The following fleet lists detailing ship, aircraft and weapon data are now available as free Pdf downloads.
- Soviet Navy and Navy of the Russian Federation
- Royal Navy of the United Kingdom
- United States Navy
- Chinese Peoples Liberation Army Navy
- French Navy
- Argentine Navy
- Royal Australian Navy
- German Navy
- Italian Navy
- Japanese Maritime Self Defence Force
- Spanish Navy
- Royal Thai Navy
- Royal Canadian Navy
During the 1960s Soviet ship designers such as Rostislav Alexeyev began work on a number of military ground-effect vehicles (GEV). These vehicles resembling a cross between a ship and a jet aeroplane were designed to attain sustained high-speed flight over a level surface (usually over the sea) by making use of ground effect, the aerodynamic interaction between the wings of the craft and the surface.
When first spotted by US aerial spy photography these strange vehicles caused widespread confusion and fear throughout the intelligence services. One Ekranoplan with the markings “KM” visible on the aerial photographs was even nicknamed the “Kaspian Monster”
An artists impression of the “Caspian Sea Monster”
These can be used in the game of Naval Command to create hypothetical scenarios in which NATO forces encounter these strange and highly classified vehicles.
In the game, for the purposes of combat these are treated as maritime patrol aircraft and can be targeted with anti-aircraft weapons. For detection however they are classed as surface ships although a -1 modifier is applied to all detection rolls, this is to represent the confusion that this type of vessel would cause to RADAR operators as it would show on their screens as a surface target but will be moving at too fast a speed.
The dilapidated remains of a Bartini Beriev VVA-14 Ekranoplan
The following are game characteristics for a selection of Soviet Ekranoplans. Note that some of the weapon loads are hypothetical as most of these vehicles ever entered active service.
MD-160, the sole completed Lun-class ekranoplan
Tonight we played a game of Battleship command, recreating the battle of the North Cape, the final battle of the Scharnhorst.
The fleets were as follows:
Scharnhorst set a southerly course while the British Cruises gave chase. Meanwhile the German destroyers broke off to the east, coming round to a northerly course with the intention of attacking the cruisers. To the south the Duke of York and Jamaica set an intercept course towards Scharnhorst.
After a few turns of manoeuvre and a few ranging shots, two of the cruisers broke off their chase to engage the German destroyers, leaving Norfolk to pursue the Scharnhorst. The cruisers engaged in a brief but violent action that resulted in both destroyers being sunk.
Around the same time Duke of York came into sight of the Scharnhorst and both ships opened fire, both scoring numerous hits.
Norfolk then arrived and opened fire on the German ship, now taking fire from two sides. Norfolk and Jamaica closed their range and both launched torpedoes.
Two torpedoes hit, breaching Scharnhorst hull causing flooding. Duke of York then moved into close range and fired a devastating salvo, scoring 7 penetrating hits, sending Scharnhorst to the bottom.
Overall another fun game, even if Scharnhorst was doomed from the start. The British benefitted from passing more command rolls, allowing them to bring their ships to the optimum positions. Meanwhile Scharnhorst failed a number of critical command checks, so was unable to carry out alterations of course big enough to avoid the enemy gunfire. This demonstrated how important command ratings for the ships are in Battleship Command. If checks are failed and ships begin to lose situational awareness things can quickly go wrong with devastating consequences.
My new Second World War naval wargame rules are now available from WargameVault!
The rules are intended to be fast to play allowing an action to be fought to a conclusion within a few hours of play.
Battleship Command also includes a new command and control system where the quality of the officers under your command can have a major impact on the game.
The rulebook includes all the rules needed to play, generic and historical scenarios as well as ship and aircraft data for the British Royal Navy, the Kreigsmarine, French Navy, Regia Marina, US Navy and the Imperial Japanese Navy.
Battleship Command on the WargameVault
Naval Command player Dylan Jones has very kindly produced this fleet list for the modern Japanese Maritime Self Defence Force.