Early Access Feature List

Cobra (@nicholas.dackard), over on the ED Forums (link: here) has posted a list of the features set for the Early Access release coming on 13 March 2019:

Gonna be awesome!


Dear All,

On the 13th of March, we launch the F-14 into Early Access!
We’re incredibly nervous and excited to hear your thoughts and to begin this shared journey of Tomcat development as we steam full speed ahead towards full release.

Our goal has been to ship the F-14 in a major feature complete state for Early Access, and we’re incredibly proud to have achieved our goal to do so.
That said, there are some specific items that have been either purposefully deferred until post-EA (due to potential for complications) and/or that we simply were unable to implement in time.
Some of these will be implemented very quickly post release, especially that may be useful in conducting flight operations, while others constitute less important systems that serve merely as a future curiosity and will be added down the line. Most of the items on this list fall into the latter category.

We’d very much like to commit to a timeline in which you will see these features, but due to the uncertainties of release and the potential for new, unexpected issues to arise due to the much wider user base, we’d like to hold off on doing so until things settle in the two weeks post early access release. That will give us a much better picture of where we stand and what to expect, so that we can make an accurate assessment that you can count on.

We hope to adhere to your ideal idea of an Early Access development process, and hope you’ll all stay involved in giving feedback and helping us build the most realistic Tomcat of all time.
Have faith in us as we jump in together!

Without further ado, here’s a non-exhaustive list as of today (few days prior to going Gold):

Visuals:

  • AA-1 Interrogator Control Panel. : This panel will serve no purpose in DCS, but it will be missing visually on day 1.

  • Ejected Pilot : Upon ejection, the Pilot’s will transform into the F-15 pilot in DCS.

  • Dynamic Modex Numbers : Due to the extreme variance (!!!) in F-14 squadron modex placement, font choice, size and more- we’re still working on implementing this in a performance friendly way.

  • In-Cockpit Pilot : We know this is a frustrating feature to be missing for those of you in VR, so this is a top priority and you will not be waiting long (that goes for you Viggenites too, we know!).

  • LAU-7 / LAU-138 : Sidewinder adapters on shoulder stations will currently appear as LAU-7 but will behave as LAU-138 (additional chaff available). LAU-7/138 will be selectable in the ME.

Functionality & Systems:

  • TWS Auto steering centroid and automatic scan volume controls : Allows for steering indication to center of targets selected for AIM-54 engagement and also allows the WCS to control the radar scan volume for maximum target track coverage. This has been implemented some time ago, but due to unresolved issues this might not make it in on Day 1.

  • AN/AWG-9 slaved to TCS functionality : Allows the radar to be slaved to the TCS lock allowing the radar to lock the TCS target in STT. Of limited use in DCS, and wasn’t used IRL according to SMEs.

  • JAM/JET functionality, indication of jam strobes Allows the RIO to set at what level a pulse doppler target is jamming at and then display it as a JAM strobe on the TID.

  • Improved AIM-54 control Allowing for better optimization of lofting and seekerhead modes, such as when to go active and to be fully SARH in STT. This feature is pending DCS API changes for 3rd parties to allow us to more directly control missile behaviour.

  • TID, DDD, VDI, HUD Some minor indications will be missing at EA. These include, for example, the AVIA display mode and Nav Grid. These are minor and non-critical omissions.

  • In Flight Training System. Used for in flight crew training (e.g. programs that generate fake target returns on radar). Of limited use in DCS.

  • Circuit Breakers. We don’t expect to implement a full simulation of every CB in the F-14, but critical and often used ones will be added continuously throughout EA, as well as an expansion of the electrical systems modeling.

  • Radar Further small enhancements will be added over time and if feasible in the DCS engine. These include sidelobe modelling, returning signal strength trace on DDD (including jamming), clouds/weather and Jet Engine Modulation (JEM)
    Missing BITs (Built-In Tests):
    BITs serve limited purpose in DCS- but these (and more) missing BITs will be implemented with time:

  • DECM BIT.

  • WCS BIT Sequences.

  • OBC (On-Board Checks)

  • LANTIRN IBIT
    Missing Systems:
    TARPS
    This system was always intended to be launched post-EA, and we’re still conceptualizing how deep we want to go.
    JESTER
    We will continue to improve and add functionality during EA- especially with your feedback!
    One significant piece of functionality that we plan to add is JESTER being able to operate the LANTIRN TGP.

Content

  • Campaigns : As noted in our purchase pages, the two free campaigns will be available post launch.

  • Training Missions : We will expand the amount of training missions during the course of EA.

  • A-6, Forrestal, F-14A : We will detail our plans regarding these ASAP. The Forrestal will be priority #1.

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That’s looking like a good list. Will be really interesting to see how they managed the Radar details within the existing DCS engine. Also…

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More like:

[.insert gif of Hulk changing back to normal I couldn’t find in a quick google.]

I’m really looking forward to doing regular pilot stuff such as take-off, circuits and landings in that big ol’ analogous bird but also BFM, LANTIRN, oh my, all the things! squeeee!

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That’s all I need!

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Some of those items sound like things you’d only notice if you played with the pre-release press version.

The Forrestal will be nice but let’s be honest, the A-6 is the thing we really want. I can forget the Stennis is the Stennis easily enough, but I can’t pretend anything is an A-6 but an A-6.

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W O W…Just saw thatThe Fighter Pilot Podcast*** will do a TomCat special to be released on March 12th* !!! Does it get any better than that???

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