Spotting Distance... again - Page 15 - ED Forums


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Old 03-18-2019, 01:00 PM   #141
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Originally Posted by Cake View Post
You sir, have hit the nail squarely on the head.

There are two potential issues when simulating spotting. The first is not being able to spot when you should, if you looked at the correct area for a target but couldn't see it. The second is being able to see targets in the sim that would be impossible to see in real life.

So, if it HAS to be one or the other, which problem is worse?

I fly for a living and while I had 20-10 eyesight for much of my youth, it's not that good anymore. I can still spot a large fighter at up to 10 miles. For example, not that long ago I spotted two F-15s on an intercept at 9 miles beam aspect to me. They were easy to spot because they were descending to engage a target so there was a lot of relative movement. From this distance I could even recognize the type as soon as they rolled into a steep bank. If ATC hadn't given me a vector I probably would have never scanned my 3 o'clock so closely and spotted them.

20-20 vision is way below average for fighter pilots. I remember seeing an interview of an Israeli ace who explained part of his success in being able to spot enemy fighters at up to 25 miles, when most of his fellow pilots would't see the same aircraft until 10 miles. He probably had 20-6 or better vision.

I personally think the problem of not being able to see stuff that should be obvious to a fighter pilot's eyes that are in fact looking in the correct direction - remains a huge issue in DCS. It's clearly a problem to many here, and trying to explain it away as "spotting is difficult" doesn't do it justice.

Sim pilots face enough difficulties with the man to machine interface, like trying to hold a mouse cursor over a knob and spin it while flying the airfraft with a stick that feels nothing like the real thing and usually offers no feedback. It's generally easier in a real cockpit, minus the weather, physical demands, and other risks. Flying sims well is enough of a challenge with controls that
can never approximate the feel of the real thing. Given these challenges, it's a little unfair to make spotting so much harder than it is in RL. it would be better to make sure "simmers" see everything a virtual Chuck Yeager would have seen than to make it impossible for a large segment of our base to struggle so much. "Tricks or cheats" really are the lesser of two evils. So, if Jester says, MiG-21 2 o'oclock high and you look in the right section of sky, it SHOULD BE somewhat easy to spot it when you look in that area.

In RL, aircraft to be spotted are IN FACT VISIBLE whenever the atmosphere and weather do not obstruct them. The question is individual, are your eyes good enough to acquire it? Nineline is right in saying that spotting aircraft is hard in RL. It isn't impossible though, I know what my 20-20 vision in real life can spot. How does DCS compare? I'd say in RL I can spot stuff at four times the distance I can in DCS, so flying DCS makes me feel like I have 20-80 or 20-100 vision. Not the feeling I want.

The thing that sparked this thread was the F-14 air to air training. I did these missions on my somewhat high end system with RIFT. I had jester start a STT on a MiG23 and visually acquired the MiG in the HUD diamond at something like 8 or 9 miles. After closing passed something like six miles, the MiG vanished (without changing aspect) from inside the diamond, only to reappear around two miles. This is silly and completely diminished the experience. The F-5s were almost impossible to spot, despite Jester telling me they were dead ahead. Any trick or cheat would be vastly superior to this. I love the RIFT, but man, it's hard to see another fighter taking taxiing onto the runway from the same airport at less than half a mile away......

I think our DCS programmers are talented enough to come up with a solution that makes everyone happy. It just needs to be made a high priority.
A most interesting read from a RL pilot, so Cake thank you very much for your input. Personally I do not think more needs to be said.
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Old 03-18-2019, 01:35 PM   #142
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Yeah that post really takes the cake
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Old 03-18-2019, 02:05 PM   #143
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Originally Posted by Tippis View Post
A maths-only solution needs to be ditched because it breaks things both at the very extreme and the very short range, and should be replace with an actual simulation of perception and a techniques to normalise all visual cues across all kinds of different hardware.
Math isn’t subjective whereas “actual simulation of perception” has no firm definition. Mathematical perspective is straightforward to implement and not subject to debate. There’s no way to get a consensus on what “actual simulation of perception” is.

Originally Posted by Tippis View Post
The problem is that spotting with sensors is tied in to visual spotting, somehow. If it is easer to spot visually, it is also easier to pick up on sensors so not only do some people gain the advantage of having targets be easier to spot, but also easier to detect and lock up. This is not an acceptable state of affairs.
If this is really true please post a link.

Originally Posted by Tippis View Post
More to the point, other games can do this because they do not have the unfortunate technical debt that DCS apparently has
Other games aren’t relevant here, this is a DCS discussion. You know the rules. And if you’re asking for “smart scaling” like that “other game” it’s already been stated by Wags that DCS can’t do this.

Originally Posted by bell_rj View Post
Most comments I have read talk about spotting issues in the near to middle distance, not at long range. 30 mile unit spotting would indeed be a little excessive!
That’s the result of turning down your resolution and turning off AA. That’s exactly what you’ll get, the ability to see specks on the horizon at 30 miles but spoil your ability to see closer objects.

Originally Posted by Cake View Post
I love the RIFT, but man, it's hard to see another fighter taking taxiing onto the runway from the same airport at less than half a mile away......
As if this subject wasn’t complicated enough, VR is another problem entirely. The current headsets just don’t have a high enough resolution. I don’t think there is a solution for that from ED that wouldn’t break spotting on all the other devices. VR and graphics hardware that can support higher resolutions in 3D just need to evolve more before VR is really ready for flight sims like this.
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Last edited by SharpeXB; 03-18-2019 at 02:23 PM.
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