Today we'd like to present you the final part of the Stalingrad trilogy, the ending of the story that started in "Blazing Steppe" and continued in "Fortress on the Volga" campaigns. The new campaign will tell you about the combat operations of the Soviet IL-2 attack planes in December 1942. The development of the third part took much longer than we initially expected, partly because of the need to research a huge amount of data from the archives telling about the actions of the three Soviet Fronts and Air Armies, but the result will prove itself worthy of the effort spent.
We are proud to announce the Pre-Order of the new historical Campaign "Ice Ring" for IL-2 Sturmovik: Battle of Stalingrad.
Basing on the combat order records and operational reports of the Soviet 8th Air Army, we have managed to recreate an absolutely unique history of combat operations of the 226th Ground-Attack Air Division regiments. The campaign consists of three large stages, during which you'll operate from 4 different airfields and take part in the most dramatic events of the final part of the Battle of Stalingrad.
The successful counter-offensive of the Red Army in November 1942 led to the encirclement of the 284 thousands troops including the German 6th Army and 4th Tank Army, as well as Romanian divisions. Then the task of supplying the troops was assigned to the transport and bomber units of the Luftwaffe, so the first part of the new campaign is dedicated to the very beginning of the Soviet air blockade formation.
At the end of November, the command of the Soviet 8th Air Army issued an order to relocate the 235th Fighter Air Division to the south of the city. It was also decided to form a special air group of IL-2's pilots from the 226th ShAD who were experienced in dogfights and flying in difficult weather conditions and place it under the 235th IAD headquarters command. During this period, you'll fly reconnaissance flights, search and destroy German transport aircraft in the air and strike at their take-off and landing airfields inside the cauldron.
The situation of the encircled enemy group on December 2-6, 1942 from the reporting map of the Don Front and the situation at the morning of December 2nd from the campaign map.
In mid-December, when the special air group was disbanded, you'll return back to your regiment. Against the background of the ongoing reorganization in the division and the beginning of the enemy offensive from the direction of Kotelnikovo (Operation "Winter Storm"), you'll have to fly several combat missions directly against the surrounded German troops.
At the end of the campaign, when the situation on the southern flank of the Stalingrad Front becomes critical, you'll be sent to the most threatened sector. As part of a hurriedly formed ground attack air group, you'll take part in the heaviest battles on the Myshkova River, which determined the outcome of the entire German counter-offensive and sealed the fate of the troops surrounded in and near the devastated city.
Events on the Myshkova River from December 22 to 26, 1942 from the reporting map of the Stalingrad Front and the situation in the middle of December 22nd from the campaign map.
You'll fly 15 combat missions on the IL-2 AM-38 (model 1942), about 7 hours of gameplay in total.
The new campaign is scheduled to be released in Summer 2020.
The IL-2 Sturmovik Team
Update 4.006 will probably be released on Tuesday May 19th (tomorrow) if all goes well. If not, we'll try again on Wednesday. So back up anything you want backed up before you attempt the update. This will be a big one, maybe backup your entire IL-2 install folder just in case. Update servers will likely be jammed for a while so please have a bit of patience with us. This update is JAM PACKED with good stuff. We think you'll like it a lot.
Also, I will leave the Yak-9 and Yak-9T Pre-Order discount live for a few more days, but hurry it will end soon! These Yaks are worth every penny. A lot of fun!
Some great skins for the Yak-9 are included.
Finally a Soviet fighter with good performance and a 37mm punch!
Update 4.006 will be released soon and we can show you more of the coming improvements. Today we'd like to demonstrate how the aircraft materials and textures will look in the new renderer compared to the old one. For instance let's look at La-5 series 8, He 111 H-6, P-38J-25, Albatros D.Va:
We also have good news about the changes in 4.006. First, the airframe damage model for the WWI planes will be tuned according to your feedback. Second, the ships in the sim will have more advanced physical models - they will be able to run aground, receive an impulse from collisions, etc. - this is important for the Battle of Normandy where they played a major role. Third, according to Tank Crew players' feedback, we added a server option to disable tank AI gunners in multiplayer. Another option that has been requested for a while - now tech chat messages are a difficulty option so the players will be on equal terms in multiplayer.
Our engineering department improved the FM and systems modeling for a number of planes, including Yak-7 and Bf-110. Tank Crew assault guns will be able to fire indirectly at a heading and distance set by the gun or platoon commander. In the graphics department, we're adding an alternative antialiasing method, FXAA, which trades some AA quality for a noticeable performance boost. It also has a side effect of somewhat improving the visibility of the contacts against the ground, especially when used in conjunction with the "Sharpen" graphics option. Several planes from already released modules will get the 4K quality external textures and the rivers and sea will get the updated water surface visualization.
As usual, the full list of the changes and improvements will be available at the update launch and it is already close to 70 items total. We're hoping that the next update will be another step forward in the development of the project and you, our customers, will enjoy it. And to finish today's Dev Blog, here are a couple of Yak-9 and Yak-9T Collector Planes screenshots from our Producer:
You can discuss the news in this thread