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Clear for Action Wintercon 2018 After Action Report
On February 24th, a Clear for Action game was run by Euel Kinsey and assisted by veteran naval gamer, Rick Smith. Once again, the Oakland Center was the venue for this Wintercon event. The usual GM, John Hugenor, had to cancel due to health reasons. So instead of running the game on a laptop LAN as in past cons (see BGG links: https://boardgamegeek.com/thread/1103161/clear-action-event-... & https://boardgamegeek.com/thread/1726176/revenge-tin-can-sai...),
Euel’s 43 year old Apple II was thrust into action to assist with the damage assessments. Everything else was done according to the “old School” rules and on the floor. This year’s event was in the Banquet Room on a parquet floor area amidst the carpeted area. The parquet pattern will be useful in range estimation. In John’s computer assisted game, the computer assisted and expedited the range estimation process, so the ship’s position on the table was an approximate location.
Euel at the helm of his 43 year old Apple II computer setting up the game.
Euel opted for a hypothetical (i.e. demo derby) contact between Axis and Allied cruisers in 1/1200 scale. Chris and Rick were commanding the Prinz Eugen (Ship #9: 127 pts), Myoko (Ship #6: 127 pts) and Sendai (Ship #8: 65 pts). Euel, Franz and I served as captains of the Atlanta (Ship #3: 75 pts), Indianapolis (Ship #4: 97 pts) and Baltimore (Ship #1: 127 pts) respectively. The two forces were set up approximately 100” apart, well within range of the cruiser’s main armament. All of the Axis ships were equipped with torpedoes and the two Japanese ships had the Long Lance torpedoes. Only the Atlanta had torpedoes so I was not going to close in right away exposing the Baltimore to the torpedoes.
Turn 1: The Axis ships smartly started straight ahead and they simultaneously turned to port (left for landlubbers). The Allied cruisers exhibited their independent commands. The Atlanta proceeded to close the range with a smart turn to port. The Baltimore proceeded at half speed starting with a starboard (that’s right for you landlubbers) turn. The Indianapolis expended her entire 33 kt movement in a starboard turn. Whilst the Axis maintained their formation, the Allied ships were totally scattered. The gunfire resulted in no hits.
Turn 2: The Axis ships continued on their previous course. Atlanta turned starboard and continued to close the range. The Baltimore accelerated 6 kts and continued on its previous course. Indianapolis violently turned to port as part of an “S” turn to extend the range. During the gunnery segment, Prinz Eugen drew first blood with a hit on the Baltimore. The hit reduced Baltimore’s maximum speed by 1 kt.
Turn 3: Sendai continued straight on her previous course whilst Prinz Eugen and Myoko turned to starboard to close the range on the Atlanta which was continuing its starboard turn. Things got interesting when the Indianapolis continued her turn to port and Baltimore initiated a turn to starboard. They barely avoided a disastrous collision. Prinz Eugen and Sendai missed with their gunfire on the Baltimore. The timing of the starboard turn must have thrown them off. The Baltimore correctly estimated the range to Prinz Eugen and scored 4 hits from her 8” guns. The Myoko’s gunfire was long against the Atlanta while the Atlanta scored 3 hits on the Sendai.
Atlanta (Ship #3 at lower left) is separated from the heavy cruisers, but
manages to score 3 hits on Sendai (Ship #8).
That’s a mighty close call between Baltimore (Ship #1 going to the right) and the
Indianapolis (Ship #4 going to the left).
Turn 4: Suffering a hit on the helm in Turn 3, Prinz Eugen continued on its previous course. Myoko turned to starboard while the Atlanta turned to port and ambushed her. Captain Euel Kinsey ordered “Triple Fire at range of 16”; 9 hits scored damage on Myoko’s engines as well as her main and secondary turrets. After avoiding the Baltimore, the main guns of the Indianapolis scored 4 more hits on Prinz Eugen armament and boilers.
Turn 5: The maelstrom intensifies and chaos ensues. The Prinz Eugen fired at Atlanta, but fired long and hit Myoko instead. Atlanta continued her Triple Fire at Myoko scoring 7 more hits. Indianapolis scored 2 more hits on Prinz Eugen.
Turn 6: Prinz Eugen scores 4 secondary gun hits on Atlanta while Atlanta’s Triple Fire hits back with 6 hits. Myoko’s gunnery missed Indianapolis while Indianapolis struck back with 1 hit (main gun) and 4 hits (secondary guns). Fires start on the Myoko’s decks.
Turn 7: In spite of all the maneuvering, every ship missed their targets.
Turn 8: Baltimore scored 2 main gun hits on Myoko which was dead in the water. Myoko still managed to get 3 main gun hits on the Indianapolis. The Prinz Eugen’s guns hit Indianapolis with 4 main gun and 3 secondary hits. Before she slipped under the waves, the Indianapolis ordered Triple Fire at the Sendai. Indy scored 9 8” gun hits and 6 secondary gun hits sending her to the bottom.
Turn 9: Atlanta gets 5 hits on Prinz Eugen while she returns with 3 hits on Atlanta. Baltimore evades Myoko’s gun fire and scores 2 hits from her main guns. Myoko’s fires continue.
Turn 10: Prinz Eugen’s gunnery misses Atlanta. Atlanta scores one hit on Prinz Eugen. Two hits from Baltimore’s main guns sink the burning Myoko.
Turn 11: Prinz Eugen sinks the Atlanta with her 8” gunfire. Baltimore extracts a measure of revenge by sinking Prinz Eugen with one last 8” gun hit.
I adopted Muhammad Ali’s strategy of “Float like a butterfly, sting like a bee.” While my compatriots chose to charge in, I was ignored and able to survive with almost no damage.
“Naval battle history is wrote by those remaining afloat.”
Matt Kiriazis (2018)