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Honest discussion about realism...?


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There’s been lots of debate on the forums about which WW2 modules next, what’s required regarding documentation and the need for flight test data / real pilot experience...

(same applies in main DCS 2.7 and 3rd party forums - more focused on security etc)

 

So - where’s the honest position here?

The 262 vs F6F and Zero debates are the best examples

 

Clearly, recreating and extinct aircraft (eg Whirlwind) or very rare aircraft (Typhoon, most Axis types) gets tricky.

 

BUT - we do have the D9 and K4, both with no surviving airworthy examples, so is this a recent development???

 

Some have argued that it fits Nick Grey’s personal likes and TFC collection examples... pretty sure this is simplistic, but the sim is going to be massively compromised if devs have these limitations applied 

 

What adds or detracts the most in terms of realism???

 

- every fuel and engine system fully modelled, according to test and evaluation data and with the latest CFD model, or,

 

- a lack of suitable peer adversaries to fly against (because they’re not modelled for incomplete data) or,

 

- AI that works by different rules of aerodynamics / physics, defies even programmable logic and has sensors and shooting abilities that knows your exact position at all times???

 

Not a post to promote argument, as I respect alternative viewpoints.

 

I don’t want arcade FMs, either in flyable modules, or in the current AI

 

But I would love to fly a Ju 88 strike, pilot a 262, work the taxi rank or fly a cross channel raid in a Whirlwind 😋

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There may not be flying original examples of the D9 but several airframes do exist and a few are ground runners. There are D9 flyable replicas. There may not be any Bf109 Ks in existence but there are many similar surviving original BF109s.

 

I think EDs criteria may be more exacting than a 3rd party developer.

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We dont really have a map for the 262..
My guess- itll be something that will marry into the Marianas.. Obviously more towards a zero and Wildcat.

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Posted (edited)

Using the D9 and K4 as examples isn't great, namely because of the massive amount of info the Allies found or researched themselves during and post WWII on enemy equipment. As it was Intelligence, it was all filed nicely and kept over the years.

It's a weird situation where there's more data for them than some Allied planes, like the P-47, Mossie etc... where the manufacturer had the data and it's been lost over time as it wasn't as stringently recorded and kept. For example, ED had to do a load of CFD analysis themselves for the P-47, as that data had been lost over time.

 

It'll probably be the same for a lot of planes, gathering as much as they can, seeing what blanks exists, and deciding if they can, or if it's worth it to, fill them in to a high degree of confidence. ED have said before if it doesn't meet a certain threshold, they won't do it.

 

As for the other points, lack of adversaries only really applies to the more A2A orientated aircraft, and only then under some scenarios. There were enough different types flying in WWII that a lot of matchups did happen or were possible, if rare. Obviously it's not a completely moot point tho, as they'd be no point developing a pure night-fighter if there's not at least one major opposing one to come later on.


Edited by Buzzles
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Posted (edited)

Interesting re the D9 replicas... I’ve seen videos of the Anton replicas flying but didn’t know that there were also a few Doras around 👍

 

As far as adversaries are concerned, I fear that this is where the WW2 setting will come unstuck.  If the reference material criteria are set at such a high bar, then even something as fundamental as a Ju 88 becomes very difficult...

 

Maybe that the reason for the pivot towards the Pacific? Well referenced US prototypes and a reasonable case to get by with just a single Japanese model, whereas Europe starts to look tricky for either BoB or the existing late war timeframe

 

By way of comparison, the modern 4th gen jet models must have to rely on extensive assumptions, work arounds and downright guesswork for radar, RWR, EW / ECM, and missile parameters...  

 

I’m sure that the same mix of hard fact and sensible assumption would also apply to WW2 modules


Edited by rkk01
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you know what id rather go back to just plain wishlist threads instead of this sort of intellectual bargaining disguise

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welcome to dcs forums 2021. this thread contains someone who should go back to *rma 3.

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3 minutes ago, probad said:

you know what id rather go back to just plain wishlist threads instead of this sort of intellectual bargaining disguise

 

+1

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Posted (edited)
8 hours ago, rkk01 said:

Interesting re the D9 replicas... I’ve seen videos of the Anton replicas flying but didn’t know that there were also a few Doras around 👍

 

 

You thought right, there aren't any. Mogster was too optimistic in his post. The only original Dora ever restored to flying condition in 1990s was the FHC D-13 one, but it only was a ground-runner and only back in the day. I don't know if they even fired it up since then, which means it's in practical terms a static display item now.

 

As for the Replicas, Flugwerk almost built two or three before folding its business. So far only one of them was completed and made it to the ground-running stage, but registration/flight-permit issues prevented it from flying.


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8 hours ago, probad said:

you know what id rather go back to just plain wishlist threads instead of this sort of intellectual bargaining disguise


Certainly not the case as far as my OP is concerned

 

It was a genuine question - as much about reference material requirements as about aircraft.


There has been much debate about the feasibility of both the Me 262 and the A6M.  For both of these examples it should be a question of WHY NOT, rather than can we / can’t we around (or hiding behind?) availability of reference material.

 

Both of these aircraft exist today as ground running and flyable airframes - if anything they are both “less extinct” than the Mossie was until very recently.  And as for the replica 262s not flying on Jumo engines, surely that just equates to a different mark number, as per Lancasters using Hercules engines or Beaufighters using Merlins - and way less significant than putting a Merlin in a Mustang...!

 

I list those two aircraft as examples to illustrate my question, not as a somehow veiled wish list- and certainly the Zero isn’t a wish list item, it is essential for Pacific...

 

At the other end of the scale the Whirlwind truly is extinct - no complete airframes and a defunct, dead end engine lineage.  Similar limitations on the Typhoon and Tempest... or Ju 87, 88, Do 17, He 111... but that’s the real thrust of my question - where is the appropriate cut off between having everything, nothing or “enough”

 

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Posted (edited)
2 hours ago, Art-J said:

 

You thought right, there aren't any. Mogster was too optimistic in his post. The only original Dora ever restored to flying condition in 1990s was the FHC D-13 one, but it only was a ground-runner and only back in the day. I don't know if they even fired it up since then, which means it's in practical terms a static display item now.

 

As for the Replicas, Flugwerk almost built two or three before folding its business. So far only one of them was completed and made it to the ground-running stage, but registration/flight-permit issues prevented it from flying.

 


Aye it seems so. I’ve been scouring the net for videos of them in action but there’s nothing. 
 

 


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13 hours ago, StevanJ said:

We dont really have a map for the 262..
My guess- itll be something that will marry into the Marianas.. Obviously more towards a zero and Wildcat.

A rather long sidenote to this:

 

Well, actually we have a map. The Normandy map. The 262 saw action in that area and at that time, whereas neither the Bf109K4, nor the Fw190D9 did. And both were released long before any map beside Caucasus appeared in DCS. I'm not sure but I think P-51D-25, P-47-40 didn't see action in the Normandy area either.

 

What I want to say: ED priorized the aircraft over the theater so far.

Did the A-10C, F-5E, MiG-15bis, F-86F, F/A-18C, F-16C see combat in the Caucasus area that we have? Persian Gulf map as it is now is also an area for a hypothetical conflict for the available planeset.

Syria map yes for some aircraft, but then this is a 3rd Party map.

 

DCS is more about the aircraft itself.

 

Mariannas is like the Channel(in its current form): a strange choice

No time corresponding aircraft for both maps available or announced by ED.

And the WWII version of the Mariannas map is very far away from being released. The modern version being the first, I tend to think WWII was not the deciding factor to choose this area.

 

It seems for me the crowd that came from WWII games/sims to DCS is somehow unable to enjoy the aircraft, when there is no map underneath them which is labeled as the area that this aircraft saw action in history. The other big WWII sim offers many maps that are named after areas where combat happened. But for me these maps (especialIy the newest one) are so extremely lifeless and repetitive that they don't give me the feeling of actually flying over this particular area of the world. I take the old and worn out(for the eye) DCS Caucasus anytime before I fly over the "Other Game" Bodenplatte or the Kuban area. But I do enjoy the other game nontheless, because what counts for me is the experience a particular aircraft offers. Sure the correct map enhances the experience, but during a dogfight I rarely enjoy the landscape. Weather and clouds are more important in a dogfight than the corn field on the ground.

 

So while a period correct map is nice and increases the immersion into the situation, I fail to see why it should be a deal-breaker if it isn't available.

 

____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

 

For the WWII aircraft themself and realism: There is no need to have a flyable example. How did all the flyworthy P-47 help ED for their recreation? ED needs data for the FM.

No flyworthy aircraft will be flown to its limits just to gain data for ED. They are too precious. Gaining data on the spin characteristics of a P-47 for a PC recreation? Won't happen with a real aircraft.

If there is not enough data, then CFD will help. That's what they did with the P-47 and will do for future aircraft. So a plausible FM of the Zero seems possible.

Sure CFD is not the holy grail. If nothing is available at all, CFD won't help too.

 

Where airworthy examples of aircraft can help are other not FM related areas. E.g. the engine, not for the performance itself but for the behaviour of the engine.

How fast does the engine react to throttle changes? Throttle response changes with altitude? How does it sound at different powersettings? How quickly does the coolant/temperature react on opening/closing of cooling flaps? Propeller pitch change rate, flaps speed etc.

 

Corresponding adversaries are very important as this is a combat simulator. Air and ground. P-51D against a Leopard II? That's a big strech. Interesting, but not funny for the majority.

For simulation of the aircraft without combat, MSFS or X-Plane are big players on the market so DCS has to have features the others don't offer. E.g. Damage model

But it is still a joy to just fly around in DCS. It will be fun to fly around the Channnel with the Hind, once the performance on the Channel in VR gets acceptable.

 

Fox

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Interesting, and obviously correct observation on the value of warbirds vs the value of flight data...

 

my biggest steps forward in taming the DCS warbirds has been looking at cockpit vids of current take offs etc - all conducted under much reduced power settings to conserve engine and airframe life👍
 

So, possibly as I suspected... there may be a bit of “hiding behind” availability of data and airworthy examples 

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5 hours ago, iFoxRomeo said:

A rather long sidenote to this:

 

Well, actually we have a map. The Normandy map. The 262 saw action in that area and at that time, whereas neither the Bf109K4, nor the Fw190D9 did. And both were released long before any map beside Caucasus appeared in DCS. I'm not sure but I think P-51D-25, P-47-40 didn't see action in the Normandy area either.

 

What I want to say: ED priorized the aircraft over the theater so far.

Did the A-10C, F-5E, MiG-15bis, F-86F, F/A-18C, F-16C see combat in the Caucasus area that we have? Persian Gulf map as it is now is also an area for a hypothetical conflict for the available planeset.

Syria map yes for some aircraft, but then this is a 3rd Party map.

 

DCS is more about the aircraft itself.

 

Mariannas is like the Channel(in its current form): a strange choice

No time corresponding aircraft for both maps available or announced by ED.

And the WWII version of the Mariannas map is very far away from being released. The modern version being the first, I tend to think WWII was not the deciding factor to choose this area.

 

It seems for me the crowd that came from WWII games/sims to DCS is somehow unable to enjoy the aircraft, when there is no map underneath them which is labeled as the area that this aircraft saw action in history. The other big WWII sim offers many maps that are named after areas where combat happened. But for me these maps (especialIy the newest one) are so extremely lifeless and repetitive that they don't give me the feeling of actually flying over this particular area of the world. I take the old and worn out(for the eye) DCS Caucasus anytime before I fly over the "Other Game" Bodenplatte or the Kuban area. But I do enjoy the other game nontheless, because what counts for me is the experience a particular aircraft offers. Sure the correct map enhances the experience, but during a dogfight I rarely enjoy the landscape. Weather and clouds are more important in a dogfight than the corn field on the ground.

 

So while a period correct map is nice and increases the immersion into the situation, I fail to see why it should be a deal-breaker if it isn't available.

 

____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

 

For the WWII aircraft themself and realism: There is no need to have a flyable example. How did all the flyworthy P-47 help ED for their recreation? ED needs data for the FM.

No flyworthy aircraft will be flown to its limits just to gain data for ED. They are too precious. Gaining data on the spin characteristics of a P-47 for a PC recreation? Won't happen with a real aircraft.

If there is not enough data, then CFD will help. That's what they did with the P-47 and will do for future aircraft. So a plausible FM of the Zero seems possible.

Sure CFD is not the holy grail. If nothing is available at all, CFD won't help too.

 

Where airworthy examples of aircraft can help are other not FM related areas. E.g. the engine, not for the performance itself but for the behaviour of the engine.

How fast does the engine react to throttle changes? Throttle response changes with altitude? How does it sound at different powersettings? How quickly does the coolant/temperature react on opening/closing of cooling flaps? Propeller pitch change rate, flaps speed etc.

 

Corresponding adversaries are very important as this is a combat simulator. Air and ground. P-51D against a Leopard II? That's a big strech. Interesting, but not funny for the majority.

For simulation of the aircraft without combat, MSFS or X-Plane are big players on the market so DCS has to have features the others don't offer. E.g. Damage model

But it is still a joy to just fly around in DCS. It will be fun to fly around the Channnel with the Hind, once the performance on the Channel in VR gets acceptable.

 

Fox


Cheers Fox, ive tried to find information with regards to where the 262's were based, all leads pointed to Germany places like Lechfeld Air Base.

I just assumed, no one would want an air start?,
My mistake. Apologies to all..

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13 hours ago, StevanJ said:


Cheers Fox, ive tried to find information with regards to where the 262's were based, all leads pointed to Germany places like Lechfeld Air Base.

I just assumed, no one would want an air start?,
My mistake. Apologies to all..

To be correct, the 262 operated in the Normandy after the 27th July, three airfields that were used - at first Chateaudun, then Etampes, then Juvincourt, not used simultaneously - are not airfields on our Normandy map. If the Normandy map is extended 25km to the south, Chateaudun could be included. Etampes is within the map borders already, at the SE map border.

The third consecutive airfield Juvincourt is far out of the Normandy map.
Ugra wanted to enhance the Normandy map, once Syria is finished, but I don't think they will add these airfields... perhaps I should post a request in their sub-forum. Just in case.

"Kommando Schenk" operated from there and yes the operations were very limited.

 

Source: The Messerschmitt Me262 Combat diary, by John Foreman and S.E. Harvey

 

 

Fox

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20 hours ago, rkk01 said:

Interesting, and obviously correct observation on the value of warbirds vs the value of flight data...

 

my biggest steps forward in taming the DCS warbirds has been looking at cockpit vids of current take offs etc - all conducted under much reduced power settings to conserve engine and airframe life👍
 

So, possibly as I suspected... there may be a bit of “hiding behind” availability of data and airworthy examples 


I suspect the biggest problem with the 262 is historical modelling of the engines, performance and handling, the effects of low quality materials and avgas available to the Germans also.

 

It’s not “hiding behind” anything, it’s how much do you have to make up? The ED DCS warbirds we have are massively complicated and the systems modelling seems difficult to get right compared to modern digital aircraft. The nuances of the FM, engine deign limitations,  cooling systems, even pilot physical constraints are huge, and for the aircraft we have ED can phone someone and say how is it? (Or at least they can ask someone who’s flow a very similar aircraft in the case of the 109 K and D9) How do you complete an aircraft model in extreme detail and refrain from “making stuff up” if no ones even seen (and heard) one of these aircraft run for 50 years or more?

 

Don’t get me wrong, I’d love to fly a DCS Typhoon, Tempest, Ki84, N1K, Ki61 but I don’t see how it can happen without “making stuff up”

 

 

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Here's an interesting question. Do we need as much detail information for the AI planes as well?

 

Not every aircraft in the game needs to be flyable and the addition of many AI planes of the era would at least make the environment more believable and to some degree would solve the problem of not having enough adversaries to fight.

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I think a lot depends on ED, I don't think that data is the real problem for many planes (seems there is a lot of guesswork for modern stuff so why not with WW2?), but the effort needed to collect them(archives at different places, different museums), and at the moment they put much more effort for modern stuff than WW2. If they put the same effort on the F18 as on WW2 plane, I think we could see very cool stuff and I wouldn't mind to pay the same price (even more) as the modern planes, if they are very well done with ALL features

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Some interesting responses...

 

As a scientist and engineer, there is a world of difference between “making things up”, “educated guesswork” and “sensible assumptions”... yet all three cover the areas of “lack of knowledge” or “hard data”.

 

By all accounts, the P-47 was very much lacking in hard data, but with airworthy examples and current pilot experience.  No amount of pilot knowledge will tell you how much lift for a given speed and AoA or how much hp for a given manifold pressure - you still need the numbers....

 

(but those numbers could be derived from engine output measurement, comparison with a known similar installation, or just assumed on a scale of 0 to x based on a known max).  Some of my work includes modelling of natural systems and it always amazes me how really good (accurate) simulations can be produced with sensibly selected parameter ranges (taking account of feasible min, max and “normal” ranges of values)

 

 

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23 minutes ago, Blackbird12 said:

I think a lot depends on ED, I don't think that data is the real problem for many planes (seems there is a lot of guesswork for modern stuff so why not with WW2?), but the effort needed to collect them(archives at different places, different museums), and at the moment they put much more effort for modern stuff than WW2. If they put the same effort on the F18 as on WW2 plane, I think we could see very cool stuff and I wouldn't mind to pay the same price (even more) as the modern planes, if they are very well done with ALL features


They put a fair amount of effort into the P47, aerodynamic CAD work and all.

 

I’d suggest it’s easier to obtain reliable data for modern planes, government approval tends to be the stumbling block frequently. At least if somethings made up for a modern aircraft the devs tend to be aware what the real parameters are.

 

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On 5/5/2021 at 3:42 AM, Mogster said:

There may not be flying original examples of the D9 but several airframes do exist and a few are ground runners. There are D9 flyable replicas. There may not be any Bf109 Ks in existence but there are many similar surviving original BF109s.

 

I think EDs criteria may be more exacting than a 3rd party developer.

 

There are also quite a few A6M2 and M5 replicas flying, as well as one original M5 with original engine still flying, yet "lack of flying Zeros" is always used as an excuse to not make one. The same "problem" obviously didn't stop D9 or K4 development. And what about the A8? I thought flying examples of that were rare as well. Hell, the Zero even has USAAF testing documentation from captured specimens that can be used. I don't understand this cherry picking, nor do I understand where the WW2 version of the Marianas map will go if we don't have any WW2 Pacific assets to use there other than the P-51D-30 and P-47D. Will we be stuck with Antons desguised as Zeros and taking way more damage than a Zero possibly could before going down?


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Existing and accessible airframes has never been a hard requirement as far as I can tell. The first requirement for module development was/is access to first hand documentation. Flight/maintenance manuals, test results etc as far as I know. If, for some reason, these aren't available, but flying airframes are, then it's been considered as the second best thing.

As far as I know, the only warbird currently done without lots of existing original documentation is P-47, and many CFD efforts, as well as knowledge from existing airframes/pilots were used.

In case of Japanese aircraft, I think there are a few surviving flyable Zeros and Oscars, and a ground display Ki-100. So they may be feasible for what we come to expect from DCS, without going to the "unicorn infested la la land of many guesstimations". But, primary documentation and SME info always came before access to an airframe in module dev as far as I know.

 

If the same amount of CFD effort is put in along with data from flying examples/aid of SMEs who flew them, I do think a Zero is probably feasible eventually. But that's just me musing.

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1 hour ago, Nealius said:

Would USAAF testing of captured aircraft not fall under primary documentation of sorts? 


Yes but you commonly run into problems with details surrounding how the tests were conducted and the condition the aircraft was in.
 

You need details of the exact model tested, serial numbers are ideal but not always recorded (quite often during the war or just after the allies weren’t precisely sure what they had) Then you have to decide if the tests performed are representative of how the aircraft was operated by the original units, Japanese avgas was of really poor quality in the last year of the war and really limited their aircraft performance. Captured Japanese aircraft were tested with high quality US fuel seem to have performed better than they ever did at unit level, fullfilling their potential if you like, but assuming you want to model historic operation by front line units then you have to take factors like fuel quality into account. Build quality and finishing also suffered in Japan in the last few months of the war.

 

The ideal documentation comes from the results of testing of serial production examples issued to front line units. Other records aren’t useless but a lot of caution needs to be taken while interpreting them. 

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4 hours ago, Nealius said:

Would USAAF testing of captured aircraft not fall under primary documentation of sorts? 

Usually tests of captured aircraft presents some challenges like aicraft being in a rather rundown condition etc. But not always the case, and they are still better than no info at all.

Still though, in my personal opinion they fall a bit short of being "primary source", just imo though.

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