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"Naval Command game" Topic

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Weirdo16 Sep 2019 9:06 a.m. PST

My group played a game of Naval Command yesterday, which turned out really fun. The scenario was an island assault, Marine Nationale vs PLAN. Each fleet was 2000 points, with no ships launched after 1980, and the objective was to land more ground troops on two islands in the center of the table than the other side. The French fleet was centered around an Ouragan LPD, escorted by a Colbert CG and two Tourville FFGs, with an Agosta SS to round things out. The Chinese group was centered around two Type-72 Yukan LHAs, escorted by a Sovremenny DDG, two Type-53H FFGs, and one Type-37 Hainan.





I thought I had the upper hand when I detected his Sovremenny fairly early, and crippled it with a spread of Exocets from my Colbert before it could get a single Sunburn off and also secured one of the objective islands with helicopter-deployed troops, but best laid plans, and all that. I still needed to kill those Yukans before they buried the other island in troops. So I clear out the blocking Hainan, dart my Super Frelons in to lock on the lead troopship…and can't make a damage roll to save my life. Seven freaking Exocets, it took to send that thing down! All of them locked on, only one got shot down, I just couldn't sink the damned thing! All the while, it and its sister ship are spewing out landing boats. In the end, it came out a draw, with each of us in possession of one island.

This was an awesome game, with tense moments one after the other the whole time. I swear, I spent the last three turns just a die roll or two away from victory.

Thresher01 Supporting Member of TMP16 Sep 2019 12:35 p.m. PST

Sounds like fun, and historical.

Those Exocets do see to have problems detonating, in many cases.

Weirdo17 Sep 2019 8:30 a.m. PST

It was great fun! I absolutely love Naval Command as a system. My only real complaints are that certain secondary units can be very difficult to use, due to a lack of consolidated stats. For practical purposes, the following cannot be used in games, or are very hard to do so:

Aircraft/helicopters carrying bombs or torpedoes(it doesn't say if they're guided or not, helicopters do not list speed in their stats)
Landing craft/hovercraft (no consolidated stats, no EW/AS ratings)
Pirate boats and merchant ships(no consolidated stats or point values)
Land facilities(no stats or point values)
Land-based aircraft(no armament or point values)

But for straight warship vs warship action? It's everything I wanted in a game.

Oldgrumbler18 Sep 2019 1:08 p.m. PST

It seems to be hard to find a good selection of 1/3000 Chinese ships. Any suggestions as to where to look?

Weirdo19 Sep 2019 7:56 a.m. PST

1/3000? No clue, I play 1/2400. For that scale, Viking Forge is really good, as is GHQ. (Viking Forge is the cheaper of the two by far.)

Perhaps shapeways? People there often produce their ships in a variety of scales.

Oldgrumbler19 Sep 2019 8:22 a.m. PST

On reading thru the rules I am tempted to play it with counters rather than miniatures, at least initially. 1 cm = 1 nm (2000 meters). Could even use hexes. It seems like a board game at this scale, but the ranges are so long it is an appropriate scale.
There is a much better selection of 1/2400 ships than 1/3000. Shapeways does have a large number. I will check out Viking Forge.

Oldgrumbler19 Sep 2019 8:36 a.m. PST

Shapeways & Picoarmor seem to be the best sources for 1/600 modern aircraft.

Bozkashi Jones19 Sep 2019 4:38 p.m. PST

Nice game Weirdo!

Oldgrumbler19 Sep 2019 9:21 p.m. PST

I used Inkscape & made up ship & plane counters for 3 fleets. These should work nicely for a test game.

colkitto22 Sep 2019 1:15 p.m. PST

Denian have – or had: I don't know whether he is still in business – a nice range of modern Chinese in 1/3000. They're a cut or two above the usual 1/3000 stuff, and more up-to-date too.

colkitto22 Sep 2019 1:16 p.m. PST

Oh, and what BJ said!

Oldgrumbler23 Sep 2019 8:55 p.m. PST

Are there any videos that explain how to play? I studied the rules but there are a few things that I feel that I am doing wrong.
For example, it appears that strike aircraft have no movement limits. Patrolling AC have limits but Strike AC do not.
In scenario 1 , a victory objective is to move AC past a picket line of ships. The rules don't explain how the ships can detect & attack them. I assume it is the same procedure for defending against an attacking AC. The strike AC cannot search for targets. So only their single patrol AC can. So if it gets shot down they cannot attack the pickets.


Weirdo30 Sep 2019 11:43 a.m. PST

That's more of a tactics issue than a rules one. The attacker knows that if his patrol plane is lost, that's the game right there, so he needs to keep it out of SAM range, but the mission gets a lot easier(and more points are scored) if enough defender ships can be sunk to open a hole in the defense net. Opening a gap is almost mandatory, because the attacking aircraft are arriving piecemeal, and you can't rely on swamping the defender. (Killing the defender's patrol plane will also help.)

The defender needs to spread his ships out so that his entire edge is covered by air defence, but also wants to overlap where possible to provide strong points(good places to put your ships so they don't get sunk). Steadily advancing is advisable because as it was mentioned before, if you can catch the attacker patrol plane in your AA, that's the game right there. You do need to be careful as you move, to not let any gapsopen in your net.

As always, radar is a tough choice. Defender ships that go active greatly improve their AA, but are much more easily detected and painted for airstrikes. If the attacker patrol plane goes active, it can guide in airstrikes very easily, but if it miscalculates and wanders into SAM range…poof.

Oldgrumbler30 Sep 2019 12:06 p.m. PST

I have since figured it out. A Aircraft that are not on patrol have an unlimited movement. It does not say in the rules but likely they are required to move in a straight line & cannot weave about. In this scenario, if their AWACs does not detect a ship then they are to dash off of the board past the picket line of ships to get 1 VP. The rules only describe how ships may attack planes that are attacking them, not whizzing past them. The obvious thing is to generalize the rule. It needs a slight rewrite.

In my second scenario of 2 Chinese DDG & 2 FFG vs similar US ships, all the latest design, the US was easily destroyed. The Chinese AS missiles have a range of 150 cm & the US a range of 70 cm with each side being able to move 8 cm each turn. It was a massacre.


Rev Zoom01 Oct 2019 11:56 a.m. PST

So how did the PLAN ships manage to detect the US ships at such a distance?

Oldgrumbler03 Oct 2019 7:27 a.m. PST

Both sides had AWACS up.


Weirdo04 Oct 2019 10:51 a.m. PST

How do you balance land-based aircraft such as AWACS, etc? We've got no point values for them, nor for land bases. Near as I can tell, that makes them unusable except in very specific scenarios, never in pick-up games.

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