I’ll be honest, I wasn’t expecting a big patch or really anything from 1C Game Studios today. Then when I woke up this morning the word was that the forums and IL-2 website were in maintenance mode. A surefire sign that a patch would be coming. Here it is ladies and gentlemen – IL-2 version 3.003 and the beginning of IL-2: Battle of Bodenplatte Early Access.
I’ve been looking forward to these two aircraft for months and suddenly they are both here. The Spitfire IXe and Bf109G-14 are the first two aircraft in the Bodenplatte line-up to be available to fly. If you’ve pre-ordered Bodeplatte, updating to version 3.003 will give you these two aircraft that are ready to fly right now!
There’s some fairly impressive features on these two aircraft as well. Let’s start with the Spitfire IXe.
This 1944 variant of the Spitfire IX has the pointed tail and the E-type wing armament with two 20mm Hispano Mark II cannons and two Browning M2 .50cal heavy machine guns. That’s not all either. The Spitfire IX was heavily used in 1944 and 1945 as a fighter-bomber and we have bomb as well as rocket armaments. Yeah!
You think I’m done but that’s not all. This version also comes with optional clipped wings, optional Mark II GGS gyroscopic gunsight, and both Merlin 66 and Merlin 70 variations making this both a LF.IXe and a HF.IXe. The Merlin 66 is for low and medium altitude operations while the Merlin 70 is tuned for high altitude.
The developers have released this video of the gunsight in action:
Look for a full review once I’ve had a chance to fully fly the new Spitfire and compare it against its closest competitor.
The Bf109G-14 has also been released today and its a very interesting aircraft. The G-14 is an attempt by Messerschmidt to reconcile all of the different G-6 versions that various factories were producing into a single standard aircraft. That effort only partially succeeded but it did create an aircraft that brought a lot of new features all together.
The ‘Erla’ glass canopy provides much improved view out the sides with a basically unobstructed view compared to the G-6 and earlier versions. It’s taller tail has stability benefits and its MW50 equipped DB605 engine can run at maximum power for a full 10-minutes. Nice!
Also available is the WGR-21 anti-bomber rocket which can be used to hurt formations of bombers with its high explosive warhead. This is a brand new weapon that I look forward to trying. Not as new to us but still fresh is the MK108 30mm cannon also available on the Bf109G-6 – that weapon and MG151/20 gunpods are available to the Bf109G-14 as well.
Far from being a copy and paste of the earlier Bf109G-6, the G-14 adds a variety of interesting features to the mix. I look forward to doing a full review.
There’s a whole series of updates that have gone into this patch. Aside from the new aircraft, there are updates for Career mode to fix bugs, new squadrons are available to join as a pilot in the campaigns, and that pesky black screen issue with multiplayer has been solved.
Bug fixes and two new planes round out a fairly impressive update.
Players shouldn’t expect either of these aircraft to appear in the Kuban Career mode as they are far out of the time period that it covers but expect them to form the basis of many missions in a future Bodenplatte Career release later in the products development.
Check out the full update from the developers including a detailed description of how the new Gyro sight works from 1CGS’ new programmer.