Previously, I posted a review of Minden Game’s Eindekker so now I shall describe a game.
There is an optional rule to roll up your own pilot rather than use one of the famous aces. I decided to go this route and rolled up Leutnant Karl von Schmutzer. I got a lucky roll so I ended up having three skills – Initiative (gives a bonus roll in the first turn of combat), Gunner (bonus to damage inflicted) and Ace (bonus to the “maneuvering” die roll). I decided to randomly roll the mission and ended up on Combat Patrol over friendly territory.
Schmutzer’s description of the mission is in italics. My commentary on gameplay is in brackets.
As I took off, I was immediately bounced by two enemy fighters. I was still climbing and the enemies were at a higher altitude. The lead pilot dove upon me, unleashing a burst of gunfire. Hot lead ripped into the nose of my Eindekker, and its engine started sputtering. I slammed my stick back and jammed on the rudder, pulling into an Immelman that put me on the tail of my adversary. I pulled the trigger, knowing that I had no margin for error as the enemy’s comrade was screeching down upon him. But my training and the capabilities of my fine aircraft paid off, and my burst set the enemy craft ablaze. The other fighter, seeing the fate of his partner, decided to flee the battle.
[The random event roll for the first turn indicated two enemies. In the first turn of combat, only the lead plane could attack. The enemy won the dice roll, primarily because of their height advantage, and the damage roll indicated an engine hit. In the second turn, Schmutzer won the maneuvering roll against the lead fighter. The damage roll, aided by Schmutzer’s Gunner skill, indicated a destroyed aircraft. The other enemy lost its maneuvering roll against Schmutzer, so it could not fire. Because of the destruction of its partner, the remaining enemy had to roll morale. It failed so it fled.]
With damage to my engine, I had to make a choice: turn back to the safety of base or press on with the mission. Even with a victory under my belt, I could not bear the thought of running home without even reaching the mission zone, so I decided to continue. I safely reached the area behind the German trenches and began the patrol. At first, all I saw were flashes of antiaircraft artillery in the distance.
[Random event rolls indicated AA, but only if over the trench line or enemy territory. Schmutzer was over friendly territory, so there was no effect.]
Finally, I spotted a British reconnaissance plane making its way back home. I went on the attack, guns blazing, and made short work of the Brit. Convinced that I now had honorably fulfilled my mission, I decided to nurse my damaged craft back home. I made it without incident and am pleased to report the destruction of two enemy aircraft.
[With all of Schmutzer’s skills, the recon plane was at a decided disadvantage. Schmutzer easily won the maneuvering roll and the damage roll indicated a destroyed aircraft. Even though I could have patrolled for a couple more turns, I decided that Schmutzer would head back to base. All in all, it was an auspicious start to Schmutzer’s career, as he racked up 2 kills and 20 VPs.]