How does AA fire against Flights and Flight attacks on Ships ACTUALLY work?

Home Forums Historical Victory At Sea How does AA fire against Flights and Flight attacks on Ships ACTUALLY work?

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  • #183411
    Christian Sorensen
    Participant

    I apologize in advance if the answers to these questions seems ridiculously obvious, and perhaps they would to players of previously published versions of these rules, or to those who know the text of the full rulebook! 😉

    For “Shooting Down Aircraft” on page 16 the text mentions that “If enemy flights are in range, a ship’s AA battery is fired….”. Does this mean that AA battery or light guns with the DP trait can shoot out to extreme range at enemy flights?

    Later, it says “When targeting enemy Flights, roll the Attack Dice of the AA battery as normal. These Attack Dice are never modified.”   Does this mean that the Attack Dice Modifiers chart on page 8 is never used for AA fire, and therefore shots at Extreme Range have the same chance as those at Point Blank? What if the firing ship had executed an “Evade!” order that turn, would the firing AA batteries still have the -1 penalty to that weapon system’s rolls?

    For “Attacking with Aircraft” the rules introduce a special table to find the Roll to Hit number, depending on the type of Aircraft Flight.  However, unlike the the previous section’s Shooting Down Aircraft rules, there is no sentence such as “These Attack Dice are never modified”.  Does this mean that the Attack Dice Modifiers chart on page 8 is used?

    If it is used, are all Flights considered to be at “Point Blank” range since the Aircraft flight is necessarily touching the base of the target?  If it is not used, does this really mean that “Target Ship Class is a Destroyer”, “Fast Moving Target”, “Stationary Target”, “Large Silhouette”,  etc still have no effect on an Aircraft Flight’s To Hit roll?

    What about if the target ship had executed an “Evade!” order that turn, would a successful hit still have to be re-rolled?

     

    Cheers!

    #183412
    Eumerin
    Participant

    For “Shooting Down Aircraft” on page 16 the text mentions that “If enemy flights are in range, a ship’s AA battery is fired….”. Does this mean that AA battery or light guns with the DP trait can shoot out to extreme range at enemy flights?

    Yes. But keep in mind that “Extreme Range” is usually fairly short for AA guns. And DP guns that are used in an anti-air role only get half their normal range.

    Later, it says “When targeting enemy Flights, roll the Attack Dice of the AA battery as normal. These Attack Dice are never modified.” Does this mean that the Attack Dice Modifiers chart on page 8 is never used for AA fire, and therefore shots at Extreme Range have the same chance as those at Point Blank? What if the firing ship had executed an “Evade!” order that turn, would the firing AA batteries still have the -1 penalty to that weapon system’s rolls?

    No modifiers. It’s going to be hard enough to get that ‘6’ that you need without adding additional modifiers. It’s worth remembering that anti-aircraft guns were rapid-firing and were capable of rapidly swiveling. Even an evading ship generally wasn’t moving fast enough to throw off the aim of her anti-air gunners.

    For “Attacking with Aircraft” the rules introduce a special table to find the Roll to Hit number, depending on the type of Aircraft Flight. However, unlike the the previous section’s Shooting Down Aircraft rules, there is no sentence such as “These Attack Dice are never modified”. Does this mean that the Attack Dice Modifiers chart on page 8 is used?

    I’m inclined to say that yes, you do include the modifiers, with one exception. Historically, ships that were under air attack did try and evade incoming aircraft by throwing off their aim. So using most of the modifiers makes sense. The exception is for torpedoes. I would not apply the torpedo modifier. I would argue that it’s already incorporated into the “To-Hit” number for torpedo bombers, since they can only attack with torpedoes. Additionally, the -2 modifier for torpedo attacks would technically require you to get a 7+ against a typical target, which is a bit difficult most of the time. Finally, remember that aircraft don’t have range bands. So the range modifiers never come into play.

    • This reply was modified 1 year, 12 months ago by Eumerin.
    #183414
    Christian Sorensen
    Participant

    I’m asking how the game is actually played, and Eumerin’s explanation of how it works for AA fire is certainly plausible and consistent with a reading of the rules.

    However, for Aircraft attacking ships, I see no written rationale for using all of the page 8 modifiers EXCEPT that for torpedoes!  I’d think it would be all or nothing, and then we could debate what happens with the range modifiers!  FWIW, if all of the table is used, a torpedo bomber flight attacking the flank of a non-destroyer would need 5 to hit (original 5 -1 for point blank -1 for side +2 for torpedo).

    And there is still the question of what happens when the ship target is Evading, as the rules for that order say “all enemy Attack Dice which successfully hit this ship this turn must be re-rolled.”   I suppose it might be possible to argue that resolving an attack with Aircraft does not involve rolling Attack Dice, but that seems a little too lawyerly for a set of abridged rules.  Hence my curiousity about what is in the main rules, and how this is intended to be played!

    #183415
    Nat
    Participant

    Hi Chrisitian, if you look in the thread wardroom FAQ, i’ve done a complete breakedown  of how AA works in the FAQ thats attached.

    In the QSR for aircraft attacking ships, they hit on their own score, no modifiers (only kamikazes say to use them, the others say not to) and evade will still take effect as its any successful attack.

    #183418
    Enioch
    Participant

    In the QSR for aircraft attacking ships, they hit on their own score, no modifiers (only kamikazes say to use them, the others say not to) and evade will still take effect as its any successful attack.

    Not exactly true. ‘Any successful attack’ was the wording in beta. ‘All enemy Attack Dice which successfully hit this ship’ is the wording in the QSR.

    The D6 rolled by aircraft is not described as an Attack Die in the QSR. It’s described as ‘a D6’.

    I do agree with Christian, however, that this seems a bit lawyerly and that the intention seems to be ‘all attacks’.

    #183419
    Nat
    Participant

    yeah thats rules lawyering to the Nth degree…

    #183420
    Enioch
    Participant

    Counterpoint:

    If Evade! does not force rerolls vs planes, then it has no downside in that context. Vs ships, you get the -1 to own attacks and inability to launch torps. Vs planes you keep your own AA effectiveness, but force rerolls

    Evade is either utterly overpowered vs planes (if forcing reroll, because it’s only positive), or has no effect whatsoever (if it does not force reroll). Pick your poison.

    #183421
    Nat
    Participant

    you missed the 3rd option… the ship does suffer a -1 to their AA (the whole flights section is contridictors.. AA doesnt suffer modifier, except against large or kamikazes..so why not evading as well?)

    This is why I’ve not done any crib sheet or looked at any scenarios.. I feel that the extra rules will alter what we have a fair bit!

    #183422
    Christian Sorensen
    Participant

    It would be good to know how the designers and playtesters have resolved these issues, eh?

    #183423
    clockwork81
    Participant

    I hope Warlord looks at this forum. I really like the game. I feel like the rules need more clarification, particularly plane/carrier/ship interactions. Scouting is an awesome idea but needs an update due to the 7 and 10 rungs being game breaking. Torpedos need a nerf at least in terms of speed/accuracy, maybe not so much on damage as many of you have pointed out.

    #183424
    Nat
    Participant

    You are the first person I’ve seen say torpedoes need to be less accurate… they are at a base -2, meaning they’ll never hit better than a 4+…and that’s close range in broadside!

    also whilst the long lance has a number of people saying range is too long for games it’s the only one…..

    #183425
    Enioch
    Participant

    I feel like the rules need more clarification, particularly plane/carrier/ship interactions. Scouting is an awesome idea but needs an update due to the 7 and 10 rungs being game breaking

    I have written some homerules for my Pacific campaign which rebalance scouting something fierce, and introduce scouting arcs for planes. Might make them public after some more playtesting.

    also whilst the long lance has a number of people saying range is too long for games it’s the only one…..

    While I might agree that teleporting torpedoes are a bit weird, they still fit the rest of the games mechanics and I’m OK with them for game smoothness. Long Lances are fine, IMHO, they’re the IJN gimmick.

     

    #183427
    Eumerin
    Participant

    However, for Aircraft attacking ships, I see no written rationale for using all of the page 8 modifiers EXCEPT that for torpedoes! I’d think it would be all or nothing, and then we could debate what happens with the range modifiers! FWIW, if all of the table is used, a torpedo bomber flight attacking the flank of a non-destroyer would need 5 to hit (original 5 -1 for point blank -1 for side +2 for torpedo).

    First, aircraft don’t have range bands. So there is no “point blank” range for aircraft attacks. Ergo, you can’t get a point blank to-hit modifier when attacking with aircraft.

    Second, Torpedo bombers carry exactly one weapon – a torpedo – and have their own special “to-hit” number that they don’t share with anything else (what I mean to say is that while other planes do hit on a 5+ just like torpedo bombers, those planes all have their own separate to-hit entries). It would make sense that any modifiers for the only weapon that torpedo bombers carry would already be incorporated into the to-hit numbers for torpedo bombers (as it turns out, their to-hit number is exactly two higher than the to-hit number for dive bombers).

    Finally, the to-hit number with the torpedo penalty in place is 7+. You can’t hit a moving ship with that number. If you attack a cruiser or capitol ship in the flank, then the number needed changes to 6+, which is still difficult enough when compared to dive bombers that I wonder why anyone would take torpedo bombers if the torpedo to-hit penalty is applied.

    In the QSR for aircraft attacking ships, they hit on their own score, no modifiers (only kamikazes say to use them, the others say not to)

    While I’d be willing to accept this (aircraft attacks are different enough that it wouldn’t surprise me if the intent was that they were meant to completely ignore the normal attack rules – including the modifiers), I don’t see where it says this about normal aircraft attacks in the QSR.

    #183428
    Shrokins
    Participant

    Christian, I think the answer to your question about evading is: nobody knows. The players don’t, because the rules booklet is vague. And I suspect the designers never thought of this gap in the rules. For whatever reason, there are loads of such gaps. IMHO, the best way to approach Victory at Sea is to consider it still in beta; I think of it as a fun, unfinished game with lots of potential. Maybe the full rulebook will bring us answers in January.

    One of the biggest gaps in the rules, in my view, is setting out precisely what happens when ships bump bases. (I find matches often devolve into a brutal torpedo knife-fight, with ships’ bases jammed up against each other, and these situations raise many questions.)

    • This reply was modified 1 year, 12 months ago by Shrokins.
    #183488
    Greg S
    Participant

    It would be good to know how the designers and playtesters have resolved these issues, eh?

     

    I did  some playtesting of the Beta for Mongoose and lot of playtesting for VAS’s predecessor A Call to Arms.    And I suspect admitting that will open myself up for criticism.  But please bear in mind that I got no payment for  playtesting VaS except helping to shape the game in a small way.  The designers intentions are as opaque to me as they are to you, and sometimes trying to get him to explain them is like banging your head against a brick wall 🙂 .  And most importantly, I will get my rulebook when Warlord ship my order at the same time as everybody else’s.

    I can tell you how we played it. but  bear in mind things may have changed between Beta and the final version.

    Fighter attack rolls are not modified.  Not by range, not by beam, not by target speed, not by torpedo.  I know that doesn’t realistically represent tactics such as torpdos going for the beam, and dive bombers flying down the length of the ship.

    Although, as pointed out above, Kamikaze does use some of those modifiers.

    I can’t tell you for sure whether Evade modifies AA.  AA does get modifies by Heavy, by Torpedo Bomber, so probably Evasive will also apply, but don’t quote me on that.

     

     

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