Jump to content
Sign in to follow this  
GiledPallaeon

Belay That Order: Ship Types and Star Wars Exceptions

Recommended Posts

1 hour ago, Maturin said:

Anyways, to get back to GP's original post, I think Armada has room for more Cruisers.  As the most flexible type of ship we should be seeing them more often!  They could play MSU-leader, or Support for a Battleship/Dreadnought....it would be nice to have more ships in the ~70-80 point range to choose from.  Right now the VSD and AF seem squadron-focused in their roles; how about a beefier ship with a 0 or 1 squadron value?

Bothan Cruiser for Rebs and Carrack for Impis?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
4 hours ago, Maturin said:

I believe that's the intent of Relay - extend a ship's command range via a forward controller.  I can't really think of a mechanism by which a squadron would itself have a squadron command value.....though i suppose it could be included as a special rule.

The other question is would it still count as a large based squadron or as a flotilla? A E-2 Sentry has a max take off weight of 347,000lbs, compared to what is a large fighter the F-15 Eagle's 68,000lbs. Now I know that values of a plane today really has nothing to do with what they want to do but just looking at some ships that I am guessing would be flotilla's the WWII PT Boat comes in at 112,000lbs (or 235,000lbs less), a more modern version the PHM Pegasus comes in at 510,000lbs (or 163,000lbs more). So I cold see it as a large base fighter with no weapons (I do not know of a single AWACS that has any weapons) but the special ability, or a Flotilla again with no weapons (or maybe some if modeled as one AWACS with escort?) but a decent squadron value.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 7/11/2019 at 8:44 PM, GiledPallaeon said:

Compare ships using criteria related to what they are and what they do, not their role.

This phrase doesn't make sense without prior understanding. What did you mean? isn't role and "do" the same?

 

On 7/11/2019 at 8:44 PM, GiledPallaeon said:

(If someone wants an explanation of how a torpedo really attacks its target, please post and I will make a separate addendum on the subject.)

Me too, if you haven't gotten to it already

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
4 hours ago, Blail Blerg said:

How do you classify the armada flotillas?

The nearest WWII equivalent I think would be the cargo ships converted to Merchant Auxilluiarry Carriers (MAC) for convoy escort.

 

A few pom-pom guns and 6 Swordfish or Martlets/Wildcat fighters. Just enough to scout around the convoy and keep the U-Boat's heads underwater, report their positions to escort destroyers and maybe make an attack with 50cals, rockets and depth charges. 

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Merchant_aircraft_carrier

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
20 hours ago, Blail Blerg said:

This phrase doesn't make sense without prior understanding. What did you mean? isn't role and "do" the same?

 

Me too, if you haven't gotten to it already

A better way of phrasing that might have been "what they do, not what they're named". Example: the Arquitens is clearly a cruiser; its command functionality is used with a fair amount of frequency in both TCW and Rebels. Compare this to the MC30 "frigate", which much more closely resembles the original idea of a "frigate-rigged" ship, which in more modern parlance is a heavy destroyer (verging on cruiser by raw firepower), despite heavily outmassing the Imperial cruiser.

 

So the way torpedoes are commonly depicted as working is hitting the side of the ship more or less square, detonating, and blasting a hole in the hull. That idea was used up into World War II (and beyond in some navies that couldn't afford more advanced weapons systems). However that doesn't work on an armored warship, so contact warheads were mostly limited to use on known "soft" targets (merchantmen and lighter warships that couldn't afford the tonnage.) More or less immediately after the invention of the self-propelled torpedo, naval architects went to work developing countermeasures (almost all until very recently have been passive systems that essentially functioned as armor.) These systems are very obvious when a ship is out the water, as the otherwise sleek form bulges out (thus "torpedo bulge"). The principle was effectively spaced armor, where the torpedo warhead would be detonated by the outer layer of the system, with the shock absorbed by specially designed filler material (often at least partially if not completely fluid-filled). This meant that not only did the weapon not pierce the inner buoyant hull but the shock damage was (mostly) isolated from the ship.

Torpedo bulges kind of worked. The best example of their effectiveness was at the attack on Pearl Harbor in 1941. Air-dropped torpedoes were obviously designed to kill any kind of warship (I promise I'm getting there) and thus were actually aimed under the keel. Pearl Harbor is too shallow for this attack, so the Japanese spent several months developing and testing a modified version of the Type 91 air-dropped torpedo (formally the Type 91 Mod. 2 IIRC) that wouldn't dive straight into the bottom of the harbor. Most of these modifications worked (we fished more than one torpedo out of the mud after the attack), and the torpedoes slammed into the sides of the American battleships on Battleship Row (and a couple cruisers, the Raleigh and the Helena). Because it was a surprise attack, the Americans did not have the watertight doors on the ships shut (as would be the case in combat), but the Navy discovered something interesting. Of the battleships hit by torpedoes (Oklahoma took 5, West Virginia 7, California 2, and Nevada 1), the bulk of the damage suffered was not the actual holes caused by the blasts. Instead, the bulk of the flooding was caused by the torpedo warheads knocking the frames of the ships out of alignment and causing tears in the ship that way.

It's ok if you're not totally sure what a frame is, it builds into the actual preferred method of torpedo use. Basically the way most monohull ships are built is with a keel and frames. Think of the keel as your spine, and the frames as your ribs, if your ribs went from the top of your head all the way to your toes. The keel is the fundamental structural component of the ship, while the frames give the ship shape. Here's the thing: all of that structural engineering is done with the idea that the water will be supporting the bottom of the ship. When a ship is out of the water, i.e. in drydock, a careful eye will notice that the ship is very carefully placed on many support structures all holding the keel and the lower parts of the frames. Think of this like the jack points on your car, except we're holding up the whole car.

A modern torpedo (IIRC this attack was invented between the World Wars, and perfected in the era since) attacks the keel. Remember, explosives work by exerting force on the things around them over very short periods of time. This is always the rapid (we're talking dozens of microseconds up into dozens of milliseconds here) expansion of a lot of gas. When the warhead goes off, all of that force is now pushing up on the keel, straining it in a way that it is not designed to deal with. Very shortly thereafter (still working in fractions of a second here) the gas will have expanded enough the weight of the water will start pushing back. But the water doesn't have the chemical energy that pushed the gas out, so it will rush back into the space (comparatively) slowly. What this means is the ship will also "fall" into that space, before being pushed back out by the water. (It also gets slammed by the weight of the water, but the damage is usually done.) This violent up-down cycle will usually snap the keel, and tear a hole through the ship at the point of the detonation. Sometimes (varies depending on state of target and how big a warhead you hit it with) the ship will snap cleanly in half. If you look very closely towards the end of the second video in the original post, you a gash running up the side of the ship roughly where the fount of water was. That's the hole torn when the keel snapped. On almost any ship, a hit that central is very fatal. (And that's without accounting for the shock damage that probably left the ship without power dead in the water.) All that make sense?

See below for one of the better images of torpedo bulges I've ever seen. This is HMS Royal Oak I believe.

66687394_768752093540070_888640379346223

Edited by GiledPallaeon

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
20 hours ago, Mad Cat said:

The nearest WWII equivalent I think would be the cargo ships converted to Merchant Auxilluiarry Carriers (MAC) for convoy escort.

 

A few pom-pom guns and 6 Swordfish or Martlets/Wildcat fighters. Just enough to scout around the convoy and keep the U-Boat's heads underwater, report their positions to escort destroyers and maybe make an attack with 50cals, rockets and depth charges. 

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Merchant_aircraft_carrier

 

I think that’s true for the Rebel Transport, but I think the Gozanti is better described by a true fighting ship.

 

Maybe a corvette, but since it can scatter I think a fast attack craft of some sort is closest.  E-boats, MGB’s, PT boats, etc.  The Goz lacks the black dice that would signify torpedo equivalent firepower, so British MGB’s would be the closest parallel.  

 

Armed Merchant Cruisers could be another possibility, since they were lightly armed (and lacked gun directors for the most part)...and if caught in a real fight didn’t last long.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I was motivated by this topic to finish a section of a story I've been writing a while. I post it here for interest and thanks to the OP for great thoughts.

This section is an in-universe response to the question "What is a Frigate?"

 

https://daveswargames.blogspot.com/2019/07/what-is-frigate-excerpt.html

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On ‎7‎/‎13‎/‎2019 at 12:41 AM, xanderf said:

Nah, the only real way to look at the series is picking out what references Lucas was attempting to emphasize.  Famously, the dogfighting over the Death Star in ANH was intended to be evocative of the Battle of Britain (not just aircraft dogfights, or even WW2 dogfights, but specifically the Battle of Britain).  And I think the ship-to-ship combat - although not as clearly stated in interviews (that I'm aware of), but certainly VISUALLY clearly indicated 

Nah, I think he was focused on WW2 bomber missions, specifically the movie Dam Busters. Someone did a nice side by side comparison of ANH, and there are some similarities.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, Ling27 said:

@GiledPallaeon Today I learned about Amphibious Assault Ships (thanks USS Boxer). Would stuff like the Acclamator fall into that catagory/role?

Roughly yes. Boxer is a Landing Helicopter Dock, so you’re looking at the troop landing and aircraft (LAAT/i gunships mostly) element of the Acclamator class. The other good comparison is a merge with the San Antonio class Landing Platform, Docks, which include the heavy armor lift the Acclamator carries but is not standard on Tarawa class (of which Boxer is one) or the follow-on America class LHA (also sometimes called amphibious assault ships, but that is a nebulous term. The big change in the early America class units is the lack of the well deck for landing craft.) Neither real ship type carries the offensive firepower that the Star Wars vessel does, only self-defense systems, but the San Antonios were designed to accept standard Mark 41 Vertical Launch Systems that could carry heavier air defense missiles and surface to surface weapons that mimic the shore fire capabilities of the Republic turbolasers and torpedoes.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, Ling27 said:

So, its basically a get in there and land to deploy troops while also acting as a localized C&C for supporting aircraft?

More or less. It’s not all the way up on the beach, but it’s not supposed to be all that far offshore either. It’s using landing craft (the LCAC specifically) to get troops on the beach initially, and it has a full flight deck and hangar deck to run any helicopter you can think of and S/VTOL aircraft if you have any (the Harrier, which we retired, and now the F-35B). By contrast the San Antonio’s are more optimized to move heavy equipment (artillery, tanks, etc.) so they have less aviation facilities but what they do have is optimized for heavy lift helos like the -53 series. Both types do Command and control, but the Assault ships are more closely intertwined with the air element while the LPDs unify the group and liase with surface combatants and other assets in theater.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 7/13/2019 at 1:41 AM, xanderf said:

And I think the ship-to-ship combat - although not as clearly stated in interviews (that I'm aware of), but certainly VISUALLY clearly indicated - was meant to be Age of Sail.

From the opening scene of ANH, which could have as easily been a 3rd or 4th-rate Ship of the Line chasing down an enemy Sloop or Schooner (or, heck, a Frigate)...to the battles in RotJ where the Rebel and Imperial ships saddled up alongside each other and exchanged broadsides meters apart, as the classic sailing vessels of old...throughout the series, the ship-to-ship interactions were always the more glacial and COMPREHENSIVELY multi-role nature of the sailing era ships.

Posted a few days back, I know, but I think this is the best explanation for why Star Wars ships are as multipurpose as they are, not to mention the seemingly bizarre broadside tactics we see on screen.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On ‎7‎/‎18‎/‎2019 at 4:00 PM, GiledPallaeon said:

More or less. It’s not all the way up on the beach, but it’s not supposed to be all that far offshore either. It’s using landing craft (the LCAC specifically) to get troops on the beach initially, and it has a full flight deck and hangar deck to run any helicopter you can think of and S/VTOL aircraft if you have any (the Harrier, which we retired, and now the F-35B). By contrast the San Antonio’s are more optimized to move heavy equipment (artillery, tanks, etc.) so they have less aviation facilities but what they do have is optimized for heavy lift helos like the -53 series. Both types do Command and control, but the Assault ships are more closely intertwined with the air element while the LPDs unify the group and liase with surface combatants and other assets in theater.

Somewhat adjacently, and maybe drifting off the topic of the thread (or back onto it, depending on your point of view)...

...what makes these ships good shore-assault combatants also makes them almost better disaster-relief ships.  In the case of major hurricanes, tsunamis, etc, which hit coastal areas and knock out civilian infrastructure, one of these ships nearby can save a lot of lives.  Both from the direct capabilities of moving heavy equipment around (hovercraft landing on beaches and heavy airlift helicopters are neither very badly deterred by ruined highways) or the rather significant hospital capabilities, but also their focus on communications, command and control for co-ordinating surviving emergency responders and services on shore.

(Especially in a game context, everyone likes to focus mostly on the direct combat capability of ships - but in any era, that's almost never what the ship spends the VAST majority of its time doing, and indeed direct humanitarian missions using secondary capabilities of a ship are incredibly common.  In the end still serving the primary reason the nation bought the ship, of course - supporting and increasing the influence of the nation in question.)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 7/13/2019 at 11:42 AM, xanderf said:

 

EDIT: And actually to bring that around to the current topic - there had been a theory advanced in an EU work somewhere, not currently backed by any canon source I'm aware of, that did indeed suggest that is where Star Destroyers got their nomenclature from.  Given the start of the program would have been under the Imperial Senate, a reasonable argument could be that the Emperor (and Imperial Navy generally) got approval for development of these warships through the Senate by calling them only 'destroyers'.  *shrugs*  Not really an explanation I like, as 'Star Destroyer' seems its own type easily enough, and rule of cool says that if something is named for destroying stars...it's extra cool.

I have another theory as to the name that I thought of reading the op. So Destroyer is a shortening of either Torpedo Boat Destroyer (like the raider) or Fleet Destroyer (like the gladiator) with the first half of the name being related to it's intended target.

What if we consider a Star Destroyer to be a shortened version of Star System Destroyer. A ship designed to single handedly conquer a lightly armed star system typical of the SW galaxy. That explains its loadout of troops and vehicles better. For conquering a system boots on the ground are more valuable than torpedos. Clicks well with the empire's hubris, considering a entire system to be a combatant to be defeated.

This is of course wrong, star destroyer is a rule of cool name, but a fun idea. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Sign in to follow this  

×
×
  • Create New...