The latest 1CGS developer diary for the IL-2: Great Battles Series shows off the last tank planned for Tank Crew – Clash at Prokhorovka and its one with a complex and interesting story that should make for an interesting addition to the tank line-up in the sim. Let’s have a look!
Details of the Ferdinand tank
This week’s developer update is mostly focused around the Sd.Kfz.184 “Ferdinand” self propelled artillery. The tank’s difficult development history and unique powerplant as well as its incredible armor protection make for some interesting reading.
The incredible 200mm armored plate for the front of the fighting compartment along with thick armor protection nearly everywhere else makes me think of this self propelled artillery tank as something more akin to a battleship than a regular armor vehicle. The Ferdinand does have some weak spots on the top as well as with its electrical drivetrain that prevented the tank from attaining more than 20km/h and its range was apparently 150km under ideal circumstances.
It should be interesting to see these issues and the incredible strength of this tank represented on the battlefields of Tank Crew.
Possibly the most interesting part of the developer diary are the efforts that the team went through to model this tank.
It was important for us to recreate it as close to the real one as possible, just like all the vehicles we already have in Tank Crew, and it was really hard to do. There is only one early Ferdinand remaining in the world – #501, it is located in the armored forces museum in Kubinka near Moscow. Another one, later modification called Elefant with a commander cupola and MG installed, is in the US. The available documentation is very segmentary, short and incomplete. However thanks to the effort of our partners in Digital Forms and application of cross-checking analysis, we have one of the best recreations of this combat vehicle available. From our side, we contributed to the recreation of its maneuverability, armament and systems functioning peculiarities, which required a lot of work as well. On the screenshots, you see exactly that Ferdininand #501 that was captured in the Kursk battle and ended in the Kubinka museum.
As always, its interesting the depths that 1CGS (and their partners at Digital Forms) have to go through to locate the details necessary to bring something like this tank to life. Of course the stories are great but here are some great looking screenshots to really show off what this tank has become in the sim. Have a look!
Tank Crew not quite finished yet
When this new tank is released in just a few weeks we’ll be a point where the Tank Crew – Clash at Prokhorovka line-up will be complete. This will be a big moment for the series IL-2 series and the experiment that is Tank Crew.
1CGS has been careful to say that development continues and it’s a bit unclear at this moment of Tank Crew is going to be considered finished and out of early access as of this release or if there are still a few more items to go before the team is calling this title “done.”
There are also some rumours that self propelled AAA vehicles may yet be developed as collector vehicles or collector tanks in the future so if you can’t get enough of the ground vehicles, there may be more that you can pick up in the future.
1CGS has not yet announced if there will be additional follow-up releases for Tank Crew, however, there are plenty of ideas of where the series could go next if 1CGS decides to do that. I suspect there may be a cooling off period for the team as they work on the Battle of Normandy project and consider futures for Tank Crew and Flying Circus. Only time will tell!