Lack of German naval strat: problem or not?

  • @Lynxes:

    Of course you should use your at-start subs aggressively like you describe. The problem is any sub you build will either be blocked in North Sea (sz6) or if you get it out to English Channel or Norwegian Sea (sz7 or sz3) it’s very easy for the UK player to send either one DD forward or move his entire fleet forward and destroy your sub while defending with their measly ‘1’ in defence. If you have enough air power you might force the UK player to send in only their DD with the RAF so as to not expose their fleet, but if I was UK I’ll trade one DD for one sub anyday since it comes out of Germany’s hard-pressed IPC pocket!

    The only way for BUILT subs to be effective for Germany is to get them to attack the main UK/US fleet in sz3 or sz7 in conjunction with air units and the mistaken DD block rule negates that possibility.

    Again I’ll say, if you build subs you’re telling your opponent “I will not let you go into sz 7 or sz 3.”  If you plan to be effective with them.  A sub on G1 will not be blocked into sz 5 unless the GB1 build is directly into sz 6.  Your goals are:  clear sz 2, clear sz 6.  You want ss sz 6 and, pie in the sky all 4 of your ftr survive, they’re in nwy x2, fra, and alg.  This will nearly force the GB player to spend either nothing on a navy or all 43.

    My general objective is to get a few subs on the board, spread them out, and use them as the infantry of the sea as Germany.  This strategy generally involves the aggressive pursuit of Kar, as an air-base established their allows ftrs to defend sz 3.

    If 2 subs then sz 5 sz 6
    “” 3 “” sz 3
    “” 4 “” sz 4

    As you space your subs, you need to be able to think “well if a dd sinks this sub it’s not a big deal because I will sink a dd and I will net 2 IPC, BUT if he goes full force at one of my subs I should be able to destroy whatever’s in that sea zone, or at least come out +IPCs”  If you’re spending money on this and you can’t tell yourself that, you’re just wasting the cash.

  • Moderator

    I think subs can provide a pretty good annoyance factor.

    Even if you are placing subs in Sz 5 and they get blocked by a UK DD in sz 6, Germany comes out ahead by 2 ipc.  If you have multiple subs and UK/US moves their fleet to sz 6 to block, you may be able to get off a strafing run with 4-5 subs and 5-6 planes.  In this case the subs make great fodder.  Maybe you lose 1 plane as well but you’ll still inflict about 5 hits which likely means the Allies losing DDs or possibly CAs compared to the majority of your losses being subs.  And you can always play the OOL game too and lose an extra ftr or 2 and try for a second rd of combat with 1-2 subs and try to sink an AC or another Capital ship.  Obviously this scenerio would depend on the overall fleet size but I can see its uses in certain circumstances.

  • As I said UK will gladly spend 8 IPCs to block several subs from being used against the invading fleet. If you only build one sub, then maybe UK will stack up its main fleet with that DD instead. No way the Allies are going to move a major fleet into North Sea if you have several subs in the Baltic Sea! They don’t need to, no land territory borders the North Sea that can’t be invaded from other sea zones. And if they want to get into the Baltic, they just put up a DD as a block in the North Sea the first turn and then move in their fleet from English channel or Norwegian Sea.

    The only way to use subs is, as I detailed some time ago in posts on the strategy boards, is to use ITALIAN air to attack the DD block. And that will only work until US sends in a DD. In the '42 scenario, JAPANESE air can be used to attack the US DD block. All this is too gamey tactics and hardly something you can base a sound strategy on.  😐  Subs were not intended to be built by Germany for this game, and that fact will remain until subs are boosted in some way.

  • Moderator


    As I said UK will gladly spend 8 IPCs to block several subs from being used against the invading fleet.

    One DD can only block 1 one sub.

    Ger attacks with 1 sub and air (66% shot UK dd misses), then Ger Non-Coms remaining subs to other szs and replaces new sub in Sz 5.

    Now the Allies need a DD to take out the sub (if survived) in Sz 6 as well as the other subs that could have moved to Sz 3 or sz 7.

    Just like the Allies aren’t going to move a fleet to Sz 6 if Ger can attack heavy, Germany isn’t going to move a bunch of subs so 1 DD and tons of Allied air can sink them.  It is a bit of a cat and mouse game, but 1 Ger sub can force the UK to use at least TWO DDs (one to block sz 6, which gets killed, and the one needed to sink the Ger sub in Sz 6 if suvived the attack on the DD).  The Allies then need additional dds to sink any remaining subs that scatter.

    At somepoint the Allies need to go to Sz 6 fairly heavy, just to stop the negative trade of 1-2 dds for 1 sub.  Thats a worst case +2 for Ger and potentially a best case +10 ipc for Ger for one turn.  (depends on how long or how many rounds the constant trade of sub for dd lasts).

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