Should it be radio rather than radar?

In Phoenix Point at the moment we’re building radar stations which then give an instant and uniform detection of areas to explore.

I don’t know if I’m misunderstanding how modern radar works, but I’ve always associated it with the detection of aerial or naval units, not static ground locations. - To that end I’d expect a radar station to pick up a large floating alien (were they called behemoths?), I’d even expect them to detect the location of alien mist, but I wouldn’t expect radar to pick up a haven, and I definitely wouldn’t expect it locate abandoned scavenger sites (unless those barrels are responding to echo location because… lore somehow). I also wouldn’t expect radar to give a uniform range, if you built a radar station (at low elevation) in Chile I would have thought that it should be more effective in the direction of the Pacific Ocean compared to its ability to detect anything on the other side of the Andies.

I realise that a game simplifies things, and that variable or even LoS radar detection would probably be a nightmare to program, and I know that over the horizon radar exists to counter LoS detection that would limited by the curvature of the Earth. But even so I would feel that the construction of Radio towers would make a lot more sense if the aim is to discover land based locations and additionally they could lead to some interesting gameplay mechanics.

  • Havens could appear at different time points; even in an area where you’ve got coverage it’s not to say that a haven is populated and therefore able to respond at a given time point, they might appear or disappear at different stages of the game depending upon what is happening to them.

  • Havens could also choose to not respond to the player based on the player’s relationship with their faction.

  • Discovering the location of scavenger sites could depend upon picking up info/clues to describe that location and/or travelling close to it. (Clues could be gained from havens, from newly recruited soldiers, from interrogations, from single event radio contact made by civilians/soldiers that require aid)

  • Radar stations could then be left to detect mist and those big floating alien thingamajigs.

EDIT - I meant to say ‘Radio Tower’ not ‘Radar Tower’ in paragraph 3


We used radar in war against NATO aggressors. It uses something similar to echo location bats use, but with radio signal. RADAR stands for RAdio Detection And Ranging, so it’s radio already.

Yes, radar does use a form of radio detection, but that’s not the same usage of radio as would be used in a radio tower which could allow for 2-way communication via radio.

It’d be interesting to know about the capabilities of the radar that NATO was using - Was it able to detect abandoned buildings/settlements? And did geography affect its range, or was that always uniform?

NATO afaik did not use regular radar too much, as there was no airforce to oppose them, and for terrain, they just need regular map. They mostly used counter-radars, that detect and lock on radar signal, and dropped locators for, to my knowledge, GPS triangulation. But, both of those were used to guide missiles, as again, we had no way of resisting bombardment, there are even units that turned their tanks vertically to shoot at the planes, it was that desperate. But, in the end over-reliance on countering RADAR cost America much, as they lost stealth bomber. Guys that shot it down did not know it was invisible, apparently. I can’t tell you too much, we were on the receiving end, and the tech advanced plenty since the '99.


Yeah, that’s an interesting difference I guess, NATO wouldn’t have need to detect buildings and settlements as they’d already have that knowledge - Was Satellite also imaging a thing back then?

I’m sorry to hear that you were on the receiving end of that btw, I can’t imagine it being a good situation to be in all round.

satellite imaging arrived shortly after Sputnik. It was just film based and involved retrieving the film in a highly dramatic fashion