VTOL VR: T-55 "Tyro" - First Impressions
Updated: Oct 23
In the past couple of days, we got a couple of surprises in regard to additions for VTOL VR, the VR-only flight simulator. The main one, aside from a pretty sizeable update, was the release of the T-55 Tyro, the first trainer and multicrew-capable fighter available for this game.
Today we will take a look at some of the features that this small plane can offer and if it is a good fit for you and your play style!
EXTERNAL AND INTERNAL 3D MODELS
The modeling work is very much in line with the rest of models already present in VTOL VR. It looks sleek, yet the textures are very simple. This certainly aids in keeping the VRAM footprint low and the frames high, a crucial aspect for any VR game.
This doesn't mean that the models are bad, quite the contrary. The T-55 is a very well-designed aircraft that, while being fictional, manages to keep a certain sense of realism and structure that only VTOL VR has. The cockpit feels believable, and its layout flows naturally, even in the heat of combat. Props to the devs for managing to keep this trainer classy.
That being said, the T-55 does seem to be heavily inspired by the Korean FA-50 "Golden Eagle" supersonic trainer and light attack aircraft. Quite the choice, considering that this aircraft is very capable of performing both training and combat duties.
ITS PLACE IN THE GAME: A TRAINER AND A FIGHTER
In the VTOL VR "meta", the Tyro fills in a role that has not been filled yet either by a mod or any of the official aircraft: training. It excels greatly at allowing you, and your friends, to share a cockpit and delegate duties while in combat or in more relaxed scenarios. The concept of having a pilot and an instructor is nothing new, but in a game like VTOL VR, this concept shines in a different light.
I flew with my friend Golfie for a while, accompanying him in the instructor seat. To say that we had a blast would be an understatement, it was some of the best fun I've had in a VR flight sim in quite a while. It was extremely refreshing to get on the backseat and manage the systems as a team instead of being task-saturated.
Golfie focused on flying while I managed all the systems, meaning that we could both focus on our tasks a lot more as we just trusted each other. This allowed us to accomplish objectives meant for more capable aircraft in the T-55, which was something that took me by surprise. It is impressive to see how much teamwork can affect the experience in this game, something that we had already gotten a glimpse of last year with the AH-94 add-on.
A COMPLETE PACKAGE
While it really doesn't bring anything new to the table, it is fair to say that the Tyro is a very complete add-on. Aside from the aircraft, you also get access to a voice-acted campaign where you play the role of a rookie pilot flying for a small air force. You will face against a more capable adversary that will challenge you in every single way possible. This campaign's purpose is to show you what is capable with the T-55 and that, despite being a less maneuverable and capable than the rest of the aircraft in the game, it is still an extremely versatile and unique machine that could serve as your point of entry to VTOL VR and even combat flight sims as a whole!
The aircraft also has an instructor controls override system that allows the backseater to take the controls from the "trainee" at the front, a feature that is extremely useful for training scenarios where the pilot does something that puts the aircraft in danger. In such cases, the instructor can forcefully take control away from the pilot to save the aircraft. I'll admit that I used this feature to have some fun. I took the controls away from Golfie to, well, have some fun. Not only that, but I would recommend just trusting your backseater.
This aircraft is a fit for almost everyone that could be interested in VR flying, a fact that is only enhanced by its very competitive pricing and accessibility.
About the Author
Santiago "Cubeboy" Cuberos
Longtime aviation fanatic with particular preference towards military aviation and its history. Said interests date back to the early 2000 leading into his livelong dive into civil and combat flight simulators. He has been involved in a few communities, but only started being active around the mid 2010. Joined as a Spanish to English translator in 2017, he has been active as a writer and the co-founder of Skyward ever since. Twitter | Discord: Cubeboy #9034