A LOT is being worked on at the moment and we’d like to share what is going on, but first, here is a picture of our new American bomber pilot models that are now ready for implantation. Once again, our dear friend Alexey comes through with a beautiful model.
First, update 4.603 is coming next week, assuming there are no nasty last-minute surprises. The 4.603 update will see the release of the long awaited Sd.Kfz. 10/5 Flak 38 vehicle mounted anti-aircraft gun and three WWI aircraft for Flying Circus: Volume II – the SPAD VII, Pfalz D.XII and the Airco DH.4 two-seater.
In addition to the new aircraft for FC2, Ugra Media is hard at work on the map and making elements for it including buildings, airfields, vehicles and other small details that you may find interesting.
And don’t forget that the awesome STEEL BIRDS historical campaign is also going to be released with the 4.603 update. You can still pre-order it HERE in the IL-2 Official Webstore! Jabo pilots get ready!
I also want to touch on a few items that you have heard about or have been waiting for patiently for a while.
We have good news and not so good news on the progress of our new more Complex Fuel Systems feature and Drop Tanks. It looks like we will be able to include drop tanks for some of the later model Bf-109s in the sim along with their new fuel system modeling in the next update. The not so good news is that other aircraft will have to follow in future updates as we work to retrofit so many planes. We had hoped to be able to accelerate this process, but we have not been able to fill a couple critical positions on the team in time to make this happen as fast as we want. However, these 109s really needed drop tanks so we added them first. There is a slight chance they won’t make this update if last minute bugs appear, but we are hopeful. Positive thoughts please!
Next, our new Air Marshal feature has been in testing for a couple weeks now and it does function, but there are some bugs and design issues that need to be ironed out before release. Air Marshal includes lots of GUI related items and is also connected to multiplayer so it’s more complex than a simple GUI feature. We’re finally feeling confident that Air Marshal will indeed be released, but exact ETA is still not known. However, it’s inching closer and closer with the help of some motivated testers. When we’re certain the interface is finalized or very close to final, we will show you pictures and talk about its features.
Additionally, we continue to test and work on the new AQM (Advanced Quick Missions) feature and it’s making rapid progress, but initial tests revealed some issues that need to be addressed. The AQM system will eventually be applied to all our maps and we are working to do that as soon as possible. It is likely it will be released for our larger maps first then applied to the others. Projected release is this Fall.
In Career mode news we are happy to report that 8 new mission types for fighter-bombers are going to be in the next update. Viks and LukeFF have been working to improve the career in this aspect and all seems to be working well.
Also, many of you know we are working on new cloud technology for the sim. This should bring our clouds up to a new level of beauty, variety and realism. We also plan to work with a talented community member on this project and we hope it will bear fruit in the coming months. But before we get into worrying about artistic quality, we need to perfect the technology part of it. And we think, based on early tests, that these clouds will also improve performance, but yield a prettier result. We’ll have pictures for you once we have something worthwhile to show you.
And finally, work on several new aircraft continues – V-1, P-51B/C, Me-410, Mosquito, Ar-234, B-26 (AI) are all being worked on feverishly and Ugra is knee-deep in building the cockpit for the C-47 along side preparing more FC2 planes for release.
And last but not least - Jason is beginning to plan future projects that you’ll likely learn about late this year or early next year as we work feverishly to finish Battle of Normandy.
There are so many aspects of IL-2 we are working on as we finish out this hot summer and we’ll talk about in future Developer Diaries.
See you in the skies!
The Sturmovik Team