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Thread: More reflections on cannon fire.

  1. #1
    Admiral of the Blue.
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    Default More reflections on cannon fire.

    Reading a new book, a passage on firepower in the 18th century struck a chord. I had previously noted that ships generally carried only enough crew to man one broadside at a time, and generally had just enough men to touch off the opposite guns if they were already pre loaded. This got me thinking about the way we merrily blat off with either broadside every second turn. Would it not be more realistic when using both broadsides in quick succession, after the first pre loaded volley, to insert an extra turn in loading like we do for double shot to allow for gun crew swapping sides of the deck to service the guns?
    Rob.
    The Business of the commander-in-chief is first to bring an enemy fleet to battle on the most advantageous terms to himself, (I mean that of laying his ships close on board the enemy, as expeditiously as possible); and secondly to continue them there until the business is decided.

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    Would making reloading count as 3 actions simulate this without having to remember skipped turns?

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    I think that the game assumes that ships are fully crewed before a battle starts.

    Another point to consider came up when I was reading recently some of the 'Under Admiralty Orders' series of books. A ship using topmen in its gun crews could not manoeuvre as easily in battle.

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    Admiral of the Blue.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Naharaht View Post
    I think that the game assumes that ships are fully crewed before a battle starts.
    That is the reason I placed this question in the House Rules section Dave.
    I know for a fact that many British ships were always undermanned and was thinking about simulating the real situation. Conversely the French were often overmanned, but with soldiers and jail sweepings etc, so the quality of their gun crews would also be adversely effected.



    Quote Originally Posted by Naharaht View Post
    Another point to consider came up when I was reading recently some of the 'Under Admiralty Orders' series of books. A ship using topmen in its gun crews could not manoeuvre as easily in battle.

    That was one of the many reasons for taking in sail before going into action, as well as providing less leverage and thus a more stable gun platform.
    Rob.
    The Business of the commander-in-chief is first to bring an enemy fleet to battle on the most advantageous terms to himself, (I mean that of laying his ships close on board the enemy, as expeditiously as possible); and secondly to continue them there until the business is decided.

  5. #5
    Admiral of the Blue.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Aaron View Post
    Would making reloading count as 3 actions simulate this without having to remember skipped turns?
    That was what I was intending to say Aaron. Sorry if I did not make it quite clear.
    Rob.
    Last edited by Bligh; 07-20-2018 at 12:35.
    The Business of the commander-in-chief is first to bring an enemy fleet to battle on the most advantageous terms to himself, (I mean that of laying his ships close on board the enemy, as expeditiously as possible); and secondly to continue them there until the business is decided.

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    I would say allowing only one reload action simultaneous per turn might better simulate this. The movement compared to the firing is already very slow. My take is that a broadside in game represents several broadsides and that is why the front/rear arcs are so wide. The reloading is a way to get a period feel to the game but not necessarily a perfect simulation.

    Basically when considering game design you have to balance reality and having a fun, fast played game.

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    Admiral of the Blue.
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    Point taken Jonas.
    Rob.
    The Business of the commander-in-chief is first to bring an enemy fleet to battle on the most advantageous terms to himself, (I mean that of laying his ships close on board the enemy, as expeditiously as possible); and secondly to continue them there until the business is decided.

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    And it should of course be "The firing compared to the movement is already very slow."

    That is when manoeuvring with the larger ships, like the rate of turning a first rate can do between broadsides.

    When reading descriptions of battles it's always fun to imagine what happened in SoG terms when a third rate passes by duelling ships and gives them two or three broadsides in passing. There isn't movements slow enough to represent the pace often used in the bigger battles.
    Last edited by TexaS; 07-20-2018 at 13:30.

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    Admiral of the Blue.
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    That is also a very good point Jonas.
    I am going to leave things alone on this one I think.
    Thanks again Rob.
    The Business of the commander-in-chief is first to bring an enemy fleet to battle on the most advantageous terms to himself, (I mean that of laying his ships close on board the enemy, as expeditiously as possible); and secondly to continue them there until the business is decided.

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    Admiral of the Blue.
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    Reflecting on your post further Jonas, brought to mind a discussion I recently had with captain Kiwi about thr rule for firing only your forrard or aft batteries. You then must need treat it as a whole battery fire rather than having a part battery still loaded. This is even more annoying when you have a target in range of your fore and aft batteries but not your full broadside. The rules say that you may not split targets, but any gun captain worth his salt would target the ship he had in sight. In this instance if it is deemed that the whole battery has gone off anyway, surely it makes sense to hit the second ship as well.
    Rob.
    The Business of the commander-in-chief is first to bring an enemy fleet to battle on the most advantageous terms to himself, (I mean that of laying his ships close on board the enemy, as expeditiously as possible); and secondly to continue them there until the business is decided.

  11. #11
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    Unfortunately, in the military mind in the 18th and 19th Century initiative in not encouraged if it does not follow orders.
    I do not think a gun captain would override his section officer who would not override the deck officer who would not go against the captains wishes without express orders.
    In the heat of battle the Captain would be concentrating on the closest enemy that could do him damage and therfore using that which he could use immediately. The rest would be kept in Readiness to deal that target and not swanning off finding their own. Just in case the Captain wanted to deal a crushing full broadside, would be a little embarrasing if he ordered a full fire at the now presented target but half his gun captains were in the middle of other actions dealing with their own ideas of a target, dont think that would happen I am afraid.

  12. #12
    Admiral of the Blue.
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    Fire as you bear can cover a multitude of sins Chris, especially on the lower gun deck. and we certainly know of situations where a Captain reserved his Carronades for specific targets. However, that would in this case depend on where your Carronades were situated, and you could fire them each round anyway.
    Nevertheless, I take your point.
    Rob.
    The Business of the commander-in-chief is first to bring an enemy fleet to battle on the most advantageous terms to himself, (I mean that of laying his ships close on board the enemy, as expeditiously as possible); and secondly to continue them there until the business is decided.

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