General Questions

Discuss the Victory at Sea range of naval games.

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Lord David the Denied
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General Questions

Postby Lord David the Denied » Tue Jan 08, 2008 11:57 am

Hey everyone, I have some general questions before I start podding out money on this game. I'd appreciate any answers anyone can provide.

1, Cruisers, how much use are they in average games? Assuming a game at 5 raid (can you tell I play ACtA?) how much use would an FAP on skirmish or raid level cruisers be? I'm looking at the Royal Navy and they have a lot of different cruisers, mostly 6" gun light cruisers according to Burger's rather handy site. Can this ships seriously threaten something larger with their torpedoes? Can they effectively screen battleships from other cruisers and destroyers? Aircraft? Any tips for using them?

2, Destroyers, just how important are destroyers in a balanced fleet? Again at 5 raid, is an FAP of destroyers worth taking? How good are they at screening battleships from torpedo and air attack? How good at making torpedo attacks on battleships? Obviously destroyers are the only ships that can hunt subs so they're important for that, but in general, how useful are they?

3, Submarines, how much use are they in average games? Can you reliably sink a capital ship with subs? A cruiser? How vulnerable are they to destroyers or air attack?

4, Carriers, how much use are they in the post-OoB rules? Is it worth getting any of the RN carriers for average games? How vulnerable are capital ships to air attack, generally speaking? Is a screen of destroyers enough to keep air attacks at bay or do you need your own aviation as well?

Think that wraps it up for now. I'd love to hear anything anyone can tell me about the game, any battle reports anyone has would be great too. Thanks.
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Postby Ben2 » Tue Jan 08, 2008 12:28 pm

For a five point raid game with a bit of everything:

2FAP on a battle level BB ie QE or New York
1 FAP on a raid level carrier
1 FAP on 2 8" gun cruisers ie York or Aoba
1 FAP on Destroyers.

Destroyers are useful for sub hunting, as a wolf pack and for smoking to block fire. Wolf pack destroyers are great for hitting cruisers or damaging BBs.
Cruisers have enough guns to harass bigger ships, squash destroyers that get too close and enough torps to hurt BBs.
BBs are always worth taking.
A raid level carrier is now worth it with the new aircraft rules, previously I'd have spent that point on two more cruisers.
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Postby Lord David the Denied » Tue Jan 08, 2008 1:56 pm

It seems to me that the 6" gun cruisers can't really threaten a BB with their guns, since they're weak and can't cause criticals - unless that's been changed, and the torpedoes are one shot, so you're taking a chance attacking battleships.

8" gun cruisers can, at least, cause critical hits since they're not weak. I'm guessing/hoping that gives them a shot at killing something bigger than them, and enough of one to make them worth considering in battle. Am I right about any of this?
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Postby ebar » Tue Jan 08, 2008 2:52 pm

However you will get several for the same price of one top rank battleship and a cruiser that's coming in at full speed is going to be difficult to hit before it gets into range. Plus of course one battleship can only be in one place at a time.

Personally I prefer to use the light cruiser Edinburghs over the heavy cruiser Countys. On the whole cruisers in general don't have any business trying to slug it out with battleships, other than to finish off cripples with their torps.

Against other cruisers, CL's at least those with TL weapons stand a better chance of hitting in the first place, which I prefer over the better damage potential of a CA.

Destroyers are definately useful both on the defencive and offensive, but they definately need to have numbers on their side when mounting a strike.

Can sub sink a cap ship. Well unless your very jammy on the dice, no. A cruiser on the other hand they can blow out of the water. The down side with subs, is that they're a bit of a one shot wonder. One shot then its a wonder if they every get into firing position again.
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Postby Lord David the Denied » Tue Jan 08, 2008 3:09 pm

The RN gets a class of CA at skirmish level, the three-turret version of the County-class. Two of those has to be worth one of the four-turret version, and the extra firepower of thr 8" guns has to worth thinking about for the same cost as a 6" cruiser with TL.

Obviously I don't delude myself that a raid-level CA can take on a battle- or (heaven forbid) a war-level BB, but it's nice to know they can hurt one or finish off a cripple.

Thanks for the answers so far. Anyone else's opinion would be very welcome.
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Postby Soulmage » Tue Jan 08, 2008 3:29 pm

I ran a cruiser heavy task force the other day and found them to be very effective.

Undeniably you need BBs to dish the heavy damage. But cruisers in their proper role can be highly effective.

Cruisers should be used to:

Destroy enemy cruisers (heavy cruisers)
Destroy enemy destroyers (heavy or light cruisers)
Provide AA coverage to BBs (AA variant cruisers)
Torpedo enemy BBs (heavy or light cruisers w/ torpedoes)

If you just look at the cruiser stats in that light, you'll easily be able to find the ones that work best for you.
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Postby Leadman » Tue Jan 08, 2008 4:03 pm

In VAS, two Raid PL ships usually don't have as much fire power as one Battle PL ship. However, two Skirmish PL ships will often have more fire power than one Raid PL ship. The choice between 2 Patrol PL ships and one Skirmish PL ship is less clear with Navy and play style dictating which is the better choice. For example, two Italian Patrol level destroyers are not usually as good a choice as one Skirmish level CA. However, I will almost always take two Japanese Kagero class DDs over a Sendai class CL.

While my local group usually plays 5 point Battle or larger games, my 5 point Raid OOB RN fleet consists of:

2 FAP on 1 Battle PL Warspite (Target size 5, armored deck, radar, 8x3AD AP main, and good secondaries).
1 FAP on 1 Skirmish PL Edinburgh class CL (one of the best skirmish choices in the game) and 2 Patrol PL L class DDs (unfortunately, this ship didn’t make the cut so use J class instead).
1 FAP on 1 Skirmish PL Edinburgh class CL (one of the best skirmish choices in the game) and 2 Patrol PL L class DDs (unfortunately, this ship didn’t make the cut so use J class instead).
1 FAP on 1 Skirmish PL Gloucester class CL (not as good as the Edinburgh, but still good) and 2 Patrol PL M class DDs (unfortunately, this ship didn’t make the cut so use J class instead).

All of these ships have radar so using smoke screens against Italians, French, and Japanese fleets is a given. All of these ships except the BB have a max speed of 7 inches and can get the benefit of moving at flank speed.

Have fun,
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Postby Lord David the Denied » Tue Jan 08, 2008 4:31 pm

Why no 8" gun cruisers? Pack more of a wallop than the 6" cruisers and you can get 2 of them at skirmish level.
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Postby Soulmage » Tue Jan 08, 2008 6:30 pm

Leadman wrote:In VAS, two Raid PL ships usually don't have as much fire power as one Battle PL ship. However, two Skirmish PL ships will often have more fire power than one Raid PL ship. The choice between 2 Patrol PL ships and one Skirmish PL ship is less clear with Navy and play style dictating which is the better choice. For example, two Italian Patrol level destroyers are not usually as good a choice as one Skirmish level CA. However, I will almost always take two Japanese Kagero class DDs over a Sendai class CL.

While my local group usually plays 5 point Battle or larger games, my 5 point Raid OOB RN fleet consists of:

2 FAP on 1 Battle PL Warspite (Target size 5, armored deck, radar, 8x3AD AP main, and good secondaries).
1 FAP on 1 Skirmish PL Edinburgh class CL (one of the best skirmish choices in the game) and 2 Patrol PL L class DDs (unfortunately, this ship didn’t make the cut so use J class instead).
1 FAP on 1 Skirmish PL Edinburgh class CL (one of the best skirmish choices in the game) and 2 Patrol PL L class DDs (unfortunately, this ship didn’t make the cut so use J class instead).
1 FAP on 1 Skirmish PL Gloucester class CL (not as good as the Edinburgh, but still good) and 2 Patrol PL M class DDs (unfortunately, this ship didn’t make the cut so use J class instead).
I don't think this is a legal list, is it? Looks like you are splitting 3 of your FAPs between skirmish and patrol choices. Aren't you only allowed to split one?

. . . and I'd agree that heavy cruisers are definitely worth looking at.
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Postby Leadman » Tue Jan 08, 2008 7:15 pm

Lord David the Denied wrote:Why no 8" gun cruisers? Pack more of a wallop than the 6" cruisers and you can get 2 of them at skirmish level.
At 5 point Raid, I'll take a couple of CAs (usually the Norfolk class) if I don't run a BB. But if I have a BB, then I don’t need the CAs. In larger games, I will tend to take a CA or two. The Edinburgh and Gloucester class CLs are capable of putting a serious hurt on any CA and are better at killing DDs than any of the RN CAs. The Edinburgh has 4, TL/W, 6" turrets versus the 4, 8" turrets of the Norfolk or 3, 8” turrets of the York class. The TL 6” guns will get more hits than the 3 or 4, 8” turrets. The Edinburgh has 3 AD of secondaries versus the 2 of the Norfolk or 1 of the York. Under OOB, Weak guns can cause critical Hits on armor 3 or less. Granted the crits caused by Weak guns aren’t quite as deadly as those caused by 8” guns but you will get more of them. Under OOB, secondaries don’t take a -1 penalty when firing at ships moving more than 7”, and get a +1 bonus for firing at 10” or less. So, firing at the broadside of a fast moving DD at 10 inches or less, results in 3 AD hitting at 4+ from the secondaries, and 4 AD hitting at 5+ but re-rolling misses from the 6” turrets. The Norfolk will get 2 AD hitting on 4+ and 4 AD hitting on 5+. The York will get 1 AD hitting on 4+, and 3 AD hitting on 5+. Torpedoes are a wash since all three ships have 2 AD of torpedoes on both sides. The other RN Skirmish PL CAs (London and Kent classes) don’t have torpedoes. I’ll take the Edinburgh and Gloucester CLs first every time.

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Postby Leadman » Tue Jan 08, 2008 7:21 pm

Soulmage wrote:
Leadman wrote:In VAS, two Raid PL ships usually don't have as much fire power as one Battle PL ship. However, two Skirmish PL ships will often have more fire power than one Raid PL ship. The choice between 2 Patrol PL ships and one Skirmish PL ship is less clear with Navy and play style dictating which is the better choice. For example, two Italian Patrol level destroyers are not usually as good a choice as one Skirmish level CA. However, I will almost always take two Japanese Kagero class DDs over a Sendai class CL.

While my local group usually plays 5 point Battle or larger games, my 5 point Raid OOB RN fleet consists of:

2 FAP on 1 Battle PL Warspite (Target size 5, armored deck, radar, 8x3AD AP main, and good secondaries).
1 FAP on 1 Skirmish PL Edinburgh class CL (one of the best skirmish choices in the game) and 2 Patrol PL L class DDs (unfortunately, this ship didn’t make the cut so use J class instead).
1 FAP on 1 Skirmish PL Edinburgh class CL (one of the best skirmish choices in the game) and 2 Patrol PL L class DDs (unfortunately, this ship didn’t make the cut so use J class instead).
1 FAP on 1 Skirmish PL Gloucester class CL (not as good as the Edinburgh, but still good) and 2 Patrol PL M class DDs (unfortunately, this ship didn’t make the cut so use J class instead).
I don't think this is a legal list, is it? Looks like you are splitting 3 of your FAPs between skirmish and patrol choices. Aren't you only allowed to split one?

. . . and I'd agree that heavy cruisers are definitely worth looking at.

The list is legal. The rules state:

"Players wishing to break down Fleet Allocation Points beyond the values and ship quantities in the Fleet Allocation table may do
so. The following guidelines must be observed when splitting Fleet Allocation Points to maintain the balance of the game. This
will allow players to use a single Fleet Allocation Point to buy ships of different levels rather than of one Priority Level only."

This allows you to split an FAP between 2 different PLs, but doesn't limit the number of FAPs that can be split.

Dannie
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Lord David the Denied
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Postby Lord David the Denied » Tue Jan 08, 2008 7:33 pm

Leadman wrote:At 5 point Raid, I'll take a couple of CAs (usually the Norfolk class) if I don't run a BB. But if I have a BB, then I don’t need the CAs. In larger games, I will tend to take a CA or two. The Edinburgh and Gloucester class CLs are capable of putting a serious hurt on any CA and are better at killing DDs than any of the RN CAs. The Edinburgh has 4, TL/W, 6" turrets versus the 4, 8" turrets of the Norfolk or 3, 8” turrets of the York class. The TL 6” guns will get more hits than the 3 or 4, 8” turrets. The Edinburgh has 3 AD of secondaries versus the 2 of the Norfolk or 1 of the York. Under OOB, Weak guns can cause critical Hits on armor 3 or less. Granted the crits caused by Weak guns aren’t quite as deadly as those caused by 8” guns but you will get more of them. Under OOB, secondaries don’t take a -1 penalty when firing at ships moving more than 7”, and get a +1 bonus for firing at 10” or less. So, firing at the broadside of a fast moving DD at 10 inches or less, results in 3 AD hitting at 4+ from the secondaries, and 4 AD hitting at 5+ but re-rolling misses from the 6” turrets. The Norfolk will get 2 AD hitting on 4+ and 4 AD hitting on 5+. The York will get 1 AD hitting on 4+, and 3 AD hitting on 5+. Torpedoes are a wash since all three ships have 2 AD of torpedoes on both sides. The other RN Skirmish PL CAs (London and Kent classes) don’t have torpedoes. I’ll take the Edinburgh and Gloucester CLs first every time.

Dannie
Well, when you put it like that, it makes perfect sense. Taking a light cruiser up against a battleship is a good way to lose the light cruiser, but using that same light cruiser to smack destroyers down will see better results.

I see it all now. :wink:

Ok, another question: Battlecruisers. At the same PL, can a battlecruiser face off a battleship? The Renown- and Hood-class BCs both have torpedoes and firepower comparable to BBs at their own level, with slightly weaker armour. Can they work in the role of a BB in an average fleet?
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Postby Soulmage » Tue Jan 08, 2008 8:58 pm

The American fleet has some excellent heavy cruisers that will run your the same cost as the lights. They have triple 8" turrets that are therefore twin-linked. Its nice. :)
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Postby Lord David the Denied » Tue Jan 08, 2008 9:04 pm

I'll be deep in the cold, cold ground before I play a US fleet... :wink:

Although TL 8" guns would be very nice. :P
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Postby Leadman » Tue Jan 08, 2008 9:54 pm

Lord David the Denied wrote:
Leadman wrote:At 5 point Raid, I'll take a couple of CAs (usually the Norfolk class) if I don't run a BB. But if I have a BB, then I don’t need the CAs. In larger games, I will tend to take a CA or two. The Edinburgh and Gloucester class CLs are capable of putting a serious hurt on any CA and are better at killing DDs than any of the RN CAs. The Edinburgh has 4, TL/W, 6" turrets versus the 4, 8" turrets of the Norfolk or 3, 8” turrets of the York class. The TL 6” guns will get more hits than the 3 or 4, 8” turrets. The Edinburgh has 3 AD of secondaries versus the 2 of the Norfolk or 1 of the York. Under OOB, Weak guns can cause critical Hits on armor 3 or less. Granted the crits caused by Weak guns aren’t quite as deadly as those caused by 8” guns but you will get more of them. Under OOB, secondaries don’t take a -1 penalty when firing at ships moving more than 7”, and get a +1 bonus for firing at 10” or less. So, firing at the broadside of a fast moving DD at 10 inches or less, results in 3 AD hitting at 4+ from the secondaries, and 4 AD hitting at 5+ but re-rolling misses from the 6” turrets. The Norfolk will get 2 AD hitting on 4+ and 4 AD hitting on 5+. The York will get 1 AD hitting on 4+, and 3 AD hitting on 5+. Torpedoes are a wash since all three ships have 2 AD of torpedoes on both sides. The other RN Skirmish PL CAs (London and Kent classes) don’t have torpedoes. I’ll take the Edinburgh and Gloucester CLs first every time.

Dannie
Well, when you put it like that, it makes perfect sense. Taking a light cruiser up against a battleship is a good way to lose the light cruiser, but using that same light cruiser to smack destroyers down will see better results.

I see it all now. :wink:

Ok, another question: Battlecruisers. At the same PL, can a battlecruiser face off a battleship? The Renown- and Hood-class BCs both have torpedoes and firepower comparable to BBs at their own level, with slightly weaker armour. Can they work in the role of a BB in an average fleet?
At Armor 4+and target 4+, the RN Renown and IJN Kongo classes are at a big disadvantage versus most BBs. Against fleets that don’t have a BB, they are very effective, though they need to be more mindful of CAs. The Hood at armor 5+ with 3 DD guns and radar is as good as most Battle PL ships. The problem with the Hood is that the Warspite is available with the same guns and radar plus and armored deck and a target size of 5+. It may not seem like much, but at extreme range, unless the enemy has radar, the Warspite can’t be hit (target 5 + 2 = 7). While the same ship can hit the Hood on a die roll of 6. At the same target size and PL, the Nelson is available with armor 6+ and one more 3 DD gun. FYI, in my opinion, once the decision was made to change the Nelson’s armor to 6+ and give it radar (both decisions supported by the data) the PL should have been left at War.

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Postby Leadman » Tue Jan 08, 2008 10:07 pm

Soulmage wrote:The American fleet has some excellent heavy cruisers that will run your the same cost as the lights. They have triple 8" turrets that are therefore twin-linked. Its nice. :)
The USN CAs at Skirmish PL are very good. Take a look at the Brooklyn/St Louis class and the Cleveland class CLs. These are awesome ships, especially the Cleveland class. Nothing like radar, 4 TL/W turrets supported by 4 AD of secondaries and good AA to support your CAs.

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Postby MektonZero » Tue Jan 08, 2008 10:52 pm

Leadman wrote: "This will allow players to use a single Fleet Allocation Point to buy ships of different levels rather than of one Priority Level only."

This allows you to split an FAP between 2 different PLs, but doesn't limit the number of FAPs that can be split.

Dannie
It states that players are allowed to use a SINGLE point to buy ships of different levels.
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Postby Lord David the Denied » Tue Jan 08, 2008 11:36 pm

Leadman wrote:At Armor 4+and target 4+, the RN Renown and IJN Kongo classes are at a big disadvantage versus most BBs. Against fleets that don’t have a BB, they are very effective, though they need to be more mindful of CAs. The Hood at armor 5+ with 3 DD guns and radar is as good as most Battle PL ships. The problem with the Hood is that the Warspite is available with the same guns and radar plus and armored deck and a target size of 5+. It may not seem like much, but at extreme range, unless the enemy has radar, the Warspite can’t be hit (target 5 + 2 = 7). While the same ship can hit the Hood on a die roll of 6. At the same target size and PL, the Nelson is available with armor 6+ and one more 3 DD gun. FYI, in my opinion, once the decision was made to change the Nelson’s armor to 6+ and give it radar (both decisions supported by the data) the PL should have been left at War.

Dannie
What level is the Nelson-class now? At the moment I don't have the books to check things, just Burger's site. Looks like I'm going to have to buy them, eh?
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Postby Leadman » Wed Jan 09, 2008 2:22 am

MektonZero wrote:
Leadman wrote: "This will allow players to use a single Fleet Allocation Point to buy ships of different levels rather than of one Priority Level only."

This allows you to split an FAP between 2 different PLs, but doesn't limit the number of FAPs that can be split.

Dannie
It states that players are allowed to use a SINGLE point to buy ships of different levels.
No, it doesn't. It says that splitting a single FAP can be used to buy ships from more than one PL. Before splitting FAPs was allowed, a single FAP could only buy ships from one PL.

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Postby Leadman » Wed Jan 09, 2008 2:28 am

Lord David the Denied wrote:
Leadman wrote:At Armor 4+and target 4+, the RN Renown and IJN Kongo classes are at a big disadvantage versus most BBs. Against fleets that don’t have a BB, they are very effective, though they need to be more mindful of CAs. The Hood at armor 5+ with 3 DD guns and radar is as good as most Battle PL ships. The problem with the Hood is that the Warspite is available with the same guns and radar plus and armored deck and a target size of 5+. It may not seem like much, but at extreme range, unless the enemy has radar, the Warspite can’t be hit (target 5 + 2 = 7). While the same ship can hit the Hood on a die roll of 6. At the same target size and PL, the Nelson is available with armor 6+ and one more 3 DD gun. FYI, in my opinion, once the decision was made to change the Nelson’s armor to 6+ and give it radar (both decisions supported by the data) the PL should have been left at War.

Dannie
What level is the Nelson-class now? At the moment I don't have the books to check things, just Burger's site. Looks like I'm going to have to buy them, eh?
Under OOB, the Nelson is PL Battle. I hope that this will be changed back to War in the future. My local group plays it as PL War. We did a lot of RN versus Italin play testing. With radar and armor 6+, a single Nelson is more than a match for the Littorio. Making the Nelson PL Battle is IMHO, unbalancing.

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