Fool that I am, I mistook the press emails pinging my inbox the past few months with the words "IL-2 Sturmovik: Cliffs of Dover" in the subject for another expansion to the IL-2: Sturmovik console game series.
Why? Because Oleg Maddox's Storm of War: Battle of Britain isn't called IL-2 Sturmovik: Cliffs of Dover. Or at least it wasn't until January 2011, when Ubisoft unceremoniously flipped the name. (And yes, since I like to think of myself as a flight-sim enthusiast, that means I've been asleep at the yoke.)
The good news: I haven't missed the launch--and neither have you. The PC-only and "you'd better get yourself a capable flight-stick" flight sim just arrived in Russia on March 25, hit stores (and digital distribution accounts) in Europe today, and debuts stateside on April 19.
Wait--what's IL-2: Sturmovik? Glad you asked. Probably the best simulation of World War 2 aerial combat going. Allow me to emphasize the probably. I haven't played it, preview or beta copies weren't handed out beforehand, and I'm basing that purely on design lead Oleg Maddox's track record (that, and he patiently delayed the game for years to perfect things). No one else, save for DCS Simulations (the Black Shark and A-10C Warthog wizards) has come close to what Oleg Maddox and 1C Games pulled off in the original IL-2 games. The only reason they're not on the tip of gaming tongues daily is that they're by serious flyers, for serious flyers.
That needn't limit their appeal. Have a look at this trailer and try not to care.
Did I mention it supports 128 players dogfighting online? I'm pulling down my review copy now.