After nearly ten years on the old Web.com platform, the Indy Squadron Dispatch now has a new home on the web.
Some of the changes that readers will notice include fewer total pages on the new site. This is because the new site has a wider presentation than the old site, allowing more content to be placed on each page.
The new "Downloads" page is a better way to archive old issues of ISD and make data available to readers (such as Indy's house rules). The archiving of all known issues of ISD in digital form is a massive project that will hopefully come to fruition on this new site so that everyone can download the entire history of the Indy Squadron quickly and conveniently. It also better preserves the squadron's heritage by committing it to a digital format. The entire first decade of ISD exists only on paper at this point, but we are working on transferring all of the early paper issues into PDF format for preservation.
The menu links to the forum and Indy Squadron TV are direct and now require only one click. Also note the return of our original Indy Squadron logo created by Brian Halberstadt more than a decade ago.
Future issues of the Dispatch will appear in blog format to make more data available to the reader with less scrolling and searching.
NOTE: To view the entire issue, always click the "READ MORE" link to the lower right of this sentence! There's much more in this issue.
The 2012 calendar is now posted on the right side menu bar on the front page of the new site.
In an effort to encourage more participation in games other than Indy's two major annual events, the following rule was passed by a 6-0 vote on Feb 18, 2012:
To be eligible to compete for the title of “Indy Squadron Champion” in the Armistice Day Fits Tournament, a player must either:
- Have participated in an official Indy Squadron game in the same calendar year, not including the Red Baron Fight or the Armistice Day Fits Tournament, OR
- Establish lifetime eligibility by having previously won an Indy Squadron championship title.
2011 was a weak year for the Indy Squadron. The lack of an annual calendar was one of the primary causes, in addition to fewer issues of the Dispatch being published.
That't not entirely surprising. In some ways, it's not even a bad thing. There's an ebb and flow to hobbies like Dawn Patrol. Business, family matters and other pass times take their toll on player commitment. That's to be expected. The key is to maintain an existence during these times, and the Indy Squadron has always done that.
There were fewer issues of ISD published in 2011, but there were issues published. We played fewer games, but we still played. Our two big events - Red Baron Fight and the Armistice Day tourney - were held with solid turnouts and great enthusiasm despite a slow gaming year. We had fewer local representatives at Gen Con, but we did have some representation. It was a slow year but the organization held together and maintained its existence.
I hope the good turnouts at gaming on Feb 18 and Whosyercon are an indication of the coming year. The publication of a complete 2012 schedule should help considerably.
On February 18 the squadron held a surprisingly well-attended gaming session in addition to a brief business meeting to help organize the coming year.
Dory, Wesley, Rick, Ian, Michael, Stephen Dale, Ethan and Stephen all participated. Two games were played while Alice whipped up a delicious meal of barbecue pork with chips and salsa, which everyone enjoyed immensely.
On March 2, Rick, Ethan, Stephen Dale and Stephen attended Whosyercon, a small gaming convention based in Indianapolis. Dawn Patrol veteran George Henion is vice president of the con and it was a pleasure to see him there. Rick ran two game slots to help introduce new players to the game.
Here is Rick's game report from Whosyercon:
WhosyerCon game reports
by Rick Lacy
I signed up to run two DP events at WhosyerCon in 2012. The following are reports on the official games and the pickup games played.
Game 1: Hot August Night (8-28-1918, F Med 7:00 pm no wind/clouds)
In this game, I tried to keep it simple hoping that any new players would be able to jump in and learn quickly. The game was one of the first to start (12 noon) at the con and not many players were there yet, so I didn’t have enough for an official game. Rather than not play however, I allowed my two new players to run 2 planes each (still an unofficial game, but one that allowed most of the game situations to be illustrated). On the German side was the younger player (I forget his name unfortunately), on the Allied side was Larry, an older gentleman. It was 2 Sopwith Dolphins vs 2 D-VII (160) Fokkers.
After a brief explanation on record keeping, movement, and firing/damage, my players rolled initiative. It was Fokker/Dolphin/Fokker/Dolphin. The first Fokker pulled away slightly, leaving the first Dolphin with a side shot. The second Fokker pulled up for a tail shot, and the second Dolphin followed suit. Firing saw the only Fokker firing miss while both Dolphins hit for average damage.
The second turn saw the movement order reverse. This time however, both Fokkers teamed up on one Dolphin, causing significant damage in the right wing.
The third turn saw the movement order reverse again, but this time one of the Dolphins managed to roll snake eyes on a pilot chance, causing a critical wound to the hapless pilot. He immediately dove away from the fight, passed out 2 turns later, and crashed into the ground shortly thereafter. The remaining fight was a damaged Dolphin, a Fokker trying to get to the damaged Dolphin, and another Dolphin trying to intervene. The Fokker managed to win initiative several turns in a row and damage the fresh plane, even causing a light wound to it’s pilot, but could never make it back to the tempting target just beyond his reach. When the dice turned, the Fokker wisely chose to fly away, ending the combat.
Even though they didn’t end up with pilots, the two players seemed to enjoy the game. I’m glad I ran it. It’s always good to have people see the game played and allow new players to see how it works.
Game 2: Pickup (10-2-1917, C High, no wind/clouds)
After the first scenario, 3 other Indy Squadron members showed up while one of my new players moved to other games. A random mission was rolled and we ended up with Stephen and Larry in Alb D-Vs while Rick was in an Alb D-III vs Stephen Dale in a French SPAD V-II (150) and Ethan in a French SPAD X-III.
The first turn saw Larry move first. He moved just far enough that Rick couldn’t box up, so he opted to pull up on the side of Larry’s plane to cover him. This left Rick an unprotected target and both French planes sandwiched him. Stephen then pulled up for a top shot on Ethan. Firing resulted in average damage all around for everyone but Rick, who was fortunate in that Ethan missed him so he only took 2 points from the undergunned SPAD.
The fight continued to swirl around 13,500 ft with neither side gaining or losing much, until a pilot hit on Ethan caused him to dive out of the fight. He eventually died in a crash. Meanwhile, Ethan had managed to put a bullet into Larry, and he dove always also, to crash and die as well. Stephen Dale then wisely chose to leave rather than face Stephen and Rick alone.
Game 3: Two Seat Terror (8-28-1918, F Low, low clouds, no wind)
Two Halberstadt CL-IVs were tasked with a contact patrol, the objective to determine if the British forces currently on the offensive had forced a river crossing in their sector. As they were approaching the target, they happened to run into 2 Bristol F2.B's (275 hp) on their way to bomb the mortar unit supporting the Germans in their defense of the river. The Germans immediately dove to ground level and began their observations - each plane had to identify 2 groups of troops and then return with their data. The British opted to ignore their mission and gleefully went after the Germans rather than continue to target.
Ethan’s pilot immediately got one area identified, but Stephen was not so lucky. The Allies managed to hit both German planes slightly.
Ethan then pulled both Allies to the extreme end of the search area, leaving Stephen to make his ground observations unmolested. He identified both his search areas quickly, then started back toward Ethan. However, both Allies (having been beaten at numbers by Ethan), came back and targeted Stephen. His observer managed a HO shot at Rick through the wings for 4 hit factors (all of which went into Rick’s engine). Meanwhile, Ethan pursued Rick and pulled up for the 100 ft tail shot, exposing himself to Ricks HO observer fire. Rick hit for 3 hf, one being a light wound to Ethan’s pilot.
As Ethan had identified his second group, it was time for the Germans to leave. However, they decided that since their armorer had given them a bombload, they should use it, so they dropped them on an identified group of British soldiers, hitting them hard and dispersing an entire British platoon.
Pulling away after their bomb drops, the two Halberstadts looked like they would get home okay – until Ethan’s pilot passed out at 700 feet, both crewmen dying in the resulting crash. Rick’s pilot was awarded the kill. Stephen escaped, ending the combat.
Game 4: Pickup (12-2-1917, C Low, wind 20mph from W, no clouds)
A setup game where each side got to pick it’s own planes, the Allies had Rick flying his backup SE5a pilot while Ethan was in a Bristol 275 vs Stephen Dale in a DrI and Stephen in a Hannover. The Allies were making a bombing run on a train, and there was an additional target of a balloon at 600 feet a short distance away. Stephen moved first, then Ethan dove down for a bomb run. Stephen Dale chose to charge straight in on the Bristol, which Ethan tried to punish him for, taking a 150 foot head-on as a defensive shot (unfortunately missing and jamming his rear gun in the process). As Stephen Dale pulled up for the bottom shot, Rick’s SE dove down and targeted the DrI with a 100 foot top shot – which resulted in a pilot hit on Stephen Dale and good damage to his DrI.
Stephen Dale pulled away and climbed, but Rick followed and got a 100 foot bottom shot which apparently did significant engine damage as the DrI started smoking. Ethan completed his bomb run destroying the 2nd car in the train. Stephen pulled up, firing both the pilot's and observer's guns at Rick for average damage.
Stephen Dale chose to dive away for a landing. Rick followed Stephen to keep the pressure on him, and Ethan decided attacking the balloon solo would be a good idea. This was immediately disproven unfortunately, as he failed to surprise the balloon defenses and took 12 shots from the top in anti-aircraft fire. The resulting damage pretty much crippled him and caused the engine to catch fire, but he managed to get 3 hits on the balloon. He failed to down it however, and flew away to line up for his landing attempt. Meanwhile, Rick lost numbers to Stephen and chose to swoop by. Stephen followed but missed his shot.
Ethan missed his landing roll and crashed hard, end over end. The pilot was killed outright, but the observer lived. He was unfortunately captured. Rick chose to fly away and ended the game.
For those local players who missed the Con, you missed a fun day. We hope to see you all at the next gaming day.