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ASW Modding (Comments) - 8/15/2020 4:19:15 PM   
el cid again

 

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Submarine combat in AE is poorly modeled. It is also substantially a function of code it is
impractical to work with because it is undocumented.

It is a complex subject involving submarine attempts to find targets, and what happens if they do?;
surface ships trying to find submarines, and what happens if they do?; and some aircraft trying to
find submarines, and what happens if they do?

The chances all three platforms (submarines, surface ships, or aircraft) find a submarine improves
over time, because of increased experience levels for any given unit, and sometimes because of improvements
in "radar" - most "sensors" are rendered as radar even if they are not technically radar.

See pages 131-132 in the Manual for what it says about surface ships vs submarines. See also page 138.

It appears that DE's have an advantage in detecting submarines. That might reflect "better sonar" in some
abstract sense, but in any case should be the case because of specialized training. ASW is difficult and only
dedicated crews get good at it. USS England, DE-635, probably was the best ASW ship of WW2 or of all time.
It sank an entire patrol line, usually on the first pass. [For the last sub in the line, it let a different
ship attack first. When it missed, it went in and did the job, with one pass as usual.] This is NOT normal.

The ASW model is poor, partially because it is based on a "number of weapons on bearing" approach. ONLY
ahead throwing weapons have a "direction" in the game. A depth charge attack involves closing the "datum point"
the sub is thought to be at, passing over it, and continuing on - dropping a pattern based on the assumption of
where the sub may be at the time the depth charges arrive at depth? The depth of the sub is unknown. The sub
may - and usually does - change course and speed and/or depth between when DC are dropped (which the sub can hear) and when
they reach depth and detonate. Ahead throwing weapons are different. Except for Squid - which is basically three
depth charges thrown in a triangle pattern - these are contact weapons. They only go off if the charge hits something -
hopefully the sub. So they work regardless of the depth. They involve many projectiles - usually in a circular
or elliptical pattern. But some - notably Japanese "ASW mortars" and later "ASW rockets" - only fire in a line -
partially because the direction of the sub may be known (and bearing may be known much better than range is).

The game model assumes lots of individual throwers and racks "aiming" at a sub in some direction. But that isn't
how ASW really works. Instead, DC attacks should be defined as "all directions" - and should be based on the
statistical probability a pattern may hit. This should be proportional to the size of the DC and to the number
of DC in the pattern. Ideally, calculate the area each DC can penetrate a hull of 22 mm (the Allied assumption
for ASW weapons during WW2 because of Type VII and Type IX Uboats) and because we need some standard to work with.
Multiply the sum of the area times the number of DC in a pattern. For mixed patterns (of large and small DC),
simply do this for both types, and add the result. Values per pattern should be relatively low - between 1 and
20.

ASW torpedoes are a special case. The US one was so effective production was cut back. It was sold internationally
and used for many decades. It should have a very high value - above 80.

Air ASW is poorly implemented. It more or less is limited to bombs (and, if surfaced, aircraft guns). You must
model other Air AS weapons as bombs to get them to work. Any individual bomb should have a low rating. But a
"smart" Air ASW torpedo should get a high rating.

A submarine without guns may be less likely to try to fight on the surface, particularly in daylight.

Post #: 1
RE: ASW Modding (Comments) - 8/15/2020 6:20:40 PM   
Admiral DadMan


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Ok, since the code isn't changing, what's your end game here?

< Message edited by Admiral DadMan -- 8/15/2020 6:21:57 PM >


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RE: ASW Modding (Comments) - 8/15/2020 8:26:33 PM   
PaxMondo


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+1

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RE: ASW Modding (Comments) - 8/16/2020 9:00:23 AM   
thephalanx1453

 

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Good post, thanks for the all the info.

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RE: ASW Modding (Comments) - 8/16/2020 10:39:35 AM   
splashell


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Not an expert but I assume relevant RL factors in terms of hitting a submerged target or not is the depth the target is in, the relative direction it's going to compared to the ship dropping charges, the relative speed it's going compared to ship dropping charges, and of course the area which the DC or DCs cover.

For every depth, every speed and every bearing there is a mathematical solution to get path of sub and DC to intersect (i.e. you need to make the charge to hit water at a certain point, which takes into account sub speed, bearing, depth and rate of sink for DC). The game is not abstracted to the level where depth, speed and bearing are taken into account, so imo it is impossible to model this level of accuracy and the area which the DCs cover versus the area which the sub is in. After you get those values, you could probably start further developing some statistical model for hits.

The game probably abstracts ASW on a level which takes into account crew experiences, and probably number of ASW weapons, which have certain accuracy and effect/pen values. Then throw in some random multipliers or rolls, and shallow or deep water. AFAIK the game DOES model/have max depth ratings for different subs, which increases the modeling capability.

During the Pacific war, neither Japanese or US subs had very deep diving depths compared to German subs. Some have theorized it's because these subs in the Pacific were larger in volume, meaning the pressure hull had to cover more volume and in order to not make these subs so ridiculously large and heavy and unusable, the thickness was cut down a bit. Another thing if you look at a Balao or VII boat, you notice the VII is much more cylindrical/round, which equals more compressive strength (as is evident by calculated crush depths of 130m vs 230m).

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RE: ASW Modding (Comments) - 8/16/2020 10:59:59 AM   
Alfred

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: thephalanx1453

Good post, thanks for the all the info.


You're easily misled.

The OP has very little to do with how ASW is handled in AE. He has never had any access to the game code. He likes to trawl the web, then present his findings to show how much smarter he is than the AE devs.

Alfred

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RE: ASW Modding (Comments) - 8/16/2020 11:11:10 AM   
Alfred

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: splashell

Not an expert but I assume relevant RL factors in terms of hitting a submerged target or not is the depth the target is in, the relative direction it's going to compared to the ship dropping charges, the relative speed it's going compared to ship dropping charges, and of course the area which the DC or DCs cover.

For every depth, every speed and every bearing there is a mathematical solution to get path of sub and DC to intersect (i.e. you need to make the charge to hit water at a certain point, which takes into account sub speed, bearing, depth and rate of sink for DC). The game is not abstracted to the level where depth, speed and bearing are taken into account, so imo it is impossible to model this level of accuracy and the area which the DCs cover versus the area which the sub is in. After you get those values, you could probably start further developing some statistical model for hits.

The game probably abstracts ASW on a level which takes into account crew experiences, and probably number of ASW weapons, which have certain accuracy and effect/pen values. Then throw in some random multipliers or rolls, and shallow or deep water. AFAIK the game DOES model/have max depth ratings for different subs, which increases the modeling capability.

During the Pacific war, neither Japanese or US subs had very deep diving depths compared to German subs. Some have theorized it's because these subs in the Pacific were larger in volume, meaning the pressure hull had to cover more volume and in order to not make these subs so ridiculously large and heavy and unusable, the thickness was cut down a bit. Another thing if you look at a Balao or VII boat, you notice the VII is much more cylindrical/round, which equals more compressive strength (as is evident by calculated crush depths of 130m vs 230m).


A fair bit of information was provided by the devs regarding ASW. Precise details of course were not provided, but enough information was made public to understand the degree and type of abstraction incorporated into AE. A search of those devs comments will disclose that your post, whilst inaccurate in certain respects, nonetheless is soundly based.

What so many modders seem to refuse to acknowledge and understand is that a high degree of abstraction is unavoidable. Certainly if one is designing a game which can be played on the average consumers hardware, does not get bogged down unnecessarily in petty details which turns playing it into a chore, does not require a PhD in order to play, and can retail at a price point which generates sales and profit generation.

Alfred

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RE: ASW Modding (Comments) - 8/16/2020 11:45:44 AM   
splashell


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Yes, everything depends on the level of modelling wanted which can be anything. FWIW I love the ASW part of the game (it's very fun to watch) and a suddenly popping up torpedo attacks always raises the tension. I also play Silent Hunter games which are fun as well to quench the thirst of the tactical side arousing from the strategic side. And the Silent Hunter games can arouse the thirst for the strategic side. A never ending cycle of interest (which is good ).

Of course the best game ever would be a game which models all of these details and enables to play Silent Hunter, Il-2 Sturmovik, Call of Duty etc. in your own dynamic WITP-campaign. What would be more fun than take 3rd/1st person view part in your own WITP campaign as a soldier defending in the jungle of Burma or getting a shot at Akagi with Gato

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Post #: 8
RE: ASW Modding (Comments) - 8/17/2020 7:55:43 AM   
thephalanx1453

 

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OP provided some history and IRL information about weapons and ships that I didn't know before, that's why I thanked him. As to how ASW is handled in AE, I had a look, and it seems pretty good to me, just maybe not to the level of detail that OP wants.

(in reply to Alfred)
Post #: 9
RE: ASW Modding (Comments) - 8/17/2020 1:53:22 PM   
RangerJoe


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As long as the code works and is somewhat realistic, that is good enough for me. I don't need to know exactly how it works just like I don't need to know exactly how a television works.

Personally, I would not want to be inside or even on top of a ship that throws a depth charge in front of it, then have the depth charge detonate as the ship passes over the depth charge. Something like that could ruin your sea voyage or even your whole day.

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RE: ASW Modding (Comments) - 8/22/2020 2:33:41 PM   
Ian R

 

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Probably why the ahead throwing weapons like Hedgehog & Squid were multiple launched mortar bomb type things, rather than a depth charge.

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RE: ASW Modding (Comments) - 8/22/2020 4:24:18 PM   
Moltrey


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I can live rather comfortably with the current state of submarines in WITP:AE. If I had a magic wand I would like the propensity of sub attacks against DDs and Escorts reduced, but even that is a small irritant.

Ultimately, that's what this post and others like it are all about; player's irritation and frustration due to aspects of the game that they know won't be "fixed" to their liking.
Everyone wants to be an expert on their favorite interests. It's human nature. Learning to live with our flaws and limitations is the hardest lesson in life.

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Post #: 12
RE: ASW Modding (Comments) - 8/22/2020 6:28:44 PM   
Platoonist


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Moltrey

I can live rather comfortably with the current state of submarines in WITP:AE. If I had a magic wand I would like the propensity of sub attacks against DDs and Escorts reduced, but even that is a small irritant.



The submarine attack sequence that annoys me the most is when a sub skipper elects not to attack a particular target (usually an AKL) and is then subjected to to an ASW counter-attack all the same. It's like; "that's what you get for even thinking about it buddy".

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RE: ASW Modding (Comments) - 8/23/2020 9:36:19 AM   
el cid again

 

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Realistic combat modeling.

Several different things affect submarine warfare.

But modeling ought to seek to achieve reasonable outcomes in the context of how ASW really works.

For ship ASW, the truth is the attacking ship passes over the "datum point" where the sub was
estimated likely to be at before the attack begins. DC drop before, at, and after this point is
reached. Other DC may be "thrown" to port and starboard (and in large patterns, always are). Thus
the "direction" of the attack basically not like a gun which attacks on a bearing it can see given
its position on the ship. Instead, every rack and thrower fires on every attack, creating a pattern around
the datum point in the sea. The area of the pattern matters. And firing in patterns expends DC faster than
just shooting from those that 'bear' - as was the code assumption. Getting reasonable values (for the specific
DC type) is entirely feasible, and the number of shots becomes reasonably limited as well. This is similar to
using "shots" for guns - shots being several shells rather than just one.

Other modeling is used for other weapons - notably the few smart torpedoes (air or sea launched) And the ahead firing
weapons are also different - they work at ANY depth - and they DO have a direction - forward. Thus a ship with
ATW fires twice per round of combat, once for the ATW and once for the DC.

If you combine this with a way to rate armor penetration of weapons and the hull thickness of subs, you get a much
better system. Calculate all weapons area of effect at which they penetrate 19 mm of hull. Give every submarine
"armor" equal to its actual hull thickness. Then your area calculations become meaningful.

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RE: ASW Modding (Comments) - 8/23/2020 9:39:21 AM   
el cid again

 

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You are correct. Sub losses are excessive and render the value of submarines far less than should be the case.
This gets worse over time due to the excessive speed at which ASW skippers pick up experience. You can mitigate this
by replacing skippers, but what players would do that?

An advantage to the hull thickness = armor trick - used to make ASW attacks meaningful - is that it does make submarines
less likely to be damaged by any weapons.


quote:

ORIGINAL: Moltrey

I can live rather comfortably with the current state of submarines in WITP:AE. If I had a magic wand I would like the propensity of sub attacks against DDs and Escorts reduced, but even that is a small irritant.

Ultimately, that's what this post and others like it are all about; player's irritation and frustration due to aspects of the game that they know won't be "fixed" to their liking.
Everyone wants to be an expert on their favorite interests. It's human nature. Learning to live with our flaws and limitations is the hardest lesson in life.


(in reply to Moltrey)
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RE: ASW Modding (Comments) - 8/29/2020 5:29:15 PM   
inqistor


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Few years ago someone made tests about submarine detection, and conclusion was that number of ASW weapons increase that chance.

So, it is possible to lower or increase chance of detection just by changing number of ASW weapons on ships. Tedious, but doable. You want to decrease chance? Change 4 DC throwers into one device. You want to increase detection chance? Make some fake Sonar devices, which will attack with undamaging weapons, but be classified as ASW.

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RE: ASW Modding (Comments) - 8/30/2020 1:20:18 AM   
Alfred

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: inqistor

Few years ago someone made tests about submarine detection, and conclusion was that number of ASW weapons increase that chance.

So, it is possible to lower or increase chance of detection just by changing number of ASW weapons on ships. Tedious, but doable. You want to decrease chance? Change 4 DC throwers into one device. You want to increase detection chance? Make some fake Sonar devices, which will attack with undamaging weapons, but be classified as ASW.


Then that conclusion is quite wrong. The number of devices has no impact on detection.

Wouldn't be the first time someone has constructed a fatally flawed test or drawn quite the wrong conclusions from the evidence.

Alfred

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RE: ASW Modding (Comments) - 8/30/2020 1:35:37 AM   
Admiral DadMan


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Alfred


quote:

ORIGINAL: inqistor

Few years ago someone made tests about submarine detection, and conclusion was that number of ASW weapons increase that chance.

So, it is possible to lower or increase chance of detection just by changing number of ASW weapons on ships. Tedious, but doable. You want to decrease chance? Change 4 DC throwers into one device. You want to increase detection chance? Make some fake Sonar devices, which will attack with undamaging weapons, but be classified as ASW.


Then that conclusion is quite wrong. The number of devices has no impact on detection.

Wouldn't be the first time someone has constructed a fatally flawed test or drawn quite the wrong conclusions from the evidence.

Alfred

And as follow on to Alfred, detection is about being spotted, devices are about prosecuting an attack. I can't see you, then I can't shoot you no matter how many guns I have pointed at you and/or how much ammo they have.

< Message edited by Admiral DadMan -- 8/30/2020 6:03:39 PM >


_____________________________

Scenario 127: "Scraps of Paper"
(\../)
(O.o)
(> <)

CVB Langley:

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RE: ASW Modding (Comments) - 8/30/2020 3:46:44 PM   
el cid again

 

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This seems like a great deal of work. And I dislike fake devices.

More than that, I don't think the number of weapons has any effect on detection. Weapons never get a chance to
shoot at an undetected target. Forum posts by some who tried to understand (and/or modify) code indicate it is things
like the type of ship and the experience of the CO that matter. Testing - which Joe Wilkerson wrote is "at least
as good as reading code" - indicates this to be the case.

In any case, basic AE has far too high a chance of killing submarines. This gets dramatically worse as ship captain
experience increases. For this reason, realistic patrolling results in excessive loss of submarines. The RHS Team
decided to take several steps to DECREASE submarine vulnerability. One of these was a more realistic ASW weapon
theory. PK (probability of kill) was dramatically reduced by allowing only a single DC pattern for most ships.
This pattern is "all sides" - unrelated to the bearing of the sub. Because the ASW ship moves over the target
sub and drops a pattern near it, it more or less always IS "all sides" - you drop before you reach the sub -
throw to both sides - and drop after you pass over it. Ahead throwing weapons on some classes permit a second
attack. This one is directional - ahead (go figure).


quote:

ORIGINAL: inqistor

Few years ago someone made tests about submarine detection, and conclusion was that number of ASW weapons increase that chance.

So, it is possible to lower or increase chance of detection just by changing number of ASW weapons on ships. Tedious, but doable. You want to decrease chance? Change 4 DC throwers into one device. You want to increase detection chance? Make some fake Sonar devices, which will attack with undamaging weapons, but be classified as ASW.


(in reply to inqistor)
Post #: 19
RE: ASW Modding (Comments) - 8/30/2020 3:48:01 PM   
el cid again

 

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You and Alfred must be correct. How can a weapon be fired if there is no target?


quote:

ORIGINAL: Admiral DadMan

quote:

ORIGINAL: Alfred


quote:

ORIGINAL: inqistor

Few years ago someone made tests about submarine detection, and conclusion was that number of ASW weapons increase that chance.

So, it is possible to lower or increase chance of detection just by changing number of ASW weapons on ships. Tedious, but doable. You want to decrease chance? Change 4 DC throwers into one device. You want to increase detection chance? Make some fake Sonar devices, which will attack with undamaging weapons, but be classified as ASW.


Then that conclusion is quite wrong. The number of devices has no impact on detection.

Wouldn't be the first time someone has constructed a fatally flawed test or drawn quite the wrong conclusions from the evidence.

Alfred

And as follow on to Alfred, detection is about being spotted, devices are about prosecuting an attack. I can't shoot you if I can't see you no matter how many guns I have pointed at you and/or how much ammo they have.


(in reply to Admiral DadMan)
Post #: 20
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