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Thread: Discouraging the unrealistic "Joust"

  1. #1

    Default Discouraging the unrealistic "Joust"

    Combats in WWII did not involve the use of Immelmans immediately after head-on attacks. Yet this is what tends to happen in WGS.

    There was a reason for that: in the time it took a plane to do a horizontal turn of 180 degrees, an aircraft could just about do a split-S or half loop upwards, but in a turning fight, shooting was possible, while in a split S or Immelman, it wasn't. Furthermore, an aircraft going vertically upwards and then rolling horizontal was an easy target.

    Suggestion:

    Firing is forbidden during both the straight before an Immelman, the Immelman itself, and the straight afterwards. In the Immelman any firing at the aircraft gets an additional A chit.


    The effect of this is that after a close in a head-on pass involving a straight the aircraft cannot immediately immelman on the enemy's tail and start firing. It must do yet another straight, then an Immelman, then another straight, before it can fire again, having completed a 180 degree vertical turn. Meanwhile, the enemy has the opportunity to also turn 180 degrees (horizontally) in the same 3 cards (for most aircraft).

  2. #2

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    Quote Originally Posted by Zoe Brain View Post
    Combats in WWII did not involve the use of Immelmans immediately after head-on attacks. Yet this is what tends to happen in WGS.

    There was a reason for that: in the time it took a plane to do a horizontal turn of 180 degrees, an aircraft could just about do a split-S or half loop upwards, but in a turning fight, shooting was possible, while in a split S or Immelman, it wasn't. Furthermore, an aircraft going vertically upwards and then rolling horizontal was an easy target.

    Suggestion:

    Firing is forbidden during both the straight before an Immelman, the Immelman itself, and the straight afterwards. In the Immelman any firing at the aircraft gets an additional A chit.
    I agree with this as a nice house rule.


    The effect of this is that after a close in a head-on pass involving a straight the aircraft cannot immediately immelman on the enemy's tail and start firing. It must do yet another straight, then an Immelman, then another straight, before it can fire again, having completed a 180 degree vertical turn. Meanwhile, the enemy has the opportunity to also turn 180 degrees (horizontally) in the same 3 cards (for most aircraft).
    I just don't understand why they have to do another Straight, Immelmann and then another Straight before they can fire again? It can only fire on the maneuver card after the last straight in the Immelmann turn. Or are you saying they have to do another straight before they do the "straight, Immelmann and straight".

    Thomas
    P.S. Great idea Zoe.

  3. #3

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    I would suggest only to disallow firing just after the Immelmann card. After all the Straights are just Straights so why disallow firing there?
    The extra A damage for doing an Immelmann is a good suggestion.

  4. #4

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    Quote Originally Posted by CappyTom View Post
    ]I just don't understand why they have to do another Straight, Immelmann and then another Straight before they can fire again? It can only fire on the maneuver card after the last straight in the Immelmann turn. Or are you saying they have to do another straight before they do the "straight, Immelmann and straight".
    Typically at the moment, 2 planes will be going straight head-on at one another, firing all the way.
    Just as they move past each other, they both immelman (having already moved straight) and end up facing each other, still firing at point blank range. They then move past each other in slow straights, ending up overlapped. Then a fast straight, another Immelman and firing pass, a slow straight firing at point blank range, and repeat.

    This rule means that they must do a straight while past each other (having fired in the previous straight move), then an immelman unable to fire, then a slow straight unable to fire. Meanwhile, the enemy has possibly done three 60 degree turns, so ends up doing a 180 degree horizontal turn in the same time you do a 180' vertical turn. A biplane may do a 240' turn, and you might end up in his sights. Trying to half-loop upwards vs a biplane was a Bad Move - you don't do that, you zoom away, climb, turn at your leisure, and come in with a fast diving pass from behind.

    Of course you *can* withhold your fire in the close, meaning you get to immelman earlier.. but still cant fire until the straight you do afterwards is past.

    Basically, the straight before an upwards half loop is with your nose at 45', the Immelman with it at 90', the straight afterwards at 135' (ie inverted). You can't do much firing at anything under those circumstances.

  5. #5

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    Quote Originally Posted by Kaiser View Post
    I would suggest only to disallow firing just after the Immelmann card. After all the Straights are just Straights so why disallow firing there?
    The extra A damage for doing an Immelmann is a good suggestion.
    I think what Zoe is getting at, is to deter pilots from doing it in the 1st place. If you make it unpleasant to do pilots will find alternatives. As during WW2 it wasn't a safe practice to do during combat. Now sometimes you will need to do it just to stay on the table but you will pay the piper then. I like it Zoe I was just clarifying it.

    Thomas

  6. #6

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    We have gone as far as ban Immelmanning during our sessions but this seems to be an excellent balance between letting players get to Immelmann while not allowing the match turn into "I can Immelmann better".

  7. #7

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    I just assume the WW2 game board is turned on its side, and we're watching the planes climb and dive instead of turning left and right.... :)

  8. #8

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    I'm wondering if in WFS each player should be required to fly two planes. Flying them as wingmen could really cut down on the Joust problem as well. I don't think most players would Immelmann on to the leader's tail if his wingman was sitting back there about 4 or 5 inches.

  9. #9


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    Quote Originally Posted by Zoe Brain View Post
    Firing is forbidden during both the straight before an Immelman, the Immelman itself, and the straight afterwards. In the Immelman any firing at the aircraft gets an additional A chit.
    I have two problems with your rule:

    1) It seems to me that the "straight-afterwards" was precisely the moment when Max Imelman would have been shooting to its prey. So I could agree on the 'not shooting during Imelmann itself, but I wouldn't forbid shooting during the straights before and after.

    2) Have you play-tested this rule? I wonder if SPAD-XIII pilots like it... since the only thing SPADs seems to be good for in WoW is to pull an Imelmann after the other...

  10. #10

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    Two problems here. First, this is a WW two discussion not WW1. Second, the split S or Immelmann Loop was something developed sometime after Max Immelmann's death. The maneuver he probably executed was the Immelmann turn, which didn't have a loop in it. More of a pull up to stall so as to turn in a very tight radius. He would find himself turned, but with very little speed. Not a very useful maneuver more than once or twice. The WW1 game card called the immelmann is a loop and reflects a game tool. The ww2 card is fairly accurate but as pointed out above - has drawbacks not reflected properly, and the house rule seems to do a much better job of handling the reality without pinning too much detail into the game. Nicely done btw Zoe.

    Quote Originally Posted by Gallo Rojo View Post
    I have two problems with your rule:

    1) It seems to me that the "straight-afterwards" was precisely the moment when Max Imelman would have been shooting to its prey. So I could agree on the 'not shooting during Imelmann itself, but I wouldn't forbid shooting during the straights before and after.

    2) Have you play-tested this rule? I wonder if SPAD-XIII pilots like it... since the only thing SPADs seems to be good for in WoW is to pull an Imelmann after the other...

  11. #11


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    Quote Originally Posted by wargamer View Post
    Two problems here. First, this is a WW two discussion not WW1.
    (ups! & doh!)

    my bad!

    I've called 911 already and I'm waiting for the paramedics to come and removing the shoe from my mouth!

  12. #12

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    Quote Originally Posted by Gallo Rojo View Post

    I've called 911 already and I'm waiting for the paramedics to come and removing the shoe from my mouth!
    At least it's only in your mouth!!

  13. #13

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    We generally play with 2 x planes each in WW2, 3 if they are bombers, true in some cases it makes the game harder with wing man trying to keep up with the leader, but what the hell it makes the game more fun

  14. #14

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    That said the "joust" is a frequent occurrence in WGF "one on one" engagements. As hinted above, having a wingman is a very effective counter to this

  15. #15

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    In fact, during my reads about air combat in WW2, several pilots said that they resort to vertical manoeuvres during dogfights.
    I would agree that during the starting manoeuvre there shouldn't be fire against targets in the same altitude or inverse altitude of the maneuvre, but not the othertargets, in games with altitude.
    In games without altitude I think that the only time it shouldn't be allowed to fire was on the reverse manoeuvre itself.

  16. #16

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    I agree with Zoe with not firing on the straights, after a reversal you would need a second or so to re-aquire your target. At best you could get a snap shot off, but that wouldn't be accurate.
    Considering planes like the F4F-F only had 20 seconds of ammo, a pilot wouldn't fire it off willy-nilly without being sure.

  17. #17

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    I played with this during my campaign scenario...well...during the first 2 parts of the turn, I allowed it during the 3rd, but I will probably not in the future.

  18. #18

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    I don't know about WWI or WWII terms but today I believe the term is "merge" not joust.

  19. #19

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    Hi Zoe,
    Like this idea and will try out in my next game at the NWS....
    We are also considering doubling the firing range (two measuring sticks for long range, one for short range) ....have your team tried this and did it work?

    Cheers from the squadron in the west
    Stephen

  20. #20

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    The problem with doubling the range Stephen is that you'll probably never be out of someone's arc of fire and once you are in it you'll find it very hard to get out of it ! When Andrea designed the game he had a slightly longer ruler (28cm string actually) and bigger cards but a compromise was made to fit it all into the original (WoW) box. He has suggested that a 2-4 centimetres more should be ok, so maybe try something about the 24cm mark ?

    "He is wise who watches"

  21. #21

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    In WGS firing arcs are way too wide anyway. While it makes some sense to have the target being the entire base, as the aircraft sweeps through a large area, unlike WWI where a small kick on the rudder could cause a yaw while not affecting forward movement much, it's a lot harder at the speeds and g forces of WWII combat. I might try experimenting with a firing arc that's only directly forward. Given a 2 sec time for each card, swivel mounts should have to delay 1 card before firing too, that is, you place a target marker on the target, then next card are able to fire at it. That's also good for WGF.

    Another possibilty is to have firing arcs that are directly forward if firing through the target's rear or front base, but use the right line if through the left base and left line if through the right. This would appear to be a simple solution to the problem of deflection shooting, where you have to aim well in front of a crossing target. It's much, much easier to shoot at a target from the rear.

  22. #22

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    Those are sound ideas, Zoe.
    Maybe the swivel machine guns should have a 60º arc to where they are aiming at each turn and they could change it at every movement after movements are planned but before they are played?

    And instead of having a 60º arc, fixed forward guns should have a 30º arc?
    http://www.wingsofwar.org/forums/attachment.php?attachmentid=165781&d=1432790517

    Fly high. Check! Sun in the back. Check! Watch your six. Check! Draw good damage cards. #$&%!![/SIGPIC]

  23. #23

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    I agree that the Immelmann turn can be problematic for WGS, but I did find this quote from Captain Robert M. De Haven very interesting. He flew P-40s and P-38s against the Japanese.

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    Sounds an awful lot like countering a Split S with an Immelman, doesn't it?

    It's from Fighter Combat Tactics in the Southwest Pacific Area.

    Personally, I think that using the Advanced Rules (including both altitude and acceleration rules) may be the best answer for the jousting issue with reversal cards in WGS. As my game group matures in its experience with WGS, we are moving that direction.

  24. #24

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    Quote Originally Posted by surfimp View Post
    I agree that the Immelmann turn can be problematic for WGS, but I did find this quote from Captain Robert M. De Haven very interesting. He flew P-40s and P-38s against the Japanese.

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    Sounds an awful lot like countering a Split S with an Immelman, doesn't it?

    It's from Fighter Combat Tactics in the Southwest Pacific Area.

    Personally, I think that using the Advanced Rules (including both altitude and acceleration rules) may be the best answer for the jousting issue with reversal cards in WGS. As my game group matures in its experience with WGS, we are moving that direction.
    If your find is correct the Immelman maneuvers to loop back and fire again were not all that uncommon. So maybe altitude rules and a wingman together is the best solution. Besides, just the wingman alone helps the stale game of a one-on-one merge (joust called here).

  25. #25

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    A Chandelle is a climbing 180 turn rather than an Immelmann style reversal - In WGS terms that would certainly put some separation between you and the Zero in this scenario; the split S performed by the Zero would have to followed by a climb to work in game - by that time you'd be well out of the way.

    "He is wise who watches"

  26. #26

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    Who knows what a chandelle in a P-38 at high speed would look like; it might not be all that dissimilar from an Immelmann, though I agree there'd certainly be more horizontal offset involved than you'd get with a true Immelmann reversal.

    But assuming, in WoG terms, that both aircraft performed the head-on at co-altitude (with no climb counters), and one performed a Split S while the other Immelmanned, the resulting climb counters gained (by the Immelman) and lost (by the Split S) could potentially mean the planes would no longer be in range of each other (depending on how precisely after the merge each performed its maneuver), due to the rules about firing at a target that is one altitude different from yourself.

    A cool example of our game rules as written imitating real life, in other words!

  27. #27

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    Quote Originally Posted by flash View Post
    A Chandelle is a climbing 180 turn rather than an Immelmann style reversal - In WGS terms that would certainly put some separation between you and the Zero in this scenario; the split S performed by the Zero would have to followed by a climb to work in game - by that time you'd be well out of the way.
    So, technically, you need to include these cards in your maneuver deck: WWS 5.8cm Maneuver Deck - Climb and Dive Cards

    Except, that they have to be non-steep maneuvers for some planes? Otherwise, Chandelles are impossible in WGS.

    PS: This could be of some use?

    Click image for larger version. 

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    MATES II: WGS MATES Cards Album
    Last edited by OldGuy59; 01-17-2018 at 01:32.
    Mike
    "Flying is learning to throw yourself at the ground and miss" Douglas Adams
    "Wings of Glory won't skin your elbows and knees while practicing." OldGuy59

  28. #28

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    Quote Originally Posted by flash View Post
    A Chandelle is a climbing 180 turn rather than an Immelmann style reversal - In WGS terms that would certainly put some separation between you and the Zero in this scenario; the split S performed by the Zero would have to followed by a climb to work in game - by that time you'd be well out of the way.
    Certainly in reality, but on the game table, it would be pretty much the same result, no?
    The problem is that the WoG engine just doesn't allow real flight actions. Sustained climbs come to mind first.
    Karl
    It is impossible for a man to begin to learn what he thinks he knows. -- Epictetus

  29. #29

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jager View Post
    Certainly in reality, but on the game table, it would be pretty much the same result, no?
    The problem is that the WoG engine just doesn't allow real flight actions. Sustained climbs come to mind first. Karl
    Well the ending placement would be quite different, though the vertical separation may be different of course, and that may present different opportunities that affect the outcome.

    "He is wise who watches"

  30. #30

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    Quote Originally Posted by flash View Post
    Well the ending placement would be quite different, though the vertical separation may be different of course, and that may present different opportunities that affect the outcome.
    OK, brain not warm then
    This brings back the issues of climbing/diving turns and energy.
    Karl
    It is impossible for a man to begin to learn what he thinks he knows. -- Epictetus

  31. #31

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    What about this idea?

    When playing the reversal card, you can only fire at an enemy aircraft if your aircraft's base overlaps the base of the target. The shot is considered to be at close range.

    I'd also add and slightly modify Zoe's excellent suggestion:

    Any aircraft firing at a target aircraft performing the reversal card causes the target aircraft to draw an extra A chit, unless the firing aircraft is also performing a reversal.

    This would be the sole exception (in WGS) to the normal rules for firing and overlaps. The reason you'd be allowed to fire in this instance is because the reversal card represents the vertical portion of the Immelmann or Split S figure, meaning that the only opportunity you'd have to fire at an enemy would be if they were directly above or below you (i.e. overlapped in WoG terms) while performing this portion of the "vertical turn" that these figures simulate. This is also why the extra A chit for firing at an aircraft in the vertical makes perfect sense - you're essentially firing at the aircraft's top or bottom surface rather than head- or tail-on.

    There would be no restrictions on firing during the straight or stall preceding the reversal card, nor on the subsequent straight, as these portions of the maneuver would be mostly in the horizontal and not vertical plane.

    If desired, you could tighten it up further by saying the target's base would have to be both overlapped and within the firing arc of your aircraft.

    The net result would be that the unrealistic "K-Turn" (to borrow an X-Wing name) of an instant 180 degree flip and snap shot would be eliminated, allowing the targeted aircraft a chance to extend and/or turn away from the reversal. Likewise, it would add a further element of skill - if you are able to force an overlap situation, you are rewarded with a close range shot and the potential of subsequent shots. But not the automatic "back stab" that the rules as written tend to encourage.

    I have a feeling this idea has been floated before, since it's so simple, and if that's the case, consider it an example of independent development of a (possibly good?) idea.
    Last edited by surfimp; 01-17-2018 at 12:19.

  32. #32

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ken at Sunrise View Post
    If your find is correct the Immelman maneuvers to loop back and fire again were not all that uncommon. So maybe altitude rules and a wingman together is the best solution. Besides, just the wingman alone helps the stale game of a one-on-one merge (joust called here).
    I was so intrigued by that quote (and the other quotes I read in the excerpt), that I went ahead and ordered the book. It's actually quite good and I'm very glad to have gotten it.

    While browsing through, I came across this absolute gem: Double Immelmanns! Well if that doesn't beat all. Very interesting.

    Click image for larger version. 

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    (P.S. - Apologies for the language - not my intention to offend anyone. It clearly shows its age.)

    I wrote up a short book review for anyone interested:
    https://www.wingsofwar.org/forums/sh...t-Pacific-Area

  33. #33

    Thumbs up

    Very interesting comments in that excerpt Steve!

    "Its a fine line indeed between going out in a Blaze of Glory or having Crashed & Burnt!"
    Member Australian Society of WW1 Aero Historians

  34. #34

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    We use 2-3 planes each and never fly solo so maybe that is why we have not experienced games that degrade into continual loops...

    If we should have to fight, we should be prepared to do so from the neck up instead of from the neck down. -Jimmy Doolittle



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