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Il2:FB+PF WIP by me

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Well, I've just finished hashing out my new Medals for a Chinese campaign branch in FB+PF (uses an "NN" country folder in the Campaings folder, comes up as "None" in the campaign selection screen)

For those familiar with my "When Tigers Could Fly" campaign, I had to fudge a lot of things- planes, places, and awards

Well, now with the NN campaign branch up and running on my PC, the country flag displayed is the Sun and Sky of nationalist China:

None.jpg

Also, new medals (some of which were not actually awarded to AVG members, but hey this is also a game and it's fun) were really needed, so I found images that were not (as far as I could tell by searching the websites) copyrighted, and made myself finally learn how to really use my crummy little photo editor. So, new AVG awards are up and properly running after a big hiccup in which medals were repeating and others were omitted:

Fixed.jpg

When (not IF, I remain positive in my thinking!) we get a Burma map, and some new aircraft, notably the Fokker XXI which will be my "Ki-27", I will update and expand WTCF to use this new map and new aircraft. I'll re-write some of the way the campaign unfolds as well

The biggest change will be that I will package it to make an "NN" folder in your campaign structure

I have been told that UQMG also uses the "NN" folder- but that should be for single missions only. It will be stressed to back up your "NN" campaign folder before installing WTCFv2

In other news, I am still on a project I am calling "Langestrasse"

This campaign is huge; it follows a Luftwaffe pilot from the Spanish Civil War to the fall of Berlin. Easily well over 100 missions. This was initially a joint effort but life being the way it is, right now my partner can't devote the time, but the project is not dead. He had done some SCW stuff, and I had been on the Fall of Poland and battle of France, and just starting on roughing out the battle of Britain, all from the LW side:

LW.jpg

grab0004.jpg

PolandMap2.jpg

Chainhomevsreal.jpg

calais.jpg

Bofmap.jpg

steinhilper.jpg

grass11.jpg

grass1.jpg

french1.jpg

Sorry for the huge number of pics; just wanted to show I've done more than just thinking about Langestrasse- this is a project I really want to do

It's not dead, it's just waitng for the Holidays to be over and for some more research to be done. I may even figure out skinning for real (That's my BS version of a Polish Light Bomber made out of a Val up there) and have some skins as well

Just a small update on WIP for Il2 FB+PF from my quarter :thumbsup:

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(some of which were not actually awarded to AVG members, but hey this is also a game and it's fun)

I like that attitude man. Wish more people had it sometimes though. I can be a real pain in the posterior with realism sometimes, especially when it comes to Corsairs, but other times it's all about the fun. Some people just can't see that because they're busy counting rivets. And yeah I have a laundry list of what's wrong with the Corsairs in the game too but hey... ;)

The Chinese medals look pretty good. The one thing I wish that Il-2's engine could handle were better award announcements like the ones that are used in Strike Fighters/Wings Over Vietnam. There are actually Nationalist Chinese ones in there now if you're curious I could put up the award structure and medals they used for that as well. Would like to see actual award letters, like the ones in EAW in this engine but I don't see how it would happen.

Going on points works well enough for the Luftwaffe (and I presume Soviets) but the US medal awards have always been slightly dodgy since there's a set progression of medals in the game. Oh well, can't have everything I suppose. Which annoys me to no end. ;)

The medals and the campaign look very groovy though, good work. :thumbsup:

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Where can I get "When Tigers Could Fly"?

Looks great.

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Let's see..should be here:

http://www.pacific-fighters.com/en/missions.php

and here:

http://www.airwarfare.com/Sims/FB/fb_campaigns_wtcf.htm

and here:

http://www.flying-legends.net/

Should be the latest user-made campaign available at Pacific Fighters, Although i recommend the sownload at Airwarfare actually, because that's were the updated skins are available for the Ki-43, right underneath the text for my Campaign. Flying Legends is also a good place to d/l, but they have changed the format of the site, I'm not 100% sure how to access the missions/campaign downloads anymore! there must be a 'download' button someplace...used to be "goto resources"

Here's the readme for the current, as-released version of WTCF by the way, no custom medals or anything like that as of right now:

**************************************************

*************

Hello and thank you for taking the time to download my first campaign for Il-2 Sturmovik:Forgotten Battles with Merged Pacific Fighters- "When Tigers Could Fly", which I could not have completed without much assistance. Thank You, Jay and Simon.

In this campaign, you will enter into a tour of duty as an ex-US military fighter pilot, recently resigned from active US Service and contracted to China, for defense against the invading Japanese. You will conduct your operations out of several places in 'Burma' and 'China' in your career flying Hawk 81s with the American Volunteer Group, more commonly known as the 'Flying Tigers'.

**Please Note! This campaign was made with Il-2Sturmovik:Forgotten Battles with ACE expansion, and the merged installation of Pacific Fighters. Stand-alone PF users, or any user without the merged installation of FB and PF will not have the maps and/or aircraft to run the campaign successfully! Some elements in the campaign were made using features available only in v3.04, such as fire and smoke. I STRONGLY urge you to have the latest version of FB+PF, v3.04m at least, to avoid any conflicts with missing items, aircraft, or maps **!!

Even though you technically fly for the Chinese in this campaign, the campaign will be played from the "US" campaign branch and will use US medals and rank, for convenience

As a semi-factual campaign, it covers the basic actions of the 3rd Squadron, Flying Tigers

Why and how is it only semi-factual?

For many reasons. Firstly, the maps we have in the game are of course nothing like the ones really needed to make these missions authentic. Keen observers will note that I have placed some key locations in convenient, rather than Historically accurate, places. For instance, the 'real' Toungoo was North of Rangoon, not East of it, and the 'real' Magwe was not nearly so close to Lashio, let alone Loiwing, which I have even moved out of China into Burma! This was not through ignorance of their locations, but rather through the need to stay on a map. Also, the timeline of actual events in Burma and China has been altered slightly to better fit the campaign. In addition, my "Kunming" comes under attack many times...in real life, the Japanese bombed it once during the day while the AVG was there- and well before the player's Squadron ever flew to the base! But, the player needed to stay on a map...

To tie the missions together without having the player constantly changing maps on every mission, I decided the best thing to do was to move these locations to where the player could access the majority of these places without having to leave one map, and 'air-start' on another

In several missions, particularly when flying in the final stage of the campaign, the player will 'air-start', but why will become clear as it happens.

As for the events themselves portrayed in this campaign, only one has a real mission as it's model. The missions would need to be scripted in a way such that the player is forced to do only certain things if I stuck to 'just the facts' and that isn't fun to make, or to play. So while these missions are plausible and could have happened, they are on the whole not based on actual missions flown by the AVG.

A quick note on the aircraft the player will find him- or her-self in:

The planes given to the AVG were most likely not the standard Hawk 81A. Strong evidence, both in the form of real Flying Tigers' experiences and recollections, and in the state of Curtiss' assembly lines at the time, suggests that the engines fitted to the AVG Hawks made considerably more power than a 'standard' Allsion engine of the same time. The key was the engines' assembly line for the AVG powerplants- there was none. Instead, parts such as crankcases and crankshafts that were out of specification and 'rejected' on tolerance and clearance issues were hand fit together so the planes could get their engines. Reports indicate that the AVG planes could reach up to 370 mph in level flight, more than a bit faster than a contemporary P-40B or C! This is only one of the factors that allowed the AVG to have superiority in the air. Reduction gear failure in AVG Hawks bears out the suggestion that the engines were more powerful than the ones intended for their airframes.

In the simulation, the AVG Hawks will be underpowered. To partially counter this, I strongly recommend the player to turn "engine overheat" off while playing this campaign. The drag reduction and unlimited time allowed at high power do not completely satisfy the desire for substantially increased engine power, but it is all I can do short of convincing Oleg and the dev team to change the power outputs for the planes.

A note on the version of FB/PF I made the campaign on:

I made this campaign using version 3.01m at first, and switched to v3.04m by the later stages. I have made considerable efforts making sure that there are no conflicts because of this, but I am after all human. Playtesting by myself and others seems to say no such conflicts exist, but if you do seem to have a conflict that may be based on differing versions of merged FB/PF (or any other concerns), please contact me at blairweescot@aol.com for help and possible solutions.

For those running Stand-alone PF:

I am sorry, but I do not run a stand-alone version. I've been playing Il2 and FB for years and the merged install was really the only way to go. I recommend it, not just to play my little campaign, but to enjoy the sim to it's potential.

Known Bugs:

There is a pair of radio communication bugs as I type this-

1) Some missions may (at the time of writing) display 'para' in the radio comm menu instead of the correct 'flight' when you access the radio commands. A potential fix is in the works, but if you see 'para' instead of 'flight' do not be alarmed; this is a small bug, and will not influence game play. Your flight can still be contaced through the menu, by selecting the highlighted 'para'. This may even be fixed by the time you read this (I hope), and you are definitely playing as a US pilot, don't worry- you had to select "USAAF" in the campaign menu to play

2) When and if you DO see the correct 'flight' nomenclature in the radio comm menu, there may be confusion, due to a bug present in PF itself. While in the breifings I refer to the player's flight as "Blue Flight", in the comm menu, the player's flight will be listed as "Green Flight". This was done on purpose, because the control tower operator will refer to your flight as "Blue Flight", and will address you as "Blue Leader" on the radio. I can't fix that, sorry, but be aware of the problem to avoid confusion.

While loading a mission, a white screen was reported by several playtesters. This was traced back to an improperly formatted background TGA file (my bad) and corrected. If for some odd reason you do see this, contact me for a corrected TGA file to fix the problem, but you shouldn't see the white screen, ever. Personally, I experience background splash issues that playtesters have not encountered; I can only assume it is my PC that is the problem, not the campaign itself.

Occasionally, I have seen the 'save track' button un-labeled after a mission. Rest assured that the 'save track' button is still there, it's the one on the top if you see no label.

Auto-pilot near map edges is sometimes odd (as is usual in the sim). I have kept the player away from the edge of the map whenever possible

Maps used:

Obviously there's no Rangoon map! I have used the Kuban map for that area. The other two major maps I used are:

Central Burma: Lvov map

Yunnan Province, China: Balaton map

Some other maps have also been used, and are present in the FMB, of course. They are 'online' maps that fit nicely within the needs of the campaign, or are maps familiar to players as other locations in FB campaigns, and should not be taken to represent the places I indicate the player is flying over literally- only that they are the nearest approximations I can have currently.

A note on Japanese aircraft:

Many IJA aircraft I needed are simply not in the sim. For example, the Ki-21 was a very common bomber used at the time...and I don't have it.

here's a list of missing aircraft, and the aircraft I used to represent it, and in a few cases, why I did that:

Ki-10: I used the Fiat CR.42 Falco. Why? It's within the realm of possibilty that IJA units might use this aircraft in China or Burma, and I wanted a slow, highly manueverable "obsolete" aircraft to give the player a hard time

Ki-21: This aircraft was a "must-have" for the campaign, so I used the good old DB3-F.

Ki-48: Another common IJA bomber that I needed to have. I used the SB2M-103. This Soviet aircraft is a good substitute- it inspired some of the Ki-48's designers

Ki-51: I needed a 'real' IJA dive-bomber. So I used the SU2 to represent Ki-51s. I used the B5N a few times, and while I didn't get rid of it entirely, I usually went back and swapped them for SU2s

E13A: I used an Ar196. Looks suitably Japanese to me. I would have liked to use it more, but it wouldn't fit in correctly with the campaign very well

K5Y: I substituted the U2VS for this aircraft. I wanted a really 'old' type to show up at least once or twice

I used the B5N a few times, hopefully this will represent a 'modern' IJA divebomber well enough

The Ki-43 is of course represented well, by several variants of this aircraft

I wish that I had the new Fokker that will be out soon- would have made great 'Nates'. Maybe I'll update the campaign? I don't know, this took a long time. We'll see.

A note on Rank: you can select a lower rank than Major to start...but the player will not lead the first two missions in that case, and may even be a non-flight leader in subsequent missions. The intent was for the player to always control the flight

Thank you to all playtesters, to all skinners, to the FB/PF development team, and to the members of the American Volunteer Group, to whom this work is dedicated.

Enclosed, please find a few files I have included for fun and/or additional information, such as photos, URLs I used for research and ideas, and maps of actual places the player flies over in the campaign.

Please contact me with suggestions, comments, or problems at blairweescot@aol.com, and I will help out if I can, as quickly as possible

Chris Blair March 5th, 2005

**************************************************

*

Note also that your USAAF splash screen will get over-written. Please back it up. My new splash is good (if I do say so myself) but I forgot to mention the over-write before, I think

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if you havent flown this cmpn, you gotta get it.....I kept expecting RT Smith to show up and cuss alot (he did y'know-I met him at harlingen airport in 89 as we were both trying to figure out how to turn in our rental car keys to a closed office-a bit salty, but hilarious). :rofl:

The japanese bombers are well represented by the Ruskie ones, the paint jobs

are very convincing. I hate to admit it, but i had to reduce the gunners on them to rookie to survive.........im not that good at dealing wiht them.

And i wouldve never thought of the crane bit with the radar towers.......thats original.

You fly alot with the brits at rangoon....it was very convincing, and the Kuban bears

a similiarity to the mountainous terrain of china.

The misns are well done, and it has a historical, realistic feel to it, even desperate.

How he's gonna do 100 misns in this lifetime, I dunno.....im still on number 7 of my VVS fihgters part 2 project, and ive worked on it nearly 2 mos. I hope i live

long enough to see it.

I saw where someone had painted up a kate like a BAttle.....looked pretty good but for the radial engine.

Anyway, looking forward to the new luftwaffe cmpn. may have to put myself in

suspended animation to see it, but looking forward to it. :unsure:

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How he's gonna do 100 misns in this lifetime, I dunno.....im still on number 7 of my VVS fihgters part 2 project, and ive worked on it nearly 2 mos. I hope i live

long enough to see it.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

Yeah, it's so time-consuming, especially if you're building historical missions that require some research. I came up with around 40 missions for my "Flying Devil Dogs" campaign. That took several months, and I only got through 5 September 1942 on Guadalcanal. I can't imagine the sort of effort it would take to portray the entire war, with a mission count in the hundreds. I guess that's why some people are selling their campaigns as expansion packs. It really is a lot of work.

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Yeah Joker, that's why I stick to single battles.

Speaking of which we have a few new guys that haven't done the "Massacre" yet. I'll be sure to send you a track when we do it if you can't make it. :D

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Yeah Joker, that's why I stick to single battles.

Joker, where is your cmpn availible at? Im not familiar wiht it. Im fascinated by all things guadalcanal....I did a cmpn for cfs2 called "87days of cactus", and i intend on doing a similiar cmpn for il2fb if i can just get 10day weeks issued. :unsure:

Bird brains "cactus Dairy" is excellent, very realistic......the briefings are done like a dairy. I think its at air warfare among other places.

Im having a ruffass time getting time to finish my vvs pt2 project, and that annoys me. Im determined to finish misn 7 before the end of this weekend. sheeeesh.

I probably spend way too much time here and at the ubi forums to.......but its such a blast. :lol:

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Enforcer, if you're trying to do a day by day of Guadalcanal then if you don't have these other books, you should beg, borrow or steal them because for that time period I've used them for all sorts of things:

1) America's Hundred Thousand: American Production Fighters of World War Two by Francis H. Dean . Check out the F4F Wildcat day by day timelines, usually any day where there was contact in the air it's given at least a mention. That's a good place to start for which days were "heavy."

2) Fire in the Sky: The Air War in the South Pacific by Eric M. Bergerud. Basically anyone doing any campaigns or missions in the South Pacific needs this book, it gives lots of interesting tidbits on how things played out.

3) Guadalcanal by Richard B. Frank. This book about the battle that goes into every aspect, air, land and sea. Lots of little details on what the specific situation was on Guadalcanal at certain times.

There are obviously others, but those are 3 really good sources for stuff in that time period.

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Yeah, it's so time-consuming, especially if you're building historical missions that require some research.  I came up with around 40 missions for my "Flying Devil Dogs" campaign.  That took several months, and I only got through 5 September 1942 on Guadalcanal.  I can't imagine the sort of effort it would take to portray the entire war, with a mission count in the hundreds.  I guess that's why some people are selling their campaigns as expansion packs.  It really is a lot of work.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

A few dollars for a well designed campaign is a small price to pay for weeks or months of enjoyment, especially if a correct skin pack is included. My hat is off to those who design missions, skins and campaigns because it is not easy work.

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A few dollars for  a well designed campaign is a small price to pay for weeks or months of enjoyment, especially if a correct skin pack is included.  My hat is off to those who design missions, skins and campaigns because it is not easy work.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

Langestrasse could be done by Summer. I know a trick or two

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Yes, those of us addicted to WTCF are familiar wiht your evil tricks...."the first one's free kid, just fly this misn in hte nice P-40 and........"

I spent about 6 hrs on that blasted thing once i opened it up.....worse than meth or crack. :blink:

I do have Franks book on guadalcanal, and it was one of the sources i used for my CFS2 cmpn......I primarily used "Cactus Air Force" by Miller.....it was day to day, lots of detail, and man its hard to put down. Great for research. I used Franks book for some preliminary stuff and info on the IJN side. Gonna be a while before i can do that scenario for IL2FB......gotta finish part 2 and 3 of VVS fighters. Its the original fighter cmpn for IL2 as it first came out, completely rewritten adn vastly improved, or so im told.

A friend of mine had fire in the sky, and i absorbed much of it.

Bird Brains cactus dairys is based mostly on cactus air force as well. Man that would make a great movie if someone was serious about it.

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Enforcer, you can get my Guadalcanal campaign here:

http://home.att.net/~r.lee.sullivan3/FDD_11.zip

A few more good books to add to Schatt's list:

The First Team and The First Team and the Guadalcanal Campaign, both by John Lundstrom, present outstanding tactical detail of the air campaign.

Also, the 1949 USMC history, The Guadalcanal Campaign, by Maj. John Zimmerman, offers some useful insight into day-to-day air operations.

:thumbsup:

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Yes, those of us addicted to WTCF are familiar wiht your evil tricks...."the first one's free kid, just fly this misn in hte nice P-40 and........"

I spent about 6 hrs on that blasted thing once i opened it up.....worse than meth or crack. :blink:

Well, get out your syringe because I'm working on the update fairly regularly:

New Mingaladon (small taste):

ming1.jpg

New Magwe:

mag.jpg

I have been messing with finding some new skins. This Charles Older skin is by Macwan, and it looks so much like the model I built as a kid it's spooky:

newolder1.jpg

Here's a new skin for the SB 2M, this time a 100A model. I had wnated to use this orignally but I couldn't find skins. Somebody made me a few. Here's a shot that shows one off, along with a crummy little skin revision done by me. I'm still looking for really good P-40E skins (The reason no P-40Es are flown by the player is because I couldn't find really good skins):

ETiger.jpg

I made that last one after someobody complained last night that the .50s were no good. Two SB 2M 100As in one pass, not too shabby :lol:

A small sample of what's to come. My 'Rangoon' Template now has, jeez, 6900 objects? About that. When I made WTCF orignally, I was very afraid of swamping the PC with objects. Well, I use the same rig and drivers as before, and I see no slow-downs from this stuff. Live and learn

This will be delayed somewhat however, a French skinner and campaign maker called 'Obelix' is updating his 60 mission AVG campaign. He's doing a great job, loads of top quality skins, and he has an eye for detail. I'm not 100% crazy about the maps he's (apparently) using, but hey, I'm not thrilled with my maps either, it's all a compromise. I wish him all the best and I don't want to steal his thunder (plus I'm holding out for Burma map(s) and the Fokker) What I'm doing however, is adding jungle-like elements to existing wooded areas in say, "Rangoon", while he is using Jungle terrain already on his map (Singapore, I think). In my opinion that's great, what he's doing, it's more economical and has a good 'feel' no matter where you go. But I've seen photos of Burma, it's messy jungle, not simply palm trees and nothing else. Hopefully I'm doing it justice with my 'messy' jungle. We'll see. I'm trying to find better maps of Kunming, too, I have one photo, from '43 or '42, showing an aerial view of part of the flight line and the hostel- that's it. If anyone has pics, I'd like to see them if possible :thumbsup:

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That's awesome, Chris! Looking forward to the update.

Ground detail is a subject on which I go back and forth. It's fun to build detailed installations, and they look great. However, I really have noticed some viscous framerates around intricate bases, especially online.

In some of the missions we've built for VMF-124, we've particularly found that trees really eat up the framerates. My own Henderson Field would look a lot more tropical if I didn't think that the palm trees would slow things down too much.

Personally, I think a little ground detail goes a long way. The action's in the air, anyway. That said, whenever I fly a highly detailed map I always marvel at the scenery, so I can't say that players don't appreciate it!

:)

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Yeah, even my computer, which isn't really that old or slow, is really slow on some of our take off runs. Frame rates in the high teen's to low twenties at times. Normally, my frame rates stay at 30 to 50. This is with forest=1 and water=1, fsaa=4x, af=0.

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Well, in the first pic in my first post, you get a good warning: "Many objects may be displayed; you may wish to turn graphics settings down" :thumbsup:

Those 6900 objects aren't all at the same base however, or even near each other. maybe 1500 are in "Rangoon", where I have added some palms here and there to get rid of the distinctly Russian flavor of the map

None of these missions are for online play, incidentally

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Last peeks before Christmas:

Kunming-

kunnew.jpg

This features the only elements I can find that reflect the actual location. From just past the twin revetments that face each other out, including the base buildings in the upper center (not the Pagoda though) are as accurate as I can make them to the way Kunming looked during the war, based on the only photo I can find. the barracks there you see make up Hostel 7

This base you already know as well but it had a facelift too:

badbase.jpg

And you're going to love and hate it. All I'll say is that it could be too tough, or too easy, depending on what you do, but be careful what you shoot at

This last pic is the twin hangars you see at the end of the tarmac at my new Kunming:

notathome.jpg

Not recommended behavior but you can do it. Just pull up really hard before you hit the unseen revetment about 50yards in front of the prop. I ought to have charged 50 bucks for mowing the grass and sweeping the floor:thumbsup:

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Ooh, another hangar daredevil!

Okay, Chris, here's the VMF-124 challenge: fly through one of the hangars on Midway Island -- inverted! :D

Banger_Inverted.jpg

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