Pacific Battles in WW2
Guadalcanal Campaign 1942-1943

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BattleFleet Naval Strategy Games
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  Battlefleet: Pacific War is WW2 naval turn-based strategy game, extension to the classic Battleship game, where ships/planes, subs can move!  
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20 Scenarios
18 Death Match Missions
2 Campaigns
Unit production
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Unit names and officer ranks are historic

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HISTORY DATA
Pearl Harbor Overview
Pearl Harbor Japs forces
Pearl Harbor Japs Aircraft
Coral Sea
Doolitle Attack
Midway
Guadalcanal
Japan Capitulates
Battleship Bismarck
Normandy Invasion
USN Admirals
Japan Admirals
Torpedo Bombers
USN WW2 Fighters
USN WW2 Battleships
SLS NAVY DATA
Aircraft Carriers
Cruisers
Destroyers
Frigates
Patrol Ships
Attack Sumbarines
Missile Sumbarines
Assault Ships
F-14 Tomcat
F-18 Hornet
P-3C Orion
S-3B Viking
CH-46 Sea Knight
CH-53 Sea Stallion
H-3 Sea King
MH-53 Sea Dragon
SH-60 Seahawk
HH/UH-1N Iroquois
 

Guadalcanal Campaign, August 1942 - February 1943

In the six months between August 1942 and February 1943, the United States and its Pacific Allies fought a brutally hard air-sea-land campaign against the Japanese for possession of the previously-obscure island of Guadalcanal. The Allies' first major offensive action of the Pacific War, the contest began as a risky enterprise since Japan still maintained a significant naval superiority in the Pacific ocean.

Nevertheless, the U.S. First Marine Division landed on 7 August 1942 to seize a nearly-complete airfield at Guadalcanal's Lunga Point and an anchorage at nearby Tulagi, bounding a picturesque body of water that would soon be named "Iron Bottom Sound". Action ashore went well, and Japan's initial aerial response was costly and unproductive. However, only two days after the landings, the U.S. and Australian navies were handed a serious defeat in the Battle of Savo Island.

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A lengthy struggle followed, with its focus the Lunga Point airfield, renamed Henderson Field. Though regularly bombed and shelled by the enemy, Henderson Field's planes were still able to fly, ensuring that Japanese efforts to build and maintain ground forces on Guadalcanal were prohibitively expensive. Ashore, there was hard fighting in a miserable climate, with U.S. Marines and Soldiers, aided by local people and a few colonial authorities, demonstrating the fatal weaknesses of Japanese ground combat doctrine when confronted by determined and well-trained opponents who possessed superior firepower.

At sea, the campaign featured two major battles between aircraft carriers that were more costly to the Americans than to the Japanese, and many submarine and air-sea actions that gave the Allies an advantage. Inside and just outside Iron Bottom Sound, five significant surface battles and several skirmishes convincingly proved just how superior Japan's navy then was in night gunfire and torpedo combat. With all this, the campaign's outcome was very much in doubt for nearly four months and was not certain until the Japanese completed a stealthy evacuation of their surviving ground troops in the early hours of 8 February 1943.

Guadalcanal was expensive for both sides, though much more so for Japan's soldiers than for U.S. ground forces. The opponents suffered high losses in aircraft and ships, but those of the United States were soon replaced, while those of Japan were not. Strategically, this campaign built a strong foundation on the footing laid a few months earlier in the Battle of Midway, which had brought Japan's Pacific offensive to an abrupt halt. At Guadalcanal, the Japanese were harshly shoved into a long and costly retreat, one that continued virtually unchecked until their August 1945 capitulation.

Guadalcanal Campaign, Aug. 1942 - Feb. 1943 --
Guadalcanal-Tulagi Invasion, 7-9 August 1942

The long fight for Guadalcanal formally opened shortly after 6AM on 7 August 1942, when the heavy cruiser Quincy began bombarding Japanese positions near Lunga Point. In the darkness a few hours earlier, what was for mid-1942 an impressive invasion force had steamed past Savo Island to enter the sound between the two objective areas: Guadalcanal to the south and, less than twenty miles away, Tulagi to the north. These thirteen big transports (AP), six large cargo ships (AK) and four small high-speed transports (APD) carried some 19,000 U.S. Marines. They were directly protected by eight cruisers (three of them Australian), fifteen destroyers and five high-speed minesweepers (DMS). Led by Rear Admiral Richmond Kelly Turner, this armada was supported from out at sea by three aircraft carriers, accompanied by a battleship, six cruisers, sixteen destroyers and five oilers under the command of Vice Admiral Frank Jack Fletcher, who was also entrusted with the overall responsibility for the operation.

The great majority of these ships (9 AP, 6 AK and most of the escort and bombardment ships), with Marine Major General Alexander A. Vandegrift and the bulk of his Leathernecks, was to assault Guadalcanal a few miles east of Lunga Point. Tactically, this part of the landing went very well. There were few enemy combat troops present, and these were some distance away. The first of the Marines came ashore soon after 9AM at "Red" Beach, a stretch of grey sand near the Tenaru River. By the afternoon of the following day they had pushed westwards to seize the operation's primary object, the nearly completed Japanese airfield near Lunga Point. The surviving Japanese, mainly consisting of labor troops, quickly retreated up the coast and inland, leaving the Marines with a bounty of captured materiel, much of which would soon prove very useful to its new owners.

While the Marines consolidated their beachhead and began to establish a defensive perimeter around the airstrip, the landing of their supplies and equipment proceeded less well. Typically for these early amphibious operations, arrangements were inadequate to handle the glut of things brought ashore by landing craft. Mounds of supplies soon clogged the beaches, slowing the unloading of the ships offshore. A series of Japanese air attacks, which forced the ships to get underway to evade them, didn't help, and when the catastrophic outcome to the Battle of Savo Island and the withdrawal of Vice Admiral Fletcher's carriers forced the the big transports and cargo ships to leave on 9 August, none of them had been completely unloaded. Though the Marines had taken their objective, supply shortages would plague them in the coming weeks, as the Japanese hit back by air, sea and land in an increasingly furious effort to recover Guadalcanal's strategically important airfield.

(credits: US Navy History Center)

WW2 HISTORY DATA
Pearl Harbor Overview
Pearl Harbor Japanese Forces
Pearl Harbor Japanese Aircraft
Battle of the Coral Sea, 7-8 May 1942
Doolitle Raid on Japan, 18 April 1942
Battle of Midway, 4-7 June 1942
Guadalcanal Campaign, August 1942 - February 1943
Guadalcanal-Tulagi Invasion, 7-9 August 1942
Battle of the Philippine Sea
Battle of Iwo Jima Battle of Okinawa
Japan Capitulates WW2 Japan Planes - List of Aircraft
Battleship Bismarck, Graf Zeppelin
Battleships Tirpitz, Scharnhorst , Admiral Graf Spee
WW2 Luftwaffe Planes - List of Aircraft
U-Boats Types 1, 2A, 2B, 2C, 2D
Kriegsmarine Submarines Types U-Flak, 7A, 7B, 7C, 7C/41, 7C/42, 7D, 7F
Kriegsmarine Submarines: U-Boats
Type 9A, 9B, 9C, 9C/40, 9D, 14
Kriegsmarine Submarines: Type XXI , Type XXIII
Grand Admiral Karl Donitz, Erich Raeder
HMS Prince of Wales Battleship, HMS Repulse,
HMS Ark Royal, HMS Hood Battlecruisers
Battle of the River Plate, Battle of Dunkirk, Battle of the Atlantic
Normandy Invasion, June 1944
Normandy Invasion ,Crossing the English Channel on D-Day, 6 June 1944
Normandy Invasion- The D-Day Landings, 6 June 1944
USN WW2 Admirals, USN WW2 Cruisers List
Imperial Japan Navy Admirals
Japan WW2 Fighters- Mitsubishi Zero
USN Battleships - Indiana Class, Kearsarge Class, Illinois Class, Maine Class, Virginia Class, Connecticut Class, Mississippi Class, South Carolina Class, Delaware Class, Florida Class, Wyoming Class, New York Class, Nevada Class, Pennsylvania Class, New Mexico Class, Tennessee Class, Colorado Class, South Dakota Class, Lexington Class, North Carolina Class, South Dakota Class, Iowa Class, Montana Class
USN WW2 CRUISERS
USN WW2 Torpedo Bomber - Douglas TBD-1 Devastator
USN WW2 Fighters: Brewster F2A Buffalo, Curtiss F9C Sparrowhawk
Grumman F3F, Grumman F4F Wildcat, General Motors FM-2 Wildcat
LOCKHEED P-38 LIGHTNING F-82 TWIN MUSTANG
REPUBLIC P-47 THUNDERBOLT
NORTH AMERICAN P-51 MUSTANG
Boeing B-17 Flying Fortress, Boeing B-29 Superfortress
Consolidated B-24 D Liberator
North American B-25 Mitchell, Martin B-26 Marauder
Junkers Ju 87 Stuka Dornier Do 215 Ju-188
Dornier Do 17, Dornier Do 335 Pfeil Junkers Ju 88
Messerschmitt Bf 109, Messerschmitt Me 262
RAF List of aircraft, Avro Lancaster
Focke-Wulf Fw 200 Condor, Heinkel He 111
Focke-Wulf Fw 190, Junkers Ju 52
De Havilland Mosquito, Vickers Wellington
Fairey Swordfish Hawker Tempest Hawker Hurricane Supermarine Spitfire Gloster Meteor
Operation Stalingrad , Operation Barbarossa
Third Reich Organization and people
German Africa Corps
Field Marshal Erwin Rommel - Desert Fox
Maus (Tank) - Panzer VIII WW2 world largest tank
Panzer 3 III, Panzer 4 IV, Tiger 1, King Tiger 2
T-34 Soviet medium tank
List of tanks WW1, WW2, Modern
Hermann Goering, Heinrich Himmler, Reinhard Heydrich, Werner Von Braun, Wilhelm Canaris, Albert Sper, Walter Schellenberg,
Von Rundstedt, Heinz Guderian, Wilhelm Keitel
Gestapo, 3rd Reich Organizations: SS Panzer Divisions
List of German Navy Ships
GERMAN ARMY WW2 ORDER OF BATTLE
German Tank Production
82. AIRBORNE DIVISION
British Armies, Corps and Divisions in WWII
Battle of Crete - Operation Mercury
Battle of Taranto
Battle of Cape Matapan, Battle of Narvik
MODERN USN / WORLD AF/NAVY DATA
USN Aircraft Carriers USS Kitty Hawk, Enterprise, John F. Kennedy, Nimitz, Dwight D. Eisenhower, Carl Vinson, Theodore Roosevelt, Abraham Lincoln, George Washington, John C. Stennis, Harry S. Truman, Ronald Reagan, George H.W. Bush
USS Abraham Lincoln CVN72 USS Enterprise CVN65
USN Cruisers 1 - USS Ticonderoga, Vincennes, Valley Forge, Thomas S. Gates, Bunker Hill, Mobile Bay, Antietam, Leyte Gulf, San Jacinto, Lake Champlain, Philippine Sea, Princeton, Normandy, Monterey
USN Cruisers 2 - USS Chancellorsville, Cowpens, Gettysburg, Chosin, Hue City, Shiloh, Anzio, Vicksburg, Lake Erie, Cape St. George, Vella Gulf, Port Royal
USN Destroyers United States Navy
Amphibious Assault Ships - LHA/LHD/LHA(R) USS Wasp, USS Essex, USS Kearsarge, USS Boxer, USS Bataan, USS Bonhomme Richard, USS Iwo Jima, USS Makin Island, USS Tarawa, USS Saipan, USS Belleau Wood, USS Nassau, USS Peleliu
SSN Attack Sumbarines 1 USS Seawolf, Connecticut, Jimmy Carter, Virginia, Texax, Hawaii, North Carolina, Los Angeles, Philadelphia, Memphis, Bremerton, Jacksonville, Dallas, La Jolla, City of Corpus Christi, Albuquerque, Portsmouth, Minneapolis-St. Paul, Hyman G. Rickover, Augusta, San Francisco, Houston, Norfolk, Buffalo, Salt Lake City, Olympia, Honolulu, Providence
SSN Attack Sumbarines 2 USS Pittsburgh, Chicago, Key West, Oklahoma City, Louisville, Helena, Newport News, San Juan, Pasadena, Albany, Topeka, Miami, Scranton, Alexandria, Asheville, Jefferson City, Annapolis, Springfield, Columbus, Santa Fe, Boise, Montpelier, Charlotte, Hampton, Hartford, Toledo, Tucson, Columbia, Greeneville, Cheyenne
SSBN Fleet Balistic Missile Sumbarines USS Georgia, USS Henry M. Jackson, USS Alabama, USS Alaska,USS Nevada, USS Pennsylvania, USS Kentucky, USS Tennessee, USS West Virginia, USS Maryland, USS Nebraska, USS Rhode Island, USS Maine, USS Wyoming, USS Louisiana, USS Ohio
USN Frigates, USN Patrol Ships, USAF Plane List
Anti-submarine aircraft - P-3C Orion S-3B Viking
USN FIGHTERS
A-10 / A10 Thunderbolt II
F-5 Freedom Fighter, F-20 Tigershark
F-4 Phantom II F-86 Sabre, A-4 Skyhawk, A-6 Grumann Intruder
F-14 Tomcat F-15 Eagle F15, F-16 Fighting Falcon,
F-18 Hornet F-22 Raptor F-35 Joint Strike Fighter
CH-46 Sea Knight, CH-53 Sea Stallion
H-3 Sea King MH-53 Sea Dragon
SH-60 Seahawk HH/UH-1N Iroquois
AH-1 Cobra, UH-60 Black Hawk, HH-60 Pave Hawk Helicopter
AH-64 Apache
B-52 Stratofortress F-111, AC130 Gunship
B-1 Lancer
B-2 Spirit
F-117 Nighthawk
U-2 Dragon Lady , SR-71 Blackbird
RQ-1 Predator
Panavia Tornado
Tornado F3 AV-8 Harrier
Pre/Post WW2 USSR Russia Planes - List of Aircraft
Pre/Post WW2 RAAF Australia Planes - List of Aircraft
Pre/Post WW2 SWEDEN Planes - List of Aircraft
F-22 Raptor, F-35 Joint Strike Fighter JSF
M1 Abrams M1A1 M1A2
M4_Sherman_Tank
US Tank Production World War 2
Battle of Gallipoli
Battle of Port Arthur
Battle of Jutland Skagerrak
Korean War Order of Battle