DCS: Black Shark Image

Generally favorable reviews - based on 12 Critics What's this?

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Generally favorable reviews- based on 53 Ratings

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  • Summary: DCS: Black Shark is a PC game of the Russian Ka-50 attack helicopter and is the first title in a new Eagle Dynamics and The Fighter Collection simulation series: Digital Combat Simulator (DCS). Following Eagle Dynamics' tradition of excellence, "DCS: Black Shark" will bring an even more realistic simulation experience than its predecessor "Flaming Cliffs". DCS: Black Shark will offer an unprecedented level of realism in regards to flight dynamics, instruments modeling, avionics systems, and weapon systems. The artificial Intelligence of ground vehicles and helicopters has been improved dramatically as well as weapon modeling. A new Mission Editor includes a powerful electronic mapping system that allows user to easily create missions and campaigns. A new campaign system allows the front line of the battlefield to move back and fourth according to your mission success or failure. [Eagle Dynamics] Collapse
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 9 out of 12
  2. Negative: 0 out of 12
  1. Replay value is off the map. Steep learning curve, though.
  2. 92
    We're confident in saying that the flight simming genre has been given a second lease of life almost singlehandedly by this one developer. Kudos to Eagle Dynamics and its beautiful rendition of Kamov's deadliest chopper.
  3. There are plenty of air combat games and simulations out there, but the list of them that are truly spectacular is short, Black Shark can I feel be proudly counted as one of them.
  4. Black Shark is the perfect game for anyone who isn't scared by a thick manual and a steep learning curve. Recommended for everyone who always wanted to learn how to fly for real.
  5. 80
    If you're willing to log the necessary hours, train like a real pilot, and memorize the daunting complexities of one of the most difficult war machines every concocted, the rewards are many and the sense of authenticity will blow you away.
  6. 80
    It desperately needs a more interactive in-game tutorial system to lessen the near-vertical learning curve, but there's currently nothing else that can challenge Black Shark in the hardcore heli-sim arena.
  7. Each new product from Eagle Dynamics is one step closer to full-fledged training software, but game simulators are judged not only by their degree of realism. Eye appeal and diversity never hurt anyone.

See all 12 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 6 out of 7
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 7
  3. Negative: 1 out of 7
  1. Dec 27, 2010
    I do not normally write reviews for anything but DCS Black Shark was so good I have to tell someone. Eagle Dynamics have gone all out in simulating the Russian attack helicopter the KA-50. Black Shark is aimed specifically at the people who are hardcore flight simmers as it is simulating a single seat gunship where you do the job of both the pilot and gunner. The game allows for the level of realism to be played down but if you buy this game you clearly aren't in the mood easy street-although i do recommend starting there. However, due to a slight problem with the game not being able to un-pause for me on easy mode, I had to have it set to hardcore simulation. After several tutorials and many pages from the instructional pdf I was finally firing my first missiles at an LAV 25-with success. The game gets more and more enjoyable as you play it. Black Shark's graphics are well done but the true beauty of Black Shark is in the intense flight model and attention to detail when it comes to making this flight sim. I love this game and I fully recommend this game to anyone who is interested in a true gunship simulator. Expand
  2. Nov 1, 2012
    In my opinion still the best helicopter simulator today (2012). Even if you do not like combat, the detailed systems and damage model allows for a much more realistic experience than any civil simulator I know of. The current version is "Black Shark 2", which is not available on some platforms like Steam. The update costs roughly 20 bucks, so in most cases you should avoid to buy the old version. Expand
  3. Sep 8, 2011
    An amazing simulation that has reignited the genre. Beautifully made and a pleasure to experience. This is as real as it gets, has never been so true.
  4. [anonymous]
    Jan 5, 2010
    The best helicopter sim since Longbow 2 and the best overall sim of 2009. Yes, it does use Starforce, but not the version that installs malware on your PC. It simply uses online activation which seems to be the norm these days. The learning curve is brutal, but if you stick with it it's highly rewarding. Expand
  5. IliasS
    Jan 7, 2010
    This is one of the best sims in the market. Great graphics, great level of realism! A Combat Flight Sim fun would appreciate it 100%. It intergrates a mission/campaign editor and the community is always up to something. Starforce is a necessary evil but it caused me no problem at all! The game was at a very friendly price (28euros) given its quality. If you are a sim fun its a must buy! and if you aren't keep away since you 'll quit before even launching your first missile. Expand
  6. Jun 20, 2011
    A military-grade flight simulator available for you! That's not a marketing gimmick. It's a fact!

    A military grade, historical (important
    milestone for hardcore simulation genre) flight simulator. As a trivia I'll add that DCS Black Shark allows difficulty and realism settings customization using which user can virtually change it to an arcade game. So what it so special about DCS Black Shark?
    DCS Black Shark by Eagle Dynamics (ED) is a part of ED's planned policy of developing simulators for military and commercial (private) customers in parallel giving the private customers an opportunity to lay their hands on a product of practically the same quality as military customers. Apart from providing flight modeling, physics/damage modeling, systems modeling and replication of performance of real machines as realistically as it gets it also guarantees that ED's DCS series features only those aircrafts which the company have access to full documentation and people who professionally work around chosen aircrafts. No wild guesses and no aircrafts not actually in service. I do realize the text is not easy to read without formatting but it may be worth it. So, a 'military grade' description should said it all but here's a few additional thoughts about DCS Black Shark:

    - get to know DCS BS by starting from viewing these
    features and official site: http://www.digitalcombatsimulator.com/index.php?scr=default&end_pos=950&lang=en
    video demonstrations:
    FAQ: http://forums.eagle.ru/showthread.php?t=33527

    - people who don't like helicopters or who flown Falcon 4.0 series exclusively enjoy DCS Black Shark, started tempted by all mentioned above

    - there are videos, tracks (in-game replays) and articles presenting how some un-cut missions look like and what is to be done

    - multiplayer missions for DCS Black Shark are often populated by ongoing air battles between human controlled fighter jets due to DCS BS multiplayer compatibility with Lock On Flaming Cliffs 2

    - a system with 3.2 GHz Core 2 Duo processor, 3 GB of RAM and GF9600GT graphics card allows to play DCS Black Shark with FPS (frames per second) in 35-70 FPS range (!), when properly configured (medium to high settings)

    - DCS BS runs better on dual core processors under Windows 7 and Vista and also features a special implementation of Vertical synchronization (Vsync) which allows higher frame rates when vsync is enabled

    - DCS BS supports multi-monitor setups

    - AI controlled helicopters seem to fly almost like they were human controlled rather than being thrown around the sky by an invisible 'hand' like in most other games

    Believe me, there's a lot more! I just don't feel like writing essays :) Issues:
    The most serious one I've found during over a year of playing is wingmen AI. They have to be commanded in a really strict and involving manner to keep them alive with us.
  7. KarlL
    Aug 9, 2009
    Paid $80 for this. Starforce wont accept my cd key. I cant play the game, And the store wont accept returns. I'd advise against buying this game, because there is a good chance your just going to be ripped off. Expand