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    Rome, Lazio, Italy

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  1. Thanks a lot to you for that! If you are somehow interested in putting some history teaching in your debriefing please contact me in private (let's not go OT) because I had some exchange of toughts about that with a few teachers. Disclaimer: I am not speaking about the history of the Flying Path. I just told Wings of War's history since some posters wondered about it. Thanks!
  2. Yes I did. But it had not a real firing cone. If I remember well, you could fire to a row of hexes: forward, 60° or 60°, up to 4 hexes away. Not, as an example, to a plane that was 3 hexes away at 30° on your left. Blue Max has the same problem: you fired to rows of hexes, But there are "blind spots" between the possible directions in which you can fire. You can have an enemy almost ahead, at 2 hexes of distanc,e and not being able to get a facing that allows you to hit it since you do not have a linear row of hexes connecting your hex to his. This is why in Wings of War I put a firing cone. If you could turn of any number of degrees, you would not need it. Steambirds, a game that has been programmed by somebody who had just played Wings of War the day before, is a strange case: turning is free, and still keeps a firing cone. I see it as a clear hint (one of the several) of WoW's influence on it - a game developed from scratch would not have used any firing cone for fixed, forward-firing machineguns. As we saw, even several hex-grid games do not feature a cone.
  3. Thanks a lot for your comment. My goal and my big effort was exactly to design a simulation that "feels like a historical, detailed wargame" while being able to be explained in 90 seconds and to be played by 6 years olds and their grandmothers, as well as to be appreciated by real wargamers. A game where the effort to make a Fokker Dr.i different from a SPAD XIII, with the same differences of their historical counterparts, is all made by me when I design, not by players when they study rules or play - in the end, they just take a different deck of cards and then feel these differences playing, with no charts and tables and rule exceptions and bookkeeping and points expenditures and whatever. A little step further from the simulation games of previous decades. To which I again pay my tribute of gratiutude in this interesting thread. Especially to Leonardi's Ace of Aces, that did the same in a totally different way.
  4. Dear all, since you wonder about the history of Wings of War's idea... Here it is. Wings of War comes after several other air combat designs of mine. The very first boardgame I published was Cacciatori di Viverne (1985), a fantasy air combat game. Then I published a very easy paper & pencil ww1 dogfight game on a student magazine (but you will not find it in my P&P games book published by Sterling since it involves paper, pencil and a coin - one element too much). Then I made a very steamlined dragon air combat game called (if I remember well) I Cavalieri dell'aria, that appeared on the game magazine E Giochi and was later reprinted on the RPG magazine Kaos. Then La squadriglia degli assi (ww1 again), designed with aviation historian Gregory Alegi, was attached to the Italian Air Force magazine for boys Rivista Aeronautica - Notiziario Giovani. Then it came Il gobbo maledetto, a gamebook about ww2 torpedo bombers illustrated with real ww2 photos. Then a web based air duel game called Face2Face, made with Pier Giorgio Paglia for Stream TV (two scenarios - Malta 1942 and Nemesis Spacefighters). Most of these games had contemporary plotting and movement. Apart for the gamebook, they were all based on grids (hexes, squares, even triangles). None used templates to move. I published tabletop games with no grids, as a Dragonball Z martial arts game released back in 1998. It used several kinds of rulers for movements and ranges, but not a real template. Wings of War is reminescent of all these designs, but it has been the first one to use templates to phisically move your planes on the table. It was created in one night exactly 13 years ago, on early February 2002. Cards from the prototype can be seen here: http://boardgamegeek.com/image/38822/wings-war-famous-aces It was decided to draw the templates on cards so to allow secret planning of moves, because of their flexibility (you could easily put into the game any fancy maneuvre that was specific for any single plane - as the Fokker D.VII's "turning stalls") and for economic reason, so that the game could have a cheap final price. I also found elegant to use cards for everything - planes, ground features, maneuvres, damages. They allowed the background landscape, taken from my previous La squadriglia degli assi, that contributed to a nice wargame feel IMHO. Only the ruler was actually something other than a card: in the first prototype it was a piece of string divided into ranges of equal lenght, then in production it became a rigid cardboard ruler. Of course I had played a lot of games that have influenced me and my design. I'd name at least Air Force, Ace of Aces, Gunslinger, Blue Max, Wings, Sopwith, Droids, WRG's War Game Rules: 1000 B.C. to 500 A.D. In no particular order. But none of them had templates to determine exactly the distance your veichle/unit would move and its final orientation. So yes, I am convinced that with Wings of War we did something new, at least from the planning/move point of view. And that we managed to put quite a lot of simulation details in a tabletop wargame that, with its basic rules, could be played by 6 years old kids: a quite unprecedented mix of realism and simplicity, if I look at the games I used to play before. In the spirit of brilliant Alfred Leonardi's Ace of Aces whose phisical limits (the use of booklets) prevented it to have the same flexibility in adding different planes, designing different scenarios, inventing house rules, allowing many players at the same table (current record for WoW is 100). Of course I never saw Bulldoguk's prototype. I doubt it was ever sent to Italian publishers, since in the '90s we were a very closed and small market for game designers. And anyway I have always been a freelance - I seldom saw any prototype sent to publishers, this just happened with Qualitygame (Rome) and Nexus Editrice (Viareggio). He can confirm if he ever contacted these two, or other publishers in my country. Thanks for your attention.
  5. tyarlashan said: The first edition printings of WoW and WYB came with a card that could not be used unless you have the other boxset, or used the work up listed on the website when they were first released. Simply, it's a marketing ploy, and boy did it work. I am to be blamed more than the marketing team for putting stuff that had no immediate use. But as a fond gamers with a long experience as a customer, I tought that a B-firing variant of a Sopwith Triplane that could add variability if you had the other box, or a promo card for another set, was more useful than just another 6th color scheme for the same airplane (no room for another maneuvre or damage deck anyway). The paradox is that if I did not put that additional card, the game could have been marketed as a 131 cards game instead than a 132 cards one and people would not complain... having less! (for Famous Aces 128 cards, having 3 B-firing Triplanes and one promo).
  6. Thanks to you for your attention! More pictures here: tinyurl.com/kmmnul
  7. Yesterday 14th of June 2009, during the PisaGioca fair in Pisa (Italy), 81 people, 65 male players and 16 female, gathered at the same table in a square of the city center. Some of them were real veterans from several cities, them bringing their own wonderful collections of personalized miniatures. In the end, only a single Allied plane was flying over a plain scattered by wrecks. The Pattuglia Acrobatica Nazionale (Italian Acrobatic Team of the IAF) flying over the site at the end of the game sealed the new record, beating the 61 players game that took place in Utah at the end of March. A report by Massimiliano "Ugoslave" Calimera (in Italian): gioconomicon.net/modules.php A photogallery of the game, with the 20 x 1 meters long table (L-shaped on one end): gioconomicon.net/modules.php The preview WW2 miniatures shown at the event: gioconomicon.net/modules.php All the best! Andrea
  8. Pour Le Merite said: Yeah, it is true that you can pass eachother without fire in blue max, you could of course make some custom rule that you move 1 square at the time and check if you can fire but that will slow down the time the game takes to play. Well, nice idea but it needs some specifications about facing during the move and it does not seems to work very fine if the speeds are different. Pour Le Merite said: I also like the experience points in BM, dunno if there is anything like it in any Wow expansion. Yeah, I really like WW1 dogfighting. For WWII they are in The Dawn of the World War II. For WWI they are here: http://www.wingsofwar.it/read.asp?id=1273 Thanks for all and happy gaming! Andrea
  9. Details here: http://new.fantasyflightgames.com/edge_foros_discusion.asp?efid=108&efcid=1&efidt=51487 It is not "a German shop" but the publisher/distributor of the German edition. All the best, Andrea
  10. Sorry again. If all goes as planned, there will be two versions of the mat - East and West. Each will be 98 x 68 cm. The picture shows them one besides the other - each one will feature a different half of it. A mat could be enough to play in 4-6 planes and even for recon/bombing missions. If you and a frioend both buy a mat and you choose a different version each, you can put them one besides the other and get a 98 x 136 cm surface with matching drawings (or a 196 x 68 cm one with non-matching drawings). All the best, Andrea
  11. It's coming: http://www.madmansmagic.de/produkte/Wings_of_War/Spezial_Artikel/gaming_mat.php# No official release date. Bye, Andrea
  12. Thanks! That's the direct link: http://www.wingsofwar.it/read.asp?id=1273 If you take blue boxes from Series 1 minis, they are all at the same level - some more agiles, some more sturdy, but all balanced. If you take Snipe and D.VII from Series 2, they are balanced between them but if you use them against the Series 1 minis give each of them a couple of ace skills to balance the better maneuvrability. Of course it's easier if you balance sides - a D.Va and a D.VII are then perfect against a Snipe and a Camel (or a Snipe and a SPAD XIII). If you take Albatros D.III and Nieuport 17 from Series 3, they are older and not at the same rank of the Series 1; besides, the Nieuport is less sturdy than the D.III. I would give 1 skill to balance Ni.17 against the D.III; 1 skill to balance D.III against the Series 1 minis; so 2 skills to balance Ni.17 against Series 1 minis. I'd say that any B/B firing two-seater can be more or less balanced with any Series 1 mini (they are all A firing). Scenarios in rulebooks give you some already balanced sides. Have fun! Andrea
  13. A similar rule is in the "On the way to become an ace" scenario, in the Famous Aces / Watch your back! rulebook. You can also check the FAQ here: http://new.fantasyflightgames.com/edge_minisite_sec.asp?eidm=24&esem=4 Have fun! Andrea
  14. The Belgian Re8 can be seen at the Royal Army and Military History Museum of Brussels. Happy flights! Andrea (picture by Gerald M. Zabos quoted on Boardgamegeek at this thread).
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