Subs first strike with destroyer present?



  • I was playing World War II Revised and subs do have a first strike even with an enemy destroyer present. I am wondering if this is a bug or is it just me not understanding the rules correctly or some game settings?

    Tested with 1.9.0.0.13066 and a two weeks old 2.0 nightly build.

    Thanks in advance.

    TripleA Subs1.png


  • Moderators Admin

    @Martin Under proper v2 rules, the presence of a destroyer does not affect when any submarine will roll its dice, but only assures any unit hit by any submarine of the opposite side will be still able to fire back, on the same round of combat.

    In practice, as long as the (British) unit or units that are receiving the hits are always able to return fire, on the same round of combat, what you are showing is fine (if you assign 1 hit to the submarine and 1 hit to the battleship, the destroyer doesn't actually matter here, as those would be able to fire back anyway).

    As far as I know, of course (I'm not entitled giving official answers about anything).


  • Moderators Admin

    @Martin It is in later rulesets that a destroyer cancels the enemy submarine's "first strike" - or "surprise strike " - ability.


  • Moderators Admin

    @Panther Yep, only from v3 onwards the first strike ability is cancelled by the presence of a destroyer on the opposite side (yet the inability to hit air remains), but in v2 any unit hit on first strike are made able always to fire back, by the presence of the destroyer. As far as I know, again.



  • Thank you all for your detailed explanations.


  • Admin

    Few questions I wonder about related to this:

    A) If a subs first strike has been neutralized, would it be less confusing for it to simply roll with the rest of the attackers?

    B) Is it incorrect for neutralized first strike subs to roll first if there are opposed subs? For example, 1 sub, 1 cruiser vs 1 sub and 1 destroyer. If subs roll first, and the defender subs hits with a first strike, could the attacker choose as casualty the submarine that has already rolled instead of choosing the cruiser? Is that rule compliant?

    C) In the LL case, having subs roll on their own is significant as it can create an excess number of casualties. For example, 2 subs with a bomber might be 'better' to roll 2 times against a 4 (with two hits being quite likely) vs rolling 1 time against a 2 (unlikely) with 1 guaranteed hit. With the right combination of units you can increase the number likely LL hits with multiple rolls, creating some outsized attacks (example, subs, surface ships and planes can all roll individually, potentially outrolling a stronger defensive force). In such a case if destroyers force subs to roll with the rest of the attacking ships, that'll reduce the number of LL rolls (something which I think has been a bit of a loophole in LL).


  • Moderators Admin

    @LaFayette As clarified in v2 the first strike is not neutralized by the presence of an enemy destroyer - so I am not sure what version(s) your questions refer to.

    Anyway:

    A.) In v2 the submarine facing the enemy destroyer still has its first strike ability. So this is rules compliant. It would be rather confusing if that was somehow eliminated. Still the opponent is forced to choose casualties at that early time of the battle, not knowing about the hits from the 'regular' attack/defense shots, what in more complex sea battles might be relevant. In v3+ the submarine facing an enemy destroyer by the rules fires together with the "rest" during the respective Attacking/Defending Units fire step(s) of the battle.

    B.) As usual, and as explicitly stated in the rules , both sides are considered to fire simultaneously. In v2 attacking and defending submarines fire at the same time while the enemy destroyer enables the casualty on his side to fire back. So yes the attacking submarine can be hit while shooting. In v3+ only the defending submarine has its surprise strike. In case the attacker chooses his submarine, only the cruiser gets to shoot later.
    (Also - when no destroyer is present - submarines from both sides can eliminate each other with their ability.)

    C.) I am not familiar with LL so I leave that to someone else.


  • Moderators Admin

    @Panther said in Subs first strike with destroyer present?:

    @LaFayette As clarified in v2 the first strike is not neutralized by the presence of an enemy destroyer - so I am not sure what version(s) your questions refer to.

    Anyway:

    A.) In v2 the submarine facing the enemy destroyer still has its first strike ability. So this is rules compliant. It would be rather confusing if that was somehow eliminated. Still the opponent is forced to choose casualties at that early time of the battle, not knowing about the hits from the 'regular' attack/defense shots. what in more complex sea battles might be relevant. In v3+ the submarine facing an enemy destroyer by the rules fires together with the "rest" during the respective Attacking/Defending Units fire step(s) of the battle.

    It doesn't really have the first strike ability. It still fires on opening, but whatever hit units that would be removed at that point are, instead, allowed to stay in the battle, and fire back, by the presence of a destroyer on their same side. While in v3 destroyers negate the first strikes of the opposite side, in v2 destroyers keep afloat the units of the same side hit by them.

    B.) As usual, and as explicitly stated in the rules , both sides are considered to fire simultaneously. In v2 attacking and defending submarines fire at the same time while the enemy destroyer enables the casualty on his side to fire back. So yes the attacking submarine can be hit while shooting. In v3+ only the defending submarine has its surprise strike. In case the attacker chooses his submarine, only the cruiser gets to shoot later.
    (Also - when no destroyer is present - submarines from both sides can eliminate each other with their ability.)

    I think here @LaFayette is actually pointing out the main advantage (for submarines) of the v2 system over the v3 system. In the v2 system, submarines can never be removed before they fire back, while in the v3 system also submarines can be removed before they fire back, if the opposite side has a destroyer. On the other hand, destroyers, in both systems, assure that the units hit by submarines will be able to fire back.

    C.) I am not familiar with LL so I leave that to someone else.

    I think usually the attacker is the one that wants to have less luck dependency. So I believe 1 dice at 6 and 1 at 2 would be preferred to 2 at 4 because it reduces luck (decreasing the probability of 2 hits but reducing to 0 the probability of no hits).
    And again, at least under a simple Low Luck system, I think this would be possible only in v3 and only as long as the opposite side has no air remaining in the battle (because, with air, you still need to separate the rolls, since they don't share exactly the same targets).


  • Moderators Admin

    @Cernel said in Subs first strike with destroyer present?:

    It doesn't really have the first strike ability.

    The ability or the right to fire in the Opening Fire Step is sometimes referred to as "First Strike Ability". But I agree this is not the precise wording of the rulebook.


  • Moderators Admin

    @Panther I was not talking semantics. I meant that v2 destroyers inhibit such ability (however called), albeit not to the extent of negating it, as v3 destroyers do, instead.


  • Moderators Admin

    @Cernel said in Subs first strike with destroyer present?:

    @Panther I was not talking semantics. I meant that v2 destroyers inhibit such ability (however called), albeit not to the extent of negating it, as v3 destroyers do, instead.

    How does a Destroyer inhibt the Submarine's ability to fire during the Opening Fire Step?
    From the FAQ:
    "In other words, subs work exactly the same for the attacker and the defender. Nothing, not even a
    destroyer, ever stops a sub from rolling its die (attack or defense) in the Opening Fire step. What a
    destroyer does do is let you keep your units that were sunk by enemy subs on the battle board until
    step 6, allowing them to fire back before going to the scrap heap."

    So the destroyer does not affect the submarine at all concerning the Opening-Fire-Step. The Destroyer affects the casualty on his side.


  • Moderators Admin

    @Panther Completely agree: That is what I meant. I meant that the most important effect of the first strike (sinking the target before it fires back) is negated. So, most of what the first strike is about is ineffective.

    I believe we are substantially saying the same thing in different ways. I agree that the first strike itself is still fully there.


  • Moderators Admin

    If this clarifies, I didn't mean that a v2 destroyer inhibits anything submarines do, during the Opening Fire Step, only what they make.


  • Admin

    Thanks for clarification, if I could summarize:
    V2: casualties simply get to fire back if a destroyer is present
    V3+: first strike is removed if opposing side has a destroyer

    @Cernel regarding LL, with two rolls against a 4:
    1/9 chance for 0 hits
    4/9 chance for 1 hit
    4/9 chance for 2 hits

    The odds are really good you'll get at least one hit, if not 2. With just one roll, you have a 1/3 chance for the 2nd hit, with the two dice you have slightly better odds for two hits. That means in LL, when attacking a naval fleet, you'd expect more often to have more casualties attacking with 2 subs and a bomber than you would 2 bombers (even though the attack power is the same).

    Personally I think a big misnomer of LL is that players reduce risk and/or are not playing odds. With subs, fighters and surface fleets, in LL you can get 3 hits with an attack power of as little as 8. Meanwhile a defender if rolling together will not have a chance for 3 hits until you get a power of at least 13, and below 12 there is a chance to have only one return hit.


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