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Wednesday, 9 August 2017
Table Air Combat: Bf-109E vs Spitfire MkI Dogfight
I re-played the basic dogfight scenario this evening, with a flight of Spitfire MkI's intercepting a Schwarm of Bf-109E's somewhere over the English Channel. I wanted to try out the deflection shooting rules again and also a new playing area that I made by cutting out then gluing together two blue cardboard folders from the local supermarket. This neatly folds in half and fits inside my Table Air Combat folder, so is eminently portable and perfect for an ad-hoc game as and when required.
This time the dogfight lasted for nearly twenty turns, with neither side managing to inflict much damage despite getting some good gun dice on several occasions. I was using the simplified 'one point of energy per Immelmann / Wingover' rule, which worked well, especially as only one such manoeuvre was allowed per turn. This meant that the dogfight was a real twisting and turning effort for both sides, just like the real thing in many respects.
In the end, the RAF managed to shoot down three of the Luftwaffe fighters for the loss of one of their own, the surviving pilot making a last minute run for home as his fuel must have been getting really low. I think the little red light must have been blinking away for most of the latter half of the scenario. In fact, I might include this 'No Fuel to Duel' twist to the scenario in the future, borrowing the fuel limit countdown from Too Fat Lardies excellent Bag the Hun miniatures rules.
I really enjoyed the game and will be running another one soon, this time with some bombers for the RAF to shoot down and the Luftwaffe to protect as close escorts rather then top cover. I also want to cut out and assemble the counters for the Bf-110, which with their heavy cannon and rear gunners should make things a bit more uncomfortable for the RAF Brylcreem Boys. It's just a shame there isn't a Boulton Paul Defiant or Bristol Blenheim Mk I set to provide some target practice!