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Old 06-13-2015, 08:48 PM   #22
Electrician's Mate
Join Date: Nov 2002
Location: Belfast, NI
Posts: 140
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Despite the common developers, SABOW doesn't have a lot in common with Steel Fury, quite apart from the different time periods.

Steel Fury (modded) has a massive set of playable vehicles (most witout 3d interiors, but all with sight, hatch and exterior views).

SABOW hasn't but, it seems, is about to have more added as DLC, possibly with new maps and theatres.

SABOW is technically better. For example like Steel Beasts it implements the speed of sound so you don't hear everything instantaneously. SABOW's AI is better and you have much more control over your platoon; as well as the ability to jump to another playable tank. If you are knocked out in SF, it's game over. Your AI driver in SABOW seems more human; he may speed up, slow down or adjust his course to avoid obstacles as necessary. The pyhsics and damage models seem better in SABOW.

SABOW's more modern graphics are significantly better, with (for example) better tank crew animations and better hit effects (visual and audio). SABOW's weather during a mission can change, from bright to torrential rain, nights can be darker or lighter, plus it gets dark or light at the appropriate times.

The more modern tanks in SABOW mean they have more features, which the sim represents very well; eg in the M60A1 if commander, you can use the stereoscopic rangefinder, or if playing as gunner, ask the commander to take a range with it for a selected target, and key it into the analogue fire control computer, thus setting your main gunsight for the correct range. SABOW does a very good job of replicating the active IR night fighting systems of the time, which of course aren't in SF, being WW2.

Apart from the period, the biggest difference is missions and campaigns.

In SF, missions are scripted. Campaigns are basically sets of scripted missions. This has some advantages, because with a relatively simple mission editor, users have made lots of extra SF missions (tho few campaigns). Being scripted, the briefings can be as thorough or realistic as the mission designer chooses to write them, or is able to. You read the briefing, launch the mission and - often within seconds - the shooting has started.

Battles in SF tend to be short and sharp. You play as a platoon commander usually (sometimes as a single vehicle) with fairly limited control over your platoon. The friendly and enemy AI isn't hopeless but it's not great either eg your platoon-mates often seem to make near-suicidal charges at the enemy. Light AFVs on both sides also tend to close with the enemy regardless. Missions often have few survivors.

SABOW has real dynamic campaigns with events carrying over from one mission to the next. It is tanksim inside a wargame. You start each campaign mission in the role of a higher-level commander, with several platoons at your disposal, sometimes including other arms like mech infantry.

You have the option of deploying and giving orders to each, before you move onto the tanksimming.

When you get there, you can play the role of any tank or platoon commander, in a playable tank (as well as drive or gun in either playable tank). Battles tend to last longer and to develop more slowly; for example an expected enemy attack may not come, it may take some time to develop, or it may come somewhere other than where you're expecting it.

In SF you are basically playing your own tank, with some capacity to control maybe two 'wingmen', in short , scripted missions, with limited scope for planning or tactics, beyond individual tank or platoon level. SABOW gives you a tactical level as well, with battles that tend to last longer, give you more time to think, and are more unpredictable.

AFAIK there is an April 2015 update for the boxed SABOW which is available cheaply but it isn't updated as frequently as the GamersGate and Steam versions and has been described as 'semi-supported (AFAIK Graviteam started updating SABOW after they got the rights back from the original publishers, who seem to have pushed it out the door before the developers would have liked).

Last edited by 33lima; 06-14-2015 at 06:10 AM.
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