**Submarines can fire a special “sneak attack” shot at unescorted transports as explained in the rulebook with the following clarification: a transport is considered escorted (and though there is no sneak attack) if:
-If it moves during combat move and if at any moment during the combat move there is a friendly surface warship in the sub sea zone.
-If it moves during noncombat move and if at any moment during the noncombat move there is a friendly surface warship in the sub sea zone.**
Yeah, that’s specifically the wording I don’t like. That’s not an escort.
First example: there’s an allied sub in sz20. A Japanese transport moves from SZ 6 to sz 36. A Japanese cruiser starts in sz 20 and moves to sz 35. Under your wording, that constitutes an escort.
Second example: there’s an allied sub in sz 25. A Japanese transport moves from SZ 6 to SZ 26. A Japanese destroyer moves from SZ 15 to sz 31 through SZ 25. Under your wording, that constitutes an escort.
I vehemently oppose THAT wording, as strongly as you want the “sneak attack” back, for the following reasons:
A) We’re to assume that all movements are simultaneous. In the first case, the cruiser moves away before the sub moves through the seazone. In the second case, paths cross, each moving a different number of spaces. So, abstractly, they’re not following the same paths, thus NOT an escort.
B) We’re also to assume seazones are very large. This is partially reinforced by the ability to ignore units neutral to you in a seazone battle. From that, and based on any semblance of reality implied by introducing the concept of an “escort”, in the first example the cruiser and the transport are separated at some point and a sub would have an opening. They’re not moving together, so how can the cruiser be an escort? In the second example, again, these are different paths entering the seazone from different borders.
How could either possibly be justified as an escort?
In my opinion, the errata was correct in establishing that the escort needed to move with the transport at every step of the transports move. I would have preferred if the escort needed to end in the same seazone as the transport, but at least it implies an escort role – moving with the transport along the same set route.
Also, your wording allows allied ships in the subs seazone to take on the role of the escort. Again, I don’t believe that satisfies the nature of an escort, or follows established game mechanics. An escort, by definition, moves WITH the ship it is escorting. The allied ships are decidedly never moving. Yeah, sure, they’re patrolling. But the game mechanics suggest that they’re not coordinated with you. After all, they don’t participate in a battle in that seazone, if you choose to engage the sub. If it was an allied destroyer, it would not cancel any sub special abilities on your turn.
I admit there is abstraction and the simultaneous movement isn’t a part of the game mechanics compared to a game like RoboRally, but come on, how can you possibly justify that either of those examples above could be considered an escort? No no, a thousand times no.
I would however accept that an escort duty is filled if a ship moves across the same borders going INTO the enemy subs’ seazone and across the same border OUT of the enemy subs’ seazone (or remained with it). I would have been very satisfied with that wording. I would have preferred it in fact, as it requires that the transport isn’t left alone in the seazone, which it can do under the errataed language.