Wings of War
Wings of War: Famous Aces
Pier Giorgio Paglia
|Players||2 – 8|
|Age range||10 and up|
|Setup time||5 minutes|
|Playing time||30 minutes|
|Skill(s) required||Simultaneous action selection|
Wings of War, by Andrea Angiolino and Pier Giorgio Paglia, is a modular boardgame collection published by Nexus Editrice and dedicated to air combat. A new edition is published by Ares Games as Wings of Glory.
The games mix card game, board game, and miniature wargaming mechanics to simulate air combat in the 20th century. The first collection is dedicated to the First World War, while a second collection is about the Second World War. The air images and cover scenes are by Vincenzo Auletta, and the landscapes on the cards are by Dario Calì. The graphic design is by Fabio Maiorana. The illustrations are based on extensive historical research.
First released in Italian in 2004, the game had an official English edition by Fantasy Flight Games. Other official editions have appeared in German, Greek, French, Spanish, Dutch, Russian, Polish, Czech, Portuguese, Swedish, Finnish and Japanese, besides translations into other languages.
In 2011 the distribution of Wings of War in English was dropped by Fantasy Flight Games. Shortly thereafter Nexus announced that it was closing down. The licence to produce Wings of War (rebadged as Wings of Glory) then passed to a new Italian company, Ares Games, who now directly distributes the product in English.
Each plane is depicted on a card and has a set of maneuver cards specifically designed for it, with large arrows on them. The player controlling the plane plans his turn choosing three of the maneuver cards in sequence and putting them face down on the gaming mat. All players then reveal their first maneuver card at the same time, put it in front of the plane card and move the latter so that the little arrowhead on the rear of the plane card matches the one in front of the maneuver card. In this way, planes can then "fly" on the table or the floor. A ruler is used to see if a plane has enemy planes (cards) in his field of fire. If so, the player chooses one target that must take a damage card with a random amount of points (optional rules cover special damages too). Short range fire (up to half ruler of distance) mean two damage cards rather than one. The different planes available determine the firepower, maneuver cards available, and number of damage points able to be sustained before being eliminated and are based on that planes historic performance.
Basic sets and booster packs
The first two sets are Wings of War - Famous Aces (Nexus Editrice 2004) and Wings of War - Watch your back! (Nexus Editrice 2005). The first one includes a selection of fighters with personal colors of the most renowned aces of World War I: the planes are Fokker Dr.I and Albatros D.Va for Central Empires and SPAD XIII, Sopwith Camel and Sopwith Triplane for the Allied. WoW - Watch your back! adds other fighters and some two-seaters allowing bombings, recon missions and other special scenarios. WoW- Burning Drachens (Nexus Editrice 2005) is the newest set in the World War I series. It includes drachens, AA guns, machine guns, air-to-air Le Prieur rockets, trench systems, and optional altitude rules. WoW- Burning Drachens includes rules for solo play as well as multi-player dogfights, bombing runs, and strafing or recon missions.Each set allows 2/4 people to play; the number can increase using more than one set.
The fourth set that was released in 2010, Wings of War - Flight of the Giants adds heavy bombers into the game. However, it is not a stand-alone game and serves as an extension to any previous WoW game.
The two booster packs Wings of War - Recon Patrol and Wings of War - Top Fighters (both Nexus Editrice 2006) add new plane models to the game, giving additional maneuvre decks, but can only be used by owners of at least one set. The Wings of War - Immelmann booster and Wings of War- Dogfight booster allow players to use other famous planes such as Max Immelmann's Fokker Eindecker.
Wings of War - Dawn of War (Nexus Editrice 2007) allows 2/6 players to engage in dogfights with the most famous fighters and ground-attack planes of 1939-1943. The game system is quite different from the one of the World War I collection, so it can not be mixed with other sets. "Squadron" booster packs for the World War II series are Wings of War- Eagles of the Reich and Wings of War- Flying Legend.
Wings of War Miniatures
Wings of War Miniatures adds war game miniatures to Wings of War by introducing model airplanes on 1/144 scale that are used in place of the airplane cards. The miniatures are made of pre-painted pewter and plastic and come with a gaming base and a set of maneuver cards. A number of different miniatures have been created, and serve as an extension to Wings of War - Famous Aces, Wings of War - Watch your back!, and Wings of War - Burning Drachens.