Thread: MT Ship Combat
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Old September 27th, 2004, 02:46 AM
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Originally posted by TheEngineer:

IMHO MT combat tumbles between three extremes:
- You succeed without any problem
- nobody hurts another
- you die nearly instantly

Is that the way technology based combat works ?
Dont know.
Why yes, that IS how it should work. Naval combat is not only completely dependent on technology, but even a slight edge can give a major advantage. During the last two centuries, around 1900 especially, ships faced many revolutions in technology. Indeed, many ships were obsoleted before they were commissioned.

Probably the greatest example was in 1862, when the British were said to have been reduced to 2 ships in their entire navy. They had been experimenting with ironclads, and only had two such vessels, but neither was of the toughness of the two American vessels that fought each other to a standstill that year.

The easiest way to illustrate the combat results you noticed is by noting battleships. They have big guns and lots of armor. The guns are intended to be able to cripple or sink any lesser ship with a single hit. Likewise, their armor is designed to shrug off hits from any lesser ship.

This means that when something goes against a battleship, it's probably going to lose, and the battleship won't even notice. When you have two battleships pounding away at each other, they either get a lucky critical hit, or it takes all day to do anything to each other. When lesser ships combat each other, especially in the modern age of missiles, there is an excellent chance that both sides will be destroyed.

Warships are designed well enough to withstand a few hits and keep fighting, even if they are sinking.

In the age of sail, ships couldn't do much damage to each other, and most engagements, if they were won at all, had to be won by boarding actions. Cannonfire was simply not good enough, unless you had a little ship getting smashed by a big one.

Anyway, hopefully I didn't make my examples too hard to follow, and the point was made.
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