Note: this is an EXE installer that creates shared texture folders and adds paths to your autoexec.cfg.
The Marine Expeditionary Unit (MEU) is a deployable, quick reaction air-ground task force of the United States Marine Corps (USMC) that includes both a battalion sized ground and support force as well as a group sized composite air component. The air assets are pulled from various stateside Marine squadrons and take on the squadron name and tail code of the medium lift squadron (formerly the CH-46 helicopter squadron, now the V-22 tiltrotor squadron), and the medium lift squadron is designated as "Reinforced" (e.g. "VMM-263 (Rein)"). Among the helicopter assets in the MEU are the UH-1N Huey (now the UH-1Y Venom) and the AH-1W Super Cobra or AH-1Z Viper, themselves taken from composite Marine Light Attack Helicopter (HMLA) squadrons.
Since the HMLA assets that comprise the Light Utility/Attack portion of the MEU are "on loan" to the medium lift squadron, they tend to paint their aircraft strictly to regulation, applying the tail code and modex (side number), painting over their own squadron insignia but not taking on the insignia of their host squadron. This may make for less interesting aircraft, but it makes for very easy skinning. As a result, I was able to create tails of each Reinforced HMM/VMM squadron that has deployed in a MEU, as well as modexes 30-47 (3x and 4x are normally the modexes used for HMLA assets in a MEU with one range for the UH-1 and the other for the AH-1). All of this allows for 168 separate combinations realistically representing the UH-1s that have deployed over the past 20 years, all with a minimum of textures. This allows the mission editor to create larger scale missions with unique skins for the UH-1 while keeping the texture overhead to a minimum, and allowing for realism at the same time!
Each of the Hueys in the reinforced squadrons use the proper modexes in their proper timeframes (with possible exceptions of a single isolated deployment or detachment during the timeframe), and where a reinforced squadron's UH-1 modex has shifted fr om 3x to 4x, a separate timeframe has been indicated in the skin name. In these instances, the skins spanning only the 1990s will feature Marines in green flightgear with all other skins featuring Marines in desert gear.
The following reinforced medium lift squadrons are represented (HMM are helicopter squadrons, H/VMM indicates both HMM and VMM tiltrotor squadrons):
HMM-161 (Rein) Greyhawks
HMM-162 (Rein) Golden Eagles
HMM-163 (Rein) Ridge Runners (aka Evil Eyes)
HMM-164 (Rein) Knightriders
H/VMM-165 (Rein) White Knights
H/VMM-166 (Rein) Sea Elk
H/VMM-261 (Rein) Raging Bulls
HMM-262 (Rein) Flying Tigers
H/VMM-263 (Rein) Thunder Eagles
HMM-264 (Rein) Black Knights
H/VMM-266 (Rein) Fighting Griffins
HMM-268 (Rein) Red Dragons
HMM-364 (Rein) Purple Foxes
HMM-365 (Rein) Blue Knights
This skin pack is intended to provide a lot of variations in skins while minimizing textures and VRAM usage. The option of installing textures to the livery folders is available, with 168 variants at 22Mb per skin the resultant footprint defeats an intended purpose of this skin pack. If you do wish to use one of the non-compact installation options, I recommend doing a JSGME package and then selecting the squadrons you want for your missions.
A note about the Crew Chief & Door Gunner:
Since enlisted US troops don't wear rank/rate insignia on flightsuits, their rank/rate is displayed on their nametag. Since there are no specific nametag textures for the crew chief/door gunner texture, I have added a nametag to the velcro on the chest armor (as is standard practice).
In choosing names for the texture, I opted for US servicemembers who received the Medal of Honor. CPL Jason Dunham represents the Unites States Marine Corps in these skins. The following is his Medal of Honor citation:
For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty while serving as Rifle Squad Leader, 4th Platoon, Company K, Third Battalion, Seventh Marines (Reinforced), Regimental Combat Team 7, First Marine Division (Reinforced), on 14 April 2004. Corporal Dunham's squad was conducting a reconnaissance mission in the town of Karabilah, Iraq, when they heard rocket-propelled grenade and small arms fire erupt approximately two kilometers to the west. Corporal Dunham led his Combined Anti-Armor Team towards the engagement to provide fire support to their Battalion Commander's convoy, which had been ambushed as it was traveling to Camp Husaybah. As Corporal Dunham and his Marines advanced, they quickly began to receive enemy fire. Corporal Dunham ordered his squad to dismount their vehicles and led one of his fire teams on foot several blocks south of the ambushed convoy. Discovering seven Iraqi vehicles in a column attempting to depart, Corporal Dunham and his team stopped the vehicles to search them for weapons. As they approached the vehicles, an insurgent leaped out and attacked Corporal Dunham. Corporal Dunham wrestled the insurgent to the ground and in the ensuing struggle saw the insurgent release a grenade. Corporal Dunham immediately alerted his fellow Marines to the threat. Aware of the imminent danger and without hesitation, Corporal Dunham covered the grenade with his helmet and body, bearing the brunt of the explosion and shielding his Marines from the blast. In an ultimate and selfless act of bravery in which he was mortally wounded, he saved the lives of at least two fellow Marines. By his undaunted courage, intrepid fighting spirit, and unwavering devotion to duty, Corporal Dunham gallantly gave his life for his country, thereby reflecting great credit upon himself and upholding the highest traditions of the Marine Corps and the United States Naval Service.
CPL Dunham is also the namesake of the USS Jason Dunham (DDG-109), the Marine Corps Security Force barracks in Kings Bay, GA, and Crucible stations at both MCRD Parris Island and MCRD San Diego.
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 Release, Open Beta, or Legacy 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, legacy 1.5, 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.
1.0 Initial Release for DCS World 1.2.7
1.1 Added "slick" specific textures
Added Light Compass Grey weapons hardpoints
1.11 Applied desert boots to USMC troops.
1.13 Minor Texture Updates
1.13a Updated naming convention
1.20 Fixed left door gunner texture
Added USAF Adversaries to available nations
Updated installer for DCS 2.5 and DCS Legacy 1.5
Special thanks to upuaut for assistance with the more "exotic" material names, as well as the assistance with custom rotor colors.
You are free to use any of the textures in other skins or projects as long as proper credit is provided in the readme file.