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Olham

Pleading for Labels and other aids

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Besides my flying "Full DiD" in our "Krauts vs Crumpets" Campaign, I often fly other pilots,

who use Labels or TAC sometimes.

 

I just had a long and confusing fight between my Staffel - Jasta 77b - and many British SPAD XIII.

First I was flying without Labels and TAC, but when I spotted an explosion forward right of me,

I wanted to know what happened around me and switched the aids on.

 

I was surprised to find, that some Albatros from Jasta 37 had joined our fighting. One of them got

hit by a SPAD, and the engine exploded out of the craft. I might have missed the fact, that we had

got company in our fight.

 

Although I think, that flying "Full DiD" is the ultimate top of our development as pilots here, I want to

recommend the use of Labels and maybe TAC to all, who are still early on their ways to reach that

top. When you are still getting overstrained by the confusion around you plus the handling of your

crate, then the aids might be usefull for your help, until you can drop them one day.

 

 

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I find it the same way. Early on, I used all labels and aids. Then I went to no labels, no tac and etc. But after wondeirng about the Aces and etc, I find i want and in some cases "need" to know who is on my tail that is flying so brilliantly.

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Guest British_eh

Hi there,

Yes, an interesting dilemma. Certainly the pilots could "see" much better than we can in the Simulation.

Just heads up that there is going to be a new Standard by which you may wish to fly to in addition to DiD or as an alternate to Did or your own settings. It will be out shortly ( like P4 grin.gif) and will have slightly different parameters. OBD OFF Team has given us the flexibility to adjust the Workshop Settings to create standards like DiD. This will just be another option. I can say that dozens of hours have been spent in researching what we believe are the parameters that could be used in the Workshop Settings to produce what are going to call Realistic Survival Settings ( RSS).

Cheers,

British_eh

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I like to be able to ID the aces as well as my flight mates (I count noses on the way home to know who, if anyone, I lost). About 1/3 of the way down the ViewUI file (XP users, BOOTDRIVE:\Documents and Settings\your user folder\Application Data[a hidden folder]\Microsoft\CFSWWI Over Flanders Fields) you'll find the color settings for the labels. I use 0x2FCCCCCC for the Friend, Enemy, Bogie and Goal colors. That renders all AI labels the same from any distance. The two numbers after the 0X are the level of transparency, 00 being invisible and FF being 100% opaque. 2F makes them clear enough to be read without having to pause the game but at the same time they're not overwhelming in a dogfight (i.e. you'll usually see the plane before the label...and if you're looking for the labels I hope you've filled out your will before taking off). I find this a good compromise between the full DiD standard and a playable game. It's also a good middle ground for those wishing to work their way up to full DiD without having to go off labels cold turkey. Of course, you may want to modify the specifics to suit you, should you even choose to try this at all. Another side of this is that it makes the information lines ("you hit enemy aircraft", "structure damage",etc.) the same as the labels, so they're not gone but they're not in your face.

 

The waypoint advisory lines are still a solid red.:dntknw:

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Interesting idea, von Baur! I had changed the colours already, but forgot where I did.

Now I will do some more tests and changes.

The idea to give them all the same colour makes it one step closer to DiD, cause we

wouldn't know the enemy from his colour. I must try that!

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Just tested the first own changes on the TAC and the Labels.

I kept different colours firstly, and made them less transparent (0x7F...).

But I'll try other values, too.

I have also changed the size of the TAC to 0.27 instead of 0.30.

 

A very intersting field for experiments - thank you, von Baur!

 

 

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nbryant, I have Vista, but perhaps it's similar on Win 7.

If not, search for the file: ViewUI.xml

 

On the C:-drive, I find my "computer name" as the second folder, right under desctop.

In that folder I have a folder called AppData.

In there, I go to folder "Roaming"; in there is the folder "Microsoft".

There, I go to "CFSWW1 Over Flanders Fields" - and in there is the ViewUI.xml

 

Make sure you make a back-up copy of it.

Edited by Olham

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All the same color makes friend/enemy distinction less automatic, but the transparency setting is the key to looking for the plane and not the label. I'm thinking of darkening mine to 29, as I still have to really focus to read pilots' names (of course new glasses might help in that respect, too :blink: ).

 

My TAC is .20 and at the bottom center. At that size and in that position the bottom quarter of it is off the screen entirely and it's in about as unobtrusive a place possible for combat (unless I'm looking upward to at least some extent it's inside my cockpit). All I use it for is waypoints anyway, so I keep is set to the shortest range and showing ships only. And if anyone ever creates a set of printable maps that matches OFF's terrain properly (including the in-game map for the briefing...hint for P-4) I'll stop using it completely.

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I've been using this mod for quite some time, and I'm fairly sure that it was VB that provided the full file to me, with all the changes in situ.

 

Having only white dots on the TAC, and largely opaque white labels for all aircraft provides you with just enough information to operate - rather than the paucity of DiD settings - and goes some way to letting you have the sort of vision and visibility of real WWI pilots. Plus, you don't have to muck about turning labels off and on just to see who's there - the information is present, and you simply have to look more carefully to pick it up. And woe betide you if you forget which white dot on the TAC is an enemy aircraft, rather than one of your own!

 

I'd very much like to see this mod as an option in P4, if it's possible, and I thoroughly recommend it to everyone; even mad DiDers!

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Another side of this is that it makes the information lines ("you hit enemy aircraft", "structure damage",etc.) the same as the labels, so they're not gone but they're not in your face.

 

The waypoint advisory lines are still a solid red.:dntknw:

 

Blimey!, do you chaps fly with all that writing on the screen? And external views? You have the right to fly exactly as you wish, but sheesh, a bit arcade isn't it?

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Von Baur, you can switch the message lines off in "Workshop", in the "Graphic settings".

 

Fortiesboy, for a veteran like you it is arcadish, of course. But I was advocating the aids

for all still new to OFF, and those who still find it hard to keep an overview.

No one should feel like he isn't accepted round here, when he uses those aids.

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"sheesh, a bit arcade isn't it?"

 

Well, no, not if you think about it.

 

IRL, pilots had much better vision than can be reproduced in the game, and, equally, they had little giveaways such as sun glints from a distance and a much sharper outline than is possible on any but the most outstanding (and expensive) graphics cards/computers. For example, many people here have reproduced pictures of emblems they've seen on enemy aircraft: I can't, because my AGP graphics setup can't provide me with the oomph to get this detail, and hence, I get to miss mcuh of what a real pilot would have seen.

 

This is very much a way of evening up the balance. It's probably not to everyone's tastes, and if you prefer the rigours of DiD and flying without any aids whatsoever - BTW, try that in the BE2c some time; you'll find you haven't got a compass - then that's fine, but to deride it as 'arcade' is to misunderstand the effect that it gives. You're simply compensating what would have been visible and obvious to real pilots with a contrivance that performs the same overall effect.

 

Cheers,

Si

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Blimey!, do you chaps fly with all that writing on the screen? And external views? You have the right to fly exactly as you wish, but sheesh, a bit arcade isn't it?

 

These are my sentiments as well. The screenshots with no labels look to me like you are really there in the war...they could almost be a photograph from a real WW1 flight. That's the experience I want. The screenshots with labels and TAC look more like an X-box game, and I cringe. To me, its like having a very cool motorcycle, but then putting training wheels on it. It can be fun to ride, but you are kind of riding with the kiddie crowd. OK, OK, I should just shut up... as long as people are having fun thats great and I just need to bite my tongue (but its soooo haaard! :)

 

That said, the ghosted labels certainly are a vast improvement over the stock neon ones.

 

It might be nice if in Phase 4 they increase the visibility of distant planes a bit, maybe with a dot for far away planes similar to the visuals in RB3D. At this point I don't think it is on OBD's radar, and probably won't be unless someone conclusively proves that the current visual distances aren't in fact realistic (I am not a pilot so have no idea).

 

A notification of an ace kill and the chance to claim him (like we have with ballons now) might be a nice touch, so we can know we downed an ace without having to resort to labels?

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My view on labels in OFF is that they are completely consistent with full realism, even though they're a bit big and obnoxious.

 

The reasons for this are varied, but, I find, compelling:

 

-you're not there, as you would have been. Presence and situational or locational awareness are heightened by actually being present in 3-dimensions. Furthermore, being there gives you the ability to learn about your surroundings (the way a person is constantly learning about the area where he lives). That level of deep immersion in location and geography would have provided an extra dimension to knowing where you are. Disorientation is absolutely an issue, but when you live somewhere and are completely immersed in it, you start to learn shortcuts and tricks to knowing where you are.

 

-computer AI: the AI doesn't "see" the way we do. It is basically part of a computer program. Once you come within a certain range, it always knows whether you're a friend or foe. I've found they tend to "lock on" and know who I am a couple of thousand yards out. By contrast a human using only monitor+eyesight won't know until the markings are visible only a few dozen yards out. So basically without labels, it's as if you have "20/1000" vision if they have "20/20". That certainly can't be.

 

Labels remedy both situations and though they're somewhat obvious, they do so in a pretty realistic way. With location-- if you were actually living at the front day in and out, you'd have a level of immersion where you can identify what is what fairly quickly. Labels give you a sense of this knowledge when flying in game.

 

As to sight-- the labels put you on a par with the AI in terms of being able to see. Yes, optimally it would mbe so the AI has the same vision limitations as the player, but given the current AI, I think labels allow you to see and identify the enemy about the same as they can see and identify you. Playing against humans this would not be necessary since all would suffer from the same "sight and monitor" handicap.

 

I think limited use of the TAC could be acceptable as well, say where it functions to identify limited ground installations to give some more sense of that "life at the front" immersion.

 

So I fly with labels on and find that does not conflict with realism, simply because all it is doing is fixing some of the handicaps that come with it being a simulation and playing against a computer.

Edited by SirMike1983

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When I started this thread, I didn't mean to ask everyone to switch their Labels on - I was only

advocating the freedom of choice; and I wanted to highlight the advantages Labels can have.

But surely: everyone to his own likes.

 

SirMike's post made me think of another thing we "Full DiD Hardliners" have eliminated:

the simulation warning lines.

I must say, that I found it quite useful to know, when my aircraft was threatening to stall.

A real life pilot told me once, that he finds it hard to fly sims, cause they don't provide him with

the "belly feeling". What he meant was, that he can actually feel the plane being close to stalling.

And the simulation warning can give you just this "belly feeling" back - even if it costs a bit of

"full realism" or might look a bit arcadish.

 

But as I said - everyone to his own likes.

Edited by Olham
  • Like 1

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I tried Von Baur's improved label and TAC colours earlier today, and they really do make a difference! I'd never have been able to figure out that kind of stuff all by myself (I'm no PC guru), so thanks for the instructions. I don't need the labels so much, but it's nice to have those "you hit" and "you've been hit" texts much less visible than in the vanilla version. :good:

 

Full DiD flying is very hard and often frustrating, but also very rewarding. But I don't want to do it all the time. There's nothing wrong with having the options to configure the sim just like I want it to be. And it's definitely true that in some ways the full DiD experience is even harder than what real life pilots had to face, because the visibility from our "cockpit" is not at all comparable to what you can actually see from a real airplane. Everybody who's ever been in a real aircraft and looked around knows that you can see much better in reality than in the best of flight sims. TrackIR helps a lot (I can't even imagine how I could play sims so long without it!), but even with it our vision is so restricted that in real life, no pilot with such a poor eyesight would ever have been allowed to fly combat missions, at least no for long. It's almost like being a horse with blinkers. :cool:

 

EDIT: Does anybody have a colour code or something for experimenting with the label colours settings? Those number and letter combinations included in the xml file are pretty much like Hebrew to me!

Edited by Hasse Wind

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