"Dawn Patrol" painting by Simon Smith (www.sasmithart.co.uk)
Note: This beautiful painting of No 56 Sqn in 1917, "Dawn Patrol", is displayed here with the kind permission of the artist, Simon Smith. View all of his artwork at www.sasmithart.co.uk.

Welcome to the website of Number 56 (Virtual) Squadron. Founded in 2016, we are a team of hobbyists in the WWI flight sim, Rise of Flight (free to play), and have no affiliation with any current-day military, political, or historical organization.

100 Years Since End of Service in WWI

posted Feb 3, 2019, 6:58 AM by No 56 Sqn   [ updated Feb 3, 2019, 7:04 AM ]

In No 56 Sqn RAF/RFC, Alex Revell writes:
On 2 February [1919], the final order came. The squadron was to be reduced to cadre status on the 5th. The day was dismal, snow lay on the ground and there was low cloud. Speaks and Clarkson left with the squadron's remaining transport. Grinnell-Milne, the last to leave watched the lorries take the long straight road to Cambrai. No 56 Sqn RFC/RAF had ceased to exist as a fighter unit. (119)

One-hundred years ago, almost to the day, No 56 Sqn completed its military service in World War I. During 1917-18, the young pilots of No 56 Sqn exhibited great courage and skill in combat flying, though many did not return home. The world now more than ever needs to remember the horrific nature of that war, to honor the memory of the fallen by ensuring that such global conflict never happens again.

No 56 (V) Sqn will continue to fly in the virtual skies of Rise of Flight (and, soon, Flying Circus). If you would like to fly with me and help build a virtual community of flight sim friends, consider joining No 56 (V) Sqn. S!

"No 56 (V) Sqn WURD Comms Guide" Released

posted Apr 10, 2018, 11:59 PM by No 56 Sqn   [ updated Apr 11, 2018, 12:52 AM ]

I've posted first version of the WURD Comms Guide on our Community page. WURD stands for Wheels Up Radio Discipline and is our Squadron's unique way of communicating in flight to approximate and simulate real-world practices of WWI pilots. This is just the first version of the document, and it will invariably be updated as this system is tested and refined. It is currently best viewed on screen (rather than printed) because the font size came out looking smaller than I expected. I may revise this in the future as well and make it a 2-page document for ease of use.

Happy 100th to the RAF!

posted Apr 1, 2018, 11:52 PM by No 56 Sqn   [ updated Apr 1, 2018, 11:52 PM ]

Exactly 100 years ago today, on 1 Apr 1918, the Royal Air Force (RAF) was formed. We commemorated the event in style with a multiplayer tribute flight. Happy 100th!

"No 56 (V) Sqn Pilot's Handbook" Released

posted Apr 1, 2018, 11:20 PM by No 56 Sqn   [ updated Apr 1, 2018, 11:21 PM ]

I've just uploaded v1.00 of our virtual Squadron's Pilot's Handbook. This new document is intended to give the WWI flight sim community, prospective applicants to the Squadron, and Squadron members a guide to the fundamentals of our little virtual group. As our virtual Squadron is still in its infancy, some of the descriptions may seem somewhat grandiose, but the intention here has been to describe the vision for the club to attract potential members (with similar interests and preferences) that may want to help implement it together. Please visit our "About" page to read our new Pilot's Handbook. Keep in mind that it's an evolving document that will be revised as the Squadron learns and grows.

Upcoming Events: RAF100 and Bloody April

posted Mar 29, 2018, 12:13 PM by No 56 Sqn   [ updated Mar 29, 2018, 12:14 PM ]

April 2018 will be a busier month as far as Rise of Flight community events go. No 56 Sqn will participate in commemorating the exact 100th anniversary of the formation of the Royal Air Force (RAF) on April 1, 1918. This event will take place on Sun, 1 Apr 2018 (not a joke!) on the Cuban/SteveF Syndicate Connection Multiplayer Server in Rise of Flight and will feature a truce for a 30-minute RAF tribute, culminating in a group firing of many flares into the sky. This wouldn't be completely unprecedented: as Alex Revell writes in his book, No 56 Sqn RAF/RFC, that upon scoring their 200th victory, "the squadron's entire stock of Very lights (flares) was fired into the evening sky -- 40 red, white and green lights lit up the countryside". Also, Jasta 5's annual Bloody April event will be taking place that month, and No 56 Sqn will try to participate on most of those Saturdays, if possible. To read more about these community events, click on each one of those entries in our Squadron Calendar. If you would like to fly together with No 56 Sqn, contact Badger on our Discord server. See you in the virtual skies!

Discord Server Activated (Chat)

posted Mar 29, 2018, 9:47 AM by No 56 Sqn   [ updated Mar 29, 2018, 9:49 AM ]

I've created a Discord Server for No 56 Sqn. Discord is a free text chat and voice comms platform for gamers, and it's very useful and intuitive. We'll still use TeamSpeak for voice comms for now, but Discord will be our primary text communication app (there are browser-based, desktop, and mobile versions) for the Squadron while I research different forum software options. After we have a forum up, most substantive discussions will take place there, while the Discord server will be used to do the weekly coordination of group flights (dates, times, availabilities, etc.). Eventually, I hope to move to Discord for voice comms as well since I think it's a better platform overall than TeamSpeak (though currently almost everyone in the Rise of Flight community uses the latter). Everyone, including guests, is welcome to drop by the No 56 Sqn Discord Server and chat with us now: http://discord.gg/QvpexcX .

Reactivating the Squadron

posted Mar 2, 2018, 6:37 PM by No 56 Sqn   [ updated Mar 29, 2018, 9:35 AM ]

After being absent from the Rise of Flight community for over a year, I am back in the virtual skies of WWI. No 56 Sqn, the virtual squadron created in 2016, is now reactivated. We are recruiting pilots, both newbies and veterans alike. All of the information listed in the original news post (see below) is still current, though of course squadron combat operations are commencing now in 2018. The skies in Rise of Flight are currently dominated by Jasta squadrons; No 56 Sqn, though now in its nascent form, will seek to challenge this status quo. If you're interested in joining the virtual No 56 Sqn, please read more about us on this site, and then apply today. See you in the skies!

New Member: 56Sqn_Whiskey

posted Nov 10, 2016, 7:50 PM by No 56 Sqn   [ updated Mar 2, 2018, 6:39 PM ]

A new member has joined the ranks of No 56 Sqn: Whiskey. He hails from Arizona and is a welcome addition to our newly-forming squadron. if you're browsing our site and are interested in joining the squadron yourself, fly along with me and Whiskey as we tear up the unfriendly skies of Rise of Flight during our squad night, Thursdays at 8:30 p.m. (Central Time). Welcome 56Sqn_Whiskey!

Now Forming: No 56 Sqn

posted Oct 21, 2016, 6:44 PM by No 56 Sqn   [ updated Mar 2, 2018, 6:39 PM ]

Almost one hundred years to the day after the formation of the real-life squadron, No 56 Sqn, a virtual group, is now forming to fly and fight in the virtual skies of the WWI flight simulator, Rise of Flight. The mission of the squadron is to foster fun and camaraderie in a virtual WWI combat flight simulator setting while honoring the memory of the real life airmen of No 56 Sqn who fought in the Great War. 

As the current front-runner in its genre, Rise of Flight will be the simulator of choice of the virtual squadron for the near future. We will fly mostly British aircraft, especially the S.E.5a, the historical ride of the real-life No 56 Sqn. Command is under the direction of me, callsign 56Sqn_Badger. The website of the squadron is 56Sqn.com.

In the coming days, the website will be updated with pages that outline the community, aircrew, aircraft, training, history, and recruitment for the squadron.

Squadron training will take place in 2016 and the early part of 2017, and "official" squadron combat operations in the virtual skies will begin in April 2017, one hundred years after the real-life No 56 Sqn went into action over the Western Front.

Stay tuned for more updates and happy flying!

1-9 of 9