Europe Ablaze puts hundreds of planes at your command to send out over the deadly skies of Britain, France, and Germany during World War II. Take the place of Reichsmarschall Goering or Air Chief Marshal Portal to plot campaign-wide priorities and set the tactical doctrines your fleet commanders must follow. Then sit back and helplessly watch the events of the day take their course: the successes, the devastation, and lost planes tallied for you tersely at the end of each day, like a report card on which the fate of your nation depends. If that's too much responsibility and not enough action, the role of fleet commander is available, too. To warm this seat, you need some real knowledge of air strategy. Plan night and day missions, approach vectors, and rendezvous. Balance wear and tear on your squadrons with the demands of your commander-in-chief. Select targets that maximize each squadron's skills and planes, but keep abreast of enemy flight paths -- your opponent has plans of his own.
Up to twelve hot-seat players can split up the air command roles available in Europe Ablaze, or one player can take on all the roles or even leave everything to the computer to learn some strategy. Detailed hex maps included with the game lay out the targets in each scenario and provide a platform for planning the next day's strategy. The computer screen alternates between short menus leading to command and report screens, and a campaign-wide map on which the events of the day play out. Though the planning is turn-based, fleet commanders have access to "run-time" commands by halting the spinning clock which marks the progress of the day. Enemy strike plots can be examined, intercepts sent out, and patrols strengthened every five minutes if you like.
Behind the scenes, accidents happen, crews gain experience, repairs are made, and the results are rolled into each day's report. Weather varies regionally and changes with the season and the hour. Ultimately, victory rests on destruction delivered; each air fleet commander is scored separately, and their contributions determine the commander-in-chiefs' scores, which decide the outcome of the scenario. A map editor adds complete design of new campaigns and a sample Mediterranean scenario.
- "Europe Ablaze: The Air War Over England and Germany 1939-1945" -- Tag-lined title
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