Friday, 20 February 2009

Preparing for Cruiser 2009 - Jane's Naval War Game

Fred Jane is - amongst other things - famous for designing his naval war game.

Some years ago, after buying a reprint of the 1905/06 edition of Jane's Fighting Ship that contained the complete text of his Naval War Game rules, I decided to recreate - as best I could - a set of models and playing equipment for the game. I then demonstrated the game at a COW (Conference of Wargamers) where it was well received.

As a result of that demonstration Bill Leeson, who had previously published various editions of the Kriegsspiel rules, published a copy of the 1912 version of the rules. Until recently this - and the version published in Donald Featherstone's NAVAL WAR GAMES - were the only copies of the Jane's Naval War Game rules in circulation, and they were not easy to find. The latter has now been re-published by John Curry, who has also re-published the 1905/06 rules as part of a larger volume that contains details of the Royal Navy's 1921 Naval War Game rules.

I have agreed to run a pre-dinner session of the 1905/06 Jane's Naval War Game at Cruiser 2009, and have spent some time today making sure that all the equipment I need is ready.

This picture shows a 'Sea Square' (these are the playing surface; up to eight are used during a game), a 'Target' (what you hit with a 'Striker' - the holes caused by the 'Striker' show when the shot and shell have landed), a 'Striker', several model ships, and a copy of my fast-play version of Jane's rules.
I have enough 'Targets' ...

... but I am missing some 'Scorers' ...

... so it is off to the printers in the morning to get some more photocopied.

I will be using my fast-play version of Jane's rules. These retain the flavour of the original rules - most importantly including the original firing system - but have much easier to understand (and use) manoeuvring rules.

I will be using my own home-made models of the Turkish and Greek Fleets of 1913/14.


  1. I'm hoping you'll show us your home-made pre-dreadnoughts. I've had in interest in doing something like that myself.

  2. If I have time tomorrow I will try to photograph them and add the images to my blog.


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