The Story of the Mirage F1 in the SAAF
Author: Dick Lord
Reviewed By: Dean Wingrin
The original Vlamgat book has all but been sold out and the publisher no longer longer exists. As there was still a strong demand for the book, the author got together with Combat360 Productions and decided to release an update as an electronic ebook.
However, let the publisher tell about it directly: 'This multimedia CD is (in) essence about the book Vlamgat, and after some serious consideration, we tried to 'reproduce' Vlamgat as close to the original printed version as possible. Sure we could have included as many 'fancy' effects, video clips, etc. in the book itself, but at the end of the day it is a classic book that is going to require proper reading, with as little distraction as possible.
Instead, we added a collection of whatever material we could find on the Mirage F1 (including a complete F1AZ flight manual!!!) to try and capture the spirit of this great great aircraft in virtual space."
Thus, I'm not going to review the contents of the book (it was previously reviewed here). So what does the CD deliver?
- The Vlamgat 2005 e-book (Actually the book in .pdf Acrobat Reader format)
- Additional colour photographs
- Audio introduction by the author (The author reading the written introduction)
- Farewell to the Mirage F1AZ video
- Video clips of the Mirage F1 in action
- Additional previously unreleased material by the author
- History of the Mirage F1 in the SAAF
- Original Mirage F1AZ Flight Manual with SAAF updates
- Over 90 extra pages written by General Rafael de Pino, commander of the
Cuban Air Force in Angola during the conflict about the (early) days in Angola.
- Cuban pilot lists
- Vlamgat screensaver
- Preview of the up and coming 'Angolan Theatre' simulator project for Falcon 4.0
Although I could not find the promised additional unreleased information by the author (it could very well have been included in the various reference section categories), there is some nice additional reference material (much of which is provided by the IPMS SA website). This Reference section includes a background on the Mirage F1, retirement from the SAAF, Mirage F1 ordinance and a real gem ... the complete SAAF Mirage F1AZ Flight Manual!
The video on the retirement of the Mirage F1AZ was produced by SAAF TV and it covers the introduction of the Mirage F1s into the SAAF as well as the development of the Super Mirage with the SMR95 engine. Other videos are a SAAF TV Mirage F1 special report and an incredible French video with some absolutely awesome low flying displays (accompanied by rock music... must be played loud to fully appreciate the freedom of low flying). It is very important that you have the correct codecs to play the videos (these ar eincluded on the CD).
If you have not yet got the paper book, then purchase the CD today! Even if you have the paper book, this CD is still well worth getting, particularly for General Rafael de Pino's memoirs of his setting up of the Cuban airforce in Angola in the early 1970's and the first few years of operations, as well as the F1AZ flight manual.
System requirements are: Pentium 300 MHz, 32Mb RAM, 24x CD-ROM drive, Media Player 9+, Direct X 8.1, Adobe Acrobat Reader (Acrobat Reader v6 and Windows Media Player 10 and codecs are included free on the CD).
The Vlamgat CD may be purchased online at The Airforce Shop.