Steve
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Glenn has suggested a way for honest players to do more extensive searches WITHOUT giving away where your ships are. It's here in the "Searching is good now," not clarified thread and in this post below.

With this idea it is now possible to be much more historically accurate. TF commanders always searched the area around themselves at dawn whenever it was possible for enemy ships to be nearby. They often also searched further out especially if they had land based planes to do it.

Admirals had gotten used to just sailing out and engaging the enemy in battle. Just finding the enemy was a challenge. Sneaking around is much harder on the flat ocean than it is on land. Basically all there is to use are weather fronts with fog, rain or really low clouds.

Players of Midway have gotten used to sneaking around because air searches are un-historically limited. As soon as the transports got close enough, they were spotted and the attacked by B-17s & PBYs [on 6/3]. The reason the CV TF was not spotted is that it was under a weather front. As soon as it got in front of it they were spotted too.

[If we wanted to simulate this [without luck] we could just let the whole row of areas across the top (the #1 row) be "rainy" and unsearchable. Then with a 4 turn night the IJN can get in range of Midway for a dawn strike without being seen 1st.]

The below ideas will TOTALLY CHANGE the game. No more counting on sneaking up on the enemy. You will know when you have been spotted, but should expect to be spotted as soon as you get close enough to him. With 4 turn nights, the dawn turns become critical.

This may mean that the US can hardly ever win. This may require other changes in the game to give them a chance. Several people have said that the IJN ships are over rated for AA fire. Seth has suggested that the IJN ships had really poor AA because they intended to dodge the bombs and torpedoes. A rule could be drafted to reflect this. This would make it hard for the IJN to mass enough ships around their CVs to protect them. Make it useless to wait for more and better AA ships to arrive before moving forward.

Rather than moving search planes around we could continue with the search by area concept. We just allow many more searches.

{Edit to add-- To make it harder on the US let IJN ships move 4 when they 1st arrive and US ships move 8 (additional reinforcement ships just 4). This makes it much harder to find them. I think we should keep the 4 US searches and 3 IJN searches and just add the below D & T, and, optionally, 1 more per turn can be by IJN Emily anywhere in columns F, G, H, & I.}

The US can use PBYs from Midway and carrier Ds to search. PBYs have no range limit, but how many should we allow? Ds can search 2 (or maybe 3) areas out.

The IJN can use Jakes from Tone & Chikuma; the CVS and AV that were with the transports on their way to setup a seaplane base at Kure; and any other ships with Jakes. Glenn says Mogami class CAs had them. They can also use CV based Ts.
Jakes could go 7 areas out or they could search in the same general area for 2 consecutive turns 4 areas out. Ts can search 3 (or2) areas out.
You might even let the IJN use Emily flying boats from the Marshall Is. to fly around and search, maybe just 1 area per turn. Maybe they will get lucky and find the US fleet. They had plenty of range for this.

This is GLENN's double blind search idea.
GLENN239 wrote:
Another search method is this, if you and your opponent trust one another, and intend to use squadrons to search (1 'ready' squadron can search one area) -

Use a second search board, with blind. Each player places one blank counter face down in each area on their side of the board, (so about 80 counters each).

After you move, replace the blank counter in an area that contains your ships with a counter that says "Contact".

Remove the blind so that the US player can't see the board. The Japanese player searches areas on the US players side of the board. He leaves face up any 'contact' markers he discovers, leaves face down any blanks. The US player repeats.

Set the blind aside and resolve each contact.

This works well if you are using submarines too.
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Glenn McMaster
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Midway was designed to be a bit like 'battleship' where ships could scoot around the board undetected and get into striking position. But in real life, bases and carriers had the ability to blanket entire sectors such that it wasn't too likely that ships could escape detection.

If you use squadrons to search, then it becomes a balance between using enough to find your opponent's ships, but then leaving enough squadrons to effectively attack what has been discovered, (ie, the exact problem that carrier admirals had in real life). Historically, Fletcher attacked with 30 DB squadrons and searched with 6.

You could have a rule that the Japanese are limited to 4 "T" search squadrons until the US fleet is discovered. That would reflect Nagumo's state of mind, and expectation there were no enemy carriers nearby to interfere with his attack on Midway.

Nagumo had orders to attack Midway on the morning of the 4th. If the IJN player does not do so with a certain strength, it should cost him maybe 5vp, for disobeying a direct order.

Midway had about 30 PBY's, meaning a total of maybe 10 searches each day, usable all at once or a few each turn. Range out to 600nm.

Speaking of range, the strike range of planes is 14 squares. That translates out to each square being something like 35-40nm, or around 120nm per area. A Jake or Kate or SBD searched out to 300nm or so, and used its extra range as a safety factor. So search ranges should be something like this -

PBY - 5 areas.
Others - 3 areas.

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Steve
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To Glenn:
I disagree, "You (or I) are/am in Command". This would make you Yamamoto, not Nugamo. A new plan presupposes that there is no demand that an early attack be made on the base at Midway.

I attempted to find the 'scale' in a different way. I saw that there are 2 islands on the map. They are between 1.5 and 2.5 sqs. apart. [This is grainy, but the best we can do.] They are about 50 - 60 miles apart, I think. I came to each sq. is 25 nm across. I'm pretty sure that the US Ts here were short ranged, maybe 175 nm out and then same back. This is 7 sqs. US Fs were not much better. US Ds and most all IJN planes were some better, I have suggested that their range be increased. [The IJN Ts on the Hosho were an older type, the Hosho couldn't carry the modern types.] I think it is better to set "air strike" range as the range they can all fly, instead of an average.

{Edit to add-- Also, if most IJN TF contain a ship that can only make 25 knots or so then in 2 hrs. it moves 2 sqs., so 2 sqs. equals 50 nmi. We could say that ships are not normally going full speed they are going "cruising speed", but that since there are 9 [or 11 with 4 turn nights] (not 12) 2 hr. turns in a day (so a turn is really longer than 2 hrs), therefore these can cancel out and a sq. can be about 25 nmi. across. If a sq. were 40 nmi. across and TF were limited to 25 knots, then turns would have to be 3.2 hrs. long. Even at 28 knots (the top speed of Kaga and Yamato), turns would have to be 2.857 hrs. long.}

This means that a ship going 25 knots will cover 2 sqs. in a 2 hr. turn. A ship going 32 knots will cover 2.56 sqs. per turn, hence my ship speed of 2.5/turn. It allows ships to move 5 sqs. in 2 turns, but only for 3 times each game (due to fuel consumption considerations). Perhaps I am wrong to assume that ships are moving at "full speed" most of the time, but cruising speed is porportional to top speed. A ship going 19 knots will cover 1.52 sqs. per turn, hence my rule for some ships to go 1.5/t = 3 sqs/2 turns. Of course the old US BBs were designed to go 21 knots, not 19.

I see you want to let the US have 10 PBY searches per day because they had 31 PBYs = 10 "squadrons" or PFs. The game currently allows 7x4= 28 searches/day, anythere. So, 10 may not be enough. You are thinking that 1 PF should search 1 area/day (or when used and can be used 1 or 2 or maybe 3 times per day). We (the game, you, & me) pretty much ignore the time it takes to fly out there and the ability to search while flying out there. We need more searches because we are more caggy than they were. We get sighted and we turn back to shake them off, they just assumed they would be sighted again soon, and so kept going.

In 1 hr. at 180 knots a PBY could fly more than 7 sqs. (at 25 nm/sq.). This means the 3 PBYs in a PF could sweep all the zones of 2 areas in the middle hour of a 2 hr. turn (during the 'search phase'). The 3 SBDs of a D-1 (or the 3 Kates of a T-1) could also sweep all the zones of 2 areas (1 near and 1 further out) in the mid-hr. of a turn (= the search phase). So, perhaps when using CV planes to search each PF should be allowed to search 2 adjacent areas. This would mean that the 10 PF of PBYs at Midway could search 20 areas/day, == 10 PF X 2 areas/PF; and the D-6 that Fletcher used to search that morning could search 12 areas. These seem like good numbers.

One way to let CVs get to striking position of Midway before they are spotted would be to make nights longer. If they were 4 turns long, ships could move 8 zones; and if just Areas A-1, B-1, & C-1 were considered to be rainy and un-searchable (for enen just 6/3 & 6/4), then CVs could get 5 zones from Midway un-seen. This is historical, as a weather front did hide the IJN CV TF during 6/3. {But, can they attack out of these areas? No, they can't because their planes would not be able to find their CVs when they return. The IJN can not afford to kill all those pilots and other air crew, they can't replace them fast enough as it is.}

I think that the PBYs searched 700 nmiles out, which is 9 areas out. Even 600 nmi. out is 8 areas, which is anywhere on the map, if sqs. are 25 nmi. across.
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Glenn McMaster
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Quote:
. I disagree, "You (or I) are/am in Command". This would make you Yamamoto, not Nugamo. A new plan presupposes that there is no demand that an early attack be made on the base at Midway.


Historically, Nagumo was under orders to attack Midway on the morning of 4 June.

Quote:
I see you want to let the US have 10 PBY searches per day because they had 31 PBYs = 10 "squadrons" or PFs. The game currently allows 7x4= 28 searches/day, anythere. So, 10 may not be enough.


I said 10, just for example.

Quote:
You are thinking that 1 PF should search 1 sq.


For simplicity’s sake, yes. But the math says this is pessimistic. Assuming it’s 120 square NM per area, that’s 14,400 square miles. A PBY might be able to see 15 miles out on either side, so cuts a search swath 30nm * 110 mph = 3,300 square miles per hour. Three of them in four hours (ie, their outbound leg) could search roughly 3 areas. So, you could have 11 PBY’s search 33 areas per day, but that’s basically amounts to the IJN being automatically spotted if it comes within 5 areas of Midway.

Quote:
One way to let CVs get to striking position of Midway before they are spotted would be to make nights longer. If they were 4 turns long, ships could move 8 zones



Yes. Darkness was approx. 0800 to 0400, which is 4 turns.
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Steve
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GLENN239 wrote:
Quote:
. I disagree, "You (or I) are/am in Command". This would make you Yamamoto, not Nugamo. A new plan presupposes that there is no demand that an early attack be made on the base at Midway.


Historically, Nagumo was under orders to attack Midway on the morning of 4 June.
Yes, he was, but Yamamoto was in command, not Nagumo and I am Yamamoto.
GLENN239 wrote:

Quote:
You are thinking that 1 PF should search 1 sq. {edit by Steve-- I ment "area" as he thought.}


For simplicity’s sake, yes. But the math says this is pessimistic. Assuming it’s 120 square NM per area, that’s 14,400 square miles. A PBY might be able to see 15 miles out on either side, so cuts a search swath 30nm * 110 mph = 3,300 square miles per hour. Three of them in four hours (ie, their outbound leg) could search roughly 3 areas. So, you could have 11 PBY’s search 33 areas per day, but that’s basically amounts to the IJN being automatically spotted if it comes within 5 areas of Midway.

If the 3 PBYs of a PF are flying 25 nmi. apart at 100 knots in 1.5 hrs. (less than a full turn), they can fly 150 nmi. This is across 2 areas if each one is flying across the center of a row of zones. If we allow each PBY PF to just search these 2 areas/day, it is more restrictive than real life, because to fly out 600 nmi. will take them about 6 hrs. (=3 turns) at 100-110 knots. this 600 nmi. is 24 zones or 8 areas. So in just the last 1.5 turns they can fly 12 zones, and therefore search an 'area' that is 3 zones wide by 12 zones long, which equals 4 areas in a row. Then they turn round to fly back and search the same 4 areas on the way back.

Again note: I think zones are 25 nmi. across.
GLENN239 wrote:

Quote:
One way to let CVs get to striking position of Midway before they are spotted would be to make nights longer. If they were 4 turns long, ships could move 8 zones



Yes. Darkness was approx. 0800 to 0400, which is 4 turns.
And I also said that the 3 areas A-1, B-1, & C-1 might be un-searchable because of a weather front there. You also can't attack out of them because your planes can't find their CVs when they return.
 
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Steve
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A purest might argue that the PBYs need to find the enemy TF fairly early in the turn, so the strike planes can be sent out in the 1st half of the turn.

If so then the 3 PBYs in a PF can only search 1 area in that time.

If you are willing to add complication then-- let each PF of PBYs search 1 area in the 'search phase' AND another adjacent area at the end of the turn. Or 2 in the 'search phase', but they can't attack the 2nd one or must use 2 waves. See 'wave attacks' in my other posts.

And still each PF of PBYs can fly only once per day.

This does not apply to SBDs and Kates because they were faster and could cover 2 areas in just over 1 hr. In just 1 hr. or less if they can-see/look 13 nmi. behind them as they start and 13 nmi. in front of them when they finish.

In practice, this means that the US can search 6 areas on the west edge with 3 PFs of PBYs. Note that the #1 row is un-searchable. If it is searchable, the US will waste 1/2 PF (for a total of 4
) to search them all. If they use the 3 PF, they will have just 7 more for the rest of the day. There are 6 more turns to go so they will have to be frugal with them. The final contact report that leads to a strike on a specific zone may need to be made by SBDs (=DB) from a CV. In real life, the strike planes had to do some searching on their own because it took them somewhat over an hr. to fly out there and the last contact report may have been an hr. old by the time they left the CV.

Note-- I have suggested that ships be allowed to move x2 speed in the turn they arrive on the board. With this rule, it would take the US 7 of their 10 PF searches to search all 14 areas of the 1st 2 columns of areas that the IJN CV TF can reach, 6 if the 1st 3 areas of the 1st row are un-searchable.


Also, if nights are 4 turns long some way for the search planes to find them in the morning will be needed. If ships can move 8 zones at night they could be "anywhere" on the map if they started near the middle. In real life this was done by the search planes searching all the areas they flew over as they flew over them. But we (the game and us) now just let PBYs search out at the end of their search pattern.

In real life in 2 hrs, search planes could fly over 3 areas, so 3 PBYs could search those 3 areas. They could fly out for 3 turns = 24 zones= 8 areas out then turn around and fly back for 3 turns searching as they go. This will take 6 of the 7 daylight turns in our 'days'. On the 2nd day the IJN may be in the center of the map. If so they would be seen 2 times, on the way out and again on the way back. Additional PBY PFs could be sent out then to "track" the enemy TFs.

Purests might want to just let the US attack IJN ships that are found in the 1st (or maybe the 1st or 2nd) of these areas.

Perhaps this system would be better when used with Glenn239's new truely double blind search system for honest people. It would just take a lot of time to look under all those counters on all those areas that you can fly a PF over each turn. And it might be hard to remember what areas you can search. You don't want to put CV based search planes on the special search board, it would give the enemy informmation about where your CVs are. I suppose the US player could put markers there for where his land based search planes are.

It would not be unusual for the US to have his search PBYs take off in the last night turn and move 3 areas, and not search. He knows there can be no IJN ships in those areas, because yesterday he did not see any furter west. This gets his planes out to the west edge 1 turn sooner.

CV based search planes have cruising speeds of -- SBDs = 128 nmi./hr. and Kates = 140 knots. At 128 knots in 4 hrs they could fly 512 nmi. = 20.5 zones = 7 areas. Therefore, it is not unreasonable to let them search 3 areas per turn for 2 turns, 6 out and 6 back. This is 18 zones out then 18 back. In practice they would search 3 out and then 2 more, so they could re-search 1 area to keep the enemy from slipping past them, see below. The IJN Kate could go further/faster, and so could stay up for 5 turns instead of 4. They might search 3+2+2 going out and then 3+3 coming back, meanwhile the CV will have moved 4 times. Search planes need to have been 'ready' last turn, because it really took off late last turn. We let it fly 3 areas from where it's CV ended this turn, because it really had more than a turn to keep flying. However, you really should not be able to attack ships that you find after the 1st and 2nd areas you search. Boy this is getting too complicated.

Players may need to have their search planes re-search the same area they the searched last in the last turn to keep the enemy from sneaking past them "under a cloud" as they fly past.
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Glenn McMaster
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Quote:
If the 3 PBYs of a PF are flying 25 nmi. apart at 100 knots in 1.5 hrs. (less than a full turn), they can fly 150 nmi. This is across 2 areas if each one is flying across the center of a row of zones.


I can look up the actual search pattern if you’d like. It was something like 28 PBY’s flying to 600nm across a ‘slice’ of 120 degrees – about 375,000 square miles in total.

Quote:
Again note: I think zones are 25 nmi. across.


For your remake you can make the zones any size you want, regardless of what the original’s scale was. The problem with smaller zones is that it compresses the map, hence makes maneuver less effective. The map is 20x26 zones, isn’t it? So at 25nm per zone, that’s 325,000 square miles, meaning that the PBY search is basically guaranteed to find the IJN forces every day, or know that it’s holed up in that ‘unsearchable’ A1, B1, C1. .

Quote:
And still each PF of PBYs can fly only once per day.


The PBY’s did not return to Midway after their 4th June search – they went to anchorages in the Hawaiian Islands chain. If they return to Midway, the Japanese player should be able to destroy them on the ground.


Quote:
Boy this is getting too complicated.


Indeed it is. The key, IMO, is to pick the correct scale for the map for searching and for ship movement within a 2-hr turn, so that you're not into really funky search rules. Keep it one sqd = a 1 area search.

A 3-plane formation can search about 16,000 square miles in 2 hours, (I would forget multiple-turn searches, for simplicity’s sake). That translates to an area of around 120-130nm on a side, or about 40-43nm per zone. So the scale would be -

1 sqd = searches 1 area,
your ships can move 1zone per turn, (maybe twice per day they can move 2)
Your USN air ranges are 8 zones (TBD, FTR) and 14 zones (SBD).
IJN air ranges are 14 zones.

The PBY's would be special search counter that can search one area, then on the next turn move up to two more areas and search another, then are removed.

That sort of thing.
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Steve
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Glenn,
Changing the scale to match the search rules situation is a different idea.

So, lets look at that. If we go with 42 nmi. = 1 zone = 1 sq., then ships that are going 21 knots can move 1 sq. in 2 hrs. This is a reasonable “cruising speed” for most ships. Then the only option there can be is to move 2 sq./turn sometimes. Mostly ships should never be allowed to do this in consecutive turns.

If ships moved at their full speed for all turns then the following speeds are possible-- Ships that could go 31.5 knots could move 2 sqs. every other turn. Ships that can go 28 knots could do this 1 out of 3 turns. Ships that can go 26.25 knots can do this 1 out of 4 turns. [These next 2 could be combined into twice a day with at least 5 between them for ships that can go 25 knots. Ships that could go 25.2 knots can do this 1 out of 5 turns. Ships that can go 24.5 knots can do this 1 out of 6 turns.]

But, ships rarely moved at full speed for hour after hour. This just burned too much fuel. So add a limit on the number of times you can do this per game along with the spacings given above.

Ships that can go 10-11 knots can move 1 every other turn.

At the moment there are 7 + 2 moves in a day = 9 2hr. turns/day.
We should have 4 night turns, so this is 7 + 4 = 11 2 hr. turns/day.
Either way the 12 turn day is not yet here.
But, let's ignore this.

Experienced players of Midway move 2 in a turn to escape being tracked or found next turn by enemy searches. They are used to this being possible. Glenn, you seem to want it to be likely/possible for the IJN TFs to remain un-found a lot of the time. You object to the idea that they were going to be found and tracked as soon as they got close to Midway unless they were under a front and so in nasty weather.

With 42 nmi sqs and ships that move just 1 sq per turn, ships will be very much slowed down. Usually they will be easy to "track" because they can only move 1 sq/turn. They will often move next to area boundry lines so it will take 2 searches to be sure to find them. During a 4 turn night they can move at most 5 sqs (6 for ships that can move 31.5 knots). 6 and 7 sqs if you add in the 1st daytime turn. [I remember that the IJN liked to rush down the Slot to Guadalanal for some purpose and then rush back up the Slot to get back out of airattack range. This would not be possible under these rules.] Your plane ranges allow most planes to fly out 7 sqs to attack. BTW-- I would set ranges at TBD = 8, F4F = 12, and SBD & all IJN = 16. Hosho's T should be less = 10 or 12. and the Vindicators at Midway = 14. All except the TBD are less than real life.


My research says that 22 PBYs searched on 6/3 and 6/4 and they did return to Midway, very late in the daylight of each day. They went out 600 nmi. And turned left 90 deg. to go 100 more nmi. then turned and returned 600 nmi. to Midway. The total planned flight of 1100 nmi at 110 knots would take about 10 hrs. BTW--I saw tonight on the internet that the pilot of the PBY that found the IJN CV TF KNEW before he took off that he would find them. He should not have known this, if he was captured and let it slip, the Japanese would know their codes were broken. See below for damage to planes on the ground.

The link is and look down just a little right after where it says "June 4, 1942"
http://www.centuryinter.net/midway/veterans/howardadyjr.html

It is true that the US was able to approach Japanese held islands and bases unobserved quite often. For example Guadalcanal. But also many others, others where planes were based (unlike Guadalcanal). This may have been because the IJN lacked the fuel to fly dense searches everyday, day after day; and they did not break our codes. Japan was fighting a poor man's war. They had to use the bodies of their men to substitute for shortages in equipment, weapons, ammo, and fuel. Also, our plane's ranges increased later in the war so we did not have to get as close as they had to get to Midway. We could surprise them almost all the time.

But, so what? The IJN had the short end of the stick in this war. That is just the way it was. It is not historical to insist on giving them a break in this battle. At Midway we knew they were coming, we had their plan and OB, we could scrape up the PBYs to put there, we had the fuel to burn, and the men and ships to oppose them; they didn't have these advantages here or later in the war. That is just the way it was. In the game, we can't help giving them the advantage of knowing that the US knows they are coming. They didn't even think this was conceivable.

Your complaint that the IJN TF are always found, so let's reduce searches to 1 area per "squadron" per day (or per flight) is just non-historical. It clearly reduces the amount of searching a "squadron" can do.

It is a different question to ask, can the game be improved if searches happen at 2 times. The 1st is done early in the turn, so a strike can be launched at the normal time under the rules (as the rules are now). The 2nd search would happen later in the turn, after it is too late to launch a strike. In this case the game designer has 2 choices. 1] leave the rules as they are, the late sighting just helps you know where to search next turn. Or 2] make a whole new set of rules to have strikes be launched late in the turn (also) so that they have to land in the next turn. Personally I don't want to have to do this, it adds too much complication. But, is it enough to know where to search? Any thoughts?

Yes, planes on the ground [not ready, reading, or ready] at Midway should be exposed to destruction [1 PF per strength point eliminated and 1 search PBY PF per 2 strength pts. elim] by IJN air or ship attack.
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Glenn McMaster
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Quote:
Your plane ranges allow most planes to fly out 7 sqs to attack.


The game’s plane range is 14 - 7 out, 7 back. If the scale is 40nm per zone, then I’d set the ranges at 8 for a TBD, 10 for an F4F, 14 for the others. (If the USN player ‘level bombs’ with his TBD’s, then his “T” range becomes 14).
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Quote:
If ships moved at their full speed for all turns then the following speeds are possible-- Ships that could go 31.5 knots could move 2 sqs. every other turn. Ships that can go 28 knots could do this 1 out of 3 turns.


Say the scale is 40nm per zone. Modify the search board counters to have a ‘backside’. If the ship moves two zones, you flip it over. That means it can only move 1 zone on the next turn. If it only moved 1 zone this turn, flip it normal side up at the end of its movement, which means you can move 2 zones next turn. If you want to get really fancy, (and most people don’t) mark on the hit pad each time you move 2 zones, so that later in the game fuel can become an issue. Now, the choice of 1 zone or 2 zone is tactical and simple. That's a simple rule, which should make it fun.

Quote:
Your complaint that the IJN TF are always found, so let's reduce searches to 1 area per "squadron" per day (or per flight) is just non-historical. It clearly reduces the amount of searching a "squadron" can do.


Searching was a very fuzzy science at the time, because of navigation errors, bad visibility, mechanical problems, radio failures, miscoded information, searchers being shot down before reporting - you name it, it happened.

In theory, a search plane could cover 6,000 square miles per hour; in perfect conditions. In practice, it could be far less than that amount, when ‘friction' was fully accounted for. A Japanese float plane passed very close to TF-17 at 0630 on the morning of the battle and missed it completely – that was Murphy’s Law in action. Move that cloud, and Nagumo would have hit Fletcher with a massive strike by 0900.

The rule is that the search of an area automatically detects ships in the area, and no player of Midway, IMO, wants to fiddle with die rolls for each area he searches. If that is the case, you have to account for Murphy by cutting down the theoretical search area. If a squadron of 3 aircraft automatically searches an area of 14,400 square miles in 4 hours, that translates to 1,200nm per plane per hour of ‘new’ areas being searched. That is about 1/5th of the theoretical maximum, which fully accounts for Murphy and double-coverage in the pattern. If 2/5th’s is more your style, go with 2 areas per squadron.

At 25nm per square, the board is so small that Midway automatically finds the IJN carriers each day. But it was routine in 1942 that sea forces could stay over 600nm from a seaplane base in order to stay concealed. But if the board is only 600nm, then this cannot occur. Fletcher’s fear was that Nagumo would continue east, emerging behind the Midway search area, and catch him from the north. That’s not possible if the scale of the map is too small.
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Quote:
But, so what? The IJN had the short end of the stick in this war. That is just the way it was. It is not historical to insist on giving them a break in this battle.


Strikes from the Hornet should miss their target on a roll of ’1-3’. Enterprise’s fighter escort should return to Enterprise without engaging in combat on a roll of ‘1-3’. TF-16 T and D squadrons should have to attack independently of each other on a roll of ‘1-3’. USN torpedo attacks should shift 2 columns to the left, (ie, a 3-1 attack is a 1-1 attack).

These are all ‘historical’, but not much fun for the USN player, right?

Quote:
Glenn, you seem to want it to be likely/possible for the IJN TFs to remain un-found a lot of the time. You object to the idea that they were going to be found and tracked as soon as they got close to Midway unless they were under a front and so in nasty weather.


What fun is there in playing the IJN, and automatically being spotted every morning and whacked first? The emotional ‘payoff’ for the IJN player is to be able to cleverly dodge the USN searches and set up for the first strike. A game that makes that impossible is less interesting.
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Steve
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[q="GLENN239"]
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What fun is there in playing the IJN, and automatically being spotted every morning and whacked first? The emotional ‘payoff’ for the IJN player is to be able to cleverly dodge the USN searches and set up for the first strike. A game that makes that impossible is less interesting.
My answer to this question is--
1] Allow the IJN to arrive when they really did, all on the 1st day.
2] Allow them to change their plan and reorganize their fleet to suit that plan. This brings all those BBs into the fight.
3] Add in searches by Mavis or Emily from the Marshall islands. I am trying to give the IJN every asset that they could have used, perhaps including the Zuikaku and the ships of the nothern force.
4] I have suggested that the whole #1 row of areas be nasty weather and un-searchable. I suppose the same sort of thing could apply to the 1st 3 areas [(or depending on scale and ship speed) enough of them that a run in 1 night will get you in air range of Midway] of the #7 row too. This simulates the posibility of swinging way around to the north or south of the search plane's range. You can't attack or search from these areas, though.
5] Now the "fun" is in trying to find a way to win even though searching will always find them.
. . a] They can swing way around north or south.
. . b] They can opperate 2, or with the northern CVLs, 3 TF of CV; plus a bait one. They will use more BB with the CV for more AA fire.
. . c] They can lead with the, now expendable, BB to bombard Midway and draw the US into attacking them.
. . d] If their planes have longer range than US planes, they can try to attack from very long range.
. . e] And others I have not thought of yet.
.
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Steve
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GLENN239 wrote:
Quote:
If ships moved at their full speed for all turns then the following speeds are possible-- Ships that could go 31.5 knots could move 2 sqs. every other turn. Ships that can go 28 knots could do this 1 out of 3 turns.


Say the scale is 40nm per zone. Modify the search board counters to have a ‘backside’. If the ship moves two zones, you flip it over. That means it can only move 1 zone on the next turn. If it only moved 1 zone this turn, flip it normal side up at the end of its movement, which means you can move 2 zones next turn. If you want to get really fancy, (and most people don’t) mark on the hit pad each time you move 2 zones, so that later in the game fuel can become an issue. Now, the choice of 1 zone or 2 zone is tactical and simple. That's a simple rule, which should make it fun.

Quote:
Your complaint that the IJN TF are always found, so let's reduce searches to 1 area per "squadron" per day (or per flight) is just non-historical. It clearly reduces the amount of searching a "squadron" can do.


Searching was a very fuzzy science at the time, because of navigation errors, bad visibility, mechanical problems, radio failures, miscoded information, searchers being shot down before reporting - you name it, it happened.

In theory, a search plane could cover 6,000 square miles per hour; in perfect conditions. In practice, it could be far less than that amount, when ‘friction' was fully accounted for. A Japanese float plane passed very close to TF-17 at 0630 on the morning of the battle and missed it completely – that was Murphy’s Law in action. Move that cloud, and Nagumo would have hit Fletcher with a massive strike by 0900.

The rule is that the search of an area automatically detects ships in the area, and no player of Midway, IMO, wants to fiddle with die rolls for each area he searches. If that is the case, you have to account for Murphy by cutting down the theoretical search area. If a squadron of 3 aircraft automatically searches an area of 14,400 square miles in 4 hours, that translates to 1,200nm per plane per hour of ‘new’ areas being searched. That is about 1/5th of the theoretical maximum, which fully accounts for Murphy and double-coverage in the pattern. If 2/5th’s is more your style, go with 2 areas per squadron.

At 25nm per square, the board is so small that Midway automatically finds the IJN carriers each day. But it was routine in 1942 that sea forces could stay over 600nm from a seaplane base in order to stay concealed. But if the board is only 600nm, then this cannot occur. Fletcher’s fear was that Nagumo would continue east, emerging behind the Midway search area, and catch him from the north. That’s not possible if the scale of the map is too small.
You should use Flagships anyway, so only they need a 'backside'. I happen to like more things to think about so limiting Kaga, most IJN CVL, & Yamato+2 BB to 28 knots; is something I like. So, they can move 4 sqs. in 3 turns. Some IJN CVL could only go 23 to 25 knots, none could go 31+ knots.

We wargamers really like to cover all the bases, to anchor our flank on the board edge, to search every possible space. We love to take advantge of the map edge when there should be no map edge. I have often thought that rules should be made against that where that makes sense. Here that would mean letting the IJN move along rows #1 or #7 (east as far as D-7) and not be searchable, but they couldn't search or attack so long as they are there. The US would not lose much by being banned from these areas. This is my way to keep the "map" from being too small.

The question I asked was-- suppose that it has been decided to let each 3 plane "squadron" search 2 areas (1764 sq. nmi. each) per turn, would it be better to have 1 of those areas be searched late in the turn and if so, is just knowing where to search next turn enough of an advantage from finding them?

Another thought was-- ships that move 1 per turn will find it hard to shake off searchers/trackers. Or is moving 2 after you have been found going to be enough to satisfy players? Further, I would like to not let ships move 2 diagonally in 1 turn. Also, planes to some extent.

To pick up a thought from another post-- during the night you can move pretty far. How easy will it be to re-find the enemy TFs at dawn every day? The 1st day under the original rules it is just possible to air attack Midway in the 1700 turn, under these rules it is not possible. So the IJN must plan on attacking on the 2nd day. The US also can't (with current rules) rush across the map (making it essy for the IJN to track them) and attack them along the west map edge. This is even ignoring the un-searchable areas along north and south edges. So, unless they both move to meet in the center, the battle will take place on 6/4.

Another problem with 42 nmi. sqs. that I just saw is-- SBD cruised at 128 knots. This is right at 3 sqs. per hour. In 2 hrs. they can fly 6 sqs. Their range is 14 (or I say 16 sqs. but really is as much as 25.3 sqs.), so at max. range of 7 or 8 they will be off their CV for over 4 hrs. In this time the CV could move 2 - 3 sqs and after they land it will take them zero time to ready for their next attack. An example: on 6/4 a strike is launched early in the 0500 turn; at max. range it would not reach the enemy TF until early in--to the middle of the 0700 turn; it attacks; it would reach its CV (that has not moved) untill early in the 2nd half of the 1100 turn; and so they land then. Under the current rules-- they launch, attack, and land in the 0500 turn; ready in the 0900 turn; and can launch again in the 1100 turn. Which means they launch their 2nd strike before they even land from the 1st strike, not good! And they are off their CV all during the 0900 turn, so if it is attacked then, they are not there, are not readying and will not be lost if the CV is sunk.

So, given these problems with 42 nmi. sqs. I think 25 nmi. sqs. are better, so long as the un-searchable areas are used. If this is so, the US can again rush across the map to attack the IJN. But, all the IJN ships will arrive by the 1500 turn of 6/3.

BTW-- I suppose that the last daylight turn needs to be a little long so planes can land before dark, but after the end of the normal turn. So maybe, that is why there are just 11 turns of 2 hrs. each in a 24 hr. day. If so, optionally, (with 25 nmi. sqs.) all ships can move 1 extra in this turn.
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Glenn McMaster
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Quote:
Under the current rules-- they launch, attack, and land in the 0500 turn; ready in the 0900 turn; and can launch again in the 1100 turn. Which means they launch their 2nd strike before they even land from the 1st strike, not good! And they are off their CV all during the 0900 turn, so if it is attacked then, they are not there, are not readying and will not be lost if the CV is sunk.


Here’s my draft rule for that, from my Midway variant,

During ‘readying’ step -

Air Strike Recovery: After the ‘readying’ status of all squadrons aboard a ship have been updated, squadrons currently in their recovery zones on the search board are recovered to the parent carrier’s "unready" box. These squadrons may not be ‘readied’ that turn.

If the carrier is not in the same zone as the squadrons at the moment of recovery, then all the squadrons attempting to land must undergo a special procedure:

Squadrons may land on any carrier in the recovery zone. Otherwise, count the number of zones between the recovery zone and an eligible carrier (do not count the recovery zone). Roll a die for each squadron as it attempts to land at the new destination; if the roll is equal to or less than the distance in zones, it is eliminated. Otherwise, the squadrons are placed in the "unready"" box of the carrier’s operations pad . If a squadron has no place to land within 5 zones it is eliminated.


During the Air Operations Step:

Air Strikes . Players assign their air strikes by placing an available "air strike" counter of the appropriate base or carrier in the target zone along with all the squadrons from that base which are participating in the attack. Place the carrier's "recovering aircraft" counter in the zone where the squadrons will return for landing.

Step 17: Aircraft Return

After all air attacks are resolved, both players:
(1) Return all strike aircraft to any 'recovering aircraft' zone(s) earmarked for any of the squadrons participating in that strike.

To strike you place the squadrons on the map zone under a strike marker for that carrier, and also ‘recovery’ zone marker for that carrier. Resolve the attack and move the squadrons on the search board to the recovery zone. Then, during movement of the next turn, the parent carrier ‘sails’ to the recovery zone to pick them up, (this is the ‘Point Option” issue that Spruance’s staff badly bungled the day of the battle), and recover them after the ‘readying’ step is done. So a strike going out at 0800 lands at 1000, readies for 1200, and launches against at 1400 – a cycle time of six hours, meaning that you can get two attacks per squadron per day.
 
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Now the "fun" is in trying to find a way to win even though searching will always find them.


Fuchida relates that on the bridge of the Akagi a few days before the battle, Nagumo’s staff huddled down and decided what their priorities would be, given the total lack of information they had on the enemy. It was decided that, because they were under orders to do so and they really didn’t anticipate a counterattack, that they would attack Midway on schedule.

The very fact there was a conference implies the possibility of another outcome – that the attack on Midway could have been postponed a day until Kido Butai had hunted through the potential ambush points. Had this ahistorical decision occurred, then either Nagumo would have skirted further north, staying in heavy weather, and snooped out Fletcher while remaining a great distance from Midway, or he could have veered sharply to the south and scouted the waters southwest of the island, ahead of the oncoming transports.

In order to simulate these types of options, the map has to be big enough to allow operational maneuvering. Make it too small and all of the pre-battle positioning (such as Hara’s opportunity to ambush TF-17 from an unexpected direction during the Battle of the Coral Sea), these all float away. Part of the drama of Midway is determining what position the USN carriers are defending from, what vector the IJN carriers are attacking from. Make the map too small, and none of that matters.

Quote:
The question I asked was-- suppose that it has been decided to let each 3 plane "squadron" search 2 areas (1764 sq. nmi. each) per turn, would it be better to have 1 of those areas be searched late in the turn and if so, is just knowing where to search next turn enough of an advantage from finding them?


You have to playtest it. Gut hunch is that complexity is probably bad – Midway’s key virtue is its simplicity. Designing games is like a shopping spree; the first thing you do is fill the cart with everything in sight. Then, later, you get to the checkout counter and realize that there’s a limit of 10 items per customer. Then you have to start being selective.

Quote:
So, they can move 4 sqs. in 3 turns. Some IJN CVL could only go 23 to 25 knots, none
could go 31+ knots.

I wouldn’t worry too much about splitting fine hairs on ship speeds. You have essentially two; slow (transports, old USN BB’s) and everything else. That conveys the core principle.

Quote:
So the IJN must plan on attacking on the 2nd day


Alter the set-up rules to account for the speed of ships on the map, whatever speed you choose that to be.
 
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Steve
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GLENN239 wrote:
Quote:
Under the current rules-- they launch, attack, and land in the 0500 turn; ready in the 0900 turn; and can launch again in the 1100 turn. Which means they launch their 2nd strike before they even land from the 1st strike, not good! And they are off their CV all during the 0900 turn, so if it is attacked then, they are not there, are not readying and will not be lost if the CV is sunk.


Here’s my draft rule for that, from my Midway variant,

During ‘readying’ step -

Air Strike Recovery: After the ‘readying’ status of all squadrons aboard a ship have been updated, squadrons currently in their recovery zones on the search board are recovered to the parent carrier’s "unready" box. These squadrons may not be ‘readied’ that turn.

If the carrier is not in the same zone as the squadrons at the moment of recovery, then all the squadrons attempting to land must undergo a special procedure:

Squadrons may land on any carrier in the recovery zone. Otherwise, count the number of zones between the recovery zone and an eligible carrier (do not count the recovery zone). Roll a die for each squadron as it attempts to land at the new destination; if the roll is equal to or less than the distance in zones, it is eliminated. Otherwise, the squadrons are placed in the "unready"" box of the carrier’s operations pad . If a squadron has no place to land within 5 zones it is eliminated.


During the Air Operations Step:

Air Strikes . Players assign their air strikes by placing an available "air strike" counter of the appropriate base or carrier in the target zone along with all the squadrons from that base which are participating in the attack. Place the carrier's "recovering aircraft" counter in the zone where the squadrons will return for landing.

Step 17: Aircraft Return

After all air attacks are resolved, both players:
(1) Return all strike aircraft to any 'recovering aircraft' zone(s) earmarked for any of the squadrons participating in that strike.

To strike you place the squadrons on the map zone under a strike marker for that carrier, and also ‘recovery’ zone marker for that carrier. Resolve the attack and move the squadrons on the search board to the recovery zone. Then, during movement of the next turn, the parent carrier ‘sails’ to the recovery zone to pick them up, (this is the ‘Point Option” issue that Spruance’s staff badly bungled the day of the battle), and recover them after the ‘readying’ step is done. So a strike going out at 0800 lands at 1000, readies for 1200, and launches against at 1400 – a cycle time of six hours, meaning that you can get two attacks per squadron per day.
Not a bad rule, not bad at all.

The only thing I would do is allow short ranged attacks to land a turn earlier. Say, 4 sqs. (or less?).

What is the CV marker on the strike planes for? If several different CV attack a zone from different zones, do you keep the planes separate? Or are all the planes attacking a zone mixed up, then how do you separate them again for their return flight? You really just need 1 marker for the flagship or flag-CV for all the CVs in a zone.
 
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I put this idea here and in the 1st post of this thread. I figured out a way to do something similar with a laptop and a spread sheet. It's better because ships only search the zone they are in but planes search the whole Area.

GLENN239 wrote:
Another search method is this, if you and your opponent trust one another, and intend to use squadrons to search (1 'ready' squadron can search one area) {[Steve added: their search range is 3 or maybe 4 Areas]} -

Use a second search board, with blind. Each player places one blank counter face down in each area on their side of the board, (so about 80 counters each). {[63 blanks pus some with "Contact" on them.]}

After you move, replace the blank counter in an area that contains your ships with a counter that says "Contact".

Remove the blind so that the US player can't see the board. The Japanese player searches areas on the US players side of the board. He leaves face up any 'contact' markers he discovers, leaves face down any blanks. The US player repeats.

Set the blind aside and resolve each contact.

This works well if you are using submarines too.

 
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