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Old 11-23-2015, 09:08 PM   #1
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Default Atlantic fleet thoughts and strategy

This is a great sim for mobile platforms (though admittedly it's hard to play on phone, more geared toward tablet). I've been playing this a lot, many times through campaigns and 5 or 6 times through battle of atlantic. Thought I'd throw out some random thoughts/criticisms/strategies. This is for v1.09 update for iOS.

- Radar: Useless. The only thing it is good for is getting a general elevation for your first shot. After that use the map, for every ship, each turn, for tweaking shots. Even though accuracy increases with multiple shots on a target, it's relative and not something to rely on. Especially at long distances, targeting specific areas of a ship, the difference between a hit and a miss is .01 - .02 degrees. Radar not equipped to handle that reliably.

- Map: Very accurate. After gauging distance using radar for the first shot, it's much more useful to go to the map to tweak distance each turn. After playing a few times, you'll be able to accurately gauge how much elevation to add or subtract to score accurate hits every time.

- Accuacy. Bring your capital ships broadside and halt them as soon as possible. Having your ships at a full stop greatly helps tweaking distances to target on the map.

- Target turrets and engines. The game seems to be accurate in its damage modelling. If you're battling a battleship or heavy cruiser, target the guns to take them out quickly. Hit the very rear of a ship to kill its engines and stop it from fleeing. Taking out engines is especially useful on axis sub missions in battle of atlantic when you're in the tedious task of chasing down merchants. Slow them down so another sub can catch up and torpedo them.

- Carriers. Absolutely useless. Never, ever buy one. The decks are fragile and taken out of commission usually with a single hit, and not able to repair in-mission. Even when you can launch planes, you only get 4 attacks for 9 game turns (ready, launch, 4 attacks, then return, ready, launch). And usually 2 of those 4 attacks will get shot down so really it's like 2 attacks. Given an attack is a single torpedo or bomb, they're weak attacks anyway, making them even more useless. Biggest disappointment of the game. Carriers changed warfare by proving air power was much more effective than big guns, and killed the battleship as a weapon of war, but even a light cruiser in atlantic fleet has an advantage over a carrier.

- Use torpedos against subs, not depth charges/hedgehogs. Lining up a hedgehog or depth charge is frustratingly challenging, plus the sub will dive when you get close with destroyer and (inexplicably) leave battle after a failed attack or two. Much more effective to attack with torpedos. Launch salvos at a distance so they don't dive when you get close. Much easier to kill and they won't disengage this way.

- Submarines. Very useful. In campaign mode, I usually play one battleship and 2 subs. Usually at least one sub is in position to take out one battleship on first salvo, and I use my initial shots from my battleship to take out the rear guns of another ship... which usually has the additional effect of hitting the engines and slowing it down for more torpedoes. The type XXI subs in the 1.09 update are potent enough, with their speed and fast reload, that I play 80% of the axis missions using 3 XXI subs alone. It's a nice diversion from surface battles.

- Aircraft depth charges: are only effective at periscope depth and periscope - 1. If you have subs in Britain's zone or off of the east coast in the battle of atlantic, usually the opponent's warships will sic aircraft on you with depth charges after your first torpedos hit. These attacks are unrealistically accurate and will kill your sub 90% of the time. To get around this, dive twice after launching your torpedoes. Aircraft depth charges can't hit you that deep. If you're close enough that your torpedos hit the same turn you launch, it's better to surface the next turn and take your chances against warships firing guns on you. They're less accurate than air attacks, and depth charges don't affect surfaced subs.

- Glide bombs. Select your OWN ship and point the aircraft at the the opponent. Most airborne attacks require selecting the target ship and then attack. If you do this with the rocket glide bombs the axis occasionally gets, it results in a bizarre random attack that rarely hits. I found by accident the correct method for glide bombs is select your own ship, point the aircraft at the opposing ship, and release at a (long) distance. It's very accurate this way, and the glide bombs are VERY powerful, capable of taking out even battlecruisers in single attack and doing serious damage to battleships.

Those are my comments after a couple months of play. I hope they fix the weakness of carriers: making the decks more durable, minimize/eliminate the turnaround time, letting aircraft launch a salvo of torpedos, allowing multiple sorties per attack, giving allies glide bombs... something like that. I also wish there was a function to create custom campaigns and save them, rather than just creating a single custom mission. The default campaigns are good but it would be nice to be able to create your own set of multiple missions into a custom campaign to make them more varied and challenging.
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Old 11-23-2015, 11:11 PM   #2
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CKurtz! Your review is most enlightening and a first-rate first post!
"Only two things are infinite: The Universe and human stupidity; And I'm not too sure about the Universe..." Philip K. Dick
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Old 11-25-2015, 10:49 PM   #3
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Great write up!

RADAR (Target Solution) and Map sound like they are working as intended. There is a third tool "Splash History" which is faster than using the Map. Briefly, about 1 degree of elevation moves a shot into the next category. So if you are in the red (+300 yards), drop your elevation 2 degrees. If you're in the yellow (+150 yards) drop it 1 degree. This will almost always put your next shot into the green zone which results in hits most of the time. This technique works best at medium gun elevations and when compared to Target Solution data provides an additional level of confidence.

CARRIERS: got a boost in update 1.10. They now get 2x aircraft per wing, so 8 attacks for a CV and 4 for a CVE. Also flight decks were made a little more resilient. One other benefit of carriers is scout planes in Battle of the Atlantic mode which provide a significant bonus for the detection of enemy vessels.

GLIDE BOMBS: very interesting observation!
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