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Thread: Historical Mission Type Questions

  1. #1

    Default Historical Mission Type Questions

    Hey all,

    I'm trying to put together some historically-based mission types, that would typify a "day in the life" of an average pilot. The idea being to provide some variety, by rolling before the game to decide what kind of mission it is. I am mainly focused on Western Front - Spring 1918 (both before and during the Spring Offensive), because that's what I have the planes for. At this time I only have British and German- so will focus my efforts there.

    The one's I'm thinking about right now:

    -Fighter Sweep (Offensive Patrol)
    -Artillery Observation/Contact Patrol (a 2-seater must attempt to remain on the board to complete their mission)
    -Short Range Photo Recon (a 2-seater must attempt to take pictures of a tactical target and get off the board safely)
    -Daylight Bombing Mission (a flight of 2-seater bombers strike a target)
    -Ground Attack
    -Long Range Photo Recon (a 2-seater must attempt to take pictures of a strategic target and get off the board safely)
    -Transit (simply exit the far edge of the board, simulating either going to or returning from one of the above missions (except Fighter Sweep))

    I've been trying to do research on these typical missions to see what would be "normal," but could use some help. So any historical assistance you can provide on the below questions would be much appreciated:

    1) Artillery Observation/Contact Patrol: These were generally undertaken by Corps Observation Squadrons (RFC/RAF) - [so either RE8 or FK8], or German Fl Abt (A) [C-Class]. From what I can tell, these were generally unescorted (at least on the RFC side), so the only help they could except to receive was from roving friendly fighters, correct? It does seem like the Germans occasionally escorted theirs, but generally with 2-seater CL class, rather than D-class single seats. Is that correct?

    2) Short-Range Recon: Likewise with Artillery Observation/Contact Patrol - most likely unescorted?

    3) Daylight Bombing Mission: From what I can tell, DH-4s were often unescorted, or could be escorted by Camels, SE-5a, or Bristol F2s. It doesn't seem like the Germans did much daylight bombing with 2-seaters, mostly night with the big-boys like Gothas, etc. Is that correct?

    4) Ground Attack: Well documented GA sorties by Camels, and to a lesser extent SE-5s. Did German D-class fighters do much Ground Attack? or was this left mostly to the CL-class?

    5) Long-Range Photo Recon: For RFC/RAF, this would be Bristol F2s - either unescorted or self-escorted by other F2s? And for Germans, C-Class, either unescorted or escorted by CL-class - rarely by D-class, correct?

    Trying to balance historical correctness with playability - wanting to make sure I'm at least in the ballpark. Obviously a single RE8 against a flight of German D-class wouldn't be much fun (for the RE8!), but maybe a roving Camel patrol intercedes on his behalf.

    Any help is much appreciated!

    Thanks,
    -Max

  2. #2

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    Have a look at the official scenarios from the rule books Max, they may help you construct scenarios - all helpfully put together in this document:
    Official Scenarios and Scenario Rules - found in the files here - https://www.wingsofwar.org/forums/do...do=file&id=214

    "He is wise who watches"

  3. #3
    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

  4. #4

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    Look at the scenarios 'HERE' put together for the Solo Campains. Lots of great scenarios there with everything you can imagine from retrieving a spy from behind enemy lines to attacking trains and submarines.

  5. #5

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    It was interesting to see your various options for scenarios and then some of the detail, because the scenario I have planned for our group tomorrow night is an RE8 on reconnaissance escorted by a SPAD VII encountering an Albatros CIII also on reconnaissance escorted by a Halberstadt DIII. This is an earlier period to what you are planning for, and your information suggests that the two seaters might not have had escorts. With four of us, it is always good to have at least four planes.

  6. #6

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    Quote Originally Posted by Windy Jack View Post
    It was interesting to see your various options for scenarios and then some of the detail, because the scenario I have planned for our group tomorrow night is an RE8 on reconnaissance escorted by a SPAD VII encountering an Albatros CIII also on reconnaissance escorted by a Halberstadt DIII. This is an earlier period to what you are planning for, and your information suggests that the two seaters might not have had escorts. With four of us, it is always good to have at least four planes.
    Hi Doug,

    Yeah I'm not sure about earlier in the war... I know the Jastas were born out of the D-class sections of units that were used as escorts, so that's definitely conceivable.

    For 1918 though, it's appearing to me more like what I posted above. Am currently reading "Aces Falling" by Peter Hart; The RE8s were assigned to Corps Observation squadrons, that generally operated up to 15km behind the German line, mostly on tactical reconnaissance, artillery observation, or contact patrol type missions. Of all the first-hand accounts mentioned from RE8 crewmembers in the book so far (I'm up to late August 1918), I can't recall a single one that mentioned anything about a dedicated single-seat escort. It seems like the usual tactic if attacked would be to race for the British lines, as the Germans generally seemed reluctant to chase across the lines (if not on a dedicated cross-lines mission) due to the desire to conserve both aircraft and aircrew. That was how Richtofen was downed after-all, breaking one of his own dictas...

    Likewise, I've been reading on the USAS' 1st Pursuit Group's time with Nieuport 28's in the spring and early summer of 1918 - most of the German two-seaters engaged were unescorted, but some are mentioned as being escorted, a subset specifically by other two-seater types - others they didn't classify the escort. But they seemed very keen to identify Albatros or Pfalz scouts when fighting them (no doubt due to the excitement of engaging another fighter), so it seems like if the escort was a single-seater this would have been worthwhile to report - which leads me to believe that C-class was generally escorted by CL-class rather than D.

    Bombing missions by DH4s seem to have been occasionally escorted by various aircraft, but also operated unescorted. Likewise with Deep Reconnaissance missions by F2Bs (though in the latter I can't recall any instances of them being escorted by single-seaters, only other F2Bs).

    Thanks Dave, Mike, and Peter; I'll check those out. Am hoping for something a little more specific than "a two-seater" or "a single-seat" scout... I tend to nerd out on the history side of it, and find myself preferring historical scenarios that are relatively playable, rather than the other way around if that makes sense...

  7. #7

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    Thanks for that lengthy reply, Max. It is interesting to read accounts of those who were actually there and flying the machines. I recently read about Ross Smith, who before he flew from England to Australia for which he is famous, was flying in the Middle East. He talks about the various aircraft, what they were like to fly, and particularly how they compared with their opponents aircraft. He was really pleased to receive Bristol F2Bs. They allowed them to dominate the skies.
    Last edited by Windy Jack; 06-01-2020 at 20:10. Reason: Typo

  8. #8

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    Quote Originally Posted by MadMad17 View Post
    Hi Doug,

    Yeah I'm not sure about earlier in the war... I know the Jastas were born out of the D-class sections of units that were used as escorts, so that's definitely conceivable...
    The early squadrons were mixed - the Germans issued Eindeckers in ones and twos to their recon squadrons to protect the tandems - before long they formed the KEK's (Feb '16) with initially two to four Eindeckers based at strategic locations to find and work over the Tommy recon. The British lost so many aircraft they had to begin escorting their tandems.
    There was a re-org in the summer of '16 and the jastas were formed from these beginnings, soon to be equipped with the new D class Albatrii.
    The British & French had also separated their units and formed job specific squadrons by this time.
    In June 17 four jasta were pulled together to form the first Jagdgeschwader, more followed.

    "He is wise who watches"



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