A is for Alphabetised wargame and sim news. I could have scattered these topical tidbits throughout the week in the hope they’d make Tally-Ho Corner look lively and well-staffed. Concern for your LMB dabber persuaded me to glue them together and present them as a single Ever Given-sized tract instead.
B is for Bell 47
The whirlybird that made an unlikely appearance in Where Eagles Dare is set to make an equally improbable one in Flight Simulator. The fact that Asobo’s chart-topper doesn’t, on paper, support rotary wing aerodynamics doesn’t seem to bother the team behind VFR flight sim FlyInside. FlyInside Inc say they already have their Bell 47G “integrated into MSFS and working nicely… Our flight model provides an authentic helicopter flight experience, with realistic collective/cyclic response, ground effect, flap-back, transverse flow, torque/yaw, and auto-rotation capabilities.”
C is for Combat’s consequences
Let’s hope the aptly named Brave Lamb aren’t so focused on crafting a “deep emotional experience” they end up inadvertently creating an implausible one. When War Hospital’s project lead does their first dev vlog, I want to see well-thumbed copies of tomes like The Great War and the R.A.M.C. and Medicine in First World War Europe on the bookshelves behind them.
D is for Dispensing with dice
We knew that number-slathered counters would play no part in Comrades and Barons: Gates of Freedom, the world’s first Latvian War of Independence digital wargame. The vid above implies dice won’t get a look in either. Māris Ozols plans to resolve enagagements with the help of stylish cards. How refreshing.
E is for Engineering expertise
Subject Matter Experts don’t come any apter or older than Friedrich Grade, the 104-year-old currently assisting the Crush Depth devs Overworked Studios. In his youth Friedrich was Chief Engineer aboard U 96, the ‘Das Boot’ boat.
F is for Friendly advice
Hands up who thinks Madnetic Games should abandon WW2 Rebuilder this instant and use their London assets in a game about wartime bomb disposal in the British capital. Who wants to toss lumps of tarmac into a wheelbarrow or scrub soot off a facade when they could be sitting at the bottom of a dirty great hole, easing the fuse out of a Sprengbombe Cylindrisch 1000.
G is for Grieving aces
Friendships are coming to Until the Last Plane. Buddies that fly together will get combat bonuses, but if one pal dies, the other’s morale will plunge like a Tirpitz-bound Tallboy.
H is for How much is that doggy in the windthrow?
Just £2.16! You can buy your very own theHunter: Call of the Wild bloodhound for two quid at the moment. Purchasers get to choose the name, sex, and coat colour of their hunting companion, and pick character traits. Petting, praising and proffering treats at appropriate moments improves the beast’s ability to follow blood trails.
I is for Iberia imminent
I don’t keep Euro Truck Simulator 2 and American Truck Simulator permanently installed for the same reason I don’t keep custard creams and honey-roasted nuts within easy reach. The self denial preserves my productivity/waistline, but means I probably won’t get to see the transformational lighting improvements introduced by recent updates until Iberia drops later this month. In preparation for ETS2’s next adjunct I’ve been doing some exploring in Street View. The first person to tell me where I was when I took this snap gets use of the THC morion for the next month.
J is for Just teething troubles
Slitherine/Matrix haven’t exposed hexy heavyweight War in the East 2 to Steam scrutiny yet. Judging by the number of crash reports posted on the official forum since last Friday’s launch, their decision to sell only through the Matrix store initially, was a wise one.
K is for King of the mountains
Be sure to warm-up your little grey cells before trying The Cyclist: Tactics demo. Automation’s bicycle racing TBS is bally clever, but the unusual approach and depth of the simulation make for a learning curve as steep as Alpe d’Huez.
L is for Left hand down a bit
I’d pay good money for a Suez Canal ship sim made by VSTEP, Ilan Papini, or Michael Donning. Sorry screenshots, suspicious timing, and an unknown dev mean this may be the one and only time this imminent Med2Red rudder-em-up appears on Tally-Ho Corner.
M is for More mediocrity?
Setting your bus sim in Berlin, the home of the undisputed king of bus sims, is an awfully bold move. As Early-Accessable-since-Sunday The Bus is the work of TML Studios there’s probably little point grumbling about poor physics, lack-lustre audio, and lumpy frame rates in the forums. Calls for more convincing conveyances in TML’s Fernbus Simulator and Tourist Bus Simulator fell on deaf ears.
N is for Non-lethal nuances
Uncomfortable with DoorKickers 2’s setting and “shoot first, soul-search later” approach? Hot Brass might be more to your taste. This £11 top-down SWAT title features WASD-guided operators, and punishes you if you top an unarmed suspect, even if that suspect is lunging for you when you pull the trigger. Tasers and shouted warnings are just as important tactical tools as MP5s and M1911s.
O is for Oddly octagonal
There’s a reason wargames with octagonal movement grids are rarer than fossilized Stegosaurus saddles. I look forward to finding out how the ones in Fire & Maneuver, the first game from animated documentary maestros The Armchair Historian, justify their presence.
P is for Plague of honey badgers
Ratels seem to be everywhere at the moment. Leopard’s Leap, the latest add-on for Graviteam Tactics, features them. They’ve just arrived in War Thunder courtesy of the Ixwa Strike update. And pretty soon they’ll be scampering about in Wargame: Red Dragon too.
Q is for Quick teabreak
R is for Reentry revamp
Wilhelmsen Studios spent a significant portion of 2020 upgrading Reentry’s recreations of the Mercury and Gemini projects. They’ve started 2021 by giving Apollo the same treatment. The sim’s moonshots now utilise the new physics engine – TSS – and are undertaken in a Command Module transformed by refurbishment.
S is for SGS Halls of Montezuma
If I end up reviewing Mexican-American War recreation, SGS Halls of Montezuma, I hope the review doesn’t boil down to “Fascinating theme, feeble AI”. My time with SGS Winter War and SGS Afrika Korps suggests it might.
T is for Tally-Ho Corner top tip
Struggling to come up with a memorable moniker for your new game or searching in vain for a theme for your next project? THC recommends turning to the turf for inspiration. Today’s Newcastle racecards prove my point. The runners there include Perfect Soldier, Legion of Honour, Spartan Fighter, Curfewed, Oakenshield, Seas of Elzaam, and Quintillus – all games I’d willingly cross the paddock to fetlock fondle.
U is for Under consideration
It’s possible the next 3×3 will have a political theme. Recently released Rogue State Revolution beckons, I’m keen to discover whether the first three hours with Shadow Empire is slog or swan, and I’ve been meaning to try Suzerain since Sin Vega described it as “absolutely fantastic” back in December.
V is for Vertiginous violence
I’m thinking of asking friend of THC, Erwin Rommel, to run his eye over multiplayer FPS Isonzo when it launches later this year. A brilliant Mountain Battalion company commander in 1917, Erwin ran rings around the Italians during the final Battle of Isonzo. Leading a force of 150 men, he engineered attacks that led to around 19000 Italians surrendering.
W is for We are rail fantasists
Dovetail Games’ thin skin, failure to embrace object-oriented programming, and maddening habit of over-promising, all draw criticism in this insightful Sim UK vid. It’s been four years since Train Sim World: CSX Heavy Haul snaked onto Steam, and customers are still waiting for touted features such as steam locos, multiplayer, and a full suite of editors. Is it any wonder people like Mike are all out of trust.
X is for Xceptionally menacing
Livery artists are going to have a field day with the due-this-quarter Early Access DCS: Mi-24P. In the forty years since it first flew, the Hind has worn the insignia of around seventy different air forces.
Y is for Yes, please
The trailer above undersells Attack at Dawn: North Africa. It makes it look like a Panzer Corps 2 clone with amateurish, asthenopia-inducing visuals when actually it’s Something Far More Exciting with amateurish, asthenopia-inducing visuals. Designer Tomislav Čipčić’s second unorthodox Desert War wargame (The Flare Path covered the first – Iron Cross – a decade ago) aims to kick Convention up the arse by offering the option of WeGo or turnless play. Factor in formation movement, thick FoW, strong AI, and carefully researched OoBs, and you’ll understand why my preview code request went out this morning.
Z is for Zero-G R&D
The latest Jigsaw Club upload is a nod to Space Station Designer, an upcoming management game about building, maintaining, and monetising spindly space labs. As Polar Motion, the studio behind Buzz Aldrin’s Space Program Manager, began working on SSD around four years ago, the release day surely can’t be far away now.