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akd last won the day on July 2 2016

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  1. There is a deep misrepresentation of the effect torpedoes had on tactics in the game because it is entirely focused on spotting torpedoes and then reacting to the torpedo itself. This means that if it is spotted early (and the game gives very generous, even near fantastical [sonar], means of spotting torpedoes), the torpedo will miss and the destroyer will be ineffective. If you are attacking the AI and torpedoes are not spotted early enough to dodge individually, the AI will be hit. The AI won't take proactive action to prevent that from happening if it doesn't see torpedoes. (There is of course a huge imbalance here between player and AI, as the player is given multiple "meta" means to know if and when torpedoes have been launched, but the AI must spot the torpedoes themselves in the water.) That is generally not what happened in fleet battles. Maneuver and tactics were shaped more by the threat of torpedoes that would probably not be seen or not seen early enough for a battle line to maneuver against. If a destroyer division maneuvered to make a torpedo attack, an opposing fleet had to react, even if that meant spoiling its gunnery against an opposing fleet. This meant that battles could be shaped by torpedo vessels even if they average torpedo vessel alone was highly unlikely to ever score a hit with a torpedo. Individual vessels could be "ineffective" while still collectively shaping a battle. RTW2 reflects this reality much better. You have to react to the apparent intent to attack with torpedoes as you are not given any indication whether they have been launched or not. The AI player likewise has to react to the threat of your torpedo vessels and has informational parity (although it is obviously far less capable of micromanaging attack and defense than the player).
  2. There might be differences by doctrine (the expected load out of a set of guns in battle, not an on the fly change issued in the middle of the loading cycle), not on a per gun basis, but for example all quarter deck carronades might be loaded with canister because of the short range function and position relative to a target (ability to sweep the opposing deck), whereas gun deck cannon would be loaded with round shot, as canister would be useless firing into the side of a ship, even at close range. Another example would be single shot in carronades (they could not be double loaded) while long-guns were at the same time double-shotted. I would suggest allowing different ammunition a per deck or gun type basis.
  3. That’s not entirely correct. What really drives the equation is relative movement. Two ships sailing on a parallel course at 30kn is a completely different gunnery problem than the same ships on steeply converging courses. But yes, relative to a constant course, adding changes to course and speed would increase the problem. But speed itself not as dominant a factor as the game portrays.
  4. Yes, it is what drove real tactics and technology of the time, but: They should not be so easy to spot. They should not be so easy to store in huge numbers and reload. The threat of torpedoes shaped battles more than known torpedoes themselves.
  5. Rewriting history is why many of those objects were erected in the first place.
  6. Some underwater installations had limited rotation, and later installations (e.g. Nelson / Rodney) relied on gyro steering. https://www.navalgazing.net/Battleship-Torpedoes-Part-1
  7. Yes, HE in game seems to behave more like Common or Semi-AP shell, not like thin-cased, quick-fuzed HE shell. Generally the latter was reserved for shore bombardment as it applicability to naval combat was limited. If it is common shell or Semi-AP, then it should behave like AP just with less penetration and more post-penetration damage. Splinter damage is a complex topic that is handled poorly in game. I don’t think there is any accounting of secondary effects from splinters beyond hit point damage. No splinters are generated by near misses and hits don’t seem to ever have splinter effects like you might see generated in the log during an RTW game.
  8. What do you see odd about this, or did a “not” get left out?
  9. This all sounds amazing, but I am concerned about the “industry standard” day / night cycle. Haven’t played KCD (damn, keep meaning to pick that up), so I don’t have that reference point, but consider that the passage of time and visibility were central to 18-19th sailing. One of the iconic age of sail encounters would be the chase into dusk, trying to reach a prize before the sun sets and your quarry disappears into the gloom (and probably changes course so you have to guess his intent). That is all undermined if 1.) transition to / from day to night and back is just a quick visual event and 2.) if visual conditions do not radically alter during transition. It would seem that a “captain’s cabin” time compression mechanic would make fake day / night cycles unnecessary. Likewise, consider that day and night cycles (and even moon cycles!) are essential to smuggling and need to at least conform to the scale of the world to be used in a meaningful way. One of the big disappointments of NA was never getting to enjoy a battle at sunset. You’d blink and it would be over. Also, will weather be local or global? Would there be the possibility of escaping into a fog bank or a rain squall in the distance?
  10. The way to fix it is to modify accuracy using relative speed (i.e. rate of range change and rate of bearing change) not absolute speed. There is no difference in the gunnery problem (ignoring own ship speed effects like vibration, spray, etc.) presented by two ships sailing on parallel courses at 20 knots and two ships sailing on parallel courses at 30 knots.
  11. The problem is there is no way to know which of the many torpedoes they took sealed their fate. Was it number 5 or number 10? Nonsense. It is not like armor. Once used in a area it can no longer protect the ship because it works by absorbing blast through deformation of the elements. Like the crumple zone on a car, if you get front-ended again, you’re in trouble. Working TDS almost always leads to some loss of buoyancy also (part of the TDS may include air spaces), although it not supposed to be fatal.
  12. Based on an enormous amount of first hand accounts of battle, complete fog of war on the enemy beyond the basics of position, class and easily observable conditions (think “on fire” or “sinking”) would be much closer to the type of information feed tactical decisions were made on, but I agree various different sources of information could come together to provide knowledge that was less than none, but nowhere near perfect, and would generally be offset with a large amount of completely wrong information.
  13. Warfare doesn’t work like that. Imperfect information is the norm, and dealing with it is part of tactics (and should be part of a wargame). Puzzle games give you complete information then ask you to find the perfect solution. On the specific issue of omniscient knowledge of enemy weapon status, it is particularly harmful to making a good wargame because it is information only the player can use.
  14. They are not search devices, nor useful for that purpose. Until radar comes along, the primary means of search is Mk. I eyeball aided by binoculars (and as such there is not significant differences ability across the time frame or between nations. Look here for US Navy 1943 lookout manual: https://www.history.navy.mil/research/library/online-reading-room/title-list-alphabetically/l/lookout-manual-1943.html It's really down to training, height of observation and visual conditions, nothing else.
  15. I’m not so sure it even makes sense as a design choice, especially when you consider that in a campaign setting these are per ship / per ship class decisions, when ammunition and propellants really should be a fleet-wide development, or at least per gun of a particular type. I’m also not so sure that history really suggests there was ever much of a trade-off decision in selecting explosive fillers or propellants. When something better became available, it was generally used. I’d rather see propellants and explosive fillers as a fleet-wide unlock based on technological development level, a doctrine setting that determines how much of various ammo types are carried based on ship class and armament, and leave the individual ship design choice to things that affect the physical storage and handling of ammunition like shell length. Would much rather see those “slots” used for more choices in configuring fire control and propulsion on ships, which were crucial decisions at the ship design level.
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