Since the release of Battle of Kuban we are striving to release the free historical campaigns that augment the single missions and Career mode in our modules whenever time and resources allow.
Today we want to tell you about the campaign ‘Wings over Caen’ - it will be released in the near future and will be free for all Battle of Normandy owners. This historical campaign is dedicated to the operations of the No. 245 Squadron RAF which has been using Typhoon Mk.Ib fighter/bombers.
One of the primary objectives of the 3rd British Infantry Division, which was part of I Corps and landed at Sword Beach on D-Day, was to capture the city of Caen. However, they did not succeed in this either on June 6 nor the following days. Gradually, the German command turned Caen into the cornerstone of its entire defense in Normandy, where the majority of reinforcements were thrown in. The battle for the city dragged on for more than a month and a half, seriously slowing down the advance of the Allied forces in the British sector.
The central role in close air support for British and Canadian forces was to be played by the four Typhoon armed wings of the 2ndTactical Air Force: Nos. 123, 124, 143 and 121. The latter included the 245th squadron which was engaged at the very tip of the advance.
The squadron was originally formed in August 1918 and re-formed in October 1939. Using Hurricanes, it participated in the Dunkirk evacuation, served as an AA defence unit and provided air cover for sea convoys. Since September 1941 it operated in the skies of the northern France.
In January 1943 the squadron received Typhoons and in June has been assigned to the 2ndTactical Air Force. During the invasion preparations it continued the airstrikes against the enemy communications in northern France, rejecting the bombs in favor of the unguided rockets.
After two weeks of the Normandy landings the squadron has been ordered to move to the continent, but then all kinds of things went wrong. Our campaign starts right at this point and covers the most fierce fighting for Caen since June 27th to July 27th,1944.
All the missions of the campaign were created using the real operation records of the 245th, the other squadrons of the 121st wing and other units, allowing you to experience the sufficiently authentic of the events.
No. 121 Wing Typhoons have been assigned four main tasks during this timeframe:
During the campaign you’ll have the chance to try your hand in all of them, providing support for the main operations of the British High Command near Caen. The sorties will have different weather conditions, time of day and battlefield smoke, recreating the real difficulties the Typhoon pilots had to overcome in addition to the fire from the ground and rare enemy fighters.
With this work we would like to pay respects to all RAF and U.S. Air Force veterans who were fighting in the Normandy skies and to Squadron Leader John Russell Collins in particular.
He commanded the unit skillfully, made it a force to be reckoned with and personally led it into combat on numerous especially dangerous occasions. Unfortunately, on August 11th, 1944, during the last mission in the operative cycle before the planned rest, his Typhoon was hit by enemy AAA and he was killed.
In the campaign you’ll be acting under his command and see his Typhoon designated MR+? in several missions.
P.S. We would like to thank Luke =LukeFF= Wallace for valuable input and help with research and all our beta-testers and translators who make the regular and timely campaign releases possible.