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View Full Version : my review, comments and suggestions for Pacific Fighters



JonHal
11-04-2004, 10:29 AM
Before I get into my review of Pacific Fighters let me give you a little background on me and my flight sim experience I've always been a student of the pacific Theatre. I own literally hundreds of books on the subject. I'm an active model builder for this time period as well. No other historical period interests me as much as the Pacific Theatre of World War 2 and not to sound immodest I do know the period well. I€ve had the honor of meeting several WW2 legends in my life including Greg Boyington and James Flatley.

I am NOT an IL2 diehard. I started playing flight sims way back with Battlehawks 1942. I moved on to Aces of the Pacific, Pacific Air War and combat Flight Simulator 2. I do purchase European theatre sims but I don€t enjoy them as much as the Pacific Theatre. So I did Purchase and fly IL2, CFS3, EAW and many others. I never purchased IL2 :FB or the Aces expansion pack.
When I heard that the IL2 Team was putting together a Pacific Sim I was ecstatic. While I didn€t get into IL2 that much I did appreciate it€s technical merits and features. I just wasn€t too interested in the Eastern Front.

Flash forward to receiving my copy of Pacific fighters.

Planes: Very pleased with the selection of planes in the package. Love seeing the many models of Corsairs including the F4U-1 Birdcage! Excellent. There are a few glaring omissions. Why can€t I fly a Kate or Avenger? Where is the Devastator? I realize this is Pacific Fighters and not Pacific Torpedo Bombers but their absence in a highly touted historically accurate flight Sim is glaring.

Flight Models: Having never flown any of these planes.. (Though I did get to ride in a B-17) I can€t speak to how exactly authentic the flight models are but it feels right so far. I can B&Z in my Corsair, The Engine cuts out on my A6M2 if I pull some Neg G. I€m not saying it€s perfect. I don€t know who could, but it sure feels good and historically accurate.

Missions: Disappointed. Very few pre-made missions. The Dynamic Campaign game seems very buggy.. Why, if they are going to make me fly historically long distances can€t I warp there. Maybe the Diehards can spend 45 minutes flying to an enemy aircraft carrier but I€d like to be able to warp to the action. I maybe only get an hour or two a night to play. The 8x time increase just doesn€t cut it. The Dynamically created missions are also buggy in some places. I€ve seen whole flights crash into mountains, fall into the ocean.. etc€¦

Online: I got on the Ubi.com servers and have played for several nights in the PF only area. Very fun. The Lag was minimal. I did notice a slight pause every time someone would respawn in the game. The Online maps are fun with the spawn points not to far away.

Graphics: One word, Beautiful. From the planes, to the water and islands. Simply gorgeous.

Ships: Argh.. Disappointed again. The Models in the game are beautiful. I love seeing the detail in the Lexington and Essex class CVs. You can tell someone obviously knew there stuff which only makes it more frustrating when it€s not accurate. The LEX and SARA did NOT have their names written on the Decks during World War 2. Also the narrow flight deck at the bow of the Lexington is wrong for her Wartime fitting. Can someone tell me why there are British Battleships in Pearl Harbor?? Where are the American Battleships? Or the Japanese ones? I thought I was buying a Pacific Sim. Besides recreating the attack on the POW and Repulse I didn€t see much need for a British BB.
Where is the Yorktown class? They were only involved in, wait, every single major Carrier engagement of the pacific!

Mission Builder: simply awesome! I€ve spent more time here building single player and Coop missions with ease. Excellent feature especially needed with the lack of Single player missions. I€ve already started creating accurate missions based on historical events but I hit a roadblock. I can€t make any of the great Carrier Battles! I need the Devastator to make accurate Coral Sea and Midway Missions. I need a Yorktown Class Carrier to make an accurate Coral Sea, Midway, Eastern Solomons or Santa Cruz missions! It just goes against the Historian in me to Have Avengers at Coral Sea. Or call an Essex a Yorktown class! Maybe I€m a small minority on that issue but it matters to me.

Final impressions: Overall I€m very happy with Pacific Fighters. I€m glad I bought two copies. It€s even made me go back and order IL2:Forgotten Battles and the Aces Expansion. It€s a great job from the IL2 team and I want to thank them for the hard work and love they poured into this project. I will be playing with this for a long time. However that is not to say I€m completely pleased with it.
There is room for improvement and expansion. I think no Pacific theatre Sim is complete without a few missing things. Here is my list.

TBD Devastator
Flyable Kate and Avenger (And Devastator)
Yorktown class CVs
Hiryu Class CVs
Battleships (I can€t stress this enough) We need accurate Targets. POW is not acceptable at Pearl Harbor. This is a historical Sim not a Jerry Bruckheimer movie! How about an Arizona, Iowa and Yamato class?
Flyable Betty (It says on the box, or am I missing something in the game where I can fly them?)
Corrected Lexington class for it€s war fit.
I'm sure there are a lot more I could come up with but these are off the top of my head.

Would I be willing to pay for these in an Expansion? Heck yes!

Thanks for reading and thanks again to the IL2 team for a great sim.. I can only hope it get€s better!

jon

JonHal
11-04-2004, 10:29 AM
Before I get into my review of Pacific Fighters let me give you a little background on me and my flight sim experience I've always been a student of the pacific Theatre. I own literally hundreds of books on the subject. I'm an active model builder for this time period as well. No other historical period interests me as much as the Pacific Theatre of World War 2 and not to sound immodest I do know the period well. I€ve had the honor of meeting several WW2 legends in my life including Greg Boyington and James Flatley.

I am NOT an IL2 diehard. I started playing flight sims way back with Battlehawks 1942. I moved on to Aces of the Pacific, Pacific Air War and combat Flight Simulator 2. I do purchase European theatre sims but I don€t enjoy them as much as the Pacific Theatre. So I did Purchase and fly IL2, CFS3, EAW and many others. I never purchased IL2 :FB or the Aces expansion pack.
When I heard that the IL2 Team was putting together a Pacific Sim I was ecstatic. While I didn€t get into IL2 that much I did appreciate it€s technical merits and features. I just wasn€t too interested in the Eastern Front.

Flash forward to receiving my copy of Pacific fighters.

Planes: Very pleased with the selection of planes in the package. Love seeing the many models of Corsairs including the F4U-1 Birdcage! Excellent. There are a few glaring omissions. Why can€t I fly a Kate or Avenger? Where is the Devastator? I realize this is Pacific Fighters and not Pacific Torpedo Bombers but their absence in a highly touted historically accurate flight Sim is glaring.

Flight Models: Having never flown any of these planes.. (Though I did get to ride in a B-17) I can€t speak to how exactly authentic the flight models are but it feels right so far. I can B&Z in my Corsair, The Engine cuts out on my A6M2 if I pull some Neg G. I€m not saying it€s perfect. I don€t know who could, but it sure feels good and historically accurate.

Missions: Disappointed. Very few pre-made missions. The Dynamic Campaign game seems very buggy.. Why, if they are going to make me fly historically long distances can€t I warp there. Maybe the Diehards can spend 45 minutes flying to an enemy aircraft carrier but I€d like to be able to warp to the action. I maybe only get an hour or two a night to play. The 8x time increase just doesn€t cut it. The Dynamically created missions are also buggy in some places. I€ve seen whole flights crash into mountains, fall into the ocean.. etc€¦

Online: I got on the Ubi.com servers and have played for several nights in the PF only area. Very fun. The Lag was minimal. I did notice a slight pause every time someone would respawn in the game. The Online maps are fun with the spawn points not to far away.

Graphics: One word, Beautiful. From the planes, to the water and islands. Simply gorgeous.

Ships: Argh.. Disappointed again. The Models in the game are beautiful. I love seeing the detail in the Lexington and Essex class CVs. You can tell someone obviously knew there stuff which only makes it more frustrating when it€s not accurate. The LEX and SARA did NOT have their names written on the Decks during World War 2. Also the narrow flight deck at the bow of the Lexington is wrong for her Wartime fitting. Can someone tell me why there are British Battleships in Pearl Harbor?? Where are the American Battleships? Or the Japanese ones? I thought I was buying a Pacific Sim. Besides recreating the attack on the POW and Repulse I didn€t see much need for a British BB.
Where is the Yorktown class? They were only involved in, wait, every single major Carrier engagement of the pacific!

Mission Builder: simply awesome! I€ve spent more time here building single player and Coop missions with ease. Excellent feature especially needed with the lack of Single player missions. I€ve already started creating accurate missions based on historical events but I hit a roadblock. I can€t make any of the great Carrier Battles! I need the Devastator to make accurate Coral Sea and Midway Missions. I need a Yorktown Class Carrier to make an accurate Coral Sea, Midway, Eastern Solomons or Santa Cruz missions! It just goes against the Historian in me to Have Avengers at Coral Sea. Or call an Essex a Yorktown class! Maybe I€m a small minority on that issue but it matters to me.

Final impressions: Overall I€m very happy with Pacific Fighters. I€m glad I bought two copies. It€s even made me go back and order IL2:Forgotten Battles and the Aces Expansion. It€s a great job from the IL2 team and I want to thank them for the hard work and love they poured into this project. I will be playing with this for a long time. However that is not to say I€m completely pleased with it.
There is room for improvement and expansion. I think no Pacific theatre Sim is complete without a few missing things. Here is my list.

TBD Devastator
Flyable Kate and Avenger (And Devastator)
Yorktown class CVs
Hiryu Class CVs
Battleships (I can€t stress this enough) We need accurate Targets. POW is not acceptable at Pearl Harbor. This is a historical Sim not a Jerry Bruckheimer movie! How about an Arizona, Iowa and Yamato class?
Flyable Betty (It says on the box, or am I missing something in the game where I can fly them?)
Corrected Lexington class for it€s war fit.
I'm sure there are a lot more I could come up with but these are off the top of my head.

Would I be willing to pay for these in an Expansion? Heck yes!

Thanks for reading and thanks again to the IL2 team for a great sim.. I can only hope it get€s better!

jon

Takata_
11-04-2004, 10:41 AM
good review.
I'm pleased to see you ordered Forgotten Battles and AEP and I'm pretty sure we'll got some very good mission/coop from you in the near future.

owlwatcher
11-04-2004, 10:45 AM
Like your review. It's honest.
Have not played with the CVs in FMB yet.
Keep us posted on your historical events missions.

Tdavart
11-04-2004, 10:51 AM
Nice review Jon. I agree with just about everything you said. I too am pretty familiar with the PTO and am also very pleased with PF. As you said there are a few glaring errors. I have tried to point out a few times that the Lex and Sara are in prewar colors. Not sure what the reasoning was to include them versus just one Yorktown class which could be used all through the war. Also just one Arizona type BB could be used to represent the PH line up. Another little error are the color of the deck numbers on the U.S. CVEs. Should be black like the Essex. But what a difference from CFS2!

The decision not to include flyable Tor******s has been greatly discussed and only hope some action will be taken. It's not complete without them. I understand that an AI TBD will be in the patch. Otherwise the plane package is terrific and all the models and cockpits are beautiful. Just wish I could fly them in FS9. http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_smile.gif

goshikisen
11-04-2004, 10:53 AM
An objective review from an enthusiast. Nicely done.

I too think there are some problems but for the most part I think PF is brilliant! Oleg has always backed up his products so I have no worries that the lion's share of the issues will be addressed.

I just installed Catalyst 4.10 drivers for my 9800XT (which I'm happy to say do not exhibit any of the problems thought to be associated with this driver version and PF) and turned on Overdrive in the Control Panel. PF looks incredible... smooth frame rates and beautiful graphics.

I agree with you on the ships... we need American and Japanese BB's. Yamato and Iowa class are absolutely essential. If we're going to have Pearl Harbor we also need those early war BB's as well. I suspect we'll see them in the near future.

-also-

The Japanese, in my opinion, had the coolest looking (not discounting the KM Prinz Eugen) light and heavy cruisers of WWII. We need to have a couple IJN cruisers. I think IJN Takao is the dictionary definition of cruiser.

Thanks Oleg for a brilliant sim... and look forward to the improvements you have in the pipeline.

Regards, Goshikisen

p.s. can you put a goshikisen in there someday too?

smatchimo
11-04-2004, 10:53 AM
Well put, and all though I too believe its unfinished, its a blast, and Oleg and crew will finish it with a couple of patches. Thats one of the great aspects of this sim, the devs really CARE about the product.

Cheers!

Weather_Man
11-04-2004, 10:57 AM
Good review. You've about nailed it. There is hope though. There will be at least 2 patches adding additional content. Planes, maps, ships, etc. Along with bug fixes, tweaks to the DGen and who knows what else. The first patch will be out very soon I hear. So be patient. I think most if not all of your concerns are being addressed. For now, there's plenty to have fun with. http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_smile.gif

crazyivan1970
11-04-2004, 11:23 AM
Welcome aboard

JonHal
11-04-2004, 11:37 AM
thanks! Very True... as it is now flying, say, the Pearl Harbor mission I feel yanked out of the immersive experience when I see those British BBs. Like watching the movie Pearl Harbor. They painstakingly made great CGI versions of Battleship row and intercut them with Modern Cruisers at the docks, Or Japanese Planes taking off the back end of the USS Lexington. :-)

Give us one older US Battlewagon at least for the Pearl Scenarios.

don't get me wrong. I'm glad that we get a lexington and Saratoga. Beautiful ships indeed. I just feel the Yorktown class as or more important to include in the sim. It's a good sign that so many poeple mention that it may be included in a patch.

I agree that the Japanese cruisers and BBs are some of the prettiest ships afloat, I just want to sink them in an Avenger!

I love the game so far though and I'm very optimistic of its future

Jon

<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Tdavart:
Nice review Jon. I agree with just about everything you said. I too am pretty familiar with the PTO and am also very pleased with PF. As you said there are a few glaring errors. I have tried to point out a few times that the Lex and Sara are in prewar colors. Not sure what the reasoning was to include them versus just one Yorktown class which could be used all through the war. Also just one Arizona type BB could be used to represent the PH line up. Another little error are the color of the deck numbers on the U.S. CVEs. Should be black like the Essex. But what a difference from CFS2!

The decision not to include flyable Tor******s has been greatly discussed and only hope some action will be taken. It's not complete without them. I understand that an AI TBD will be in the patch. Otherwise the plane package is terrific and all the models and cockpits are beautiful. Just wish I could fly them in FS9. http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_smile.gif <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

pacettid
11-04-2004, 11:43 AM
Jon, I think this is an excellent and accurate review of the sime, as it currently exists.

With regard to the FMB, I have gotten around the problem of not having the Devastators by simply modeling the Dauntless portions of the carrier battles. The torpedo bombers and dive bombers almost never arrived on the scene at the exact same moment, so I just model the action in the vicinty of my flight, during the few minutes we are attacking the CVs.

Considering the strength of ship AAA (this really needs to be toned down some, as even "rookie" ships are deadly), we try not to stick around for too long after dropping our bombs, so I currently don't include the torpedo planes in the mission, I just assume they have already made their attack and departed, or are right behind us. Not as kewl as I would like, but not historically inaccurate either. For right now, I find it an acceptable limitation.

JonHal
11-04-2004, 11:53 AM
my thoughts on the missions I want to build are, I think, along the same lines as yours. My goal is to build set piece actions. Each one it's on mission. Bombing and Scouting Six's attack on the Japanese Flattops, Thach's encounter with the Japanese CAP. Most of all I'd like to make as accurate as possible the Hiryu's Strikes on the Yorktown as two seperate missions. One the Dive Bomber attack and the other the Torpedo attack. The small number of planes actually invovled in those actions seems to be very doable in the "pacific Fighters" engine. Of course I lack the Yorktown and the Hiryu at the present.
If there is interest I will post more info as I learn the intracasies of the FMB. If anyone is already undertaking these missions I'd love to hear about that too and offer any help or support.

Regards,
Jon

<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by pacettid:
Jon, I think this is an excellent and accurate review of the sime, as it currently exists.

With regard to the FMB, I have gotten around the problem of not having the Devastators by simply modeling the Dauntless portions of the carrier battles. The torpedo bombers and dive bombers almost never arrived on the scene at the exact same moment, so I just model the action in the vicinty of my flight, during the few minutes we are attacking the CVs.

Considering the strength of ship AAA (this really needs to be toned down some, as even "rookie" ships are deadly), we try not to stick around for too long after dropping our bombs, so I currently don't include the torpedo planes in the mission, I just assume they have already made their attack and departed, or are right behind us. Not as kewl as I would like, but not historically inaccurate either. For right now, I find it an acceptable limitation. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

TacticalYak3
11-04-2004, 11:53 AM
Look forward to your insightful comments as this sim evolves mate. Thanks for your initial efforts. Look forward to your work in FMB.

And while not your main interest, with PF it looks like those interested in the Western Front have more "toys" to play with.

Regards,
TactS!

Charlie901
11-05-2004, 05:33 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by JonHal:

Planes: Very pleased with the selection of planes in the package. Love seeing the many models of Corsairs including the F4U-1 Birdcage! Excellent. There are a few glaring omissions. Why can€t I fly a Kate or Avenger? Where is the Devastator? I realize this is Pacific Fighters and not Pacific Torpedo Bombers but their absence in a highly touted historically accurate flight Sim is glaring.

Ships: Argh.. Disappointed again. The Models in the game are beautiful. I love seeing the detail in the Lexington and Essex class CVs. You can tell someone obviously knew there stuff which only makes it more frustrating when it€s not accurate. The LEX and SARA did NOT have their names written on the Decks during World War 2. Also the narrow flight deck at the bow of the Lexington is wrong for her Wartime fitting. Can someone tell me why there are British Battleships in Pearl Harbor?? Where are the American Battleships? Or the Japanese ones? I thought I was buying a Pacific Sim. Besides recreating the attack on the POW and Repulse I didn€t see much need for a British BB.
Where is the Yorktown class? They were only involved in, wait, every single major Carrier engagement of the pacific!
jon <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>



Totally agree on these two points and hope this is addressed in the near future.

lbuchele
11-05-2004, 08:09 PM
Very good review, JonHal.Fair and honest,by a enthusiast viewpoint.
I have a sugestion: let´s move it to the topic
who lists the bugs, where Oleg could read it.
What do you think?