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Old 09-25-2019, 09:06 PM   #76
AzureSkies
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Originally Posted by Herman View Post
The ability to re-map hotkey commands (like Dangerous Waters) would be an incredible feature.

[snip]

If possible, maybe even allow the player to re-name displays/units to something he finds more useful.
Both should be relatively easy to do. I'll try to keep these good ideas in mind.

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Originally Posted by Tnih_n View Post
Not sure if you have this in mind already, but will the game feature some kind of tactical map ?
But of course. This is rather essential for any naval game, really. The graphics for the map display are actually done in very high resolution, and exported from infinitely scaleable vector graphics, so a map display has been in planning since the start, but is still waiting on completion of other core features, first.
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Old 09-25-2019, 09:43 PM   #77
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Default VEHICLE HIGHLIGHT

Hello again, everyone.

For this week's update/highlight, we'll have some cooperation with a NATO ally, and be joined by the Royal Navy.

Though too large for a Spruance's hanger, given the Spruance is the only NATO ship modeled at the moment she'll have to do for our landing pad.

This is the American designed, but British-built variant of the Sea King.



Made by Sikorsky as the SH-3 Sea King for the US Navy, it was also licensed to the UK manufacturer Westland as the Westland Sea King for the Royal Navy.



Identifiable by the six-bladed tail rotor and larger dome on the spine, this is the HAS.5 variant.



It could carry 4 Mk. 44, Mk. 46, or Sting Ray torpedoes, or 4 depth bombs, giving it a rather formidable armament.

As an aside, one little detail I'm rather happy with is the automatically-switching "rig for red" lighting.



It has a top speed of 113 knots, just one knot faster than the Soviet Ka-25 Hormone, though with a range of 1,200 km, it has three times the range.



An upgraded version built largely off of the HAS.2 variant, the HAS.5 comes standard with MEL Super Searcher radar, Racal MIR-2 Orange Crop ESM and sonobouy tubes.



Many served in this configuration in the Falkland Islands Conflict.



Some were later modified to carry the AN/ASQ-81 MAD. This aircraft in particular is modeled as one with such a modification.



More images:















Keep in mind, graphics are subject to upgrade, especially with regard to certain details...

I apologize again that this update was late, but thank you for joining us. Please feel free to comment and discuss below!
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Old 09-26-2019, 12:53 PM   #78
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Mindblowing! So much love on the details.
Keep on the good work.

Did you have video of the starting and landing helicopter?
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Old 10-01-2019, 07:22 PM   #79
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Mindblowing! So much love on the details.
Keep on the good work.

Did you have video of the starting and landing helicopter?
Not yet, unfortunately.
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Old 10-01-2019, 09:31 PM   #80
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radar WEEKLY UPDATE

Hello again, everyone.

Nothing new to see quite yet, but radar does have a contact: The modelers have been hard at work. Recent work has been on a lot of "under the hood" code and optimization, particularly with regards to the map and sensor systems.

Stay tuned for more updates as they come.

Though it's been brief this time, thanks again for joining us.
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Old 10-08-2019, 08:34 PM   #81
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Default WEEKLY UPDATE

Hello again!

So, with current work focusing on things less show-offable, and not having shown a lot recently, I've decided to make the best of it and show off some of the changes to/progress on the minimap/control interface.

The overlay and definitely the console textures will probably be improved considerably before any release, but the addition of a number of simple features such as box selection and locking the map on any contact go a long way to improving the feel of the game.

Still deciding on the exact menu layout/tree structure/button positions, and playing with the font size and style to make it the most legible while maintaining a distinct aesthetic.

Also while the sensors modeled are far from complete, they work and auto-classify contact types (air, helo, surf, or sub) based off the contacts' returns and some simple logic, including true classification on visual ID, and also planned is ESM and active sonar interception to classify contacts based on their sensor type.

Also, datalink is being modeled. Should make multiplayer interesting.

Shown are NATO and Soviet colorations/modes, as well as locking the camera on the player ship, selected ship(s), or nothing, and various zooms, distance units modes and menu positions.





Also, I'm looking forward to showing off some more progress on the modellers' side next week...



Thanks for joining us, if you have any feedback or concerns with regard to the UI system please feel free to discuss. As stated before, it's a bit tricky to come up with a unique, immersive and functional/well-designed UI system that can both allow a great deal of depth to the control while not being too overwhelming on the learning curve and reasonably intuitive.
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Old 10-09-2019, 09:48 PM   #82
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Still deciding on the exact menu layout/tree structure/button positions, and playing with the font size and style to make it the most legible while maintaining a distinct aesthetic.
I would like to suggest that you consider using both upper and lower case letters in the display. I know that the Navy has a tradition of only using upper case in all things (and only recently changed to allow lower case in messages), but I think that the mix will make some words more easily recognizable and also save space in your displays. This can allow for longer words to appear on the same line and not be broken.

Also, I suggest a hotkey beside each function. For example, your display shows "FULL" and "HIDE". Perhaps you could consider allowing a mode that shows "Full [F]" and "Hide [H]". Maybe have two different modes that can be activated/disabled according to player preference.

Harpoon also had a space-saving hotkey feature. It might help to display hotkeys with a different colour "Full" or an underscore "Hide". This way, the length of the word is all that is required (no extraneous spaces or parentheses).

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Also while the sensors modeled are far from complete, they work and auto-classify contact types (air, helo, surf, or sub) based off the contacts' returns and some simple logic, including true classification on visual ID, and also planned is ESM and active sonar interception to classify contacts based on their sensor type.
The auto-classify function is convenient. However, one shortcoming of Harpoon was the way the game engine tracked contacts. During a battle, a contact might appear and be given the name, "Contact 21". If contact was lost and then re-acquired later, it would still appear as "Contact 21" because the game engine had already assigned every platform a permanent ID number for administrative purposes. This allowed the player to know immediately it was the same contact as before.

Commander Zimm, the creator of the WW2 game, "Action Stations", would have every new contact given a new designation. That way, you never knew if the ship you engaged 5 minutes ago, lost in a smoke cloud, and then re-acquired and re-engaged was the same ship you fought earlier or a new enemy.

Of course, in WW2, it was mostly surface action and often at night, where visibility was the key factor. In modern combat, with the use of electronic sensors, contact is virtually instantaneous. Also, you probably do not want to be generating a gazillion new ID numbers for contacts that are only lost or flicker for a second or two.

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Also, datalink is being modeled. Should make multiplayer interesting.
Will the information flow between allied players instantaneously? With players able to use Skype or other chat mechanisms, any delay might be moot. Implementation of any potential delay in data transmission may not be worth the candle or effort and may actually detract from the enjoyability of the gameplay.

I raise it as a discussion point and thought exercise.
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Old 10-14-2019, 10:28 AM   #83
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Oh goooshhh, you break my heart ! SEAKING !

Nice job ! Keep on men !
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Old 10-15-2019, 07:45 PM   #84
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Herman View Post
I would like to suggest that you consider using both upper and lower case letters in the display.
The LCD font is true to LCD layouts - lower case letters take the same amount of space, and aren't always clearer.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Herman View Post
Also, I suggest a hotkey beside each function. For example, your display shows "FULL" and "HIDE". Perhaps you could consider allowing a mode that shows "Full [F]" and "Hide [H]". Maybe have two different modes that can be activated/disabled according to player preference.
FULL and HIDE are placeholders for the time being. I'll certainly look at setting custom key bindings, though - that should be fairly easy.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Herman View Post
Also, you probably do not want to be generating a gazillion new ID numbers for contacts that are only lost or flicker for a second or two.
From the start of implementing the sensor system I made sure lost contacts wouldn't retain information. As it is, there's a fairly simple system in place to account for relatively long delays in-between contact without the contact getting re-assigned next time contact is made. But if it does go for too long, then yes, you won't know which contact is which.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Herman View Post
Will the information flow between allied players instantaneously?
It depends. But where this will really shine still remains quite awhile down the road.

For multiplayer, I tend to prefer to leave things to the host's settings, and this is probably a good place to do that. Some would rather just trust the other team to not cheat in such a way - and communicating information accurately about the ID of contacts might be difficult enough on its own that it wouldn't be too much an issue - but it shouldn't really be an issue to make data links always active for the entire team as an optional setting.

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Oh goooshhh, you break my heart ! SEAKING !

Nice job ! Keep on men !
Thanks!

Update coming soon. It's a highlight tonight.
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Old 10-15-2019, 09:27 PM   #85
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Default VEHICLE HIGHLIGHT

Hello again, everyone!

Tonight's update is another vehicle highlight, and this time it's a ship.

It's the Oliver Hazard Perry-class frigate.



With a displacement of 4,100 tons, it's a relatively small ship, nonetheless, it would become well-known for its durability despite its size. It has a top speed over 29 knots. Although ultimately 51 would be produced for service in the US Navy (and a total over 70), by the end of 1983 only 37 were built, meaning along with the Spruance destroyers, these were some of the new ships of the time.

It was designed to escort amphibious assault groups, carrier groups, and convoy groups across the Atlantic, and with a range of 4,500 nmi could do so without refueling. So let's start taking a look at specific systems that make up the ship's other capabilities.



Its primary weapon was the Mk.13 single-rail launcher. It has a magazine capable of holding 40 RIM-66 SM-1 MR missiles, while 26 of those slots could hold RGM-84 Harpoon anti-ship missiles, though the standard loadout was to split it 36-4, SM-1s to Harpoons.



It could load and fire at an impressive rate, firing a Standard Missile every 10 seconds or a Harpoon every 22.



It should be noted, that while the SM-1 was developed as an anti-air missile, it also could work effectively as an anti-ship missile. Though obviously with a much smaller warhead than purpose-built antiship missiles, the capability makes it a very useful weapon.

Although it's difficult to find reference to it, and was never done much, according to one source the magazine and Mk.13 were able to carry and fire RUR-5 ASROC missiles, as well.



Though it should be noted that the Perry could only carry and fire the SM-1 MR, RIM-66A/B/E, with the E variant only barely entering service in 1983. Thus its range is limited to only 74 km, less than that of the Slava or Azov's S-300 Fort (NATO: SA-N-6 "Grumble") system with a range of 90 km.

Nonetheless, it holds second place with a considerable lead, and definitely far outclasses the RIM-7 Sea Sparrows used on the Spruance that only had a range of 19 km.



But a ship without sensors is blind. At the bottom-left, in the white dome above the bridge we see the Mk.92 fire control radar used for the Mk.13 launcher. In the middle, the radar dish is the Perry's Air Search radar, the AN/SPS-49, with an effective range of 474 km (where it will detect aircraft with a large radar cross-section, but struggle to detect missiles or aircraft with much smaller radar cross-sections).

And finally, on top of the mast, is the little white doppler radar brick of the AN/SPS-55 Surface Search radar.

The ship also houses the SQS-56 sonar system, though the effectiveness of the system as implemented in the early 80's was under question.



Back to armament, after RIM-66 SM-1 MR missiles and RGM-84 Harpoon cruise missiles, the next weapon system would be the Italian-designed, water-cooled OTO Melara 76 mm gun. It is capable of an impressive 80 rounds per minute and having a range of 15.9 km with HE-PFF rounds, for engaging either airborne or surface targets.



And it is directed by the AN/SPG-60 target illuminator radar, visible on the elevated platform.



And finally, it carries two Mk.32 launchers - one on each side, capable of carrying three Mk.46 or Mk.50 torpedoes each.





Last but certainly not least, perhaps the most generally useful system on the Perry is its two hangers for storing, and flight deck for operating, SH-3F LAMPS helicopters, making it very formidable in the ASW role.





Now, some of you familiar with the Perry may be wondering about something that seems to be missing.

In the 90s, Perry frigates were back-fitted with 20mm Phalanx CIWS systems on the stern, just above the hanger.

By 1983, Perries were starting to be built with these, but older ships built without them had not yet been fitted with them. This means that some ships will have them, some will not:



And there it is, the 20mm M61 Vulcan cannon fitted in a naval point-defense system known as the Phalanx CIWS. Just remember not to leave it off when you need it - or even worse, leave it on an "engage all targets" setting when you don't.

(In Blue Water, point defense systems will probably be modeled to, by default, be in an "engage incoming targets moving over 200 knots" mode).

So that's our update for the week. Thanks for joining us.



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Old 10-16-2019, 01:07 PM   #86
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Aaah, Oto melara 76mm... Remember time on Frigate !
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