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Invincible uboats under 1.00.071? - 5/31/2020 9:16:15 AM   
sillyflower


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I have 3 carriers and many other sub-hunters trying unsuccessfully to score any hits on sveint's 4 uboats. No arial attack does anything and the subs never react to warships moving next to them. Not even having every escort ship on the route stops him killing several merchants per turn with zero losses, and they never kill fewer than 5 either.

I also suspect that he's been able to slip oilers through the net as well, but I might be wrong about that.






I tested this in hotseat in case it was just a fluke. North of Ireland the game works as it used to. Airstrikes sometimes succeed and subs sometimes attack surface ships arriving adjacent to them.

Repeating the experiment on the African coast route roughly where sveint's subs are, the subs become invincible. They never react to enemy movement, carrier strikes see nothing and uboats move around through and adjacent to allied ships without ever being attacked.

Never had this problem vs uboats before with .06.

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< Message edited by sillyflower -- 5/31/2020 9:32:09 AM >


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RE: Invincible uboats? - 5/31/2020 9:30:55 AM   
ncc1701e


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What is your tech level in Carrier Operations?
What is his tech level in Attack Submarine?

Is there any big difference?

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RE: Invincible uboats? - 5/31/2020 9:32:12 AM   
ncc1701e


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As German, I see the same thing if my subs are advanced.




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RE: Invincible uboats? - 5/31/2020 9:34:22 AM   
sillyflower


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This is in '39 so low tech all round. I have hardly ever seen an enemy sub in action after '40.

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RE: Invincible uboats? - 5/31/2020 9:36:03 AM   
sillyflower


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The game is only a few turns old. I can't recall ever having seen an enemy sub after '41

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RE: Invincible uboats? - 5/31/2020 12:59:50 PM   
Harrybanana

 

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My understanding of the Rules is that only a "patrolling" fleet has a chance to intercept an enemy fleet. So if his subs are in Raider mode they will never intercept/attack you no matter how close you move to them. Like you I have found that air attacks very seldom find Raiding Subs and even when they do seldom if at all do any damage. But then I haven't played that much yet. I am surprised though by the number of merchants Sveint is sinking every turn. I thought maybe it was because you had forgotten to escort your convoys; but since that is not the case I agree that it might be a bug.

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RE: Invincible uboats? - 5/31/2020 2:24:41 PM   
sillyflower


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Raiding subs should react to warships landing or passing next to them. If not, they would be a wonder weapon because only carriers or patrol groups (ie real patrol groups not destroyer groups named patrol groups). The 1st part of my test shows they did react normally.

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RE: Invincible uboats? - 5/31/2020 3:19:52 PM   
AlvaroSousa


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Subs are the most difficult aspect of naval combat in a game like this. It is quite difficult to balance the raiding and surface combat for them.

I have not changed the rules for subs, that I remember, in v7

Surface wise they aren't that effective
Subs do have a chance to get a surprise attack which means they fire first.
Sub targeting goes after damaged capital groups first before other groups.
So a sub's best chance is intercepting a damaged naval group and it needs to be in fleet mode
Where a sub does the best damage is raiding in raider mode.

Hunting subs is only with planes or surface groups when the sub is next to a coast.

I've played many games balancing this aspect and it is at a good point right now where if both the Germans and Allies invest in convoy escorts then by 1943 the German uboats are pretty much not cost effective without some tricky assuming the Allies haven't filled every convoy zone with 12 escorts. At this point the Germans have to make a decision on cost effectiveness. If they should continue sub warfare at an economic loss but due to its attacks it also weakens the Allies enough they have trouble landing in places.

Basically it's a big strategic math problem that has no absolute answer.

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RE: Invincible uboats? - 5/31/2020 7:59:47 PM   
sveint


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I'm just getting lucky in that game. In all my other games subs are rather ineffective.

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RE: Invincible uboats? - 5/31/2020 8:42:40 PM   
ncc1701e


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Well, my best score ever:
Merchant marine sunk - 12
Escorts sunk - 3

A wolfpack of three U-Boats (all three Attack Submarine 1940)




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RE: Invincible uboats? - 5/31/2020 9:08:14 PM   
AlvaroSousa


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Damn!

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RE: Invincible uboats? - 5/31/2020 9:47:40 PM   
Flaviusx


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I see nothing unusual here, and this is well within the range of results possible for the Axis. I've had games where the Axis sinks 60+ merchants by May of 40.

Subs are no joke and they are hard to sink early on. You have to get very lucky with carrier or land based air. Escorts are pretty useless with 39 tech almost to the point where you might be better off not even deploying them until they tech up a level. 1940 subs versus 1939 escort is a turkey shoot...for the subs.

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RE: Invincible uboats? - 5/31/2020 10:04:31 PM   
baloo7777


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Does each SS Grp represent several subs? Do uboats have an advantage in 40 (The Happy Time as it was called)? Then after 41 the escorts/aircraft have an advantage until by 43 the uboats go out and don't come back? Is there even a chance of bringing England to her knees using uboats during 40-41 and still being able to produce enough armor and planes to have a Barbarossa?
I don't usually try that path as I've lost too many subs in 40-41 to the AI with settings for computer player boosted and I'm just starting to pbem. I will have to find out about pvp, but info is always useful.

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RE: Invincible uboats? - 5/31/2020 11:31:45 PM   
Harrybanana

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: Flaviusx

I see nothing unusual here, and this is well within the range of results possible for the Axis. I've had games where the Axis sinks 60+ merchants by May of 40.


60+ by May 40 is tough on the Allies. But if I am counting correctly Sveint has sunk that many (or very close) by February 40. At this rate by the end of May 40 he will have sunk around a 100. That means about 50% of the UKs starting merchant fleet sunk in the first 9 months of the war. I know they gain some from Neutrals, but that is still a lot. But maybe he is just getting lucky and things will calm down. Oh yeah, historically the "Happy Hunting" time didn't begin until June 40 after the Germans captured the French ports.

quote:

Subs are no joke and they are hard to sink early on. You have to get very lucky with carrier or land based air. Escorts are pretty useless with 39 tech almost to the point where you might be better off not even deploying them until they tech up a level. 1940 subs versus 1939 escort is a turkey shoot...for the subs.


My understanding is that the primary purpose of escorts in the game isn't to sink subs (that is just a bonus) but to reduce the number of merchant ships sunk. So if you don't use your escorts, won't that result in even more merchant ships sunk? And if the answer is "No", the same number of merchants will be sunk regardless of the number of escorts, than I think that is a game flaw. Historically, if there were no escorts, the subs could surface and wipe out most of a convoy with their deck guns.



< Message edited by Harrybanana -- 6/1/2020 5:31:43 AM >

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RE: Invincible uboats? - 5/31/2020 11:58:12 PM   
RoadWarrior

 

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1. How close your boats are don't matter.

2. How would an player know if this is a bug or not? Just asking.

3. Only Mr. Wizard can say if this an issue or not.

4. This looks very odd to say the least IF your open an minded player - we do all love to pick a side. In this case Mr. Wizard wins no matter the side we pick

< Message edited by RoadWarrior -- 5/31/2020 11:59:57 PM >

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RE: Invincible uboats? - 6/1/2020 10:07:54 AM   
sillyflower


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OK, I think there may be a bit of misunderstanding about my point.

My complaint is NOT about losing X merchants per turn, which is now 8 per turn because sveint's subs have v. high experience. It is about the apparent loss of the allies to ability to 'attack' the uboats by going adjacent, or when uboats go past them. Bad luck would be that those combats sank no uboats, but there is simply never any combat. Carriers do do air attacks but achieve nothing either beyond perhaps +1 spotting once in a blue moon (?5% of strikes). All this is is what is making the uboats invincible: it is the inability to engage in combat with them.

I've done more testing of '39 scenario with uboats attacking the trade route which goes up the western side of Ireland., accumulating about 100 turns of futile efforts by every allied warship I could find. Not 1 combat and that's with usually 4 groups of allied warship trying to stop the slaughter. I can't even get any allied reaction when I dance the uboats between/under them trying to get attacked. NB the uboats are outside the range of land-based air, so I haven't tested that issue.

The only result from my posting is that another of my opponents (it would be impolite to name him but he's posted on this thread so I know he's read it) is now using his uboats the same way with impunity

I know that there haven't been any relevant rule changes recently. However, these results are wholly different in character from the many other games I've played to date where there has always been fights between the uboats and allied navies with both sides having casualties so I believe that this is not currently WAD. Sveint's experience to date has been the same as mine, and all the AARs I've read tell the same story of actual battles.

To answer Roadwarrior, if nobody else has this problem, there must be a problem with my installation of the game. However, if others find the same issue, then it's a game problem

ADDENDUM I ran each test until lack of oilers intervened. I reckon about 20 oilers refuelled allied ships adjacent to uboats and about 10 supplied uboats after sailing past, or through, allied fleets to reach the uboats. No oiler was ever intercepted.


< Message edited by sillyflower -- 6/1/2020 10:23:15 AM >


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RE: Invincible uboats? - 6/1/2020 10:39:33 AM   
sveint


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The only way to actively attack submarines is with aircraft.

Escorts can passively damage them.

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RE: Invincible uboats? - 6/1/2020 11:12:50 AM   
Flaviusx


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It's like Sveint says. Only air and escorts can get to subs that are raiding.

Your tactics would only work here if those subs had been set to fleet, or were adjacent to a coast, and they aren't. It's always been like this.

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RE: Invincible uboats? - 6/1/2020 1:00:02 PM   
sillyflower


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Thank you for both for this. I must have had too many games where subs have been wandering around in fleet mode.

Leaves me with no idea why a patrol group is almost x3 the cost of a sub (330 to 120 PPs) and just over the price of 40 escorts (320 PP) as if they cannot be used as sub-hunters in the way they were in WWII


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RE: Invincible uboats? - 6/1/2020 3:08:07 PM   
Harrybanana

 

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I agree with Sillyflower that the Rules make patrol groups rather useless, at least for the Allies. Perhaps this is necessary for game balancing. But if, as Flavius says, subs are more effective if they are grouped together, than I wonder if the game is WAD. As I posted elsewhere, my understanding from the Manual is that 10 convoy escorts provide maximum protection no matter how many resources/merchant ships are using a particular convoy route. In other words using more than 10 for any route is pointless. If so, one would think that if you grouped all of your subs to attack just one convoy route the Allied Player could put 10 of his escorts onto that single route giving it maximum protection and limiting sub damage. But since the Allied player doesn't have enough convoy escorts to cover all of his routes, logic would dictate that the Axis player would sink more merchants by splitting up his u-boats between 2 or 3 convoy routes; thus forcing the Allied Player to use less than the maximum escorts for each route (or perhaps maximizing one route at the expense of the others). So what I want to know is:

1. Do the game mechanics make groups of 3 subs more effective than if those subs were attacking separately? If so, what is the logic behind this? I realize that historically the u-boats attacked in killer packs; but that didn't mean the entire u-boat fleet was in a single pack. I assume each submarine unit already represents a wolf pack (or even several packs).

2. Is the Manual correct that the maximum number of convoy escorts that are effective for each route is 10?

3. Do the number of escorts help reduce the number of merchants sunk?

4. Do the number of sub units in a fleet effect the likelihood of being found and attacked by air units? Logically, a fleet of 3 sub units would be easier to locate than a fleet of 1 sub unit.

< Message edited by Harrybanana -- 6/1/2020 3:12:40 PM >

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RE: Invincible uboats? - 6/1/2020 4:42:01 PM   
baloo7777


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Why do surface ships have varied anti-sub values, if they can not attack subs?. For example, the German destroyer group that starts the 39 scenario has an anti-sub factor of 4 while the CA group has a 2? What is the purpose of those numbers?

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RE: Invincible uboats? - 6/1/2020 5:04:03 PM   
sillyflower


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In the unlikely event that a sub attacks you.

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RE: Invincible uboats? - 6/1/2020 10:18:57 PM   
sveint


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Please everyone remember that these results are an outlier. In ALL my other games the subs are quickly sunk or damaged.

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RE: Invincible uboats? - 6/2/2020 12:23:35 AM   
Harrybanana

 

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If it is just luck (and I did say it might be just that) than OK. We will have to wait to see if these results are occurring in other games. But I would still like my questions answered. It will help me and others plan our strategies for the War in the Atlantic.

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RE: Invincible uboats? - 6/2/2020 1:02:31 PM   
Dalwin

 

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DD groups should have some chance to engage subs even when they are raiding and not along the coast. This system is, at the very least, counter-intuitive.

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RE: Invincible uboats? - 6/2/2020 8:01:56 PM   
baloo7777


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quote:

1. Do the game mechanics make groups of 3 subs more effective than if those subs were attacking separately? If so, what is the logic behind this? I realize that historically the u-boats attacked in killer packs; but that didn't mean the entire u-boat fleet was in a single pack. I assume each submarine unit already represents a wolf pack (or even several packs).


From WarPlan Dev Diary #3 - Naval System Operations:


quote:

The naval scale for WarPlan is 5 different types of naval groups consisting of….
Carrier Group = 2 large aircraft carriers or a mix of smaller aircraft carriers with 150 – 200 combat aircraft.
Battle group: 2 battleships/battle cruisers + support ships
Cruiser group: 4-6 heavy cruisers + escorts
Patrol group: 4-6 light cruisers + escorts or a destroyer patrol
Sub group: 10-15 active submarines out at any one time

2 convoy groups…

Escorts – 6-8 frigates, escorts, and corvettes for trade routes
Merchant Marine – cargo ships ferrying resources


Hope that helps with question 1. I'd like to know the answer to the others as well...

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RE: Invincible uboats? - 6/2/2020 8:25:53 PM   
ncc1701e


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quote:

ORIGINAL: baloo7777

Why do surface ships have varied anti-sub values, if they can not attack subs?. For example, the German destroyer group that starts the 39 scenario has an anti-sub factor of 4 while the CA group has a 2? What is the purpose of those numbers?


Ships with anti-sub values can attack subs if they are near coastlines.

< Message edited by ncc1701e -- 6/2/2020 8:26:03 PM >


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RE: Invincible uboats? - 6/3/2020 4:25:00 PM   
baloo7777


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quote:

ORIGINAL: ncc1701e


quote:

Ships with anti-sub values can attack subs if they are near coastlines.


Thanks. It seems like a hard concept to get my head around, so I keep reminding my self that this is 5-15 subs deployed weekly during a two-week turn.

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RE: Invincible uboats? - 6/4/2020 8:34:19 PM   
ncc1701e


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Subs are not invincible...

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RE: Invincible uboats? - 6/4/2020 10:37:53 PM   
AlvaroSousa


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Harrybanana

1. Do the game mechanics make groups of 3 subs more effective than if those subs were attacking separately? If so, what is the logic behind this? I realize that historically the u-boats attacked in killer packs; but that didn't mean the entire u-boat fleet was in a single pack. I assume each submarine unit already represents a wolf pack (or even several packs).

2. Is the Manual correct that the maximum number of convoy escorts that are effective for each route is 10?

3. Do the number of escorts help reduce the number of merchants sunk?

4. Do the number of sub units in a fleet effect the likelihood of being found and attacked by air units? Logically, a fleet of 3 sub units would be easier to locate than a fleet of 1 sub unit.


#1 Depends. Early on when the Allies don't have enough escorts spreading them to different convoy lanes every turn is a tactic all the way up to 1941. Later you want to 3 group them.

#2 Yes. This is based on real data about convoy escorting research from Black May by Gannon

#3 No they sink subs

#4 Yes by a small amount.

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