I had an interesting mission the other day. My current "serious" campaign is with RFC 46, flying Sopwith Pups, at the moment June 1917.
I was part of a 4 member patrol behind enemy lines, me being not the leader but one with higher rank. Just when we were about to cross the lines, I have seen to my left, relatively close a single speck. Allied archie indicated that it was an enemy aircraft, flying back to his lines. He was rather close, but my leader decided to continue and didn't bother attacking him. So I did something very "gamish", what I usually never do in serious campaigns, no matter how much it's tempting. I thought, let's cache him quickly, he's alone, and so I simply left my formation. Usually I only attack if the flight leader says so.
My flight continued it's way over the lines while I attacked the enemy over nomansland, who turned out to be an Albatros DV. We twisted and turned and fought for quite a while, and all that carried us deeper into enemy territory. I managed to land some hits and so did he. He then tried to escape by doing several split-S and continued deeper into his lines, flying quite low, so I decided to let him go, since I didn't want to expose myself to enemy groundfire.
I have lost my flight completely, so I circled about, trying to gain some height again and then to fly home. Just out of curiosity I did another thing what I usually don't do. I activated Labels to check where my flight is. To my horror I saw 3 RFC 46 labels fighting 4 Albatros DV labels. They were about 12 km away and I couldn't have seen it anyway if not activating labels. Flying to their aid would therefore be cheating, so I went back towards my lines.
Over the enemy trenches I got suddenly attacked by 3 other Albatros scouts. It was a desperate fight, trying to reach my lines. I was shot up pretty badly and only got away because I went down quite low and flew towards a friendly balloon. The groundfire scared the pursueing enemies away, so I was able to get home more or less in one piece, whistling windshield and shaky control. From my flight luckily nobody fell, but one was badly wounded, crashlanding in nomansland, another lightly wounded. All those virtual guys who have 100+ missions and flighthours and whom I know pretty good, having some sort of "friendship" with them.
What have I learned, or better, got reminded again?
1. If I wouldn't have left my formation, we would have run into the enemies on equal terms. Maybe there wouldn't have been a fight in the first place, maybe no crashlanded and wounded friends.
2. if I wouldn't have left my formation, I wouldn't be jumped at alone by 3 enemies.
3. Always obey your flightleader
4. stick with your formation, like a pack of wolves
5. In real life I would probably get court martialed for disobeying the flightleader and jeopardizing the patrol
6. An easy trap to do such things when thinking gamish
Last edited by Creaghorn; 03/24/17 10:26 PM.