This session report is for my ongoing campaign game of RAF: Lion. I am using all the advanced rules except for night fighters.
August 11th, 1940
We had been warned that the Germans would soon be making a major aerial assault on our beloved Britain. With our land forces in disarray after Dunkirk, it was up to those of us in the RAF to turn back the Boche and make certain our homeland stayed free.
Most of the morning passed without incident. Was Jerry having a lie in today? We soon discovered that whatever had been happening on the Continent, sleeping had very little to do with it.
The Luftwaffe led off with what the Americans would call a "full court press". Two major and two minor raids came boring in, distributed more or less evenly across southern England. We scrambled nearly everything we had and managed to turn back all but one raid. It was this last raid, comprising nearly 600 aircraft, that made it into Dover and did minor damage to the docks and warehouses of the city. The aerial combat saw a modest amount of enemy aircraft shot down, the majority in one glorious skirmish that resulted in an Ace Spitfire squadron.
(Overall, we lost 2 Hurricanes and 1 Spitfire to light losses, while the Germans lost 2 Me109s and 3 He111 to the light loss box.The Dover raid did 2 points of port damage.)
Most of our lads were on the ground re-arming when the next wave swept in. Thankfully, it was much smaller than the first. Due to excellent work by the radar boffins, we avoided intercepting a pure fighter sweep. This freed up our squadrons to intercept 100 Stukas heading for the Tangmere airfield. This was very dangerous, as we had three squadrons sprawled all over the base re-arming. Only two squadrons were able to intercept. Through superb piloting, one of the squadrons made it through the escorts to attack a Ju87 gruppe, punishing it severely. The other, unfortunately, made it through to the airfield. Fortunately their aim wasn't up to British standards and they did only a small amount of damage. However, due to the vulnerability of our crates as they were being serviced, we lost a number of Hurricanes to the enemy's bombs. (I got very lucky here. In the fight between my 2 Hurricane squadrons and 3 escorting 109s, I managed to drive off 2 of the enemy while keeping 1 squadron intact (though depleted) to attack the bombers. In his attack on the bombers he did heavy damage to his target. Otherwise I would have likely taken an H result to my airfield which could have been very expensive in terms of replacement points. As it was, they only did 1 point of damage and cost me 1 point of Hurricane replacements.)
Another light raid came sweeping in to Hornchurch airfield. We managed to drive it off before it dropped its bombs, but at the cost of some more shot up Hurricanes. We had no more squadrons available if Jerry had come at us again, but fortunately no more incoming raids were detected.
(At this point I was out of squadrons and the Germans were out of fighters. Due to all the combat earlier, most of LF2's fighter contingent was stacked onthe 1800 time slot.)
All of our boys were rearmed, refueled and ready to fight. Once again the radar system proved its value as it detected another massive raid incoming, close to 500 aircraft. Fortunately for us, getting this flotilla organized and moving in the right direction cost Jerry time. By the time he crossed our coastline heading for Hornchurch airfiled again, we were waiting for him. (I maxed out my detection roll resulting in very early warning. I essentially had my pick of squadrons from that area and the two adjoining.) We sent seven squadrons to meet the Hun, and because of very advanced warning we were able to park our crates well above their formations (British altitude advantage event for which we qualified due to the very early warning).
The resulting battle was a slaughter. We sent two gruppe of bombers reeling with heavy battle damage and forced the rest to abort well short of their target. We also shot up some of his fighter escort, taking only light losses to one of our spitfire squadrons in return. One of our Hurricane squadrons showed real leadership and exceptional gunnery in this battle; they'll be a squadron to watch (the 5 VPs from aerial combat qualified one of the Hurricanes for ace status).
This was the last raid of the day. We went to our evening meals boosted by the thought that we'd definitely shown Jerry that attacking England wasn't going to be an easy prospect. Still, there was a long time to go before winter weather made an invasion unlikely.
(Edit: I am not quite the master strategist I thought I was. I was cheating like crazy in this play through. I had forgotten to separate out the reinforcement squadrons, so I started the BoB at about 150% of the proper starting squadron count. Oops. I have started the campaign over and will post a new session report soon.)
- Last edited Tue Aug 4, 2009 5:31 am (Total Number of Edits: 1)
- Posted Sun Aug 2, 2009 2:56 am
I have a real love/hate relationship with good session reports like this one. I love reading them (especially for games I already own or have already decided to buy) but I hate it when a session report peaks my interest enough to make me seriously contemplate getting yet another game that I honestly don't have the money for...
It is a spendy game, but you do get two solo versions (Lion and Eagle) which are different experiences to play, plus the real meat of the game: the 2 player version. I suspect once I've played this versus a person I'll like it even more.
The components are good, too. Not "Conflict of Heroes" nice, but still fairly decent. Check out some of the "out of the box" reviews if you haven't already done so.
For me, good games are all about having to make hard choices with limited resources. While this is certainly true in the solo versions, in the 2 player you won't be able to count on the "cardboard AI" making a sub-optimal move to relieve the pressure. The stakes will be even higher, as it were.
Once I've finished my campaign I'll post a full review, but if you like solo games I suspect you'd be happy with this one.