Thursday, August 24, 2017
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BRITAIN ALONE: Battle of Britain 1940

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BRITAIN ALONE: Battle of Britain 1940

 
Prime Minister Winston Churchill's June 4th 1940 speech where he proclaimed "we shall fight them on the beaches" was beginning to look prophetic by July 1940. The BEF had been evacuated from Dunkirk and France had fallen. Britain and the Commonwealth stood alone against the Third Reich's European ambitions. On July 16th Hitler gave the directive for operation Sealion, the invasion of Britain. The plan required that air superiority would be achieved before an invasion could be launched. The stage was set for the Battle of Britain.
 
At the start of the campaign the Luftwaffe deployed a strength of 2550 serviceable combat aircraft to sortie against the British from Luftflotte 2, Luftflotte 3 and Luftflotte 5. The RAF had a strength of 1963 serviceable combat aircraft of which 754 were single seat fighters. RAF Fighter Command had a serious shortage of pilots but had the advantage of fighting over home ground and possessed an integrated air defense system based on radar. The Luftwaffe had more experience and numerical superiority.
 
The Battle of Britain opened on July 10th with Kanalkampf (Channel Battle) the Luftwaffe attack on convoys and ports. This was an attempt to lure RAF fighters into combat. Facing a serious shortage of pilots ACM Hugh Dowding, CinC Fighter Command  was intent on rebuilding his forces for the major clashes to come and only sortied what was needed to cover shipping and ports. The area near Dover became known as 'Hellfire Corner' for the frequent clashes between the Luftwaffe and the RAF. The channel battles lasted until July 30th. 

Hermann Goering launched Adlertag (Eagle Day) on August 13th with the objective to destroy Fighter Commands aircraft and infrastructure on the ground. Many coastal airfields were hit but the overall results were not what the Luftwaffe had hoped for. A larger series of raids on August 15th yielded better results. The August 18th raids hit the RAF hard as the Luftwaffe inflicted severe damage to the airfields. Damage to maintenance facilities and ground crews was also heavy. Some squadrons had to be moved to civilian airfields due to the heavy damage at fighter bases.The pressure on Fighter Command was beginning to mount.
 
On the night of August 24th the first bombs fell on London. On the night of August 25/26 RAF Bomber Command attacked targets in Berlin. On September 4th Hitler gave a speech calling for British cities to be razed in retaliation. The Luftwaffe launched a massive raid on London on September 7th causing widespread destruction. The switch to attacking London gave the RAF fighter forces a much needed respite to regroup. Between August 15th and September 6th the RAF lost 273 fighters to the Luftwaffe's 308 aircraft. A ratio much closer than previous phases of the battle. RAF losses were higher than their replacement rate. The Luftwaffe's change in focus to London marked a critical turning point in the battle. 
 
Through faulty intelligence estimates Goering believed that RAF Fighter Command was a broken force and planned a massive and decisive attack on London. On September 15th the Luftwaffe launched two large raids against the capital. The morning and afternoon raids totaled 1300 sorties. The RAF scrambled some 300 fighters from 30 squadrons in defense from No.11 Group (AVM Park), No.12 Group (AVM Leigh-Mallory) and No.10 Group (AVM Quintin Brand). The ferocity of the RAF defense came as a surprise to the Luftwaffe crews who found themselves in a running air battle from the coast of Kent to London. In the end 58 Luftwaffe aircraft were lost and 26 RAF fighters were shot down that day.
 
On September 17th Hitler postponed Sealion indefinitely and the threat of imminent invasion past. The Battle of Britain did not officially end until October 31st with the Luftwaffe switching to night attacks and daylight jabo raids. Fighter Command lost 1012 aircraft and 537aircrew killed in the 112 day battle. The Luftwaffe lost 1918 aircraft and 2662 aircrew killed in the same period.
 
This FSO will recreate the Battle of Britain with frame 1 as the battle of the convoys, frame 2 as the attack on the airfields and frame 3 as combat over London.
 
Country Percentages:

Axis 50%

Allied 50%

 
Field Assignments:
 
Axis Bishop
Allies Knight
CM Rook
 
OOB:
 
Axis (Luftwaffe):
 
Bf 109E
Bf 110C (min 20 - max 30)
He 111H (min 24 *players*)
Ju 87D (frame 1 and 2 only)
 
Allied (RAF):
 
Spitfire I (max 36)
Hurricane I
 
Special Rules and Ordnance Restrictions:
 
* All aircraft must be used by a minimum of 12 *players*.
* Allies may not go "feet dry" over the Continent. 
* Bomber formations are MANDATORY.
* Level bombers are limited to 20,000 feet.
* Axis fighters have all air-ground ordnance disabled.
* He 111 has the 20mm cannon and torpedo options disabled 
 
* ALL AIRCRAFT ARE TO BE LANDED AND THE PLAYERS TOWERED OUT BY FRAME END OR WILL BE CONSIDERED SHOT DOWN AND THE CREWS KIA.
 
Scoring:
 
Aircraft Pts

------------

Bomber = 10 pts
Dive Bomber = 10 pts
Twin Engine Fighter = 10 pts
Fighter = 5 pts
 
 
Target Pts
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Gun = 0.5 pt
Hangar = 25 pts
All Other = 3 pts
Cruiser = 50 pts
Destroyer = 25 pts
 
Survival Pts
----------
 
Landing Bonus = 2 pts
Pilot Survival Bonus = 1 pt 
 
Arena Settings:
 
- BoB40 terrain
- Fuel burn 1.0
- Icons friendly 3k/enemy 3k
- 0.3 Ack
- Fighter and Bomber warning range 42,000 (about 8 miles)
- Tower range set to 42,000 (for display only to match the above setting)
- Haze/fog full visibility (17 miles)
- Dot Radar: OFF
- Sector Radar (Bar Dar): Allied only altitude 200 feet and up with 4 minute update
- Enemy collisions on
- Friendly collisions off
- Killshooter off
- Time: 13:00 ( 1PM ) Game Clock
- Formations: On
- Formation Autopilot: On
- Bomber calibration: Automatic
- Wind: 0K-2K NO WIND 
           2K-18K W TO E - Speed 5
           18K-24K NW TO SE - Speed 10
           24K+ W TO E - Speed 15
 
Designer's Notes:
 
Design by Warloc

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