I'm still struggling a bit on target priorities, and how it will work 'in the wild', both UI-wise and AI-wise...
What if you don't have enough fuel to bring the ordnance back home if no targets are found. Jettison, or plan for it by reducing max strike radius?
How is it done IRL?
You have a lot of good points. Care to elaborate on TOT intervals?
TOT interval, I think is needed because you don’t need or indeed don’t always want multiple targets hit at the exact second.
In response to your previous query on TOT accuracy – generally/doctrinally there is no tolerance for error, it’s down to the exact second; in reality the variation can be up to 15-20 seconds and that is good enough.
Because it is both impractical and often unsafe to have multiple targets hit at the exact second you need to set in effect another TOT for each target. I think game wise it could be handled with an interval based on the one TOT. Perhaps a default interval of 20 seconds, which the player can adjust. If you combine the two ideas (TOT accuracy tolerance and interval) the default interval should be at least twice the accuracy tolerance you set.
If you take a situation where one platform has a lot of ordinance, say a B-2 with 40 JDAMS. I think (don’t know for sure) it is theoretically possible for all 40 to strike at once, but if you did that the effects of one bomb would cause other bombs problems: Shrapnel causing duds in bombs that are a few milliseconds slow, blast throwing off guidance, slow bombs detonating on impact with debris etc. Plus, it makes BDA assessment and any investigation a nightmare. If you set an interval of even 5 seconds for 40 individual DMPI (Designated Mean Point of Impact – or sub target) the entire strike if over in just about 3 min, the intelligence guys get good video of each strike, each bomb is free and clear of all the others, and the bad guys still don’t have time to react.
Some questions: What if the targets disappears? Before take-off? After take-off? What to do with unspent ordnance?
That’s what the target priorities are for. If a target disappears because it was destroyed the asset shifts to the next priority target until there are none left and they RTB, so theoretically you will have AC RTBing with ordnance. If the target is lost because you no longer have a decent target location, that’s a bigger problem. Perhaps the mission planner needs a switch so the player can select to stay on the target no matter what and hope the resolution improves as the strike gets closer to the target.
How shall aircraft be assigned to targets?
Either by the player in the first instance or if s/he does not, then the planner does it automatically, and the player has a chance to change that after the ‘calculate’ option shows him what the planner has done. I think this could certainly be evolutionary, and may be a bridge too far for the first cut at the planner.
How shall weapons be assigned to targets?
Same as above. Player first then planner, then adjust.
How would ships coordinate with ground strikes in practice?
By time and airspace. The game makes it simpler than in real life as airspace is not really an issue – so time. Gets back to the TOT planner.
How would tanker coordination work in detail?
I think the tanker feature you have in the current mission planner is quite powerful and would suffice. In an ideal world, a routine would run during the calculate phase, do a distance, volume and fuel usage calculation - and tell the player ‘Mission XXX has been set up at these RPs and these tankers assigned to it. They need to depart at XXX time’. That is probably beyond the scope right now I think, but not sure.
How would escorts work in detail? Would these have flightplans and waypoint times too?
The same way they work now, I don’t think you need to change that at all.
How would this work with large volumes of air strikes? Hundreds or possibly thousands of sorties spanning days or even weeks?
This would rapidly become unmanageable. In real life an ATO (Air Tasking Order) would cover a 24-hour period for an entire theatre. So based on that you shouldn’t even consider anything more than 24 hrs.
A mission planner should be designed to plan missions – not air campaigns. So you need geographical, or time based or number of target based limits. Exceed those and you need another mission.
To me a strike mission would be aimed at a concentration of similar or supporting targets, an airbase, a port, several key targets in an area the size of a city, that sort of thing
< Message edited by emsoy -- 2/4/2018 8:39:55 AM >
"Command: Modern Air/Naval Operations