Yet another noob question (or ten) (Full Version)

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Suhiir -> Yet another noob question (or ten) (10/10/2012 3:42:18 PM)

I'm doing the Guadalcanal scenario (as the allies) because it's big/long enough to allow/force some longer-term planning and requires a good mix of Sub/ASW, surface, and air operations.

I'm in late October now and have a few questions about the results I'm seeing.

1) Surface combat vs the Japanese is suicidal. I know they have a significant advantage in night battles and have avoided them when possible. I've changes out ship captains to ones with decent naval and aggression ratings. But even in day battles a typical encounter is : Japan 1 x CA, 1 x CL, 3 x DD vs 5 x CA, 6 x DD.
The Japanese fire every time they,re fired on so having them outnumbered is a disadvantage as their crews operate at hyper-speed in their gun turrets. Apparently they can fire every gun aboard that's in range while my crews fire one weapon each volley (and rarely 2). I know Japanese torps are MUCH better, but they hit as often as mine miss, that is to say usually. So the normal result of the battle is Japan 1 CA lightly to moderately damaged, 1 CL or DD moderately damaged vs Allied 2 CA's sunk, 1-2 DD's blown to hell/sunk.

What am I missing/doing wrong here?

2) Air-to-air combat is worse then suicidal. Again I've swapped to decent pilots and squadron commanders. But my most recent air battle is the reason for this post. Japan 4 waves of average 30 fighters and 6-10 attack aircraft vs a 106 plane CAP (all 4 carriers with full fighter complement set to 100% CAP).
In any air battle my aircraft suffer 30-50% mechanical failures (out of ammo, low oil pressure, etc.) so never get involved in combat. I see the Japanese have about a 5% mechanical failure rate. Even so my 50ish operational Wildcats fight vs the Japanese Zeros suffering a 2 or 3 to one loss ratio and rarely reach the attack aircraft (who sometime don't even appear on the air battle screen but materialize just in time to attack my ships). They then proceed to hit no less then 20-25% of the time, and do an average of 35 float damage to larger ships and frequently sink smaller outright in one hit. In earlier air vs ship battles vs the Japanese I counted myself lucky to get a 5-10% hit rate and their ships often soaked up 4-6 hits each and sailed happily on.
Now repair ... HA! Send it back to Pearl? The repair times are longer then the scenario so anything significantly damaged is as good as dead (i.e. out of the scenario as a useful unit).

This scenario doesn't give me a year to train pilots so I'm stuck with what I have, and they're apparently inept.
What am I doing wrong here?

3) American sub torps 1942, what more needs to be said. On the rare occasions they hit (maybe 1 in 10) it's a dud. So after a month of efforts I now just leave em in port.
The Japanese on the other hand hit no less then 50% of the time (closer to 80) and one-hit-one-kill is the rule. My ASW efforts consist using the medium bombers in ASW, not that they ever attack anything, but they occasionally spot a sub I then converge 2-4 flotillas each of 4 DD's/SC's and maybe 10-15% of the time spot the sub and search; maybe 25% of the time they actually attack and maybe hit 10% of the time. Net result is 8-16 ships get a (100 * 0.15 * 0.25 * 0.10) = 0.3% (point zero 3 not 3) of damaging the Japanese sub, not it didn't say sink it, haven't sunk one yet. At that rate by the end of the scenario they should have 3-4 damaged subs.

Same question, what am I missing/doing wrong?




witpqs -> RE: Yet another noob question (or ten) (10/10/2012 3:52:15 PM)

For openers, leaving your subs in port. Yes the torpedoes are awful. But they go boom 20% or 30% (I forget) of the times that they hit. Leave them in port they have a 0% hit rate and a 0% explosion rate. That's like not even playing the scenario.

Replace your sub commanders with the most aggressive available. Send them out. Use patrol zones (look at the myriad collection of other threads where people have covered this). Subs are not going to win the scenario for you, but give them a chance to help.




Empire101 -> RE: Yet another noob question (or ten) (10/10/2012 4:20:14 PM)


quote:

ORIGINAL: Suhiir

I'm doing the Guadalcanal scenario (as the allies) because it's big/long enough to allow/force some longer-term planning and requires a good mix of Sub/ASW, surface, and air operations.

I'm in late October now and have a few questions about the results I'm seeing.



2) Air-to-air combat is worse then suicidal. Again I've swapped to decent pilots and squadron commanders. But my most recent air battle is the reason for this post. Japan 4 waves of average 30 fighters and 6-10 attack aircraft vs a 106 plane CAP (all 4 carriers with full fighter complement set to 100% CAP).
In any air battle my aircraft suffer 30-50% mechanical failures (out of ammo, low oil pressure, etc.) so never get involved in combat. I see the Japanese have about a 5% mechanical failure rate. Even so my 50ish operational Wildcats fight vs the Japanese Zeros suffering a 2 or 3 to one loss ratio and rarely reach the attack aircraft (who sometime don't even appear on the air battle screen but materialize just in time to attack my ships). They then proceed to hit no less then 20-25% of the time, and do an average of 35 float damage to larger ships and frequently sink smaller outright in one hit. In earlier air vs ship battles vs the Japanese I counted myself lucky to get a 5-10% hit rate and their ships often soaked up 4-6 hits each and sailed happily on.
Now repair ... HA! Send it back to Pearl? The repair times are longer then the scenario so anything significantly damaged is as good as dead (i.e. out of the scenario as a useful unit).

This scenario doesn't give me a year to train pilots so I'm stuck with what I have, and they're apparently inept.
What am I doing wrong here?





Keep an eye on morale and fatigue, and if too high, get out of the combat area and rest.

Tired/demoralised pilots will be chopped into pieces by experienced enemy units.
If you are flying 100% CAP all the time, your pilots will soon tire.

Also check Commanders ( how good are they? ), and your altitude settings, and plan your CAP accordingly.
If the enemy are coming in at 14,000 feet, set your CAP 5,000 feet above their incoming attacks and hopefully you'll get the jump on them.




aztez -> RE: Yet another noob question (or ten) (10/10/2012 4:21:26 PM)

1) You never can underestimate the good old luck with those battles.

Yes, it mostly is somewhat suicidal but if you have overwhelming force and hit good dice roll. Well, good things happen.

Just remember that you can lose some ships and every single japanese destroyer or cruiser will add up in the end.

2) Wildcat is 50/50 aircraft. Absolutely no match for evenly strenght Zero's. Check the alltitudes since that plays big role.

Also recommend you read LoBaron's air to air manual. I think it is stickied in the war room sector.

3) ASW.. well it old story. Japanese can pretty much nuke your submarines at stock games so you pretty much have to deal with it.

Why it isn't fixed well that is anyones guess but I have given hope out long time ago.

The dud rates get better allthough submarines are intresting. If you lucky they can deliver but don't count on it.

Good luck with the game. Despite some flaws it is still the best large strategy game there is in the market by far.




larryfulkerson -> RE: Yet another noob question (or ten) (10/10/2012 7:27:44 PM)

Hi Suhiir dude.......I tried the Guadacanal scenario one time only and learned my lesson from just 20 turns or less. The Allies have a
ship repair yard at OZ but the Japs have none. So if the Allies can manage to only get their ships lightly damaged in combat they can be
repaired and thrust back into the fray. But any damaged Jap ship stays pretty much damaged for the entire scenario so it's to the
advantage of the Allies to damage those ships somehow. As early as possible. That way they will be kind of the scenario in the long
run. I was playing against a human opponent and pretty soon the turns started to falter and then I never heard from my opponent
again. Suits me 'cause the scenario was getting kinda boring after the first say 20 turns. On the other hand I lost a good opponent.
D'oh.




inqistor -> RE: Yet another noob question (or ten) (10/10/2012 11:22:28 PM)

1-2) There is serious difference in experience levels for both sides. Allies have more units, and better supply situation. Just do not challenge Japan on equal terms.

3) I played this as Japan, and I do not think I have sunk single sub (despite having few discovered for weeks in shallow water around Port Moresby). This time it is because of date - ships just are poorly equipped for ASW, do not waste your efforts for hunting submarines.
As for torpedoes - try to catch unescorted transport ships - that way you will attack on surface with guns. Also hunt damaged ships, you will have greater chance of hit.




Suhiir -> RE: Yet another noob question (or ten) (10/11/2012 1:11:53 AM)

witpqs

My subs are in port because they don't justify the supply expenditure to keep them out not because I don't realize a 1-in-50 chance to both hit and explode is better then none. Given the limited supply available in the scenario and the amount used by medium bombers attempting ASW in Australia I just don't have the resources to spare for 1-in-50 chances. The auto-supply does a wonderful job of stockpiling supplies at bases I'm not using while the ones that need it run on a shoestring. I'm hoping that with luck eventually these unused/unoccupied locations in Australia will reach some sort of supply cap and the "excess" will actually get to the bases I use.

Empire101

Morale is fine, fatigue there's not much I can do about because if I run less then 80-100% CAP the carrier pilots don't have a place to return to. I move in, have one large air battle, move back out and rest, then repeat. Commanders I've changed out already (and they were a pretty good lot to start with) altitude I've split at 11,000 because it's mostly Bettys and their damn torps killing me but one can't ignore the Vals dive bombing me.

aztez

I know luck/die rolls are a factor in games/war and I've had my share, I still have all my CVs and even one operational CA left in late October!

larryfulkerson

The OZ repair yard has been working overtime keeping enough APs/AKs afloat to maintain my supply movement efforts; but mostly trying to repair one of my BBs that will actually be finished before the scenario is over.

inqistor

I suspect the experience levels is the big thing affecting me here. I know you can train aircraft pilots (if you have enough supply available) and I am, but the scenario is too short for this to have a major impact, and on the occasions I MUST engage in air-to-air combat they get shot down anyway, I suppose the 3-4 that are lucky enough to survive 20 air battles will be pretty good pilots. Even with disbanding most of my squadrons to provide aircraft to fill out the remaining ones the aircraft replacement rate is such that I lose more in the AM phase of a battle then I get from the factories in a month )OK, slight exaggeration ... both the AM and PM phase).
And how does one train ship crews? Given the rate at witch they're sunk, and the turn-around on repairs if the ship survives a battle, it's obviously not in battle ... and sailing in circles somewhere out of harms way certainly isn't going to cut it.

##########

I guess my questions were poorly phrased.

How does one hold their own against the Japanese in this scenario?
This is my 3rd/4th attempt at the scenario (I'm using it to learn the game before attempt a full campaign game) and I've learned a LOT, but apparently not enough and not something(s) critical.




JeffK -> RE: Yet another noob question (or ten) (10/11/2012 2:37:02 AM)

quote:

ORIGINAL: Suhiir

witpqs

My subs are in port because they don't justify the supply expenditure to keep them out not because I don't realize a 1-in-50 chance to both hit and explode is better then none. Given the limited supply available in the scenario and the amount used by medium bombers attempting ASW in Australia I just don't have the resources to spare for 1-in-50 chances. The auto-supply does a wonderful job of stockpiling supplies at bases I'm not using while the ones that need it run on a shoestring. I'm hoping that with luck eventually these unused/unoccupied locations in Australia will reach some sort of supply cap and the "excess" will actually get to the bases I use.

At worst, you subs will act as an early warning line, set enough off Truk and Rabaul will either give you good info or force the JFB to waste supply on an ASW Campaign. You might also cause any IJN TF to change his track and burn a few more pounds of fuel. In the latest patch you can set your bases to stockpile and you have always had the ability to store less supply than is currently there.

Empire101

Morale is fine, fatigue there's not much I can do about because if I run less then 80-100% CAP the carrier pilots don't have a place to return to. I move in, have one large air battle, move back out and rest, then repeat. Commanders I've changed out already (and they were a pretty good lot to start with) altitude I've split at 11,000 because it's mostly Bettys and their damn torps killing me but one can't ignore the Vals dive bombing me.

I have never run CAP at more than 60%, I thinkl (subject to an expert confirming) that you are putting all eggs in one basket and might cover 1 raid but subsequent raids get through. Are all CV in the same TF, in this period you would struggle to get 2 CV into a TF and get optimal sorties.

aztez

I know luck/die rolls are a factor in games/war and I've had my share, I still have all my CVs and even one operational CA left in late October!

larryfulkerson

The OZ repair yard has been working overtime keeping enough APs/AKs afloat to maintain my supply movement efforts; but mostly trying to repair one of my BBs that will actually be finished before the scenario is over.

Repairing a BB would be a waste. I think this is a perfect example of trying to run a modern campaign in the SW Pacific in 1942/43.

inqistor

I suspect the experience levels is the big thing affecting me here. I know you can train aircraft pilots (if you have enough supply available) and I am, but the scenario is too short for this to have a major impact, and on the occasions I MUST engage in air-to-air combat they get shot down anyway, I suppose the 3-4 that are lucky enough to survive 20 air battles will be pretty good pilots. Even with disbanding most of my squadrons to provide aircraft to fill out the remaining ones the aircraft replacement rate is such that I lose more in the AM phase of a battle then I get from the factories in a month )OK, slight exaggeration ... both the AM and PM phase).
And how does one train ship crews? Given the rate at witch they're sunk, and the turn-around on repairs if the ship survives a battle, it's obviously not in battle ... and sailing in circles somewhere out of harms way certainly isn't going to cut it.

Maybe lower the operational tempo, after the initial rush for the 'canal you have plenty of time to build/plan for the remaining months.

##########

I guess my questions were poorly phrased.

How does one hold their own against the Japanese in this scenario?
This is my 3rd/4th attempt at the scenario (I'm using it to learn the game before attempt a full campaign game) and I've learned a LOT, but apparently not enough and not something(s) critical.



IMVHO, the Guadalcanal campaign can spin on 1-2 battles, whoever win holds the whip hand though I believe supply is always a problem (as it should be) for the JFB.

I usually spend as much effort in building up a series of support bases (on both sides) rather than trying to fight from Noumea or Truk




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