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Author Topic: Dedicated Great War awards and ranks  (Read 5624 times)

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jpten

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Re: Dedicated Great War awards and ranks
« Reply #12 on: February 12, 2017, 08:33:33 AM »

A very wise selection.  Many other sims include the later medals but your selection is a most accurate arrangement for most of the war period.  The RFC did not become an independent service till April 1918 so it used the Army medals till that point.  Keep in mind also that the Royal Navy Air Service operated several squadrons in France in direct support of the RFC and for a time was in charge of the air defenses of London. Sopwith had an exclusive contract to supply the RNAS so you might consider a set for them.  The VC would need a Blue ribbon and the MC would need to be changed out with the DSC.
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SpongeBob

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Re: Dedicated Great War awards and ranks
« Reply #13 on: February 13, 2017, 01:37:05 PM »

Hi jpten, thank you very much for your valuable help.
I think it is possible to cover all the British options: in country.properties file there are options to choose the Royal Flying Corps (gb) and the Royal Naval Air Service (rn). The Royal Air Force was founded by an amalgamation of the two previous services in April 1918. Since the Royal New Zealand Air Force (rz) did not become independent until 1923, I would suggest to use this service as a replacement of the RAF in later campaigns. I suppose nobody would use RNZAF in DOF. Thus, I can prepare three sets of British awards:

RFC (for campaings prior to April 1918)               RNAS (prior to April 1918)                            RAF (post April 1918)
0 Mentioned in Despatches                              0 Mentioned in Despatches                           0 Mentioned in Despatches
1 Military Cross                                             1 Distinguished Service Cross                        1 Distinguished Flying Cross
2 Bar to the Military Cross                               2 Bar to the Distinguished Service Cross         2 Bar to the Distinguished Flying Cross
3 Distinguished Service Order                           3 Distinguished Service Order                       3 Distinguished Service Order
4 2nd Bar to the Military Cross                         4 2nd Bar to the Distinguished Service Cross   4 2nd Bar to the Distinguished Flying Cross
5 Bar to the Distinguished Service Order            5 Bar to the Distinguished Service Order         5 Bar to the Distinguished Service Order
6 2nd Bar to the Distinguished Service Order      6 2nd Bar to the Distinguished Service Order    6 2nd Bar to the Distinguished Service Order
7 Victoria Cross (with red or crimson ribbon)      7 Victoria Cross (with blue ribbon)                  7 Victoria Cross (with red or crimson ribbon)

It is only a question of placing the campaign in the appropriate folder. Time to select the images of each medal!
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SpongeBob

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Re: Dedicated Great War awards and ranks
« Reply #14 on: February 18, 2017, 03:51:51 AM »

Hello, I've finished the awards for the British Empire. The set is divided into three packs: Royal Flying Corps (1914-April 1918); Royal Naval Air Service (1914-April 1918) and Royal Air Force (April 1918-onwards).

These are the medals for the RFC:



Medals for the RNAS (Military Cross is replaced by Distinguished Service Cross, and Victoria Cross has a blue ribbon):



Medals for the fusion of both services into the RAF (Instead of Military Cross or DSC, there is a Distinguished Flying Cross):



In order to give the RAF its own country (since GB is used for the RFC), I've used the Royal New Zealand Air Force, since it didn't existed until 1923. (Sorry to New Zealanders for momentarily stealing their country).

I will update the download link as soon as I finish the German awards, so we will have a complete set of medals for the main fighting countries (British Empire, France, Russian Empire and Germany). Later I can take care of less known countries.

I've found some difficulties with British ranks, it is quite confusing, especially equivalences among the different services.
My proposal for the Royal Flying Corps is the following:
0 Cadet
1 2nd Lieutenant
2 Lieutenant
3 Captain
4 Major
5 Lieutenant Colonel
6 Brigadier General

Is is correct? Should I replace ranks for the RNAS or the early RAF. I've tried to find the answers by searching on the net, but all I can find is extremely confusing. Any help is welcome.
Cheers!
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jpten

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Re: Dedicated Great War awards and ranks
« Reply #15 on: February 18, 2017, 11:01:00 AM »

Looks good, one detail however, the first year of the DFC (1918) the purple stripes were horizontal not diagonal.  It changed in 1919.
  The RNAS used Naval Ranks, Ensign, Sub-Lieutenant, Lieutenant, Lieutenant Commander, Commander, Captain, Commodore.   The Army ranks are correct but cadets should be in flying school, even newly arrived at the front should have rank.  The other issue (minor) is that above the rank of Major and Commander, an officer would not commonly be on flying missions.  It could happen, but they would be at an administrative level at that rank and to be leading a mission means they are not doing their proper job in the office.
    If you wanted to reflect a true war time circumstance that is not seen in flying sims, (your mod may be the first) and fill all the rank slots you could drop cadet and have 'Acting Captain' ,  'Acting Major' and 'Acting Colonel' (unless there needs to be a specific distinction a Lt. Colonel is usually called Colonel in general references) in between the proper rank.  This would reflect that they are doing the role of the higher rank but are still ranked at the lower.  It was very common but you don't see it reflected in games very often.
  For the RNAS I would drop Commodore and have  'Acting Commander' before 'Commander'.  The RNAS was not as manpower depleted as the Army and acting ranks were less common in the Air service.
 
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SpongeBob

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Re: Dedicated Great War awards and ranks
« Reply #16 on: February 19, 2017, 01:47:14 AM »

Hi jpten. Thank you very much for your advices. They are really interesting and helpful. I will fix the stripes in the DFC (I only found a single picture, almost all of them have the diagonal stripes).
Concerning the ranks, I will replace Cadet by Sergeant, which is used in some other IL2 countries as the base rank. Moreover, if I have understood McCudden biography, during 1916 he flew as a Sergeant, before being promoted to Second Lieutenant in January 1917. I also could begin with Second Lieutenant, but then we will run out of low ranks, and players should change their joysticks by a pen and papers.

After your proposals, ranks would be as follow (correct me if I got you wrong):
RFC and RAF
0 Sergeant
1 2nd Lieutenant
2 Lieutenant
3 Captain
4 Captain (Acting Major)
5 Major
6 Major (Acting Colonel)

RNAS
0 Ensign
1 Sub-Lieutenant
2 Lieutenant
3 Lieutenant-Commander
4 Acting Commander
5 Commander
6 Captain

Thanks for your help! :D
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jpten

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Re: Dedicated Great War awards and ranks
« Reply #17 on: February 19, 2017, 09:19:30 AM »

Sounds like you have it under control.  My only concern is if something like 'Captain Acting Major' will be too long to fully display in the rank spot.  I do not know how many characters it supports.  A back-up plan could be to abbreviate it to some extent, i.e. Cpt. (Acting Maj.) other than that I think it is great.
   There were a lot of enlisted men ( or as the British called them 'other-ranks') flying in WW1.  When Von Richthofen started (he had been a Cavalry Officer) it was as an observer.  Since the main function of a recon plane was flying where the observer needed to go, it was the officer ranked position and it was considered improper for another officer to act as a chauffeur and fly the plane so the pilot was enlisted.  With the British losses during the Fokker Scourge of 1915 and Bloody April in 1917, the RFC was more concerned with filling cockpits.
   
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SpongeBob

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Re: Dedicated Great War awards and ranks
« Reply #18 on: February 19, 2017, 09:34:03 AM »

Hi jpten, thank for your quick answer and your encouraging words.
Well, in default RN ranks there is a "Flight Chief Petty Officer", a bit longer than anyone in my lists, so I reckon it shouldn't be a problem. However, everything will be checked in game before uploading.
By the way, are you a frozen WWI pilot that has been brought to life again by some side effect of global warming? :D
I'm learning a lot by reading your answers!



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jpten

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Re: Dedicated Great War awards and ranks
« Reply #19 on: February 19, 2017, 12:44:52 PM »

I feel old but not that old.  I am actually a combat Infantry veteran but I have been collecting WW1 for over 20 years.  I have a lot of source material including about 50 issues of the Illustrated London News from WW1 and I lived in Germany for two years and met several German veterans from both wars. It all adds up to a head full of history bits that is of very little use outside of history forums and military based games.  Having a few medals myself I also understand a little how military award systems work and very often do not work.
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SpongeBob

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Re: Dedicated Great War awards and ranks
« Reply #20 on: March 07, 2017, 02:41:47 PM »

Hello again.
No news in the last few days, but I've been working on my project. I spent a moment of huge panic: I made a stupid thing forcing my computer to shut down and losing Windows access. I feared I had lost everything, but I managed to repair Windows without losing data. Hopefully, IL2 is not treated as a program, but a bunch of files, so the only thing I could do after repairing Windows was to fly in IL2. Other programs needed to be completely reinstalled.
In the meanwhile, I've been researching about awards and ranks, following jpten wise advice, and I have made some extensive changes in French medals and ranks. I've seen that French aces used to add myriads of bronze palms on their War Crosses (up to 28 in some cases), so I decided to display just two or three still pictures of these movie. It is impossible to show one palm after another, but some medals can reflect the fact that you have been awarded with your fifth, tenth or twentieth bronze palm. So my new proposal for the new French set is as follows:



You can compare with René Fonck War Cross:


Do you like it? Any suggestion?

Next step: update Russian medals and begin at last with the German set.
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Jenato

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Re: Dedicated Great War awards and ranks
« Reply #21 on: March 08, 2017, 11:38:49 AM »

SpongeBob,

This set is unique and very realistic. Believe me, if your work should be implied in BAT... waaaw!!! I am wondering how the German awards will turn out.
One thing though about the most famous one of these medals... the Blue Max... Early in the First World War the award, which is of Prussian origin, was earned by Max Immelmann after eight aerial victories as very first in a line of many, while Werner Voss got his Blue Max after 24 victories the 8th of April 1917. As the airplane technology improved, and this went rather fast, the amount of victories “needed” to be granted the Pour le Mérite raised too.
Though many people believe Manfred von Richthofen was awarded the Pour le Mérite with Oak Leaves, this is not true. As a matter of fact this “higher level” of the famous blue enameled Maltese Cross with French inscription was never awarded during the Great War. An award von Richthofen did get was the Roter Adlerorden. This Order of the Red Eagle existed in six different classes and the one von Richthofen got was the Order of the Red Eagle Third Class with Crown and Swords. Hopefully this info is of any value to you, because I can imagine the temptation may be strong to use the Blue Max with Oak Leaves… 

Greetings,

Jenato
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SpongeBob

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Re: Dedicated Great War awards and ranks
« Reply #22 on: March 08, 2017, 01:33:21 PM »

Hi Jenato,
thank you very much. Your suggestion is truly appreciated. This is the strength of Il2, a live community composed by so many people with extremely specialized knowledge and real love and care for flight history. I will take into account all the information you have pointed out. The German set will be specially dedicated to you.
Greetings,

SpongeBob
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Jenato

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Re: Dedicated Great War awards and ranks
« Reply #23 on: March 09, 2017, 02:23:31 AM »

You're welcome! Something I forgot to mention: one of the other awards von Richthofen got wasn't Prussian of origin, but Saxon. The Militär Sankt Heinrichs Orden or Military Order of Saint Henry was the oldest order of all the German states in the Reich. The reason it was often given was summarized on the reverse side of the medal. "VIRTUTI IN BELLO" or... Bravery in War. That says it all, doesn't it? Though the very beautifully painted figure on the front side of the medal , in the center of the piece -by the Germans called "des runden Mittelschildes " or round shield in the middle - is Emperor Heinrich the Second, the tekst around it may be confusing: FRID.AUG.D.G. REG SAX INSTAURAVIT, meaning: Friedrich Augustus Der GroSe, re-installed King of Saxony, who also
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