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Thread: OTT Daring Young Men Mission 1 Luftwachdienst – Sperrflug - 5th January 1916

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    Default OTT Daring Young Men Mission 1 Luftwachdienst – Sperrflug - 5th January 1916

    OTT Daring Young Men Mission 1

    Luftwachdienst – Sperrflug - 5th January 1916

    Prologue – an introduction to the local Bulldogs
    It is January 1916 and the RFC squadrons, based in northern France, are struggling to keep pace with events. Flying already outdated aircraft, they are facing an enemy that is using the latest technology, synchronised weapons – machine guns capable of firing through a rotating propellor without damaging it. Pilot losses are growing rapidly and replacements both frequent and, for the most part, inexperienced and raw to the game.

    Earlier, just after breakfast time, on a cold 5th January, the following flight members were gathered together:
    There was the flight leader, Lt Mick Evan Taker, known to most as Mick, but to members of his own flight as “Meatball”. Nobody knows the reason why! He’d only just taken over the flight, because the previous incumbent of this position now lies six feet beneath the mud of France. He had been well liked and so is Taker! Little else is known about the latter, other than his accent, which marks him as a former public school boy.

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    F/Sgt Henry Edward Roe, is a rookie pilot from the village of Great Bentley, in Essex. He should not be confused with his namesake of public school origins, currently stationed elsewhere in the world, despite the remarkable likeness! One could be forgiven for thinking they were twins. However, they are not even related. *
    Rookie he might be, but Roe has already spent some time as an observer, albeit not over enemy territory, and had been rated good enough to send back to Blighty for pilot training. The man is steady and reliable and newly arrived from training only yesterday.
    *(This last comment relates to the H E Roe of earlier chronicles, yet to be completed. The comments won’t mean anything if you are unfamiliar with them : )


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    2nd Lt Peter Lewis and his observer, AM2 Walter Lewis. Neither has been with the squadron long enough to get a nickname, but some of the more obvious are currently being mooted. Peter was born and bred in Edinburgh, Scotland, where he graduated from university with a degree in economics. He spent a few months working for a bank, but was glad to leave that seemingly dull occupation for the excitement of the war. Having experienced the latter recently, he is no longer certain he made the right decision.

    AM2 Walter Lewis, however, has no doubts at all, at the present time. He originated from Ystrad, a small mining community in the Rhondda Fawr valley, in Wales. He left school at the age of twelve to go down one of the mines owned by the Cory Brothers, with his “da”. Spent the next five years down the pits, covered from head to foot in black coal dust, until a methane gas explosion killed both his da and his brother. He couldn’t wait to be away from that and as soon as the war broke out he volunteered for the RFC and trained as a mechanic. A very practical man with an excellent, mechanically minded, brain, he has been offered several chances to go up in the air as an observer and loves it. He is also very good at it!

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    And last, but by no means least, the pairing of Lt Harold Isore and his observer AM1 William Conker. The former is another Englishman and comes from Kent. His father was a successful businessman, who began life in Oxford from where he made a lot of money from the bicycle trade; moved to Canterbury, in Kent, where his fiancee lived, and then started a motor vehicle repair business, also very successful. Harold was therefore born with a silver spoon in his mouth and benefitted from his father’s wealth throughout his youth. After his father’s death, six years ago, however, he discovered that his business talents were not of the same calibre as his father’s. The business went into decline. So Harold sold up, and joined the army. He is a career soldier, serving with the Royal West Kent Regiment and now with the RFC.

    As for AM1 William Conker. He is South African and hails from Cape Town. He had rudimentary engineering training before the war and worked in the mining industry. But the rest of his family are farmers, meaning William grew up in the countryside and is a superb horseman and an excellent shot. When the war broke out he volunteered for the cavalry, naturally enough, but was so disgusted by the way horses were treated by the army, that he requested transfer to the RFC. His engineering skills, coupled with further training, sealed the deal. So here he finds himself, on the western front, in a country he never expected to see, ever.

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    (Please note – in some of the following photographs the reader may spot “ace” markers here and there – these were used solely to aid me in identification between similar aircraft and were attached to pilots who may achieve these skills if they survive long enough. No ace skills were used in the process of playing out the mission.)

    The Mission

    “A right blooming mauling, sir, that’s what I calls it!” said AM1 Smithers.
    “Yes, Alf. Thanks for pointing that out to me. Looking at the remains of my poor bloody aircraft I would never have guessed had you not told me! Still, got to keep you boys at it eh! Otherwise you might get too much sleep at night.”
    “Mmmmm” replied the dejected ack emma.
    Lt Mick E Taker, known to his flight as “Meatball” for some unknown reason, walked away from the Bristol Scout, reflecting on the AA explosion that nearly blew his ear drums out; it was that close, all but destroying his bus. He crossed over to the office where he found Uncle sitting by the window, puffing away at his pipe. The aroma from the burnt tobacco was familiar and comforting.
    “Any news Uncle?”
    “Not yet Mick. Peter Lewis has been whisked off to the Doc and I haven’t had a chance to talk to Walter yet. No sign of the others yet I’m afraid.”
    “OK, leave Walter to me. I’ll go over and see what he knows right away”.

    A minute or so later and he was sitting on an upturned box, opposite AM2 Walter Lewis, in one of the hangars.
    “Bit of a rough one that, Walter! Are you alright?”
    “Me, Mick sir? I’m just fine and dandy. More than I can say for Peter though. Thought we’d made it back across the lines ok. But one of the huns caught up with us, right at the end and Peter copped one in his shoulder. Did well to get us back here in one piece, God bless ‘is little cotton socks.”
    “He’ll be just fine,” interjected Taker, “ but you’ll be needing another pilot when next you go out. Now, listen. I want a more formal, verbal report from you, right now. Given that, rumour has it, you were last away from the scene, you are the most likely one to know what happened. Are you up to that right now?”
    “Oh yes, Mick sir. In fact I can remember just about every detail of the whole affair, seeing as I was up front all the time and having to keep a look out 360 degrees all along the way!
    “It were like this you see…………..”
    And for the next ten minutes, AM2 Walter Lewis gave his account of the events of that afternoon, in a broad accent, him being from the Rhondda valleys in Wales.

    His tale really should commence with the report, yesterday, of Hun balloons being spotted, overlooking a sensitive area designated as part of the forthcoming build up for an allied offensive operation. They had to come down. A telephone call from HQ had given the Squadron the task of getting rid of them.

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    Despite the generally held belief that airmen would jump at the chance of such a job, believing it to be like a day at the funfair,the reality was that the RFC airmen already knew otherwise. It was potentially very dangerous indeed. Balloons were usually heavily defended and previous missions of this nature were littered with reports of failure and lost aircraft.

    Despite this and with the usual stocism of men at war, six airmen had found themselves approaching the balloons during the early afternoon.

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    Flying at near maximum altitude, out of some near motionless cloud cover and crossing the enemy trench lines, well out of range from any incidental ground fire, it wasn’t long before the approach of enemy aircover was spotted. The small black dots, growing visibly with each passing second, were first noted by the eagle eyed Walter Lewis, who twisted around and gesticulated the fact to his pilot. Peter Lewis, in turn, waggled his wings and in so doing drew the attention of the rest of the flight to the oncoming danger. Nothing for it though but to continue on. The BE2c pilots had strict orders to focus on the balloons. It was up to their escorts to deal with the EA. The only sign of any response to the approaching Germans, therefore, was the further gaining of altitude.

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    Then came the crack, crack of exploding shells. The familiar dark grey and black smoke puffed into existence around them, necessitating constant shifts in altitude to put the gunners operating their anti-aircraft guns on the ground, off their aim. To the amazement of the inexperienced, F/Sgt Henry Roe, the same black puffs of smoke also appeared around the oncoming enemy aircraft. He wasn’t familiar, as were the others already, with the irritating habit of Archie from all sides being hurled at all in sundry in the air, despite the use of clear distinguishing roundels and crosses identifying one sides aircraft from those of the other side.
    “The daft bug*ers must be blind as bats” thought Henry to himself. Not that he was complaining. After all, any help they could get was welcome. The possibility that the enemy might actually bring down one of their own didn’t exactly upset Henry Roe in the least. Of course, what he hadn’t considered was the idea that German mono-planes looked very much like British or French mono-planes from six or seven thousand feet away and it wasn’t always simple to make out the identifying features just mentioned. So, caution being the better part of valour, fire away, at everything and anything, they did. Besides it was good sport and relieved the boredom!

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    “You digress Walter!” said Lt Taker.
    “Ah, yes, sorry Mick, sir. I’ll try and keep it brief then.” So he continued his report:

    “Well, as you know, on account of you being there, like, …….”

    The two flights of enemy aircraft closed upon one another slowly but surely, to the point where both observers in the two BE2cs, Walter Lewis and AM1 William Conker, were able to open fire on the first balloon, the one furthest south. Archie was pretty heavy at this point and it was now that the flight leader, Lt Mick Taker, was hit by a fragment of HE AA shell, whilst his Bristol Scout was severely damaged.

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    Lt Taker whinced at the memory. His wound was slight as it happened, and had already been dressed, before the start of this report. But the moment had been very discomforting.
    Anyhow, to continue, apart from some minor hits registered on the balloon, which didn’t appear to do anything at all, the rest of the machine gun fire rattled away in the familiar fashion, with absolutely no effect whatsoever! Enemy marksmanship seemed to be as bad as their own at that point. And with that and one final wasted shot at the other balloon, Lt Taker had turned for home.

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    At the time, he hadn’t even noticed the effects of the attack on the southerly balloon and was delighted when Walter Lewis announced that it had suddenly gone up in flames and plummeted in a raging inferno to its doom below. The enemy observers had long since departed and had been carried to safety by their parachutes. In fact the crew below had also started to winch down both balloons as fast as they were able. So it was one down, one to go and time running short.

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    At this point, Walter surprised Mick by declaring his belief that the two Bristol Scouts had done a marvellous job in drawing off the two Hun mono-planes, which in turn had given the two BE2cs an opportunity to do their job relatively unmolested, barring the attentions of a persistently dogged Aviatik. But that was jumping ahead in the tale.

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    What Walter had not been aware of was the damage to the other Bristol Scout, flown by F/Sgt Roe. In another early exchange, the engine of the Scout had been hit by machine gun fire from a Fokker mono-plane and began to play up badly, necessitating the additional departure of the second of the escorts. So, unintentionally, they had attracted the attentions of both the Fokker EIII and a Pfalz EI as they turned to limp back to the barn. The thought of the Brtishers “running away” had been too much for the enemy pilots to resist and they had followed.

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    Meanwhile, despite the continued incessant, but largely ineffective, interference from Archie, and as the EA mono-planes peeled off, the two BE2cs were able to focus their attention on the second and sole remaining balloon. Followed, as already mentioned, by the pale ghost like form of an Aviatik. Unfortunately, for the British, despite having the same problems, relating to arc of fire, as our very own two seaters, the observer on this EA, also placed in the forward cockpit, was good at his job.
    The closer the British two seaters came to the balloon, the more damage they did to it; the observers were getting their eye in. But so too the observer on the Aviatik, who fired accurately at whichever of his two adversaries he could lay his sights on.

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    The next few minutes were decisive. Two almost seperate actions developed. The one involved a couple of scouts on either side – the retreating Bristol Scouts, being chased by a Fokker EIII and a Pfalz EI, unwittingly serving their purpose by drawing danger away from their two seaters. The other, a desperate and dangerous attempt by the BE2cs to bring down the second balloon.

    The Fokker scored first, hitting the “rookie” pilot’s Bristol at long range and damaging the Scout’s rudder temporarily. (This was an error on my part as I had forgotten to move the Bristol on its last manoeuvre of the turn – but I let the resultant damage stand. The reader may notice that the Fokker remains out of range of said Bristol Scout for the remainder of the mission.)

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    Meanwhile the BE2cs continued to circle the balloon, rather too close for comfort, firing when the opportunity presented itself.

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    And that damned Archie continued to blast away at anything that moved.
    “I think,” said Walter, “the pilots of the hun mono-planes are going to have a few harsh words with the crews of those AA guns, if and when they get the chance.”

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    Then it was the turn of the Pfalz to make its mark. Closing in on the flank of Roe’s Bristol, its pilot fired an accurate burst at long range and suddenly the Bristol burst into flames. Roe was now a rather frightened individual. Desperately he steered for the cover of the distant clouds that still hung, motionless, in the sky ahead.

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    The two BE2cs, however, were faring rather better. Although most of their shots appeared to do little or nothing to the balloon, experience and gut feelings told the airmen in the two seaters that they were close to fulfilling their objective. If only the scouts could hold off the enemy for a while longer. The pilot of the Aviatik seemed to have made an error in his calculations and was temporarily off their tails. Things were looking good, as long as they didn’t think too far into the future! Then came the familiar daka daka daka daka. OK so the ghost was still there!

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    “Then, sad to say Mick, sir, there was a rather bright flash from the direction you were travelling in and I saw one of the Bristols crash to earth in flames. Seeing as your good self is here before me, that must have been poor Henry. And him on his first mission and all! I hope he made it ok, sir, Mick.”

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    “So do I, Alf, so do I” replied Lt Tasker, thoughtfully, because he was wondering why he hadn’t noticed that incident either. Had the shock of being wounded really blinded him to everything? If so, was he fit to be their flight leader? He’d give that some thought later. Right now he needed to know what happened to Lt Isore and AM1 Conker.
    “Carry on please Alf. I’m all ears.”
    “Well, Mick, sir, after that, things went quite well for us, right up until the moment Lt Isore’s aircraft was hit badly by archie and caught fire………...”

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    The two British two seaters circled around the balloon, firing when they could and being chased by the Aviatik or shot at by archie. The BE2c flown by Peter Lewis copped a load from the flak at one point, but the Aviatik, which up to that point had been doing rather a good job against them, suddenly veered off and seemed to lose contact.

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    That left both aircraft free to continue in their attempts to shoot down the balloon, a task that was proving to be frustratingly difficult. All the more so since the two German mono-planes were suddenly seen to turn away from chasing the Bristol Scouts and to begin making their way back towards the BE2cs.
    “A most unwelcome sight Mick, sir, I can tell you” said Walter, rather unnecessarily.

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    “That was when their archie finally got its act together and caught Peter with a packet and fire broke out. I don’t know if that contributed to what happened almost at the same time, or if it was the final result of our shooting that did it, but the second balloon suddenly strted billowing smoke. So we mutually decided to beat a hasty retreat and turned for home, only to see those to mono buzzards heading in our direction.”

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    “And all hell was let loose on us, I can tell you …………..” He stopped to light a cigarette, then remembered where he was.
    “Its ok Walter, you can tell me the rest just as easily outside the hangar as in it.” Said Lt Tasker, and they got up and strolled out into the chilly evening air, where Walter Lewis added smoke from his cigarette to the mist from their warm breath. Both of them stood there, stamping their feet, until Walter continued his tale.

    “Well, Mick, sir, the hun did their best to make minced meat out of us, any way they could. What with archie and the Fokkers, or whatever they’re called and the Aviatik trying to close with us again, we were running scared I don’t mind saying!

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    “If it weren’t for the fact we were all in great need of firing practice, as the shooting was horribly inaccurate, sir, I don’t think we’d be here right now talking to one another. As it is it was their archie that finally swung the balance. Them and the fire on Isore’s aircraft.”

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    “Your shooting can’t have been that bad Walter. You managed to shoot down both balloons between the two of you” added Lt Taker.
    “Ok, Mick, sir, I grant you that. But those balloons are enormous, and anyone can hit them from a long way off. Trying to hit a moving aircraft isn’t so easy is it?” he said, again rather unnecessarily, given the person he was addressing.
    “Anyway, I might have hit one of those mono-planes. In fact I’m sure I saw the pilot flinch as we passed, but it wasn’t me that saved the day. It was their own archie. I tell you Mick, sir, somebody has to do something about it, else all of us are going to be shot down by our own guns. The Fokker I hit was damn near blown out of the sky by his own archie. Reckon I should send those guys a thank you note. What do you think, sir, Mick?” Walter was obviously struggling to call an officer by his first name.
    “Relax, Walter. We’re all in the same boat here and nobody pulls rank except when the brass is around. Mick is my name – feel free to use it”
    “Thanks, Mick. Guess I’m just a bit wound up after today. Guess I’m going to have to get used to it tho’. I can’t see this war ending any time soon, can you?”
    “No Walter, I can’t. Anyway, I need you to finish your report soon I’m afraid. I have a million and one things to be getting on with and so do you.”

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    “Right.” said Walter and he stubbed out the remains of his cigarette.
    “Well, after the Fokker went down, it was the turn of our boys. Lt Isore had done a great job putting the fire out. He just dived and dived and dived and the fire went out, but then his luck ran out when the other mono-plane, the white one, attacked him again. Isore was pretty low already, so didn’t have far to go when his aircraft finally gave up and went down. I think he landed in the trenches, but I couldn’t see whose. They’re pretty close to each other at that point in the line. I hope they make it back ok. I thought William Conker did rather well against those balloons, Mick. I’m sure his shooting was a great deal better than mine. And Harold Isore is a damned good pilot. I’ve flown with him before and I’d go again quite happily. Can’t afford to lose those men. We’ve lost so many already.
    “So that just left us to see off the two hun. The little mono-plane that just shot down Mr Isore, was following us just to the side and I’d switched my gun to the starboard side rear facing position. I had the perfect shot, but guess what! The damn thing jammed on me. I reckon though, that the hun thought we were dead meat because of that and he just followed us nice and close, slowing down a little to tuck himself in behind us. But just as he opened fire, my gun cleared and I put a good couple of bursts into him at close range. Made the pilot jump a bit, I can tell you. Clear as daylight, I know I hit him. Sure enough he broke a way immediately after and I thought to myself, we’re home and dry!

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    “Never count your chickens though Walter, I said out loud to nobody in particular. Because that’s when the Aviatik came back at us. Peter must have sensed he was there, because he threw the bus over starboard side, to give me a shot. But I missed. That’s when Peter copped it. The observer in that hun bus is a blo*dy good shot, I’ll give him that. Long range, a norrow arc of fire and a moving target and he still managed to put one into the pilots cockpit. Reckon I shall be practising loads to get as good as that, Mick.

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    “But we made it back of course. Peter threw our bus about despite his wound and the Aviatik lost touch again. And that was that. Oh and I all but forgot. Just before we put paid to the second balloon I managed to drop a bomb smack bang on top of one of their Ack ack guns. Don’t suppose it finished them off completely, but it certainly stopped their little game for the rest of today, I’ll guarantee it.
    “And that’s that Mick. Its all I know. Now I have to cram all of that report into a couple of lines for the officials.”
    “Thanks Walter. At least I know now what happened. Good job out there lad. Good job done by all!”

    And with that, Lt Mick Taker returned to the office to seek out Uncle. The familiar aroma of freshly burnt pipe tobacco told him he was in luck.
    “Well, Uncle?”
    “Good news, Mick. All three have been picked up. A couple of injuries but nothing too serious. Roe and Isore will be out of action for a while, but they’ll mend. They’ll also have learned some valuable lessons from their experience, Mick. There’s hope for them after all.
    “Now go and get some rest. You’re not exactly in the best of health yourself and we need you back again as soon as possible.”
    And for once, Mick did as he was advised and took himself off for a quiet reflection on his own performance and hopefully a good kip.


    The end


    Butcher’s Bill

    Entente


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    F/Sgt Henry E Roe (Bristol Scout) / EXP NML / 0 Kills
    2D6 = 8 – 3 EXP – 1 NML = 4 Injured Skip 1D6 scenarios. 1D6 = 1
    E & E
    2D6 = 5 + 1 NML -1WIC = 5 – injured skip 1D3 = 3 Skip 2 scenarios
    Result skip 2 scenarios

    Lt Mick E Taker (Bristol Scout) / RTB / WIA / 0 Kills
    2D6 = 9 + 1 RTB -1 WIA = 9 All good
    Result – All well when you land well!

    Lt Harold Isore (pilot) RAF BE2c / SD NML / 0 Kills
    2D6 = 7 – 1 SD – 1 NML = 5 Injured Skip 1D3 = 1 Skip 1 scenario
    E & E
    2D6 = 6 + 1 NML -1WIC = 6 Injured skip 1D3 = 2 Skip 1 scenario
    Result – Skip 1 scenario

    AM1 William Conker (observer) RAF BE2c / SD NML / 2 Balloons destroyed
    2D6 = 11 – 1 SD – 1 NML = 9 All well
    E & E
    2D6 = 8 + 1 NML = 9 All well
    Result – All well

    2Lt Peter Lewis (pilot) RAF BE2c / RTB / WIA / No kills (1 AA gun destroyed by bombing)
    2D6 = 6 +1 RTB – 1 WIA = 6 Injured skip 1D3 = 4 Skip 2 scenarios
    Result skip 2 scenarios

    AM2 Walter Lewis (observer) RAF BE2c / RTB / No kills (as above re the AA gun)
    Result – All well


    Central Powers


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    Ltn Joseph Jacob (Fokker EIII) / EXP FT / WIA / 0 Kills
    2D6 = 7 – 3 EXP – 1 WIA = 3 Injured skip 1D6 scenarios. 1D6 = 1
    Result - Skip 1 scenario

    Ltn Hans Leptien (Pfalz EI) / RTB / WIA / 2 kills
    2D6 = 11 + 1 RTB – 1 WIA = 11. All good
    Result – All good

    Obltn Hermann Lux (pilot Aviatik CI) / RTB / 0 kills
    Result - All good

    Ltn Albert Mendel (Observer Aviatik CI) / RTB / 0 kills
    Result – All good

    Targets

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    Two balloons SD – both accredited to AM1 William Conker (Observer RAF BE2c).
    One AA gun destroyed – accredited to AM2 Walter Lewis (Observer RAF BE2c).

    Victory points

    Aircraft forced to leave - Both Bristol Scouts (one later shot down) and the Pfalz
    Central Powers 1 point Entente 1 point
    Single seat aircraft shot down – One Bristol Scout and one Fokker EIII
    Central Powers 2 points Entente 2 points
    AA guns destroyed – one Entente 2 points
    2 seaters shot down - one Entente
    Central powers 3 points
    Balloons shot down – two
    Entente 10 points
    Fokker Eindekker brought down on the right side of NML – 0

    Totals: Central Powers – 6 points : Entente - 15 points
    Last edited by flash; 01-08-2019 at 03:33. Reason: Tally & VP Corrected

  2. #2

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    Many thanks Neil. That was one of the most enjoyable, nip and tuck scenarios I've been involved with. Hope I haven't made too many errors. I played altitude, probably not particularly well, but it did serve to avoid any collisions for a change The bombing I wasn't entirely certain about, but since the BE2c was nicely lined up, I couldn't resist the temptation Not sure if the BE2c was capable of carrying both a bomb and an observer. If not the points should be adjusted and the missing gun was as likely to fire at the Germans as the British, so no telling how that might have turned out.. The AA only fired once at the Aviatik and missed anyway, so I hope that meets with approval. All in all a right mauling for the RFC and I think our Bulldogs are going to be struggling to survive for very long.
    Cheers for now, Mike

  3. #3

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    Epic start Mike.
    I have read some AARs over the years but this one has everything excepting boredom.
    Splendid action and narrative.
    Starts the year with a real bang!
    Rob.
    "Courage is the art of being the only one who knows you're scared to death."

  4. #4

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    Wow - that was quick off the starting block Rob. I've only just finished posting it Thanks for the positive comments and glad you enjoyed it

  5. #5

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    Epic AAR indeed!

    Hughe and beautiful setting like a Wallace and Gromit film with WW I planes.
    Voilเ le soleil d'Austerlitz!

  6. #6

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    A cracking start Mike, well done, a great read as well as a visual feast.

    I think you were a little hard on the Bulldogs, they gave as much as they took and on top of that fulfilled the main objective, destroying both balloons. Having been given some of the corniest names in the history of corny names, I'm surprised they fought so well for you.
    The table is looking excellent as always, there seems to be more bits and bobs this year, I don't remember the wire entanglements and the trenches, also the little explosion markers and shell holes look great as do the planes.

    The pencil drawings of the pilots is a clever device, one I was considering using instead of photos, my problem is I can't draw, did you do these? If so well done.
    All in all you've set a high bar for the rest of us. Excellent stuff.

    H.E.Roe indeed.

  7. #7

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    Great job, Mike.
    As always, your narrative propels the reader through to the end, with many twists and turns on the way.
    A resounding victory for your Bulldog Bristols and BE.2s (I have a question about those that I will pose in the DYM thread)
    REP on the way, sir.

  8. #8

    Thumbs up

    Another magic AAR & storyline from your pen Mike.
    That was so full of non stop action I was holding my breath!
    Really great you completed the mission & all your lads made it home with just a few bumps & bruises although the Aircraft ended up pretty second hand!

    Rep Inbound!

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

  9. #9

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    Well done Mike - cracking story & action over a super table, the boys done good, they took some knocks but we will see them all again.

    Uncle says:


    Well done chaps, that showed them, it cost us but they'll think twice before flying their kites near us again !
    Make sure on your reports that you remember to take account of those WIC when working out E&E....
    Looking at the VP, the FRTB -1 is for those forced to leave the table, if they get shot down on the way they haven't yet left the table so that FRTB should not be counted but being SD is.
    Hence Totals: Central Powers – 6 points : Entente - 15 points
    AM.1 William Conker will get a MID Mention in Despatches for his part in the attack.
    Herr Leptien though shot down and wounded achieved two victories and will be awarded his pilots badge, an Iron Cross 2nd class and a wound badge.

    REP gun jammed....
    Last edited by flash; 01-08-2019 at 03:39.

    "He is wise who watches"

  10. #10

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    Thanks a bundle everyone. Really encouraging comments.
    Wallace and Gromit film
    OK now there's something interesting to think about. Did either of them ever fly an aeroplane I wonder?
    Yes, John, the pencil drawings are my own efforts, taken from paintings of real pilots found on the internet. Something else I enjoy doing once in a while. The pic of H E Roe is done likewise except the face is based on a cartoon drawing produced by a friend of mine called Jon. Some of his work appears elsewhere in my earlier AARs. Glad you spotted the corny names. Others members do likewise if you look carefully. Bit of fun
    Pete, I shall go straight from here to the DYM thread and look into whatever question you are posing for me

    Finally, why does "Held for Uncle" always sound so ominous? A bit like waiting outside the headmasters door after some misdemeanour

  11. #11

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    Just finished reading the report Mike and what a cracker it was! Plenty of action with great visuals and descriptions.

    A win for the Bulldogs but looks like we might have an 'Eagle of Lille' in the making with Ltn. Leptien.

    REP inbound.

  12. #12

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    Despite the final tally, this looks to have been a real squeaker-on or two more accurate shots would have changed the situation completely. Excellent AAR!

  13. #13

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    Cheers guys.
    ....looks like we might have an 'Eagle of Lille' in the making with Ltn. Leptien.
    Yes indeed Carl, Ltn Leptien did rather too well for my liking Shall have to keep a weather eye out for him (And make a suitable drawing of him too).
    ....this looks to have been a real squeaker
    Absolutely, yes Sam, you are so right! I really think that without the boom card being drawn against the first balloon, the whole scenario would have been altered. Quite a few shots could have gone either way I guess - which is why I think most of us stick to a simple system of always drawing damage against one side first. Me, I always draw against the entente first; all of them. Then I do the same for the CP. That was something I picked up on early in my involvement with OTT. The dice rolls were also reasonably kind to both sides too, during the calculations for the Butcher's Bill. That can make a hell of a difference sometimes. But I think one of the other big differences between the early war campaign and the previous OTT BE campaign lies in the use of the B damage deck. There are so many more "0" results.

  14. #14

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    Stunning terrain? Check! Beautiful kites? Check! Cracking good tale? Check!

    Nicely done, Mike! A great opening salvo.

    Well... bummer. Rep gun appears to be a bit dodgy and will require some work before it fires again.

  15. #15

    Skafloc's Avatar Northern Command Squadron Leader.
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    Nicely deon. Just got through reading the AAR. Only comment I would make, that I hope the Bulldog players will remember, the monoplane Fokkers should break off combat and not cross over the lines, unless you want to make a draw for it somehow. Historically they were under strictest of orders not to cross NML and it was a downer for them.

    But otherwise a cracking first round into the bank so to speak. Well done. And a bombing to boot! Fortune favours the brave and those who run away live to fight another day.

    Neil
    See you on the Dark Side......

  16. #16

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    Aah yes Neil, you are absolutely correct. Thanks for pointing that one out. It was only the Fokker Eindeckers wasn't it? Do you know when that ruling came to an end? Only I don't want my Bulldogs flying in and out of Nomans land all the time just to avoid them for the rest of this campaign Or would that have happened in reality, assuming that after a while RFC and French pilots would have noticed the trait?
    Anyway, thanks for the other comments too guys. All very much appreciated

  17. #17

    Skafloc's Avatar Northern Command Squadron Leader.
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    Probably after the Eindecker landed mistakenly whilst in transit and captured intact so the secret was out.

    Neil

    PS: April I think off the top of my head.

    Quote Originally Posted by mikeemagnus View Post
    Aah yes Neil, you are absolutely correct. Thanks for pointing that one out. It was only the Fokker Eindeckers wasn't it? Do you know when that ruling came to an end? Only I don't want my Bulldogs flying in and out of Nomans land all the time just to avoid them for the rest of this campaign Or would that have happened in reality, assuming that after a while RFC and French pilots would have noticed the trait?
    Anyway, thanks for the other comments too guys. All very much appreciated
    See you on the Dark Side......

  18. #18

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    Right, so the idea will remain for the rest of this campaign. OK I shall try to remember Thanks for the heads up

  19. #19

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    Great action and tale Mike! Your boys came up roses taking down both objectives, well done sir! A couple of bruises and scratches but all will fly again so not a bad outing.

    Your terrain is always a treat. You set the bar high for yourself and we all expect no less now!

  20. #20

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    Your terrain is always a treat. You set the bar high for yourself and we all expect no less now!

  21. #21

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    Yet again with the great mats and scenery Mike.
    AAR was stunning , its just a shame it cst so much to give the Bosch a bloody nose.


    I'm learning to fly, but I ain't got wings
    Coming down is the hardest thing

  22. #22

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    True Paul, but the cost was less than expected It can only get worse from here in. But what the hell - my boys can take it Can't they



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