Instinct Technology (a company which specializes in tool development for games) created a pretty amazing NVIDIA graphics demo of a large scale dogfight with
1024 4000+ (!) all Fokker (?) aircraft flying around. There are only 16 actual AI aircraft, but somehow they are mirrored 64 times to create this crazy scene. Sure, it's not historically realistic, but I'm not sure that's their goal. It looks like they just wanted to push the limits to demonstrate a large scale fight scene. Interesting choice of aircraft and environment in a market with few WWI sims.
So this post is for all the nay-sayers who thought it couldn't be done! :) Still, it's technically only 16 AI pilots, but this shows beyond a doubt there are ways of giving the impression that each aircraft is autonomous. Arcadey? Sure! But using the same concepts one could conceivably apply the same technique to super-realistic flight sims. Not that you would necessarily want to (there's plenty of the anti-furball croud to vouch for that).
(via Ming at SimHQ)
(edit: fixed the video link & some description. Thanks to Aaron Donaghey at Dark Water Studios)