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davebit15

The paradox of carriers in a naval warfare game

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Carriers ended the age of naval warfare. Since the appearance of carriers, all other classes were either completely displaced or relegated to a support role. Naval warfare became a subset of air warfare. Let that sink in.

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Not really. The introduction of carriers and submarines simply 'shifted the meta' in real life so to say. Battleships got phased out as technology advanced and were replaced by carriers. It wasnt an outright replacement... more of a cost effective better solution

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Just now, _1204_ said:

Not really. The introduction of carriers and submarines simply 'shifted the meta' in real life so to say. Battleships got phased out as technology advanced and were replaced by carriers. It wasnt an outright replacement... more of a cost effective better solution

You can call it a "meta-shifting" if you want: it won't change the fact that naval warfare became a fight between two fleets out of sight of each other, each one sending planes to sink the other.

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All modern warships have always been support/service roles. The Aircraft Carrier is nothing more than a fancy floating gas station for air power. Battleships never actually 'ruled' the seas since they were getting sunk by little motorboats with spar torpedoes. They are all 'support' role for a government's decisions... Not since the days of the Pirates has it been any different.

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17 minutes ago, davebit15 said:

Carriers ended the age of naval warfare. Since the appearance of carriers, all other classes were either completely displaced or relegated to a support role. Naval warfare became a subset of air warfare. Let that sink in.

I knew that decades ago.

What's it to do with this game?

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4 minutes ago, _1204_ said:

Not really. The introduction of carriers and submarines simply 'shifted the meta' in real life so to say. Battleships got phased out as technology advanced and were replaced by carriers. It wasnt an outright replacement... more of a cost effective better solution

This, CV's became the primary method of projecting force but initially BB's were still extremely useful for their ability to support landings and to provide AA for the CV. It was only with the advent of effective ship to ship guided missiles that pushed them out of favor for a place in the fleet.

4 minutes ago, davebit15 said:

You can call it a "meta-shifting" if you want: it won't change the fact that naval warfare became a fight between two fleets out of sight of each other, each one sending planes to sink the other.

The weapons and the distant that battle happens at changed but the mission never really changed, control a chunk of sea to enable your land forces to accomplish their mission.

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This game covers the period from about 1900 to about 1955, give or take.

In that period, from 1900 to about 1918 carrier launched aircraft never sank a warship at sea. From the start of WWII until December 1941 the score of battleships was 1 carrier sunk, while carriers had sunk in turn, 0 battleships at sea until well, quite late in the war.

For most of the period aircraft carriers were fairly incapable, even during WWII there were plenty of combined carrier/surface actions and at night in particular there were plenty of surface-only actions.

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1 minute ago, BrushWolf said:

This, CV's became the primary method of projecting force but initially BB's were still extremely useful for their ability to support landings and to provide AA for the CV. It was only with the advent of effective ship to ship guided missiles that pushed them out of favor for a place in the fleet.

The weapons and the distant that battle happens at changed but the mission never really changed, control a chunk of sea to enable your land forces to accomplish their mission.

Battleships were kept in use after the battle of Midway because they already existed. It's not a coincidence that the Montana class was cancelled in 1942.
As for the ultimate goal of the navy, yes, I agree the main objective is almost always to support (or prevent) the landing of an army. But again, that doesn't change the fact that the naval warfare per se is centered around planes.

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3 minutes ago, davebit15 said:

Battleships were kept in use after the battle of Midway because they already existed. It's not a coincidence that the Montana class was cancelled in 1942.
As for the ultimate goal of the navy, yes, I agree the main objective is almost always to support (or prevent) the landing of an army. But again, that doesn't change the fact that the naval warfare per se is centered around planes.

The Montana was cancelled mostly because the existing fast battleships were just as good at AA and gunfire support. Once the war ended while there was still a place in the fleet for BB's in their new support role there was no need to build more and only a few that were under construction were completed.

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11 minutes ago, BrushWolf said:

This, CV's became the primary method of projecting force but initially BB's were still extremely useful for their ability to support landings and to provide AA for the CV. It was only with the advent of effective ship to ship guided missiles that pushed them out of favor for a place in the fleet.

The weapons and the distant that battle happens at changed but the mission never really changed, control a chunk of sea to enable your land forces to accomplish their mission.

BB's already existed and the need for AA & landing support was then, at that time so they remained useful but were obsolete for the purpose they were built to perform. The fact planes could not safely provide close support at night in WW2 gave the BB's a few more years of life in that role. The role in the Gulf War was to sell the idea there would be an amphibious assault, nothing more.

Yes, the mission hasn't changed but the BB is a weapon. A trapdoor Springfield can still kill but............

The OP is correct, the CV changed naval warfare and made large costly capital ships obsolete. WG is attempting to balance a huge gap.

 

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2 minutes ago, BrushWolf said:

The Montana was cancelled mostly because the existing fast battleships were just as good at AA and gunfire support. Once the war ended while there was still a place in the fleet for BB's in their new support role there was no need to build more and only a few that were under construction were completed.

Well, we can't do anything but to speculate about it. But the fact keeps being that the last battleship in history was completed in 1946; and it was completed just because some hard-headed politicians insisted in completing what was already considered to be a "white elephant," too slow, large and obvious against air attacks, and expensive from a logistics point of view.
But even assuming battleships as feasible, their role changed drastically from the leading ship in the fleet, to an air-defense role secondary to even fast cruisers and destroyers. Only as land bombardment platforms they were justifiable, and even that role was contested by aviation.

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The role of warships depends on the kind of war and how nations want to project power and influence. In a modern total war the SSBN would be the leader. CVs are great at projecting conventional power. But like aircraft replacing the big  guns, missiles and AI drones may replace carrier aircraft and the ships carrying them. As war changes so do the weapons, though bayonets still seem to be around. 

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