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    • By 76.IAP-Blackbird
      Original Message is from ShamrockOneFive posted over at Il2 Forums. It was posted in April, but right now it is a good time to reread it and maybe, buy it as an xmas gift for yourself 


      Hey folks,
       
      I spent some serious time with IL-2: Battle of Kuban and particularly with patch 3.001 before I started to write my review. I decided I wanted to write a review for new players coming in or old players that were used to IL-2: 1946 so that they would have an idea of what this series is all about. I didn't want to hide the few warts that the series still has but I also wanted to put them in context of all of the great things that it does so well.
       
      At a little over 4,500 words I think I've captured nearly all of my main thoughts and feelings on the recent final release of the title and I try and cover as much ground as possible. This review isn't so much for you guys as it is for new players coming in. In short, I think IL-2: Battle of Kuban is a crowning achievement for 1CGS and one that points towards a very bright future for the series.
       
      https://stormbirds.blog/2018/04/11/il-2-battle-of-kuban-in-depth-review/
       
      Thanks for reading and I hope you enjoy the review!
       
      https://forum.il2sturmovik.com/topic/35878-il-2-battle-of-kuban-in-depth-review/
    • By 76.IAP-Blackbird
      Hello everybody,

      Today we'd like to dedicate our Dev Blog to the tank part of our sim. We attempt not only to create the authentic visual models of the tanks and model their movement, armament, and damage realistically. We also want to create an interesting gameplay, based on historical events, as usual, that will not only entertain you for some time but let you experience what a real tank warfare in a meeting engagement situation was like.

      The air part of our sim started at the great battle of WWII that changed its course and the course of world history, the Battle of Stalingrad. Following this principle, we start the tank part with one of the key tank battles on the Eastern front that decided the entire 1943 campaign - Prokhorovka.

      Beginning the campaign development for "Tank Crew – Clash at Prokhorovka" we faced the fact that a usual, common for flight sims approach just won't work - its unlikely that any single tank crew in July 1943 survived several large-scale engagements in a row (especially a Soviet one) and participated in all key points of the large Prokhorovka battle we'd like to reconstruct in our scenarios.

      Therefore we have decided not to link the scenarios with a personal story of one of the tank crewmen, but concentrate on creating a coherent story about July 6 -17 engagements. The mission briefings will include first-person remarks, but there will be several plot lines. This will allow you to experience the battle of Prokhorovka from several locations and command 2-3 different combat vehicles in the course of one campaign.
       
       
      "Breaking point" (tentative title)
      Soviet campaign

      This campaign will be dedicated to the heroic deed of Soviet tankmen of Rotmistrov 5th Guards Tank Army that disrupted the German offensive at the center of the southern part of the Kursk salient at the cost of their lives. The massive, but poorly prepared counterblow on July 12th stopped the German advance and eventually pushed them back to their initial positions. The later missions of the campaign will cover the subsequent, less known stage of the battle of Kursk on July 13th - 15th at the interfluve of Donets river.

      Timeframe: July 6th - 15th, 1943.
      Controllable tanks: T-34-76 mod. 1943, KV-1s
      Duration: 10 missions
      Average playing time: 5 hours
       
       
      "Last chance" (tentative title)
      German campaign

      This campaign will tell about the operations of the tank units of Army Group South during Operation Citadel. Having breached two army defense lines, German forces reached Prokhorovka as early as at the evening of July 6th and were close to capturing this key area. However, instead of continuing their advance they were forced to defend against numerous Soviet counterstrikes that culminated in the massive battle on July 12th. The second part of the campaign will be dedicated to German attempts to encircle and destroy Soviet 48th Corps at interfluve of Donets river and the forced retreat of the German 2nd Tank Corps to initial positions when the entire offensive failed.

      Timeframe:  July 6th - 17th, 1943.
      Controllable tanks:  PzKpfw III Ausf.M, PzKpfw IV Ausf.G, PzKpfw VI Ausf.H1 "Tiger"
      Duration: 10 missions
      Average playing time: 5 hours 

      To make our feature about Tank Crew – Clash at Prokhorovka more visual, we can show you several WIP screenshots of the new tanks made by our partners - Digital Forms. They are planned to be released in Early Access early next year:
      - T-34-76 mod. 1943 produced by Nizhny Tagyl tank factory #183 in name of Communist International ("Uralvagonzavod") and 
      - Panzerkampfwagen IV (Sd.Kfz.161) Asufuehrung G produced by Nibelungenwerke of St. Valentin
       







      To accompany them, here are WIP screenshots of Prokhorovka map being developed by our mapping team. The new landscape scaling tech has been developed specially for this map - by reducing the total size of the map from 400x400 km to 100x100km we were able to make its heightmap 16 times more detailed. The detailed area of the Prokhorovka map is still in development, but other parts of this map are more polished. We'd like to note that it is suitable not only for tank engagements, but also for aerial ones and, of course, for joint multiplayer battles that unfold both on the ground and in the air simultaneously. To illustrate this, today we can show you the views of Belgorod that is also there:
       



       

      Aaand we are delighted to present you the finished tankmen models. We still need to animate an each crew member in each player controllable tank in the sim, but now you can already see how they will look:
       



       
      You can discuss the news in this thread
    • By 76.IAP-Blackbird
      Update 3.007  
      Dear friends,

      We just published another IL-2 Sturmovik update - 3.007. In this update we release 4 new aircraft: P-47D-28 and Bf 109 K-4 for Bodenplatte and Sopwith Camel and Pfalz D.IIIa for Flying Circus. But of course, these planes aren't the only addition - the two months weren't spent in vain and we have added numerous improvements to the sim.

      First, as announced before, we're adding new mission types to the Career mode. Second, there are many fixes that should make the multiplayer experience smoother. Third, important changes in the game stats adjust the kill registering logic. Fourth, the damage modeling of simple AI controlled vehicles is much more detailed now. Fifth, FM now takes into account the compress-ability of the air at high speeds - this complex modeling was required for late war aircraft, but it works for any plane in our sim. Sixth, pilot AI has been improved. There are other numerous changes in graphics, user interface, physics and aircraft systems, etc.
       
      Some words on the new aerodynamics feature presented in this new update:
       
      Our physics engine now includes the aerodynamic effect of air compress-ability at high Mach numbers. Our lead engineer has done the hard work of adding this phenomenon to the simulation so we take another step forward in our physics engine.  As it is well known, when an aircraft’s speed approaches the speed of sound, many aerodynamic characteristics change; the drag increases a lot, the lift changes in a complicated way, the center of pressure and the aerodynamic center moves backwards. All of these factors affect the maneuverability, the stability and control-ability of the aircraft. When this happens the available G-load factor goes down, the turn rate decreases while the radius of trajectory does up and when pulling hard the airplane enters a stall earlier. Some airplanes have a tendency to become unrecoverable while in a dive at extremely high speed. As we plan to have high-speed piston and jet airplanes in Bodenplatte we could not ignore this aerodynamic effect. However, all airplanes in the Great Battles series now has this feature. So, dog-fighting at high altitude and high speed is getting another step closer to reality
       
      You can read the whole list of 100+ improvements that come with 3.007 below:

      Main features:

      1. P-47D-28 "Jug" available to all Bodenplatte owners;
      2. Bf 109 K-4 "Kurfürst" available to all Bodenplatte owners;
      3. Sopwith Camel available to all Flying Circus Vol. 1 owners;
      4. Pfalz D.IIIa available to all Flying Circus Vol. 1 owners;
      5. New mission type for Career mode: Cargo paradrop for Ju-52/3mg4e;
      6. New mission type for Career mode: Special squad paradrop for Ju-52/3mg4e;
      7. New mission type for Career mode: Free Hunt for fighter planes;
      8. Major FM change: air compressibility at high speeds now modeled;
      9. New late war Luftwaffe pilot models added to Bf 109 G-14 and Fw 190 A-8;
      10. Multiplayer: a kill will be awarded immediately only if an enemy pilot was killed, bailed out or his aircraft crumbled;
      11. Multiplayer: a kill won't be awarded if a pilot manages to return and land at a friendly airfield (with the exception of point 12, see below);
      12. In mission statistics, an aircraft will be scrapped only if its fuselage or a wing at its base has been ruptured;
      13. New, more detailed damage modeling is used for simple (AI controlled) vehicles - it is now possible to damage their engines, wheels or tracks, crew and ammo rack;

      Multiplayer changes:

      14. Engine sounds of other players planes won't randomly disappear;
      15. Gunfire sounds of other players planes won't randomly disappear;
      16. Net traffic generated by multiplayer clients has been optimized, which should improve the performance of multiplayer servers;
      17. Other players position prediction routine has been optimized, resulting in a smoother multiplayer experience;
      18. The delay between a player pushing the fire button and other players actually seeing his aircraft fire has been minimized to the best possible extent;
      19. Other players gun convergence displayed correctly;
      20. APHE and HEAT rounds fired by other players won't generate a double sound effect;
      21. Server ping values appear correctly in the server list;
      22. The coalition flag in the game world switches correctly;
      23. Binary mission logs are now saved correctly (needed for mission stats debugging);
      24. An exploit linked to navigation markers on the fullscreen map has been fixed;
      25. Right Ju-52 engine animation fixed;
      26. AA searchlights function correctly in multiplayer;

      Visual changes:

      27. FPS in forest areas with lots of trees visible has been improved a lot thanks to the tree rendering optimization;
      28. Aerobatics smoke effect has been improved;
      29. Wrong 'black debris' effect issue while hitting enemy planes has been addressed;
      30. Distant forests won't appear too white in morning or evening fog;
      31. Water drops now appear on the pilot goggles in VR;
      32. Water drops on windshield have been removed during winter (unrealistic);
      33. Oil drops from the damaged engine will appear on the pilot goggles only if he peeks out around the windshield;
      34. Engine start effect has been improved;
      35. Flying Circus aircraft now has the new fire and leak effects like the rest;
      36. Mission designers can place colored smoke signals in custom missions;
      37. Too subtle sun glare effect has been improved on the Moscow winter map;

      GUI changes:

      38. Tank Crew commands now have their own input settings section;
      39. Starting altitude shouldn't reset in QMB;
      40. Wrong aircraft type issue in QMB has been fixed;
      41. Air turbulence and wind direction randomness work correctly in QMB;
      42. Wind direction randomness near the ground works correctly in QMB;
      43. Precipitations during bad weather work correctly in QMB once again;
      44. Mission track records will be named correctly;
      45. Mouse pointer won't disappear after opening Settings menu while replaying a track record;
      46. GUI shouldn't flash after alt-tabbing anymore;
      47. With Imperial units selected in settings, the atmospheric pressure is indicated in mm Hg in Career missions forecast;
      48. Speed tooltip appears correctly while hovering the mouse cursor over a waypoint;
      49. Career interface won't glitch after exiting a Career briefing using the top navigation buttons;
      50. Chat messages delay in singleplayer has been corrected;
      51. A possible crash bug tied to changing settings during a mission has been fixed;
      52. Technochat has been optimized, making the game smoother in many situations;
      53. Technochat tips have been moved to the main chat area;

      FM and instruments changes:

      54. Engine oil in case of a leak or engine failure won't be splattered on the windshield or pilot goggles for P-39;
      55. Aircraft fuel tanks may detonate (the probability depends on the amount of fuel left);
      56. Fuel tank explosion correctly nullifies the fuel reserve;
      57. You need a greater sideslip motion to put off the fire on Flying Circus aircraft;
      58. Collimator reticles look better;
      59. Revi 16B sight reticle made more authentic (Bf 109 G-14 and Fw 190 A-8;
      60. In addition to critical aircraft damage or loss of controls on one axis (lateral or longitudinal) the tip suggesting to bail out will appear in the following additional cases:
      - no fuel left,
      - engine damage makes a horizontal flight impossible,
      - fire on board;
      61. Artificial engine assistant now uses different mixture control lever positions:
      - He-111 H6/H16: decreased from 10 to 5 positions,
      - Hs-129 B2: increased from 4 to 5 positions,
      - Spitfire Mk.VB: decreased from 3 to 2 positions,
      - Spitfire Mk.IXe: decreased from 4 to 2 positions;
      62. Artificial engine assistant now uses less different cowl flaps positions on Fw-190 A5 and А8 (3 instead of 5, like on other aircraft);
      63. Radio direction finders corrected for all aircraft (inverted);
      64. An error in aerodynamic momentum calculations while pushing the Bf-109 G14 rudder to the left has been corrected;
      65. Spitfire Mk.VB and Mk.IXe coolant boiling temperature increased from 115°С to 140°С (MSL) and for MiG-3 increased from 115°С to 120°С (MSL);
      66. Different mixture error that appeared while controlling Bf-110 G2 left and right engine throttles separately and that caused the power difference between them has been fixed;
      67. Bailing out tip added for Fokker Dr.1;
      68. Indication errors corrected in Fokker Dr.I fuel and speed gauges;
      69. Fokker Dr.I and SPAD 13.C1 descriptions corrected;
      70. Bomb lever delay fixed on SPAD 13.C1;
      71. The default amount of fuel in GUI corrected for different aircraft;
      72. All FLying Circus airplanes ground collision made more detailed;
      73. Fokker Dr.I and SPAD 13.C1 visual damage appearance corrected;
      74. SPAD 13.C1: erroneous speed, water temperature and fuel tank pressure readings corrected;
      75. SPAD 13.C1: upper wing fuel tank leak and fire effects added;
      76. SPAD 13.C1: bombs can be dropped only one after another;
      77. Oil leak effect added to all Flying Circus planes;

      AI changes:

      78. AI fighters, AA guns, etc. will continue to engage a target even if is criticaly damaged;
      79. AI planes pursuing a target evade the ground better;
      80. AI wingmen following the leader evade the ground better;
      81. AI pilots check their speed and altitude before attempting Split-S and downward spiral maneuvers;
      82. AI maneuver more efficiently after passing each other in a dogfight;
      83. AI wingmen keep formation a bit better;
      84. AI pilots take off correctly from Nizhny Balikley airfield in Stalingrad Career;
      85. Turrets aiming at enemy planes corrected;
      86. AIs controlling detailed (Tank Crew) tanks takes into account the different ballistics of various ammo types;
      87. AIs aim the tank guns better;

      Other changes:

      88. Pilots bailing out from Flying Circus planes are animated better;
      89. IL-2 mod. 1943 gunner bails out correctly;
      90. Sound volume balance between engine and wind sound has been adjusted;
      91. The issue when the first login attempt resulted in failure message has been addressed;
      92. Burning fuel tanks sound added;
      93. Mouse control pointer (in mouse control mode) won't disappear if aircraft suffers heavy damage;
      94. MG fire heard from inside of a tank has been made different and more realistic;
      95. Blazing Steppe campaign: secondary task labels removed, scenarios #3, 7 and 12 containing Ju 87 groups have been corrected;
      96. Steam locomotive explosion power has been reduced;
      97. Destroyed Pz 38t and Marder III H burn correctly;
      98. Iron sights textures won't blink on IL-2 mod. 1943;
      99. Water drops correctly appear on all He 111 H-6 windows;
      100. Ju 52/3mg4e gauge dials made clearer;
      101. Rogue (enemy) Pe-2 won't appear while playing for USSR after January 16th in Stalingrad Career.
          Please discuss the update in this thread.
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