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The Hunters: German U-Boats at War, 1939-43» Forums » Sessions

Subject: It's a Trap! rss

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Tim Korchnoi
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I am Captain Hans Delbruck. I am preparing to head out to sea yet again in this new, glorious year of 1941. Thus far, I have done quite well for the Fatherland: I have sunk 9 enemy ships totaling 71,700 tons including the CV Eagle. My crew is tough and experienced and ready to depart and to win more victories at sea.

For our latest patrol, we are assigned to the British Isles. We have been here 3 times before in September and December 1939 and in March of 1940. We are highly confident heading into battle as our last patrol in the Atlantic netted us 3 ships sunk with 21,900 tons sent to a watery grave.

Our patrol begins quietly. No problems in the Bay of Biscay or transiting to the British Isles. Upon entering the British Isles we detect a large freighter the Thomas Mckean, 7,200 tons of ship. And it is all alone. We fire from tubes 1,2, and 4 and score 2 hits sending the enemy into the deep. Easy pickings.

As we move deeper into the British Isles we detect a small freighter, the Marcrest a ship of 4,200 tons. And it has an escort. But it is night and I know my crew and boat well. We should be able to slip in and sink this little fish. My first officer boldly speaks up. "Captain, perhaps we should let this little fish go. We have barely begun our patrol. Surely there will be bigger fish yet to come?" I pause. I consider. Maybe he has a feeling? Perhaps something in his gut is trying to warn us away. I could listen to his gut; but instead I listen to my pride. “Don’t worry Kurt, we will hit this little one and slip away before the escorts even know we’re here.”

I order the boat into medium range. It is night, so I give the order to surface and launch torpedoes. Two torpedoes are launched. One misses entirely. The other strikes and the rumble of an explosion follows. Success yet again! The small freighter sinks. And here comes the escort.

I give the order to dive. They find us dropping their depth charges, causing light injuries among the crew and some flooding. The flooding is promptly stopped. And they come again.

Again they find us and this time we suffer greater damage: the periscope is wrecked, an electric engine damaged, and the forward torpedo doors damaged. I begin to sweat heavily. We have just lost the initiative.

Again the propeller blades come and again they find us! More explosions and the flak guns are damaged, more crew members injured, and aft torpedo door damaged. How could one little freighter have such a heavy escort? Why would so much attention be given to one little ship? What ARE they carrying? And then it hits me: IT’S A TRAP!!!!! I grit my teeth; my first officer looks grim. We must get away, WE MUST!

We twist, we turn, we maneuver as well as we can. We struggle with all our might! And we are still found. This time the damage reports comes in: hull damaged and fuel tanks leaking.

The blades from the destroyer are deafening. And I realize there is no escape. My hubris had doomed me and, more importantly, killed the men who relied on me to get them home again. But there will be no going home this time. A final explosion rocks the boat, water pours in, the hull bursts.

Yes, I should have let this little one go.
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John Kranz
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Wow!! Very gripping story and sad ending for the boat and crew. Why do I sense such a tale can be told by those lost at the bottom long ago....
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Tim Korchnoi
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So very true. Isn't there a stat at the start of Das Boot that said something like 40,000 men went out in U-boats in WWII and 30,000 never came home. shake

On a lighter note, after the first two attacks, all I could hear in my head was Sheldon Cooper doing his impression of Admiral Akbar and thus, the title of my session
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Scott Dexter
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catosulla wrote:
Isn't there a stat at the start of Das Boot that said something like 40,000 men went out in U-boats in WWII and 30,000 never came home. shake


I am wondering if that is what we can expect from the out come of most games (ending not in 1943, but in the briny deep!

Scott
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Gregory Smith
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Heya,

I feel your pain

BTW, back in testing days.....I was racking up some good numbers in a type IX. I had the Oakleaves, was looking pretty positive towards swords....life was good.

Aircraft alarm! Well, no biggie I thought, I've evaded plenty of those. Failed the crash dive roll....and in comes the attack, courtesy of Mike Lam

First roll: 12
Second roll: 12 (adjusted to....13)

And in an instant, the best guy I had ever run went down to an early death.

Moral of the story: Don't EVER let Mike Lam roll escorts against you But I guess it's what makes it fun....knowing any moment can be your last.

I'd actually be very interested to hear from the first guy who dies from the "Swim Call" random event. We had quite a bit of discussion on this way back. It's about a 1:15,000 probability. If I had to lay money I'd say it's probably going to hit Dave Long first. hehehehe.


Greg
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David Tsui
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catosulla wrote:
I am Captain Hans Delbruck.


Ahh, that's why Igor didn't get your brain.

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0072431/trivia?ref_=tt_trv_trv
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David Tsui
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Sturmer wrote:
I'd actually be very interested to hear from the first guy who dies from the "Swim Call" random event.


Wasn't a U-boat actually lost because of an ill-timed swim call?
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Gregory Smith
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Hey,

Yes David, that's why it's in the Random Events. It was too fun not to have in there (all the random events happened historically, more or less).

I'd have to go back to my notes, but it was a U-boat in the Caribbean and sure enough, the Kmdt slipped, fell and smacked his head....and died.

Greg
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Jim Ransom
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This Memorial Day weekend, do not thank a veteran. Say a prayer of thanks for those in our military who gave their last full measure of devotion, and all their tomorrows, so that we could enjoy today and all OUR tomorrows.
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Herr KaLeu, sometimes you must listen to the men trying to back you up. But when you decide upon a plan of attack, you must be focused, and attack ruthlessly. You must be a Steely Eyed Killer of the Deep, for the Tommies will show you no mercy.
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Magnus K
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A u-boat wasn't lost, but the commander of U-203 hit his head on the hull while diving from the conning tower, in September 1942.
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John Kranz
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I can't wait for the day that someone posts here and says Swim Call did them in as U-Boat Kommandant.... devil
 
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Tim Korchnoi
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cheque6 wrote:
catosulla wrote:
I am Captain Hans Delbruck.


Ahh, that's why Igor didn't get your brain.

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0072431/trivia?ref_=tt_trv_trv


I wondered how long it would take for someone to point that out

As far as the Abbey Normal brain goes, a relative of his must have manufactured the torpedoes early in the war angry
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Ron A
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Sturmer wrote:

I'd have to go back to my notes, but it was a U-boat in the Caribbean and sure enough, the Kmdt slipped, fell and smacked his head....and died.


OOhh, time to check Google and then my library!

Google gave me skipper's name, U-Boat + date, then it was off to my books.

You said Caribbean, so I checked Kelshall first. He says that the crew radioed BDu saying their skipper had died during air attack. This isn't right, but maybe the crew did radio this in preference to the truth.

Then I checked Blair, vol 1, but that only goes up to Aug 42, and it isn't there.

FINALLY, checked Blair vol 2, and found the story.

Rolf Mutzelburg, U-203, Ritterkreuz + Oak Leaves, 14 days out of France. After the accident, Mutzelburg was still alive and 24yr old 1WO Hans Seidel took command/. He headed for a U-Tanker that had a doctor aboard, but Rolf died before reaching the doctor. U-203 was then recalled to France.

Kelshall every once in a while gets his facts wrong (as in this case) but overall his book is well worth reading.
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John Kranz
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Ron, great job tracking this information down. You are a good sleuth!
 
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