AA50-Is there something we're missing about SUBs??



  • I’m feeling a shift in my opinions about subs.  Maybe they will be useful - for the loss i defense, the fact that they can’t be hit by planes without a destroyer is actually pretty big.



  • To keep a fleet alive nobody is buying subs anymore 4 ones is nothing to 3 TWOS.

    This is simply incorrect!
    I did not do the math to prove it (I dont bother), but I did a small dice test.
    attacker: 3 destroyers:
    Defender: 4 submarines
    –-
    The subs won 7 out of 10 times!

    This does not prove this statement

    This is actually not true. For 24 IPCs you could get 4 Subs or 3 Destroyers. The 4 subs would actually beat the 3 destroyers both on offense and defense given average rolls. However, since subs cannot be hit by planes they are still a pretty mediocre fodder unit.

    but it atleast proves that saying that 4 ones is NO match for 3 twos is completly incorrect.



  • I’m feeling a shift in my opinions about subs.  Maybe they will be useful - for the loss i defense, the fact that they can’t be hit by planes without a destroyer is actually pretty big.

    Great 🙂 Cuz subs are far better this time around than any other verson of A&A.
    The navy part of A&A is not perfect, but atleast the new submarine are more interesting than they used to be.  In my view the biggest problem is that BIGGER navies will autokill SMALLER navies.


  • 2018 2017 '16 '11 Moderator

    You could run the test easily on Frood.  Run 3 Artillery attacking 4 Bombers and you get: 56.3% chance your destroyers (Artillery) survive and 41.2% chance your submarines (Bombers) survive.  That means a 2.5% chance of mutual destruction give or take, over 10,000 battles with 3@2 vs 4@1.

    In otherwords, 3 destroyers attacking 4 submarines is a crap shoot.  A toss up if you will.

    That said, I will again point out that you can look at the individual ability of a unit to sink another to get an alternative representation.  The biggest problem I have had with dice calculators is that they are too rigidly set on the binomial distribution.  For them you can only pass or fail.  They cannot take into account the odds of each result passing on a more subjective basis (which is why I am known as the fleet killer by some.)  When it comes to fleet battles in particular (because its the only place you have units that can be hit and not die) it becomes necessary to look at just how likely it is you could get more or less hits.  Or, in other words, how wide is that variance from the mean?

    A destroyer rolling at 2 or less is going to have a flatter, wider bell curve than a submarine defending at 1 will.  Even more so if you start adding in battleships to absorb hits, etc.  On the flip side, you can get more units and more chances with submarines than with destroyers.

    Anyway, just thought I would check the numbers, then I started to ramble.



  • With AA50 subs now having a first strike capability in each round of combat (if no enemy destroyer is present) at only 6 IPCs I think they do have a purpose. This sub will absolutely declaw the 2-hit battleship. And the bomber/sub combination can lay waste to capitol ships at a relatively low cost (assuming you always retreat when your subs are gone). ~ZP



  • Since nobody is ever going to buy subs as germany, maybe germany should get 1 free sub per round! 😉

    As for subs not being able to be used as fodder, it doesnt make much sense, if you order a sub to the surface to fight the good fight, it should do as its told!



  • @ShredZ:

    Since nobody is ever going to buy subs as germany, maybe germany should get 1 free sub per round! 😉

    As for subs not being able to be used as fodder, it doesnt make much sense, if you order a sub to the surface to fight the good fight, it should do as its told!

    I am puzzled frankly, we have just completed our 4th, 4 player AA50 house game. 
    The Allies won for the first time.  After action;
    Analysis, the German player did not buy subs, until it was too late. 
    In the previous games, Germany had bought a Min of 1 sub per turn.  Axis won all three games.  The German player decided he lost because,
    he forgot to by a sub each round, like previous games and  the Allies made it a real two front war and he lost. 
    Are we getting different results? 
    We have already decided, a normal buy in our games, min. Germany must have 6 INF, 1 Sub each turn, then whatever else you need with remainder of IPC’s.
    Again, disclaimer we use Sub Stealth Rule. 
    Our results seem to show Subs manditory for Germany.
      A strong sub fleet, combined with airpower, keeps opponent Fleet defense very busy.
    Are you finding USA, forced to defend Pacific every game?  We are, Japan is huge.
    note, USA also, buying subs to go with his air units.  He was watching the German player’s effectiveness and started the same, one sub per round thing. 
    Its, now getting tougher on the Japanese player.
    Why would you not use subs?
    Would you not trade a 5 or 6 IPC sub unit for more expensive units, all day? 
    Its a winning economic trade.
    Defend with subs-no, attack-definitely.  Best defense, is a good offense…
    Where the hell are those subs!! should be the question of the day.



  • Bluestroke, you ever go all out KGF?  As in, America and UK dedicate 90% of their resources to dominating Europe ASAP, and managing to sack Berlin before the Axis get Moscow or USA?



  • @Rakeman:

    Bluestroke, you ever go all out KGF?  As in, America and UK dedicate 90% of their resources to dominating Europe ASAP, and managing to sack Berlin before the Axis get Moscow or USA?

    Of course, that has been standard move forever(or at least twenty years.)
      Its the standard move in most games I’ve played.  Its not working so, far in our AA50 games.  I note, someone stated in a thread,
    " the Axis have the advantage in most new setups." 
    They have the hardware deployed.  It takes a little longer to learn, Allies strats.
    Allies have to buy and deploy, giving Axis two complete turns, unopposed really.
    I remember, when A&A(classic) first came out.  The Axis always won.  Until, we figured out how to play the Allies.  Now, you have to have bids to keep the Axis in the game.
    So, Axis have taken 3 out of 4 games.  We stumbled across this by accident, in the first AA50 house game;item:Germany got shipyards on its first turn tech roll.  He began buying 5 IPC subs with his INF buys and trading them with the Allies, before we knew it the Allies were having trouble supporting their shuck shuck ops in Europe.
    Meanwhile, Japan left alone ran wild…  nuff said.
      Its too early, to make the broad judgements I am reading.  I am simply asking, why your not deploying sub/airpower combos against aggressive play. 
    We have found its slows fleet deployment considerably.
    We also note, Italy is much stronger in the Med and Africa then Germany ever was. 
    Hell, by the fourth game the USA had begun pulling in subs with his bomber buys and stopped japan for the first time-LOL.
      Either way, we shall see, by the first of the year, different play styles, will have employed variable approaches to the common KGF strat.  We will have an answer.
    Do you find this to be the same game as AAR, we find it different, more fluid?



  • @Bluestroke:

    Again, disclaimer we use **Sub Stealth Rule. **
    Note: we use the hidden rule-where subs orders are written down on paper and you only see them when a destroyer finds em or you attack out of the blue… and at 6 IPC there are a lot of subs(add improved ship yards Tech at 5 IPC the wolf pack is back.)

    Bluestroke,

    You are playing an entirely different game here
    If the DDs don’t know where the SUBs are, then yes, SUBs will be viable

    We are talking about OOTB rules here though
    DDs know exactly where SUBs are, and what support units they will need to bring in to finish them off
    SUBs are near useless in such a combat system

    Short of having to write where hidden units are on paper (which will never fly in online play), I think the simplest way to replicate what you’re doing, is not to have detection of SUBs by DDs automatic.  Instead, have each DD roll a “Detection Roll” to see if SUBs are detected or not…

    SUB Detection Rolls and DD-to-detect values
    -All attacking and defending SUBs are “Undetected” at the start of Combat. Each SUB has a DD-to-detect value, which is 3 at baseline, and represents the likelihood of being detected (a higher value means more likely to be detected)
    -Only DDs can “Detect” SUBs. In the first cycle of combat, prior to Opening Fire, EACH DD in the attacking and/or defending force rolls a SUB Detection Roll. If at least ONE SUB Detection Roll is less than or equal to an opposing SUB’s DD-to-detect value, Those specific enemy SUBs are considered “Detected”.
    -If none of the rolls are less than or equal to a SUB’s DD-to-detect value, Those SUBs remain “Undetected.” If there are no opposing DDs, then all SUBs would remain “Undetected”.
    -Undetected SUBs may submerge on Opening fire and thus avoid further combat

    This would greatly increase SUB survivability and make them much more likely to be used (especially in conjunction with some Convoy Raiding Rules).



  • @cousin_joe:

    @Bluestroke:

    Again, disclaimer we use **Sub Stealth Rule. **
    Note: we use the hidden rule-where subs orders are written down on paper and you only see them when a destroyer finds em or you attack out of the blue… and at 6 IPC there are a lot of subs(add improved ship yards Tech at 5 IPC the wolf pack is back.)

    Bluestroke,

    You are playing an entirely different game here
    If the DDs don’t know where the SUBs are, then yes, SUBs will be viable

    We are talking about OOTB rules here though
    DDs know exactly where SUBs are, and what support units they will need to bring in to finish them off
    SUBs are near useless in such a combat system

    Short of having to write where hidden units are on paper (which will never fly in online play), I think the simplest way to replicate what you’re doing, is not to have detection of SUBs by DDs automatic.  Instead, have each DD roll a “Detection Roll” to see if SUBs are detected or not…

    SUB Detection Rolls and DD-to-detect values
    -All attacking and defending SUBs are “Undetected” at the start of Combat. Each SUB has a DD-to-detect value, which is 3 at baseline, and represents the likelihood of being detected (a higher value means more likely to be detected)
    -Only DDs can “Detect” SUBs. In the first cycle of combat, prior to Opening Fire, EACH DD in the attacking and/or defending force rolls a SUB Detection Roll. If at least ONE SUB Detection Roll is less than or equal to an opposing SUB’s DD-to-detect value, Those specific enemy SUBs are considered “Detected”.
    -If none of the rolls are less than or equal to a SUB’s DD-to-detect value, Those SUBs remain “Undetected.” If there are no opposing DDs, then all SUBs would remain “Undetected”.
    -Undetected SUBs may submerge on Opening fire and thus avoid further combat

    This would greatly increase SUB survivability and make them much more likely to be used (especially in conjunction with some Convoy Raiding Rules).

    Joe, What you say is true.  We are not OOB.  That is why I denote our game,
    " AA50 House rules, " and include mention of Sub Stealth.

    We do not use Sub detection.  Its OOB Automatic detection  when a DD is in the Sea Zone.  The Sub Stealth only modifies OOB, the fact, you don’t see subs until the DD shows up.  OOB rules except, when your submerge, no one sees the sub, until you pop up or a DD shows up in your Sea Zone.  This is simple and very powerful. 
    Your path to attack is hidden.  Its how subs operate, ambush attackers.
    Though, I like your detection rules.  I will present them to the guys and see if we can adopt them.  The are very KISS orientated, its hard to get new stuff into our game.
    Hell, I try every game to get something in-LOL.

    Even if, we did not use this rule, I find subs a useful cheap unit under OOB  rules.  Especially when combined with airpower.  Have you used this combination? 
    True, We don’t play online, its face to face 4 player games. 
    Face to Face, its the way the game was designed. 
    I like the instant interaction of board game play.
    I know, Online play would be used by me, if I did not have players readily available.
    I could see where management of sub stealth would require a modification of online protocols.



  • @Bluestroke:

    Joe, What you say is true.  We are not OOB.  That is why I denote our game,
    " AA50 House rules, " and include mention of Sub Stealth.

    We do not use Sub detection.  Its OOB Automatic detection  when a DD is in the Sea Zone.  The Sub Stealth only modifies OOB, the fact, you don’t see subs until the DD shows up.  OOB rules except, when your submerge, no one sees the sub, until you pop up or a DD shows up in your Sea Zone.  This is simple and very powerful.   
    Your path to attack is hidden.  Its how subs operate, ambush attackers.

    Though, I like your detection rules.  I will present them to the guys and see if we can adopt them.  The are very KISS orientated, its hard to get new stuff into our game.
    Hell, I try every game to get something in-LOL.

    Even if, we did not use this rule, I find subs a useful cheap unit under OOB  rules.  Especially when combined with airpower.  Have you used this combination? 
    True, We don’t play online, its face to face 4 player games. 
    Face to Face, its the way the game was designed. 
    I like the instant interaction of board game play.
    I know, Online play would be used by me, if I did not have players readily available.
    I could see where management of sub stealth would require a modification of online protocols.

    FTF is definitely the way to play  🙂
    I get the occasional game in, but not as often as I’d like

    I like your SUB rules as well, and would agree, they probably do best represent the actual situation
    What would be cool, is if online or PBEM games could send the map back and forth, but have your SUBs only seen on your map, but not your opponents (Kinda like the old Milton Bradley game Battleship…  “Doh!  You sank my Battleship!!!”   😄 )

    I’m not sure if this is possible though, and hence the alternative.
    We have been using this system in Enhanced though and it works fairly well.
    I’m just not sure how the lower costs for DDs and SUBs would affect things.
    (I should add that we use an Air modifier, so if there is Attacking aircraft present, the detection goes up to 4, and likewise if there are Defending aircraft present (ie. on an AC))

    It’s really hard to say for sure how SUBs will be until we know the actual set-up and complete rules (By the way, I appreciate your work on the maps so far).  I do feel though, that the automatic detection of all SUBs by a single DD is a true killer of SUB viability.  SUBs will basically be limited to a single attack (if that), only to be easy pickings on the following turn.



  • Nice discussion about subs. I think they were designed wrong from the start and it seems the AA50 changes haven’t adressed the basic problem; subs were never serious battle-winning weapons in World War II, their function was only to sink enemy transports and merchantmen and thus they were a STRATEGIC weapon. That’s why I tried to work out some kind of strictly economic attack use for subs in my very sketchy ideas that are not play-tested. But I think the direction is the way to go;

    http://www.axisandallies.org/forums/index.php?topic=12671.0

    I there opt to not have convoy zones but instead each transport is a movable convoy zone, both being subject to being destroyed and to be a point to inflict IPC damage. Also, I propose subs should have a move of three for economic attacks. In that way, you can avoid the embarrassing situation of German subs never even reaching the enemy. If they inflict enough damage, the fact that they’re destroyed isn’t a problem. Submarines had the highest loss rate of any units in the war apart from Kamikazes, so their vulnerability is quite accurate from a historical point of view!


  • 2018 2017 '16 '11 Moderator

    If Lynxes is correct, and he may be for the Atlantic theater, then Submarines should hit on a 4 or less but only against destroyers who fail to detect them and transports.  Likewise, only destroyers can attack submarines.

    However, I know for a fact that submarines WERE an offensive weapon used by Japan against the American navy which is why Aircraft Carriers were outfitted with blister packs (extra armor around the water line to absorb torpedo hits from submarines and other ships.)

    If submarines were not used, then the only torpedoes that carriers would have to worry about were ones that somehow managed to get past the battleships, cruisers, destroyers, destroyer escorts, fuel ships, transports and other water craft.  That’s an awfully small amount of torpedoes to worry about to devise, invest and install blister packs on aircraft carriers.

    However, if undetected enemy submarines were sneaking into your fleet formations and taking shots at your carriers before you found them, then it makes sense to invent, devise and install blister packs to protect your carriers from, what I call, snipers of the sea.


    So, if I am correct, perhaps the rule should be that undetected submarines can shoot at targets they choose to attack.  That means if you attack with 5 submarines and they are not detected, then all 5 can fire at a battleship simultaneously and then flee to safety; but only if you are attacking with only submarines and no other ships.


  • 2017 '16 '15 Organizer '14 Customizer '13 '12 '11 '10

    I think they were designed wrong from the start and it seems the AA50 changes haven’t addressed the basic problem; subs were never serious battle-winning weapons in World War II, their function was only to sink enemy transports and merchantmen and thus they were a STRATEGIC weapon. That’s why I tried to work out some kind of strictly economic attack use for subs in my very sketchy ideas that are not play-tested. But I think the direction is the way to go;

    Finally! This is exactly what subs should represent. I dont like this idea that subs are integral part of your surface fleet attack. The only way a sub would be able to participate in surface combat is if they were already planted en mass in the area where the fleet battle is taking place and ONLY IF they were able to move 25+ knots underwater to be able to catch up with warships. IN Battle the speed is increased to help evade getting hit by deck guns, even torpedos from ships as fast as each other have a really hard time hitting targets due to the speeds involved.

    Subs are a strategic weapon used to sink merchant shipping which is moving at 8-12 knots slowly across the water with heavy goods stored in the holds. Of course a few exceptions exist, but the only proper solution to subs IS an economic sack of IPC and not a primary soaker or attacking naval unit in fleet battles.



  • To make my rule-suggestions more concrete you would for each sub attacking a transport have:

    2/6X7 IPCs sinking of transports
    3,5 IPCs of convoy damage

    5.83 IPCs inflicted damage.

    So about equal damage to the cost of the sub. There is some chance your sub is sunk by destroyers before inflicting IPC damage, and also some chance you might survive the attack in the opponents turn against your sub and get a second attack, but it should add up to something around 5-6 IPCs on average.

    And I don’t take away the normal sub abilities at all. I just assume that won’t be the reason you will be buying subs, since a destroyer or a fighter for your carrier is better value for money for naval combat. Throwing your subs into naval combat would be a desperate solution, when your back is against the wall.


  • 2017 '16 '15 Organizer '14 Customizer '13 '12 '11 '10

    so in your proposal subs can ignore ships and target transports?

    They strike them and sink them, then roll for IPC damage?

    where does your convoy exist? abstracted or in specific sea zones? what is maximum damage per zone?

    Check out house rules…lots of ideas flowing on this.


  • 2018 2017 '16 '11 Moderator

    To combine some of the ideas….

    How about Submarines Attack @ 0, Defend @ 0 but have to be actively detected by destroyers to be sunk.  Each destroyer in a convoy negates one submarine.  Each destroyer in a convoy that rolls a 1 finds a submarine and sinks it. (Think AA Guns.)

    If the submarines attacking ever exceed the number of destroyers in the convoy, ALL TRANSPORTS AND CARGO are lost.  (Destroyers can still attempt to detect and sink a submarine for each destroyer present.)

    That way the submarines are still useless in surface combat, but they still have teeth and still force the enemy to put destroyers out to protect their transports.  (Examples to follow.)



    EXAMPLES


    Example 1:  America and England have a joint convoy in a sea zone.  Other ships may or may not be present in that sea zone, but have no bearing on this convoy or this convoy raid.  The convoy of transports are protected by 3 American Destroyers and 4 British Destroyers.  Germany attacks this convoy with 8 submarines.  This automatically sinks all 4 transports, however the seven destroyers roll seven dice, any 1’s result in a sunk submarine as well.

    Example 2:  Japan has 7 destroyers and some transports in a sea zone.  America attacks with 6 submarines.  Since the defending destroyers out number the attacking submarines, all transports are 100% protected and each destroyer rolls a die.  Any ones result in sinking a submarine. (Yes, this means two destroyers roll against one submarine.)



    Note, other than destroyers, transports, cargo on transports and submarines, no other units are effected at all.  You could have 400 battleships in a sea zone and have zero influence on attacking submarines with them.  Likewise, you could attack a battleship with 400 submarines and also have zero influence on it.


  • 2017 '16 '15 Organizer '14 Customizer '13 '12 '11 '10

    That is sure some good  out of the box thinking….

    How bout to extend the idea… subs roll out separately and only against transports hitting them at 2 or less. ( super subs 3 or less)

    after that then DD and CA roll locating and hitting at 1.(combined roll)

    If subs submerge or retreat combat over as per oob.

    If subs stay for a second round, then the same thing occurs except the DD/CA goes up to 2 or less.

    lastly, subs can be totally ignored and dont block anything. they only do things when its their own turn.

    Planes cant roll out with unless a DD or CA is present.

    If a sub locates a transport the transports are gone. no special dispensations.

    very simple?



  • My crazy sub idea (based on the above postings): subs can only attack transports, only DD’s can attack subs. To make it simple we let DD’s get a combined detect/attack value @1 (or @2?), similar to AA guns. But unlike AA guns each DD fires one shot each. Each sub that are not killed by DD’s, attack any transports in the SZ. Either the transports are autokilled, or each sub fire @4 or maybe @5?

    If the trans are to be autokilled then this will (kind of) depict the real historical Battle of the Atlantic, allies almost lost the war because of  lost tonnage until they started making lots of small warships like DD’s, frigates, cruisers, corvettes etc. to escort the transports. In the beginning of the Battle of the Atlantic the transports were just sitting ducks if a German sub attacked them.


  • 2017 '16 '15 Organizer '14 Customizer '13 '12 '11 '10

    The subs need the first opportunity to strike and need an semi-escape for a one round deal.

    If they get greedy they need to be punished somewhat

    ASW hitting at 3-5 is wacked– making subs auto-deaths.

    lastly, cruisers were capable ASW, and if you have some of them they should be able to ASW like in reality.

    I have to also move this to house rules because that’s what the thread has become.



  • @Imperious:

    I have to also move this to house rules because that’s what the thread has become.

    could also prefix “AA50:” to thread name
    coming from AA50 section the OP naturally did not mention its for AA50

    So, if I am correct, perhaps the rule should be that undetected submarines can shoot at targets they choose to attack.  That means if you attack with 5 submarines and they are not detected, then all 5 can fire at a battleship simultaneously and then flee to safety; but only if you are attacking with only submarines and no other ships.

    Yeah undetected submarines should have an optional target selection.
    I am also with you on the existence of “fleet submarines” rather than all of them being slow and battle-useless convoy-hitting submarines.


  • 2017 '16 '15 Organizer '14 Customizer '13 '12 '11 '10

    I was thinking of Jennifer’s idea and i now think this is the best solution:

    Submarines:
    Attacking Submarines can only engage enemy transports or perform convoy raids on enemy sea zones designated as such. If they elect to attack transports perform the following sequence:

    1. Subs each roll at 2 or less to hit. Transports are removed for each hit.
    2. ASW units (Destroyers and Cruisers) each roll hitting at one. Remove subs.
    3. Subs may elect to submerge or continue attack.

    Note: If attacking ASW units engage the subs on their own turn follow the same procedure except ASW units can now be hit rather than transports.

    Special Rules:
    • If the active player has Super Subs Technology they attack at 3 or less.
    • If the active player has ASW Technology, then planes can now roll for ASW as long as a ASW naval unit is present ( at a 1:1 basis). Also, all ASW units now roll at 2 or less to score a hit.

    to clarify naval units (surface) can totally ignore enemy subs and transports if they like on their own turn. Neither can block.



  • Hey, IL, we also have a discussion of these things on the thread “Economic warfare expansion…” in House rules.

    I think subs should do IPC damage as well as hit transports and this should be a separate attack from normal combat. Bombers do IPC damage but they typically can attack 4-6 times before they are shot down, whereas subs get killed more quickly and should have a more powerful attack.

    Cruisers as ASW, not sure. Most escort ships were smaller than fleet destroyers, “destroyer escorts”. And the most powerful escort ship was the escort carrier. In my proposed rules, destroyers and fighters on carriers hit on a ‘1’ and one destroyer enables one fighter to fire. If you allow more ASW than that, I fear subs become too weak! Also cruisers I think should be bought for naval combat rather than ASW, which after all was their main use in the war.


  • 2017 '16 '15 Organizer '14 Customizer '13 '12 '11 '10

    yea i added in planes as attackers but if non transports are in the sea zone, they must attack as normal as per OOB.


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