From: Bedfordshire UK
We like to put our fleets out to sea though!!! We all do... So it's no longer abstract or quiet at Sea. Not unless you got a guy that is lazy with his Navy. Sea battles cost the West a lot, not really important in the East at all. Had fleets gone toe to toe, I could see a lot more going on. Bismark was sunk cause of a massive effort... If Germany had the kind of operations I make out in the Atlantic Naval losses would have been a lot higher than they are, U-boats are harder to detect than Surface Fleets!
~Fleet Detection raised makes sense?
Quite agree, that's the good part about the game, it can be adjusted to suit what each player is looking for.
What I am describing is that fleets are going to sea, I am getting 100s of combat reports, but most of them are 'sea bombardment' (air attacks), or submarine attack, with some surface action against transports and convoys. I am not saying that this is perfect, but it is close to the historical record, there were not many surface gun actions in the European war. I only listed the wartime attacks on capital ships in port to indicate that they were in as much danger when anchored as they were at sea and the game is representing this fact.
Prinz Eugen was able to return to port undetected with one of the most intensive searches going on the Atlantic, the Bismarck would also have returned mainly unscathed, but for the injudicious radio communication by Lutjens and a lucky hit from an ageing Swordfish. The Italian fleet used its superior speed to leave the scene of action whenever possible and only a single hit, at extreme range, by Warspite (why didn't we save that ship ?) made Cape Spartivento into a gun action. Surface actions by major warships were very few, whilst air and submarine attacks were everyday events, which is what I am reading in the game reports.
None of this should exclude players from wanting to try different strategies, which is a major part of the fun in this game, with its ability to change settings.
However, that doesn't means it's all OK, some things settings can't fix, an Italian BB fleet is able to attack and destroy an AI controlled transport group in the MED, firstly the transport group probably shouldn't have been there, unless it was heading for Malta (AI convoy routing problem), secondly, in the presence of enemy fleets, it should have had a substantial escort. It's not enough to have friendly forces in the same sea zones, the transport groups should be moving as part of a fleet also containing BB and CA groups, as close escort, ideally with CV/CVE groups, if available. The AI should be made to do this, as that would be a more realistic deployment and it would have probably resulted in a surface action between the attacking force and the escort (which is the effect we are looking for).
Just increasing detection chances may merely result in a further slaughter of unescorted AI transport fleets, which the enemy will be better able to detect.
The point has been made before that the AI tends to send out fleets in many small packets, which can easily be destroyed in detail, or are too small to be effective if they do get a sighting, instead of forming sensible packages of ship groups in the fleets it creates. If the AI fleet deployment could be improved it would go a long way to providing the combat effects we want to see.
I don't know what can be done with the game system, but if naval superiority could be calculated, as air superiority is now being displayed, this would help in calculating the need for close escorts and the type and size the escort should be. The escort you need in mid-Atlantic sea zones is not the same as will be needed in the Central Med.
When fleets are providing 'alternative supply' to ground units, as during and after amphibious operations, there should be an increase in sighting and engagement chances. Fleets cannot easily evade when unloading supplies, or maybe naval superiority could be part of the calculation, affecting the rate of supply in areas where the enemy has naval superiority.
So, I am in no way proposing Lazy Navy, my navies are very active, as are the AI forces, but can see how significant improvements could be provided, firstly, with adjustments to the scenario 'const' file engagement chance and sighting settings, but mainly by making the naval game work better overall, if the game system is capable of doing it.
We have a fleet tick boxes for 'engage' and 'raiders', perhaps we can refine these tick boxes for aggressiveness, or caution, with the player choosing whether fleets are looking for action, or just scouting and providing supplies, the tick box selection would adjust the chance of engagement, especially when opposing fleets are both on aggressive settings. If you choose to be set fleets at cautious, then they may not be able to carry out amphibious landings, alternative supply, bombardment and spotting missions, depending on naval superiority in sea zones. Obviously if the enemy has no naval units present in a sea zone, it should not matter much what setting you have.
I would also like to see some account taken of the sea zones that a surface fleet passes through during movement, if it passes through an area where there are enemy bomber units in range, there should be a risk of interdiction attacks, otherwise you can pass from one safe area, to another safe sea area, with no risk in between.
< Message edited by Rasputitsa -- 1/20/2013 12:37:19 PM >
"We have to go from where we are, not from where we would like to be" - me