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British cruiser Kent under fire, early in the game

Jackson Gamers' 1/1200 scale WWII Naval Game

Action in the Central Med.

This glorious Italian victory was gamed at HobbyTown in North Jackson on March 16, 2002. We used our own "Surface Warship" rules. The Italians were trying to exit ships off the far side of the table into an area marked "To the British Convoy". Their British opponents were trying to prevent any Italian ships from exiting the table into that zone.

A surprise reinforcement of 3 Vichy French destroyers arrived on turn 4 to aid the Italians. A small agonizingly slow big-gun monitor was the only British reinforcement, on turn 6.

Row of Italian Cruisers with a destroyer in the center

The British captains were: Mark Stevens, Jim Pitts, Jay Stribling

The Italian Cruisers form column

British captains Mark Stevens (left) and Jim Pitts (right) in the background. The British Battle line is shown in the background, shell splashes already clustered heavily around the lead (flagship) Queen Elizabeth. The red and yellow 20-sided dice in the background will give an idea of the size of the ship models.

British DDs under fire

The two British destroyers peel off and head towards the Italians (out of image to the left). The Italians concentrated heavily on the British light units out of a fear of their torpedoes.

The three Vichy French Destroyers

The Three French Contre-Torpilleurs are heavy destroyers, with high speed which they can sustain as long as needed. Their commander, a veterian of the British Bombardment of the French North African fleet, wanted only to strike at the hated British.

The Italian Fleet consisted of:
2 BATTLESHIPS Vittorio Veneto, Roma
3 LIGHT CRUISERS Eugenio di Savoia, Abruzzi
Giuseppi Garibaldi

The French Destroyers cut across in front of the Italian Cruisers

The center French destroyer in the line is on fire. The French will steer to port during the next during launching torpedoes at the British ships in the background.

The lines pass each other

The first two lines are Italian cruisers, headed south (right) at high speed, trying to exit the table in the area marked "to the British Convoy". The next line is made up of the French Destroyers headed North (left) at high speed after launching torpedoes at the British. Note one of the Destroyers is still gloriously aflame!

Same as above, from a different viewpoint

The Italian captains were: Larry Reeves, Tim Latham, Luke Brister, Jody McDonald and Robert Whitfield.

Italian Battleships in action

Larry Reeves (at left) commanded the Italian Capitol ships Roma and Vittorio Veneto. These modern ships gave as good as they got against the British battle line. A few shell splashes show they are under fire but without any massive concentrations of British shells. These ships took damage but never gave up the fight. A special game rule (unknown to the British) would cause any Italian ship to leave the game at best speed if she took any torpedo damage. The happened to one cruiser, but the Italian Dreadnoughts never were touched by any British fish.

Three Italian Cruisers push on south

The lead Italian ship in the cruiser column took a torpedo hit from British destroyers (sunk by the time of this shot) and hauled out to the right of this picture. The remaining three Italian cruisers are very close to the edge of the table where they can head for the off-table British convoy. The British were unable to stop them. The British heavy cruiser Kent is on fire in the background.

The British Fleet consisted of:
3 BATTLESHIPS Queen Elizabeth, Warspite
Royal Sovereign
2 DESTROYERs Maori, Zulu

British Battleships

Queen Elizabeth leads the battle line, followed by Warspite. The slower "R class" Royal Sovereign brings up the rear. To port (right side on this picture) the extremely slow monitor Roberts has just steamed into the battle. Shell splashes show that the Italian fire concentrated on the lead ship. These British ships were signifigantly slower than the more modern Italian ships. The more modern British heavy ships were in the Atlantic, not the 'Med".

The Italian Battleships turn south

Battleship Roma has turned south, following the cruisers towards the "convoy zone". Note the mass of shell splashes showing where all the Italian fire was concentrated on the lead British battleship Queen Elizabeth.

The Queen Elizabeth under heavy fire.

The Queen Elizabeth has turned north to parallel the Italian Cruiser line and close the range to the Roma but she is low in the water, under fire from almost all the Italian ships and the Italian destroyers, crossing her bow, still have some torpedoes. A cruel end for a great ship!

Royal Sovereign and paper-work

The British battleship Royal Sovereign steams by a ship data card. Actually this card was for the light cruiser Arethusa but, being sunk, she will need it no more. Each of these ship data cards is drawn on a 3' x 5" index card. We have had several proposals to make nicer looking ones that can be put on the web site, but so far nothing has been done.

The Royal Sovereign and several other ships on both sides in this game are scratchbuilt wooden models, made by the very talented Larry Enoch.

The British received victory points for:
No enemy ships enter "convoy zone" 20 points
Enemy Battleship sunk 20 points
Enemy Cruiser sunk 10 points
enemy Destroyer sunk 5 points

At the end of the game, the British had 10 points, for sinking an Italian Destroyer and a French one also. Possibly they would sink an Italian cruiser or two.

The Kent, the same ship as at the top of the page

The Kent is surrounded by shell splashes and on fire, her end is near. Vichy French torpedoes administered the Coup de Grace.

The Italians received victory points for:
Enemy Battleship sunk 20 points
Enemy Cruiser or Monitor sunk 10 points
enemy Destroyer sunk 5 points

A the end of the game, the Italians had 30 points with 20 more sure to come when the Queen Elizabeth sank.

Italian Battleship Roma under fire

The Italians won the game, getting one cruiser off the table in the designated "To the British Convoy" sone, with two more cruisers right behind her. The Italians lost only one destroyer, with a cruiser, torpedoed and steaming for home. The Vichy French lost one destroyer also, but the French admiral won his own personal victory by torpedoing a British cruiser.

The British lost the game along with a Battleship, two cruisers, and two destroyers. The balance of power in the central Mediterraean had shifted. The Italians now had the upper hand!

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