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John Prados' Third Reich» Forums » Rules

Subject: Surf and CV Factors rss

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Santiago Torres
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Hello,

A (probably) newbie doubt

In 15.13 it states that "One newly-built SURF factor per production segment may be placed in each shipyard containing a SURF unit with a strenght less than nine". Does it mean I can spend only one factor in one given ship, or that I can spend 1 factor (and only one) per every ship that meets conditions?

Thank you!
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Martin Gallo
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daedel wrote:
In 15.13 it states that "One newly-built SURF factor per production segment may be placed in each shipyard containing a SURF unit with a strenght less than nine". Does it mean I can spend only one factor in one given ship, or that I can spend 1 factor (and only one) per every ship that meets conditions?


One SURF may be 'repaired' by one point per port. Shipbuilding is slow.
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Jeff Adams
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To expand on Martin's point: if any of your SURF in a given port are less than 9 factors, one (and only one) of the SURF units at that port may add one factor that turn, so a "4" can become "5".
 
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Mark Luta
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Henderson
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The idea of this rule, I think, is to simulate repair of 'battle damage', as opposed to launching new or heavily-modified ships. So I think it should only be used to add strength to fleets which suffered losses in combat. It seems an abuse of the rule to split a 9 fleet and send some factors elsewhere, simply to allow immediate addition of strength next turn. I probably would not argue with someone who insists the rules allow this practice--but I would probably not play with him again, either....
 
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Ian Buttridge
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The idea of this rule, I think, is to simulate repair of 'battle damage', as opposed to launching new or heavily-modified ships. So I think it should only be used to add strength to fleets which suffered losses in combat. It seems an abuse of the rule to split a 9 fleet and send some factors elsewhere, simply to allow immediate addition of strength next turn. I probably would not argue with someone who insists the rules allow this practice--but I would probably not play with him again, either....
-----------------------------------------------
The rules pretty clearly allow this, and I figured it could be the additional of smaller ships like destoyers.....We pretty much started the game this way and nobody protested or made an issue of it. It makes a big difference in game balance not to allow it as well.

Ian
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Mark Luta
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I would contend the rules 'clearly' do not intend to allow splitting a 9-factor fleet into a bunch of smaller fleets and dispersing to shipyards, just to add several fleet factors each turn. Otherwise, why even bother to stipulate a less than 9-factor fleet? If those shipyards are somehow miraculously able to suddenly quicken production just because a capital ship or two show up, they ought to be able to maintain the same production rate without any fleet factors at all there!

Even 9 months is an awfully short period of time to be adding significant naval strength, but it is probably a playability decision--requiring 2-3 year building times for major fleet augmentations (once some number of ships are modernized from mothballed ships--and obviously Germany should not be allowed to do this, historically speaking) would probably require an entire staff playing each naval power to determine build needs! So as I think I have said elsewhere, I view this as more effort being expended to speed construction/modernization that was already in the works, the ships are already being built, we just want them faster. You simply cannot realistically expand even destroyer squadrons in 3 months time. And applying the legalistic version of this rule, nations could split their carrier forces and end up with massive expansions of the carrier fleets rather quickly.

On the other hand, I have found it generally unwise to even do much rebuilding of partially-depleted fleets, since surface factors are so expensive. An overly aggressive naval building schedule can bankrupt a nation come year end. And so long as Britain builds at least a couple of fleets each year, barring really bad luck in some major battles, no nation in Europe is going to be able to outbuild the Royal Navy anyway. So it just seems crazy to allow such an absurd distortion of the simulation of long-term naval building programs. But, each to their own.
 
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Eric Miller
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markluta wrote:
I would contend the rules 'clearly' do not intend to allow splitting a 9-factor fleet into a bunch of smaller fleets and dispersing to shipyards, just to add several fleet factors each turn.


I think the rules are less than clear on what they "intend", but, I do believe they SHOULD intend what you propose.

I can see repairing fleets, I can see voluntary break downs to accomplish specific missions.

But I don't think the designers/developers foresaw that players creating partial fleets had the unintended by-product effect of speeding production.

In the AH versions, players were not allowed to voluntarily break down, nor could they build a partial fleet. YOU HAD TO BUILD A 9-FACTOR UNIT OR NONE AT ALL. I think this reflected an organizational limit on the number of "Fleets" a country could support.

I think something similar is needed here.
 
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Darrell Pavitt
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Maybe limiting the total number of Surf factors in play?

That way, if you have 3x9 factor fleets, you can break down as desired but not build more than 27 factors until you add a new 9 factor fleet.

(I thought that was an existing rule anyway - maybe I was thinking of A3R).
 
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Robin Lapinou
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This rule already exists, and it is the base of naval building in that game !
You can NEVER have more factors that allowed by the scenario instructions (set up + force pool + additions )

On the one hand, forbidding naval units break-down is a good way to avoid "legal cheating" consisting of repairing each turn the one-factor fleet you have built on the 3rd turn. But building only 9-factors fleets is HUGE if you are Italian !!!! That actually means Italy will never be able to take its 2 x 9-SURF out of the force pool, and is condamned to stay with its 4x9-SURF at start fleets and repair them if damaged.

Maybe players should just be fair-play and only repair fleets that have deen damaged in battle.
On the other hand, breaking down fleets is really useful and eralistic I think, especially in the Pacific, because you may just need smaller task forces to undertake specific missions like controlling an uncontested sea zone or supporting a small unloading.
 
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Mark Luta
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The 'fair play' suggestion in the above post is exactly my suggestion, for the reasoning I have already outlined.
 
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Ulrich A
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Quote:
The rules pretty clearly allow this, and I figured it could be the additional of smaller ships like destoyers.....We pretty much started the game this way and nobody protested or made an issue of it. It makes a big difference in game balance not to allow it as well.

Ian


thumbsup Seconded.

Yes, it could be the adding of PT boats, Minesweepers, and such. I would find it unfair to punish creative play by assuming a rules 'intent' that clearly is not in the wording. shake
 
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Ulrich A
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Agabdir wrote:
This rule already exists, and it is the base of naval building in that game !
You can NEVER have more factors that allowed by the scenario instructions (set up + force pool + additions )


Correct! And, according to me, this rule is all that is needed to keep things 'realistic'.

Building *1* puny factor per turn per shipyard is really not that much. Shipyards represent LARGE facilities; they should be able to turn out a couple small ships every few months, *in addition* to long-term projects.

Furthermore, production in this game *is* assumed to be near lightning-fast, or we could never have zero-time Panzer units!

There is a production spiral in WiF that may seem more 'realistic', but the 3R series is based on simpler, more abstract (and less fiddly) models.
 
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Robin Lapinou
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It sounds good.
We tried to play a few turns of a experimental game where all units had to be purchased one turn in advandce and wait on the turn track, because it seemed more realistic to us.
Franckly, it was really hard to play, because you already have to plan ahead a lot in that game, and was even harder. But not impossible.
It changes the game a little bit, because you can't buy units for one specific mission, you have to buy them "in case" you need them sometimes.
Interesting.
 
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Michael Lyons
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Does splitting up Surf or CV among a country's shipyard really speed up construction time? Major powers have 2 or 3 shipyards apiece. Great Britain or Japan could break up a 9 factor Surf among their three shipyards, and three turns later, have three 6 factor Surfs. This gives 9 additional Surf factors in three turns, the same as building a 9 factor Surf.

For those Italian 9 factor fleets in the force pool, I noticed that an example of play shows Italy building 3 Surf factors. One factor is added to an existing fleet, and a 2 factor Surf is built to show up three turns later.

By the way, how many shipyards does the USA have? I'm assuming one per game, Third Reich and Great Pacific War.
 
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Robin Lapinou
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The thing is you can repair IN ADDITION of building new factors. So with 3 shipyard, England could buid add to 3 factors a turn o existing fleets based in those shipyards, PLUS building any number of new factors that would take 3 turns to be available.
Obviously, costing 4 BRP each factor, the real limit of fleet building is the economy and nothing else.
If you look at the movement chart provided in GPW (if you have it of course), the USA have 2 shipyards on the West Coast, and 3 on the East Coast, and Britain has one shipyard on the Canadian East Coast (Halifax). All the East Coast shipyards are considered occupied by a fleet train beginning in 1942.
I guess this is mainly for a matter of storage capacity, since, as I said above, you can build any number of new factors in a single shipyard, and you will rarely want to bring back damaged fleets from Europe or the Pacific to repair them (though it might happen I guess), and the economic limit is not a huge worry for the US :)
 
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Jon Torgoose
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We play it where you can split off a 9 SURF or a cv thats been in sea control (or done anything or even nothing) into any combination of units as the definitions in 1.2 of the 3rd edition rules state:

Quote:
"Players may 'make change' freely with air and naval pieces, breaking them into two or more pieces of lower strength or combining them into pieces of higher strength. All such pieces must be of the same nationality and type and add up to the same value as the original one(s)."


Apart from taking advantage of being able to produce at least 1 extra SURF unit a turn, splitting off SUB units and placing them at the top of stacks can help to hide the contents of a hex and make a hex look far more threatening than it may be.

At first I thought it was a bit of a cheap (not cost wise, an almost gamey way of getting more) way of doing it but now I dont see it as badly as I used to. Yes Britain can build a hell of a lot of SURF units if it wants to but money it spends on SURF is less for diplomacy, ARM units and impulse chits!
 
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Colin Raitt
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Playing devil's advocate. Your shiny new battleship slips out of harbour on its first combat mission. 2 weeks later it returns and the crew explain how to get the turrets to rotate smoothly, where to stick the radar antennae and how to keep the boilers at max pressure very politely, no expletives needed. Your workers get cracking on these minor repairs and up grades. Your ship is worth more next time out. Or your 15 year old heavy cruiser gets spanking new fire control optics, a torpedo swivel mount and 2 floatplanes bolted on. This explains why you need a ship to build a ship. Of course it doesn't explain why you can't build up a 9 point fleet. I found being tied to shipyards sometimes reduces flexibility. For instance in the western med I would like to port at Gibraltar or Tunis rather than Marseilles so my surf and CV have a choice of where to sail next season.
 
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