Wednesday Night Gaming 01/31/24 – Leyte Gulf – Nimitz

The final trip to the Leyte Gulf was held at Fantasy Books & Games in O’Fallon, IL as part of the Wednesday Night Series. It was the IJN vs the USN with the somewhat hapless Taffy 3 in the middle of lines of battleships and destroyers on this January evening.

The smaller table lead to the engagement heating up quickly as the valiant DDs & DEs escorting the CVEs heading straight at the IJN battle-line only to be met by withering fire from the lights and the heavies.

Below a look at the IJN DDs and behind them the heavies with the close escorts of Taffy 3 bravely heading straight for them to engage in a David & Goliath contest.

The CVEs of Taffy 3 pour on the coal trying to make their escape while launching everything they had to keep the IJN busy. Our simplified air rules for this scenario were a 1D6 roll for the air group commander each turn. That number would indicate the number of airstrikes the USN would have and they could be allocated as he wished. A 6 was required for a hit and that would generate a roll on the Critical Hit table for the defending vessel. Our Air Group Commander was unfortunately not blessed with great dice rolls and the airstrikes provided only a very limited benefit.

Here the USS Hoel takes on a line of screening destroyers of the Imperial Japanese Navy.

Here the commanders of the US relief force push forward as fast as possible. The six old battleships were moving as fast as they could to the fray.

Below we have a new version of crossing the T as this formation of Japanese DDs broke the line of the USN’s group of older BBs on the right. The hoped for torpedo attack was disrupted by the secondaries of the battle-line. Some fish hit the water but their numbers were greatly reduced by the accurate radar assisted gun directors of the late war US vessels.

End game view. The IJN did better in this outing than any previous run of this scenario sinking two of the Escort Carriers. The USS Johnston scored a torpedo hit against the Yamato forcing it out of the battle line. The Japanese DD’s took a brutal punishing in the middle defending their battleships but did their job against a hail of shells coming from the guns of all those Fletchers. It was concluded that the remaining CVEs would likely escape and the IJN would likely extract themselves from a situation becoming unfavorable. Certainly more destroyers from both sides would head to Davy Jones locker as this process proceeded.

Overall a good night of gaming and a big thanks to all the players who joined in for our second trip to O’Fallon to run Nimitz. We also extend a Thank You to our generous host Fantasy Books & Games and their superb crew.

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