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#4440957 - 09/26/18 07:45 PM MiG Alley Spring Offensive reports (19 years ago)  
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DBond Offline
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On a whim I Googled to see if any of my old posts were still about. I haven't flown this awesome sim in ages, but I was happy to find this still floating about the intraweb. It's a piece I did for Combatsim many moons ago. I thought I'd post the links for nostalgia. What a great sim this was.

Spring Offensive Part One

Spring Offensive Part Two

Spring Offensive Part Three

Man I loved MiG Alley smile


No, now go away or I shall taunt you a second time!
#4441102 - 09/27/18 03:00 PM Re: MiG Alley Spring Offensive reports (19 years ago) [Re: DBond]  
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Nice article!

It's a pity nobody has modernised the Mig Alley code. The source code was released and the EECH people here have determined that nobody owns Empire Interctive's IP anymore.
It would take a fair bit of effort though.

#4441111 - 09/27/18 03:53 PM Re: MiG Alley Spring Offensive reports (19 years ago) [Re: DBond]  
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Yeah, it would be great, but I don't see it happening. I think it was Viking at the time that was running Combatsim and he asked me to do a write up on the Spring Offensive so I did. The MYard that I keep referring to is Marshalling Yard as it's not obvious what I meant. That was the lingo at the time for MiG Alley folks as I recall, so it didn't need to be written out in full.

The Spring Offensive and the dogfighting in that sim were fantastic for the time. I wonder how I'd feel about it now if I were to play it again. Aside from Falcon 4 which had come out the previous winter, MiG Alley probably had the next best campaign in any flight sim, at least in my view.

One thing I really liked about it was how the MiG squadrons were handled. Each had a different paint scheme and skill level. Over time you'd get to know them and once identified you'd have an idea of how dangerous they were.There were bare-metal MiGs that were flown by novices, who literally had trouble controlling their aircraft, and would bail out if tracers flew past, all the way to the Red Tail squadron (pictured in the article) who were highly skilled and deadly.


No, now go away or I shall taunt you a second time!
#4441235 - 09/28/18 08:27 AM Re: MiG Alley Spring Offensive reports (19 years ago) [Re: DBond]  
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Interrestingly, modern OS itself is not a big problem for MiG Alley - it runs OK under Win7 with BDG patch. But the modern videocard is - it doesn't run at all at AMD (anything younger than Catalyst 13.1) and shows graphical artefacts on NVidia (GTX1060 in my case). On NV it still runs in software mode, but I as yet haven't found a solution to run it properly. Would appreciate any ideas.

Last edited by Dornil; 09/28/18 08:27 AM.
#4441286 - 09/28/18 03:14 PM Re: MiG Alley Spring Offensive reports (19 years ago) [Re: DBond]  
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It would be great to see it get a redux version, I'd buy that if it were updated to today's standards and could recognize my HOTAS.

Another comment about those MiG squadrons, particularly the novice ones. You could actually maneuver kill them. If you could get one of these novices in to a knife fight you could cause them to spin out and they'd crash. They'd be fishtailing with PIO, or at least it gave this appearance. That was cool, and I can't recall a sim since that had this. Maybe there has been and it's escaping me. But the sheer variety in the skill of the enemy aircraft was quite amazing for the time, and maybe even compared to today.


No, now go away or I shall taunt you a second time!
#4441560 - 09/30/18 10:18 AM Re: MiG Alley Spring Offensive reports (19 years ago) [Re: DBond]  
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Dornil, I just tried running the game with a GTX1060 but it failed with a DirectDraw error. I had it running OK-ish with a GTX590 on the same Win7 machine, but that was 6 years ago.
Unfortunately, Mig Alley has fallen into the 'black hole of graphics compatibility' of the post-Glide and pre-DirectX9 era (roughly 1999-2002). GPU support of these games is a matter of luck and the situation will only get worse over time.

Apart from rewriting the game, the best bet would be a DirectX wrapper like DxWnd or running the game under Wine on Linux. Neither of them would likely work straight away, but both have logging facilities to find out exactly what is going wrong. It's always good if someone else has already done the legwork though. smile

DBond, what do you mean by 'updated to today's standards'? The same game running perfectly on modern hardware? or with DCS level graphics/flight modelling/load times as well?
I missed out on Mig Alley in its day and was still playing F22TAW, whose (frankly ridiculous) campaigns managed to engage with my brain in a way no other combat flight sim has done since, despite its 1997 graphics engine. Night missions were the best as I'd have to render the world largely in my imagination.
While I admire the technical achievement of engines like DCS and IL2 series, they utterly fail at creating a compelling 'world' that I can engage with.
This is all very subjective though. smile

#4441686 - 10/01/18 02:16 PM Re: MiG Alley Spring Offensive reports (19 years ago) [Re: mikew]  
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Originally Posted by mikew

DBond, what do you mean by 'updated to today's standards'? The same game running perfectly on modern hardware?



Essentially yes. Modern resolutions, graphics, sound. The ability to recognize my stick/throttle correctly. I don't think the core gameplay needs a rework, though I might have a different opinion if I were to play it today. The tendency to view old favorites through nostalgia-colored glasses isn't lost on me. It could even be part of it's charm.


No, now go away or I shall taunt you a second time!
#4441785 - 10/02/18 12:50 AM Re: MiG Alley Spring Offensive reports (19 years ago) [Re: DBond]  
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One of the very best sims. I loved the simplicity: Guns , cannons , and jets. Early straight and swept-wings jet-combat in the dawn of the jet age. Love those Sabres. Ground pounding , interdictions, bridge busting with the F51, F80 and the awesome F84 . To me the AI opponent was very good because it was believable . In the SO campaign you never knew who would show. You could come across a Chinese recruit who would panic and spin out -Or Remember the early red nosed mig buggers with funny wings--Honchos. . When You saw them, and were dead. Remember " Dentist", T-6 FAC/TAC and the infamous RTB bug-a-boo.
Dbond: Remember your "Tip of the Day" and your SO AAR on Frugalsworld ? They were always a fun read and they help me complete the awesome SO campaign a number of times. I archived a bunch of posts and tips for when i return to Korea. Ah. .. Good times

#4441848 - 10/02/18 11:47 AM Re: MiG Alley Spring Offensive reports (19 years ago) [Re: DBond]  
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Hey Vox, nice post, you summed up the good stuff well. thumbsup

Vox, eh? I like your amps and I have one of your pedalboards too (of course your username may have nothing to do with guitars haha)


No, now go away or I shall taunt you a second time!
#4441954 - 10/02/18 11:36 PM Re: MiG Alley Spring Offensive reports (19 years ago) [Re: DBond]  
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Sorry. unrelated to audio equipment. Vox=voice in latin

#4442023 - 10/03/18 01:41 PM Re: MiG Alley Spring Offensive reports (19 years ago) [Re: DBond]  
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Yes, indeed. And I knew that actually. Just thinking I might have met another guitar player.

Anyhoo, back to the scheduled programming.....


No, now go away or I shall taunt you a second time!
#4492552 - 10/12/19 12:56 AM Re: MiG Alley Spring Offensive reports (19 years ago) [Re: DBond]  
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I can still play that game on Win 7 Pro x64, Nvidia GT 730 card.. Runs fine. IIRC, needed a specific game patch to run right, possibly mentioned above. Anyone got a link to patch(es) for the game, for the newbies?.

I liked the game, although the unusual HUD Enemy display took some getting used-to, it was useful and effective with some experience. Ran fine with old Logitech Wingman Extreme joystick.

IIRC, just for laughs, I landed at some airbase (NK?), and taxied around shooting up hangars and such.

No idea if it will work in Win 10, though Anyone try it?

Last edited by RIBob; 10/12/19 01:05 AM.
#4496551 - 11/08/19 06:59 PM Re: MiG Alley Spring Offensive reports (19 years ago) [Re: DBond]  
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Sorry for the late reply on this - @RIBob - I still have the original install disk - will need to find the patch 1.23 of course and then the fandangling of getting it to install biggrin

#4499291 - 12/05/19 11:13 PM Re: MiG Alley Spring Offensive reports (19 years ago) [Re: DBond]  
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Like @Mr.Fork I still have my I have my original CD. Unlike him, I also still have an executable named MIG123.EXE (it's 2,310,904 bytes). The file dates to 2002. I can post it somewhere if needed. Looks like I might have to break out my Win7 machine or perhaps even my WinXP box) biggrin.

Last edited by mandrews; 12/05/19 11:13 PM.

i7-7700 @ 3.6GHz, 32GB DDR4 RAM, SSD (OS) + SSD (Games), GTX 1070 Ti, Acer Predator Z35p 3440x1440 GSync
#4530765 - 07/21/20 01:18 AM Re: MiG Alley Spring Offensive reports (19 years ago) [Re: DBond]  
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I kept my old Win XP computer so I could still fly MiG Alley, as well as EAW and RB3D. And I do fly them regularly.

New combat flight sims, as good as they are in regards to graphics and flight modelling, don't hold a candle to the older sims campaign modes.

Last edited by PipsPriller; 07/21/20 01:19 AM.

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#4530842 - 07/21/20 04:55 PM Re: MiG Alley Spring Offensive reports (19 years ago) [Re: DBond]  
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Mig Alley was a favorite. I do wish for a come back with better graphics and immersion factor as in OFF.

#4608913 - 09/17/22 11:21 AM Re: MiG Alley Spring Offensive reports (19 years ago) [Re: DBond]  
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I too loved this sim. And thanks to DBond's excellent campaign tutorials I managed to get a lot of fun out of this Sim.

There is hope. GoG (Good Old Games) have released versions of Red Baron3D and European Air War that allow them to run well on modern computers using Win10. Fingers crossed they will get around to doing the same for MiG Alley.


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"But Emillo you promised ....... it's postpone"
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#4609045 - 09/19/22 04:28 PM Re: MiG Alley Spring Offensive reports (19 years ago) [Re: DBond]  
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Pips!

Yeah, those were the days, over at Frug's eh?

I'd play an updated version no doubt. Still, one the best combat sims I've ever played. Good campaign, good dogfighting, a squadron roster to manage, a war to prosecute. And maybe the best thing about MiG Alley was the AI, which was way ahead of it's time. The way the skill of the enemy AI pilot could be determined just by the way he flew, how the novices could be made to bail out simply by firing a burst of 50 cal past his canopy, or how aggressive maneuver could cause the AI to panic, with PIO and he would fishtail and eventually lose control and crash. Maneuver kills are rare in flight simming.


No, now go away or I shall taunt you a second time!
#4609169 - 09/21/22 12:21 PM Re: MiG Alley Spring Offensive reports (19 years ago) [Re: DBond]  
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I kept Win 7 32bit on my system just for Mig Alley. Sadly it doesn't seem to work with my Radeon RX5700. Anyone able to run it with that card, I would love to hear about it!

Despite countess moments of frustrations due to CTDs even back in the day, Mig Alley is still my N° 1 combat sim of all time. I don't want a remake for fear it can never be that good. I just want the old girl to run on today's hardware. While I appreciated the real-time campaign in BoB2, I just felt that Mig Alley's phased system worked better for me. Another aspect that MA did incredibly well was its voice chatter. Fond memories...


Undercarriage lever a bit sticky was it, Sir?
#4609187 - 09/21/22 04:22 PM Re: MiG Alley Spring Offensive reports (19 years ago) [Re: DBond]  
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Yeah Johan, stuff like -- and it's been a long time now so forgive me -- "train leaving the station at Sinanju" and that sort of thing. Which wasn't about trains, but slang for a squadron of MiGs scrambling. Am I mixing up my sims? Dentist was the name of the controller right? There was a lot to like about this sim. Pips mentioned the campaign guides we did over at Frugals, and I can still recall the campaign vividly, which targets to hit, how to get the line moving. Optimal squadron placement. Which bridges were key. How 23mm AA gun tracers looked like basketballs as they arced toward you. How I would always make a pass over ground targets to get a visual and make sure I was shooting no cart-pulling donkeys lol. Hunting trains along the rail lines in a F-80. The infamous "Redtails" squadron of aces that upped the ante considerably when they were spotted in the furball.

I like the point you make about the 'phased' system, and it did indeed work quite well. I liked BoB's campaign too it must be said, but the phase system worked well, three sessions per day and the front line was recalculated after each. Dymanic without being continuously so.

Great sim.


No, now go away or I shall taunt you a second time!
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