B-17, Queen of the Skies

B-17, Queen of the Skies: Winning, Rules, Instructions & Play Guide

1. Introduction

B-17, Queen of the Skies is a solitaire board game that simulates the experiences of a B-17 bomber crew during World War II. The game was designed by Bruce Shelley and published by Avalon Hill in 1983. The player assumes the role of the crew and the aircraft, making strategic decisions to complete missions and survive the war. The game is played using a game board, dice, and various charts and tables to determine the outcomes of player decisions and random events.

The objective of the game is to complete a tour of 25 missions, which mirrors the typical tour of duty for a B-17 crew during the war. The game is notable for its attention to historical detail, with the player having to manage fuel, ammunition, bomb loads, and damage to various parts of the aircraft.

Despite its complexity, B-17 was well-received and has maintained a dedicated fan base over the years. It is often praised for its ability to generate narrative and dramatic tension, as players become attached to their virtual crew and aircraft. Over the years, the game has been reprinted and expanded, with additional rules and scenarios available for more experienced players.

Quick tip to win at B-17, Queen of the Skies

Make sure to protect your crew and aircraft, as losing these can cost you the game. Remember, the game is about survival over victory. Maintain your focus on completing missions successfully rather than engaging in unnecessary battles.

2. Rules for playing B-17, Queen of the Skies

  1. The game begins with the player selecting a mission from the mission chart. The mission determines the target, the route, and the potential enemy resistance.
  2. The player then prepares the B-17 for the mission by assigning crew members to their positions and loading the aircraft with bombs and ammunition.
  3. The game progresses in turns, each representing a segment of the mission. During each turn, the player rolls dice to determine the occurrence of random events such as enemy attacks and mechanical failures.
  4. The player makes decisions based on these events, such as evasive maneuvers, returning fire, and repairing damage. The outcomes of these decisions are also determined by dice rolls and reference to the appropriate charts and tables.
  5. The mission is successful if the target is bombed and the B-17 returns safely to base. The player earns victory points based on the success of the mission and the survival of the crew.

While the official rules provide a realistic simulation of a B-17 mission, players may introduce ‘house rules’ to adjust the difficulty or add variety to the game.

3. How to Win at B-17, Queen of the Skies

Winning at B-17, Queen of the Skies requires a combination of strategic planning, risk management, and a bit of luck. Here are some strategies to increase your chances of success:

  1. Plan your mission carefully: Choose your target and route wisely. Consider the enemy resistance and the distance to the target. A closer target may be easier to reach, but it may also be heavily defended.
  2. Manage your resources: Your crew and your aircraft are your most valuable resources. Protect them by making smart decisions during enemy attacks and mechanical failures. For example, use evasive maneuvers to avoid enemy fire, and prioritize repairing critical systems.
  3. Take calculated risks: Sometimes, taking a risk can lead to a big payoff. For example, you might decide to press on to the target despite heavy damage, hoping to score a direct hit and earn more victory points. However, always weigh the potential reward against the risk of losing your aircraft and crew.

4. Best Strategies for playing B-17, Queen of the Skies game

The best strategies for playing B-17, Queen of the Skies involve a balance of offense and defense.

Here are some strategic plays to aim for:

  1. Maximize your firepower: Use your machine guns to defend against enemy fighters. Aim for the engines and the cockpit to disable the enemy aircraft.
  2. Minimize your exposure: Use evasive maneuvers to reduce the chance of being hit by enemy fire. However, remember that evasive maneuvers also reduce your bombing accuracy.
  3. Keep your crew healthy: Treat injured crew members as soon as possible. A healthy crew is more effective and less likely to make mistakes.

Playing the board game B-17, Queen of the Skies, requires a strategic approach that involves both offensive and defensive tactics. One cannot simply rely on either of the two aspects alone. Having a balance of these two strategies can significantly improve your chances of winning the game.

Offensive strategies are the proactive steps taken to score points or achieve objectives in the game. This could involve targeting specific enemy pieces, pushing aggressively towards objectives, or setting traps for your opponent. Offensive strategies are often riskier as they involve making moves that expose your own pieces to potential counter-attacks. However, a well-planned offensive can catch your opponent off-guard and quickly tilt the game in your favor.

On the other hand, defensive strategies are about protecting your pieces and maintaining your position on the board. This could be through creating strong defensive formations, carefully moving pieces to avoid enemy attacks, or making moves that create obstacles for your opponent. While defensive strategies may not score as many points as offensive ones, they can protect your pieces and keep you in a strong position for longer.

It’s important to remember that the key to winning B-17, Queen of the Skies, is not to rely solely on offense or defense, but to balance the two. This means being flexible and adaptable in your strategy, switching between offense and defense as the situation demands. For instance, if your opponent is playing aggressively, it might be wise to switch to a more defensive strategy to protect your pieces. Conversely, if your opponent is playing defensively, an aggressive strategy could help you break through their defenses and score points.

In addition to balancing offense and defense, it’s also important to understand the rules of the game and the capabilities of each piece. This will allow you to make the most of your pieces and use them effectively in your strategy. Furthermore, studying your opponent’s strategy and predicting their moves can also give you an edge in the game.

In conclusion, the best strategies for playing B-17, Queen of the Skies, involve a balance of offense and defense. By understanding the rules, knowing your pieces, studying your opponent, and adapting your strategy as necessary, you can greatly improve your chances of winning this game.

5. Scenarios for B-17, Queen of the Skies

In B-17, Queen of the Skies, you will encounter a variety of scenarios that will test your decision-making skills. Here are some common scenarios and how to handle them:

  1. Enemy attack: When you are attacked by enemy fighters, you have several options. You can return fire, use evasive maneuvers, or both. The best choice depends on the situation. If you have a good chance of shooting down the enemy, return fire. If the enemy has a good chance of hitting you, use evasive maneuvers.
  2. Mechanical failure: When a system fails, you must decide whether to repair it immediately or wait until it is safe. If the failure is critical, such as a loss of engine power, repair it immediately. If the failure is not critical, wait until you are out of enemy territory.
  3. Injured crew member: When a crew member is injured, you must decide whether to treat the injury immediately or wait until it is safe. If the injury is serious, treat it immediately. If the injury is not serious, wait until you are out of enemy territory.

6. Frequently Asked Questions about playing B-17, Queen of the Skies game

  1. Q: How long does a game of B-17, Queen of the Skies take? A: A game typically takes 1-2 hours, depending on the complexity of the mission and the player’s familiarity with the rules.
  2. Q: Can I play B-17, Queen of the Skies with more than one player? A: While the game is designed for solitaire play, it can be played cooperatively with multiple players, each controlling a different aspect of the mission.
  3. Q: How much luck is involved in B-17, Queen of the Skies? A: While dice rolls play a significant role in the game, strategic decision-making can greatly influence the outcome.
  4. Q: Can I play B-17, Queen of the Skies without the game board? A: The game board is not essential to play, but it helps to visualize the mission and keep track of the aircraft’s status.
  5. Q: Where can I buy B-17, Queen of the Skies? A: The game is out of print, but it can often be found on online auction sites and at board game conventions.

B-17: Queen of the Skies Review – with Joe Steadman