View Full Version : AAR: When the Fog Lifts - Too Little, Too Late

02-08-2015, 11:56
The last three days have seen nothing but fog, rain, and the darkness of night. Today started much the same way, but as morning gave way to afternoon, the fog began to lift. To our surprise and chagrin, the enemy’s ship, which we were pursuing the entirety of this past week, appeared with a thunderous greeting to our stern. With glass shattering, wood splintering, and sails shredding, I knew we were in for a fight. Fortunately, we were between our foe and its destination. Aboard her was cargo we greatly desired – intelligence. This was Lieutenant Fyffe’s first engagement as the captain of a ship. We all wondered what the next few minutes would hold.



Fyffe gave the order, and we turned toward port, heading straight back to our prey, directly into the wind.

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Not content with their initial hello, the French opened fire on our bow. Though pieces of wood flew everywhere, few, if any, of our crew were hurt. On a ship our size, however, the two broadsides we received were sufficient to reduce our firing power. How quickly one can feel weakened.



In the midst of the chaos, I noticed a smile appear on Lieutenant Fyffe. His maneuvering into the wind enabled us to be pushed back into position to fire a broadside as the French approached. Though not as damaging as we hoped, some of our shot found its mark.



As we continued to turn, the French fired at our stern once more. Unlike the two previous salvos, this firing killed and injured several of our men.



Having completed our turn, the two ships were now closing. We opened fire. Had we not sustained the level of damage we already had, I am confident we would have inflicted much more harm. We caused some damage to the French’s hull, but witnessed some of our shot missing our target.



A moment later, the French returned the favor. We exchanged musketry, most of the wounds being suffered by the enemy. Though it could have been a lot worse for us, I wasn’t sure how much more damage we could sustain.



As we continued forward, the French turned hard to starboard, coming across our rear. Fortunately, their fire was fairly ineffective. Maybe luck was shifting to our side.



Soon, we were running parallel to each other. Luck, it appears, is fickle. At the moment we needed to strike a significant blow, we expended ammo to no effect. I think all of us started questioning whether we would secure our prize. As we both sailed toward the French’s destination, we knew time was on their side. This meeting was the final leg in our race, and if we didn’t stop them soon, we weren't going to be able to at all.



War brings with her many moments of serendipitous fortune; war, also, brings with her many moments of missed opportunity. As our men reloaded their guns, we found ourselves in position for a potentially decisive blow. Never before have I experienced silence so loudly.



One cannot dwell on such matters long, for as our two ships crisscrossed in an increasingly urgent dance with time and space, the French opened fire for a last time. This shot would seal the fate of us both. Sufficient to cause us to disengage, our enemy’s guns ripped apart more of our hull, compromising our ability to fight effectively.



As we turned for home, we bid the French farewell with a parting shot, but as often is the case, it was too little, too late.



Lieutenant E.R. Fyffe (P) / returned to port / no victories


Capitaine de corvette (AI) / returned to port / successfully delivered passenger


Union Jack
02-08-2015, 13:23
A the fickle hand of fate. Great game and pictures Eric. Pity about the result but at least you still have your ship.

02-08-2015, 18:11
Great AAR Eric! I very much enjoyed the narrative and thought for sure you were going to pull this off?! I really like the close up photos as well (tell Sue that the foreground photography with the ships is cool! I'm going to have to try that at some point). So, only one of us has been successful so far? Clearly you created a tough scenario. :wink:

02-09-2015, 06:13
very enjoyable report and absolutely great narrated. If my english would be better, I would also like to make my reports more narrative.
I like your idea with the close-up foto-shooting :shootleft: Will try that in my next sailing adventure.

Iron Outlaw
02-22-2015, 23:33
Great AAR Eric, if only they'd had cameras 200 years ago!

I notice you use a photocopy of the damage boxes on the Ship Mat and counters lying on the sea surface. Looks interesting, can you tell me how that works.


02-23-2015, 02:34
It was a very good read and I love the pictures from deck level.

02-23-2015, 22:17
I am glad you enjoyed the AAR.

It was fun setting up the close-ups from the point of view of the firing ship. I wanted visuals to go along with the first-person narrative.

Brad, for each combat action, we took a bird's eye shot showing the damage chits taken by the receiving ship. I checked off the damage boxes on the laminated logs/mats each time, and returned the chits to their containers. At the game's end, I showed the laminations in the Butcher Tally section so folks could see the final results. Above the respective photos are the results for each captain according to the directions in the solo rules.

Iron Outlaw
02-23-2015, 23:23
Many thanks Eric!

John Paul
02-24-2015, 01:51
Excellent report Captain Eric! I'm sure the Admiralty Board will not be happy with the results of your voyage, but will be glad you returned your vessel with a solid weather deck still located well above the water line! Better luck next voyage!

02-24-2015, 02:22
Yep! Great little AAR - all sounded a bit brutal though! :shock:

02-24-2015, 21:43
Yep! Great little AAR - all sounded a bit brutal though! :shock:

It is safe to say my Captain returned to port a bit battered and bruised.

Comte de Brueys
02-26-2015, 13:44
Nice AAR, Eric.

Maybe I recognized it a little bit late, but this was a good read and the pictures are nicley shot.

I hope the the luck returns to your crew again. Next time the French will pay. :Arrrr:

05-21-2015, 05:51
A roistering maelstrom of fire and blood Eric.
too bad lady luck did not smile on your endeavors this time.
I enjoyed every turn that the battle took.

Mark Kaiser
05-22-2015, 01:23
The sharks didn't dine as well as they could have! Great AAR sir!