Sanity prevailed and I played The Thin Blue Line scenario, rather than the entire campaign. At my rate of play, which is one day per session, it would have been too lengthy a proposition.
The Thin Blue Line begins on August 27 and ends on September 11th. This represents the longest period of sustained German raids.
I was able to attrit the Luftwaffe, but not enough to gain a victory. However, the RAF was in good shape at game’s end with a fairly deep pool of experienced replacement pilots and plenty of replacement aircraft. At the rate things were going, an operational victory was probably two days (of game turns) away.
The hour and day card draws tended to favor the British player. What the British player cannot stand is successive German raids over the period of one game hour, or during the course of a day. The quicker the clock and calendar moves, the better for the RAF.
One thing I started doing a little too late was making sure there were enough British fighters scrambled to attack the bombers, and not just the Me-109 hunter groups. This involved massing planes and taking some risks about subsequent coverage if there were followup raids, or another series of attacks. My warning levels were consistently high which helped, and, once again, the card draw kept the clock moving. It was so similar to historical “Big Wing” theory.
Once bombers are disrupted, aborted or placed in the damage box by a fighter attack, the effectiveness of a raid is greatly diminished. Again, fate did not favor the Germans, with many raids reduced to a low factor attacks, and resulting low levels of damage and victory points.
A great game, and worthy of all the praise it has gathered over the past twenty years. My only complaint is that a couple of charts are buried in the rules, especially the Airfield Operations summary. I will copy this onto a separate sheet the next time I play.