For one of the scenarios I'm working on I need the ratings for the B-24D Liberator, as the lists in the rulebook only cover the later, up-armed B-24J. Stripping the numbers back, the only significant difference are the fire factors, so the movement, climb rate, robustness, size and so forth, can just be copied over. The fire factors are a bit more complicated, however, so it's a question of working them out then adjusting them by comparison with similar aircraft.
The closest match in terms of armament is the B-17E, which had a similar layout of .50 cal machine guns in the frontal arc but an additional ventral ball turret. This has a fire factor distribution of 4/6/6/8, while the ball turret equipped B-24J has fire factors of 5/6/6/8. I think something like a 4/6/6/6 would be about right, factoring out the ball turret of the B-24J but building in the two cheek guns of the B-24D.
This raises the thorny issue of the top turret being able to fire in more than one arc in a turn, as the rules abstract the turret fire as an addition to each firing arc. In reality, the dorsal gunner might be able to sweep through two arcs, as he traversed his mounting, but not all four directions in one go. There are two possible ways to fix this, if you are bothered by it.
The first is two reduce the fire factors to the base numbers, then have the top turret as a once per turn addition of bonus to the front, side or rear. The second, more radical solution, is to have a separate turret fire factor, which covers all four arcs but can only fire into one per turn. However, both of these methods would mean changing the rules and potentially unbalancing the ratings, so it's probably best to just stick with the system as it is, even though it's not that realistic.
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