How to make battleships a more attractive purchase

  • '17 '16

    I think these historical explanations fit very well here:

    @CWO:

    @toblerone77:

    There weren’t a lot of battleships produced in WWII they were quickly outmoded by the carrier. Germany, Japan and the US built some new ones and perhaps some other examples exist. Without going into a largely historical debate. How about eliminating new BBs altogether?  What I mean is all original BBs would remain but no further BBs could be built.

    There were basically three groups of battleships in WWII:

    • those that already existed when the war started;

    • those whose planning and construction had started prior to the war and which were completed during the war;

    • and those which were left uncompleted on the shipyard stocks (or which remained on the drawing boards) when it became clear that the BB had had its day.

    Most of WWII’s modern fast BBs fell into the second group.  Very few new BBs got started during the war, but quite a few already-started ones got completed during the war.  Missouri and Wisconsin, for example, were quite late arrivals; I think they first went on active duty in 1944.  Fast battleships which could keep up with carrier task forces, by the way, did get put to good use by the US Navy as anti-aircraft escorts for the carriers, while older BBs did valuable work as shore-bombardment vessels in support of amphibious landings.  This still meant that they would have little place in the carrier-dominated postwar navy, but they were nevertheless able to earn their keep during WWII (even while playing second fiddle to the carriers).

    @CWO:

    @Baron:

    Maybe it is better to look into Air-naval battle because there is costlier Cruiser, Carrier and Battleship units which needs protection so a cheaper Fg unit will be taken as casualty instead, from both sides: attacker and defender.

    It would be an interesting exercise to go through the official OOB rules and check all of the combined-arms bonuses to see how they hold up to the “which is the supporting unit and which is the supported one?” test which I mentioned in my earlier post today.

    For example, when I saw the part of your text that I’ve just quoted, it made me think about the two roles which the US Navy’s battleships played in the Pacific in WWII. One role was to provide shore bombardment to support amphibious landings, but another role (especially for the fast battleships) was to provide anti-aircraft defense for the fleet carriers.

    In AA& terms, this would translate into providing carriers with a defense boost against air attack when the carriers are paired with battleships.

    Generally this would mean a boost against attacks by tac bombers, but it would also apply to kamikaze attacks (since some of these attacks were carried out by small fighter-type planes).

    @CWO:

    @Baron:

    Between cruiser and battleship is correct to consider that both provide a kind of anti-air cover for carriers? Mainly Cruiser (mostly light cruisers with AA batteries)? Mainly BB? What is your opinion?

    US battleships and US cruisers both carried a decent number of 5-inch dual-purpose guns (typically 5-inch/38-caliber models), which had good performance both as surface-attack weapons and as anti-aircraft weapons.

    Anti-aircraft light cruisers, I think, carried even more of them than light and heavy cruisers or battleships. In addition to the 5-inchers, battleships and cruisers also carried large numbers of 40mm and 20mm anti-aircraft autocannons and of .50 caliber heavy machine guns, so they could put up quite a wall of AAA fire of assorted calibers when all of that stuff was fired all at once.

    (Interestingly, when the kamikaze attacks started, it was found that only the shells from the 5-inch guns had enough kinetic energy and explosive power to have a good chance of stopping an approaching kamizaze plane dead in its tracks, assuming that a hit could be scored.  The machine guns, the 20mm Oerlikons and even the 40mm Bofors could kill the pilot and/or set the plane on fire, but wouldn’t necessarily blow it out of the sky, so kamikaze planes would sometimes continue flying in the general direction of the target even though the pilot was dead.)

    So yes, I’d say that both battleships and cruisers should confer an anti-aircraft defensive bonus to carriers when paired with them.

    American carriers and destroyers carried 5"/38cal guns too, but in much smaller numbers than battleships and cruisers – so those weapons don’t need to be taken into account because of their small numbers.

    For the carriers, I’d regard the presence of these guns as already built into their standard defense values.  For destroyers I wouldn’t see them as giving any anti-aircraft bonus to carriers.

  • '17 '16

    @MarineIguana:

    Cruiser at 10 seems about appropriate for me, largely for the reasons other people have explained compared fighters and destroyers.

    On the other hand, I would be very wary of reducing the cost of battleships. The 2-hit mechanic has the potential to make naval battles oppressive and not fun. At a cheaper cost, it becomes very viable for US to stack battleships and battle and retreat with little consequence. 6 BB with say a mixed fleet of 1 car, 2 fig, and 1 dest can deliver 5-6 naval hits with no losses then retreat.

    For me, a fun naval game involves naval positioning, deadzoning, calculated fighter support from land, and smart blocking (using destroyers). I would hate to see a naval battle devolve into stacks of BB with a winner takes all battle.

    Battleships will be definitely obsolete and un-optimized choice if cruiser goes 10 IPCs:
    20 Cruisers against 10 Battleships:
    A. survives: 74.2% D. survives: 24.4% No one survives: 1.4%
    6 cruisers against 3 BBS:
    A. survives: 62.3% D. survives: 32.2% No one survives: 5.5%

    Your 2 hits BBs strafing tactics is well anticipated.
    Good points.
    The main problem is that when you have a lot of BBs together, you can take too many hits making them and the fleet almost invulnerable with a good strafe tactics.


    I would suggest keeping 20 IPCs but a different way of playing additional hits and repair.

    However, BBs get 3 hits now.

    Here the rule:
    “Battleship are always main target: you cannot put a hit on another BB until you destroyed a crippled one or put another hit on a damaged one.

    Here, how you could play it:
    during combat, a single hit put on BB make it damaged but has no big consequence.
    A damaged BB will fully recover once put on the board, according to OOB 1942.2 rule.

    A second hit (put on the same, according to the main target rule) make a BB really crippled.
    When put on the board, it is only fully repaired at the beginning of player’s turn (and, if playing Global, when on a SZ deserved by NB).

    A third hit destroyed a crippled battleship.


    This make an average of near 7 IPCs/hit.  Just between Subs and Destroyers.
    So, for the high cost investment, it will make Battleship a competitive unit against small warships.
    And a bunch of BBs fleet cannot create a loophole in which you can do a massive hit and run without too much casualties.

  • '17 '16 '15 Organizer '14 Customizer '13 '12 '11 '10

    I agree with everyone on bringing the cost of Battleships to 1 IPC each in order to make them more attractive:

    42888888888888888878878  x453827969565 x 1/3 32480275057- 45857504
    38936892686843-3198468946+4946564+1/3=4280470407=42805740570

  • '17 '16

    @Imperious:

    I agree with everyone on bringing the cost of Battleships to 1 IPC each in order to make them more attractive:
    42888888888888888878878  x453827969565 x 1/3 32480275057- 45857504
    38936892686843-3198468946+4946564+1/3=4280470407=42805740570

    😉
    No kidding, you should be proud IL I bring another solution than cost redux…

  • '19 '15 '14

    Haha I take it Imperious doesn’t see it as such an issue. I will say that to me, the shame is that you have all these nice scultps left over taking up space in the box, plastic that might just as well have gone to other pieces.

    I still think the idea to transport 1 ground has merit.  Since it doesn’t require changing the cost structure, just the addition of an ability that already exists.

    Consider that this might provide some interesting dynamism in the first round and cat and mouse tactics. For example germany has 1 battleship and 1 cruiser (viable sea lion? Egypt? Karelia? Caucasus?). But this is somewhat offset because Uk has 2 cruisers at the start. So they could match Egypt on counter, or bring more force to/from india, or into east indies. Japan would get the biggest early boost. But USA also starts with a battleship and cruiser.

    Would work with the current cost structure, the question is, does it break the opening? Probably goes to Axis advantage. But that is more an issue of the set up than the unit itself in the abstract. Might work in other games if balanced.

    12 ipc gets you 1 ground, and the cruiser abilities.
    20 ipcs gets you 1 ground, and the battleship abilities.
    14 ipcs gets you 4 ground on transports, but with no attack/defense.
    19 ipcs could get you 3 ground, cruiser transport combo.
    21 ipcs gets you 6 ground with 3 transports. Seems flexible, where transports would still be worthwhile, but moving ground would not be as rigid as the current system.

    Transports would still be required to mount larger invasions, but supported by the larger capital ships (which could break out for smaller actions without putting defensless transports at risk every time).

    I would definitely buy a cruiser at 12, or battleship at 20 if it got another ground unit into amphibious.  I think players might be more likely to put these units at risk on the early cat and mouse naval game, than they are when transports have to be escorted. Might lend itself to less naval stacking around major transport fleets and earlier break out moves with the ships that survive the first round.

    I’d think that transports, subs, destroyers and carriers would all still be necessary and ultimately the most effective buy, but at least this gets the other two warships into the game a bit more.

    Finally this change might accelorate the pace of the game overall such that it doesn’t drag as much in the opening,  and would probably conclude in less total rounds/hours.

  • '17 '16

    12 ipc gets you 1 ground, and the cruiser abilities.
    20 ipcs gets you 1 ground, and the battleship abilities.

    Why not simply put 1 Infantry, no more no less, per cruiser?
    And 1 ground unit (Inf, Art, MechInf, Tank, AAA) for Battleship unit?

  • '17 '16

    Transports would still be required to mount larger invasions, but supported by the larger capital ships (which could break out for smaller actions without putting defensless transports at risk every time).

    I would definitely buy a cruiser at 12, or battleship at 20 if it got another ground unit into amphibious.  I think players might be more likely to put these units at risk on the early cat and mouse naval game, than they are when transports have to be escorted. Might lend itself to less naval stacking around major transport fleets and earlier break out moves with the ships that survive the first round.

    It will improve the total game experience I think.


  • I understand that battleships seem underpowered by the sheer number of IPC’s they cost. The idea that they can transport one unit is horrible. battleships aren’t transports by no means. Historically they were the ship that bombarded an island or defended a carrier group. Normally what I do is up their bombardment hit up a number AND allow them to attack twice in a combat round (note this double roll for one battleship is only on attack). this makes them a solid buy for an offensive minded navy

  • '19 '15 '14

    Well the idea is that historically, attack transports APA and LSI were frequently supported by Battleships and other larger warships, which would bombard the coast to clear the way for amphibious invasions. So in my way of thinking its really not that much of a stretch. All you are doing is abstracting from the single ship to include within it aspects of the larger battle-group that it is supporting. I mean, to me the 1 unit transported idea seemed simple and easy to adapt, which was the main reason I suggested it. Since it could be implemented without having to really change anything (cost etc). I’m sure there are a number of alternatives that we could come up with, but those are probably more complex. You could have battleships boost a transport in a way similar to how artillery boosts infantry, or you could design some sort of new combat mechanism for it, or an increased attack value on bombardment. But then you are talking about a more sizable addendum to the rules associated with the unit, or creating new rules which have no analogue in the current game. It could work, I’m sure, it just seems a bit more complicated.

  • Customizer

    Without getting too wild, and fitting within game mechanics, you could simply boost firepower to land units + 1 in uncontested amphibious assaults for all rounds just like artillery does making BBs more valuable. this could be modified to include cruisers too. BBs can support 2 INF and cruisers can support 1. Do this for all rounds of combat and not simply a bombardment.

  • '17 '16

    @toblerone77:

    Without getting too wild, and fitting within game mechanics, you could simply boost firepower to land units + 1 in uncontested amphibious assaults for all rounds just like artillery does making BBs more valuable. this could be modified to include cruisers too. BBs can support 2 INF and cruisers can support 1. Do this for all rounds of combat and not simply a bombardment.

    Interesting idea which I completly forgot could be used as a way to promote BBs and CAs (when we were trying to introduce a more historically accurate shore bombardment for Destroyers and in general).
    Destroyers able to get a Shore Bombardment? (1942/1940) http://www.axisandallies.org/forums/index.php?topic=30249.msg1260861#msg1260861

    1942.2 & G40 Improving historical accuracy of amphibious assault
    http://www.axisandallies.org/forums/index.php?topic=33217.msg1262175#msg1262175

    This should be kept within the limits of only paired Infantry units being unloaded from transports in an Amphibious assault get this bonus.
    But any INF cannot get both bonus from Art and BBs or Cruiser. It is still a combined arms, right?

    Even if it is for all combat rounds, this will be a limited bonus since Infantry units is always the first casualty taken.
    It will mostly fade by itself in subsequent rounds, due to attrition.


    As read another time, by " boost firepower to land units + 1" do you really intent to make Armor A4 and Art A3 during a debarkment?


    Probably, it is in this post you got the first development of this idea of BBs and Cruisers providing support to Infantry/Marines:
    http://www.axisandallies.org/forums/index.php?topic=22292.msg1101675#msg1101675

  • Customizer

    I say “land units” generally meaning Mechs and Inf. I leave it open to debate as people will want to refine it to their own tastes and may have other units (HBG comes to mind) besides OOB. The general idea is however that BBs and CAs will essentially act as artillery and “advanced artillery” meaning BBs can support two units CAs support one. I might suggest that even if there is a naval battle they would still act as seaborne artillery. The idea would make both vessels a more valued purchase but limit is power to amphibious assaults.

  • '17 '16

    @toblerone77:

    I say “land units” generally meaning Mechs and Inf. I leave it open to debate as people will want to refine it to their own tastes and may have other units (HBG comes to mind) besides OOB. The general idea is however that BBs and CVs will essentially act as artillery and “advanced artillery” meaning BBs can support two units CVs support one. I might suggest that even if there is a naval battle they would still act as seaborne artillery. The idea would make both vessels a more valued purchase but limit is power to amphibious assaults.

    Cool idea, I forgot also about Mech Inf.

    So, at least with OOB, Cruisers act as artillery support and Battleships provides an Advanced artillery support for Infantry and Mechanized Infantry during an amphibious assault.
    Cruiser (CA) give +1A boost to 1 Infantry or Mech Inf unit, in addition to the first round shore bombardment @3.
    Battleship (BB) give +1A, boost to up to 2 Infantry or Mech Inf units, in addition to the first round shore bombardment @4.
    In addition, a naval battle in a SZ doesn’t block this kind of Artillery support.

    Now the question remain: is it enough incentive for a cruiser at 12 IPCs and BB at 20 IPCs?

    I found this capacity nearer a historical feel, at least.


  • @toblerone77:

    Without getting too wild, and fitting within game mechanics, you could simply boost firepower to land units + 1 in uncontested amphibious assaults for all rounds just like artillery does making BBs more valuable. this could be modified to include cruisers too. BBs can support 2 INF and cruisers can support 1. Do this for all rounds of combat and not simply a bombardment.

    Very good idea! I was thinking making BB’s support cruisers on bombard and attack. This would make a cruiser and BB attacking or bombarding 2 4’s.

  • '19 '15 '14

    This is probably the best solution we can get. I like it because it links the two main warships with transports, and enhances their value on amphibious, but without coopting the specific ability of the transport itself.

    The only thing to account for is how Battleships and Cruisers interact with transports that are unloading 1 Inf + 1 Artillery, or 1 inf + 1 tank.

    For simplicity it is probably best to treat all land units equally. The only concern might be the potency of the existing artillery unit when combined with this new form of battleship and cruiser support.

    I might suggest, if it proves overpowered when combined with normal bombardment, that this new land combat role should just supercede and replace normal bombardment. This would simplify things and lead to less confusion overall. Especially since bombardment as it stands is rather complex (the whole casualties firing back aspect, and separate combat phase etc.) The idea suggested above would eliminate that weirdness and streamline everything into regular combat, just with the bonus added. Seems fairly easy


  • We recently tested the following, and we were quite confident with it:

    Battleship: 17 IPC (no changes to rules)
    Cruiser: 9 IPC (Attack decreased to 2)

    Battleships now are a real strong weapon, as far as you can afford them. Especially if you already have the superior navy, the hit absorption is useful, as you hopefully don’t lose any units in battles vs smaller navies. A really strong buy for USA and/or Japan.

    Cruisers get a completely new job. They are the cheapest way to get a strong defense. Especially useful for defending small groups of transports against enemy air raids. They totally outvalue aircraft carriers in this role, but their ability to support a subsequent land battle is very limited (bombard at only 2. No fighters can participate in defending the land units later on). Therefore Cruisers shine at attacking islands, but carriers are still better for large invasions.

  • '17 '16

    Do you mean that Cruiser get this stats:
    Attack 2
    Defend 3
    Move 2
    Shore bombard  2
    Cost 9

    It is a completely new idea.
    I like this concept because it provides a way to understand why many Cruisers were Anti Aircrafts platforms.

    IMO, I think that a balanced cost compared to BB should be 10 IPCs instead.
    Because for 18 IPCs, you would get a 2xD3 on defense compared to a single Defense @4 for Battleship.
    The 1 IPC higher is not enough.
    With 20 IPCs, it means a 3 IPCs difference for 2 Cruisers.

    Did you try the reverse?
    Attack 3
    Defend 2


  • @Baron:

    Do you mean that Cruiser get this stats:
    Attack 2
    Defend 3
    Move 2
    Shore bombard  2
    Cost 9

    It is a completely new idea.
    I like this concept because it provides a way to understand why many Cruisers were Anti Aircrafts platforms.

    Exactly

    Edit:
    However, one should keep in mind that the Allies do profit a bit more from these changes as the Axis. Therefore the bid should maybe adapted to that.

  • '17 '16

    @Baron:

    Do you mean that Cruiser get this stats:
    Attack 2
    Defend 3
    Move 2
    Shore bombard  2
    Cost 9

    It is a completely new idea.
    I like this concept because it provides a way to understand why many Cruisers were Anti Aircrafts platforms.

    IMO, I think that a balanced cost compared to BB should be 10 IPCs instead.
    Because for 18 IPCs, you would get a 2xD3 on defense compared to a single Defense @4 for Battleship.
    The 1 IPC higher is not enough.
    With 20 IPCs, it means a 3 IPCs difference for 2 Cruisers.

    Did you try the reverse?
    Attack 3
    Defend 2

    The issue is that it makes another Sea unit better on defense than attack.
    Same as Carrier and planes.

    I believe that Cruiser should be an offensive weapon inside the ships roster.
    Otherwise that makes Fleet on defense too hard to attack by the same warships roster on 1 unit for 1 unit basis.


  • @Baron:

    I believe that Cruiser should be an offensive weapon inside the ships roster.
    Otherwise that makes Fleet on defense too hard to attack by the same warships roster on 1 unit for 1 unit basis.

    As it is already with carriers? ^^

  • '17 '16

    @arwaker:

    @Baron:

    I believe that Cruiser should be an offensive weapon inside the ships roster.
    Otherwise that makes Fleet on defense too hard to attack by the same warships roster on 1 unit for 1 unit basis.

    As it is already with carriers? ^^

    Yes.
    1 Carrier Att 1 Def 2 + 2 Fgs A3 D4=
    Attack 7 Defense 10

    If Cruiser A2 D3 is added into the mix, 2 units (A4 D6) for example:
    Attack 11 Defense 16, 5 units.
    The same 5 units on offense vs defense are overwhelmed.

    A&A Calc:
    Overall %*: A. survives: 15% D. survives: 82.8% No one survives: 2.3%

    http://calc.axisandallies.org/?mustland=0&abortratio=0&saveunits=0&strafeunits=0&aInf=&aArt=&aArm=&aFig=2&aBom=&aTra=&aSub=&aDes=2&aCru=&aCar=1&aBat=&adBat=&dInf=&dArt=&dArm=&dFig=2&dBom=&dTra=&dSub=&dDes=&dCru=2&dCar=1&dBat=&ddBat=&ool_att=Bat-Inf-Art-AArt-Arm-Sub-SSub-Des-Fig-JFig-Cru-Bom-HBom-Car-dBat-Tra&ool_def=Bat-Inf-Art-AArt-Arm-Bom-HBom-Sub-SSub-Des-Car-Cru-Fig-JFig-dBat-Tra&battle=Run&rounds=&reps=10000&luck=pure&ruleset=AA1942&territory=&round=1&pbem=


    If, instead, Cruiser A3 D2 is added into the mix, 2 units (A6 D4) for example:
    Attack 13 Defense 14, 5 units.

    The same 5 units on offense vs defense are still beaten up, but get almost twice the odds of survival (15% vs 28%):
    A. survives: 28.2% D. survives: 68.9% No one survives: 3%

    http://calc.axisandallies.org/?mustland=0&abortratio=0&saveunits=0&strafeunits=0&aInf=&aArt=&aArm=&aFig=2&aBom=&aTra=&aSub=&aDes=&aCru=2&aCar=1&aBat=&adBat=&dInf=&dArt=&dArm=&dFig=2&dBom=&dTra=&dSub=&dDes=2&dCru=&dCar=1&dBat=&ddBat=&ool_att=Bat-Inf-Art-AArt-Arm-Sub-SSub-Des-Fig-JFig-Cru-Bom-HBom-Car-dBat-Tra&ool_def=Bat-Inf-Art-AArt-Arm-Bom-HBom-Sub-SSub-Des-Car-Cru-Fig-JFig-dBat-Tra&battle=Run&rounds=&reps=10000&luck=pure&ruleset=AA1942&territory=&round=1&pbem=

  • '17 '16

    The only way I see to keep the defense against planes manifesto is to provide
    the 1 AA roll per cruiser.

    Cruiser
    Attack 3
    Defend 2
    Move 2
    Shore bombard  3
    Special 1 defensive AA first shot @1 against up to 1 plane/per cruiser unit.
    Cost 10


    In such situation as above,
    if Cruiser A3 D2 is added into the mix, 2 units (A6 D4) for example:
    Attack 13 Defense 14, 5 units.

    A. survives: 22.1% D. survives: 75.6% No one survives: 2.3%

    http://calc.axisandallies.org/?mustland=0&abortratio=0&saveunits=0&strafeunits=0&AA=on&aInf=&aArt=&aArm=&aFig=2&aBom=&aTra=&aSub=&aDes=&aCru=2&aCar=1&aBat=&adBat=&dInf=&dArt=&dArm=&dFig=2&dBom=&dTra=&dSub=&dDes=2&dCru=&dCar=1&dBat=&ddBat=&ool_att=Bat-Inf-Art-AArt-Arm-Sub-SSub-Des-Fig-JFig-Cru-Bom-HBom-Car-dBat-Tra&ool_def=Bat-Inf-Art-AArt-Arm-Bom-HBom-Sub-SSub-Des-Car-Cru-Fig-JFig-dBat-Tra&battle=Run&rounds=&reps=10000&luck=pure&ruleset=AA1942&territory=&round=1&pbem=

    That way, Cruiser is clearly not better than Destroyer against incoming Submarines.
    But you still get a better Anti-Aircrafts platform while keeping his single offensive roll of Shore bombardment.

    This can be balance with a 17-18 IPCs 2 hits Battleship.

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