Friday, August 21, 2015

Airmen in the Water

In the wake of savage dogfight that drifted over the English Channel a scattering of downed aviators drifted in the sea.  Both sides were anxious to recover their men and perhaps pick up a survivor or two, so rushed light craft into the area.  And hence to the game.

The weather was overcast and the water relatively calm.  As I told the players these aren't SEAL Team members who are trained in high speed pick up, so they would have to go at less than 15 knots during the 30 second turn the pickup was attempted.  (In the end I forgot to make them do the snag and drag roll, so all pick-ups happened automatically.)  Rules are Flaklighter, miniatures are 1/700 scale and the aviators were positioned by tossing a handful of pennies over the table.  When picked up we rolled a dice and odds or evens determined nationality.

 Two Schnell-bootes with a 20mm gun fore and aft, two LMGs midships, and two torpedoes with reloads.

Four Vosper MTBs with twin HMGs in a turret and a LMG at each torpedo tube.

The coin toss favored the British, who closed quickly.  Two boats went to engage the larger, more powerful S-Boats while the other two attempted to make rescues. 

No one's gunnery was particularly effective as the fighting ships were racing at high speed.  Even this point-blank pass failed to score any hits.

In the end the British boats grabbed two British and three German aviators, while the Germans only picked up one German.  One of the Vospers was severely damaged and another mysteriously went off the wrong side of the table, but a Schnell-Boote was reduced to half speed so they could not pursue their lighter opponents further.  Seen here forming up to make their escape.

An introductory game I kept it simple and we were done in less than two hours.  Everyone wanted vessels with more firepower.  Perhaps next time we will get out of the early years for the more powerful coastal craft.  Everyone was in agreement that we should play again.  My thanks to what is turning into the Thursday night crew for gathering again this week.


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