I come to you with a request...and a mission. The Allies need you. Right now, there's a war going on. It's going on 24/7, day and night. It's on the ground (infantry, armor, and paratroopers), on the water (destroyers, river patrol boats, and supply ships), and in the air (fighters, tactical air support, and strategic bombing). There is no "squadron night," where you fly then shut down the game server. The battles are going on whether you're online or not, all night and all day, every day. It's a true combined arms PvP sim. It goes until one side wins, then starts over after a short, two to three day, intermission. It's "Battleground Europe: World War II Online" (WWIIOL). The basic game is free to play. There are no microtransactions and there is no pay to win. Once you get into the game, if you want more, there are two subscription levels, Starter ($7.99(US)/month) and Premium ($14.99(US)/month). The Starter sub gives you up to rank level five and access to more equipment. The Premium sub gives you access to all rank levels and all ingame assets.
For those of you who have (or haven't played it... Yes, the graphics are dated. It looks old. That's because when the game first came out (2001), the publisher (Strategy First) forced the game's creators (Cornered Rat Software Studios) to release the game early. It was still buggy and was missing important features. Then, the publisher took the advance order money and ran, leaving the Rats to pick up the pieces. Over the years, there have been updates, but the graphics are still not up to today's standards. HOWEVER, the simple graphics also mean there can be more people on the same map at one time without killing your frame rate. This is a GOOD thing, since everyone is on one single map, with NO instancing, which covers over 135,000 square miles (1/2 scale map of Europe).
If you're flying a mission, and fly over a city being fought over, drop down and run a couple strafing passes. But beware, those are actual players whose characters you're shooting at, and they shoot back. A lucky rifle shot through the windscreen HAS been known to take down a plane by killing the pilot. I know because I was playing infantry not too long ago and killed a Stuka that way.
The Rats have done what they can over the years to keep the game running. Not too long ago, they did a fundraiser and started making improvements and updates. They cleaned up old, badly-patched "spaghetti" code, purchased some new hardware and software, and brought the game back to life. Recently, they finished another fundraiser which will allow them to do even MORE. There are new units coming into game (tank-buster aircraft and mobile (truck/halftrack mounted) anti aircraft guns). At first, these will be repurposed assets already ingame. Soon, there will be entirely new vehicles under development.
The Rats are VERY committed to growing and improving the game. This is where you come in. The server population is pretty low, at the moment. When the game comes out on Steam, later this year, it's expected there will be a large influx of players. Anyone ingame ahead of time will gain valuable experience levels and practical knowledge, and perhaps can even train for High Command to direct the tactical assets ingame. You would then get to set attack orders on towns, move troops and material around to keep the front lines strong, and direct our attacking and defending forces to key spots so we win battles...and campaigns.
It's worth a look, especially the free version. As a pilot, take an entry level plane up and get into a couple fights. Be careful, however. The physics and damage models are as realistic as they could possibly make them. You can fly combat air support (strafing/dive bombing), fighter sweeps, tactical bombing, even RDP (resource, design, and production) bombing raids on enemy factories. RDP raids keep the enemy from replacing lost equipment as quickly. That type of attrition can make a big difference when fighting over an important town.
The Axis is strong. I'm asking you to help make the Allies stronger. Even a couple nights a week as a free to play pilot can make a big difference. When you don't feel like flying, hop into an armored vehicle or grab a rifle and be a ground pounder...or pilot a river patrol boat and protect Allied held towns and bridges from Axis forces.
It's DEFINITELY worth a try, and your presence would be greatly appreciated.