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rjw

scramble mission flying DFW C.V.

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I just started a career as "Bomber Heinz" with FA(A) 289b based in Sierentz Alsace. On my second flight I drew a scramble mission with three other DFW's in my flight. Six Nieuports were overhead and I presumed looking for a fight. I led the flight off but elected not to follow the flight plan as I thought it would expose us too much. I had the flight circle the airfield at low altitude (100 to 150 feet) in hopes that the airfield anti-arcraft would aid us. Since the airfield is very closely surrounded by high ground in the form of hills I expected the low flight would protect our under bellies from attack since it would be difficult to fly in under us. We kept circling but the Nieups wouldn't engage! Smart boys those brits!

 

I eventually had to terminate the mission as it was a stalemate and fuel was running low.

 

This was my first experience flying the DFW and I was wondering if any of you have had similar experience and what you might have done in a scramble facing 6 Nieups

 

Regards to all

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Scramble mission with an artillery spotter squadron (FA(A) means Flieger-Abteilung, Artillerie, in English Flying Detachment, Artillery) makes no sense, so I won't fly such missions. I hope WOFF will have a better system for two-seater careers.

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.

 

Yuppers, same here. The scrambles are completely unrealistic, in particular when you are in a B/R unit. And Robert, you are now in my most favorite of favorite regions to serve at the virtual front - the Alsace. B-E-A-U-tiful.

 

.

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Hmmm;

 

I accept your views with respect to the squadron designation. I will look for another bomber unit in the Alsace area, as I agree with Lou about the beauty of the area!

 

Tnx

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Good Morning rjw, I've flown that mission 3 times. Workshop settings change things; Ai skill, ground gunnery, regional air activity were the ones I tinkered with

 

1st time I was slow in taking off and didn't clear the field before my plane was crippled and forced down. medium density setting, aggressive AI, easy ground gunnery. My pilot was hospitalized.That pilot was later captured for the duration of the war and I restarted the campaign with aother pilot.

 

2nd time I set density to light, Ai to historical, and ground gunnery to hard. Flew in the same manner you described with the same result.

 

3rd time I elected to refly last mission and changed the regional air activity to heavy. When in the briefing room I noticed the "air start" box and decided to see what difference that would make. First and only time I've used it. What a furball lay ahead of me. Many, many nieuports were already engaged with bombers and albatrosses (albatri??) at varius levels of elevation. I was able to destroy 1 nieuport and cripple 2 more before being damaged and forced to land at my airfield.

 

That was the only time I've used the air start. I don't think I'll do so again. That scramble mission made no sense and I just wanted to see how setting could impact it.

 

Since then I've reformated my ssd and upgraded my windows OS. Didn't save any pilots. Haven't started a pilot in that campaign yet, but will do so. Not sure how I'll handle the situation when it arrives.

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I agree with Lou here about the Alsace - the region is most beautiful for just flying around!

It is ideal for beginners too, because other than Flanders it is not the "hot spot" of air fighting.

This beginner could slowly move further north with growing experience.

 

Ernst Udet took that way more or less.

He started with KEK Habsheim (KEK = Kampfeinsitzer-Kommando = single seat fighter command),

changed to FFA 68 Ensisheim (FFA = Feldfliegerabteilung = field flyer detachment) - both down

in Alsace, near the Rhine river.

FFA 68 became Jasta 15, with which Udet went further north, to La Selve in the Marne region,

which is also quite beautiful, and still not the same "meat grinder" as Flanders.

 

In OFF Udet is with FFA 68 from the beginning, because they are neighbouring units.

Another nice Staffel is Jasta 32, which begins in Morchingen in northern Alsace, and later moves

to the Verdun sector, before they go north to the Marne region.

 

I'm sure Lou could recommend some units for the Entente side in Alsace.

Edited by Olham

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The problem with Alsace in P3 is the total lack of French two-seaters. They have some units there that were equipped with Sopwith Strutters for some months in 1917, but for most of the war there's nothing there but Nupes and SPADs. Flanders is the most developed region in OFF, so in my opinion, it's there that you can have the most satisfying careers on both sides of the front.

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I love scrambles. They may not be realistic but you are protecting your home turf and that should get you red under the collar and ready to fight. You're not expected to win and if you do down a few it will be even more glorious. I do tend toward the aggressive approach in OFF so I always fight it out on a scramble but try to stay low especially if the odds are against me - which they typically are. If you do get damaged you could usually coax your craft down without getting hurt too badly or not at all. I try to keep my fight right next to the airfield so if I have to land I have some flat even ground. Usually the second I take some bullets on a scramble I level her off and get right to the ground.

 

I don't fly 2-seaters that often though so that could change your thinking a bit. The DFW maneuvers pretty well so you should have a fighting chance but I think what you did under the circumstances was the smartest think rjw.

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I follow the "Settings for Realistic Missions" and so I skip all the scramble missions, and specially if flying two seaters !

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Thanks folks;

 

I appreciate all the feedback. As usual it is always useful!

 

Cheers!

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Bletchley and Buddy1998's mission mods (included in OFFice) remove Scramble missions for two-seaters. In the next release, your OFFbase adjutant won't assign Scramble missions to Flieger-Abteilung, Artillerie squadrons either. Very simple rule, drops missions where

("sweep" = mission/type) and (found? find squad/name "FA(A)")

 

Open to suggestion for other rules to make mission planning smarter and more realistic.

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German squadrons with the abbreviation AFA (Artillerie-Flieger-Abteilung) were also artillery spotter units.

 

Unfortunately you cannot find out the roles of French and British two-seater units from their names like that. It would be great if the historical role of a squadron, escadrille, and Staffel / Abteilung were reflected in the mission types generated by the sim. But then flying in some artillery spotter squadron would be boring if you couldn't actually do their job, ie. direct arty fire. This is something that I hope to see included in WOFF.

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According to the WIKI-site "Deutsche Luftstreitkräfte" the shortage for "Artillerie-Fliegerabteilung" was "AFlA" (where the third letter is not a capital "I" but a small "L".

For all who are interested in the Deutsche Luftstreitkräfte, and who can understand enough German:

 

http://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Luftstreitkr%C3%A4fte_%28Deutsches_Kaiserreich%29#Abk.C3.BCrzungen

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I see what you mean - could be that the author made a mistake there?

This would be a question for our historians.

 

Cause here is an exchange between Frontflieger and Freese (who seems to have quite some knowledge too),

and Freese keeps writing "Afla":

 

http://www.theaerodrome.com/forum/2001/11882-preiss-winter-died-sept-14-1915-a.html

Edited by Olham

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It just seems so strangely illogical. F stands for Flieger in all the other forms. For example Fliegerabteilung - FA, not FlA. Festungsfliegerabteilung - FestFA, not FestFlA.

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Yes, that's true. I just checked several postmark stamps on postcards, and they all wrote it:

"Artillerie-Flieger-Abteilung", which would short be AFA.

 

To create even more confusion: do you know, why there are

 

1. AFA (Artillerie-Flieger-Abteilung)

as well as

2. FA(A) (Flieger-Abteilung (Artillerie) )

 

???

Edited by Olham

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Ah, okay - I see, you know more about it than I do - shame on me.

But I'm only just an Albatros-man...

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German squadrons with the abbreviation AFA (Artillerie-Flieger-Abteilung) were also artillery spotter units.

 

AFA was the older name. They became FA(A) as the war progressed.

 

Thanks! Makes more sense to go with the unit name rather than the squadron name given how the units and roles change over time:

("sweep" = mission/type) and (true? any [
   found? find squad/unit "FA(A)"
   found? find squad/unit "AFA"
])

 

So for example FFA 9b will get scrambles while fielding Eindeckers, but no longer when it becomes FA(A) 296b. Whereas while the unit names progresses from AFA 209 to FA(A) 209 its role doesn't change.

 

What about MFFA 1? Presumably this stands for Marine Feldflieger-Abteilung, but the included graphic says Marine Flieger-Abteilung (Artillerie) (should be MFAA?).

Edited by Lothar of the Hill People

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Yes, MFFA stands for Marine-Feldflieger-Abteilung. I don't know much about their activities. Unfortunately there seems to be very little published material available on German naval aviation in WW1.

Edited by Hasse Wind

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I was curious about MFFA missions in the OFF campaign. Do they attack shipping? Is there shipping to attack?

 

Flew that scramble mission again. Ai aggression was historical and I was not flight leader because I wanted to observe and experiment some. Odd thing; this time approx 9 sopwith strutters were opposing our 5 DFW. The DFWs flew a slowly expanding tringle while gaining height. The sops didn't engage and remained very high. I steadily gained altitude and just waited for them to engage. It was an odd sort of circle dance with no one taking the lead. After approx 35 minutes with no engagement I decided to dive and target the leader of the primary flight of strutters. Four quick bursts sent him into flames and all hell broke loose.

 

The tangle of two seaters had begun! I regained the altitude advantage and hit the "h" button a few times. My squad headed my way to help but were at an altitude disadvantage, I dove on the tail plane of the primary flight of stutters, killing the tail gunner. (love hearing the confirmation yell/scream/ouch sound), and then blew off a the lower left outer wing. Keeping my speed I flew towards my 4 squad members that were climbing to help. Just before meeting them I pulled hard back on the stick, gained altitude, and flew a tad off to the left waiting to see how the AI engaged each other. It wasn't like a typical dogfight at first, they seemed to remain more in a defensive/tight formation and not seperate into individual dogfights.

 

While all this is going on the other flight of strutters is still not engaging and flying a LARGE diameter circular pattern at very high altitude ove the area.

 

As always the fight looses altitude and now the snow and wind increase in intensity, it is January. I stay out of the mix for a bit and watch the 4 on 3 engagement. It didn't last long. I'm guessing that is because the Ai was set to historical, I don't know. So now I have the altitude and dive on the 3 strutters from the 11 O'clock. Three sort burts into the first and it is on flames with the crew jumping, couldn't target the second, put two short burts into the third causing the engine to smoke heavily.

 

While all this in going on in the virtual OFF world, the predicted thunderstorms have arrived in the real world. Lilly, my petite beagle has jumped into my lap forcing me to pause the game. She is a shivering shambles of the woodchuck kille and rabbit hunter she is real life. Now her now adult lab mix pups father by "go home stupid black dog" , Gunner and Bella, are howling as loud as they can. Lilly licks my face and shivers uncontrolably as I hug her and say, "Good Girl, your Safe".

 

Then the power goes out. Lucky for me I purchased a "UPS" a few years ago. It's basically a power back-up for the PC. Saved me from big issues and even let me continue to fly IL2 with the RAF_74 back in the day as the internet connection is landline dialup which isn't always shut down by a power outage. The computer is running my hounds want IMMEDIATE attention and the power is off and I'm playing OFF. I howled "Pass the ammuniton and praise the Lord", Lilly quit shivering and joined in and we all howled. Then I loudly authoritely told them to STIFFLE, went to the fireplace mantle, took down some oil lamps and light them. Feed the dogs some "treats" made from their bring home kills of woodchucks, possoms, coons, and beaver.

 

Now I could go back to the game. Decided just to land at my airbase which was very close. Cut the engine early and just glided down. This bird can glide. Shut down my computer, ate some of the beaver jerky, lit a pie and cracked open a homebrew.

 

There is another thread going on about being late to the party. I'm late too, but it's the best party I've seen in years. This party doesn't require high speed internet, and I can even play it in a power outage with my hound dogs in this rural hunting cabin that is my home.

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I was in the process of cleaning up my grammar and typing when Mozilla crashed. such is life on dial-up.

 

Thunderstorms are in the distance now. I went to town and purchased flour and surar amoungst many other things on the list. The Rhubarb is up and I'm craving a pie. Too early for fresh strawberries yet. Gunner left me his morning kill on the porch. A large female woodchuck. I'll skin it, bone it, jerk the meat, and have treats.

 

WOW! Crazy thunder and the difference from sight to sound is decreasing.

 

Gotta love spring storms!

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As far as I know, the MFFA's operated over the front just like all the other FFA's. The FFA units were under army formations, while the MFFA units belonged to the navy. There were other units that were used over the North Sea, and they had seaplanes and other equipment better suited to naval warfare.

 

The MFFA and MFJ formations were the German equivalent of the British Royal Naval Air Service.

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