Thursday, April 11, 2013
J is for....JET AGE!
It was suggested we toss some of our new found cash at the sponsors. Imperial Hobbies had a booth there and I stumbled upon "Check Your 6! Jet Age!" I sorta caved in, as I'd been hunting on picoarmor site a while ago, and damn me if there aren't a lot of planes available for cheap there. I also greatly enjoyed playing in some Check your 6 games held by John W at the Trumpeter nights.
My latest acquisition focuses on the period of Aerial combat from 1946 - 1988 where dog fighting still happened. Later than that and improving sensors and missile technology has removed the sort of close in maneuvering for cannon shot (or missile) that the game models. The author notes that he believes that it is the man not the machine (quoting test pilot Chuck Yeager) that has some of the greatest effects on combat performance. The system neatly models this by giving better pilots more flexibility to alter their moves. All move plotting occurs secretly, the reveals and moves occur in order of worst pilots (and in sub order of worst position lower altitude, down sun, national characteristics). The better pilots then can slightly alter the moves they plotted so that they move after their opponent, and can change allowing them much greater latitude in movement. Tailing a plane forces the opponent to reveal some of his movement information during the plotting phase.
The greatest barrier in my mind for this game is going to be functional flight stands. John W has some great stands with ball joints on top (so the models can be tipped to reflect their move), an indicator for air speed, and the brass rods are swapped out to represent different heights. I find the brass rod changes kill a lot of time though (it's also a bit challenging to read the heights on the rods sometimes as they are thin diameter and a bit worn). I do really like the visual representation of different heights. I'm contemplating using legos with numbers on each block to represent the height. I have a sample pack of planes heading over from picoarmour so I will be able to assess if this is going to work soon.
Here's a nice review of a game (no relation to myself) from Brian Cantwell.
Hopefully I can get some pictures up in the not too distant future (although likely after this month).