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new comms procedures

Posted: 20 Feb 2021, 13:15
by Hammer
EDIT: changed the graphic for the whisper setup as I forgot to include the crew sub-channels in the whisper to all.

We are starting to get a lot of people showing up for mission night. This is leading to comms conflicts. I would like to change a bit to a more segregated comms setup and procedure on teamspeak.

We will have two (or more if necessary) sub channels for flights of different types (eventually this might change to different sub-channels for all flights). They will just be named flight1, flight2, etc. The task assigned to a flight will determine which sub-channel you go into - you occupy a sub-channel with the rest of your flight/task. If we take last Wed as an example, the DEAD flight would occupy flight1 and the FORCAP flight would occupy flight2 sub-channels.

This is easy enough, but what about cross-(sub-)channel comms? We will use whisper lists. You will use your normal PTT to talk to your flight in your sub-channel. To talk to the other sub-channels and the parent channel you will set up a whisper list. Within teamspeak, go to tools->whisper lists. Select New, and then select a PTT button for this new whisper list. Once you have a PTT button assigned, ensure that Whisper to: has Clients & Channels selected. Then on the right side expand RLGaming Teamspeak Server and then expand Channels. Then select Flying, Flying/flight1, and Flying/flight2 (and any other flight subchannels there are, including crew sub-channels) by dragging them into the middle window or double clicking on them in the right list. It should look similar to this graphic:

teamspeak whisper 1.png

Once complete click OK. Your teamspeak window will look like this. When you push your whisper PTT the channels and sub-channels in that whisper list will get a red indicator next to them on the right instead of the normal blue dot lighting up.

teamspeak whisper 2.png

The good news here is that this whisper setup can be left permanently in your teamspeak setup; it is only used when we need to divide up tasks/mission/flights due to many personnel flying.

For flight comms to other flights, one person should be designated as flight lead or flight radio operator. Only that person should use the whisper (unless it is an emergency) to send comms to the other flights. This is relaxed during setup, ingress, egress and other relaxed times during mission nights. We do not want to impact the social aspect of our group, but we do want to accomplish missions with a bit less frustration due to comms congestion.

For mufti-crew aircraft the multi-crew personnel should set up a 2nd whisper to their other crew member, which may or may not change between mission nights (but this is relatively quick and easy to set up/change). Another alternative, if there are only a couple of flight members and the other aircraft in the flight do not mind, just use the flight sub-channel for both crew intercom and flight comms.

Any questions/issues/comments please post here.

Re: new comms procedures

Posted: 21 Feb 2021, 07:02
by Grifter
All this makes sense and I think it will help a lot. I have a couple of suggestions that may be worth considering:

1. Establish a routine spot or time during ingress and egress to tighten up and loosen comms discipline, just so everyone knows when it's okay to say something over global comms if they so desire. This spot could be fifty miles to target during ingress and fifty miles to base during egress, for example.

2. Since we're limiting this setup to only two channels, flight and global comms, flight leads should announce their flight and the flight they are addressing for clarity's sake. For example:

"DEAD to ESCORT, interrogate bogies BRA 330 for 75, angels 20."
"ESCORT to DEAD, roger."

3. Of course, so long as the flight isn't dealing with a threat or doing a task, light chatter within the flight should be fine, and occasionally there are points during a mission that allow for it. However, all flights should keep an ear out for other flights in need of help; yes, in all likelihood, we'll all be too busy for sidebar conversations.

Again, just some suggestions to consider to make sure that comms stay as clean and clear and possible. :-)

Re: new comms procedures

Posted: 21 Feb 2021, 14:57
by Hammer
Good suggestions. I will say let's leave it up to the package commander as to when comms discipline goes into effect. When he feels it is time, he can just make the call "All stations, comms disipline is now in effect".

Also, yes flight leads should be the only fight member using the whisper to all flying channels. Alternatively the flight lead could designate another flight member to do this.

I also added a bit more to the multi-crew section to consider.

Re: new comms procedures

Posted: 21 Feb 2021, 15:08
by Bones
This is true that only flight leads should be broadcasting to their own flight, and to their own package and partner flights. Wingmen should only communicate with their flight leads when necessary and then only on their discrete channel (ie don't respond "two" that you are following his turn to heading on the global channel). This is how it is IRL.

Also, i should point out that for the DEAD to ESCORT call example, that the call should be bullseye over BRA. This is because say DEAD is in hot and escort is off flying away from them to prosecute an incoming threat 90 degrees from DEAD's heading. When DEAD calls a new set of threats coming in from BRA whatever, this is in relation to DEAD's nose. Unless escort knows what DEAD's heading is, this doesn't help them at all to know where the new threat is. That is why bullseye is used instead. It is global. PLus if escort can't take the new threats, now someone else who wasn't even part of DEAD's package can find the new threats more easy than if it was a BRA call. How would FORCAP for instance know where DEAD is and where their nose it pointing to figure out where the new bandits are in relation to them?

Now for some aircraft this may not apply...I don't think the JF-17 has bullseye, right? Or in the Tomcat, there is bullseye but if you have Jester in back you're sunk since her can't manipulate the NavGrid like a human can to find bandits based on bullseye..but then you have the AWACS or just calling the other flight and asking for a talk on.


Re: new comms procedures

Posted: 21 Feb 2021, 15:46
by Hammer
It is the FC3 aircraft that are not able to make use of bulls. I think all others can, maybe except rotary wing - not sure there. The different airframes may access/use bulls differently, but I believe they all can do so one way or another.

Re: new comms procedures

Posted: 22 Feb 2021, 06:38
by Grifter
Also, i should point out that for the DEAD to ESCORT call example, that the call should be bullseye over BRA.
I wasn't thinking about that when I provided my example, but that's a very good point. Thanks, Bones.

Re: new comms procedures

Posted: 22 Feb 2021, 14:38
by Jedi Master
I have less than zero confidence I will get with any of this.

Comms are something that I don't understand. It's Chinese to me. No, worse, because I actually know a few words of Chinese and I know NOTHING about this.
It's like cooking...I know what foods I like to eat but I can't make myself care enough to learn how to make anything beyond hot water or a microwaved meal.

Re: new comms procedures

Posted: 23 Feb 2021, 06:25
by Grifter

I know it seems complicated but that's why we're just keeping it to two PTT's, one for broadcasting across flights and one for communicating within your flight. This is so simple that it can be done on the fly and literally takes seconds. All you need a free/open button or or switch on your HOTAS or a key on your keyboard for an alternate PTT. I can walk you and Panzer through it Wednesday night if you like. It's really simple.


Re: new comms procedures

Posted: 23 Feb 2021, 09:45
by PanzerMeyer
I have no issues. I use a similar comms setup for ArmA 3 sessions on SimHQ.

Re: new comms procedures

Posted: 28 Feb 2021, 21:35
by Hammer
edited initial post.