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#4480364 - 06/28/19 12:06 PM Re: News about version 4.1 [Re: Ssnake]  
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Only in the bundle, since it requires physical shipment. It makes sense to send it out only if there are other items that need to be shipped anyway.


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#4480380 - 06/28/19 01:32 PM Re: News about version 4.1 [Re: Ssnake]  
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So the big reveal is over? Could you post release notes so we know what we are buying? Or confirm what the new playables are? Or are the available amount of NEW playables going to be dependent on pre-orders?

Last edited by Woofie_Dog; 06/28/19 01:33 PM.
#4480394 - 06/28/19 02:48 PM Re: News about version 4.1 [Re: Ssnake]  
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Hey Ssnake, I suppose the preorder bundle upgrade will only upgrade from 4.0 to 4.1, right?

To be more clear, I'm currently with a 2.5 codemeter license and was going to get back to the game in 4.0 (life didn't let me play in the last 8 years lol), but waited for 4.1 (to avoid paying twice for the upgrade), so I didn't purchase the 4.0 upgrade (then USD 40), but now I see that 2.5 to 4.1 is USD 89. So, in the end, I could yesterday had purchased the USD 40 upgrade to 4.0, and then the USD 25 to 4.1, so I missed playing 4.0 and now I have to pay more frown ...

Is there an way around it or I'm OOL? Thank you.

#4480409 - 06/28/19 03:44 PM Re: News about version 4.1 [Re: Woofie_Dog]  
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Originally Posted by Woofie_Dog
So the big reveal is over? Could you post release notes so we know what we are buying? Or confirm what the new playables are? Or are the available amount of NEW playables going to be dependent on pre-orders?

One or two more videos will be made and uploaded to YouTube, possibly also the one or other preparatory tutorial.
The only thing that depends on the preorders is the production batch size for the physical items - printed manuals, the installation USB stick, the preorder surprise item.

We will quit the preorder phase as soon as there is a noticeable reduction in new orders, suggesting that we have collected the peak demand, and have enough know-how to set the production lot size. So, please make your decision soon if you want any of the physical items. We will of course create more manuals and USB sticks than to barely satisfy the preorder demand, so you can always order both the installation stick and/or the user manual at a later point. But prices will go up.


The release notes will be prepared in the coming days, and be made available before the actual release day. But I can't promise that the preorder phase will last that long.


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#4480411 - 06/28/19 03:58 PM Re: News about version 4.1 [Re: SacaSoh]  
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Originally Posted by SacaSoh
Hey Ssnake, I suppose the preorder bundle upgrade will only upgrade from 4.0 to 4.1, right?

To be more clear, I'm currently with a 2.5 codemeter license and was going to get back to the game in 4.0 (life didn't let me play in the last 8 years lol), but waited for 4.1 (to avoid paying twice for the upgrade), so I didn't purchase the 4.0 upgrade (then USD 40), but now I see that 2.5 to 4.1 is USD 89. So, in the end, I could yesterday had purchased the USD 40 upgrade to 4.0, and then the USD 25 to 4.1, so I missed playing 4.0 and now I have to pay more frown ...

Is there an way around it or I'm OOL? Thank you.

I'm sorry, but it seems like you're out of luck in this case. Version 2.5 was made in 2009, version 2.6 came out in 2011. That we're offering a seven year-long upgrade period including the skipping of major version numbers is, I think, rather generous. At some point we have to draw a line. The last 10 years have seen constant investment on our part to make everything better, with considerable expense. Upgrade fees are at least a symbolic price to have PE players a skin in the game and to contribute to that effort, even if it could never even remotely cover the actual expense.

Now, if you want the items from the preorder bundle, I could fully understand that, and I'm willing to help out; you could order both the $53 bundle and the $89 upgrade, and then contact me (my forum name here (at) eSimGames.com). I would cancel the 4.0 to 4.1 license upgrade ticket, and we would refund $25 to your credit card account. That would amount to $117 in total, compared to $149 for a completely new purchase, still a substantial savings. A possible alternative are time-based licenses. At $39.50 for a year you could play Steel Beasts for two years straight and still have money left compared to the $89 upgrade option.


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#4480465 - 06/28/19 07:24 PM Re: News about version 4.1 [Re: Ssnake]  
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No offence, but no major version upgrade, i.e. from 4.0 to 4.1 for US$53.00 seems too much. You must admit that your expenses were/are well paid by Steel Beasts Professional customers - by military professionals that are your main targeting group. Personal edition is just for general audience and not main scope of your business.
For the value of 4.1 upgrade we can buy full versions of other sim/games, e.g. IL-2 Tank Crew, Steel Fury, Panzer Elite, etc. etc.
Of course, that is just my personal opinion. IMHO, changing your marketing strategy lowering selling price of PE would significantly increase the quantity of sales leading to increased profit.

#4480484 - 06/28/19 09:42 PM Re: News about version 4.1 [Re: Ssnake]  
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Most of the $53.- are the costs of shipping, handling, printing the manual, and having the USB stick manufactured. As a 4.0 license owner you may simply go for the "pure download" option for $25.-

4.1 is a major upgrade from a functional point of view. The version number after the decimal point is irrelevant. When we released SB Pro PE, the first version was 2.251, the first major upgrade was then 2.419, followed by 2.538, 2.640, etc.; at the end of the day, these are nothing but sequential version number incremented by each compiler run. There is nothing else to it.

As to whether the expenses have been paid for by army customers - this is only partially true, and even then it's a logical fallacy to accept any price other than zero if one would take the argument seriously. In which case you could just as well argue that no company should make a single cent of profit as soon as all the expenses have been covered. Which is a serious economic theory, called Socialism. Measured by the amount of profit (less the amount of customer support cases) that it generates, the Personal Edition receives a disproportionately large fraction of our development time. We still do it because the Personal Edition is a good yardstick to juge ease of use/accessibility, and PE users are quicker and more vocal to report bugs.


All that being said, nobody is forcing anyone to buy anything. Here's our offer. I think it's very much worth it. But value is a highly subjective thing that depends on personal preferences and the general situation. A glass of water may be worth thousands if you're lost in the desert, or worth nothing if you're caught in a rainstorm. I think that for 4.0 users, asking for $25.- for three years of the team's really hard work is seriously underpriced. But we promised the new terrain engine for version 4.0 and it took us three years longer, so I at least honor that promise with the implicit $15.- discount.


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#4480521 - 06/29/19 01:48 AM Re: News about version 4.1 [Re: JJJ65]  
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Originally Posted by JJJ65
You must admit that your expenses were/are well paid by Steel Beasts Professional customers - by military professionals that are your main targeting group. Personal edition is just for general audience and not main scope of your business.


We at least are paying for usage by the ADF.

We acknowledge that there are some flow on effects to civilian customers, but there is certainly no expectation that say only 80% (random % for the sake of argument) of what we pay for goes to the Military version and 20% is re-directed to something other than we paid for.

Suggesting that implies that we, and other countries, are doing our respective tax payers a dis-service.


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IAW the Defence Communication Manual 2016, Chapter 3, paragraphs 3.28 - 3.30 - The views expressed are mine alone and do not reflect the views of the Department of Defence.
#4480549 - 06/29/19 05:47 AM Re: News about version 4.1 [Re: Ssnake]  
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Oh, sorry, I have overlooked the update from 4.0 to 4.1 is for 25 USD only. My apologies - that is reasonable price.
I think, however, you misunderstand my point and you advocate, from my point of view, bad marketing strategy: is it better to sell 10 copies of PE for 153 USD each than 100 copies for 60 USD each?

#4480556 - 06/29/19 06:31 AM Re: News about version 4.1 [Re: JJJ65]  
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Originally Posted by JJJ65
I think, however, you misunderstand my point and you advocate, from my point of view, bad marketing strategy: is it better to sell 10 copies of PE for 153 USD each than 100 copies for 60 USD each?

Thanks for your advice on marketing strategy (which actually is advice on sales policy). Free business consultancy, what's not to love.
We're selling Steel Beasts for 20 years now. Let's assume that I know what we're doing, and that I have good reason to do so, because I have more information than you do. Which is privileged however, so please excuse me if I don't disclose our business secrets in a public forum. I can however summarize that your suggestion is like 99% of all other helpful but unsolicited suggestions. We tried it, and the underlying conventional wisdom does not apply to our product and market.

A viable alternative strategy - for someone else - might be to run a freemium Ponzi scheme with pay to win salami sales tactics, and then to fleece the whales as long as they are willing to pay money to substitute grind. But that's neither the type of game that I want to make nor could we adopt such a strategy without losing 90% of our current audience, starting from scratch marketing wise, and we've already seen how well those WoT clones are doing. Plus, it would be a huge distraction from our actual business.

What eSim Games offers and always has is brutal honesty:
  • Honest prices - you pay for the marginal costs of what it costs to support the Personal Edition, less the cross-subsidied part where we see the utility value of having the Personal Edition in the first place.
  • Honest gameplay - no DLCs to pay extra for, no hidden costs, no freemium BS, no unlocking of levels, equipment, skills or whatever; your own skill and your own luck decides the outcome. Also, we give a d4mn about scenario balance. Some scenarios are much harder to win than others, some may even be impossible to win.
  • Honest results - we play no favorites in our modeling and simulation to make player groups with a frail collective ego feel better about their (or eSim's) favorite country's tanks.
  • Honest feature reduction - in order to avoid export control issues, we only keep those features out that might otherwise cross the line, compare to the classroom version.


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#4480561 - 06/29/19 08:36 AM Re: News about version 4.1 [Re: Ssnake]  
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Yes, that is good you are sure about your sales policy, but that (the sales policy) is the reason I have never bought upgrade from 3.0 to 4.0 and I am not going to buy upgrade from 3.0 to 4.1 either. And this time I am sure I am not the only one. However, you know better than me you can live without general audience customers wink .

#4480567 - 06/29/19 10:15 AM Re: News about version 4.1 [Re: Ssnake]  
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Look, if you're looking for a cheap option, we have time-based licenses for that. $24.50 for four months, $39.50 for a full year. This is an excellent deal for anyone who has only a passing interest in tank simulations and knows that he's going to play with it only for a limited time. And it's not like you couldn't come back any any given point, for one month, a few, or a year. You can keep telling me that Steel Beasts is too expensive, but in the light of this offer your credibility suffers a bit.

If you have a CM stick with a 3.0 license on it like your post suggests, we're offering an upgrade for a six year-old version at $59.- which is $6.- less than the combination of a 4.0 upgrade and a subsequent version 4.1 update would have cost you. And that license will be good for another three years until the next update comes along, which you can probably skip again, so we're talking about $59.- compensating for the last six years, that's less than $10.- per year. Don't tell me that it's a problem of the price. Maybe the changes from 3.0 to 4.1 don't convince you of the value of the whole package, but then please be so honest and tell me what you're missing. Because the 4.0 upgrade was massive, and 4.1 brings a lot of new elements that make it a much better simulation overall. It's perfectly fine if you would rather see other elements being worked on, but then let's not pretend that it's about pricing when you really would like to see a different direction in our development.


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#4480764 - 06/30/19 05:51 PM Re: News about version 4.1 [Re: Ssnake]  
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So no new playable tanks??....kinda under whelming for three years of not having any upgrades and not getting a terrain patch.Yes there are some nice things,and the price IS equal to the task,but I really expected /hoped for more.At the very least a thermal equipped OPFOR tank or finished ones we already have(ie chally 2).I bought the upgrade regardless but I'm unimpressed so far.Just seems kinda lean compared to previous upgrades which were on a yearly basis(they were yearly right???haven't checked that for sure.) I think I would have preferred to pay the full 40$ upgrade for more playable tanks TBH,but that's your call.

EDIT: Thinking about it a bit more I realize that a counter argument might be made regarding the new non playable content BUT as someone who has made game content in other sim's "without any prior knowledge" of modeling and has produced content in a matter of days/weeks (tanks for arma for example) is the reason I made the comments that I did.

Last edited by Woofie_Dog; 06/30/19 07:47 PM.
#4480782 - 06/30/19 07:41 PM Re: News about version 4.1 [Re: Ssnake]  
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Originally Posted by Ssnake
This video is slightly older, but still a good illustration of what the new terrain engine is capable of (has still the old lighting, and the terrain that is shown here, sadly, won't be part of SB Pro PE 4.1):




This is confusing as well...it says where NOT getting the terrain in 4.1??? I thought the 4.1 was all about the terrain ?? why is this not included??

#4480805 - 06/30/19 11:47 PM Re: News about version 4.1 [Re: Woofie_Dog]  
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Originally Posted by Woofie_Dog
So no new playable tanks?

This upgrade isn't about new playable vehicles specifically even though it has a number of them, most notably the DF90 and the DF30 (just in case you missed them, although the way you phrased your post sounds as if you're deliberately omitting them to prove your point). But if your definition of "tank" is narrowly focused on MBTs or tracked armored vehicles, then No, there aren't any with crew positions.

Quote
kinda under whelming for three years of not having any upgrades and not getting a terrain patch

Yeah... terrain "patch"...
That task ... ballooned slightly. Which I thought was kinda obvious given the fact that it took us three years, but maybe we integrated everything so well that it betrays the unsuspecting eye what effort went into all this.
  • High-res terrain means, the grid resolution was increased by a factor of 512, the render resolution even by factor 2048.
    At the same time the map file sizes increased only by a factor of maybe 10...15, and we could shrink the typical scenario file size by a factor of 20.
    And we maintained the ability to edit and modify maps for mission designers with only minimal restrictions. That alone cost one programmer almost six years of work.
  • We rewrote the whole lighting code for the render engine, and had to replace every single piece of vegetation artwork in the terrain, and then add a fair bit of new models. This allows representing a far wider range of climate zones/landscape types - like sub-saharan Africa. It looks a lot better. We increased the frame rates, SB Pro PE is very playable now with visibilty set to 7...10 kilometers.
    Hint: Typically frame rates develop in the opposite direction with version updates.
  • High-res terrain required an entirely different approach to vehicles; we had to add a suspension model that not only works for the player's tanks, or 20...30 tanks as you would typically see in a racing game. It had to be made to work for several ten thousand vehicle entities to accommodate the needs of some of our military customers. When we shopped around at a simulation-centric exhibition for 3rd party solutions boasting "high performance suspension code" that was supposedly "suitable for large number of entities" -- they meant "up to 100". When we told them "we need it for several 10,000" they visibly paled and became very quiet.
    But we did it anyway. It may not look like much, and yes, the benefit for you is maybe not very high, but our work is dictated by far wider ranging needs. Our team is less than a tenth of that of Bohemia Interactive (since you brought up ArmA III as an example) and still we get things done where others fail miserably.
  • A suitable suspension model for all vehicles was only part of the ripple effect that a change in the terrain engine caused. We also had to replace the driving code for all vehicles, which was a bloody nightmare because it was 20 years old and touched everything. Which means that when you rewrite it, you introduce "refactoring bugs" everywhere that must be found and killed quickly before your changes destroy the entire product. But we took that risk because it was the prerequisite for better pathfinding and better AI behavior. Units are no longer water-shy, but they don't drown themselves as often anymore either. And it works down to a framerate of about eight, because we have customers with scenarios so large ... well, see above.
  • Right, the terrain isn't just high-res now, it's also deformable at runtime. So engineer vehicles can now dig vehicle emplacements. We can crater the landscape. This opens the path for a lot of nice feature improvements in the future.
  • Next up, the new model for high explosive and fragmentation effects. Which tracks up to 20,000 individual fragments per explosion, in real-time, and puts everything on a solid engineering foundation (which it was not, up to now). This will improve the quality of simulation results enormously in the coming years as we refine the parameterization, and further boost the performance in subsequent development steps.

I know of no other simulation even in the professional military field that combines the capabilities of Steel Beasts in a remotely comparable way. There may be specialized applications that can do individual things somewhat better, but none that can do everything, and do it on a single PC, let alone at a comparable price point. And I'm not alone in that assessment. We've worked with research labs that used Steel Beasts for experimentation purposes because there was no other tool that offered both the breadth of scope and the high degree of fidelity in simulation results. None.

Yes. No playable new MBT. I'm sorry. We were kinda busy the last years.

As far as the confusion about the terrain is concerned, the "DTED is dead" video was meant to illustrate the capabilities of our new terrain engine. But the terrain data on which this was based is not available for public distribution, so we can't include it in the coming release. Sorry, no Danish sand dunes for you, we don't have the rights for it. But you will get one or two maps from Finland that are based on LIDAR scans; slightly less in resolution but still much better than anything that was available in the past. And one from BAOR's Sennelager area, Germany.


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#4480824 - 07/01/19 08:08 AM Re: News about version 4.1 [Re: Woofie_Dog]  
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Originally Posted by Woofie_Dog
EDIT: Thinking about it a bit more I realize that a counter argument might be made regarding the new non playable content BUT as someone who has made game content in other sim's "without any prior knowledge" of modeling and has produced content in a matter of days/weeks (tanks for arma for example) is the reason I made the comments that I did.


Well I wouldn't necessarily claim that the tanks in ARMA hold a candle to the tanks in Steel Beast Pro PE.

Even the ones in VBS are poor comparisons to the ones on Steel Beasts Pro PE.

Last edited by Gibsonm; 07/01/19 08:09 AM.

Mark (}-:
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IAW the Defence Communication Manual 2016, Chapter 3, paragraphs 3.28 - 3.30 - The views expressed are mine alone and do not reflect the views of the Department of Defence.
#4480881 - 07/01/19 01:30 PM Re: News about version 4.1 [Re: Gibsonm]  
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Originally Posted by Gibsonm
Originally Posted by Woofie_Dog
EDIT: Thinking about it a bit more I realize that a counter argument might be made regarding the new non playable content BUT as someone who has made game content in other sim's "without any prior knowledge" of modeling and has produced content in a matter of days/weeks (tanks for arma for example) is the reason I made the comments that I did.


Well I wouldn't necessarily claim that the tanks in ARMA hold a candle to the tanks in Steel Beast Pro PE.

Even the ones in VBS are poor comparisons to the ones on Steel Beasts Pro PE.



Ok ...I'll play your game...

Well I wouldn't necessarily claim that the Planes,helicopters,infantry,weapons,trucks,OPRFOR ARMOR(with exception of the T-72 and BMP),cars,ships,terrain,buildings,flora,animals,waters or editor, in Steel Beast Pro PE hold a candle to the Planes,helicopters,infantry,weapons,trucks,OPRFOR ARMOR(with exception of the T-72 and BMP),cars,ships,artillery,terrain,buildings,flora,animals,waters,or editor, in ARMA.

But in any case my point was in terms of time it takes to create assets.

Last edited by Woofie_Dog; 07/01/19 01:45 PM.
#4480898 - 07/01/19 03:17 PM Re: News about version 4.1 [Re: Ssnake]  
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Just goes to show that different priorities yield different products.


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#4480905 - 07/01/19 03:52 PM Re: News about version 4.1 [Re: Ssnake]  
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Originally Posted by Ssnake
Just goes to show that different priorities yield different products.


Yes yes...sadly...I have to agree totally in your defense since Bohemia did the ridiculously stupid idea of introducing Aliens into the arma world(and to that I say "#%&*$# them")...100 points to you.

#4480926 - 07/01/19 07:30 PM Re: News about version 4.1 [Re: Woofie_Dog]  
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Originally Posted by Woofie_Dog
Originally Posted by Gibsonm
Originally Posted by Woofie_Dog
EDIT: Thinking about it a bit more I realize that a counter argument might be made regarding the new non playable content BUT as someone who has made game content in other sim's "without any prior knowledge" of modeling and has produced content in a matter of days/weeks (tanks for arma for example) is the reason I made the comments that I did.


Well I wouldn't necessarily claim that the tanks in ARMA hold a candle to the tanks in Steel Beast Pro PE.

Even the ones in VBS are poor comparisons to the ones on Steel Beasts Pro PE.


Ok ...I'll play your game...

Well I wouldn't necessarily claim that the Planes,helicopters,infantry,weapons,trucks,OPRFOR ARMOR(with exception of the T-72 and BMP),cars,ships,terrain,buildings,flora,animals,waters or editor, in Steel Beast Pro PE hold a candle to the Planes,helicopters,infantry,weapons,trucks,OPRFOR ARMOR(with exception of the T-72 and BMP),cars,ships,artillery,terrain,buildings,flora,animals,waters,or editor, in ARMA.

But in any case my point was in terms of time it takes to create assets.


Well its not my "game".

You said basically that a novice can make models in no time at all.

I'm saying that compared to Steel Beasts it shows.

If the AFVs in VBS / ARMA were any good, the ADF might use it more for vehicle orientated operations than we currently do. As it is, we use VBS for Infantry centric training and SB for vehicle centric trg, in part due to those differences in fidelity.


Mark (}-:
LTCOL RAAC
IAW the Defence Communication Manual 2016, Chapter 3, paragraphs 3.28 - 3.30 - The views expressed are mine alone and do not reflect the views of the Department of Defence.
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