Jump to content

Logo

Photo

Detectability questions


  • Please log in to reply
49 replies to this topic

#1 Joe K

Joe K

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 340 posts

Posted 15 March 2011 - 10:02 AM

In trying to get a handle on this relative detectability issue, I have a few hypothetical cases, and since I can't create test scenarios for them (yet), I'm hoping someone can shed light on what should happen in these situations:

Case 1:
A player's base and an AI base exist, say, 400 nm apart - or whatever distance places them beyond each other's air radar range. A MiG-21 is loitering directly above one base and an E-2C is loitering directly above the other base. Both planes are at high altitude, and neither have any radar active. Both bases have active radar. There are no other groups "in play". The questions are, who sees what?
1. Is the E-2C detected by the other base? Why?
2. Is the MiG-21 detected by the other base? Why?
3. Is either plane detected by the other plane? Why?
4. Is either base detected by the other plane? Why?
5. Is either base detected by the other base? Why?
6. Do any of these detections differ depending on which base/plane is on the AI's side and which is on the player's side? Why?

Case 2a:
Two plane groups of opposing sides are within engagement range. One group is a pair of MiG-21s. The other group is a pair of F-4's. Neither group has (or had) its radar active. Both are at cruise speed, Low altitude, and generally facing each other. There is only one base for each side, and the engagement area is beyond the range of either side's ground radar, and there are no AEW, EW, or other airborne assets on either side. The detectability questions in this case are:
1. Is either group detected by the other? How, why, and who first?
2. If one or both groups were loitering, would that change the detectabilities? How and why?
3. If the groups were not at the same altitude, would that alter the detectabilities? How and why?
4. If one or both groups changed direction, would that alter the detectabilities? How and why?
5. Would a different speed of either group affect its detectability? How and why?
6. Would a different altitude of either group affect its detectabilty? How and why?
7. Do any of these detections differ depending on which plane group is on the AI's side and which is on the player's side? Why?

Case 2b:
Same as Case 2a, except the two plane groups are pairs of F-15Cs. Same questions.

Case 2c:
Same as Cases 2a&b, except the four planes are all MiG-17s. Same questions.


I have my own assumptions about each case, but my assumptions regarding detectability have been seriously brought into question of late, so I'd like to know what is supposed to happen in these situations, and why. (Note: I'm not seeking a detailed numerical analysis here, but rather just wanting to know what is the normally expected detectability in each situation, along with brief explanations, where applicable). I'll compare these to my actual observations, in various similar situations.

Thanks.

#2 Brains

Brains

    Advanced Member

  • Rear Admiral
  • PipPipPip
  • 62 posts

Posted 15 March 2011 - 02:57 PM

In trying to get a handle on this relative detectability issue, I have a few hypothetical cases, and since I can't create test scenarios for them (yet), I'm hoping someone can shed light on what should happen in these situations:

<Plenty snipped>

Is there some reason you can't just work these cases up in the scenario editor to start with? (And bring the data back to the forums if there is something odd in your opinion, of course)

#3 Warhorse64

Warhorse64

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 498 posts

Posted 15 March 2011 - 06:52 PM

In trying to get a handle on this relative detectability issue, I have a few hypothetical cases, and since I can't create test scenarios for them (yet), I'm hoping someone can shed light on what should happen in these situations:

Case 1:
A player's base and an AI base exist, say, 400 nm apart - or whatever distance places them beyond each other's air radar range. A MiG-21 is loitering directly above one base and an E-2C is loitering directly above the other base. Both planes are at high altitude, and neither have any radar active. Both bases have active radar. There are no other groups "in play". The questions are, who sees what?
1. Is the E-2C detected by the other base? Why?
2. Is the MiG-21 detected by the other base? Why?
3. Is either plane detected by the other plane? Why?
4. Is either base detected by the other plane? Why?
5. Is either base detected by the other base? Why?
6. Do any of these detections differ depending on which base/plane is on the AI's side and which is on the player's side? Why?


IF the aircraft have their radars OFF, neither of them should be detected by any means, because they are not emitting and they are far beyond visual range. HOWEVER, if an aircraft is part of the same formation as a base, the default state for its radar is the same as that of the base's organic radar - ALWAYS ON. Therefore, in that case the aircraft radar may in fact be active, even if you haven't told it to do so. The Hawkeye has ESM, so if the MiG IS radar-active, there's a decent chance the Hawkeye will see it, because 400 nm at High is within the horizon. Some versions of the MiG-21 also have ESM, so they would probably see the Hawkeye if it was radar-active, as well. AFAIK, with the exception of the 'secret base' facility in the latest DBs, all fixed bases are always detected. (They don't move, and they can't hide ... :lol: ) The AI tends to have patrolling aircraft use their radars if they've got them, so that will have obvious effects on detectability. I'm honestly not sure whether you can force it NOT to use its radar. :huh:

Case 2a:
Two plane groups of opposing sides are within engagement range. One group is a pair of MiG-21s. The other group is a pair of F-4's. Neither group has (or had) its radar active. Both are at cruise speed, Low altitude, and generally facing each other. There is only one base for each side, and the engagement area is beyond the range of either side's ground radar, and there are no AEW, EW, or other airborne assets on either side. The detectability questions in this case are:
1. Is either group detected by the other? How, why, and who first?
2. If one or both groups were loitering, would that change the detectabilities? How and why?
3. If the groups were not at the same altitude, would that alter the detectabilities? How and why?
4. If one or both groups changed direction, would that alter the detectabilities? How and why?
5. Would a different speed of either group affect its detectability? How and why?
6. Would a different altitude of either group affect its detectabilty? How and why?
7. Do any of these detections differ depending on which plane group is on the AI's side and which is on the player's side? Why?


If the groups get close enough, visual detection should eventually occur. In Real Life ™, the MiGs would probably spot the Phantoms first, because the Phantoms are much bigger and have smoky engines. OTOH, some variants of the Phantom have TCS (Television Camera Sensor), which could give them the advantage instead. Pilot quality would also be relevant. However, in-game, I think only the TCS would make a difference in an otherwise equal situation. I don't think any of the other issues you raise matter for visual detection by eyeball, though the TCS is probably restricted to the same field of view as fighter radars (45 degrees to either side of your course). As noted previously, the AI tends to use its radar if it has it, which obviously will change the equation somewhat.

Case 2b:
Same as Case 2a, except the two plane groups are pairs of F-15Cs. Same questions.


Same as 2a, except no TCS.

Case 2c:
Same as Cases 2a&b, except the four planes are all MiG-17s. Same questions.


Same as 2a, except no radar and no TCS.

I have my own assumptions about each case, but my assumptions regarding detectability have been seriously brought into question of late, so I'd like to know what is supposed to happen in these situations, and why. (Note: I'm not seeking a detailed numerical analysis here, but rather just wanting to know what is the normally expected detectability in each situation, along with brief explanations, where applicable). I'll compare these to my actual observations, in various similar situations.

Thanks.



#4 Joe K

Joe K

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 340 posts

Posted 16 March 2011 - 02:58 PM

In trying to get a handle on this relative detectability issue, I have a few hypothetical cases, and since I can't create test scenarios for them (yet), I'm hoping someone can shed light on what should happen in these situations:

<Plenty snipped>

Is there some reason you can't just work these cases up in the scenario editor to start with? (And bring the data back to the forums if there is something odd in your opinion, of course)

Two things:

1. No scenario editor in the Demo.

2. I'm looking for opinons and explanations of what people are expecting these situations to produce - to see if my understading of their previous discussions of the matter is actually correct, or if something got lost in the soup. Just trying to bring it into focus a bit.

#5 Joe K

Joe K

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 340 posts

Posted 16 March 2011 - 03:34 PM

IF the aircraft have their radars OFF, neither of them should be detected by any means, because they are not emitting and they are far beyond visual range. HOWEVER, if an aircraft is part of the same formation as a base, the default state for its radar is the same as that of the base's organic radar - ALWAYS ON. Therefore, in that case the aircraft radar may in fact be active, even if you haven't told it to do so. The Hawkeye has ESM, so if the MiG IS radar-active, there's a decent chance the Hawkeye will see it, because 400 nm at High is within the horizon. Some versions of the MiG-21 also have ESM, so they would probably see the Hawkeye if it was radar-active, as well. AFAIK, with the exception of the 'secret base' facility in the latest DBs, all fixed bases are always detected. (They don't move, and they can't hide ... :lol: ) The AI tends to have patrolling aircraft use their radars if they've got them, so that will have obvious effects on detectability. I'm honestly not sure whether you can force it NOT to use its radar. :huh:


I was trying to force the situation specifically where the planes were not attached to the bases - so they would be independent from base settings... but I wanted them over the bases to make the case play right. I did not take into consideration the inability to force the AI to keep its radars off - but this is a hypothetical. ;)

Anyway...

Part of the reason behind this case was to find out whether the planes could detect each other at those distances without the benefit of ESM detection of the other's radars, and without the aid of the ground radars.

By the way, is it possible to detect planes via some form of ESM even when they have their radars off? If so, I'm curious about how and when this would take place.


If the groups get close enough, visual detection should eventually occur. In Real Life ™, the MiGs would probably spot the Phantoms first, because the Phantoms are much bigger and have smoky engines. OTOH, some variants of the Phantom have TCS (Television Camera Sensor), which could give them the advantage instead. Pilot quality would also be relevant. However, in-game, I think only the TCS would make a difference in an otherwise equal situation. I don't think any of the other issues you raise matter for visual detection by eyeball, though the TCS is probably restricted to the same field of view as fighter radars (45 degrees to either side of your course). As noted previously, the AI tends to use its radar if it has it, which obviously will change the equation somewhat.

I'd question whether the Phantoms are actually a lot bigger than the MiG-21's, although I suppose it depends a bit on what aspect you're viewing from. Anyway that was the reason for my putting identical aircraft in the other two sub-cases. The smokey trails were reportedly a give-away for the Phantoms in RL; dunno about the MiGs in that regard, although I recall pictures of MiG-17s that were putting out some pretty serious smoke, albeit perhaps not at cruise. (Is any of that even modeled in any way in the game?)

The primary reason for these sub cases was to "investigate" the maddening puzzle of why my pilots have so relatively poor vision compared to the AI's pilots. Specifically in the situation where an engagement occurs in an area well outside of anyone's radar coverage, it is clearly the norm for AI planes to sneak up on, or at least track, target, and kill my air groups without using any radar, while my boys must be blind as moles when they aren't using their radars, and have ineffective radar when they are using it - cause they can't find the AI guys either way, and if they do shoot at the uncertainties, they almost always miss. It just puzzles the heck out of me how the AI guys are so all-seeing, while my guys are such bumbling idiots. Gotta get some better optometrists... or some bionic eyes, I guess... <_<

#6 Warhorse64

Warhorse64

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 498 posts

Posted 16 March 2011 - 04:59 PM

By the way, is it possible to detect planes via some form of ESM even when they have their radars off? If so, I'm curious about how and when this would take place.


In Real Life, sure, it happens all the time, because ESM will pick up radio as well as radar. I think H3 might allow for comm intercepts, but I don't really play it, so I couldn't say for sure. I don't think HC models that, but Tony would probably know.

#7 CV32

CV32

    Administrator

  • Staff Pukes
  • PipPipPip
  • 8,276 posts

Posted 16 March 2011 - 05:41 PM

In Real Life, sure, it happens all the time, because ESM will pick up radio as well as radar. I think H3 might allow for comm intercepts, but I don't really play it, so I couldn't say for sure. I don't think HC models that, but Tony would probably know.


No comms model in HCE, so no comms detection.

#8 Brains

Brains

    Advanced Member

  • Rear Admiral
  • PipPipPip
  • 62 posts

Posted 16 March 2011 - 08:30 PM

In trying to get a handle on this relative detectability issue, I have a few hypothetical cases, and since I can't create test scenarios for them (yet), I'm hoping someone can shed light on what should happen in these situations:

<Plenty snipped>

Is there some reason you can't just work these cases up in the scenario editor to start with? (And bring the data back to the forums if there is something odd in your opinion, of course)

Two things:

1. No scenario editor in the Demo.

2. I'm looking for opinons and explanations of what people are expecting these situations to produce - to see if my understading of their previous discussions of the matter is actually correct, or if something got lost in the soup. Just trying to bring it into focus a bit.


Elsewhere (in the mounting number of speculative threads you've generated), you've said that you have access to a mysterious friend with a full copy and talked about doing some testing there.

Coming to the table with some reviewable info (logs, save games, scenarios demonstrating a detection question, etc) and questions about them beats endless speculation and opinions for bringing things into focus.

Kudos to Warhorse for the legwork and answer, BTW.

#9 VictorInThePacific

VictorInThePacific

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 259 posts

Posted 17 March 2011 - 02:25 AM

the maddening puzzle of why my pilots have so relatively poor vision compared to the AI's pilots. Specifically in the situation where an engagement occurs in an area well outside of anyone's radar coverage, it is clearly the norm for AI planes to sneak up on, or at least track, target, and kill my air groups without using any radar, while my boys must be blind as moles when they aren't using their radars, and have ineffective radar when they are using it - cause they can't find the AI guys either way


By this point it needs to be plainly recognized that the AI units do NOT have any detection advantage "cheat" over the human units. If they did, given that no one seems to be saying that the game definitely does that, then if the game did in fact do that, Tony, Brad, and all the other Harpoon experts here would have to be lying through their teeth. It's an either-or case. Personally, I am going with the first possibility.

And therefore any further suggestion that such a "cheat" is the explanation for certain observed effects is just wasting people's time. If anyone finds that their planes are being bushwhacked by the AI time and time again, you can be fairly certain that the scenario designer has positioned the AI units where they can bushwhack you, if you let them.

Nor is a question of the game running wrong on one specific machine. If the game file is corrupt, then the game won't run at all.

I am making it my personal mission to track down the real explanation for these effects.

#10 donaldseadog

donaldseadog

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 622 posts

Posted 17 March 2011 - 04:21 AM

the maddening puzzle of why my pilots have so relatively poor vision compared to the AI's pilots. Specifically in the situation where an engagement occurs in an area well outside of anyone's radar coverage, it is clearly the norm for AI planes to sneak up on, or at least track, target, and kill my air groups without using any radar, while my boys must be blind as moles when they aren't using their radars, and have ineffective radar when they are using it - cause they can't find the AI guys either way


By this point it needs to be plainly recognized that the AI units do NOT have any detection advantage "cheat" over the human units. If they did, given that no one seems to be saying that the game definitely does that, then if the game did in fact do that, Tony, Brad, and all the other Harpoon experts here would have to be lying through their teeth. It's an either-or case. Personally, I am going with the first possibility.

And therefore any further suggestion that such a "cheat" is the explanation for certain observed effects is just wasting people's time. If anyone finds that their planes are being bushwhacked by the AI time and time again, you can be fairly certain that the scenario designer has positioned the AI units where they can bushwhack you, if you let them.

Nor is a question of the game running wrong on one specific machine. If the game file is corrupt, then the game won't run at all.

I am making it my personal mission to track down the real explanation for these effects.

Hmm, just a thought, most of us think Harpoon is pretty realistic and in reality it takes an operator quite a while to learn how to run their machine, it sure as hell takes a warfare officer a long time to learn his (and these days her) trade. Not meant as a slap in the face, just a reality check I guess.

Don Thomas

#11 CV32

CV32

    Administrator

  • Staff Pukes
  • PipPipPip
  • 8,276 posts

Posted 17 March 2011 - 08:09 AM

And therefore any further suggestion that such a "cheat" is the explanation for certain observed effects is just wasting people's time. If anyone finds that their planes are being bushwhacked by the AI time and time again, you can be fairly certain that the scenario designer has positioned the AI units where they can bushwhack you, if you let them. Nor is a question of the game running wrong on one specific machine. If the game file is corrupt, then the game won't run at all. I am making it my personal mission to track down the real explanation for these effects.


This is essentially my position as well.

Without tangible evidence - saved games, etc, whatever Tony (as the code guy) needs to look "under the hood" - continuing to flounder about in perceptions, observations, assumptions, and sometimes, I suspect, rather severe exaggerations or distortions of the facts (whether intentional or not), is just an exercise in wasting time and frustration.

To the point that we probably annoy and aggravate one another when that is not at all intended.

If a player observes a behavior that appears to be a bug, a flaw or cannot otherwise be explained, then please, please produce the things needed to explore the issue, determine if there is a problem, and if so, fix it.

Its hard to diagnose and fix an engine if a driver doesn't bring his car to the garage, ya know. ;)

#12 Joe K

Joe K

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 340 posts

Posted 17 March 2011 - 09:32 AM

And therefore any further suggestion that such a "cheat" is the explanation for certain observed effects is just wasting people's time. If anyone finds that their planes are being bushwhacked by the AI time and time again, you can be fairly certain that the scenario designer has positioned the AI units where they can bushwhack you, if you let them. Nor is a question of the game running wrong on one specific machine. If the game file is corrupt, then the game won't run at all. I am making it my personal mission to track down the real explanation for these effects.


This is essentially my position as well.

Without tangible evidence - saved games, etc, whatever Tony (as the code guy) needs to look "under the hood" - continuing to flounder about in perceptions, observations, assumptions, and sometimes, I suspect, rather severe exaggerations or distortions of the facts (whether intentional or not), is just an exercise in wasting time and frustration.

To the point that we probably annoy and aggravate one another when that is not at all intended.

First off, I'm not stating that there is a "cheat" involved. BUT, there are certainly several situations where behavior seems to be unbalanced for some reason, and I'm frustrated that no explanation has been forthcoming that actually fits the situation and explains all the observations - the most maddening example may be the one I mentioned here about AI groups being regularly able to detect, track, target, and kill my air groups without ever using their radar, yet my air groups can't even find the AI air groups under the same conditions via radar, ESM, visual, or anything - unless those AI groups activate their radars. In and of itself, the reasons why the AI is able to do this still generally baffle me... but even if there really is a good explantion that I'm not grasping, it still perturbs the heck out of me that my own groups don't have somewhat comparable abilities. THAT is that aspect that is most annoying. In some scenarios, such as the Bridge, I quite literally feel like I'm sending blind men into battle with spitballs as weapons, against an enemy that possesses 22nd century capabilities... and that just makes no sense to me at all, given my understanding of the capabilities of the platforms involved.

If a player observes a behavior that appears to be a bug, a flaw or cannot otherwise be explained, then please, please produce the things needed to explore the issue, determine if there is a problem, and if so, fix it.

Its hard to diagnose and fix an engine if a driver doesn't bring his car to the garage, ya know. ;)

Please believe me when I say that I sorely wish that I could. But also please remember that I have submitted several game-saves which demonstrated various behaviors, and logs which I'm not really sure of the value of/need for, yet to my knowledge, nobody else saw the same behaviors using those game-saves, and the log info was summarily dismissed as not showing any anomalies (which I can't speak to because I don't fully understand the info that those are showing). Given that utter failure of my best efforts to provide satisfactory and reproducible "technical" evidence, I seem to be left with the only alternative of exploring stuff that might explain "operational" reasons for the apparently-inconsistent/incorrect behaviors that I frequently experience during play. I don't know what else to try.

And I do very well understand the difficulty of trying to diagnose and repair problems via "telecommuting", without having detailed info nor being able to actually see and touch the problem (been there, done that... and pretty well tired of it, too. :( Now, I'm getting to see the "other side" of the coin, I suppose...) In fact, I'd love to be able to see what's going on when you run those game-saves - sort of the same problem from the opposite direction, I guess...

The only "technical" options still possible -AFAIK- are to see if we can create something that will produce similar behaviors using the HUE installation, so that it will provide something easier to work with on your end. But before we even get out of the gate on that, I have two huge concerns about it: Since I don't have any good idea what may cause these behaviors, I'm shooting in the dark as far as trying to come up with something from scratch that will demonstate them... so it seems highly unlikely that we can induce those behaviors in HUE... and even if we can, then isn't it just as likely as the earlier games-saves were, to fail to reproduce on your end? (I mean, how will it be any different?) My best hope is that the previous game-saves will demonstrate the behaviors on HUE, right off... but then what?
The only other thing that I can think of to try is to see whether I can make those games-saves demonstrate the same behavior on other machines in the Demo version, but I guess the concensus has already condemned that plan to failure. So, I'm left to wonder just what I can do that will provide any "useful", "adequate", and "satisfactory" "evidence" to prove the behaviors?

But, we've covered all that ground before...

It sort of makes me wish there was a practical way to "record" game play, such that it would play-back the game as actually played, for review. Maybe something would turn up from that. Anyone have a spare DVR??? ;)

#13 VictorInThePacific

VictorInThePacific

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 259 posts

Posted 17 March 2011 - 09:58 AM

It sort of makes me wish there was a practical way to "record" game play, such that it would play-back the game as actually played, for review.


There is such a thing. It's called a screenshot. I have provided 2 in the "scenario creation" thread from exactly the relevant instant. Now you claim, Joe, that your AEW planes are constantly being jumped by stealthy enemy fighters. Fine. Next time it happens, lean back, stretch, press "print screen", dump it into Paint, save as a JPEG, and upload it here. Then do it again. This will not help for formally debugging the problem, but it will certainly help to convince everyone here that you are actually seeing this effect.

Of course, after I have made this plain statement, if you do NOT provide such screenshots, then everyone here, realizing how easy it is to provide them, will be certain that you do not actually see such effects.

#14 CV32

CV32

    Administrator

  • Staff Pukes
  • PipPipPip
  • 8,276 posts

Posted 17 March 2011 - 10:04 AM

Screenshots are useful as illustrations of what is going on, or to help explain a particular point, and I certainly invite them if they help in that respect.

But keep in mind, as Tony said earlier (or in another thread, I don't recall which), they won't help him determine what is going on "under the hood". A savegame from just prior to the "event" is a much better tool for diagnosis, etc.

#15 Joe K

Joe K

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 340 posts

Posted 17 March 2011 - 10:17 AM

Just a quick status update for Tony:

As I hear it, the entire HUE is now installed on his secondary machine. (Not sure why he did the whole thing, as I thought he was only going to put in the HCE parts, but...) He put the 2009.050 Demo on it first, so both are in place. When I can get up there again, I will try my game-saves on both the Demo and the HUE version, and report those results, and discuss any appropriate next steps based on those results.

Meanwhile, I have the Demo 050 up on one of my other computers now and have been running the game-saves there. So far, these runs have not demonstrated the behaviors at all. That's not making me feel all warm and fuzzy, because even though they are known to take a bit of time on my primary machine before things start manifesting regularly, they've always demonstrated at least a hint of the problem early on... but in this case, they aren't acting up at all so far. I will try to replicate the conditions of the "delayed onset", to see if that produces anything. If not, then my only other test would be to try and replicate the system environment. Unfortunately, I won't be able to run all of the same apps on the second machine as are active on my primary machine because several of those are not installable on the second machine due to licensing or compatability issues... sooo... instead, I'll have to try taking my primary system down to running only the HCE Demo app, and see if that makes the behaviors disappear on my primary machine, too. Unfortunately, I don't have any way to provide a really equal system environment on these two machines - shoot, they're not even the same version of the OS. :( So, I'm not really sure how conclusive the results are going to be, anyway.

I will report all relevent results as they become available.




0 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users