Thursday, 19 December 2013

A bit of a re-think

The work I did re-visiting the play-test of my ITCHY AND SCRATCHY NAVAL rules seemed to confirm that my proposed changes to the Gunfire Results were a good idea ... but overnight I realised that there was a serious flaw in my thinking. Getting rid of the difference between the effects of hits on armoured and unarmoured ships would unduly increase the chance that an armoured ship's speed could be curtailed. Likewise the armament of an armoured ship was going to be as easy to disable as it was if the ship was unarmoured.

Obviously these changes will need to be rejected ... but I still think that the Flotation Values need to be increased to ensure that ships' survivability is increased. I also think that increasing the damage caused by torpedoes needs to be examined. My first thoughts are to increase the damage caused in lost Flotation Value from 1D6 to 2D6 ... but that would make them very destructive ... possibly too destructive. (The average score from 1D6 is 3.5 whereas the average score from 2D6 is 7 ... which is quite a big jump.)


  1. Bob, for your torpedoes why not roll 2d6 and simply take the higher die?

    This will get an average of about 4.5 with the following average results:

    6 -- 11 times out of 36
    5 -- 9 times out of 36
    4 -- 7 times out of 36
    3 -- 5 times out of 36
    2 -- 3 times out of 36
    1 -- 1 time out of 36

    -- Jeff

  2. Bluebeard Jeff,

    Thanks for the suggestion. It is a very workable solution to my dilemma and I will give it very serious consideration.

    All the best,


  3. I have a feeling that the destructive levels of torpedoes at 2D6 is about right. If it is feasible, I might look to the probability of a hit.

    This is 'numbers out of the air', you understand, but consider two possible torpedo mechanics:
    [A] Torpedo hits on a 5 or 6, and when successful, does 1D6 damage.
    [B] Torpedo hits on a 6, and when successful does 2D6 damage.
    From the point of view of damage done per torpedo fired, the statistical results are the same: 1.67
    I stand to be corrected on this, but I gather that torpedo fire (except by submarines against unsuspecting merchant vessels) was always a low probability proposition. What made the weapon worthwhile - especially up to around WW1 - was the reasonable chance that a single hit would be enough to send any sized vessel to the bottom.

    I like the 2xD6 damage roll for another reason: the 'bell curve'. I think (imagine/guess) that this will better reflect the relative survivability of large units compared with small.

  4. Archduke Piccolo,

    Thanks for your very helpful comment and suggestions.

    I think that I must agree with your analysis about the inaccuracy of torpedoes and their potentially for sinking a ship during the ironclad-era ... and I think that my revised torpedo rules will have to reflect this.

    All the best,



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