I am very much ashamed
to say that I am just now in the process of learning how to play the campaign.
I've been too busy with IA missions, the historic missions, testing, forum help and real life.
I know for some (me included) the campaign seems
like an incredibly complex, daunting almost overwhelming task
Well, let me tell you the above set of instructions is a fantastic way for someone to get a "quick start" and taste of the campaign
I took about 30 minutes just glossing over the LW and RAF campaign instructions in the manual just to get an overall view of how it is supposed to work. I did not spend a ton of time concentrating on the fine details. My objective was to just get an overview of the basic functionality.
Then I went to Options>>>Game>>>Mission menue and set:
LW Skill modifier = Low
RAF skill = High
LW Tactics and Intel = historic
Map Plotting = Off
Auto Vectoring = On
Read what these do on pages 57-58 of the manual.
I then followed the instructions in the first post above for single squadron, selecting 54 squadron of the RAF. I left the Directives at default.
May I suggest if you are a total campaign newbie like me, that you change the default game time
settings. The game runs at different speeds and slows down or speeds up depending on what stage is ocurring - all are customizable. By slowing things down, it gives you time to comprehend whats going on and "learn" how the campaign works. Hit pause at lower left. Right-click just next to the bottom left date & time screen and a pop-up will appear, pick Time>>Game Speed
. Try these settings (or even slower) at first:
Non Raid Speed = 60
Reconn Speed = 30
Raid Speed = 15
Dialogue Speed = 1
By the way, in the upper right corner of the campaign map, I clicked on the "size" icon (just below and to the right of the "X") and was able to go to the desktop - with the game still running (Paused) and open the manual and am literally typing this post with the game running. This allows you to pause things and go back and forth between the manual and game and understand what you are seeing better.
In about an hours time total I've overcome the apprehension and have a basic understanding of how the Campaign works. I now see that the campaign - along with the ability to frag into a huge array of missions at any time - is actually the core of this game.
It is incredible how you can simultaneously be part of and/or manage a strategic battle from the largest macro perspective all the way down to a tactical level and fragging anywhere in between. By being involved at the larger level it makes the IA missions that you actually frag into all the more meaningful and suspenseful.
As someone who has done alot of reading about the Battle of Britain and seen a ton of documentaries and the movie, etc., this now puts me even more into the "time machine mode".
I can't believe that for over 2 years now I've missed out on all the campaign has to offer.
I suspect a lot of others are in the same position. I can't urge you enough to give this a try. You won't regret it.