About Subs and Cruisers

Breaking away from the Second World War and paying a visit and tribute to the First World War. Coming this March, 2013
Erly

About Subs and Cruisers

Post by Erly » Sun Nov 17, 2013 11:53 pm

I read in several topics (and in some fan reviews) that submarines and cruisers became poor units when compared to the battleships.

For submarines, well, for 12 ipcs you can buy two of them instead of 1 battlehip, so you have 2 strikes at 2 or lower to hit wich is better than 1 strike at a hit of 4 or lower (because you have the same hit statistics with the chance to hit twice instead of one), plus you have all the abilities of the subs (irrestrict submarine warfare, cross hostile sea zones without combat, etc). So, why buy 1 Battleship instead? Well, because if two subs take a hit, it is done, you now get only one strike of 2 or less, but if your battlhesip get hit you still have 1 strike of 4 or less PLUS you don't loose your unit AND can provide support for amphibious attacks.

As for cruisers, well, with a strike that hits with 3 or less, 3 spaces of move, no bombardment support for amphibious attacks, no two hits lifespam and no other special abilities, 9 is REALLY expensive.

So, with the game going further and further, we see seas crowded of battleships and transports with almost no cruisers or subs, so, something is really wrong with the cost/benefit rates of them, don't you agree?

I'm fan of the following adjustments: give the subs the same abilities it has in WWII editions of the games: can not be attacked without a "detector" ship, can make "surprise attacks" and submerge before any other actions of either the friends or the foes.

Then, we could give the "detector" ability to the cruisers.

What do you think?

Caractacus
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Re: About Subs and Cruisers

Post by Caractacus » Mon Nov 18, 2013 3:57 pm

Erly wrote:I read in several topics (and in some fan reviews) that submarines and cruisers became poor units when compared to the battleships.

For submarines, well, for 12 ipcs you can buy two of them instead of 1 battlehip, so you have 2 strikes at 2 or lower to hit wich is better than 1 strike at a hit of 4 or lower (because you have the same hit statistics with the chance to hit twice instead of one), plus you have all the abilities of the subs (irrestrict submarine warfare, cross hostile sea zones without combat, etc). So, why buy 1 Battleship instead? Well, because if two subs take a hit, it is done, you now get only one strike of 2 or less, but if your battlhesip get hit you still have 1 strike of 4 or less PLUS you don't loose your unit AND can provide support for amphibious attacks.

As for cruisers, well, with a strike that hits with 3 or less, 3 spaces of move, no bombardment support for amphibious attacks, no two hits lifespam and no other special abilities, 9 is REALLY expensive.

So, with the game going further and further, we see seas crowded of battleships and transports with almost no cruisers or subs, so, something is really wrong with the cost/benefit rates of them, don't you agree?

I'm fan of the following adjustments: give the subs the same abilities it has in WWII editions of the games: can not be attacked without a "detector" ship, can make "surprise attacks" and submerge before any other actions of either the friends or the foes.

Then, we could give the "detector" ability to the cruisers.

What do you think?
I made Battleships unable to attack Submarines, only to defend against them.

I also created a convoy raiding system that allows Subs to take 2 IPCs and warships 1 IPC from any SZ with enemy IPC-providing spacing adjoining - up to the maximum that these areas provide.

This made Subs more interesting, and Cruisers were needed to hunt and kill them.
Caractacus.

WILD BILL
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Re: About Subs and Cruisers

Post by WILD BILL » Mon Nov 18, 2013 4:27 pm

Those house rules make a lot of sense Caractacus, I had a similar suggestion quite some time ago to blend the role of the destroyer into the cruiser.

Erly

Re: About Subs and Cruisers

Post by Erly » Mon Jan 06, 2014 11:41 am

Caractacus wrote:
I made Battleships unable to attack Submarines, only to defend against them.

I also created a convoy raiding system that allows Subs to take 2 IPCs and warships 1 IPC from any SZ with enemy IPC-providing spacing adjoining - up to the maximum that these areas provide.

This made Subs more interesting, and Cruisers were needed to hunt and kill them.
In WWII games of Axis and Allies the game mechanics of the submarines was like this: you can only attack them if you had a detector ship in your team (what is, pretty much, what you said about cruisers), but you still able to defend if attacked AFTER the subs make a preemptive "surprise attack".

Plus, you made Unretricted Submarine Warfare a general rule, nevertheless, only subs could historically do it. That is because if you use surface warships, you just do a blockade, as the enemy merchant ships can detect you and make an alternative route, but the subs simply sunk the cargo ships undetected.

I liked the generalization of "any SZ with enemy IPC-providing spacing adjoining", though.

Whackamatt
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Re: About Subs and Cruisers

Post by Whackamatt » Mon Mar 31, 2014 3:01 pm

I disagree with the premise that subs and cruisers need help to compete with battleships; they’re not supposed to. They all serve different roles. It isn’t a simple math calculation, where 2 X 6 must be equal to 12. This game has NEVER worked that one. The scale of comparison isn’t linear.

For one, the big intangible that I have seen few people consider is HOW OFTEN you are able to buy battleships, and by which powers. Yes, in the end I would rather have 1 battleship than 2 submarines in a fight, but how often will the Ottoman Empire be able to drop BBs? Sure, Germany does have enough cash to buy them, but at times it makes more sense to spend less on navy to focus on the ground offensives.

The REAL IC for IC comparison comes in when you compare 1 battleship, with 1 submarine + 6ICs of OTHER STUFF. Yes, my navy won’t be as tough after that purchase, but at least I added 1 hit and a 2 in combat. PLUS I added 2 infantry on a much needed front, or a plane to give my stack of 10 artillery air superiority, bumping those 10 3’s to 10 4’s in combat. Or I added another tank to absorb hits on that stagnant front.

Having played a couple of times as Germany, I can say without a doubt that I have purchased submarines, and the occasional cruiser instead of all BB’s. Did I feel cheated? No; you get what you pay for, and you’ll never have enough ICs to buy everything you want.

That’s one of the benefits or attractions to saving and buying a battleship. But you do so at your own risk of weakening your land forces by 12 ICs instead of 9, or 6, or none. It’s a trade off, and one each power has to weigh with the ICs they have on hand. I feel each naval unit is worth their price.

All that said, I do feel that the unrestricted submarine warfare is rather ineffectual. There needs to be some rewriting to make it useful. I haven’t seen it invoked yet. By the time Germany can clear out the UK navy and get into position, the US is entering the war, and usually with 80+ ICs in navy.

Caractacus
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Re: About Subs and Cruisers

Post by Caractacus » Tue Apr 22, 2014 6:00 pm

Erly wrote:I liked the generalization of "any SZ with enemy IPC-providing spacing adjoining"
Thanks, Erly!
Erly wrote:Plus, you made Unretricted Submarine Warfare a general rule, nevertheless, only subs could historically do it. That is because if you use surface warships, you just do a blockade, as the enemy merchant ships can detect you and make an alternative route, but the subs simply sunk the cargo ships undetected.
I am afraid that I don't understand either part of this assumption, nor the conclusion:

1) How do merchant ships 'detect' enemy warships? They can't. In WWI, the aeroplanes were virtually incapable of performing even short-range patrols out to sea in an effective manner, let alone functioning as an ocean-patrolling force that could keep tabs on enemy surface warships tens or hundreds of miles out to sea. Even in WWII, it was not easy at first to track enemy warships and a gap existed in the central Atlantic for some time. Radar, radio-pinpointing and aircraft carriers as well as long range large aircraft brought this to an end in WWII, but in WWI there were no such abilities. And even if you did spot a warship (or a friendly neutral let you know that it had seen one in a certain area), if that information is even ten hours old before your merchant ships reach the area, then the warships can easily be 200 miles away from that point without even straining themselves...and of course by the next day (only 24 hrs later) that distance is a circle nearly 500 miles in radius - i.e. 1,000 miles in diameter!

2) What do you mean by 'make an an alternative route'? If you are heading to a country's ports, there are only a few destinations. These can only be approached from certain directions (the UK has many ports, but the presence of Ireland means that ships are channelled in even this case). If ships are travelling from the US to the UK, there are only a certain number of viable options.

3) Further, even when the merchants see the warship at maximum visibility range, it is already too late. The warships probably have a cruise speed of 20+ knots, whilst the overwhelming majority of transport vessels in WWI would be unlikely to manage more than 10 for any period of time... Assuming that the warships and the merchant vessels see each other at something like 15-20 miles, there is little the merchant ships can do - they will be run down in no time. Gun ranges for the time would have been 4+ miles for most cruisers (more for battleships), so the gap would need to be closed by only 10-15 miles - doable by a warship in little over one hour even if the merchant were sailing directly away...

If you are talking about a a close-in blockade (maybe even within or almost within sight of shore), then the only way to get merchant vessels safely into port would be to destroy those warships blockading you - aircraft can do nothing against them at this time. It hardly matters if the merchant ships know the warships are there if they still have to sail past them to reach the port...

It sucked to be a merchant navy sailor in WWI... :(
Caractacus.

pellulo
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Re: About Subs and Cruisers

Post by pellulo » Mon Dec 15, 2014 10:40 pm

Both sides were surprise the power a sub. had, in the early part of the war, a German sub. sank a few old style dreadnaught ships in one day. Perhaps to show what a danger subs. were, for round one the Axis subs. could hit on a three and below. Axis submarines sank more ships in WWI than WWII, considering they were a few times more U-boats operating in the second world war. Thanks, Pellulo


Last bumped by Anonymous on Mon Dec 15, 2014 10:40 pm.
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