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Reliability, Fatigue and Secondary guns improvements

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I have a few suggestions that would make ship design more realistic I think:

1) Model reliability of equipment.

2) Consider crew fatigue.

3) Refinements to design features of secondary guns.


As for my first point, I think reliability of components is an important feature in naval combat as ships can break down and get worn out over time. I think it should be possible to design more durable and reliable equipment (but less performance per displacement/cost) while also being able to use equipment optimised for performance (but more likely to break down and wears out faster). While features could be designed in, things would suffer from long time between maintenance and from heavy use. A ship that has been at sea for several months or has been mashing its engines at flank speed for several hours in a battle should be vulnerable to breakdowns and gradual loss of performance - or possibly catastrophic failures. For example, a ship's speed may be reduced by worn out engines and fouling, and overtaxing engines might result in them failing (or potentially the boilers exploding etc) and guns may suffer from barrel wear or misfires if they have been shot many times. I think this could be applied to all components if possible. I think this could be coupled with allowing things like RADAR to be blown off a ship or malfunction or a radio breakdown meaning you lose contact with a ship and can't give them orders.

The second point links somewhat with the first - much like the ship itself the crew could become worn out in battles and over time. Stokers for a coal fired ship shouldn't be able to keep a ship at top speed for such a long time, and gunners reloading heavy shells without assistance likewise would slow down. Obviously, this can be mitigated with automation like oil-firing or autoloading assistance. Possibly combined with point 1. Possibly designs with more comfortable crew quarters would be crew would be more motivated, or perhaps you could try and compensate for fatigue by overcrewing ships so there are more people to do the work. Morale might also have an effect?


Refinements to secondary guns in designer I think should be mainly in the form of splitting them from main guns - allow them to have separately selectable rangefinders, ammo load, explosive type, shell weight etc rather than them having to use the same as the main gun ( possibly with the appropriate logistical problems the differences could cause). For example, you might want long ranged main guns with stereoscopic rangefinders and explosives good for AP use, when you might want coincidence rangefinders and HE shell optimised explosives on secondaries, or secondary fire control might get knocked out with the main one for the main guns still fully operational.

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