Pacific War, Wake Island

USMC-C-Wake-4Wake Island 1941. The Pacific War scenario starts out with 3 strikes on Wake. I guess there is no response or counter… or does CAP get to react. [EDIT – I ran 3 attacks on the ground units and only managed a T or Troop Quality Check, which the Marines passed easily.]

No doubt the first of many stumbles learning this game. The US start with 1 Marine units 1 sub and 1 step of 1 Engine planes [fighters]

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The IJN have air support from the Marshall islands and are ready to land troops. No Zeros that were historically present, just a 2E force with 1 Step of IJN Marines being escorted.

I shall walk myself thru this simple but overwhelmingly wordy process, one step at a time. Enjoy the drama.

Select air to attack PW

Select air to attack  [PW]

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Place Target Marker.


Opening strikes x3

The Japs score a Troop Quality check, the Marines save easily.

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Each hex closer moves the marker along the ‘Ops track for time tracking’ and allows mutual search.

Now the IJN closes in with its Ships, searches fail to spot them, and sub attack misses the target.


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IJN, lands the Marines unopposed, Sub contact fails to register a hit and Anti Sub atks also fail.

In essence all units are in the Wake Is hex we a spread out as needed:






Anti Sub attack:

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Now the Air Movement Phase

Imp. Japanese Forces fly to Wake Is. Each hex affords a chance to detect and this activate Interceptors.


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The twin engine force of Nells and Bettys head to Wake to soften up the ground forces.2015-09-08 15.58.51


Searches fail until just before the aircraft are on the Marines! The wildcats and buffalos race to the fight. [A  step must interact with the interceptors] Bot sides score a kill, with the Bettys rolling a ZERO!

2015-09-08 16.05.53One step continues into the target hex.

Nells and Bettys approach. With the intercept almost over the island the handful of Wake Island planes fly to take them on finally detecting the enemy approach.

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The Bombers survive the Flak and cause another troop check, which again is passed by the salty Marines!
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The Bombard Phase begins and this allows the offshore shipping to attack individually.2015-09-08 18.06.29


The tiny atoll is rocked by Naval fire from the Yubari, the APD transport and the Tenyru Crusier. Str one, one and finally a 2 strength barrage adds a ‘broken’ to the 1 step holding the fort. 1st Marine is in trouble!


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The Ground combat phase now kicks in. The USMC is Troop Quality/2 as is the IJN Marines as they Amphib in. TQ 4 v 3. This pops us on the 11 column.

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We look at the total number of steps involved, and the force ratio (1:1)… and see a 0:0 result. No losses!


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I think this means that the boys on Wake hold out? The scenario says one battle cycle. Unless we run thru another round? The scenario seems to say explicitly a battle cycle..singular.

sequence of play

15 thoughts on “Pacific War, Wake Island

  1. Sorry noticed some errors in play. The IJN air is a Level 1 with 4 hits (Values <0, 1, 1) so Marines only TQ on 0 or 1. And in the air to air combat the IJN need to roll a zero then less than 4 to hit, while allies hit on 1 or 0. You also missed the naval combat with the Wake fortification. Normally the IJN bombers go after the fortification first to weaken the defenses (it has three hits), this can reduce hits to your ships during the naval battle sequence with the fortification prior to bombardment. This is a really hard scenario to win as the IJN. Great presentation and visuals, really nice to follow.

      • Pacific War Scenario Book – Engagement Scenario NR. 3 – Allied Setup – Hex 2942 (Wake Island): Small Airfield with (1 step) 1E-CV-L1 “The counter starts with 5/6 Hits”; Wake Fortification “0-3 (hits) Gunnery X, 0, 2”; 1st Marine Bn; SS1 with 4 hits. From Mark Herman’s Pacific War by Victory Games 1985.

    • The IJN Air is 2Engine L0. [0/3/3] air v grnd is a TQ on a roll of a 3 from what I read on the chart.
      The Betty/Nell units Air2Air is a 0, and rolled a zero for a kill. the US rolled on the FOUR table, and inflicted a hit. Thus 1 unit goes thru to the strike yeah?

      • Same as above except it is Japanese Setup – Hex 2241 (Kwajalein): Small Airfield with (2) 2E-L1 “2 Engine L1 with 4 of 6 hits”. Thus the IJN value of 1 “5-4hits=1” for Ground Attack and <0 "2-4hits=<0" for Air to Air while US value 1 "6-5hits=1" for Air to Air. Hope this helps. You can find the Scenario Booklet on Mark's – Pacific War web page.

        • It seems that my Pac War scn book has some pages double printed. Thanks for adding the detail. I now SEE the wake fortification words, It just did not register that it meant ‘grab teh fortification counter’. Terse scenario setups 🙂

          • Regardless, love this game. It was a great introduction with both interesting commentary and visual explanation of what was going on. Easy to follow and a great example of play. Can not wait to see your next one.

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