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"Naval Newbie Needs... Help" Topic

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Duke Beardy Dad12 Jun 2017 1:27 a.m. PST

Hello one and all; I've been looking at a new avenue to take when it comes to gaming, and my eye has been caught by the grand nature of WW2 naval warfare. However I'm finding it overwhelmingly difficult to know where to start.

As such please could anyone recommend any rule sets that are still in print, and explain which scales are better for gaming and why. I'm UK based, so I don't know if that helps define which rules/models are available.

I really am new to this aspect of gaming, although I've played many other aspects of wargaming for over a decade now (yup still young in my mind).

Thank you for any responses :)

Chalfant12 Jun 2017 2:46 a.m. PST

Our club uses General Quarters from Old Dominion… and have played in 1:2400, 1:3000, and 1:6000. The smaller the scale, tendency for the price of the miniatures to come down, and the less table you need to game on… the larger the scale, the more distinct and detailed the miniatures are, but you might need more space to fit the battle. Not sure what is better.


Ed Mohrmann Supporting Member of TMP12 Jun 2017 5:28 a.m. PST

Mooby666. are your interests mostly in surface to surface
Naval warfare (River Plate; Denmark Strait; etc) or
air to surface (Midway; Marianas' Turkey Shoot; etc.)
or both ?

It would help to know, since the model sizes/rules
make a great difference.

Surface/surface, 1:6000 makes sense and could accommodate
Royal Navy versus Italians (Mediterranean), Bismarck/Hood
and the ABDA forces versus the IJN during the fight for
Java, as well as the cruiser/destroyer actions in the
Solomons in '42/'43.

If you are interested in the carrier versus carrier
actions, you might want to consider 1:300 aircraft
models while representing target ships with suitable
paper cut-outs.

Do you want fairly simple rules or do you prefer
complex rules which delve deeply into Naval gunnery
(calling shot patterns, for example) ?

And how much play surface do you have, and are you
a solo gamer or are others involved ?

fantasque12 Jun 2017 6:48 a.m. PST

Where in the UK are you? If its anywhere near the Central Belt of Scotland then you could come along to the Falkirk club and I'd be happy to show/play you through a range of different WW2 rules / scales

Allen5712 Jun 2017 7:21 a.m. PST

I like General Quarters (v.1). Believe there are 3 versions. The books for all are small, approx. 11x19 cm. I say this because ordering them from the US should have relatively low postal charges. Each version of GQ seems to increase in complexity. I liked the first. Other rules to consider are "Battlestations, Battlestations" which are low to moderate in complexity and "SeaKrieg" which are high complexity.

While I am a great fan of small miniatures I have found that the 1/6000 and 1/4800 are so small that it is hard to identify the ship. I am not impressed with the sculpting of most 1/3000 models. In 1/2400 the less detailed ships from Panzerschiffe are good gaming models and relatively inexpensive. A more limited range of available ships and the best detail in 1/2400 are the models from GHQ. I don't care to game with them because all the added bits of detail make them more delicate. There are a lot of great 1/4800 models on Shapeways but I find these to be so small that IMHO you may as well go with 1/6000. Before investing heavily into any of the scales buy one or two ships and see what you think of them. Photos of models can be deceiving as to what their appearance will be when in the palm of your hand.

Table size was mentioned but for me it is not so much table size as scale distances. 1/6000 is the only scale where ship size and combat distance look realistic. 1/3000 and 1/2400 may be acceptable. It is up to you.

Dexter Ward12 Jun 2017 7:37 a.m. PST

General Quarters 3 is what we use
It's a completely different system to GQ1 (GQ2 was an extension to WW1).
We find GQ3 hits the sweet spot of not too much detail but enough to keep the game interesting.
Naval Thunder is also good (a bit simpler than GQ3)

We use 1:3000 scale ships

wrgmr112 Jun 2017 8:26 a.m. PST

Beer and Pretzels fast buckets O dice game we play, is Victory at Sea.

Shagnasty Supporting Member of TMP12 Jun 2017 9:32 a.m. PST

My group is happy with GQ 3 for WW II and FLeet Action Imminent for WW I. We use 1/2400 scale.

Ed Mohrmann Supporting Member of TMP12 Jun 2017 9:56 a.m. PST

I have a large number of Panzerschiffe models from
3 eras – SAW, WWI and WWII.

P'schiffe's, while not overly endowed with detail,
are inexpensive and the range of available ships is

P'schiffe's also sell a set of rules which are
fairly simple, quick in play and not too complicated.

Personal logo McKinstry Supporting Member of TMP Fezian12 Jun 2017 10:19 a.m. PST

For us, the General Quarters series strikes the right balance between playability and flavor.

It is possible to get all the ships you could ever need/want at a reasonable price and still look sensible size v range on table in 1/3000, 1/4800 or 1/6000 although you really need Shapeways to fill out 1/4800.

Private Matter12 Jun 2017 10:21 a.m. PST

I second Ed's comments about Panzerschiffe. However, for rules I like Naval Thunder: They are easy to play as well as quick (and I do believe that it is cheaper than General Quarters).

Striker12 Jun 2017 2:53 p.m. PST

I'm also a fan of Naval Thunder. It's available through Wargame vault. As for scale we use 1/2400 but that's because we like the look combined with the price. For bigger battles, 1/6000 would probably be the scale.

Asterix Supporting Member of TMP15 Jun 2017 9:12 a.m. PST

You guys have reeled me in (pun intended). I've purchased a copy of "Naval Thunder," and it looks really neat. I also put in an order to Panzerschiffe for a few Japanese and US WW II warships. Just a few because I'm hoping they'll fit into the scale I have in some old (from the 1990's) Alnavco metal ship I have. I've been to Alnavco and their prices are … pricey! Are there other sources for the 1:1200 scale out there that I've missed?

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