Thursday, July 30, 2020


PeterW is going to umpire a Jutland Campaign for us using campaign rules he wrote & used successfully years ago. He is revising & updating his campaign rules,  My Dreadnoughts tactical rules were written for actions of 1 or 2 squadrons a side & need to be simplified to make them suitable for the large fleet action we hope to get.   Today Chris & I fought a small a game to play test my first draft of my Jutland rules.
Chris' British battle cruisers are on the left, Jim's Germans on the right.  Both are in line ahead with DDs & CLs flanking.  Both have a super-dreadnought squadron coming on later from their ends of the table.
The BCs engage at long range as the light ships get out of their way.  The Germans superior range finding allows them to inflict the first hit.
The Brits turn to close the range. 
The British ploy to close the range went tits up when the Lutzow hammered Indominable so hard she had to break off & Siedlitz hit a vital spot on the Tiger & she blew up. 
With every Brit BC now damaged, The Brit's DDs laid a smoke screen to cover a battle turn-away away as the mighty 5th Battle Squadron with 4 Queen Elizabeth class super-dreadnoughts approach. 
Hipper turns his BC away from the QE's as the GHSF III Battle Squadron of 4 late model dreadnoughts approaches. 
The 2 squadrons of super-dreadnoughts steam towards each other as the German BCs lay smoke to cover their retreat.
The two squadrons turn into line on opposing courses as the German DDs move out of the way. 
The squadrons are engaged at extreme range - the biggest guns against the toughest ships.  Both slow down to improve their fire.  Both side occasionally range in a slavo, but at extreme range lose it again.
Margraf has landed two vicious salvoes on Valiant & she has been forced to Break off while Banham did the same to Kaiser.   But the German BC's have now tagged onto the  German line & the Brits decide that 3 ships to 7 is bad odds & that it's time to break off the action.

The Brits lost Tiger sunk while Indominable & Valiant have critical damage forcing them to break off. 3 other ships have significant damage.
For the Germans, Kaiser has broken off with critical damage & 2 BCs have significant damage, but they head for home with no ships sunk claiming victory.

The changes from Dreadnoughts include using smaller ship counters so 2 fit in a hex.  This makes length of a battle line the correct length relative to the ranges.  Not so important in a tactical game, but makes the transition for strategic map to table top work better & will allow the larger fleets we expect the campaign to produce to fit on the table better.  I'm generally simplifying the rules to speed up play but trying to do so without reducing tactical options significantly.  This action only took us an hour, gave us plenty of tactical choices & we both enjoyed it.  My changes worked well & the game pointed to a few opportunities for further improvements - which we'll give another test next Tuesday night before we start the campaign itself.

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