Friday, 21 April 2017

Those magnificent men in their flying machines.

Early in 2016 a Friday night game at New Buckenham introduced me to Wings of Glory by Ares Games, specifically the 1/144th scale WWI version. Given my interest in aviation, the simplicity of the game mechanism and the pre-painted ready to play aircraft I was hooked. It was then I discovered the history of the game, moving from one manufacturer, Nexus Games where it was called Wings of War, to it's present location with Ares Games. The good news was all the rules and playing pieces were compatible with each other, the bad was that stock of gaming pieces was normally quite low  and therefore could be expensive on the second hand resale market.

I then found and joined the Wings of Glory Aerodrome forum which has proved to be a goldmine. The levels of knowledge, skill, friendship and outright generosity displayed by the membership is outstanding. An enquiry about the sizes of basic, but hard to get, game component pieces, with a view to making my own led to me receiving offers of spares and surplus parts from several members all at no cost. I was amazed by this. So now armed with some playing pieces it was time to get some aeroplanes.

I was after Royal Aircraft Factory (RAF) SE5a aircraft which of course were one of the uber rare original Nexus models and was available occasionally for stupid money on a certain auction site. So plan B and at last years Salute show I bought three metal SE5a kits from Red Eagle Miniatures which are apparently the old Skytrex range. These were constructed, with some tips from the forum and painted up as aircraft from 56 Squadron RFC/RAF.

Since then several "official" aircraft have been purchased from various sources and many game played including several against my wife, one of which I finally won. I have also met up with forum members to help demo the game at a couple of wargaming shows and will be doing so again this weekend at Salute, whilst trying to avoid the temptation of buying into the WWII version of the game.

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