I have posted below the first in a series of files covering scenarios from 1884 – 1905. The first set ends in 1892 and covers the following battles:
1) Foochow, 23 August 1884 (Historical/Solitaire). This was the only actual naval battle of the Sino-French War. If people remember the ‘Battle of Manila Bay’ from the original game, then this is a similar situation. A totally outclassed fleet at anchor destroyed in its base by the superior fleet of Vice-Admiral Courbet, who like Commodore Dewey 14 years later, became a national hero.
2) Courbet Fights again, 13th February 1885 (Hypothetical). The Chinese sent a squadron to relieve the blockade of Formosa (Taiwan), but when they sighted Courbet’s squadron they legged it. This postulates that they didn’t. There are also historically reasonable options to increase the size of the Chinese force to make the sides more even.
3) Chenhai, 28 February 1885 (Hypothetical/Solitaire). ‘Battle of Santiago’ type battle as the Chinese ships blockaded in the port of Chenhai attempt to breakout. Something that historically they wisely chose not to do.
4) For the honour of Spain, September 1885 (Hypothetical). Hypothetical Spanish-German war over the Caroline Islands incident. A Spanish squadron must leave Port Mahon, Menorca to face a German squadron.
5) Colonies for the Kaiser, December 1885 (Hypothetical/Solitaire). A Manila Bay re-run with another useless Spanish fleet v’s a German cruiser squadron.
6) Revenge for Tunisia, February 1888 (Hypothetical). Italy was mightily annoyed by the French occupation of Tunisia in 1881, and Franco-Italian relations reached their lowest point at this time during the premiership of the Francophobe Francesco Crispi. This assumes war broke out and the two fleets clashed.
7) Grand Tunisia, March 1888 (Hypothetical). Crispi hoped to obtain German and/or British support for his war against France, but the lack thereof was one reason a conflict never occurred. This assumes he has that support. The British Channel Squadron and German Training Squadron join the Italians against the French, reinforced by their Reserve Squadron, in a huge battleship fest!
8) Apia Bay, The Samoan Crisis, March 1889 (Hypothetical). American-German rivalry was a theme throughout this period right up until WW1. The standoff in Apia Bay in the Samoan islands was an early example. A Typhoon destroyed or crippled all of both sides’ ships before any conflict could possibly occur. This assumes it didn’t.
9) Caldera Bay, 23 April 1891 (Historical/Solitaire). The Chilean Civil war saw little naval action as the rebels controlled almost the entire Chilean Navy. However, a couple of Loyalist torpedo gunboats slipped into Caldera Bay and torpedoed and sank the rebel ironclad Blanco Encelada. This is really just a Torpedo rules training scenario.
10) The Itata Incident, May 1891 (Hypothetical). The American seizure of the rebel gunrunner Itata at San Diego, it’s escape and abduction of an American Marshall, and it’s eventual return to America, was a huge cause of friction between the Chilean rebels and America. The American press speculated whether the USN cruiser chasing Itata would fight the rebel cruiser providing a loose escort. This presumes it did. Another good training opportunity with this one on one cruiser action.
11) ‘Fighting’ Bob Evans, November 1891 (Hypothetical). With war between America and Chile seeming a possibility, the patrol gunboat of Commander Evans encountered a brand new Chilean cruiser at Montevideo. Evans subsequently wrote of his desire to fight the cruiser. This assumes he got his wish. He would subsequently go on to Chile where his firm diplomacy with the Chileans earned him his epitaph from the American press.
12) The Baltimore Crisis, February/March 1892 (Hypothetical). The Itata incident was one of several slights that the rebels perceived to be aimed at them by America during the Civil War. So when the rebels were victorious they were none too friendly to the crew of the USN cruiser Baltimore when they were granted shore leave in Valparaiso. The assault of the crew by a Chilean mob resulted in two sailors being killed, and many more wounded. Tensions between the two nations were high for several weeks. This assumes war resulted. The Americans have the edge, but this is 1892, not 1898, and the victorious Chilean Navy is not the demoralized and outgunned Spanish Navy.
There are also some new notes that are applicable to some of the ships in the scenarios, along with some new rules and clarifications. These battles replace some earlier files I posted previously and that are now removed.
- Last edited Wed Nov 16, 2016 3:56 pm (Total Number of Edits: 1)
- Posted Tue Nov 15, 2016 4:55 pm
Sir; I would like to thank you for your labors, and let you know that they ARE appreciated. It is gratifying to see that there is still an interest in this classic. Fire When Ready is without exception the best naval war game in the history of the universe (this one, anyway). I know that there are numerous simulations, but these are jobs, not games.