I allowed myself a little bit of wiggle room so that the characteristics I rolled up on a D100 matched the skill levels of the pilots that I created using the Finest Hour tables, but this was kept to an absolute minimum and wasn't really needed apart from the initial background roll. Anyway, here's the end result for the pilots currently assigned to flying duties, with more work to do to devise names and some detail to their respective stories.
Wednesday, 27 October 2021
Tuesday, 26 October 2021
Monday, 25 October 2021
Sunday, 24 October 2021
I've ordered some sample Roman units from Warbases for Strength and Honour to see what they look like when painted up. If I like them I'll probably get some more in advance of the rules being published in a few weeks time. I was thinking of using them as the core of an army for either the 1st Century BC or AD, depending on some further reading around the subject.
Friday, 22 October 2021
I've had this book on the Kindle for a while so what better time to read it than over the half term holidays, during which I will be able to sit down and make some notes for the Bag the Hun Finest Hour solo campaign. Tally Ho!
Thursday, 21 October 2021
I've always wanted to run a Bag the Hun campaign using the Finest Hour supplement for the Battle of Britain with 1/285th scale aircraft, but there wasn't any interest at the club so I shelved my plans a long time ago. However, my recent 1/600th scale games for the Khalkhin Gol project over the summer have convinced me that I can manage to run quite large games on a solo basis, with several flights on each side and bombers on autopilot. So, one thing I'm going to add to my 'to do' list for 2022 will be a Battle of Britain themed solo campaign, based on the system in Finest Hour and using 1/600th scale Tumbling Dice magnet based model aircraft.
To give myself something to aim for, I rolled up a squadron for the RAF today, using a combination of the mechanisms in the supplement and a bit of cherry picking. A dice roll identified the unit as No27 Squadron, which was actually based on the North West Frontier flying Westland Wapiti light bombers and Tiger Moth trainers at the time, but in my campaign it will have been disbanded and reformed as a fighter squadron in October 1939. The squadron is based at Middle Wallop airfield in 10 Group, which is just up the road from me and so an ideal choice. The squadron is equipped with the Hawker Hurricane Mk1 and has a generous compliment of seventeen machines, although one is currently U/S. The squadron code is RM.
As the timeframe for the campaign will be the Kanal Kampf in July 1940, the pilot generation system has given me a total strength of sixteen aircrew, so I will have four spare pilots in reserve and a full complement of twelve for my four sections. The Squadron Leader is a Top Ace, having achieved eleven kills during the Battle of France, and is leader of 'A' Flight, Red Section. The other section leader in 'A' flight is a Veteran of the fighting in France too, so a safe pair of hands at the helm of Yellow Section. The leader of 'B' Flight and Blue Section is a newly minted Junior Ace with five kills over the beaches of Dunkirk, but the leader of Green Section is a Sprog, fresh from advanced training (I decided that he was a well to do and well connected pre-war private pilot, so promoted to section leader on the basis of his supposed flying experience rather than any combat skill).
Luckily, there is another Junior Ace pilot in Green Section to shepherd its newly appointed section leader, backed up by a solid Regular sergeant pilot in the number three slot. The other section pilots are a mixed bag, with two more Veterans and Regulars, together with a couple more Sprogs, sprinkled around the squadron according to the random dice rolls that I made. The reserve pilots are all Sprogs, as you'd expect but there is a single Regular to give the CO some options when it comes to replacing losses and rotating pilots during the campaign. I may well dip into the character generation system in Squadron Forward to flesh out the identities and backgrounds of each pilot, but I don't want to over complicate things at this stage.
In terms of preparation for this solo campaign, I'll obviously need twelve Hurricanes based and painted but will also have to paint quite a lot of Luftwaffe bombers and fighters too. The Kanal Kampf gives me the option of using Ju-87 Stukas, so I'll need twelve of them plus twelve bombers to start with, probably Heinkel III's as they are really nice models. As fighters I will need twelve Bf-109's and, as it's still early days in the Battle of Britain, I'll also need twelve Bf-110's as fighter escorts. A couple of reconnaissance aircraft would also be useful, so I can add a Ju-88 or Do-17 in that role, with the option of expanding up to twelve aircraft in the bomber role later on. This is quite a lot to do but still manageable if I do it in stages (I have fiddled the encounter table to fix the maximum number of aircraft at twelve, which is more than enough to deal with!)
This will all kick off in 2022 but it's always a good idea to plan ahead!
Wednesday, 20 October 2021
I'm on holiday for a few days now, so have been planning some solo wargaming while the weather is still terrible, to squeeze in alongside the inevitable DIY. The focus will be on some more Wings at War, particularly MiG Alley as I've only just scratched the surface of the game and really want to try out some different mission set ups. I'm also going to be playing more naval games including at least a couple of War of the Pacific scenarios and possibly some more Anglo-British Victorian ironclad battles. I may even play a bit of Mad for War Essentials using the print and play counters that come with the rules, although it's all a bit sketchy at the moment, so who knows?