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Wings of War: Famous Aces» Forums » General

Subject: So, are the booster packs necessary? rss

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Anders Young
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Recently having gotten into Wings of War, I've so far found myself buying the Famous Aces and Watch Your Back! boxed sets. Soon enough I'll get Burning Drachens, but the other day I found myself eying the booster packs at the local game store. And I was wondering, what do they add, specifically? And are they really worth it? Are any necessary?
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Andrea Angiolino
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The game is designed so that you do not need them: they are not necessary. Each of them add different planes, usually with new maneuvre decks: so they are useful both to increase the number of players at the same table, and to variate the feeling of the game. If you buy, let's say, Top Fighters and Dogfight, you can play in four with a Snipe and a Se5a against a D.VII and a SS D.III: you get a "late war" scenario with fighters that are more agile than the ones in Famous Aces, and thgis can be fun. But if you also add 4 planes from Famous Aces, you can play in four.
Recon Patrol gives you different two-seaters from the ones in Watch your back!, slower and with some weapon variants. This can give a different feeling to a scenario like "Raid over Istrana", both if you replace the two-seater with one of them and if you add a fighter and a second two-seater to play with 6 planes. "Immelmann" offers early war planes, more fraglie and with less maneuvres...

Of course Burning Drachens offers more: both new planes and new rules for altitude, ground fire, AA guns, balloons, rockets...

All the best!

Andrea
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Kevin Duke
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Anders, if you are playing with only ONE box of Famous Aces, let me start by recommending you get the Recon Patrol booster.

As it stands, with FA you have to decide whether you fly the Fokker Triplane or the Sopwith 3 winger (they share the same deck). While the Sopwith may be historically a little bit "early" and limited for everything else in FA, it's still a fun plane to fly and most folks enjoy using it. But with your 2 boxes, if you fly the Sop Triplane, you're left with only the Alb. DV, Halberstadt D2, and Ufag to fly for the Central Powers side.

Recon Patrol will give you another "D" deck (plus some very good looking Triplanes for both sides.). AND, as Andrea mentioned, Recon Patrol will also give you some 2 seater planes that are a little bit more "normal" than the ones in Watch Your Back, which are unusually fast for the times. You'll get the Re8 (a real workhorse for the RFC), plus the German Roland C (an oddly beautiful plane), the Breguet 14 (a good recon/bomber, used by the US as well as the French), and the Pomillio, an Italian 2 seater.

Further, in examining the 2 seater deck, you will see how you can adapt the D deck-- remove some of the maneuvers-- and create an additional deck for flying two of the 2 seaters at the same time (at a cost of not flying a triplane, of course.)

Andrea spells out the contents of the other boosters. Just note that the Roland, Re8, Fokker D7, and Snipe all currently appear as miniatures (and those sets include the maneuver deck AND the card that matches the miniature), so if you have any interest in the minies, you can cover some of the same ground that way... and still use the decks and airplane card with your "cards only" games that allow you a wider range of plane types than the minies do.
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Andrea Angiolino
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kduke wrote:
Anders, if you are playing with only ONE box of Famous Aces, let me start by recommending you get the Recon Patrol booster.


Since the Hanriot (if A firing) is pretty well balanced with the Famous Aces plane, you then will also be able to play a 6 players scenario with one fighter each where everyone is balanced, using a D.Va and two Dr.I against a HD.1, a Camel and a SPAD XIII. Not so historical: on the Western front there has been only one "A firing" HD.1 with two machineguns, Coppens' blue plane, and only for a few days, while on the Italian front no Dr.I ever flew. But quite fun anyway!
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Todd France
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Necessary?
Definitely not.

Worth it?
Depends on two things: Are you a completist? and Are you planning to buy the miniatures? If you answered yes to the first question, then clearly you need them. If you answered no to both, then you'll probably also want them to add diversity to your selection of aircraft. But if you don't feel the need to have every card in the game, and you're thinking of picking up some of the minis, then you may want to skip the Top Fighters and Recon Patrol boosters, as you can get the included maneuver decks by purchasing the appropriate miniatures. The Dogfight and Immelman boosters have not been reproduced in miniature yet, and will not be until the end of the year at the earliest. I personally find that the Top Fighters and Dogfight boosters combine for another set of 4 fighters that play together similar to the fighters in Famous Aces, but are all just a notch above those planes.
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Anders Young
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Thanks a lot for the responses. The booster sets sound pretty cool, and I definitely like the idea of more planes. Just as a quick question, do any of them include brand new maneuver decks, or do they all use the old ones that come with the base games?

I'd go for the miniatures, but I mainly want new planes, and as a poor college student I don't have money to buy both.

I just want to mention that I enjoy the game a ton, and so far it's becoming one of my favorite games for a quick play. It was especially fun the other day when I took a short trip to the United States Air Force museum here in Ohio. It was pretty entertaining to look up at the Fokker Dr.1 they have and think, "I stomped my roommate with one of those just last night."
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Andrea Angiolino
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Thanks to you for the kind comments!

The decks in the boosters are usually new. Recon patrol has one old (D) and one new (K). Immelmann has one old (G) and one new (P, in two copies). All the others have two new decks, never appearing in the boxes before.

I'd like to see the USAF Museum... Their Dr.I bears the colors of Rahn's plane (he spent the last part of his life in Ohio). There is a card for him in Famous Aces... and even a miniature:



Happy flights!

Andrea
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Todd France
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4ndrz wrote:
I'd go for the miniatures, but I mainly want new planes, and as a poor college student I don't have money to buy both.

If you're specifically looking to maximize airplane diversity for your money, I'd say the booster packs are a better buy for you than Burning Drachens. There's a lot of good stuff in Burning Drachens, but most of it you won't need for standard dogfights, since you already have the A damage deck and the Burning Drachens rules are available on-line. For dogfighting, you'll end up with 2 more maneuver decks, which is the same as you'll get with any of the booster packs, and I'm pretty sure you can get 2 booster packs for less than the Burning Drachens cost these days.

With the Immelman booster pack, you'll be able to fly 2-on-2 dogfights of DH-2s vs Fokker Eindekkers, or you can pick up either Top Fighters or Dogfight for some better planes to add into your Famous Aces dogfights.

Also, don't forget that you can recreate an extra H deck if you want another 2-seater from: the B & C decks from Famous Aces, the F deck from Watch Your Back, the M deck from Top Fighters, or the O deck from Dogfight. A complete list is here, if you want it: http://www.boardgamegeek.com/filepage/39075
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kevin long
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4 miniaatures will fit in your box!! if i had known that i would have bought them sooner i know - not much help am I?
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