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Author Topic: Lissa 1866  (Read 996 times)

Offline Emporium

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Lissa 1866
« on: August 24, 2021, 11:59:28 AM »
Hi, at my wargame club (Gruppo Ludico Aglianese, italy) we are planning a scenario based on the infamous naval battle of Lissa in the prussian/austrian/italian war of 1866, known in Italy as the third italian war of indepedence. The battle was a disaster for the italian navy, it lost two ironclands to noone, and confirmed the bad military reputation of the new italian kingdom after the defeat of the army at Custoza a month before.
The battle is very interesting since it's the only batte between two major fleets of the ironclads period, the fleets are quite balanced and a refight could make a funny scenario.
The scenario came to life a year ago when spithead miniatures announced a new batch of their lissa battle's ships in 1/1200 scale. We purchased a full set, including advisos and minor ships that didn't played any role in the battle. We try to study the battle as best as we could: italian sources were an obvious choice but we tried to get also some informations from the austrian side.
At the moment we are building/painting/rigging the ships, we are also testing some ruleset to use for the scenario: it's not a simple task, since we need a ruleset simple enough to play the scenario in 3 hours (we have to handle about 40 ships) but that has the flavour of the period. Any tips?

Online Easy E

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Re: Lissa 1866
« Reply #1 on: August 24, 2021, 04:55:40 PM »
Nice choice of topic. 

I find this battle so fascinating as it caused Naval planners and designers so much confusion.  Due to the effectiveness at ramming, the Naval Ram became a prominent feature of naval warfare for a few decades. 

Prominent enough for HG Wells to have a Steam Ram, the (in)famous and fictional, HMS Thunderchild in War of the Worlds
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Offline shandy

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Re: Lissa 1866
« Reply #2 on: August 24, 2021, 05:16:25 PM »
Great project and nice looking ships! I've been toying with doing this battle as a project time and again.

David Manley has rules specifically for Lissa: https://www.wargamevault.com/product/185447/Broadside-and-Ram


David Manley's rules always aimed at giving a fast and interesting game without getting bogged down in too many details. They could be what you are looking for - although I have to admit I never played those.

Offline Westfalia Chris

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Re: Lissa 1866
« Reply #3 on: August 24, 2021, 05:51:44 PM »
Wonderful! Lissa is one of my favourite naval battles, given that it is essentially the only "proper" naval battle in the early ironclad era. I'm looking forward to seeing more of this!

Offline Emporium

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Re: Lissa 1866
« Reply #4 on: August 24, 2021, 07:01:12 PM »
Great project and nice looking ships! I've been toying with doing this battle as a project time and again.

David Manley has rules specifically for Lissa: https://www.wargamevault.com/product/185447/Broadside-and-Ram


David Manley's rules always aimed at giving a fast and interesting game without getting bogged down in too many details. They could be what you are looking for - although I have to admit I never played those.
Thanx for the tip, I just purchased the ruleset ,will give it a try.
 @Easy E Ramming is a main feature in early ironclad period but it shouldn't be too overpowered:actually at Lissa only one ramming was effective (a lot indeed) but was possible just because the target ship was almost immobilized. Many other rammings were attempted but with no results. It was very difficult (impossible?) to ram efficiently a moving target since you had to obtain an almost perpendicular angle of impact.
@Westfalia Chris I hope to give you some updates soon since we would like to bring the scenario at Empoli Games con that is planned at the end of October (cross fingers)

Offline Emporium

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Re: Lissa 1866
« Reply #5 on: October 02, 2021, 10:22:15 AM »
Hi all,
a brief update about the project. The italian ships are almost ready, just basing is missing, the austrians are primed and rigged but just a few are painted. The real challenge was making the ratlines, usig some very thin fabric used to wrap candies....a nightmare!  Our aim is  to be ready for Empoli Games con that is to be held on 23/23 October. Yesterday we had a first test of the scenario, using some blank bases for the itaians: actually we have decided to use as bases some plastic usd "fisches", so the visual result more than Lissa looked like austrian navy vs the federal reserve :-).
As Shandy suggested we used Broadside and ram ruleset with some minor changes in ramming ad adding a simple rule on smoke, a major feature of the battle. The ruleset is ok, veeeeery simple as had to be to manage all thoose ships. We have planned a new test in two weeks, stay tuned!

Offline shandy

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Re: Lissa 1866
« Reply #6 on: October 06, 2021, 03:59:10 PM »
Look great, I'd love to participate, unfortuntately the event is a bit far from my home  lol

Offline jambo1

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Re: Lissa 1866
« Reply #7 on: October 06, 2021, 04:27:28 PM »
Great post, really interesting. Looking forward to seeing more, the ships that are done look superb. :)

Online Easy E

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Re: Lissa 1866
« Reply #8 on: October 06, 2021, 08:40:28 PM »
A great start!

Offline Emporium

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Re: Lissa 1866
« Reply #9 on: October 19, 2021, 02:43:08 PM »
Hi all,
last friday we had another test before Empoli Games con that will be held on next weekend. As you can see the usd fiches has been replaced by proper italian ships. The austrian ships have all base colours and need "just" some shading, highlights, flags and, of course, bases...... i'm still quite sure that they will be ready for the con.

Having played the scenario two times i can say that it's still pretty hard for the italians despite our efforts to balance it: close formation austrian ships can support each other very easily and while an ironclad has not to be worried by the fire from a single ship, 4/5/6 ships firing at once on a single target can be very destructive. Also italian deficit in command points has proved decisive, since it affected not only the ability to manouvre the ships but also to repair them.

We knew that the scenario was uphill for italians so we allowed Albini's powerfull division to step in on a d10 roll: in one test it come into play on first turn, in the other on turn 6. Both times it didn't proved a great aid for the italian side since Albini's command malus avoided him to manouvre in a suitable position to aid the ironclads.  In the last test 2 italian ironclads were sunk (Principe di Carignano and Palestro) and other 2 were crippled while the austrians lost just one wooden ship (Adria).

Next friday we will have a last test before the convention and we will test some minor changes in the ruleset (Ie Albini will come into play on a d6). Next update will be with the pics of our table at the con, wish me/us good luck and....... cross fingers!

PS: the austrian commander had Willhelm Von Tegetthoff's mood ;-)

Offline vtsaogames

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Re: Lissa 1866
« Reply #10 on: October 19, 2021, 09:10:32 PM »
PS: the austrian commander had Willhelm Von Tegetthoff's mood ;-)

Indeed he did!
And the glorious general led the advance
With a glorious swish of his sword and his lance
And a glorious clank of his tin-plated pants. - Dr. Seuss


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Offline Emporium

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Re: Lissa 1866
« Reply #11 on: October 27, 2021, 09:53:00 AM »
Hi all,
last weekend we played the Lissa's battle scenario at Empoli Games con. It was the first convention we attended as a club after a two years stop due to Covid19 restrictions. We played the battle four times as a partecipation game (3 austrian victories, one italian), the table has been very appreciated by the attendants and the organizers. We won the "Bronze Trajan" prize, having been judged as the third best table of the convention. It was a lot of fun, not only playing the table but also to attend the con  wich means playing other club's tables, meeting old friends, making new ones and purchasing some toy soldiers, of course!
 

Offline ChrisBBB

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Re: Lissa 1866
« Reply #12 on: October 27, 2021, 10:58:22 AM »
Great job all round - bravo!

 

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