• Continuing that thought, like in all aspects of life, there ARE trade-offs.

    I think a key one that influences me is how much does UK have to spend.

    If they were going to buy a naval unit and have less than $12, then a DD is for you.
    if you have 12 or 13, you might consider the CA (assuming no subs can attack or you already have a DD)
    14 and over brings the A/C into consideration
    if you have no available ftrs to land on the a/c, then you might then fall back on the CA to get a “3” defense

    You also have to consider what sort of strategy is Germany employing?  Are they really turtled up, strong stacks in France, Germany and perhaps even Poland?  If so, then an A/C & ftr strat is probably a bit better because the CA’s won’t really be used.  If Germany is trading many territories, then CA’s might be very helpful.

    Bottom line:  I have won without Cruisers as a part of my allied navy and I have won with them being an intergral part of my navy / allied game plan.

    So my bottom line is that Cruisers can be useful in certain situations, but loaded A/C’s are probably more useful in more situations.

  • Pretty well said, axis_roll.  :-)

  • '20 '18 '17 '15

    I think cruisers are an excellent piece and add flexibility and fun to buying; it is no longer an all or nothing (BB vs DD).  It’s a mid range with trade offs.

    They are very useful if you find yourself bombarding a lot, or have amphibious assaults as a part of your strategy.  Buying crusiers instead of battleships will give you more offshore shots for your IPC.  If you had 60 IPCs, the firepower of offshore shots would be 15 to 12 in favor of the cruiser.  But it’s still more than just that, you’d have more ships with which to bombard, allowing for multiple targets per turn.

    While the piece has its uses, as with most units, it is highly dependent on what your opponents have and buy.  Some games cruisers might be worth it, while other strategies would require the battleship.

    Throw in personal preferences to the mix and the cruiser won’t be for everyone.  There’s no right answer, really.  I simply prefer to keep all options open to give myself maximum flexibility when playing an opponent.

  • Very well said, also, Whack.

  • I think it depends upon your definition of “useful” or “very useful”; if by “very useful” you mean that cruisers are a unit you would buy in all situations, then they are not “very useful”, but no unit fits that definition…  With the new naval rules transports and subs are out as fodder (with subs not being usable as such against air if your opponent doesn’t have a destroyer), so the new “infantry of the sea” is the destroyer.  So yes, if you’re going for pure defensive utility destroyers are your best bet for single units, while the 2 fighter/carrier combo has the better defensive punch to IPC ratio.  However, naval units are not all about defense, and the limits of production capability and availability also provide problems.

    I think the naval units are much more balanced for usefulness than the land units might be; at least cruisers are useful for more efficient bombardment in comparison to battleships, while artillery really isn’t that useful in comparison to tanks (though tanks at 6 IPC as in AAP40 gives artillery a little more value in comparison to artillery vs. tanks at 5 IPC).  Carrier units and destroyers provide the best defensive value, but the fighters are more vulnerable in amphibious assaults than bombarding cruisers or battleships; especially in the European theater where you can usually still get your fighters to the site of battle without carriers anyway, so why not use both planes and bombardment for more offensive power?  None of the naval units is an all-powerful, all-purpose unit; they each have their drawbacks, and everyone can argue about which of the drawbacks are worse, but it would seem that would depend upon the situation that presents itself.  So maybe all we need is some more love in this thread…  :wink:

  • Pretty well said, AngelSurfer.

    I still think subs are the infantry of the sea.  In most cases they can be taken off as casualties.  The only time they can’t is when you are facing significant air with no destroyer, as you said.

    I only buy to get more than 1 or 2 destroyers in a fleet if I am in great need of cheap casualties against air, since as you say, subs can’t be used in this situation.  Or, of course, if facing a lot of enemy submarines.  But if you’re facing an enemy fleet, obviously, subs are the infantry of the sea.  They are also the infantry of the sea when hunting enemy subs.  If I’m attacking a few subs (maybe that survived after killing stuff) I like to have a sub to go with the destroyer and air, for a cheap casualty.  Yes, in many cases subs are the infantry of the sea, just not always.

    Great point about production capacity.  Those arguing against cruisers failed to take this into account.  Maybe you have 24 IPC’s buy only 2 production slots.  Or maybe your factory is damaged, so buying more expensive units is no longer so inefficient.

    That would actually be a good topic for another thread.  Talking about buying more tanks instead of just max infantry when your complex is heavily damaged.  You know, when infantry cost 4, arty costs 5, and tanks cost 6.

  • It’s all great but in my experience, nothing beats air power.

    • Air power can pull out anytime in an amphibious battle. If you know what you are doing, they are as safe as that cruiser doing a strafe.

    • A cruisers does 1 bombardment at 3, a fighter does it every round at same.

    • A cruisers have a defense value of 3, a fighter defend at 4 both on land and sea.

    • A cruiser has a range of 2 VS 4 ( which can be complemented by AC ) for fighters when it comes to power projection.

    • A cruiser can move in water vs fighters which can move over land and sea.

    • A cruiser finish it’s move where it attacked. Air power retreat to safe territory.

    • Last, but not the least: Cruiser cost 12, fighters cost 10…

    If you only looking for the ‘‘bombard’’ ability, buy a bomber for the same price which is even better than the fighter.

    The way I see it from the allies view UK/US, there is 2 boats and a half in this game.

    • Transports
    • AC for transport defense + fighters ( build only what you need for defense, period)
    • 1 DD, and only 1. If there is really a sub threat to your fleet, ajust in consequence, normally the DD should be able to block the path to your fleet in worst case/ ill planning.
    • The rest should be all bombers using the best AC there is, an unsinkable UK island.

    When I play germany, I buy infantry / fighters, more fighters and then bombers as soon I get the upper hand. Japan can actually go all the way with infantry and bombers as they already got whatever they need for sea defense ( in doubt, an AC and fighters ).

    So yea, cruisers are useless. There is no way any boats in this game can compare to fighters for versatility and even less to bombers when it comes to attack value.

    I’ve played lots of game and air units are simply the best buy coupled with the best versatility roles ( sea and land ), best range and being the only units that can actually retreat after an attack is completed. All you need is the infantry fodder, which is the same for cruisers bombard and pretty much any serious strats.

  • TripleA

    Corbeau Blanc, i agree with your assessment of carriers/fighters compared to cruisers.

    do not be fooled by posts of players trying to create a very rare scenario whereby a cruiser is the best purchase.

    i am sure there is a very rare scenario in which a opponent has put your navy at risk and you are next to an industrial complex and you only have 12ipc and the cruiser really is the best purchase for this oddball scenario.

    so once in a game one power would be best to buy one cruiser. this is not basing a strategy around cruisers as it is a inferior strategy compared to other options.

    this does not make a cruiser a very usefull unit.

  • Owkey, I really shouldn’t do this, but… Cruisers suck. And even Larry and his crew turned to “I still think it is balanced” when I presented them the irrationality behind cruisers.

    Let’s go for a warship roundup and usability. I’ll start of with the uncontroversial ones:
    sub: cheap hit, good for sneaking, can’t attack air => very useful for disrupting enemy waters
    DD: counter of sub, cheap hit, can attack air => basic sea unit
    Carrier: expensive, but allows excess of fighters to fight sea battles => flexible and certainly useful with fighters already purchased

    I think everyone agrees with the above.
    Battleship: expensive, has double hit, high attack, and, most importantly, auto-repair. Auto-repair is the reason why a Cru and DD aren’t the equal of a BB. After taking a hit in sea battle, with DD + Cru, you end up with only Cru. With BB, you end up with a fully repaired BB. Net gain: 8 ipc’s. Which one is better now? Shore bombard is a nice extra, but without it, the BB would still be a decent buy. I remember Caspian Sub used to describe a strategy with the USA to kill Japan: Build IC in Alaska, build a fleet of BB’s. Use the BB’s to hit-and-run the Japanese navy, using auto-repair to soak up losses, while Japan keeps sacrificing subs. This was back in the days when a BB was 24 (!) IPC’s, and was an interesting idea. In 1942, the idea gets only more interesting, maybe to the point it is a viable strategy  :evil: So in short: BB’s have their use thanks to auto-repair. Think about it ;)

    Now, why are Cru’s bad?
    Cru: expensive, no double hit, only plus is their shore bombardment => overpriced. Shore bombardment isn’t what it used to be (you have to send an inf every time, and the opponent still gets to shoot back!). Compared to other units, a Cru sucks. Which would you like best, a bmr or a Cru? A bmr is the better offensive piece: much greater range, better attack, can strategically bombard (which is at least as good as shore bombard). One can argue that the Cru is better at sea defense than a bmr. Which is true, but a Cru is MUCH worse than a DD at sea defense: at sea defense, the number of hits one can take is essential. A DD takes a hit at 8 IPC’s, a Cru at 12 IPC’s. An increase of 50%! The meager shore bombardment doesn’t equalise, and the damage/IPC count is equal between Cru and DD, which also has sub detection. Not to mention you can buy two sea hits (=two subs) for the price of one Cru. So at defense, Cru is also not a good choice. But is it an “all round” unit then, not particularly good at anything, but decent at everything? Maybe, I say. If they were priced at 10, they would be. Or if they had the sub detection instead of DD. Or an AA to counter those overpowered bombers at sea. But alas, a rational mind is hard to find. So any time my opponent purchases a Cru, I silently smile, because he just flushed 2 IPC’s down the drain. Litteraly 8-)

  • @ HolKann

    While I agree with your overall assesment, I still see a marginal semi regular use for them with the US and maybe UK.

    I have noticed times with the US when trying to build a fleet up in the pacific, and you need actual fleet to re-enforce a somewhat difficult area cruisers can come into play, that or you don’t want to spen money on a carrier/fig combo.

    This also works for both the US and UK in the Atlantic.  It works once in a while as a semi-luxury item, or a quick fix re-enforcment unit in a jam that isn’t too bad in the long run because you can shore bombard with it later.

  • Moderator

    Note:  I’m mainly talking about the UK here.  Other than the US I don’t see the other countries needing a navy.  Japan can usually buy whatever it wants to due to its high income.  Germany can build a navy, but doesn’t need one, and Ita already has 2 CA and a BB.


    I don’t really disagree with some of the assessments, but what I think you guys might be missing is the Cruisers value over time.  Looking strictly at dd vs. ca or ftr vs. ca, okay maybe you don’t get a ca, but you also have to look long term.  The 8 ipc to 12 ipc comparision doesn’t work as well when you consider that for every round you have a cruiser you have a 50% chance to kill an enemy inf.  So if you are anticipating having it around for 8 turns, that means you’ll do 12 ipc damage, essentially paying for the ca, where as the dd would just be sitting there.  Again this all comes back to needing the minimum amount of fodder ships to deter an attack.  If you anticipate needing 6 dds (maybe combined UK + US) + a couple loaded ACs as an unsinkable fleet, I don’t know why you wouldn’t consider 3 DDs and 2 CAs + carriers instead.  If you can get your unsinkable fleet in the water by rd 4 and your games typical go to rd 12, then with the CAs you’ve spent 24 but also killed 24 ipc worth of units over 8 rds, however if you spent that 24 on DDs you are simply out of the 24 ipc.

    Having only 3-4 DDs is usually enough to skew any air to navy battle in your favor anyway.  So even if you have to lose 1 CA or 1 ftr in the last rd of battle you should come out ahead, assuming you can add.  Heck if Germany wants to sack some planes trying to kill a CA, then fine.  The important thing is to make sure they can’t get to your transports.

    Germany with 8 ftrs can’t sink a fleet of
    #1 - 7 DD + 1 AC + 2 ftrs + trns but they also can’t sink
    #2 - 4 DD + 2 CA + 1 AC + 2 ftrs + trns

    Assuming you ended up taking 7 damage in both battles.  Yes you’d lose more in ipc value if Germany attacked fleet 2 (56 vs. 66) but in both cases Germany lost 80 and didn’t get to your trns.  I can’t see any player playing Germany doing either attack.  But again for the duration of the game fleet #2 will be killing on avg 1 inf per turn, so for every rd the game goes on the CAs continue to pay for themselves.

    That’s why with the UK I like to try and get 2 CAs (or 1 BB + 1 CA) in the water ASAP.  The longer you have them the more you get out of them.  I still go AC on UK 1 but by UK 3-4 I’m looking to drop a CA or 2.  Note:  I typically play longer games (10+ rds easy).

  • Another thing, to get the use of bombardment, you need to drop a land unit for every single of them. The more CA you have, the harder it is to use them all to their potential.

    On long run, if you get there, 20 Fighters don’t need 20 infantry to strike on land. You could even send them without land fodder if you’d wish to.

    On long run,  even if you could fuel your CAs every round with land units, the more the games goes, the more fighters become cost efficient even spending for an AC each 2 fighters (And I mind you, past a point, you simply don’t need to reinforce the fleet, simply going with bombers ).

    EX: 9 cruisers bombard at 3 vs 6 fighters at 3 EVERY battle round. On the second round of battle, the fighters already rolled 3 more dices… that gaps get bigger and bigger the more units you get and simply disproportionate as soon you can buy bombers without worrying about fleet defense.

    On long run, 1 AC + 2 fighters will always be better than 3 cruisers on defense. Once ''unsinkable" status is achieved, 3 bombers will always be better than 3 cruisers.

    On the long run, air units versatility cannot be match by any boats. For exemple If Russia is suddenly about to collapse, you can’t send the CAs to defend that gap while you could always retreat the fleet to safe sea zone while sending all fighters to correct a end game situation. V

    Understand me here: It is not that the cruiser is a bad unit, it would be balanced in regard to ALL other units. The Truth is that it is air units that are totally unbalanced in this game. A supposed flaw that prevent them from landing after an attack actually makes them the best unit there is as they don’t need to sit there to take the counter attack. Their fly range is out of proportion, in WWII , crossing the english channel was more then often a one way trip for BF-109 and Spitfires…  the same goes for bombers flying over Germany. There is so many things wrong with thoses 2 units, I could go on and on and on. On the other side, they effectively were then end of conventional naval warfare but do we really want to reproduce that to the uselessness of most other units?

    The end result remains, they are the best at almost all aspect except land fodder ( hey, they are only 2 ipc more than a DD whe it comes to sea). To make matters worst, the best technologies applies to them. This in itself should be a thread.

  • @Corbeau:

    Understand me here: It is not that the cruiser is a bad unit, it would be balanced in regard to ALL other units. The Truth is that it is air units that are totally unbalanced in this game. A supposed flaw that prevent them from landing after an attack actually makes them the best unit there is as they don’t need to sit there to take the counter attack. Their fly range is out of proportion, in WWII , crossing the english channel was more then often a one way trip for BF-109 and Spitfires…  the same goes for bombers flying over Germany. There is so many things wrong with thoses 2 units, I could go on and on and on. On the other side, they effectively were then end of conventional naval warfare but do we really want to reproduce that to the uselessness of most other units?

    The end result remains, they are the best at almost all aspect except land fodder ( hey, they are only 2 ipc more than a DD whe it comes to sea). To make matters worst, the best technologies applies to them. This in itself should be a thread.

    Good points.  Also, due to some strange ways zones are drawn, air can go ridiculously far in some places, and not very far at all in others.  And then there’s the techs…  3 of them applying to bombers, 2 to fighters…

    Good point about the fighters only costing 2 more than a destroyer.  That’s why I don’t buy many destroyers - just enough to handle subs and be cheap fodder against enemy air.

  • @DarthMaximus:

    Germany can build a navy, but doesn’t need one

    At first I thought this as well, but each game I play I feel more that Germany needs keep her baltic navy. I know at least one game where I could lose just because I failed to buy the AC G1. That for 1941 scenario, but for 1942 I think the navy is really too good for Germany to not buying it

    I’m giving a last chance to 1941 scenario now we have a better bid system, but that for I’m seeing is pretty probably I quit totally from this scenario after tourney ends

    Agreed with your statements about cruisers

  • I agree with Func.  I think Germany needs a navy, because it’s too easy to lose Norway and Finland without one.  I can’t imagine allowing the Allies free access to Norway, Finland, Karelia, Baltic States, Poland, Germany, and NWE early in the game.  It’s bad when Germany loses her navy.  And 1 or 2 transports can move 2-4 ground units from Germany to Karelia or Baltic States for several turns.  I don’t lose many games as Axis, but in every game that I lose, it’s largely because I lost the German and Italian navies by round 3-4.

    I can’t think of a round 1 purchase that is as important to me as a G1 CV.

  • @Darth Maximus

    While it is true bombarding ships are the only ones that are directly valuable to land attacks, if I were concerned about an over time bombarding ship with intangibles I would choose 1 20 IPC BB to 2 24 cru, as it is cheaper, offers more protection and has comprable bombarding stats.  The IPC differential adds even more due to the absorbtion on an attack (as in it may be worth more than a 4 IPC cost).

    Also I think, it isn’t so much as comparing a cruiser to a destroyer but comparing a cruiser to an air unit.  Air is just a superior build 9/10 times.  The only reason you build a navy at all is because you absolutely have to. When compared to air navy has; less power projection, has more limited range, has more limited movement, has worse stats (ipc for ipc), still can’t take land, has less than or equal to movement, is in danger of becoming next to worthless past a certain point in the game, and less versital/ flexible. I will take 1 carrier and two airplanes over 3 cruisers any day of the weak and on UK1 (where you are in the best position to buy multiple capital ships) to not build a carriers in favor of cruisers seems particularly like a bad idea (as in you can immediatly utilize up to 4 allied fig by G2 making your fleet untouchable for at least 3 turns and giving your fig better range). I may even take 2 battleships over three cruisers.

    Not only that the cost deficiancy is even more when you consider the otherwise worthless extra transports you are building (for those advocating the over 4 cruiser bombard strat) and the infantry you sacrifice everytime by straffing.  Add that to the fact that you can’t be doing much in any other theater with the UK other than straffing and weaking 1-2 German territories per turn.

    I just think the UK is capable of a lot more with better money managment and unit allocation.  That being said, buying a cruiser can and should happen sometimes, just not very often, particularly with a UK making less than 30 IPC’s.

    In short

    carriers at least utilize fig (which are cheaper, stronger, and more versitile)

    destroyers are cheaper if you need a “quicky” unit to defend (though this is when I would buy a cruiser if I had the money), or if you have to build one due to subs

    While I still don’t advocate buying the BB, I think the math is better on them than on a cruiser in most cases.

    @ those advocating German builds

    The problem compounds itself 10 fold with Germany and Italy (Japan can build anything it wants, because it’s Japan).  The game is designed for the Allies to dominate the Atlantic almost at will.  If the Allies can not control the Atlantic due to the mechanics of the game, the game becomes truley hopeless for the Allies.  Even if that was not the case I think the math still shows fig / bomb will be the better buy in over 90% of G1-G3 purchases than a cruiser.

  • dondoolee -

    CV = Carrier, not cruiser.

  • Cruiser’s are best for Japan. UK doesn’t really need a navy anyways and Cruiser’s are a bit costly for money towards Britain. The US are rich enough they can mainly buy Battleship’s. Germany just need a one time navy in the Baltic to sink the Royal Navy, and for the Italy, navy you can just smoke the British Navy. Russia don’t need a navy. So for Japan, it’s good because they shouldn’t spend too much, for a battleship, besides they start out with two. So Cruisers are like tanks, very useful pretty strong, so yeah.

  • '12

    Dylan, exactly how many times have you actually played AA?  The UK really doesn’t need a navy?  Really, exactly how do they get units into battle then?

    The utility of straffing with offshore bombardment and landing units really does not seem to be of economic nor strategic benefit, if it were a good idea, then BBs over CCs should be the choice with a 33% better chance of inflicting a hit.  I just don’t see how even a battleship shot and infantry is a smart attack against a stack to ‘just weaken it a bit’ never mind a cruiser shot.  With a total offense of ‘5’ you should do 5/6th of a hit and therefore 5/6th of a 3 IPC unit.  Spending 3 IPC to inflict 2.5 IPC of damage just doesn’t win it in my books.  Better off to buy bombers and strategicly bomb there you spend 15 (or 12 in later games) IPC to do 17.5 IPC.  Moreover, you should drop 2 units rather than 1 to fully utilize the transport.  The best ratio would be 1 INF + 1 ART for land units using the math every 1 point of offense does .5IPC of damage against a stack of infantry.  Couple it with 2 CC you get 10 offense inflicting on average 5 IPC of damage for the cost of 7 IPC in units, you lose the war of attrition.  Moreover, those 2 units landed in a shuck operation in time coupled with air assests might take out 2-3 units in a territory being traded back and forth and thus actually earn income and change the tactical situation on the board.

  • LOL Japan shouldn’t spend too much.

    Oh boy that is a good one. Considering from round two they are ahead of the US in IPCs in most games as Darth said above Japan can buy whatever they want. And for Pacific action I like Battleships and Carriers above cruisers. The carriers and fighters project the power and once a proper mass of battleships is achieved they can strafe opposing navies to death due to the healing ability. Plus it can be amusing starting an invasion with 6 or 7 bombardments at 4.  :-D And before the comments come that was in a League game that I won.  :-P

    Cruisers can be good for the UK, as far as the invasion strafes I think MrMalachiCrunch is missing the numbers. When you are wearing down a heavy stacked territory it is not using just 1 Cruiser to bombard with, done properly it should be using about 4 or more. It is very hard for Germany to keep replacing those losses in France or Germany depending where the strafe is taking place. As far as the bombers and that math, the bombers are subject to AA fire. There is no guarantee of that 12 IPCs doing 17.5 in damage, that 1 out of 6 can very well come the first AA roll.

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