|Image from here:|
MIG Alley was the nickname for the Northwest corner of Korea, where the Yalu River enters into the Yellow Sea. This was the area where Communist MIG-15s tended to scrap with USAF Sabres for control of the skies. Here, high above Korea was the site of many of the first Jet-vs-Jet battles in history.
The Korean War officially began June 25th, 1950. The initial air battles were fought between the North Korean Air Force using old WWII era planes, and the South and their allies. The USAF used later WWI propeller driven aircraft and some early Jet aircraft.
On November 1st, 1950 the first MIG-15 jet fighters attacked a flight of USAF F-51 Mustang fighter-bombers. Later that day, the first jet vs. jet combat took place between the MIg-15 and the F-80 Shooting Star. The USAF's early jets were inadequate for the task, and soon the USAF was resupplying and using the new F-86 Sabre to counter the Communist threat.
The MIG-15's during the early phase of the war were secretly being operated by the Soviet Unions highly skilled 64th Fighter Aviation Corp. While the Soviet pilots were engaging in the air, they were also starting to build up the North Korean and Chinese pilots to eventually rotate in and replace them.
As the F-86 began to appear in the skies over North Korea Mid-December the stage was set for a clash for control of the Skies over North Korea between the MIG-15 and the F-86 Sabre.
After several play tests, and getting feedback from others I made a couple of BIG changes to these rules. The first big change was to remove the "action economy" element of the game. In the old version, all pilots took action in the Rookie Phase, Experienced Pilots and Aces in the Experienced Phase, and Aces only in the Ace phase. This proved to be unpopular as an Ace pilot in a Prop plane could go faster than a rookie in a Mig. Therefore, I removed this and instead gave the different levels of pilots the ability turn or change altitudes differently. Rookies could only initiate a turn at the start of their move OR change altitude, experienced can at any point OR change altitude, while aces can change altitude and turn freely.
I also made a bit of a change with Wingmen and formations. Therefore, you can better imitate the true Finger Four formation or pairs of aircraft working in tandem on the table. A formation has the Wing Leader activate first, and it auto actives the wingman who must maneuver the exact same way as the Wing Leader.
Finally, I modified Detection so it was a bit harder to detect some planes right off the bat. This allowed you to "sneak" them in and deploy them closer to the enemy. I did this by changing it from a straight d6 to a d6+Turn mechanic. I then increased the Detection number of all aircraft. It is possible to detect a Jet fighter on turn 1, but it is unlikely. Let's see what these changes did to the game.
I intend on giving both of these changes a try today.Sortie:
This time, I am purposely re-creating a playtest battle I posted previously. As such, it will mirror the set-up of that battle in order to test the key changes I made to the rules. The UN is the attacker, and the sortie will be the Combat Air Patrol.
Again, we are mirroring the original combat. The weather was determined to be clear.
Since this is a standard Combat Air Patrol in MIG Alley, no additional terrain is needed. However, we add some hills on the edges of the board, ad determine them to be difficult terrain at Low Altitude.
The board is 48MU by 48 MU and an MU equals 1 inch.
Today's battle will be using my (in)famous Paper Templates.
4 F-86 Sabres- Experienced Pilots
4 Mig-15s- Experienced Pilots
This will be a straight up dogfight between the two sides of equal points and aircraft.