Battle of Britain Development Group

The BDG was born on 30th July 2001 when Ken Cook from SimHQ invited a band of BoB devotees to join a private forum to aid the development of Rowan’s Battle of Britain, which had been released early in 2001. The forum was set up in the knowledge that it was probable that Rowan would release the source code for BoB into the public domain. In an email sent to Paul “Bader “ Rogers on June 13th, 2001, David Pringle of Empire Interactive suggested that the source code for BoB could be released.

Battle of Britain II “Wings of Victory” 2.06 was the result of BDG and Shockwave Productions (now called A2A Simulations), and was the last “official” update. Since then the BDG has continued to release freeware updates (now up to BDG_2.12) that improve and build upon the great foundation laid out by the original developers.  Rowan Software may no longer exist, but their legacy still remains.  In some ways their light is now shining brighter than ever.

More than 50 people have contributed to the simulator over the last 10 years. Here are some of our current members.

Last edited December 16th, 2012

alexcraig

Age:
Location: Pennsylvania, USA
I’m a semi-retired businessman who resides in rural Pennsylvania; albeit my wife thinks I live in Hatteras, NC as I run a part-time charter boat there.Basically, I only have two recreational passtimes: fishing & BoBIII’m not really a ‘gamer’, per se; however, sometime during my youth I became impressed by the courage and stamina exhibited by the Brits during the Battle of Britain.

In addition, I have always been interested in war planes to include some relatively close up experience with F-104 Phantoms, F-102 Delta Darts, F-105 Thunderchiefs & A4 Skyhawks among others during an all expense paid vacation in a SE Asian tropcial paradise courtesy of the US Marine Corp. Hmmm …. I really should include the AC-130 Gunship we affectionately referred to as “Puff the Magic Dragon”.

This combination of factors led my kid brother to give me a copy of BoB II in 2006 for a birthday or Christmas, I forget which. I’ve been hooked ever since. He has since sent me copies of at least another half dozen combat flight sims, all but one of which remain in their original shrink wrap. 😉 There just isn’t enough time.

I’ve come to enjoy the comradery of the BoB II Development Group and remain impressed by the level of dedication and talent exhibited by many of the members.

I am a mere tester, but since I’m told I have an aptitude for puzzles I enjoy helping out when and where I am able.

Bader

Age: 45
Location: Bletchingley, Surrey, UK
Paul Rogers, 45, married for 15 years with three children- Benedict (14), Joshua (11), Freya (8), dog, cat, fish and other dependents. Live in the medieval village of Bletchingley, Surrey surrounded by the most lovely countryside and right in BoB territory. The BoB was fought out over my house (which was fairly new at that time and was owned by the bank manager).Read Engineering Science at Oxford (a very long party as I recall it now..) then decided I wanted to change the world as a research scientist, then realised I wasn’t going to and discovered that selling technology is far more lucrative and offers greater opportunities than designing it. Have been at Cisco for 14 years. Travel the world a fair deal and meet interesting and challenging people.

BoBI and BoBII have been a hobby for 10 years now. For periods it was many many hours a week. Latterly with various things going on in R/L, rather less. But a part of me is always in this sim. Have had the pleasure of meeting many R/L BoB fanatics and sharing the sim with them (one to call out is Steven Bungay, author of the definitive book- the Most Dangerous Enemy). They are universally impressed with what we have done with this software. It is a time machine, not a game.

blue six

Age: 60
Location: Winnipeg, Canada
Ken Newnham, age 60, which I’m told on good authority is the new 40 – this apparently makes me slightly younger than our pals Bader and Osram. Gotta love the new math…I’m a retired RCAF Engineering Officer and a long time flight simmer, dating back to “F/A-18 Interceptor” on the old Amiga 500 in the late 1980s. My particular interest is flight models. I first cut my teeth in FMs on a fine old sim, “Fighter Squadron – Screaming Demons Over Europe” (SDOE), working on add-on aircraft, mainly in partnership with a very talented French builder, Scorpion Rouge.

In early 2006, I bought BoBII and was immediately impressed by the overall feel of the flight model. Soon afterwards, having made the mistake of pointing out some issues with the modeling of the Bf109 slats, I was invited to fill a vacancy in the BDG FM department, and do something about it. My coding ability is limited, so I was paired up with Buddye. Once we sorted the slats, we moved on to other items: spin coding, torque effects, control response (with Eric of A2A) and eventually a progressive rework of the FMs of all five flyable models.

That work has more or less dried up for the moment, but could resume with a bang should the BDG coders devise a way to introduce new flyables to the sim without disrupting the campaign mode. In the meantime, I’ve drifted over to FSX, where it’s been my pleasure to have reworked the flight dynamics in support of A2A’s exceptional Accu-sim P-40 and P-51D.

My wife and I live in Winnipeg, Canada (nine months of winter and three months of poor snowmobile conditions). Our children are grown and have departed the nest. My non-sim interests include X-C skiing, cycling, in-line skating, Brit sports cars and motorcycle restoration.

Buddye

Age: 69
Location: Texas, USA
My name is Buddye and I am 69 yeras old, after graduating from the Unversity of Texas in 1966, I spent 30 years working for IBM on NASA’s Space Shuttle and the FAA’s Enroute Air Traffic Control System in both management and programming jobs. I started as a beginning programmer and ended as an executive manager. I am now retired and live in the Houston, Texas area. I have a wonderful wife of 46 years and two daughters who are a primary teacher and a baby doctor. My hobbies are golf and BOBII.I have always loved aircraft and spent years helping my father restore a 1938 Luscome tail dragger. We flew it for years until it was completely destroyed in a Texas tornado.I joined the BDG in 2003 and have been working on BOBII or Mig as a coder in C++. I have spent years working on BOBII’s AI with a goal of enhanceing BOBII’s AI so it is recognized as the “best” off-line AI in fight sim history. BOBII AI continues to be my prime interest.

When BoBII was release in 2005 with all the its problems/issues, I went to work on it helping Osram fix problem. The collection of that work is reflected in our 2.04-2.12 BOBII Updates which are free to our players.

stickman

Age: 58
Location: Hawaii, USA
Aloha!
Was born 1954 as Jeffrey, in Basin, Wyoming, USA.
US Government BLM Range Resource Manager Father was an atheist. State school Teacher Mother was a Unitarian Christian. I adopted a free thinking liberal attitude, and rarely go to church.
Spent all my school years in Malta, Montana, until I was 18.
1973 I enlisted US Navy for 6 years serving 7th Fleet on a Destroyer Tender out of San Diego, California, and later a Submarine Tender at Guam,
as an Opticalman/Instrumentman. Easy duty!After discharge I lived in Long Beach, California for 5 years as an Instrument Tech. Met my wife there and had 3 children born.
Never did like Southern California much, especially to raise children, so I moved back up to the North West USA. Which I still love.
Found a job as an Instrument & Electrical Mechanic with a gold strip mine and mill, north of Elko, Nevada.
8 years there until my Filipina wife got tired of the cold winters and the abuse she got from a lot of her jealous white women co-workers!
Oh yeah! I saw it, when she worked at the same mine that I did.
She wanted to move back to California, but I been there already, and talked her into moving to Hawai’i where she has family, instead.
Quit my job before I had a job lined up in Hawai’i and sold our trailer, and off we go. Hah! Call me a crazy gypsy.
Soon found a job with Chevron Hawi’i Oil Refinery, as an Instrument & Electrical Mechanic. Still working for them. Best Company I worked for & that treats it’s workers well.
I am a member of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers. Any political Party that wants to break up labor Unions are my deadly enemies.That’s my bio in a nut shell, without all the dirty details.My main interests are History and the Current Events that history has given us. And where do we go from here?
This often involves bloody wars, so Military history has always held my main fascination since I was 10 years old.
Was also always interested in geography as a child. My bedroom walls were always plastered with maps!
My first wargames as a boy were the old Avalon Hill board games. Then I subscribed to the Strategy & Tactics magazine for many years.
After computers came along, I played many of those computer War games, Flight Sims, and Subnarine Sims.

I am still mostly a War Gamer at heart.
But.. when Rowan tried to marry a Campaign War Game with a good Flight Sim… I got hooked on that concept, and the potential that BoB1 had.
Been trying to polish it better ever since. In my spare time.
Everyone needs a hobby, even if it turns into an addiction.

—-

For BoBII I have 3 ongoing unfinished projects.

1. Improve the look and calibrate better all flyable aircraft instruments.
2. Try to reproduce all Factories, Docks, Naval Bases, and Industries to look true as they were summer and autumn of 1940.
3. Try to reproduce Anti-Aircraft Command true to summer and autumn of 1940 Battle of Britain.

Not neccesarily in this exact order, as I am somewhat of a flighty creature!

Two27
Age: 50
Location: USA
Randy, 50yo formerly of the US Army, crippled in training in 1987. During my short time in the service accomplished/earned a few unique distinctions. Less than 2 years in, in 1986, I proposed using a desktop computer and off-the-shelf software (SSI’s MechBrigade) as a tactical training tool. Only one person took me seriously, the rest thought I was being ridiculous. The one was CPT John Antal, a young armor officer who if you watched the Patton series on the History Channel in 2010, you saw as COL Antal retired. I managed to find “market” for the sim at a college ROTC dept and we ran it in 1990 and 1991, which were probably the first ever training use of OTS software run on a PC in the military.Again in 1986 I was invited to “request” assignment to the Army’s Combined Arms Center, the US Army’s creative and intellectual heart. I designed and ran sims (non-computer) for division and corps-level operations that ran for a week at a time, 24/7. In five days designed from scratch a new tactical combat sim system required as the basis for a new intelligence tool. Was part of 3-man team that wrote and supervised battalion and brigade tactical training missions for a division.Then there were my main skills , that is another more interesting story – another time. After my injury, I was relegated to a bed 20-hours a day for two years and it took 12 years to get the VA to do right by me. Lean hard years. To paraphrase Indiana Jones, “It’s not the years, but the mileage.” I live in constant high to extreme pain and can’t take pain killers; I’d become addicted in short order so I deal with it. Raised two children (son and daughter) solo. When I worked, all too rarely, I proved adaptable doing technical training, computer systems analysis, and technical writing.

History has been a fascination since age ten and war-gaming since age twelve. I would buy Avalon Hill games just to dissect the rules systems, then learn the history behind the game, and rewrite the rules to better replicate the reality. Pretty ambitious for an early teen. Over the years, I designed a BattleTech regiment-level, platoon-resolution, maneuver-style game for FASA that they turned down at the time (1991), redesigned the original Starfire: New Empires into a simpler play-by-mail format so my army buddy and I could play while he was in Korea, have taught military history at TCU as a guest lecturer, and taught tactics in a college Army ROTC department again as a guest lecturer. If you are familiar with Battlefront, in 2008 before I suffered a health setback, I was considered one of the better historians on the boards for the Strategic Command 2 game.

For BoB II my area of expertise is the campaign code.