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    • By 76.IAP-Blackbird
      Update 4.001

      IL-2: Great Battles Version 4.001 Launched – Battle of Bodenplatte and Flying Circus Officially Released! Tank Crew Campaigns - Released!

      Dear Pilots!
      Finally, we have reached a very important milestone for our latest IL-2 Sturmovik titles. Today, two projects moving from the Early Access phase to Official Release. The first of these is Battle of Bodenplatte, which acquired the last major content components that were missing - the seasonal textures for the Rhineland map and the Pilot's Career. However, this does not mean that work on this project is completely done, we plan to spend some time before we begin our next project on fine-tuning and polishing a number of its components and adding a couple yet to be completed pieces such as Air Marshal. However, we feel it contains enough content and features that we can begin to sell it in all our channels including Steam as we head into the Holiday Season. In addition, we plan to closely monitor your messages in order to improve the quality of the project as much as we can in the last part of 2019. Bodenplatte turned out to be a truly record-setting job for us, the volume of work done on the development of maps and aircraft of the late period of the war is unprecedented for us. The late period imposes serious additional requirements on the manufactured equipment; however, the result is extremely interesting. The included aircraft make an incredible impression, because this is already the "apogee" of piston powered planes and, at the same time, the "dawn" of jet aircraft. The Rhineland map impresses with its scale, size and richness of cities and the number and historically researched airfields. The career "Battle of the Rhine" takes place over a fairly long period of time that includes four seasons - from September 17th, 1944 to April 1st, 1945. The Career covers a very significant part of the war on the western front - more than half a year. Battle of Bodenplatte was a bold step for us and when coupled with our other two projects, it pushed us to our creative limits. We hope you will enjoy it! Also, a Standard Edition of BOBP will be coming soon with the P-38J and Fw-190 D-9 offered as Collector Planes to give users more buying options. BOBP will also be available on Steam in the coming weeks, there are still a few details we must work out there first.

      Flying Circus - Volume 1 is now available in its fully planned state and all the remaining ground-based equipment of the First World War have been added in our new standard of visual quality. Observation balloons with observers who may leap from their post when under attack are also included now. A number of improvements were also made on the map, primarily to the front line. We hope that users who purchase this project will like the step forward in comparison with our previous title Rise of Flight, especially in the visual quality of aircraft and the environment that we, together with our partner Yugra Media, have created for you. Although the flight models generally correspond to the ones from Rise of Flight, many of the improvements that have been made over the past 7 years for Il-2 Sturmovik play a role in Flying Circus as well. Such improvements automatically benefit all projects within the framework of our one common game world and give a new, previously unavailable experience of virtual flight and combat in the First World War. All these new opportunities unfold in their fullest when playing with the use of virtual reality devices. FC includes so many new things - new landscape technology, new lighting and clouds, better sound, new AI and improved ballistics, new graphic effects and new materials for aircraft surfaces, new detailing of textures and models - all this and much more gives the virtual pilots of the First World War something that is not available anywhere else. We hope to make more Flying Circus volumes in the future and we thank those who have jumped into this new product so far!

      Note: We have extended the $10 Off Early Access discount for days more, but it will go to full MSRP very soon. Make your purchase before the price goes up!

      Tank Crew – Clash at Prokhorovka is still under development, as one more tank and three self-propelled guns are being built by our DigitalForms partners. However, from the point of view of the gameplay, this project has almost reached its planned goals - this is expressed in the release of the Breakpoint and Last Chance scenario campaigns in this version. These campaigns tell the story, in the maximum possible historical manner we can, about the complex and intricate events of one of the greatest tank battles on the Eastern Front - the battle of Prokhorovka.

      This battle was not limited only to the events of July 12th, it took place over several tense days, from July 6th to July 16th, 1943. The events and outcomes of this battle are extremely complex and controversial. Although the Soviet troops and armored forces suffered heavy losses, the German command was never able to achieve their planned goals. At the end of the battle, the situation in this sector of the war front almost returned to what it was before it began. However, numbers or the “net book balance” does not always determine the magnitude of the event. The incredible tension, power, complexity and intensity of this military clash, which practically merged into one single and continuous epic multi-day battle, has few equals in world history. And the ambiguity of the outcome of the battle only enhances the intensity of the drama of these events, which do not require any embellishment - simply being retold "as is", without exaggeration is incredibly exciting. It should also be noted that the release of these tank campaigns is accompanied by the completion of the development of some of the most important features of Tank Crew – the radio and command interface. This will allow you to better control your own tank and your tank platoon. We also plan to continue the refinement of our tank project in the coming months as this project too readies for official release.

      And finally, the Achtung Spitfire! Scripted Campaign is also now released and ready to be played! Developed by our friends The Syndicate, this historically inspired campaign contains 20 missions featuring a fictional storyline that is inspired by historical events. Your character is a young Russian pilot from Siberia serving on the North Caucasus Front in late May 1943. The campaign features missions inspired by the Soviet 37th and 56th Armies attack on the German 44th Army Corps west of the city of Krymskaya. You’ll fly a bird of a different feather in the lend-lease Spitfire Mk.Vb over the beautiful Kuban region of the Soviet Union.  The campaign is great fun and full of action.

      This campaign also has a new feature. We have added support for special assigned skins for the player’s plane and other planes I the mission. This is a first for us in a pay-ware campaign such as this. However, to see them, you must download the free skin pack from HERE and place the skins in the Spitfire Mk.Vb Skins folder. We have decided to offer the skin pack as an optional download to lighten our distribution costs and the size of your install if you don’t own this campaign. The skin pack is offered free of charge of course.

      We thank you for your patience as we have readied this product for release and many of you have already pre-ordered it and we appreciate your support. Products like these add more diversity to our product line and help fund many new innovations and content for all of you.

      And now we proudly present version 4.001 to you, our friends, partners and customers. And like most huge updates, there are likely to be some bugs or other unintended issues missed in testing. We of course, as always, will address them just as fast as we can. We appreciate your support as we have worked hard to build all of these new products. Here’s to you and to more great combat-sim goodness in the future!

      The Sturmovik Team
       

       

       

       


      Main features

      1. "Battle of the Rhine" career timeframe consisting of five chapters added to Battle of Bodenplatte;
      2. Rheinland Autumn 1944 map added to Battle of Bodenplatte;
      3. Rheinland Winter 1944-45 map added to Battle of Bodenplatte;
      4. Rheinland Spring 1945 map added to Battle of Bodenplatte;
      5. Canon de 75 mle 1897 gun added to Flying Circus;
      6. 7.7 cm FK 96 n.A. added to Flying Circus;
      7. QF 4.5-inch howitzer added to Flying Circus;
      8. 15 cm sFH 13 howitzer added to Flying Circus;
      9. QF 13 pounder 6 cwt AAA gun added to Flying Circus;
      10. 7.7 cm FlaK L/27 AAA gun added to Flying Circus;
      11. Hotchkiss Mle 14 regular and AA machineguns added to Flying Circus;
      12. Spandau MG 08 regular and AA machineguns added to Flying Circus;
      13. Great War searchlights added to Flying Circus;
      14. Thornycroft J-type self-propelled AA gun added to Flying Circus;
      15. Daimler M1914 armored self-propelled AA gun added to Flying Circus;
      16. Benz LKW 1912 truck added to Flying Circus;
      17. Leyland 3 Ton RAF truck added to Flying Circus;
      18. Crossley T5 command vehicle added to Flying Circus;
      19. Mercedes Kettenwagen 22 command vehicle added to Flying Circus;
      20. No-mans land visually improved on Arras map;
      21. Amiens cathedral added on Arras map;
      22. Balloons added on Arras map in quick mission builder (QMB);
      23. Observers bail out from balloons on Arras map;
      24. Soviet tank campaign Breaking point added to Tank Crew;
      25. German tank campaign Last chance added to Tank Crew;
      26. Tank radio chatter added to Tank Crew;
      27. Tank commander interface  added to Tank Crew. Attention: it is engaged from commander seat by ~ key (tilde). For the driver to follow your orders turn autopilot on from the driver seat first (otherwise you will be driving the tank manually as before);
      28. Achtung Spitfire! Scripted Campaign is released;
      29. Simplified AI-controlled Pz.Kpfw. VI Ausf.H1 added;
      30. Simplified AI-controlled M4A2(75) added;
      31. Simplified AI-controlled M4A3(75)W added;
      32. New Extreme quality cloud setting added that makes the clouds sharper and less 'shifting'.
      33. Three new P-51 (by ICDP and Bugsy) and one P-38 skin added (by ICDP);  

      General improvements

      34. The color of aiming helpers for the guns, bombs and rockets has been changed;
      35. Ground vehicles navigate large bridges on Rheinland map correctly;
      36. Rheinland and Arras maps have cobblestone roads;
      37. Missing grass added to yellow fields on Prokhorovka maps;
      38. Mission designers can define the default GUI map view more accurately by using Normal type lines;
      39. Mission designers can use custom (unofficial) skins in the campaigns;  
      40. Career bug that caused the planes left in the air to be lost has been fixed;
      41. The visual image of rotating propellers in VR has been improved. New parameter "prop_blur_max_rpm_for_vr" can be added to startup.cfg, [KEY = graphics] section - it governs the maximum visible RPM of the propeller in case you don't like the current setting designed to minimize the visual artifacts caused by reprojection VR tech;

      Aircraft improvements

      42. Unlimited ammo difficulty option no longer creates bombs and rockets under a lost wing;
      43. MiG-3 flaps have been corrected - any change of the flaps limiter position retracts them first and then extends to a new position;
      44. A wrong shaking warning message has been removed from P-51D-15;
      45. The automatic supercharger gear change altitude has been corrected on P-51D-15 when using 150 octane fuel;
      46. Radio volume can be adjusted (LAlt+NumPad+ and LAlt+NumPad- by default);
      47. Pitch response curve for non-FFB joysticks has been corrected for all Flying Circus planes, making them easier to fly level. SPAD 13 and Dr.1 were adversely affected due to this change and will be fixed I a Hotfix;
      48. More aircraft controls are blocked when the pilot is unconscious;
      49. After rearming in a service area the guns are ready to fire immediately without pressing reload key;
      50. You can't see your own previous plane when starting again in multiplayer;
      51. Wrong technochat messages about rudder and elevator surfaces were corrected (like reporting a right part hit instead of a left one);
      52. Fw 190 D-9 fuel switch works correctly;
      53. Tempest Mk.V s.2 engine startup made faster;
      54. AI Bf 109 K-4s correctly start their engines on parking;
      55. FlyingTempest Mk.V s.2 without part of a wing became more difficult;
      56. Tempest Mk.V s.2 stall speed increased by 6 mph;
      57. Me 262 A elevator is less affected by ram air according to newly found data;
      58. RPM control helper won't sometimes turn on by itself on Expert difficulty;
      59. AI wing leaders flying on jet aircraft won't decrease their speed too much waiting for their wingmen;
      60. AI pilots try not to exceed 5G (6G if they have anti-G suits) to prevent the loss of consciousness;
      61. When starting a QMB mission close to AI aircraft they'll act more aggressively;
      62. A bug that could cause AI P-39 pilots to overrev and damage their engines has been fixed;

      Ground vehicle improvements

      63. Vertical gun aiming speeds on all player-controlled vehicles were made realistic according to their correct reduction ratios and the handwheel rotation speed which is the same for all vehicles;
      64. When player exit a gunner seat the gun or MG is left in the last aiming position;
      65. When gunner opens his hatch, the turret is left in its last position;
      66. Repairing of Pz.III main gun and turret traverse mechanism happens correctly;
      67. Panoramic gunsight on KV-1s and  T-34 (UVZ) mod.1943 tanks can be damaged by hitting its armored cupola;
      68. The repair process has been corrected to prioritize the leaks;
      69. Tiger main gun has been made sturdier against fragments;
      70. Simple AI ground vehicles with damaged wheels, engine or killed crew no longer become an unmovable obstacle;  
      71. A destroyed AI object no longer causes excessive damage to other objects ramming it;
      72. Ammo crates near artillery positions are not a difficult obstacle anymore;
      73. Simple ground vehicles have realistic gun aiming speeds;
      74. GAZ-AA and ZiS-5 trucks have correct mass (previously they had empty vehicle mass);
      75. Simple AI tanks and guns have a delay between initial aiming and opening fire and between destroying a target and engaging another;
      76. Detailed AI tanks button up when engaging a target;
      77. Detailed AI controlled T-34 (UVZ) mod.1943 is correctly counted in statistics;
      78. Destroyed Т-70 has correct tracks texture;
      79. The forward lights of the G-8 locomotive no longer shift from it when viewed from a far distance;

      Scenario campaign improvements

      80. Fortress on the Volga: aircraft appear and disappear according to the new visibility distance;
      81. Fortress on the Volga: you can encounter U-2VS when flying over the enemy territory;
      82. Fortress on the Volga: U-2VS and Hs 129 can be seen on airfields;
      83. Fortress on the Volga: the movement of all transport and armored columns has been corrected;
      84. Fortress on the Volga: Soviet tank attack in mission 3 has been completely overhauled;
      85. Fortress on the Volga: other minor improvements;
      86. Blazing Steppe: aircraft appear and disappear according to the new visibility distance;
      87. Blazing Steppe: you can encounter U-2VS in the air;
      88. Blazing Steppe: U-2VS, P-40 and Hs 129 can be seen on airfields;
      89. Blazing Steppe: the movement of all transport and armored columns has been corrected, there are more of them and they are larger;
      90. Blazing Steppe: new aircraft groups added;
      91. Blazing Steppe: all Soviet 85 mm AA gun batteries were overhauled;
      92. Blazing Steppe: all static objects have been updated to correct durability values;
      93. Blazing Steppe: the forces and mission logic have been corrected in missions 6 and 8;
      94. Blazing Steppe: other minor improvements.
       
      Please discuss the update in this thread.
    • By FETCH2015
      Can you help this little Pony
      Can you help me,   help this little Pony ?
    • By FETCH2015
      A closer view of the F-22 HUD used in the OPERATION DARIUS Add-On.
    • By FETCH2015
      screenshot of the F-22 Cockpit used in the Operation Darius Add-On.
    • By MigBuster

      Help fund the Strike Fighters 2 Windows 10 update!

      Strike Fighters 2 is a series of popular PC games we released back in 2008 (over 11 years ago!). It was a unique series of inter-connected light/casual flight simulation games set in the Cold War. Despite its age, it's still being enjoyed by many users, thanks largely to its huge and active mod community.

      The games were originally designed on (then brand new) Windows Vista, but over the years, new Windows versions have came and gone (Windows 7, 8, 8.1, and finally 10), the hardware has evolved at dizzying speed, and internet security and privacy have become major concerns. With all these changes, some people are reporting issues running our old games on newer machines.

      We'd love to be able to update the series to the latest Windows and Direct X version. But we're a very small independent company with very limited resources, and we do not currently have the funds to do this. And this is where you can help!

      $25,000 USD is the minimum we need to cover the cost of development and testing. At this level funding, the update will simply be Windows 10/DirectX 12 update with no other fixes, enhancement or improvement.

      Of course, any funding we get above and beyond the $25K amount would be used to further enhance and improve the series. Our users have asked for Oculus VR support, air-to-air refueling, and many other features. These all cost time and money, a lot of it unfortunately, so they'll need to be prioritized. We'll put the decisions about which additional features to work on to vote among the contributors. So by funding this and becoming a contributor, you're not only helping us with the funding, you'll also have a say in which direction to go with the update.

      We estimate it'll take 2 months of development and testing for the update to be completed. So if we can get started by mid-September, we should be able to release the basic update by this November before Thanksgiving. (Any features from additional contributions will of course take longer)

      We'd like to thank our fantastic community, especially the mods community who continue to put out amazing work to improve our games for everyone. We couldn't do this without the community support. Thank you!
       
      Contribute here:
      https://fundrazr.com/31YZNe?ref=ab_A4B60kVy3KOA4B60kVy3KO
       
       
      Answers to some questions asked online:

      Q. What happens if the funding goal isn't met?

      A. Not everything will be lost even if we don't make the funding goal. We do plan on securing the amount we're short by through other means (loans) and still get the Windows 10 update done at a later time (probably early next year). If we have to go this route however, the update will have to be a paid update and not free to everyone so we can at least recover part of the cost. It'll be free to only those who contributed to this and those who purchased the SF2 Complete Edition.

      Please note that this campaign is set as "Keep it all", meaning we keep all the contributions even if the funding goal isn't met.

      Q. Can we add <xyz> features and fix <abc> bugs?

      A. We'd love to be able to do everything everyone is asking for, but unfortunately, all these take a lot of time and money. If you're expecting our games to have all the features from other AAA-quality games, then you'll be disappointed. Those games costs 10+ (some over 100+) million budget, and there is simply no way we can even come close to that with $100-500K budget we usually spend on our games. If this crowd funding makes more than the funding goal, we'll have the contributors vote and decide on which features we should spend that extra amount on.

      Q. Are you going to continue to support the game?

      A. We wish we could continue to support the game forever, but again, these things takes a lot of money, and we simply can not afford to keep supporting old games for years and decades. This crowd funding goal is enough to pay for just 2 months of operation. In order for us to continue to support the game year after year, we need the community to continue to buy our games (and not just play them) year after year.

      Q. Isn't it better to do Strike Fighters 3?

      A. We'd love to be able to do SF3, but we're not ready to commit that much time and money to a new PC game at this point (we still haven't paid off the development cost of SF2NA). A completely new game would take us at least 5 years and cost us at at least 2 million. Plus, everyone expect post-release support for 10-20 additional years, easily doubling the cost. We just don't think we'll be able to raise that amount needed based on numbers we have. We'd love to be proven wrong on this, if this fund raising goes way better than expected, we can re-consider this in the future.

      Thank you!
       
       
      Update on result from TK
       
       
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