Like I wrote in my last post three of us from my local Kriegspeilklubb here in Stockholm had played a game of WWI Naval combat. The rules were Naval Thunder Clash of Dreadnoughts. This is the fist time any of us have played these rules and we liked the fast that the rules move at a good pace and make for a fun game that can be played in a short amount of time.
So before we get too deep into the AAR I wanted to post a few pictures from my recent trip to Turkey. It was a nice trip and the weather was very good. I went to Side Turkey and the flights were great, the hotel was good but the staff sucked!!! Yes it was an all inclusive type place and if I do go back to Side I will not stay at the hotel I stayed at. SO here are some pictures of the high points!!!
When I returned to Stockholm, the weather has changed and today it is hovering around 3C and we had the first SNOW on Thursday of this week
OK so now what you have been waiting for! The AAR!
This was the first run of these rules and it was a good opportunity to learn the system as I have the Naval Thunder Battleship row, which is the WWII version and is similar to the Class of Dreadnoughts WWI rules.
The four ships that we used in this game are painted and owned by Soren, who has his own blog here! Black Powder Games. Soren is an excellent painter and I encourage all of you to check out his blog and see some of the outstanding work he has done.
The Battle was between the British and the Germans and is based on the Naval battle of Jutland. The German commander, Jesper, had two Battleships at his command. The ships he commanded were: SMS Fredrich der Grosse and SMS Ostfriesland, both ships started in line of battle and entered the board from the same location.
Here is a picture of the two German Ships.
The paint job is awesome and the GHQ miniatures are very detailed.
Soren made up the ship labels and they are perfect for the bases and add a great touch to the ships.
The British force was made up of one Battleship and one Battle cruiser. The two ships were: HMS Iron Duke (battleship) and HMS Indefatigable (battle cruiser). I commanded the HMS Indefatigable and Soren took the HMS Iron Duke. We selected sides between the three of us by drawing a different color dice from my hat. Two black dice,one each for the British and the one red dice for the Germans. I started on the board with the HMS Indefatigable and would have to hold off the Germans until turn four when Soren entered the boar from the North board edge with the HMS Iron Duke.
Here is a picture of all four ships before we started the game.
Here is my ship before the sky rained down steel and death!!!
We stared the game with going through how the rules worked and Jesper and I took a few turns to maneuver before Jesper started to let fly the steel and things started to get interesting fast!
The first splash marker is laid on the table to indicate that I was under fire.
The Naval Thunder Rules are not complex and they get down to business fast and very effective. The first salvo from the German ships was at max range and missed, but things changed fast. The next turn both groups of ships were closer and we both exchanged gunfire. I had an advantage firing with all of my guns and I hit first. The damage to the German Battleships was not very much. Jesper also struck home and I took some minor damage as none of the rounds penetrated my armor. Things were getting hot for me when the HMS Iron Duke came on board and provided another target for the Germans.
The Iron Duke arrives to help fight the Germans.
The battle continued but I still was the main target of the German Battleships. By this point I had started to take hull damage, which can add up pretty fast.
In this picture you can see the two fleets firing broadside at each other. Jesper has a hand full of dice and the target is me! Note the two splash markers on my Battle Cruiser.
Soren and I both took a different German ship as a target and started to fire away at at them. We scored some hits but I was getting a lot of fire directed at me and Jesper's 12 inch guns were starting to do some serious damage. In one turn he started a fire on my ship which spread into a second fire. On the same turn he hit the bridge of my ship killing everyone in the bridge. My ship could not make any course changes until the crew was replaced.
My ship is without a Captain and she is burning!!!
No time for tea and Spotted Dick at tea time today!!!
To make things worse on the next turn Jesper hit one of my main turrets and it exploded. Now for a little history lesson. Apparently the crews of the ships would place gunpowder on all the levels of the turret to increase the rate of fire and to move the gun power faster. well this also defeated the compartmentalization of the turrets so if one compartment was damaged the only damage would be to that compartment, when if you stack gunpowder in each compartment you are creating a large roman candle. To reflect this poor choice in moving gun powder the British have to take a special dice roll each time a main turret is knocked out. Well the dice Gods were on my side and I rolled low enough that the ship did not explode into a cloud of smoke!!! That was too close for comfort!
A picture take of my ship as the front turret goes up in a ball of flame and smoke!
At this point I was trying to fight fires and keep the ship afloat. I could not make a change of course and run because there was no one alive in the bride!!!! The Germans continued to steam forward and the Iron Duke started to find her target.
Here the German Battleships are taking evasive maneuvers to try and avoid being hit.
The Iron Duke was able to hit the SMS Fredrich der Grosse and she scored a turret hit! Unlike the British the Germans do not have to take an extra die roll to see if the ship explodes. The Germans had learned the lesson not to stack power like the British after the battle of Dogger Bank in 1915. The gunfire also set a fire on board the SMS Fredrich der Grosse!
A picture of the turret exploding and the fire on the German Battleship!
A view of the German fleet from my burning ship!!!
The Germans know that I am almost out of action and start to target the Iron Duke with both Battleships. This results in a turret hit on the Iron Duke!!! She also passes the British Gun power check and continues to fire away at the German Battleships, who are starting to take hull damage from all the hits scored by both the British ships.
The Germans plan there attack on the Iron Duke!
The Iron Duke as her turret explodes!
I was able to re crew my bridge and eventually put out all the fires on my Battle Cruiser and I turn for home and try to outrun the Germans who turn to pursue. Luckily for me my engines are still running and I have an advantage in speed. At this point we called the game as it was getting late on a Tuesday night.
My ship turns to run with the Germans in hot pursuit.
I still had one fire raging on my ship at this point.
The result is that I had taken a beating and my ship would be out of action for a long time. I started the game with 76 hull points and when we called the game i was down to 11 hull points left. The German Battleships had taken damage as well but they have more armor and more hull points. The Iron Duke also took some damage but all the big battle wagons would be able to fight again a lot sooner than my Battle Cruiser.
Overall the rules move fast once we go to know them, there is plenty of action with the big guns and long range. We did close to use the secondary guns for one turn before I broke off my attack and started my run for safety. Lesson learned by me, don't go toe to toe with a Battleship unless you are a Battleship!
We all had fun and we look forward to playing more WWI battles in the near future as well as some WWII battles.
Oh I almost forgot to mention that I celebrated my first King Gustavus Adolphus Dayin Sweden on Thursday. It is an interesting holiday and you can read about it here: Gustavus Adolphus Day. I did not have the traditonal pastery but a choclate moose over chocolate brownie pieces. It had the traditional bust of the king and it was great. Here is a picture of the treat!!!
I hope you enjoyed reading this.