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View Full Version : AAR: Feb 2015 Solo Campaign – by spiessbuerger



spiessbuerger
03-08-2015, 11:24
‘Our ships were British oak, and hearts of oak our men.’

Preparation

France (Player):
Capitaine de frégate Lucien Murrou with his 74-guns Ship of Line Genereux

Britain (AI):
Captain Michael Cullen with his 74-guns Ship of Line HMS Defiance
Commander James Moore with his 32-guns frigate HMS Castor
(Diceroll: 1)

Game settings:
Standard Rules plus Variable Wind Direction and the additional rules from the scenario

French Order: Capture or destroy the out breaking enemy ship(s) or force them to sail back into port (+50% damage)

Yes to night action: 3 crews send in two boats to the battery island…

Preamble
In the very early morning of the 28. February 1794 the French ship of line Genereux sended two boats with soldiers to a small outpost battery near the British port of Gibraltar.
The order from Capitaine de frégate Lucien Murrou: Take the British battery on the island and use it to our advantage!

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Diceroll 3: The soldiers stormed the battery (1 crew dead, 2 crew manned the guns)

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The surprising attack was a success.
A few French soldiers died, but the special commando was able to man all the guns on the battery.
Fortunately the French attack was unsighted by anyone in the nearby British port.
The French ship meanwhile anchored in a hiding position behind the island and awaits the British outbreak.

Turn 1

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With the first glimpse of sunlight the British ships start their escape.
Because of the inshore wind it was hard work to reach the open sea.

Turn 2-3

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Now the French Capitaine set sails and turned port side.
(the crew counter on the left marked the temporary sailing target for the AI ship in the north channel)
The wind turns slowly north.

Turn 4

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The French ship wants to blockade the escaping way of the British 74 while the British frigate takes a course southerly.

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Perfect! Full broadside through the bow of the British Ship of Line HMS Defiance.
On the other side both British ships took the battery under heavy fire.
(Now I think they wouldn’t have done it because the battery did not yet start to fire.
So the British shouldn’t have been known that their battery is in the hands of the enemy)

Turn 5

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The Genereux has to turn over after her successful battle opening.

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That gives a good opportunity for the British 74 to answer with a narrow broadside herself.

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But also the French battery can now answer the fire to the along sailing British frigate.
The battle is underway.

Turn 6

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While the Genereux proceeds with turning over, the British 74 comes along reloading.

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Now the French ship fires back a well aimed narrow broadside to the HMS Defiance.
Only two perfect broadsides and more than 50% of the British 74 are damaged by that now!

Turn 7

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Because of the massive damage and crew losses the British Captain orders to turn back to port.
Meanwhile the French Genereux lost too much speed at the end of her turn over and drifts back.

13257

The British Captain sees the outmaneuvered French ship and sends a last broadside into her hull.

Turn 8

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The Genereux gets ready again for sailing and answers with another broadside to the escaping British Ship of Line.
But the gunners aimed too short. The French Capitaine is quite put out about that bungling! :smack:

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At the same time the British ship fires a long broadside to the French battery.
Answered by some minor hits from the battery.

Turn 9

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The wind turns back to northeast. And the French Capitaines mood doesn’t get better by that.
Because his ship has lost much speed by sailing close hauled and both British ships are running away now.

13262

The upsetting British 74 has to encounter the French battery for reaching the save port.
Both sides exchange some hits. But the British 74 must be made of very hard oak and is still in sailing shape.

Turn 10-11

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The guns are getting reloaded as fast as possible and before the British 74 sails out of reach of the French battery both sides exchange some fire again.
But again no hits for the French gunners.

Turn 12

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The wind turns further to east.
Now the French ship is in much better sailing conditions. But too far away to intercept the British ships.
So the French Capitaine gives up. For now the battle is over.

spiessbuerger
03-08-2015, 11:26
Result:

Minor victory (+1 point) for the French Capitaine de frégate Lucien Murrou (P) and his Ship of Line Genereux:
The ship returned to port
- French 74 was too far in the north what made it impossible to get in touch with the south running British frigate
- Only minor casualties

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British Captain Michael Cullen (AI) with his 74-guns Ship of Line HMS Defiance: caused to return to port
- Got the critical hits from the French 74 and some additional hits from the battery
- Unfortunately the French side was not able to finish the British 74 after that

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Commander James Moore (AI) with his 32-guns frigate HMS Castor: escaped successfully
- Only one hit from the French battery. And the ship was never again in any aiming distance of the French’s

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The French battery (P) did a good job.
- a little bit too much men died for (but no problem in that scenario)

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Remark:

- The manned battery was not such effective as I hoped. Nevertheless the battery did a good job especially against the 74-guns HMS Defiance
- If you lose contact to one running ship, you have no chance to intercept it anymore. Especially if it’s a faster ship than the 74-guns SoL.
- Not sure what the best strategy of this scenario would be. I think there is some luck necessary and the Players ship should always sail in reach to any enemy ship.
- Maybe the enemy ships should get slow downed in case of getting damage (for example sail or mast special damage causes direct slow down sailing)

Nightmoss
03-08-2015, 15:44
Very enjoyable AAR. Nice photos, description and flavor! :thumbsup:

I never was able to occupy the battery, but I agree that dealing with the two separate ships is a challenge.

Mycenius
03-09-2015, 04:22
Nice! :happy: :beer:

TexaS
03-09-2015, 04:28
Very good read.

I'll see if I can get started on the January scenario this week perhaps. This seams like much fun.

Union Jack
03-17-2015, 16:36
Nice report. Hope you liked playing it. The wind against the ships leaving port should be a balancing factor, however you allowed the wind to veer then veer back. If it had stayed then it might have made a difference.

The escaping frigate although nothing could have stopped it should have left the short table edge but that is a moot point.

Well played.

spiessbuerger
03-19-2015, 11:22
Nice report. Hope you liked playing it. The wind against the ships leaving port should be a balancing factor, however you allowed the wind to veer then veer back. If it had stayed then it might have made a difference...

Oh, that's indeed a factor (I didn't thought about while playing).
But I had a lot of fun playing it. Also as the wind was "against me" in that battle.

And its also a good scenario to play it more than one time because of the shuffled AI ships. :thumbsup:

Bligh
06-23-2015, 14:33
Another exciting encounter. The French Captain went for the larger vessel and was unlucky not to gain an overall victory.
In the circumstances the Frigate was almost certain to escape, so no dishonour there for the French.
I enjoyed every minute of the action.
Rob.