16 January 2017

Tragedy at Sea - Victory at Sea Gone Wrong

Saturday, I got a chance to play Victory at Sea: Age of Dreadnoughts with David. He'd never played and it had been ages since I played last. Fortunately, it's a simple enough system that the lack of experience didn't affect the game much.

I put the scenario together - a Blockade out of the MRB. The two WWI fleets I own are Black Sea rivals Turkey and Russia. David chose the Russians and would be the blockading force. My small Turkish flotilla would try to run past him.

My group - two cruisers and four destroyers.

The scenario features a semi-random deployment for the defender. I thought I may be able to run up the right edge and avoid much of the Russian fleet.

Some terrific early marksmanship by the Russian destroyers sends two of my destroyers, old French Durandal-class things, to a watery grave. Bah!

Full steam ahead was the order of the day. One of my destroyers lays smoke, screening the two cruisers.

Of course, one of the two destroyers in the lead takes a hit and was crippled. Those Russian destroyers were HOT!

Impending doom. The rest of the Russian forces waste no time cutting me off.

The Pantelimon easily sinks a destroyer. Grr. I was hoping to hit it with a torpedo or two.

My Midilli-class cruiser and a destroyer trade torpedo hits and sink each other. Actually, the entire destroyer flotilla unloaded an absolute SCHOOL of torps and got a couple hits. I only had two and got lucky.

A few minutes later, the Pantelimon levels its guns at the Medjidieh, my other cruiser, and sinks it in no time. My cruiser had manged to sink another Russian destroyer (to the right of the frame) just prior.

The Tri Svyatitelia crushes the last of my destroyers. All gone.

As one-sided as it was, it was still enjoyable. Honestly, I don't mind being on the short end in a scenario like this. it makes every kill sweeter. Challenges of this magnitude are few and far between in tabletop gaming, which tend to be "balanced" affairs. As it turns out, I screwed up setting up the scenario and those battleships the Russians had were over-powered. It hardly mattered, the four destroyers on the right side game me enough trouble! It's poor form to blame the dice, but my dice were wretched.

I think David enjoyed the game and I'm looking forward to another game of Victory at Sea. Maybe next time I'll sink more than two row boats! Oh, and those Russian torpedo destroyers are absolute beasts having 9, 10, 12 torps each! Who cares if they're single-shot; that wall of doom is going to just crush whatever is unfortunate enough to get near it.

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