DCS F-14: New AIM-54 API Coming on 18/11/2020 TODAY! Hype!

Update!

It looks like that the new API is coming today (04/11). More info here.
In case you are wondering, yes, the rest of this article is pretty much useless now. C’est la vie ¯\_(ツ)_/¯


In their latest Development Update, Heatblur hinted the possibility of finally releasing the implementation of the new ED’s missile API to fix the issues that have been affecting the AIM-54 for more than a year and a half:

In the past couple of weeks, we’ve also continued to interface with Eagle Dynamics on missile guidance and the associated API issues. ED has implemented a number of fixes which should hopefully lead to the solution required for the -54 to work appropriately. We are currently in the process of evaluating these DCS side changes but we believe there’s strong potential of including these AIM-54 guidance updates in the patch on the 18th!

The new API was mentioned in October 2019. My understanding is that Heatblur sorted it quite quickly but there was more worked needed from ED’s side (but don’t quote me on this as I did not speak with anyone from HB or ED directly).

I hope the new API will fix the terminal guidance issues along making the behaviour of the AWG-9 WCS more realistic. I really wish to see a more accurate AIM-54C Mk47 as well as, at the moment, the AIM-54A Mk60 is still the favourite due to its much more powerful rocket motor and the CM resistance between the two is fairly close anyway.

This is how it should behave:

  • TWS with range >10NM: LTE 3s, loft, SARH/DL, missile goes active at 16 seconds time-to-impact
  • PDSTT with range >10NM: LTE 3s, loft, SARH/DL, missile does not go active (SARH/DL all the way to target)
  • TWS or PDSTT with range <10NM, or PH ACT selected: LTE 3s, no loft, active directly after launch
  • PSTT or BRSIT or (ACM cover up with no track or PSTT or PDSTT): LTE 1s (unless STT and angle >15deg then 3s), no loft, active immediately

This means that my Probability of Kill model may not be accurate any more. I already have a few ideas about how to improve it and make it more accurate by using more strict parameters. Moreover, this will make the results more consistent the easy to replicate during a mission.

I doubt, however, that I will spend the same amount of time to create the new model (the previous took me ~70h) as I do not have the same amount of spare time any more. On the other hand, we know the pros and cons of the missile very well now, the point will be understanding the changes and apply them.

Other goodies

The patch scheduled for the 18/11 is impressive in terms of content. Unfortunately there is not much for players flying only as RIO, besides the mentioned API and some other changes to AIM-7MH and QoL. But for the rest of the world population not as boring as myself, it’s a terrific patch.

Heatblur has done and is doing an incredible job. I appreciate how they announce features rather than delays with zero bs, and players can rest assured that the content is coming and the patience is rewarded with quality standards always increasing.

Want an example? Listen carefully to the first few seconds of this video. Magnificent!

The only question that buggers is: how come that the F-14 module is so cheap?

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.