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A Return to WWI Aerial

After a gap of several years, last Friday we played a WWI aerial game. Set in October 1916 and fought above the frontline trenches, the game saw a flight of British Sopwith Pups up against a flight of German Albatross DIIs.

The Albatross types were a recently introduced aircraft type and with a strong airframe and twin forward facing machine guns, it set down the standard design for scout planes for virtually the rest of the war.

In comparison the Pup was under-armed and structurally much weaker but remained one of the most agile fighters of the war. The Germans enjoyed a tactical advantage well into 1917 until the inferior Allied aircraft were replaced with up-gunned types.

The players (Doug, Rob and Theo against Alex and Piotr) took a couple of turns to get to grips with the movement system and they appeared to want to stay in formation. Once the first shots were fired this discipline broke down and the game turned into a real dogfight.

Despite the supposed technical advantage the German side had, the victory went to the British with one Albatross being shot down and the other crashing when returning badly damaged to base. Neither pilot survived. Perhaps weight of numbers (3 to 2) swayed the result or luck of the dice - although Rob would disagree with that having suffered the inevitable disproportionate number of gun jamming incidents.

Theo registered a kill to start his tally despite choosing his pilot name as Timmy Titters. Rob chose Major “King” Fowlup perhaps in anticipation of misfortune.

All in all a reasonably comfortable return to WW1 aerial.



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