With the F/A-18 rework currently underway, I’d like to make a suggestion for an interesting and useful feature:
Not just the minimap we currently have, a realistic radar screen, with a few different modes of operation. This would add some complexity to the F/A-18, without being destructive or particularly combat focused.
The radar could be used to realistically intercept and engage other aircraft in roleplay combat, rendezvous with refuelling tankers, or for general situational awareness.
Below is a
poorly photoshopped image artist’s impression of what this could look like:
As you can see, the usual minimap has been replaced with a radar display, similar to that found in another mobile flight simulation game.
The radar could be operated by buttons in the “Systems” section, as well as by moving the cursor on the display (TDC: Target Designator Cue).
There are several different modes of operation, only a few would need to be included in a casual sim like IF. Here’s a small selection:
Range While Search: The basic mode. The radar scans and displays what it sees as raw hits or “bricks” on the screen. This mode allows the maximum possible scan volume.
Track While Scan: More advanced than RWS, TWS allows multiple targets to be tracked at once, displaying additional information such as speed, altitude and track. Limited scan volume is a disadvantage of TWS mode.
ACM (Air Combat Manoeuvring) Mode(s): Include at least one of these. These modes are intended for use at close ranges (10 NM or less). Several ACM modes exist, each has a set scan volume and automatically locks onto to the first thing it sees within a certain range.
Once locked, information provided by the radar can then be used to direct an IR missile seeker head to the target, or calculate the required lead for a successful gun kill. Neither live missiles or guns will be included in IF, however if the seeker head (just the sidewinder lock tone, with no firing capability) and a realistic gun pipper (again with no firing capability) were simulated with radar guidance, it would hugely enhance roleplay combat in IF.