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Immersion killers
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Vole
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Post Post subject: Immersion killers
Posted: Wed Jun 08, 2011 12:54 PM
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When you set off flying a campaign you will have to strain your imagination to a higher or lesser degree. Flying for example a Guadalcanal campaign built on the Guadalcanal map with the actual planes included is less straining than flying a Battle of Britain campaign on the Finland map with TU-2's as stand ins for Dornier Do 17's.

However, a large number of campaigns (including some of my own) uses stand ins for maps, planes and so on. Each of these factors and even other factors can be immersion killers (not my expression - it is electrons (or thats where I got it) - but I kind of like the expression).

So ... which are the worst immersion killers for you? As a mission builder I am highly interested in the answer.

For me it is definitely the use of - or rather the lack of - ground objects. Nothing like a deserted airfield supposed to be busy for killing immersion off!

Map choice CAN be a killer too. For some reason I have personally never been able to accept Finland as stand in for the South of England.

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PhilK
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Post Post subject:
Posted: Wed Jun 08, 2011 01:05 PM
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"Perfect" or "Good" weather at mid-day is an immersion killer, as the lack of shadows and humidity makes the landscape look plasticky. I tend to avoid making missions in the 11am-1pm time period, and if I do, I use poor/blind weather.


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bingofuel
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Posted: Wed Jun 08, 2011 02:15 PM
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Too much aircrafts in the sky which provoke low performance.
Lags are the worst immersion killer.

Ace skills are also disturbing, when you are killed at the first pass with a 90° angle by an I-153 that ran across from nowhere. Since I want to enjoy my game, no shame to say that I often use to downgrade the skill levels of the IA fighters and bombers before engaging a new offline campaign.

Why don't you ask also about the immersion helper?

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Bogustogus
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Posted: Wed Jun 08, 2011 04:05 PM
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For me, these are the worst immersion killers:

1> wrong use or no use of skins
2> wrong loadouts
3> untested missions
4> fantasy tactics & targets
5> lack of research

as for 1:
IL-2 is an eastern front sim and most default skins for European theatre axis planes have yellow noses, wingtips and fuselage bands. That color was not used outside the eastern front with the exception of some yellow noses in the BoB.
When campaigns turn out to have default skins for everything except the player's flight/ squadron it kills the immersion because it has obviously not been researched properly. Once you know about tactical markings it becomes impossible to overlook.

as for 2;
Long ago I decided to make a Bf-110 campaign for 2 reasons; one being the thought that for every other type there were already plenty of campaigns but not for that one. The other reason was the stock campaign for Bf-110 in version 2.04 and later ones. Besides the fact that it was rather boring, it also had you attack tanks with anti- personnel bombs and other impossible loadouts that seemed to have been put in without thinking. Also, the transit altitude was always the same, just like the running into an enemy patrol after 80% distance to target in EVERY mission. Besides that, the enemy AAA was always exactly in your path at the front line, damaging your plane in 50% of all sorties...
Worst of all, it was 63 missions with 0% variation. Ground pounding only.

as for 3;
I tried a campaign someone made around a certain theme and in the very first mission one had to intercept a He-111 which was doing recon according to the briefing.
All you had to do was follow the leader. Well, the leader flew off at top speed and disappeared in the clouds because the He-111 was in the clouds.
The weather type being rain, it was impossible to see the leader and the target.
Had it been tested, the mission builder would have found out soon enough that this was a mission impossible. (Same mission had eastern front skins on all aicraft) . Also, consider this; photo recon while flying in 10/10 cloud, in the rain? Come on.
I never continued the campaign.

as for 4;
suppose you fly an IL-2 mission and the whole squadron of IL-2's fly at 3000m.
To me, that kills the immersion because the IL-2 was never used like that. It takes less than 10 minutes to find out that the VVS used them at altitudes below 1000m to avoid interception.
Then, arriving over target (let's say, a Luftwaffe airfield) in your IL-2, to find out that the targets are lined up perfectly and planes are parked wingtip to wingtip, that kills immersion, too. Targets should be dispersed and/ or camouflaged on airfields. However, if it's a VVS 1941 airfield, they should be lined up perfectly. See also under 5.

as to 5;
like some exampes I already gave, lack of research can be an immersion killer. For instance, if you fly a FW 190 over Stalingrad, that is incorrect altogether. There were no FW's at Stalingrad.
It's obviously no problem for those who no nothing about that kind of a thing. But most of us do, and because the information is all available either here at M4T or elsewhere, the killing thing is finding out that the mission builder did't go through the trouble of finding out.
Another element of research would be that a good mission or campaign has correct dates and front lines. If you fly an eastern front mission which has blue in the east and red in the west, I'm done before I even get started. Wink


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Last edited by Bogustogus on Wed Jun 08, 2011 04:13 PM; edited 2 time in total
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Beebop
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Post Post subject:
Posted: Wed Jun 08, 2011 08:21 PM
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Interesting observations Bogustogus. I agree 100% about empty home fields. It's like your in an episode of "The Twilight Zone"

I'm assuming these 'problem' campaigns were advertised as being historical and I do hope you tried to contact thsse authors of the campaigns you found faulty a quick PM or email explaining where they went wrong. In the case of the recon in poor weather recon mission I would have explained in the brief that when the mission for the 111 set out weather was predicted to be suitable over the target but changed. That would explain why that mission existed. Plus I would enjoy a "foxhunt" for the 111 for a while at least.

As for some of the stock campaigns, I agree. Too much sameness. I flew most of "Burning Ridge". Pretty much it was the same mission over and over but I liked the mission and liked the challenge of trying to find the same target in a different place each time. In real life several sorties a day would take place on the same target area until one side or the other achieved some sort of victory. Seldom would that be achieved in just one mission. But again, I agree, 80 such missions is a bit too much. After 80 sorties the enemy would have moved forward or back or something.

There is one comment I would strongly disagree with though...
"When campaigns turn out to have default skins for everything except the player's flight/ squadron it kills the immersion because it has obviously not been researched properly."
Sometimes the information to research isn't there to correctly ID squadron's involved. Skins for that particular squadron/campaign may not have been made or found. Also campaigns tend to be small files, even at 80~100 missions compared to the size of a skin folder that might be several hundred Mb to cover all planes. If you have a slow connection that could dissuade some from trying it out. Plus I've d/l'ed campaigns with skins to find the quality of skins to be so poor that I'd rather have defaults.

The best help a person can be when they run across an unsatisfying campaign/mission/skin is tell the author (via PM or email not on the forums) what the problems were so that the author can improve their skills. All IL-2 content makers early attempts were of much lower quality than later content as they learn the craft, their painting program, the FMB and the game limitations.


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9./JG54_EZ
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Post Post subject: Immersion killers
Posted: Wed Jun 08, 2011 10:19 PM
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My number one immersion killer (in the whole game) is the fact that Lights #1, 2, 3, 4, aswell as smoke and fire cannot be destroyed. Therefore not being able to be used by mission builders in some scenarios because you'll have yourself a bunch of floating lights once the object you "lit up" has been destroyed.

For example..
I'd like to create a mission with a factory which belches out smoke from one of it's chimneys, or a plane with nav lights on which is parked on a runway ready for takeoff, for people to destroy. If the factory is destroyed, the smoke still appears to be coming out of the top of a chimney which doesn't exist anymore, and where the plane debris is, the floating lights remain.

...And empty airfields.. I'll have none of that Smile

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Bogustogus
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Post Post subject:
Posted: Wed Jun 08, 2011 11:17 PM
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Beebop wrote:
Interesting observations Bogustogus. I agree 100% about empty home fields. It's like your in an episode of "The Twilight Zone"

I'm assuming these 'problem' campaigns were advertised as being historical and I do hope you tried to contact thsse authors of the campaigns you found faulty a quick PM or email explaining where they went wrong. In the case of the recon in poor weather recon mission I would have explained in the brief that when the mission for the 111 set out weather was predicted to be suitable over the target but changed. That would explain why that mission existed. Plus I would enjoy a "foxhunt" for the 111 for a while at least.

Of course the He111 could have been sent out based on an erroneous weather forecast. I fully agree. In that case however, it should end up flying above or below cloud, not in them. No sane recon crew would uselessly continue a mission in 10/10 cloud. They would either return to base or make sure they could actually see something or photograph something.

Beebop wrote:

There is one comment I would strongly disagree with though...
"When campaigns turn out to have default skins for everything except the player's flight/ squadron it kills the immersion because it has obviously not been researched properly."
Sometimes the information to research isn't there to correctly ID squadron's involved. Skins for that particular squadron/campaign may not have been made or found.

I actually meant that, for instance, having the correct skin for my own flight but the enemy has eastern front colours (during a BoF mission) is avoidable. The web is crammed with colour profiles so it's easy to find out which skins to use but very often this is not done.
I fully agree to overlooking the fact that squadron numbers are incorrect simply because they are not available.

Beebop wrote:

The best help a person can be when they run across an unsatisfying campaign/mission/skin is tell the author (via PM or email not on the forums) what the problems were so that the author can improve their skills. All IL-2 content makers early attempts were of much lower quality than later content as they learn the craft, their painting program, the FMB and the game limitations.

I couldn't agree more. Sometimes it simply isn't possible to have everything right & correct.
In such cases I PM the author to tell him what I think needs attention. The other option would be to give the campaign a bad review but I consider that "not done".
Any campaign builder deserves some sort of credit. Let's not forget the effort alone gives the community something that they don't get anything in return for. This site gives us enough proof of that. Wink Cool

I also agree with EZ, the smoke & lights lack dynamics and they are not very useful. I can add an argument to that; what I would like is for smoke to be controllable, having "timeouts" like ships so you can determine when the smoke/ flame should start emitting.
Version 4.101 has dealt with another issue I had with lights, which was the "always on" characteristics.

Maybe we should start a thread called "immersion makers" vs. immersion killers. Wink


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Last edited by Bogustogus on Wed Jun 08, 2011 11:26 PM; edited 2 time in total
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electron
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Post Post subject:
Posted: Thu Jun 09, 2011 08:08 AM
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Thanks for raising this, Vole and no hard feelings! Smile

I was missing the map part when dowlinging in anticipation and then... boom... oh my, what is that?!

Bogustogus, quite list.

mine is much shorter I guess and I would first like to adress skins...
not too much trouble for me regarding skins. I am guilty of not providing skins for any possible bomber squad in a camapign. It doesn't doo much for me.

the only thing that really kills stuff is invasion stripes as they are very striking ... fighting in 43 over the Normandy against a striped Spitfire or Thunderbolt is disturbing to me. other than that I pretty much don't care if it is all metal or green.... ID, shoot down, end of story. Wink

generally I research a lot when doing a campaign and lack of skins is no sign for no research (my Bär Me-262 campain as example) - I just don't put much weight on having each enemy skinned seperately myself.
the player aircraft and teh ones close to it (the one i usually get to see in close up) are usually skinned though.

I am a map guy and use the minimap a lot.
so any "really striking maps" can kill imersion for me if these are used as standins. Finsgulf was allways borderline for example due to the look of the coastline with its fjords. but there just was nothing better - not even close. There was one exciting experioment with the Kuban map and a east/west twist, kuban being England! - I actually could play that because the campaign and briefings where great.

also, homefields are important. But some people overdo it, allways having Tiger tanks or the like crossing the runways and stuff like that... very unrealistic.

briefings are also quite important for me. i like to read a little bit of a story while I play. be it fiction or fact. and I am guilty of liking a little political incorectness. I learned that while playing the first SCW Jederman campaign I guess which really hit my strings the way it was told.


Last edited by electron on Thu Jun 09, 2011 08:11 AM; edited 2 time in total
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Ritchie
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Post Post subject:
Posted: Thu Jun 09, 2011 02:06 PM
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My worst immersion killers:

1) Fighters that start shooting at each other from 400 metres or more. It’s even worse if they are veterans or aces. Not only that the cracks, too, dare shoot from those distances, they also show the absurd tendency to hit you with the first bullets they fire. Mad

2) Aircraft flying merrily into heavy flak without any need. Nobody ever told them that one may bypass an area with flak concentration.

3) AI fighter pilots in badly damaged planes that keep hanging around in the combat zone & challenging the enemy instead of heading for home straight away.

4) Wrong or no skins

5) Wrong era aircraft, such as Hellcats in 1942 or Emils in mid-war scenarios.


# 4 and 5 can be corrected easily. I always go through a mission before I play it to adjust if necessary.

The others are programming issues. Behaviour # 2 and 3 might be too difficult to improve as it would require an AI routine that “knows” when it is reasonable to fight and when to quit.

As for # 1, I’m wondering if the standard distance for opening fire has to be that far. For veterans and aces in a WW II flight sim, it should be much less, simply because it used to be that way historically. From this point of view, IL-2 as it is should more deservedly be called “Snipers of the East”.
I’d welcome any adjustment on that part as a huge “immersion maker”.

Another immersion maker has already materialized in the newest TD patch. I’m most happy with the improved default markings and I find myself using blank skins much more readily than before. Very Happy



P.S.: Immersion killers – nobody mentioned the door bell, the telephone and – worst of all – nagging family members.

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Bogustogus
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Post Post subject:
Posted: Fri Jun 10, 2011 11:44 AM
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Ritchie wrote:

P.S.: Immersion killers – nobody mentioned the door bell, the telephone and – worst of all – nagging family members.


LOOOL Very Happy Cool Laughing


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Kurfurst
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Post Post subject:
Posted: Fri Jun 10, 2011 08:09 PM
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Bogustogus wrote:
Ritchie wrote:

P.S.: Immersion killers – nobody mentioned the door bell, the telephone and – worst of all – nagging family members.


LOOOL Very Happy Cool Laughing

Oh yeah, when my wife calls to me and walks in the 'Il2 room' looks at my screen and there's a Bf109 on the runway with its wheels stuck up in the air and she asks, 'did I do that?' Evil or Very Mad


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