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On 8/28/2020 at 4:49 PM, slide said:

Not just @David Hingtgen...:aggressive:

wtf happened? Laziness. Pure. Simple. Laziness.

smells like an activision effort to me!

Actually, I had a long convo with SuperOstrich about this and it is most likely a legal issue. The rights to use the aircraft are expensive, for some reason, so it's cheaper to use similar but clearly not designs, or even concept designs.  Given that this takes place in an alternate universe they can explain away the design changes.  The issue really comes if they change the design after using it in an older title.  I'm not sure of the CoD games have ever used the F-14 or UH-1 before, but if they haven't then using "inspired by" designs would help them get around licensing fees.

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I don't play CoD, but the tactic makes sense to avoid licensing fees. We've seen the same employed by HasTak with Transformers for years. Honestly, it doesn't bother me if a game uses fictitious designs, especially in an action or shooter game. I often enjoy the designs that the artists conjure up for these games. Now if you're talking Flight Simulator, those should replicate the real aircraft inside and out as much as possible.

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2 hours ago, Knight26 said:

Actually, I had a long convo with SuperOstrich about this and it is most likely a legal issue. The rights to use the aircraft are expensive, for some reason, so it's cheaper to use similar but clearly not designs, or even concept designs.  Given that this takes place in an alternate universe they can explain away the design changes.  The issue really comes if they change the design after using it in an older title.  I'm not sure of the CoD games have ever used the F-14 or UH-1 before, but if they haven't then using "inspired by" designs would help them get around licensing fees.

yes, earlier Black Ops games had more accurate Hueys, for example, these ones look like UH-1N's... or at least I recall them being so...

 

13 minutes ago, M'Kyuun said:

I don't play CoD, but the tactic makes sense to avoid licensing fees. We've seen the same employed by HasTak with Transformers for years. Honestly, it doesn't bother me if a game uses fictitious designs, especially in an action or shooter game. I often enjoy the designs that the artists conjure up for these games. Now if you're talking Flight Simulator, those should replicate the real aircraft inside and out as much as possible.

that's exactly why they do it, and why none of the guns have their proper names.

it's still BS, Activision has more money than the Church, and that's just in their CEO's bank account!

 

As an aside: the "licensing fee" thing never made sense to me... *insert firearms manufacturer* makes a game company pay to advertise their product? What? Same goes for things like Ace Combat games licensing the real aircraft...

I mean it fit's with a company like H&K, since they've only very recently been seen to give a crap about the US-civilian market, but does anyone else not understand the logic here?

is it a case of "*insert videogame* isn't going to change the rate of sale of our product appreciably, but $*insert amount* up-front from a licensing deal can immediately be folded into our budget"?

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5 hours ago, slide said:

...

As an aside: the "licensing fee" thing never made sense to me... *insert firearms manufacturer* makes a game company pay to advertise their product? What? Same goes for things like Ace Combat games licensing the real aircraft...

...

Keep in mind that Lego cancelled a recent aircraft set (that had already started to see a limited release!) because of licensing fees.

Blame the lawyers and companies wanting to protect their corporate image (as licensing fees inevitably includes questions about how such things are going to be used/depicted in-game).

Edited by sketchley
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I'm actually not sure if the licensing was the main issue for that case, since LEGO has partnered with Boeing before, when they made sets of airliners (I believe they released an official 787 set).  A bigger issue was revealed by a reviewer who got a copy of the set, and found out that the inner mechanism was so over-geared that it was self-destructing, and tearing the teeth off of some of the sprockets.

I think the licensing for stuff like Ace Combat is more on the research and development side, getting info straight from the manufacturer about how things look and work; the general audience of most flight games is so far removed from the customer base of most aircraft manufacturers, the licensing doesn't seem like it could be related to advertising. 

Manufacturers caring about how their products are portrayed does become a massive issue with racing games though, because certain production companies have very strict rules about how they want their cars shown on screen.  The big one that I always hear about is Porsche, and how they are incredibly stingy with who they allow to include their cars in any game at all, but many of the manufacturers will outright refuse to let you use their car if there is any physical damage modeling in the game, because they just don't want people doing virtual damage to their virtual merchandise.

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On 8/30/2020 at 6:55 PM, sketchley said:

Keep in mind that Lego cancelled a recent aircraft set (that had already started to see a limited release!) because of licensing fees.

Blame the lawyers and companies wanting to protect their corporate image (as licensing fees inevitably includes questions about how such things are going to be used/depicted in-game).

I had to look into that one.

From Military.com:

"Despite being just 10 days away from its August 1 release date, LEGO pulled the Osprey from its website and announced that shipments of the new set would not go out to retailers. In their official statement, LEGO said:

The LEGO Technic Bell Boeing V-22 Osprey was designed to highlight the important role the aircraft plays in search and rescue efforts. While the set clearly depicts how a rescue version of the plane might look, the aircraft is only used by the military. We have a long-standing policy not to create sets which feature real military vehicles, so it has been decided not to proceed with the launch of this product. We appreciate that some fans who were looking forward to this set may be disappointed, but we believe it's important to ensure that we uphold our brand values.

LEGO's policy of not making sets based on military vehicles goes back to its very beginning. In fact, the original LEGO brick colors in the 1950s didn't even include grey because LEGO feared that they could be used to make military vehicles like tanks."

 

and the same quote in a "the Brothers Brick" article. Though that article does point out this:

"The German Peace Society organized a petition to halt LEGO’s production."

 

Seems it was LEGO's anti-war stance, and public pressure based on their previous "no military vehicles" track record.

Which, while I disagree with the decision, is their prerogative.

Nothing I can find mentioned license fees...

 

Looks like I get to blame them damned Peaceniks again!:D lol:rofl:

 

also: does that mean that when it eventually DOES get picked up by some rescue service, it'll be kosher?

Edited by slide
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33 minutes ago, Shadow said:

This was way too good not to share.

Spoiler

 

 

That was great!!

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43 minutes ago, slide said:

...

Seems it was LEGO's anti-war stance, and public pressure based on their previous "no military vehicles" track record.

Which, while I disagree with the decision, is their prerogative.

Nothing I can find mentioned license fees...

...

That's the official statement.  The problem with it, though, is that the set was already in production and being released (sold) to the public.  If it was against their company policy, why did it reach the stage where the set was being produced and members of the public were purchasing it before it was cancelled?

So, that leaves us with 2 possibilities: the aforementioned gear problems, or problems with the licensing (or both).  It makes sense to provide a smokescreen (the official statement) for both those issues, but if it was a gear problem (a manufacturing/materials problem), wouldn't that warrant a delay while they sorted things out, not an outright cancellation?  The gear problem is doubly odd, as it begs the question: why wasn't it sorted during prototyping and test production?

Regarding mention of licensing fees: is this something the company would want to publicly admit?  At the very least, it makes sense to conceal it to maintain an amicable relationship for possible future business.

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3 hours ago, sketchley said:

That's the official statement.  The problem with it, though, is that the set was already in production and being released (sold) to the public.  If it was against their company policy, why did it reach the stage where the set was being produced and members of the public were purchasing it before it was cancelled?

TBH, i don't follow LEGO very closely, but If one had to venture a guess...

From Brick Fanatics:

Quote

German Peace Society – United War Resisters, an anti-war organisation, contacted Brick Fanatics and shared the following statement:

  • “The new LEGO set is released with an official License from Boeing and Bell. According to data from the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI) Boeing has been the second largest arms company in 2018 with global arms sales totalling € 26.08 billion/$29.15 billion. According to the same data Bell achieved rank 27 with a total of € 3.18 billion/$3.5 billion in arms sales. We are not happy with this cooperation and the new military LEGO set.”

Shortly thereafter, the LEGO Group shared the following statement:

  • The LEGO Technic Bell Boeing Osprey V-22 was designed to highlight the important role the aircraft plays in search and rescue efforts. While our set depicts a rescue version of the plane, the aircraft is predominately used by the military.? We have a long-standing policy not to create sets which feature military vehicles and in this case we have not adhered to our own internal guidelines.
  • As a result, we are currently reviewing our plans to launch this product on August 1.

It simply may not have been a problem until someone on their forums [or whatever they do for public interaction] either raised the issue, or pitched a fit [as internet denizens do].

 

The way I'm reading this:

It's not the $ amount of the fees being a problem for either LEGO or Boeing, it's that LEGO payed $X to a military manufacturer, which upset some people. LEGO being LEGO, they want none of that, which is understandable.

I have no idea if that's true or not, but yea, I'd buy the official explanation.

I've seen companies make costlier decisions for dumber reasons.

 

Boeing LOVES the idea of kids playing with a toy of their airplane(s), and it was built-in marketing for the V-22 as a SAR bird... Boeing couldn't lose on this one.

As you said, LEGO was already shipping/selling it, so the evidence would suggest that they didn't want to stop production either. LEGO would've already payed Boeing's fees [presumedly], so why stop unless they thought the resulting brand damage would be major?

One panicked corporate officer could've easily resulted in this situation playing out this way.

Edited by slide
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3 hours ago, sketchley said:

So, that leaves us with 2 possibilities: the aforementioned gear problems, or problems with the licensing (or both).  It makes sense to provide a smokescreen (the official statement) for both those issues, but if it was a gear problem (a manufacturing/materials problem), wouldn't that warrant a delay while they sorted things out, not an outright cancellation?  The gear problem is doubly odd, as it begs the question: why wasn't it sorted during prototyping and test production?

Yes, smokescreens make sense.

One assumes they would've delayed the release if the issue wasn't solved, which suggests that it probably has been, or they wouldn't be shipping/selling the thing.

I would assume "LEGO sold a piece of junk" would ostensibly be way worse for them, long-term, than working with Boeing.

 

3 hours ago, sketchley said:

Regarding mention of licensing fees: is this something the company would want to publicly admit?  At the very least, it makes sense to conceal it to maintain an amicable relationship for possible future business.

If the fees were too high, one assumes they would not have signed the deal/contract...

Or their legal team dropped the F'ing ball, and Boeing slid-in some extra fees, etc.... also possible.:rofl:

Edited by slide
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8 hours ago, slide said:

Yes, smokescreens make sense.

One assumes they would've delayed the release if the issue wasn't solved, which suggests that it probably has been, or they wouldn't be shipping/selling the thing.

I would assume "LEGO sold a piece of junk" would ostensibly be way worse for them, long-term, than working with Boeing.

Thank you for looking into it.

Maybe it was a panicky corporate officer after all?  That, or one branch of the company went all guns-blazing to complete the project, and it was only after the fact that the senior staff found out about it after it was flagged by the German Peace Society.  And as European sensitivities are rather complex, I can see it prompting the corporate response.

 

So, ultimately, from what we can gather, licensing fees were the root cause of the sets cancellation, but not in the way I initially interpreted.  It was merely the fact that Lego was paying money to an arms manufacturer (which, when phrased like that, sounds rather distressing... :unsure:).

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As I've mentioned before in the LEGO thread---LEGO has made many models the past couple years, that are of Boeing aircraft. (licensed/branded ones, not just "resembling")  Just none that were military-based.  So the argument that it's "because Boeing is an arms manufacturer" doesn't really work, because LEGO's been paying Boeing fees for years, for non-military sets.   

(I'll be annoyed if the Ideas 737 set fails to get approval, because it's Boeing-----heck, all airliners would be off the board, as every civil company makes military planes too, nowadays, even Embraer) 

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8 hours ago, electric indigo said:

Boeing just needs to find a client who puts the Osprey into SAR service to redeem themselves & Lego B))

Problem solved!

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14 hours ago, sketchley said:

Maybe it was a panicky corporate officer after all?  That, or one branch of the company went all guns-blazing to complete the project, and it was only after the fact that the senior staff found out about it after it was flagged by the German Peace Society.  And as European sensitivities are rather complex, I can see it prompting the corporate response.

Indeed. I wonder what sort of division there is between LEGO writ-large and Technic... I have no idea of their corporate structure.

5 hours ago, David Hingtgen said:

As I've mentioned before in the LEGO thread---LEGO has made many models the past couple years, that are of Boeing aircraft. (licensed/branded ones, not just "resembling")  Just none that were military-based.  So the argument that it's "because Boeing is an arms manufacturer" doesn't really work, because LEGO's been paying Boeing fees for years, for non-military sets.   

(I'll be annoyed if the Ideas 737 set fails to get approval, because it's Boeing-----heck, all airliners would be off the board, as every civil company makes military planes too, nowadays, even Embraer) 

It's not so much that "Boeing is an arms manufacturer"... as you pointed out: almost ALL aircraft manufacturers have military contracts, same with Mitsubishi, Mercedes, BMW, CAT [Caterpillar], lots of others as well from whom they've licensed vehicles/products.

It's that the petition was introduced.

Some choice lines from the petition read:

  • "The „Osprey“ is a tilt rotor freight aircraft built by the arms companies Boeing® and Bell®. It is sometimes armed with heavy weaponry. The „Osprey“ is being used by various branches of the US military as well as the Japanese army. The aircraft is also used in attack and raid missions. The aircraft has been deployed to Iraq and more currently to Yemen, Mali, Syria and Afghanistan. Reportedly the Osprey has been involved in lethal incidents with civilian casualties – children among them. There is no civilian version of the „Osprey“ today."
  • "The arms section of Boeing® also produces fighter jets, fighter helicopters, bombs and rockets (even intercontinental nuclear rockets). There are numerous examples of the use of Boeing® arms violating human rights, humanitarian and international law."
  • "Why does LEGO® not have other militaria and military vehicles in its program?
    Because the production of such items violates company values and goals. LEGO® has set itself high standards for responsibility and sustainability. In fact, there is a regulation which specifically targets the production of arms: „The basic aim is to avoid realistic weapons and military equipment that children may recognize from hot spots around the world and to refrain from showing violent or frightening situations when communicating about LEGO products. At the same time, the purpose is for the LEGO brand not to be associated with issues that glorify conflicts and unethical or harmful behavior.“ (LEGO progress report 2010). Arms and military vehicles are also ruled out in other documents on the corporate values of LEGO®."

They're using the fact that this is a military-only plane [at least right now] to get it shut down, citing LEGO's previous stance, and apparently LEGO's own corporate regs.:unknw:

 

I'm still going with: Corporate Officer didn't know, found out via a petition, and decided shutting it down was the safest way forward for the brand.

but again: little knowledge of LEGO, other than they make neat toys, I'm just applying Occam's razor to the info I can dig up on a quick google.

Edited by slide
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Concerning LEGO's Osprey, I believe there's more to the cancellation than their bowing to an obscure anti-war group in Germany. They've released any number of military inspired aircraft sets going at least as far back as the 90's (I own this set, which looks an awful lot like the AH-1). The Air Race Jet  is the most recent military inspired set, Osprey notwithstanding, to grace shelves. It's not officially licensed, but it bears some similarities to the F-35. I'm not sure if the licensing had anything to do with it, either, as they've created other Boeing sets, as mentioned. As military craft go, a cargo/troop transport is fairly innocuous, relative to the options.

LEGO played down the issue with the gearbox, which I believe has more to do with the cancellation than LEGO's admitting. The gear seems to maintain integrity if the gearbox is spun up with it already engaged. However, when the load on the gearbox is high, due to the large motor used in the set, the torque seems to be too high, and the load too great, for the gear to handle and the teeth break. It's a bit of an oversight, and potentially embarrassing if this set made it into thousands of hands around the world, and many of those people experienced a catastrophic failure while playing with their set. The timing of this anti-war group's complaint coincided nicely before widespread release of the set, thus saving LEGO a great deal of embarrassment, and a probable recall that may have cost them more than not releasing the set at all. Or, they may have tried to find a work-around kit for the set, which would also cost them money, as they'd likely send those out free to all the folks who bought it and experienced breakage. There's precedent, as a number of areas  on the Shuttle Adventure set 10213 were deemed to be structurally unsound after wide release and LEGO created a parts pack to fix the issue. I have this set, but didn't learn about the supplemental pack until after they'd released a second edition of the set with fixes implemented (10231), so mine remains as it was originally released. I've never had any issues, but I wouldn't have minded some additional free LEGO. I digress. I do believe LEGO takes their commitment to not producing modern military stuff seriously, but if this set had worked properly, I'm not sure they would have cancelled it, citing the Search and Rescue livery purposely chosen to distance the set from military application. The fact that it has no civilian equivalent is moot, IMHO; they've made countless military-esque vehicles over the years, including this gem, which also takes a cue or two from a certain military VTOL. There was no uproar that I can recall when that released, and license notwithstanding, there's only one real-world aircraft that looks like that.  So, by appearing to acquiesce to the pleas of this group and do some 'soul searching', I think it was a propitious opportunity for LEGO to avoid a potentially disastrous issue by appearing to fall back on their moral obligations. That may be cynical, but as good as the LEGO Group is as a conscientious company, and I believe they are, they're still human at the end of the day, and given an opportunity to simultaneously save face and money under the guise of taking the high road, they went for it. That's my $.02, FWIW.

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7 hours ago, M'Kyuun said:

Concerning LEGO's Osprey, I believe there's more to the cancellation than their bowing to an obscure anti-war group in Germany. They've released any number of military inspired aircraft sets going at least as far back as the 90's (I own this set, which looks an awful lot like the AH-1). The Air Race Jet  is the most recent military inspired set, Osprey notwithstanding, to grace shelves. It's not officially licensed, but it bears some similarities to the F-35. I'm not sure if the licensing had anything to do with it, either, as they've created other Boeing sets, as mentioned. As military craft go, a cargo/troop transport is fairly innocuous, relative to the options.

LEGO played down the issue with the gearbox, which I believe has more to do with the cancellation than LEGO's admitting. The gear seems to maintain integrity if the gearbox is spun up with it already engaged. However, when the load on the gearbox is high, due to the large motor used in the set, the torque seems to be too high, and the load too great, for the gear to handle and the teeth break. It's a bit of an oversight, and potentially embarrassing if this set made it into thousands of hands around the world, and many of those people experienced a catastrophic failure while playing with their set. The timing of this anti-war group's complaint coincided nicely before widespread release of the set, thus saving LEGO a great deal of embarrassment, and a probable recall that may have cost them more than not releasing the set at all. Or, they may have tried to find a work-around kit for the set, which would also cost them money, as they'd likely send those out free to all the folks who bought it and experienced breakage. There's precedent, as a number of areas  on the Shuttle Adventure set 10213 were deemed to be structurally unsound after wide release and LEGO created a parts pack to fix the issue. I have this set, but didn't learn about the supplemental pack until after they'd released a second edition of the set with fixes implemented (10231), so mine remains as it was originally released. I've never had any issues, but I wouldn't have minded some additional free LEGO. I digress. I do believe LEGO takes their commitment to not producing modern military stuff seriously, but if this set had worked properly, I'm not sure they would have cancelled it, citing the Search and Rescue livery purposely chosen to distance the set from military application. The fact that it has no civilian equivalent is moot, IMHO; they've made countless military-esque vehicles over the years, including this gem, which also takes a cue or two from a certain military VTOL. There was no uproar that I can recall when that released, and license notwithstanding, there's only one real-world aircraft that looks like that.  So, by appearing to acquiesce to the pleas of this group and do some 'soul searching', I think it was a propitious opportunity for LEGO to avoid a potentially disastrous issue by appearing to fall back on their moral obligations. That may be cynical, but as good as the LEGO Group is as a conscientious company, and I believe they are, they're still human at the end of the day, and given an opportunity to simultaneously save face and money under the guise of taking the high road, they went for it. That's my $.02, FWIW.

I agree with all of this^^

From my understanding the petition wasn’t even that large either. At least that is what I remember from when we discussed this in the LEGO thread. not to mention all the Fictional Military War vehicles they make all the time for Star Wars and Marvel. Yes I know they are not real but if LEGO is concerned with glorifying war and death then why make those which sole purpose is to make war machines look cool. 

Chris
 

 

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17 hours ago, M'Kyuun said:

*SNIP*... The Air Race Jet  is the most recent military inspired set, Osprey notwithstanding, to grace shelves. It's not officially licensed, but it bears some similarities to the F-35...

So... it's a J-20, sans canards?:rofl:

 

Jokes aside, all of what you said is also plausible/possible. I have no knowledge of the gearbox/motor or it's torque issues, but I can see how a combo "OMG we need to not ship this lemon" and "Hey, there's this petition calling us out on ignoring our own corporate precedent we can use as cover" makes a lot of sense.

 

If the torque issue really is that bad, then you're correct: shipping them out only to have the gears self-destruct on them would be embarrassing. 

Edited by slide
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  • 2 weeks later...
3 hours ago, F-ZeroOne said:

Could they at least have tried to make it look less like every generic “Going to be taken over by a rogue A.I. and try to shoot down the hero about halfway through the movie” drone ever...? :lol:

It really doesn't need to look like every generic "going to be taken over by a rogue AI" drone... one specific one is plenty? :lol: 

1034594392_ss(2020-09-15at11_02.33).jpg.94422c0c98b73133dba4e1504a5a89d3.jpg

Seriously, I have trouble believing that's not on purpose, at some level.

Edited by Chronocidal
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I'm telling ya, Kawamori has a time machine. We're just catching up to his vision 25 years later. The A.I. holographic idol stuff still needs some work, though.  

Looking at that pic, I had to cue up "Wanna Be an Angel".  So lovely. 

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7 hours ago, kalvasflam said:

Running joke of the week apparently.  Can anyone identify the silhouette of the plane?  :ohmy:

image.png.bba35d0642f5d4f96c321a22a0e14aed.png

The punchline is that the troops that is supposed to be supported are US troops.  :shok:

I guess one could make the argument that they are aggressors...   :lol:

B4EAE8AE-5014-43E8-BCBB-138EC08F8391.gif.3ec6dde118f5f1067258f9cbe5d1402e.gif

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Hey, to be fair, the Russian Navy isn’t exactly in the best shape right now...

Gotta say that the Troops poster reminds me of why I like the MiG-29 so much. From certain angles it really looks the business!

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3 hours ago, AN/ALQ128 said:

Speaking of USAF Aggressors...

https://twitter.com/TheDEWLine/status/1306523756056150016

The F-35 looks pretty nice in a RuAF scheme.

Yea... No... the entire concept is hurting my brain...

why would you paint an F-35 like that? who in their right mind thinks the F-35 can handle like a Su-57?? [a visual-range dogfight being the only time you'd even see the other guy, let alone his camo-scheme]

If you're just doing BVR training that way, why would you [potentialy] ruin the Anti-Radar paintjob on your F-35?

 

Did any of the Su-57 demonstrators [and that's exactly what they were, let's not kid ourselves] produced actually get their anti-radar coatings?

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7 hours ago, slide said:

Yea... No... the entire concept is hurting my brain...

why would you paint an F-35 like that? who in their right mind thinks the F-35 can handle like a Su-57?? [a visual-range dogfight being the only time you'd even see the other guy, let alone his camo-scheme]

If you're just doing BVR training that way, why would you [potentialy] ruin the Anti-Radar paintjob on your F-35?

 

Did any of the Su-57 demonstrators [and that's exactly what they were, let's not kid ourselves] produced actually get their anti-radar coatings?

Dunno about the Su-57, but the 57th Air Wing are hoping to use "threat representative" colour schemes for their F-35's.

https://theaviationist.com/2020/09/17/exclusive-57th-wing-confirms-plan-to-use-threat-representative-color-scheme-on-the-aggressor-f-35s/

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