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I really hope that HB doesn't think they have to model all the differences between each ship in the class or do USS Forrestal only. Sometimes perfect is the enemy of good enough.

 

I do strongly suggest that they just switch the name and the number between all 4 members of the class. Not having Saratoga, Ranger or Independence because some different mast arrangement would be a big and senseless loss. There are probably only a hand full of people that would ever notice such details (I might be one of them) and this is a flight sim after all. Having all the significant names of the class is much more important.

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Hey guys, The forrestal and the Viggen out of EA are our two top priorities right now. More info ASAP on all of these items!

We're working on a final art pass/overhaul on the Forrestal. We're just not happy with the level of detail and accuracy as it was in the state about a month ago.    I'll quote myself from ho

Just a quick update on this front; we are preparing to launch our major F-14 patch and hopefully that will be wrapped together with a proper update on the Forrestal which will then be our target relea

The reason why I want all 4 ships or at least liveries for them, is for realistic campaigns like Vietnam operations where there where more than one carrier or a given class in the gulf of Tonkin for example during line backer USS Kitty Hawk and USS Constellation both in the same class where both operating in the gulf at the same time, regardless it’s nice to see more than just the Forestall in DCS to allow for diversity of carriers and realism for the sake of the Carrier name matching the carrier name on the aircraft the operate from her deck. 

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I went looking around the f-14’s files today originally looking for something else regarding the Supercarrier for a mod, and I stumbled upon 4 in the f-14s Coremods or mods folder (can’t remember which one) and 2 of the files where the F-14A and F-14B Cfg/entry files the other two was the Entry file for the USS Forestal and USS Saratoga, I think I found these in the “Entry” Folder (or something along the lines of that) ether in the Coremods or Mods section I think the mods section in the Eagledynamics core install, I’ll post some screenshots tomorrow when I get the chance but it seems we’ll be getting The Forestal And Saratoga.

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20 hours ago, MBot said:

I really hope that HB doesn't think they have to model all the differences between each ship in the class or do USS Forrestal only. Sometimes perfect is the enemy of good enough.

 

I do strongly suggest that they just switch the name and the number between all 4 members of the class. Not having Saratoga, Ranger or Independence because some different mast arrangement would be a big and senseless loss. There are probably only a hand full of people that would ever notice such details (I might be one of them) and this is a flight sim after all. Having all the significant names of the class is much more important.

Those reasons are very obvious to a lot of people. I wanted all four as well but I'm glad that we won't get the painted over Honda Accord effect. To just swap the numbers and paint like a livery would be cheap and blasphemous TBH!

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3 hours ago, Jackjack171 said:

Those reasons are very obvious to a lot of people. I wanted all four as well but I'm glad that we won't get the painted over Honda Accord effect. To just swap the numbers and paint like a livery would be cheap and blasphemous TBH!

 

Genuine question: You would prefer to not have Saratoga at all versus having a Saratoga with some incorrect masts or antennas? Because HB current plan as far as we know is doing only USS Forrestal.

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6 hours ago, MBot said:

 

Genuine question: You would prefer to not have Saratoga at all versus having a Saratoga with some incorrect masts or antennas? Because HB current plan as far as we know is doing only USS Forrestal.

Honestly brother, I'd rather it look right than not at all. There are little more than mast and antenna when you reference these ships. I'm a Flight Deck guy. And most ship guys can tell the difference. The deck configurations are slightly different. In DCS, CVN 71-75 work because those ships are VERY similar. CVN 68-69 are very similar to each other but sort of different from the rest. But you can't take CVN-68 and swap out the numbers and make her -75. I mean, you could but it wouldn't look right. And now you have a Franken ship!  I don't expect everyone to get it or care. But for those of us that know, it would probably be an eyesore. And then you would have people calling it out and bashing the Devs for not getting it right! I don't bash, but that's just me.

I'm ok with just the Forrestal! Do it right or don't do it at all!

 

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I certainly understand where you're coming from Jack, especially since you served aboard her as a "flight deck guy", but the fact is, the vast majority of the customers in DCS didn't serve aboard a Fofrestal class carrier, as a deck ape or any other rate for that matter. Add to that, the certainty that over a 30+ year career, the ship underwent several modifications/improvements that probably changed her appearance significantly. As a mission builder, it has always been a mild irritant to me that (prior to the SC) there was only one carrier to place in a mission. Sure you can change the name but in game it remained the John C Stennis. Now we have the 4 super carriers and life is good. The problem remains with the Tarawa. The solution is so simple. Look at what they did for the Arleigh Burke, Ticondaroga and Perry. You have a rather large selection of names you can assign to these ships after putting them into a mission, which actually changes their identity within the game. Now I am certain that there are many sailors that served on several of those ships that will say DCS got it all wrong but it is such a small portion of their customer base and the benefit is far greater for the whole. I would never advocate for leaving the Sara out of DCS world just because it wasn't absolutely 100% accurate, because the fact is, you could only achieve that by nailing down a specific time period for which it was modeled. With that mindset, one might argue that you should only be permitted to assign specific aircraft types and only from specific air wings. How detailed do you want to get? Like I said, I understand where you're coming from but try to see it from another side. I love the realism, the accuracy in the models and all but for such a relatively small difference in details between ships, we could have several of those beauties instead of just one. And regardless of how either you or I feel about it, in the end, it's up to HeatBlur anyway. 😀

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3 hours ago, AG-51_Razor said:

I certainly understand where you're coming from Jack, especially since you served aboard her as a "flight deck guy", but the fact is, the vast majority of the customers in DCS didn't serve aboard a Fofrestal class carrier, as a deck ape or any other rate for that matter. Add to that, the certainty that over a 30+ year career, the ship underwent several modifications/improvements that probably changed her appearance significantly. As a mission builder, it has always been a mild irritant to me that (prior to the SC) there was only one carrier to place in a mission. Sure you can change the name but in game it remained the John C Stennis. Now we have the 4 super carriers and life is good. The problem remains with the Tarawa. The solution is so simple. Look at what they did for the Arleigh Burke, Ticondaroga and Perry. You have a rather large selection of names you can assign to these ships after putting them into a mission, which actually changes their identity within the game. Now I am certain that there are many sailors that served on several of those ships that will say DCS got it all wrong but it is such a small portion of their customer base and the benefit is far greater for the whole. I would never advocate for leaving the Sara out of DCS world just because it wasn't absolutely 100% accurate, because the fact is, you could only achieve that by nailing down a specific time period for which it was modeled. With that mindset, one might argue that you should only be permitted to assign specific aircraft types and only from specific air wings. How detailed do you want to get? Like I said, I understand where you're coming from but try to see it from another side. I love the realism, the accuracy in the models and all but for such a relatively small difference in details between ships, we could have several of those beauties instead of just one. And regardless of how either you or I feel about it, in the end, it's up to HeatBlur anyway. 😀

I see your point as well. Also, I've never served aboard her; way before my time. But I am a student of history and warfare as are many others. The differences are as clear as the day is bright! Since DCS is the place to "get it right" instead of making Frankenstein modules, my stance is still the same. Yes, it is up to Heatblur on which direction they go. It looks like it's the right one from what I see, but that's my thing. And I'm sure some hard charging livery maker will go crazy if they only produce the Forrestal. And then you will have exactly what you were asking for. So it looks like a win-win. Only time will tell!

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At the same time, good enough is the enemy of "do it right". Case in point, to many our existing Tomcat model is more than good enough, until you spend some time actually looking at it closely. Which is why there's now a pile of things that are in the pipe to get fixed because the jet is a mashup of 3 different models. Missing B and late A features, includes D features, and features that should only be on As or Ds but not on Bs are again everywhere.

 

Doing it Right is important. Yes, mission builder flexibility is important and I think including one offs of ship classes sucks. I also prefer to have at least one thing done right so I'm not staring at something picking out every single problem because unlike the unwashed masses I actually picked up a book and learned about the subject. And considering how much work HB have yet to do on the Tomcat, the final fixes for the Viggen and the promised Drakken AI jet, the AI Intruder, etc. something is bound to get cut for now. Maybe down the road they make good and expand the ship list. Maybe in the meantime we get repainted Forrestalls to fill in. I don't know. HB may not have decided yet either. But I rather prefer it is done right, whatever it is.

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Judging by the Entry luas I found for the Forestal and Saratoga I think they might be making at least the Forestal and Saratoga and knowing Heatblur will probably be modeling the differences, if they do the a Ranger and independence with their differences in models I hope the Forestall and Saratoga get released before the Ranger and independence 

1 minute ago, LanceCriminal86 said:

At the same time, good enough is the enemy of "do it right". Case in point, to many our existing Tomcat model is more than good enough, until you spend some time actually looking at it closely. Which is why there's now a pile of things that are in the pipe to get fixed because the jet is a mashup of 3 different models. Missing B and late A features, includes D features, and features that should only be on As or Ds but not on Bs are again everywhere.

 

Doing it Right is important. Yes, mission builder flexibility is important and I think including one offs of ship classes sucks. I also prefer to have at least one thing done right so I'm not staring at something picking out every single problem because unlike the unwashed masses I actually picked up a book and learned about the subject. And considering how much work HB have yet to do on the Tomcat, the final fixes for the Viggen and the promised Drakken AI jet, the AI Intruder, etc. something is bound to get cut for now. Maybe down the road they make good and expand the ship list. Maybe in the meantime we get repainted Forrestalls to fill in. I don't know. HB may not have decided yet either. But I rather prefer it is done right, whatever it is.

A lot of the  Bs where actually actually A model upgrades with the GE-110-400 replacing the P&W TF-30s which where denoted by “F-14B Upgrade” above the bureau numbers and the the factory built F-14Bs had “F-14B” above the bureau numbers 

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10 minutes ago, aviation360 said:

Judging by the Entry luas I found for the Forestal and Saratoga I think they might be making at least the Forestal and Saratoga and knowing Heatblur will probably be modeling the differences, if they do the a Ranger and independence with their differences in models I hope the Forestall and Saratoga get released before the Ranger and independence 

A lot of the  Bs where actually actually A model upgrades with the GE-110-400 replacing the P&W TF-30s which where denoted by “F-14B Upgrade” above the bureau numbers and the the factory built F-14Bs had “F-14B” above the bureau numbers 

 

That's not the issue. We are talking about physical features and textures that are either present and shouldn't be, or missing and should be present. There are a number of mirrored vents and such that should only be on As or Ds that were rebuilt As, things that should only be on one side of the jet, the missing ALQ-126 antennas, etc. This is not something explained away by "well a few jets might have", this is well documented and acknowledged by HB. I've laid out these issues elsewhere on the forums under the Skinner's thread as well as when I asked what jets were scanned, which proved out that a D and 2 A models were scanned hence the presence of D only features.

 

Like I said: Good enough vs "right", and attention to detail. For a time I could live with stand-ins as long as the right thing is eventually done, but usually sooner than later.

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1 hour ago, Jackjack171 said:

 ......The differences are as clear as the day is bright! Since DCS is the place to "get it right" instead of making Frankenstein modules, my stance is still the same.......

I really do see your point and I am somewhat inclined to agree with you in general but as far as the differences between the Forrestall and Saratoga being "as clear as the day is bright!", I just can't see it. I have spent a little time now looking up the two ships as well as the class as a whole and I'll be darned if I can see anything that sticks out like a sore thumb. Granted, the pictures are not always from the same angle for both ships and some of them were of models but just from a general shape of the three ships in the class, I could not see any significant differences at all that sood out.

 

As an aside, this conversation is interesting to me because, back when the Hornet first came out, I never once saw anyone jump on the forums and comment on the absence of the navigation post on the Stennis model, which is a fairly significant piece of hardware. It's like nobody noticed it at all, or were not that concerned about it being left off, but elsewhere, we see folks commenting on the presence or absemce of vents or small antennas on certain varients of one model or another, or even the type of flight helmet the developer used when they modeled the pilot!! LOL! You've got to love this community! 👍 🤣

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1 hour ago, aviation360 said:

A lot of the  Bs where actually actually A model upgrades with the GE-110-400 replacing the P&W TF-30s which where denoted by “F-14B Upgrade” above the bureau numbers and the the factory built F-14Bs had “F-14B” above the bureau numbers 

 

This actually isn't true. Some F-14As were rebuilt as Bs, but a good majority of the F-14Bs were new build. The F-14B (UPGRADE) was a major overhaul in the late 1990s to add the PTID, Sparrowhawk HUD, and DFCS. The As that were upgraded to Bs just had F-14B (and then later B (UPGRADE)) above the BuNos.

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3 hours ago, AG-51_Razor said:

I really do see your point and I am somewhat inclined to agree with you in general but as far as the differences between the Forrestall and Saratoga being "as clear as the day is bright!", I just can't see it. I have spent a little time now looking up the two ships as well as the class as a whole and I'll be darned if I can see anything that sticks out like a sore thumb. Granted, the pictures are not always from the same angle for both ships and some of them were of models but just from a general shape of the three ships in the class, I could not see any significant differences at all that sood out.

 

As an aside, this conversation is interesting to me because, back when the Hornet first came out, I never once saw anyone jump on the forums and comment on the absence of the navigation post on the Stennis model, which is a fairly significant piece of hardware. It's like nobody noticed it at all, or were not that concerned about it being left off, but elsewhere, we see folks commenting on the presence or absemce of vents or small antennas on certain varients of one model or another, or even the type of flight helmet the developer used when they modeled the pilot!! LOL! You've got to love this community! 👍 🤣

I'm there with you on the Stennis. I just never said anything because, at the time I thought, why rock the boat? But since the SC module (which needs work but has, can and will kick ass) and seeing what can be done, my thoughts are, do it right or don't. As I think about it, what's important maybe, is the time frames and modifications that that ships class went through. If they could get that situated, then there could be a baseline ship that could father the others.  I served FDNF so the Independence is the one I was looking forward to the most. I'll support HB in whatever they do. I don't mean to be so pedantic at all. It's just have a keen eye for this kind of stuff. Either way, we are all going to have a lot of fun!

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4 hours ago, AG-51_Razor said:

I really do see your point and I am somewhat inclined to agree with you in general but as far as the differences between the Forrestall and Saratoga being "as clear as the day is bright!", I just can't see it. I have spent a little time now looking up the two ships as well as the class as a whole and I'll be darned if I can see anything that sticks out like a sore thumb. Granted, the pictures are not always from the same angle for both ships and some of them were of models but just from a general shape of the three ships in the class, I could not see any significant differences at all that sood out.

 

As an aside, this conversation is interesting to me because, back when the Hornet first came out, I never once saw anyone jump on the forums and comment on the absence of the navigation post on the Stennis model, which is a fairly significant piece of hardware. It's like nobody noticed it at all, or were not that concerned about it being left off, but elsewhere, we see folks commenting on the presence or absemce of vents or small antennas on certain varients of one model or another, or even the type of flight helmet the developer used when they modeled the pilot!! LOL! You've got to love this community! 👍 🤣

 

Because those things are relevant. The existing Stennis model was hot garbage and everyone knew ED wasn't going to actually put effort into it, that's why nobody made a big deal out of it when both the Stennis and Vinson were early 2000s quality looking 3d models.

 

You can't ask for and praise attention to detail about things like flight models and the 'feel' of a module but then laugh when attention to detail is pointed out, or the lack thereof. Some of the big things touted about the Tomcat was laser scanning and using photo scans for the base textures. And they indeed are very detailed. The problem is the scans got all merged together without another step of QC to make sure they were "right" for the jet being portrayed. That's being corrected, which is also the difference between certain developers.

 

Funnily enough folks heap on praise about guys providing really detailed skins, yet we are the ones complaining to HB to do the things like fix the model or give us the right helmets to match the skins we spent months on researching and emailing/phone calling pilots to get photos or descriptions of who was on the canopy rails. Why? Because unlike the masses we've been face deep in Tomcat photos to try and get them looking just right. Looking at panel lines to help get the stencils lined up, that stuff. And that's where you start noticing things are 'off', and then you can't un-see them. I'm just glad that Heatblur has a great team who are willing to look at the various points and try to work them into their product improvement flow, rather than just saying:

 

"Eh, it's good enough as is"

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Like I said, you've got to love this community! And I do. I appreciate you and your devotion to accuracy however you have to understand that the vast majority of the folks in the DCS world are not nearly as invested in the accuracy or realism as you are and their frame of reference is a little different. You are commenting about rivet and panel lines, small little bulges where a certain RWR antenna was located on the A model and not on the B, or vise versa and there is a very large group of folks in this world of DCS that don't know the difference between a flap and a leading edge slat, or a spoiler and an aileron. The one thing we all have in common though is our love of this simulation and how beautifully it is done.....even if a couple of details are wrong. It is a very good explanation of the old saw, "ignorance is bliss".

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I don't think HB are a developer who would just make stuff up and not pay attention to detail. Do it properly or don't do it at all. I'm fairly certain we migh see the Saratoga and potentially the other ships much later down the road, maybe even together with the A-6.

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Well, it's not that simple. For example, if the carrier is 99% the same, that 1% difference is not worth having four different modules on the hard drive and all the efforts of maintaining four different 3D models on the development side, especially as they come for free with the F-14 module. It's simply not reasonable to expect or demand this. 

 

And if they only model Forrestal, anybody having a problem using a Saratoga which is just a reskinned Forrestal could simply decide not to use or mod the missions which use them. 

 

Unless, of course, the modding community jumps in and mods in the other members of the class and keeps maintaining them. 


Edited by Dudikoff
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8 hours ago, Dudikoff said:

Well, it's not that simple. For example, if the carrier is 99% the same, that 1% difference is not worth having four different modules on the hard drive and all the efforts of maintaining four different 3D models on the development side, especially as they come for free with the F-14 module. It's simply not reasonable to expect or demand this.

 

What maintenance would a 3D model require exactly? Genuinely asking, because changelogs don't have much... Only ones I remember that got corrected are the MiG-21bis off the top of my head. The Hornet cockpit still has the really obvious model holes near the brake pressure gauge (which isn't exactly located somewhere out of sight), which was reported nearly 2 and half years ago.

 

And as far as space is concerned, the model files themselves is relatively small compared to stuff that are real heavy hitters (such as maps).

 

The total size of the 'Shapes', 'Liveries', 'Textures' and 'TexturesArchive' folders inside CoreMods -> tech -> USS_Nimitz (why it's called that is anybody's guess, but it's the folder concerning the western supercarrier assets) is just over 2GB - the stock liveries of the F-14A-135-GR by itself is 1.8GB - not far off, and that's only 6 liveries...

 

If it is a free asset that'll be a free improvement to DCS, and isn't dependent on owning the F-14 module, then it's more reasonable. But on assets that have a cost to them (even indirectly by necessitating owning a module) I'd expect them to be accurate and high quality (though I'm certain the latter is something Heatblur won't disappoint us on). The former ED fell short on with the Arleigh-Burke and fell short on the latter on the updated Kuznetsov.


Edited by Northstar98
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I understand where they're coming from. It's kind-of a shame that we aren't getting USS Saratoga, which was the only Forrestal-class to operate the F-14B. I was kinda looking forward to USS Ranger as well. With the Heatblur A-6 coming, the Ranger's all-Grumman air wing would have made an interesting campaign subject.

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6 hours ago, Northstar98 said:

 

What maintenance would a 3D model require exactly? Genuinely asking, because changelogs don't have much... Only ones I remember that got corrected are the MiG-21bis off the top of my head. The Hornet cockpit still has the really obvious model holes near the brake pressure gauge (which isn't exactly located somewhere out of sight), these were reported over 2 and half years ago.

 

And as far as space is concerned, the model files themselves is relatively small compared to stuff that are real heavy hitters (such as maps).

 

The total size of the 'Shapes', 'Liveries', 'Textures' and 'TexturesArchive' folders inside CoreMods -> tech -> USS_Nimitz (why it's called that is anybody's guess, but it's the folder concerning the western supercarrier assets) is just over 2GB - the stock liveries of the F-14A-135-GR by itself is 1.8GB - not far off, and that's only 6 liveries...

 

If it is a free asset that'll be a free improvement to DCS, and isn't dependent on owning the F-14 module, then it's more reasonable. But on assets that have a cost to them (even indirectly by necessitating owning a module) I'd expect them to be accurate and high quality (though I'm certain the latter is something Heatblur won't disappoint us on). The former ED fell short on with the Arleigh-Burke and fell short on the latter on the updated Kuznetsov.

 

The point was whenever they need to fix or update anything (some bug, future improvement or more likely a significant rework of various parts when something in the base DCS engine changes, e.g. related to lighting, ATC, ships modeling, etc.), they have to do it in 4 different places which then needs to be downloaded four times. 

 

And given how it's by no means a prerequisite for the F-14 module, but something HB decided to offer with it for no extra charge, in that regard it's free, yes. It's not like the F-14 module costs that much more than the other modules to cover all this extra work they're seemingly expected to do for free.


Edited by Dudikoff
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  • 3 weeks later...
On 3/14/2021 at 3:12 PM, Dudikoff said:

 

The point was whenever they need to fix or update anything (some bug, future improvement or more likely a significant rework of various parts when something in the base DCS engine changes, e.g. related to lighting, ATC, ships modeling, etc.), they have to do it in 4 different places which then needs to be downloaded four times. 

 

And given how it's by no means a prerequisite for the F-14 module, but something HB decided to offer with it for no extra charge, in that regard it's free, yes. It's not like the F-14 module costs that much more than the other modules to cover all this extra work they're seemingly expected to do for free.

 

It's not free. They're not doing us a favor. It is part of the F-14 package, which means they are under contract to deliver it to the paying customers of the F-14. The fact that they're making it available to everyone, even non-paying customers is nice, but this pay now for work done later model is getting old.

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8 minutes ago, Banzaiib said:

It's not free. They're not doing us a favor. It is part of the F-14 package, which means they are under contract to deliver it to the paying customers of the F-14. The fact that they're making it available to everyone, even non-paying customers is nice, but this pay now for work done later model is getting old.

 

Yeah, cos F-14 module is, like, totally unplayable right now without it.... 🤔

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5 hours ago, Banzaiib said:

It's not free. They're not doing us a favor. It is part of the F-14 package, which means they are under contract to deliver it to the paying customers of the F-14. The fact that they're making it available to everyone, even non-paying customers is nice, but this pay now for work done later model is getting old.

 

That's a rather narrow-minded way of looking at it which conveniently ignores what generally constitutes a DCS aircraft module. Do other similarly priced DCS modules come with a freebie such as the aircraft carrier?

 

From a somewhat more realistic perspective, one could say they have generously (or perhaps stupidly, given how they get pestered about these) decided to throw in some extras with the module like the A-6E AI and Forestall carrier because the DCS World is lacking some important Tomcat-era assets.

 

If the module price was much more than other modules so that these extras were realistically factored in the price of the module, then I would understand your insistence on these being part of the module that should have been delivered ASAP, but the price was more than fair given two variants of F-14, plus LTS, plus Jester AI included.


Edited by Dudikoff
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i386DX40@42 MHz w/i387 CP, 4 MB RAM (8*512 kB), Trident 8900C 1 MB w/16-bit RAMDAC ISA, Quantum 340 MB UDMA33, SB 16, DOS 6.22 w/QEMM + Win3.11CE, Quickshot 1btn 2axis, Numpad as hat. 2 FPH on a good day, 1 FPH avg.

 

DISCLAIMER: My posts are still absolutely useless. Just finding excuses not to learn the F-14 (HB's Swansong?).

 

Annoyed by my posts? Please consider donating. Once the target sum is reached, I'll be off to somewhere nice I promise not to post from. I'd buy that for a dollar!

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