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Pz8 - 1935/65 Aerial Wargame Rules

1. What You Need
1/600 aircraft models mounted on 1" hexagonal flying bases; a playing surface marked in 1" hexes; chits for Activated and Damaged aircrafts; one normal D6 and several small D6 for each player.

2. Sequence of Play
At the start of each turn, players roll one D6, the higher has Initative and can activate one of his aircrafts (two if his aircrafts are the double of his opponents, three if they are the triple, and so on). Then the other playter activates one of his aircrafts (or two, or three…), until all aircrafts are activated (end of turn).

3. Movement Points (MPs)
Each aircraft must expend at least 1/3 (rounded up) of his MPs during its activation. Aircrafts can't be activated more than one time during each turn. Aircrafts can't end their movement on one hex already occupied by another aircraft. Place one small D6 near the flying base to record the current altitude level. One activated aircraft can expend his MPs to perform the following actions:

Maneuver
MPs
Forward one
1
Forward one, descend
1
Forward one, climb
2
Slip left/right, descend
2
Forward one, turn 60 degree/1 hex facing
2
Forward one, climb, turn 180 degree/3 hex facing
4 (3 if biplane)

4. Tailing
If one aircraft is "tailed" by another enemy aircraft on its rear hex, flying in the same direction, it must be activated before other, non "tailed" aircraft(s). If two or more aircraft are "tailed", the player can choose which activate first. In the example, the red aircraft is "tailing" the black aircraft:

5. Firing
Firing is done after the movement, and before another aircraft is activated. Target must be within the firing arc and at the same altitude level, if targeted by frontal (fixed) weapons; at the same on one higher altitude level, if targeted by rear (flexible) weapons; see firing arc diagrams. Aircrafts do not block line of sight. Select a target and roll a D6:

Range
1
2
3
4
To Hit
4-6
5-6
5-6
6

-1 if the firing aircraft changed direction 180 during that activation
-1 it the target is one level higher (rear / flexible weapons only)
-1 for Green pilot / gunman
+1 for Veteran pilot / gunman

If the target is hit, the Attacker rolls a D6 + Attack Factor, the Target rolls a D6 + Defence Factor. If the results are equal, no damage occurs. If the Attacker scores +1 or +2, the Target is Damaged: immediately halves his MPs (round up); permanently subtracts -1 to hit; permanently subtracts -1 to its maximum altitude (must dive as its next first action, if required). If already Damaged, it's Destroyed. If the Attacker scores +3 or more, the Target is Destroyed. In addition, if the Target is not Destroyed, can immediately fire back to the Attacker, but subtracts -1 to hit.

6. Factors

  • 1 MP for each 100 Km/h of speed
  • 1 Attack Factor for single MG
  • 2 Attack Factors for multiple MGs
  • 3 Attack Factors for MGs and cannon
  • 4 Attack Factors for multiple cannons
  • 1-3 Defence Factors depending on structure, speed, manouvrability
  • 1 Altitude Level for each 3000 meters

7. Sample Statistics

Aircraft
MPs
Attack
Defense
Altitude
CR42
4
2
1
3
Gladiator
4
2
1
3
Hurricane
5
3
2
3
Spitfire
6
3
2
4
Me 109
6
3
2
3
Bf 110
5
3 (f) 1 (r)
3
3
A6M Zero
5
3
2
3
F4U Corsair
6
3
2
3
Me 262
8
4
3
4
Meteor
9
4
3
4
Mig 15
10
4
3
5
F-86 Sabre
11
3
3
5

8. Firing Arcs (Frontal and Rear)

9. Campaign Rules
Players take one Squadron of pilots, that can be "Green" "Average" or "Veteran". Each pilot has a fighter plane. The campaign is a series of short battles (6 turns on a 22x28 hexes board) with the objective of shooting down the enemy fighters. When a fighter is destroyed, roll one D6 for the pilot: with a 5-6 he survives and returns to the next battle, with other results he is injured / killed / captured and must be substituted by a new pilot (Green). Pilot that kill enemy planes during a game, gain one level of experience in the next encounter (i.e. they become "Average" if "Green", "Veteran" if "Average";). Damaged planes can exit the table, but can't return back for that game.

Deploy one Squadron first, all planes in adjacent hexes, touching one side of the board, around the centre of that side. Then roll another D6 to see where the other Squadron comes from (1-2 = left, 3-4 = front, 5-6 = right, around the centre too). Roll one D6 for the Altitude of each Squadron. If the result exceeds the max. Altitude allowed, use the max. Altitude (i.e. if one plane has a max. Altitude of 3, and the D6 = 4, it will start at Altitude 3). Victory conditions: kill the higher number of fighter planes, after 3 games. In case of a tie, count the number of "Veteran" pilots.

10. Solo Rules
Each plane of the solo player and of the NPO ("non playing opponent") is indicated by a playing card (example: A,K,Q,J of Hearts for the plater, A,K,Q,J of spades for the NPO). At the start of each turn, draw one card = plane activated, then another one and so on, until all planes are activated. When a plane is killed, remove its card. Shuffle the cards at the start of next turn. Ignore "Tailing" rule.

11. Designer Notes
These ultra-simple rules are intended for a very quick dogfight game or a campaign between fighter squadrons. There are not (still) rules for bombers. I use them with my 8 years old boy and with my wargaming friends when I have only half an hour for a game.

6 March 2010, Pz8