Probably not this year. And we won’t be seeing conflict sizes of BMS campaigns in DCS, it’s simply not possible.
If you compare DCS and BMS, by today’s standards, BMS is a Fiat 500. DCS started out as a Fiat 500 but as engines (hardware) became more capable, ED changed the body. DCS is now a 50 ton truck with a 300 horsepower engine. BMS is still a Fiat 500 only now with a 300 horsepower engine. Go figure.
BMS is very lean, it was from the ground up designed to handle large conflicts through admissions in the realism of things that happen far away from the player. DCS has a fundamentally different approach. DCS was built to simulate everything that happens on the battlefield to the same level of realism (no bubble). Both approaches have their pros and cons, but unless graphical progress in DCS halts in eating away the gains of improving hardware, conflict sizes will remain the size they are right now.
I see others equating dynamic campaigns with full scale war scenarios.
A campaign can be ’dynamic’ without simulating the entire war.
A real war, even the really big ones, are usually fought in campaigns. There are theatres of operations with campaigns where strategic goals are obtained.
It is possible to break down the virtual war in similar smaller elements, which also is quite realistic.
So, no, we won’t be able to simulate wars fought in multiple theatres, or big strategic campaigs.
But that’s not a requirement for a dynamic campaign.
I think maybe 7-10 day campaigns will be possible on the maps we have today. There will be many mission types to be flown. Fly the CAP, and watch the Strike packages do their thing, under your cover. Do the SEAD before the Strike. Watch everybody else execute their missions. The ATOs will shift depending on the success of previous missions.
What I hope ED will achieve, with their dynamic campaigns, is proper resource management. I want to manage a squadron, with pilots amd airframes. I also want that feeling of being a small part of the big puzzle, so to speak. The AI need to be able to handle themselves. I don’t want to have to do everything myself, as that would be unrealistic.
It’s not an easy task.
But none of the above requires larger maps.
Not with the level of detail of the current maps, no.
But, as with all computer hardware, RAM requirements will increase with time…
I don’t doubt we’ll see larger maps in the future. It’s just that it’s not a requirement for dynamic campaigns.
I am pretty much with @Troll here.
While I would love to have bigger maps and be able to simulate the full war, I think it will be possible to simulate a part of the theater in a believable, somewhat realistic way.
My main fear is that the AI in its current state is not able to do the job. They will have to improve it considerably to make it suitable for that.
No easy task.
I agree with troll too, i personally can live without full dynamic campaing. But something like Janes F-15 or F-18 style career with limited weapons , airframes etc… and fell of that things what i do will effect outcome.
And curent AI is usable , but default taskings and “rules” are really bad in mission editor. But thats offtopic , its what is and i dont think that it will improve near future.
Exactly, dynamic campaign and “conquer the map” or often incorrectly used synonymous. Best example would be the Battle of Britain, which is a textbook case of a real air campaign that would work very well as dynamic campaign, that included no significant ground combat at all.
Other ones might be the Falklands, where the war mainly was fought at sea, and not with a big amount of assets actually.
Or Kosovo, where for quite some time basically only the Serbs had significant ground forces.
I would not be surprised if we’d see some pretty significant improvements to both (ground/air) unit AI and editor unit programmability in the forseeable future. It is neccesary for much of what ED are planning, integral part of those plans.
Personally I think this is not really a showstopper for most people… They could use the current maps for the 8GB people (how many are still among us?) and expand them for people that have 16GB of RAM. the 2,200,000 subscribers to Star Citizen have zero problems with that for instance.
What is more worrying though is of course the fact that if you make two dimensions twice as big, you need 4 times as much RAM. So ED would need to incorporate some kind of container streaming idea, similar again to star citizen (or the player bubble in F4.0). That is a development cost decision but I hope they will go for it someday as the current maps, beautiful as they are, can feel a little claustrophobic with the F18 sometimes.
@MBot, no ground combat only air? that would be disappointing.
I don’t agree with arguments about it being too complicated or “DCS is more complicated than BMS”. That is simply untrue and no good reason why with modern tools it would be impossible to make a similar or better DC experience, see it as a strategy game in real time with player interaction. It is a lot of work though there’s no denying that, but if a single guy could’ve managed it in 98’ (true story) that’s our light at the end of the tunnel.
All I am saying is that a ground war is not a defining property of a dynamic campaign. It can feature ground combat or not, but it is not what is making a dynamic campaign dynamic.
In fact I can think of many scenarios for a DC that would not require a ground war: Battle of Britain, strategic bombing of Germany, North Vietnam (Rolling Thunder, Linebacker) or the first month of Desert Storm, just to name a few historical ones. Add fictional ones and the possibilities become countless.
In fact you are going to get such a dynamic campaign for DCS very soon
In fact, if you look at all the 90s sims you’ll see that fully scripted campaigns were always in the minority. However, the dynamic ones could range from “augmented random single missions” all the way up to what F4 did. There is plenty of room to make one below there that is still enjoyable.
I think the minimum things needed for a DC include:
variety (if you get the same mission over and over because target X wasn’t destroyed and the campaign is fixated on that happening next, you’re sunk)
a realistic consistent ORBAT, where you can’t shoot down 10 MiGs every single mission for 10 missions and the enemy just keeps throwing them at you, at least not for any conflict post-1975 or so
persistent damage, a must really, where a bridge lost one mission isn’t back the next, but with realistic repair timelines so that a damaged airfield might be back after 2 or 3