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NachtJaeger110

Contact Visibility

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Well, it does render planes at 10 km distance, they are just too hard to see, because they are 1-2 greyish pixels at that distance.

 

I think what would work, would be to adapt the icon system from RoF, with some changes. For instance, in RoF, the icon appears right were the plane is (not like in BoS, where you will see an arrow underneath the plane) and the icon basically looks like a small biplane. Too easy to spot in this case of course, but i'm pretty sure this could be adapted and scaled down and made so that it only appears at long distances (maybe 5+ km).

 

I would rather see something like that, than CloD style reflections, which would also be pretty tough to see, atleast when flying over snowy landscapes.

 

Here are a few screenshot of a P-40 about 10 km away in BoS and a DFW C.V at about 3.5 km distance in RoF (icon on and off), so i'm assuming that BoS already uses smart scaling to improve things a bit.

Just IMO. When comparing spotting in RoF vs BoS, for me spotting in RoF is a lot easier. I think this is partly due to the fact that in RoF the aircraft are all open cockpit and BoS has dirty canopy glass. The other part is that there is something different about the atmosphere in BoS (maybe haze) that makes contacts more difficult to spot and maintain too.

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Just IMO. When comparing spotting in RoF vs BoS, for me spotting in RoF is a lot easier. I think this is partly due to the fact that in RoF the aircraft are all open cockpit and BoS has dirty canopy glass. The other part is that there is something different about the atmosphere in BoS (maybe haze) that makes contacts more difficult to spot and maintain too.

 

This matches my subjective experience as well. I am not sure that it is canopy glass though: you can fly some of the red crates canopy open and it still seems hard to see anything. I suspect some AA or super-sampling effect working differently: the wings on RoF planes stand out against the sky much better as dark lines. Below the horizon I find them equally hard to see: take your eyes off the target outside 500 meters or so  for a moment to check six and I have difficulty re-sighting it even when looking straight at it in both games, unless it flies across a nicely contrasting bit of terrain.  

 

Perhaps an illusion because the BoS planes are further away than we are used to in a RoF setting? Not an easy thing to test.

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Hi, after taking a look at some of these screenshots i really had to scratch my head.... I did some research on how to increase the contact visibility and found a topic where the importance of lowering the gamma setting was mentioned. So i tried that and had the luck to be able to play on a server with very good wheather and sun position today... the issue now is not nearly as bad as I originally had the impression. And I tested the actual spotting distance in the replay with the the Indicators and I have to admit that i was misjudging the actual "popping up" distance. So yes it is acually happening at 10kms. Nethertheless, I think the spotting distance needs to be increased alot and that the dot is too small at distances higher than 6 kms, especially when he is in the "glare" of the horizon he is nearly completely disappearing.

However I have made a new Video where I kind of adjust my Statements a little ( even though I think my Points are still very much true, which is shown by all the people sharing this Impression, and the way that the game is played by most people online( meeting at the airfield)), which will be up in a few hours from now.

PS: Where can I get those awesome glasses ;)

Glad to see you are ready to admit a mistake. Sorry if I came off as rude in my earlier post. I regret the wording I used there.

 

Still, I don't recognise the problem, as I have little trouble spotting air contacts out to 10km. I agree that the draw distance should be increased maybe to 15km to avoid pop ups, and I'm very open to discuss ideas on how to improve visibility for people who have a hard time spotting.

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I think, that the main reason spotting seems so much easier in RoF has to do with speed. Everything happens so much faster, while the size of the objects we're trying to spot are only a bit larger and the distances involved essentially the same. In RoF you have plenty of time to scan the sky looking for a dot that moves very slowly across your view.

 

There's also something in the rendering ofc. especially the way BoS renders aircraft against the sky, which really makes it blend in, but I think that's secondary to speed as a factor.

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This matches my subjective experience as well. I am not sure that it is canopy glass though: you can fly some of the red crates canopy open and it still seems hard to see anything. I suspect some AA or super-sampling effect working differently: the wings on RoF planes stand out against the sky much better as dark lines. Below the horizon I find them equally hard to see: take your eyes off the target outside 500 meters or so  for a moment to check six and I have difficulty re-sighting it even when looking straight at it in both games, unless it flies across a nicely contrasting bit of terrain.  

 

Perhaps an illusion because the BoS planes are further away than we are used to in a RoF setting? Not an easy thing to test.

 

What do those damn mechanics use to cover the canopies at night anyway? Sandpaper?

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I think, that the main reason spotting seems so much easier in RoF has to do with speed. Everything happens so much faster, while the size of the objects we're trying to spot are only a bit larger and the distances involved essentially the same. In RoF you have plenty of time to scan the sky looking for a dot that moves very slowly across your view.

 

There's also something in the rendering ofc. especially the way BoS renders aircraft against the sky, which really makes it blend in, but I think that's secondary to speed as a factor.

 

The trouble with that theory is that faster movement should make it easier to notice things, not harder, if you are looking near them. It is of course true that you have a shorter time in which to be looking in the right place, but if you are the relative motion of the object is what the eye picks up (along with edges). I suspect the winter map lighting and atmosphere effects also contribute - there is no doubt that ease of spotting varies a lot in RoF depending on the time of day. It will be interesting to see if people have a different experience on the new summer maps.

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DCS Beta 1.5 spotting is what they should use as a benchmark. Right now its very bad. And not only in regards to spotting.

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I'm watching something right now about an Israeli fighter pilot, Giora "Hawkeye" Epstein.

He had extraordinary eyesight and was able to see other fighters at 24 miles. He says that the average pilot could see them from about 8-12 miles.

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Just IMO. When comparing spotting in RoF vs BoS, for me spotting in RoF is a lot easier. I think this is partly due to the fact that in RoF the aircraft are all open cockpit and BoS has dirty canopy glass. The other part is that there is something different about the atmosphere in BoS (maybe haze) that makes contacts more difficult to spot and maintain too.

I would actually say, that it seems easier, because the speed of the planes is basically a quarter or a third of the BoS planes (generally speaking), so you practically have three to four times as much time to spot something. If you compare RoF and BoS spotting more closely and place an airplane of similar size (two-seater in RoF vs. single-seater in BoS for instance) at the same distance from the player, the plane in BoS will be way easier to spot, even with canopy closed, because it's not scaled in RoF. But i also think that camouflage works better in BoS, i've rarely seen a white camouflaged plane in RoF flying over a winter landscape.

 

I'm not sure if the BoS haze really makes a difference, but maybe things will change when we get the summer and autumn maps.

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I have to say, I find the spotting distance fine just as it is.

 

If you're looking for a dog-fight I can understand what Ape has to say but.......... I fly ground attack, I like to fly as low as possible inbound to my target, hugging the trees and gullies. I want to avoid a fight, if I see aircraft I fly a dog-leg to make sure I don't become a statistic. I only pop up as I approach my target. I don't want to be seen.

 

Just adding another angle to this thread.

 

 

Cheers.

Edited by keeno

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Guys! I got the problem fixed once and for all! Somebody told me a few hours ago how to lower the Gamma setting even more and where the Config file is to be found: Programms(x86)/1c/BoS/data/startup.cfg , in there is a Line for Gamma that you can reduce ingame to only 0.8, but manually you can lower it much more. I have flown it with 0.5 and this makes the spotting just as easy and working in a good way as it is in Cliffs. Sure it would be nice if the contacts would be rendered a few kms further out in addition to that but just now I flew BoS for the first time as I always wanted it to. I finally can count on my Eyesight and i am not Snowblind anymore! The Game looks a lot better and richer in color that way too! I think that the whole thing is a Hardware Issue, this would explain why some people have the same problem while others cant understand it, maybe some graphics cards have stronger HDR effects which make this whole thing unbearably blinding which makes the dots so hard to see, but like I said, If you are one who has this Problem lower the Gamma in the config and you are good to go! Such an easy fix for such a Game destroying Issue! I will make a Video about that of course.

Edited by JG26_Ape
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Yes, it's a known "problem", see http://forum.il2sturmovik.com/topic/16949-what-gamma-value-do-you-use-graphics-settings/

 

I'm writing "problem", because in the end it may well just be that the default settings of gaming oriented LCD panels are way too bright, and it's not the game's fault. I think that's the case with my BenQ panels, which I would not recommend to anyone. This game made me realize all displays were not equal, and the quality gap can be pretty large. That's something I always knew was true in theory, but I did not think I would mind or notice. With my panels, I just can't seem to have proper blacks and proper whites at the same time. I can't complain, at the time I bought them I just picked the cheapest panels that met my size requirements, and I got what I paid for, I suppose. Another thing to look for is the number of colors a panel can show. Some of the sky gradients, and ground colors at night, just look horrible. The game renders 16M colors, but the panel is limited to a few hundred thousands, it seems. And it shows.

 

Then there is also the fact that the devs may have intended for the blinding effect of snow. And that would be OK, if we had other seasons than snow (which is soon to be the case). Dealing with the challenge of spotting in winter can be fun, but not if that's the only gameplay you have.

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Most peoples monitors are adjusted way too bright by default, (contrast settings are confusingly actually brightness setting and brightness is black level) if they are set up correctly the in game gamma adjustments are perfectly aceptable for fine tuning, if you have to use .cfg edits this points to monitor setting issues 

 

Too low gamma settings will render sky and cockpit too dark and create more issues than (one important issue) it solves, and seems a bit 'gamey' much like using very low resolutions in old IL-2 and CLoD to get better spotting

 

Cheers Dakpilot

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If every display was calibrated correctly. They would all look exactly the same. Then how would manufacturers claim theirs is "better"?

:-D

So TVs are all deliberately set to look too bright or colorful so that customers will be drawn to buy them. At home that setting is always too garish. I don't know if the same philosophy applies to computer monitors There are some home theater calibration DVDs out there with black and white level test patterns that's help pick the right setting.

This one (Pluge) would be applicable to what we are looking for here. I just googled it so I'm not sure how correct this copy is. But you should be able to make out the white and black steps. Many digital displays will clip off the signal above video white and below video black (where the dots are), a good TV will let you see it in order to calibrate. I think most PC monitors probably clip. You would probably need to use the actual DVD or BD I order to get this set right rather than use the screen shot attached here. But this is an example.

post-1189-0-67326700-1444649593_thumb.png

Edited by SharpeXB

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Most peoples monitors are adjusted way too bright by default, (contrast settings are confusingly actually brightness setting and brightness is black level) if they are set up correctly the in game gamma adjustments are perfectly aceptable for fine tuning, if you have to use .cfg edits this points to monitor setting issues 

 

Too low gamma settings will render sky and cockpit too dark and create more issues than (one important issue) it solves, and seems a bit 'gamey' much like using very low resolutions in old IL-2 and CLoD to get better spotting

 

Cheers Dakpilot

 

 

Ok so it looks like I need to calibrate my monitor as a first step then a fine tweak for the in game setting

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The test pattern above is from this disc. You'd need to use the disc and not a screenshot from someone else.

Netflix has it. Digital Video Esentials is a great tool for calibrating TVs.

 

http://dvd.netflix.com/Movie/Digital-Video-Essentials-HD-Basics/70091299?strkid=1136302039_0_0&strackid=2851bc5b80f81bd8_0_srl&trkid=1640825

Edited by SharpeXB

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Two things here. First, you guys are awesome. In spite of some minimal differences of opinion, you gentlemen (ladies?) came together to create a great discussion/information thread. One I have truly enjoyed reading and I have learned from. Thank you all.

 

Question: We all know that there are limitations on view with our eyes from "real" verses 'digital" viewing. But just how much I wonder. In other words, how much more (or less) can we see in real life with a good set of eyes? Flipping the coin, how much do we loose via digital imaging?

 

Chief

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Some sweetFX profiles could help too.

Is there a profile out there that optimises for contacts, if so would b nice to try.

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Question: We all know that there are limitations on view with our eyes from "real" verses 'digital" viewing. But just how much I wonder. In other words, how much more (or less) can we see in real life with a good set of eyes? Flipping the coin, how much do we loose via digital imaging?

 

Not very much actually.

 

Disclaimer: This is not as straightforward to compare as it may seem, because the eye doesn't really percieve images in well ordered pixels, the way a screen shows it. But we can use angular resolution as an approximation.

 

If we go by the 0.0128 degree (or around 45 arcseconds) threshold for how small details the human eye can distinguish, then 4K graphics with the view fully zoomed in in BoS really comes quite close to that threshold. At most we are talking 50% off, which is really not that much, considering that screen resolutions are bound to increase in coming years.

 

The distance redering in BoS however is a bit behind what can be achieved with 4K graphics. Already at 1080 I can see planes 'popping' into view at 10km distance. I can only imagine that the effect is even more pronounced in 4K.

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It's easy to determine the pop-in/pop-out distance.

Make a pursuit style quick mission hunting some Ju52s and you can observe them pop in and out of existence from full detail (at full zoom you can see the clearly see the engines and tail and whatnot, which is rather impressive don't get me wrong) to nothing at a point close to or exactly at 10km distance.

 

I'm doing what you describe on my server, Con. This takes its toll on the CPU, leaving room for a dozen people. If you want a big server with 64 players, I fear it might be hard having many AIs

Depends entirely on how one does the AI though, pretending that's an absolute blurs the issue.

Giving the AI the exact same FMs as for human planes means you'll have way less of them, which is unfortunately what they did with BoS.

Unfortunately I say from the perspective of someone who has zero interest in SP and does most of his flying these days on Storm of War. Anyone who ever flew CloD on a full ( up to 70 people) with dozens of AI buzzing around knows what I mean.

 

 

In a perfect world the devs probably would've included the option to have a simplified or full FM/physics simulation for bots to ensure it's fun for MP and SP I guess, but that's a good bit extra effort.

And since they apparently were so incredibly busy with the AMAZING SP experience for BoS and BoM I guess there was no time left for...  :lol:  

Ok, ok I'll stop.

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In a perfect world the devs probably would've included the option to have a simplified or full FM/physics simulation for bots to ensure it's fun for MP and SP I guess, but that's a good bit extra effort.

 

Full physics AI for fighters is probably the right thing to do, or people will complain about UFO AI every time they get shot down by one. There's also little point in fighting an AI that you know is not subject to the same physics. Bombers AI, on the other hand, can use simplified physics. The way it is today, bombers are actually a lot more problematic than fighters, and that could be a huge win. I seem to remember from the Questions to Devs thread that Han was not excluding having simplified FMs for the AIs in the future.

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The fact that the AI use a real FM is one of the most appealing features of BoS and RoF. Given that the vast majority of gameplay is SP. It makes the fights against the AI much more palatable knowing that they are following the same rules you are. It's a big plus.

Han mentioned some solutions to the load this places on the CPU

- Use Simple FM for the far away AI and the advanced FM for those closer.

- Make another CPU thread for physics.

 

Sounds like some good ideas.

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Full physics AI for fighters is probably the right thing to do, or people will complain about UFO AI every time they get shot down by one. There's also little point in fighting an AI that you know is not subject to the same physics. Bombers AI, on the other hand, can use simplified physics. The way it is today, bombers are actually a lot more problematic than fighters, and that could be a huge win. I seem to remember from the Questions to Devs thread that Han was not excluding having simplified FMs for the AIs in the future.

Exactly my point.

In MP you use AI to fill the servers with focus points for the action, or to have an ongoing campaign regardless of time zones in the case of Storm of War for example. Usually and ideally in the form of bombers and transports as such. FMs aren't that important for them, DM and top speed more so for obvious reasons.

 

Hence the clear and obvious caveat about posting with a MP perspective I put in, you know?  ;)

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for my clarification, is the desire to see FIGHTERS with NO ZOOM beyond 10km?

.

seems that much of the discussion has been the visibility of a fighter at distance. im not sure if i'm clear on that being with full zoom or no zoom.

.

larger planes (attack/bombers) seem to be more relevant, since they should be visible out further, but the discussion seemed to begin with a concern for dogfight strategy.

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isn't it ironic that we chose skins for camouflage, fly in clouds to hide, avoid contrails to avoid being seen, fly on deck for stealth, etc, etc, etc. ...we want to hide and surprise the enemy..but we want to see the enemy all the way across the map!

.

personally, i have trouble seeing planes very close sometimes, even in clear sky. ahhhh, maybe they're 'popping' out? NOW i have an excuse!

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I can see other aircraft in DCS 1.2 at about 6mi (10km) without zooming in. And ground targets from 13,000' (4,000m)

DCS is a little more clear than BoS

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i recall reading a comment of one of the wwii russian fighter pilots about hating to fly cover for the attack planes because the attack planes flew close to the ground, and flying low enough to 'cover' them meant becoming an easy target for enemy fighters, and flying high enough to avoid being a target they would lose sight of the attack planes. remember that the eastern front was known for it's low altitude combat.

... of course, this must also consider the difficulty of seeing under your plane.but attack planes would have never flown low if they would always got nailed/spotted by enemies from long distances. and,  looking at a documented strategy for the russian cover by fighters, the fighters were taught to fly to the side and above (i think i recall 500m to the side, 500m higher?).

.... someone mentioned ground visibility being poorer than visibility at higher altitude and, of course, clouds must be considered when viewing towards the ground.

.

...but this DOES show that low level attack/bomb missions could succeed because of visibility issues, and probably depended on it. so it adds a bit of 'IRL consideration' for the concerns that defense must catch attackers en-route rather than loiter at target. 

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I can see other aircraft in DCS 1.2 at about 6mi (10km) without zooming in. And ground targets from 13,000' (4,000m)

DCS is a little more clear than BoS

 

Is this with blue skies over a desert or with some cloud and haze

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Is this with blue skies over a desert or with some cloud and haze

This is the old version 1.2 so just the summer Caucuses map. Under conditions of good contrast, like targets in the open and planes against clouds. And admittedly I'm using a 4K monitor.

 

BoS puts a little more haze in the way, I'm sure so that this pop in distance isn't as noticeable. I'd see it instantly in DCS if a plane popped in at 6 miles. That's like the spread of my wingmen in a flight. The modern stuff has much greater ranges where you need a bigger draw distance.

Edited by SharpeXB

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What FLAK crew can see:

 

8.000 - 10.000 m 

 

"You can see with the naked eye: Aircraft or invisible, or they can be seen as a small black dot".

"You can see with binoculars: Silhouette deliquescent points."

 

http://s015.radikal.ru/i331/1510/aa/e3adaa13c2af.jpg

http://www.airpages.ru/mn/scout_00.shtml

Edited by Sokol1

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I tried Ape's suggestion and I went bananas.

Well, not really. I did notice the world of snow was not so blinding but also the cockpit was much darker.

Dark enough to turn on the cockpit lights.

 

I also notice the outside of the plane was much darker. When I come in for a landing I open the cockpit and stick my head out.

The sky was noticeably darker.

 

I am not sure I like it this way but to spot planes I may do this.

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100% Agree with Ape.

 

I just finished a sortie with a lot of guys in server. I was patrolling a very active area and only saw contacts I was right on top of.

 

This is a problem. The human eye can pick aircraft out from the ground very readily. Our eyes are attracted to movement and light.

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I have to say I'm in agreement with a lot that is being discussed here, I'm finding it more difficult to spot other aircraft now and I don't remember this being a problem before. I tried Apes idea but found that although it worked slightly it did make the whole screen too dark. I was using Reshade but found it easier to spot aircraft without it - that said the SweetFX settings did make the whole picture seem more real. At the moment I'm now using some older SweetFx settings through FlightFx - as I still use that for RoF which seems to work ok.

 

But just to clarify that any aircraft over 4K I'm finding hard to see whether I'm zooming in or not, if I'm offline then the AI spot them well before I do and without icons on their almost invisible. As I said before I don't remember this being quite so bad and I have no problem in other flight sims and my screen has been calibrated, so is there maybe just a little too much haze as has been mentioned?

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It's easy to determine the pop-in/pop-out distance.

Make a pursuit style quick mission hunting some Ju52s and you can observe them pop in and out of existence from full detail (at full zoom you can see the clearly see the engines and tail and whatnot, which is rather impressive don't get me wrong) to nothing at a point close to or exactly at 10km distance.

 

I'm experiencing that a lot on multiplayer servers. If you patrol around an enemy airfield with a 9.9km radius and some planes are taking-off, you will clearly see the shape of the planes on the runaway, and as soon as it is taking-off and go a little bit far away (200m...) it suddenly disappears. I mean, it does not become a dot or anything, it pops out, vanish... Maybe take a look at CLOD with team fusion, you'll see a dot in the sky from way farther. I feel like it is the last and only REALLY SERIOUS problem left with BOS/BOM development and gameplay at this point... :unsure:

Edited by rolluptito

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I'm experiencing that a lot on multiplayer servers. If you patrol around an enemy airfield with a 9.9km radius and some planes are taking-off, you will clearly see the shape of the planes on the runaway, and as soon as it is taking-off and go a little bit far away (200m...) it suddenly disappears. I mean, it does not become a dot or anything, it pops out, vanish... Maybe take a look at CLOD with team fusion, you'll see a dot in the sky from way farther. I feel like it is the last and only REALLY SERIOUS problem left with BOS/BOM development and gameplay at this point... :unsure:

 

It is an issue, but it is the same for all players

 

obviously a further distance than 10K would be preferable

 

However the 'Dot' method has a considerable drawback

 

spotting your enemy first is the key in combat

 

with a 'dot' you are able to increase visibility by running at a lower resolution making Your dot bigger on your screen

 

with some people prepared to cheat/hack for some weird reason to get a competitive edge, it is not unreasonable for those types to run a very low res to get an advantage

 

at least with the current method the playing field is somewhat level even if restricted

 

hopefully a better system can be created now with 64bit and a possible DX upgrade, but one without unreasonable exploits easily available

 

Cheers Dakpilot

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It is an issue, but it is the same for all players

 

obviously a further distance than 10K would be preferable

 

However the 'Dot' method has a considerable drawback

 

spotting your enemy first is the key in combat

 

with a 'dot' you are able to increase visibility by running at a lower resolution making Your dot bigger on your screen

 

with some people prepared to cheat/hack for some weird reason to get a competitive edge, it is not unreasonable for those types to run a very low res to get an advantage

 

at least with the current method the playing field is somewhat level even if restricted

 

hopefully a better system can be created now with 64bit and a possible DX upgrade, but one without unreasonable exploits easily available

 

Cheers Dakpilot

 

Well, it's not the same for all players, if you play a turn/dogfighter you will just have to go to bombing locations or airfields and enter the furball. If you are playing energy fighting though, you will almost be a blind bird up there at 5.5km high. Even if you turn around an airfield with a 7k radius (ground) at 5.5k alt you will see nothing, or appearing and vanishing things. 

 

:(

Edited by rolluptito

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few facts from other IL2 titles about this same visibility matter

 

- the original IL2s had what I consider the best possible solution to the "too small for pixel" problem - a simple dot represented a distant aircraft and preserved visibility beyond display resolution limits (which are unfair, as monitors vary wildly in this regard) 

 

- it did not create any "overspotting" issues with lower resolutions, in fact, this was about a decade ago when HD wasn't really available (back then, LCD monitors were just recently becoming mainstream) - even with those resolutions of the late CRT era, the "dot solution" proved absolutely appropriate under the vast majority of reasonable* scenarios 

 

* to intentionally lower res in order to achieve "bigger" dots would be an extreme, exceptional edge case at best, almost certainly not a meaningful drawback in a general sense and surely not enough a factor by itself to offset the advantages of the dot solution

-- also, by that same logic, my 39" TV at 1080p which I have for a primary monitor would be considered "cheating" 

 

- on Cliffs of Dover (with TF patches, of course) you'd even have aircraft glints that would give their position away even at greater than normal spotting distances as the metallic surfaces catch the sunlight and reflect them your way. In reality, this effect would highlight an airplane at distances upwards of 20km - it's like a mirror bouncing off the sun, and it can get extremely bright in the right conditions

 

 

my personal best-solution suggestion to end this issue would be to do just as the first IL2 titles did, and add the dots over distant aircraft -- one may even improve on the effect by having that dot gradually fade off into the same color of the sky/haze until it is no longer visible (increasing its transparency would create just that effect, regardless of lighting conditions) - this would also reduce the (arguable*) benefits of using a lower resolution for "cheating" 

 

* to do this would severely interfere with the would-be-cheater's ability to correctly judge the distances of those contacts - leaving him in a disadvantage from being less able to effectively prioritize his threats / it would also reduce his overall recognition capability and make him unable to determine friend or foe until much closer than a player at normal resolution

 

 

extra points if the sunlight glint effect is also added, as this is a tactically relevant consideration as well

 

 

cheers

Edited by Moach

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