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Thread: OTT-CYM Mission 8: Formation Flying! – 26th August 1916 – by ShadowDragon

  1. #1

    Default OTT-CYM Mission 8: Formation Flying! – 26th August 1916 – by ShadowDragon


    OTT-CYM Mission 8: Formation Flying! – 26th August 1916 – by ShadowDragon
    Original scenario by Vagabond

    https://www.wingsofwar.org/forums/sh...16-by-Vagabond

    Evening has come to the Hunter Valley and the Wilde-Dundee families have gathered for the social time – it’s the 1960s but not the time of the Hong Kong flu-pandemic so social time can include hugging, kissing, laughing, singing and so forth – as people once what seems a long, long time ago. This evening there will be a story about the WWI exploits of the two older men, Jacques Wilde, as he was officially known to the authorities that be, and Bruce Dundee; not because every evening has a WWI story but it’s the WWI stories in particular that interest us. Perhaps there are other stories that would interest us…but they’re likely to remain lost in the foggy mist of time.

    Bruce broaches the subject of what would be a suitable story, “Hey, Jack, why don’t you tell the children about the next time you got shot down.”

    “The NEXT time?”, scowled Jack.

    “Yeah, the next time. The first was your swim in the Channel. The one just after that. You know – once is unfortunate but, by then, twice – well, you were making a habit of it.”

    “Ha, ha,” replied Jack. “Sometimes habits can be a good thing.” He winked at this wife, Angelique.

    “How many times were you shot down, Grandpa”, asked one of Jack’s grandchildren.

    “That’s for another time, Mikey. Tonight, at your illustrious uncle’s request, I will tell you about the time when Rumsbottom….er, Rumsbottle, our squadron commander had the notion that aircraft were naval ships.”

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    Jock, Fergis and I had just returned from our time in Dover. We had a few days of R&R which we mostly spent avoid the Admiral as we still owed his wife several years of pay for her broken china. Our flight commander, Flashman called us all into the briefing room for our daily orders.

    “Gentleman, Sir Henry, has been out dining with the local RFC squadron commanders. It seems there’s a contest as to which squadron can come up with a tactic to break up those new Hun bomber formations. Sir Henry is keen to show them what the RN can do so he’s suggested that we use naval tactics – line astern, cross the T, turn about, cross the T again, and so forth.”

    “That will put the strange wiggly thing in your haggis,” growled Jock. “Aeroplanes are not ships.”

    “Too true, Jock, I have some ideas to slightly modify Sir Henry’s plan. As you know the Hun bombers flying over in our little neighbourhood have been flying a diamond pattern with three Albatros at the point and flanks and a Roland at the back where it can cover the formation with it’s superior arc of fire. Anyone coming at the formation from the front isn’t likely to get out backside of the formation, and, as you know our Nieuports can barely keep up with the Hun bombers.”

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    “Four of us will take on the Hun bombers – besides myself it will be Bruce, Jack,” Flashman looked intently at Fergis, “and you, Fergis.”

    Fergis rolled his eyes and stood back in a noncommittal fashion - one arm folded while he puffed his habitual cigar – as if to say, “do your worst.” We still had not got the idea of what was behind the tension between Fergis and Flashman and the other higher ups.

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    “A single line astern won’t do as the Huns will likely have moved on before the last pilot has a chance to engage. So will do two lines – astern; it won’t do to not give a nod to the Old Man. I will lead the first line which will fly parallel to the Huns but at the right moment turn to fly past the left flank Albatros, giving him a good burst on the way but aiming to come behind the Roland. He’s our main target. Fergis will follow right behind me with the same objective. Bruce, you will lead Jack, a bit further towards the Hun formation – slip sliding nearer and near until you and Jack hit the flank Albatros again and then cut in behind to finish off the Roland. One more point that’s very important. We come in above the Huns so that their range is shorter and only dive down when we’re on the Roland. No point in giving the Huns more targets than we need to.”

    “Won’t that leave Jack vulnerable to the flank Albatros observer as he cuts behind?” asked Bruce. “He’ll still be above the Albatros which will have a clear shot at him.”

    “Hopefully”, all four of us will have a shot at the Albatros and he’ll at least have dropped out of the formation if not worse for him”.

    Well, I can tell you I wasn’t keen on deliberately flying behind an enemy two-seater as if I were a practice target.

    “What happens after we….er, cross the T? Our Bébé’s can’t catch those Huns.”

    “True but we’ll have done our duty to the letter….’T’ as it were…and not get all shot up by flying into a hornet’s nest of bombers. Maybe we’ll get a Hun bomber or two. Jock, you and Al are assigned escort duty for some of our RFC observer friends. It seems that the RFC chaps insist it should be only four planes to have a go at the Hun bombers.”

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    So there we were four nimble – even delicate – Nieuports trying to take on four robust Hun bombers – all as fast or even faster than our Bébé’s and with twice as many guns. It started well, enough, Flashman led the first charge – exchanging fire with the flanking Albatros – just as planned.

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    I don’t know what happened to Fergis but he never got a shot off at the Albatros but Flashman timed it perfectly – diving into the blind spot of the Albatros while he engaged the Roland. Bruce….well, he did okay too, I suppose, as he took on the Albatros from the direction of its blind spot too.

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    I followed right behind Bruce. I got a good shot at the Hun, but the Hun observer timed his shots well too. No doubt tracking me following Bruce. He did a lot of damage to my Nieuport.

    “Ah, face it, Jack. You screwed up and mistimed it. Perhaps it you had taken flying instead of swimming lessons.”

    Jack scowled at Bruce and went on with his story.

    Then lady luck smiled on us. Flashman must have hit something critical in the Roland because it went off like a firecracker.

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    As I wasn’t yet near the Roland – or where the Roland might have been, I was still above the Albatros which had a clear line of fire to me; and seeing our flight paths he had a good idea of where I’d be too. Bam-bam-bam and something cracked on the Nieuport and I was doing my best to land somewhere soft but it was No Man’s Land beneath me. Fortunately I was near our lines and some Tommies helped me out and to safety. I was a bit bashed up and had to spend a couple of weeks in hospital. It should have been longer but there was a war to fight.

    “Ah, Jack, I heard that it was just a few bruises and scratches and that you should have been back in a couple of days – except that you had charmed the nurses into making it a two week holiday.”

    Jack coughed and looked over at Angelique, who betrayed nothing.

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    While I hadn’t brought down the Albatros I had done him a bit of harm and it dropped out of formation to head home. The remaining Albatros had kept formation and were too far away to be caught; although Flashman and Fergis tried.

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    Bruce, meanwhile, ever the glory hound, decided to run up his ‘kill’ count and take down the Albatros that was heading back over No Man’s Land.

    “Aw, Jack, I was just trying to avenge what looked like the death of my junior partner.”

    Junior? My arse, junior.

    “Jacques, language?” interjected Angelique.

    Jack cleared his throat and continued his story…well, Bruce, seeking to ‘avenge’ my ‘death’ cut off the Albatros and set it on fire.

    “On it’s blind side….you forgot to mention that.”

    Jack ignored Bruce.

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    Whatever….Bruce continued firing away until the Albatros crumpled and plummeted down into No Man’s Land.

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    When Flashman, Fergis and Bruce got back to the station, Flashman went over to check out Fergis’ Nieuport. Not a shot had been fired. When he confronted the Irishman, the Irishman shrugged and said, “Ah, I couldn’t get a clear shot, sir!” – managing to say ‘sir’ with enough of a tone to make you question his deference to authority but not enough that you could actually say that was the case.




    Victory Points:
    2 X 2 pts for bombers exiting - 2 X 2 pts for bombers shot down Two-seaters shoot down = 0 pts

    A DRAW – again!

    Notes:
    1. Although the scenario was that all three mats are Entente territory I went with one of the as NML since it was a NML mat.
    2. I had a 3rd tandem crew but one of the crewmen is still on 'sick leave' so I went with two unknown crews. The Roland - from an unknown Adler unit and an Ottoman crew as it seems the Adlers opposite the Seadogs are training up Ottoman crews.

  2. #2

    Default


    Butcher’s Bill

    The Seadogs
    Nieuport 11
    FCdr Nigel Flashman / RTB / - /1 kill

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    Nieuport 11
    FSL Fergis O’Neil / RTB / - / -l

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    Nieuport 11
    FSL Bruce Dundee / RTB / - / 1 kill

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    Nieuport 11
    FSL Jack Wilde / SD-NML / - / -
    C&W = 7 -1 SD -1 NML = 5; Injured = 5, skip 2
    E&E = 9 – 1 WIC +1 NML = 9; They didn't even see me!

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    The Adlers
    Albatross C.III
    Observer Ltn Alois Böning/ RTB / - / -

    Pilot Vzfwbl Hans Schwendemann / RTB / - / -

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    Albatross C.III
    Observer Ltn Kurt Strähle / SF / NML / 1 kill
    C&W = 6 -2 FLM -1 NML =3; Injured - Skip 1D6 Scenarios = 3, skip 3
    E&E = 7 +1 NML -1 WIC -1 FLM = 6; In hiding = 3; skip 1

    Fwbl Willie Weiss
    C&W = 2 -2 FLM -1 NML = -1; KIA

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    Roland C.II
    Unknown Observer / Boom / NML / -
    C&W = 5 -3 Boom -1 NML = 1; KIA

    Unknown Pilot / Boom / NML / -
    C&W = 7 - 3 Boom -1 NML = 3; Injured = 5, skip 5
    E&E = 5 +1 NML -1 WIC -1 Boom = 4; Captured & Escaped = 2, Skip 1

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    Albatros C.III
    Unknown Observer / RTB / - / -

    Unknown Pilot / RTB / - / -

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    Last edited by flash; 10-17-2020 at 07:07.

  3. #3

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    The tactics seemed to work better than most there Paul, especially with Jack picking up the spare.

    Uncle says:


    Well done chaps, reduced them by half so not a bad effort at all. That'll shake their confidence & they won't want to take losses like that whenever they come over.
    Checked the tally, that Strähle chap is out for 3 not 2 (3 - Injured - Skip 1D6 Scenarios)

    You still need to PM me a P2 for the Seadogs.

    On t'other side of the lines...
    Vzfwbl Hans Schwendemann is awarded the Iron Cross 2nd class & Pilot Badge for service to the Kaiser.

    Fwbl Ernst Köhler joins the flight as P2; Ltn Hermann Steinhauser as observer to replace wounded Strähle
    Last edited by flash; 10-17-2020 at 07:08.

    "He is wise who watches"

  4. #4

    Thumbs up

    Great effort there Paul!
    I think that the best result for our lads yet.
    Have some Rep for your actions.

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

  5. #5

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    Quote Originally Posted by gully_raker View Post
    Great effort there Paul!
    I think that the best result for our lads yet.
    Have some Rep for your actions.
    Thanks, Baz. Pete's the one to catch but he's on the other side.

    Now it's up to you, Mike and Paul to show up the Adlers...or at least tie Pete.

  6. #6

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by flash View Post
    The tactics seemed to work better than most there Paul, especially with Jack picking up the spare.

    Uncle says:


    Well done chaps, reduced them by half so not a bad effort at all. That'll shake their confidence & they won't want to take losses like that whenever they come over.
    Checked the tally, that Strähle chap is out for 3 not 2 (3 - Injured - Skip 1D6 Scenarios)

    You still need to PM me a P2 for the Seadogs.

    On t'other side of the lines...
    Vzfwbl Hans Schwendemann is awarded the Iron Cross 2nd class & Pilot Badge for service to the Kaiser.

    Fwbl Ernst Köhler joins the flight as P2; Ltn Hermann Steinhauser as observer to replace wounded Strähle
    Thanks, Dave...and thanks for picking up the misread C&W results.

    The 'Boom' card made the tactic look good but on the other hand a '3','3' and '4' damage cards against Jack evened out the luck. Plus the Seadogs would have had a few more shots at the Roland. So, even without the 'Boom' card the results may have ended up similarly. Except for the lead aircraft, slip-sliding into a parallel course - to avoid frontal firing MG is the way to go. The only thing I'd do different would be to not have a plane immediately behind the the lead plane but move that plane to the rear to exploit results.

    So....lead plane set up to turn in towards the rear bomber, giving the flank plane a shot as it passes
    A 2nd and 3rd plane set up as Bruce and Jack to time their slip-sliding to avoid frontal arcs of the bombers, but to turn in towards the Roland, shooting at the flank plane as they pass
    The 4th plane to be back of the 3rd plane to (1) shoot down the flank plane if it's still or (2) a target of opportunity.

    As it was poor Fergis didn't get one chance to fire - which means his plane was wasted as it wasn't well positioned. Of course, that has now become part of the 'history' of the squadron.

    PM sent with a new Flight Commander for the tandems.

  7. #7

    Default

    A good result and it looks like your tactics worked well. The Nieuports are pretty but fragile planes and I'm not sure if their famed manoeuverability is helping to compensate for that.

    Your guys looked to be in quite a good position to chase down the tandems over the remaining 2 mats taking into account the stall move each turn. Its a slow process but I was expecting that there would be 2 parts to the action, the initial attack, then a lull and then the final catch up. Presumably you were just too far back to achieve that?

    Still you did far better than I did.

    I see Fergis is still playing the mysterious villain part.

  8. #8

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Vagabond View Post
    A good result and it looks like your tactics worked well. The Nieuports are pretty but fragile planes and I'm not sure if their famed manoeuverability is helping to compensate for that.

    Your guys looked to be in quite a good position to chase down the tandems over the remaining 2 mats taking into account the stall move each turn. Its a slow process but I was expecting that there would be 2 parts to the action, the initial attack, then a lull and then the final catch up. Presumably you were just too far back to achieve that?

    Still you did far better than I did.

    I see Fergis is still playing the mysterious villain part.
    Thanks, John, for a fun scenario.

    I did play out the chase over the 3 mats but never caught the last two bombers. I just didn’t include those photos as there wasn’t anything in them but 2 Nieuports behind the 2 bombers. Bruce’s Nieuport was definitely not going to catch them as I rolled the dice for Bruce chasing the bombers or taking out the bomber turning back and he went for the latter. I switched from Jack to Bruce after Jack went down so AI looked after the other 2 scouts. Perhaps if I had played one of the 2 pursuit scouts it might have caught up to get a shot in since I know that 3 side slips is faster than 3 straights. However it would have been 1 or 2 shots max.

    I had no pre-game decision on Fergis and let the game results continue the mystery or clarify it. So, still a mystery - even to me.



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