Not really an AAR, more like a quick report on my experience in my first run through Jutland Operational, as Grand Fleet. I stopped at dusk as it was clear by then that I had learned some interesting lessons, though I guess technically, I might have won.
I sent both Fleets- Beatty's (the BCF) and Jelicoe's (the GF) - to a rendezvous to the north west of the Skagerak and just as it was getting to the point where I was thinking they were going to smash into each other and I'd better do something, Beatty's destroyers started reporting contacts a little south of them. Must have been almost exactly where the actual battle took place, except I was feeling well chuffed, because I had more or less united both fleets and had the HSF within range of my entire combined force. I had also made sure that the 5th BS (the Malaya, Barham et al, under Evan-Thomas) was (I thought) with Beatty, thus avoiding his mistakes. It looked like this:
For an hour or so Beatty and the HSF were steaming parallel engaging each other at about 15,000 yards. I then realised that Evan-Thomas was miles away, and that I had made precisely Beatty's mistake, though not in the same way, because Evan-Thomas was too far ahead of me, rather than too far behind.
unfortunately, I didn't take any more saves and pics (I will next time), but what happened between the above pic and nightfall was that I made the terrible mistake of letting ALL my forces get really close in to the HSF. I did manage, in fact, to completely surround the entire HSF, with Evan-Thomas to the SE of it, Beatty to the west and SW, Hood and Jellicoe covering the nth. But they all got too close. I hadn't thought at all about torpedoes. Jellicoe was SO right to worried about them. I think he had the exact right approach, because the HSF launched mass torpedo attacks on all my ships and I lost many!! 2 BBs, 1B, various cruisers and destroyers. The HSF lost about the same, maybe a little more. If I'd stuck it out until morning then maybe all his torpedoes would have been shot and I could have done a lot more damage. But by then I thought I'd learned enough. Next time I will certainly keep my distance.
very enjoyable, and the AI was very imnpressive. Great to watch the GF manouevering from 6 lines abreast into one mammoth snaking line astern, all under AI control.
I really like this game. Thanks to the devs! Thanks especially for concentrating on AI instead of eye-candy. It makes all the difference.
I'm playing it through again now, and I have a major problem with HSF DD torpedo attacks. The AI is very adept at turning away the capital ships and sending swarms of destroyers out to launch torpedo attacks on my big guns. Can anyone advise on tactics - what am I meant to do in the face of six DDs headed for my GF capital ships? It feels like the only thing I can do is turn the whole fleet away from them. What I would like to do is have destroyers out in front and have them fight the destroyers. I can do this on Captain mode, but if I want to be 'realistic', in Admiral mode, then what does the AI do to deal with the DD torpedo threat? I haven't seen it react very quickly. If I turn the line away then it does send destroyers out, but I would like to be set up so that I didn't have to wheel a 10,000 yard column of massive ships out of the way of a handful of pesky destroyers. But if I don't, it seems, the results can be devastating. Any help appreciated.
Some advice: 1. Do not keep too close to the enemy, 10000 yards or so is really the minimum safe engagement range against an enemy battleline with DDs in support. 2. Your own AI controlled DD divisions in support will sally forth in counterattacks, but you can not always count on them doing so immediately. 3. If you are subject to a mass torpedo attack, turn away together, that is really the standard response, and one practiced by Jellicoe. If you feel adventurous, try to turn into the torpedoes, but prepare for some losses. 4. Avoid combat with heavy ships at night, things will be very chancy.
Last Edit: Jan 3, 2014 13:45:03 GMT -5 by Fredrik W
If I, say, place the GF under AI control (whilst I retain control of the BCF)just as we are about to start the engagement, with the HSF in LOS of the GF, will it then 'hunt' the obvious target (even if I haven't selected a target manually), changing course to do so, or will it continue along the last plotted course I gave it, attacking whatever presents itself, but not changing course to keep at it?
Never forget that the AI has to deal with the same fog-of-war as you but it lacks the cognition and sense of immediate purpose that you have. Forces will generally try to support each other but there may be waypoint tracks or unique objectives that the AI may default to. For example say you have the BCF under your control and the GF under AI control. Your force sights and starts to engage German light forces as screening units; the BCF appears to be an overwhelming force and so the AI may not prioritise coming immediately to your support. That will probably change if big ships are spotted but typically there will be some delay.
An AI controlled Force that has completed its scripted objectives and has no additional programmed waypoints may consider its mission complete and head home. In Admiral mode you retain control of each Force and I would recommend that you use it.
I recommend after the scenario, examine the track charts with the aim of trying to determine how the AI reacted at various points along the way.
Just to clarify - I was wondering if the AI - when you give it a target - changes course to maintain contact, or not? Does it stick to the course you've given it, and target as long as it can, on that course, or does the target override the course and it will change course to keep contact? I think I know the answer is the former, from playing, but just checking. Thanks.
Thought so. Thanks. Have you any thoughts, for future iterations, to change that to the latter? That would be an interesting possibility, I think, though, knowing nothing about programming, I'm ignorant of its feasibility or difficulty.