Just Flight® / Aeroplane Heaven® DH-98 Mosquito
by John Allard
Considering all the British aircraft types of WWII, the DH-98 Mosquito ranks in the top tier in recognition and remembrance and in the level of reverence with which it is held. It is overshadowed only slightly, perhaps, by the Spitfire and Lancaster; only one other type may possibly be able to lay claim to a place with those three, the Hurricane. These four stand as the epitome of British military aviation during the war years. Of them, the Mosquito is unique – unconventional to the point of being almost a radical departure, if not in appearance, then at least in concept and in construction.
Near Dover, Bound for France
I was fortunate enough to be included as a
beta tester for the Just Flight – Aeroplane Heaven incarnation of this legendary
and evocative Warbird. You’ll have to take me at my word on that. I’m sure that
the publishers simply overlooked the fact that the testers were not credited in
the manual - these things happen. When the good Mutley suggested a Mosquito
review here, I jumped at the chance to fly it some more.
Just Flight have recently released this very good package in both download and DVD form. It comes in three pieces, the base pack and two add-ons. The latter are so cheap that no one should hesitate.
This release is a full-featured, dual-sim package – it is compatible with FSX and also with FS9, just for the benefit of those of us who still cling to that older version for the sheer defiance of being able to run with the sliders all the way up.
The list of features and animations is long and impressive. I won’t list them verbatim, but you can check out JF’s Mosquito page HERE Most of those noted features bear up well in actual use.
The base package, at 14.99 GBP or $29.99 USD, includes three types and four variants. They are the B (Bomber) Mk IV, the FB (Fighter-Bomber) Mk VI and the FB Mk XVIII Tsetse with its under-slung flak gun - a novel beast to be sure.
The add-on packs are called Mosquito Special Ops - Upgrade Pack A and
Mosquito Photo-Recon & Radar - Upgrade Pack B. These go for a paltry 4.99 GBP or $9.99 USD each.
The Special Ops Pack contains some additional
liveries for the types in the Base Pack, but mainly features some of the
oddities of the Mossie lineage; two with a bulged bomb-bay – one each with and
without a glazed nose; a “civilian” version, operated by BOAC during the war
carrying high value cargo, including people at times, between Britain and other
places, including certain neutral countries; a “Highball” version that was to
carry spinning skip-bombs, a lį the Dambusters, but against naval targets. In a
confusing twist, this pack also contains some additional liveries for some of
the models in the other add-on pack. So – pay attention here – in Pack A you get
some unique types but also some additional liveries for the Base Pack and for
Pack B. I must have missed that in Marketing class – oh, I never took Marketing,
but if you think that’s novel, just wait.
The other add-on, the Photo-recon and Radar pack has four additional model types which include a torpedo-carrying naval version with a tail hook. It also has two new liveries for the Base Pack and one new model for the Special Ops Pack. I tried to diagram the relationship between the three packages, but it broke Photoshop. OK, not really, but just buy all three. It’s worth it just to avoid having to figure out what you really get if you only buy one or two of them.
For the more war-like amongst us, most of the
weapons functionality works up to the limits of FS to model them. The bombsight
in the bomber versions has several working widgets and functions properly.
Ordnance noise, smoke and gun flashes are modelled as well. When open, the
bomb-bay doors reveal interior details and the appropriate weapons load outs.