Saturday, 20 February 2010

All at Sea

A bit of a change this week. The battle was a scenario from the Russo-Japanese war and involved the manoeuvrings following Tsushima and leading up to the siege of Port Arthur. As the Japanese commander my task was to cover a minelaying operation in a strait. My opponent needed to stop the minelaying and keep the strait open.

The minelayers were of course my weakest ships and needed to be protected from enemy fire so when the Russian scouting squadron made straight for them it necessitated some raid manoeuvering. Fortunately, (for me), the scouting squadron comprised the enemy's weakest ships, so their rapid advance proved their undoing; all three going down under heavy gunfire. Though, as the Russian admiral said, sinking at least put out the fires which were raging onboard.

The Russian light cruisers 'death ride' bought time for their heavy units to enter the fray and also upset the initial Japanese plan. The Russians had gambled on sending their cruisers through a narrow strait, taking the risk of grounding, in order to pose a threat to the Japanese flank. This had the additional effect of threatening the minelayers again who had moved there to keep out of harms way. They had to resort to full speed to change flank and take cover behind their battleships.

As time ran out a Russian victory was adjudicated, although they had lost 3 ships to none of the Japanese, they had delayed the minelaying and kept the strait open.

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