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Above the Clouds!
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Above the Clouds!

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Above the Clouds! is a set of air-combat miniature wargame rules for fighting large air battles from the late 1930s through the 1950s. 

The rules are intended to produce a free-flowing and fast game to represent air combat.  Although air warfare is a very technical form of combat, rules which focus too much on the technical details quickly lose the "feel" of air combat by turning the game into a slow, plodding simulation where seconds of combat time require hours of game time to resolve. 

To avoid this, a fairly minimalist approach was taken in the game design.  Individual aircraft have unique capabilities, and pilot skill/experience determines advantages and disadvantages, but the emphasis in the game is rapid execution of turns so that they game moves quickly.

To achive this, the following concepts guided the game development:

- Each player will typically control 2-4 aircraft

- Minimal plotting, make a quick decision for each aircraft and move on

- Aircraft speeds should matter, but it should not take more than a couple seconds to determine speed changes

- Combat should be decisive and quick to resolve

- Aircraft damage should not be overly detailed -- aircraft will either be fully functional, crippled or destroyed

- It should span the gambit of combat from teh wars of the late 1930s (Spanish Civil War, 2nd Sino-Japanese War) through the 1950s (Korean War, Arab-Israeli Wars)

I hope you enjoy Above the Clouds!

 
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Reviews (0)
Discussions (7)
Customer avatar
August 05, 2017 12:55 am UTC
PURCHASER
Solitaire suitability?
My purchase is hanging on that.
Thx
Customer avatar
Gavin T August 07, 2017 12:38 am UTC
PUBLISHER
There are solitaire scenarios which involve attacking unescorted bomber formations. However the main thrust of the game is fighters vs fighters, whether or not there are bombers to be attacked or defended. Of course these can be played by a single player alternating decisions for each side, but there is no "system" for controlling fighters against you.
Customer avatar
August 16, 2017 10:30 pm UTC
PURCHASER
Thanks for your answer. Went for the Rules, Fall Weiss, Flat Top and the new one Blitz! Now, lets read!
Customer avatar
July 28, 2017 4:20 pm UTC
PURCHASER
Is it solitaire friendly, or can it be adapted for solitaire play?

Ps
Really caugth my attention to find there were so many models of one aircraft (ex. 5 P40 types). Thats nice!!

Customer avatar
July 25, 2017 5:06 am UTC
PURCHASER
Will there eventually be rules for pacific war planes and naval operations? My primary gaming is pacific, so hope that is on the agenda.
Customer avatar
Gavin T July 25, 2017 5:25 am UTC
PUBLISHER
The next release, planned for July 31st, will be "Flat Top" which will include the APDs for aircraft involved in the carrier battles of 1942.
Customer avatar
Claudio D July 24, 2017 8:41 am UTC
One Question: When we get the late-war aircrafts - such like the FW-190-D or the P51D-Mustang? Or better: Can we get something like "Armybooks" for the Axis and Allies?
Customer avatar
Gavin T July 24, 2017 2:16 pm UTC
PUBLISHER
My release schedule is set to get all of the Above the Clouds products released by the end of 2017. Right now the release schedule for "Pointblank" (Late-war Europe) is the second week of September, 2017.

Sincerely,
Gavin
Customer avatar
Bruce C July 20, 2017 7:54 pm UTC
Is there somewhere that I can read (or watch?) a detailed review of this ruleset?

There are plenty of air combat rules - what makes this one better than others? Please tell me why should I spend the money on this one instead of another.
Customer avatar
Gavin T July 24, 2017 7:02 am UTC
PUBLISHER
Sorry for the delay in responding. I have just uploaded a "Free Sample" file which will walk you through a simple turn of a 2-on-2 engagement to illustrate how the game plays.
Customer avatar
Joseph N July 18, 2017 7:47 pm UTC
But is this game fun? :)
Customer avatar
Gavin T July 19, 2017 8:12 pm UTC
PUBLISHER
It was well received by 1st time players at Rapier 2017 (Jacksonville, FL) and Nashcon 2017 (Nashville, TN), and is well liked by the local gaming communities in Fort Walton Beach and Pensacola, FL.
Customer avatar
Phil L July 14, 2017 2:45 pm UTC
PURCHASER
Nice game system that only requires limited plotting (Left, Right, Straight, or Vertical). Movement and combat are clear and easy, and the game doesn't require the looks ups or multiple charts associated with similar titles. Limited aircraft in the base game--no Navy planes, almost everything else is early WWII, multiple variants of the same types. Nothing from Korean War or Arab-Israeli Wars) or pre-WWII. Designer courteously and quickly responded that additional aircraft would come in future supplements. The list of aircraft included in this product is below.

(Kittyhawk Mk.II / Mk.IV)
(P-38F-H Lightning)
(Spitfire LF Mk.V (ClippedWing))
(P-47B/C Thunderbolt)
(Spitfire Mk.V)
(P-40E/K/M Warhawk)
(P-39D-N Airacobra)
(Kittyhawk Mk.I / Mk.III)
(Boston Mk.III)
(P-40F/N Warhawk)
(P-40L Warhawk)
(Beaufighter)
(Fw-190A-2)
(A-20G Havoc)
(B-17E/F Fortress)
(Fw-190A-4)
(Bf-109F-4/R1)
(B-26 Marauder)
(Bf-109G)...See more
Customer avatar
July 17, 2017 3:20 am UTC
PURCHASER
Does this game take into consideration the slower roll rate of some aircraft, like bf110?
Customer avatar
Gavin T July 17, 2017 4:16 am UTC
PUBLISHER
Yes, aircraft have a roll rating, which effects the maneuvers which are available on their aircraft performance display. Some aircraft with bad roll ratings may end up "banked" after a roll maneuver which effectively limits their available plots for the next turn's maneuver. Other aircraft may not have roll maneuvers at all, and they may end up "banked" after simple turning maneuvers.

If an aircraft is particularly good at rolling its pilot may be able to move an additional hex after such a maneuver.
Customer avatar
Michael I July 25, 2017 4:08 am UTC
PURCHASER
I cannot find the roll rating unless you mean that all shaded maneuvers are rolls. Also where do you find the power rating? This looks like a streamlined version of Check Your 6! but I am having some trouble piecing together some of the rules.
Customer avatar
Gavin T July 25, 2017 5:32 am UTC
PUBLISHER
If the aircraft has an "Average" roll rating it does not show up on the APD. If the rating is Good, Fair, or Poor it will show up in the characteristics section of the APD. Basically an Average rating doesn't change any rules so it is omitted for brevity, but if the rating is other than average it is listed in the characteristics. If the rating has effected the maneuvers (either deleting them or by making them "banked" maneuvers) it will simply note the rating. If the rating changes an ability (Good roll rating allows a bonus move of 1 hex, for example) the special rule will be in the characteristics where the rating is noted.

In any case, the roll rating is "baked into" the APD.

I encourage you to join the AtC Support group on Yahoo, I will be glad to clarify the rules and look forward to hearing what the problems are so I can continue to make the rules clearer. (Send an email to atc_support-subscribe@yahoogroups.com to subscribe.)
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