Requirements: 32 bit Winsock
PLATFORM: WIN95, WIN NT
Most subsims pit you, the player, against the computer. You have the illusion you're confronted by aggresive destroyers and hapless merchants; lethal, unseen enemy attack subs and guided missle frigates. But, of course, it is an illusion, a manifestation of a clever team of programmers. Iron Wolves pits you against real flesh and blood opponents, in real time.
Iron Wolves is an online sim only. You download the program from their home page onto your hard drive and start the program while logged on. There are two sides in this Atlantic War, the Northerners (blue) and Westerners (red). You are given a choice of numerous warships to take into battle:
- Submarine - We're talking U-boats. Two varieties here, standard and "heavy" sub. The heavy has stern tubes. Both have deck guns. Pretty speedy on the surface; depth changes take forever.
- Corvette - You hunt the U-boats, with forward-firing hedgehogs and depth charges. Guns included.
- Destroyer - Faster and bigger than corvettes, you bring torpedo tubes to the party. These destroyers are obviously better suited for action as merchant raiders than ASW. It's tough and can take a lot more damage than the others.
- Tanker - This is what you get if you don't subscribe to Iron Wolves. You're given an assignment, usually to make it to some coordinates in one piece. Fulfill your assignment and you're awarded a warship free. A tanker has no armament and they are slow targets. Keep your life jacket at hand, sailor.
- Computer-generated ships - or drones, can be either destroyers, corvettes, or tankers.
U pon surfacing you can post an observer topside, which gives you a better field of view. To select a target for gun action, right click on the enemy and press the "Commence firing" button. Enemy subs at periscope depth can be discerned as small, white twinkles in the water. When they fire a salvo of torpedoes at you, you can see the tracks coming. Evasive maneuvering helps but doesn't guarantee safety. Firing torpedoes in Iron Wolves is sloppy business. You have to lead your target judiciously to ensure a hit. The escorts use sonar to track subs. Crawl over a contact and drop the charges. A map view allows you to see the field of battle and keep track of your allies and opponents. Graphics are good, though the ocean texture never varies, and the sky is perpetually overcast. Sounds are adequate for this kind of program; the explosions are really good. Program reliability varies, depending on the performance of your server and the Iron Wolves' server. Losing the connection is not uncommon.
One of Iron Wolves' neatest features is the chat box. Players trade taunts and b.s. in a rapid, merry flow. I played this sim when it was beta in the spring of 1996. Many of the old vets are still at large --Captain Nemo, 1baddude, Deogee, Shad. These Iron Cross holders will make your Iron Wolf experience a short and wet one.
War is a costly business but Iron Wolves has managed not to go overboard with their pricing structure. Fourteen consecutive days runs $10; $19 by the month; or $20 for 10 single day tickets. You can play as a target, er, that is, a tanker, and if you finish your mission you can earn a warship free. Unlike a store bought subsim, you never stop paying for Iron Wolves, but on the other side, you are always part of a dynamic battlefield.
Keep in mind, Iron Wolves is not a pure simulation. It has simplified the strategy of undersea warfare greatly. The theater of battle isn't a vast stalking ground, it's one big melee, with improbable numbers of escorts roaming the seas and no weather variations. Convoys consist of three ships at most, and the players manning the destroyers and corvettes have no guidelines or orders to protect them. Tankers and merchants are merely targets for surface ships and subs alike. The structure of subsim gameplay typical of most other sims is notably absent. So if you're after an authentic, historically accurate U-boat simulation, Command Aces of the Deep remains your only option.
If judged solely by its simulation performance, Iron Wolves would come up short. 688(I) has multi-player capability and pure sim character in one cohesive package. That said, Iron Wolves is a step toward the online multi-player battlefield that everyone wants. You can command a sub or a surface raider. Your opponents are human and offer witty wisecracks. It's fun and entertaining, so if you don't mind a simplified sailing model and limited tactics, get in there and shoot!
You can find the Iron Wolves home page at http://www.on-line.co.uk/iw.html
Early Access Game
Get instant access and start playing; get involved with this game as it develops.
Note: This Early Access game is not complete and may or may not change further. If you are not excited to play this game in its current state, then you should wait to see if the game progresses further in development. Learn more
We have created some missions to demonstrate and test different gameplay elements, with the intention of putting them together in a persistent open world.” “We expect full release to occur in 2021” “Throughout early access we will be carefully analysing player feedback which will guide how gameplay systems in IronWolf VR evolve. Our aim is to achieve an intuitive and engaging system for controlling the submarine that takes full advantage of roomscale VR.
Our vision for IronWolf VR is that players will be able to patrol the oceans and be provided with a persistent open world, with interesting and varied gameplay being available as they explore the open ocean.” “Some highlights of the current IronWolf VR build are:
- A VR optimised submarine with control, sensor, torpedo and engine room for both multi-crew and singleplayer gameplay
- Variety of locomotion options (room-scale, dash, smooth)
- Variety of missions and open-world gameplay
- Variety of enemies including destroyers, frigates and aircraft
- Night missions
- Day/night cycle in the open-world
- Local multiplayer with desktop controls
- Full mouse and keyboard controls without VR
It was multiplayer-only and rather arcade-like (not a true simulation by any stretch), but it had a convincing naval atmosphere [especially given its graphics' limitations] and one hell of a community...as I remember. There were two rival nations ('Red' and 'Blue') and you had seven generic (i.e. they looked and performed the same for each side) vessels to choose from (see descriptions at end***).
There was one particular occasion in that game where two long-time players (myself a noob at the time) became involved in a very agitated battle in the forums, which very much expressed itself in the game. Their names were Popeye and Bousch and, while I don't know exactly how their tiff started, it was war (Bousch went so far as to create numerous player accounts just to mock Popeye, playing as characters with names such as 'Gay Popeye' etc.). It came to pass that there I was one day, scanning through my periscope for an escort I'd been trying to bypass, when Bousch spawns right in front of me (you spawned, randomly, almost anywhere on the map). Surprised at first, he being so close in the periscope that I could not see his nametag (too high/out of screen...it's color would have denoted he spawned on my team), I launch a torpedo thinking he's the escort I'd been scanning for. Just as I do, I cut my engines... making myself invisible to his passive sonar. Off in the distance is Popeye, shooting at something else. My torpedo hits Bousch, who rapidly concludes that the explosion of my torpedo was Popeye shooting at him. He immediately sails over and sinks Popeye with a torpedo salvo...in spite of Popeye ALSO being on our team. The two proceed to cuss at each other non-stop for the next few hours...both thinking the other had shot first. LoL...!!!
In all, however, Iron Wolves had a great concept where a simple yet reasonably strategic and community-based, naval-themed game was concerned. Does anyone happen to remember why it dried up? The men who developed 'Enigma: Rising Tide' I had thought tried to buy it, but its owners wouldn't sell.
***IRON WOLVES' VESSELS
...available to ALL players:
The basic submarine was considerably slower on the surface, but more agile (especially submerged) and faster diving than the 'heavy' submarine. It had four forward torpedo tubes. Paying players had access to this vessel in unlimited supply, while non-paying players earned one (or a corvette) from completed tanker missions. Given its relatively weak durability, lack of a deck gun, slow surface speed, but quick diving time and tight turn radius, I likened this submarine to a Type II U-boat.
Slow and unarmed, most of these were AI-controlled. Non-paying players, however, could sail them to earn either a corvette or a submarine for every set of coordinates reached. Paying players sailing them would earn either a destroyer or a 'heavy' submarine for the same (paying players had an unlimited supply of the corvette, 'improved' corvette, and basic submarine). These were the 'Liberty Ships' of the game (although called tankers, their 3D model more closely resembled the Liberty Ship/Patrick Henry class).
Slow but highly agile, the corvette was armed with a single turreted gun and depth charges. For paying players, sinking a submarine with a corvette (or any vessel) earned a destroyer. There were no kill-based rewards for non-paying players - a corvette or a basic submarine was earned by completing tanker missions. I likened this vessel to the Flower class. While slow and suffering from limited armament, it was the savior of many a tanker...forcing surfaced subs to dive and break pursuit [the deck gun of a 'heavy' submarine had equal strength to the corvette's gun, but the heavy submarine would not win a durability contest].
...exclusive to paying players:
Larger, slower diving, more sluggish in maneuvering, but faster on the surface and more formidably armed that its smaller cousin, the 'heavy' submarine had four forward torpedo tubes, a deck gun (equal in power to a corvette's gun), and two aft torpedo tubes. It's greater durability made it able to endure greater depths for longer periods. I likened this submarine to the Type IX U-boat, as it did not have the 'agile' feel you'd expect of the Type VII (the basic in-game submarine, meanwhile, being too slow).
Like the basic corvette, but with improved speed and, in addition to its armament of a single turreted gun and depth charges, it had hedgehogs (exclusive to this vessel, hedgehogs were the only forward-firing ranged weapon in the game that was effective against submerged subs). While called the 'improved' corvette, I likened this vessel to the Black Swan class sloop as, with its greater speed and ranged forward anti-submarine capability, it was truly capable of being an independent sub HUNTER (whereas the basic corvette pretty much had to act as a tanker escort).
The destroyer was the fastest vessel in the game, and combined two turreted guns with four torpedo tubes (port/starboard) and depth charges. It's guns combined with its durability made a number of them a match for shore batteries. A well-placed torpedo salvo, meanwhile, could see it better the light cruiser in a duel. Paying players earned a destroyer by sinking a submarine (either variety). Sinking a destroyer with a submarine (""), meanwhile, earned them a 'heavy' submarine.
With four turreted guns and six torpedo tubes (port/starboard), the light cruiser was the only vessel in the game with the power and durability to knock out a shore battery solo. This, however, also tended to make it the enemy's highest priority target. Paying players earned one by destroying a shore battery, while sinking one earned them either a destroyer or a heavy submarine (depending on whether it was sunk by a surface vessel or a submarine respectively).
|This article does not contain enough correct in-line citations. Please help improve this page by fixing or adding more citations. [Proposed: February 3, 2018]|
The Iron Wolves were an elite subgroup of the Iron Lords.
Over one hundred years before the events of Destiny, the Iron Wolves were a legendary unit of Guardians within the Iron Lords. The current state of the Iron Wolves is unknown, but what is known is that they were associated with the Iron Banner Vendor, Lady Efrideet. There are a total of eight Iron Lords that achieved the rank of "Iron Wolves."
List of Known Iron Wolves
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