Panzer Corps 2 - Dev Diary #9

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Re: Panzer Corps 2 - Dev Diary #9

Post by hs1611 » Mon Mar 25, 2019 2:10 pm

Speaking only for myself, NO CAMPAIGN means NO MONEY from me.

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Re: Panzer Corps 2 - Dev Diary #9

Post by proline » Mon Mar 25, 2019 4:34 pm

PoorOldSpike wrote:
Mon Mar 25, 2019 3:18 am
proline wrote:
Sun Mar 24, 2019 9:46 pm
..you took his words out of context. He actually mentioned that there are many other holdups, particularly the weak AI.
Yeah but the Campaign is the number one stumbling block like the dev said- "You have guessed correctly that campaign is the main problematic area".
In that same thread I suggested the devs put up a poll to find out who wants a Campaign anyway, but he pooh-poohed the idea, look-

Rudankort (15 Jan 2019) "From talking to players and following their discussions on various forums over the years, I know that pretty much 90% of our users play campaign mode exclusively. I'm confident about this and don't need any polls to confirm it."
Oh there's no doubt that we want campaigns and that PzC 2 won't succeed without them. However, that doesn't mean there need to be good campaigns available on launch day- PzC is proof of that. They just need to come out regularly starting on launch day.

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Re: Panzer Corps 2 - Dev Diary #9

Post by PeteMitchell_2 » Mon Mar 25, 2019 4:53 pm

proline wrote:
Mon Mar 25, 2019 4:34 pm
Oh there's no doubt that we want campaigns and that PzC 2 won't succeed without them. However, that doesn't mean there need to be good campaigns available on launch day- PzC is proof of that. They just need to come out regularly starting on launch day.
I agree!
PoorOldSpike wrote:
Sun Mar 24, 2019 9:06 pm
Personally I never play campaigns in any game, they just don't interest me
This is interesting, please allow me to ask, what do you play then, standalone scenarios and MP only, or mods?

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Re: Panzer Corps 2 - Dev Diary #9

Post by Rudankort » Mon Mar 25, 2019 5:35 pm

PanzerCro wrote:
Fri Mar 22, 2019 11:04 pm
When we can expect new diary ? :)
Next dev diary will come out in April, but before that, there might be something else coming your way guys, and the whole team is busy with it right now. Alas I cannot tell you more. :)
proline wrote:
Sun Mar 24, 2019 9:46 pm
The original awful PzC vanilla campaign was slapped together pretty quick- it has the feel of something that was made in weeks, not months.
In my opinion it was not awful at all, I sure had fun with it myself, and there are many other people who did. And yes, it took a few months to create it. I think there are still old messages from PzC beta available on this forum, so anyone can check this for himself.

There are several reasons why creating the first campaign takes longer than all the rest. For one thing, the game itself and the editor are far less stable. Even more importantly, before doing any content, the designer needs to "figure out" the game for himself, understand how all new systems and rules work together and how it affects scenario design. Finally, in case of our team, the same person is responsible for vanilla campaign and for unit stats, and stats tweaking goes in parallel with content creation. If unit balance does not work somewhere, stats get adjusted, and some adjustments in the campaign might be needed as well.
proline wrote:
Sun Mar 24, 2019 9:46 pm
Rudankort goes on to say "we could only set to creating it when the game itself was in a fairly advanced state" which also makes no sense, since a good campaign can and should start by sketching out the campaign tree, researching the battles, designing the maps, etc. none of which requires the game to be complete.
It makes more sense if you consider it for a bit.

Sketching out the campaign tree and researching the battles has been done ages ago, in fact, a lot of this research was reused from our work on Panzer Corps. I'm talking about actual content design work here, not preparation.

Designing the maps upfront does not help much for two reasons. On one hand, painting a map (terrain) takes very little time, like half an hour per map, so you don't save much time this way. On the other hand, maps made prematurely are very likely to be scrapped, for example when you realize that because of new rules and stats the map must have been 10% larger or smaller. As soon as we were confident that we could determine map sizes properly (and avoid all kinds of other traps like that), we did start creating the maps, but this did not speed up us much in the grand scheme of things.

By far the biggest job in any scenario is configuring scripts, AI behavior and lots and lots of playtesting. Basically, you need at least a few days per map, and anyone who used PzC editor can confirm that most of this time does not go into painting terrain or placing units. And this work requires pretty much a finished game and editor.
Teku wrote:
Mon Mar 25, 2019 3:19 am
i'm curious if you'll get to play as/against Japanese forces in the pacific war at some point. Like maybe a theoretical campaign where they won midway and pressed on into the mainland like you could as the Germans in PC1
I sure hope that you will be able to play Japanese at some point, but not in 1.0. :)
proline wrote:
Mon Mar 25, 2019 4:34 pm
Oh there's no doubt that we want campaigns and that PzC 2 won't succeed without them. However, that doesn't mean there need to be good campaigns available on launch day- PzC is proof of that. They just need to come out regularly starting on launch day.
This is not how I see the situation. Market is growing more competitive every year, and bad reviews and ratings upon release can ruin the game. I don't want to take any chances here, my approach is to try and do every aspect of the game as good as I possibly can. Of course, we must develop the game under the existing time and money constraints, but campaign design is not what strains the budget the most, so this does not look like a good place for shortcuts. We have even created all graphics assets to cover the African theatre in 1.0 already. There is very little we can save by cutting the amount of content now. For this reason, the new vanilla campaign is quite ambitious. It's definitely much larger than PzC (and PG as well, for that matter).

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Re: Panzer Corps 2 - Dev Diary #9

Post by PoorOldSpike » Mon Mar 25, 2019 6:37 pm

PeteMitchell_2 wrote:
Mon Mar 25, 2019 4:53 pm
This is interesting, please allow me to ask, what do you play then, standalone scenarios and MP only, or mods?
I usually play single standalone vanilla scens against the AI in most games because I like to play the same way as I make love- furiously, quickly and decisively, rather than get bogged down in l-o-n-g campaigns.
For example if I fancy a quick game to fill in a couple of hours between 'Stargate SG-1' and 'The Waltons', I crank up a scenario to fill the slot.
Hey the Waltons is on later, "John-Boy faces a dilemma when he sees Yancy Tucker steal two chickens; should he remain silent or be a good citizen and report it to the police?"
Hmm sounds good..

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Re: Panzer Corps 2 - Dev Diary #9

Post by proline » Mon Mar 25, 2019 6:55 pm

Rudankort wrote:
Mon Mar 25, 2019 5:35 pm
In my opinion it was not awful at all, I sure had fun with it myself, and there are many other people who did.
It was so poorly designed calling it a campaign is a stretch. If you win early on, you get transported from 1941 to 1945 which guarantees you a loss since your units will have no XP and most of your core slots will be empty. You lose by winning and win by losing, that's bad. Having fun requires carefully looking over the tree so you don't get stuck on the wrong branch by getting one MV in just the wrong place or one DV you didn't want.

Some scenarios give more money for a MV than a DV but don't tell the player that. That's bad.

Many paths through the campaign involved less than a dozen scenarios. That's also bad. It lacks the mechanics that make later campaigns fun such as escape hexes, captured units, victory objectives other than "destroy your opponent". The maps are bland, most lakes and rivers and other features aren't labelled, and the scenarios lack the historical research of later ones.

This isn't to say that the Vanilla campaign was inadequate. Clearly it was fine. But it does show the first campaign doesn't have to be good. That said, I'm happy to hear the bar will be higher in PzC2, I just hope that doesn't come at the expense of running out of money during development or having to cut corners elsewhere. Unless it takes funding away from putting shadows everywhere. That would be fine. :D

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Re: Panzer Corps 2 - Dev Diary #9

Post by Rudankort » Mon Mar 25, 2019 9:34 pm

proline wrote:
Mon Mar 25, 2019 6:55 pm
This isn't to say that the Vanilla campaign was inadequate. Clearly it was fine. But it does show the first campaign doesn't have to be good. That said, I'm happy to hear the bar will be higher in PzC2, I just hope that doesn't come at the expense of running out of money during development or having to cut corners elsewhere. Unless it takes funding away from putting shadows everywhere. That would be fine. :D
OK. I'm glad that we've progressed from "awful" to "fine and adequate" in such a short time. :P

There is no doubt that the vanilla campaign had its share of problems, but it's difficult to demand from it using game features which did not exist at the time. Also for the record, I don't remember any unnamed rivers, but we never planned to name other terrain features. Other content which we released, including the GC, did not name them either.

Branching vs. linear campaign debate is raging ever since PG was released. Linear campaigns by definition do not have many of the problems which you complain about, and there was nothing easier for us than to create another one for Panzer Corps launch. However, without getting lost in this holy war again, I will point out that a PG-style campaign represents Germany in WW2 in a very interesting and unique way. Panzer Corps preserved this tradition, and Panzer Corps 2 is going to preserve it too. We are very well aware of the problems associated with this approach, like short branches, unbalanced branch length and the need to artificially take a certain outcome in order to unlock a certain branch. Fixing these problems will require not only some changes in the underlying game mechanics, but also a lot of scenarios, and this is exactly the reason why the size of the campaign in Panzer Corps 2 has got so much bigger.

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Re: Panzer Corps 2 - Dev Diary #9

Post by huckc » Mon Mar 25, 2019 9:58 pm

The winning path of the vanilla campaign was 100% un-plausible, stretches well into fantasy. A cross ocean invasion against the most industrialized nation on the planet already tooled for war production, with an already armed populace of 130 million? A navy that's in the Gulf of Mexico for no reason? Makes no sense.

Hopefully the PC2 vanilla campaign is somewhat plausible like the grand campaigns and less fantasy wish-fulfillment.

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Re: Panzer Corps 2 - Dev Diary #9

Post by Rudankort » Mon Mar 25, 2019 10:04 pm

huckc wrote:
Mon Mar 25, 2019 9:58 pm
The winning path of the vanilla campaign was 100% un-plausible, stretches well into fantasy. A cross ocean invasion against the most industrialized nation on the planet already tooled for war production, with an already armed populace of 130 million? A navy that's in the Gulf of Mexico for no reason? Makes no sense.

Hopefully the PC2 vanilla campaign is somewhat plausible like the grand campaigns and less fantasy wish-fulfillment.
Well, we cannot deny our players the pleasure of invading the US. :) What approach to this would look more plausible to you?

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Re: Panzer Corps 2 - Dev Diary #9

Post by PeteMitchell_2 » Mon Mar 25, 2019 10:33 pm

Yeah, implausible (as a few other things) but available in Panzer General 25 years ago already...

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Re: Panzer Corps 2 - Dev Diary #9

Post by Teku » Mon Mar 25, 2019 11:10 pm

I don't think there's a realm where it can look in any way "plausible". personally I enjoyed the theoretical idea of the "What if?" aspect as to what would have had to happen for such an invasion to occur and what it might have looked like. My Nitpick about the PC1 version for the invasion of it was the lack of U-Boats, which made up the bulk of the kriegsmarine throughout the war, and lack of type of boats as well, Like the type XXI and XVII which both played a heavy influence on post war designs.

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Re: Panzer Corps 2 - Dev Diary #9

Post by proline » Tue Mar 26, 2019 1:40 am

Double post
Last edited by proline on Tue Mar 26, 2019 4:47 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Panzer Corps 2 - Dev Diary #9

Post by proline » Tue Mar 26, 2019 1:45 am

Rudankort wrote:
Mon Mar 25, 2019 9:34 pm
OK. I'm glad that we've progressed from "awful" to "fine and adequate" in such a short time. :P
The vanilla campaign is awful from a gameplay perspective, but it was adequate from a commercial perspective. It may have set back the franchise, you'd know better than me, but it did not kill it. PzC lives!
Rudankort wrote:
Mon Mar 25, 2019 9:34 pm
There is no doubt that the vanilla campaign had its share of problems, but it's difficult to demand from it using game features which did not exist at the time. Also for the record, I don't remember any unnamed rivers, but we never planned to name other terrain features. Other content which we released, including the GC, did not name them either.
There's no good reason not to name the rivers, lakes, and seas. That's easy and takes only a few minutes per map. If a city is more than 5 hexes across, individual neighborhoods should be marked (i.e. Warsaw, Budapest, Stalingrad).
Rudankort wrote:
Mon Mar 25, 2019 9:34 pm
We are very well aware of the problems associated with this approach, like short branches, unbalanced branch length and the need to artificially take a certain outcome in order to unlock a certain branch.
There is no need to make the player lose on purpose to take the losing branch. The choice to take the losing branch could instead be attributed to poor decision making further up the chain of command. I.e. if you don't want the Russians to die in 1941 so you can gain more XP by killing them in 43, you should still be able to play your best in Moscow 41. Then just throw a popup part way through the scenario saying that the leadership is worried about incoming enemy reinforcements and wants to cut and run. The player could then choose whether to carry on and win or end the scenario there, no loss required.
Rudankort wrote:
Mon Mar 25, 2019 10:04 pm
Well, we cannot deny our players the pleasure of invading the US. :) What approach to this would look more plausible to you?
It is true that a German victory over the USA is a total and complete fantasy. But at least make it so we can suspend disbelief. Some ideas:

A) The Germans get control of the Italian, French, and UK fleets, and, in conjunction with the Japanese fleet, are able to destroy all US naval forces. Then they set up air bases in a neighboring country such as Canada, Mexico, or Cuba before invading

B) After winning in 1943, the Germans increase spending on their atomic bomb project. The British air raids on their heavy water plant in Norway never happen and Heisenburg continues his project with vigor. By the time they invade in 1945, they have a limited number of tactical nukes with which to beat back the American hordes.

C) After seeing the UK and / or USSR lose in 1940 or 1941 the USA decides that they are going to join the winning side- the Axis! Historically the USA always waited until it was obvious who was going to win before entering a world war and nazi sympathizers and pacifists abounded so this is possible. As a German ally, the USA remains complacent. Their fleet is in mothballs, their Air Force is still mostly obsolete, and their army is poorly trained. They only snap out of it after the other axis powers have occupied a costal state.

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Re: Panzer Corps 2 - Dev Diary #9

Post by Teku » Tue Mar 26, 2019 6:38 am

you could have just edited the original post instead of posting it twice XD

I think the A-bomb would be to op to use in a game such as this. And historically with the way germany handled its armaments, its highly unlikely it would have received much more than it did. The extent of german interest into it resulted in a small generator built in a cellar that they never got working since they new they had to win the war in 2 or less years or they wouldnt stand much of a chance

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Re: Panzer Corps 2 - Dev Diary #9

Post by Retributarr » Tue Mar 26, 2019 4:46 pm

Rudankort wrote:
Mon Mar 25, 2019 10:04 pm
huckc wrote:
Mon Mar 25, 2019 9:58 pm
The winning path of the vanilla campaign was 100% un-plausible, stretches well into fantasy. A cross ocean invasion against the most industrialized nation on the planet already tooled for war production, with an already armed populace of 130 million? A navy that's in the Gulf of Mexico for no reason? Makes no sense.

Hopefully the PC2 vanilla campaign is somewhat plausible like the grand campaigns and less fantasy wish-fulfillment.
Well, we cannot deny our players the pleasure of invading the US. :) What approach to this would look more plausible to you?
If you haven't already, try to watch the recent T.V. Series...called..."Hunting Hitler". https://www.bing.com/search?q=Hunting+H ... RS=CHECKED

This T.V. Series show's how 'Hitler' could have easily left Berlin and made his way to South America. Hydro-Electric generating plants, Heavy-Water plants, Chemical-Warfare production facilities, huge planned Air-Bases, Armaments production Factories and so on were in the work's or already established!.

Several hundred thousand 'Nazis' fled to South-America...to try to establish the Fourth-Reich!...including Hitler, Bormann and so on.

Eventually, they could have used Missiles, somewhat like the V-2, but a more advanced version was well underway before the war ended in Europe, I can't remember it's designation?, however...these advanced Missiles would likely have been the vehicles to deliver Atomic-Weaponry to U.S. Cities.

As far as a physical land invasion of the U.S., that was not covered in the Series as it the 4th-Season was cancelled???. However, with this T.V. Series, you now have a factual/real basis with which to concoct a somewhat realistic/near-actual assault on America!.
Last edited by Retributarr on Tue Mar 26, 2019 5:04 pm, edited 3 times in total.

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Re: Panzer Corps 2 - Dev Diary #9

Post by proline » Tue Mar 26, 2019 4:51 pm

Teku wrote:
Tue Mar 26, 2019 6:38 am
I think the A-bomb would be to op to use in a game such as this. And historically with the way germany handled its armaments, its highly unlikely it would have received much more than it did. The extent of german interest into it resulted in a small generator built in a cellar that they never got working since they new they had to win the war in 2 or less years or they wouldnt stand much of a chance
As I said, any scenario where the Germans win is a ridiculous fantasy. Their economy was much smaller than the British Empire alone, let alone the Soviet Empire and the USA. Germans who weren't fools knew from before the war even started it was a dumb idea (Canaris never wavered from this understanding, even when silly Germans thought they were "winning").

All I'm trying to do is throw out some slightly better ideas than having the Germans take the East coast because the Americans all went to the Caribbean together.

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Re: Panzer Corps 2 - Dev Diary #9

Post by PeteMitchell_2 » Tue Mar 26, 2019 6:48 pm

On the note of going into fantasy and/or alternative what-ifs, the other thing that surprised me when I played the GC East (and I had mentioned it here on the forum previously already) is the following paradox phenomenon: so how does it work that you win DV after DV (in selected battles of a more or less single campaign path, not along the entire front of course) and then you still end up defending Berlin (in some way)… but then with an army full of Tiger IIs and Elefants? That’s also implausible for several reasons…

So as an idea, wouldn’t it be more plausible to work against a few deciding choke points along the campaign path, e.g. a) Moscow/Crusader in 1941, b) Stalingrad/El Alamein in 1942, c) Kursk/Sicily in 1943 and d) Normandy/Bagration in 1944. So depending what happens at these battles (or the various preludes of them) you could spread out into multiple (maybe dedicated winning or losing) paths?

With this you could follow the historical battles to some extent but also include various what-if scenarios (yes, some are implausible from today’s understanding of the historical events) but well, I guess it’s just a game… (without going into politics: e.g. what if Richard Sorge had not informed the SU about Japan’s plans to stop attacking the SU from the Manchuria in mid-September 1941 or going even further, what if Japan had actually attacked again? Please note, I am not mentioning the Kiev/Leningrad diversions of Army Group Center as I think they were less critical than the SU reserves in the Far East…)

So do you think Moscow had fallen with around ~100,000 men left defending it (i.e. without bringing in ~1,000,000 fresh reserves from Siberia by December 1941)? So in case you think Moscow had fallen with ~100,000 men left… had it made a difference to the course, duration or outcome of the war? Maybe, maybe not… personally, I believe it had not made a difference to the overall outcome of the war as the Allies out-produced the Axis 4:1 on almost anything from 1942 onwards. In addition, I am pretty sure the SU had not surrendered just because Moscow had fallen (as it was in PG and the PzC vanilla campaign). Also the situation was very different from the armistice between Russia and the Central Powers in 1917 or the peace treaty in 1918.

Just some ideas for discussion… and you don’t even need to be overly creative, with some historical understanding, the list of very interesting (and yes, to some extent implausible) what-ifs could be very long and make it an even more interesting game (of course this requires more effort than just preparing a random map creator)… which is still good to have, no worries.

Well, without any further information on the overall timeline, I guess PzC2 and the initial campaign are (already) well under way overall… but maybe the developers take some input from the community for future DLC development… the opportunities are sheer endless (and they could even balance the different preferences of the players, i.e. combining historically accurate events with interesting/implausible what-ifs for entertaining gameplay)! :mrgreen:

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Re: Panzer Corps 2 - Dev Diary #9

Post by PoorOldSpike » Tue Mar 26, 2019 6:59 pm

Regarding atomic bombs, it only took two to make Japan surrender, but whether the USA would have surrendered if Germany used a couple against NY or DC we'll never know...

Image

Image


A Nazi study of the effects of an A-bomb on NY-
Image

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Re: Panzer Corps 2 - Dev Diary #9

Post by PeteMitchell_2 » Tue Mar 26, 2019 7:16 pm

PoorOldSpike wrote:
Tue Mar 26, 2019 6:59 pm
Regarding atomic bombs, it only took two to make Japan surrender, but whether the USA would have surrendered if Germany used a couple against NY or DC we'll never know...
Yeah, besides the nukes, there was even a target list for conventional bombing:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Amerikabo ... al_targets

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Re: Panzer Corps 2 - Dev Diary #9

Post by PoorOldSpike » Tue Mar 26, 2019 8:08 pm

PeteMitchell_2 wrote:
Tue Mar 26, 2019 7:16 pm
Yeah, besides the nukes, there was even a target list for conventional bombing:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Amerikabo ... al_targets
Yes and in fact even before the war began, Germany had planes capable of flying the Atlantic and bombing America, namely their Condor airliners (below).
However it would only have been a one-way trip because they couldn't carry enough fuel to get back to Europe and would have had to ditch in the sea at a pre-arranged spot for the crew to be picked up by U-boats.
Later the Condors could have been given more powerful engines to get back to Germany.

"On August 10-11, 1938, Focke-Wulf 200 Condor D-ACON 'Brandenburg' (below) made a record-breaking nonstop flight across the Atlantic from Berlin to Floyd Bennett field in Brooklyn, New York.
The 4,075 miles flight (6,437 km) took 24 hours and 57 minutes against strong headwinds, at an average speed of 164 MPH (263 km/h). The return flight to Germany took 19 hours and 47 minutes at an average speed of 205 MPH (330 km/h) on August 13, 1938"


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