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Online Asid

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Re: FSCAI: Flight Simulator Combat Artificial Intelligence FSX/P3D
« Reply #30 on: February 23, 2020, 12:02:01 AM »
An Inside look - working on 0.10.1
Dutch Owen 22/02/20


Just an update. I'm taking a much-needed break for a little while so why not write about it...

Eight days ago I decided the last stage before release was to strengthen the AI pilot's slack dogfighting abilities based on some ideas I've had over the last couple of months while working on the radar systems implementation. I thought it would take a day or two. Wrong...

Mainly because this is like an onion, as you peel each layer off another appears. Solving one problem brings you up against another one. One that was there all along, but was obscured by the even worse failure you just corrected.

But also because of TacView. If you're at all serious about air-to-air combat but don't own this tool (or an equivalent) you're missing out. Tacview makes detailed postmortem analysis of a dogfight easy, and you can clearly see what happened versus what should have happened. If you're analyzing your own ability it's helpful, but if you're trying to keep your programmed AI from doing too many dumb things it's just essential. But it also leads to more and more things to do because you see many more blunders than you were aware of while flying.

Where we're at is that I've found several nasty bugs that caused wrong-way turns and idiot climbs or dives and I've fixed those. I've introduced several techniques to further tighten the turn rates for the AI, but it's not yet turning as tight as I can. It needs to be at least as good as me turning. Most importantly I've implemented "pitbull mode" where in a close dogfight the AI pilot will focus on keeping his nose on you using the same successful logic as the missile tracking functions. Now if he can get his guns on you in range he rarely misses, and he works much harder at getting his guns on you than before.

But that's revealed deeper issues! Right now I'm struggling with what I call the "idiot reversal". We are using FSX/P3D logic to fly the AI aircraft, but with "assists" to force angles of bank and pitch that a civilian AI pilot would never do. But at the core we're giving the sim command to "fly to a given point in space." But FSX/P3D pilots will always turn in the direction that has the fewest compass points to cross to get to a heading to the point in question. For dogfight purposes this point is always the enemy aircraft (or a lead point in front of it) updated at least every second of the fight as the enemy moves.

Now imagine the AI is turning left towards your aircraft and you're crossing laterally behind them. This is danger for the AI because you are behind them. The only appropriate move for him if he's trying to stay in the turn fight is to tighten his left turn. But let's say you do cross his centerline ...suddenly you are on his right side. So by FSX/P3D sim pilot logic that's a right turn. So instead of tightening his left turn he reverses and goes back right - which brings him right into your guns. The "idiot reversal".

How do we stop this idiot reversal while still using sim logic to fly the airplane rather than slew mode? There are ways - like computing a fake fly-to point under those circumstances. And I'm working on that now.

I just wanted you to know how complex this is, not only implementing dogfight logic but doing it within the limitations of a civilian simulator.

I think once I have this nailed this is the last major issue before release. Hopefully this weekend but it will be solved however long it takes.

Dutch

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Re: FSCAI: Flight Simulator Combat Artificial Intelligence FSX/P3D
« Reply #31 on: February 24, 2020, 01:17:15 PM »
Release of FSCAI Third Edition ALPHA v0.10.1
Dutch Owen 23/02/20


Captains,

The installers for the Third Edition of FSCAI are here ready for download:

FSCAI ALPHA version 0.10.2 for 32-bit Sims (FSX and Prepar3D Version 3) 20.5MB

FSCAI ALPHA version 0.10.2 for 64-bit Sims (Prepar3D Version 4) 20.5MB

Important Tip!! When you run the installer for FSCAI you should right-click on it and select "Run as Administrator". This will help avoid possible security-related problems in the installation. You'll have to extract it from the ZIP do to this.

Warning: This software is an ALPHA development release. It will contain bugs. It is extremely unlikely it will do any harm to your system but we can't make any promise that it won't.

Unless the README says otherwise, simply re-installing over the old version will update, no need to un-install first.


Changelog Version 0.10.1

- Too many bugs fixed to list the details here.
- The skill level of the AI pilots are significanty enhanced in this release.
  They will be more aggressive on offense and have better defensive options.
  This is an ongoing process of improvement that's not close to finished yet.
- User aircraft of type LB or DB (level or dive bombers) can now defend themselves
  with gunners if so configured.  All such aircraft in the default database are
  already configured for this to happen.
- Wingmen, if able to see the user aircraft, will now warn if you have a bandit on
  your six.
- Crash detection is present and will be invoked if you crash if you have crash
  detection turned on in the sim and Tacpack is not present.  You can stop this
  with CRASHDETECT=0 in the Options file.


« Last Edit: February 26, 2020, 02:46:25 PM by Asid »
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Re: FSCAI: Flight Simulator Combat Artificial Intelligence FSX/P3D
« Reply #32 on: February 24, 2020, 01:20:06 PM »
FSCAI Version 0.10.1 is released.
Dutch Owen 23/02/20


Hi everyone,

After a considerable wait, the new release of FSCAI is posted up for you to test. See the pinned thread "Latest Version of FSCAI Right Here" for the links (see above post).

Be especially careful and backup your old version first. This is the first time I've packaged up FSCAI in months and this involves so many changes to program and content that it's very possible something is missing the installation. BACK UP FIRST!

The major enhancement is what is hopefully for you better AI dogfighting abilities. Another important one is the ability for AI gunners aboard a user aircraft level bomber to shoot at attacking enemy aircraft. For other nice added goodies check out the README in the ZIP.

The major effort that has taken most of the time between releases is the extensive huge integrated radar systems. They are not ready yet. They are disabled in this release.

Decent if not good combat abilities of AI pilots is at the core of this project and this is a step in that direction. At the start they were hopeless, now we are trying to get them to be at least semi-competent. In my testing so far, depending on the aircraft being used, it's now necessary to at least respect their ability or you will get shot out of the sky. At least with guns - nothing much has changed when using missiles except better turning ability should mean he will get a firing solution on you much earlier than before. The biggest issue that I see is that AI airplanes just can't turn tightly enough although that's been improved greatly over what it used to be. We're still working on developing ways to fix this.

Testing has shown that, as we know, the implementation of each sim airplane can have a dramatic effect on how it fights. Both user and AI aircraft we have now were not designed with dogfighting in mind. Therefore, they will not likely behave in combat like their real-life counterparts do. This is a fact we can't do much to work around with changing the flight dynamics of each plane.

Enjoy and please report bugs and problems either in response to this post or as a new post if you feel like it's important enough for that.

Enjoy your experiences with FSCAI.
Dutch

PS. For you Tacview junkies here is an ACMI file of my last test, which clearly shows how the A2A Spitfire can turn on a dime but the AI 109E can only turn decently. Result: Spitfire wins every time which is not realistic. Although I did miss a few shots, and it takes quite a few .303 rounds to bring down a 109 whereas if the 109 pilot ever got his 20MM on me (which he very nearly did twice) I'd have been hitting the chute.

ACMI Spitfire vs BF109 test

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Re: FSCAI: Flight Simulator Combat Artificial Intelligence FSX/P3D
« Reply #33 on: February 26, 2020, 02:45:35 PM »
Release of FSCAI Third Edition ALPHA v0.10.2
Dutch Owen 26/02/20


Captains,

The installers for the Third Edition of FSCAI are here ready for download:

FSCAI ALPHA version 0.10.2 for 32-bit Sims (FSX and Prepar3D Version 3) 20.5MB

FSCAI ALPHA version 0.10.2 for 64-bit Sims (Prepar3D Version 4) 20.5MB

Important Tip!! When you run the installer for FSCAI you should right-click on it and select "Run as Administrator". This will help avoid possible security-related problems in the installation. You'll have to extract it from the ZIP do to this.

Warning: This software is an ALPHA development release. It will contain bugs. It is extremely unlikely it will do any harm to your system but we can't make any promise that it won't.

Unless the README says otherwise, simply re-installing over the old version will update, no need to un-install first.


Changelog Version 0.10.2

- Fixed bug where an AI aircraft would disengage endlessly instead of only once.
- Improved AI break/evade logic somewhat.
- Greatly improved turn rate of AI aircraft.
- Indexed skill level to many items not previously indexed.
- Added new option "Default Average Skill Level" on Options dialog.
- Added ability to change any unit's team on the Active display list.
  (Double-click a unit line to access this option)



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Re: FSCAI: Flight Simulator Combat Artificial Intelligence FSX/P3D
« Reply #34 on: March 02, 2020, 01:48:00 AM »
Plan for the next few releases
Dutch Owen 01/03/20


We've spent the last two weeks making the close combat dogfighting better which has been a great success.

The next release, 0.10.3, will contain some improvements and additions to the AI's defensive abilities; specifically fixed implementations of the spiral dive, high & low yoyo, and a new 'evasive' mode where the AI will jink and manuever when an enemy is on his six to make it difficult to shoot him. We may have a split-s and immelmann available too if plans work out for those.

Following that, we'll have a close look at jet combat including guns-only and missiles and make the adjustments needed to tighten that up. That will be 0.10.4.

That should be the last dogfighting upgrade for a while except for bug fixes.

We're really looking forward to 0.11.0 which will contain some much-needed new ASL missions features:

1. The ability for mission-defined aircraft to correctly obey conditional instructions in flight.

2. The addition of a "GROUP" statement to define a group name, formation, route, optional target, and code name color.

3. The ability to substitute a GROUP parameter for the ROUTE parameter on OBJECT statements thus attaching the object to a group with its route, formation, and optional target.

4. A statement to formally define a collection of objects as a "library".

5. A global option to allow libraries defined above to be automatically loaded if the user aircraft gets within a user-defined proximity to the library location.

These last two options have the potential to make a properly defined combat environment come alive without having to select a mission.

Lots of interesting stuff to look forward to in the next month!

After That:

Work is proceeding on the Radar environment and its getting closer. What will that mean?

It will be possible to attach a defined "radar" device to a ground SimObject. This will give the object the ability to see enemy objects within the range, elevation, and azimuth of its definition. It will attempt to classify the threats it detects (by detecting groups of aircraft as opposed to singles) and will attempt to predict the direction of the threat. Once a prediction is determined the radar station will have the ability to vector AI aircraft on its own team to intercept the threats. It will also have the ability to send the user instructions to intercept unless the user is on a mission other than CAP, even if the user is parked at an airport.

Most interestingly, it will have the ability to scramble parked AI aircraft to get airborne and intercept a threat - and also the ability to issue "air-raid" alerts to threatened airfields. This will result in audible air-raid and scramble alerts at the airports affected. This will also alert any ground-based AA objects nearby so they are ready to shoot and can't be surprised.

Of course since the radars are attached to SimObjects they can be destroyed. Campaign mode already works now - if an object is destroyed in a mission it stays destroyed in subsequent missions. Thus, this enables SEAD in any era. Yes, we will have radar-homing missiles and yes, radar operators will be aware of them and operate their equipment cautiously.

Can we do all this? Yes we can.

Dutch

PS. I have a friend who, I recently discovered to my amazement, in his Navy career actually operated a captured Soviet "Spoon Rest" mobile radar installation and he's advising me on how it all really worked from the radar operators point of view. (They fired simulated missiles at the Top Gun trainees, and got a case of beer for the whole OPFOR radar crew if they got one) ... My friend said that was the most fun he had in his career hands down. So, expect authenticity.


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Re: FSCAI: Flight Simulator Combat Artificial Intelligence FSX/P3D
« Reply #35 on: March 07, 2020, 12:15:45 AM »
Release of FSCAI Third Edition ALPHA v0.10.3
Dutch Owen 06/03/20


Captains,

The installers for the Third Edition of FSCAI are here ready for download:

FSCAI ALPHA version 0.10.3 for 32-bit Sims (FSX and Prepar3D Version 3) 20.5MB

FSCAI ALPHA version 0.10.3 for 64-bit Sims (Prepar3D Version 4) 20.6MB

Important Tip!! When you run the installer for FSCAI you should right-click on it and select "Run as Administrator". This will help avoid possible security-related problems in the installation. You'll have to extract it from the ZIP do to this.

Warning: This software is an ALPHA development release. It will contain bugs. It is extremely unlikely it will do any harm to your system but we can't make any promise that it won't.

Unless the README says otherwise, simply re-installing over the old version will update, no need to un-install first.


Changelog Version 0.10.3

- New 'Evade' option for AI defensive move when others not appropriate
- Different and hopefully better overall defensive move decisions.
- Improved speed and pitch adjustments during a turn fight.
- Bug where AI repeatedly disenaged and disengaged at the wrong time fixed.
- Bug where rear aspect missile option not saving fixed.
- Higher than novice skilled AI pilots no longer drop target because of clouds.


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Re: FSCAI: Flight Simulator Combat Artificial Intelligence FSX/P3D
« Reply #36 on: March 27, 2020, 01:50:24 PM »
Release of FSCAI Third Edition ALPHA v0.10.4
Dutch Owen 26/03/20


Captains,

The installers for the Third Edition of FSCAI are here ready for download:

FSCAI ALPHA version 0.10.4 for 32-bit Sims (FSX and Prepar3D Version 3) 20.5MB

FSCAI ALPHA version 0.10.4 for 64-bit Sims (Prepar3D Version 4) 20.6MB

Important Tip!! When you run the installer for FSCAI you should right-click on it and select "Run as Administrator". This will help avoid possible security-related problems in the installation. You'll have to extract it from the ZIP do to this.

Warning: This software is an ALPHA development release. It will contain bugs. It is extremely unlikely it will do any harm to your system but we can't make any promise that it won't.

Unless the README says otherwise, simply re-installing over the old version will update, no need to un-install first.


Changelog Version 0.10.4

- Fixed potential bug where database wasn't loaded when sim installed in the
  root of a separate drive.
- Fixed crash when objects damaged by Tacpack.
- Various tweaks to defensive ACM.


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Re: FSCAI: Flight Simulator Combat Artificial Intelligence FSX/P3D
« Reply #37 on: April 23, 2020, 12:26:51 AM »
Release of FSCAI Third Edition ALPHA v0.11.2
Dutch Owen 22/04/20


Captains,

The installers for the Third Edition of FSCAI are here ready for download:

FSCAI ALPHA version 0.11.2 for 32-bit Sims (FSX and Prepar3D Version 3) 20.6MB

FSCAI ALPHA version 0.11.2 for 64-bit Sims (Prepar3D Version 4) 20.6MB

Important Tip!! When you run the installer for FSCAI you should right-click on it and select "Run as Administrator". This will help avoid possible security-related problems in the installation. You'll have to extract it from the ZIP do to this.

Warning: This software is an ALPHA development release. It will contain bugs. It is extremely unlikely it will do any harm to your system but we can't make any promise that it won't.

Unless the README says otherwise, simply re-installing over the old version will update, no need to un-install first.


Changelog Version 0.11.2

- New 'ZONE' command in the Teams file to define zones for a team independent
  of airports.  See the end of the Teams_Vietnam.cfg for an example of its use.
- Data displays in the UI now scale to the size of the window.
- 'Removed' objects no longer show in the Active Units display.
- The serious bug of wingmen sometimes attacking the flight lead (you!) has
  been fixed.
- The annoying bug of menus sometimes not appearing requiring a re-press of
  the Shift-J or F keys is now fixed.
- Countermeasures have been revamped to be more realistic and now AI pilots will
  use countermeasures to evade missiles fired at them by you or by the AI. You
  can see the flares being used if you are close enough.
- Several team assignment priority issues have been fixed.
- The 'Carrier' feature defined in Missions\Carriers.cfg that allows you to get
  missions from a carrier at sea is now working again.
- A bug where a wingman in 'cover me' mode would engage a ground target is fixed.
- A bug that caused intermittent SAM failures on launch has been fixed; they are
  now even more dangerous than ever.  Use your flares!  Flares can be shot from
  any aircraft using by default the Shift-F key (this key is assignable in
  Options.cfg).
- A number of missions, particular in the Southeast Asia area, have been revised
  and/or fixed.


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