A US Frigate attempts to engage a Confederate commerce raider on the high seas. Sea or indeed any waterway colour is always a minefield in my experience so I have opted for safety first and have gone with the above - even for the ‘coffee coloured’ Mississippi! At least it is easy to tell that it is a naval game….or even an aerial one!
I have finished my board for use with my 3 x 3 Ironclad rules. It started life as an off cut from a sheet of 8mm thick plywood - I have another couple of spare pieces that have been earmarked for various projects - painted using a tin of Wilkinson’s ‘Totally Teal’ matt emulsion paint, some sticky white ‘dots’ and a coat of satin varnish to give it some sheen. It is not perfect but it does suit the models I have built and so is in keeping with the overall look of the thing. Whilst the colour is quite tropical looking it will suffice as I am firmly of the ‘blue sea or indeed any waterway’ school of naval wargames! Quite what the brown water types would think of this is anyone’s guess but I take solace that not for nothing was the River Danube known as the ‘Blue Danube’ - slightly out of theatre I know but you get the drift of what I am getting at!
I opted to use white dots rather than lines so that the grid effect was less intrusive. For some reason it actually makes the playing area seem larger than it is although I have already thought of making a similar board but using bigger squares (these are 6”). The nine central squares are enclosed by four areas that perform a similar function to the reserve and flank areas of the various land based versions of the rules. My plan is to use these for grand tactical manoeuvres to add a little uncertainly to the proceedings. Each of the surrounding four zones overlaps three squares so a ship or ships entering the central battle zone may be able to exercise some tactical acumen when doing so as the opponent will not know exactly where they are coming from. I have not even begun to think about the rules for using this but I will certainly be doing so. This painted design is subtly different from the previous unpainted version due to the change in the outer zones.
As an aside the board will also serve for use in 3 x 3 aerial games and I suspect you will not be surprised that I have a cunning plan in that direction….