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Thursday, October 24, 2013

Fixes for running BoBII under WIndows 8

BoBII players who have updated to Win 8, or bought a machine with it pre installed, have been gnashing their teeth as the game seemingly won't run using the usual workarounds and emulation modes.

A couple of kludges which you may be able to use have emerged however. One, or a combination of these, may get you flying!

.net fix

BoBII uses .net 3.5 but by default this is turned off in the windows control panel, in favour of .net 4.5. Go into the control panel>programs>windows programs and enable .net 3.5

emulation mode

If you right click on your BoBII desktrop shortcut and click Properties, you will see a Compatibility tab. Logic would tell you that if BoBII doesnt run under Win8, but it did run under Win7, you should choose Win7 compatibility mode right?

Wrong. The compatibility mode which works best for BoBII is actually Win98. Choosing this, and adjusting the game resolution and refresh rate to find the sweet spot, may get you flying again.

CPU cores

Win8 doesn't manage CPU core usage very well for older games which were born in the single CPU era. Try running BOBII on a single core. Here is how to switch cores on and off.

Good luck, and post here if you have other tips!

CoD players: Don't upgrade to TF patch 4.0 yet if...

If you play most offline single player missions and campaigns.

While the new patch does wonders with new maps and better framerates and visual effects, the attempt to model the stiffening of controls in high speed maneouvres has caused more problems than expected.

The AI currently can't cope with the new flight models and especially the 109s have trouble pulling out of dives, and frequently plough into the ground.

So the Team Fusion advice at the moment is, a fix is on the way, but if you play mostly single player,  stick with patch 3.01 for now.

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Want to get a head start on DCS WWII?

You can get a feel for the sim already - no need to wait.

Just download the DCS World platform (the sim is free and you get the excellent Su25 and campaign free).

Then buy the excellent P-51D module. As a standalone aircraft it is a little overpriced at 39.99 USD but it is frequently on sale at a lower price so keep an eye out for sales.

This machine will be flyable in the DCS WWII game, and for premium package backers comes with the game.

For many DCS WWII pilots this will be your warbird of choice so the more you fly it now, the better a pilot you will be when the sim is launched!

You can either fly this machine online against other P-51 pilots (numbers have increased recently since the DCS WWII title was announced) or against an AI FW 190 which offers a decent practice opponent.

See a video clip of a 1-1 dogfight here:

So what are you waiting for? DCS WWII (at least part of it) is already here!

Monday, October 21, 2013

BOBII work in progress

A small update on what that group of Battle of Britain obsessives, the BoB Developers Group, is currently working on for the next update for this venerable but evergreen sim.

The focus has been on further increasing the unparalleled historical accuracy of the sim.

Example 1: placement of AAA sites. 'Stickman' has been counting, correcting and placing AAA sites all over the operational area, based on historical records researched in minute detail: one example here.


So the flak you experience flying over SE England in the game, is as real a representation of what German pilots saw, as you can possibly get.

At the same time, the team has been working to adjust coastlines and place buildings for numerous locations to reflect historical maps and records.

Example: Farborough RAE factory site before


And after


The team learned there were actually 63 buildings at this site, and using historical records, placed them and populated the site appropriately so that as a Luftwaffe pilot if you attack Farnborough, you are attacking a much bigger target, with a lower chance of total destruction than previously.

The same precision is being applied to coastlines, ports and other key features.

Finally there has been a lot of work on fine tuning escort behaviour to enable the game commander AI to better manage the use of escorts.


The aim for the next patch is that within a margin of random error, escorts meet up with their bombers, and react proportionately when they are engaged by the RAF.

There is more work planned, and on the wishlist, and the team is always looking for volunteers, especially coders, to help.

For example, the game will currently not run under Windows 8. Help is urgently needed to solve that issue!

Saturday, October 19, 2013

New autumn and winter missions for TF mod 4.0

Have created 3 missions set in 1941 and of course based on real events, utilising the winter and autumn maps.

You can download the zip file here:

Simply unpack to your mod folder in \Documents\1C SoftClub\il-2 sturmovik cliffs of dover - MOD\missions\Single

These missions feature:

- Multiple RAF and Axis flyable aircraft, all with their own briefings and objectives
- Dozens of highly detailed and populated Axis airfields in France, ports, shipping, vehicles and other targets
- Dusk takeoff, night time landing in one mission
- The new Blenheim IV-F heavy fighter, night fighters and Sunderland bomber



Some screenies for your viewing pleasure, thanks TF crew!


Team Fusion patch 4.0 released

One of the beautiful Roen911 screen backgrounds from the patch

The Team Fusion patch 4.0 for Cliffs of Dover is now available and is being generally well received.

I will do a full review when it finishes downloading! Both Torrents and Download sites are either very busy, or very slow because it is only a 5GB download.

Here is the abbreviated readme:


* Historical markings for all marks of bf 109.

* Removed the black line under the nose bulbs on all marks of bf-109

* Corrected 109 gauges

* Full size Revi C12/C & /D in German aircraft

* Corrected light switch position in german aircraft

* Corrected RPM gauge in Bf 110

* Added NJG 1 (Bf110) with skins

* Corrected Hurricane cockpit lighting

* 'Cleaned' windscreen of Hurricane NF version

* Increased the intensity of the revi sight reticle at daytime

* Removed the blue revi sight reticle when sight turned off

* Added aircraft: flyable and non flyable

* Added the possibility to display any picture of choice to the cockpit dashboard

* Added Blenheim and BR.20 autopilot


* FM adjustments: high speed maneuver, low speed roll rates and overheating characteristics.

* Stall characteristics adjusted for Bf 109, Spitfire, Hurricane and Bf 110.

Image by Roen911


*Changed background pictures, used with kind permission of rOEN911. Full credit belongs to rOEN911. His work can be seen on his DeviantArt, here:

* Added Teamspeak interface to the in-game windows.

* Added two new configurable keys to zoom in and out. These keys are under the "Camera" menu in the options.

* Added driveable tanks and artillery. This is a BIG WIP but we decided to let you in on the fun. (Note: Not all tank models and artillery are driveable and AAA guns cannot be manned)

* Clouds blend into view instead of "popping up"

* Clouds no longer cause whiteout when flying through them at night

* Contrails now have the same colour as the high clouds

* Removed the "white puffs" from tracks

* Removed a bug causing sun whiteout on inside of spitfire cockpit glass

* Lowered the "leakage" of the revi sight and other light sources inside the cockpit

* Optimised code for clouds, fire, explosions, water splash and smoke for less FPS drop when close

* Explosions and fires are made more emissive at night

* Runway lights no longer shine though the cockpit

* Searchlights are re-introduced but we still have a bug left that makes them only work for the first mission per session

* The moon no longer looks like a light bulb

* Night time now desaturates the aircraft and terrain

* Made the water slightly more reflective

* Improved spotting of mid-distant aircraft

* Increased the effect of exhaust flames

* Rebalanced building light levels

* Corrected available ammunition for German 20mm MG FF and MG FF/M to match historical records

* Various corrections to incorrect ballistic properties

* Tracer visuals more realistically sized

* Various tweaks and corrections to tracer and smoke spiral look

* Change to "DeWilde" properties

* Removed shadows from explosions and smoke

* Tweaked hit effects from incendiary and HE rounds

* New and much more realistic looking aircraft reflection

* Fixed a bug causing the sirens of the Ju87 and spinners of the Blenheim to turn into a square

*Changed bomb sounds

*Changed artillery/tank impact sounds

*Changed bullet impact sounds

*Changed plane impact sounds

*Changed ground rolling interior sounds

*Changed interior bullet/flak impact sounds

*Changed train explosion sound

*Changed interior wind sounds

Image by Roen911

================================================== ====

* Enabled czech localization.

To turn on Czech language, add "GameLanguage=Czech" to the "MOD" section in the confuser.ini.

Should the MOD section not exist, Simply copy and paste these lines to the bottom of the file.




================================================== ====

* Clouds drawing distance has been increased 3x

Note: To enable extended clouds distance, add "ExtendCloudsDistance=yes" under the "[MOD]" section on the "confuser.ini" file.






================================================== ====


* Maps re-textured, LOD, lighting and colors reworked

New Missions

* 2 QMB night missions added.


* Historical markings for all marks of the bf 109.

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Book review: Men who killed the Luftwaffe, Jay A Stout

Grabbed a copy of this book about the USAAF in Europe, for free from Amazon - you can't go wrong with free, right?

Never read a history of the USAAF strategic bomber force in Europe before, so I am no expert at all. 


Nearly gave up in the first five pages when the writer implied that by the time the US joined the war in 1941 the RAF had achieved virtually nothing (Battle of Britain aside!) against the Luftwaffe in either Africa, the Med or Europe , the RAF night bomber offensive in Germany was pointless and it was obvious nothing would change this until the US of A arrived in numbers (with its admittedly inferior P40s and P39s assumedly?). Not sure about that....


- the raf leadership did not have a plan for destroying the luftwaffe...
- after the battle of britain the raf and luftwaffe did nothing but engage in a series of tit for tat engagements that did neither of them great harm
- the soviet unions red air force was even less effective
- on the other hand the usaaf arrived in europe intent on killing the luftwaffe

Not sure about that either....

That jingoistic introduction aside, I persevered, he settled down a bit and I am 40% of the way through the book, and it is an interesting enough read though am definitely not convinced on his take on history, but lack comparisons to hold him up against... here is my take on what he is saying

- it took several months after Pearl before the 8th AF commander, Eaker, got his act together and got himself and his organisation to Europe ie he wasted a lot of time at a critical phase in the war just getting into the fight
- once he did, it took him nearly two years 1941-1943 before the 8th was a truly dominant force and he was criticised relentlessly by his commander, Arnold, for not getting enough aircraft over Germany often enough (compared to eg the Brits)
- eventually he was sacked by Arnold and replaced by Doolittle, because of these frustrations
- the US daylight bombing offensive could not be demonstrated to be any more effective than the British night bombing strategy. It allowed for more precision but at the cost of significantly higher casualties and key industrial targets like oil and aircraft production facilities were in any case quickly repaired and often produced more after being attacked (and subsequently optimised) than before they were attacked
- sheer weight of numbers, pilots and machines, defeated the Luftwaffe more than any other factor eg better aircraft, strategy or tactics

Hmmmm. If you too pick this up for free, let's just say, you'll get your money's worth.

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

DCS WWII kickstarter closes, what did it achieve?

Well, there has been a lot of interest in the idea of using a Kickstarter campaign to support the development of a new flight sim, so what happened?

In the end the campaign raised about 160,000 USD - 60,000 USD more than the original 100K target and 10,000 over the first of several 'stretch' targets.

Along the way the incentives and bonuses for backers were changed, changed again, and changed yet again until it became almost impossible to work out what your pledge had actually earned you between early alpha, early beta access, t shirts, flight manuals, extra aircraft, signed photographs of the team or a day in Moscow...all were up for grabs at some point or other. But in the end, if you were a backer at around the $40 level, it got you access to several flyable aircraft that later buyers may have to purchase individually, and access to the closed beta of the game.

It was all rather chaotic.

Some people seemed to think their money was going to support the base game development, but that was never the intention. The kickstarter campaign was just intended to allow the devs to add more content to the game before its release, and generate some needed interest and PR.

So what extra features in the actual game will the 160,000 USD buy actually? Remembering that at one point the devs were dangling a flyable and crewable B17 in front of backers to encourage them to pledge.

The whole campaign resulted in...a cockpit for the already planned AI Me262, it turns out.

Now that it is done, looking back it seems like a whole like of hype and digital ink for a very small outcome in terms of extra game features to me but if you are a backer, you may be happy it all ended with you getting potential access to a few more aircraft for a relatively small outlay.

From project lead, Ilya Shevchenko explaining that the KS project was not a distraction and only resulted in adding a new cockpit to the game:

The team had their tasks on September 4th, the day before KS launched, and that's exactly the tasks they're working on today, and what they'll be working on on Oct 6th, the day after KS ends. I have not issued any new tasks or changed any existing ones during this campaign once. The 3D modelers are making planes and cockpits. The landscape designers are working on Normandy. The programmers are doing their thing.
I really can't stress this enough. The only change that will result from this kickstarter is the addition of the Me.262 cockpit to one modeler's task list, and the addition of its programming to the flight model crew. That's IT. Everything else is exactly where it was a week, a month, two months ago.