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Developer Diary, Part XI

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Hello dear friends. Spring has come, but here is heavy snowfall in Moscow. Perhaps nature wants to help us and provide us the opportunity to study the types of snowy expanses as long as possible. Many thanks to the nature and the weather, but we still want to see the spring. Tell that forecasters possible.

 

The work is productive in the office and any delays is still insignificant and they are within the norms. This is encouraging every morning. The time is coming when images come more often than texts in our diaries.

 

But this will be in the future; right now we have a lot of affairs and concerns. Work with such large projects often leads to the need to experiment and change something when we see the result. For example, a small change in lighting requires a fix for already-made textures and a change in the details of animation requires a change in the models. At the moment, your help is very valuable in the search for materials and blueprints. Finding them is getting harder every year as well as data about the battle. Every week we go to the archives, looking for any information that might help. Help us; many of you demonstrate your knowledge in your verbal debates, but actual documents help even more, maybe that can be a key to unlocking something we are missing.

 

We planned some interesting events and experiments, they will be interesting for us and for you and they will be implemented in the near future, if the weather will allow it. We'll leave the office and go to the airfield to make a dogfight with sport airplanes and conduct tests of turbulence and wake forces. We'll surely shoot all on camera and turn it into interesting films that later we'll present to your attention. Funny, that work on a completely virtual project sometimes requires very real risk, but that's what makes our job so interesting.

 

And I can already say with confidence that we'll meet with the Russian community in Volgograd (Stalingrad) in May and it will be possible the first presentation of our work. I'll let you know the details later when we'll know our plan exactly.

 

T34-CTZ_1.jpg T34-CTZ_2.jpg T34-CTZ_3.jpg T34-CTZ_4.jpg

 

Full news

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I love these updates! Thanks a lot for taking the time.

I also like the clarity and specificity (when it's possible). We won't always like every decision but we get to know the decision and the reasons for it.

Anyone have any free tickets from Japan to Volgograd? Anyone?

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"...dogfight with sport airplanes and conduct tests of turbulence and wake forces."

 

Sounds interesting, good luck with it.

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Nice looking T-34.

 

Have fun in the real sky, but please, do be careful.  As one of the great test pilots of our time says: "That flying s..t will kill you."  (Mike Melvill of Scaled Composites).

Edited by ElAurens

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"...dogfight with sport airplanes and conduct tests of turbulence and wake forces."

 

Sounds interesting, good luck with it.

Yes, really a good idea! Looking forward to the vids.

T34 looks very good! Thank you for the regular updates! ^_^

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S!

 

Thanks for the update :) Believe me, we still got a plenty of snow and cold up here in Arctic Circle ;) Maybe in one month we start to see sign of real spring :D Good to see the dev team is in good spirits, it tells all are devoted and the product is in good hands :) Have a nice wintery weekend!

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Part XI for those of us who prefer Roman numerals.



in the USA we actually have a combat dogfight excursion in California, and Florida..

 

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Sublime texture on that T-34! Really very rich and varied surface, with mud, original green camo, slapped-on winter camo, etc. represented in a very convincing way. Excellent texture artist you have, send our congrats to him! Bodes well for the future quality.

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Sublime texture on that T-34! Really very rich and varied surface, with mud, original green camo, slapped-on winter camo, etc. represented in a very convincing way. Excellent texture artist you have, send our congrats to him! Bodes well for the future quality.

 

For her :)

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Great updates, thanks guys! I have the feeling that the Q/A part is almost over, since the most urgent questions had been answered and from the near future some nice shots are goinig go say more than a thousand cat videos :)
Enjoy your weekend, the sun came out here today, hope she will make it to mother Russia soon!

Cheers

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Part XI for those of us who prefer Roman numerals.

 

in the USA we actually have a combat dogfight excursion in California, and Florida..

 

That looks great Mastiff, thanks for sharing.

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Happy to see the multiple screenshots...will be inteested in what other vehicles are planned for initial release.

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Thanks for the update, nice pictures and interesting information, as usual. Edit: I realize the second paragraph is much longer, but the first one is still the main part of the reply.

 

But this

At the moment, your help is very valuable in the search for materials and blueprints.
Seriously? Except for a single question regarding the Ju 87 wing geometry, you guys haven't even bothered with a question, let alone an ongoing discussion about information you seek or any display of interest in any materials. Is the Ju 87 issue still open? Is it important? Do you want someone to go to a museum and take the measurements? Or what? And as far as I can tell, you haven't managed to properly texture the water temperature gauge in the LaGG, but my question regarding it, has fallen on deaf ears. On the bottom line I have to suppose you were talking to and about a different community. Edited by JtD

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JtD - It's apparent that both communications and questions relate to the Russian community and not the international one. Which is why I find these "updates" mildly interesting at best and no improvement over what we had with CloD. It seems to be a feature of Russian teams that they're far more "insular" than the international community wants. I believe RoF's success in communications is pretty much down to Jason and he seems to be currently absent from the project.

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Not sure, he's on the forum frequently. Last time yesterday. He doesn't say much, though.

 

Btw, on the Russian board, the discussion regarding this update contains more replies by the developers than this topic contains in total.

Edited by JtD
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Precisely ... which is what Zorin (rightfully) criticized lately. It does send out a message but I doubt the developer likes the content and tenor of said message. It says "You don't really matter to us" to us folks here. *shrugs*

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I guess we need to ask more questions so that we at least earn a right to complain. :)

 

Here's one: I see that in May there'll be meeting, possibly including a first preview. Is a similar event, or an event on smaller scale, planned in different locations? Do you intend to be present something on some computer game conventions/fairs some time in 2013?

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I'm right here guys. I have been busy with ROF Beta and other special projects. BOS progress is moving along as planned so there is not much to discuss at the moment. Loft has been doing a fine job answering questions and keeping you updated. I will answer more questions when I return from my trip to Moscow next week after my discussions with the team in person and I will be more involved in the forum as the project matures further.

 

Besides the Russian event, We also plan a media only even later in the year for BOS and ROF in the USA. We won't be at E3 and I don't think we have any plans for Gamescom this year. Maybe in 2014. If things change I will let you know.

 

Jason

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Any English/Russian speaker able to:

A) translate for us from the Russian forums?

B) attend the Volgograd meeting, whenever it may be?

 

I'm keen to hear as many details as we can.

 

Btw, if the tanks look like that, then my hopes are high for the aircraft!

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Yup, very good texture work. And that usually means there can be some economy in terms of modelling/polygons, which is a good thing.

 

Also pleased to hear concrete info about plans and time-lines, which in turn manages expectations.

 

It's quite nice to have a dev cycle based on a sense of normality and almost the mundane, rather thana boom-bust roller-coaster of massive highs and lows. Candy is nice, but so is a sense of steady progression and spadework.

 

Ben

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I'm a poor Russian speaker at best, since the last time I did anything serious with it was in college, but I'll do my best to give the gist of developer responses from the Russian forum (for this update, anyway). I do not guarantee accuracy.

 

Post #4: question on fine detail on the T34. Reply was that such things don't matter, given that they're practically invisible from even a few hundred feet.

 

Post #15: question about whether the T-34 model comes from a previous project. Reply was that it did, and had some finishing work done to bring it into BoS. Edit: Post #17 says that it was actually made from scratch, and that's why Loft is so happy with it, since they only started in December. Or maybe not???

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I'm right here guys. I have been busy with ROF Beta and other special projects. BOS progress is moving along as planned so there is not much to discuss at the moment. Loft has been doing a fine job answering questions and keeping you updated. I will answer more questions when I return from my trip to Moscow next week after my discussions with the team in person and I will be more involved in the forum as the project matures further.

 

Besides the Russian event, We also plan a media only even later in the year for BOS and ROF in the USA. We won't be at E3 and I don't think we have any plans for Gamescom this year. Maybe in 2014. If things change I will let you know.

 

Jason

 

Jason ... it's not the fact that you don't have time - it's the message that the considerable interaction between developers and the Russian-speaking community sends out when compared to the cut&paste posts here. Don't be surprised when the mood takes a sharp turn towards skepticism or the forum usage drops. Right now it's a graveyard here ... compared to the Russian forum. Should speak volumes.

 

Edit: I do have a question for the pool, though. What is the intended ground object pool in the tank/artillery/vehicle department? A T-34 is, of course, logical, but it wasn't exactly alone on the battlefield. ;)

Edited by csThor
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Jason ... it's not the fact that you don't have time - it's the message that the considerable interaction between developers and the Russian-speaking community sends out when compared to the cut&paste posts here. Don't be surprised when the mood takes a sharp turn towards skepticism or the forum usage drops. Right now it's a graveyard here ... compared to the Russian forum. Should speak volumes.

 

Edit: I do have a question for the pool, though. What is the intended ground object pool in the tank/artillery/vehicle department? A T-34 is, of course, logical, but it wasn't exactly alone on the battlefield. ;)

 

Don't be so dramatic dude. No one speaks to his customers and readily shares information more in the genre than myself and the BOS/ROF team. What we have done with ROF should tell you all you need to know about our communication. Nothing will change. It's still very early in the process and there is not much to comment on except small nitty gritty details some want to know about that we are not prepared to speak about yet or I have not spoken to Loft about yet. Loft is the producer and my partner, if he wants to speak in his native tongue to the Russian community that is great and does not say anything about our attitude to the non-Russian community or myself. It is very easy to do a Google translate to see what he says while I focus on keeping my promises to my other product's customers for a couple weeks.

 

Jason 

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I have to say it once again, your texture artist is fantastic, whoever she is!  :salute:

Not to detract from any of the work you other guys do, but she has a great eye for detail.

 

Keep up the good work team and thanks for sharing!

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Besides the Russian event, We also plan a media only even later in the year for BOS and ROF in the USA. We won't be at E3 and I don't think we have any plans for Gamescom this year. Maybe in 2014. If things change I will let you know.

Thanks for the answer. :)

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Sublime texture on that T-34! Really very rich and varied surface, with mud, original green camo, slapped-on winter camo, etc. represented in a very convincing way. Excellent texture artist you have, send our congrats to him! Bodes well for the future quality.

 

+ 1!

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Thanks for the update! I like the experiment part: dogfighting with sport planes, cannot wait to see that! :)

 

And of course the T34 looks really nice...

 

 

Sublime texture on that T-34! Really very rich and varied surface, with mud, original green camo, slapped-on winter camo, etc. represented in a very convincing way. Excellent texture artist you have, send our congrats to him! Bodes well for the future quality.

 

+1 too.

 

Hopefully this sim is going to rock :good:

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Cheers for the update, and thanks for the honest answers and feedback. Looking forward to seeing progress in the next few months.

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Thanks for the update...  I know we still have quite a ways to go so for me at this point anything is good and I really am not expecting volumes.. a year from now I'd be expecting a bit more but for now.. it is what it is and it is appreciated.

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Bongodriver scratched the itch:

 

So if you are waiting on someone to dig you a hole you'd want each shovel full categorised and counted out.........do you want it in roman numerals or Arabic?

 

Don't bother, son. It wont wash here.

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Morning from Germany.

 

Don't be so dramatic dude.

 

I don't see my words as drama ... more as a result of experience with the banana board. And given the weekly cut & paste answers to questions - the style of questions and the answers show BTW that 99% of these questions were asked in Russian and only translated into english BTW - reminds me all too much of what went on there WRT "development updates" and what effect they had on conduct and mood in that board over there. Burnt child dreads the fire, you know. ;)

 

No one speaks to his customers and readily shares information more in the genre than myself and the BOS/ROF team. What we have done with ROF should tall you all you need to know about our communication. Nothing will change.

 

I do not doubt that, but even a cursory look via an online translator will reveal to anyone who takes the time that the discussion between community and individual developers is active there ... and not existant here. As JtD remarked so rightly there was a single question on the Ju 87 posted but even that seemed to have been more "accidental" than anything - there was no follow-up, not even an acknowledgement of the replies or even a quick note "Thanks, we've found the answer". This is also why I found discussions here rather shallow, not going into issues. My personal impression is that people are unsure what to expect and so there is no discussion in depth, maybe a byproduct of the disappointment in CloD.

 

 It's still very early in the process and there is not much to comment on except small nitty gritty details some want to know about that we are not prepared to speak about yet or I have not spoken to Loft about yet.

 

Let me answer that with an experience from back when "Forgotten Battles" was in development. For months before the release it had been known that Starshoy was writing a dynamic campaign generator for FB. But it was only during the betatest that anyone but MG got a good look at it (including myself). You know what I did first? I wrote a three-page response to the way campaigns were set up and why virtually none of them had any historical realism in them and why they should be scrapped and rewritten. I tried to outline campaign ways that would work ... It was a vain effort, at that point there was a feature freeze and nothing was changed.

 

You see there are "nitty gritty details" which - unless caught "early in the process" - can pretty much ruin a part of the effort for some. It certainly ruined DGen campaigns in 1946 for me (along with a number of real DGen shortcomings).

 

Loft is the producer and my partner, if he wants to speak in his native tongue to the Russian community that is great and does not say anything about our attitude to the non-Russian community or myself.

 

I don't doubt it's not intentional but it creates the impression - at least for me - that we here are merely an appendix, to be placated weekly by posting a scripted "weekly update", and the real stuff happens on the Russian forums. Intentions and impressions/results do not always match. ;)

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You see there are "nitty gritty details" which - unless caught "early in the process" - can pretty much ruin a part of the effort for some. It certainly ruined DGen campaigns in 1946 for me (along with a number of real DGen shortcomings).

 

 

Very good post csThor, I had exactly the same feelings, but these were dispelled by Han http://forum.il2sturmovik.su/topic/277-???????

Edited by 89-

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I disagree on the point that they wouldn't be aerpnautical technicians, at least the person responsible for the flight models is.

 

But it would be great if they took up a historian in the team. This is really what has been missing from Rise of Flight. Not that they get the broad historical facts wrong, but the immersion is in the details.

 

This is a dang good idea. I'm working in a chipset company that makes them for all the major players (manufacturers of cellulars, tabels, pc's etc). We have liaisons that work with each player and develop a tight relationship with them. The teams are carefully chosen and often spend years with them, forming bonds and getting to really know what the players want, so we can deliver what they need for their product.

 

It would be cool if the devs had a historical liaison that helped them in campaign design, or consultants, but they probably thought about this. But they can't pull some big name university professor that's never been a pilot or played a sim. They need to get someone who understands the context its in. Its developing a game as historically close as possible, within reason. 

 

 

for the discussion. . . 

 

 

 

Hey the devs are openly communicating with us. That's alot from the dryness of banana. 

 

I think no matter what billions of Engrish speakers or not, exist for the market. English speakers aren't the center of the world, but it doesn't matter who is center, or not, isn't necessary for this game discussion. So even if the Russian forums get it first, it happens everywhere. A close friend owns a bar, hence you and a select choice of your friends, can get a few free drinks. KNow a car mechanic pal? You get free advice on car (if she's cool). Those Russian forums that are close to the devs will get it first.

 

But something eclipses that, and its the goals we all can agree on. We all want a game that works awesomely in all systems. We want a game that's historically correct and realistically modeled within reason (a reasonable degree of "fun" put in, because its a game and its something we do for entertainment and fun), that has a great campaign, and "the online features". A awesome FM and DM too. We like big maps, and bombs that go boom, we like tigers and bunnies*, and we like the zoom. And a good AI. 

 

 

*shack bunny or the blue flightsuits

 

 

An example was in MiG Alley for fun vs tedium. The missions took literally hours to complete if you flew the whole way, more so in the Mustang or mudmover missions with the prop planes. But they had a speed up / fast  forward feature where after you set your way points you could blaze through the parts where you're sitting with nothing but sky for miles, and slow down to normal when you got into the combat area. 

 
Not everyone has hours to play . . . 

 

I'm sure there is more that the community would agree as a whole, and I'd put myself out there and say as a community we want the best sim that is balanced in all respects, has what the original IL-2 series drew us in for 10 years, but surpasses that. 

 

 

I feel the devs drawing help from the community helps the game overall, even if they could do it alone. People involved (in any part) really get a passion for the product, even if its a small part. I remember my friend worked on the Titanic, and to this day he'll talk about it and even though he doesn't like notebook or chick flicks, he is proud and likes the Titanic. 

 

Also sometimes you get out of the box ideas, that the devs might not see from their perspective

 

 

 

I like the devs going out and flying to get a feel and testing things in the sport planes, its just good. 

 

In regarding changing the developing things from the start or else its permanent. Diamonds are forever. Changes will happen. Ok,  I have hope this game is going to be diamond. But if the ROF engine can be upgraded to give us something close to CLOD, something worthy of the next gen Il-2 its going to be, I think in the future changes can be implemented.

 

Time is short and waits for no one. They are developing a game that works, and all the extras and details crucial for immersion but not to a bug free / working game may not get priority over others. Like a great flight model or bullet physics being done in lieu of the ground crew riding in bicycles or riding on the ordnance tow . . . 

 

The devs have a grasp of the full scope of what the game can be in years to come, but also to focus on making the first one a great one. 

Edited by hiro

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Locking while I get this thread cleaned up. So much useless, useless crap in here.

Many posts will be deleted, do not be surprised, do not take it personally.

 

 

Stuff like this is what drives developers AWAY from interaction.

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Okay, most of the thread is gone.

I've tried to leave a post or two that politely reflect the fact that some people wish there were more direct interaction and taking up of offers of help from the English-speaking forums. 

 

That done, make any further comments about the content of the updates.

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Very impressed by the moody, evocative texture work on the T-34. Really beautifully done. Can the authors name be revealed? Makes me think back to that first dev blog with the video of two modern tanks moving about. How amazing it would be to see a pair of T-34's bob and curtsey in the snow in a similar manner.

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