Linux Air Combat

Linux Air Combat

LINUX AIR COMBAT is a free, open-source combat flight simulator developed by for the LINUX community. Its roots came from the well-known "classic" flight game known as "GL-117", but this new incarnation has been extensively re-written and improved.

LINUX AIR COMBAT is also known as "LAC".


  • Free and open source distribution. The clean source code compiles without modification on major LINUX distros
  • Very smooth, simple, high-performance graphics yield high frame rates even on modest computer hardware
  • 45 flight/view functions can be mapped to any detected joystick axis, button, or keyboard key
  • Modern, multi-axis analog/digital joysticks support precision control of elevators, ailerons, rudder, throttle, etc.
  • Mouse control of elevators, ailerons, and weapons for those lacking a joystick
  • A growing list of World War II aircraft (now 25 different flyable aircraft)
  • A theoretical Jet fighter with performance similar to the General Dynamics F16
  • Industry-standard "Air Warrior" style viewsystem is easily configurable for other view options
  • Sophisticated flight model with stalls, high-speed compressibility, high-G blackouts, and redouts
  • Realistic high-altitude degredation of engine performance
  • Fuel consumption is proportional to engine load including WEP/Afterburner effects
  • Flight performance is degraded when lugging heavy bombs, missiles, or rockets
  • Flight performance is degraded when aircraft are damaged
  • Simulated RADAR to help locate opponents
  • Simulated IFF to help Identify Friend verses Foe
  • Guns combat
  • WW2-era Air-to-Ground rockets
  • WW2-era bombs
  • Missile combat (only when flying jets)
  • Flares and Chaff operable as missile countermeasures
  • Free flight mission
  • Four tutorial missions with detailed audio narration to help beginners get a quick start
  • Five Offline combat missions
  • Online "Head to Head" mission suitable for air racing or combat (2 players only. No server required.)
  • Free, high performance Linux Air Combat Server is now available at
  • Three distinct, ten-player Internet missions in various terrains, with strategic airfield combat (Internet and access to LAC Server required)
  • User-loadable graphic aircraft models support the free, open, well-known ".3ds" format
  • User-loadable background music, sound effects, and narration files support industry-standard ".wav" format
  • "Talking Cockpit" can verbalize target location so you can hear it without diverting your eyes
  • Innovative "Network Router Panel" on cockpit shows network telemetry and comms data flow from other players
  • Best-of-breed network user management with interplayer status messages on the cockpit panel
  • Powerful integration with "Mumble" for world-class voice communication between players
  • Dedicated Mumble server manages a rich heirarchy of voice radio channels and online help
  • 16 Comms-related functions can be mapped to any keyboard key
  • Airfields with defensive guns challenge nearby opponents and protect nearby allied aircraft
  • Airfield defenses can be damaged and degraded with bombs, rockets, missiles, and/or machine guns
  • Damaged airfield defenses are gradually repaired by surviving airfield maintenance personnel
  • Bombers have autogunners that take shots at nearby hostile fighters
  • "Norden" bombsight emulation makes precision, medium or high altitude bombing possible
  • Realistic bomber climb rates: Heavily loaded bombers need a long time to climb to altitudes high enough to avoid fighters
  • Realistic bomb-run tactics make heavy bombers vulnerable to opposing fighters during critical mission segments
  • Heavy bombers can destroy an airfield in a single sortie if well flown and undamaged by opposing fighters
  • In active development and subject to frequent improvements
  • Minimum system requirements: 

    Running Linux Air Combat requires desktop Linux supporting all of the usual and customary OpenGL and SDL run-time libraries. Specifically, like most desktop LINUX systems, yours should have all of these:

  • libfreeglut3
  • libSDL1.2_0
  • libSDL_mixer1.2_0
  • libmesaglu1
  • libmesa
  • If your LINUX system is typical, you will need to compile LINUX AIR COMBAT from the free source code (the well-organized source code makes this very easy, even for non-programmers). In addition to the prerequisites listed above, you will also need gcc (almost always present), and all of these tools and libraries, which are generally NOT preinstalled in most major LINUX desktop distributions:

  • gcc-c++
  • Code::Blocks
  • Libfreeglut-devel
  • libSDL-devel
  • libSDL_mixer-devel
  • Experienced LINUX users will recognize all of these as well-known LINUX components. For most of the popular LINUX desktop distributions, every one of these components will be freely available through the usual and customary means, using free package managers. If you have a good Internet connection, you should be able to get everything within 5 or 10 minutes and with just a few mouse clicks.

    Developer: Robert Bosen
    See also: