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SubSim

An outstanding Web site for submarine combat simulator video games. Lots of great information on existing and upcoming games.

BTW, readers sometimes ask me whether I play submarine computer games myself. Although I'm not much of a gamer, I have spent a lot of time with Jane's 688(I) game. This one is rather realistic, and partly because of that is also extremely hard work to play! I happen to know some of the former submariners at Sonalysts, a private consulting firm in Connecticut near the New London Submarine Base. They provided substantial input to creating 688(I), and many of the crewmen voices you'll hear while conducting a "combat mission" are in fact former submariners, adding to the authenticity!

Russian Sub Museum: Juliett 484

Located on scenic Narragansett Bay just outside Providence, Rhode Island, this actual Soviet diesel-powered nuclear cruise missile sub is a "must see" for anyone in the area who is interested in submarines and Cold War history. (I visited the Juliette with my wife and some friends in early August.) This Juliette-class, known as K-77, is preserved beautifully at the pier, in the condition of her last patrol before decommissioning in 1994. She once carried four cruise missiles each with a range of about 300 miles, each of which bore a nuclear warhead (yield classified). Her targets, when she went into service in 1965, were major U.S. cities such as NYC and Washington. Later, USSR tactics changed and this Juiette's job was to stalk NATO carrier battle groups near the North Sea. (She also has a total of 10 torpedoe tubes in bow and stern, and one torpedo that she carried was always nuclear.) I can tell you that it's extremely thought-provoking to walk through her hull and see where the captain and his officers and crew slept, ate, and worked. Talk about crowded and smelly! I could easily picture the 100 or so brave, physically tough, dedicated submariners, ready to give their lives for the Motherland into order to launch their terrible weapons. (Their missiles had to be launched while on the surface, and were guided by a conspicuous radar beam that the Juliette emitted from a huge collapsible antenna -- so their job was probably in practice a suicide mission.) Seeing the cruise missile launch control panel will send a chill up your spine! Thank God that the launch order never came.

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