The biggest problem with this games naval aspect is this,unlike the land combat where the bullets & cannon are wiping out the Infantry. At sea the object of the battle is to demoralise the crew of the ships, which makes them strike there colours and surrender,the ship is then captured and taken as a prise.This represents a fundemental difference,you cannot compare Infantry and a heavy ship in this simplistic form of combat resolution.
As you know to build one heavy costs $12 and 1 manpower + taking 18 months to build and commission, so the decision to build these ships has to be taken, and at present the rules mean that they are a luxury for most Countrys and do not represent value for money or time invested in them to build.
All your investment and time is wiped out on the single roll of a dice,as the combat rules list them as lost or SUNK ?
Combat at sea could last for hours, with heavies pouring broadsides into each other, please note that a heavy can withstand hundreds of cannon hits to its hull and not sink,as the vast majority of such hits are above the waterline,to sink a wooden ship it needs to be holed below the waterline on a great number of occasions,and I should point out that at the battle of Trafalgar only 1 heavy actually sunk and this was due to a fire on the ship which in turn led to an explosion of her magazine,so even she would not have sunk. As it stands it is illogical to build these ships at present, because to loose them to a single die roll in combat devalues them and makes them expensive and pointless in the game for all Nations except Britain.
So the vital change that needs to be implemented for naval combat is this.
Combat result = LOST (sunk) is stupid and must be replaced by, Captured or prise and a ship instead of being listed as lost or sunk is transfered to the other fleet as a prise instead!
This simple change which is based on fact from history, is of paramount importance, there is a very big difference in each side losing ships completely, as is now and having to build new ships to replace the ones lost or sunk.
Lets assume that France blockaded at Brest by Britain decides to fight,as it stands now with the naval combat system, she could suffer a major loss in ships up to 25% of fleet strenght,these ships would need to be rebuilt and replaced with 18 months required to build them. But if they were captured or taken as a prise instead of being listed as lost (sunk) whose to say that France in another Combat fight with a better die roll would not recapture the ships she lost in a previous battle, plus take prises from Britain in so doing weakening Britain and strenghting her position.
The fact is this ships were captured and recaptured many times during the Napoleonic wars,these ships did not require to be rebuilt saving each country many months, money and manpower.
Also a major concern is the % loss table is excessive ie 5%,10%,15%,20%,25% off your total fleet removed is to high, this should be reduced to something like 2%,4%,6%,8%,10%,12% of your fleet transfered to the opposition!
Most battles were not overwhelming victories to one side or the other, this was rare Trafalgar for example, the vast majority of battles were between 1 - 5 ships captured by the opposing fleet.
It would be worth while for Spain or France to breakout from any British blockade with the knowledge that only 2% - 12% of her ships might be captured,but at least France or Spain for example could in the months ahead be able to combine there forces,as per history and be in a position with sheer numbers at least to challenge Britain,In stead of now in the game all France does is put all her ships in Brest for example and lets Britain blockade her there in a stalemate.With the navys playing very little part in the game.
The above rule changes plus the implementation of the naval pursuit and evasion for 1.06! would indeed make these ships much more of an option and a valued asset within the game, and give the navys of the world the respect they are due, for without her navy Britain would never have become an Empire, or the USA of today a Superpower.
If something like the above rule changes can't be implemented in the game as it stands, then all I can do is hope that maybe I will be able to create something similar via the forth coming editor, otherwise this is really a show stopper for me and my enjoyment of the game will suffer in fact the game will more than likely just gather dust and be put down to experience.
As I have said before in other post I like the game and given time has the potential to be far better but at this present time it is seriously out of touch with the time period it is trying to represent, and even allowing for the glaring errors within it the naval aspect is shocking to say the least and has no bearing on the facts. Well I can hear the original boardgamers saying that the naval part of the game has never been important anyway, then all I can say is I'm glad I never played the original then.
This is not the original version but it is the pc version,and as such there is nothing to stop it from improving the game, yes by all means have avaiable the original version but please don't stiffle the games potential via the editor or the computers adaptability to tweak the rules, allow Marshall the freedom he deserves to adapt the game in conjuction with gamers ideas for improvements.
< Message edited by hellfirejet -- 4/19/2009 9:42:14 AM >
I'm not retreating, I'm attacking in a different direction! Lewis B. "Chesty" Puller