Gerald M. Zabos
Germany
Heidelberg
Baden-Württemberg
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I was a bit unsure what to await from my magazine subscription of the Strategy & Tactics magazine. My 6 magazine + game subscription started with #255 "First Battle of Britain: The Air War over England, 1917-1918". After reading the rules and a few plays, me and my regular wargaming partner are really excited about this game.

This is a session report from one of our games. We played with standard rules - no optional rules. I will handle each Turn as a separate section.

Players:
German: Gerald (me!)
Britain: Dominik

Initial Setup - Britain:
Morale Points: 0
Britain - HQ:
- HQ 47 - Canturbury (3012) +1 AA

Britain - Aerodromes:
- Folkstone (3115) / +1 AA / +2 Squadrons /
- Dover (3314) / +1 AA / +2 Squadrons /
- Margate (3310) / +1 AA / +2 Squadrons /
- Throwley (2712) / +1 Squadron /
- East Church (2710) / +2 Squadrons /
- Goldhanger (2605) / +1 Squadron /
- St. Omer (4119) +1 AA / +1 Squadron /

Britain - AA:
- Walmer (3313)
- Ramsgate (3311)
- Colchester (2804)
- Ipswich (3001)


[British setup]

Initial Setup - German:
Morale Points: 0
German - HQ:
- "England" HQ - Ostende (4812)

German - Aerodromes:
- Zeebrugge (5110) / +1 AA / +2 Squadrons
- Ghistelles (4913) / +1 AA / + 2 Squadrons
- Mariakirke (4813) / +1 AA / + 2 Squadrons

German - AA:
- no AA present

MAY 1917:
Planning Phase die rolls: German: 4 / Britain: 1, German goes first.

Random Events Phase - German: DR: 6 -> Morale Cracks -> not applicable because not one player has 10+ MP
Random Events Phase - Britain: DR: 12 -> From the front -> nothing to report.

RAF Creation Phase: skipped

Redeployment Phase: skipped, not on Turn 1

Reinforcement Phase: skipped, not on Turn 1

Recon Phase: skipped, by both players.

Gentlemen's War Phase: skipped, players want to proceed with flying turns.



German Flying Turn 1 - Movement :
- 2 Squadrons take off at Zeebrugge and form Mission Group 1. Mission group moves 6 hexes: 5110 -> 4507

- 2 Squadrons take off at Ghistelles and form Mission Group 2. Mission group moves 6 hexes: 4913 -> 4517

- 2 Squadrons take off at Mariakirke and form Mission Group 3. Mission group moves 6 hexes: 4813 -> 4417

German Flying Turn 1 - Air to Air Combat :
- no contact

German Flying Turn 1 - Bombardment :
- no enemy installations ahead

British Flying Turn 1 - Movement :
- 1 Squadron takes off at St. Omer, moves 4 hexes: 4119 -> 4417 -> "ENEMY AHEAD!"

- 1 Squadron takes off at Goldhanger, moves 6 hexes: 2605 -> 3206

- 2 Squadrons take off at Folkstone, form Mission Group A. Mission group moves 6 hexes: 3115 -> 3718

- 2 Squadrons take off at Dover, form Mission Group B. Mission group moves 7 hexes: 3314 -> 4018

- 2 Squadrons take off at Margate, form Mission Group C. Mission group moves 7 hexes: 3310 -> 4014

- 2 Squadrons take off at East Church, form Mission Group D. Mission group moves 7 hexes: 2708 -> 3409

British Flying Turn 1 - Air to Air Combat :
- British 66th Squadron of Sopwith Pup Fighters, is spotting 2 German Squadrons: Jasta-1 with Albatros Fighters and 17th Gotha Bomber Sqadron. The German Mission Group decides to attack ! The Squadrons engage in combat, but both sides leave without harming each other.


[ The 66th Squadron engages a german mission group ]

British Flying Turn 1 - Bombardment :
"Don't talk me into bloody bombardment, we're having trouble to intercept all those Krauts!"




German Flying Turn 2 - Movement :
- Mission Group 1 moves 6 hexes: 4507 -> 3906

- Mission Group 2 moves 6 hexes: 4517 -> 4119 "St. Omer is below us! Attack the aerodrome and watch out for the FlaK."The 13th & 14 Gotha Bomber Squadron are fired upon by AA. This leads to waste of fuel and a shattered formation, while trying to bypass the heavy FlaK fire. Mission Group 2 is split up, the 14th Gotha Bomber Squadron moves to 4219, while the 13th Gotha Bomber Squadron stays on target (4119).

- Mission Group 3. Mission group moves 1 hexes: 4417 -> 4316 "St. Pol is below - prepare for bombardment!" .

German Flying Turn 2 - Air to Air Combat :
- no contact

German Flying Turn 2 - Bombardment :
- Mission Group 3 attacks St. Pol. The 17th Gotha Squadron scores no direct hit and is heading back for friendly territory.

- 13th Gotha Bomber Squadron stays on target and commences bombardment on St. Omer aerodrome (4119), without inflicting any damage.


British Flying Turn 2 - Movement :
- The 66th Squadron disengages combat and moves: 4316 -> 4715

- 1 Squadron is holding position above the North Sea (3206).

- Mission Group A moves 4 hexes: 3718 -> 4119. The 75th and 78th Squadron move in to attack the 13th Gotha Bomber Squadron over St. Omer.

- Mission Group B moves 2 hexes: 4018 -> 4219. The 33th and 38th Squadron attack the 14th Gotha Bomber Squadron.

- Mission Group C moves 4 hexes: 4014 -> 4316. The 50th and 36th Fighter Squadrons attack the German Mission Group over St. Pol !

- Mission Group D moves 4 hexes: 3409 -> 3906. The 76th and 77th Fighter Squadrons find nothing at the reported location. It seems that British intelligence was fooled with fake informations.

British Flying Turn 2 - Air to Air Combat :
- 66th Squadron searches the sky near the trenches...

- Mission Group A is closing in for an attack on the 13th Gotha Bomber Squadron. But the German Bomber Squadron chooses to avoid combat and is heading towards their home base.

- Mission Group B is attacking the 14th Gotha Bomber Squadron. The 33th and 38th gain no ground. The attack fails.

- Mission Group C is attacking Jasta-1 and 17th Gotha Bomber Squadron. Although the 50th and 36th initiate the contact, they can't land any effect on the German Mission Group.

British Flying Turn 2 - Bombardment :
"Don't talk me into bloody bombardment, we're having trouble to intercept all those Krauts!"




German Flying Turn 3 - Movement :
- 13th Gotha Bomber Squadron moves 6 hexes: 4119 -> 4716. Orders:"Retreat and avoid contact with enemy!"

- The 17th Gotha Bomber Squadron returns to the friendly aerodrome at Ghistelles, where it lands. (4316 -> 4913)

- The 14th Gotha Bomber Squadron moves 1 hex to St. Omer and attacks prepares to attack the aerodrome (4219 -> 4119). AA fire is heavy, but the 14th stays on target.

- Jasta-1 is heading for St. Omer and engages the 75th and 78th British Squadrons, to provide cover for the 14th Gotha Bomber Squadron. (4316 -> 4119)

German Flying Turn 3 - Air to Air Combat :
- Jasta-1 is attacked by 75th and 78th Squadrons, but to no effect. Jasta-1 turns the tide of the battle, 75th and 78th have to split their formation.

German Flying Turn 3 - Bombardment :
- 14th Gotha Bomber Squadron stays on target and commences bombardment on St. Omer aerodrome, without inflicting any serious damage.


British Flying Turn 3 - Movement :
- The 66th Squadron moves 1 hex and intercepts the 13th Gotha Bomber Squadron on its way back home: 4715 -> 4716

- 1 Squadron is moves 6 hexes to Goldhanger and lands at the aerodrome: 3206 -> 2605

- The 75th and 78th Squadron join up at (3516) on their way back to Folkstone.

- The 38th Squadron moves 5 hexes: 4219 -> 4716, where it joins the 66th Squadron to intercept the 13th Gotha Bomber Squadron.

- The 36th and 50th Squadron move 4 hexes: 4316 -> 4119 and engage two German squadrons: Jasta-1 and 14th Gotha Bombers.

- The 33th Fighter Squadron moves 7 hexes: 4219 -> 3515 on its way back to Dover aerodrome.

- Mission Group D moves 7 hexes and lands at Margate aerodrome: 3906 -> 3308.

British Flying Turn 3 - Air to Air Combat :
- British 38th and 66th Squadrons attack the 13th Gotha Bomber Squadron. The attack is not successfull, as the Gotha Bomber manage to disengage combat unharmed.

- British 36th and 50th Squadrons engage Jasta-1 and 14th Gotha Bombers. A successful hunt. Most of the Gotha Bombers get damage, but manage to return to friendly territory. The ground crews predict it will take a few weeks until those bombers will take off again. Probably July 1917.

British Flying Turn 3 - Bombardment :
"Don't talk me into bloody bombardment, we're having trouble to intercept all those Krauts!"




German Flying Turn - 4 Movement :
- 13th Gotha Bomber Squadron moves 4 hexes to Ghistelles aerodrome and safely lands. 4716 -> 4913

- Jasta-1 is still in combat over St. Omer. (4119)

German Flying Turn - 4 Air to Air Combat :
- Jasta-1 challenges the british 36th and 50th Squadrons over St. Omer. Outnumbered, Jasta-1 gets beaten up. All airplanes get damaged but return to their home base. After repairs, Jasta-1 reaches full numbers again in June 1916.

German Flying Turn - 4 Bombardment :
- no bombardment missions


British Flying Turn - 4 Movement :
- All British Fighter Squadrons return to their aerodromes.

MAY 1917 is over
Scoring results: Britain scores 2 Morale Points ( ) for damaging Jasta-1 and 14th Gotha Bomber Squadrons. German side scores no points.
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Russ Massey
United Kingdom
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I'm afraid I couldn't get past the mis-spelling of CantErbury on the first map picture!
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Robert Wesley
Nepal
Aberdeen
Washington
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Rutan wrote:
I'm afraid I couldn't get past the mis-spelling of CantErbury on the first map picture!
damm! and ME neither, oh wait! why YES I shall "inspitefully" of your admonishion at that!
GOOD "Jorb"!
arrrh
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Mike NZ
New Zealand
LOTR
New Zealand
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Soooo the game is FUN to play then? Looks pretty cool. I like the victory conditions-map is a little 'naked' on the detail side though-but game play is most important-maps can be changed!
 
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Nils R.
Germany
Aachen
Nordrhein Westfalen
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Didn't you forget the German bomber ace during setup?
In our game the British player found it very hard to deal with a German Kill stack of 3 Gotha bombers with an ace, since the Brit can only engange them with 2 squadrons at once they will likely get obliterated by a 9 fp attack and need to be very lucky to score damage themeselves.
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