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Analysis of Naval Gunnery Combat - 3/7/2006 3:01:24 AM   
Tom Hunter


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A day or 3 ago I posted a thread saying naval combat was broken, which sparked a number of replies.

Many of them mis-identified my complaint or attributed the cause to things that were not true in the battle, either purposefully or asking a question, like "were you TFs set for surface combat?"

My complaint was that BBs do not hit often enough, that the in game hit percentage is less than 1% while historical hit rates went from 3% to a little North of 10% with lower numbers occuring under mitigating circumstances such as Bismarks last battle.

For the sake of a complete argument the mitigating factors are:

Heavily outnumbered and under heavy fire
Serious damage such as critical torpedo hit or damage to the gun directors
Suprise


Amiral Laurent and a few others suggested I take a look at the ammo expenditures, that they would show that my hit % were in the acceptable range.

Well I did, and here is the look under the hood. The descriptions of the battle can be found on the Naval Combat is Broken thread and also in my AAR. The short version is:

The Japanese ran into a British TF under Sommerville with 4 BBs cruisers and DDs which they suprised, fought 3 rounds with then broke contact, then re-established contact and fought one round.

The Japanese ran into a TF under Palliser with PoW, Repulse and Cruisers and DDs which was not suprised, they fought 2 rounds, broke off, re-established contact and fought one more round.

The Japanese fought a one round combat with the USS Oklahoma and 13 PT boats, then broke off.



There is one thing that I learned that I'm sure has been discussed before, which is that a lot of British Cruisers are missing thier torpedoes. In total the Brits were missing 36 torpedos from cruisers during this action. The Brits and PT boats fired off 17 torpedo ammo factors representing 115 to 125 torpedos and scored 1 hit. The Japanese fired a large number of torpedos, they had 144 tubes and 1 round of reloads so they could have fired as many as 288! but more likely about 200, of which 5 hit. I'm not complaining about this, just putting it in as a curiousity. I do find it odd that some many British ships are missing TTs.

But the really odd things happen when you look under the hood at the gunnery model.

First everyone needs to understand that an ammo factor on a BB main gun equals about 44 rounds, on an 8" gun it equals 31, on a British 6" gun CL with 8 guns it equals 33 rounds, but if that ships is a British 12 6" gun CL then it equals 50 rounds, and if it is a CL with 6 guns it equals 17 rounds. 4" and 4.5" ammo factors seem to be set at around 20 rounds per factor, except on the British CLAAs where it would be much more.

If this makes no sense to you then your following perfectly. If it seems sensible go to the back of the class.

Finally the time it takes to fire the rounds is always the minimum time, I use Navsource as my reference for rates of fire and when a range is given I used the lower number.

Now lets look at the BBs in the action.

The Warspite was suprised in the first round, just like the rest of the BBs in the first TF. She did fire in on the Atago in round 2 and 3 and also in the second engagment. She hit once in the second engagement with a 15" shell. Total rounds expended 132, precentage of hits: 0.075% which is off from historical by more or less 1 full order of magnitude. Warspite missed at 4000 and 8000 yards and hit at 9000. It takes Warspite 8 minutes to fire off that many rounds.

Warspites secondary battery did not fire at all, but her tertiaries did open up firing 41 shells and hitting once for a 0.024% hit rate, way below historical but theoretically possible. It takes Warspite 37 seconds to fire off this many rounds from these guns.

During the battle Warspite was hit by 2 8” shell from Atago, one during round 2 of the first engagement and 1 during round 1 of the second engagement. No other ships fired on her, and Atago does not appear to have fired during the surprise round, so it does not look as if there are any of the mitigating factors described above in this case.

Revenge, Ramilles and Resolution failed to fire their main guns at all.

Resolution was torpedoed in the surprise round of the first battle and then struck by 12 5.5” and 5’ shells for the rest of the fight, and took an addition torp in round 2, all hits credited to the IJN CL Naka. It is not unreasonable to assume that she was knocked out by the first torpedo hit. So she is affected by one of the factors listed above, end of discussion.

Revenge did open up with her secondaries firing at Haguro in rounds 2 and 3 of the first action and round 1 of the second. She fired 21 shells, hitting once at a range of 4000 yards for a .10% hit rate. It takes her 52 seconds to fire this many rounds. She is hit 3 times by Harugo’s 8” guns in the surprise round and twice by secondaries, in round 2 she is not hit at all, in round 3 she takes one more 8” shell in the first round of the second engagement she takes 1 more 8” shell. None penetrate though one did hit a secondary. In short Revenge is taking fire but not crippling fire.

Ramilles opened fire on the Nachi during round 2 and 3 of the first engagement.
She fired 42 shells from her secondary at 4, 8,000 yards, hitting once for a .023% hit rate. It takes Ramilles 65 seconds to fire off these shells.

She also opens up on Nachi with her tertiary hitting once at 4,000 yards and once at 8,000 yards for a respectable .057% hit rate. Ramilles is hit by 2 8” from Nachi in the surprise round, 2 more in round 2 and 1 in round 3. None penetrate or appear to do systems damange.

Resolution fires 21 secondary shells at Naka during rounds 2 and 3 of the first contact and round 1 of the second. None of them hit. It takes her 53 seconds to fire these rounds. She does surprisingly well considering the punishment she is taking.

The performance of Revenge and Ramilles is curious, they both clearly had targets for the duration of the battle and neither was being hit very hard. Ramilles is especially difficult for me to explain because she was firing and hitting with her secondary and tertiary guns for what must have been an fairly long period but her main guns never opened fire.

I have seen similar results in numerous other BB Vs. CA and CL battles, but nothing like this occurred historically. In fact I am not aware of any battle between BBs and any other warship where the secondary battery engaged but the primary battery did not.

My conclusions:
The combat model breaks down in 2 areas, % of big gun shells scoring hits, and in types of guns engaging.

There hit % Vs. major surface combat units is as much as an order of magnitude too low, another way of putting that is that the historical Warspite should have hit Atago between 4 and 13 times, with 8 being a very reasonable number. I will point out that Atago was firing on Warspite, so she is not maneuvering to avoid Warspite’s gunnery. Instead the model is just not generating hits the way the real men manning the real guns did.

The types of guns engaging is utterly broken. There is no engagement in WWI or WWII where a major warship withheld fire from its main battery but fired its secondary guns on a major target. In fact there are a number of cases where the secondary battery checked fire to allow better shell splash spotting for the main guns. The model has things exactly backwards, the 15” guns are checking fire so that the 4” guns can zero in on the target.

Next, a look at the Cruisers.
Post #: 1
RE: Analysis of Naval Gunnery Combat - 3/7/2006 3:43:33 AM   
Ron Saueracker


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Your using stock? I'm not sure which cruisers you are referring to but some of the classes were "grouped" together for simplicity (given the variations just with County class alone). CHS has sorted this out by representing all classes and variations.

One of my big problems is the FOW inspired "off doing something else" feature, which randomly selects ships to be just that, off doing something else and not either targetable or able to fire. Really sucks when when this happens to your core ships!

Given the abstract nature of the model, I would have removed this and just given every ship an equal number of ops points and let them have at it, with whatever DRMs are present. I would also have taken this random element and applied it to other TFs in the hex, because as it stands at the moment, there is no FOW regarding TFs and all are capable of intercepting, depending on the leaders operations/naval rating. (basically the random element is in the wrong situation, it should be removed from within TFs and added to multiple TFs.

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RE: Analysis of Naval Gunnery Combat - 3/7/2006 4:22:20 AM   
Alikchi2

 

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Excellent analysis.

Off the top of my head, we could possibly lower the maneuver values for smaller ships and increase them for larger ships based on a formula. Gun accuracy could be worked on the same way, by increasing accuracy of large calibre weapons and decreasing that of smaller weapons, based on a formula. I don't know enough about ammunition to suggest a change there, but you could also cut the range of secondaries and (possibly?) tertiary weapons. I don't like it when I see BBs swapping 40mm shells at close range and ignoring their big guns.

This isn't a fix, but it's a thought. Kind of like a Nik Mod for the naval combat system.

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RE: Analysis of Naval Gunnery Combat - 3/7/2006 4:58:44 AM   
Mike Scholl

 

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Your analysis is interesting. And the system is certainly silly at best, and outright rediculous more often as not. While campaigning in the Solomans in a PBEM, my opponant was shutting down my attempts to bombard with a force of Lt Cruisers and DD's which kept beating and/or driving off my CA, CL, DD forces---even beat some BB's I tried to suprise him with. In frustration, I sent a bunch of PT's up the slot (with the thought of running him out of ammo).
The PT's whipped his force several times in a row, and drove him off. Smaller and weaker forces seem to get some type of "hidden" advantage in the system

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RE: Analysis of Naval Gunnery Combat - 3/7/2006 5:00:27 AM   
Tom Hunter


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Exeter fired her main batter on Nagara at 4,000 yards in round 2 and 3 of the first engagement and round one of the second. She fired 94 shells and scored 1 hit at 4,000 yards, for a hit percentage of .01. She was hit once by a 5.5” shell during the surprise round, and was not fired on during round 2 at all. It takes her 3 minutes and 54 seconds to fire 94 shells.

Leander opened fire on the DD Teuzuki during rounds 2 and 3 of the first engagement and round 1 of the second. She fired her main batter 99 times and hit once in each round for a total of 3 6” hits and a .03% hit rate. This is actually the low end of normal for WWI at 18,000 yards, but at least it is on the 20th Century chart. Her secondary batteries fire 20 rounds at hit once at 8,000 yards for a .05% rate. She takes 2 3.9” hits in the surprise round, 1 in round 2 and one in round 3. Leander fired for 2 minutes 28 seconds.

Achilles fires on Yugumo during round 2 and round 3 of the first engagement and round 1 of the second she fires at total of 133 main gun rounds hitting once at 9000 yards for a percentage of .0075 once again we are an order of magnitude off. Achilles was not fired on during the surprise round, or round 2, but was fired on and hit twice by Yugumo in round 3 and once in round 1 of the second engagement, none of these hits penetrated. Achilles fired for 3 minutes and 20 seconds.

Finally Newcastle engaged in a losing battle with Kagero. Kagero hit Newcastle with a Torpedo and 4 5” shells in the surprise round, then 3 more 5” in round 2 and 2 more in round 3. Newcastle fired back expending 100 rounds and hitting Kagero once in round 2 at 400 yards for a hit percentage of .01 Newcastle fired for 1 minute 34 seconds.

Again this is difficult to explain. Why is Achilles, a veteran ship that is not being shot at shooting so poorly? She had a target worth the expenditure of 133 main gun rounds which implies her director had the target for more than 3 minutes. Again this is the type of accuracy one expects from a ship without functioning director control which is not the situation here.

Of the ships listed above the only one with an excuse is Newcastle. But even there the result is strange. Badly damaged ships check fire and fall out of combat, they don’t unload 100 rounds at the enemy.

Finally before we get to the DDs look at the performance of the Japanese. They don’t hit anything either! Resolution was torpedoed twice and burning at a range of 4,000 yards and she took 3 hits? Similar ships in similar circumstances do dozens of hits in real battles.

Fortunately we don’t have the main battery not firing effect for cruisers, so though they do very, very badly compared to historical results they do shoot. However they don’t do what real ships with high ROF guns do, which is find the target and then fire madly for 20-30 second to smother the enemy with shells. I don’t recall this happening in any of my battles, but if you read up on the war when one side is surprised, be it the Americans at Gaudalcanal, Italians at Mattapan or Germans in the sea off Northern Norway the other side unloads a great many shells in a short period of time and gets much higher hit percentages than we see here, or in our other battles. Later on I will post some real world data for comparison. For now lets just say that cruisers don’t work right, but they work a bit less badly than BBs, which seem to not shoot at all.

Next the DDs and more comment on secondary batteries and target selection.

(in reply to Alikchi2)
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RE: Analysis of Naval Gunnery Combat - 3/7/2006 5:13:45 AM   
Demosthenes


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Well analyzed, impressive.
I have seen similar results myself, mainly the Battleships rarely firing their MA, most frustrating.

I think Ron's observation of the 'random factor' is also a probably correct...it's in the wrong spot.

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RE: Analysis of Naval Gunnery Combat - 3/7/2006 5:19:28 AM   
el cid again

 

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quote:

First everyone needs to understand that an ammo factor on a BB main gun equals about 44 rounds, on an 8" gun it equals 31, on a British 6" gun CL with 8 guns it equals 33 rounds, but if that ships is a British 12 6" gun CL then it equals 50 rounds, and if it is a CL with 6 guns it equals 17 rounds. 4" and 4.5" ammo factors seem to be set at around 20 rounds per factor, except on the British CLAAs where it would be much more.


I am a long term student of naval surface battle - and old enough to remember an actual line of battle battle (in which I participated) -
and I do not think your idea of normal hit rates is in the right range.
Real world long range gunnery WHEN IT WORKED (got more than 0 hits - resulting in infinite ratios of shots fired per hit) were quite generally in the range of 0.2 to 0.6%. This increased, somewhat understandably, as range decreased, until at POINT BLANK range it might reach the 5-6% range. At normal ranges it was on the order of 2% on a good day - with skilled crews and a reasonable sea state. It was in NO circumstances "north of 10%."

However, you are quite correct that ammunition factors may be improperly done. But I am not sure how you are calculating shots per gun? It requires you consider the number of guns firing and the rate of fire - a value indicated by the "accuracy" field. INSIDE a combat routine you DO NOT know how many guns are firing - it depends on several factors - the game is very sophisticated. It won't shoot damaged guns. It won't shoot guns that do not bear on the target because of target angle or because the target is masked by friendly ships. Thus, if a T is crossed, only the lead vessels can shoot at all, and then only a fraction of their guns which bear. I fear you may be attempting analysis of a particular action without sufficient information about what happened tactically to know vital things of this sort. On the other hand, it would not surprise me if the game has the number of shots wrong. A Japanese submarine has only 17 or 18 rounds, yet they get that many shots! [I have reduced it to only 3 shots - 6 shells per shot]. Other ships may have similar issues. But IF this is the case, it ONLY affects the total number of shots before the ship is out of ammo - not how the routine works - and we can FIX data errors of this sort.

But this is UNRELATED to the amount of ammunition - which is a weight value - and not the weight of the shell - but the weight of the round before it is fired. This is further complicated because supplies of other kinds - including avgas - are included in the same supply factor.

< Message edited by el cid again -- 3/7/2006 5:21:25 AM >

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RE: Analysis of Naval Gunnery Combat - 3/7/2006 5:27:42 AM   
el cid again

 

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quote:

Again this is difficult to explain. Why is Achilles, a veteran ship that is not being shot at shooting so poorly?


You are attempting to understand by analysis what is impossible to understand due to a lack of data. There are possible answers to this question which are quite legitimate. We do not know. It is possible this is due to a die roll - luck - and luck really matters in naval action. I saw a line of radar equipped modern USN destroyers engage an awful (but admittedly large) formation of wooden junks armed only with land type field guns - apparently still on wheels - and manage to lose in a strategic sense - lose so badly we never dared try to cut the sea lane of communications between Malaya and Cambodia again. [This lane delivered more tonnage than the Ho Chi Minh Trail did to the Delta area of South Vietnam. It was ONLY cut by a LAND invasion of Cambodia several years later.] It is not always easy to know what will go wrong?
We went into battle CERTAIN of success - it was night and we had radar - they probably didn't - what could go wrong? In real battles, things go wrong. And you may never know what either. We really do not know why HMS Hood sank, for example.

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RE: Analysis of Naval Gunnery Combat - 3/7/2006 5:30:51 AM   
el cid again

 

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quote:

I don't like it when I see BBs swapping 40mm shells at close range and ignoring their big guns.



Suppose I told you this is technically correct? That at really close range the big guns cannot train fast enough to bear? That the little guns can be put in local control and track any surface target - they are intended to track airplanes after all - and regardless of bearing shift rate they have a good chance of scoring a hit? It appears to me that if things do not feel right according to our pre-concieved notions, we assume they are "wrong" when, possibly, they are actually technically correct.

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RE: Analysis of Naval Gunnery Combat - 3/7/2006 5:41:46 AM   
el cid again

 

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quote:

There is one thing that I learned that I'm sure has been discussed before, which is that a lot of British Cruisers are missing thier torpedoes.


There are a surprising number of errors in weapons, armor and ship speed/range/fuel data on both sides. These are easily fixed and will be in RHS. One of the reasons it is nice to have a British cruiser in a surface battle is that it usually has torpedoes, and reliable ones too.

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RE: Analysis of Naval Gunnery Combat - 3/7/2006 5:54:44 AM   
Demosthenes


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quote:

ORIGINAL: el cid again

quote:

I don't like it when I see BBs swapping 40mm shells at close range and ignoring their big guns.



Suppose I told you this is technically correct? That at really close range the big guns cannot train fast enough to bear? That the little guns can be put in local control and track any surface target - they are intended to track airplanes after all - and regardless of bearing shift rate they have a good chance of scoring a hit? It appears to me that if things do not feel right according to our pre-concieved notions, we assume they are "wrong" when, possibly, they are actually technically correct.


I don't think that is technically correct at 4000+ yards and over.
In the 1st Naval Battle of Guadalcanal US destroyers were within I believe 500 yards or under from BB Hei, Hei could not depress her guns low enogh to hit the DDs, and conversly I remember reading the DDs torpedos were to close to Hei to arm - but I have never read of another engagement where heavy caliber guns were unable to fire on another ship.
Even at Matapan (March 29, 1941), the British BBs were within 2000 yards BEFORE they opened fire on the surprized Italian DDs and CAs (as I recal) - and they had no problem doing effective and fatal gunnery.

< Message edited by Demosthenes -- 3/7/2006 5:58:29 AM >


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RE: Analysis of Naval Gunnery Combat - 3/7/2006 6:10:27 AM   
Mike Scholl

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: el cid again

quote:

I don't like it when I see BBs swapping 40mm shells at close range and ignoring their big guns.



Suppose I told you this is technically correct? That at really close range the big guns cannot train fast enough to bear? That the little guns can be put in local control and track any surface target - they are intended to track airplanes after all - and regardless of bearing shift rate they have a good chance of scoring a hit? It appears to me that if things do not feel right according to our pre-concieved notions, we assume they are "wrong" when, possibly, they are actually technically correct.


While you are technically correct (provided the ships are going in reaonably "opposite" directions and the range is VERY short) I think you are "pulling his chain" in game terms. With the exception of 1st Guadalcanal (where both sides were pretty much suprised) BB's simply did not close to such distances. So while your statement is accurate, it's also pretty superfluous.

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RE: Analysis of Naval Gunnery Combat - 3/7/2006 6:26:01 AM   
Alikchi2

 

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The problem is you see battleships and battlecruisers in daylight and nighttime combat regularly closing in on each other as the range decreases from 30,000 to 18,000 and all the way down to 2,000 yards, not scoring a single hit with their main guns, and pounding away for twenty minutes in the combat replay with 40mms and Oerlikons.

I'm not denying that it was technically possible for BBs to hit each other with their anti-aircraft armament. I think it should be possible in the game - it could happen, if both sides were deprived of radar and daylight, or if there were other extenuating circumstances. 1st Guadalcanal is a good example - in fact, it's the ONLY example, because it never happened again, to my knowledge.

But it happens depressingly often - even with fully upgraded, radar-equipped ships, in broad daylight. I've done enough testing for my mod - a tutorial scenario set in 1945 - to see it multiple times. And guys, that just shouldn't be likely to happen. It should be theoretically possible but the chance is just infinitesimally small. Iowa and Yamato aren't going to leisurely cruise up next to each other on a sunny pacific day and trade AA fire like they're wooden sailing frigates trading broadsides or something.

"Stand by to repel boarders!"

< Message edited by Alikchi -- 3/7/2006 6:33:52 AM >


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RE: Analysis of Naval Gunnery Combat - 3/7/2006 6:48:35 AM   
el cid again

 

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quote:

But it happens depressingly often - even with fully upgraded, radar-equipped ships, in broad daylight. I've done enough testing for my mod - a tutorial scenario set in 1945 - to see it multiple times. And guys, that just shouldn't be likely to happen. It should be theoretically possible but the chance is just infinitesimally small. Iowa and Yamato aren't going to leisurely cruise up next to each other on a sunny pacific day and trade AA fire like they're wooden sailing frigates trading broadsides or something.


Although I enjoy surface action, I will confess I avoid it as inefficient. I don't think I can fix the damage fast enough to be worth it - I would rather use airplanes. But while I have seen BBs do well and poorly, I have never seen this behavior as a problem in either UV or WITP. I have never seen a major force close in daylight from 30,000 to 4,000 yards, with nary a hit by a big gun. If you are seeing this regularly, then I will agree something might be amok. Maybe. There are really a lot of die rolls in our sophisticated system, and you may not know what some of them are that would make sense to you if you did know. I can think of real actions at long range without hits on many occasions.

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RE: Analysis of Naval Gunnery Combat - 3/7/2006 7:07:34 AM   
Tom Hunter


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El Cid Again "and I do not think your idea of normal hit rates is in the right range.
Real world long range gunnery WHEN IT WORKED (got more than 0 hits - resulting in infinite ratios of shots fired per hit) were quite generally in the range of 0.2 to 0.6%. This increased, somewhat understandably, as range decreased, until at POINT BLANK range it might reach the 5-6% range. At normal ranges it was on the order of 2% on a good day - with skilled crews and a reasonable sea state. It was in NO circumstances "north of 10%."

Jutland, an analysis of the fighting, has a hit rate of 2-3% for the run to the South and to the North, Iron Duke firing at 6,000 yards was doing 10%.

In WWII:

From "The Rising Sun: The decline and fall of the Japanese Empire," by John Toland, Page 474 USS Washington fired 75 shells, and hit 9 times which is a 12% rate.

I am looking for the combat log of the South Dakota, it was linked somewhere in this forum, one of the things I noticed is that the Kirishima hit the South Dakota many times, and she might have also had a hit rate in excess of 10%.

"Life and Times of Old Shiny" has her getting the drop on a German DD at point blank range and doing 'over a donzen hits in two minutes" Sheffield can fire a maximum of 120 to 132 shells in 2 minutes which is also a 10% hit rate, IF she fired the maximum number of shells possible. This was at very close range, under 1000 yards, but she also had a very short time to react due to low visibility. Sheffield did much better than the German DD, which failed to fire at all.

So I have 3 quick examples (and plan to get more) of hit rates at or North of 10% starting in WWI.

"However, you are quite correct that ammunition factors may be improperly done. " -El Cid Again well, lets just say the math does not add up.

"INSIDE a combat routine you DO NOT know how many guns are firing - it depends on several factors - the game is very sophisticated." -El Cid Again

But inside these combat rounds we do know EXACTLY how many rounds of ammunition were expended. The game tells us. Now it is possible that the game is lying, but I hope not. The hit rate calculations in my example do not depend on the number of guns firing, they depend on the number of shells expended. I based the amount of time the guns were firing on the number of tubes x rate of fire per minute divided by ROF. For all I know or care the combat model assumes only one gun per ship fires. Regardless the hit percentages are way out of wack, and the fact that BBs fire their secondaries but not main battery has no basis in historical fact.

"It won't shoot damaged guns. It won't shoot guns that do not bear on the target because of target angle or because the target is masked by friendly ships. Thus, if a T is crossed, only the lead vessels can shoot at all, and then only a fraction of their guns which bear."

None of this matters to my argument. The game says that Warpite has 18 ammunition factors, Warspite has 800 rounds, and 18 goes into that 44 times. Therefore each ammo point is 44 actual shells. The game tells me that Warspite expended 3 ammo factors which is 132 shells, the game then tells me one of them hit.

"I fear you may be attempting analysis of a particular action without sufficient information about what happened tactically to know vital things of this sort." El Cid Again

I don't see any information missing from the above example. Bearing, number of guns firing, weather, drunken crew, you name it, none of it changes the shell expenditure or the number of hits. I buy your argument completely for gunnery hit percentages within the historical range, but .0075 is not in the historical range at all, it is off by a full order of magnitude. So far I have yet to see a single factor that can explain this, given the other known information about the battle.

Basically your 2-6% hit rate figure is not correct, and there are numerous sources that say so. The rest of your argument accuses me of not having enough information without actually showing where the information is missing.

Once again I submit that the game say 3 ammo factors were expended, that an ammo factor equals 44 rounds, and that hits are actually measured in rounds, not factors. I have proof of the last statement in a later post by the way. 1 divided by 132 = .0075 which is a hit rate similar to that enjoyed by Admiral Dewey at Manila Bay. By 1942 gunnery had improved somewhat but you would not know it from this game.




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Post #: 15
RE: Analysis of Naval Gunnery Combat - 3/7/2006 7:15:20 AM   
Tom Hunter


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quote:

You are attempting to understand by analysis what is impossible to understand due to a lack of data. There are possible answers to this question which are quite legitimate.


This is simply not true. All of the possible explainations would result in a lower ammo expenditure, which is a critical point in my analysis. Ships that can't hit the target don't fire 132 rounds. Not ever, you will never find a real life example.

You can find examples of ships that fired small numbers of rounds and then stopped shooting because the target was too far away, or sinking, or because they took catastrophic damage. These ships did not inflict many hits, often not any.

You can find ships that fired a hundred or more rounds but in every case you will find a 2% or higher hit rate if there is a large ammo expenditure.

You cannot find high ammo expenditures and hit rates at 1% or below in the 20th century, you have to go to the 19th century for that.

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RE: Analysis of Naval Gunnery Combat - 3/7/2006 7:19:40 AM   
Tom Hunter


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quote:

But while I have seen BBs do well and poorly, I have never seen this behavior as a problem in either UV or WITP.
El Cid Again

I have gripped about it, but this is the first time I have really run the numbers because I always bought the "you don't have enough data" argument, or the "things happen" arguement.

Well now I do have enough data, and the data shows that the model gives A historical results. The more I crunch it the worse it looks. Loot at the Japanese hit rates at 4000 yards! Any Japanese officeer that bad would not be running guns on a warship.

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Post #: 17
RE: Analysis of Naval Gunnery Combat - 3/7/2006 8:02:12 AM   
Ron Saueracker


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quote:

I am a long term student of naval surface battle - and old enough to remember an actual line of battle battle (in which I participated) -
and I do not think your idea of normal hit rates is in the right range.

El Cid


Hi Cid. How old are you? What "battle" was this? Desoto Patrol instigated Gulf of Tonkin "Incident" or what? Curious.

Ron

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Post #: 18
RE: Analysis of Naval Gunnery Combat - 3/7/2006 9:30:24 AM   
mogami


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Hi, Tom did your combat replay match the combat.text I sent with the turn? I ask because I am certain Atago took 2 15in hits. (one right after the other) and that these were not the only large cal hits she took. I stopped watching the combat animations because my ships were being pounded.
2/3 of the TF engaged moved 2 or less hexes after the battle. (meaning the TF had the hell shot out of it) Only 1 CL and 2 DD moved their full allowance) A TF does not split ito that many parts following combat unless it is severly damaged. (The point being your gunfire did a lot better then you are making it sound)

Had any of these ships been in surface combat recently? (Torpedos cannot be reloaded without support ships even in ports where gun ammo can be supplied) I had to run my ships up north to reload torpedos. If I had been able to reload closer I would have been there a day or two sooner)

< Message edited by Mogami -- 3/7/2006 9:37:26 AM >


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Post #: 19
RE: Analysis of Naval Gunnery Combat - 3/7/2006 1:42:45 PM   
Tom Hunter


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Mogami,

I set the combat replay for minimum speed (4.5 seconds) and watched it 3 times in full plus a couple of additional times in parts. Atago took 1 15" and tertiary from Warspite, and 2 14" from PoW.
All the British ships and the Oklahoma were fully loaded with everything. All the British ships had hand picked captains except for Repulse and Mauritius which had hand picked captains at one point but lost them to the leader bug sometime in the previous week.

No ship in either TF had night fighting xp lower than 68, and the xp in the Pow TF was higher.

On the Allied side this was the best of the best.

That said the Japanese gunnery may have been worse than the British, I want to get into that over time. Either way this combat system is not reflecting reality, and seems to have very strange internal logic, wait until we get to the Oklahoma.

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Post #: 20
RE: Analysis of Naval Gunnery Combat - 3/7/2006 2:37:53 PM   
Sardaukar


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I had a chance to check the WPO game that my friend did buy, so obviously I was curious if I should too. In that I was seeing similar things. Capital ships were just doing nothing..or firing only their secondary armament. And those were British capital ships..and they didn't even fire when they surprised IJN several times. Admittedly those were night engagements...but still...

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Post #: 21
RE: Analysis of Naval Gunnery Combat - 3/7/2006 2:47:11 PM   
Speedysteve

 

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quote:

From "The Rising Sun: The decline and fall of the Japanese Empire," by John Toland


FWIW I am currently reading this book and find it a very useful addition to a Pacific War collection if not already obtained.

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Post #: 22
RE: Analysis of Naval Gunnery Combat - 3/7/2006 3:01:43 PM   
String


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Sardaukar

I had a chance to check the WPO game that my friend did buy, so obviously I was curious if I should too. In that I was seeing similar things. Capital ships were just doing nothing..or firing only their secondary armament. And those were British capital ships..and they didn't even fire when they surprised IJN several times. Admittedly those were night engagements...but still...


I guess you were playing the "Pacific Jutland" scenario. In WPO the starting night experience for all ships on all sides is around 20-30. Very low. Therefore, the first night engagements tend to be very very inconclusive. However, after a few battles the ships do quite well in night combat.

I do not know if the naval combat routines were tweaked in WPO, but I haven't noticed such problems there. My BB's almost always use their main battery and do quite a bit of damage. So do enemy BB's.

Ofcourse, there has been a night battle or two with no main calibre hits scored, but those were between ships with 30ish night exp.

I have only witnessed one single day combat battle where a battleship failed to score a hit with her main calibre guns while being undamaged. That was when a single destroyer was engaged by a japanese pre-dread and a cruiser escort. The range never closed to under 23000 yards and I presume the destroyer escaped utilizing her superior speed.


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Post #: 23
RE: Analysis of Naval Gunnery Combat - 3/7/2006 3:21:27 PM   
Sardaukar


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Yep, was Pacific Jutland (since I was just trying the game). Got bit annoyed when my Brit BBs just did suck in gunfire and torpedoes even when they surprised IJN 3 out of 4 fights.... But I can accept it as being night battles mostly 2000-7000 yards... Just wanted to see how the surface combat was in WPO, so tried to get as many of those as fast as possible.... I'm still wondering how the hell my BB crews coudn't see burning IJN ships in that distance, tho...

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Post #: 24
RE: Analysis of Naval Gunnery Combat - 3/7/2006 3:38:51 PM   
Feinder


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I don't know crap about any of this, but this thread is an interesting read! D_mn Tom, you have -WAY- too much time to be watching this stuff! (* just kidding, thanks! *).

Not to dillute your thread, but if you're ever really, extremely bored, you might want to test the "declining penetration value vs. deck armor hits in day-time combat".

a. At greater than 12,000 yds you have have a greater chance to score a deck hit (at least in WitP, sounds reasonable in real life = plunging fire).

b. Day-time combats usually open at about 18,000 yds, and several rounds are often exchanged as the range closes.

c. During these exchanges, you are quite likely to score a deck armor hit (a good thing I believe).

d. However, shells hitting the deck armor, RARELY, EXTREMELY RARELY, ever penetrate, regardless of the size of incoming shell (I've seen 8" shells from CAs not able to penetrate the tinfoil deck armor of CLs).

e. I understand that the devs decreased penetration values as range decreases (I don't see why it would really matter, maximum velocity x mass is the same at 8000 yds or 18000 yds, if your hitting max velocity). Still, I'll take their word for it. But I've noticed that penetration drops WAY off at 12000 yds (as above example). If it's going to drop off (again, I'll take their word for it), I think it's dropping off TOO much. Usually, a ship was at least vulnerable to plunging fire from guns of comperable size. But I just don't ever see penetrations in the replay from deck hits. I can't speak for my opponents, but I know my own ships only take paint damage from "non-penetrating deck armor hits" (and I'm thinking that 8" shell -should- have penetrated the deck armor).

Dunno. Has anybody seen this?

Frankly, I love to watch a good naval battle in Witp (esp one that I "win"). The .txt file doesn't tell you the story, you MUST watch the battle to see if those 6x hits were 3.5" pop-guns or 15" ruin-your-days (altho Tom's research seems to indicate that that they are rarely the ruin-you-days, and I think he's right!).

Whatever.

Interesting thread.

-F-

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Post #: 25
RE: Analysis of Naval Gunnery Combat - 3/7/2006 3:51:16 PM   
el cid again

 

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quote:

Jutland, an analysis of the fighting, has a hit rate of 2-3% for the run to the South and to the North, Iron Duke firing at 6,000 yards was doing 10%.


You do realize that, in offering this data as a criticism, in a technical sense you CONFIRMED my data: the 2-3% for medium range is indeed possible with skilled crews in good conditions - and a single exceptional datum point is just that - not something you can build a typical simulation algorithm on.

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Post #: 26
RE: Analysis of Naval Gunnery Combat - 3/7/2006 3:56:33 PM   
el cid again

 

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quote:

From "The Rising Sun: The decline and fall of the Japanese Empire," by John Toland, Page 474 USS Washington fired 75 shells, and hit 9 times which is a 12% rate.


Perhaps you should consult a mathmetician. Single ship datum points are not what you need to build a rule of thumb or algorithm that is useful in simulation. If you add in all the occasions on which there were no hits at all, you will be depressed at the statistics. If you rule all of those cases out - then you must also rule all the other exceptional datum points out at the other end of the range. You can either include EVERY datum point - including all the zero cases - or you can focus on those within a certain distance of the mean case - and ignore BOTh extremes. But you cannot just look at the extream case on ONE end and say "that is the norm." Turn it around: how would you feel if I cited a case where a single ship fired abc rounds and scored no hits, concluding 0% is the norm?

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Post #: 27
RE: Analysis of Naval Gunnery Combat - 3/7/2006 4:01:31 PM   
el cid again

 

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quote:

"Life and Times of Old Shiny" has her getting the drop on a German DD at point blank range and doing 'over a donzen hits in two minutes" Sheffield can fire a maximum of 120 to 132 shells in 2 minutes which is also a 10% hit rate, IF she fired the maximum number of shells possible. This was at very close range, under 1000 yards, but she also had a very short time to react due to low visibility. Sheffield did much better than the German DD, which failed to fire at all.



We don't have the statistics, but a German raider managed to sink Sydney - at point blank - with inferior weapons. She didn't sink at once - but limped off burning and never was heard from again. The raider was also sunk in the same action - but some of the crew survived. At point blank range it is normal to score very well. But it is wrong to believe that average ships in average conditions will routinely score more than 10% hits even under such circumstances. This is not to say a superb ship under exceptional conditions could not sometimes achieve that - a different statement entirely. But you should not be expecting this, and you would be much more justified to cry "naval combat is broken" if you saw it regularly - than if you see lots of misses. Lots of misses ARE normal - even when you cannot explain why.

There is a submarine simulation game which got modified to the point it is "too realistic" - it is no longer easy to get a fire control solution. Players hate it - but that does not mean it is a bad simulation - it just means players like to see things go boom.

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Post #: 28
RE: Analysis of Naval Gunnery Combat - 3/7/2006 4:06:05 PM   
el cid again

 

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quote:

But inside these combat rounds we do know EXACTLY how many rounds of ammunition were expended. The game tells us.


I do not think it does. For example, a "mineshot" is 8 mines. A torpedo shot is typically 4 or 6, but sometimes 2, and sometimes other values. I mean in the game - forget real life - if we did real life a Japanese sub would ALWAYS shoot ONE torpedo at a TANKER! When a rapid fire gun is involved, it is shooting bursts, not rounds. Do we even know what the tacical impulse of time is? You must take the ROF times that many minutes to calculate the theoretical maximum number of shells that might have been fired. Do you know how many guns could not bear on ship XY in impulse C? No you do not. Do you know how much below the maximum rate of fire it was shooting? No you do not. The game tells you "shots" - but do you know how many shells that represents? I doubt it.

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Post #: 29
RE: Analysis of Naval Gunnery Combat - 3/7/2006 4:11:22 PM   
el cid again

 

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quote:

For all I know or care the combat model assumes only one gun per ship fires.


Look at the data. The database knows how many guns are forward, how many aft, how many port, how many starbord, how many center (both port and starboard but neither forward nor aft). It also knows how many of which are damaged. It picks the number of guns based on the situation - the bearing of the enemy - if to port and you are down a turret on the port side it matters. If your T is crossed only your forward (or aft) guns bear. And so on. ROF probably varies. At long range the ship does not start at maximum ROF - it is ranging. AFTER it finds the range it probably goes to something near maximum - depending on the rating of its captain. Maybe not all the way. And how many shells is a "shot" varies - it is a low number for heavy guns but hundreds or even thousands for machine guns - over a space of x or xy minutes. We do not know. Analysis based on so many unknowns is bound to lead to false conclusions.

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Post #: 30
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