The Spring ends soon, and we're preparing the next update for you. In the next 2-3 weeks, we plan to finish the testing of the new game version, which has started already - this week we started the beta testing of Flying Circus S.E.5a and Albatros D.5a and today we add T-34 UVZ mod. 1943 from Tank Crew project to it. And the next week the beta testing of the long-awaited Me 262 A for Battle of Bodenplatte will begin.
For Bodenplatte we also have the Summer US pilot ready, German and British pilots will receive their summer outfits soon. We can show you the US one today:
Jet engine Jumo-004B-1 for Me 262 A fighter/bomber is nearly finished - it is installed on the aircraft, its characteristics are set up and it is being tuned right now. For our project, we have chosen the updated variant of this engine which had a modified valve that made the throttle controls more trouble-proof. However, sharp throttle changes still can cause an engine fire, so it requires a degree of caution. Speaking of available modifications, this aircraft in the game will have the following ones:
- EZ 42 gyro gunsight with automatic deflection calculation,
- R4M unguided air-to-air rockets, 12 per mounting,
- Armored pilot headrest,
- Pilot back armor,
- Removal of the gun mounting armor for making the aircraft less nose-heavy,
- Removal of two Mk 108 guns,
- Bomber variant capable of carrying two SC 250 or one SC 500 bombs.
The list of this plane peculiarities includes the dangerous effect of Mach tuck at higher speeds that at first decreases its yaw stability. This yaw stability decrease not only makes the aircraft harder to handle but also warns the pilot of the increasing danger of an uncontrollable dive. The nose landing gear is omnidirectional and has additional brakes. While the plane is capable of reaching up to 837 kph near the ground it has good controllability at low speeds thanks to wing slats. It should be noted that the longitudinal center-of-gravity depends on the remaining fuel, ammo and modifications installed very heavily. For instance, if you remove the nose gun armor and two guns, it becomes so tail heavy with full tanks that it is dangerous to fly. Positive characteristics include good roll controls at any flight speed. All in all, the plane is going to be controversial, unusual and very interesting to fly:
Next Flying Circus planes, S.E.5a and Albatros D.5a, are completely finished and are being tested at the moment. The new level of visual quality allows us to have a fresh look at the aircraft of the Great War - previously invisible details became apparent, the materials became more lifelike. We hope to be able to show you the first screenshots of the Arras map soon. Meanwhile, we started the work on the next pair of WWI planes we have to develop - Bristol Fighter and Halberstadt CL.II. Bristol Fighter was a general purpose frontline aircraft that served as fighter, light bomber and recon plane while Halberstadt CL.II was a specialized frontline attack aircraft, sometimes also used for recon. But today we can show you the screenshots of S.E.5a and Albatros D.5a:
Tank Crew owners will also get much new stuff in this update - our partners from Digital Forms have finished the work on T-34-76 UVZ mod. 1943 and it will also be added to Early Access. There is much info on T-34 available, but some things can be repeated. Fast, maneuverable, with good armor and weapons - sloped angle armor made it only slightly less armored than heavier KV-1s. However, long 75 mm and 88 mm German guns in 1943 were very dangerous and this armor was no longer enough, so this means that T-34 crews need to rely on the main advantages of this tank - speed and mobility - even more.
However, the new tank isn't the only addition to Tank Crew you'll get in the next update. We're currently testing the new, more detailed tank damage model. The damage sustained will be indicated on a special overlay toggled by Enter key and in the messages on the left of the screen. The following systems can be damaged:
- Cooling system (coolant leaks that eventually lead to an engine overheat and damage),
- Oil tanks (oil leaks lead to fire danger),
- Fuel tanks (fuel leaks also increase the danger of fire, more for gas engines and less for diesel ones),
- Transmission and gearbox (longer gear shifting, inability to change the gear, complete transmission failure),
- Steering (more difficult turning),
- Electric system (inability to start the engine, inability to use powered turret traversing mechanism, internal and external lighting, radio),
- The left part of the suspension and left track,
- The right part of the suspension and right track,
- Main turret traverse mechanism,
- Manual turret traverse mechanism,
- Gun mounting,
- Main gun,
- Machine guns,
Of course, this feature is linked to another - the possibility of field repair. It is also being worked on and most of it will be usable for aircraft as well. The crew will be able to repair the tank systems in the field as long as the tank is not completely destroyed. In addition, the mission designer can add special repair and ambulance tracks that accelerate this process both to single and multiplayer missions. Later, during Summer, we plan to add refueling and ammo trucks to replenish the fuel, oil, water and ammo reserves. And today we can show you the screens of the coming T-34-76 UVZ mod. 1943:
You can discuss the news in this thread
The time flows and the Summer draws near, and we're another step closer to the release dates of our projects. For Bodenplatte, the biggest chunk of work to be done is the map. With first cities, settlements and airfields done, the work continues on placing the rest of them according to historical data. In the code, we have begun the long-awaited work on aircraft AI improvements: for instance, in the next update, we plan to release the improved formation logic. For Career mode, new squadron emblems, military ranks and awards for all three countries will be finished soon.
P-38J-25 and Tempest Mk.V FM are in the works, while Me-262A jet fighter-bomber FM should be finished soon. Speaking of visual models, P-51D-15, P-38J-25, Tempest and B-25D are nearing completion and proceeding according to schedule. Of course, the new theatre of war requires new ground vehicle models too. Today we can show you the screenshots of another one - German Sd.Kfz. 7/1 halftrack with 20 mm Flak-Vierling 38 AA gun:
For Flying Circus, the development of the Arras map (1918) continues, it will use the new art techniques being developed for 'Bodenplatte'. We should be able to show you the first screenshots of it in Summer, but today we have some new WWI aircraft cockpit screenshots, S.E.5a and Albatros D.Va. As you can see, the work on them is nearly complete and we plan to release them for Flying Circus owners before the end of this Spring:
For Tank Crew, the work on enhancing the tank damage modeling is progressing well. Physical tank models now include many systems and their damage while visual models have many new animations and working instruments. The already released systems have their damage modeling improved and we have added simple GUI damage notifications for systems and crewmen. All significant events will be displayed in the 'technochat' (log) on screen. In May-June we plan to implement repairing, refueling and rearming (which later will be also applicable for aircraft). In the next update, we'll release the animated crews for PzKpfw. III Ausf. M and M4A2. Today we can show you the PzKpfw. III Ausf. M crew and PzKpfw. IV Ausf. G interior:
And to finalize this Dev Blog we would like to show you the new promotional video for Battle of Stalingrad created by =HH=Pauk. It shows that the development of all of our projects doesn't stop on release date by all means and they are continuously developed and improved. Enjoy:
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One week has passed since our previous Dev Diary and we have something new to show you once again. The rate of development is truly fantastic. Today we won't have so much text but will compensate it with WIP screenshots of two 'stars' of our Bodenplatte project.
The first star of today's Blog is the British fighter Hawker Tempest Mk.V series 2. These planes played a significant role in the events of January 1st, 1945 - the units managed to take off in time when Luftwaffe attacked the Allied airfields during Bodenplatte operation. Tempests were equipped with some serious firepower - four 20mm Hispano guns - and achieved good speeds at lower altitudes, which was handy for a dogfight near the ground.
The second aircraft we want to show you today is USAAF North American P-51D-15 Mustang, the most famous American fighter of WWII that was widely used in different theatres of war. To a degree, its exceptional range and altitude capabilities made the deep bombing raids over Germany possible. Mustangs had good overall maneuverability and climb rate, while their six .50 cal M2 Browning machineguns allowed them to engage any air targets. A Mustang could also carry bombs and rockets, making it a fighter/bomber.
It should be noted that while many Mustangs still exist around the world, including airworthy ones, most of them are combinations of different modifications, including post-WWII ones. Therefore we're spending a lot of time researching tech schematics, spare parts catalogs, and similar documents to make sure the final result will be as authentic as possible.
And to finish today's blog, here are WIP screenshots of the next Flying Circus plane - Fokker D.VIIF. This Deutsche Luftstreitkräfte late WWI fighter has been equipped with a great engine for its time, BMW D.IIIa, that gave it an advantage over Allied fighters at high altitudes. Coupled with good maneuverability, it made Fokker D.VIIF a very dangerous adversary.
You can discuss the news in this thread