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Sunday 10th April WW1 K/spiel at Little Gaddesden

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Sunday 10th April WW1 K/spiel at Little Gaddesden Empty Sunday 10th April WW1 K/spiel at Little Gaddesden

Post  Martin Sun Mar 20, 2016 8:28 pm

Our next game in just 3 weeks time is set in the North Sea in December 1914, before the infamous German raid on Scarborough.

This is an interesting period - one of frustration and disquiet for the Royal Navy on one hand, and opportunity for the High Seas Fleet on the other.  Players command German or British naval forces varying in strength from an individual squadron of four armoured cruisers to an entire battle fleet of over twenty dreadnoughts together with attendant light forces (light cruisers and destroyers).  In addition, zeppelins, submarines and mines will almost certainly feature in events.

Selecting from a range of operational objectives, players plot deployments divisible by hourly moves on theatre maps divided into hexes of about 15 nautical miles.  Umpires will determine the time and location of any contact which in turn initiates a card-driven combat resolution phase.  While not involving traditional miniatures, the mechanics of this phase do reflect the defensive and offensive capabilities of individual vessels.  The effects of manoeuvre and damage are incorporated, but bookkeeping is kept to a minimum.

Victory will be determined by an assessment of objectives met, an appraisal of individual success and failure and, most importantly, by the thinly disguised prejudices of the umpires.

Expect cat and mouse, the confusion of fog both literal and metaphorical, inadequate communications, professional incompetence, material weaknesses, British sangfroid and Hunnish brutality.

We would like to get a good idea of numbers, so could you please complete the doodle below, whether or not you are able to play.  You can also express a preference from British, German and or Umpire.

http://doodle.com/poll/7k842p5u5476wce7#table

Please note that this game will be starting a little earlier than usual, at 10.30 am.

Martin (J)

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Post  Martin Fri Mar 25, 2016 11:56 am

Sunday 10th April WW1 K/spiel at Little Gaddesden Seydli10

We have 8 registered for this game so far, but could still fit more in.  If you have not already done so, could you please complete the doodle below.  You can also express a preference from British, German and or Umpire.

http://doodle.com/poll/7k842p5u5476wce7#table

Please note that this game will be starting a little earlier than usual, at 10.30 am.


Martin (J)

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Sunday 10th April WW1 K/spiel at Little Gaddesden Empty Fred Jane's naval wargame

Post  King_Rufus Fri Mar 25, 2016 10:34 pm

Check HERE for some interesting stuff about the history of naval wargaming.

- From 'The Rules of the Naval War Game' by Fred T Jane: ‘Wargames are played, for the most part, without the supervision of an umpire. The game relies on the integrity of the individual players to show consideration for other players and to abide by the rules. All players should conduct themselves in a disciplined manner, demonstrating courtesy and sportsmanship at all times, irrespective of how competitive they may be. This is the spirit of the wargame.’

The other great figure in this field was Fletcher Pratt, who I believe rented entire ballrooms to play his game.
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Post  Martin Fri Mar 25, 2016 10:56 pm

That's a really interesting post, Your Royal Rufusness.  Much obliged.

And the comment about the spirit in which the game was played very much reflects the approach the KS group has always taken.

Bill Leeson republished the Fred Jane naval game about 20 years ago, or more, and we tried running a game once.  We didn't get very far into it, but it was a nice mix of operational and tactical.  It looks like the April game will be along similar lines.

Combat was very unusual in the Fred Jane game.  When firing a salvo, you struck a photocopy of the target ship's silhouette from Jane's Fighting ships with a specially designed stick, with a pin in it.  The silhouettes showed armour distribution, so depending on where the pin struck, you could work out whether the shell penetrated, and if so what would have been damaged.

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Post  Martin Mon Mar 28, 2016 12:05 pm

We are now up to 11 attendees for this one.  Bravo chaps.

The guys running the game tell me it is easily expandable for extra players, so it's not too late to register your interest here http://doodle.com/poll/7k842p5u5476wce7#table

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Post  Mr. Digby Mon Mar 28, 2016 3:49 pm

I am looking forwards very much to this game. The naval situation in the N Sea in WWI was fascinating and although the major forces only clashed a handful of times there were several near misses and many encounters between lighter forces - its a period I have wargamed all my life and I'm keen to see how this Kriegspiel plays out.
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Post  Martin Sat Apr 02, 2016 12:28 pm

A reminder that this game will be starting a little earlier than usual, at 10.30 am.

Still places available if you would like to join us  http://doodle.com/poll/7k842p5u5476wce7#table

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Post  Martin Sat Apr 09, 2016 11:43 am

A final reminder that tomorrow's game will be starting a little earlier than usual, at 10.30 am.

11 have registered so far, but still places available if you would like to join us  http://doodle.com/poll/7k842p5u5476wce7#table

Martin (J)

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Post  Mr. Digby Sat Apr 09, 2016 11:50 am

If there is a vacant umpire post for this game I'd love to witness how this one works "under the hood" as WWI N Sea naval gaming is always a tricky area of warfare to replicate in a wargame - the space/time/response conundrum often means fleets sail and miss and nothing happens!
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Post  Martin Sat Apr 09, 2016 1:34 pm

I'm pretty sure that you'll be needed on the umpire team, Diggers.

It looks like we're up to 12 players now.

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Post  Mr. Digby Tue Apr 12, 2016 11:43 am

I thoroughly enjoyed the day and it was great to see familiar faces again.

For me the tactical side of the game had some issues in terms of it not really being a Kriegspiel but the strategic side of the game was excellent and imposed on the two sides senior officers the right sort of command decisions and strategic conundrums the historical officers faced.

I agree with both you, Martin, and Steve, that running the same theatre of war using a compressed time scale to encompass several operations over a period of months with the battles abstracted down to a suitable level would give a quite different but nonetheless interesting game, perhaps with the objectives of each side being to amass a series of VPs won or lost due to varying factors such as British public opinion, Royal Navy (in)eptitude, Kaiser (dis)pleasure with his fleet, German crew morale due to (in)activity, horrid-hun-ness over submarine warfare, likelihood of affected neutral (American) opinion, and so on.
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Post  Martin Tue Apr 12, 2016 2:18 pm

Yes me too.  Many thanks again to Steve & John for running the game.

The WW1 North Sea situation is a fascinating conundrum for both sides, and the unanimous view was that we would like to play this again. I like your ideas re the campaign, Diggers.

Martin (J)

PS next game is on Sunday 15th May and is set in the 1879 Zulu War.  Our scenarios begins in the wake of the British disaster at Isandhlwana.  The British commander has heard that the hated Sir Garnett Wolseley already on the way to supersede him, and is under pressure to deliver a quick victory.
Doodle here http://doodle.com/poll/zvtprtcguh42mgf4

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Post  Mr. Digby Tue May 24, 2016 3:36 pm

For those interested (and in the UK) there is a documentary today - Tuesday 24th May - on BBC 2 at 9:00pm presented by Dan Snow that is being broadcast to mark the 100th anniversary of the battle. Revisionist history is now seeing Jutland not as a bloody stalemate or a humiliating defeat for Britannia but as the battle that won the Great War. After Jutland the German fleet never seriously contested the North Sea again with major units and with the failure of the U-Boat campaign Germany was starved of foodstuffs and military products like rubber, nitrates, etc. Unrest at home and in the armed services meant that Germany collapsed from within, all issues directly linked to the Royal Navy's blockade of her ports.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b07dps1x

http://www.bbc.co.uk/mediacentre/latestnews/2016/wwi-centenary-battles-jutland-somme
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Post  Martin Tue May 24, 2016 3:45 pm

Thanks Diggers.

I think that's a strong argument for why the Allies won. The blockade had an increasing effect the longer the war went on, and finally a hugely corrosive one on German nutrition, health and morale. Jutland meant it would remain in place.

Martin (J)

PS unfortunately it conflicts with another on the last few weeks in Vietnam.

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Post  Mr. Digby Tue May 24, 2016 4:08 pm

You can always catch up with the BBC one on iPlayer; that's what I do.
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Post  Martin Tue May 24, 2016 5:18 pm

Good point. Yes. We use an Amazon firestick on the TV, so we can watch iPlayer via that.

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Post  Mr. Digby Tue May 24, 2016 6:53 pm

Which side is the Vietnam documentary on?
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Post  Martin Tue May 24, 2016 8:37 pm

BBC4 at 9 pm.

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