AAA first shot ability, how do you see it?


  • @Baron:

    @the_jetset:

    My 2 cents.

    AAA is probably the most modified aspect of the Three-Turn House Rules set that my group plays.  …. The basic aspects are here below.  These mesh with other details in the full rules set which I won’t mention here.

    • All ships have AAA ability.  This is “Preemptive @1” happening after the Sub-Special Attack and before Normal Combat.  A ship’s AAA is the ONLY way a ship can hit a plane.  Ships normal combat rolls must be applied to other ships.  … Therefore, in theory, a ship can roll TWO times per combat round.  Once @1 against a plane, and then again per their normal roll against an enemy ship.    This happens during each round of combat.

    • Land-Based AAA happens during normal combat and during each round of combat.  AAA guns can only target ONE plane @1 per combat round.  Their hits must be applied to planes, not land units.  AAA now cost 4 IPCs.

    Fine for your AAA house rule.
    What I’d like to ear now is that based on your idea you explained how it seems better reflect AAA historical/physical behavior compared to OOB AAA?

    Said otherwise, what did you dislike about AAA first shot, so you developed a ground AAA without first shot while you give a first shot to naval unit?

    I can understand that for playability of Naval combat a separate attack/defense roll phase was needed, but maybe there is other reason too.

    Or, said otherwise again, what makes you feel uncomfortable about OOB AAA so you try to develop a specific house rule on that issue?

    Thanks for your answer.

    Hello BM.

    Both Naval and Land AAA goes in every round of combat.  Naval AAA is preemptive to regular combat for two reasons:.
      1)  I think Naval AAA has a little bit more justification for preemptive behavior.  Take Torpedo 8 squadron for example.  …. all shot down while making their attack run.  … Dive bombers and Torpedo Bombers were one-shot attacks.  Ship’s AAA tried to get them BEFORE they got into range. 
      2) Game mechanics.  Ships will role 2 times.  Once for their AAA and then again for ship-to-ship.  Therefore, I needed to insert the AAA shot somewhere.  After the Sub-rolls and prior to regular combat rolls seemed like a nice spot.

    We’ve played 2 games with this mechanic so far.  (One five-player on the Europe map and an 8-player Global).  Naval combat is a lot more fun this way … and also a bit more realistic … especially with the potential to retreat after each round of Naval combat.

  • '17 '16

    And why did you change AAA from first shot to regular combat phase on land battle?
    Please give us not only a game reason, but also any historical impression or simile, if you can.
    Thanks,
    Baron


  • Hi Baron,

    Land battles are much more ambiguous in A&A.  The time scales are a lot different than Naval battles.

    The great (large) Naval battles in the Pacific were events that happened over the course of a day … maybe two.  They were quick, decisive and excessively violent strikes.

    The great land battles were events that generally took weeks … or even months.

    AAA’s implementation in land battles was quite different than AAA in naval battles.

    At sea, super-high concentations of AAA where loaded on a ship and used intensively for a few minutes with comparatively high results.

    On land, AAA is spread out in a wide variety of implementations… defending supply depots, key infrastructure, imbedded with ground units, defending air-bases etc…  and that AAA will be used MANY times in the course of the week(s) / month(s) battle that A&A is simulating.

    In A&A, a round of Naval Combat is probably something that happens in a day … or even a half-day.  And AAA was thrown out A LOT sooner than the attacking plane’s torpedo’s or bombs were dropped.

    An A&A round of land combat is something that happens in maybe a week or even weeks of combat.  And during that time, AAA is coming from a large number of areas over a large amount of time.

    Therefore, it doesn’t make much sense to have land-based AAA preemptive during regular combat.

  • '17 '16

    I like this way of comparing land and naval.
    It seems to make sense to have regular combat AAA that way.

    Here is a completely different POV on AAA game unit.
    From a game POV, giving to such or such unit first shot make it a defensive feature, simply because it forbid any enemy’s plane being hit to get a roll.
    It increase survivability of defending units.
    Since AAA is strictly a defensive weapon, it is correct to give it a similar game mechanism.


  • Hi Baron,.

    Yes.  Naval AAA has a little more “punch” than land-based combat AAA.    …. but, remember, AAA is the ONLY way a ship can hit planes.   😉  …   so as the old breed admirals quickly learned in the early stages of WWII, their fine Battleships were no longer the kings of the high seas!    …  and they reluctantly removed Mahan’s books from their strategy shelf and placed them into the history pile.

    Your A&A fleets should be built around the AIRCRAFT CARRIERS, not the Battleships.   Battleships are best used as escorts and for assisting amphibious assaults.

    These revised AAA rules (together with the Three Turn Playing System and Enhanced Combat rules set) will help make the game reflect this historical reality.

  • '17 '16

    @the_jetset:

    Hi Baron,.

    Yes.  Naval AAA has a little more “punch” than land-based combat AAA.    …. but, remember, AAA is the ONLY way a ship can hit planes.   😉  …   so as the old breed admirals quickly learned in the early stages of WWII, their fine Battleships were no longer the kings of the high seas!    …  and they reluctantly removed Mahan’s books from their strategy shelf and placed them into the history pile.

    Your A&A fleets should be built around the AIRCRAFT CARRIERS, not the Battleships.   Battleships are best used as escorts and for assisting amphibious assaults. These revised AAA rules (together with the Three Turn Playing System and Enhanced Combat rules set) will help make the game reflect this historical reality.

    Was this bolded point, the main reason which drives you to rethink Naval combat and changing how AAA works?

  • '17 '16

    @CWO:

    @Baron:

    These two points seems to show that “first shot” better describes AAA capacity than “surprise strike”, which should be reserved to Sub ability.
    I believe AA guns have  a much longer range of direct fire than any plane weapon.
    So AAA start shooting before enemy can shoot back, hence …

    My point wasn’t that AAA didn’t usually shoot first in WWII.  My point was that this “shoot first” ability was not by itself any kind of decisive advantage. As I said, a WWII bombing raid isn’t the same as a Western gunfight, where the guy who gets his gun out of his holster first (assuming he’s a good shot) immediately achieves a 100% victory.  AAA defenses against bombing raids were long attritional battles, in which the AAA guns would gradually – and very, very slowly – cut down the number of incoming bombers.  And keep in mind that most of the AAA shells that were fired at the bombers missed them completely (especially at night).  So in that kind of situation, the number of AAA guns firing is much more important that the concept of who shoots first.

    Thanks for this additional clarification and summary of your analysis.

    I was trying harder to find some points in your analysis which can explain why OOB AAA first shot seems intuitively OK to many people for reflecting somehow part of WWII air battle than trying to summarize your historical points.


  • Hi Baron,

    Exactly.  I think you hit the nail right on the head!

  • '17 '16

    @Baron:

    @the_jetset:

    Hi Baron,.

    Yes.  Naval AAA has a little more “punch” than land-based combat AAA.    …. but, remember, AAA is the ONLY way a ship can hit planes.   😉  …   so as the old breed admirals quickly learned in the early stages of WWII, their fine Battleships were no longer the kings of the high seas!    …  and they reluctantly removed Mahan’s books from their strategy shelf and placed them into the history pile.

    Your A&A fleets should be built around the AIRCRAFT CARRIERS, not the Battleships.   Battleships are best used as escorts and for assisting amphibious assaults. These revised AAA rules (together with the Three Turn Playing System and Enhanced Combat rules set) will help make the game reflect this historical reality.

    Was this bolded point, the main reason which drives you to rethink Naval combat and changing how AAA works?

    @the_jetset:

    Hi Baron,

    Exactly.   I think you hit the nail right on the head!

    But why did you see that G40 Naval fleet were clustered around Battleship?
    Carriers, Destroyers and Subs were optimal not Battleship nor Cruiser.


  • @Baron:

    But why did you see that G40 Naval fleet were clustered around Battleship?
    Carriers, Destroyers and Subs were optimal not Battleship nor Cruiser.

    Let me guess 🙂

    there is several “types” of fleetactions in WW2. Three types are
    1. contolling a seazone
    2. destroying/protecting civilian, commercial and  shipping
    3. supporting ampibious landings and troops on land.

    Subs and DDs are for fighting a convoy war (2)

    Subs and DDs are not that important for controlling a seazone and have nowhere near the impact they have in the game.

    For controlling seazones, CVs + landbased planes where the undisputed king.

  • '17 '16

    You answered a different question.
    You are questionning Destroyer’s blocker ability.
    Maybe, if a more accurate naval is needed, DD can only be used as blocker against Sub ; to block surface vessels you can house rule that Cruiser or bigger is needed.
    That way, some Carriers will be needed to do so.


  • @Baron:

    You answered a different question.
    You are questionning Destroyer’s blocker ability.
    Maybe, if a more accurate naval is needed, DD can only be used as blocker against Sub ; to block surface vessels you can house rule that Cruiser or bigger is needed.
    That way, some Carriers will be needed to do so.

    I would disagree. I think I talked about how subs and DDs are way to effective (compared to CVs) when building a combat fleet. If you wanted to make the game historically correct in composing a combat fleet, you would simply count the number of carriers and their planes, and then almost completely disregard the other ships. A fair version of this would be to make it so that ships had AA only, and planes where the only thing that was allowed to fire at enemy ships in a fleet battle. It is difficult to grasp how dominant they where.  Remember that UK sank half of the italian fleet using 20 gladiators in a nightraid.


  • @Kreuzfeld:

    It is difficult to grasp how dominant they where.  Remember that UK sank half of the italian fleet using 20 gladiators in a nightraid.

    You are correct, but you should also remember that real life planes in 1940 had real short range. A fighter could barely cross the English Channel, so if a fleet was a few miles off the coast it was safe from air raids. In A&A the whole German Luftwaffe can fly from Western Germany and sink the whole British Fleet in the Mediterranean Sea, and maybe even land in the Libyan desert, which would be impossible in the real world. Give fighters and Tacs a 1 movement over sea, and I will support your ideas. Also the 4 engines heavy Bombers should not able to hit a ship on 4 or less, they were made for carpet bombing, not for targeting a small boat.


  • Narvik and Kreuzfeld,

    Both really good points!  I just had a 7-player G40 game yesterday with the Three-Turn playing System.  This makes it so ships can only hit airplanes @1 with their AAA roles.  In general, it makes for a better modeled game.  BBs and Cruisers are used mostly for supporting amphibious assaults.  Subs and DD’s kind of make their own little “mini-Fleets” or are used as support for the CV’s.  In general, planes are the new Kings of the Sea.

    • @Strat Bombers:  We make strats hit Naval Units @2 instead of @4.  For anyone who has any doubts upon why we do this, please click on this link:  https://www.ibiblio.org/hyperwar/OnlineLibrary/photos/images/f000001/f003725.jpg

    • @Aircraft Range over Sea Zones:  Wow.  Great suggestion Narvik.  Limit airplanes to only being able to move ONE sea-zone.  That means they can only COMBAT MOVE into the sea-zone directly adjacent to, or surrounding, their originating territory.  (Non-combat moves may be conducted as normal) … When originating from a CV, they can only COMBAT MOVE into the sea-zones directly adjacent to their originating sea-zone.    This would remove the gamey moves of having the planes leave from a certain sea-zone, and then the carrier moves … etc …

    • @Land-Combat vs. Sea-Combat:  I mentioned this in a previous post.  The time-scales for land and sea combat are simulated quite differently in A&A.  Land combat is much more abstract and each combat round happens over a longer period of time.  (probably a week or even 2 weeks per round)  … Whereas Sea-Combat is on a MUCH closer scale.  Heck, CV’s are probably almost simulated on a 1:1 scale … at most, each CV visible on the map probably simulates a “Group” of no more than 4 or 5 carriers.  Each round of naval combat probably simulates a 12 to 24 hour period of combat.  Therefore, it doesn’t make sense, to have fighter planes moving 2000+ miles over open water.

    Narvik.  I think your suggestion about limiting airplane range would make a very happy compromise between the awesome “power” carriers and planes had at sea … while better simulating their historical range.  Also, your suggestion will place better emphasis on the importance of controlling key islands in the Pacific … and Malta in the Med.

    I would like to discuss this further and do some test-scenarios.  I would also like to open this as a discussion topic in the “Three-Turn Playing System and Enhance Combat” rules set.  Once we test and get any bugs worked out, I would like to implement it into the rules set.

  • '17 '16

    @Kreuzfeld:

    @Baron:

    You answered a different question.
    You are questionning Destroyer’s blocker ability.
    Maybe, if a more accurate naval is needed, DD can only be used as blocker against Sub ; to block surface vessels you can house rule that Cruiser or bigger is needed.
    That way, some Carriers will be needed to do so.

    I would disagree. I think I talked about how subs and DDs are way to effective (compared to CVs) when building a combat fleet. If you wanted to make the game historically correct in composing a combat fleet, you would simply count the number of carriers and their planes, and then almost completely disregard the other ships. A fair version of this would be to make it so that ships had AA only, and planes where the only thing that was allowed to fire at enemy ships in a fleet battle. It is difficult to grasp how dominant they where.  Remember that UK sank half of the italian fleet using 20 gladiators in a nightraid.

    Blocker ability cannot be a fruitful tactics if you have to commit costly units.
    The OOB cost structure is made in a way that destroyer is first fodder/blocker.
    12 IPCs Cruiser is a high cost and 10 IPCs Fg can be fodder but not blocker.
    Commit Carrier as blocker, you need an additional unit such as Escort Carrier, CVE, around 10 IPCs.

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