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Friday, November 30, 2012

Cliffs of Dover REDUX out now

The RAF campaign REDUX available NOW

Mission design and storyline by Heinkill
Scripting by Bolox and Gabuzomeu
Beta testing by EAF92_Splash, Slot, and W1ndy.

Welcome to this ‘redux’ version of the stock Cliffs of Dover RAF campaign.

Why a ‘redux’? Well, quite simply because the original plot of the RAF campaign read like it was written by a 20 year old Japanese console gamer and in the developers’ rush to get the game on the market many of the missions were either badly designed or just plain broken.

The user community and 3rd party developers have stepped in and filled the campaign gap with some highly entertaining and professional single player content, but it is still offputting to new players that the stock campaign that comes with the game is just so…terrible.

What has been redone?

The entire plot of the campaign has been rewritten. The campaign is now inspired by the career of real life BoB pilot ‘Red’ McColpin, one of the first US airmen to serve with the RAF in WWII. 

Clear mission success and failure criteria have been created, together with an innovative system that displays the player’s and squadron’s kills and losses during the mission and throughout the campaign, and awards medals for campaign progress.

Regarding historical accuracy, an attempt has been made to recreate a sense of history as the campaign unfolds, with authentic Ministry of Defence RAF Fighter Command campaign combat reports used to provide the player with an end of day summary of theatre wide events at the end of each mission. You will relive the terrible events of summer 1940, just as they happened.

Finally, the landscape of SE England and France has been populated so that the previously empty ports of Dover, Folkestone and Calais, and combat stations Tangmere and Manston have been made into living locations, bustling with activity.

The team behind the Redux campaign mod has thoroughly enjoyed working to bring this to you. We hope you enjoy using it, as much as we enjoyed building it.


35MB download here:


ZIP file (also containing self installer) at Airwarfare website:

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Channel Battles for CoD: review

Wellington take down - Desastersoft's Channel Battles 

The last patch for IL-2 Sturmovik: Cliffs of Dover solved many performance issues, improved frame rates and made the game more playable for many players.

So this review will focus on the question, "If Cliffs of Dover becomes more playable on my PC, what can I do with it!?"

How about loading up Channel Battles, the latest add-on from third party developer, Desastersoft?
In May I reviewed one of the most comprehensive third party add-ons to Cliffs of Dover, Desastersoft's Wick vs Dundas.  

Wick vs Dundas did not just add a whole lot of skins, objects and missions to Cliffs of Dover, it put the new content into a well packaged new campaign platform allowing the player to gain promotions, and win medals, by their progress through the campaigns. It also increased the interactivity and immersion of the offline experience by adding radio calls triggered by in-game events, which could change your objectives "on-the-fly".

I won't recap all the features of the Desastersoft add-on platform here. For that review: go here.

Instead, I will look at the upcoming English Language release coming from the German Desastersoft stable, "Channel Battles", and give you a play-by-play taste of what campaigning in the Channel Battles add-on has to offer.

And the good news is, although the English language release is still a way off, and the add-on is currently only available in German, I will show you why you don't need to wait! Don't speak German? No problem, with the patented "Heinkill workaround for German add-ons".
I am using Cliffs of Dover version 1.08 beta patch for the review.

The Package
I got a hold of the physical jewel case from Desastersoft, but the add-on is also available as a download. The jewel case comes with a beautiful map of RAF and Luftwaffe airfields, which you will use during the campaign, as you'll see. Also included is a German language handbook, which if you are not German, you won't get much joy from. But trust me on this, you don't need it.

Packaging - Desastersoft's Channel Battles
The physical Channel Battles package with DVD-ROM, handbook, and map.


Cliffs of Dover rumour roundup

Another month, another bunch of Cliffs of Dover rumour mongering.

The latest, sparked by Foobar at who implied that 1C Maddox had merged with and 'assumed' 777 studios (the makers of Rise of Flight). The 1C team had been let go and the CoD code and rights sold. Jason from 777 jumped on that to deny any such 'merger'.

"1C did not "assume us" and ROF is completely owned and operated by 777 Studios and development plans remain the same for ROF." - Jason

Threads about it were deleted from the 1C official forums and Foobar removed his post.

No official news from 1C has been forthcoming since, so here is the current list of known knowns, unknown knowns, and unknown unknowns, for your collection:

- Development of the IL2 Sturmovik CoD code platform will continue, with some sort of sequel of unknown nature, which is due to enter alpha stage in 2013 (source: former 1C official spokesperson Blacksix.)
- 1C Maddox is working on an MMO (I have seen nothing to contradict this yet, see my earlier post)
- The sequel will be 'Battle of Moscow', will be set on the Eastern front, use the same format and engine as CoD and will include a Stalingrad map/scenario (rumour based on screenshots released by 1C).
- Cliffs of Dover bugs and issues will be 'fixed' if/when it is merged with the sequel (this is more a hope, than a rumour).
- 1C has relieved team member Blacksix from his role as spokesperson ("My work in this section is also finished ...I will answer the questions, but in general, that's all. As you well know, I can not tell you now about the future of the series and you have to wait for the official announcement from 1C "), and no one else from Maddox games has posted anything on the 1C forums or for several weeks. Lead developer Ilya Shevchenko has not posted on since 18 October 2012, so this must mean...(dot dot dot...add your own ending here.)

Seriously folks, nothing to see here - move along.

BOB2 version 2.12 gets closer! And a bomber skin mod!

This news from Bader of the BDG:

"Good news is that we have been battling with some obscure crashes for some time. Osram has done some excellent diagnostics and found that we have been hitting an internal animation number limit, of 8000 animations (there are so many more things going on visually in BoBII now than even a couple of patches ago with all the objects and effects in big battles).

This now seems to be fixed, so we are now in final test stage. This looked like a couple of weeks a while back but with testing you never can say. So it's no good to commit just yet."

At the same time a new bomber mod has been released by Aces, which takes away an annoying 'shine' which affected bomber skins at dawn and dusk.

Download Link (Mediafire):


Complete redo of stock CoD RAF campaign avail soon!

Coming soon, a complete remake of the stock RAF campaign that will replace the RAF campaign in your Cliffs of Dover main menu.

The campaign replaces the ridiculous original plot with one featuring Carroll 'Red' McColpin, one of the first 'American Eagles' or US pilots who joined the RAF to fight before their country entered the war. He later led the 404th Fighter Group in support of the D-Day invasion and the drive across Europe. In 400 missions, he recorded 11.5 victories and collected 29 awards for gallantry. Following the war, McColpin remained in the Air Force, serving in several command and senior staff positions, ultimately becoming the commander of the 4th Air Force.

"For myself I reasoned that as I had flown most of my life and knew there was going to be a global war, why not start flying for England, a country that needed help and believed in our precepts of democracy, and one that would be our ally soon enough in any case. I knew America was on the verge of war. When the Battle of Britain started I decided that I couldn't stand by and do nothing."

- Pilot Officer Carroll McColpin.

McColpin will start in 607 Squadron at Tangmere as he did in real life, then move to 602 Sq at Manston.


-Completely rewritten plot and mission briefings: NO MORE SPITGIRL (though she does appear as a B-actor 'Easter Egg' in one mission) and you will no longer have to shoot fellow RAF pilots, and get shot down over France in order to succeed.
-Mission bugs corrected (ie flights with no targets, wrong loadouts, wrong units, wrong waypoints)
- Scripts rewritten by Bolox and Gabuzomeu:
-Extra challenges added to every mission. No more recon missions with no enemy aircraft or objects. No more enemy flights not engaging. Mission difficulty increased - you will need to keep your head on a swivel, even as you return to base.
-Corrected AI skill levels and mission objectives to minimise chances of dumb AI behaviour or tactics
-More activity and objects at Tangmere, Manston, Calais Marck airfield and Dover and Calais ports.
-Medals and promotions added: Start as a raw pilot officer flying on the wing of 607 Sq Ldr Vick, progress to Flight Lieutenant leading your own flight, finish as 602 Squadron leader, leading your full squadron in a Big Wing engagement over the Channel. Plus Bolox and Gabuzomeu have scripted in the ability to win medals based on progress through the campaign and personal victory count.
-Historical photographs replacing in-game screenshots in briefings.
-Historical quotes added: end of mission screen shows either quotes from Winston Churchill, or Adolf Hitler.
- Historical RAF Fighter Command combat reports are displayed at end of every day.

Current status is that all missions have been remade, we are now fine tuning individual missions and campaign structure and beta testing.

You can get a preview of the readme document here: