IL*2 Sturmovik: Battle of Moscow and Beyond

IL2-Sturmovik-Battle-of-Stalingrade-Battle-of-Moscow-1C-Company-Update-Combat-Sim-2Developer 1C is hard at work preparing for the release of Battle of Moscow, the next addition in its IL*2 Sturmovik franchise. While BOM is due out sometime in the next couple months, 1C has its eyes set on more than just the immediate future: “Long term planning requires long discussion, so we’ll be able to give an answer to the question ‘what will come next after Battle of Moscow’ both to you and ourselves closer to its release.”

Battle of Moscow is unquestionably a large undertaking, as it will include: eight new aircraft, two special premium edition aircraft, aircraft modifications, an exceptionally large map, as well as an accompanying campaign. Not to mention, all of this content will be available in both Battle of Stalingrad as well as in BOM. Currently, 1C is in the midst of beta testing three of BOM’s planes: Bf 109 F-2, IL-2 model 1941, and Pe-2 series 35. Provided no major snags creep up during the testing, there is a good chance we’ll see the next update later this week. Realistically speaking, I wouldn’t be surprised if we don’t see the update until next week, as it is a decent amount of content to try to push through testing in one week’s time.

IL2-Sturmovik-Battle-of-Stalingrade-Battle-of-Moscow-1C-Company-Update-Combat-Sim-1But even with BOM taking up the bulk of 1C’s time, the developer still has plenty left on its plate to occupy it through 2016 and beyond. In particular, 1C is paying special attention to the flight model, which is so crucial in any air combat sim. While IL*2‘s current system is anything but shabby, it’s not without a number of bugs which can, often times without warning, cause your gaming session to come to a halt. It’s always good when a developer shares their goals and plans with their players, and it’s especially comforting to see a developer share plans that extend beyond the next major cycle release. After all, many gamers, especially dedicated enthusiasts, are pretty understanding when a developer doesn’t always meet all of its goals in a timely manner; however, what most of us can’t abide is when a game creator, especially in such a niche genre as air combat simulation, goes completely dark and refuses to interact with its player base.

To that end, 1C has been good enough to provide its fans with a fairly extensive list of tweaks and changes that they’re hoping to implement in the coming year:

[I’ve edited the list to correct a few minor spelling issues]

Complex tasks that require significant changes or research to find their cause:

  1. Find and eliminate the cause of invisible planes sometimes appearing in multiplayer (which is very hard thanks to the system complexity);IL2-Sturmovik-Battle-of-Stalingrade-Battle-of-Moscow-1C-Company-Update-Combat-Sim
  2. Fix the issue that causes stopped engines to start and stop again for some time;
  3. Fix the issue with a plane turret controlled by another player not correctly disappearing after plane crash;
  4. Fix the issue with propeller dust wash effect not disappearing immediately after crash;
  5. Damage model improvements: make hits to wing roots damage longerons and cause wing fracture;
  6. Fix the issue of Pe-2 propeller sound remaining after engine (and wing) loss;
  7. Improve engine start procedures on all planes by setting engine control axes to positions convenient for taxiing and take off;
  8. Add a button to reset rudder axis to middle position (useful for players who use buttons to control it);
  9. Improve flight model control tools that will make development process of new aircraft FMs more efficient;
  10. Additional research of airplane sideslip angle influence on plane roll;
  11. Additional research of dynamic airflow compressibility and its influence on plane diving and control effectiveness (previously we based FM adjustments on manuals that stated 750 km/h velocity limits, while some test reports contain data of planes achieving significantly faster speeds in dive, when dynamic airflow compressibility is ought to be taken into account);
  12. Mouse control: make the control assist react to small direction changes less vigorously;
  13. Fix the issue of BF 109 E-7 – it shouldn’t ‘squat’ when you engage brakes;
  14. Fix the issue of several planes: wind can somewhat swing them on the rear wheel while parked;
  15. Improve wheels modeling, that will make large planes with low power engines, but big wheels to taxi easier;
  16. Improve autolevel flight assist for non-dive bombers (He-111, Ju-88, Pe-2 s. 87 and Pe-2 s. 35) so it will use rudder instead of ailerons for corrections;
  17. Add engine detonation affect caused by a variety of causes (wrong mixture, high mixture temperature, engine overboost, etc. );
  18. Add weapon misfires caused by overheating;
  19. Develop more sophisticated high-G effects system so it will affect plane crew depending on their weariness, oxygen amount, wounds, etc.;
  20. Make bailing out impossible during heavy rotations or other hard maneuvers;
  21. Make pilot head movement more realistic by adding a simple spine model;
  22. Add united controls for different adjustable stabilizers;
  23. Make twin engine coolers on Bf 109 F4, Bf 109 G2 and Ju 87 D3 more detailed (currently always left cooler emits vapor when any radiator is damaged);
  24. Add emergency cooldown systems to aircraft where applicable;
  25. Make fuel system simulation more complex (more detailed tanks system, allow player to control engine flow and control fuel amount manually, more detailed fuel leaks and self-sealing process, fire probablity based on remaining amount of fuel inert gas pressurization, external fuel tanks.

Regular tasks:

  1. Check and correct fineness ratios of all planes with their flaps extended;
  2. Correct La-5 engine damage model (overheat damages it too fast now);
  3. Correct Fw 190, Ju 87 and He 111 engine damage models (engine rotates for a long time with propeller blades bent);
  4. Implement MC 202 flaps safety system that retracted them at high speeds to protect them from damage;
  5. Correct Bf 110 flaps system to make flaps extension incremental in all cases;
  6. Correct He 111 trimmer so it won’t stop moving before value reported in technochat reaches 100%;
  7. Correct (invert) He 111 trimmer;
  8. Add landing gear breakability to all planes where it is missing;
  9. Correct ‘jumpy’ behavior of Bf 109 F4, G2 and F2 to resemble E7 behavior and check other planes;
  10. Implement jamming and self-closing of sliding canopies from high speeds and pitching/diving;
  11. Correct Pe-2 issue where throttle control assist leads to oscillating throttle value at full setting;
  12. Set up different radio frequencies for own and enemy planes;
  13. Add tips to technochat;
  14. Invert certain values in technochat (for example, trimmers);
  15. Manual mode switches on planes with automatic governors should also turn off the corresponding in-game assist;
  16. Bf 109 flaps control wheel should also jam when the flaps jam;
  17. Planes with powered front armament will have their fire capability blocked after power loss;
  18. Add reserve guns reload systems where applicable;
  19. Implement smoke generators;
  20. Improve hand shake effect to correspond to engine RPM;
  21. Improve force feedback effects on FFB capable joysticks (taxiing over bumpy field, ground impact when landing without landing gear);
  22. Correct gun fire FFB effect (it shouldn’t be influenced by plane speed as it was reported to be the case on P-40);
  23. Make it possible to torn off all I-16 landing gear covers in dive;
  24. Make it possible to torn off upper Yak-1 landing gear covers in dive;
  25. Yak-1 upper landing gear covers should be torn off in an event of corresponding wing loss;
  26. Address Ju-87 oscillating engine RPM issue that happens during takeoff at maximum throttle;
  27. Animate radiator control buttons on Ju-87 and Pe-2;
  28. Turn off electric thermometers on parking for the planes with powered thermometers;
  29. Jam compasses at high roll values;
  30. Improve oxygen system modeling on German planes;
  31. Correct Fw-190 adjustable stabilizer indicator;
  32. Conduct additional research of LaGG-3 and La-5 takeoff ability with strong side wind;
  33. Correct Ju 87 engine thermal modeling;
  34. Correct ‘near stall’ audible cue on Bf 110 E-2 (currently these sounds can be heard even with minimal pitch corrections).

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