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"Portable Air Wargame: Further Missions" Topic

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08 Sep 2019 11:24 a.m. PST
by Editor in Chief Bill

  • Changed title from "Portable Air Wargame - Further Missions" to "Portable Air Wargame: Further Missions"Removed from Ultramodern Warfare (2009-present) board
  • Changed starttime from
    07 Sep 2019 10:23 p.m. PST
    07 Sep 2019 10:24 p.m. PST

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Whirlwind07 Sep 2019 10:23 p.m. PST

I have been playing through more 1940 scenarios using a version of the air warfare rules from Bob Cordery's Developing the Portable Wargame book. Please see the following links for more:

Battle Escort:

Spitfire Against Ju88s:

A Low-Altitude Dogfight:


Just Jack Supporting Member of TMP08 Sep 2019 4:16 p.m. PST


Did I say seven? Make that nine, I didn't realize there were two more in this batch. And damn you, man! You're making me think about buying more rules… And I'm really liking the scenarios from the boardgame; keep playing and posting, and I'll copy them down ;)

A question regarding the rules: are there spotting rules?

Regarding the bomber escort mission, I was surprised to see how well the British did against all those Messerschmitts, good on them!

Regarding the Spit vs Ju-88s, make that ten! Anyway, rather than re-roll misses from 6 o'clock, why not just lower the 'to hit' number (mine hit on 3+ from 6 o'clock)?

Regarding Low Altitude Dogfights, 10% of the time, eh? Very impressive. Certainly the results have been plausible. I'm just not a big fan of re-rolls; to me, might as well just give them extra dice to roll in the original go. And why did the Germans break off in the second fight of this scenario? Seemed like they were okay in terms of losses/damage, and in decent position on Deere and Allen.

In any case, pretty cool man, thanks for sharing!


Whirlwind08 Sep 2019 9:37 p.m. PST

Hi Jack, and thanks.

No spotting rules in the Portable Air Wargame. There are spotting rules in the Achtung! Spitfire boardgame the scenarios are taken from so they may get incorporated in some form at some point. Their basic premise is that spotting determines the starting positions of the sides (so interceptors that spot first have better chance of bouncing the opposition; escort fighters that spot first can detach some aircraft to intercept the defending fighters before they get near the bombers. And so on.)

Yes, the Hurricanes were shooting very well in that game. Lucky dice mainly! Of course, the Hurricanes are not that much worse than 109s in this context, plus the 109s were mainly aiming for the Battles.

I might change the hit numbers for various angles (and I have done so for frontal deflection shots) – further experimentation ahead. The advantage of re-rolls is purely a simplicity and speed one – it is a marginally faster mechanic because you have to remember less stuff. In most games the difference is too marginal to justify IMHO but perhaps not in this game since maintaining the speed is almost everything. But your point is well made and I will playtest some variants in the next games.

The way that Bob's morale rules work is that a force has to break off if they suffer more than a third of their total damage points in whatever order. So for the 109s in that game that was 7 points (a third of 5 x 4, rounded up). When the first 109 went down, that is 4 points gone straight away, so the Spits only needed to cause 3 additional points of damage to cause the 109s to break off. What I need to do is find some way of graphically representing the accumulated damage points for the AARs (I just use bit of scrap paper to record damage points and energy chits at the moment) to make that clearer.

Just Jack Supporting Member of TMP09 Sep 2019 2:44 p.m. PST


Yeah, I am a fan of spotting rules in general, though I'm not using any in my current games with the "Battle of Britain" rules. Trying to keep them simple and quick. Having said that, I don't know that you need spotting rules as the scenarios you're playing seem to take care of that. I.e., the game is beginning at the point one or both have spotted the other, and if one hasn't spotted the other, he's about to be bounced, and then he'll know where the enemy is!

I'm definitely a big believer in differing firing factors for different angle/deflection shots. And I think re-rolls are fine as a mechanic in terms of their effectiveness, I'm just not a fan of them. I just feel like 'why make two die rolls when you could make just one.'

That's very interesting about the morale, and particularly so as a function of percentage of overall damage points, rather than planes lost.

Well, I went and did it, ordered "Developing the Portable Wargame." Thanks, John!


Whirlwind09 Sep 2019 3:23 p.m. PST

I'm definitely a big believer in differing firing factors for different angle/deflection shots. And I think re-rolls are fine as a mechanic in terms of their effectiveness, I'm just not a fan of them. I just feel like 'why make two die rolls when you could make just one.'

I accept the challenge…next game will vary the target numbers rather than use re-rolls! (with the possible exception of a re-roll for ace pilots. I'll see how I feel).

Just Jack Supporting Member of TMP09 Sep 2019 4:57 p.m. PST

No challenge, brother, was just expressing my personal preference. I'm more comfortable with dice roll modifiers, but that's just me.


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