Rules: Subs vs transports with air support


  • Sup gang,

    Had our regular Saturday A&A game.  We had a rules meeting about scrambles vs subs and transports…and couldn’t come to a consensus.

    Japan built an airfield in Kwangsi to protect ships sitting in SZ36.  Japan then left 3 transports and a destroyer sitting in that sea zone, with planes for scrambling.  UK sent 2 subs into the zone and attacked.  Japan scrambled 3 fighters, and we went to the battle.

    1 hit for UK sub.
    1 plane hit for Japan (normal for this game - bad rolls all over the board).
    UK loses a sub, Japan loses the destroyer.

    Transports are then dead in the next round of combat, correct?  My understanding is a “yes”.  Planes cannot hit subs without a destroyer, transports cannot defend, subs cannot attack planes.

    It was then brought up, that the planes are still actively defending the transports, and the subs have to make individual rolls on each transport to destroy it.  Meaning, Japan gets to attack with the planes if the sub misses its shot.  ???

    This is where it turned into a back & forth about the whole ruling.  It was brought up that this was talked about here a long time ago and it was ruled correct, the sub would have to fire for each transport.  Can I get some thoughts?


  • Yea, transports are dead since the sub can’t be touched


  • The sidebar on page 20 of the Second Edition European Rulebook states:

    In a sea battle, if the defender has only transports remaining and the attacker still has units capable of attacking, the defending transports are all destroyed, along with their cargo. You don’t have to continue rolling dice until all the transports receive hits. This will speed up combats. This also occurs if the only combat units remaining can’t hit each other. For example, if the defender has only transports and submarines remaining, and the attacker has only air units remaining, the air units and submarines can’t hit each other, so the transports are defenseless.

    The example is reversed but it still applies here.

    You don’t have to fire for each transport because the outcome will be the same. It’s just a matter of time before you roll the required numbers to hit each transport. The only time it does matter is if the transports are with an attacking force, because the transports have the option of retreating.


  • Thanks for the answers, I had figured as much.  I might have to re-print the rules and go over them again with the gang next Saturday.

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