[URL Verdict: Neutral][Non-DoD Source] Re: [airbattle] Other systems (AVID derives from PHAD)


Waters, Michael A (Flight Vehicle Performance AIR 4322) CIV USN NAWCAD (USA)
 

Ø  transitioned from 20-degree snowflake

 

You’re mistaking the 20-degree PHAD for the primordial Snowflake PHAD (which I developed independently from Tony after the fact, when BoP was in an extreme state of flux in the 2000-2001 time frame - see Paleo-BoP and  Air Supremacy).  I don’t recall trying to convince you to use the 20-degree PHAD (which always bugged me, but that was before the vertical hex grid innovation …) but I certainly recall the … debates … over the utility of the third dimension in space combat (even excluding operating within a gravity well at fractional-G acceleration).

 

Ø  I will slightly mourn the nomographs,

 

I always wanted to create a virtual nomo for on-line play (I even wrote some back-end C# for the purpose, which I still use when I play by e-mail … not that it improves my tactical outcomes all that much).  FWIW, I still find the “analog” nomograpahs and the “digital” E6B (or WizWheel, in USMC parlance) to be complementary tools, much like a NATOPS/NATIP performance chart and the calculators that I create for tablets are complementary tools.  Each by itself is suggestive, but in combination they are transformative.

 

Michael Waters

NAVAIR 4.3.2.2 (AB212)

Flight Vehicle Performance

Mission Planning Team

48110 Shaw Rd. BLDG 2187 Suite 1320-C4

NAS Patuxent River MD, 20670

 

301-757-0595 (office)

301-342-8597 (fax)

240-298-5673 (cell)

 

From: airbattle@groups.io <airbattle@groups.io> On Behalf Of Ken Burnside
Sent: Tuesday, January 24, 2023 9:21 AM
To: airbattle@groups.io
Subject: [URL Verdict: Neutral][Non-DoD Source] Re: [airbattle] Other systems (AVID derives from PHAD)

 

Very much a case of mutual benefit, and the AVID absolutely derives from the PHAD. 

Matt Picio told me about Birds of Prey in mid 2000, I came to the list right after you'd transitioned from 20-degree snowflake to the current PHAD (I saw both); Mike Waters was trying to convince me to take the Snowflake for Attack Vector: Tactical.

I read an early set of laid out rules by Phil, and Mike Waters helped me over some hurdles (and I sent my pain points back to Phil shortly afterwards; I was a useful 'here's someone who knows nothing about air combat' guinea pig). There were some concepts that I didn't get the first time. I took notes on them (including what 'finally made it click') and passed them on to Phil; for example, in that tutorial, the relationship between rolling the lift vector and turning was never made explicit; it was assumed that everyone knew what a lift vector was... :)

Once I understood the PHAD, I had the idea of tilt blocks and box minis to show orientation and colored tiles to show altitude.

I published Delta-V with the AVID in 2001, with a print run of 300 copies -- and sold out after Origins and GenCon. I was looking for anything I could get cheaply enough to use as tilt blocks, but ultimately had to go to China for manufacturing. If you still have some of the wooden tilt blocks from back them (I've got a couple in my desk drawer), those were made by my father in a woodshop in Alaska.

I had to sneak a set of tilt blocks to Ethan McKinney to show to Phil in actual play; Phil's opinion prior to using them was that they were "just toys. BoP is a serious game, played with counters." Ethan says it took all of one turn of using them for Phil to switch to "I will never play an air combat game without these ever again." On the drive back from the playtest, per Ethan, Phil was saying "Oh man, we have _got_ to have these." :)

I then got Tony's buy in (and the signed contract to publish BoP) and bought the dies for the parts. 

And, again, absolutely a case of mutual benefit!

I am looking forward to the E6Bs; I will slightly mourn the nomographs, much like I slightly mourn Tony's likelihood table: They're really elegant and powerful tools made specifically to purpose. And are very pretty math besides.

I have people here locally who I'm going to teach BoP from draft tutorials for the next version -- they play the space games, so the PHAD won't be too different from the AVID, and they've helped me pack a lot of copies of BoP over the last 7 years. Hopefully, we'll find plenty of pain points with useful suggestions for Phil and Ken to incorporate.


Tony Valle
 

On Jan 24, 2023 at 9:21 AM -0700, On Behalf Of Ken <airbattle@groups.io>, wrote:
I had to sneak a set of tilt blocks to Ethan McKinney to show to Phil in actual play; Phil's opinion prior to using them was that they were "just toys. BoP is a serious game, played with counters." Ethan says it took all of one turn of using them for Phil to switch to "I will never play an air combat game without these ever again." On the drive back from the playtest, per Ethan, Phil was saying "Oh man, we have _got_ to have these." :)

I then got Tony's buy in (and the signed contract to publish BoP) and bought the dies for the parts.

The single most painful part of the entire process was convincing Ken that the tilt blocks had to be RED and BLUE. Sides in air combat are RED and BLUE. Green is right out. You draw an aircraft in green on the whiteboard at Nellis and you better be talking about a tanker. But I still have a huge set of the “Christmas” tilt blocks which are mostly anchoring the basement floor.

And, again, absolutely a case of mutual benefit!

I am looking forward to the E6Bs; I will slightly mourn the nomographs, much like I slightly mourn Tony's likelihood table: They're really elegant and powerful tools made specifically to purpose. And are very pretty math besides.

Mind you, I have started to use Ken’s “difference die” for a couple of things in BoP where it works, and I may go back to using likelihood for the next release, also where it works. I was trying hard to distance the game from the Air Superiority / Fighting Wings family at the time and that led to a few sub-optimal decisions. 

But recalling the fact that missiles flown by experienced people worked much better than missiles flown by newbies was an aspect of AS/TSoH that I recalled vividly and did not like at all (even though I usually benefitted). That urge to be different led to the abstract missile flight modeling in BoP and of all the innovations in the game, that is the one of which I am most proud. There’s nothing like anywhere in the air combat gaming universe.

I have people here locally who I'm going to teach BoP from draft tutorials for the next version -- they play the space games, so the PHAD won't be too different from the AVID, and they've helped me pack a lot of copies of BoP over the last 7 years. Hopefully, we'll find plenty of pain points with useful suggestions for Phil and Ken to incorporate.

I’m certain that will be the case and I’m looking forward to it!
_._I am certain that will be the case, and I’m looking