View Full Version : Suggestions for the Future of Air Command

April 22nd, 2001, 06:30 PM
I thought it would be good to start a topic with what players thought about possible future Versions of Air Command. I guess this topic would be something that Joe Jaworski could look at for ideas (if he wants them).

I've already covered some ideas but I will put them in this topic for completion sake.

1) Campaigns: Let's have a system that you could start at a very small airport and if you do well (achieve a high enough score, or other conditions) then you will be offered a job at a larger airport. This will continue until you have been recognised as FAA's Air Traffic Controller of the Year (or something like that)

2) Special Events: Maybe include things like The Presidents Plane is flying through (or even landing) and you must divert traffic until it's done. Maybe the 747 with the Space Shuttle on it. Other events could be airplane emergencies, like low fuel, engine not working, passenger very sick, etc. Just some things that would make you shuffle traffic around in order to put priority to a particular plane.

3) Maybe we could make "No-Fly-Zones" that you wouldn't be allowed to have planes fly through. Suggestions would be "Over the White House" or "Military Training Grounds". In those cases, there are chances that the plane would be shot down.

4) Make weather a consideration. I never use the Doppler Effects, not because they are a pain, but because they don't (in my opinion) add anything to the game. Let's make the weather a consideration by having the storm area affect the flying of the aircraft. Maybe you have to divert the aircraft around particularily bad storm areas. Also, Joe, if you are feeling really adventurous, have the weather areas "morph" so that their shape doesn't stay constant the entire time.

5) I've mentioned the radar sweep before. Let's make this a "Bonus points" option. But, when it is on, the planes, weather, etc. only update on the screen when the sweep goes over them. I can't say that I know what modern radar is like, but from my usage of radar in the navy, the sweep started at the center of the screen and worked around in a 360 degree circle.

I am having a bLast playing AC 3.0 as it is, but it mainly something of a "Beer and Pretzels" game to me, so that I mainly play when I am short on time to play something else. With some of the additions mentioned above, this could really turn into a great game with substance.

Does anyone else have any suggestions? What would be great, also, is if Joe, himself, would comment on the board.

May 4th, 2001, 01:35 AM
Another thing I thought up Last night. I would like to add flexibility to the editor, allowing us to change the airplane list and pilot sounds. I know that you can do this manually by replacing files, but I would like to have an easy way to change them just for 1 map. That way, I can create a futuristic "Space" traffic control situation (let's say on the moon, or even in a star fleet) and it could be realistic with different sounds other than the prop planes, and "Delta". Then I could play the next game with the normal planes and it would load the sounds automatically.

May 5th, 2001, 02:43 AM
I have 3 things in mind http://www.shrapnelgames.com/ubb/images/icons/icon7.gif

1. Agree that weather should have effect on planes...maybe pilots take it on themselves to ask for course change, or some such.

2. Apply more specific speeds to each type of plane...Cessna/Piper/Cheokee type single props (50 - 140 mph) compared to 150+ for heavies...and whatever Lears and Cessna jets have.

3. When changeing altitude, the "foward" movement maybe should be reduced some percentage/factor.

Just some thoughts...

May 5th, 2001, 03:27 AM
When Joe implements these features, and we all "know" he will, he needs to make sure he adds the ability to turn them on and off at will. Some of these ideas may be great in theory, but not in actual execution. Not that Joe can't make a great game or anything (AC3 RULES!), but I like to be able to make decisions regarding what type of game I want to play. A simple option window with check boxes, or radio buttons, or *be creative* would do nicely.
And, this is off topic but, has anyone played ATC Simulator by Aerosoft? I would like to think that AC3 is much better, but I have no way of knowing because there is no demo at their website (or it's hidden really well). And I can't see myself spending 60 dollars (that can buy a decent quantity of alcohol) on something I can't play first.

May 5th, 2001, 03:49 AM
I agree that these options should be "optional". It only makes for a better game, since you can make the game personalized to how you want to play. I never have the doppler effects on, nor the grid sweep. I just wish we could hear from Joe and Shrapnel (with regards to the manual) just so that I would know that they are actually reading our opinions and concerns.

May 5th, 2001, 09:22 PM
Well, even if NO ONE IS LISTENING, we at least have some place to vent our frustrations. Sigh ...

May 5th, 2001, 09:59 PM
Well I don't know what Joe plans with the future of the game since it his game. One thing to keep in mind is this game is done specifically to be a fun ATC sim that sets it apart from more hard core efforts.

May 6th, 2001, 12:59 AM
Yep, I agree on makeing anything as options...

I accept/like http://www.shrapnelgames.com/ubb/images/icons/icon7.gif this ATC type as being fun over a hard-core type...anyone ever taken the ATC test? Fun is much better http://www.shrapnelgames.com/ubb/images/icons/icon7.gif

May 6th, 2001, 03:25 PM
Speaking of the ATC testing...

only two words...

Bartlesville Bloodbath

(just think kobiashi maru)

May 7th, 2001, 12:26 PM
We're listening and paying attention- it is feedback like this that helps us the most in planning the next Version.

Thanks everyone for their great input!


May 7th, 2001, 04:52 PM
Hey Joe. Great to hear from you. It's great that you guys are listening to your consumers. If I could take a little of your time, I was wondering if you could give us a hint as to when a new Version will be out (are you working on it yet?) and what it might include? Also, are you considering this Version to be a free update, or will it be a "Air Command 2" that we would have to purchase? Thanks again for making a fun game.

May 7th, 2001, 08:24 PM
Drunkard....In regards to your inquiry about ATC Simulator by Aerosoft, my friend has it and I got a chance to play. It is almost an exact replica of a real control tower. The voice recognition option is cute. To tell you the truth, it was little to real for me. I could understand why real controllers would take up chain smoking! Very nerve racking. I much prefer Air Command (AC3 RULEZ!), but if your into realism, I don't think you would be disappointed.

May 8th, 2001, 09:40 PM
Thank you. http://www.shrapnelgames.com/ubb/images/icons/icon7.gif I was waiting for someone to say that. I suspected it was ultra-realistic and un-fun, but I had to be sure. And I am sorry about squeezing it into the forum, but where else could I ask?

May 11th, 2001, 04:03 AM
If it's not already integrated into the game (I'm waiting for my copy - to Gabe: I've got both the beer and pretzles for the authentic AC3 experience http://www.shrapnelgames.com/ubb/images/icons/icon7.gif), add the ability to change the in-game music. While some may enjoy the Beauty and the Beast soundtrack (cough*me*cough), others may not. Or they might just not be in the mood. Actually, I take this back. And the only reason I am continuing through with this post is because of this "solution". Disable sound in AC3, and run Winamp or whatever in the background while you play for tunes. I forgot about this. :\ Wait, I don't take it back. Being able to change the default music with a "sound editor" would be slick. Go forth and conquer, Joe.

Just don't bother Joe if it crashes with Winamp open (multi-tasking is bad). But if someone *manages* to get it to crash, then we can harp on Joe for this feature. And that is always fun. :

[This message has been edited by Drunkard (edited 11 May 2001).]

May 17th, 2001, 12:55 AM
I just got AC3 in the mail today. And to my horror there was no jewel case. Just a less-than-spectacular paper sleeve. This is a personal thing, but I hate paper sleeves. They're cheap, and they scratch CD's. I swear they do. Anyone who makes up for their lack of life with games knows this. And this has some merit with "normal" people too, because, I have never heard anyone "normal" complain about a less-than-spectacular jewel case.

The "boss" feature dunna work unless ye start a new game. I wish it to work. I dunna know if it has been mentioned. What if I get stuck with the program open and can't pull the mouse over to new game quick enough? (As ridiculous as this sounds. Hey, it's coming from me though.) http://www.shrapnelgames.com/ubb/images/icons/icon7.gif

[This message has been edited by Drunkard (edited 17 May 2001).]

May 17th, 2001, 01:57 AM
Another thing I just thought of...let's put some restrictions on the pause key. Either have it so that you can't issue commands on pause (which you can do now if things get too hectic), or even better yet, have an option that you will lose points for every command you issue while the game is on pause. This will allow people who don't want the extra challenge to play as it is right now, with no penalties, but allow those who do want the challenge to engage this option. Or another idea, is to have the option to "turn off" the ability to issue commands under PAUSE, and get some bonus points.

May 17th, 2001, 02:29 AM
Also, there should be an option to adjust the sound levels. In other words I want to lower the volume level of the pilots and pump up the music - I swear I wasn't being SARCASTIC in my other post.

Again, I fail to remember is this has been mentioned. If it has, then I second.

P.S. I read the manual - but I'm lazy. I've been too used to being babied by other games that have sliders for sound levels. Also of note: in the manual under the FAQ section you have the question: "How do I change the sound volume of the music or pilot voices?" In the answer to the question it mentions the "SYNTHESIZER" slider. And in all CAPITALS at that. Well, my computer does not have one. It must be specific to a certain type of sound card and driver combination. I have two computers at home. Both lack the "SYNTHESIZER" spoken of. However, I assume it's just the MIDI slider. I know better. But some people will not. And I just mention it to possibly relieve some confusion for others and so you can update the manual accordingly - if you so desire.

P.S.S. By the way Joe, the manual FAQ is excellent (ignoring the nitpick above). It even raises questions I wouldn't have thought to ask - and then answers them.

[This message has been edited by Drunkard (edited 17 May 2001).]

May 31st, 2001, 04:24 AM
I was at work when it hit me (yes, I actually think of AC3 at work). Themes. What AC3 needs is themes. Sort of like the Desktop Themes for Windows but for AC3. That way everything is unified. All the suggestions for sound editors, etc. It could be integrated using themes. And it would fit with Joe's minimalist attitude towards interface design. There could be a simple option to load theme files and AC3 could take care of the rest. This could work. That way we could create pilot voices, music, and backgrounds (I want this ability...I'm specifically talking about pasting images behind the radar circle...like, maybe a ATC tower picture or something) and load them on the fly. If this ever gets put in, I will create an honorary DISNEY theme just for Joe. *Smootchie*Smootchie* http://www.shrapnelgames.com/ubb/images/icons/tongue.gif

[This message has been edited by Drunkard (edited 31 May 2001).]

May 31st, 2001, 05:04 AM
HOT DAMN I'M ON A ROLL TODAY! Multiplayer. Bear with me on this one...AC3 multiplayer. I don't know all the details, maybe the forum members - *cough*, gabe, *cough*, strider - could help me out on this one. Have it set up where we could play through GameSpy Arcade. Or something cool like that. It could work by having the players each ATCing in adjacent regions (or far away regions, who cares). That way ATC's (players) could handoff planes to each other in different areas. A plane could take off from one airport on X player's screen and fly to, and then land at player Y's airport in that person's screen. I can't speak for anyone else, but this sounds super. There could also be a "scorematch" where players compete for the highest score - my *** is a bit sore now and I am getting tired of pulling ideas out of it. And I can't think of anything else right now. Maybe I'll go get drunk and come back...

January 3rd, 2005, 10:26 PM
More airports: Atlantic City (casino traffic), Philadelphia, Baltimore, Pittsburgh, Portland Maine, Washington, Cleveland, Jacksonville, Tampa Bay, and Baffalo.

April 20th, 2010, 04:33 PM
Wow, a stale nine-year old thread. Why not respond? I was a young man when this one started.

Okay, things I want:

1) Some indications on where the planes entering are coming in at, as well as their altitudes. I've had planes dusted that are all happily on their way to the VOR and suddenly a plane comes out of the sun and game over. Sigh.

2) Better vectoring to the VOR. Sometimes it works well - like Atlanta. Sometimes it sucks, like LAX. Really, you need the planes to try to fly the short leg of the run to the VOR first, so they come in on a more usable angle for landing. It makes such a difference to be able to tell the guy to find his own damn way to the airport without me stearing him him.

3) Yeah, emergencies. Click this option on, and some plane, somewhere, will declare an emergency. For every five minutes you keep him up, it cost you points. It would be really cool if you could land them anywhere. If you have an engine fire, you'll hardly be picky.

4) The fast and slow differentials are too great. Planes just run away whem they throttle up and hand in space when they throttle back. Half the effect would be nice.

Thats all I got.


April 21st, 2010, 12:27 AM
I'll add another I forgot...

5) When you clear someone for takeoff, they are already cleared to climb to 10k on the VOR. Why not allow you, as the controller, to also set their immediate course and alt when you clear them to roll?

You should click on them for takeoff, and it should default to 10k and their exit VOR (or 1K and their destination airport). You should be able to put in a VOR, heading and altitude now and then hit execute, which puts them into takeoff and has them follow the orders you gave them.

This way, I don't have to worry about launching a plane under a whole lot of other planes and having to catch him off the end of the runway to give him further instructions. I can hold him at low altitudes and run him out a bit before lifting him.

That would be much better.

April 24th, 2010, 12:18 PM
6) At the end of the game, show your points details. It only makes sense - if I really suck a score, I'd like to know why. I can only tell if I get on the top ten, which is rather a catch-22.

You should have room on that end splash-screen.

August 7th, 2010, 01:59 AM
With the upgrades the FAA is FINALLY making to the ATC system are there plans for an AIR COMMAND 4.0 based on GPS tech?

September 1st, 2011, 03:42 PM
So there's no future for AC? I'm an old Scopejockey Trained on 30 yr old equipment back in the '80's
An AC 4.0 with update GPS style control & current techniques. I'd buy it