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[LeLv34]Lykurgos88

Career automated sorties should yield more kills for squadmates

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I have only recently started playing the career mode. First I started Soviet career during Battle of Moscow (34th PVO, Mig-3) and after that German career during Battle of Stalingrad (JG51, FW-190 A3). I use the following difficulty settings:
 

Spoiler

 

Career:

Speed = Moderate

Frontline density = Medium

Start = Runway

Difficulty = Medium

 

Game difficulty:

Realistic, except for user interface (UI) enhancements and icons

 

 

With both of these careers I have noticed that my squadmates get rarely any kills whatsoever from those automated sorties that the player is not part of (they do get little kills from proper player-led missions too, but this thread is not about in-game AI performance). Now, I do understand that in reality the majority of sorties during the WW2 didn't produce combat kills, but I believe there are still some arguments to be made in favor of more aerial and ground kills in this game. I present both a historical AND a gameplay related arguments:

 

1) Historical argument

 

While majority of aerial combat sorties did not produce kills during WW2, this is only true when we examine the war as a whole. There were multiple periods of high intensity warfare, where certain squadrons racked up tremendous amounts of kills in short periods of time. For example during 1944 Finnish squadrons 24 & 34 (HLeLv 24 & 34) didn't rack up that many kills in the spring, but as soon as the Karelian summer offensive started in June 9th, there was a spectacularly high increase in achieved aerial victories. In just 2 months squadrons 24 and 34 achieved a combined total of 435 aerial victories. You can find similar records from German Luftwaffe's JG51 and JG 52 during their most intense deployments.

 

The career mode in IL-2 only has battles of "high intensity". Battle of Moscow and Stalingrad were especially fierce, and they resulted in numerous air casualties on both sides. Having the player's fighter squadron get more aerial victories (during battles like these) is not too far-fetched IMHO.

 

2) Gameplay argument

 

Currently any decently competent human player will vastly outscore his AI squadmates. The scoreboard for AI remains almost static throughout the entire campaign. Gameplay-wise it would be more satisfying to have some actual competition from your fellow squadmates. So when the player receives the promotion to "Squadron commander", it would feel worth the extra effort.

 

Illogical outcome

 

Gameplay-wise there are also some results from automated missions that seem downright buggy. Or that they make no sense considering the "Accomplished" outcome. I will list the discrepancies here:

 

- "Enemy vehicle column attack" = I have never seen any kills (ground or aerial) from these missions. Considering that in order for these missions to be "Accomplished", the player has to hit at least one vehicle with bombs/rockets/guns, it makes no sense for automated missions to not yield any kills at all.

--> Solution: If the mission is considered "Accomplished", give every squadmember vehicle kills between 0-3.

 

- "Enemy river crossing attack" = Similarly I have never seen any kills from these missions.

--> Solution: If the mission is considered "Accomplised", one squadmember should get a "bridge kill". Others should get vehicle, AAA gun or machine gun kills between 0-2.

 

- "Enemy artillery position attack" = No kills from these.

--> Solution: If the mission is considered "Accomplished", one squadmember should get a "cannon kill". AAA, rocket launcher and machine gun kills should also be possible (0-2 kills for each).

 

- "Enemy train attack" = No kills from these either.

--> Solution: If the mission is considered "Accomplished", one squadmember should get a "locomotive and&or railroad car kill". Others should get railroad kills between 0-1.

 

- "Enemy airfield attack" = Very rarely any kills.

--> Solution: If the mission is considered "Accomplished", one squadmember should get a "parked plane kill". Others should get "parked plane, AAA gun and machine gun kills" between 0-2.

 

- "Intercept enemy bombers" = One kill is very rarely recorded. Never seen 2 kills from same mission.

--> Solution: If the mission is considered "Accomplished", at least one bomber kill should be given to one squadmate. It should not be impossible for the squadron to get more kills too.

 

- "Freehunt, escort missions, river crossing covers ETC" = One kill is very rarely recorded. Never seen 2 kills from same mission.

--> Solution: These missions can acceptably have 0 kills even with the "Accomplished" result. However, there should occasionally be a possibility for 1-5 kills for your squadron, if you are lucky.

 

Finally as an addendum, I noticed the new recruits for squadrons have some very strange and illogical "initial kill records". In my FW190 campaign new recruits of my squadron had "facility, residential building, marine and station" kills, which make no sense for JG51 fighter squadron. Similarly new bomber squadron recruits should not have many initial "Heavy plane kills" ETC.

 

3) In summary: I feel that simple outcome algorithm changes are in order for extra immersion and squad competition. These little changes can make the whole career feel more "alive" instead of the player being the sole hero. The outcome results should probable scale with the campaign difficulty options too, so that "Realistic campaign speed" results in slightly less kills from automated missions than the "rapid" setting. I also feel that USSR and German squadrons should get kills at the same pace from automated missions, even though it's not realistic. This is a game after all, not a 100% recreation of history.

 

TL;DR

Automated missions in IL-2 career mode give next to zero kills for squadmembers. They should get more aerial and ground kills for the sake of squad competition and player immersion. Some buggy results/stats should also be fixed.

 

Thank you for reading! I have player IL2 GBS for at least 200 hours now and I'm having a blast despite little issues here and there. I especially appreciated the recent AI enhancements. Keep up the good work, and have nice day! :soldier:

 

 

 

 

 

  • Upvote 3

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Posted (edited)

I agree that AI stats need some boost to keep pace with the player, but I think the problem is not the AI, but the player. We are top aces compared to what was possible in reality.

 

I'm in the 9th mission into the Kuban campaign with a Yak1B/Yak7 unit, one mission failed, but I have 12 ground kills from 4 ground attack sorties and 8 air kills from 4 escort sorties. And add to that that I'm a very bad pilot.

 

Hungary in 1944 was a combat-rich environment, but the average figure is 1 kill per 10 sorties for ace pilots with over 20 kills. Now factor in pilots with lesser abilities, and it results in a guesstimate that whole squadrons had to fly 2 to 3 sorties in order to score one single victory. From this point of view, the performance of the AI is historically correct.

Edited by sniperton
  • Upvote 1

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But then there are the ground attack missions, which make no sense. How can the "Attack enemy river crossing" be considered completed, if no one actually destroyed the pontoon bridge? Or why is the "Attack enemy convoy" completed, if not one enemy vehicle is destroyed?

 

Some of these "Accomplished" results are downright buggy.

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Posted (edited)

Just wanted to point out that low or missing AI scores are more a gameplay issue than a historical inaccuracy.

10 hours ago, [LeLv34]Lykurgos88 said:

Some of these "Accomplished" results are downright buggy.

Agreed.

 

Edited by sniperton

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