Monday, November 15, 2010

Ammunition Rules for Wings of War

The following great article is from John Snelling . . .

Tried ammo restrictions with WoW Thursday and really enjoyed it. It also evens out 2 seaters vs the single seat fighters. Here is the rules.
Try them I think you will like them.

These rules are now standard in my games. You will need a six-sided die and pencil and a pad of paper to record the following; one person on each team can record the ammo counts of a dozen aircraft with ease.

Firing Guns
Regarding guns and bullets, historically the Lewis gun had a 97-round magazine (we'll say 100) while the Spandau had 500 and the others (ie Vickers, Schwarzlose 400). Parabellum treated same as Lewis. Rates of Fire for each gun were close so this factor becomes negligable. Thus the ammo counts for each gun are:
- Spandau 25
- Vickers 20
- Schwartlose 15
- Lewis 5
A long range shot use 2 ammo counts, short range uses 1 ammo counts. Thus the Lewis can only fire three times (2.5 rounded up) at long range, or 5 times at short range, or a combination. Once ammo is depleted it is gone, but Lewis and Parabellum guns can reload. Each pilot has an initial load plus 2 reloads (15 counts); rear gunner has initial plus 4 reloads.

Reloading and Unjamming
Green jam card jams one gun (ie half of a twin-barrelled Spandau); red card jams all firing guns. A partially jammed Spandau (or Vickers or SE5a mixed weaponry) can still fire, but as "B" damage instead of "A" damage. Gun jam counter for a pilot is only removed if:
- plane is not on fire
- plane flies straight maneouver that is not part of immelman or overdive
- pilot not involved in shooting or reloading
Reloading follows similar procedure with respect to plane on fire and plane flying a true straight maneouver. Only one barrel/gun can be unjammed at a time. If the SE5a Vickers/Lewis gun suffers a partial jam, roll the 1D6 die: 1-3 = Lewis; 4-6 = Vickers.

Sounds complicated, but it's not.

On top of this, I add historical airframe realism:
- Nieuport 11 and Fokker A.III receive four gun jam counters instead of three (no Foster or other mount to help pilot access gun)
- Schwarzlose equipped Albatross D.III and Aviatik D.1 receive one permanently jammed barrel if a red gun jam card is drawn, non-Schwarzlose planes are not affected (I have another chart showing aircraft availability and selection)
- Pflaz D.III cannot unjam (it couldn't due to pilot inaccessibility; but problem was rectified with D.IIIa variant)
- Albatross D.V and D.Va only get 2 jam counters - these aircraft had a forced trim on the control stick which centered it, arguably making it easier for a pilot to focus attention on other matters (such as unjamming)

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