Ships in Port

We've talked about Advanced A&A... Now I'd like to hear your comments on what YOU envision a DELUXE A&A GAME to be. What would it look like.

Should ships be allowed to remain "in port"?

Yes, allow ships to take refuge in land territories.
No, ships should always be considered "at sea".
Total votes: 10

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Ships in Port

Post by Flashman » Wed May 09, 2007 3:22 pm

Many players will have experienced that in A&A navies are often found to be "sitting ducks" for enemy action, particularly from air attacks. While this is largely true of the period which saw battleships become redundant and carrier based aircraft dominate naval warfare, it makes expensive naval units an unattractive buy for many players.

So should we allow ships to take refuge from air attack by staying in port? This would mean "docking" at a land area instead of staying out to sea. Such units could not be attacked in a sea battle, nor take part in the defence of the territory at which they are docked, but could still be taken as casualties if the area is attacked in a land and air assault. Ships leaving port would have to leave via the area at which they entered, so would have to be placed over the appropriate land/sea boundary.

To take Pearl Harbor as an example; if the Japanese wanted to attack the US Pacific Fleet it would have to attack the entire Hawaii territory including land and air defences, rather than simply needing to take on the Fleet "at sea". (I'm assuming all fleets begin the game "in port".)
A succesful amphibious assault should not entitle the victor to place it's ships "in port" immediately, as we can assume docking facilities are likely to have been damaged for a short while.

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Post by Larry » Wed May 09, 2007 10:02 pm

It's an interesting idea. I have considered it int he past. It does work... but is it worth the 4 or 5 new rule paragraphs?
Comments noted

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Post by Flashman » Fri May 11, 2007 6:45 pm

Thinking about this some more, it occurs to me that ships can no more stay indefinately at sea than planes can stay in the air. (Well, not much longer anyway.)

So how about this radical proposal tying up the ships-in-port idea with fueling:

Each and every turn, each and every ship on the board must refuel in port.

Yes, that's right. Think about it. It radically, but accurately, depicts the natural travelling distances of ships.
The 2-area movement is retained, although moving in and out of port doesn't count towards this (or if you prefer, it does count so increase ship movement to three or four.)

So, a ship must either
1. Start a turn "in port" in which case it refuels and can move out to sea, ending it's turn in mid-ocean if it chooses;
2. Call at a port in mid journey to refuel (and pick up cargo if desired);
3. End it's move in port to refuel.

It will be seen immediately that this restricts the distance from which amphibious assaults can be launched.

For example( and assuming we use the wider oceans as suggested elsewhere) , if Great Britain falls to Germany, it becomes much more difficult for the Allies to liberate Blighty from North America. Sailing from East USA or Canada, the invasion fleet must rest in mid-ocean. On the next turn however, it cannot sail to Britain and attack because it hasn't refueled and cannot refuel in Britain even if the assault is successful because the captured territory doesn't become "port friendly" until the beginning of the following turn (let's assume the ports have been put out of action by the Germans).

So, potential refueling calls such as Iceland become much more important in general strategy. I would suggest that virtually ANY land or island territory should have fueling stations, they need not be large naval bases.

The importance of stations such as Gibraltar, Malta, Aden, Ceylon and Singapore to the British Empire becomes clearer when you consider this factor.

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Post by polar » Mon May 14, 2007 12:42 pm

To fix the 'navy' being sitting ducks is one of my main whishes for the delux version.

About the need to refule: not entirely sure.
-It will make island etc. important, but maybe WAY too important.
-US is forced to attack Islands before taking down Japan. (which is nice)
(if there is no ports in alaska or in east russia)
-Taking over japans islands would be set to speed of crawl ?
-The things you can DO with your navy becomes very limited.
-Setting an supperior navy in the only available port forces you to attack that navy. Meaning, an insuperior navy becomes even more useless.

How about giving ports other abilities which can make islands more important:
-battleships can only repair at one of your ports, and it cost you 1 movement point.
-damage battleships loose their bombardment abilities.
-you may place new ships in sea-sones adjent to a port?
-in addition you may place up to max 1 new infanteri (or marine) in an
area with a port.

The combination of these two should give some Islands in the paccific more to fight about.

Ports may also benefit Germany/Italy, as they can now put ships (transporte, Ubouts etc.) into a port. Also if there is a navy battle and the UK battlehsip is damaged (lets say outside italy) it is more or less forced to go back to UK.

As I said in another tread, the battleship changes would allow for an perfectly ballanced japanese national benefit: Yamahato: 3 hits battleships :)

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Post by adlertag » Mon May 14, 2007 3:38 pm

Just use the rules from A&A Pacific :

Convoy zones
ships move 3 spaces if from port to port
fighters Combat Air Patrol

I also would like to see aircrafts need destroyer to attack subs.
Tech Developement, now aircrafts can attack subs without destroyers

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Post by Flashman » Mon May 14, 2007 4:15 pm

I should say that ALL land and island areas should be considered as having small ports with refueling facilities.

A more limited number of NAVAL BASES could be added providing additional benefits such as repairing damaged ships.

Damaged BBs should fight at 2-2

Yes, new ships can be placed in port or at sea as there is no movement cost for going from "in port" to "at sea".

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Post by polar » Mon May 14, 2007 4:21 pm

I love the convey rule. (haven't seen it before)

So in sort:

-ships are "safe" from naval combat
-repair battlships
-increases movement (convey rule)
-one (or more?) ship and one infanteri may be placed at an terretory with

One can devide between PORTS and NAVAL BASES
giving ports only the first benefite above and NAVAL BASES all of the above.

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Post by Flashman » Mon May 14, 2007 7:24 pm

It will be seen that ships in port are vulnerable to "blockade" by which enemy shipping, even a single transport, can pen them in and limit their movement. This is because a ship must leave port by entering the same sea zone it entered by. By placing naval units in that sea zone an enemy can force the defender to either stay bottled up in port, or sail out to attack the blockading vessles. The ship breaking the blockade then becomes vulnerable because the combat move ends it's movement allowance meaning it is left "at sea", thus leaving it a target for enemy units. It cannot attack and destroy the blockader, then nip back into port on the same turn. It can however retreat back to port from an unsuccesful attack.
Note that the blockading ship cannot stay at sea for an entire turn, therefore to successfully maintain a blockade a number of ships must be rotated to continuously occupy the sea zone.

Note my suggested Torpedo bomber unit. A successful attack by this unit MUST be taken by a ship. There is no reason these units cannot be used in an attack on a land territory harbouring ships, in which case those ships will still suffer damage rather than the defender absorbing all hits with cheap land pieces. This is of course precisely what happened at Taranto and Pearl Harbor, so even ships in a heavily defended port are not entirely safe.

New ships can of course only be placed in ports whose territory contains an Industrial Complex.

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