History is Fun

Thursday, August 20, 2015

Scanian War Naval Battle AAR

Hi all!
Yesterday Soren (over at Black Powder Games) and I played a game of Form Line of Battle with our ships for the Scanian War. 

Things got hot in this battle!

We both had 3 ships each, Soren commanded the Danish squadron consisting of: The Flag ship Christianus V (85 guns), Churprindsen (74 guns) and Christianus IV (58 guns).

From front to back: Danish ships Christianus V, Churprindsen, and Christianus IV

I commanded the Swedish squadron consisting of : The flag ship Kronan (110 guns), The Nyckeln (84 guns), and the Armarant (52 guns).

From left to right: Swedish Ships Kronan, Nyckeln and Armarnat
This game we assigned a flag ship and assigned an Admiral to the flagship.  Each Admiral has his own ratting and the Danish had a Superior Admiral and the Swedish had an Average Admiral rating, Which I think worked out well.

The set up at the beginning of the game

The game started off with the two of us setting up the scenario and who had the strategic advantage, which fell to the Danish. This allowed Soren to set up his fleet after I had set up mine and he had the weather gauge in his favor.  This means he was able to direct the direction and flow of the battle.

The first shots fired by Christianus V at the Kronan

Soren was able to maneuver into position to get off the first shots that were at long range at the Kronan.

The first shots of the game
The long rang shots from the Danish squadron fell short and Soren started to maneuver his ships to get close to me, where I was trying to keep my distance and use the advantage of having the Swedish "Death Star" the new name for the Kronan!

The first shots fall short of the target
Well I took the opportunity to turn and fire at the Christianus V with Kronan and my first shot hit home and started to wear down the broadside factor of the Christianus V.  I will do a break down of the starting hull, crew and broadside factors and the damage each ship took at the end of the AAR. You will see that the Kronan did very well for herself, probably better than the real ship. At least she survived the game and did not self destruct like the real ship.

The Kronan scratching the paint on the Danish ship Christianus V

Kronan firing here full broadside!
The game contained with all ships getting into the fight and firing at long, then medium and then finally short range.  Soren soon found out that it was going to be hard to take down the Kronan. He started to be more aggressive and started to get in close to try to board the Kronan.

The Danish Squadron dealing death on the Swedish ships

Sometime the shots hit and sometime they missed

The fight was very good and Soren tried to board the Kronan with the each of his ships. each attempt failed, which is good because at one point Soren was very close to boarding the Kronan with two ships and if he had been able to board with those two ships I do not think the Kronan would have been able to win the combat.

The Nyckeln takes a critical hit and loses her fore mast
Soren was able to do some heavy damage to the Swedish Nyckeln who lost a mast early in the game due to a critical hit when she was hit by a full broadside fired from the Churprindsen. This was the first time a critical hit had been scored in our two games. So it was fun going though the process of figuring out the damage received by the critical hit.

The Danish making a run for the Swedish Squadron

The battle rages as the range gets shorter

The Swedish ships score hits as well as the Danish

The Nyckeln scoring a hit on the Churprindsen

Another devastating hit on the Nyckeln, she is now on fire!
Later on as we continued to pound away at each others ships the Nykeln again is hit by a salvo and gets a critical hit which starts a fire! Fire on a wood ship loaded with gun powder is bad!!! Luckily the crew was able to put the fire out fast!

We are at close range here and the Nyckeln was able to put out the fire

The first boarding attempt by the Danish, Christianus V tries to board the Kronan, which fails

After the boarding attempt Soren's and my line of battle fell apart and the fight became ship on ship. A lot of damage was dealt out to ships of both sides. We did have a boarding action between the Nyckeln and Christianus V.  During this boarding action we ran into our first issue with the rules and I will be writing the authors of the rules for a clarification on how to to settle the issue we had.  Basically the result of the boarding action is that I was able to defend the Nyckeln and repel the boarders with both of our ships losing crew parties to the point we had just the number of crew to run the ship and man the guns. Both ships cut free and started to sail away in a hail of gun fire!

A view of the fight from above

The flag ships sail past after the failed boarding attempt

The start of the one boarding action that took place!
Stern rake on the Kronan did little damage from the smaller Churprindsen
Soren continued to try to disable the Kronan and was able to manuver to get in some very good shots but the difference in size of the ships and the reduced broadside factors on the Danish ships did little damage.

The battle lines are gone and the fight becomes ship on ship

The Danish fleet was doing OK the Christianus V had taken a lot of damage and was almost to the point that she would not be able to fire anymore. The Churprindsen had taken some damage but she was not at full strength and would not be able to take on the Death Star alone.  Christianus IV was in good shape but again she was a smaller ship and the her ability to defeat the Kronan was limited.

Point blank range!!

Lots of smoke!! I can smell the gun powder!!!

At this point we called the game due to time, we had planned to play two battles but we only had time for one since we had more ships and more unique events take place.  We called the battle a tie but that is to be debated. Ships on both side were severely damaged and will need a lot of repair while other ships were in good condition.

Holy Smoke!!!
In close and personal!!!

Please check out the charts below for a breakdown of the starting condition of each ship and the damage taken. 

Who do you think won???


  1. Thank was a great and intense battle! Its actually really fun and a big part of the game to "sail" and maneuver into position, trying to outwit the counterpart and their next move. Overall match winner must be Kronan, with Churprindsen coming second on account of some good hits on Nyckeln. Great game that needs to be repeated shortly!

    1. I agree it was a great game and I think we need to continue to work the rules and get a good feel for the game. You were aggressive in your tactics which reflects in the damage the Swedish ships received.

  2. Clearly a Swedish Victory ;)

    Very nice AAR !

    1. I agree. It was great to see Kronan survive the battle!

  3. I very nice AAR. The short time as was there it booth looked and sounded as if you guys had a great time.

    1. Swedish victory, by the way. That is just crystal clear. :-)

    2. Thanks Joakim! It was fun and we will be painting more ships to throw into the fire! I agree that it was a Swedish Victory! the Danish Flagship was about to go into mandatory strike test because her broadside factor was getting close to 0.

  4. Very exciting clash! I give the victory to the Danes on points.

    1. Thank you Jonathan! It was a great battle and hopefully we will have more battles soon! Ours fleets will grow and we will continue to work the rules! They are very good and work for a huge period of Naval History.

  5. Great report with really beautiful ships! The "black powder smoke" really adds to the atmosphere aswell. /Mattias

    1. Hi Mattias,

      I agree about the smoke, last time we played I used the plastic smoke screen markers I had on hand but this time I remembered to raid my Sambo's sewing supplies for some pillow stuffing. It worked much better that cotton balls!

  6. A lovely game, glad to see you are enjoying the rules :)

    1. HI David!
      Thank you for your feedback on the boarding party issue we had. Now we know what to do. We will have another game next week. Lets see what happens in this coming battle. I have four more ships to paint up for the Swedish Navy.
      Thanks for checking out my blog. Your rules are very good and I enjoy them a lot.