It's funny, but I always avoided full DCS because of what I perceived as it being complicated and and prone to problems. I've only had small, temporary layouts, sometimes with switches.
But the remote commander, and the new DCS explorer, have been completely and totally reliable for me. If MTH had simply unlocked a few features on the app, like subway sounds, for example, I would have gladly paid for those upgrades and been very happy to stick with the Explorer forever. As it is, I'll be running one or two MTH locos going forward as I always have--via Explorer, or most likely remote commander, and subways using the transformer commands in automode. Combined with LionChief and LC+, and sometimes conventional running, this makes for a perfectly workable layout.
My only concern is my DCS Explorer dying, or the transformer controller. The hardware. Which means, I suppose, I should buy backup hardware, like an extra Explore, transformer controller and remote commander.
Pdx, I also initially avoided dcs because of some of the comments I read here. But it’s like reading restaurant reviews on Yelp - some people love it, some hate it, and the only way to tell the truth is to try it out for yourself. I’m glad I finally did 15 years ago. I’ve never had any problems with it and all my command and conventional engines run superbly, and I’m far from an electrically proficient individual. My layout is in a 10x14 foot room, has four levels, over 20 blocks and sidings, and all are connected to the tiu with excellent results. I think dcs is even better for smaller layouts like ours. The explorer doesn’t give you nearly as many features as the full dcs for subways. As a fellow subway fan, I can tell you that you don’t know what you are missing, being able to control mixed consist subway trains, easily operating station stops, programming your own out and back loops, and all the other great subway features with dcs. I regularly run seven or eight different engines at the same time on my subway themed layout and dcs really makes it work flawlessly. I have conventional tracks that run my conventional engines as well via dcs. It’s truly amazing. Ignore the noise and give it a try like I did. You’ll never look back and now that you can see that dcs has an afterlife, the decision should be even easier.