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View Full Version : AAR: January 2017 Mission 1: Pell Mell.



Union Jack
01-28-2017, 04:26
Pre-amble

“We fully accept your point about your crew Captain but you were not aboard and they did mutiny. Suffice to say the decision of the board is that you were in no way to blame; being ashore in hospital at the time, so the court finds you not guilty and furthermore unaccountable for the actions of your crew in your absence. This courts martial is now dismissed having fully discharged its duty, God save the King”.

The court broke up and officer after officer came to shake Jacks hand. It did not bode well for his 1st officer who had tried to quell the unrest but had been over powered and locked below when his crew mutinied. Jack stiffened as the Commodore, now Rear Admiral, approached. “Well Captain Union, the court has admonished you of all guilt, perhaps now we can get on with the war, eh?” “Yes, Sir...but what about...” Jack got no further as the Admiral raised his hand. “I have put in a good word with the court about your 1st, from the evidence he tried his best to quell the mutiny and it would seem that your 3rd officer was more involved. It is on him that most of the blame will fall. Now, enough of that. My squadron is being reinforced as you know and whilst I have lost Dunkirk and Morpeth, there are never enough frigates you know, I am receiving 3 more 74’s and an unrated sloop for messages etc”. Jacks face dropped at the mention of the unrated sloop; surely he was not being given that as a command. The Admiral continued...”Now as I was saying, the 3 74’s I am getting, Spartiate, Defence and Vanguard, well Vanguard’s Captain fell ill on the voyage and died 2 days before they dropped anchor. So presently she is without a Captain. I am making you her temporary Captain, do a good job and I might let you keep her, make a hash of it and I’ll beach you faster than you could jump overboard!” Jack smiled at the Admiral, “I’ll not let you down sir.” With that he doffed his hat and stepped aside as the Admiral and his entourage left the court. Captain Smith, the Flag Captain, handed him an envelope as he passed; “Your orders Captain Union”. “Thank you sir”. He replied as the Flag Captain departed in the wake of the Admiral.

Out in the harbour Jack could see the reinforced squadron being refitted for sea. The Flagship HMS Royal Sovereign, HMS Africa, Alnwick, Northumberland, Spartiate, Defence & HMS Vanguard awaiting the arrival of their new captain. The little sloop had already left the harbour carrying dispatches for the Admiral; she would be very busy over the coming months.

“......I Captain Jack Union am to take command of His Majesty’s Ship Vanguard with all dispatch”. Jack finished the customary reading in of himself as the new Captain, there was a half hearted huzzah then all hands where dismissed and Jack withdrew to his cabin. He was given no relief for no sooner had he removed his coat when the shout came; Captain to repair aboard Flagship with all haste.

Jack was the last to arrive and was bid sit as the Admiral started, “It would seem our previous endeavours have only been the precursor for something larger. This morning dispatches arrived confirming that we are now at war with Spain as well as France. A squadron of French ships has broken out of the Brest blockade and are either sailing south for the Mediterranean or west to the Caribbean. Either way we have been ordered to sail but not to follow the French but to shadow a Spanish squadron which left Cadiz this morning to join up with the French. We have known of this for some time, hence the refitting of our ships. Now we have a definite destination, The Azores island group. It may be that this is where they will meet with the French squadron. Together they will make a strong force. We will sail with all haste to bring the Spanish to battle before they can join forces with the French. Gentlemen your order await, God speed and God Save the King.”

Jack collected his orders and was rowed back to his command. He called a conference of his officers and told them the gist of the Admirals briefing and that they had orders to sail to the Azores. Hopefully he would have time to get the feel of his new command during the voyage and to feel the mettle of the crew. It would be a hard journey but one he knew he would acquit himself well.

Union Jack
01-28-2017, 04:27
Captain Union pushed his crew as hard as he had aboard the Dunkirk. Regular sail drills and running out of cannon. He ran competitions with small prizes, mast v mast and gun division v gun division. He also made some subtle changes and where worthy promotions amongst the ranks. Slowly but surely he won over the men of the lower decks. His officers though where another matter entirely. His 1st was efficient but by the book. He carried out his orders to the letter but no further. He doubted his ability should he, the Captain, fall in battle for his 1st had no imagination and seemed to pass on matters to the 2nd and 3rd officers, who junior in rank seemed to carry more weight with the men under their commands. His 1st was stand offish, aloof but he could not fault him for he got the job done.
It was on the eighth day that the lead ship signalled sail in sight.

27827

The Admiral ordered all sail and devil take the slowest. So it was on the 3rd day that HMS Defence, Africa, Alnwick and Vanguard had pulled away from the slower, Flagship, HMS Northumberland and Spartiate.

27828

27829

They had closed the gap considerably and it was only a matter of time before the Spanish squadron were brought to battle. “Signal Sir”. The officer of the watch came and told him. “And?” he knew he was short in his reply but he wanted information not what he could see with his own eyes. “Pardon Sir, I’ll find out directly” the 4th officer replied quickly. He returned a short while and relayed the signal in full. “Enemy have come about Sir. HMS Defence has informed us to keep on station and in line of battle.”

27830

He smiled as he said , “Good, in future report to me in full, understand” but the 4th officer had turned and resumed his station. “Clear for action if you will and let us see which division is ready first. An extra ration of rum to the winner”. Drummers began to beat out the call to arms as Jack could hear the innards of the ship being cleared away for action. He knew he had plenty of time as his would be the last ship engaged. But he wanted the crew alert and ready. It was the Port fwd division that were ready first but it was close as call after call came in. His 1st was already beside him as he gave leave for the 4th officer to take his post. He complimented him as it was his division that had won the race.

“Sir, Defence has signalled 5 enemy ships”. “Good make the acknowledgement”. So it was 5 to 4 in favour of the Spanish.

Jack could see that the Spanish line which had been heading for the British ships was now turning away to the north.

27831

HMS Defence had already turned to try and break the line or cross the ‘T’, but the lead ship had turned directly away and it looked the rest were following.

27832

“Gunfire Sir”, his 1st calmly said. “Yes, I hear it too, Defence must have engaged the 2nd Spanish ship with her Stbd guns. I can see the Spanish has replied.”

27833

HMS Defence could only fire with her fwd stbd division but her Captain wanted to make every shot count. He considered his ship lucky as no serious damage had been done. ‘Now to break the line’.

27835

“Defence is through Sir. She has broke through between the 2nd and 3rd ship.” Jack could see but he wanted his officers to relax. “Thank you”. He replied calmly.

27834

Defence was now in a position to rake the 2nd and 3rd Spanish ships. The Captain aboard Africa knowing he had time to reload ordered his fwd stbd division to fire on the 4th Spanish ship and his fwd port division to engage the 2nd.

27836

Monarca had taken a battering, San Isidro was no better. Santa Isabel was not badly damaged but now ran the risk of colliding with San Isidro. Argonauta was trying to return to give support but was struggling against the wind.

27837

HMS Africa reeled under the weight of iron as Monarca’s broadside slammed home. The foremast came tumbling down and the Captain called for men to clear the wreckage. He could see that casualties were heavy amongst the forward divisions and crew manning the sails.

27838

Musket fire broke out as Defence and San Isidro traded blows. There would be no boarding action as HMS Defence’s speed was going to carry her clear of San Isidro. The Captain knew he was sure to be raked in return for the carnage he had caused the Spanish 74.

“Sir, Monarca in range”. “Then fire let’s see if we can open up our score in a positive fashion”. “The 1st officer turned and gave the order. Gun by gun recoiled as Vanguards port broadside sped towards the enemy ship. With no reply Vanguard was spared the devastation now incurred by the Spanish 74 Monarca. Holed again, fires breaking out across the upper deck and rigging and the helm was sluggish sureley the Spanish captain had no choice but to strike his colours.

27869

“The Spaniard has taken much damage Sir”. “It was a combined effort Mr Gregory, it was the first time he had used the 1st officers name, we just added the icing to the cake. But pass on my regards to the port side crew on a job well done.” “Aye, aye sir”.

Defence had pushed through the gap, her captain had wanted to board the Spanish 74 but it was not to be. The Spaniards firing was ragged and although the damage was considerable much of it was superficial.

27870

From the rear Jack could see the British ships were closing on each other fast so he ordered sail to be reduced to as not to collide with Alnwick.

27871

Monarca was still trying to make a break for it but well within range of Vanguard. Jack ordered another broadside and this did the trick. The Spanish 74 dropped her colours and surrendered.

27872

27873

HMS Africa engaged San Isidro causing much damage to the already heavily damaged 74.

27874

The damage to San Isidro being that great she lowered her colours and struck so the crew could tend to the breaches to her hull and the fire raging in the lower gun deck. HMS Africa was also engaged by the fwd battery of Santa Isabel, which caused a small fire to break out but Santa Isabel suffered the loss of her mizzen in the return.

27875

Santa Isabel was also engaged by HMS Defence on her stbd side, losing her main mast and quite a few crew. HMS Defence was hit hard as at close range the weight of iron from Santa Isabel struck home. Holed in 2 places and with more crew loss she could barely man the pumps to stay afloat.

27876

Now it was the turn of the marines aboard Africa and Santa Isabel. Muskets rang out and crew fell on both ships. (Using the card the Spanish forced Africa to redraw against all zero chits. Not that it did much good) (Used the Dead Eye Captain card).

27877

The British ships were keeping formation as the scattered Spanish 74’s were taken on one by one. 2 had struck, Monarca and San Isidro, Argonauta was trying to close to give support whilst Santo Domingo was the only other unengaged Spanish 74.

27873

As HMS Africa passed Santa Isabel, the next in line, HMS Alnwick closed and engaged her. More fires broke out on the hapless Spanish 74.

27878

HMS Alnwick not to be outdone engaged Santo Domingo to stbd too.

27879

Santo Domingo engaged HMS Defence and caused even more destruction on the British 74.

27880

Close enough for musket fire Defence and Domingo traded shot.

27881

HMS Africa and Alnwick engaged Santa Isabel with muskets too.

27882

Forcing Santa Isabel to strike.

27883

HMS Alnwicks captain exhorted his crew as they quickly reloaded both broadsides.

27884

Jack seeing Alnwick move ahead of Santo Domingo and with sail shortened ordered the wheel hard over, slewing Vanguard to port. Slowing her down but bringing the full stbd battery to bare on Santo Domingo. Alnwick and Vanguard fired together and Santo Domingo felt the full weight of 2 broadsides slam home. Both fore and main masts were shot away and many crew lay dead or wounded on the deck. (Used the Deft Captains card)

27885

27886

On board HMS Africa her captain saw that San Isidro had raised sail and was making to rejoin Argonauta. The port rear division recoiled as they fired at the Spanish 74 trying to escape. Such was the devastation that she struck her colours for a final time.

27887

Seeing that all was lost Argonauta turned to stbd and made good her escape.

27888

Union Jack
01-28-2017, 04:27
The Butchers Bill:

27889
HMS Defence: -9 Hull/-9 crew/RTP
Repaired 1 hull box and 1 crew at end of game. Repaired 5 Hull and 5 crew in port. -3 Hull/-3 Crew.

CAPTAIN SAMUEL FOSTER 6 ABILITY POINTS

HMS Africa: -5 Hull/-5 Crew/RTP
Repaired 1 Hull and 1 Crew at end of game. Repaired 4 hull and 4 crew in port.

CAPTAIN HENRY GUINNESS 5 ABILITY POINTS

HMS Alnwick: -2 Hull/-6 Crew/RTP/Captured San Isidro/Santa Isabel/Santo Domingo
Repaired 1 hull box and 1 crew at end of game. Repaired 1 Hull and 5 crew in port.

CAPTAIN JOSHUA STOUT 5 ABILITY POINTS

HMS Vanguard: No damage/ RTP/Captured HMS Monarca.
No repairs needed.

CAPTAIN JACK UNION 5 ABILITY POINTS

27890
27891

Argonauta (Burden 5): RTP

Monarca (Burden 5): -9 Hull/-10 Crew/Strikes to HMS Vanguard (with 3 leaks and not enough crew to man pumps founders and sink.)

San Isidro (Burden 5): -9 Hull/-7 Crew/Strikes to HMS Alnwick.

Santa Isabel (Burden 5): -7 Hull/-9 Crew/lost 1 mast/Strikes to HMS Alnwick.

Santo Domingo (Burden 5): -9 Hull/-5 Crew/lost 2 masts/Strikes to HMS Alnwick.

Summary
1. The best laid plans never survive first contact with....a dice roll! Each time the Spanish roll took the squadron away from the British. This I put down to them not wanting to fight bu join up with the French, in otherwords keeping their force intact. I rolled for Monarca's captain and he decided to engage drawing the rest of the squadron with him. That left Argonauta out of it and tring to tack back against the wind to rejoin the fight, too late.

2. I randomly diced (6 on a D6) for Captains Abilities for the Spanish ships. The rear 2 ships got 6's and a random draw produced the cards.

3. I tried to keep the British squadron moving as a squadron and it worked to some extent. As luck would have it enabling them to break the Spanish line twice and with devastating results.

4. Monarca was holed 3 times and no ship was in range of her to lend assisitance. So she sank!

5. Using the advanced ruiles I always allow my ships to regain 1 hull (Using the Repair Damage Action Chit) and 1 crew (Using the Grog Chit). Then the normal campaign rules for repairs as stated on the spreadsheet.

6. Defence wil be out of action for the 2nd mission to replenish her crew and repair her hull.

Hjl
01-28-2017, 08:54
Love the preamble! I eagerly await the battle.

Bos'n
01-29-2017, 17:29
Pre-amble

“We fully accept your point about your crew Captain but you were not aboard and they did mutiny. Suffice to say the decision of the board is that you were in no way to blame; being ashore in hospital at the time, so the court finds you not guilty and furthermore unaccountable for the actions of your crew in your absence. This courts martial is now dismissed having fully discharged its duty, God save the King”.

The court broke up and officer after officer came to shake Jacks hand. It did not bode well for his 1st officer who had tried to quell the unrest but had been over powered and locked below when his crew mutinied. Jack stiffened as the Commodore, now Rear Admiral, approached. “Well Captain Union, the court has admonished you of all guilt, perhaps now we can get on with the war, eh?” “Yes, Sir...but what about...” Jack got no further as the Admiral raised his hand. “I have put in a good word with the court about your 1st, from the evidence he tried his best to quell the mutiny and it would seem that your 3rd officer was more involved. It is on him that most of the blame will fall. Now, enough of that. My squadron is being reinforced as you know and whilst I have lost Dunkirk and Morpeth, there are never enough frigates you know, I am receiving 3 more 74’s and an unrated sloop for messages etc”. Jacks face dropped at the mention of the unrated sloop; surely he was not being given that as a command. The Admiral continued...”Now as I was saying, the 3 74’s I am getting, Spartiate, Defence and Vanguard, well Vanguard’s Captain fell ill on the voyage and died 2 days before they dropped anchor. So presently she is without a Captain. I am making you her temporary Captain, do a good job and I might let you keep her, make a hash of it and I’ll beach you faster than you could jump overboard!” Jack smiled at the Admiral, “I’ll not let you down sir.” With that he doffed his hat and stepped aside as the Admiral and his entourage left the court. Captain Smith, the Flag Captain, handed him an envelope as he passed; “Your orders Captain Union”. “Thank you sir”. He replied as the Flag Captain departed in the wake of the Admiral.

Out in the harbour Jack could see the reinforced squadron being refitted for sea. The Flagship HMS Royal Sovereign, HMS Africa, Alnwick, Northumberland, Spartiate, Defence & HMS Vanguard awaiting the arrival of their new captain. The little sloop had already left the harbour carrying dispatches for the Admiral; she would be very busy over the coming months.

“......I Captain Jack Union am to take command of His Majesty’s Ship Vanguard with all dispatch”. Jack finished the customary reading in of himself as the new Captain, there was a half hearted huzzah then all hands where dismissed and Jack withdrew to his cabin. He was given no relief for no sooner had he removed his coat when the shout came; Captain to repair aboard Flagship with all haste.

Jack was the last to arrive and was bid sit as the Admiral started, “It would seem our previous endeavours have only been the precursor for something larger. This morning dispatches arrived confirming that we are now at war with Spain as well as France. A squadron of French ships has broken out of the Brest blockade and are either sailing south for the Mediterranean or west to the Caribbean. Either way we have been ordered to sail but not to follow the French but to shadow a Spanish squadron which left Cadiz this morning to join up with the French. We have known of this for some time, hence the refitting of our ships. Now we have a definite destination, The Azores island group. It may be that this is where they will meet with the French squadron. Together they will make a strong force. We will sail with all haste to bring the Spanish to battle before they can join forces with the French. Gentlemen your order await, God speed and God Save the King.”

Jack collected his orders and was rowed back to his command. He called a conference of his officers and told them the gist of the Admirals briefing and that they had orders to sail to the Azores. Hopefully he would have time to get the feel of his new command during the voyage and to feel the mettle of the crew. It would be a hard journey but one he knew he would acquit himself well.

Excellent back story. I haven't read the rest of the AAR, but felt I had to compliment you for this bit.

By the way, I'm still playing November. How can I keep up?

Hjl
01-29-2017, 18:53
This is looking brutal already! I love it :Arrrr:

Wahko
01-30-2017, 01:11
On the edge off my seat! Great report so far...

Bligh
01-30-2017, 03:30
Good start for the British Neil, but with a five to four advantage and the clout that some of these Spaniards have it could still go either way.
Great stuff, let us hope that Captain Union can save the day.
Bligh.

Union Jack
01-30-2017, 09:03
Battle finished. But for the Spanish squadron trying to escape and turning twice, it may have been a different story if the lines passed each other and it was gun to gun.

Hjl
01-30-2017, 09:29
A hard fight well won.

Bravely lead forlorn hope by the Defence.

Nightmoss
01-30-2017, 10:41
Like everyone else I really enjoyed your preamble backstory! :thumbsup:

I might be alone in my thoughts, but I'm beginning to think the AI is not up to performing adequately against human players when you get any more than two ships on the table? It's like there's no cohesive plan or uniformity on movement and/or rules of engagement when AI fleets are involved? I'm puzzled on how to play this out if/when I get time for this scenario.

Union Jack
01-30-2017, 10:47
I tried to keep both fleets together but with Argonauta wondering off I made a decision to roll for each ship behind and luckily Monarca took over and tried to take on the British. I think once a squadron is committed then perhaps it should be they stay in formation unless forced to strike or are boarded etc.

I'm thinking now along the lines of the Langton Fleet rules. But more on that later. (need time to put something together and see if it works).

Bligh
01-30-2017, 10:52
What a battle Neil or should I say Captain Jack, and interesting to see how the scales gradually tipped in favour of the British.
I love your little extra additions such as the strike cards.
Must make me some of those. Also placing special ability cards by the ship in question.
I often forget to utilize mine.
Splendid show all round once again dear chap.
When you have dealt with your casualties do repair aboard my Flagship for a cold collation and a glass or two of my finest Port.
Bligh.

Bligh
01-30-2017, 11:27
I tried to keep both fleets together but with Argonauta wondering off I made a decision to roll for each ship behind and luckily Monarca took over and tried to take on the British. I think once a squadron is committed then perhaps it should be they stay in formation unless forced to strike or are boarded etc.

I'm thinking now along the lines of the Langton Fleet rules. But more on that later. (need time to put something together and see if it works).

I always keep both fleets in battle line unless Admirals orders stipulate otherwise, or if ships have to take avoiding action. Once battle is joined I use the AI charts, unless a stupid action is specified when I do the nearest sensible one to that asked for.
Rob.

Union Jack
01-30-2017, 11:27
I'm going to play this again and try out some very simple fleet signal rules. See if the outcome changes any.

Hjl
01-30-2017, 13:09
I'm going to play this again and try out some very simple fleet signal rules. See if the outcome changes any.

I'm very interested in the outcome, I tend to get the fleets into range and then reduce speed to minimum and try to stay in a line. It would be nice to fet some good fleet rules though as currently it's a bit of a mess.

Bligh
01-30-2017, 13:18
I should have mentioned that both fleets take in or increase sail in order to keep distance from the other ships until they break from the line for individual combat.
Rob.

Union Jack
01-30-2017, 17:40
OK played this again tonight:

1. Both fleets started off in the positions indicated in the Brief.
2. The Spanish remained in line astern of the Flagship Argonauta and would follow the quickest card to maintain this.
3. The first signal from the British was to wear in succesion. Marker placed on leeward front corner and following ships would turn as near or on the marker as possible to maintain line astern.
4. This brought the British on a parallel course to the Spanish.
5. The British followed my gameplan in the original AAR to break the line. So hoisted the signal. Break the line but remain in line astern.
6. Well it worked well for the intial break through, then Defence got raked and struck to the enemy.
7. The following ships tried to follow and only Africa succeeded.
8. Alnwick got caught and struck. By this time the lead 2 Spanish had struck too.
9. Then a 3rd Spanish 74 struck and it was 2 on 2.
10. With struck ships blocking the way, Vanguard tacked around Alnwick and proceeded to head off the Spanish, which could only sail into the wind as their way was blocked by all the struck ships.
11. Africa took the long way round Defence and joined Vanguard, who had just raked Santa Isabel, in making Santo Domingo strike as Santa Isabel made her escape.

Butchers Bill:
Argonauta: -9 hull/-9 crew/ Strikes to Vanguard.
Monarca: -3 hull/-10 crew/ Strikes to Alnwick
San Isidro: -9 hull/-3 crew/ Strikes to Africa.
Santa Isabel: -4 hull/-7 crew/RTP
Santo Domingo: -9 hull/-3 crew/strikes to Vanguard & Africa.

HMS Defence: -2 hull/-10 crew/Strikes to Monarca/Re-taken.
HMS Africa: -5 hull/-3 crew/RTP.
HMS Alnwick: -4 hull/-10 crew/Strikes to San Isidro/Re-taken.
HMS VAnguard: -3 hull/-9 crew/RTP.

A more bloody engagement, especially in crew casualties, but the same overall result. 4 Enemy ships taken or sunk.

4. Fleet actions.
a. 2 or more ships equal a fleet.
b. Before action is commenced decide which ship is the Flagship. This is the ship that ALL signals originate from.
c. Choose a formation:
i. Line ahead. (All ships form up in front of the flagship).

X
X
X
X


ii. Line astern. (All ships form up behind the flagship).
X
X
X
X


iii. Line abreast. (All ships form up to the left or right of the flagship.
X X X X Or X X X X

iv. Line Oblique. (All ships form up behind and oblique either to port or stbd).

X
..X
....X
......X

Or

......X
....X
..X
X


d. The gap between ships is up to you as long as the formation is consistent with those shown above.

e. Enemy will always form up in line astern. (They do not change signals)

f. Position fleets and start the game.

g. Changing orders. (You may combine 2 signals. For each signal combined after the 2nd add 1 turn delay)

i. You might wish to change signals; if you do then choose from the list or make up a signal of your own.
ii. A change of signal is for all ships in the squadron.

A: General Chase: No ship may reduce sail or turn away from the enemy unless to do so would speed their approach towards the enemy, within 1 ruler of an enemy ship. Once within 1 ruler of an enemy ship the ship may behave independently.
B: Engage the Enemy: All ships must engage nearest enemy. No ship may reduce sail until within 1 ruler of an enemy ship.
C: Engage more closely: All ships that fired at the enemy must sail closer and keep engaging.
D: Engage to leeward: All ships must move to windward side of the enemy and engage the enemy.
E: Engage to Windward: All ships must move to leeward side of the enemy and engage the enemy.
F: Break the line: All ships must turn towards the enemy and attempt to break the line. If British may double up, ie form two lines.
G: Disengage: All ships engaging the enemy must disengage.
H: Tack in succession: Place a marker on the windward front corner of the lead ship. As each ship approaches the marker they must execute a turn to windward, towards the wind.
I: Wear in succession: Place a marker on the leeward front corner of the lead ship. As each ship approaches the marker they must execute a turn to leeward, away from the wind.
J: Tack together: All ships must execute a turn to windward, towards the wind at the same time.
K: Wear together: All ships must execute a turn to leeward, away from the wind at the same time.
L: Line Ahead: All ships form up in front of the flagship.
M: Line astern: All ships form up behind the flagship.
N: Line abreast: All ships form up to the right or left of the flagship.
O: Line Oblique: Ships form up staggered to the right or left.
Z: Special Signal: Write your own special signal.

(I use scrabble letter tiles and just place the letter tile corresponding to the new signal on the ship base or name card.)

h. How to execute the new signal.

i. An addition to the game sequence
1. Planning
2. Action Phase
3. Signals phase (this is a delayed task, but does not take up a task itself; and the signal will be carried out in the next signals phase. Place new signal card on table as a reminder.
4. Movement
5. Combat
6. Reloading

ii. Repeaters. If the fleet is in Line Oblique or has 1 or more frigates or unrated ships acting as a repeater then if a ship can draw an unbroken line, ie no obstacle or ship in the way (main mast to main mast), then that ship, or ships, carries out the order immediately.

Bligh
01-31-2017, 03:02
A very good explanation of your signalling method Neil.
I will give it a trial asap.
this was something that i was toying with but you have actually put it into action.
Well done sir.
Rob.

Union Jack
01-31-2017, 03:13
My breaking the line was ineffectual asDefence couldnt rake the 1st or 2nd Spanish 74 only the 1st with a close range broadside. So as Defence passed through she was raked by the 2nd Spanish 74. It would have been better to have sailed along the line gun for gun. Or cut across the lead Spanish 74 and formed 2 lines of 2 and sailed down either side 2 ships to 1.

I also did not play double shot.

I am thinking that double shot should only be used at 1/4 range ruler.

UJ

Bligh
01-31-2017, 12:10
I am starting to agree about double shot from my reading of actual accounts.
Interestingly if this were done it would bring the Carronade into perspective better as being the most powerful gun at medium range. That shot every turn would be most telling if the enemy could only trade shot for shot at A damage at this range.
Rob.

Nightmoss
01-31-2017, 13:10
Neil, that's an excellent amount of work you put into signaling and fleet actions. I'm going to copy and paste that into a separate document I can read offline. Thanks! :salute:

Bligh
01-31-2017, 13:45
I agree Jim.
I have copied the relevant part and saved it into the folder which I am compiling on signal flags at sea.
Rob.

Union Jack
01-31-2017, 15:25
Also having read up on many engagements it would seem that double shot was not all the useful. Unless at very short ranges you could not predict what if any would hit the target, so my assumption of using only at 1/4 ruler.

Also my reasoning for having my captains take the reload ability, more along the line of the British for historical better loading and firing.

For signals I worked on the AI following a set formation, line astern, ahead etc for the whole game. Whilst the player could change signals throughout but as I played timing is damn hard to work out and it doesn't always work to your advantage. I also used the campaign rule of the AI ships firing A at long, B at 1/4 to 1/2 and C at 1/4, hence the high casualties in crew.

Hjl
01-31-2017, 15:35
I think I'll d this in my next campaign game.

Bos'n
02-02-2017, 15:33
Like everyone else I really enjoyed your preamble backstory! :thumbsup:

I might be alone in my thoughts, but I'm beginning to think the AI is not up to performing adequately against human players when you get any more than two ships on the table? It's like there's no cohesive plan or uniformity on movement and/or rules of engagement when AI fleets are involved? I'm puzzled on how to play this out if/when I get time for this scenario.

I'm not sure that Neil's Fleet Action Rules solve this problem, but I think they are a great addition to the game. I've included them in the Campaign Rules thread as an optional set of rules and plan to use them in my games at the Family Game Store. Yes that's a plug for my brother's store in Savage Mill Mall, Savage, Maryland. Sorry about that.:embarass: Not really.

Any comments or changes to the rules should be posted to the Optional Rules thread started be my good captain (oh, oh, I mean) Admiral Bligh. :shock:

Bos'n
02-02-2017, 15:42
Like everyone else I really enjoyed your preamble backstory! :thumbsup:

I might be alone in my thoughts, but I'm beginning to think the AI is not up to performing adequately against human players when you get any more than two ships on the table? It's like there's no cohesive plan or uniformity on movement and/or rules of engagement when AI fleets are involved? I'm puzzled on how to play this out if/when I get time for this scenario.

This is a real problem, folks, and needs to be addressed. This campaign pits human minds against a set of rules and the rules rarely win out.
(It's really embarrassing when I loose.)

What can we do to help Mr. AI become a little more challenging in these scenarios?

:question: Any thoughts?

Bligh
02-02-2017, 16:30
Always give them more ship power than the attacking fleet either by extra ships or by a larger ship in the mix.
That for starters.
Rob.

Union Jack
02-03-2017, 09:08
I agree with Rob. Until we get a workable set of fleet rules for the AI, I would give them more ships or at the very least 1 larger ship. I'm going to trawl my various naval rules to see if there is a Solo AI variant for fleet actions.

Bos'n
02-03-2017, 15:51
I agree with Rob. Until we get a workable set of fleet rules for the AI, I would give them more ships or at the very least 1 larger ship. I'm going to trawl my various naval rules to see if there is a Solo AI variant for fleet actions.

Thanks Neil. The temperary fix that both you and Rob suggested is good. Some how we need a set of rules that allow the AI to "think" for itself or at least know when to disengage might help. In my Nov. battle, the French have Genereux and two dinky frigates left. The Americans have left them a way out and I've decided to let them take it. The Americans are hurting too. Their choice is too catch them or let them go and lick their considerable wounds. A human had to make the decision to leave, no set of rules could do that.

I look forward to seeing what you come up with.

Bligh
02-03-2017, 16:18
Maybe we could use the same sort of criteria which we do with Aircraft on the Drome. A series of factor add up .Ship hull damage, loss of crew, have nearby ships struck or sunk, is captain wounded etc, reach breaking point and if possible run.

Rob.

Hjl
02-03-2017, 21:28
I'm looking forward to seeing where this ends. The solo rules work fine for individual ships but fall short with fleets.

Bligh
02-04-2017, 02:08
Take a peek here Hugh.

http://sailsofglory.org/showthread.php?4427-Optional-rules

Rob.

twsl
02-04-2017, 22:10
I have copied the relevant part and saved it into the folder which I am compiling on signal flags at sea.
Rob.

It was mentioned in another thread about 6 months ago but if you haven't seen or don't have it, I have Wargames Illustrated number 2 (1987) with the article "The Bying Touch" Wargaming fleet actions in the age of sail by Andy Callan I could scan and send your way. It contains both signalling and fleet action rules and includes all the flags I think you are looking for. I actually made all the cards years ago and never put them into practice.

Bligh
02-05-2017, 01:09
Thanks Alan.
It would be great if you could.
I have a book on signals but it is annoyingly incomplete in giving all the information on any of the dets of signals. Only samples of each and not in colour.
Rob.

Union Jack
02-11-2017, 13:19
Yep had a copy but lost it. We played with a wood base and plastic slide clip for A4 paper to slide flags into. Would love a copy too.