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Scramble: Battle of Britain


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I believe Aris pointed to this „CM like“ tactical air war game in development years and years ago (unfortunately, I couldn’t find the OP anymore).

Anyway, it looks like development is coming to an end. A Demo shall be released on 17th June on Steam.

“CM like“, because it is a very tactical dog fight game and it seems to have a „we go“ system like CM.

If that works as good as it looks, it will be a worthy „CM companion“.

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Yeah, very interesting game. 

WEGO fighter combat.

Here is a first impressions video of the demo (which is out):

 

Personally I expect that it will be a while to finish this. But highly interesting either way.

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I've had a few days to play the demo and have to say I'm impressed. The replay files are buggy, the more detailed control features are turned off and right now some realism is off (Spitfire I won't choke when pushed directly down into a dive from level flight). But, it's a demo and the physics are good, I'm liking the sounds I'm hearing, and I like how the devs have figured out an intuitive control that feels right. You can chop throttle to pull tighter then punch it back as needed. When the more detailed control features are unlocked, things like slides, barrel rolls and even snap rolls will be possible. 

The replay files are somewhat buggy, but it will be used to share with others your mission results. One can even 'step into' another player's replay at nearly any playable point in the replay file to see for yourself what is was like. You can literally analyze the entire fight as an AAR to see how both your pilots and the enemy's fought.

Slitherine posted a video about the future of this game and it sounds a lot like the way Achtung Spitfire and Over the Reich played, with campaigns and a roster of diverse pilots to command for missions. I'm very hopeful for this game because the core play is looking very good.

Edited by Grisha
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On 6/16/2024 at 2:03 AM, Redwolf said:

Thanks for the report.

Maybe we even get TacView integration with it.

Meanwhile I played a few hours, too.

Scramble is indeed the best and only of it’s type, But unfortunately, I have rather mixed feelings.

It looks perfect and runs well, even on my 7 year old computer.

The tutorial is quite useless, but after watching an introduction on YT, the controls are easy to figure out.

Setting the flight path is quite similar to Achtung Spitfire and Over the Reich. Currently the WASD keys are used, which feels pretty old fashioned, but works.

My first issue: The flight path is obviously a curve through a 3-dimensional space (as opposed to Achtung Spitfire with a curve on a flat pane). Hm, 4 dimensions actually, considering that a plane may fire as soon as a target comes into sight. I personally find it quite difficult to figure out where, at which altitude and in which flight position my plane ends up. Ok, that can hopefully be better visualised in the final game.

Next issue: During the turn execution the camera is centered on the plane (if not, I did not find out how to change it). The result: During execution, one sees the plane in the centre of the screen, making „strange moves, rolls, jinks…“ only. The actual move can only be seen during replay. OK, that can probably be fixed, too.

My biggest issue: Each move covers about 2.5 seconds only. The result: One easily has to play 20 or 30 turns to come into a firing position. That issue unfortunately seems “system inherent”. 
Fun fact: I had one dog fight, where I finally managed to fire a burst after 20+ turns. In the next turn we collided and both planes crashed into the Channel…

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I played for an hour or so and I agree, I'm impressed so far. You really have to think in 3D, AND a couple turns ahead. I suspect people who aren't familiar with dogfighting tactics (especially those of WW2) will struggle until they learn the basics. Because it feels like the physics are done well, and the planes are modeled like their real life counter parts. Which means you want to fly to your plane's strengths and not just try to turn as hard as you can. 

It does take 20+ turns to get into a position for a shot sometimes, and I don't think that's a bad thing necessarily. There's a lot of strategy and tactics which go into that. It does feel, however, like it might be too easy to get a "snap shot" off due to the turn based nature of the game. From flying a lot of sims, that kind of thing is really hard to do and rarely works but I was able to set that up pretty easy in the 4-5 dogfights I did. We'll have to see if they come up with a way to mitigate that. 

Looking forward to playing it some more, and certainly how the game develops as you get access to more controls like rudders. I do think this will simply be a dogfight simulator though and not much of an air war game...at least that's what it feels like now. 

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