Welcome to the Summer News
What a wild few months! So much has happened since our Spring Newsletter. With the release of S.O.G. Prairie Fire v1.3, Team Savage has been catching its breath and taking some well-earned rest. Let’s dive into everything that’s happened with the Team and the awesome S.O.G. Prairie Fire community…
S.O.G Prairie Fire v1.3
On 13th June 2023, our third free update (version 1.3) for S.O.G Prairie Fire was released. Hopefully, you’ve been having an excellent time with it already, but if not, check out the trailer below and the links to the release announcement, where you can read all the details on what you’ve been missing.
Here’s a summary of what’s included:
The Vietnam War just spread to Cambodia! With Update 1.3, you can now wage war with 3 new factions - the communist Khmer Rouge, their opponents, the Khmer Army (FANK), and the US Marine Corps have also been added.
These factions come with 9 new vests, 9 new packs, and 10 new helmets, all equipped with relevant vehicles and static weapons.
There are also 18 new weapons to fight with, including the M20 super bazooka, SOG specialties - suppressed PPK, P38, and HP, XM177 with M203, sawn-off M14A1 and sawn-off suppressed 9mm M1 Carbine. In response to a request from our MACV-SOG advisers, we have also added the 10-second claymore and claymore with WP grenade attached - an essential weapon for evasion.
This release sees a big vehicle update with two new tanks (M48A3 and T-54B) with flamethrower variants, several new APCs and variants, the CH-47 Chinook, and its awesome ACH-47 Guns-a-go-go monster gunship and 3 new static weapons. The ANZACs also now have their authentic Dirt Ranger car fleet with armed and utility variants. To combat the F-4, we have added the classic MiG-21PFM jet, with an afterburner, fuel tanks, and a range of air-to-air and air-to-ground weapons.
You can read more about the update here:
MIKE FORCE News
An immersive multiplayer scenario created by Savage Game Design on 3 terrains
Battle your way through 550 km2 of authentic landscape on 3 terrains in this fully supported multi-team co-op game created by the S.O.G. Prairie Fire team. The popular Mike Force game has been upgraded to include all the new weapons, vehicles, and equipment from the 1.3 update. Also, for 1.3, a mission parameter was added to scale the number of AI (and therefore difficulty), making solo or small team play more fun.
Find the Mike Force changelog here on our discord to see what’s been updated.
Community Screenshot Competition
We’ve just wrapped up our Community Screenshot Competition! Held from June 14 to July 4, over 150 submissions were received by community artists! All of the art submitted was reviewed by the team's MACV SOG Military Advisors, and the top 3 scenes, plus the winning Air Support scene, have been selected for awards. Winners and shortlisted art will be featured on our website and social media soon. The awards include personally signed memoirs and rare challenge coins from our awesome MACV SOG adviser team.
General Category Winners:
1st Place: Scarecrow1625
2nd Place: DonBuerMoses
3rd Place: colgeet
Air Support Winner
1st Place: TheCheekyRedcoat
We couldn’t believe how many excellent scenes you created. Each scenario’s quality, creativity, and power made it a real challenge for our judges to pick the winners. For those who didn’t win an award, we’ll produce a new video highlighting the shortlisted art later this year. We are so grateful to the generosity of our adviser team for donating personal prizes for this competition.
Fundraiser for Frozen Dagger expedition
Royal Marine Sam Cox’s Antarctic journey is starting soon. While we know he’s going to be shivering from Berkner Island to Reedy Glacier, you awesome community members worked to keep this heroic adventurer from the worst of the elements. The SOG Prairie Fire community helped raise £740 for Sam, which has been put towards a top-of-the-line tent to insulate him while he recovers between each day’s exhausting trek through the icy wilderness.
One donor also won the raffle and will be receiving this awesome personal prize from USMC (Ret) Colonel Barry “Scarface 20” Pencek, who flew his Cobra in support of the legendary SOG Operation Tailwind:
For those who missed it and want to contribute, you can still donate to Sam here
We had a whole run of great events around the release of v1.3. Between June 16th-18th there were players participating in several epic operations:
Defense of Khe Sanh and Operation Atlanta
This 60-player event involved defending Khe Sanh from NVA attacks for a prolonged period.
Lcpl.Liru was Zeus for this event and you can watch the fun from his point of view here:
Dolly897 was providing close air support to the besieged base in the all-new ACH-47A Guns-A-Go-Go gunship. You can watch the battle from the air here
This epic 80-player event happened on The Bra map in Laos and involved a lot of new tanks.
DigbyZF was operating as Zeus for this mission and you can watch from his point of view here
Chewie was one of the grunts on the ground, carrying a M79-thumper. You can view the battle from his perspective here:
Frozen Dagger Fundraiser Event
In support of the Frozen Dagger expedition fundraiser, we played Mike Force all weekend, and enjoyed using a lot of the new equipment, weapons and vehicles introduced with the 1.3 update.
We engaged the community and players to join us to fight the hordes of enemies in some thrilling and entertaining Mike Force battles. Our servers were packed, and we had a great time working together.
It was a great opportunity for Prairie Fire developers to meet players and have fun together. A big thank you to all those who attended, and especially to those who donated to the expedition fundraiser.
In July, we held another successful 40-player event based on the start of the Easter Offensive. 4 ARVN squads were on patrol when suddenly they found themselves under pressure from immense enemy fire. Great teamwork and coordination between assets was needed for the ARVN forces to survive and extract from the area.
You can watch the event from Lcpl. Liru’s perspective, acting as Zeus here:
For those interested in MACV SOG history, there are some fascinating conversations and interviews published regularly on our YouTube channel - Please subscribe here
Facing the Khmer Rouge - Maj. Gen. Ken Bowra
This rare and detailed conversation with Ken Bowra covers his experiences training Cambodian army (FANK) soldiers in Vietnam and, his subsequent deployment as part of the Military Equipment Delivery Team (MEDT) in Cambodia, and his moving reflections on the terrible fate of Cambodia under the Khmer Rouge communists.
MACV SOG meets polar marine
If, like us, you’re following Royal Marine Sam Cox’s preparations for his Antarctic journey, then be sure to check out this podcast featuring Sam and MACV SOG legend Dick Thompson. Discussing the multifaceted aspect of survival on his upcoming journey, Dick explores parallels with operating in remote jungles under extreme conditions. There’s a surprise MACV SOG ambush at the end, too.
New podcasts focused on Dick Thompson’s incredible new book
BOOK: SOG Codename Dynamite: A MACV-SOG 1-0’s Personal Journey
Dick Thompson’s newest book is out! “SOG Codename Dynamite: A MACV-SOG 1-0’s Personal Journey” is available right now on Amazon here.
Last October SOG Prairie Fire director Eggbeast had the immense honour to sit down with Dick in his hometown in Georgia and record some in-person interviews after reading an early draft of his book. Dick discusses combat frankly, so viewer discretion is advised. Like his book, the podcasts pull no punches as we discuss the book and his personal stories that led to its writing. Please join us for these premieres and chat with DLC devs while you watch.
PREMIERE 30 AUG: Codename Dynamite: Weapons of SOG - LTC Dick Thompson MACV SOG
PREMIERE 6 SEP: Codename Dynamite: SOG Team Training - LTC Dick Thompson MACV SOG
Recent podcasts featuring eyewitness accounts supporting Paris Davis, Medal of Honor
While Whiplash and Eggbeast were in Washington DC for the Paris Davis Medal of Honor ceremony they had a chance to sit down with two vital eyewitnesses to that fateful battle on June 18, 1965 in which Captain Davis saved 4 of his team-mates while himself wounded.
PREMIERE 16 AUG: Eyewitness for Paris Davis: CWO-3 Bob Baden
Bob Baden was an Aircraft Commander Pilot who flew 360 hours throughout the war. In this moving testimony, he explains some fascinating details, from flying hueys on combat operations to supporting Paris Davis, fighting alone on the ground, to later being shot down and wounded, and eventually evacuated.
Eyewitness for Paris Davis: Spc4 Ron Deis
Ron Deis was a member of the Special Forces A-Team “A-321” who flew on the Bird Dog FAC in support of Paris Davis’ raiding party at the battle of Bong Son. Ron also monitored the battle from their A-camp and handled the wounded as they arrived, including SOG legend Billy Waugh, who had just been rescued by Davis. To get the firsthand account of what happened make sure to click ‘notify’ so you’ll know the moment it drops!
Paris Davis Medal of Honor playlist
If you missed our exclusive interviews with Colonel Davis, where he remembers his Army career and operations with A-321 leading up to the battle of Bong Son, you can find them in our Paris Davis playlist.
SOG Veteran Q&A
During the Frozen Dagger fundraiser event on 16-18 June 2023, MACV SOG 1-0 recon team leaders Dick “Dynamite” Thompson and John “Tilt” Stryker Meyer dropped in for a live Q&A session with Prairie Fire players. The questions from the community were excellent, and both veterans, devs and players had a great time discussing details of the incredible MACV SOG experience in Vietnam. Thanks to all who attended, sent in questions, and our veteran advisers for being so open and comfortable to discuss their wartime experiences with us.
If you were not there on the night, here is the recording from our Discord stage:
Updated game modes
For the 1.3 update of S.O.G. Prairie Fire, several community game modes have been updated to bring all the new weapons, vehicles, and faction equipment into play. We can’t thank enough the community developers who work tirelessly to entertain us all with their epic game modes.
There are four updated game modes to enjoy linked here:
Solo Campaign with SOG AI mod
If you are more of a single-player Arma fan and want to play the multiplayer campaign solo, then we’d recommend you give Johnnyboy’s excellent SOG AI mod a try.
SOG AI is out now and has massively upgraded the ability to lead your spawned-in AI teammates. Lead your team with fast-paced squad-level infantry tactics that make for unique gameplay with extensive new behaviors for your AI team.
If you are new to Prairie Fire and looking to get started on the first campaign mission, “Eldest Son,” but playing solo, Scalespeeder Gaming has created this awesome beginner’s guide featuring SOG AI mod:
Spearhead 44 Creator DLC
We’re proud of what we’ve made for you all, but it’s hugely important to celebrate other important contributions to the Armaverse.
Check out the Spearhead 1944 Creator DLC trailer below if you need to get your fill of WWII combat in a classic Arma MilSim experience:
There are connections to S.O.G. Prairie Fire, as the original menu design and multiplayer menu revamp were developed originally by the HOW team, along with their excellent melee system. We traded a lot along the way, including many team members.
Supporting a creator DLC in its early stages increases the likelihood of further updates, so please get behind the team!
From everyone here at Team Savage, we wish Heavy Ordnance Works a successful launch for their epic new DLC and look forward to sharing war stories once the release frenzy has calmed down.
One of the things that makes Arma 3 so special is its modding community, supported by tools and a powerful 3DEN editor created by Bohemia Interactive. Over the years since S.O.G. Prairie Fire was released, the team has been constantly impressed by the quality of user-created missions on the Steam workshop.
- Subscribe here to over 100 community-made missions!
- Subscribe here to over 50 community-made mods that can improve or deepen your game experience. (Tip: if you are new to Arma, do not load them all at once!)
Check out our discord channel to keep track of all of these releases as they drop.
Since releasing S.O.G. Prairie Fire in May 2021, the team has been monitoring feedback from players in our wishlist and especially in our feedback tracker, and we are very grateful for all the detailed feedback, bug reports, and suggestions that have been submitted.
- The team has completed approximately 100 feedback tickets in Update 1.3. There is a detailed list of the changes here.
- The Prairie Fire Wiki has also been updated with all the new class names.
- You can read more about our design decisions in the OPREP here.
The team is constantly motivated and moved by the overwhelmingly positive feedback from the player base, and we have more plans for the future - with news on this expected soon - Stay tuned!
Whew! We said it would be a long one! The summer has been spectacular, with the team making a Herculean effort to push out the 1.3 update, raise awareness of Sam Cox’s Antarctic expedition, and help preserve personal histories about Cambodia, Paris Davis, and Dick Thompson!
The Community has matched our energy with 5 updated game modes (including our own Mike Force), a bundle of awesome artwork for the competition, raising funds for Sam Cox, a series of epic large-scale game events, and detailed single-player mods and guides!
So, what’s coming up in the Fall?
An all-new Patreon site for the team is in the works to allow us to raise funds to support our new projects, which include:
- A free SOG Nickel Steel mod - dependent on SOG Prairie Fire, with the same quality. This will allow us to continue to produce content for SOGPF fans while we make our next game title in parallel. The first big asset is ready, and it’s going to bring a whole new level of destruction to SOG teams in-game!
- A free new game mode featuring MACV SOG missions and character development.
- Graphic Novels of key SOG memoirs.
- More in-person and remote SOG/ SF interview podcasts.
The Patreon site will be released with the Nickel Steel mod very soon.
We’ll be attending the Special Operations Association Reunion in October to visit with our heroes and show them the game updates.
We are also starting work on our next game, which will be in Unreal 5. No details can yet be provided, except to say it will be based on SOG Codename Dynamite, so give the book a read or watch the podcasts!
Thanks for your continued support!