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GQIII.3 at Enfilade 2018

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#1 W. Clark

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Posted 30 May 2018 - 11:50 PM

GQIII.3 was well represented at Enfilade 2018 in Olympia WA over the Memorial Day weekend.


I ran a what if of Denmark Strait called Operation Rheinubung. This was modeled after the fleet sortie that Raeder wanted, but damage and construction delays prevented from happening. Instead he sent out Bismarck and Prinz Eugen.


In this what if scenario, the Germans had Bismarck, Tirpitz, Scharnhorst, Gneisenau, Lutzow, Admiral Scheer, Admiral Hipper and Prinz Eugen. The Germans were organized into 2 ship squadrons with BBs, BCs, 11 inch cruisers and 8 inch cruisers all paired up.


The Brits had KGV and PoW in a squadron as well as Hood and Repulse in another squadron. In addition the light cruisers Manchester, Birmingham, Kenya and Arethusa were in a squadron and there was a DesFlot of two 3 ship DesDivs made of A, I and E class DDs. Finally, there was a squadron containing the Suffolk and Norfolk trailing the Germans through the Denmark Strait.


Visibility was 15,000 yards maximum and only going to get worse. The wind was Force 5 from the north and there were 3 squalls randomly rolled that merged into one large squall located directly between the Germans and Brits. The Germans were on a heading of 270 degrees at 12 knots and restricted by ice from turning much further north. The Brits were on a heading of 330 degrees at 15 knots. The wind would push the squall towards the Brits, but it hampered the Germans more because they did not have radar. Once the Brits had radar contact they were able to change course and speed long before the Germans could.


The Brit player acting as Admiral Tovey sent his DesFlot in early to make a torpedo attack. The destroyers got shot up pretty good, but managed to get a torp each into Bismarck and Tirpitz. The destroyers then withdrew to clear the way for the Bats to have at it. Bismarck and Tirpitz were reduced to a turret each with their speed reduced to less than 15 knots. Scharnhorst also suffered some damage. Hood was reduced to 1 turret while Repluse lost all of hers. The PoW lost her twin turret, but the KGVs remained relatively in good shape and were crossing the German tee by this point.


The Germans decided to withdraw and while it was unlikely that their battleships would get away; the rest of the fleet was almost untouched. I deemed it a strategic victory for the Brits as they had prevented a German break out into the Atlantic and prophesied that Hitler would not celebrate Admiral Lutjens' birthday.


Ix Nichols ran a what if of Mers el Kebir.  Ix had the French at sea, which while far better than being tied to the mole with their stern's to sea was not going to change the fact that the Brits had 15 inch guns and BB armor. The French under Admiral Gensoul (Dave Franklin) were in line astern with Strasbourg leading Dunkerque, Bretange and Provence. They had a 3 ship division of super DDs ahead and another to their port flank. Some Stringbags came in and tried to torpedo us, but we made short work of them with our first class French AA guns (OK, OK, we rolled really hot several times).


Then the Brits appeared off our port and slightly behind. We headed east along the coast behind smoke while we decided if we would try for victory (just run for Toulon) or glory (fight it out). Being French, glory won out and we ceased smoking up the place so we could shoot at armor we could not penetrate while doing only half damage (I did not claim that it was a wise decision). The Brits were concentrating on our older BBs and quickly reduced them to 13 knots. In addition, one of their BBs (I don't know if it was Valiant or Resolution) had swung out of line and was crossing our stern. I'm pretty sure the Brit capital ships, Hood, Valiant and Resolution were organized in 1 squadron, but our opponents being new to the rules, we decided to not contest the maneuver.


We hit Hood reducing her speed to 26 knots, but a Brit DD managed to get a torp into Strasbourg slowing her to 25 knots. I was running our port DesDiv as well as Dunkerque and our fearless leader ordered me to execute a torpedo attack on Hood. I turned 90 degrees to port and crossed her bow inside 4,000 yards and let go with a twin and 5 triple mounts inside the first range band. Hood failed to evade, but it was mostly a bow arc. I then managed roll a 6 or higher 6 times in a roll missing her completely. 


To make a long story short; the Mogadors beat up the leading three Brit DDs while our capital ship secondaries lumped on the other 5 Brit DDs. Strasbourg sank the Arethusa with one broadside. What of my destroyers? Well Lynx took three bulkhead hits and was in sinking condition, Kersaint was pretty well wrecked and Tigre was untouched. The Mogadores had each lost a gun mount and Le Terrible was untouched. Bretagne and Provence had lost some secondaries and Provence had lost 1 turret. Dunkerque had lost her rear center line secondary and Strasbourg had a hull hit. So the French were no where near as beat up as they were historically, but we also had not escaped; so it ended up a marginal victory for the Brits and Admiral Somerville probably had his career wrecked.






#2 Kenny Noe

Kenny Noe

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Posted 05 June 2018 - 12:08 PM

Thanks for the report and running games.  Good to see other convention reports.


Most appreciated.

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