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Simplified Altitude Rules


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#1 HMS Hajj

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Posted 17 September 2009 - 05:23 AM

I've just posted my Simplified Altitude Rules over on Wings of War Aerodrome.
It replaces the climb counters with maneuver card combinations. You can check
it out at...

http://www.wingsofwar.org/forums/showthread.php?p=1113#post1113


Fly safe,

Keith

 



#2 Pour Le Merite

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Posted 21 September 2009 - 07:22 PM

Hmm, I didn't see any way to compensate for a few planes that have exceptional climbing or diving ability.

Both the Sopwith and Fokker triplanes can outclimb almost anything and in both the original rules and in your version the planes will perform a lot worse than they did in the war. They are both slow planes but the ability to climb (and for that matter dive) makes them a lot more even with faster plane even if a camel was a better plane than the dr1.

Spad XIII had the ability to outdive any other plane during the whole war, it could dive more or less straight down while other planes would break into pieces for a lot less.

To make a good system for diving and climbing you would have to count those in.

I personally would probably use a maximum dive and climb value on all planes each turn instead and use more altitudes than 4.

Say that almost all planes can climb 1 step in each round (of course using it's climbing cards) but a plane like the triplane could climb a lot more, like 3 or so. And same thing with diving, if you dive more than a certain value your plane should take damage.

It i of course just my thoughts reading about it right now and not anything I put a lot of thinking into...yet. But all planes don't have to stall when climbing, a triplane will really not have to.

Heavy planes like most 2 seaters have problems both with climb rates and diving fast. That would kinda balance things also that the fighters are actually better than the scouts in the game while in reality they were worse.

Say 10 altitudes or so (with a maximum ceiling for some planes. Most planes can climb 1 step each round and dive 2 steps but a few planes can climb a lot more or dive a lot more. And 1 steep or 2 regular means 1 altitude climbing. Then it would be possible for the triplane to make 3 steep in a row (which the plane actually can IRL).

Just some thoughts at least. Climbing rules arent that easy to make, they must both be simple and realistic. But I think that it is possible to make a system that is both. I will spend some time thinking about this. Both the simplefied rules and the official works fine for most planes but they really makesthings hard for the planes that had climbing or diving as a speciality.

Also I agree 100% with Haji that the climb counters are bad. It is a lot easier to have more altitudes instead. But more than 10 altudes gets far to complicated to be handled in the game. with 10 as max (and most planes should have 8 as max, but a few were able to fly really high) the game should be more balanced for planes with really good (or bad like the fokker EIV) ceiling.

Also like Haji said should you only be able to fire 1 altitude up or down. And if they don't one shot someone at another altitude they should be forced to dive or climb after the next time they place their cards because when you have the nose of your plane pointing up or down for a while it will affect the altitude, and it will make things easier for the opposing players.

Thanks, Haji. You have right that we could use some custom rules for altitudes. I think however that it demands a bit more thinking. Simple isn't everything, we must get it somewhat realistic also.



#3 HMS Hajj

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Posted 22 September 2009 - 04:53 AM

Thanks for the reply.  As the title of these rules say, it is a Simplified way to add altitude to the game.  I wanted a way to add the tactical aspect of altitude with out slowing game play down.  These rules do that quite well and play much better then they read.  I'm personally not very interested in adding in great detailed realisum for each plane out there.  I feel that kills this game and only brings it closer to games like Blue Max and such.  The appeal to so many for this game is it's ease and speed of play.  Having different sets of rules for different planes removes some of that ease and speed.

 

I thought about the ceiling for planes quite a bit when trying to come up with new altitude rules.  I finally decided that in game terms, it really did not matter.  When in a game are you going to fly your plane at an altitude that your opponent can not reach?  The point of the game is got dogfight each other, so everyone should always be at an altitude that every one can reach.  If you want to use altitude as a way to escape from an enemy, just climb when at altitude 6.  I don't think there is any need to play out the rest of the escape, just make it abstract and it works just fine.



#4 Pour Le Merite

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Posted 22 September 2009 - 05:50 AM

HMS Hajj said:

Thanks for the reply.  As the title of these rules say, it is a Simplified way to add altitude to the game.  I wanted a way to add the tactical aspect of altitude with out slowing game play down.  These rules do that quite well and play much better then they read.  I'm personally not very interested in adding in great detailed realisum for each plane out there.  I feel that kills this game and only brings it closer to games like Blue Max and such.  The appeal to so many for this game is it's ease and speed of play.  Having different sets of rules for different planes removes some of that ease and speed.

 

I thought about the ceiling for planes quite a bit when trying to come up with new altitude rules.  I finally decided that in game terms, it really did not matter.  When in a game are you going to fly your plane at an altitude that your opponent can not reach?  The point of the game is got dogfight each other, so everyone should always be at an altitude that every one can reach.  If you want to use altitude as a way to escape from an enemy, just climb when at altitude 6.  I don't think there is any need to play out the rest of the escape, just make it abstract and it works just fine.

Max ceiling is realistic, some planes like the Eindeckers had problem wit this. In game that means that the Nieuport 11 and DH2 can circle around and higher altitude until they have the advantage and then attack. Just like it was in the war.

Adding a few numbers doesn't make the game so much more complicated, they alreade have a few numbers. Only thing youll need to do is to put a small sticker with the info on to the stand.

As a old Blue max player I really don't think Wows best point is it's ease and speed, Blue max wins both of them. There you had one larger hexagon movement instead of 3 cards, playing a game usually takes half the time from Wow. Wow is more realistic and don't demand hexagon mats (both are btw good games).

But as I said in top, there must be some kind of disadvantage for 2 seaters when it comes to climbing. It was one of their top weakneses ('cept the Bristol fighter) and they are way to overpowered right now. Simple is fine but too simple will unbalance the game. In the original rules and the simplistic some planes just suck compared to how they were also, like the Dr1 and Spad XIII.

Spad XIII was counted very close to the Foker DVII because of it's superb diving ability. Disregarding stuff like that will both upset the re-enactment of any arial battle and lower the realism a lot.



#5 csadn

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Posted 22 September 2009 - 09:53 PM

Pour Le Merite said:

But as I said in top, there must be some kind of disadvantage for 2 seaters when it comes to climbing. It was one of their top weakneses ('cept the Bristol fighter) and they are way to overpowered right now.

Have you looked at the climb rates for most 2-seaters in _WoW_? Bigger number = worse climb rate. The Roland is an absolute *cow* on that score, and I don't recall any of the others being much better.



#6 Pour Le Merite

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Posted 23 September 2009 - 05:04 PM

csadn said:

Pour Le Merite said:

But as I said in top, there must be some kind of disadvantage for 2 seaters when it comes to climbing. It was one of their top weakneses ('cept the Bristol fighter) and they are way to overpowered right now.

 

Have you looked at the climb rates for most 2-seaters in _WoW_? Bigger number = worse climb rate. The Roland is an absolute *cow* on that score, and I don't recall any of the others being much better.

They are still too good. Particulary for the RE8 that was worse than anything else.... The Roland actually did better.

I have a nice book about planes that were failure, the RE8 is in it. They lost so many.



#7 csadn

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Posted 23 September 2009 - 09:07 PM

Pour Le Merite said:

They are still too good. Particulary for the RE8 that was worse than anything else.... The Roland actually did better.

Bear in mind: If the RE8's climb rate were accurately rendered, it would not be *able* to climb during a game....



#8 Pour Le Merite

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Posted 24 September 2009 - 09:34 AM

csadn said:

Pour Le Merite said:

They are still too good. Particulary for the RE8 that was worse than anything else.... The Roland actually did better.

 

Bear in mind: If the RE8's climb rate were accurately rendered, it would not be *able* to climb during a game....

Lol, you got me there. On the + side did it have a lot of fuel so it usually spent a lot of time climbing behind it's own lines before the mission and then tried to keep it's altitude as much as possible during missions.

It was still the worst plane of the war. The german aces shot so many down. It is a lot better in the game then it should be.

I have the book "Under the guns of the red baron", sometimes he downed them 3 and 3...



#9 csadn

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Posted 29 September 2009 - 10:52 AM

Pour Le Merite said:

It was still the worst plane of the war. The german aces shot so many down. It is a lot better in the game then it should be.

[nod] Also explains why, once the Bristol F.2B, the Breguet 14, the Salmson 2A2, and the Sopwith 1&1/2 Strutter came along, the Germans started losing again; as well as explaining the inordinately high kill scores on the German side. It's easy to win when your opposition *sucks*.



#10 Pour Le Merite

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Posted 30 September 2009 - 05:54 AM

csadn said:

Pour Le Merite said:

 

[nod] Also explains why, once the Bristol F.2B, the Breguet 14, the Salmson 2A2, and the Sopwith 1&1/2 Strutter came along, the Germans started losing again; as well as explaining the inordinately high kill scores on the German side. It's easy to win when your opposition *sucks*.

Uhm, the RE8 was replacing the strutter.

The Bristol fighter was never intended as a observation plane, it was made to be a fighter. However once it started to get old (read 6 months for any WW1 plane 'cept Spad XIII) it was moved to be an observation plane.

But the allird had the best planes during many oeriods of the war. Like Feb-Aug 1916 and may1917-may 1918.

The true reason for the germans success was 3:

1. German fighter pilots were usually taken from observation and bombing pilots. That means they were experienced already when they started. The allied pilots were totaly green with just a few days training.

2. Tactics. Dicta Boelke and the fact that germans were a lot better with having the old pilot train up the new ones than the brits.

3. Germans usually fought over friendly lines and most often with the wind blowing them home. The allied had to fly against the wind when they were going home. That was why Richtoffen won over Hawker. And since the germans had fewer planes they were often with the orders to be defensive.

But we shouldn't forget that there was another nation with many high scoring Aces: France. Fonck had 74 comfirmed victories and about twice that number uncorfirmed. Ha was most likely by far the highest scoring pilot but since he usually flew alone over german lines it was hard to confirm hes victorys. Another thing was his personality (as a british ace said in his memoirs "He is not a gentleman").

The allied had about 4 times as many scouts as the central powers had most of the war and the german maneged that rather good. Jasta 11 and other Jastas like that didn't win because they had better planes. They usually were outnumbered and often had fewer planes.

But I do wonder if the british and french refusal for parachutes doesn't meant that they lost a lot of good pilots way too soon compared to the germans. Germans only got it in the last year of the war.

The idea to make a whole lot of a really crappy plane like the RE8 did have some impact on the war, I can't imagine why they didn't used the DH4 instead which was a lot better plane that reached the front only 3 months later. And still they made 4000 RE8s and used then the whole war. A total mystery.

Still, there were many reasons why the german (and french) pilots scored so many more victorys.



#11 csadn

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Posted 30 September 2009 - 09:00 PM

Pour Le Merite said:

Uhm, the RE8 was replacing the strutter.

We're both wrong -- they were coterminous, in different services (1&1/2 was RNAS; RE8 was RFC).

Pour Le Merite said:

The Bristol fighter was never intended as a observation plane, it was made to be a fighter.

Not so -- the original designation was "R.2" (AKA "Type 9"), and indicated an observation role; it was retasked as a fighter during development.

 

Pour Le Merite said:

Still, there were many reasons why the german (and french) pilots scored so many more victorys.

It is worth noting the scores for the sides were far closer in WW1 than in the Second Unpleasantness. But then, in the first go-round, the Germans didn't have the Soviet Air Force to beat on.... :P



#12 Pour Le Merite

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Posted 30 September 2009 - 11:03 PM

You are right, my wording was very bad with the 1 1/2 Strutter. It was used by RNAS from febraury 1916, and by the home defense. RFC only used it as a trainer. As usual did the RNAs have first pick with any Sopwith plane (we in fact uses that in our campaign rules).

But what I meant was that the Strutter was made a whole year earlier than the RE8.

As for the fighter:

The Bristol fighter's basic design stemmed from design studies by Frank Barnwell in March 1916 for an aircraft in the same class as the R.E.8 and the F.K.8 - the Type 9 R.2A with the 160 hp Beardmore engine and the R.2B, powered by the 150 hp Hispano Suiza.2 Neither type was built as the new 190 hp (142 kW) Rolls-Royce Falcon I inline engine became available, and Barwell designed a new aircraft around the Rolls-Royce engine. This, the Type 12 F.2A was a more compact design, intended from the outset as a two-seat fighter: it first flew on 9 September 1916.3 The F.2A was armed in what had by then become the standard manner for a British two-seater: one synchronised fixed, forward-firing .303 in (7.7 mm) Vickers machine gun, and one flexible .303 in (7.7 mm) Lewis Gun mounted on a Scarff ring in the observer's rear cockpit.

Only 52 F.2As were produced before production switched to what became the definitive Bristol Fighter, the Bristol Type 14 F.2B which had first flown on 25 October 1916. The first 150 or so were powered by the Falcon I or Falcon II engine but the remainder were equipped with the 275 hp (205 kW) Falcon III engine and could reach a maximum speed of 123 mph (198 km/h). The F.2B was over 10 mph (16 km/h) faster than the F.2A and was three minutes faster at reaching 10,000 ft (3,000 m). A second Lewis gun was often added to the rear cockpit.

The Bristol M.R.1 is often described as an "all-metal version of the F.2b". In fact it was a totally new design - although it shared the characteristic of having the fuselage positioned between the upper and lower wing. Two prototypes were built, the first flying on 23 October, 1917, but the M.R.1 never entered mass production.

The F2 fighter was made as a fighter plane all the time. That they used the frames from a plane made for observation and gave it a stronger engine isn't really relevant here, particulary since Type 9 R2A never was more than a prototype. The fighter was still design as a fighter plane and later moved to other duties when it no longer did good in a dogfight.

I reccomend Ospreys "Bristol fighter Aces", it have a lot of fun info about it (like that the very first thing the first planes ran into on the maiden mission was Jasta 11, it didn't do wonder for the reputation of the plane). And that the moronic leader of the Bristol flight had told everyone not to oil in their machine guns...

But, yes there were a even bigger difference between the aces in WW2 because of the germans tactics, younger pilots there were tasked with protecting the backs of the experienced one. Still, the german aces were better because they were a lot more outgunned in WW1.



#13 csadn

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Posted 01 October 2009 - 08:37 PM

Pour Le Merite said:

But what I meant was that the Strutter was made a whole year earlier than the RE8.

Not quite a whole year -- both first deployed in '16 (the 1&1/2 in spring, the RE8 in fall -- an unfortunate choice, considering... :P ).

Pour Le Merite said:

The F2 fighter was made as a fighter plane all the time. That they used the frames from a plane made for observation and gave it a stronger engine isn't really relevant here, particulary since Type 9 R2A never was more than a prototype.

Well, as the quote says, it derived from an observation unit, so it "has some quantity of blood".

And *do not* get me started on the stupidity of the folks running that war -- one could make some unkind remarks about *why* the US took three years to get involved.... :P (I have a hard time watching _Blackadder Goes Forth_ because of this.)



#14 Pour Le Merite

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Posted 02 October 2009 - 05:54 AM

csadn said:

 

Not quite a whole year -- both first deployed in '16 (the 1&1/2 in spring, the RE8 in fall -- an unfortunate choice, considering... :P ).

Pour Le Merite said:

 

Well, as the quote says, it derived from an observation unit, so it "has some quantity of blood".

And *do not* get me started on the stupidity of the folks running that war -- one could make some unkind remarks about *why* the US took three years to get involved.... :P (I have a hard time watching _Blackadder Goes Forth_ because of this.)

Well you are right there the first ones hit the front at late november so it is 10 months as the Strutters arived in febraury. We usualy count one month after that when we play but allow a single plane on each side (with extra experience points if you shoot them down of course).

 

Well, the Us involvement wasn't actually a simple decision. First we have Washingtons old idea that Us shouldn't get involved in foreign war, it will not lead to anything good. Of course he was also in for self defense. The great war was a slaughter and not getting involved in it wasn't that dumb, the true stupidity was the war in itself. Washington is actually the only Us president I truly admire and he did make some sense.

They fought over how the Serbians felt they were badly treated and killed a prince, and due to alot of not so smart alliances actually made  to prevent a war (as BA say "-It was all bollocks"). The only good thing was the comparibly small number of civilian casualties.

The other thing is that US really didn't get attacked, the incident that made them go in the war was because the german subs sank a ship with many civilians on, but the ship also freighted weapons to britain which actually was making it a legal military target.

And also, there wasn't really any side that was right in the war, they were all fighting about something that actually was pointless and letting millions of people die for that. Of course, Germany and france were still upset since germany took Lorraine from france and the russians and Austrians were not liking eachother much either since earlier war.

The reason for WW1 is a lot more and complicated than WW2, and just saying someone was right and another one wrong just isn't fair. War is madness and WW1 was the maddest of them all. Take Somme, 2 british soldiers died for every square feet of land they took.

So honestly, I think I would have stayed clear from that war if I was a world leader at the time.I mean, I would jump into a hopeless war against the nazis anytime but the ones that actually started this war was the serbs and the Russians (the serbs wanted backup or else they world turn in the assasins to the austrians, they were just a day away of doing that when the russians backed them up). That didn't make them evil either of course, well maybe the guys that protected the assasins. And then of course we have the Austrians that occupied the serbs. Which is Napoleons fault... And so on. And I havn't even talked about englishmen, italians, turks and so on.

My point anyway is that peace is usualy the smartest way, but however not always. And to stop with a Sunzu quote from "the art of war" -"Involving your country in a war is a very dangerous risk and should never be taken light".






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