With the Pope visiting the Philippines, I have some spare time over these days to consider some of my hobby tasks for the year. Why can I do that? The Philippines declared public holidays for yesterday, today and Monday. Of course, I will be working for some of this time as our project moves towards some deliverables (not quite a sprint but more like a fast paced jog) but I also have some extra spare time. This will allow me to finish some stuff for Mal (set for this afternoon) as well as starting to look at the Jutland Project for this year.
Yep, a wargamer with a project. Actually, a wargamer with a number of projects and I will get around to writing up this year’s crop soon. However, I have started to thinking about the Battle of Jutland. It is the 100-year anniversary of that battle next year and as I have both the Grand Fleet and the High Seas Fleet sitting around in 1/3000 scale waiting for paint, I thught I would do them this year.
Of course, in addition to painting them, I will also be looking at playing the odd game with them. Some battleship vs battleship, of course, along with the struggle of the battle cruisers come to mind. I also enjoy small ship actions like a good swirling destroyer/TBD fracas.
My question at the moment relates to the destroyers as well. In the past, I would have (and did) base them all individually. However, with Jutland, there are a lot of them. I am therefore thinking about a number of basing options, namely:
- Base them individually – but there are a lot of them – in fact on the British side, 26 × Light Cruisers and 79 × Destroyers with the Germans deploying 11 × Light Cruisers and 61 × Torpedo Boats
- Base a single leader for each flotilla instead of all the vessels individually and scale up the armament on the base to represent the full flotilla’s firepower
- Base the whole flotilla (that is, all the vessels that make it up) on a single base, and scale up the armament for the full flotilla’s firepower – but this is a lot of vessels.
- Base by half flotilla
- Base by division (which is where I am leaning towards at the moment)
Now, I like the fourth and fifth options above. If basing the half flotilla or division I am not worrying so much about the distance between vessels and would base them line abreast, otherwise, if line astern, I guess it would be a very long thin base.
Now, the problem with a flotilla base is the sheer numbers. For example, let’s take the 4th Destroyer Flotilla. It consisted of:
HMS Tipperary as the flotilla leader
The flotilla was then divided into two half flotillas which were further subdivided into two Divisions of three to five vessels. The First Half-Flotilla consisted of two divisions:
The second half flotilla had as its flotilla leader HMS Broke with the two divisions consisting of:
I can see me getting out some models and spending some time with a piece of paper and pen trying out various flotilla configurations – perhaps line abreast, perhaps an oblique structure.