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Question about directors and rangefinders.

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Hey y'all!

So I'm not the most well read on the subject of naval warfare, more than the average person for sure but around these parts, not so much.

I'm just confused by how directors are currently implemented. Right now, we have two choices: Stereoscopic Rangefinder which is good for long range and coincidence rangefinder for "base accuracy". Whatever that means.

I'm just wondering... Why is this a choice? Wouldn't ships typically have multiple types of rangefinders and directors? It just seems kinda stupid to me that a ship that has "good" accuracy at 20km but mediocre accuracy at medium to close distances. I'm aware of battles during ww2 where ships were missing at point blank (mostly Japanese ships) but that was less of a director problem and more of a local control issue IIRC.

In Rule the Waves you keep getting better and better types of rangefinders and directors as you progress through the years and there is really no question about which is best. You just get upgrades.

Could someone explain how they work in this game? Why is it a choice, and  should it be? What is base accuracy and what exactly counts as "long range" in this game?

Sorry for the confusion. Maybe I missed some obvious thread that explains everything.

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Coincidence and stereoscopic rangefinders use different mechanisms, but they give similar results. With all othe factors being the same, for the same base optical length (the size of the device), they have equal accuracy.

The advantage of a coincidence rangefinder is its ease of use. However, typically a vertical line must be visible to make a good "cut," so it can be harder to use against airplanes and some very special camouflages. The advantage of a stereo rangefinder is that it can more easily deal with irregular shapes, such as planes. The disadvantage is that it requires innate skill on the part of the user.

Aside from those differences, I would not say one is better than the other at various ranges.

I do not know how they work in the game.

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In the game one gives a bonus to base accuracy and is both lighter and cheaper, while the other gives a bonus to long-range accurary while weighing and costing more.
I don't know which one is which, since I always choose them by stats and pretty much ignore the name. ^^

As for the matter of mixing the two kinds, I think the kind of rangefinder was specific to the nation, so I don't think there was any mixing of the two kinds, but I'm far from an expert on the matter.

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It really depends on the ship, time period and opponets. And on what you want to do and to a certain degree on whether you want to invest the extra tonnage for the long-rangers.

Regardless of all that I wouldn't bother with the long-range stuff until sometime around 1920. Before that ships are just too inaccurate and at least for me those battles usually devolved into mid or short range brawls at 2km or less. I don't know where exactly the point is where long range becomes viable, but I for one always take the coincidence RF prior to 1920 and go by a case by case approch for later periods.

Beyond that it depends a great deal on what you sit in and what you fight. BBs vs. BB is usually something where long-range is king. Same for BCs, since they are quite dependant on dodging shots.

With CA it's much harder to decide. If it's a torpedo setup, short range. If they are supposed to be escorts for BB and BC, then long range could help to snipe the enemy DDs and CLs before they get in torpedo range. If it's a CA vs CA fight, long range is probably better.

For the CLs and DDs I almost always pick short-range.

Edited by Norbert Sattler
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