The ANF indulged me recently with the opportunity to start an extensive programme of rule-testing Napoleonic naval wargames rules. The motivation derived partly from the recent launch of the delightful Sails of Glory range of ready-made ships of the period, for which I have yearned since, no doubt, the manufacturers were not even born. There is an accompanying set of rules, which I have seen working at the NWS http://napoleonicwargamingsociety.blogspot.com.au/. First up for testing were Signal Close Action (SCA), the rules produced by Rod Langton, ironically the owner of Langton Miniatures, which produces fine metal cast Napoleonic models. (Using these rules with Ares miniatures - the definition of guilt). Unfortunately my copy of the latest edition is overseas still, so we had to make do with the original 90s version of the rules, but we all still thought it well worth while to try them out. This rambling post is the resultant report - naval wargames take a lot of moves - twenty-two in this case and still without an absolutely final ending - and it's hard to explain without detailing every single move.
At the same time, the commander of the other squadron, now Rear-Admiral Cochrane (uncle of the Sea Wolf) found himself in the position Nelson dreaded at Trafalgar, being fired on whilst being unable to reply. The rules having permitted 'delay fire' once to the manoeuvre phase and 'delay twice' to the move fire, any ship that gets into a raking position can almost inevitably rake twice in these rules (at least the advanced version that we used) and HMS Superb (right centre below) was battered, losing her captain as she retreated, all of which Markov, at least, found most peculiar, Worse, HMS Superb eventually struck whilst making off, a morale oddity to the rules that none of us much liked - there needs, I think, to be a 'inert' rule for ships out of enemy fire range in place of strike - simple enough to arrange but very peculiar, we thought.
There are two other blog reviews of this action that I can recommend, and am delighted have been posted, one from each of the subordinate commanders.
http://napoleonicwargamingsociety.blogspot.com.au/2014/11/battle-of-san-domingo.html here from the British side (where you can see some splendid pictures of the brief fire on the Imperial) and here
http://onesidedminiaturewargamingdiscourse.blogspot.com.au/2014/11/battle-of-san-domingo-with-signal-close.html from the French side.