Wings - Manual
Wings is not an interactive movie, nor could it be called a military
flight simulator, and yet it combines elements of both to create a unique
Wings is not a game about winning or losing. In fact, there is no way to
lose the game, and the only winner is the player with enough skill and
determination to face over 230 different missions and see the war through to
its end. It isn't easy. You find new challenges and surprises at every step,
and your opponents' skills and aircraft dramatically improve as the war
The game is historically accurate wherever possible. The Das Rittmeister
character that you meet at the end of 1916 is fictionalized, as well as the
56th Aerosquadron itself, which represents a typical English, American, or
French fighter unit. The real 56th squadron was an elite unit made up of the
top pilots of England. They traded flight tactics and tested new SE5's before
returning to their units to share their newly acquired knowledge.
Welcome to WWI. It is March 2, 1916. You're about to find out what it was
really like to be an Allied pilot in the Great War. Good luck, Lieutenant.
BEFORE LOADING THE GAME
Before loading Wings, make backup copies of both disks. Make sure that the
copies are named "reel 1" and "reel 2". Put the originals in a safe place
and play the game from the copies.
Caution: do not write protect reel 2, as games are saved to this disk.
Hard disk installation: you can install Wings to you HD. On reel 1 is a
file named READ_ME.INSTALL that explains the procedure.
Connect a joystick and turn on your monitor. Insert reel 1 into df0: (if
you have 2 drives, insert reel 2 into df1:) and turn on your computer (1000
owners, boot using kickstart v1.2 or later). If you're using only one disk
drive, follow the prompts for switching disks. Once the game is loaded, the
title sequence begins. You can bypass this by pressing the fire button.
If you are playing Wings for the first time, you will go directly to Flight
School after the title sequence. The menu selection let you Add Pilot, Delete
Pilot, View Pilot, Earn Wings, Join Squadron, and Quit/Exit. The options
available at any given time are highlighted.
One pilot, Waldo P. Barnstormer, has already earned his wings when you
arrive at Flight School. You may use him as your alter ego if you want to
jump right into the game. Or, create a new pilot and go through the pilot
training sessions to earn your own wings.
ADD PILOT select this option and the Add Pilot screen appears (you can add
up to 10 pilots). Type in your pilot's name and press RETURN (2nd Lieutenant
is your first rank). The box at the bottom of the screen lets you set your
pilot's abilities. Use the joystick to click on the bars (or use cursor keys)
to change the ability levels. The bar color changes from red (low) to yellow
(adequate) to green (good), depending on the level of ability assigined.
The Ability Points indicator at the top of the box shows how many points
that you can assign. When you create a new pilot, he has 40 points assinged
to each ability, plus 40 more that you can distribute between his abilites.
This is the only time you can actively adjust these numbers. During the game,
these abilities increase or decrease according to your performance in battle.
After making your selections, press ESC to go back to the Flight School
DELETE PILOT select this option to remove a pilot from the Flight School
VIEW PILOT select this option to see any Flight School pilot's statistics.
You'll notice that most of these categories have no figures while you're in
school. Later, after you've seen a few battles, you'll learn what these mean.
EARN WINGS select this option to go to Flight School. You must pass
training in order to join the 56th Aerosquadron. You'll be assigned training
missions (strafing, bombing, or flying), which are excellent practice for the
real thing. Once you succeed at one of the training missions, you earn your
wings and are eligible to Join Squadron.
JOIN SQUADRON select this option after earning your wings to join the 56th
Aerosquadron. Make this selection, then choose which qualified pilot you wish
to be in the game (only one pilot at a time can join the 56th). You must give
a password to be allowed in the 56th Aerosquadron, and you can find that
password in your Pilot's Briefing Manual (HAHAHAHA! password removed by SKID
After you give the correct password, you receive a briefing from your
commanding officer, Col. Charles Farrah, at the 56th HQ. Then the Squadron
Roster appears, where you see all the members of the 56th listed by rank,
the # of missions they've flown, and enemy plans they've downed. Select
CONTINUE GAME. A company journal appears-your diary of the war. Pages turn
automatically to the current day's entry-read it carefuly, as it often has
vital information about your upcomming missions. Press FIRE to go to your
QUIT/EXIT If you haven't joined the 56th, this ends the game session. If
you have a pilot in the 56th, QUIT/EXIT takes you to the Main Menu.
If you have a saved game, the Main Menu appears after the title sequence.
You can also access this menu from other points in the game.
The Main Menu has 5 selections: REVIEW PILOTS, CONTINUE GAME, NEW GAME,
FLIGHT SCHOOL, EXIT/SAVE. use the joystick to move the cursor arrow to the
desired selection; press fire to select.
REVIEW PILOTS select this option to view the Squadron Roster. This lists
all the members of the 56th by rank, # of missions flown, and enemy pilots
downed. From this screen you can select Current Pilot, Memorial (list of
the 20 best Wings players), or Exit (to return to the Main Menu).
CONTINUE GAME anytime the game take you to the Main Menu, select this
option to resume playing the current game.
NEW GAME select this option and you see the prompt DELETE GAME IN
PROGRESS? Select YES to start a new game. If you have a game in progress
that you don't want to lose select NO, then CONTINUE GAME (or Exit/Save
to save the game).
FLIGHT SCHOOL select this option to create and train pilots.
EXIT/SAVE select this option to end the current session and save the game.
Only one game at a time may be save on Reel 2. If you wish to save more than
one game, make copies of Reel 2 and use a different copy for each game.
AERIAL COMBAT MISSIONS
In any aerial combat mission, your flying skill is of paramount importance.
You must be able to evade enemy fire, maneuver to get enemy targets in your
sights, an occaisonally land a badly crippled airplane without crashing.
Enemy planes and the baskets of enemy observation balloons are easily
distinguished by their red coloring; Allied aircraft are light brown.
If you can see bushes, you are flying VERY low. To maintain level flight,
keep your the horizon line inside your circular gunsight. If you stall
(your engine coughs and you start to dive), don't panic. Release the stick
for a moment to regain lost airspeed, then ease it back to return to level
Missions aren't over until all enemy planes and balloons have been shot
down (make sure that your enemy actually hits the ground; a damaged plane CAN
recover and come back to attack you). You can ditch (land you plane) to make
a hasty exit from any aerial combat missions. Of course, this is frowned upon
by Wing HQ.
Look araound by pressing these keys on the number pad: 8-forward; 4-left;
6-right; 2-back. Press fire to shoot your machine guns.
NOTE: when you are facing forward, watch for your pilot's head to turn left
or right; that is the direction of the nearest enemy plane.
Before each aerial combat mission you receive mission orders that include
the date, type of mission, and who (if anyone) will be flying with you
(including how many missions each of you has flown and how many confirmed
kills you've made).
After you your mission orders and take off (click on FLY), a "movie card"
appears. Important information about the upcoming battle is included in these
There are four types of aerial combat missions.
PATROL Destroy all enemy aircraft (you may meet anywhere from 1 to 10). If
any enemy planes get by you and your comrades, you fail your mission.
BALLOON BUSTING Destroy all enemy balloons (1-5) and any palnes protecting
them. You will also be under anti-aircraft fire from the ground.
ESCORT Ensure the safety of the bomber or recon plane you are assigned to
escort by destroying all enemy aircraft. If you lose the plane that you're
escorting, you fail your mission.
PROTECT Destroy all enemy planes and ensure the safety of the Allied base
or balloons you are assigned to protect. If the base is hit or the balloons
destroyed, you fail your mission.
At the end of each aerial combat mission you recieve a Post Flight Log.
This mission report tells you whether your mission was a success or a
failure, the name of all 56th pilots involved, their status (OK, downed,
etc>), and how many planes and/or balloons each pilot shot down.
If you are unlucky enough to go down and can't make a smooth landing, your
pilot will be killed. This means that you must go back to Flight School and
create a new persona to continue the war.
In any strafing mission, your shooting skill is vital. Press fire to shoot
your machine guns and watch slightly ahead of your plane for the flashing
streaks where the bullets hit the ground. Some targets require several hits
to finish them off. You must be able to hit enemy trucks, trains, tents,
infantrymen, etc., and avoid hitting ambulances, and red-cross tents. You
must also avoid being hit by ground fire. You can't die in a strafing
mission, but you can be shot down by repeated machine-gun hits or a single
hit from a large anti-aircraft gun.
Before each strafing mission you receive a set of mission orders that
include the date, the type of mission (your primary target), any secondary
targets, and what to avaoid hitting. In order to succeed in a strafing
mission, you must destroy 50% or more of your primary objective targets (in
a train strafing mission, you must destroy 50% of the cars as well as the
engine). Destroying secondary targets improves you pilot's ratings.
At the end of each strafing mission, the Post Flight Log tells you
whether your mission was a success or a failure, how many rounds of
ammunition you shot, what percentage of your shots hot a target, and your
status. It also tells you how many of those targets you destroyed and
what percentage of the targets you destroyed.
You first bombing mission comes later in the game, as bombs were in
short supply at the beginning of the war. When you do get bombs, good aim
is crucial. You must be able to hit enemy targets and avoid hitting
hospitals, churches (what fun is that?), schools, and ambulances (all of
which are marked by a red cross). You can't die in a bombing mission, but you
can be shot down by direct hits from anti-aircraft fire (close shell bursts
rock your plane and make it uncontrollable for several seconds).
You can see how many bombs you're carrying (max of 10) by looking at the
underside of your wings. Press fire to shoot your machine guns. To drop a
bomb, press fire while simultaneously tapping back on the joystick.
Before each bombing mission you receive a set of mission orders that
include the date, the type of mission (your primary target), any secondary
tagets, and what to avoid hitting.
After you see the mission orders, a recon photo of the target area is
diplayed. On the photo you'll see your primary targets circled in red (if
your primary target is a moving taget such as a submarine or a train, you
won't see a recon photo). In order to succeed in a bombing mission, you
must destroy all of your primary objective targets. Destroying secondary
targets improves your pilot's ratings.
At the end of each bombing mission, the Post Flight Log tells you
whether you mission was a success or failure, how many bombs you carried,
how many bombs you dropped, how many targets were part of your primary and
secondary abjectives, and how many of those targets you destroyed.
AERIAL COMBAT FLYING
All functions of flying your plane in Wings are controlled by the joystick.
Pushing the joystick forward or pulling it back operates the elevators
(located on the tail of the plane) and points the nose of the plane down
(diving) or up (climbing). Airspeed increases are accomplished by diving.
Pushing the joystick left or right operates the ailerons (the wing flaps) and
causes one wing to drop and the other to lift, enabling rolls and turns.
There are three methods of control, from which all aerobatics maneuvers are
derived: roll, pitch and yaw. Think of your plane as having three axes. The
first axis runs from the nose to the tail, and rotation arounf this axis is
called a roll (turning over). The second axis runs from wingtip to wingtip
and rotation around it it called pitch (diving and climbing). The third axis
passes vertically through the center of the plane and rotation around it is
called yaw (turning left or right).
ROLL To execute a roll, push the joystick all the way to the left or right
and hold it. Level off by centering the joystick when the horizon is level.
PITCH To climb from level flight, pull the joystick back. Listen to the
engine sounds and you'll notice that the engine slows down as you climb. If
you climb to steeply, you lose too much airspeed and stall the plane. Push
the joystick forward to dive, which increases you speed and can correct a
stall if done in time.
YAW To turn, push the joystick left or right to bank the plane, then center
the joystick. The plane continues in a full turn. To stop turning, level the
On the next few pages are several aerobatic maneavers you can perform in
your SE5. A little fancy wing-work can help you evade the huns in a dogfight;
but, don't forget, the object here is to shoot your taget and get out alive!
CAUTION: When doing aerobatics of any sort, be sure you have enough
altitude to complete the maneuver without hitting the ground! Loops are
especially dangerous in WWI aircraft, as you always come out of a loop
at a lower altitude than when you began it.
ONE-HALF ROLL TO INVERTED FLIGHT From upright level flight, push the
joystick all the way to the right (to the left, if you want to roll left).
As you approach upside-down position, keep in mind that pulling back on the
joystick noses the plane toward the ground and pushing forward pitches it
skyward. Level off when inverted.
[Note: lots of nifty diagrams here.....BUY THE GAME TO SEE THEM! They can't
be done in ansi, sorry.]
ONE-HALF ROLL FROM INVERTED FLIGHT From inverted level flight, push the
joystick all the way to the right. As you appraoch the upright position,
center the stick.
SLOW ROLL From upright level flight, push the joystick all the way to the
right. To stop rolling, center the stick.
FOUR-POINT HESITATION ROLL Push the joystick to the right to begin the
roll. Briefly center the stick at the 1/4, 1/2, and 3/4 points of this roll.
To stop rolling at the end of the roll, center the stick.
EIGHT-POINT HESITATION ROLL Same thing as the four-point roll. Just stop at
every 1/8 point of the roll.
ONE-HALF LOOP TO INVERTED FLIGHT Start at a reasonalby high altitude and
dive to increase airspeed. At the bottom of the dive, pull sharply back on
the stick until you loop into inverted flight. Center the stick to level out.
ONE-HALF LOOP FROM INVERTED FLIGHT From inverted flight, pull back on the
stick until you loop into upright flight. Center the stick to level out.
ADVANCED MANEUVERS: ATTEMPT ONLY FROM HIGH ALTITUDES
INSIDE LOOP Start at a reasonably high altitude and dive to increase
At the bottom of your dive, pull sharply back on the stick to climb and
Continue holding back on the stick all the way through the loop, until
you finish in upright level flight.
ONE-HALF CUBAN 8 Start at a reasonably high altitude and dive to increase
At the bottom of the dive, pull sharply back on the stick to climb and
loop. Continue to hold back on the stick through the top of the loop until
you are nosing directly down.
At the 3/4 point of the loop, center the stick. Push right on the stick to
do a 1/2 roll to upright position; center the stick to stop roll. As you come
upright, pull back on the stick until you are level in horizontal flight.
SPLIT S Do a 1/2 roll right to inverted position. Pull the stick back to
pitch downward, until you level out when you reach horizontal position.
IMMELMANN TURN Start at a high altitude. Dive to increase airspeed. At
the bottom of your dive, pull back on the stick to climb and loop until you
are in level flight. Then release the stick. Roll right to upright flight and
center the stick to stop the roll.
To view your status in Wings, select REVIEW PILOTS from the Main Menu, then
select Current Pilot from the Squadron Roster screen.
The status screen is divided into 4 sections. The first section shows your
rank; name; # of missions; # of times you ditched or were downed; # of
reprimands you've received; and # of times you were victorious in each type
of mission (dogfights, bombing raids, and strafing runs).
The second section shows your confirmed kills, broken down by monoplanes,
biplanes, triplanes (five planes and you're an ACE!), and balloons.
The third section lists your personal stats: flying ability, mechanical
aptitude, shooting ability, and stamina. You set these levels when you create
your pilot, then your performance in battle affects them from that point.
Successful missions affect all four of these favorably; an unsuccessful
mission affects them all negatively. The amount of effect is determined by
the mission's difficulty level. Successful missions positively affect your
entire squadron. Repeated failure has a negative effect on the squadron's
FLYING ABILTY The general maneuverability of your airplane (how fast you
can fly and turn) is affected by this ability.
MECHANICAL APTITUDE This rating affects how well your plane holds up in
the air, whether or not the guns jam, and how much functionality and control
you have if you are hit.
SHOOTING ABILITY The level of this ability affects the # of hits that you
need in order to take out enemy aircraft. It also determines the accuracy and
range of you machine guns.
STAMINA The level of stamina determines how well you're able to survive
crashes. Rookie pilots tend to be killed instantly in mid-air collisions,
while pilots with high stamina may get a chance to land.
Certain activities in successful missions can favorably affect particular
ratings. In a strafing mission, if you hit the required # of primary
targets, then take out a majority of your secondary targets, your shooting
ablility increases. Hitting all the supply areas in a successful strafing
mission also ads more to your shooting ablilty. If you sustain no hits to
your plane during a successful strafing mission, you get a signifigant
increase in mechanical aptitude. The more hits you sustain, the smaller
the increase. Getting shot down results in a decrease in mechanical
aptitude (even in a successful mission).
After you hit your primary targets in a bombing mission, you get extra
flying ablity for success at hitting seconday targets. If you avoid being
hit by anti-aircraft flak during a successful bombing mission, you get extra
When you abilty levels change, the "nickname" you get for each category
changes on your status screen. The chart below shows some of the changes you
may see, starting with the lowest possible rating.
FLYING MECHANICAL SHOOTING STAMINA
Sitting Duck Butterfingers Pea Shooter Door Mat
Clay Pidgeon I Apprentice I Marksman I Lead Belly I
Clay Pidgeon II Apprentice II Marksman II Lead Belly II
Sky Falcon I Grease Monkey I Sharpshooter I Granite Gut I
? ? ? ?
? ? ? ?
? ? ? ?
? ? ? ?
When you win a medal, it appears in its appropriate niche in the bottom
window. Medals and promotions are awarded based on the pilot's successes and
the mood at Wing HQ. Mood is affected by how the squadron does as a unit.
Keep this is mind next time one of your buddies sweeps in and steals a
hard-earned kill just as you were about to deliver the finishing blow.
WINNING AND LOSING
You can't really lose the game, but you can lose a pilot. Naturally, if
your pilot dies, he's out of the picture. If you fail at three missions in a
row, you recieve a severe warning from you C.O. You get a second warning with
your 4th consecutive failure, and you're thrown out of the squadron with five
failures in a row. Just one success in between these failures will keep you
in the air.
Your pilot can also be given a dishonorable discharge for behaviour
unbecoming an officer of the 56th Aerosquadron. Unacceptable behavior
includes shooting down one of yur own planes or balloons, or shooting any
object marked with a red cress (ambulances, hospitals, schools, and
churches). Each time you do one of these dastardly dees, you get a reprimand.
Three reprimands and you're out!
You can win Wings by Surviving until Armistice Day. The last mission is on
Nov 10, 1918. When you make it through that mission, you've made it through
the war and to victory!
STRATEGY AND TACTICS
AERIAL COMBAT MISSIONS At the beginning of a mission where the enemy is
in front, circle around and attack from behind. When your group is
outnumbered you can't afford this luxury, because you risk losing your
wingmen who are counting on you for cover. In this situation, attack quickly,
spltting the opposition, then dive out before you sustain too much damage.
This tactic can save your buddies' lives by diverting enemy fire. And on the
really tough missions, you're going to need all the help that you can get up
Use the numeric keypad to look around. Don't let the enemy surprise you!
If you see an enemy pilot in front of you, don't try to fly straight at
him. Figure out which direction he's headed and fly to where you think he is
To avoid enemy fire during a dogfight, keep dodging, don't fly at a
constant altitude, and, if you get hit, dive or climb immediately.
There are three ways to avoid Archie (anti-aircraft) fire when going after
an enemy balloon: fly over the balloon and dive straight down on top of it
(this strategy was used by many pilots); fly around the shell bursts and
attack from the rear; or strafe the anti-aircraft gun and destroy it (dive
straight down at the beginnin of a balloon busting mission and you'll usually
find the anti-aircraft gun).
Be careful when attacking an enemy plane head-on, especially when it is
above you. A well placed burst could send him spiraling out of control-and
right into your flight path!
When following a banking target, lead him with your shots.
Don't shoot Allied anti-aircraft guns!
STRAFING AND BOMBING MISSIONS When you recieve mission orders, your
mission objective is the primary target you must destroy.
STRAFING MISSIONS Keep moving and try to hit the infantry before they
crouch down to shoot. This helps keep your plane in one piece.
If you don't have time to take out the anti-aircraft gun, watch where the
shell bursts are hitting and fly around that spot. It only takes one hit from
an Archie to end your mission in a hurry.
When you're strafing infantry, get them before they can escape to the right
or left side of the screen.
BOMBING MISSIONS Keep moving to avoid the anti-aircraft gun.
When you're ready to drop your bombs, wait for the guns to fire; then, move
in quickly and release your deadly cargo before they can fire again.
When enemy planes come in, quickly take them out (if you can't avoid them).
They'll interfere with you and keep you from getting to your target.
That was the instruction manual; I will NOT type in the "Aviator's
Briefing Manual for the First World War" as that is 80 pages! It is also
just a bunch of interesting stuff about WWI that you don't need to play.
Typed by MICTLANTECUHTI of SKID ROW. Edited by PARASITE.