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Herr Prop-Wasche

Combined FM and AI Weight Mod Complete!

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Dear friends and patient fans of OFF and the modding community: I am very pleased to announce that I have finally completed and uploaded for approval to the administrators my long anticipated--at least by me--"HPW Combined FM AI Empty Weight Mod." This mod fully combines my previous FM work contained in my earlier Allied and German FM Packs, along with FM revisions to several existing aircraft, plus the inclusion of several additional aircraft, such as the Fokker EV, Nieuport 28, Sopwith Pup 80 and 100 HP versions, Sopwith Triplane 100 and 130 Hp versions, Spad VII 150 and 180 HP versions, and Spad 13 200 and 235 HP versions. The FM is also now fully compatible with 33Lima's AI Empty Weigh mod so the user can now enjoy the benefits of both mods at the same time. Please look at the readme file included within the zip file for important installation instructions and a much more extensive description and discussion of the mod.

 

The file was just uploaded a few minutes ago, so should be made available sometime later tonight, Eastern Standard Time (U.S.A.). I apologize for taking so much time to complete the mod, but as anyone else who can attest to fooling around with the FM's in CFS3, the job of revising an FM is not exactly straightforward. For one thing, I wanted to take special care to test and to empirically validate that my changes actually worked in game, instead of just relying on numbers and figures produced by programs such as Airwrench. Therefore, you can be assured that if I report that the Albatros DII flies at a speed of 98.5 mph @ 10,000 feet, then it does indeed fly within 1 or 2 mph of that reported figure. (Note: estimating turning radius is virtually impossible via empirical testing, so I had to rely much more on estimates provided by Airwrench to estimate turning radius. In general, lighter aircraft and aircraft with larger wing surface areas will have the smallest turning radii).

 

I worked very hard to insure that all of the aircraft in the mod are available in the campaign. In fact, the mod is two days later than it should have been because at the last minute I discoverd that four aircraft were inexplicably not working. It took me all of Tuesday evening and most of last evening to track down the glitch--apparently one tiny file for the Albatros DV had managed to sneak into the files for the DV_early, DVa, and DVa 200, making them incompatible with OFF. Anyway, that bug has been tracked down and squashed, and everything now works as intended. Nevertheless, if you find anything that does not appear to be working right, be sure to give me a ring, and I will try to track down the problem post haste.

 

One last thing--be sure to look at the readme file. I also spent a lot of time working on it. In particular, it explains my inclusion of variants to the Sopwith Pup and Triplane, as well as the Spad VII and 13. Finally, if anyone notices any historical inaccuracies in any of my statements in the readme, please point them out to me so they can be fixed.

 

Thanks again for your patience, and i hope that everyone enjoys the mod and 33Lima's empty weigh mod!

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Thank you HPW,

 

For sharing your work, I will definately be downloading your latest effort and trying it out. :drinks:

 

best regards Rob.

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I think I covered that in the readme file, but if you have not downloaded it yet, the answer is, yes you do need 33Lima's mod. His mod works for aircraft that have not had their FM's modded. My new FM AI Weight Mod simply includes Lima's weight changes to aircraft using my FM.

 

Therefore, to use both of our mods, first apply Lima's AI Weight mod using JSGME. Then, apply my mod. My mod will overwrite the .cfg files of aircraft that use my FM and will leave the other aircraft alone.

 

Here is a list of planes with a modified FM:

All 8 Albatros versions

Pfalz DIIIa

Fokker EV

Sopwith Pup

Sopwith Triplane (one gun version)

Spad 7

Spad 13

Nieuport 28

Re8

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Thank you HPW. As usual, you have advanced OFF to new heights of realism. :drinks::clapping::salute:

 

Edit: I forgot to ask, but does this FM mod also contain the Rear Gun Arc Mod since I do not see it mentioned in your above notes or Readme ???

Edited by Panama Red

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Great stuff HPW. Off to try it out now!

 

Panama, no it doesn't contain the Arc mod. The two mods work with different files (.cfg files for the empty weight/FM mod and .bdp and .xdp files for the arc mod) so they can safely be combined. ArcMod does use the same files as HPW's Ultimate DM but I combined the two by enabling ArcMod AFTER the DM. This means I over-wrote and lost the DM changes for the 2-seaters only, but kept it for all the other planes.

 

Incidentally, just to emphasise HPW's explanation, the reason you hve to enable the empty weight mod BEFORE enabling this new combined mod, is because the FM mod includes the AI weight mod ONLY for those planes for which it provides revised FMs - which is a lot of them, but not quite all. So to get the AI weight mod for the planes that aren't in the FM mod, you have to enable it first. The combined mod then over-writes this, with a new FM+ AI empty weight .cfg file for its large sub-set of planes.

Edited by 33LIMA

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Great work, HPW and 33Lima!

 

Would it be possible to summarize all the latest versions of DM and FM mods you guys have built for us and the recommended order in which they should be installed with JSGME utility to gain the full effects.

 

Outstanding!!!

 

OlPaint

Edited by OlPaint01

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Pardon me for being a pain, but I've not been making use of the mods for OFF. Other than those needed to match everyone else's files while taking part in the Vasco's Volunteers group a couple of years ago the only one I currently have is the no-tracer mod. You see, having dealt with the new-FM-a-week days of Red Baron (and the "my mod's better than your mod" arguements they generated on the Wings of Valor forum) I'd decided not to get involved in all of that with OFF, particularly since the on-line side has been laid to rest. But the downside of UOP's doesn't seem to be infecting this game and I, too, am a little tired of AI SPAD's out-turning my Fokker D-VII and so I'm ready to "take the plunge".

 

However I'm a little stuck. I've seen Ol'Paint (btw, does that mean you're "a-peeling"? :grin: ) and HPW speak of something called JSGME. I did a search and the only two hits that came back were the two posts on this thread. Could it have been mentioned in a post or posts that have since been deleted? What is this JSGME and where do I get it/how do I use it? Or is that info contained in your readme file as well? And I, too, could probably use the answer to Ol'Paint's question, considering the near-stock condition of my game (yes, I do have HitR).

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This is what you need, von bauer:

 

http://www.users.on....ucts-jsgme.html

 

It's a mod enabler; best install it INTO OBD Software/CFSWW1 Over Flanders Fields (or wherever you've installed the main OFF folder). You can install JSGME either into a single, central location or have a copy inside each sim you use it for (recommended - I have a second game-specific install of JSGME for IL2-46 set up for UP3+DBW).

 

You then simply install (=unzip, preserving the folder structure, which will be the mod name followed by the subfolder structure where the mod goes into your game) each individual mod into a folder called 'MOD'. JSGME will create this MOD folder when you install it, INSIDE inside the OFF game folder.

 

You then run JSGME; opens with two columns, available (installed but not enabled) mods on the left, and enabled mods on the right, with 'arrow' buttons in between to enable and disable mods - as seen on the link above. Like the mod enabler for Panzer Elite.

 

At the moment, my list of enabled mods, as it appears when I open JSGME (from top - first enabled, to bottom - last enabled) is:

 

Flakmod [produces tighter bursts of AA fire, for better target location, while reducing lethality to compensate] - http://combatace.com...fields-phase-3/

HPW Ultimate Damage Model 1.25 [does what it says on the tin] - http://combatace.com...hpw-ultimatedm/

ArcMod for HPW DM 1.25 [increases the very restricted stock OFF 2-seater arcs of fire; I had forgotten when I typed my reply to Panama that there is this merged version of arcmod and DM , which would otherwise partly conflict] - http://combatace.com...damage-mod-125/

AI Empty Weight mod - http://combatace.com...fields-phase-3/

HPW Main FM AI Weight Mod - http://combatace.com...-ai-weight-mod/

ArcMod for FE2b (HPW DM version) - [DM-compatible add-on to ArcMod, to cover the FE2b which was left out of the earlier version of ArcMod] http://combatace.com...fields-phase-3/

Edited by 33LIMA

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@33Lima

Thanks for the list of mods you use. The install order was what I was particularly looking for.

 

@von Baur

I use JSGME to manage all my various game mods (OFF:HitR, ROF and First Eagles). I use it to install/uninstall my various selections of both Bletchley's Active/Quiet Sectors Mod files and also HPW's Active/Quiet Weather files in addition to HPW's and 33Lima's FM and DM mods - highly recommended.

 

OlPaint (I DO need a touchup, lol)

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@33Lima

Thanks for the list of mods you use. The install order was what I was particularly looking for.

 

@von Baur

I use JSGME to manage all my various game mods (OFF:HitR, ROF and First Eagles). I use it to install/uninstall my various selections of both Bletchley's Active/Quiet Sectors Mod files and also HPW's Active/Quiet Weather files in addition to HPW's and 33Lima's FM and DM mods - highly recommended.

 

OlPaint (I DO need a touchup, lol)

 

Ah-haaa, someone else who appreciates the virtues of all THREE of the current crop of WW1 airwar sims! Good to see.

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Ah-haaa, someone else who appreciates the virtues of all THREE of the current crop of WW1 airwar sims! Good to see.

 

I think 2012 is going to be a great year for WWI flight sim fans. I'm not sure what FE 2 has got planned but RoF has been banging away at adding features and of course OFF 2 looks like a giant leap forward in every way. It looks to me like the WWI flight sim niche is really starting to mature across the board in terms of quality products and features available to the users. Three cheers!

 

Hellshade

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Don't know, i tried the weight mod, at least in the earlier war. as soon as there is an obstacle behind the runway, bei it trees or a ridge or something, all AI AC don't have enough power to get high soon enough and crash one after another. so i skipped it again. i tried it with two seaters and halberstadts etc. maybe it works with later more powerful AC, but at least the early ones seem to have problems getting airborne properly. as long as i know during the start there is a kind of boost for AI AC to prevent that. maybe this boost should remain and then the weight mod would work.

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Creaghorn:

 

I agree with your observation as I've experienced the same thing. (Thinking aloud) I'm wondering if it would be possible to adjust a setting in the cfg file in the "empty fuel weight" from "realistic" to more "game friendly" i.e. ~10% less. Maybe a balance can be reached somehow.

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I have tried downloading this file to add to the list that 33LIMA posted, but it keeps saying ist's corrupted: ArcMod for HPW's Damage Mod 1.25 Version 1.0, 16 November . Any body else have the same problem ???

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Prop - Just to be clear for myself...the only files I need to have activated with the Jones installer is:

 

Lima's AI weight and your new Main FM and AI weight. Just those files?

 

I don't need to have your previous FM files installed as well. These new files replace the earlier ones. Is that right?

 

 

Thanks,

Royce

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Prop - Just to be clear for myself...the only files I need to have activated with the Jones installer is:

 

Lima's AI weight and your new Main FM and AI weight. Just those files?

 

I don't need to have your previous FM files installed as well. These new files replace the earlier ones. Is that right?

 

 

Thanks,

Royce

That's right, Capt. Royce. The new mod replaces the older FM pack mods, as well as any other FM mods I made for the N28, Spad 7, or Spad 13.

 

If you use my revised update without 33Lima's empty weight mod you will get my revised FM planes flown by the AI at reduced weight but all other planes at their normal OFF weight.

Edited by Herr Prop-Wasche

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Don't know, i tried the weight mod, at least in the earlier war. as soon as there is an obstacle behind the runway, bei it trees or a ridge or something, all AI AC don't have enough power to get high soon enough and crash one after another. so i skipped it again. i tried it with two seaters and halberstadts etc. maybe it works with later more powerful AC, but at least the early ones seem to have problems getting airborne properly. as long as i know during the start there is a kind of boost for AI AC to prevent that. maybe this boost should remain and then the weight mod would work.

 

Thank you for pointing this out, Creaghorn. Lima and I had a discussion at the time he released his reduced weight mod about whether to base the AI weights on maximum weight load minus 80 pounds for scouts and 150 pounds for two-seaters, while I advocated basing AI weight on Ramp weight (empty weight plus fuel weight plus pilot weight) minus 80 pounds for fuel weight. In most cases, the difference was not that much, and it was Lima's mod, so I didn't really push the issue. However, in some cases--especially two-seaters--the difference can be significant and might explain the difficulty some planes have with getting off the ground. In fact, here are the differences between my approach and Lima's approach for a few selected aircraft:

 

Aircraft

Ramp Weight

Max Weight

Re8

2015

2528

Roland

2304

2680

DFW

2775

2994

Fe2b

2607

2887

Halberstadt

1427

1713

 

So you can see a difference from about 500 lbs for the Re8 down to about 220 lbs. for the Halberstadt. The difference between scouts is usually 100 lbs. or less, so might account for the trouble being mainly isolated to two-seaters.

Edited by Herr Prop-Wasche

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I just flew some test 'flight takeoffs' in QC with Halb DII, Roland CII and Fokker EIII (the latter was the only early-war plane I tested originally) with Veteran and Rookie AI skill, 'Historical' FM. All all took off and formed up without incident. The airfield only had a few trees at the end of the field tho it did have slightly rising ground then a wood a little futher out.

 

I've previoulsly flown some FE2b missions and I remember one wingman crashed into the sheds, which were well to one side of the runway as usual not at the end, so he had veered off course quite a bit, early in the takeoff run. This was the first & only time I've seen a takeoff crash with the mod.

 

There is definitely not an issue affecting all 2-seaters. I've flown quite a few RE8 missions with the weight mod and haven't had any problems - and the RE8 got a pretty massive increase, as it's stock OFF weights were WAY too low - so the AI went from flying pre-mod (empty weight) at 1431 lbs, to post-mod at 2528 lbs (loaded weight minus 150 lbs allowance for fuel used) and they could still take off and fly!

 

Of the ones I just tested, the Halbs seemed to need the longest take-off run and have the flattest climb out, and so liable to be most prone to takeoff crashes. It may be no co-incidence that stock OFF uses a rather high loaded weight for the Halb - 1793 lbs, compared to 1696 lbs (Gray & Thetford's 'German AC of WW1' & Munson's 'AC of WW1' both have the lower figure). I tended to correct only the more extreme errors in the stock OFF weights (out by over 100 lbs or so). Possibly the Halb DII should be corrected too; being a lower-powered plane, the nearly 100lbs extra weight may make more of a difference. It doesn't stop them climbing and dogfighting (any more than they can, stock; all AI-flown planes seem to suffer from a tendency to go for the deck early and then do rollercoasters, tailslides and wing-overs when they get there, with or without the weight mod) but it may tip the Halb's takeoff performance too far below par.

 

I'll kick off some careers in various early war planes over the holidays to get a feel for the possible issues. It'd be quite easy to reduce the added weight, tho I was (and remain) reluctant to do this, as it seems to need quite a decent increase to have any visible effect on the AI's performance otherwise. Keep the feedback coming as it's only this way we'll be able to find out where the best point of balance is.

Edited by 33LIMA

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:drinks: I copied the download and have to do it manually, over each type a/c in the a/c files ? :dntknw: Edited by carrick58

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Not sure which mod you're referring to, carrick but yes they all involve over-writing some files of planes in the folder OBD Software/CFSWW1 Over Flanders Fields/Aircraft. But use JSGME and install the mods files into the OBD Software/CFSWW1 Over Flanders Fields/MOD/ folder rather than over-writing the originals, so you can back it out.

 

I've done some more testing and there is a strange problem with the Halb DII.

 

So far, other planes seem ok, But Flying a Halb camopaign with Jasta 1 out of Bertincourt which has a wood with slightly rising ground at the far end of the field, I'm seeing probs. My own flight is consistently taking off ok. But 'Flight 1''s lead plane is crashing into the trees and his wingmen are then crashing too - it's like they're blindly following him in, rather than suffering from the same problem. This has happened twise now. All the planes in my flight got airborne ok, whether I flew off first or let some of them go first. Both times, Flight 1 leader flew into the trees and all his wingies followed him. Need to repeat this a few more times to confirm it's definitely the pattern.

 

Hard to be sure, but with the Halb, I don't think the extra weight is the issue, not mainly anyway. There's something else going on. From what I've seen, OFF planes can take a huge increase in weight before they can't take off; the Empty Weight Mod added over 1000 lbs to the stock AI RE8 and it still takes off and flies ok.

 

Hard to say without a line-by-line comparison but the .cfg files for all the AI-flown Halberstadts look the same so it's a bit of a mystery.

 

One clue is that when I'm flying the DII, it's EXTREMELY nose-heavy. Much more so than any other OFF plane I've flown. Seems strange, given the wings - and with that possibly the centre of lift - are so far forward - she looks like she should be tail-heavy if anything, tho that's just a wild guess. I can't find anything about the real plane's CoG or how the Vintage Aviator DIV replica flies.

 

I've reduced the added weight by 97 lbs to correct the stock OFF figure but no difference.

 

So - thus far the only clues I've got are (i) the 'other' flight, not the player's one, being affected and (ii) the Halb's extreme nose-heaviness. Will do a bit more experimenting, to see if this is affecting some other planes too.

 

HPW - can you advise, what figures need tweaking, to push the Halb DII's CoG aft a bit, in the .cfg and .air files? I'd like to try that and see what difference it makes, if any.

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Ah, fun with the old CoG values! I don't recommend it unless you have a lot of time on your hands, but they do seem to influence the nose or tail heaviness of aircraft and, and may also influence low altitude performance--all that bobbing up and down over the trees--as well.

 

There are several values which affect CoG and CoL in OFF. The main ones are "empty_weight_CG_position= 0.000, 0.000, 0.000," which controls location of CoG, and "reference_datum_position=0, 0, 0" which controls CoL to an extent. Think of CoG as the position on the plane where a vector extends from the fuselage to the ground, and CoL as the position on the plane where a vector extends from the fuselage into the heavens--think of a toy airplane being suspended in mid-air by two strings--one coming up from the ground and the other attaching to the ceiling--with the plane in the middle.

 

There are a few other values that also affect CoG, but not by as much. The fore or aft location of the fuel tank and pilot, as well as the main wing seem to have some influence, but I am not entirely sure exactly how.

 

Basically, it takes a lot of experimenting and then testing to get the right "feel" for each aircraft. Also, the changes should be kept small.

 

I also have a few observations to report about the Halb and some of the two-seaters which I will list in the next post. After that, and after tomorrow, I will do some more experimenting with the Halb's weight, CoG, and CoL to see what I can come up with.

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