Post by vonfriedman on Apr 10, 2019 9:25:19 GMT -5
This scenario represents a hypothetical clash between the fleets of the Triple Alliance (Germany, Austria-Hungary, Italy) and of the Entente between France and Great Britain, which takes place in the Mediterranean in 1914, according to pre-war plans.
It is largely based on the scenario "Goeben vs the French Fleet" whose author (I don't remember his name) I thank warmly. Another sincere thanks goes to bcoopactual, who designed a splendid flag for the Triple Alliance.
As for the forces facing each other, for the French and the British I based myself on the book Naval Operations by J. Corbett. The ships of the Triple Alliance are all those listed in the naval agreement signed in 1913.
I thank in advance all those who want to try playing this scenario and to report any bug.
Oldpop plan In our counterfactual history of WW1, as already mentioned (and as in the reality), in the early days of the naval war the problem of the North African French troops arises. For the Entente, it is about transporting tens of thousands of those soldiers with all their equipment as soon as possible to France mainland. For the Triple Alliance it is instead to prevent this and, if possible, to destroy the enemy. The French, after various hesitations, decide to organize some convoys and to have them escorted by their entire Mediterranean fleet, composed of most of the French navy. The British, after concentrating their forces in the North Sea in order to fight the German navy, can provide limited support. However, some Invincible-class battlecruisers and a few other ships are available. The Triple Alliance avoids to attack the ports of embarkation and the convoy assembly zones, and instead deploys the best and most recent ships of Italy and Austria Hungary, together with the German battlecruiser Goeben, in the bases of northern Italy. At the same time, by means of spies, submarines and false fishing boats, one eye is kept open on the ports of embarkation. As soon as the French convoys sail, the Triple Alliance fleet will in turn sail with the aim of intercepting and destroying the convoys, even at the cost of engaging in a decisive battle. At the high command of the French fleet there are fierce discussions about the most convenient route for the troopships convoy. Eventually an elderly Admiral steps forward and imposes silence on everyone. In the Navy he is universally known both for the dozens of operational plans he has masterminded and for his unofficial nickname of oldpop. After giving a dirty look to some too garrulous young officers, he exposes his "Spain Coastline Operational Plan". In essence he explains that the direct and shortest route is also the most risky. The enemy can deploy his submarines along that route and can calculate exactly the most appropriate point to intercept the convoy with his surface forces. Above all, sailing in time, the enemy can attack the convoy coming from both east and west. According to oldpop it is better to take a route west of the Balearics Islands. In this way the Triple Alliance has to sail farther from its bases and can possibly intercept the convoy coming from east only. Moreover, the Entente may get some support and information from Spain, a nation that has mostly unfavorable feelings about Triple Alliance. The opinion of the elderly Admiral prevails. The Entente accordingly adopts his "Spanish Coast Operational Plan". The convoy sails, closely escorted by the French pre-dreadnoughts and older battleships, while another naval force comprising the French dreadnoughts and the British battlecruisers provides cover from the eastern side. The arrival of the convoy in the vicinity of Marseille is expected at night. The Triple Alliance fleet, promptly warned, set sail from La Spezia and La Maddalena shortly after the convoy's departure, concentrating in the Gulf of Genoa and then heading towards WSW. If you want to confront yourself with this situation, you can download the Triple Alliance op scenario enclosed here.