Wednesday, 13 January 2021

In the ether & in the air

This week we did a WW1 aerial combat game, with Richard's "Knights of the Sky" rules. We had a good turnout for the game, with seven brave souls prepared to do battle in the skies above the Western Front. 


Jon, Will & I were the Germans, to the right, in the heavily armed but clunky Albatrosses. Chris A, Patrick, Steve & Ian were the Brits in the nifty little Sopwith Pups.


With poor communication, we worked on instinct. Will went off to deal with the two at the top of the picture, and Jon & I headed to face down the other two.


Our flying was intricate and surprisingly well co-ordinated. Perceiving the threat, one of the Brits from the top of the picture (Chris??) turned in to bolster his comrades.


Jon & I lined up, and at close range we get to roll dice that cause more damage than the Pups do. This is important for us, as the British planes are much quicker round the table, so we need to pile on the damage when we can.

So of course, one of Jon's guns jammed, and the other missed. Both of mine jammed without even firing. It was going to be one of those evenings.


We flew past each other, and the combat got a bit more whirly. I had to avoid any fancy flying for a turn, in order to unjam my guns. That made it harder to get away from pursuit.


The Pups were certainly getting the better of us in terms of positioning, and they started to inflict damage on us. 


We simply couldn't buy a hit anywhere. 


Then, just as I lined up a Brit in my sights (missed again, thanks for asking, but at least I didn't jam), someone got on my tail (Patrick, I think), scored a hit, rolled a double six for effect (really? These dice have sixes on them?), and my plane went into a tail spin. Patrick decided to pursue.


It didn't end well. Before I could recover my tail had been shot off and I was decorating the landscape.

In the end all three Germans were shot down for minimal damage the other way. I came back on (as did Jon), against the same planes. This time I changed tactics, and spent four turns climbing to a higher level. With a poorer performing plane this meant I could dive, gaining speed and manoeuvrability, and get on one of the Pups.

I did that, and still missed him. 

Richard then thought it was time to end it all, as did my internet supplier, as my connection then went down. Thanks Gigaclear.

It's quick, easy to play (once you've got your head round the order codes) and looks good. The planes have washers on the bottom of them, and these go on the top of one of these:

It's a precision magnetic retrieval tool. That's a strong magnet on the end of it. The pen clip unscrews, so you can replace it with a normal screw and so attach it to a hex base. Each height level in the game is one of tube lengths. It works really well. They aren't that expensive either, if you buy them in packs of 10. Personally, for what I need I'll be sticking to my wine glasses.

Hopefully we'll be playing that again. And hopefully I'll hit something next time.



 





10 comments:

  1. Excellent recap of a fun gaming session. The game worked really well remotely. I need to figure a way to throw Patrick off my tail. He stuck to me like glue and then followed as I flew myself into the ground. With luck, I will hit something next time too!

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    1. He was a bit merciless. Perhaps if he turns up for the next SCW tour superior tactical know how will enable you to extract revenge.

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  2. How did you attach the telescoping tool to the base? Is it possible to screw it in from the bottom? Thanks.

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    1. Well, I didn't do it personally, but Richard showed us that the pen clip top unscrews, leaving a threaded hole. You then drill a hole in the middle of the base, and attach with a bolt with an appropriate thread and not too big a head. I think the bases were two layers so that the second layer, also with a hole in it, went round the head of the bolt, stopping the whole thing from wobbling.

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  3. A nice looking game, a bit reminiscent of my occasional exposure to Wings of War - is it their models you have used or are they something else?

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    1. Supposedly based on the legendary air combat "Ace of Aces" books. Not my models. I think Richard said they were 1/72 plastic. Certainly bigger than WoW.

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  4. A marvellous looking First World War dogfight with 1/72 planes--superb!
    Do the magnetic telescoping stands also allow you to bank and yaw the planes?
    Regards, James

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    1. No. I think it's impressive they go up and down.

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  5. Looks great. Just wondering what your dimensions for the mat is, the hex size, and the wooden hexes for the stands is?

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    1. Not my hex mat, but based on the size of the models (1/72) and the A4 playsheet on the table I'd say they're 100mm.

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