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  1. Interesting proposition concerning the armor modifiers. I think I see what you mean. Once all of the modifiers are applied, do the penetration values approximate, say, DeMarre, or Krupp, or the Thompson universal formula? I'm not familiar with Rule the Waves, unfortunately, so I can't say how this compares. Regarding a retreat, I think it is often true-to-form, a good thing. Would not a seriously damaged vessel retreat, to save life and the ship itself? That said, it is a little frustrating, because we then have no real win condition. You definitely don't need to sink the whole opposing side to win in "real life," but that's not present here. Not yet, anyway. We can't deny bases, set blockades, bombard airfields, destroy port facilities, land troops, whatever, that an unopposed force could perform with impunity. So we don't have any "mission accomplished" feeling when the enemy just cuts and runs. For custom battles, if all forces on one side retreat, the battle simulator should allow the battle to "end" at our discretion. The simulator would show an after-action scene, with losses and damage for each side. Maybe we could also set the AI behavior, to "never retreats," "trying to escape," or something in the middle. That would go part of the way; the rest, I think, would be dependent on campaign.
  2. This patch is very nice. The new hulls are fun to play with, I especially like the catapult on Zara. Maybe we will have scouts and spotting planes one day. Custom battles look great. Once we can save designs there, I think it will be even better. The new scenarios are good. I think another cool one would be attack/defense on a port, with forts and mines. Definitely a huge piece of naval warfare there. In terms of things to improve, I think further relaxation of snap points is needed, especially for barbettes. No doubt the auto-generator finds them useful when trying to make rational designs, but for us I'd like few restrictions. If we want to build idiotic monstrosities, let us do so, though with penalties. It may serve as small lesson. AP is improved, but from what I glean, the penetration values are still too low. The base pen looks to refer to iron plate, which may be our "problem," because it seems fairly reasonable for homogeneous steel. What penetration formula does the game use? Is it proprietary? And why are the Mark 5 "standard" shells about twice the reasonable weight for their caliber? (maybe a lb to kg conversion, or lack thereof?) Regarding small guns, I think they are still undertuned. Part of the issue stems from the abundance of armor -- without knowing the specifics of the in-game ship layout, it looks that the armor covers too much area. An increase of rate of fire (still somewhat low at high Marks) could help. A better approach may be to give an inverse bonus to gun size: the smaller the gun, the less the penalty it takes from high target speed and small target size. Anti-torpedo guns would fulfill their purpose, while not overwhelming the big guns when fighting battleship to battleship.
  3. The classic "quick-firing" (QF) gun evolved in the 1880s from machine-guns meant to defend against torpedo boats. These guns used brass cartridge cases to form a gas seal, such that the breech-block could be simplified. With their simple fixed or semi-fixed ammunition, quick-operating breech, and reduced need for bore clearance, these guns fired fast compared to conventional bag-loading screw-breech guns. A 105mm M119 "QF"-type howitzer firing. Note the unitary fixed ammunition, as well as the rapid reload. The breech uses a sliding block rather than a screw interlock. While conventional big guns were needed to fire armor-piercing solid shots, so as to penetrate the thickest armor on enemy battleships, QF guns could fire great volumes of high-explosive shells at attacking torpedo boats. Crucially, they could also wreck the unarmored upper works of enemy battleships. Battleships of the 1880s often only had armor to protect their vitals from heavy shots (compare with the later all-or-nothing concept), so much of their sides were vulnerable to even small explosive shells. New vessels in the 1890s thus had regions of medium armor to protect against QF guns. The US Navy did not have the technology to make big QF guns when designing the battleships Indiana, Iowa, and Kearsarge. To compensate for a lack of 6in QF guns, the Americans instead implemented 8in bag-loading screw-breech guns. It was reasoned that these big guns, though they might only fire once every two minutes, would be able to penetrate medium armor meant to keep out the shells of 6in QF guns. The battleship Indiana. Two of the four wing 8in turrets can be clearly seen, one deck above the main 13in guns. Unfortunately, these guns would tend to produce a lot of blast effect, and themselves would be vulnerable to the blast effect of the main battery. This made their placement awkward. An ensign, Joseph Strauss, came up with a solution for Kearsarge. The 8in guns would be mounted in a two-story turret, atop the 13in main guns. This made a quadruple turret, one each fore and aft. This would neatly save on centerline space and reduce the effects of blast. The 8in guns would have separate elevation but would not have a separate traverse. Rather, they would train with the 13in main guns. At the short ranges envisioned, any difference in lead between the guns would be negligible if firing at the same target. The slow-loading 13in guns would fire only about once every five minutes, so the turret could turn to let the 8in guns fire at other targets if needed. As all four superimposed 8in guns would would contribute to a broadside, four 8in guns could be eliminated compared to the Indiana and Iowa. The battleship Kearsarge. Both quadruple turrets are visible. Note the lack of wing turrets. A diagram of Kearsarge. Note how the hoists for the 8in guns descend through the 13in segment. However, after the Kearsarge class (begun 1896, completed 1900), the 8in gun was dropped. It could after all penetrate medium armor only with AP shells, and with the development of US QF 6in guns these weapons were no longer considered useful. The complex, untried two-story turret was also dropped. Partially, it seems, there were fears that damage could kill the single trainer or the training engine and thus knock out all four guns. As consequence, the Illinois and Maine II classes had 6in secondary batteries. The experience of the 1898 Spanish-American War changed things again. 8in guns made several hits on Spanish ships and were admired for their range and flat trajectory (and, as Friedman points out, probably their decent rate of fire). However, new QF 6in guns were evidently not present in any quantity, and the 8in gun had an accuracy of only ~4%. Though new gun technology was being implemented, new guns were not put in action: the Kearsarges were not finished until 1900, and the Illinois and Maine II classes had some years yet to completion. The Virginia class was therefore constructed with a new model of quadruple two-story turret, incorporating 8in guns atop 12in guns. The 8in guns again had no separate traverse. However, dissatisfaction with the two-story turret soon flared. Though superposed turrets were again considered, the Connecticut/Vermont class was built instead with four twin 8in wing turrets instead. The small Mississippi class likewise lacked two-story turrets. USS Virginia. Both quadruple turrets are visible, as is one of the two wing 8in turrets. A closeup of one of Virginia's quadruple turrets. Advances in propellants and ammunition handling and loading in the years since the Kearsarge design drastically increased the rate of fire of bag-loading screw-breech guns. Indeed, US 6in bag-loading guns attained nearly the same rate of fire as QF fixed-ammunition guns. This had severe effects on the superposed turret. Friedman thus quotes Admiral Schroeder, a commander of Virginia: "by a strange paradox, the great increase in the rapidity of fire of our heavy guns from, say, one shot in three minutes to three shots in one minute, virtually neutralized the advantage of having 8-inch guns where thy could be fired without interfering with the 12-inch. Whenever a gun is fired in a turret there is a certain amount of concussion which precludes firing another for a few seconds; and, even with smokeless powder, the heated gasses linger for an appreciable time in front after each discharge, making it impossible to point for the next shot until they have been wafted away. With the two 12 inch in a turret firing alternately, and each able to fire every twenty seconds, there would be only about ten seconds between 12-inch shots; and if the 8 inch were to 'butt in,' they would probably interfere with the next 12in shot--the last thing to be thought of. As that problem gradually developed, and the rapidity of fire increased, each ship tried different combinations of fire to obtain maximum opportunities for fire--single-barrelled salvos, double-barrelled salvos, double-barrelled 8-inch salvos combined with single-barrelled 12 inch, and so on. But the ultimate conclusion was that rapidity of fire had knocked out the superposed turret." By the time the Virginia class was completed, Dreadnought was already under construction. New battleships had no purpose for intermediate batteries: Big guns would be needed for long-range combat, and smaller, handy guns would be needed against torpedo boats and destroyers. At long ranges, the different trajectories of 8in and 12in+ guns guns would require different leads, so a single traverse would no longer be sufficient. Seven battleships carried these weapons: the Kearsarge and Kentucky, and the Virginia, Nebraska, Georgia, New Jersey, and Rhode Island. All were completed after the Spanish-American War, and all served through WWI. Several were also involved in actions to quell war and regional unrest in Mexico and the Caribbean. To my limited knowledge none ever fired a shot in anger. Kearsarge had its weapons removed in 1920 and was converted to a crane ship, serving many years until being scrapped in 1955. Virginia and New Jersey were sunk as targets in Billy Mitchell's famous 1923 demonstration. The rest were scrapped in 1923. Though many later ships would be fitted with small anti-torpedo-boat guns and AA guns atop their main gun turrets, these weapons were not intended to be manned for combat in fleet actions against other battleships. Neither were they truly integrated with the turret as the 8in guns had been. It would be interesting to see superposed turrets in the game. I am not sure it would be productive to spend much (or any) time on implementing them, but as a early tech it would be cool to have.
  4. Precisely! Thus the (apparent) lack thereof in the game is a problem. Interesting, I had perhaps mistakenly thought the game's ammo detonations were from turret hits. Maybe there is some barbette system hidden away from us. Certainly the selectable barbette option reduces detonation risk. The question, I think, is how. Are there anything akin to magazines on our ships? Would be interesting to see if our turret placement actually affects placement of "magazine" compartments belowdecks.
  5. The fundamental issue with barbettes is that they appear to only be associated with the placeable object. Most guns of 8in and greater caliber had armored barbettes, or at least big armored handling rooms right under the turret. An armored ammunition hoist or barbette tube would extend down to the armored magazine roof, if the barbette itself did not go that far. As near I can tell in the game, turrets placed directly on the deck don't have an ammunition supply chain of any kind. At least, we have no indication showing they do, apart perhaps for the "ammunition detonation" critical, which I suspect is an abstracted modifier to hits on the gun mount itself. This gives "deck-mounted" guns a certain advantage over "barbette-mounted" guns which do have a part of the ammunition supply modeled. We cannot specify transverse bulkhead thicknesses, so any hits from fore or aft can cause huge damage if the extended deck and belt are too thin. Thus our purported all-or-nothing design would be fatally flawed when attempting a chase or retreat. Versus, say, the Nevada class, which had no belt or thick deck forward of No.1 turret, but did have 13-8in transverse bulkheads. Neither can we really specify increased compartmentation in the fore and aft parts of the ship, which would go a long way in increasing damage resistance in these unarmored places. The "compartmentation" slider we have affects the whole ship, as near I can see.
  6. Gotcha, makes sense. On the contrary, I don't think most people are familiar with the process of air-injection braking on Diesels, so I talked about that previously in this thread. For that matter, I've never heard a good description of exactly how the Vulcan transmissions worked on the German ships. Could they actually change gears? I always imagined them as a bunch of planetary reduction differentials with clutches so each Diesel could be disconnected for maintenance.... A quibble, but there were seven Diesel-powered German cruisers, out of the twelve. The K light cruisers, Leipzig, and Nuernberg had combined turbine/Diesel plants, per Koop and Schmolke's book. Plus, for Diesels, we have hundreds of the American escort destroyers (including a bunch of Diesel-electrics! I agree, electric transmission would be fun to see), or the eclectic Japanese Diesel warships, or the planned Spaehkreuzers, or the Z-51, or yada yada yada. I would be curious to know more about their transmissions too. On an unrelated note, did WWI or WWII German submarines have air injection braking? Relevant for diving, as at least on Japanese subs the engines had to be completely stopped for declutching and transfer to electric propulsion. Obviously the Americans dodged that problem by abandoning direct drive in favor of pure electric transmission. I don't know if you saw my posts earlier in this thread, but I strongly agree that stopping mid battle is idiotic. I support adding a reverse only if ramming is introduced. I support adding crash-astern maneuvers only because it would help avoid torpedoes and collisions. You don't have to come to a complete stop to avoid something bad, is my point, deceleration to a slower speed may be enough. If a destroyer launches a 40 knot torpedo 1000 yards away, that's a solid 45 seconds to impact, within the timespan Lewis gave for a merchant ship to achieve full astern RPM. You may be able to dodge it by slowing down a little. It would be nice to have as an option, is my argument. I think we can agree that actually travelling backwards is probably a bad idea. Very cool information on those turbo electrics!
  7. Is that always true? Is an emergency one that takes seconds? What if you do have two minutes to respond? Takes a long time to move your battleship's course. If you're trying to avoid the flagship, would that not be enough time to start (not complete, obviously) stopping? Why does, for instance, Lewis' Principles of Naval Architecture devote a pretty substantial amount of time to this? When is it useful, then? I ask as a genuine question, because it's pretty standard in trials. Also not quite true for the German Diesel-powered units, which used push-button controls. Edit: Found the answer in Lewis, pages 257-258 in volume 1. It is generally held that at high speeds, turning is superior to crash stopping for avoiding a collision, if turning is possible. This is evident because the advance is less than the ahead reach of a crash astern, and because directional instability will occur with crash stops. The example Lewis uses are from trials of turbine-driven single-screw tanker ships of 190000dwt, trialed at 200,000 to 225000 tonnes. They begin crash stops at ahead speed of 16 knots, attain full astern RPM between 44 and 102 seconds, and stop within ~20 minutes at head reach of 4000-5000 meters. This is basically maximum possible momentum (about the most possible in game), at moderate power and forward speed. If a hard turn is attempted, a maximum head reach of 1000 meters is incurred instead, showing the value of turning instead. However, at lower speeds, 12 knots and below, crash stops become more and more useful, until about 6 knots, when turning has no advantage. Lewis also mentions rudder cycling as a way to maintain directional control for radical maneuvers, but I think that would be too complicated to realistically add. Uh, my mistake, I think I wrote poorly when I said "box." "Case" is better. I was not trying to claim there was anything like gear changes, except maybe for those weird Vulcan devices on the German "pocket battleships," and maybe their interwar light cruisers. I think you make a good point regarding increased stress. Also a great point regarding low steam pressures at starting. There were no clutches, most of the time, for reverse turbines. The reverse was most often a separate stage on the low pressure enclosure. That is, certainly for Japanese ships -- the astern turbines were always connected to the shafts on their cruisers. This is per Japanese Cruisers of the Pacific War. I think most navies used the same arrangement, from those examples I am familiar with. Per Anatomy of the Ship: Dreadnought, the eponymous ship lacked any clutches, even for the cruising turbines. There is a notable difference here in that the reverse turbines had their own enclosure aft of the ahead turbines on the outer shafts, though on the inner shafts they were part of the low pressure enclosure. Koop and Schmolke's book on Bismarck apparently indicates the astern units were integral to the intermediate and LP ahead turbines. Likewise, their book on German destroyers indicates the astern stages were part of destroyer LP turbines. The Anatomy of the Ship book on HMS Belfast says they were integrated in the LP; the one on Bartolomeo Colleoni says they were stages on the HP and LP.
  8. It's important to say that a crash stop is defined only as reversing the engines at speed. The question is not so much "will the ship stop suddenly," which I think has been well-said to be "no," but rather whether applying a reverse to the engine will slow the ship demonstrably compared to the same vessel just stopping the engine. For the Annapolis example, was 1000 yards when stopping the engine, or when reversing, a crash stop? Or do we have reason to think this was not possible?
  9. @RAMJB, I apologize for what may be seen as rudeness, but do you have citations for these statements? I am not sure they are well founded. It was my (perhaps mistaken) belief that crash stops are trialed in almost all ocean-going vessels, and have been for quite some time now. In regards to the viability of crash stops, aren't they not uncommon when avoiding ship collision? I cannot say for older engines, but modern ship drivetrains are certainly robust enough to weather a crash stop, gas turbine, Diesel, or steam turbine. Not something you would want to do regularly, but it won't destroy anything immediately. Are not the torsional loads imposed basically similar between a full-power start and a crash stop? Titanic's outer shafts were driven by reciprocating engines, so only the central shaft was turbine driven. There was no reverse turbine, but the outer shafts could reverse. To my knowledge the crash stop was successfully trialed during proving. Also, it is important to note that gearboxes were not in common service until ~1915. Direct drive was required before then.
  10. How can national passives go well, I wonder? I think they will only reinforce strange biases and misperceptions. What do we do about China? In First Sino-Japanese War, they had four basically independent, separate navies. The satraps were infighting and half the nation's armies and ships just didn't show up to fight Japan. After that, they lose the greater part of their naval power; then the country falls into chaos; then the navy recovers slightly in the warlord era; finally Japan shows up again and ruins everything. Hardly a constant picture, so how can we assign constant bonuses and penalties? Likewise Russia's navy, which radically changed in character between the Russo-Japanese War, WWI, and WWII. I think passives tied to governments, policies, or alliances makes more sense.
  11. That may well be, but it is an accepted tenet that using your resources, even with the possibility of losing them forever, is justified if it gains you something good later. Losing a vessel in a ramming attack is just fine if that helps you win the war. With the benefit of hindsight it is obvious ramming would become useless as a general tactic. In 1890, rams were sometimes thought valuable, and several dedicated ram-ships were then in service. The US built the big harbor-ram USS Katahdin in 1893. The Royal Navy's Archer class of cruisers was to be specially reinforced for ramming, and the Arrogant class of cruisers were literally designed as "fleet rams," commissioned 1898 to 1900. As late as 1903 the British Director of Naval Construction was asking for reinforced destroyer bows, so as to improve ramming against other destroyers. Indeed, Royal Navy destroyers were specifically strengthened to ram submarines after an incident in October 1914, when a rammed submarine failed to sink! To my knowledge, ramming was still considered a good tactic against submarines as late as 1917 (that is, more than just an opportunistic approach). If our timespan is 1890-1945, that's halfway through. There are several significant ramming or collision incidents during our time span. The British lost the battleship HMS Victoria to a ram in 1893, even if it was "self-inflicted." During WWI, HMS Broke rammed and sank not one, but two destroyers: SMS G42 and HMS Sparrowhawk. Postwar, the Japanese lost destroyer Warabi to a ram from Jintsu, 1927. During WWII, HMS Glowworm famously rammed Admiral Hipper in a desperate action. The cruiser HMS Curacoa was lost to a collision with RMS Queen Mary. Kennedy's torpedo boat was rammed. Recall the damage inflicted at Midway, when Mogami and Mikuma collided. They lagged behind, so Mikuma was caught and sunk shortly thereafter. That's 10% of Japan's heavy cruiser force damaged or sunk from that incident. Never mind that was but one of three collisions for Mogami.... As for submarines: K1, K17, K4, HMS Cachalot, F-1, Tembien, Cobalto, I-63, I-1, U-89, UC-75, U-103, U-66, U-100, U-223, U-224, U-357, U-444, U-665, and Щ-305, all rammed and sunk. So I think it might be profitable to add ramming in. Not only would it look cool, it would also require a re-evaluation of that infuriating collision avoidance, and it might change our tactics to a degree.
  12. The next alpha build will have some changes to torpedo damage. We will have to see. Part of the problem is that right now the AI is too stupid to realize you're closing for a huge torpedo launch. It knows to try evasion when torpedoes are spotted in the water, but the approach of a whole destroyer squadron doesn't seem to ring any bells. We'll have to see if that is ever changed, too.
  13. I think reverse is a good idea, provided ramming is added. May need to back out after the ram. A "crash stop" button is a good idea too. Most warships really could perform a crash stop, which does not require a double rudder, only a reverse. The double rudder can add to this effect. Dreadnought indeed had reversing turbines, incidentally. The HP astern turbines were on the outer shafts, and the LP astern were integrated with the LP ahead on the inner shafts. "A lack of astern power" is often cited because they were not very powerful, not that they were nonexistent. Contrary to what has been said before, a ship does not necessarily need to come to a complete stop to go into reverse. Your car doesn't, either -- it will work, most of the time. The issue is that it strains the drivetrain, especially the gearbox. Ships tend to have very robust drivetrains. In a direct drive ship like Dreadnought, there is no gearbox of any kind. All of Dreadnought's turbines -- ahead, astern, and even the nonfunctional cruising turbines -- were on the shaft, going straight to the propeller. Most steam piston-engine designs likewise were and are direct drive. With geared turbines, usually the gearbox consists of two to four gears permanently in sync, with no shifting, making them comparatively durable. Cruising turbines usually had a separate gear reduction, but astern turbines (at least for Japanese ships) were often integral to the ahead turbine housing and had no separate gearing. On a steam piston-engine, reverse is selected by changing the valve timing. This is easy to do. The rotating momentum of the shaft will have to compress steam, causing a braking effect and eventually reversing the prop. This will slow the ship. Likewise, with a turbine, opening the astern turbine valve will cause pressures that actively slow the prop. Blade and vane cavitation may very well occur and blades could break, but this was hardly unusual for the time. Likewise, cavitation on the props will be high, which may damage them. If you're dodging a torpedo or trying not to ram your own flagship, possibly damaging the props or astern turbines may be justified. The ship will still take a little while to stop. Going full astern will simply slow the ship faster. With a Diesel plant with mechanical transmission, air injection can be used to halt the crankshaft quickly. The engine can then be started in the reverse direction. Again, this leads to stress on the engine, but this may be justified. A Diesel-electric or turbo-electric plant can apply full power astern, so theoretically it can crash stop even quicker. A ship with controllable pitch props can change the pitch without stopping the shaft, which may effect a reverse. This is largely outside our timespan. Some German light cruisers in the interwar era had controllable pitch, but with some very extreme caveats, such that it might be irrelevant to actually add it to the game. Lastly, as mentioned before, turning one or both rudders will slow the ship, as will deploying the anchor. Deploying the anchor for this purpose can only be done safely in shallow waters, and even then one risks a chain break or motor brake failure. This video has some fairly good information on the subject: https://youtu.be/seUOEt4l97c?t=371 On another note, it's important to point out that a bow-facing line-abreast general attack was a well-accepted tactic until the First Sino-Japanese War. The Austrians experienced success with a wedge attack in 1866 at the Battle of Lissa. See below for the initial engagement: the Austrians are in red and the Italians in blue. The Italians, who "crossed the T", actually lost. This engagement famously featured several ramming actions, which gave life to the ram idea for years onward. Line-abreast is in the game, under the formations tab. Of course, at Yalu River, this was shown to be not so great of a stratagem -- which is why it was largely abandoned. Here, the Chinese are in grey and the Japanese in black. The bottom panel is the initial engagement. Though this diagram is "from memory," the depiction of the initial disposition is fairly accurate. The Chinese attempted a line-abreast attack and were defeated. The idea of "bow tanking," in the sense of stopping mid battle to continue firing forward, is of course ludicrous.
  14. https://www.history.navy.mil/research/library/online-reading-room/title-list-alphabetically/w/war-damage-reports.html On the off chance you have not seen this, a large number of US war damage reports can be found here. Together they contain a few hundred detail shots of shell, bomb, and torpedo hits on carriers, battleships, cruisers, destroyers, and cargo ships, as well as extensive analysis of their effects. Many are internal shots, though. The USS San Francisco report in particular has about 40 pictures of hits from 5 inch to 14 inch guns. A few more not featured on the Navy site are here (just scroll down): http://www.ibiblio.org/hyperwar/WhatsNew.html Some examples: 8-inch shell explosion damage on cruiser USS San Francisco. Torpedo hit on cargo vessel USS Alhena. Stern bomb damage on cruiser USS Birmingham. Stern torpedo damage on carrier USS Independence. Partial penetration on barbette by an 8-inch shell on cruiser USS Boise.
  15. To my knowledge most warships are able to crash stop, which is when the engines are set to full astern when the ship is moving forward at high speed. You are certainly correct that this can be hard on machinery, but they are built to take it in emergencies. I believe the major issue (?) is cavitation of the propellers.
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