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Thread: 2015 Solo Mission - Against the Wind

  1. #1

    Default 2015 Solo Mission - Against the Wind

    2015 Solo Scenario – Against the Wind

    Captain Jackson Andrews stared out the fly-specked window at the British fleet lying at anchor in English Harbor and contemplated the events which had brought him to Antigua.

    The journey had started nearly a month ago in Plymouth when he had been summoned to the Admiralty and given his orders. He was to use his ship, the 32-gun frigate HMS Griffon, to escort two merchant ships, the Grand Review and the Highland Lass, both carrying military supplies, to English Harbor. He had not relished his assignment. The merchants were quite slow, and even more so for this trip since they had been fitted with a few cannons because of the recent activities in the Caribbean of a French privateer known only as the Crimson Pirate and his ship the Revanche Rouge.

    The trip across the Atlantic had gone well, but once the flotilla reached the turquoise-blue waters of the Caribbean, the wind turned against them and it seemed they had to tack back and forth for several hours for every mile they closed on their destination. On three separate occasions the lookouts had spotted a strange sail hull down on the horizon, but they could not be certain if they had belonged to one ship or three. Then, less than fifty miles from the safety of English Harbor, the lookout spotted a razee 74-gun ship on a course to intercept the three English ships. There was no mistaking the identity of the ship, as soon as it came into view it hoisted the red flag emblazoned with a black heart dripping black blood – the colors of the Crimson Pirate.

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    Andrews signaled the merchant ships to tack to larboard, but they either misread the signal or panicked and they both veered to starboard. Once they realized their mistake, they both tacked in the opposite direction which only brought them head-on into the wind. (Turn 4)

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    Their momentum carried them northward but not soon enough for the Grand Review to escape a blast from the privateer that caused a leak and severed the mizzenmast of the luckless merchant.

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    The Griffon tried and eventually succeeded in bringing its double-shotted guns to bear on the enemy, and even the merchants were able to send iron towards the Revanche Rouge but any optimism was short lived as the Rouge’s guns tore into the smaller frigate.

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    The Frenchman found himself facing into the wind and Captain Andrews seized the opportunity to line up his broadsides, but again the razee got the best of the exchange.

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    With the Griffon reeling, the Rouge went after her initial prey, the Grand Review. The Highland Lass tacked north to get some separation between her and the privateer but the captain knew that he would have to turn south sooner or later if he were to make it to Antigua.

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    The battle seemed to drag on forever as the ships maneuvered against the wind. The superior seamanship and handling ability of the Crimson Pirate was displayed once again when he was able to line up his broadside on the Griffon without exposing the Revanche Rouge to return fire.

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    He then used his larboard guns to rip into the Grand Review once again, causing the captain of the now defenseless merchant to strike.

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    Captain Andrews hoped to bait the Frenchman into following the Griffon so the Highland Lass could make good her escape but the Crimson Pirate would have none of it and fired a parting shot at the Griffon as the Revanche Rouge gave chase to the fleeing merchant ship.

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    His ship on the verge of sinking, Andrews withdrew to the west, leaving the Highland Lass to her fate; a decision he knew he would regret for the rest of his life. The captain of the merchant knew her only hope was to bring her aft guns to bear and pray for a lucky shot knowing the gambit would turn his ship dead into the wind. His prayers were not answered.

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    The Highland Lass paid dearly for her captain’s risky maneuver. Taken completely aback by the wind, the ship was raked mercilessly by the Crimson Pirate causing a fire and death to much of her crew. There was no other option than to strike.

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    A sharp knock on the door brought Captain Andrews’ thoughts back into the present. An immaculately dressed Marine lieutenant said, “If you would follow me sir, the court-martial is ready to convene.”

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    Captain Jackson Andrews – Failed Mission – RTP – Relieved of Command
    Merchant Grand Review – Captured
    Merchant Highland Lass – Captured
    The Crimson Pirate – Captured two prizes - RTP
    "It seems to be law inflexible and inexorable that he who will not risk cannot win."
    John Paul Jones

  2. #2
    Captain of the Fleet
    Master & Commander
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    Chris

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    Nicely done, keep them coming.

  3. #3

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    Thank you Chris and thank you for the rep points.
    Anthony
    "It seems to be law inflexible and inexorable that he who will not risk cannot win."
    John Paul Jones

  4. #4

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    Your poor Captain Andrews has definitely paid the devil his due...and now the court martial.

    If I remember this is a tough one that requires a bit of lucky shots against the foe. I didn't happen....but with a game there's always a next time.

    in consolation for the Captain who will be spending the rest of his days on half-pay. The navy rewards success not failure.

  5. #5
    Midshipman
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    Name
    John

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    Crikey, “If you would follow me sir, the court-martial is ready to convene.” sounds very ominous. You seem to have a good sense of the period. I'm sure my game went better than yours although to be honest I can't remember the result without checking.

    I hope Captain Andrews gets acquitted but l think that might be a forlorn hope.

  6. #6

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    Quote Originally Posted by Vagabond View Post
    Crikey, “If you would follow me sir, the court-martial is ready to convene.” sounds very ominous. You seem to have a good sense of the period. I'm sure my game went better than yours although to be honest I can't remember the result without checking.

    I hope Captain Andrews gets acquitted but l think that might be a forlorn hope.
    Thanks John. The only saving grace for Captain Andrews was that he did not surrender his ship although I bet he wishes he fought on and if the Griffon was sunk, he would have gone down with her.
    "It seems to be law inflexible and inexorable that he who will not risk cannot win."
    John Paul Jones

  7. #7

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    Quote Originally Posted by ShadowDragon View Post
    Your poor Captain Andrews has definitely paid the devil his due...and now the court martial.

    If I remember this is a tough one that requires a bit of lucky shots against the foe. I didn't happen....but with a game there's always a next time.

    in consolation for the Captain who will be spending the rest of his days on half-pay. The navy rewards success not failure.
    Thank you Paul. One day I plan to replay that scenario but with so many exciting and as yet unplayed scenarios at the anchorage, I fear it will be sometime until I get around to playing it again.
    "It seems to be law inflexible and inexorable that he who will not risk cannot win."
    John Paul Jones

  8. #8

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    And, thank you both for the Rep points!
    "It seems to be law inflexible and inexorable that he who will not risk cannot win."
    John Paul Jones

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