Aerodrome Event Update

July 22, 2010

I thought I’d take a moment from a busy summer to post about the status of Aerodrome Events.  I have run several games recently.  More will be taking place in the fall after the run up to Carnage which takes place during the first weekend in November.

I ran a demo at Game Geeks on June 17th.  It went well and folks had a good time.  I ran 3 missions for six players and I think there will be further interest.

I also ran a small session at the last Northern Conspiracy session and had a fun game!  Game night is often lightly attended in July and so I had few players, but a lot of guys took a look and I think that we’ll see more!  (It is an imperative to enjoy summer while you can in this neck of the woods!)

The next event in stone is a large game for the Maine War Gamers Association on the afternoon of October 16th.  I expect to be running several other events and we are looking at involving some high school groups and hope to get some involved.  (Stan kindly gave the MWGA some rule sets to help jump-start some interest!)

I am sure there will be a number of pickup games to get a grip on making tighter Mission Rules as the key element of a campaign game.  I see the campaign as being a series of randomly generated missions with specific setup rules for each.  The campaign will progess through the war offering new aircraft and other effects.  I will be looking to post and get feedback once the bones are down and preliminary testing is done!

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Fokker DRI Conversions – Jasta 19

May 14, 2010

This is the first of a series of conversions intended to provide flights of aircraft for tournament and campaign play. Some time back I purchased a bunch of decals for converting a number of Wings of War miniatures into specific squadron aircraft from Dom’s Decals at www.domsdecals.com. The decals look great and he sends instructions with each set explaining the conversions and even specifying what paints are needed and what ratios are needed to mix the colors correctly. That is something that is very helpful for a guy like me!

The weekend before Huzzah I managed to get to the first set of planes done. These are the Fokker DRIs of Jasta 19. The base aircraft model is the Wings of War Rhan DRI. The conversions came out pretty well. The decal application is a tad fiddly as Dom says in his instructions. I managed to mess up two of the decals, but I was still able to use them to make two planes that were differentiated from the rest, but are not historically accurate. I admit that, as I lack a steady hand, I did not bother to paint the fuselage green in the tail section despite the instruction to do so.

DR1 Conversion - Painting

The setup for painting the DRIs, which was done while folks were playing Blood Bowl.

The painting was easy. I mixed the paint according to the instructions without difficulty. The color matched very well. I was very happy with the results.

Once the paint was dry, after a 24-hour wait, I sprayed the planes with Krylon acrylic gloss to give the decals a surface to cling to. I put two coats on to be sure.

The next step was applying the decals. This was pretty tricky and I used a large flight stand taped to the side of my game table work area to hold the models sideways while working. This worked fairly well. I used a couple of sets of tweezers to put on the decals, one straight pair and one pair with tips at a 30-degree angle.

DR1 Conversion - Decals

The setup for putting the decals onto the party repainted Rahn DRI models.

The surface was prepped with decal setting solution and then after drying a softening solution was applied. The trickiest part was placing the really small decals. I had a real problem putting the tiny crosses and tiny numbers on the rear of the fuselage on a couple of planes and these were the ones that I ended up fudging. These were the only two issues. The long decals were easier that I thought and I held them in place and then slid the paper away. It was pretty easy to adjust the position of the decals with a paintbrush.

After the decals dried I used a couple of coats of Krylon matte acrylic to protect the them. I had tried the Games Workshop matte spray on a test model and it produced a nasty frosting effect, which really bummed me out. A friend of mine pointed out a couple of forum posts regarding this. I found that spraying the models with a gloss coat fixed it and gave it a matte appearance.

DR1 Conversion - Gloss

The models being sprayed with gloss acrylic to insure a good surface for decaling.

It was nice to get them done before the con. The German aircraft are much more snazzy and it was easy to run the tournament with a mix of Camels that were not modified since the Allied aircraft are rather drab. The match-up that I ran at the convention was Camels vs Pfalz DR1s (a more robust version of the Fokker DRI).

DR1 Conversion - Final 1

Some of the coverted DRIs of Jasta 19

Unfortunately there is no Camel decal set. I purchased a bunch of Camel models to convert and the book British Aviation Squadron Markings of World War 1. I expect that I will be using the white vinyl letters from www.modelflags.com. These worked very well in a prior project. It may turn out that I can add a little flair with some other assorted decals, but I am still figuring that out.

I plan to do Sopwith Snipes and Fokker DRVIIs as well. These will probably be my late war match-up for tournament play. I am hoping that there will be a set of Sopwith Triplanes coming out eventually for Wings of War. (If not I may purchase a bunch of Skytrex 1/144th models if I feel like biting the modeling bullet.)

DR1 Conversion - Final 2

A side view of the converted Jast 19 DRI models.

Good Gaming!

– Andre


First Tournament Winner! & Huzzah a Success!

May 3, 2010

The first Knights in the Sky Aerodrome Tournament was held at Huzzah and was a resounding success. A crowd of 10 boisterous pilots did battle in the sky! Jerry and I were able to maintain a fast pace and the gamers contributed witty repartee across the table. All in all it was a blast to run and fun was had by all!

Eric accepts the KitS Huzzah! Cup

Eric accepts the KitS Huzzah! Cup

Eric Hatch emerged as the victor with a whopping score of 7.333 with 3 kills. Manuel Veloso took second place with a score of 3.66 and 2 kills and Gaylord Tang was right behind him with a score of 3.33 and 2 kills.

Several pilots had the misfortune of having their aircraft catch fire. At least one Allied Powers pilot was forced to land and captured by Central Powers infantry. The sky was aglow with gunfire and flames.

Stan Kubiak came and run his exciting Aerodrome 2.0 and had a good crowd of players for his Friday evening Dogfight scenario and his Carrier Attack game as well. The carrier strike was a continuation of his game from the prior weekend at Little Wars in Chicago.

Manuel accepts his Distinguished Service Medal

Huzzah went very well and the Sabis Battle sponsored by Wargames Factory was impressive! There were so many good looking well run games, I cannot even begin to recount them all! A goodly number of vendors came including ADC Books, Aerodrome, Blue Moose Arts, Bunker Hill Games, Crossroad Games, John Durant Books, The Arrington’s, The Dice Turret, RLPBS (suppliers of Aerodrome Equipment among many other nifty things!), Eureka Miniatures USA, Falcon Miniatures, and The Hobby Bunker.

Aerodrome 2 Carrier Attack in progress.

Aerodrome 2 Carrier Attack in progress.

There were a lot of attendees on Saturday and most sessions had plenty of players. A Flames of War tournament was held, there was a raffle after every period, and prizes were awarded at the end of the con.

Stay tuned for future events!


KitS Aerodrome Tournament Preparation in High Gear!

April 22, 2010

The prep for the first tournament at Huzzah! is now moving right along. The playtest tournament is this weekend! I have updated the scoring rules to include a few missing elements. Scoring cards and a scoring sheet have been posted to the Rules section as well.

I have begun the model mods for the Wings of War Rahn’s Fokker DR1s, which will be used to represent the Pfalz DR1s for the tournament. These are being repainted and decaled as Jasta 19 using Dom’s Decals conversion instructions and decal sets. Wish me luck with the fiddly bits!

I have amassed almost everything that I need to do a matchup between Sopwith Snipes and Fokker DVIIs. This looks like a great matchup and will be featured in another tournament later this year!

On the list of things to do is re-bore the last of the panels. (The acrylic spray added some width to the holes.) I need to put together 4 more sets of pegs and shells for ammo markers, make some minor fixes to a few wooden markers, cut and laminate scoring cards, and related tasks.

I am excited to get the project off the ground and starting gaining some momentum.

The event list for Huzzah! is quite impressive and the list of sponsors of all kind is staggering. Check it out at www.huzzahcon.com.


First Knights in the Sky Tournament and Aerodrome 2.0 Coming to Huzzah!

April 8, 2010
Huzzah Cup

The coveted Huzzah! Cup

The first of the Knights in the Sky tournaments (a WWI miniatures aerial combat tournament) will be held at Huzzah! (www.huzzahcon.com) in Portland, ME on evening of May 1st.  This event will use the well received Aerodrome 1.1 fast play rules.  The system features very simple easy to learn rules with a minimum of die rolling.  The simple unique system rewards players that correctly guess the enemy’s maneuvers.  Damage is static based upon range, deflection, and burst length making it an ideal tournament system.

The tournament at this event will consist of a single session with players participating in a minimum of 3 missions to qualify.  Each mission takes about one hour to play.  The player with the highest score will take home the coveted Huzzah! Cup!

For those not familiar with Huzzah! it is a premier game convention in Northern New England.  There is an excellent lineup of games, speakers, and events.  Perhaps one of the finest lineups in Northern New England in a long time!  If you are into historical gaming it will be well worth your time!

Among the presenters will be Stan Kubiak, the publisher of Aerodrome 1.1 and 2.0.  He will be running his extremely well received WWII version of the game.  This includes from all accounts a spectacular carrier attack scenario on Saturday afternoon!  Stan presents frequently at Historicon and enjoys an excellent registration. 

Here are the event descriptions with more at www.huzzahcon.com:

Friday 7pm-11pm
Dogfight!
1/144th Scale Aerodrome 1.1 presented by Andre Kruppa with Jerry Corey
Up to 16 Players
This aerodrome 1.1 game consists of a series of dogfights featuring Sopwith Camels in the classic match-up against Pfalz DR1s (a sturdier cousin of the Fokker DR1) with players matching wits for control of the skies. This is an opportunity to hone those Aerodrome skills prior to the Tournament on Saturday Evening or just have fun battling for the skies. This is an elegant fast play system featuring wooden panels to program moves. No prior rules knowledge is required. (Under age 15 only with playing adult.)

Friday 7pm-11pm
Aerodrome 2.0 Aerial Combat
1/144th Scale Aerodrome 2.0 presented by Stan Kubiak
Up To 10 Players
The popular Aerodrome® 1.1 WW1 Aerial Combat ruleset adapted to WW2 aerial combat. The rules remain easy-to-learn, easy-to-play, but take into account the faster speeds and greater weapons lethality of WW2 aircraft; rules will be explained and charts provided. Up to 10 players per round; rounds last from 45-90 minutes, running continuously through the allotted time. (Under age 15 only with playing adult.)

Saturday 2pm-6pm
Aerodrome 2.0 – Carrier War in the Pacific
1/144th Scale Aerodrome 2.0 presented by Stan Kubiak
Up To 15 Players
World War II carrier battle in the Pacific, using Aerodrome® 2.0 Aerial Combat rules with air-naval combat extensions! Bombs! Torpedoes! Flaming Zeros! An American strike force of dive bombers, torpedo bombers and fighters attacks a fleet of Japanese aircraft carriers, escorts and defending fighters. Fight to sink or to defend the carriers. Aerodrome® 2.0 experience helpful but not necessary; the rules will be taught.

Saturday 7pm-11pm
Aerodrome 1.1 – Knights in the Sky Tournament
1/144th Scale Aerodrome 1.1 presented by Andre Kruppa with Jerry Corey
Up to 16 Players
This Knights in the Sky Tournament consists of a series of dogfights featuring Sopwith Camels in the classic match-up against Pfalz DR1s (a sturdier cousin of the Fokker DR1) with players matching wits for control of the skies. A prize will be awarded for first, second, and third place. The highest scoring player will be awarded the coveted Huzzah Aerodrome Cup. Scoring is based upon Rick Schirtzinger’s well received system. To qualify a player must fly at least 3 missions. Play will be limited to an even number of players. This is an elegant fast play system featuring wooden panels to program moves. No prior rules knowledge is required. Details for scoring will be posted prior to the convention here and results will be posted thereafter. Under age 15 only with playing adult.)

Sunday 10am-3pm
Aerodrome 2.0 Aerial Combat
1/144th Scale Aerodrome 2.0 presented by Stan Kubiak
Up To 10 Players
The popular Aerodrome® 1.1 WW1 Aerial Combat ruleset adapted to WW2 aerial combat. The rules remain easy-to-learn, easy-to-play, but take into account the faster speeds and greater weapons lethality of WW2 aircraft; rules will be explained and charts provided. Up to 10 players per round; rounds last from 45-90 minutes, running continuously through the allotted time. (Under age 15 only with playing adult.)

I hope to see all of the aerial combat players that can make it at the convention!