USS Phelps

Unit Card:


Set - Rarity - Number

Flank Speed - Common - 15/40


Named for Thomas Phelps, a Union naval officer in the American Civil War who later rose to flag rank, the USS Phelps was one of a dozen Porter class destroyers. The Porters were large boats, designed to counter the large Japanese destroyers, and thus carried eight five-inch guns in dual mounts. Also due to their large size, many Porters operated as flagships of destroyer squadrons. Though their fire-power was admirable, the guns as mounted could not be raised high enough to be useful as anti-aircraft weapons, and as aircraft emerged as a threat some of these weapons were replaced by dual-purpose guns or AA emplacements. It is as well for Phelps that she received more AA weaponry, for her main duties during the war consisted of screening larger fleet units. She fended off Japanese air attacks at the Coral Sea and Midway and later escorted various invasion forces during the US island hopping campaign. Phelps finished the war on escort duty in the Atlantic, earning a hard-fought 12 battlestars for her service.


Phelps is a departure from the other American destroyers in the game, and her high gunnery stats, gained at the expense of AA and ASW are nice. Phelps's real value in game terms, however, is her impressive suite of SA's. It is rarely bad to win initiative, and Destroyer Leader give the Americans a possible advantage over other nations, none of which have access to both Flotilla Leader and Destroyer Leader. Her other SA's are equally useful. Establish Screen is an ideal way to get a jump on the enemy or push a unit with Lay Smoke Screen (USS Hoel for example) ahead of your larger units. Once in smoke, Phelps's final SA, Bad Weather Fighter boosts her chances of surviving enemy attack. It is unfortunate that an initiative bonus doesn't really interact well with Smoke, the obvious partner of Phelps's other two SA's. This fact, combined with her unfortunate lack of a range two torpedo stat makes Phelps, perhaps, a bit pricey at ten points.

Plastic Figure Notes:

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