This week the developers of IL-: Battle of Kuban updated us on some of their progress on the series with a focused on new mirror technology and several 3D model updates including our first look at the Yak-7B!
Looking into a mirror
If you’ve flown flight sims for a while you’ll know that mirrors have been a problematic part of the experience. They have been performance robbing, or very blurry, or users turned them off completely just to avoid the hassle. Some of them have inaccurate reflections too which, in a VR simulation, can be problematic when moving your head.
Despite these problems, mirrors are still very useful and 1CGS is intent on adding them to the IL-2 series and doing them in a way that is very useful.
Here’s what Han had to say:
There will be simplifications without hurting their functionality for sure – it’s likely that the mirrors won’t reflect your own plane and trees to keep the performance high. In short, we’ll do our best to make the mirrors among the best in aircraft sims, if not the best of them all.
Keeping things running smoothly is important. If they show off that bandit sneaking up on your six, then that is pretty worthwhile in my mind.
Speaking of performance…
Moscow airfield improvements
Some players are experiencing performance loss when flying over airfields on the Moscow map and 1CGS is looking to tackle the issue. Han has more to say:
The tests show that FPS hit above the ‘new’ airfields is lower and there are no ‘stutters’ which you can experience near current field airdromes when ‘Distant grass’ option is turned on.
This is definitely good news for many and Han made special mention that similar types of fields are also on the Kuban map so improvements for Moscow will be felt on the Kuban development map too.
Some interesting news that I wasn’t expecting came out today too. 1CGS is working to implement TacView support. This is something that a few members have asked about periodically over the years and now support is coming.
TacView lets you review your flight after the fact with quick scrubbing through to key parts of the flight and the ability to see your speed, altitude, G, and other factors in relation to your opponents. A useful tool for reviewing after a tense mission or finding out what you were doing wrong in a lost battle or conversely what you’re doing right.
I’m a fan of reviewing after the fact as it lays bear some of your mistakes that you sometimes miss in the heat of the moment.
Some more details on TacView are available on their website and thanks to a great compilation of videos on YouTube.
The Yak-7B makes an appearance
We now have our first look at the 3D mesh of the Yak-7B which is likely to appear sometime later in 2017 in the lead-up to the final months of Battle of Kuban development.
For those unfamiliar, the Yak-7B is a development of the Yak family of single engined fighters. The Yak-1 Series 69 and Yak-1B Series 127 are both derived from the same I-26 prototype. The Yak-7 was originally designed to be a two seat trainer aircraft, however, its revised construction also proved suitable as a fighter and the Yak-7 series distinguished itself as being heavier and more robust than the lighter Yak-1.
The Yak-7B Series 36 should be capable performer. The best assumption we can make right now is that the Series 36 will be a M-105PF engined fighter (similar to the Yak-1 Series 69 and Series 127) with some fairly impressive performance figures.
IL-2 forum member ‘bivalov’ reports that a book he has, YAK-7 FIGHTER TOTAL WAR (Author: SERGEY KUZNETSOV), reports the following figures for a Yak-7B produced in January 1943:
Yak-7b №3625 with M-105PF (3018 kg) was produced somewhere in January 1943 and during tests showed – 528/582 kph at SL/3670 meters, 5.1 min to 5000 meters and about 18 seconds at 1000 meters.
These are fairly impressive figures being only slightly slower in top speed and climb than the already excellent Yak-1B Series 127. The Yak-7B also comes with an extra machine gun making it have one of the heaviest punches of a Russian fighter yet available. Twin Berezin UB 12.7mm machine guns synchronized to fire through the propeller arc and a single ShVAK 20mm cannon firing from the hub mount is a potent and concentrated burst of fire.
Reports I’ve read about the real version suggest that the Yak-7B was a slightly easier plane to fly than the Yak-1 while still having nearly all of the performance. Its heavier weight and sturdier construction should aid in diving speed while I suspect the handling will be a little bit less agile overall from the added weight.
I look forward to flying this member of the Yak family when it becomes available. Its suitability in Stalingrad scenarios also makes me pretty excited to be able to use this aircraft in more than one battle.