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POLARIS 21 exercise, late 2021. Historical Training Scenario.

POLARIS 21 exercise, late 2021. Historical Training Scenario.


A Harpoon Commander's Edition scenario for EC2003 Battle for the Mediterranean Battleset and the HCDB2-170308 new standard 1980-2025 Platform Database. This scenario is designed with advanced Scenario Editor and to be run with HCE 2015.008+ or later.


This scenario is designed to be played from the Blue/NATO side or from the Red/"Mercury" side. You should play a few times first the Blue side to avoid spoilers, and only later play the Red side.


Image: The U.S. Military Sealift Command fast combat support ship USNS Supply (T-AOE-6, lead of her class), the Italian Marina Militare frigate Federico Martinengo (F 596, FREMM-type, ASW variant) and the ubiquitous U.S. Navy guided-missile destroyer USS Porter (DDG-78, Burke-class Flight II, with modifications for Ballistic Missile Defence tasks and forward deployed from 2015 to Naval Station Rota, Spain) conduct a photo exercise during joint operations in the Mediterranean Sea, 22 April 2020. Photo took by a US serviceperson on duty and in consequence in public domain, took from Wikipedia Commons.


From the eventful year of 2014 the World was beginning the so-called Second Cold War, the President of Russia Vladimir Putin (ex-KGB lieutenant colonel) was showing clearly his plan to recover the Russian Empire including previous Soviet territories for reinstitute the greatness of his Russia, and to guarantee his passage on the History as saviour of the Rodina.

And meanwhile, more towards Far East a less perceived and gradually growing problem was China, as reflected in the transfer of the 60% of the USN and USAF combat forces to the Pacific Theatre of Operations from 2012, move completed by 2020.

This time period is characterized by constant drills and exercises of the Western forces to keep its proficiency and fighting readiness.

At last, from November 25 to December 3, 2021, was developed the exercise POLARIS 21, acronym for Preparation Operationnelle en Lutte Aeromaritime, Resilience, Innovation et Superiorite (Operational Preparation on Antisubmarine Warfare, Resilience, Innovation and Superiority).

It was a mostly French exercise, but centred on a NATO near future all-out confrontation with a near-peer enemy.

Both sides reflect the exercise historical limited resources of its respective orders of battle, with slight modifications for playability.

Despite I'm the author, could say is a replayable, fun and balanced scenario, and as in the real life both sides have many paths to victory.


Of course this is a training exercise and actual shots, torpedoes and missiles aren't fired and nobody is hurt ...


Enrique Mas, December 19, 2021.


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Some sources:












"Tout ce qui épaissit le brouillard de la guerre" résume le contre-amiral Christophe Cluzel à la tête de Polaris 21.

Ce dernier ne connaît pas d'ailleurs non plus la totalité du scénario. "Je sais simplement que nous serons à 2.000 km lorsque l'action va débuter. Et que l'ennemi va mettre une bulle de déni d'accès sur une zone. Ce que je veux démontrer, c'est qu'il n'y a pas de fatalité dans le déni d'accès. Avec de l'audace en combinant nos effets avec une approche assez large, avec par la combinaison d'effets cinétiques et non-cinétiques, et avec de l'effet de surprise, on est capables de lever un à un tous les verrous de la porte que l'adversaire s'attache à mettre" détaille le commandant du groupe aéronaval.


And this one, discovered after publishing the scenario!!!


About the use of F-16CM/DM Blk40 by the 31st Fighter Wing in Aviano:


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AAR: WARNING, possible spoilers...






I lost two Atlantiques in the ASuW role which got into Aster-range probably and one frigate which got killed by a torpedo fired by an undetected submarine.

As long as the E2 and E3 keep their radars on, there is no need to turn the radars of the carrier group on and reveal your positions. The Rafales could easily intercept inbound aircraft and I shot down about 30 of them. Another 12 or so were killed in the air bases, which I repeatedly attacked with Scalps and Tomahawks from aircraft and ships.

I managed to torpedo most of the enemy surface group with Amethyste, which prompted min. victory conditions after around 8 hours of gameplay.




Thank you!




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HINT: read the orders again when you come onto your next watch ... ;)

I don't think I'm giving anything away to say that there is continuous action and fine tuning of immediate action to counter changing circumstances.

I suffered some unexpected damage ( not spoiling it by saying where :D ) when some one snuck thru and lobbed some munitions on me where I had left myself defenseless and insufficient 'eyes', but generally a tight air defence and asw curtain held firm.

I had dealt a fair bit of destruction then one of the junior officers asked what was our aim, so I looked back at the orders and realised I'd committed an oversight.

General stats:

Scenario=C:\Matrix Games\HUCE\addons\medc\2003\2021-11 POLARIS 21.sco

session start=8 Nov 2021, 05:00:00


Event=08 Nov 2021, 08:58:24  The Tonnerre L9014 unit ZZ002, a Mistral class, is sinking!
Event=08 Nov 2021, 09:00:01  The BLUE side has met their minimum victory conditions
Event=08 Nov 2021, 09:00:01  The BLUE side has met their total victory conditions


Oh, and no auquatic animals were harmed, but it was close 😮

Another great scenario, thanks broncepulido

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  • 5 months later...

Exercise assesment six months later, great points here:


Quote: "After the first minutes of combat, it turns out that the result is severe, and this is what the report underlines. In fact, within fifteen minutes of combat, two frigates were sunk and two more were neutralized. 200 to 400 sailors were put out of action, killed or missing. But the result was even worse at the end of the exercise, with a total of eight ships sunk or out of combat".

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