Friday, 30 December 2011

Fletcher Pratt Naval Wargame - part 1

The recently published book on the F-P game which includes full rules and instructions on how to play the game.  Link
The Sheffield Wargames Society post-Christmas games day this year provided the setting for a run through of the Fletcher Pratt Naval Wargame.  I had mentioned this to everyone at the club a couple of weeks previously and Mark Hides had been kind enough to mention it on the SWS website
In the event I had 12 players and an umpire team of three - myself, Martin R and Wg Cdr Luddite.
I opened proceedings with a brief history of the Fletcher-Pratt game and mentioned that like many others, I had first encountered it in Don Featherstone's Naval War Games book - in my case sometime in the mid 1970s.
The cherished but battered copy I have owned since 1985.  An expanded reprint is now available.
I had prepared a scenario and managed to finish off the additional ship models required. The WW2 scenario I dreamt up was capable of being downsized depending on the number of players and basically saw Scharnhorst and a destroyer (Z31) setting off from a fjord in northern Norway for the open sea. The Royal Navy had been alerted to this be air recce and had dispatched a task force to prevent this.
An example ship card produced with the aid of  The History of Wargaming website
The RN task force was made up as follows:
Battlecruiser:  Glory-less (flagship) - this was my Hood-based recreation of the Glorious as originally built.
Heavy Cruisers:  Kent, Suffolk
Light Cruisers: Ajax, Leander
Destroyers: Afridi, Ashanti, Bedouin, Cossack, Eskimo

Unknown to the British, the Kriegsmarine had sent Gneisenau and destroyer Z32 north to replace Scharnhorst in the fjord.

What could possibly go wrong?

Next time - battle is joined - including photos of toy ships, golf tees and large feet!


Geordie an Exiled FoG said...

Look forward to the battle report!

Paul said...

Bit of a tease never hurt anyone. Plenty of pics next post please.

Tim Gow said...

The report, like the game, will be a bit of a confused mess...

Tim Gow said...

Calm yourself - pics coming soon. Ish.

Dick Bryant said...

We played a variant of Fletcher Pratt that required one to move his ships, lay his fire arrow(s), estimate the ranges and pick a shell pattern all within 30 Seconds. It caused a lot of the confusion and mistakes that one would expect from a real battle. We sometimes played with as many as 10-12 players on a dance hall floor. Dick Bryant

David Crook said...

Hi Tim,

Can't wait to see how this panned out! FP is good fun when played 'mob-handed' and I have taken part in some stonking games over the years.

Did you use any map moves before hand - if so I would love to see these (beg, beg, grovel, grovel...!)

All the best and a happy new year,


Tim Gow said...

Dick Bryant
I had 12 players and a playing area about 30 feet long. I allowed 30 seconds to move and a further 60 to place firing arrows.

Tim Gow said...

David Crook
No map moves I'm afraid, as I was keeping it simple for a fairly large group, few of whom had previously played a FP game.