Heatblur Dev update

So, when I heard ‘TARPS’ I thought, finally, I can put a recon mission in there that seems somewhat plausible; at least you can see a gizmo attached for the purpose. All I have to start with is the Wiki, ‘Missions’ section:

Is this close?


@jross I too am lazy, didn’t listen but read the TLDR

“Close” is the literal wording there, so yes!


Thanks, I wasn’t clear - my bad. I’m not very familiar with this piece of Tomcat kit; was wondering how accurate the Wiki was concerning this mission. Pretty straight-forward based on that: Go really fast, take pictures.

Until today TARPS meant, to me, “what I use to keep things like my BBQ grill dry with”. :slight_smile:

I guess there was some button or switch to turn the TARPS pod “on” (start recording). Doesn’t sound like there will be any mechanism to ‘trap’ for this event in the sim. Seems the best you can do, off the top of my head, is check the players position: did they hit points A & B within some parameters. If so then success. Would be something different and having/seeing an actual hunk of gear hanging off should complete the illusion. Hmm. I’ll re-read the Wiki (just cruised through it earlier).

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There’s a great episode on TARPS on the F-14 Tomcast. I thought it might be a little boring, but it turned out to be one of my favorite episodes!


Knowing Heatblur, they will probably add something to improve the player experience and that is not dependent on mission makers.

Do you know what they did with the Viggen ELINT pod?

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:+1: I’ll check it out. Thanks again.

Looks like I started it but got interrupted (when it first came out).

Quick link


No clue. Don’t own it…sorry @Troll - I swear I’m gonna…RSN (Real Soon Now) :slight_smile:

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I don’t either but IIRC, it works something like this:

After flying around with it and landing, you get a plaintext file in your Saved Games dir with emitter types and approximate locations. The better you were able to get signals from the same receiver from different directions, the more accurate the triangulation is.

Or maybe you just got the lines and not the area? Not sure about the details, but it does allow you to do actual ELINT on a running (multiplayer as well) mission and then use rhat info immediately without any additional setup required from mission maker or scripts.

I am hoping we get something similar with TARPS where we can “develop” the pictures after landing and get them in some local files.

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Right! Most importantly, it develops a strike plan and populates a data cartridge you can select on the kneeboard immediately after landing, so in-mission you can fly an ELINT mission, land, and assess the intel gathered on the kneeboard/F10 map, and have a data cartridge loaded and ready to go if you decide to strike a radar you found. It’s cool!


All sounds cool. My hang up (at this point) is I can’t do “I/O” from lua – without changing the users 'MissionScripting.lua" file. Or I don’t know how, yet. Specifically these entries:



And I don’t want to do that. I want a newbie to be able to just download it and click “fly”. No changing your base install (I plan to support some mods for different objects like CAM, MAM, etc). And unlike paid campaigns this is semi-dynamic, ie; no missions are exactly the same (different tasks and targets).

So you can’t have things like mission-specific kneeboards or audio (I’ve handled these in different and more simplified ways). I’m hoping the updated weather plan allows me to change it on loading. Will see.

Anyway, I digressed - a lot. I may have to pick up the Viggen sooner than later as it might give me a clue as to how they did this. Not likely but there’s a corner of my hangar that’s empty?


You can add audio files and kneeboard into the .miz files be dynamically generating them can’t be done without those changes you noted above. You probably know this but I just wanted to be clear. When I was messing around with scripting a few years ago I used to disable those to create my own logs and data files from the lua scripting.

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Thanks for the confirmation, appreciated.

I have ‘dynamic’ Kneeboard information, called up with a F10 menu item for things like, “Frequency Ladder”: you click it and it spits out the the freqs for, say, tankers (among other entities and info).

Or routes using the map drawing API (lines, text, circles, arrows, etc) thus creating a ‘dynamic’ kneeboard if you will.

Most things are random, with some influencing factors like; what point in the campaign you happen to be in (early, middle, late, etc). Is why I can’t have ‘canned’ audio - creating THAT, dynamic, text-to-speech mechanism was/is a bear but so far it works. And it is by nature more flexible. Just doesn’t sound as ‘sexy’ as canned audio (but you don’t notice after a few missions). I have to ‘build’ a sentence on the fly, like:

doAudio(“HORNET 11”, “maintain”, “at or above”, “altitude(number)”, “until cleared”). Blah, blah blah. The altitude is variable in this case. And on the correct freq; without colliding with other transmissions. Took a bit of time.

All within a ‘theme’ - in this case as an “Attack Pilot” in a COIN environment. So you might get tasked for:

  • CAS: work with an AFAC (ground/JTAC not plugged in yet but soon)
  • Armed Recon (with a ‘kill box’ to patrol, complete with a grid and map display)
  • “Strike” - a coordinated strike with a bunch of other aircraft, usually on a airfield, factory of some kind, etc - a “big” target. Just not sure what to call this as these types changed over time and even between service branches.
  • Interdiction - Go break something HQ thinks will hurt the enemy
  • ‘None’ - just blast off, hold at the CAP/CP (Control Point) and wait for the AI to rustle up a target (think they called this, depending on the time/service, “On-Call CASS” or “CAS CAP”).

All info Is formatted from static and dynamic data within the mission at runtime.

And it’s even working! Testing is time consuming though.

Then ‘port’ it all over into the miz - right now I store the source externally so I can edit/debug it, then just hit “fly” after fixing/changing something (I use loadfile()). I’d never be able to do something this complex without this mech.

Ugh, then I need to do a tutorial video. And a manual (though nobody reads anymore).

Back to work for me…


From Iron Mike
" Posted yesterday at 06:22 AM


Dear All,

Apologies for the late notice on this; with our intense pace currently, we’re quieter than usual and time has flown since the AIM-54 update.

Today’s patch does not include any changes for the Viggen or F-14. Recently, lead times changed significantly for DCS patches, and while we managed to ship our large Phoenix overhaul last update, there was only a very very small gap to contribute to this patch and so we focused on shipping a larger update for the F-14 and Viggen in the October patch.

Major features which will release will be, amongst others, the new cockpit pilot bodies, Viggen art updates, a new free campaign for the F-14A, and the new full implementation of jamming and associated EW effects in the AWG-9 radar. We’ll also be updating the Forrestals with various improvements and adjustments. We’ll do an in-depth dive on the last part soon to give you all an idea of what to expect, as with the AIM-54 as it’s a rather large update to the F-14’s radar and another massive step towards full completion.

Thank you for all the support and stay tuned for the breakdown on the EW/Jamming effects! 🙂