Monday, December 9, 2013

The Hunters - The hunter becomes the hunted (Type IXA, Part 3)

I hadn't planned on reporting again so soon, but after moving into the next British Isle Patrol Box, I rolled snake-eyes - a Capital Ship!

Capital Ships are always under escort, but first we must roll to see which one. A '7' is rolled - the 31,100t BB Barham! Sink her and a Knight's Cross will be awarded upon return.

Unfortunately, we have to approach her during the day and there is no re-roll attempt on a Capital Ship. Either take it or leave it. Our Kmdt. Lehmann feeling confident after his early success, dives and floods all four torpedo tubes.


And then this... a terrible stretch of die rolls:

* G7a Steam Torpedo, G7a Steam Torpedo, G7a Steam Torpedo, G7a Steam Torpedo moves Target 1 -> Target 1 *

*** 2d6 = [6] [5]*** <Michael Collarin>
*** 2d6 = [2] [4]*** <Michael Collarin>
*** 2d6 = [4] [1]*** <Michael Collarin>
*** 2d6 = [4] [4]*** <Michael Collarin>
*** 1d6 = [1] *** <Michael Collarin>
*** 1d6 = [2] *** <Michael Collarin>

The first line of the Vassal log shows the four torpedoes being assigned a target. The next four lines are the To Hit rolls - two hits (needing '7's or less when firing G7a steam torpedoes submerged at medium range). The next two lines are the dud check rolls for the two hits... both duds! No damage inflicted on the battleship.

And then the hunter became the hunted!

A brief aside - knowing I would be playing The Hunters soon, I wanted to watch a U-boat movie. I browsed Netflix and the only worthwhile option was The Hunt for Red October. A movie I enjoy, no doubt, but it was not what I was looking for. I wanted something WWII related. Really, anything WWII related...
U-571, anything! But no such luck. I looked through another XBox app, Crackle, but no joy there either. I then tried Amazon Prime movies. And bam! Das Boot. Oh, Das Boot. A proper movie to set the mood! I tell you about this, not only because it's a great submarine movie, but if you recall the depth charge scenes, you will understand the seemingly relentless pounding you will take once the escorts have honed in on you. If you don't recall or haven't seen it or just want to recapture that feeling - watch this (same as below). It's a trailer, but it actually does a better job portraying that feeling than any of the clips I could find on YouTube.


The following is the Vassal log, starting with the escort detection rolls:

*** 2d6 = [6] [1]*** <Michael Collarin>
*** 2d6 = [4] [4]*** <Michael Collarin>
* Incoming Hits moves offboard -> 2 Hits on U-Boat *
*** 2d6 = [3] [2]*** <Michael Collarin>
*** 2d6 = [5] [1]*** <Michael Collarin>
*** 1d6 = [6] *** <Michael Collarin>
* Flooding moves Fooding -> Fooding *
* Hull Damage moves Hull Damage -> Hull Damage *
*** 2d6 = [6] [1]*** <Michael Collarin>
*** 2d6 = [1] [4]*** <Michael Collarin>
* Incoming Hits moves 2 Hits on U-Boat -> 1 Hit on U-Boat *
*** 2d6 = [2] [6]*** <Michael Collarin>
*  Damage created in Deck Gun and Flak
* Hull Damage moves Hull Damage -> Hull Damage *
*** 2d6 = [1] [5]*** <Michael Collarin>
*** 2d6 = [6] [2]*** <Michael Collarin>
*** 2d6 = [2] [1]*** <Michael Collarin>
* Incoming Hits moves 1 Hit on U-Boat -> offboard *
* Hull Damage moves Hull Damage -> Hull Damage *
*** 2d6 = [1] [4]*** <Michael Collarin>
*** 2d6 = [2] [1]*** <Michael Collarin>

The initial detection lead to two hits - one Minor Damage (no effect) and the other caused Flooding... followed by a die roll of '6' causing additional flooding.

The Hull Damage in the log was me attempting to Exceed Test Depth. This evasive maneuver causes one hull damage and requires a 2d6 die roll. However, since this was my first hull damage inflicted and it's impossible to roll a '1' on 2d6, I continued with the detection phase. A '7'. Normally, that would avoid detection (8 or less), however, there are several modifiers in play here - +1 for Capital Ship, +1 for being Previously Detected, and +1 for firing G7a Steam Torpedoes during the Day. Exceeding Test Depth provides a -1 modifier. The '7' becomes a '9' and we are detected once again.
One new hit is inflicted - the 3.7cm Flak is damaged. Hardly of any consequence at this stage. We're just hoping to evade the pigs on the surface.
We take another hull damage by Exceeding Test Depth, but this time roll to check as well now have a possible '2'. Nothing more serious due to the depth, but we are detected a third time! But with a roll of '3' and no modifiers on the hit table, the depth charges are ineffective.
We must evade soon as each time we Exceed Test Depth we take an additional hull damage and increase our chances of catastrophe. The roll of '5' causes no problems for the depth and the finally a '3'! We evade!
Unfortunately, since we did not damage the Capital Ship, we are unable to follow her and we can attempt to lick our wounds - rolling to see whether we can repair some of the damages or if they will be inoperable for the remainder of the patrol.

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