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Savo Island, 1942


Second World War Naval, General Quarters, 1/2400 scale

My last game of the month was a another naval affair. You don’t play one for ages and then, like buses, they all come along together! This was a refight of the First Battle of Guadalcanal (November 1942), a night action fought with my GHQ 1/2400 ships, and General Quarters Rules played on a 8′ x 6′ table.CIMG1983We set visibility at 24″, but the Japanese had a 4″ sighting bonus, which meant they could see the Americans, but they couldn’t see them back. They knew they were out there though – the US cruisers and lead destroyers all carried radar  -which could help shooting at ranges of 30″ or less.CIMG1979Worse, the Japanese also had two battleships – the Hiei and the Kirishima, which spent the game keeping their distance and demolishing a US destroyer each turn! CIMG1977The Japanese also had the best of the torpedo duel, as the light cruiser USS Helena went down amid a storm of Long Lances. She spent the rest of the game as a puff of cotton wool on the table, as did every other American destroyer to succumb to  enemy 14-inch shells. The only American success came late in the game when the  japanese destroyer Samidare was torpedoed – although several Japanese ships were the worst of wear, especially the light cruiser Nagara. My Americans eventually called it a night and limped off, leaving the Japanese player crowing all the way to the bar!   CIMG1974I’m not especially a fan of General Quarters, but in this game – and with a few “house rule” modifications – they worked really well. More importantly the game moved right along, despite the number of ships involved, which is a testimony to the simplicity of the rules system.

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