Steel Fleet   Scouring the Seas The hunt for the Kaiser's cruisers, July-December 1914
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Designer's notes



  Editor's choice
Hough, Richard, The Pursuit of Admiral von Spee, Allen and Unwin, 1969

Perret, Bryan, The Hunters and the Hunted, Pen and Sword, 2011

Orders of battle
Hypothetical North Pacific Battle
Somewhere between Tsingtao and Pagan, early August 1914
From Corbett's Naval Operations (pp 137-38) the squadrons of von Spee and Vice-Admiral Jerram, Royal Navy C-in-C China, were potential adversaries in the war's earliest weeks:

[Jerram] then put to sea to take up a position in view of the war breaking out as seemed best to meet the situation as he knew it. ... In these circumstances the Admiral intended, pending instructions from home, to place his squadron between the ships at Tsingtao and those at sea.
While von Spee's whereabouts were unknown to both Jerram and the Admiralty, whom soon sent Jerram elsewhere, during at least part of this period von Spee was actually headed from Ponape to Pagan; in Jerram's direction if some distance away. The credibility of such an encounter depends only on where Jerram chooses to 'place his squadron,' and the suspension of meddling by Whitehall. Thus a minor hypothetical tweak enables a reasonably balanced early war encounter between comparable ships of similar ages.

Internet Archive Jerram vs German Pacific Squadron, Nvl Oprtns, Vol 1, p 138

From the game designer's viewpoint this is one of several plausible alternate scenarios to follow Coronel in an expansion release.

From the chart, Jerram might also have intercepted SMS Emden escorting von Spee's vulnerable supply vessels.

  Charts and maps
Steel Fleet Chart showing squadron of von Spee, Nvl Oprtns, Vol 2, Chart 14

Steel Fleet Escape of SMSS Karlsruhe and Dresden, Nvl Oprtns, Vol 1, p 50

Steel Fleet Operations against German New Guinea, Nvl Oprtns, Vol 1, p 286

Please note chart 14 is originally from the portfolio Naval Operations Vol I (Maps) accompanying the first volume of History of the Great War based on official documents, by direction of the Historical section of the Committee of Imperial Defence Naval Operations: Vol 1, to the Battle of the Falklands, Sir Julian S Corbett, originally published by Longman, Greens and Co, London, 1920.

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