Pizzagalli X-Plane Super Etendard Modernise
By Alan Ashforth
The Dassault-Breguet Super Etendard isa French carrier-borne strike fighter aircraft designed byDassault-Breguet for service with the French Navy.
The aircraft is an advanced development of the Etendard IVM, whichit replaced. The Super Etendard first flew in October 1974 and enteredFrench service in June 1978. French Super Etendards have served inseveral conflicts such as the Kosovo war, the war in Afghanistan andthe military intervention in Libya.
The Super Etendard was also operated by Iraq (on a temporary lease)and Argentina, which both deployed the aircraft duringwartime. Argentina's use of the Super Etendard and the Exocet missileduring the 1982 Falklands War led to the aircraft gaining considerablepopular recognition. The Super Etendard was used by Iraq to attack oiltankers and merchant shipping in the Persian Gulf during the Iraq-IranWar. In French service, the Super Etendard was replaced by theDassault Rafale in 2016.
From 1991, the original pure attack Etendard IVMs were withdrawnfrom French service; though the reconnaissance version of the EtendardIV, the IVP, remained in service until July 2000. In response, theSuper Etendards underwent a series of upgrades throughout the 1990s toadd new capabilities and update existing systems for use in the modernbattlefield, designated Super Etendard Modernise (SEM), and this isthe model produced by Pizzagalli as freeware.
I really enjoy Pizzagalli's payware aircraft, and this freewareoffering has the same qualities I have come to expect fromhim. Accurate modelling, good frame-rates, great choice of models anda nicely designed cockpit/panel and controls.
I downloaded my copy of the Super Etendard from the store and oncedone, it was a simple case of extracting the zip (139 MB in size) andcopying the folder over to my X-Plane "Aircraft" directory.
Included in the package is a detailed and full color 10-page PDFfile which provides information on the cockpit controls, plus theexternal parts of the aircraft. For a freeware model, this is a nicebonus.
The current aircraft package comes with two liveries (French navyblue, and grey camo), both excellent quality with just the rightamount of shine and detail. There is also a nicely detailedundercarriage and cockpit adding to the effect. The model hasunderbody airbrakes and two position flaps, along with an option forthe undercarriage to be either manually controlled or automatic. Thecanopy is also animated and is controlled from a lever on theright-hand side of the cockpit. The same is for the tail hook, whichis controlled this time, on the left-hand side of the panel.
The cockpit is done well, with mostly steam gauges which arecorrect for this period (1970-90s). Though not all the switches work,all the important ones do, and this provides enough functionality toreally enjoy flying the plane. The texture in the cockpit is a darkmottled effect. In the center panel the designer has made two smallG1000 panels available, and when clicked on, they pop out for ease ofuse. It has a basic HUD which is useful for carrier landings and has auseful feature which shows the point where you are currently going toland.
This aircraft comes with a very nice sounding FMOD sound package,which greatly adds to the emersion. As you pan the camera around theoutside of the aircraft, the FMOD provides different sounds dependingon how close to the engine you are. Also, when in the cockpit andlooking left and right, you'll hear the different engine sounds too,which makes the flying experience much more realistic.
The flight model, like on all Pizzagalli's aircraft, is excellent,and a joy to fly. The rolls and turns feel just right for an attackaircraft; not as fast turning as a fighter, but not sluggisheither. In other words, just right.
The weapons are another nice feature and work extremely well. TheMatra Magic AA missiles lock on and track very accurately, as does thefamous Exocet when hitting ship targets. Even the SNEB rockets workproperly (which had been broken for years), and this was due to arequest from Pizzagalli, asking Laminar Research for a fix. Well, theX-Plane team managed to do just that! A great result by allconcerned.
In summing up, I would say this is a payware quality aircraft byPizzagalli, and a real gift to the X-Plane community.
The great thing about this freeware aircraft, is that it is acomplete package from an experienced designer and modeller.
This is an aircraft I feel a great many X-Plane users willenjoy...I know I did.
Get the pizzagalli.ch - SEM Super Etendard Modernis For X-Plane at the FlightSim.Com Store
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