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#3483293 - 12/29/11 03:38 AM Re: No Online Platoons?? [Re: QuickSilver]
strykerpsg Offline
Member

Registered: 05/28/06
Posts: 917
Loc: Ft Lewis, WA aka JBLM
Quicksilver,

I agree that someone could potentially make these various turret controls, but I think it's a niche market at best and they would have to have some sort of universal usage for something besides tank sims. There have been a few people make helicopter specific cyclic and collectives, but again,they are a niche market and the producer will probably not make much money on them, at least not as much compared to an average joystick maker. For example, many people have subscribed to the Thrustmaster Warthog series of joystick/throttle combination. They are a fantastic build and very durable. However, they are not inexpensive, roughly about $400-500, depending on where you purchase them from. Some people will settle on lesser models and accomplish the same level of enjoyment, while others buy the Warthog for it's longevity, accuracy in simming and it's ease of programmability using the Target software. But I suspect Thrustmaster isn't making a killing on the Warthog series, at least not initially.

As for my defensiveness, I admit I am a bit biased toward Steel Beast, but like you, I did my homework years ago and it was a difficult sell for me. What I saw in the series though is Ssnakes very user friendly attitude toward listening and informing their customers/followers, unlike many other producer/designers. Also, because he actively markets military end users, his data must be spot on accurate versus arcade or marginal realism of other tank sims available. I think the fact that West Point and many National Guard units use his software, not to mention Canada and Australia come to mind, smacks of high fidelty in his design and data. By definition of a simulation, I want to immerse myself into the sim as much as possible and Steel Beast has that immersiveness hands down. Now, if only I could convince him to add the Stryker series of vehicles.....I would be in nirvana.

If I came off a bit agressive, my sincerest apologies. I just read too much into your statements and wanted to reinforce I believe your wallet is speaking more than you are, about what you're seeking. I know Ssnake lives on this forum and his own, and there are hordes of loyal followers within this forum as well, that will more than give you your money's worth in a platoon engagement in Steel Beast, should you take the venture. If you have nay questions, please don't hesitate to either PM me or ask here, again there's many wiser than I, as well as wordly opinions abound.

Matt
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#3483656 - 12/29/11 03:32 PM Re: No Online Platoons?? [Re: QuickSilver]
BlueSixGolf Offline
Member

Registered: 07/15/00
Posts: 174
Loc: Mesa, Arizona
Originally Posted By: QuickSilver
I did a yahoo search for online tank platoons. I have not found ONE.


There are gaming clans that support games that model tanks, Armed Assault 2, for example.

This clan, 7th Cavalry, is an example of a gaming clan that has what it calls tank platoons.

There are other first person shooters with tanks that have clans as well, Darkest Hour, for example is a mod of Red Orchestra and it has groups styled as 'virtual units' such as Spearhead Division. As far as level of activity and depth of simulation, et cetera, YMMV.


Edited by BlueSixGolf (12/29/11 03:35 PM)

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#3483857 - 12/29/11 08:58 PM Re: No Online Platoons?? [Re: QuickSilver]
SeanSB Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 08/13/02
Posts: 35
Loc: Texas
Originally Posted By: QuickSilver

I am a bit confused why there are no USB gunner controls. Maybe I am confused but don't tank gun controls work like the old Star Wars arcade game? It is a wheel with handles that swivel forward and back. That does not seem like something that would be terribly difficult to develop or manufacture. I mean they have been using this basic design in gaming since at least the 80's right? I know tank siming is a niche market but you would think someone would step up.



The reason why is that there is no money in it. Let's start with materials choices. Metal is a choice, but its pretty expensive. (I believe AFVSIM has gone the machined metal route for small qty production.) What most controller companies do now is produce a mold and then shoot it with plastic. This works out if you are going to sell thousands. You have to sell enough to cover your design costs and the costs of producing and tweaking the mold. Think low to mid 5 figures now. The plastic itself is very cheap, were talking a few dollars a unit. The usb controller and pots/buttons are also cheap. Economies of scale also kick in when it comes to assembly. Producing a few costs a fortune, produce thousands and it becomes cheap.
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#3483907 - 12/29/11 10:37 PM Re: No Online Platoons?? [Re: QuickSilver]
jenrick Offline
Member

Registered: 07/08/03
Posts: 1072
It wouldn't be an exact match to any of the real controls out there, but a simple flight yoke will do the trick. Heck you can even use the buttons on the yoke to change your ammo selection, thermal, zoom, etc.

As to why no one does it, it's a nitch market. You'd probably have a decent chance getting some of the custom flight control shops to do a small production run that replaces the yoke of a traditional USB yoke. Heck I might by one, until then a flight yoke would do the trick if I wanted something specific.

-Jenrick

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#3485793 - 01/01/12 11:23 PM Re: No Online Platoons?? [Re: strykerpsg]
QuickSilver Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 03/14/10
Posts: 60
Originally Posted By: strykerpsg
If I came off a bit agressive, my sincerest apologies. I just read too much into your statements and wanted to reinforce I believe your wallet is speaking more than you are, about what you're seeking.


I would say this is very correct. Your absolutely right. I mean if it was $50 we would not be having this conversation. I know Steel Beasts has a lot to offer. It is at the top of the hill in its genre, no doubt. Another reason I am on the fence is I have heard work has began on the next Steel Beast title. Apparantly this sequel is supposed to offer a lot of what Steel Beast Pro offers. Maybe even at a more consumer friendly price.

Thanks for the reply strykerpsg.


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#3486307 - 01/02/12 10:54 PM Re: No Online Platoons?? [Re: QuickSilver]
QuickSilver Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 03/14/10
Posts: 60
I am going to ask a series of questions. I am working on a project but need some information.

Does Steel Beast have a start up sequence (like fuel pumps, hydrualic pumps, etc.) or do you just press a key to start the engine?

Is there a bail button (as in bailing out of the tank)?

Does Steel Beast have smoke generators?

Do you have to turn a laser on for rangeing or is it always on?

Can you control the tank treads individually? Here is an example of what I am talking about. Is it like WoT where if I push left one track goes forward and one goes back to rotate the tank or can you press two buttons one to make one go forward and the other one backward? (As a side note the only tank controls I know of are the type with 2 levers. Maybe more modern tanks use steering wheels or something like a flight stick?)

Do the gears change automatically or manually?

Do the tanks have variable throttle control or is it just gas and brake?

Do you have to close (or open for that matter) the hatch after popping out to look around or does it do it automatically.

Thank you.




Edited by QuickSilver (01/02/12 11:04 PM)

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#3486318 - 01/02/12 11:15 PM Re: No Online Platoons?? [Re: SeanSB]
QuickSilver Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 03/14/10
Posts: 60
Originally Posted By: SeanSB

The reason why is that there is no money in it. Let's start with materials choices. Metal is a choice, but its pretty expensive. (I believe AFVSIM has gone the machined metal route for small qty production.) What most controller companies do now is produce a mold and then shoot it with plastic. This works out if you are going to sell thousands. You have to sell enough to cover your design costs and the costs of producing and tweaking the mold. Think low to mid 5 figures now. The plastic itself is very cheap, were talking a few dollars a unit. The usb controller and pots/buttons are also cheap. Economies of scale also kick in when it comes to assembly. Producing a few costs a fortune, produce thousands and it becomes cheap.


I see your point. But then again......




When I see things like this, it gives me hope. Talk about a niche market. This was made for a Mech game for XBox.

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#3486930 - 01/03/12 05:50 PM Re: No Online Platoons?? [Re: QuickSilver]
jenrick Offline
Member

Registered: 07/08/03
Posts: 1072
Yep and Steel Battalion cost well over $200 (I know because I bought one) at launch.

-Jenrick

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#3487103 - 01/04/12 12:05 AM Re: No Online Platoons?? [Re: QuickSilver]
QuickSilver Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 03/14/10
Posts: 60
A TM Warthog cost $499 at launch? A normal game back then cost about $40. Making the price for the controller about 160. Seems pretty cheap to me.

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#3487387 - 01/04/12 02:11 PM Re: No Online Platoons?? [Re: QuickSilver]
Ryujin Online   santa
Member

Registered: 08/05/06
Posts: 168
Originally Posted By: QuickSilver
I am going to ask a series of questions. I am working on a project but need some information.

Does Steel Beast have a start up sequence (like fuel pumps, hydrualic pumps, etc.) or do you just press a key to start the engine?

Can you control the tank treads individually? Here is an example of what I am talking about. Is it like WoT where if I push left one track goes forward and one goes back to rotate the tank or can you press two buttons one to make one go forward and the other one backward? (As a side note the only tank controls I know of are the type with 2 levers. Maybe more modern tanks use steering wheels or something like a flight stick?)

Do the gears change automatically or manually?

Do the tanks have variable throttle control or is it just gas and brake?


One thing to note is that SB pro is a gunner/commander sim, it's not intended to train drivers and this area is not covered in depth. I never use the drivers station, just give orders from other stations. Gears are automatic, acceleration/braking, turn left turn right are the control. Engine start up is one button.

By contrast, some vehicles (depending on military customer requests) have full and detailed start ups for the turrets. The gunner's and commander's stations get the majority of the detail and depth.

Originally Posted By: QuickSilver

Is there a bail button (as in bailing out of the tank)?


No, as far as I know this is considered out side the scope of the sim.

Originally Posted By: QuickSilver

Does Steel Beast have smoke generators?


Yes, engine smoke generators and smoke grenade launchers with IR and regular smoke that do effect laser range finders.

Originally Posted By: QuickSilver

Do you have to turn a laser on for rangeing or is it always on?


Yes, you hit lase to fire the laser and get the range. Which can also burn out. You can choose if you want to use first or last return on many vehicles and all the fire control stuff is there on the appropriate vehicles with automatic lead, fusing options, and etc.

Originally Posted By: QuickSilver

Do you have to close (or open for that matter) the hatch after popping out to look around or does it do it automatically.


You can manually ope and close the hatch, although if you hit the key to stick your head out the hatch will open automatically (this is not the case with closing it when you stick your head back in). You also get the nice option to either just poke your head out or stand up all the way in the hatch.

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