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Bonkin

TFS Developer Update – September 2018

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Hello everybody. Time seems to be accelerating so much. It doesn’t seem like more than a week since I put the last update out! The team has been very busy though and there seems to be more going on than I can fit in to a single update. So much so that it may be necessary to start doing a few mid-month updates! So without further ado, let us proceed…

 

Team

We welcome two new members to the team this month. Emeren works as a freelancer in the 3D industry and will be working on existing and new 3D models. Daveod06 is a map creator and will be bringing his experience of producing several maps for IL-2 1946 into the map team.

 

To me it feels like there is a certain buzz going on within the team. For so long team members have been working their spare time on various labours of love – but now, much is being shared as we progressively move out of the modelling phase (i.e. stand-alone 3D models and textures), and into an integration phase (i.e. importing the new data items into the game). For many, it is the first time we’re starting to see completed work in all its refinery and there is a lot of positive feedback going on.

 

Schedule

We remain on track to our internal schedule and confidence and morale remain high.

 

Progress

Map

The team continue to stabilise the Map Editor and have done some tremendous work. The all new Tobruk map has been imported into a development build and we’re starting to fly around above it. The sad news is that I’m not going to show it off in this release. Why? Well we want to refine the textures and get some more objects populated on it before we showcase it e.g. airfields and buildings. There is also the matter of the sea… which needs to be changed from mucky English Channel colours to lovely rich Mediterranean blue.

 

Aircraft

In all cases, the flight models continue to be tweaked during test and are not therefore specifically reported on. This includes the various Mk variants, e.g. Spitfire VB would cover both the +12 boost and +16 boost types as well as tropical mods. This is the current status:

- CR42 cockpit 3D and textures complete. Importing almost complete.
- Bf-108 3D and textures complete awaiting import.
- Bf-109F-1, 2 & 4 imported and awaiting cockpit texturing re-work.
- Spitfire IIa 3D and textures complete, import complete. Internal animation and test in progress.
- Spitfire IIb 3D and textures complete, import complete. Internal animation and test in progress.
- Spitfire VA 3D and textures complete, import complete. Internal animation and test in progress.
- Spitfire VB 3D and textures complete, import complete. Internal animation and test in progress.
- P-40B/C Tomahawk 3D modelling almost complete. Texturing phase has started.
- P-40E Kittihawk 3D modelling almost complete. Texturing phase has started.
- Macchi C-202 cockpit 3D modelling almost complete.
- Macchi C-202 external model 3D modelling underway.
- Dewoitine D.520 3D and textures complete, import in progress.
- Gladiator II completed.
- Hurricane IIA 3D modelling and textures complete, awaiting import.
- Hurricane IIB 3D modelling and textures complete, awaiting import.
- Hurricane IIC 3D modelling and textures complete, awaiting import.
- Beaufighter Mk IC awaiting import.
- Wellington IA turrets 3D, texture complete and imported. Cockpit/Bombardier positions 3D and textures almost complete, awaiting import.
- Wellington IC turrets 3D, texture complete and imported. Cockpit/Bombardier positions 3D and textures almost complete, awaiting import.
- Wellington IC external 3D details underway.
- Martlet III external, cockpit 3D and texture just about complete, awaiting import.

 

AI

Work is underway with re-writing the AI command GUI to fix the errors and mistakes which were there. In addition, work is currently be done on addressing certain AI combat routines.

 

Notable Fixes

-          Bug #749: Overheated cooling system shouldn't blow the radiator.

 

So now on with a few of your questions from across the different forums (again, forgive me for paraphrasing). Note, the best place to post questions for me to find them is always the latest update thread:

 

Q1. If v5.0 is a success and a v6.0 is planned will there be aircraft carriers?

A. We would like to introduce Carriers in TF 6.0 yes, but it does depend on the success of TF 5.0 and whether we can continue our development efforts.

 

Q2. Do you have an idea of the price range?

A. Not at this time. Pricing will be determined by 1C.

 

Q3. Can the next update maybe show some new effects and maybe a selection of new aircraft, especially as there are so many to choose from?

A. The video updates so far have deliberately been cinematically styled but do take a long time to produce. The video’s will continue to feature new aircraft as they are imported into the game engine but as we approach the testing phase it may not be practical to focus on one aircraft each month. How the PR updates are provided will therefore be re-considered and we will attempt to show more than just one aircraft. From a practical perspective it may be easier to show pictures rather than video for example. Regarding effects, these are always be refined – both for the visual aspects and the graphical overheads. Here are a few images to illustrate work in progress:

 

channelSkin_01.jpg

 

NewFlame02.jpg

 

NewFlame03.jpg

 

NewFlame05.jpg

 

Q4. Why are you including a Bf-108 Taifun?

A. We include the Bf-108 Taifun because it was one of the first test attempts by TF to get new aircraft cockpit into the game prior to us signing with 1C and receiving the source code.  Since we had already done the work, it made sense to include the aircraft in TF 5.0.  It will stand as an intermediate trainer and can be flown by two people online. In addition, it was used by Rommel as a “Desert Taxi” so could be used for some interesting missions.

 

Q5. Can we have a bigger map area that have a navigation challenge?

A. At the moment there is a size limit for maps of approx. 400 km X 400 km. (we may look at increasing this for later maps) The map we are creating for the TF 5.0 "Tobruk" is based around the November 1940 to May 1942 period and covers the major areas where combat occurred.

 

Q6. Pilots in 109s had the option to close the right or left radiator flap manually with a cable down at the right and left leg. Could this ever be an option?

A. Pilots flying 109F's will have option to use either manual or auto rads. They will also be able to shut off one rad completely if there is a leak in that rad... this will keep the fluid in the other rad contained.

 

Q7. Any chance of a work in progress video of how the modelling work is done for a ground vehicle/object so people can appreciate how much effort is required in making one from the ground up?

A. Certainly. This video shows Yotheguy at work on the Macchi C-202 cockpit. Even though it is sped up it hopefully illustrates just how complex and time consuming this aspect of the work is. Where we don’t have original drawings, additional work is required to determine accurate object measurements and sizes from photos.

 

 

This is obviously just one part of the development process. A huge amount of effort also goes into ensuring accurate high-fidelity flight models, damage models and ballistics.

 

Q8. Any plans to improve the sound quality?

A. Yes, among other improvements, new engine sounds are currently being worked for Daimler Benz, Hispano Suiza, Pratt & Whiney and Allison engines. Also, on the subject of sound, with the introduction of flyable French and Italian aircraft we are also recording new voice packs.

 

Q9. Regarding the movement of the Spit and Hurri on the ground whilst taxying, would it not be important to rectify the existing problems now (and try to instil some confidence in TF5), rather than wait until TF5 I released?

A. Doing additional releases does take up additional effort and there is always the question of where we would draw the line. There is much work to be done and our focus needs to be to deliver TF5. As stated previously, we continue to work on the flight models all the way to the point of release to deliver the most accurate simulation we can.

 

Q10. Will future updates to Blitz be free or will it require a purchase of TF5 to get updates?

A. To fly the Tobruk map and the new planes will require you to purchase TF5. Patches and fixes made to the core game engine, (for example, improvements to AI behaviour) will be available to existing owners of TF4.5/CoD-Blitz free of charge.

 

Q11. TFS has been promising so much yet nothing seems to be forthcoming. Can we see some improvements to Blitz now – even if it is to show the customer base are being listened to?

A. We hope that through these regular updates you can see what the team are working on, but otherwise the response to question 9 also applies to this. Through these updates I do hope to show that the team is listening and responding as best it can. If for example there is something specific you want to see, I can try to capture it and show it within these regular updates.

 

Q12. The law in Germany is changing which means that swastikas are to be allowed. Does this mean that v5.0 will be able to use accurate markings featuring swastikas?

A. To ensure the game can maintain an international distribution (e.g. Russia), it is necessary to continue to avoid the use of swastikas in all aircraft markings.

 

Q13. How hard would it be to implement Nvidia Ansel?

A. It would need to be assessed. Right now it is not in our planned scope of work.

 

Q14. Have the coding team been able to do any work on Anti-Aliasing options?

A. Yes. It is something we are working on as part of game engine improvements.

 

As usual I will finish with a short video…

 

 

Thank you for your continued support, patience and understanding.

 

For and on behalf of Team Fusion Simulations,

Bonkin.

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Hi Bonkin, thanks for the update. 

 

Regarding Q. 11 I'd like to see Grass tiles that no longer pop into view and also default markings no longer appearing in replays (trk files), nose art working from the menu and finally an AI truck crossing a bridge. Look forward to seeing that, cheers, MP

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D.520 3D looks terrific in 3D Render, but the "new fires" each time more WarThunder. 😝

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Looking good guys. I'm glad to see that this is coming along very nicely and where pretty much everything is right now. The first 2 planes that I'll fly out of the list of the new aircraft are the Wellington and the Dewoitine D.520. According to this website:https://vk.com/club120670117. (at May 2nd) The D.520 is going to flyable also in a future IL-2 1946 patch. However, I see it arriving in Cliffs first, and 1946 second.

Two questions I have regarding CoD are:

1. If TF 5.0+ are major success and the development efforts are able to be continued, will TF 6.0 as well as the carriers be hopefully released before BoX releases a Pacific Theatre?

2. Roughly how long does it the importation process take for an airplane?

 

Lets hope that this dream stays alive as Oleg Maddox once envisioned.

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Any news on the interim patch that is supposed to be released before TF 5.0.....or did I dream it?

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3 hours ago, DD_Arthur said:

Any news on the interim patch that is supposed to be released before TF 5.0.....or did I dream it?

 

If that work gets done before 5.0 is ready, you'll still get it. The AI fixes are a massive undertaking but we are making progress on it. 

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8 hours ago, Mysticpuma said:

Hi Bonkin, thanks for the update. 

 

Regarding Q. 11 I'd like to see Grass tiles that no longer pop into view and also default markings no longer appearing in replays (trk files), nose art working from the menu and finally an AI truck crossing a bridge. Look forward to seeing that, cheers, MP

- We have built a new version of the grass tiles which displays less popup and we expect with further development there will be improvement on that Alpha.

- Not sure about whether we will have time to fix the issue with default markings appearing in trk files... doesn't everyone use live video records?

- Improving the realism re. vehicles crossing rivers is on our list.

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Progress looks incredible! Sad to see no mention of VR compatibility - is it still on the table for V5? Battle of Britain in VR would be a dream come true! Thanks!

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2 minutes ago, JS81Knows said:

Progress looks incredible! Sad to see no mention of VR compatibility - is it still on the table for V5? Battle of Britain in VR would be a dream come true! Thanks!

As has been mentioned, we are working on VR, but it will not be ready for TF 5.0.

 

We hope to implement it in a patch sometime in the six month period following TF 5.0's release.

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2 hours ago, Buzzsaw said:

 

- Not sure about whether we will have time to fix the issue with default markings appearing in trk files... doesn't everyone use live video records?

 

 

At the moment yes..... Because default markings appear over skins in trk files!

 

 

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Thanks Bonkin…...it's looking good...…...finally. I'm looking forward to seeing the end product

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Thank you very much for the update, really appreciated. :salute:

 

Looks to be progressing very well, looking forward to the release.;)

 

 

Wishing you all the very best, Pete.:biggrin:

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Cool update, people will never be happy with fire :P I think it's really hard to make realistic fire in games, for me it looks good enough.

It will be fun to compare p40E from box and clod, same goes for mc202.

 

Game is  getting better and better, all this improvments and tons more to come. Can't wait!

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Regia Aeronuatica is coming back !!

Well done.

One question is Mc 200 and SM79  included in the development?

Many thanks

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2 hours ago, ITAF_Rani said:

Regia Aeronuatica is coming back !!

Well done.

One question is Mc 200 and SM79  included in the development?

Many thanks

I don't think so, they said mc200 was similar to 202 (or was it g50?) so they took 202. Maybe in thhe future.

 

On 8/26/2018 at 10:43 PM, Buzzsaw said:

Building a Macchi C-200 for TF 5.0 would be nice, but in terms of replicating the environment of North Africa it does not add a lot considering the presence of the Fiat G-50.

 

On the other hand, adding a Fiat CR-42 and Macchi C-202 to the existing G-50 flyable gives a broad spectrum of the performance which was available to the pilots of the Regia Aeronautica and allows mission builders to cover the period of July 1940 to May 1942 fairly comprehensively.

 

Edited by InProgress

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On 9/10/2018 at 8:51 PM, Bonkin said:

Q12. The law in Germany is changing which means that swastikas are to be allowed. Does this mean that v5.0 will be able to use accurate markings featuring swastikas?

A. To ensure the game can maintain an international distribution (e.g. Russia), it is necessary to continue to avoid the use of swastikas in all aircraft markings.

I have question for that one, is is possible to get "unofficial" mod that would be posted somewhere else in one easy file to install it and get uncensored version? If this was "unofficial" made by TF, it would work great, updated everytime there is new plane or skins. Maybe even adding workshop support on steam,  it  would keep that mod updated all  the time and other people could add new missions, skins or anything on steam workshop. It would be really great to get this function, it adds new life to  many game if you have easy access to browse and install mods.

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6 minutes ago, InProgress said:

I have question for that one, is is possible to get "unofficial" mod that would be posted somewhere else in one easy file to install it and get uncensored version? If this was "unofficial" made by TF, it would work great, updated everytime there is new plane or skins. Maybe even adding workshop support on steam,  it  would keep that mod updated all  the time and other people could add new missions, skins or anything on steam workshop. It would be really great to get this function, it adds new life to  many game if you have easy access to browse and install mods.

TF can't make any mods which would allow implementation of the Swastika... that would be illegal.

 

I believe there is a group which is working on the coding for their own mod, but not sure when they will finish it.

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On 9/11/2018 at 2:49 PM, Buzzsaw said:

- Not sure about whether we will have time to fix the issue with default markings appearing in trk files... doesn't everyone use live video records?

 

No. Certainly not for cinematic videos.

 

 

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4 hours ago, PB_Cybermat47 said:

 

No. Certainly not for cinematic videos.

 

 

Thanks. Someone who understands 👍

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On ‎9‎/‎11‎/‎2018 at 7:47 AM, Buzzsaw said:

As has been mentioned, we are working on VR, but it will not be ready for TF 5.0.

 

We hope to implement it in a patch sometime in the six month period following TF 5.0's release.

That is excellent news! Time to start saving up money!

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That looks amazing!

There's so much to look forward to!

Better anti aliasing is certainly a must have.

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On 9/11/2018 at 5:49 AM, Buzzsaw said:

- Not sure about whether we will have time to fix the issue with default markings appearing in trk files... doesn't everyone use live video records?

 

Thought I'd add a video clip to show why:

 

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Hi MP.

 

  Can't this be fixed by downloading a custom blank skin and then putting the numbers or letters you wish on the aeroplane in game? Maybe I'm misunderstanding something here though. I alway use a blank custom skin and them put the crosses and numbers on in game. Maybe Allied skins are a little more complicated in some way?

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No Rich, you are missing the point, no problem. 

Skinning is one of the great pleasures many people have and there are thousands of custom made skins for Clod, all historically accurate with correct markings, correct text, correct nose art, correct spinner colours and they look great in real time in the game. The thing is, the trk recorder is exactly what it says, it records everything that happened. 

So as shown in the example above, someone has created an authentic skin with markings, text, etc, etc, and it looks great real-time but once viewed in a replay the default game markings just get pasted on no matter what. 

 

So think about it for a moment and imagine all those skins in game and you decide to record an epic encounter and make it a cinematic video from multiple angles. You hit playback and as you can see it is impossible as the trk file pastes the default markings on no matter what. 

 

So the point is, downloading a blank skin is exactly what we already have in game, custom skins unless you want them to have no artwork from real life can be used for replays but then they won't be historically accurate. 

Final example, let's say (if it was available in the future) we have a P-51 of George Preddy with all his victory markings, the barbers shop nose art, etc, etc. we create a great trk file, play it back, then the custom skin gets painted over with whatever default markings the game wants. 

 

Scratch any cinematic and let's not forget, if we do that then it won't be shared and if it isn't shared then that is free publicity TF is missing out on. 

 

It really is an issue and blank skins won't solve it. 

 

Cheers MP

Edited by Mysticpuma
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On 9/10/2018 at 7:51 PM, Bonkin said:

...

 

 

AI

Work is underway with re-writing the AI command GUI to fix the errors and mistakes which were there. In addition, work is currently be done on addressing certain AI combat routines.

 

...

 

This is great news.

 

Could I ask please if there is any news on a SP career mode; at the least just random missions with stats being tracked would be something.

 

CloD looks amazing, and I love some of the detail that is already in it, the move to the Med is brilliant, but I can't see myself investing in it unless there some form of SP (open ended) career (and the old AI issues would need to be fixed).

 

Thanks.

Edited by Karamazov
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I'm basically in agreement concerning the SP. I get TF is mainly concerned with re-coding/bug squashing/new hardware, and they have nothing to do with pricing 5.0. If 1C decides on full price I'd hope there's some significant tweak to what I think is a pretty anemic SP environment.  You can dumpster that goofy QMB whenever you like. Maybe in the Sept update Bonkin can touch on the SP.

 

Haha - all that being said - might be hard for me to pass on P-40 C/E and Martlet no matter what.....

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11 hours ago, Mysticpuma said:

No Rich, you are missing the point, no problem. 

Skinning is one of the great pleasure many people have and there are thousands of custom made skins for Clod, all historically accurate with correct markings, correct text, correct hose art, correct spinner colours and they look great in real time in the game. The thing is, the trk recorder is exactly what it says, it records everything that happened. 

So as shown in the example above, someone has created an authentic skin with markings, text, etc, etc, and it looks great real-time but once viewed in a replay the default game markings just get pasted on no matter what. 

 

So think about it for a moment and imagine all those skins in game and you decide to record an epic encounter and make it a cinematic video from multiple angles. You hit playback and as you can see it is impossible as the trk file pastes the default markings on no matter what. 

 

So the point is, downloading a blank skin is exactly what we already have in game, custom skins unless you want them to have no artwork from real life can be used for replays but then they won't be historically accurate. 

Final example, let's say (if it was available in the future) we have a P-51 of George Preddy with all his victory markings, the barbers shop nose art, etc, etc. we create a great trk file, play it back, then the custom skin gets painted over with whatever default markings the game wants. 

 

Scratch any cinematic and let's not forget, if we do that then it won't be shared and if it isn't shared then that is free publicity TF is missing out on. 

 

It really is an issue and blank skins won't solve it. 

 

Cheers MP

Now I understand. That is frustrating :(

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And to clarify for Buzzsaw with the question "doesn't everyone use live video records?"

 

ATAG is a closed cockpit server. They have a way of enabling a track viewer so externals can be seen....but skin downloads are off...so it is default markings only.

So if it was live records only, there would never be an external view of any aircraft in any video ever? External views in any video created from ATAG combat using trk have no issues as they are all default skins. Trk. files for SP or offline players are useless for videos if any custom skin is used.

I mean you can't line a shot up on an aircraft in SP, cut to an outside view, try and fire in the right direction, pause, go back internal view, try again and again and again?

 

Cheers, MP

 

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Besides skins tracks have problems like dropped bombs continue to appear attached to plane...

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We will look a the .trk problems and see what can be done.

 

Our primary focus is to enable the game to be played by the purchasers and the aircraft flown according to the historical characteristics and in a historical environment.

 

Other aspects of the game to do to with creating video playback are a lesser priority, but we will try to address those concerns.

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I´m really looking forward to TFS 5.0

 

And, please, please, please, have a look at the Antialiasing issues! I still can´t belive that you guys sell this sim with only basic FXAA support.

 

Cheers

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