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How did you pick a color scheme for your birds?

Aeronautica Imperialis game

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#1
Exilyth

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I've assembled the contents of the Wings of Vengeance yesterday and now I'm facing the hardest part: picking a color scheme.
 
I'm currently looking for inspiration on https://commons.wiki...raft_camouflage
 
How did you pick a color scheme for your aeronautica imperialis models?

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#2
General Zodd

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I should caveat this by saying I’m on a long holiday, so I’m itching to get started on my own models when I get home next week! BUT I have been able to give this particular question quite a lot of thought, so apologies in advance for the essay...

So, the first thing to think about is overall force cohesion versus narrative lore considerations. The reason I say this is that from my (extremely limited) understanding of airforce organisation, the typical tactical unit is the Squadron. Usually composed of one type of aircraft only, certainly one class of aircraft (fighter, bomber, recon, transport, training etc.) and would almost certainly share a colour scheme, maybe with the odd exception for Red Baron-style aces. So, if you have both bombers and fighters in your force, they’re probably not from the same Squadron, so usually wouldn’t have the same markings. Now, conceivably the next unit up (in the RAF I believe this is the Group) might have different types of squadron in it, depending on the Group’s role, and so might also have a unifying colour scheme, but this is less common as far as I know. In short, you need to decide whether you’ll have one colour scheme for all your aircraft, or have distinct squadrons.

Orks

As with all things, rules don’t really apply to Orks, but a consistent looking fleet will look better. So mainly it’s about picking a Klan and going for it! For me, I am almost certain I want to do a Blood Axe force, so camouflage will be the order of the day, with some inappropriately bright red and yellow squadron markings to make them look more Orky. I may do different camo colours and patterns for different squadrons, but I’ll see how I feel.

Imperials

The above questions are probably more important for a good looking Imperial force, as they should look like a professional airforce, and the easiest way to do that is to have an internally consistent approach to your markings and colours. Then the next question is whether you want to do camouflage markings or something more distinctive. Now, as I’m doing camo Orks, I have decided to go with non-camo on my Imperials. For ‘reasons’ I’m going with Royal Blue and yellow for my fighters, and my bombers will probably be standard Navy grey, maybe with yellow markings to help tie them in with the fighters. If you go camo, that is probably going to be theatre-specific, so would enable you to make your entire force look coherent, with some more subtle squadron markings added to a unifying camouflage scheme.

Whichever race and approach you take, you’ll also want to think about how different to make planes in the same squadron look. This could be unique patterns using the same colour scheme, almost identical planes with or without different number markings or somewhere in between. My Orks will be the first style, my Imperials will be mostly the same but with numbers, wing transfers on my squadron leader, and a slightly different pattern to help differentiate Furys from regular Thunderbolts.

Hopefully someone with better knowledge of actual airforces will be able to add some extra context, though. Not all airforces will be organised similarly to the RAF, or if they are, they might use different terminology.

Hope at least some of that is useful!
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#3
Exilyth

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Well, that was a lot, but also very helpful.

 

 

I think I'll hand out numbers for imperials as follows:

  • Thunderbolt - 145
  • Thunderbolt Fury - 245
  • Marauder #1 - 441
  • Marauder #2 - 442

... so, some kind of squadron-plane numbering scheme.

 

 

For Orks, I'll probably give all the same kulture based paintjob, but with details having different colors on each plane. Maybe I'll go with squadrons instead, I'll have to think about that some more. Also checkerboards or not is a tough decision.


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#4
Beaky Brigade

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I'm still struggling. In the end I may just go with grey with some interesting markings and weathering to spice them up. Tan colours actually show shape very well and I think some of the historical desert schemes look very beautiful, but for some reason I always think of desert campaigns as a sort of 'side quest' for air forces, at least, I don't imagine my own fighters flying over the desert (for some irrational reason).

In terms of choosing colours though there are a few considerations:

What is more important, camouflage or recognition?

If camouflage is more important which environment are you camouflaging the aircraft in, the air or the ground? And is this from attack from the ground, or in the air? Will your aircraft fly missions at high altitude or skim the ground? Is the deployment so rushed that the aircraft can't be repainted in time? The background of your squadron's campaigns should help you decide this.

Many planets in the 41st millennium are not suitable for the Mk1 sky blue and forest green schemes so that does leave room for imagination.

 

It may be that the Xenos race you are fighting uses powerful radar (or pskyers) which make camouflage less important, or their eyes perceive colours in a different way.


In the event of glorious Imperial Air superiority it may be that recognition is more important to avoid friendly fire, so garish paint schemes or 'Invasion stripes' may be the order of battle.

 

Perhaps your pilots are aristocratic bastards who paint their aircraft how they choose and laugh at regulations! 

Or maybe you just want to copy US Airforce/ RAF/ Russian/ Red Bull air race markings and do it your way.

Unfortunately with all these considerations I still can't decide myself biggrin.png

 

In terms of squadron/unit markings my research has found them relatively idiosyncratic (especially WW2 Luftwaffe markings) and a lot of those you see on aircraft today would be painted over in wartime anyway, so just go with what makes sense to you, and helps you match the aircraft to your squadron list during the game.

 


Edited by Beaky Brigade, 08 October 2019 - 08:35 PM.

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#5
Fajita Fan

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My Imperials are meant to look like WW2 American planes, specifically P51s for the Tbolts.  My orks are being painted like the Blue Angels. happy.png


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#6
Exilyth

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Mhh, that certainly is quite a bit more to ponder.

 

As for now, I think that I will paint the underside of my imperials in a light grey to camoflague them from ground assets - then again, I may as well give them a pink belly or some other garish color as the color of alien skies does not necessarily have to conform to what we see when we look up here on Terra.

 

Perhaps your pilots are aristocratic bastards who paint their aircraft how they choose and laugh at regulations!

 

Oh, that would be sooo imperial, wouldn't it?

 

Some Lord: "We demand that our personal flying fortress be clad in the finest marmors and adorned with gold. Make it so."

Assistant: "But, your lordship, surely the stone would reduce the airspeed of your swallow and the gold would make it stick out like a sore thumb during night raids?"

SL: "Did you just object? Just as we were starting to get used to your mannerisms. Now look what you made us do."

A: "But sire, surely ... "

(sound of a gunshot)

SL: "Someone, bring us an amasec! And a new assistant!"

 

msn-wink.gifbiggrin.png


Edited by Exilyth, 08 October 2019 - 10:10 PM.

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#7
mithrilforge

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Perhaps your pilots are aristocratic bastards who paint their aircraft how they choose and laugh at regulations! 

 

From the book 'double eagle' That would be the "Apostles" the Ace squadron who paint all their aircraft in cream white !

 

WWII paint schemes seem to fit well with the imperials, i'm torn on doing everyone the same though..i might do different colours but tie them together with say, tail markings all the same

...as for Orks Klan kulture colours are the go!!

 

Cheers, Mithril


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#8
Arendious

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Given the emphasis on dogfighting, there's a good case to be made for distinctive color schemes and "hi-vis" markings. Anything that reduces the time a pilot spends on "that a good guy? Or a bad guy?" is objectively good.
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#9
Beaky Brigade

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I've done it! Despite what I said about desert schemes the other day I've settled on the worryingly fleshy RAF Desert Pink from operation Granby (Desert Storm) just because it's slightly outrageous.

I think Cadian Fleshtone will be a good match!


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#10
Exilyth

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In the end, picking a color scheme was relatively simple for me once I considered the fluff:

The planes will be stationed on a world that's mostly temperate, but also has large stretches of desert. While hive cities do exist, not enough to justify urban camo.

 

So I'll probably paint my imperials in a desert yellow or light brown, maybe with a speck of green here and there.

Underside will be (light) gray, numbers as above and in white (depending on visibility, I might give them dark gray or black outlines).

 

 

I still have to pick a kultur for my orks though.


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#11
Fajita Fan

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Perhaps your pilots are aristocratic bastards who paint their aircraft how they choose and laugh at regulations! 

 

From the book 'double eagle' That would be the "Apostles" the Ace squadron who paint all their aircraft in cream white !

 

WWII paint schemes seem to fit well with the imperials, i'm torn on doing everyone the same though..i might do different colours but tie them together with say, tail markings all the same

...as for Orks Klan kulture colours are the go!!

 

Cheers, Mithril

 

Variations is a thing:

Bott4.jpg


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#12
mithrilforge

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Variation - 

 

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Mithril


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#13
Reyner

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My Imperial bombers have desert style camo and my Thunderbolts are going to be white/grey with blue patterns in the style of X-Wings! 


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