Sunday, January 1, 2023

Silent Victory USS Nautilus War Patrol #1 AAR December 1941


Hello and welcome to the next submarine launch since Pearl Harbor, the USS Nautilus (SS-168). The Nautilus is the second submarine-launched of the Narwhal class (in my game) and is commanded by Lieutenant Commander William H. Brockman Jr.

Lt Commander William H. Brockman Jr.

The Nautilus is all ready for war and is leaving its home at Pearl Harbor Hawaii in December 1941. Brockman Jr has been assigned the Marshall Island patrol with the goal of sinking as much Japanese Tonnage as they can.

USS Nautilus
The Nautilus makes the transition to the open ocean without incident and they begin their first War Patrol. Almost immediately they run into a Japanese Capital Ship.

Brockman Jr. decides that his crew is too green to tackle a capital ship in their first engagement so the Nautilus slips away into the night without being detected.

The Nautilus continues on with its patrol and after two weeks they run into two Japanese ships with an escort. This is more like it and Brockman Jr. orders the Nautilus to battle stations. Under the cover of night, the Nautilus sneaks up to medium range and aims four torpedoes at the larger ship and two torpedoes at the smaller ship. Once firing solutions are calculated the Nautilus fires its torpedoes and sneaks away before the fireworks start.

Three of the four torpedoes hit the larger ship and both torpedoes fired at the smaller ship also hit. Unfortunately, the dud fairy sprinkles some dud dust on the torpedoes and one fired at the larger ship doesn't explode and both fired at the second ship are also duds doing no damage. The first ship suffers enough damage and it sinks for the Nautilus' first victory.

The Japanese escort doesn't like the sinking and comes looking for the Nautilus. Luckily the American crew is able to get away from the escort but in doing so they lose track of the second Japanese ship they attacked and are unable to continue the attack.

After their first victory, the Nautilus continues on with their patrol around the Marshall Islands. The Nautilus finishes its first patrol without running into any more Japanese ships and sets a course for home. The transition to Pearl Harbor goes without incident and the Nautilus pulls into their berth after their first victory of the war.

The Nautilus' 1st War Patrol ends in success. They came home with 14 torpedoes which makes everyone angry but you can't sink what you can't find. The Nautilus sunk one ship for a total of 4,500 tons.

Akashisan Maru          4,500 ton freighter

The USS Nautilus earns its first Battle Star.

Come back next week for the Nautilus' 2nd War Patrol.

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