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Friday, October 21, 2016

Defense of Convoy PQ-187

 In honor or Trafalgar Day Frank put together a Naval action some where in the dark cold waters of the Norwegian Sea.  Storms and Icebergs limit visibility for both sides, rules are GQ3.
  A British Force of two Cruisers, three Battle ships and a Battle Cruiser is screening a convoy(s) somewhere to the north.
 A German force of two Battleships, two Battle Cruisers and two Heavy Cruisers
  Long range contact is made with radar but with out visual sightings we are not able to fire.
 I have some issues with my maneuvers early on hitting an ice berg...
 and two ships nearly collide (I wanted to show you how badly I missestimated my maneuvers
 The ships seem so close but the subarctic air is still thick with fog and rain.
 Then shapes loom out of the fog!
 The British land several lucky hits on the Bismark but..
 There Cruisers take a worse pounding from the German battery...
 The Exeter is especially hard hit taking damage to its hull and engineering
 HMS Hood takes aim at the German Cruisers
 Germans launch torpedoes... hitting Hood.
 Prince Eugen takes multiple hits... most go low to the hull but her crew keeps her afloat somehow.
 The British Cruises are hit multiple times. Suffolk goes down with a critical hit to her bulkhead and multiple hull hits.
 Luttow is on fire and Prince Eugen has taken damage to her rudder (which her skillful crew repair) .
 An almost gratuitous number of hits land on Exeter.
 Sinking her  Bismark and Tirpitz are both taking hit.  Bismark takes hits low slowing her but her weapons are undamaged.  Tirpitz take an engine hit but is other wise in good shape
 Torpedoes fired by the Gneisenau hits the Valiant
 Hood takes enough damage form the Crippled Lutzow  that she goes down
 Bismark repairs her bulkhead damage just managing to stay a float.. she fires.. and hits the Rodney
 Rodney has lost two of her three turrets only the rear facing C turret still works...  Tirpitz slips off the table edge in the distance...
 Lutzow tries to ram the battle ships... but fails... she is burning.
 And is then smashed by fire from Warspite both of the old dreadnoughts are badly damaged by German fire.
 Gneisenau is ready to break north.. Scharnhorst is already off table Prince Eugen is preparing to die as is Bismark...
 Rodney's hull is ripped by the wreckage of the British cruisers and begins to go down her last shot will send Bismark to the bottom
Prince Eugan and Bismark sink but the take the Valiant with their last shots.  The Germans lost two cruisers, and a battle ship.  The Two German Battle Cruisers are still in excellent fighting trim, Tirpitz is still operational but only one main turret is functional still she can easily out pace the shot up Warspite the only British ship to survive.  The British lost two Battle ships, a Battle Cruiser and two Cruisers.  A clear German win how big the win is will depend on how much damage is done in the shipping lanes. The real looser (other then the men bobbing in the frigid waters) are probably the Marries on Guadalcanal as some panicked calls for more us naval support in the the Atlantic are going form London to Washingto.

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