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Thursday, March 18, 2004

Another test of the Battle of the Kentish Knock scenario

I have had a series of disastrous runs of the Battle of the Kentish Knock, as the Dutch. Tonight, I did another run of the simulator with that scenario. This time, the Dutch tactics were simple. At the beginning of the battle, the fleet is sailing North, with the three fireships at the rear, and the jacht Dordrecht sailing to the port of the rear.

What I did is to stear the Dordrecht to turn to port, to clear the line, and then sailed around to the what would be the disengaged side. The fireships were formed into their own group and sailed North, on the disengaged side. They eventually attacked the group of ships that included the Sovereign (90 guns) and the Resolution (88 guns). One actually set the Resolution ablaze, although they may have eventually extinguished the fire.

I grouped the main fleet into a single group, set the formation as a single line, and then set a destination point to the South-Southeast, so that the line would turn 180 degrees and sail away.

The Southern half of the English fleet actually closed with the rear of the line (used to be the head of the line). The Vogelstruis was dismasted, quite quickly, but kept fighting, sinking quite a few English ships and damaging many more. The other ship disabled was the Henrietta Maria. She was disabled and then had to surrender very quickly, since she was a much less substantial ship. Both ships belonged to the VOC.

By the time the main Dutch fleet had sailed out of sight, the English had lost 9 warships while the Dutch had lost two warships and three fireships. By the standards of the First Anglo-Dutch War, this would have been considered a victory. By Privateers Bounty standards, it is strange, as the usual approach is to annihilate an opponent, no matter what the cost.

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