I wanted to try the campaign game in the rules supplement but could not find anyone who would umpire dozens of scenarios for me. (And I don't like the published solo rules - too much chasing around the sky playing whac-a-mole.) So I wrote some web scripts that attempt to provide a text-based virtual umpire. I call it Nightfighter Virtual Umpire (NFVU).

Link to NFVU.

NFVU Design Notes

This project started out as a bomber manager for Campaign A, in which the player assumes the role of the Himmelbett zone controller, directing search radar and guiding the nightfighter pilot toward likely targets. It expanded to cover the Wilde Sau and Zahme Sau scenarios.

NFVU is confined to RAF vs Luftwaffe, mid 1942 through early 1944. Other theaters and late war German technology and aircraft are not covered. Exception: As a programming exercise in the diagonal movement of flare droppers, the Fast Carriers scenario was added to the site.

NFVU incorporates all rules sections from 1 through 21. It also uses all section 28 optional rules with the exception of 28.6 (forward hemisphere tallying).

Some tweaks to the printed rules were made:

> Searchlight fixes and hand-offs are handled automatically (without player input). Searchlights will illuminate (i.e. search) whenever bombers are over their zone, and will attempt hand-offs if the next zone does not already have a fix. On cloudy nights without a moon, searchlight zones will automatically benefit from having illuminated clouds.

> Tallying and tally maintenance are automated in NFVU. If conditions exist for a tally, it will be stated by the virtual umpire. Fighters are permitted to drop a Tally in the Move Fighters Phase, or simply move out of tallying position.

> Corkscrew following is handled automatically. A modified version of rule 28.1 has been used to give better pilots and AI-equipped aircraft a greater probability of a successful pursuit.

> Collision avoidance (17.3) only changes a fighter's facing -- with a chance of collision only if facing does not change. A fighter that is avoiding a collision will be limited to 2 MPs on the next turn.

> Bombers that are not being attacked will not respond with defensive fire or corkscrew, but may become alert. This assumes that a bomber would NOT reveal its location (from its gun flashes) unless it was under imminent attack and had lost the advantage of stealth.

> Bomber alert status is unknown to the player. This takes away some of the power of oblique guns under optional rule 28.2 ("Oblique guns have a printed firepower value of 0 against an alerted bomber.") It is still best to lead with your obliques if you've got them, but if they seem to be ineffective, it is likely because the target was alert. If you get in a follow up attack within 5 turns (the duration of bomber alert status after being fired on) use your regular guns.

> Bomber type is not revealed until the Debriefing at the end of the scenario. Somewhere I read that a "good" attack position should also inform the player of his target type. Not sure it is relevant other than to know if the bomber has an alternating odd/even turn movement allowance.