Wing Leader

Wing Leader is a side-view WWII air combat game with counters representing squadrons or flights.

Wing Leader is produced by GMT Games.

I like Wing Leader because it differentiates aircraft in a simple but effective way, emphasises the importance of aces and crew training, and gives realistic loss rates.

Its rules are relatively simple (but subtle) and games can be played in a couple of hours.
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Modifications for play at a games club

I have been playing with multiple gamers at my local club and found several tweaks made the game operate much more successfully when played this way.

Bigger board


I drew and printed on paper an A0 version of the board. This has rectangles that are 45 mm x 40 mm. This larger size reduces the need for the Battle Display as you can fit more counters in the rectangles. It also enables the players to spread out round the table.

Full sized cloud markers


These are based on those by The3Furies, as detailed on Boardgamegeek.com.

Card strips, of varying lengths, are used to represent the clouds, rather than the smaller counters. These are less obtrusive, making it easier for players to concentrate on the aircraft counters.

I went for stylised clouds, somewhat like those on weather reports.

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Sequence markers


These are small counters (numbered 1, 2, 3, etc.) to indicate the order in which squadrons move.

We place these at the start of the movement phase, and gradually remove them as counters are moved. This makes it easier to keep up with things, especially when there are a lot of chains of tallies.

I made these from transparent coloured counters, with added adhesive numbers generate with a Brother P-Touch printer.

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Pen and paper Wing Displays


The standard Wing Displays proved too easy to knock and disturb.

I created a spreadsheet that generates A4 printouts of the Wing Display, with four squadrons/flights per page.

These are pre-populated with most of the information required and are updated by pen during the game.
For example, the losses boxes indicate a straggler (diagonal line) or a loss (cross).
This removes the need for many of the counters, and proved popular with the players.

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