Tuesday, 5 December 2017

Oh, wicked, bad, naughty Zoot! - Russo Japanese War

"She has been setting a light to our beacon, which, I've just  remembered, is grail-shaped.  It's not the first time we've had this problem.."

Or how it is easy to become distracted from your planned path

You may recall I mentioned attending Battleground 2017. What I didn't mention is that my friend Mark who runs the excellent blog Geordies Big Battles was part of a demo team on the day, with a game representing the Battle of the Denmark Straights, where HMS Hood was sunk by the Bismark. (as an aside, why do we say HMS Hood but never KMS Bismark?"

Anyway in the run up to the show Mark asked me to pop over to run through the scenario to see if there were any issues i.e. play with his toys while the associated wives were not around. This was of course irresistible.

So we played the game as is traditional in these cases on the floor in his lounge, and I enjoyed it - good old General Quarters before the bloat set in, with 1:3000 Navwar \ Davco ships. As it was going to be a demo we also discussed some options "prettifying" things which reminded me I had some "shell Splash" markers I had made 20-25 years ago when I was playing a Russo Japanese War campaign (more later).

A diligent search failed to locate them, but did manage to locate the Navwar 1:3000 fleets I had painted back then for the campaign. At this point I was mugged in memory lane. The campaign in question was a "quick play" one by David Manley which Dave kindly sent me a copy of after he read something I wrote in a gaming journal about the RJW. This campaign has special significance to me because it was one of the only ones we managed to run to the conclusion - or near enough anyway. On a nostalgia trip I searched Dave's site and discovered he had produced an updated version that was available from Wargames Vault and was available for less than a tenner, so I thought "why not?"

So that's why 2018 will see these guys making a reappearance, and why I'm spending some more £££ with Navwar just to be sure I have everything needed.

I would normally provide a link to the Navwar website but there is little point - for whatever reason he has decided to be an "oak of his generation" and only accepts orders through the post. Still if I want nine Divisions of Torpedo Boats I will just have to write him a letter.



  1. Interesting. I wouldn't mind having a go at that one day. As an aside, Nazi Germany never used prefixes in naming their ships, but if they had, it would have most likely been SKM - Schiff der Kriegsmarine, as KMS - Kriegsmarine Schiff doesn't make sense in German.

    1. Interesting Alex - thanks for that. I'm sure I have read KMS in the past but you are right, it's probably one of those "lost in translations \ assumptions" that happens. I know the Imperial German Navy used SMS.

  2. Here's looking forward to the start of the Russo Japanese war ;)
    It was meant to be!