Books & Media DCS F-14 & RIO Gaming

Video – RIO: The “Must Know” Fundamentals

(Almost) all the RIO basics in 2h40'!

(Almost) all the RIO basics in 2h40′!

I have the chance, after 18 months, to do another open training discussion. Unfortunately, we had to anticipate, and I was able to give only a few hours notice, and I did not have the chance of preparing ad hoc material.

Nevertheless, it has been a productive discussion, 2h40′ non-stop all dedicated to cover the basics of the back seat.
Unfortunately, the list of topics that did not fit into the discussion is quite extensive and include Timeline development and application, many concepts related to the intercept geometry, more info about Pulse radar modes, weapon application techniques, and more complex practical examples.

I have separated the long video into six parts, divided by topics.

Part I: Radar, DDD Panel, Mission Editor

The first part is probably the least interesting. It starts with a quick recaps of the three common radar modes in DCS, dividing them by PRF: Low, Medium and High. This is a necessary overview because MPRF is not supported by the AWG-9, and the two remaining modes are vastly different.
The second topic discussed is the DDD panel, and the settings I generally use. Nothing, however, is set in stone, and the RIO always has to adapt his “working environment” to the situation.
Lastly, a quick look at how a simple scenario can be created in the Mission Editor; useful to understand the display.

Part II: Radar, DDD Panel, Mission Editor

After the avionics, the very basics of the geometry are discussed. Since the topic is vast and wide, I focused on the simplest, yet pivotal to understand the displays, the TID in Aircraft Stabilised mode in particular: the Cut.

Part III: DDD and TID practical usage

I enjoyed discussing Part III and following because they are the moment where the theory meets the practice, and the stars start to align. It’s a bit of a shock initially, but playing as Radar Intercept Officer is very easy after the basics are acquired: at some point, these concepts *click*, and all makes sense.
Of particular interest, is the demonstration of how the DDD is fundamental to spot and react to the infamous “notching”.

Part IV: Intercept introduction

The next step is putting everything together versus a cooperative target. This case is the simplest, yet it is as immediate as it may sound to new RIOs: there’s a ton of concepts that, suddenly, are involved and help the RIO to build SA.

Part V: DDD and TID practical usage

Part V tries to answer a common question: what to do against jinking targets. A thorough discussion would take hours, as a most important criteria are the mission objectives, presence of friendly/hostile assets and air defences, assigned task, and so on.
In this scenario, I focused on maintaining the positional advantage, trying to prevent the target from being able to turn into our aircraft and obtain a solid firing solution.
Note that the pilot was Iceman, which works great to test scenarios, but when dynamism is required, it falls a bit short.

Part VI: AGC trace, Jamming effects, and more examples

As the more “serious” discussion terminated, I spent the last 10′ showing and discussing the effects of the recently introduced patch 2.8. For example, the F-14 has now an even longer reach sensors-wise, being able to detect the presence of a fighter even beyond the already impressive range of PD SRCH.
I have also shown the effects of switching to STT vs the AI, resulting in the computer-driven aircraft turning on its “impossible” 360°-strobe-jammer. On the bright side, this means that the target can often be seen and locked can be maintained through notching and ZDF.


I hope you have found something useful in this almost three hours long livestream. If you have questions, feel free to hop in my Discord and ask away.

Thanks 132nd.Thalamoose for enduring through this incredibly boring and never ending ordeal! 🙂

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