Note: this is an EXE installer that creates shared texture folders and adds paths to your autoexec.cfg.
A-4E: US Navy Attack Squadron 72 (VA-72) "Blue Hawks"
for DCS World with the A-4E Community Mod installed
This skin pack includes a CAG and line brid with VA-72 markings circa 1965.
VA-72 was commissioned in 1945 as Bomber Fighter Squadron 18 (VBF-18) and flew the F6F Hellcat. In 1948, the squadron was redesignated Attack Squadron 72 (VA-72), where it flew the F8F Bearcat for until 1950, when it transitioned to the F9F Panther. In 1956, VA-72 transitioned to the A-4 Skyhawk, and then in 1970 to the A-7 Corsair II, which it flew until the squadron's decommissioning in 1991.
During its 41 years, the Blue Hawks participated in many conflicts. In 1965 while flying the A-4E in Vietnam, VA-72 led the first successful strike against a SA-2 site. VA-72 also participated in the Gulf of Sidra Freedom of Navigation exercises (during the timeframe USN F-14s shot down two Libyan MiG-23s), and later participated as SEAD in Operation: El Dorado Canyon, the strike on Libyan targets in response to the bombing of a Berlin Discotheque.
In 1990 and 1991, VA-72 participated in Operations Desert Shield and Desert Storm, including the first strike against targets in Baghdad. To put a bow on a distinguished history, VA-72 participated in the last naval air strike of the war, a war in which they flew 362 sorties without losing any aircraft or aviators.
For Compact Installations - A Note About Autoexec.cfg:
Rather than copying texture files to their respective livery folders, I prefer to use a series of common texture folders along with unique filenames. This allows a single instance of many of my common textures, and keeps the hard drive footprint to a minimum (especially nice if you run a SSD for your system drive).
The installer will add a series of folders to the DCS Texture path; if you do not have these folders created, then it is no problem. The autoexec.cfg included will automatically point to the Texture folder in your Saved Games\DCS folder, and regardless of whether you run the Open Alpha, Open Beta, or Release version of DCS, the path will always point to your Saved Games\DCS\Texture folder. Again, this saves space on your hard drive.
If you use your own Autoexec.cfg, then when prompted to overwrite you can click "no". This will create a file called autoexec.new, and you can manually make the updates as you like. Just don't modify the top line with the file date; this is used by the installer for version control. However, feel free to include it in your existing autoexec.cfg, so you don't get prompted to overwrite until there's another update to the autoexec.cfg.
If you inadvertently overwrite your autoexec.cfg, it is actually backed up as autoexec.old. Just open it and copy the appropriate information to the new file.
For Traditional Installations or JSGME Compatible Extractions:
If you don't wish to use the shared texture folder and custom autoexec.cfg, you have a couple of other options available. Selecting the Traditional Install copies all textures to each livery folder, then copies each livery to each version of DCS detected (up to three versions, including release, open alpha and open beta). As a result, the listed hard disk space requirement assumes all three DCS versions are installled. Each skin is independent and portable.
If you wish to install to a location other than your Saved Games folder, you must select the Single JSGME Extraction, or else the installation will fail for not detecting existing Saved Games\DCS folders. Selecting this option will create a JSGME compatible install that can be dropped directly into your JSGME _MODS folder for installation. Each skin is independent and portable.
For either of these installation options, if there is an issue with textures not displaying, then it is likely a problem with the installer. Please let me know what textures are missing so that I can troubleshoot the issue.
1.00 Initial Release
Special thanks to Gospadin (RIP), Gyrovague, Plusnine, Kryb/Archimaede, Merker, Jones, Farlander, and Dr. Manius for the outstanding A-4E Community mod.
If you have any squadron requests, please PM me. If possible, provide top and profile views of the aircraft, preferably line art (much easier to extract color), and for CAG/CO birds, a close up of the tail fin is greatly appreciated.
You are free to use any of these skins in other projects as long as proper credit is provided in the readme file.