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.:: Interview of Matt Wagner - LOCK ON ::.
Friday 10 January 2003

( You can see pics on th french version of this interview)

Matt Wagner, Lock On producer, answers our questions, asked on Check Six' forum.

C6) First of all, thanks to have accepted to answer our questions Matt

C6) Can you tell us why UbiSoft has suddenly renamed Lock-On: Modern Air Combat into Lock-On: Air Combat Simulation for the European market? Is there any concrete reason for such a measure?

MW) We thought the title had to reflect the simulation aspect of the game, that is much appreciated by the fans.

C6) About the flight models and planes electronics: do you plan to have a detailed engine start procedure? If not, do you think it will be possible to add it in the future?

MW) Unlike Flanker 2.0, engine start-up and shut-down have been provided in Lock On. To streamline this function though, it can be achieved with two keys.

We are working hard to complete Lock On, and have not made any decisions regarding future products in the Lock On line.

C6) Of course, many people here are worried about the complexity level of the planes' avionics, especially the Russians' ones, since it has been told that Russian electronics, radar management, etc… would be improved only if "you've got the time to". Can you tell us the last news about both US and Russian avionics development?

MW) The avionics for the F-15C and A-10A are nearly complete, and I believe that even the hard-core fanatics will be pleased. However, because we have limited time to complete the project (without suffering yet another delay), the avionics for the Russian aircraft will as they were for Flanker 2.0 (which to this day still has the highest fidelity avionics of any title featuring Russian aircraft).

C6) And what about navigation tools and tower comms? Will TACAN channels be managed?

MW) Navigation will be in regards to INS systems and tower will provide taxi, take off, and landing instructions. There are no plans for TACAN at this time.

C6) Will the damage be as detailed as in a WW2 simulation like Il-2, or will the damages be randomly displayed on the planes models?

MW) Damage effects are manifested in both system failures, flight dynamics, and graphically. For instance, it is possible to lose portions of your aircraft in regards the damage site.

C6) Will there be an improvement of the AI SAM behavior? Will the radars cut off themselves to avoid destruction, just like in the real life? Will there be info sharing and cooperation between different SAM sites from the same side? And will this info potentially reach the player through the AWACS and EWR linking?

MW) These have yet to be determined, but we would like to include such features. No promises.

C6) About the electronic warfare, what about the ECM effects? Will EW warfare planes be available? And will the land-masking be a reality against the land and airborne non-look down radars? Will each aircraft have his own true radar with all the abilities, qualities and lacks simulated?

MW) Appropriate aircraft will have ECM jammers and will have various levels of effectiveness depending on the threat radar. Additionally, terrain masking and dopper-notching will be available.

Each aircraft has its own radar attributes.

C6) Can you tell us what possibilities will be made available about the flight groups composition? Is the planes limit still 4? Will mixed-airgroups (ie: Su-27s with 33s) be possible? Will we be able to choose between different flight formations?

MW) Flights can consist up to four aircraft, and multiple types of aircraft and missions can be assembled into a package. When in the game, the player can choose several formations for his or her flight.

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- ©2003 Bernard Valencelle 'Benhur' -