Blood Red Skies, Gaming & Collecting

Blood Red Skies: Naval Strike!

Using the Blood Red Skies Air Strike Scenarios in a historical context, by example of Dunkirk...

Blood Red Skies: Naval Strike!
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We’re taking a look at how to use the Air Strike rules compendium for Blood Red Skies to develop your own historical scenarios, with the potential to even tie those games in with other systems for combined arms set of linked scenarios.

A number of Air Strike! scenarios use ‘targets’ as their objectives. These come in two parts; a target marker which is positioned on the tabletop and an associated target card that is used to keep track of damage to the target.

Aircraft on the tabletop need to get within range of the target marker in order to attack it, any damage they do is tracked on the target card. Each target card is a little different and has some unique properties depending on the target under attack.

In Air Strike! you’ll find a whole range of naval targets to engage with dive and torpedo bombers. As our focus this week is on the Dunkirk Evacuations, we’ll take a look at how some of the smaller ships and motor torpedo boats work.

Ships were uniquely vulnerable to torpedo attacks and strafing, but proved extremely hard to hit with level bombers when in motion. Targets with the ship special rule may be targeted with torpedoes and strafing attacks can cause hull hits. Bombing runs count 2x the usual Firepower penalty versus a mobile target if it is a ship.

Motor torpedo boats also have the Mobile (2) special rule, which means that any pilot trying to bomb it will suffer a whopping -4 firepower penalty. Best to take advantage of the dive-bombing special rules to gain a firepower bonus at the cost of advantage levels.

Naval Strike!

This scenario is a variation of Scenario 11: Targets of Opportunity as presented on page 70 of Air Strike! We recommend playing it after rescuing stranded troops from the French coast in the Evacuate the Beaches scenario for Cruel Seas. 

When building their squadrons, the German player receives a free element of three Ju-87 Stuka dive bombers. (All Pilot Skill 3)

Before beginning play, check the results of the preceding Cruel Seas scenario and assign a target card to each surviving ship. Pick from these when revealing a target card during play.

To recreate the air battles over Dunkirk, we recommend using the following aircraft:

Royal Air Force


Land, Sea & Air!

These fantastic bundles give you a complete Bolt Action army along with a small squadron of aircraft and a flotilla of motor torpedo boats.

Tom Mecredy
Tom spends most of his time buying books and painting miniatures. He enjoys putting animals on the bases of his miniatures and half-finishing side projects. Some say that he lives in a tower on top of some windswept northern hill with his wife and cow-patterned cat, Spaghetti.