First, choose a Bomber. The list of available targets varies depending on the Base and Bomber Model of the plane you select. (Base and model can’t be changed.) A target may be found on more than one list — e.g., Berlin — but if it isn’t on the list you can’t order an attack against it. Note that corrections to the target map and gazetteer have been made for this emulator. (See the B24 Flying BoxCar variant for details.) There are five different sets of targets:
|B-17 YB-40||B-24||Avro Lanc.||Notes|
|B-17: QotS||X||The original target list only. B-17s and YB-40s flying from England automatically use this target list.|
|Expanded Target List||X||A B-17 variant from “The General” (Volume 23, #5). B-17s and YB-40s flying from England use this target list if the Expanded Target List option is checked. The list includes the original list, plus many additional targets.|
|Flying Boxcar||X||A web-published B-24 variant that takes place in Northern Europe. B-24s flying from England automatically use this target list.|
|Battle of Berlin||X||The Lancaster variant that takes place in Northern Europe, from “The General” (Volume 28, #4). Lancasters automatically use this target list.|
|15th Air Force||X||X||The Southern Europe variant, from “The General” (Volume 23, #1). B-17s and B-24s flying from Italy automatically use this target list.|
Next, choose a Target. You may view the target list, and either choose one yourself or click the [RANDOM] button next to the target list and have a target chosen from the list for you. If you don’t like the mission that was chosen for you, click random again.
Next, choose a Month and Year. You may view the date lists, and either choose one yourself or click the [RANDOM] button next to the date lists and have a date chosen from the list for you. If you don’t like the date that was chosen for you, click [RANDOM] again. Note that 8th Air Force and Lancaster missions may only be flown from August, 1942, through May, 1945. 15th Air Force missions may only be flown from November, 1943, through May, 1945.
Next, choose the Squadron‘s position within the group, and the bomber’s position within the Formation. You may view the position lists, and either choose one yourself or click the [RANDOM] button next to the position list and have a position chosen from the list for you. If you don’t like the position that was chosen for you, click [RANDOM] again.
Next, choose your Options:
- Expanded Target List: See above. This is the only option selected by default.
- Random Events: Allow mid-air collisions, extremely good luck, etc. Optional rule 18.0 from the original B17QotS rule book.
- Mechanical Failures: The bomber is subject to random mechanical gremlins, such as supercharger failure. From the “Theater Modifications” article in “The General” (Volume 23, #1).
- Time Period Specific Formations: During the initial month of the strategic bombing campaign, August, 1942, American groups flew a loose 12-plane formation. From September, 1942, through March, 1943, they flew a tighter, but still not ideal formation. From April, 1943, onwards they flew using the classic defensive box. Ibid.
- Formation Defensive Gunnery: The tighter defensive box is also more likely to produce friendly fire casualties. Ibid.
- Evade Flak: Prior to April, 1943, when COL LeMay took command of the 305th Bomb Group, American bombers took evasive action, during their bomb runs, to avoid flak. The bomber is less likely to take damage and hit the target. Ibid.
- Alternate Weather: Allow for thunder storms. (The alternate landing weather is not used as the standard rules already provide for bad landing weather.) Ibid.
- Crew Experience: Inexperienced crews are more likely to miss the target and have accidents, while veteran crews are less likely to experience such mishaps. Lead crews make more accurate bomb runs. Ibid.
- German Fighter Pilot Skill: Allow enemy pilots to be Aces, the standard veteran, or flight cadets. Optional rule 20.0 from the original B17QotS rule book.
- JG-26 Stationed in Abbeville: The most famous, and dangerous, German fighter group — the “Abbeville Kids” — will oppose missions to northern France and the Low Countries. From Bruce Peckham’s JG-26 variant.
- Ju-88s Used as Fighters: Allow the enemy to use Ju-88 medium bombers as heavy fighters. From Bruce Peckham’s Ju-88 variant.
- Extra Ammo in Bomb Bay: If the bomber is a YB-40, and it is flying a short mission (zones 2-6), then it may carry extra ammo in the bomb bay. (On longer missions, by default, the YB-40 carries extra fuel in the bomb bay.)
- Unescorted: No friendly fighter cover in any zone. The option may be used with any model bomber. Fly an unescorted B-17C or E to simulate early raids in August and September, 1942.
- Red Tail Angels: This option allows for the chance of 15th Air Force bombers being escorted by the 332nd Fighter Group, the famous Tuskegee Airmen, which did not lose a single bomber to German fighters. If this option and unescorted are both chosen, then the mission will be unescorted.
- Log Speed: Adjust the scroll speed of the mission log. The default is 2, which provides a quick, but smooth and readable scroll. Values may be 0 (very quick) to 10 (one second, very slow).
Finally, either click either the Fly Mission or Save buttons. Fly Mission is self-explanatory; “Save” saves an HTML file of the mission parameters.
- Restricting a bomber’s early missions to milk run targets was a gamey decision by B17QotS’s original designers. As anyone who has played the Memphis Belle knows, its first three missions were to Brest and St. Nazaire (twice), both heavily defended u-boat targets. To reflect historical reality, the original target list referred to above duplicates the G-3 Missions 11-25 table. If you wish to restrict an inexperienced crew to easy targets, simply select the easy target from the target list.
- Likewise restricting a bomber’s squadron to being the middle squadron on early missions. An inexperienced crew would not be the lead bomber in the squadron, but a crew’s experience did not dictate the location of the squadron. So, if you wish to restrict an inexperienced crew to the middle squadron, simply select “Middle” from the squadron list.
|Crew Assignment||Generate Mission||Group Maintenance|