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J5_Baeumer

Introducing Schusta 27b – Jasta 5's Two-Seater Battle Squadron

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QoNlsso.png

 

 

" Had I not become a fighter pilot, I would have selected being an infantry pilot. "

 

           — Rittm. Manfred Freiherr von Richthofen

 

 

 

 

 

 

We Stay to Fight: A short history of the Schlachtflieger

 

The Schutzstaffeln or Schustas (Protection Squadrons) date back to December 1916 and the Battle of Verdun. It was decided by the German Fliegertruppen to provide light two-seater escort with Albatros C.III and Roland C.II squadrons to shield heavier two-seaters flying reconnaisance for the Artillerie-Flieger-Abteilungen Fl.Abt.(A.) from aerial attack. British combat reports noted that upon sight of enemy two-seaters, one would always immediately "fly East", while the others "stayed to fight".

 

Developed specifically for this purpose, the first and best known of the new "light C"-type would become the Halberstadt CL.II, which entered service in August 1917. As the role of the Schustas shifted from two-seater escort to close infantry support, they were renamed Schlachtstaffeln or Schlastas (Battle Squadrons) in April 1918.

 

The pilots and gunners of the Schlastas were sent low over enemy trenches (typically below 100 feet / 30 meters) to cause as much damage and disarray possible ahead of infantry pushes, all the while protecting themselves from enemy aircraft. They were known as Schlachtflieger (battle flyers) to the ground troops — a most welcome sight indeed — and in turn precursors to later close support types, such as the eponymous IL-2 Sturmovik. In spite of their apparent weakness, they proved extremely successful in their role thanks to their weaponry and maneuverability.

 

It is our pleasure to reintroduce into active service perhaps the most famous Battle Squadron of them all, the legendary Schlasta 27b.

 

 

Schusta/Schlasta 27b: the historical connection with Jasta 5

 

The link between Sch27b and J5 is also easily made: nearly all Schlasta operations drew the attention of Entente scouts, and numerous reports note the intervention of several Jagdstaffeln in the area occured on a regular basis. While Jasta 5 is not directly mentioned by name in the memoirs of Schlasta 27b pilots, both squadrons were stationed in each other's vicinity and were moved in unison together which would be necessary for combined operations.  Their cooperation goes without saying.

 

Here is the list of airfields both squadrons operated from, from 1917 until the summer of 1918:

 

J5

  1. Boistrancourt: 11 Mar 1917 – 25 Mar 1918
  2. Lieramont: 25 Mar 1918 – 23 Apr 1918
  3. Cappy: 23 Apr 1918 – 27 Jul 1918

 

Sch27b

  1. Villers-au-Tertre: 8 Dec 1917 — 19 Mar 1918 (as Schusta 27b)
  2. Bouchain: 19 Mar 1918 — 24 Apr 1918 (as Schusta 27b)
  3. Bancourt: 24 Apr 1918 — 15 Jul 1918 (as Schusta 27b / Schlasta 27b)

 

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Schusta 27b: an NCO Squadron

 


Schustas were mainly NCO squadrons, with many gunners being Enlisted men. This created a unique environment in the brass-heavy world of the Fliegertruppen. Officers were present mainly for commanding purposes, even though some were indeed pilots from a Flieger Abteilung or Jagdstaffel and assisted in training. Schusta 27b itself was led by an Oberleutnant (Lieutenant) for most of its existence, with a small number of Leutnants (Second Lieutenant) in various administrative roles. The flyers themselves were typically Unteroffizier (Corporal as well as the general designation for Non-Commissioned Officer), with various ranks of Feldwebel (Sergeant) leading flights and serving as Offizierstellvertreter (Acting Officer) who ran the squadron on a day-to-day basis.

The virtual Sch27b aims to be much the same: a squadron that is welcoming to newcomer pilots who are interested in more than just the dog-eat-dog game of scout combat. It may even serve as a stepping stone between Single Player and Multiplayer. The reason for that is simple: the true strength of the Schusta lies in numbers, as both its effectiveness in ground attack and aerial defense goes up exponentially with more planes in the group. That is to say: more ordnance and more machine guns to be brought to bear on the enemy. Gunners are also welcome, of course, even though the AI is more than capable of handling itself, and excels at spotting light weapon emplacements. The fact remains that even a new battle pilot with his presence in the group alone is immediately useful, whereas an inexperienced scout pilot is often a liability until his skill improves.

 

Sch27b relies upon the existing well established command structure of J5 in accommodating new recruits and coordinating with scout pilots. 

 

Command structure

 

Adj. J5_Baeumer (Commanding Officer Jasta 5)

Oblt. J5_Matthias-Sch27b (Commanding Officer)

Hfw. J5_Hellbender-Sch27b (Acting Officer)

Fw. J5_Helmutt-Sch27b (Senior NCO)

 

Become a Schlachtflieger!

Inexperienced and experienced pilots interested in pursuing a career in Schusta 27b as a pilot or gunner should indicate their intent by posting here on this thread and look for personal message with next steps. In the meantime join us during Thursday and Sunday FC flying events on our Teamspeak server at jasta5.teamspeak3.com.  The "tag" for pilots going into two-seater service is  J5_pilotname-Sch27b as shown above.

 

image.png.9e184ce3081642c6b2625dfc4baca27d.png

Edited by J5_Baeumer
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S!

 

Congratulations Gents, a fine decision!

This reminds me of our unit and the need of 2-seater squadron back in the RB3D days. Having one really makes some team flying better and more interesting.

 

Good luck!

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Yes!

 

Appears to be a great expansion you all have going! 

 

Oh wait, nothing "appears to be" about it for the main post indicates that it is!

Edited by US213_Talbot
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Helmutt (previously known as Captain Darling) and I would like to thank you again, Baeumer, as well as all of Jasta 5, for the enthusiasm you've shown in making this concept become reality over the past few weeks and months. I also couldn't hope for a better CO for our unit than @J5_Matthias, who has been working tirelessly on the Flugpark server and missions. Even if Schlasta officers didn't typically fly with their troops, I do hope you will find the time to come fly with us.

 

Schlasta 27b had been established before in Rise of Flight, and I also want to thank @DressedWings for graciously allowing us to continue their legacy. I believe that our new recipe for success lies in operating together with the officers of the Jasta, as a semi-independent unit of NCOs — the "flying infantry" if you will.

 

 

Outside of roleplay, I'd like to reiterate what Baeumer wrote above:

 

If you are primarily a single player or VR flyer and you're on the fence about flying in multiplayer due to the dog-eat-dog nature of scout combat and possible visibility/gunnery issues, do consider giving us a go. You'll find that the Halberstadt is perhaps the ultimate teamplay machine for both attacking ground and defending against scouts, in large parts thanks to its programmable AI gunner which can do most of the spotting and gunning for you. These gunners scale dramatically in power in large formations. You still need to do some combat flying (which we'll be happy to teach you) as the gun angle is very limited, so it's not exactly "gaming the game" just yet, but you may be surprised at how much of a punch this slow little two-seater packs.

 

 

Salute and long live the Schlachtflieger!

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3 minutes ago, J5_Hellbender-Sch27b said:

Helmutt (previously known as Captain Darling)

 

Helmutt!!!  Roflmao🤣

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Just now, DD_Arthur said:

 

Helmutt!!!  Roflmao🤣

 

It's what he was called in his Red Baron 3D days, I swear! 🤣

 

(yes we convinced him to make the switch again, it seemed appropriate)

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Good luck! It reminds me of this wonderful photograph: 

image.thumb.png.d66dd395c2d89d59042e5df937feeed1.png

Edited by SYN_Vander
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And here are the real stars of the show: the men of Schusta 27b, photographed in 1917.

 

Commanding Officer Oblt.d.R. Sigmund Kreitmair in the center holding the cane. Note the officer riding boots compared to the rest of the men.

 

3zPnrzr.jpg

[Photo credit: Michael Stacey]

 

Source: "Schlachtflieger! Germany and the Origins of Air/Ground Support 1916-1918", Duiven & Abbott (2006)

Edited by J5_Hellbender-Sch27b
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Just remember to tell your Observers to buckle up...

jZ5XbaG.png


In all seriousness, it's very, very cool to see a dedicated two-seater unit forming on the front! Even if they are Bosches. 

We'll see you in the skies! 


 

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Could I ask what hours your squad is most active? I work night shift, so day time in Australia might coincide time wise with your evening sessions overseas.

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1 hour ago, bzc3lk said:

Could I ask what hours your squad is most active? I work night shift, so day time in Australia might coincide time wise with your evening sessions overseas.

 

We are currently US/UK/European-based and are very flexible during the weekend.

 

On most weeknights we're likely to be active at least sometime between 19:00 and 23:00 UTC, during the UK/European evening hours. For Australia, I take it that would be early morning?

 

As the US side of the Schlasta grows, we will likely be active during your (later) daytime as well, I’m sure at least for the regular events such as the Thursday Fly-in. Jasta 5 itself is of course also active at those times.

 

 

1 hour ago, NO.28W_Barker said:

The #20 squad will be up there looking for you. 🤤 nice juicy halb's to chase In our hot new Bristol's. 

 

Yes, very hot Bristols, indeed. On fire, even.

Edited by J5_Hellbender-Sch27b
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3 hours ago, J5_Hellbender-Sch27b said:

Yes, very hot Bristols, indeed. On fire, even.

LOL  pass you so fast it'll burn. but not before I weigh you down with lead. 

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Had my first run-in with the Schlachtfliegers today...was awe-inspiring to watch a big pack of Halberstadts convert an aerodrome to powder....laughed my head off as I realised that they were bombing the hangars we keep the 213th's SPADs in! 

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Congratulations to Jasta 5 and to Hellbender for this new initiative. Steps like this are what brings interest into the game and help us all get the imersion we are looking for.

 

Best of luck in your bombing runs gentlemen! It shall be a honor flying with you and a challenge (should I be required to fly Entente) to fly against you.

 

It is also nice to know that the chances that one of those Brisfits is flown by Bender/Darling have been dwindled.

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22 hours ago, US93_Larner said:

Had my first run-in with the Schlachtfliegers today...was awe-inspiring to watch a big pack of Halberstadts convert an aerodrome to powder....laughed my head off as I realised that they were bombing the hangars we keep the 213th's SPADs in! 

 

 
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10 hours ago, J5_Sturm said:

Fantastic video and I am honored I was part of that raid. LOL

 

It was a pleasure to have you join us, sir!

 

Scout pilots such as yourself should not feel left out: we absolutely need scout escorts when we do these deep incursions. Typically they end with us all getting shot down or forced down behind enemy lines, because the CL.II lacks the speed to egress back to our lines. Even if we can fight off a first wave of Entente scouts, the second (respawned) wave will eventually catch up with us. Having an Albatros, Pfalz or "vanilla" D.VII join us down in the mud helps tremendously (thank you @JGS4_mitra for doing that very often!)

 

All of this is to change when the WWI AAA gets fixed and missions can be adapted to be more focused around attacking objects in No Man's Land, which is where the CL.II typically operated, and where it can also receive cover from its own AAA.

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(29/12/19)

 

Saw you from miles away ( Baeumer/ Hellbender and escort), fired loads of flares to try and attract help.  With the evening sun, your wings sparkled silver from way over the other side of the mud (possibly as soon as you took off) allowing for plenty of time to position and intercept.  It didn't give you much of a sporting chance I'm afraid.  Although I shot down SYN_Artun first ( D III escort) I nearly buggered up the whole thing because I hadn't put my flare gun away, so couldn't fire my guns (stupid VR) and had to scrabble around for the buttons by which time I'd lost all of you.

 

I think, if you're going to do low level raids, it might be worth doing them in the morning, with the sun at your backs, or maybe mid-day, . You can more easily spot the enemy sparkling  while staying better hidden yourself. It'll give you better odds.

 

Anyway, best of luck with the Sqn, and hope to catch you around in the not to distant future 😀.

 

(I take no credit for shooting anyone down, it was pure dumb luck)

Edited by HagarTheHorrible
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33 minutes ago, HagarTheHorrible said:

(29/12/19)

 

Saw you from miles away ( Baeumer/ Hellbender and escort), fired loads of flares to try and attract help.  With the evening sun, your wings sparkled silver from way over the other side of the mud (possibly as soon as you took off) allowing for plenty of time to position and intercept.  It didn't give you much of a sporting chance I'm afraid.  Although I shot down SYN_Artun first ( D III escort) I nearly buggered up the whole thing because I hadn't put my flare gun away, so couldn't fire my guns (stupid VR) and had to scrabble around for the buttons by which time I'd lost all of you.

 

I think, if you're going to do low level raids, it might be worth doing them in the morning, with the sun at your backs, or maybe mid-day, . You can more easily spot the enemy sparkling  while staying better hidden yourself. It'll give you better odds.

 

Anyway, best of luck with the Sqn, and hope to catch you around in the not to distant future 😀.

 

(I take no credit for shooting anyone down, it was pure dumb luck)

 

S! Hagar, those were fun fights, even if a little bit of eggnog was involved on all our sorties tonight. 😄 That said, you got us fair and square.

 

I'm afraid that the missions and maps currently in rotation still need to be adjusted for "Schlasta use", that is to say: have continuous ground attack targets in and around the trenches, along with WW1 AAA and AAA machinegunners to both cover and attack the CL.IIs. There's ground attack A/B/C/D on a 15 minute timer on @J5_Matthias's maps and triggerable ground attack on @J99_Sizzlorr's maps, but for a group of CL.IIs there's just not enough to do, so we tend to do our glorious suicide missions, knowing fully well that the chances of ever making it back across friendly lines is very slim.

 

That doesn't make it any less fun, though! I've recorded some great footage again.

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I told Hellbender its better to fly in the morning hours, but he's rarely out of bed before noon.   

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"Inexperienced and experienced pilots interested in pursuing a career in Schusta 27b as a pilot or gunner should indicate their intent by posting here on this thread and look for personal message with next steps."

 

Right, sounds fun, I'm interested in being a pilot. Standing by for PM.

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This sounds interesting to me as well ...fly VR exclusively and don't really mind the fighter limitations ...but I do love blowing things up 😉 

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Use a different email addy to set up a new account and buy another copy at 50% off.  You could try changing your player name in the current account, but no guarantees.  I bought a second copy of the game during the sale and will be setting up a two-seater account just to support the devs.

 

PS then report to find the HaupteFeldwebel in either the bierstuebe or latrine or in one of the hangars with one of his "girls".

Edited by J5_Baeumer
directions to find the NCO

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