Friday, 17 November 2017

Day Fighters in Defence of the Reich

I am working up the Rocketeers over the Reich scenario this weekend, ready for the Bag the Hun game on Tuesday next week. I have plenty of information on the 336th Fighter Squadron part in this, with a second pilot, 1st Lt Douglas Groshong,  now added as a Veteran character card in the scenario in the role of Charlie Flight leader. I also have some ideas for the initial scenario set up and the way that bogeys will work, with specific reference to the overcast and low visibility. This is a challenge to get right, as I don't want it to complicate things but I do want to make it a feature of the action, just like the real thing.

1st Lt Douglas Groshong, 336th FS, 4th FG

What I needed was more detail on the Luftwaffe units involved, as all I knew was that they were equipped with Bf-109's, either Gustavs or Karls. This book has helped to fill in some gaps and has given me some direction in terms of the unit that may have been on the receiving end, possibly III/JG4. There are some really interesting eyewitness accounts for November 21st too, although they are both from FW-190 pilots, which confirm that many of the pilots were straight out of fighter school, so will be rated as Green. I'll have to factor that into the scenario without making things too easy for the 336th! I'd also like to identify at least one pilot as a more experienced Veteran or Ace Schwarm Leader.

Thursday, 16 November 2017

MiG Alley Royal Navy Aircraft Carrier

In MiG Alley there's a long table edge representing the coastline of North Korea from which you can launch naval aircraft over the mainland on fighter sweeps and ground attack missions. To make this a bit more 'visual' I've been thinking of using a 1/2400th or 1/3000th scale model of an RN light fleet carrier or US carrier to represent the warships involved. It would be completely unrealistic to be so close inshore but it's all about visual effect rather than the accurate realism.

However, I stumbled across this 1/1600th Heller model of HMS Colossus / Arromanches today and thought it would be just the job, although at 131mm in length it's a bit big compared to the 1/600th Tumbling Dice aircraft models, even when scale effect is taken into account. I'll see if I can find a cheap one in France at Xmas, so that I can cut it down to the waterline and base it up to represent HMS Theseus or HMS Triumph. I think it will look really cool and a lot more interesting than a tiddly micro scale model.

Wednesday, 15 November 2017

Flashpoint Fleet Air Arm

I have decided that the Royal Navy needs to be involved in my Target Locked On! and Air War:C21 'Flashpoint' projects somehow. The tenuous excuse for this is that the Chinese are sabre rattling in the South China Sea and, in particular, are involved in aggressive overflights of Hong Kong and the New Territories in the late 1960's. A bit far fetched?

According to recently declassified reports, Chinese leaders were so opposed to the prospect of a democratic Hong Kong that they threatened to invade should London attempt to change the status quo. “We shall not hesitate to take positive action to have Hong Kong, Kowloon and New Territories liberated,” Liao Chengzhi, a senior Chinese official was reported to have said in 1960.

The Royal Navy has dispatched a carrier task force to the region as a demonstration of force, leading to an incident in which Fleet Air Arm aircraft could clash with the PLAAF and PLANAF. This means that I have an excuse, if one is needed, to add some of those iconic 1960's British naval aircraft including Sea Vixens, Buccaneers, Scimitars and Gannets.

I have already unpacked my latest order from Tumbling Dice and, as a result, have a big smile all over my face in anticipation of painting them up. Paul even added an extra couple of packs of Scimitars as he packed them together with another order so saving me postage. What a nice chap he is and the models are absolutely cracking too!

Tuesday, 14 November 2017

Merseberg Mash Up

Captain Fred Glover, CO 336th FS, 4th FG

I realised that I may have left it a bit too late to finish off the B17G's for the Bag the Hun multiplayer game at the club next week. I was hoping to have finished then by now but they still need the canopy highlights, black lining and decals applied before they are ready for action. I could use them as they are but, given the time left, I would rather finish them properly later and run the scenario as a future club game in January.

Having said that, I am still running the game at the club on Tuesday, so will replace the bomber escort scenario with something more down to earth. At the moment, the plan is to write a scenario based on the 336th Fighter Squadron, 4th Fighter Group, so that I can re-use the cards that I created for this unit with one or two additions. So, I've been doing some background reading and have found a possible scenario for 21st November 1944.

Glover's P51D Mustang

This involved a dogfight at medium to low level in heavy over cast conditions, with the 336th engaging a formation of Bf109's to the West of Merseberg in Saxony-Anhalt. I have only got four Bf109's but that can be fudged for the club game if I use FW190A8's instead, rewriting the scenario to fit. The action featured three kills for the 336th 'Rocketeers' CO Captain Fred Glover, who I will make a Junior Ace with a corresponding card.

The weather conditions were pretty bad with 'thick cloud' and 'overcast' which I will try to build into the scenario using the cloud cover special rules in the Bag the Hun 2 rulebook. This may be a bit too complicated but I will have it as an option to make the game a little less predictable and to allow the use of bogeys, which definitely add an element of challenge to the game.

If this ends up being too much, I can always dig out an old scenario instead, perhaps for Malta?

Tally Ho!

Monday, 13 November 2017

Flashpoint Taiwan ROCAF F-86F Sabres

I've been practising my blocking in on four Tumbling Dice 1/600th scale F-86F Sabres this evening, using a small selection of bright colours over a matt white basecoat. The scheme is very similar to that used on USAF Korean War aircraft, which is no surprise as Taiwan was supplied with second hand jets after they had been used in Korea.

I now need to do some black lining and some highlights to the canopies, before I add the fiddly diamond pattern black and yellow decals to the fuselage band and possibly to the wings, cheating a bit to keep the scheme as simple as possible. It's all good practice for the MiG Alley / Bag the MiG project, for which I have to paint loads of the blighters!

Flashpoint Taiwan ROCAF / PLAAF Planes

I had a day release from work today, which is very unusual but also very welcome, so I thought I'd get the extra bits based and undercoated for the Flashpoint Taiwan project. I was also planning to do some more painting of the B17's for Bag the Hun but the garage is freezing, so that will have to wait. AS you can see, I now have four F-100 Super Sabres, two F5A Freedom Fighters, an S-2 Tracker and an RB-57D reconnaissance aircraft.

I also added four F-86F Sabres that I had magnet based and base coated for MiG Alley, only to realise that the fuselage stripe was vertical not diagonal, unlike all of the other Tumbling Dice Sabres that I'd based up. I'm not sure what happened here but I guess they were a sculpting mistake and I ended up with some of the wonky ones. Other than the incorrect stripe they're absolutely fine.

I thought I'd make use of them anyway as they will be fine for the ROCAF and it will actually be easier to add the checkerboard decals to the fuselage stripe in the vertical. Job's a good 'un. To wrap things up and provide some opposition for the Sabres, I based up four MiG17's for the PLAAF. I'm going to have a crack at painting the re-cycled F-86F Sabres this evening, if I can find the time.

Sunday, 12 November 2017

Naval Aviation in the Korean War

In the run up to my MiG Alley / Bag the MiG project for 2018, I've been collating together my reference material that I've already got and adding some new books as well. This is my latest acquisition and very interesting it is too, especially as I have recently added more 1/600th scale USN and USMC aircraft to the painting production line. 

Saturday, 11 November 2017

Flashpoint Taiwan ROCAF Starfighters

I decided to do a bit of small scale painting today, in advance of the Wings at War MiG Alley project, so unpacked the Tumbling Dice 1/600th scale F-104 Starfighters that I based and undercoated a few months ago. These have been languishing in a box for months, so it was good to get them sorted for use in my fictitious Flashpoint Taiwan solo campaign, for which I'll be using Target Locked On! or Air War: C21.

All I needed to do was block in the light grey fuselage with Vallejo Pale Grey Blue, then paint the engine, canopies and nose cone details. This was followed by the excellent Doms Decals insignia before I spray sealed everything in Humbrol Satin Varnish. I decided to paint the bases in Vallejo Deep Sky Blue, which looks better than the bases on the Chinese Communist aircraft that I've already completed, so I'll go back and paint them to match.

I'm quite pleased with the way these came out, so I will probably assemble some Tumbling Dice F-100 Super Sabres, F-5A Freedom Fighters and a single RB-57D Canberra reconnaissance aircraft to expand the Taiwanese arsenal. I would also like to get some F-86 Sabres but they were phased out of front line use well before the mid 1960's, when the solo campaign is supposed to be set. I could always go back a bit to the 1958 Taiwan Straits Crisis though?

Korean War Inspiration

A fantastic online article which, if you've seen the film, will make you want to download it and watch it again, although I'd probably read the novel as the more interesting option. The article itself has some great scenario material that could easily be worked up into a series of linked games, using CY6: Jet Age or the Bag the MiG variant for Korean War air combat, although any decent set to rules would do if they feature decent mechanisms for AAA and ground attack. It would make a superb show participation game too, which I don't think has been done before? Anyway, here's the link:

Friday, 10 November 2017

Bag the MiG / MiG Alley Meteors

I have a long weekend with a Monday off, so I'm planning to get some more 1/600th scale aircraft ready for MiG Alley and Bag the MiG, as well as finishing off the 1/300th scale Scotia B17's for the Bag the Hun club game. I've been meaning to add some Australian Meteors to the UN forces and, now that I have some tiny 1mm x 1mm magnets, this is a feasible job. The Tumbling Dice models are little works of art, so I will go for the whole dozen to make up the operational strength of No77 Squadron. Tally Ho!

Wednesday, 8 November 2017

Fast Attack

Some really exciting news from Rory Crabb about his latest supplement for the Naval Command modern rules. I have a dusty box full of 1/700th scale Skytrex FAC's along with some resin equivalents from PT Dockyard and Combrig which would be perfect for this, although I'll have to find them first. No idea exactly when these rules will be published but I expect it will be sometime fairly soon. I've been meaning to do modern coastal warfare for ages but just never got round to it, so at least I'll now have more than one rule systems to choose from!

Tumbling Dice 1/2400th German Pre-Dreadnoughts: SMS Hertha / SMS Hansa

Tumbling Dice have added a good selection of Imperial German pre-dreadnoughts to the Age of Battleships 1/2400th scale range, so I thought I'd add a couple to my lead pile fleet. I've chosen two of the ABG7: Hertha 1897 (C) models, which will represent the eponymous protected cruiser SMS Hertha and her sister ship SMS Hansa.

SMS Hertha

These two warships spent the first six years of their deployment in Far Eastern waters as part of the German East Asian Squadron from 1899 to 1905, including action during the Boxer Rebellion when they bombarded the Taku Forts. SMS Hansa also took part in the internment of the Russian battleship Tsesarevich in 1904 after the Battle of the Yellow Sea during the Russo-Japanese War.

SMS Hansa

In my planned pre-dreadnought mini-campaign, Imperial Germany will be an incidental player but will be actively sticking her oar into the Anglo-Japanese conflict, as and when it suits the Kaiser to do so. This is exactly the sort of thing that Wilhelm II would have been up to in order to lay a claim to his own colonial possessions at the expense of perfidious Albion or, even better, the despicable French!

Tuesday, 7 November 2017

Knights of the Sky Xmas Game

I've organised another game of the club multiplayer WW1 aerial rules, Knights of the Sky, for the beginning of December. This will be a scenario set in December 1917 in the final days of the German counter-attack at Cambrai. I was going to do another ground attack, trench strafing scenario but I think I'll just do a dawn patrol style game over the front lines. There are already plenty of players signed up and I'm looking forward to actually taking part this time, rather than just umpiring. I may even build a new 1/72nd scale model aircraft to fly, if I have the time, with a Fokker Dr1 Triplane as the number one option (I don't actually have one of these in the collection, believe it or not).

Monday, 6 November 2017

Gaslands is Go!

Here's one I made earlier!

The lady wife has been very nice and has allowed me to pre-order the Gaslands rules, counters, markers and dice bundle as an early Xmas present. It's not out until the end of the month anyway, so will be wrapped up when it arrives in suitably festive paper, although I will sneak a look beforehand. This means that some games are on the cards next year, especially as I already have some die-cast cars converted to use and plenty of desert scenery for them to drive through and blow up. I'll be adding to my modest collection of post-apocalyptic vehicles too, as I have a stash of suitable toys just waiting to be souped up into Mad Max style off road cars, trucks and bikes.

Sunday, 5 November 2017

Bag the MiG / MiG Alley Marines

I wanted to do something a bit different this afternoon so did a stock check on the 1/600th scale magnet based aircraft for MiG Alley (and also Bag the MiG). It looked like I could do with some USMC air support to add to the USN aircraft I'd already prepared, so I have magnet based eight AD-1 Skyraiders, four more F4U-4 Corsairs, four more F9F Panthers (my favourite early jet) and an S51 rescue helicopter, just in case any of them get shot down behind enemy lines.

This is a fiddly little bugger to assemble but looks pretty cool when it's done. I had to use a tiny 1mm x 1mm magnet which gives you an idea of the size of the thing! As a light aircraft in MiG Alley it has to operate as a pair with another light aircraft, so I glued up an L5 Stinson Sentinel as a FAC, although I will do another chopper at some point as well. I'm looking forward to slapping some paint and decals onto these sooner rather than later!

Gaslands Offer

I signed up to playtest these post-apocalypse car combat rules a couple of years ago but, due to the horrible meltdown at work and the resulting stress, I just didn't have the time. At the club, however, some of the chaps did do some playtesting and used the pre-release beta version of the rules for a successful participation game at Warfare this time last year. Anyway, to cut a long story short, they are now available as a pre-order special offer including some very nice templates, counters and dice:

Saturday, 4 November 2017

Bag the B17 USAAF Bomber Crew Briefing

I've written up the briefing sheet for the B17G bomber players including the formation set up, gunnery rules and victory conditions, the only tricky bit being how to keep the aerial gunnery as streamlined as possible. In the end I decided to put two Air Gunners Fire cards into the deck, with each plane being able to fire into one arc per card, assuming the target is within the eight hex range.

Other bombers can chip into this by adding their +1 dice modifier to the overall fire factor, if they haven't already fired on the card themselves. On the turn of the second card the same rules apply, again with each bomber only allowed to fire into one of the four firing arcs, in order to speed up gameplay and represent all the gunners banging away at a single target.

I think this should work fine, although it's all a bot new to me, having only used Blenheims IV's and Dornier 17's until now, with their single turret or pintle mount rear arc fire factors. It's no surprise that they called the B17 a Flying Fortress, as it is absolutely bristling with .50 cal machine guns and should be pretty good at defending itself from those nasty little fighters!

Bag the B17 Blocking In

I've blocked in the glazing on the Scotia Collectair B17's and P38's this afternoon and so they are now ready for highlighting and lining out, which I'm hoping to get sorted tomorrow. I've also painted the exhausts and given them a quick wash but they will need some tidying up before they look half way decent. It's starting to come together now but still looks a bit 'ho hum' at the moment.

Friday, 3 November 2017

Fall of Eagles

A bit of light reading for the weekend. This book features a series of short accounts, written in narrative style and focussing on the last flight of WW1 aviators during which they are shot down, crash land or otherwise end up on terra firma. It's an interesting approach and reminds me a bit of the Under the Guns books by Norman Franks, albeit from a less research based perspective. It's a very easy read and good to dip in and out of either way, so I've been reading it using the Kindle App on my phone, whenever I have a spare ten minutes or so to kill. The front cover strap line is a bit misleading but it's not a bad book if you think about it as potential scenario material rather than as a proper historical work.

Wednesday, 1 November 2017

Bag the B17 Black Ink Wash

I've been really busy this week, so I've only had time to wash the B17G's in a 1:10 mix of Black Indian Ink and Future, so that the bare metal finish is toned down and the olive green anti-dazzle panels blend in. I think this is all that I'll get done before the weekend. Anyway, the next thing will be to block in the glazing, which should make them look a bit more realistic and less like foil wrapped milk chocolate bombers.

Tuesday, 31 October 2017

Bag the B17 Extra Cards

I've worked up some extra cards to add to the deck that I created for the Berlin 1945 scenario last month, so that I can re-use most of the deck for the  Bag the B17 game. These include an extra section card for the USAAF fighter escort and cards for a sixth Luftwaffe rotte of fighters, together with Junior Ace cards for both. I may also do a card for a Luftwaffe Top Ace but that might be a bit too scary, so I'll probably just leave the deck as it is. There are cards for the B17's too including a Move card and two Air Gunner Fire cards. Finally, I have created some specific cards for the Sturmgruppe FW190A8/R2's to activate on once they have been spotted by the bomber crews. I'll print these out and stick them onto to thin card for the game.

Monday, 30 October 2017

One Hour Wargames

I've been dipping into Neil Thomas' One Hour Wargames book over the weekend, looking at the rules for Pike and Shot Renaissance battles, together with the accompanying scenarios and campaign notes. I dismissed the rules as overly simplistic when I first read them a couple of years ago but, with the rise of 2/3mm as a viable wargaming scale I've been having second thoughts. This has linked in with my Wings at War projects, as I've been looking at 2mm stuff for ground targets and terrain.

I've been inspired by the likes of Mark Backhouse and Sidney Roundwood, who have both achieved some quite extraordinary things in tiny scales, especially the Siege of Portsmouth show game that Mark exhibited last year. Not that I'm about to embark on anything like this any time soon but the attraction of large armies for minimal cost and especially time is really quite attractive, with potential for a linked campaign of scenarios based on the extensive list in the One Hour Wargames book.

'For those with limited time and space' it says on the cover, so I think the rules are definitely worth a closer look given my recurrent lack of either, not to mention my limited budget!

Sunday, 29 October 2017

Bag the B17 Painting Progress

I've done the tedious anti-dazzle olive drab panels on the B17's and the P38's over the weekend, so they are now ready for an overall wash in 10:1 Future and Black Indian Ink, which will tone down the shiny silver effect a bit. They look a bit rubbish at the moment but that's not unusual at this stage in the painting process.  Next, I can move onto the canopies and black lining, with any other details blocked in as I go, before I add the decals to make them look less boring. I really should have a seventh B17 as a 'Tail End Charlie' for the formation but I've run out of stands, so will have to make do with just six!

Wings at War Duel of Aces

Next month, when I've finished the planes for the Bag the Hun game, I'm going to crack on with my MiG Alley project, which can also double up for Bag the MiG. This will require a shed load of the homemade flight stands that I prototyped yesterday and some modular terrain boards with a wintery theme.

I was thinking that all this effort could be maximised by doubling up and doing a parallel project for Wings at War, with the WW1 variant Duel of Aces as the obvious choice. Not only could I use some of the same flight stands but also the terrain boards, adding some front line trench tiles to represent No Man's Land.

I think this would be a good way to try out two different versions of the Wings at War system and would give me plenty of opportunity to scale up both games, from a handful of planes a side to something more expansive. I have quite a lot of the 1/600 WW1 aircraft already, so just need a couple more of the balloons and some ground targets to be ready to go.

Tally Ho!

Saturday, 28 October 2017

Bag the B17 USAAF Fighter Escort Briefing

I hammered out the player briefing for the Fighter Escort Leader today, using the same format as the Luftwaffe one but incorporating the objectives, formations and reinforcements required for the USAAF mission parameters. The key difference is that the USAAF will be flying in full sections, apart from one close escort element, will enter the table at a higher altitude and must avoid leaving the table and the bombers at all costs.

I've also fiddled the pilot experience D6 roll, to filter in some Green pilots as wingmen, whilst retaining a core of Regulars, Veterans and Junior Aces. The VP's are also much less expansive than those of the Luftwaffe, just to make things crystal clear for the USAAF players. Now I just have to type up the B17 bomber crew briefing including the all important rules for air to air gunnery, then sort out any additional cards that I need for the turn deck.

Wings at War Flight Stand Prototype

USAF F84 (MiG Alley)

Peruvian Su-22 (Alto Cenepa War)

I had another crack at my version of a flight stand for the Wings at War series of rules, this time using a 3mm thick 30mm x 30mm mdf base, a 30mm panel pin and a 7mm dice frame. The idea was to make a more durable stand than my previous effort using a 2mm thick mdf base. I also tried out trimming the point on the nail with my Dremel using a cutting disc, rather than snipping it off with pliers, which worked really well much to my amazement.

Anyway, the end result was textured, undercoated with Halfords Matt Camouflage Brown then drybrushed with three stages of Foundry Rawhide. I painted the panel pin stand itself with a mix of Vallejo Deep Sky Blue and Matt White but may well repaint it in a neutral green or brown, so that it blends with the playing surface. Not bad for about 10p worth of bits and ten minutes work.

(You'll notice that neither of the model aircraft are finished, so that's the next thing to get sorted, with MiG Alley as the follow on project for the workbench)

Bag the B17 Sturmbock!

I've re-written the briefing for the Luftwaffe as I thought it was too complicated and also didn't really fit the late 1944 - early 1945 tactical setting very well. Instead of a head on attack by four  bogey FW190A8's with an equal number of dummy bogeys, I've switched to a rear attack by six bogey FW190A8/R2 Sturmbock assault aircraft, without any dummy bogeys, as anything approaching a formation of B17's from behind would be fair game for the rear gunners. I could include more bogeys bit I think this would slow things down too much at the start of the game.

This is much more like the real thing and also should be fun for the Luftwaffe players to do, especially as it's a one shot deal and has to be timed just right, with the fighters diving away off table after their attack. I wonder how this will work out? Anyway, the rest of the scenario briefing stays the same although I have also streamlined the reinforcement rules to make them less confusing and given the Luftwaffe players greater flexibility in choosing their mission priorities, with the fighter controller making the final tactical decisions.

Pauke! Pauke!

Friday, 27 October 2017


I've just started reading this book, having initially been put off by the overly American style of writing, which reminds me a lot of Stephen Ambrose, who I'm not particularly keen on for various reasons. Nonetheless, it's a good story and full of detail on Korean War naval aviation and ground attack missions in particular. I wouldn't be surprised if it ends up as a film although the audience probably wouldn't have a clue about the contemporary historical events.

Thursday, 26 October 2017

Bag the B17 Luftwaffe Briefing

I've hammered out what I think is a pretty comprehensive but not overly complicated mission briefing for the Luftwaffe fighter commander, who will be attempting to wipe out a combat box of B17G bombers in the club Bag the Hun game in a few weeks time. I have run several bomber interception scenarios before but wanted to do something a bit different this time round, so have incorporated a set up which tries to mirror tactics used by the Luftwaffe against daylight bomber formations. 

This includes a head on frontal attack on the combat box at the start of the scenario, followed up my slashing flank and rear attacks and dive away manoeuvres, whilst other Luftwaffe fighters tangle with the American fighter escorts. It will probably be a bit too much for some players to manage but I think it will work well enough to give the USAAF players a run for their money. I may re-think some elements of the briefing once I've worked out the equivalent for the USAAF fighter and bomber players.

Wednesday, 25 October 2017

The Brennan Torpedo

We went to visit the relatives today in Cawsand, opposite the breakwater in Plymouth Sound, where they are staying for the half term holidays. I have been there many times before but had not walked along the nearby stretch of the coastal path for years. As the weather was really nice we all set out along the walk, which takes you past Pier Cellars 

This site looked interesting so I did a bit of a Google and discovered that it was one of the first harbour defence installations to use the wire guided Brennan Torpedo. I had heard about the launch rails for this land based torpedo system on the Isle of Wight, where I lived for a short while, but didn't know that Plymouth also had a similar defensive arrangement in place.

The site is still MOD land so you can't actually visit or get close to the fortifications but it's still really interesting from a pre-dreadnought wargaming perspective. This webpage has a really good overview of both the Brennan Torpedo system and of Pier Cellars as well, so you can read more about both in greater depth and detail:

AK47 Bad Boys

This is where my last AK47 efforts bit the proverbial dust, six technicals of various descriptions and dubious origin, bashed together using old die cast trucks, AAA and rocket rails from The Scene and some spare Peter Pig pick ups and militia crew figures. I have been meaning to get them finished for months but life has intervened to spoil my plans.

They won't take long to do up, so I may well tackle them at the weekend when I'm back from my holiday in not so sunny Cornwall. They are designed to reinforce my existing militia technical force, enabling it to be split into two or even three technical militia units for my Dictatorship and/or Superpower Backed armies. Very handy indeed!

Tuesday, 24 October 2017

AK47 Ztum Setum is Back!

This is where I first discovered the crazy world of AK47:Republic. If you haven't seen this site before you have missed out, as it is full of inspiration for factions, units, vehicles and terrain, a lot of which is bashed together from diecast toys and spare parts from other 15mm projects. I have gone on to have many really hilarious games of AK47 and have two whole armies as a result, one Dictatorship and one Superpower Backed.

It reminds me that I really should paint that Colonial Settlers army that I based up years ago, or even put together a People's Popular Front army with all the leftover bits I have accumulated. I certainly should do some more terrain and ad hoc units either way, as I've been promising to sort out some decent 15mm African battlefield scenery for ages.

Anyway, if you get the time, why not pop over and take a look:

You can read about my AK47 adventures here too:

Bag the B17 Scenario Design

I now have about seven players signed up for the Bag the Hun B17 combat box game on the 21st November, which is spot on for what I'm planning for the scenario. The players will split into two 'teams', one for the Luftwaffe and one for the USAAF, with the bombers controlled by one or two players and the fighters split between the rest. I think the bombers will have  a lot of gunnery to deal with, so splitting them into two parcels of three planes with a player controlling each one probably makes sense, although I may just scale it down to one player plus the umpire (that's me by the way, as I don't usually fly anything).

The USAAF fighters will have an initial pair flying close escort to the B17's but will subsequently be joined by further pairs coming on as reinforcements during the game, representing the top cover zooming down to intercept the Luftwaffe fighters. These will enter from the mid points of the table edges, the exact table edge determined by random dice roll. The Luftwaffe will initially have a pair (or schwarm) of fighters attacking head on against the B17's, then will also get pairs of fighters as reinforcements appearing from the diagonal corners of the table, again determined at random and possibly as bogeys. In fact, it's all a bit like AK47, which is where I have pinched the idea from!

The old AK47 reinforcements diagram

I need to work out how this will fit with the Bag the Hun 2 game mechanics and how the Luftwaffe aircraft will leave the table once they have made their attack run, leaving the USAAF fighters on the table to continue their role as close in defence. The numerous accounts that I've read of this sort of thing always have the German fighters diving away pursued by the American fighters, so it would be sensible to try to model that in the game, albeit with the USAAF pilots ordered to stay with the bombers. I think it should work, if I can make the card deck nice and tight without too many cards to slow things down.