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  1. *Gasp* Clickbait!! I know I know, yet another Iowa vs. Yamato thread? But this time, it's not your typical 1v1 **** measuring contest. I have some interesting historical context that can hopefully spur some useful discussion, and perhaps even replicate it in training room since in this particular scenario I believe the game has all the requisite ships. What I'm talking about is "Bull's Run" during the Battle of Leyte Gulf on October 25-26, 1944, where upon realizing that he had left the San Bernadino Strait unguarded, Admiral Halsey belatedly dispatched Task Force 34, and more specifically formed Task Group 34.5 lead by Rear Admiral Badger centered around the Iowa and New Jersey back to the San Bernadino Strait in a belated attempt to protect the American beachhead and relieve Taffy 3, which had slugged it out with Admiral Kurita's Center Force. Note that TG 34.5 was only dispatched on 1622 on October 25, 1944, well after the surface action between Taffy 3 and Center Force had concluded. Had Admiral Kurita loitered around the San Bernadino Strait for a few more hours before withdrawing, it's possible or even likely that what remains of the Center Force would have clashed with TG 34.5 in the morning hours of October 26, 1944. Navweaps has the order of battle which lists the ship composition of each force. TG 34.5 Battleships: 2 Iowa-class (Iowa, New Jersey) Cruisers: 3 Cleveland-class (Biloxi, Vincennes, Miami) Destroyers: 8 Fletcher-class (Owen, Miller, The Sullivans, Tingey, Hickox, Hunt, Marshall, Lewis Hancock) Total: 2 battleships, 3 cruisers, 8 destroyers Center Force (as of Oct. 26, 1944) Battleships: 1 Yamato-class (Yamato), 1 Nagato-class (Nagato), 2 Kongo-class (Kongo, Haruna) Cruisers: 1 Myoko-class (Haguro), 1 Mogami-class (Kumano), 1 Tone-class (Tone), 2 Agano-class (Yahagi, Noshiro) Destroyers: 1 Shimakaze-class (Shimakaze), 6 Yugumo-class (Hayashimo, Akishimo, Kishinami, Okinami, Hamanami, Fujinami), 4 Kagero-class (Nowaki, Urakaze, Isokaze, Yukikaze) Total: 4 battleships, 5 cruisers, 11 destroyers Note that by the morning of Oct. 26, Center Force had already lost Suzuya, Chokai, and Chikuma, hence their absence from the list above, while Kumano was heavily damaged with a blown-off bow, so realistically you could count Kumano out of the battle. Yahagiand Noshiro were Agano-class light cruisers that mount 3x2 152 mm guns with a rather slow rate of fire of 6 RPM, making their value as surface combatants questionable. In fact, they fill the roles of destroyer flotilla leader. Finally, it's unclear how many Japanese destroyers had already expended their torpedoes during the Battle off Samar, but at least some of them did. With these composition of forces in mind, how do you think the battle would have turned out? Personally, despite the numerical disadvantage, I consider the American force as the likely victor. But before you start leveling accusations of American bias at me, let me explain my reasoning. Center Force had expended a considerable amount of ammunition, both shells and torpedoes, against Taffy 3 during the Battle of Samar the day before. Furthermore, the Japanese crew would no doubt have been very fatigued from a day of relentless combat, whereas the American crew of TG 34.5 would be comparatively well-rested and probably have a full stock of ammunition. Furthermore, the American force would have approached the San Bernadino Strait from the east, thus having the sun to their advantage. Now, the fire control and automatic gunlaying of the American ships have been often-cited advantages (both Iowa and New Jersey were equipped with the Mark 8 FCR), and I think when all these operational factors are taken into account, the American force would more likely emerge as the victors. However, I won't deny some of the advantages that the Japanese would have in this battle; numerical superiority isn't something that can be easily written off especially in capital ships, and I believe there was still an ample supply of torpedoes. Speaking of which, aside from Tone and the Aganos, I believe you can replicate this scenario in a training room, though the number of destroyers would likely have to be cut down (and can you imagine 10 Yugumo/Kagero all running torpedo reload mod?) If someone want to try and set a scenario like this up it can be a fun little exercise, especially when Cleveland finally moves to T8. Some pictures of the two forces on Oct. 25-26, 1944. The New Jersey (BB-62) prepares to turn to port, following the Iowa (BB-61) on 26 October 1944 Yamato and a heavy cruiser, possibly Tone or Chikuma, in action in the battle off Samar Content Moderated by HeadlockMvnky
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