Battlestations: Pacific/Solomons' Skirmish
A favourite of battleship fans, Solomons' Skirmish pits the player in a battleship match - two on three. Fortunately, you'll have a little more backup than the AI, and with the help of a few cruisers to put torpedoes in the water, you should be able to finish this map somewhat easily. The cruiser you start off with is supposed to be a Takao class, but it is actually a Mogami.
The difference is minuscule in the game but in real life, the Mogami would have less Long Lances.
- Scout the area for enemy activity.
- Survive until reinforcements arrive.
- Sink all three US battleships.
- Shoot down the Kingfisher.
- Stop the retreating destroyer.
- Stop the retreating US forces.
- All battleships must survive.
Your first objective is a secondary one - destroy the OS2U Kingfisher nosily encroaching upon your airspace. It starts off to the west of your current position but ultimately will fly over your head if your friends don't shoot it down first. If you want to be a little more proactive, you can launch an F1M Pete from your cruiser and chase it down. The OS2U isn't a threat at all to you, and in fact is armed only with machine guns.
Enemy resistance appears to open up a little more upon the discovery of a few destroyers picking on a doomed Fubuki-class. These destroyers are no match for your Mogami-class heavy cruiser, so sail in and eliminate them. Keep an eye out for the USS Alden attempting to flee from west to east, a little north of the southernmost island. It is easily marked by an objective marker, and in fact sails toward you as you head north. Sink this destroyer and all the others, then proceed to the designated spot.
Once you've arrived at the designated location, your crews will realize that the Americans were baiting you into a trap. A large American fleet is en route from the north, and the USS South Dakota is already hot on your heels. Three destroyers follow her in. Despite all these ship threats, man those AA guns - a squad of P-40s equipped with bombs are on their way. Shoot down as many P-40s as possible, and try not to let any escape - their armament regenerates just like your own.
If you received a gold medal in the previous mission, you'll receive a few reinforcements in the form of two squadrons of G4M Betties from Guadalcanal. These Two Engined Medium Bombers can put some serious damage on the South Dakota, so have them bomb the battleship lengthwise to ensure the maximum number of hits. If you manage to combine this with a few torpedoes from your cruiser, you may be able to sink the USS South Dakota before reinforcements arrive. This gets you the Preventative Strike achievement. Just don't lose your cruiser, or else it's game over!
Your reinforcements will arrive in a few minutes, as shown at the top of your screen. When they do arrive, however, you'll find that they have sufficient firepower to put an end to American dominance in this region. Your new fleet consists of a Fuso-class, a Kongo-class, escorted by a large squad of destroyers. In addition you hang onto all units from the previous campaign, including the Kuma-class cruisers and your own Mogami.
Upgrading to the Yamato-class battleship helps significantly here in this battle. Send the battleships head-on into your opponents. Have your battleship act as a distraction for your multitude of cruisers - have the cruisers close to torpedo range and torpedo the living daylights out of the Americans as quickly as possible. For subsequent playthroughs, have the Shimakaze-class on your side - its extra torpedoes never goes awry on this map.
The enemy fleet is composed of two Fletchers, a Cleveland, and two South Dakota-class battleships - the USS Massachusetts and the USS Indiana. An extremely viable tactic for the map is to simply use the sheer number of destroyers, combined with your two battleships as a distraction, to charge into torpedo range. The Americans will quickly be overwhelmed with potential targets, and will lose their battleships.
Once the American battleships are under, the final secondary objective comes into play - destroy what remains of the American fleet. With the amount of firepower you have, this should be a no-brainer. Sink the American fleet to end the mission.