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About Duckman

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  1. I loved the Finnish aircraft and the early-war stuff (I-153, I-16 etc) but marketwise I have a hard time seeing them go there again. I hope I'm wrong though.
  2. At the risk of sounding incredibly whiny I still want to dispute this. As I understand modern research on the topic the Soviet "tank charge" unfortunately didn't accomplish much at all. As you say it was very poorly prepared (basically no recon) and shot to pieces. There is an understandable tendency to assign meaning to it and not make it a meaningless sacrifice, just like with e.g. the also mythologized American torpedo bombers at Midway, but that doesn't change the facts. The Germans at Kursk were stopped by the combination of mines, artillery, well-placed AT guns, and tanks (including a lot of dug-in T-34s) rather than a dramatic counterstroke. What really sealed the deal was Soviet reserves and the well-timed counterstroke at Orel. As for the game, it looks superb and I can't wait to play it. Also wondering about infantry.
  3. I'd like to see poor manufacture and maintenance simulated where it's appropriate, including in Soviet and even Western Allies cases. Why not? As simmers I feel we are often too focused on getting every last engine detail and variant correct while ignoring bigger issues related to factors like reliability. Perhaps they are seen as messy and not easily quantifiable, but they still existed and had a huge effect on WWII air operations. As for your suggestion, I'd gladly look at a Me 262 manual but a) I don't have one and b) I don't read German. My impression is based on Il2 (that great fountain of piloting knowledge) as well as various books and websites. It may of course be wrong.
  4. That can get a bit weird because with the late-war Axis wonders you risk comparing theoretical performance that was rarely achieved (because of sucky manufacture, maintenance etc). I know it’s a controversial subject, but I’d love to see random failures and performance degradation when appropriate. That way you’d never know exactly what you’d get when you jump into that Shiden Kai or Me 262 - could be a world beater or a reason to abort ASAP. Not to mention that the pilots would not be in the mindset, or perhaps even trained, for air to air. The Corsair was probably the worst off, with the late versions turning the WWII sports car into a bomb truck. That’s a good comparison. Fighters actually had tail warning radars in WWII? I had no idea. Those throttles were indeed a weak point. I almost imagine mechanics and flight leaders putting "do not touch!" signs on them. Given the one-on-one turnfights beloved by computer fliers it wouldn’t necessarily be unrealistic. I’ve read numerous stories of veteran pilots kicking the rookies’ butt in an old hack just to show them that (cliche alert) ”it’s the machine, not the man” and try to get any big-headedness out of them as soon as possible. I always liked its look for the same reason. Nice, clean, predatory.............as long as you don't mention the engines. 🙂 In the aestethics department we should also note the lack of propeller noise, a feature much appreciated by contemporaries. I assume less vibration also made for a smoother ride.
  5. From flying it in Il2 (years ago): - Engines are sensitive and throttle response slow, som best leave it at 80-90% and don't fiddle too much. - It's kind of like a train that builds up speed slowly, so fly accordingly (i.e. mostly in a long straight line). - Even early jets have much better climb than props, which is handy. Look up best climb angle. To sum it up it has quite a few limitations and is strictly a boom and zoom aircraft, meaning you can still turn but don't do it too much or hard. Very heavy armament makes up for some of the downsides. All in all quite a different and fun plane.
  6. WTF! OMG! YGBSM! Pleasant surprises all around. The biggest one was probably the tank sim, which fills a great big hole in the market. Keep up the superlative work!
  7. The story of the American cannon troubles is worth quoting in full from Wikipedia: The British version [of the Hispano-Suiza HS.404] was also licensed for use in the United States as the M1, with both the United States Army Air Corps (USAAC) and U.S. Navy planning to switch to the 20 mm caliber as soon as the gun could be produced in sufficient numbers. A very large building program was established, along with production of ammunition, in 1941. When delivered, the guns proved to be extremely unreliable and suffered a considerable number of misfires due to the round being lightly struck by the firing pin. The British were interested in using this weapon to ease the demand on production in England, but after receiving the M1 they were disappointed. British wing-mounted fighter weapons by this period were cocked on the ground by the aircraft armourers before flight, the built-in pneumatic cocking mechanism used previously being regarded as unnecessary weight and detrimental to aircraft performance, so any stoppage in flight made the gun unusable until it could be cleared on the ground. The misfires also had the tendency to cause aircraft with wing-mounted guns to yaw towards the wing with the failed gun when the guns were fired, due to the unequal recoil, thus throwing off the pilot's aim. In April 1942 a copy of the British Mk.II was sent to the U.S. for comparison. The British version used a slightly shorter chamber and did not have the same problems as the U.S. version of the cannon. The U.S. declined to modify the chamber of their version, but nonetheless made other modifications to create the unreliable M2. By late 1942 the USAAF had 40 million rounds of ammunition stored but the guns remained unsuitable. The U.S. Navy had been trying to go all-cannon throughout the war but the conversion never occurred. As late as December 1945 the Army'sChief of Ordnance was still attempting to complete additional changes to the design to allow it to enter service. Some variations of the 20 mm guns used on the Lockheed P-38 Lightning aircraft were produced by International Harvester. The P-38's nose-mounted M2 featured a built-in cocking system, and could simply be re-cocked in flight after a misfire, which made the misfires less of a problem than with other aircraft. The U.S. followed the British development closely and when the Mk.V was designed, the Americans followed suit with the A/N M3 but unreliability continued. After World War II the United States Air Force (USAF) adopted a version of the M3 cannon as the M24, similar in most respects except for the use of the addition of electrical cocking, allowing the gun to re-cock over a lightly struck round. The problems of the American weapons led to most US fighters being equipped with the AN/M2 .50 cal Browning light-barrel HMG throughout the war. So the US clearly wanted to swith to cannon already during the war, it was just that aircraft cannon production kept running into problems. Quite amazing really given how successful the US was at mass producing everything else, but I guess there were some specific and apparently hard to fix issues.
  8. For the USAAF the benefits of standarization and lack of teething troubles probably outweighed any marginal gains that could have been had from cannon or a more effective HMG. There was also the bungled attempt to adapt the Hispano cannon. However, as has been pointed out the USAAF experience was atypical in that they did not face a lot of bombers or other heavier aircraft. All the other air forces and arms that did eventually switched to cannon, including the USN during and the USAF after the war.
  9. Totally missed that announcement, but great to hear! Both battles are very good choices. I guess them being islands with no big cities helps a lot with development time and framerates, both of which they'll need if they're doing carriers. Can't wait to climb into the Wildcat again!
  10. Duckman

    Malta Map

    Get North Africa? You mean as a mod? I haven't followed that sim at all lately so forgive my ignorance. As for technology and scope, it always did seem a bit like the Falcon 4 of WWII sims i.e. a glorious failure that tried to do too much. Yes Falcon 4 got fixed in the end, but it took years and many man-decades (if not man-centuries).
  11. Duckman

    Malta Map

    It seems Malta and North Africa will never make it into a modern sim. It was the intended followup to Oleg's BoB (hence the Italian planes) but never happened. Must be cursed.
  12. I thought you meant the night battle of Hamburg! Never been done and would add new layers like EW, but maybe not a crowd pleaser.
  13. Whoa, is this something official? Great in that case, especially if the ridiculous legal issues are cleared. Midway is a good choice but will of course require carriers. Doing a flyable B-17 for the Pacific seems like a huge waste since it is one of THE big ticket items if they do Western Europe. Okinawa is also a really good choice, with an interesting late war plane set (the souped up Corsairs will be huge in multiplayer). Will require some extra work on the kamikazes though, which were the main aerial threat. Adding historcal details like Fighter Direction Teams on the picket destroyers shouldn't be too hard and would give a lot of flavour. Apart from those..........Guadalcanal and Flying Tigers of course!
  14. What I'd like is really a game that brings out the differences, just like a flight sim. For example, we know that the Y-Wing is a heavy and unmaneuvrable fighter with lots of firepower (there is actually a provision for a rear gunner as well), which would make it similar to a Bf 110. The Tie Fighter, on the other hand, is light and very maneuvrable which makes it similar to an I-16. So using the original Il2 as comparison we'd get something like: Y-Wing = Bf 110 X-Wing = Bf 109 A-Wing = I-153 Tie Fighter = I-16 (remember the complaints that it "behaves like a Tie Fighter"?) Tie Interceptor = I-185 etc etc. Lite sims and shooters like Battlefield tend to conflate everything and make vehicles feel more or less the same.
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