Cheerio

July 28th, 2019 by

After 22 years spent keeping Battle-Fields.com running it seems that for one reason or another (well one really, lack of use) I have decided to pull the plug on the B-F network.

People have migrated from forums, towards more social media based platforms and games that are hosted by the games creators which means our servers have gone quiet.

Over the last few years there has been fewer and fewer contributions to the upkeep of the hardware and the monthly costs of paying for hosting so it has become more and more expensive and for no real reason.

I will keep playing the various games I enjoy so I will maybe see one or two of you around. Im still running the 737 sim at www.jetsimulator.co.uk so if you fancy a catch up you know where to find me 🙂

Its been emotional! 🙂

 

Give Condor Gliding Sim A Try

March 26th, 2019 by

Skinny gives you the skinny on Condor

Bonehead has kindly provided a server on which Im running 2 condor dedicated servers now, called BFS 1 &2. Bone has started using Condor himself and seems to love it, but it would be nice to see some more familiar BFS pilots give this simulator a try, especially now that it supports VR. 

Unfortunately there is no free trial version, and I understand you may not want to spend 60 euros on something you dont know you will like, but if so, send me a PM, I might be able to arrange something so you can test it.

Besides condor, you will need some other things to get the best experience.
You will need the latest patch and hangar update:
http://www.condorsoaring.com/downloads-2/

You will need to assign some controls. The ones you will need most and especially when flying VR, you will want these mapped on your joystick or hotas:

– Trim (I highly recommend you assign a slider or throttle to the trim. Disable the option “stick trim where available” in options)
– Airbrakes (2 buttons is fine, you dont need a slider for this)
– Flaps up and flaps down (again 2 buttons is fine)
– Next PDA screen
– PDA zoom in/out
– McCready up/down
– center VR or trackir (not a condor binding, but you’ll need it)

If you dont have VR or 6DoF trackir, also map “panel zoom” so you can actually read the flight computer.

Less crucial but useful:
– Miracle (repairs your plane in flight after collision or flutter if the server allows it)
– Pause. Online this is an autopilot, offline this pauses the game

Only used once or twice per flight:
– gear, water ballast, tow release, wheel brake, extract motor, start motor, ..

If you are new to soaring, I highly recommend going through the built-in flight school lessons. You shouldnt have much problems actually flying the planes if you are a flight sim veteran. Even the tow should feel familiar, its just like dogfighting and lining up your gunsight (aim for the outer wing tip). But you will need to learn about centering thermals, ridge flying and wave, and while you may know about energy management, this takes it to a whole new level and to be at all competitive, you will need to learn some strategies like McCready theory to give you an idea how fast you should fly ideally in what conditions. You have instruments to help you out, but you need to learn to use them.

You will also need to learn to fly with flaps if you fly 15m, 18m or open class planes (trainers, standard class and the current double seaters dont have flaps). To know which flap settings are ideal at which speeds, I highly recommend installing a modded ASI face plate with flap markings. 

This is for the Diana2:
https://drive.google.com/open?id=1FI…LLbmzG2H2N8fjc

This is for the Antares 18m (metric only, I dont have an imperial scale one):
https://drive.google.com/open?id=1Wc…zUywVSeVmM3zMo

Make a backup, then overwrite the existing BMPs in condor2\planes\(plane type)\gauges

The indications are only valid for 1G and maximum ballast, but will at least give you a rough idea.

Once you are at ease flying gliders, make a habit out of fully loading your glider with water ballast. The high wing loading dramatically changes flight characteristics, it makes you fly a lot faster (and even further) in anything but the weakest conditions, but it also makes the plane stall much more easily and makes thermalling more challenging. In condor tasks, weather tends to range from pretty good to bombastic, so you will generally always fly with max ballast. Just dump it before landing.

Though not strictly necessary, you will also want to install extra sceneries to have more online server options and more variety in landscapes. Below some direct links to popular and excellent free sceneries:

Arc Alpin (entire Alps region) 
https://www.condor-club.eu/viewscenery/242/?id=309
Its unrealistic to download it from condor club if you dont have a premium account there, but they provide link to 1fichier which should work even without any account.

Cascade Range (Western California):
https://drive.google.com/open?id=17X…vkQtmvnZH-gz5s

Big Elba (Tuscany Italy)
https://drive.google.com/open?id=1T6…wis6fop7KXvYky

Yunnan (China)
https://drive.google.com/open?id=193…0Dgqp7EqKJBr-f

If you want to fly in your own home area, you can check out this map with available sceneries:
https://www.condor-club.eu/sceneriesmap/241/

More are added pretty much weekly.
You can download them too from that site, but for non paying users, it takes.. a while.

Last edited by Skinny; 21-02-2019 at 08:34.

 

DCS Dedicated Server

March 21st, 2019 by

I think I have got the Battle-Fields dedicated server running for DCS World. I cant test it yet because its running open Beta. So if you are a Beta pilot give it a go and let me know via the forums if its working.

You can search for it using Battle-Fields.com or the IP 195.89.36.4

Happy landings!

Edit: there was an issue with the IP address, i have now changed it so if it failed for you give it another go.

 

Welcome Back

January 14th, 2019 by

Its late, Im tired and my tonsils feel like a couple of golf balls wedged in my throat. But hey, you are interested in my well being I’m sure. Well as long as things keep running I guess.

Its OK don’t feel guilty, I’m not really that bothered about you either, well unless you are one of the guys who I class as friends. The ones I chat with, the ones who genuinely are bothered about the servers and the community. The ones who keep in touch, contribute in some way. Without whom there would of been no B-F.

So what brings the latest rant on? Well several things. Firstly I have more time on my hands right now, work is quiet, family is grown up and independent. The servers have been in need of some TLC for and age. People are asking me if I want to play games again and I kind of do. So long as its with people who are fun to be around. So I thought I would come on here and rant. So rant mode disengaged.

So by way of an update, if you dont read the forums (and it would seem these days very few do) let me fill you in, bring you up to speed or whatever it is that business types say these days.

The IL2 servers have been pruned; so BF2 and BF3 have been axed at least unless there is some public outcry. But I doubt I will be hearing one. We have a new webserver that is being tested right now ready for moving the websites over. We also have started testing 2 servers for Condor2 and excellent gliding (or soaring depending on where you live) which as a retired glider pilot (sailplane pilot, depending on where you are reading from) I have to say it is the most fun I have had without guns in an age. Apart from feeling a bit queezy thermaling with the VR headset on I cant fault it.

The IL2 Battle of Stalingrad server seems fairly popular thanks to the excellent scenarios created by the Dedicated Bomber Squadron boys.

Thing is we now have spare and quite capable hardware I’m open to suggestions, however it looks like Digital Combat Simulator might perhaps, maybe, sometime, dont hold your breath be releasing a dedicated server. If they do, I might even invest in another aircraft from them, although the amount of time it takes to learn them would probably stop me doing anything else.

So now you are up to speed. Not that I really give a f**k!

Happy new year. 😁😍

 

Merry Christmas Guys!

December 23rd, 2018 by

I would just like to say Happy Christmas to those of you who celebrate it.

This has been a quiet year for B-F but a very busy one for me. Hopefully I can generate a bit more interest in the site and the servers again next year. Although it seems that things move one. Game developers seem to have latched onto the idea that they can make money out of people whilst playing as well as not just selling them the game. Its even possible to chat with your friends without needing a server of your own as companies gather data about peoples habits and generate potential leads for targeted advertising.

Small communities are possible for free now, but at what cost?

Anyhow I have just invested just short of £500 into the B-F hardware with the help of a generous donation from our resident Battle of Stalingrad guru Tip, thanks from all who use the servers :).

I racked our latest server today. Its a dell 1950 III with 32 gig ram and a couple of multi core processors and two brand new 1TB drives. This may not sound massively impressive but it is for us!

Merry Crimble!

My plans for this monster aren’t set in stone yet, but Im thinking of dedicating it to BoS and hopefully the dedicated DCS World server, IF we ever see it, it has been a very long time coming!

So if you are a DCS fan and I know we have a few and you fancy getting involved give me a shout.

I have plans for the website and modernisation of the forums, if its going to be worth the effort.

So here is hoping for world peace and lets keep the battles virtual ones in 2019. All the very best to my online friends old and new!

 

Been A While

February 19th, 2018 by

Its been a while for a lot of things.

Been a while since I had time to play a game, its been a while since I last decorated the room where my computer is, its been a  while since I started Battle-fields.com. The decorating is all done now. Which is nice because I got the chance to de-clutter the whole room. I threw loads of old games away, which is a bit sad but I tried selling them online but no one wanted them, including me. All sorts of old flight sims, Half Life, Quake and loads more. I’ve tried playing old games and to be honest it does nothing for me. Im not very nostalgic usually.

Some of the old stuff went right back to twenty years ago when I first started Battle-Fields.com. Even before that; when we started Deltaforce2.com. The game that kicked it all off was Delta Force, a Novalogic game. I couldn’t bring myself to throw that disk away though. I sort of think I wont be playing it again anytime soon although I am tempted to give it a try maybe on a virtual machine, perhaps with Windows 98 as the OS. If I have time.

Its been a while since the IP addresses changed on our servers too. Usually a forced move of servers to a new location, to save money or because the hosts went out of business, but this time it was different. Due to incompetence at Vodafone apparently the network we were on was released by mistake and I had to spend hours re-configuring all our servers to get things back up. I came close to throwing the towel in but I had my arm twisted by lots of servers users. Some of whom pay so I don’t have to spend too much of my own money. Hours of my life I wont get back!

I got to thinking, how simple Delta Force was, the favourite game type was King Of The Hill, played multiplayer. It was like playing sport. A small well defined hill with a few buildings, nothing too fancy weapon wise just loads of good tense fun with lots of laughs.

Maybe I will try it again!

 

IL2 Battle Of Stalingrad Server

December 15th, 2017 by

I have just installed a new hunk of hardware to run this server (IP 80.193.227.235).

After much messing and trying to remember settings etc I think I may have it finally cracked, perhaps! It would be good if anyone stumbling across this post could let me know if its running OK.

The old server has served us well but seems to have suffered a terminal hard drive failure, typical as we come up to Christmas!

 

IL-2: Battle of Bodenplatte, Flying Circus and Tank Crew announced

November 19th, 2017 by

The second gen IL-2 series is quickly becoming the IL-2: Battle of Everything title by growing the series beyond its Eastern Front roots by expanding the series to tackle multiple fronts and types of combat across two different wars. Introducing IL-2: Battle of Bodenplatte, Flying Circus, and Tank Crew!

Introducing Operation..ahem, Battle of Bodenplatte

1CGS and 777 Studios are working hard on finishing IL-2: Battle of Kuban with final release expected sometime around the end of December. Once that is out of the way, the series is going headlong into the Western Front with IL-2: Battle of Bodenplatte.

Operation Bodenplatte (or Baseplate) was a last-ditch effort by the Luftwaffe to rally its forces and cripple Allied aircraft still on the ground. Taking place in the early morning of January 1, 1945, mass numbers of Luftwaffe aircraft made their way to pre-determined targets hoping to catch the Allied flyers on the ground. The developers are calling this a battle to keep with the established theme of the series.

The result was one of the largest, most intense dogfights seen on the Western front and it ultimately was the last hurrah for the Luftwaffe. The developers are keen to offer both winter and summer versions of the map which likely means we’ll see more than just January 1 featured in the Career mode for this title.

It opens us up to great list of aircraft:

  • Bf 109 G-14
  • Bf 109 K-4
  • Fw 190 A-8
  • Me 262
  • P-51D
  • P-47D
  • Spitfire Mk.IX
  • Tempest Mk.V

Two Collector Planes will also come with the pre-order/Premium edition:

  • Fw 190 D-9 (Collector)
  • P-38L (Collector)

The series will also see the introduction of an AI-only B-25 Mitchell II. Flying with RAF squadrons during the battle, the Mitchell should be well known for any World War II plane enthusiast and its a sure bet that the developers will one day make it a flyable too. If time allows anyways!

Flying the canvas and wood aircraft of The Great War

1CGS is also planning to reintroduce their excellent work on The Great War themed Rise of Flight by offering Flying Circus: Volume 1. This title rehabilitates old aircraft models from Rise of Flight and introduces them into the IL-2 series with their themed module.

Flying Circus will share all of the core technology enhancements added to the IL-2 series including DX11, 64bit support and most importantly, VR support.

This is the tentative list of aircraft:

  • SPAD 13 C.1
  • Sopwith Dolphin
  • Sopwith Camel
  • RAF S.E.5a
  • Bristol Fighter
  • Albatros D.Va
  • Fokker Dr.1
  • Fokker DVII
  • Pfalz D.IIIa
  • Halberstadt CL.II

These are some of the most popular Rise of Flight aircraft and they will be available for flight above a World War I themed France map.

Fighting on the ground

Tank Crew takes the player from the skies and puts them into some intense ground warfare. There are already two tanks available in the IL-2 series that were used to test the concept. Now it’s getting a fully thought out title of its own with further enhanced ground vehicles including all of the major tanks of World War II.

Tank Crew centres itself around the Eastern Front 1943 Kursk tank battle. A map specifically centered around the fighting near Belgorod and Prokhorovka will feature a specially designed 100x100km map setup for tank battles. No word on if fliers can take to the skies above though it is quite possible.

And here’s the list of drivable tanks (tentative we’re told):

  • T-34-76 STZ
  • KV-1s
  • M4A2
  • SU-122
  • SU-152
  • ZIS-5 + 72K
  • PzKpfw III Ausf.L
  • PzKpfw IV Ausf.G
  • PzKpfw V Ausf.D
  • PzKpfw VI Ausf.H1
  • Kfz. 184
  • Kfz. 10 + Flak38

You’ll note the list includes two mobile flak platforms further increasing the likelihood that we’ll be dealing with aircraft – hopefully player flown ones! The devs are also keen to note that multi-person vehicles are a feature so you can team up with your friends all in a single tank.

This is all big news

Easily the biggest news in the history of the series. These three new titles will expand the IL-2 series and build together with the previous titles.

Read the official announcement right here.

 

Virtually There!

September 16th, 2017 by

Wow its been an age since I sat down and put the random thoughts I have in my head down on pape……. screen, keyboard? Oh I dunno. So what tromped this little (hopefully little) outburst? VR that’s what.

There has been a bit of chit chat in our forums about Virtual Reality on and off over the years (the forums have been on the go for more than 15 years) and to be honest I was never really sure if it would appear in my lifetime. So either I have to thank the developers for getting it done quickly or the dangerous hobbies I used to engage in wernt as dangerous as I thought because for now I am still here and enjoying a virtual life alongside a real one.

Is it Expensive?

At £400 for a Oculus and a couple of controllers its not cheap and you are really going to need something at least as powerful as a Nvidia 970 but being gamers most of us have the computing power. I actually had just a 960 when I first tried the Oculus Rift headset and it worked OK to be fair, an odd stutter but I still sat there giddy with excitement as I was guided through the setup. If you haven’t experienced VR yet you really should. Its mind blowing.

Im all excited about gaming again. Its not as addictive as I thought it might  get but it has sparked my imagination. I think in the next few years we are going to see some pretty amazing things. DCS flight sims are already mind blowing to look through VR goggles but they just need to organise the controls better, or at all come to think of it.

Oi!Hands Off!

After many many years of using Microsoft force feedback joysticks I have bought a hotas, only because I want to try and fly with that immersive feel. One better than that though is VTOL VR that I bought through Steam. It looks very basic, however being able to manipulate the controls using your hands in a virtual world is chuffing awesome! Its not perfect, yet, but if DCS could incorporate something similar into their simulators then I for one would be happy to pay a premium for a high quality sim that was fully immersive.

Whilst Im on about DCS why wont they release a dedicated server program? Nag Eagle Dynamics on twitter about it 🙂

Right I best get back to the simulator, its not VR in many ways its better!

 

 

Another Power Problem

September 9th, 2017 by

If you have been missing the B-F servers this morning please accept my sincere apologies …. if you contribute to their running that is. If you dont help us keep them running then I don’t apologise because we are short of cash and servers cost money to run so we host them in a leaky shed in Novotny’s back garden next to the outside toilet. Well at least this setup keeps him warm when he has to go take a number 2 in the winter.

So what went wrong this time you may be asking; well someone managed to kill the power in the building yet again, which was just long enough for the aged and overloaded battery backup to decide it had had enough. Most of the stuff is now back online I believe, we have forums you can leave a message on explaining why you think otherwise. I have mucked out the stats for our main IL2 1946 server and restarted to help keep Hoodoodat’s morale up as he and his fellow Americans now not only have to deal with Trump going nuclear (sounds like a dodgy fart after a curry the night before) but some pretty horrendous weather. So whilst Im on about it Im sure our entire community wish those of you faced with the storms all the very best.

We scrambled a highly motivated and skilled technical team to the server shed and began a thorough investigation before turning the power back on, drinking several cups of tea and talking bollocks to the cleaning lady. This kind of support doesn’t come cheap so if you are in a position to chip in a little bit in towards buying a new battery backup or even a mop for the cleaner please feel free because servers aren’t free, someone has to pay!