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Thread: Fixing the "higher machine gun" rule

  1. #1

    Lightbulb Fixing the "higher machine gun" rule

    I pretty rapidly discovered that the higher machine gun rules are pretty much overpowered. Being able to inflict two cards at an overlapping airplane should you randomly find up there pretty clearly resulted in a broken game. But the rule idea is clever. So I came up with an alternate rule that still allows it, but you have to actually decide in advance that you want to. Here it is:

    During any phase in which this aircraft does not execute a steep maneuver, instead of firing the player may decide to elevate the upper machine gun. Place this card on the aircraft console to indicate that this has been done. Once that has been done, the aircraft may either fire normally, inflicting "B" damage, or fire at overlapping targets in its firing arc at the same or higher altitude. If the target is one altitude level higher, it inflicts "B" damage at long range; if it at the same level, it inflicts a single "B" damage at +1. It may not fire at overlapping targets if the aircraft has climb counters and the target does not.

    During any subsequent phase in which this aircraft does not execute a steep maneuver, instead of firing you may remove this card from the aircraft console. Starting with the following phase, the aircraft fires as normal.

    Thoughts?

  2. #2

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    [shrug] For my part, Ive allowed acft. with the over-wing MG to fire at overlapping targets -- but only one card ("the short range is cancelled out by the non-standard aiming position"). Anything much beyond that is overcomplication.

  3. #3

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    Quote Originally Posted by csadn View Post
    [shrug] For my part, Ive allowed acft. with the over-wing MG to fire at overlapping targets -- but only one card ("the short range is cancelled out by the non-standard aiming position"). Anything much beyond that is overcomplication.
    This sounds good. KISS, always the way to go.

  4. #4

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    Quote Originally Posted by csadn View Post
    [shrug] For my part, Ive allowed acft. with the over-wing MG to fire at overlapping targets -- but only one card ("the short range is cancelled out by the non-standard aiming position"). Anything much beyond that is overcomplication.
    I like it.

  5. #5

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    I like it, but I'd make a minor addition: You can only fire at overlapping targets on the second or or later consecutive phase of overlapping. Always doing 1 card of damage. This means that the pilot would have to have the time to realize and take advantage of the opportunity.

  6. #6

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    To each his own... waiting until the 2nd card strikes me as a little too restrictive, but I understand the point.

  7. #7

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    Should the rule be extended to allow rear gunners to fire at overlapping planes above them?

  8. #8

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    Quote Originally Posted by Naharaht View Post
    Should the rule be extended to allow rear gunners to fire at overlapping planes above them?
    No, since I'm pretty sure you couldn't actually elevate rear MG's. The only reason you could do that for the forward firing ones over the wing was that they needed to be slid down to the cockpit in order for the pilot to reload it, since it required relatively frequent changing of the pan magazines. It just so happened that it resulted in the gun facing upward. (The observer could of course do that with the gin in its normal position.) (The changing of Lewis gun drums is not modeled in the game, which is just as well.)

  9. #9

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    Quote Originally Posted by Naharaht View Post
    Should the rule be extended to allow rear gunners to fire at overlapping planes above them?
    Quote Originally Posted by BraselC5048 View Post
    No, since I'm pretty sure you couldn't actually elevate rear MG's...
    Oh, I don't know.... the scarff ring was pretty decent


    and the parabellum mount had quite good elevation


    Some already have 360 firing on machines flying above them so overlap is not such a big stretch - you could even argue for a +1 bonus same as the firing from above optional rule.
    Hopefully things like this will be covered when the new scenarios/rules book comes out, whenever that is.

    "He is wise who watches"

  10. #10

    Exclamation

    Quote Originally Posted by flash View Post
    Oh, I don't know.... the scarff ring was pretty decent


    and the parabellum mount had quite good elevation


    Some already have 360 firing on machines flying above them so overlap is not such a big stretch - you could even argue for a +1 bonus same as the firing from above optional rule.
    Hopefully things like this will be covered when the new scenarios/rules book comes out, whenever that is.
    The Scarff Ring would definitely allow you to shoot forward over the Top wing at an Aircraft above you.
    Albert Ball's favourite mode of attack was to fly under a German Aircraft, pull down his Lewis on its Foster mount & fire upward into the enemy plane.

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

  11. #11

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    Quote Originally Posted by BraselC5048 View Post
    I like it, but I'd make a minor addition: You can only fire at overlapping targets on the second or or later consecutive phase of overlapping. Always doing 1 card of damage. This means that the pilot would have to have the time to realize and take advantage of the opportunity.
    I considered that, but overlaps don't normally last two phases; also, that the shot is a single-B at close range incorporates factors like "being close, but only for a moment".

  12. #12

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    Is this rule really so OP? At this point, it only "officially" applies to the N.11 and N.17, both of which are 10HP and 12HP respectively. If anything, I see it as a much-needed "Fix" to make them a bit more competitive against the Halberstadt D.III and Albatros D.II / D.III... heck even the Eindecker, if we're being honest.

    Granted, if applied to an SE.5a, that might be a bit much.



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