House Rules for Down in Flames
Having taken a shot at simplifying the "Fighting Wings" air combat system, I felt it only fair to wreak havoc on another great air war game system -- in the case, "Down in Flames." This is an approach from the other end of the complicated-simple spectrum, as Down in Flames is a relatively simple, fast-moving game system that does an excellent job of abstracting the basics of World War II plane-on-plane combat. I have long felt, however, that the elegance of the system resulted in the aircraft having a somewhat generic feel to them. Deciding I was just the right person to clutter up these simple rules, I set to work.
I have to say that I am pleased with the result. These rules basically fell together in a couple of weeks of playing and tweaking. I hope (and believe) that I've increased the game system's feeling for air-to-air combat -- and particularly the differences in aircraft -- without loading too much on to the system.
Included below are the supplemental rules for Down in Flames (the original edition of the rules, as published by GMT games), several sheets of aircraft data, and a sheet giving information for the bombers in the "Rise of the Luftwaffe" and "Zero!" games from the Down in Flames series.
Scenarios -- A variety of scenarios that I used to play-test the supplemental rules
Aircraft Cards -- I use these cards, printed out on adhesive backed paper and mounted on card stock, as a substitute for the leader and wingman cards in the original Down in Flames game. An one half in counter of the appropriate aircraft goes in the diamond. The D20 altitude die goes in the "Altitude" box. The D6 die used to track agility cards played goes in the "Agility" box. Any spare counter can be used to indicate whether the aircraft is damaged or has run out of cannon ammo.
Bf 109s -- Aircraft data sheets for a variety of Bf 109 fighters
Fw 190s -- Aircraft data sheets for a number of Fw 190 fighter types
Imperial Japanese Army Fighters -- Data sheets for fighter aircraft of the Imperial Japanese Army
Imperial Japanese Navy Fighters -- Data Sheets for Imperial Japanese Navy fighter aircraft
Spitfires -- Data sheets for a number of different Spitfire models
Other RAF Fighters -- Data sheets on fighters from Hawkers, as well as a few other RAF aircraft
USAAF Fighters -- Data sheets for fighter of the US Army Air Force
USN Fighters -- US Navy Fighter data sheets
Miscellaneous Aircraft -- Aircraft from the Rise of the Luftwaffe game not included in the data sheets above, and a few additional German aircraft
IJN and IJA Strike Aircraft -- Dive and torpedo bombers of the Japanese Imperial armed forces
USN and USMC Strike Aircraft -- Dive and torpedo bombers used by the US Navy and Marines
French Fighters -- French fighter data sheets
Italian Fighters -- Fighter aircraft of the Regia Aeronautica
Soviet Fighters -- Data sheets for Soviet fighters