IL-2 heading to consoles for the first time

1C Company’s IL-2 flight sim franchise is being brought over to consoles, publisher 505 Games (ArmA: Armed Assult, Armored Core) has announced. Titled IL-2 Sturmovik: Birds of Prey, the WWII-themed sim is getting the full console treatment as Xbox 360, PS3, DS and PSP gamers will be able to enjoy the title some time next year.

Birds of Prey is set to deliver “the most realistic landscapes and aircraft seen in any flight sim” (which you can judge for yourself by having a look at the first screenshots in the gallery) and brings along a new damage effects engine so players can see real-time damage to planes, like bullet holes on the wings after getting sprayed for example. Ground support actions will also be visible thanks to the environmental engine.

Birds of Prey boasts over 50 missions from historical battles over Europe where it apparently won’t be uncommon to take part in massive aerial battles with hundreds of other planes. And to make sure a wide audience will be able to enjoy those battles, the developers have implemented a flexible difficulty system which ranges from the arcade to realistic simulation.

The multiplayer mode allows for high amounts of customization to the “historically accurate” aircrafts – the player will be able to adjust anything from the plane’s color scheme to the choice of weapons.

The musical side of things are being handled by Jeremy Soule, the composer of such games as Company of Heroes, TES IV: Oblivion, Prey, KOTOR, Warhammer 40,000: Dawn of War and many others.

Previous IL-2 games for the PC have consistently scored high, with most scores being in the 90s, so flight sim fans have something to get excited about. The Xbox 360 and PS3 versions of Birds of Prey are being developed by Gaijin Entertainment, while DiP Interactive has taken on the DS, and DYNAMICSYSTEMS the PSP version.

[See also: IL-2 Sturmovik: Birds of Prey gallery]

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