Autumn has arrived in Moscow and Las Vegas and even thought the air temperature is dropping, our work pace is heating up fast. Work on our new cloud tech continues and is making rapid progress. We will make many different “cloud patterns” over time as we mentioned previously, but right now we are trying to create some quality cloud designs that we can put into Beta testing and fulfill the minimum designs needed to get you up and flying with them sooner rather than later. Please enjoy these screenshots and prepare to get lost in them!
Work on the forthcoming P-51B continues and I really wanted to show you a shot of the cockpit with textures, but they aren’t quite ready for public viewing yet. But rest assured that the P-51B work is going hot and heavy. I am “encouraging” Mike as much as possible to get her done.
So, we can’t show you the P-51B cockpit at the moment, but how about some shots of the Mosquito instead! As you can see, it’s taking shape and looking nice! Like our other British birds this one also has a busy cockpit that when finished will be nothing but Royal Air Force awesomeness!
Testing on the new AQMG is progressing well and it should be released in our next update as mentioned last week. The Breguet 14 is also entering its final stages of tweaking before release as well. Work on the next update overall is going quite well so we expect a smooth release of 4.605 this month as planned.
There has also been some good news with some research endeavors Jason has working on. If all goes well It may bring a new warbird to our skies. One that many of you have asked for. Stay tuned for more on that.
And as mentioned by Jason in his recent Briefing Room post we have two Collector Tanks being worked on by our friends at DigitalForms and we will announce those very soon.
The Sturmovik Team
This week we are working hard on the 4.605 update which will see two major releases. First, a French WWI bomber - the Breguet 14.B2 will be released for Flying Circus: Vol. II. The second will be the initial release of the Advanced Quick Mission Generator (AQMG) that adds a lot more mission content to the series.
The Breguet 14.B2 was operated by the French, Belgian and American air forces during WWI and it is quite a powerful machine and successful bombing platform. It was well liked in Rise of Flight and we are proud to bring it to the Flying Circus series. This time around, we have taken the time to improve a couple details of this wonderful aircraft including the addition or Fuel Mixture and Elevator Trim. Both of these details were not included in the ROF version of this plane. Whenever possible, we try to add missing details to our re-born ROF aircraft.
Advanced Quick Mission Generator
The Advanced Quick Mission (AQMG) offers a very fast way to generate Scenario-style missions quickly that offer high quality combat. It’s not a campaign and it’s not the QMB. It’s kind of an in-between feature that lays the groundwork for possibly more detailed Scenario generating (building) in the future. It’s one more way to create combat missions without having to learn the complex Mission Editor. The AQM is more of a “generator” than a “builder “meaning most of the hard work is done by the system and the user does not have to make many inputs to get up and running. The goal is to create a mission that is fun with lots of combat with flexible settings for enemy activity. The AQMG is based on the very old Campaign generator we originally had for BOS that we set aside several years ago (it worked quite well though) to make the Pilot Career mode. We never tossed the code and have now adopted it for Great Battles.
The AQMG is located inside the GUI beside the QMB and you can easily transition between the two features. The AQMG lets you choose several parameters that affect the mission, such as the map, airfield, mission type, starting position, your aircraft, loadout, weather, the time of day and the strength of enemy opposition. A mission is then generated from a historically based mission template that is populated with your objective and other friendly and enemy units that you may or may not encounter on your mission. It just takes seconds to set up a mission and get flying in a well-crafted historically appropriate mission that includes takeoff, ingress, targets, egress and landing. This is a bit more than your typically Quick Mission that is mainly geared for fast action and target practice. The AQMG can create thousands of different scenarios so no two missions will be exactly the same. This means thousands of hours air combat are at your disposal.
Here are a few examples from the Moscow, Stalingrad, Kuban and Rhineland maps. The AQMG is available on all of our main theater maps at time of release. We hope to expand it to other maps in the future.
The AQMG is one more tool in our mission creation toolbelt, alongside the QMB, Scenario Missions, Scripted Campaigns and Pilot Career offering a huge library of single-player content without the need to use the complex Mission Editor.
In addition to all of these options, we recommend you also check out the Easy Mission Generator (EMG) by SYN_Vander and Pat Wilson’s Campaign Generator (PWCG) to have even more options for creating combat missions. Both are excellent, excellent apps! We will continue to explore ways to improve both the QMB and AQMG features in the future as well. Being able to adopt these AQMG missions for Co-Op is also high on our wish list.
Old Clouds vs. New Clouds Video
Work on our new cloud technology continues at a rapid pace. So much so that we can now show you a comparison of how the old clouds and new clouds compare when rendered in the engine. This video demonstrates just how powerful the new cloud tech is and its potential. We can now offer A LOT more cloud cover and not smash the framerate that you are accustomed to. Early testing points to a net gain in framerate even with exponentially more cloud particles and shapes in the scene. The video is a direct comparison of the same track and was originally captured in 4K and reduced to 2k thanks to Jason’s outdated movie editing software. The mission that was flown in the video was an 8 vs. 8 QMB mission on the Rhineland Map with all ground objects like vehicles, flak, trains and ships enabled. The cloud cover in the New Clouds portion is considered “heavy”. The Old Clouds portion is considered just your average ‘cloudy’ preset.
Many of you will ask about how it performs in VR. To give you some idea here is what fellow team-member Jury aka Zeus told me today after testing it with his VR unit. This is a direct quote… and no he was not sucking up to the boss!
Jury, 11:58 AM
@Jason It's absolutely Awesome in VR
On my settings (I did not change it from the release version), I did not notice a decrease in FPS at all in VR
Hardware: I5-9600K overclocked by 4,8Hgz + RTX3070 + WMR "Samsung Odyssey+" in 60Hz refresh screen setting
In all Isay`s clouds test-missions - stable 60FPS in VR in all altitude
In QM battle 8x8 - stable 60FPS in VR in all altitude
IMHO its huge step onforward
like in a fairy tale in VR imagine you fly in a living volumetric sky ... Or even in a huge labyrinth of clouds
We believe this is very good news for VR pilots and all IL-2 fans for that matter. There are still some bugs to work out and there is (as usual ) some issue with Radeon cards we have to solve first. However, we are quickly moving to put these in Beta soon and then work on making many interesting and realistic cloud designs!
P.S. Yes the music in the video is annoying I know.
P.S.S. I mixed up my monitor listing in the video. I know there is no such thing as an ASUS Predator. I meant ASUS 43PGUQ. I also have an Acer Predator monitor.
In today’s DD we want to show you some screens featuring our new cloud technology and renderer. We have been working on new clouds for a few months and we now have some WIP results we can show you. As you can see, they look more natural and have more variety and are larger than our previous clouds. They also have localized rain showers and react well with the lighting creating a beautiful scene. While other teams out there have more resources than we do to make amazing clouds, our new clouds are the work of just two motivated people on the Sturmovik Team (Sergey and Isay). And soon we’ll be working with community member and friend rowdyb00t who has previously made some cool cloud mods with our current technology. This new cloud technology has great potential and of course it will take some artistic talent to make it look it’s best. They should also offer better visuals with no loss of performance over the current technology, at least that’s what we see in early testing.
We think you’ll like these new clouds and we’ll work to get these to you as soon as we can. The technology is being perfected as we speak and we will begin work on making the new cloud content shortly. Then they will go into testing with release hopefully in a few months.
The Sturmovik Team
We’re glad to inform you that a new update is released - 4.604! In addition to the new SPAD VII.C1 180 h.p. for Flying Circus Vol II, this update brings many improvements in different areas. There is a whole section of changes related to aircraft armament, including the much-discussed M2 .50 Browning machine gun rounds. We also worked on the improvement of everything connected with aircraft collisions with the ground - improved graphic effects, damage model of the airframe and pilot from collisions. The pilot's physiological model has undergone a new revision as well. A whole section of upgrades is devoted to improvements to previously released aircraft, and another to player controllable vehicles. And some AI objects developed as part of the Battle of Normandy have been introduced into the project.
Our team continues to work on improving the IL-2 universe in every possible way. Stay tuned for more updates this year!
1. Late Spad VII.C1 modification with a 180 hp engine is now available to all customers who pre-ordered Flying Circus Vol.II;
2. LCI(L), Landing Craft Infantry (Large), developed for Battle of Normandy was added to the sim (no visible crew yet);
3. The nationality of the player's aircraft in the Quick Mission now depends on which paint scheme was selected before the mission was generated (which in turn determines the voiceover, crew, and tactical numbers);
4. Spad 7 instruments improved by Oyster_Kai;
5. Several additional textures improved by Oyster_Kai for multiple aircraft such as Bf 109 series, P-51D-15, P-47D-28 and Ju 88 A-4;
Changes to Armaments
6. Instead of having two sizes of tracers ("MGs" and "cannons"), they now depend on the projectile caliber and the tracer length reduces as the projectile speed decreases (important when viewed from the side). Visible tracers of machine guns and small-caliber cannons became significantly smaller, and the size of tank and artillery tracers increased as the result;
7. Smoke traces from tracer bullets and shells became less dense;
8. Graphic effects of armor-piercing 7...15 mm bullets hitting an aircraft were reworked to look more realistic;
9. US Armor Piercing .50 bullets mass and ballistics corrected. Muzzle velocity of 36-inch M2 .50 MG changed to 864 m/s;
10. M2. 50, M2 .30, Browning .303, Hispano Mk.II, Hispano Mk.V, Vickers Class S, M4 machine guns and cannons installed on aircraft (including turreted weapons) have their dispersion corrected according to newly found reference data;
11. Soviet guns dispersion data was adjusted based on a more critical approach to the choice of reference data options (gunnery test reports of obviously defective units were discarded) and using a different method of calculating the parameter of the dispersion function. In general, the dispersion spread either decreased slightly or remained almost the same;
12. The machine gun overheating of German aircraft turrets when firing long bursts was adjusted according to the same approach for all other aircraft (there was a discrepancy before);
13. Inadequate dispersion of turreted machine guns on Flying Circus aircraft was adjusted to match dispersion of these weapons installed on over-wing mounts;
Changes to Aircraft Damage Model
14. Improved aircraft damage model: tangential ground impacts at high speed are more likely to cause an explosion, impacts at medium speed cause more damage to the aircraft and fuel tanks are more likely to catch fire on impact;
15. The excessive likelihood of control wiring damage on all Flying Circus aircraft has been corrected;
16. If control wiring is damaged on Airco D.H.4, Halberstadt CL.II, Bristol Fighter, Albatros D.Va and S.E.5a, Fokker DR.I, Fokker D.VII, Fokker D.VIIF, Fokker D.VIII the corresponding rudders will "dangle" along the air stream (other aircraft will be updated in the next update);
Changes to Pilot Physiological Model
17. Impact and excessive overload injuries model has been adjusted for aircraft and vehicle crews. Collisions with the ground have become more traumatic for pilots;
18. The accumulation of pilot fatigue from overload during long maneuvers has been reduced. This will allow for somewhat longer aerobatics and combat maneuvering. There is inadequate information on the fatigue accumulation under the influence of prolonged small overloads in the publicly available scientific articles, the rare data is very contradictory and therefore the model in this part was adjusted based on the collected opinion of surveyed pilots. Throughout the year we received feedback from experienced pilots and it became generally clear that fatigue was somewhat overestimated. This was corrected;
19. Pilot's backrest angle was adjusted on Pe-2, He-111, Ju-88, and B-25 (it is taken into account in the G-force tolerance model);
20. P-47D-22 pilot no longer has G-suit due to the timeframe of the war this aircraft was designed for;
21. The maximum value of overload that can be displayed on the instrument panel (HUD) has been expanded;
Changes to Graphics
22. Graphical artifacts "thin white stripes in the distance near the coastline" on maps with sea have been removed;
23. Graphics artifacts "white dots along the edge of the sight reflector and some other glass facets when the pilot is wounded or at night when using MSAA and the maximum graphics preset" have been removed;
24. Fixed ships reflections jumping whenl looked at from the shore;
25. Fixed local troubles with sea "climbing at shoreline rocks" on Kuban map;
26. The delay between a high-speed ground impact of an aircraft and the resulting explosion has been minimized;
27. Graphics effects of aircraft falling and exploding when hitting the ground or water or suffering an air collision were improved. A fire now burns for a while at the crash site;
28. The effect of PTAB bursts landing far off the target has been restored;
29. Shadows rendering on tank's hull while quickly turning in 1st person view were corrected;
30. Turret and gun barrel shadows cast by player's tank on the ground during 1st person view were corrected;
31. There are no "holes" in the shadow cast by the Sd.Kfz.184 on the ground in 1st-person view anymore;
32. Airco D.H.4 detailed cockpit model correctly shows in all camera positions inside it;
33. Strong stuttering near Mill airfield on the Rheinland map has been fixed;
34. The visual disappearance of cockpit windows of a damaged Yak-9 at a close distance has been fixed;
Changes to Aircraft
35. Restored the cloud cover target obscuring for AI fighter pilots;
36. AI fighter pilots shouldn't fire at a target if there is an allied aircraft in the line of fire;
37. AI fighter pilots will correctly attack a locomotive instead as the last car;
38. Cockpit won't sometimes open by itself at the end of a mission and gunners won't try to bail out;
39. Crews will bail out slightly faster from multi-crew aircraft;
40. Pilots and gunners that were killed while leaving the plane will have correct poses;
41. Fixed roll trimming of Typhoon Mk.Ib;
42. Fixed (reduced) Typhoon airframe resistance to aerodynamic loads (destructive overload decreased);
43. Typhoon constant tail loose on ditching fixed;
44. C-47A can carry British paratroopers too;
45. Added a paragraph about automatic dive operation to Pe-2 aircraft descriptions (both of them);
46. Fixed the appearance of turn indicator on Yak-7 and Yak-9 aircraft;
47. Fixed an error in the RPK-10 instrument model on the Yak-1b;
48. The guest player occupying the position of the lower He 111 H-16 gunner will correctly see his collimator gunsight;
49. Airco D.H.4: mixed up graphic animation of fuel tank leaks and fires has been fixed;
50. Airco D.H.4: a graphical artifact in the gunner's cockpit when looking at it with the photo camera mounted has been fixed;
51. Airco D.H.4: an issue where damaged landing gear disappeared at a distance has been fixed;
52. Airco D.H.4: the front cockpit instrument glass won't be visible through the rear cockpit windshield;
53. Airco D.H.4: bomb racks won't visibly appear at a distance when there are no bombs;
54. SPAD VII.C1 150h.p.: "broken glare" issue won't happen at a medium detail level;
55. SPAD VII.C1 150h.p.: the installed Lewis over-wing MG will correctly cause drag;
56. SPAD VII.C1 150h.p. and SPAD XIII.C1 excessive batting amplitude has been reduced;
57. P-39 "Prototype" paint scheme no longer has the insignia;
58. All Spitfires: an excessive haze of the windshield armored glass has been removed;
59. Both Yak-9s cockpit glass won't visibly disappear at a distance when damaged;
Changes to Player-Controlled Tanks and Trucks
60. New flame effects from exhaust pipes were added to all Tank Crew tanks (it appears when the engine is damaged and when gasoline engines are outgassed);
61. New powder gases effects were added to all Tank Crew tanks (flashing out of the gun breech when the bolt is opened after the shot is fired);
62. On all player controllable tanks the shading from the sun in a dark area affects gunsights;
63. Wound effects correctly function in all commander' viewports and visors;
64. Hatches won't sometimes open by themselves at the end of a mission and the crewmen won't try to bail out;
65. Poses of unconscious tank crewmen were corrected;
66. The crew leaving sequences of player controllable tanks and anti-aircraft guns were improved;
67. The voiceovers of ammunition type in commander's commands to suppress point and attack target when selecting sub-caliber rounds and machine gun were restored;
68. Single shots of M2 .50 and MG-34 machine guns on player controllable tanks won't create multiple shot sounds;
69. AI drivers of player controllable tanks would correctly close the visor armor shield at the start of combat;
70. Player controllable KV-1s and SU-152 have an additional paint scheme based on historical one but compatible with custom tactical numbers;
71. It is now possible to fold the armored glass block on KV-1s and SU-152 (N key);
72. Pz.Kpfw.III Ausf.M and Pz.Kpfw.IV Ausf.G driver's front and side armor flap opening controls are now separate (LWin+C for the front one as it was before, N key for the side one);
73. GAZ-MM driver's side window and windshield flap controls are now separate (LWin+C for the front one as it was before, N key for the side one);
74. Reflections in GAZ-MM windows are improved;
75. Sd.Kfz.10/5 driver's visor opening is now audible;
76. Sd.Kfz. 10/5 single-player scenarios were updated;
77. Sd.Kfz.10/5 notes now contain the info on how to use the searchlight;
78. The missing voiceovers of the commander's orders to fire machine gun on target and suppressing fire were restored;
79. All Steel Birds campaign scenarios were optimized for better performance;
You can discuss the update n this thread.
Today we want to show you some WIP pics of the P-51B/C with the birdcage style canopy. It really changes the look of the P-51 and it's obvious why they changed to the bubble style canopy with the "D" model and some "B" airframes had their birdcage replaced with the 'Malcolm Hood' canopy which was a semi-bubble modification. We will also model the Malcolm Hood.
Also, if you happen to have any detailed references on the Malcolm Hood's canopy frame, rails or emergency release mechanism please share them with us. We could use some more detailed pictures or drawings of it.
The P-51B/C is unfortunately behind schedule and should have been ready by now, but she is getting ever closer to release and likely to be finished next month.
Also, here is a pic of our American bomber pilot model ready to face some German flak!
The Sturmovik Team