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"Rules covering Pre-Dreadnought to WW2" Topic

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Oldgrumbler Supporting Member of TMP09 Dec 2021 6:47 p.m. PST

We are looking at doing an Imagination campaign in the Med that would involve purchasing (building) ships from 1880(90) to 1945. Italy vs France with Greece, Turkey, & Russia worked in, depending on our ship purchases. Probably use the SimCan La Regia Marina map will strategic rules cobbled together from Seekreig, GQIII, & the Avalanche boardgames.
We need some tactical rules to cover this time period.
So Naval Thunder does cover this time period with 3 linked rulesets in an awkward way.
Our current favorite GQ III does WWI & WWII.
Manley's You May Fire When Ready Gridley nicely does the pre-dread era.
I guess we can modify things, as we usually do, but it is a bit complicated for our usual seat of the pants estimates. At this point we mash together YMFWRG & GQIII.
Any better ideas?

HMS Exeter09 Dec 2021 7:15 p.m. PST

Im afraid you're going to run into problems with Naval Thunder. I think their ship info isn't super comprehensive. I don't think they have anything on Greece or Turkey.

I've only played GQIII at cons a few times and it never seems to run very well. It may be the GMs weren't totally up to curve on the rules tho. If GQIII works for you I'm confident their ship data will be pretty complete.

SeeKrieg IV/V will be soup to nuts, but it's pretty fiddly and not for everyone. Any rules set that requires trigonometry to resolve torpedoes is gonna be pretty hard core.

JSchutt09 Dec 2021 9:18 p.m. PST

Broadside: Empires of Steel

Personal logo Yellow Admiral Supporting Member of TMP09 Dec 2021 10:03 p.m. PST

Only one better idea: write a pre-dreadnought version of GQ3. I'd love to play it. grin

FAI (GQ3 for WWI) actually will work reasonably well for ships of about the RJW era onward, but just can't deal with the weirdness, uniqueness, and outright inadequacies of ships commissioned in the 1880-1900 era.

A more serious suggestion: you would probably have less of a lurch transitioning between periods if you adapted the older GQ1 and GQ2 system to pre-dreadnoughts. These very old rules show some ideas how to do this: link

The Admiralty Trilogy will also cover everything soup to nuts, but like Seekrieg it has a reputation for being a bit of a slog in play.

- Ix

David Manley10 Dec 2021 1:52 a.m. PST

GQ 1/2 with the "GQ1900" pre-dreadnought variant rules from the NWS website.

John Leahy Supporting Member of TMP10 Dec 2021 4:01 a.m. PST

The owner of NWS has passed away. His site is down. I have been trying the Wayback machine with no luck so far.



Oddball10 Dec 2021 5:57 a.m. PST

For pre-dreadnought ships I use Brian DeWitt's "When Dreadnaughts Rules The Seas".

Very fast play, he has info for ships in SAW and the Great War.

No idea how to get them. I picked them up at a HMGS flea market years ago.

David Manley10 Dec 2021 6:39 a.m. PST

@John, not that NWS, I was referring to the Naval Wargames Society

Prince Alberts Revenge10 Dec 2021 7:54 a.m. PST

For pre-dreadnought ships I use Brian DeWitt's "When Dreadnaughts Rules The Seas".

Very fast play, he has info for ships in SAW and the Great War.

No idea how to get them. I picked them up at a HMGS flea market years ago.

WDRTS is a fun, bloody and quick play game. Definitely not a simulation of any sort but an ideal club or convention ruleset. The author, Brian, sells them on CDs for very reasonable price and the rules come with scenarios and ship profiles for the various conflicts covered. If anyone wishes to get them, email me at lecoqfou at gmail dot com. I will put you in contact with Brian. Cheers.

emckinney10 Dec 2021 9:30 a.m. PST

Are you sticking to real ships, or designing your own?

Oldgrumbler Supporting Member of TMP10 Dec 2021 9:51 a.m. PST

We plan on doing real ships. But designing ships is fun. I get plenty of ship design experience in the computer game Rule the Waves.
By starting in 1890 we could develop all sorts of things (Harvey & Krupp steel, Cordite, Barr & Stroud range finders, water pipe boilers, etc) with appropriate improvements in ship performance. Would be an education in naval architecture. Probably too much work.
Plan to have some air, but it will never be dominant. Probably limit land based air & then limit the number of CV's.
Maybe have a month of combat per calendar year so we can see a progression of the ship types.
The easiest is likely to use GQIII for WW1 & WW2 ships. Use the ship stats from Fire when Ready, & then convert those into GQIII stats with various modifiers for the poorer armor & range finding. We would let the predreads use modern ammo.

BuckeyeBob10 Dec 2021 6:43 p.m. PST

free pre-dreadnaught rules here you may like

Oldgrumbler Supporting Member of TMP14 Dec 2021 7:48 a.m. PST

I did determine how to meld the Fire When Ready Rules with GQIII.
Of course ship speed is not an issue. Movement is done per the ruleset you prefer. I like the GQIII written orders. Use sighting or weather from your favorite set.
You use the ships data logs & ranges from each ruleset for the relevant ship. A pre-dreadnaught from Fire when Ready, a ww1/WW2 ship data sheet is from GQIII.
A ship fires according to the ruleset that its ship data sheet is from.
The key point is that damage is inflicted according to the rules governing the target.
The basic difference in the rules is that GQIII uses "Equivalent Damage Rolls" while Fire when Ready gives larger ships more ADV & BDV.
I find the Fire When When Ready System more intuitive than the GQIII system. GQIII gives all ships, more or less, the same number of damage boxes but increases the number of hits caused by a shell on a smaller ship as opposed to Fire When Ready which increases the damage that a larger ship can take (more ADV & BDV.) So you can play 1 battle with 2 rulesets.

John Leahy Supporting Member of TMP16 Dec 2021 9:02 p.m. PST

Hi David M. I checked and could not find GQ 1900 variant at NWS. I found Battlefleet 1900, But no Predread variant.

Thank you

Archon6416 Dec 2021 9:37 p.m. PST

Pre-Dread: Quickfire from War Times Journal. Quick play and free. I think they have a WW1 set as well.
Most rules distinguish the 3 periods. I don't think you'll find one that covers all.

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