Wednesday, 30 March 2016

Bomb London

Last week as we packed up from our Rapid Fire game and we were all wondering what we were going to do I blurted out "Wings of War" not having played in a while and with over 50+ models gathering dust in boxes. As usual I didn't think of what we would do until the last minute and went online for inspiration and came up with a nice game which would enable me to use my bombers.

 The scenario I found was from the official Wings of War book for bombers which I had to amend very slightly for three players. The Germans had two Gotha bombers escorted for the first leg of their journey by a Fokker DrI  triplane and a Pfalz DIII when and if they reached the second leg they would be on their own to elude whatever defences were present at the target, destroy the said target and return, hopefully, during the third part to the bosom of their protective fighters as they returned home. The British chose two SE5a's and two Camels, but the magnet fell off one of the SE5's so they ended up with three Camels, as they patrolled along the front line they spotted the dastardly Hun on his way to London.

The Germans line up for the first leg of their journey.
 Simon and Andy had decided on a plan to pick on one bomber at a time, but as with most plans it went awry from from the start. I threw my escorts straight at the enemy hoping to Immelman and come back at them while my giant Gotha's toyed with them. Jacobs in his black triplane took a hit and his engine started streaming smoke but thankfully it was minor damage, both of the escorts carried out their turns and came back on the enemy.  The bombers meanwhile got into their stride and managed to deal out plenty of shots as the British hurtled by, Andy's flight of two Camels were especially brave or confused as they ended up in the middle of the bombers and gave the German gunners some excellent targets.

The British attack.
Confusion in the bomber stream.
  As the bombers continued on their way the fighters of both sides took a fair amount of damage, and although Andy's Camels were the best targets it was Simon who lost his SE5a, Hauptmann Brandenburg's red Gotha had been hit in one engine but this only slowed him slightly. As the fighters whirled around the sky they had fallen behind the Gotha's who managed to evade the enemy and set a course for their target.

As the bombers arrived over 'London' they were supposed to be met by two second rate aircraft, Sopwith Triplanes in this instance but although I had two in the box we decided to save time and simply use an SE5 and a Camel. The Gotha's arrived in line astern pointed straight at the target, we took it that they had had plenty of time to manage this during their approach.

The bomb run.
  The defending aircraft threw themselves at the bombers but were hit by a fusillade of accurate fire from the Gotha's gunners, both were soon trailing flames but despite this continued to attack. My first bomber under Von Trotha lined up and dropped his bombs, he was slightly off and only partially damaged the target, however Branderburg in the second bomber had been watching carefully and therefore made a better effort, bang, up went the target in a puff of smoke, it was time to head for home.

An SE5a gets too close.
By this time however the British had managed to put out their fires which had not resulted in any heavy damage and were able to concentrate on Von Trotha as they manouvered behind the giant, right in his blind spot. Despite the shots which could be seen hitting the British they seemed to live a charmed life, Von Trotha's plane fell from the sky as the defenders turned on Brandenburg. Brandenburg had got separated from his friend and despite being hindered by a damaged engine he now made a brave effort to escape his pursuers, sadly it was to be in vain, just short of safety the bomber shuddered and went into a dive. Game over.

I was very chuffed that we had got a good game from the scenario and the nail biting climax as the last Gotha desperately tried to escape was a fitting end. How did the wargame go, well the Bombers dealt out a lot of good hits, especially during the second phase of the game, but even though they managed to flame both British planes they could not deal any death blows. At the end Andy and Simon had almost a dozen damage cards each with most being zero's or ones! As the last bomber was approaching safety he had six hit points left, the enemy shot and he got a zero, with the table edge ever nearer, they shot again, a one, just as I was thinking he would make it for the third phase I drew a five!

The third phase would have been an interesting fight, the same fighters from phase one turn up, the Fokker was badly damaged but the Pfalz was relatively unhurt, while the remaining British planes all had fairly hefty damage apart from one I think. If the Gotha had survived phase two then it certainly would not have survived the last leg. So who won, the Germans did, they had shot down two aircraft and destroyed the target completely, the British had shot down the two Gotha's, the loss of the target however tipped the balance.

1 comment:

  1. Nice report! I particularly like the flame effect on the SE5a in the last pic.
    I've had one game of Wings and it was absolutely excellent! One day ... ;o)