Two missions into the second season of my Storm Above the Reich campaign and things aren’t going the greatest. With 30 VPs required to “not lose” and me having 3 VP in 2 missions, things have to change for the better.
Is that going to happen in Mission #9 or is Staffel Roy doomed to fall into the depths of mediocrity, disbanded because they really suck at defending the Fatherland?
In our last mission, Kermit was gulping after realizing just what a tall mountain we had to climb.
Now I think Seth Meyers knows what’s up.
It’s time for Mission #9, where it’s go big or go home.
Or maybe just, you know, go middle of the road.
Once again, I am doing the Advanced Rules for “Pursuit” of a Fallen bomber. That means I get no Victory Points for a Fallen bomber (though I do get Experience Points). I have to pursue it and kill it before I get VP
What happened in this one?
I don’t know. I’ve forgotten already!
Let’s take a look.
(Reminder, you can always click on a picture to see it full size. Also, for the specific rules of what I’m talking about, see the Mission #1 & #2 report and the Pursuit rules are detailed in Mission #7)
The first thing to do is roll for the wounded pilots. Clausen has been wounded since Mission #1. Will that continue?
No!!! Clausen is back, but Grislawski is still wounded.
The roll for mission type has us facing bombers that are inbound to Germany. That can be good (more VP) but also bad (more chance the Escort fighters will be around for a while).
We’re on Map 6 yet again, but that gives us plenty of options. I rolled 6 Operations Points but lost one due to having a Bf 110 crash last mission. With only 5 points, the choices are kind of limited.
This time, screw the auxiliary! I bring in 5 of my own fighters. If Staffel Roy is going to make this thing happen, we’re going to do it on our own.
Clausen joins us for the first time in a long while, along with Ehrhoff (gotta get that Green marker off of him!), Ahrens, Rainer (another greenie) and Wurzer.
The Escort is 5 P-38 fighters and they aren’t leaving at all. They are going to be annoying for the entire mission. They all start in the Above Trailing position, which means they’re very likely to jump my fighters, too!
The bomber formation is Anchored at the Nose High position (this means I can’t move my fighters into Nose High at all and it may also make some spaces in the formation more lethal to me).
Sadly, there is no sun.
One bomber took a 4-point Wing hit before my guys arrived.
Maybe I can take advantage of it?
Ahrens & Rainer (aww, the veteran bringing the newbie along!) come in from Oblique Low (10:00 position).
Clausen and Ehrhoff (another veteran and newbie combo!) come in Tail Low. Wurzer comes in Oblique Low from the 4:00 position.
On Turn 1, all of the fighters move into their Level position.
One 2-count Escort moves into Ahrens and Rainer’s space!
That’s not good.
Aerial combat ensues and the Escort and both fighters break off and leave the fight. I’m down two fighters already!
I hate Escorts in Above Trailing positions. They almost always end up attacking somebody.
On Turn 2, with more Escorts possibly approaching, I decide to just attack rather than try to position myself into High altitude.
Clausen and Ehrhoff go Tail Level while Wurzer goes Oblique Low.
Of course, after all of that insurance movement, an Escort just moves to Forward Station rather than actually attacking. Oh well.
Since these attacks may not be the best, it’s better to go after the wounded Element, so all three fighters move in!
Wurzer takes his own bomber while Ehrhoff and Clausen go after the wounded one.
The Collision Check for Ehrhoff and Clausen doesn’t result in any damage, thankfully.
Wurzer does no damage and takes a Fuselage hit. What a waste of space he is.
Ehrhoff does 1 point of Fuselage damage, taking a hit that’s nullified by Position Advantage. He also gets a “Riding the Tail” result, which means he gets to attack again (or break away back to the Tail position).
Sadly, the second attack results in a Collision Check with no impact.
Clausen does a 0-point Engine hit and avoids his own hit using the Rotte Advantage.
Now it’s time for Continuing Fire, the bane of all fighters’ existences.
Wurzer is forced to Evasive Mode and doesn’t take a hit. Ehrhoff takes a Fuselage hit which forces him to change to Evasive Mode (his Green penalty means when he takes a hit, he changes modes).
Clausen takes a Wing hit.
Turn 3 results in an Escort moving to Tail High and another one moving to Nose Level. They’re boxing us in!
Wurzer’s Fuselage hit is superficial, as is Ehrhoff’s Fuselage hit. Clausen’s Wing hit knocks him out of the fight, though. Dreams of hot nurses running through his head.
Turn 4 has Wurzer getting jumped by an Escort fighter! They end up going to the Dogfight box.
On Turn 5, the Dogfight results in Wurzer and the Escort breaking off. Ehrhoff is the only one left!
The bomber Element with the wounded bomber rolls low and the formation goes Kaputt (-2 Lethal Level). Ehrhoff moves to Oblique High, just to see if he can get one more shot off.
On Turn 6, Ehrhoff approaches from Oblique High. The chances aren’t good from that direction, but it is the safest for him.
However, during the Cohesion check, the damaged bomber falls out of formation!
Thus Ehrhoff attacks another bomber in the same Element (to take advantage of the reduced Lethal Level). It helps that he is attacking a bomber from the same space as the fallen one, which means an additional reduction in the Lethal Level.
Unfortunately, the only thing that happens on Ehrhoff’s run is a Collision Check! Which he passes with no issue.
In Continuing Fire, he gets a “Confused” result. Since he’s a Green pilot, he has to spent one Tactical Point to avoid taking a hit. There are six Tactical Points left, so that’s an easy decision.
On Turn 7, Ehrhoff just Returns, and then on Turn 8, he breaks off to pursue the Fallen bomber.
The bomber already has a 4-point Wing hit, so it’s almost down anyway due to damage.
The Engine hit doesn’t result in a crew bailout, but it does result in two more Tactical Points for Ehrhoff. Since I already have five, that’s not that much help, but we’ll see if it matters!
Ehrhoff comes in Tail High in his first pass on the bomber.
He does a Wing hit!
The bomber plummets to the ground with its Wing falling off. Two Victory Points! And one EP for both the Staffel and for Ehrhoff!
Sadly, he also takes a hit to the Cockpit and that knocks him out of the fight. But the bomber fell!
The final result of the mission is just “ok.” One bomber destroyed (2 VP and 3 EP for the Staffel, one for making the bomber fall and two for destroying it ).
How did my pilots fare?
Ehrhoff crashes from his Cockpit hit, but successfully bails out! That’s another EP for him.
Clausen’s Wing catches on fire and he’s wounded as he gets out of the plane (earning 1 EP). I guess he must have left something at the hospital.
Clausen did earn enough EP from his two missions that he’s able to add the “Wily” skill to his repertoire. This makes him better at facing Escorts. But since he’s wounded again, when will we see it?
Ehrhoff spends the 3 EP to remove his Green penalty.
Yes, Zilla, Ehrhoff is no longer a Greenie!
But Rainer still is.
Two VP puts me further back on the pace, but considering what happened to everybody else, it could have been a lot worse.
Hopefully next mission we will be able to ramp things up.
Stay tuned for more from Staffel Roy!