February 15, 2020

Rule the Waves 2 Game 1 - April 1921


We have had a fairly quiet year. We renewed our security arrangement with Great Britain instead of allying ourselves to Germany, and have laid down a pair of new battleships, a new armored cruiser, and a pair of light cruisers. We have also developed several pieces of improved technology, most notably improved directors and better training gear for small turrets.

Our upcoming year looks to be relatively quiet. Our CLs will complete late in the year, but otherwise, we are unlikely to be able to do new construction. Our refit program will continue, as all of our vessels will need the new directors.

Our current fleet

April 1920

Design work begins on BB Republique, CL Infernet. Private shipbuilding expands, increasing dock size by 1000 tons. BB Redoubtable commissions into the navy, AV Sfax finishes her reconstruction. Our security arrangement with Britain expires. Breakthrough: Improved Director. UK lays down 2 DD, Japan 1 CL. Reconstruction of BB Saint Louis and Charlemagne begins.

May 1920

BC Lille, BB Caiman, BB Bouvet and CL Lavoisier finish their reconstructions. CLs Infernet and Cosmao laid down. Germany lays down a BB, UK 2 DD. Germany commissions 1 BB, 1 AV.

June 1920

BC Rouen and Lyon begin reconstruction. We sign a renewal of our security arrangement with Britain. UK lays down 2 DD, US 2 KE. US commissions 1 BC.

July 1920

We buy quadruple torpedo tubes from the British. Brekthrough: Motor torpedo boats. UK lays down 2 KE, 2 DD. Japan commissions 2 KE, US 1 BB. Republique design overhauled slightly to take advantage of dock growth.

August 1920

BB Charlemagne and BB Saint Louis finish reconstruction. Breakthrough: Torpedo protection III. We send Germany a diplomatic note over their stealing ASW technology from us. UK lays down an AV, US 2 KE. US commissions 1 KE.

September 1920

BC Nancy begins reconstruction. BCs Lyon and Rouen finish their reconstructions. Our spies steal blueprints of Austrian CA Kaiserin and Konigin Maria Theresia. BB Republique laid down. Japan lays down 1 CL, US 2 KE, commissions 1 KE.

October 1920

BC Nantes begins reconstruction. Design work begins on CA Kleber. We buy 4" +1 guns from the British. We select the Farman F.66 as our new floatplane scout. AH lays down 1 AV, UK 2 DD. Itlay and US commission 1 AV each.

November 1920

Breakthrough: 20mm automatic cannon. 17" (-1) gun developed. UK commissions 2 DD, US 1 CL.

December 1920

The remaining Richelieus are scrapped. BB Iena is commissioned into the navy, and is found to easily exceed her design speed. BC Nancy finishes reconstruction. Our spies steal blueprints for Japanese CL Takachiho. Breakthrough: Improved fuze reliability. CL Kleber laid down. UK commissions 4 DD.

January 1921

BB Massena laid down. BC Nantes finishes reconstruction. UK lays down 1 DD, Japan 1 CL. UK commissions 3 DD, US 1 BC, Germany 1 CL.

February 1921

BB Ocean begins reconstruction. One of our companies enters into a tech-sharing agreement with Britain. Breakthrough: Reliable power training and elevation. US lays down 3 DD, UK 1 DD. Germany commissions 1 CL, UK 2 DD.

March 1921

The Farman F.66 is ready for service. UK lays down 2 KE, US 1 BC and 1 DD. UK commissions 1 KE, 3 DD, US 1 KE, Italy 1 BC. Dupetit-Thouars begins CVL conversion.

April 1922


The last year has been very quiet. Our construction program continues, the highlight being the impending completion of the conversion to Duquesne to a full-size carrier. This has curtailed other conversion programs, but we face no immediate security threat, so the risk is minor.

The big question is what to do when Duquesne has finished her conversion. Unfortunately, this required reengining, and the compromises of converting an old battlecruiser are serious. It might make sense to not upgrade the other two for a while, and focus on our cruiser force instead.

Our current fleet

Ships under construction

April 1921

Our spies steal plans for improved 13" guns from the Japanese. Breakthrough: CV conversions. UK lays down 1 BC, 1 AV, Japan 1 CVL. UK commissions 2 DD, US 1 AV.

May 1921

Conversion of BC Duquesne to CV begins. BB Ocean finishes reconstruction. Breakthrough: Improved armor testing methods. UK lays down 1 BC, Italy 2 DD. UK commissions 1 AV, 1 DD, 1 KE, US 1 BB, 3 KE.

June 1921

We use a windfall of tax revenue to strengthen the navy. US lays down 3 DD. Germany commissions 1 CL, 1 AV, UK 1 BC, 2 DD.

July 1921

Breakthrough: Convoy system. US lays down 1 CVL, 1 DD. Italy commissions 1 BC, UK 1 DD. AH rebuilds a CVL.

August 1921

Breakthrough: Advanced superheater. Italy lays down 1 DD, US 2 DD. US and Japan each commission 1 BB.

September 1921

Italy lays down 2 DD, US commissions 1 BC, 2 KE, UK 1 DD.

October 1921

We select the Nieuport ND.70 to replace the Loire 63 as our primary fighter. US lays down 1 CVL, Germany commissions 1 DD.

November 1921

UK lays down 1 BC, Italy 2 DD, Japan 1 BB, US 2 DD. UK commissions 1 BC, 1 AV, US 1 BC.

December 1921

UK lays down 1 BC, Italy 1 DD, US 1 BC. UK commissions 1 DD.

January 1922

CL Descartes begins reconstruction. CL Cosmao and CL Infernet commissioned. Breakthrough: Lengthened torpedoes. AH lays down a BB, UK 1 BC 1 CVL, UK commissions 1 DD, 2 KE, Italy 1 BC, Japan 1 CL.

February 1922

BB Redoutable begins reconstruction, as does CL Du Chayla. A rebellion breaks out in Burma. Breakthrough: 16" (Quality 0) guns. UK lays down 1 AV, Italy 4 DD, Japan 1 AV. Japan commissions 1 BB, US 1 DD, 1 KE.

March 1922

CL Descartes finishes her reconstruction. Breakthrough: Heavy shells. Italy lays down 2 DD, US 3 DD. AH commissions 1 CL 1 AV, US 3 DD. We scrap the Coetlogon class CLs.


  1. February 15, 2020Alexander said...

    Looks good - I'm impressed by the numbers on the F.66, which will be a fine replacement for the LeO.48 and should make the Sfaxes useful for ASW as well as scouting. I might have gone for more cruisers rather than a second Republique, but we're not doing to badly there, even compared to the Brits. How do you think Kleber will compare with the Austrian CA? Finally, before we lay down some more BBs (which won't be until around 1923) we probably ought to increase our dock size so we can handle 10+ gun 15" BBs.

  2. February 15, 2020Evil4Zerggin said...

    We renewed our security arrangement with Great Britain instead of allying ourselves to Germany

    A good choice, I think. As the other power with global commitments, Great Britain shares more strategic interests with us.

    How do you think Kleber will compare with the Austrian CA?

    My take: When choosing our CA design we had a classic "firepower, speed, armor: pick two" situation. If we went for a Tsukuba-type, we could have had both 11" guns and good armor, but we would have been limited to 23 knots, IMO unconscionable at this year. The Deutschland-type, which we went with, allows 11" guns and good speed, but the 12000 ton limit forces sacrifices in protection. Meanwhile, the heavier 10" designs I gave examples of could achieve both good speed and protection, at the cost of firepower---not helped by the lower quality of our 10" guns and their inherently disfavored penetration statistics for their size in RtW.

    In any case, in a hypothetical duel between Kleber and Maria Theresia, I would be inclined to stay at a distance, perhaps 15-16 kyd, where the range and penetration advantages of the 11" are greatest.

  3. February 15, 2020Alexander said...

    Her armour is much better, but probably not enough to resist 11" shells. Also, the limit on tonnage makes Kleber type cruisers more affordable than a 'maximum' 10" design. I think we made the right decision, though by the '30s we may want faster ships with more deck armour enough to go for bigger and more expensive 10" designs.

  4. February 15, 2020Evil4Zerggin said...

    To be clear, I'm not displeased with our decision, but I do expect it to affect what tactics we use. Our 11" guns will probably punch through Maria Theresia's 7" belt at nearly any range we can fire them; the trouble is that at shorter ranges her 8" guns will also easily punch through our 4" belt. At that point, it's a damage race which, while probably not horrible odds, is riskier than I would go for intentionally unless given some additional advantage such as numbers, good opening hits, etc. Otherwise I would prefer to use the range advantage of the 11". In the counterfactual where we had lighter guns but heavier armor, we would need to close the distance more to penetrate Maria Theresia's armor, but our heavier armor would allow us to do so more safely.

  5. February 17, 2020bean said...

    I'm pretty much with Evil4Zerggin on this. Kleber was designed as a raider hunter, intended to track down and kill CLs, and stand a decent chance against CAs. So the armor's a bit light, particularly because I couldn't bring myself to use +0 quality guns when I had a +1 available, but she's got a lot more firepower than the Austrian ship, which probably plays in our favor.

  6. February 17, 2020Alexander said...

    In my mind the fact that Kleber is that much smaller (and cheaper) is her greatest advantage. The better guns also give her some chance against older BCs (e.g. a faster Duquesne, or an early 12" dreadnought battlecruiser) that Maria Theresia would struggle to harm. At some point we'll have 10" +1 guns, and the funds to build cruisers the size of the Duquesnes, but until then the 11" Deutschland type is probably optimal.

  7. February 18, 2020bean said...

    I checked the specs. The 11" can penetrate 7" armor at 17,000 yards. Our 8" has a maximum range of IIRC 15,000 yards, but can penetrate 4" armor at any range. I didn't read the deck figures closely, but in practical terms, we have at least a small advantage.

    All that said, I think the next CA may go with 4" DP secondaries and have a plane or two, because AIUI those help kill raiders, too.

  8. February 19, 2020bean said...

    Plan for next session:

    Basically, just keep pushing forward. Refits will continue, and when the Infernets are completed, I'll lay down another (single) CL based on that design.

  9. February 19, 2020Alexander said...

    Sounds good, and the 4" secondaries and floatplanes for a future CA also works for me. With tensions low, could we perhaps send some more ships to the reserves/mothball? If we're converting the Duquesnes then we can just mothball them until we're ready to do that. We might also be able to send Lavoisier overseas and being back a CA which could be reserved (or even mothballed). More CAs could return in exchange for Descartes and the Du Chaylas after their refits, and once the Infernets are available. Finally, maybe reserve some of the 21kn BBs if we transfer, say, the Saint Louises to the Med.

  10. February 19, 2020bean said...

    The reason I haven't pulled the CAs back is because they don't cost any more to run than the CLs that we have available to replace them. They're only 6,600 tons, and running cost has a lot more to do with size than type. The Duquesnes are still valuable reserve ships, although tensions are low enough we can probably put them in mothballs. Likewise, I'll look at what to do with the Devastations.

  11. February 19, 2020Alexander said...

    How do you feel about Jeanne d'Arc? She costs quite a bit more than a CL, though she does have an aircraft and 9" guns to make up for that.

  12. February 19, 2020bean said...

    That's basically roleplaying. There's some tension with Japan, and I didn't think it made a lot of sense to not have at least a pseudo-capital ship in SEA.

  13. February 20, 2020Alexander said...

    Well by that criteria she's the cheapest (and most expendable) ship that qualifies. Also her lack of colonial facilities isn't really a problem there, as Isly and Friant cover that. How about using Lavoisier to replace Lalande then? We wouldn't get a cost saving, but the Coetlogons are getting rather long in the tooth.

  14. February 20, 2020bean said...

    I'm working on it. Play was last night, and CL refits got overtaken by the conversion of Duquesne into a proper CV, which cost a lot because I needed to reengine. Other than that, everything is pretty much on track.

  15. February 20, 2020Alexander said...

    Excellent! Is she big enough and fast enough that we could fly torpedo bombers off her? Have we even figured out how to use aerial torpedoes? I wasn't really imagining refitting the Coetlogons, just bringing Lalande home and into the reserves with the rest of her class.

  16. February 20, 2020bean said...

    No, I'm not refitting the Coetlogons. Actually, I should probably just scrap all but Lalande immediately, and get her when I have a replacement ready. The issue is with having said replacement ready.

    As for the carrier, we don't have torpedo bombers yet, but when we do, both the DT-class CVLs and the Duquesnes will be able to operate them.

  17. February 20, 2020Alexander said...

    Ah right, I figured Lavoisier was ready after her refit last May, but I suppose that won't have included the new director.

  18. February 20, 2020bean said...

    Actually, I think I sent her to the South Pacific to replace Bruix, which I plan to scrap. I'm fine with ships in that kind of situation having older directors.

  19. February 21, 2020bean said...

    April 1922 is up.

  20. February 22, 2020Alexander said...

    How is Britain's new 27,500 ton carrier 'light'? That's bigger than Ark Royal!

    The Duquesne conversions are more expensive than I had expected, much more than the D-Ts costed. If that relates to the new engines, how much do we need the extra knot of speed? Can we spare the 7" guns?

    At some point not too many years hence we will want to build some new destroyers, so now might be a good time to focus on the areas of research that would be most helpful there.

    For construction, I'd probably carry on mostly as we have been, i.e. when DuChayla is ready, refit Bugeaud, follow up Kleber with another CA, carry on with the CV conversions, and squeeze in CLs where we can. I don't particularly mind delaying the next Duquesne in exchange for another pair of cruisers, but my instinct is to say that we are paying (a small amount) to hold on to them, so we might as well get them back in service as carriers, while brand new cruisers are more likely to benefit from any technological advances we make over the next year.

  21. February 22, 2020bean said...

    It's actually two different ships. One is a conversion of an existing CA, the other is a new-build. But conversions don't show up on the almanac screen. Look at our CVLs, where DT herself is listed under building tonnage but not counted.

    We need the extra knot to be counted as a CV instead of a CVL. It's kind of weird, because they completed at 24 kt, then lost the extra knot somewhere. I may edit it back in at some point. We should be able to spare the 7" on future ships, but your first carrier has to have a reasonable armament. Normally it's 8", but they're on the very low end of size, and should have been OK with 6", but it wouldn't let me, so I had to go for 7".

    I'm definitely in favor of focusing on destroyer research. We could really use destroyers bigger than 1,100 tons, as that's really tight for everything we want to fit on a destroyer these days.

  22. February 22, 2020Alexander said...

    Finding out that the British are building two CVLs reassured me that vast light carriers aren't a thing, but now I'm wondering what happens if you try and build a 23kn 30,000 ton carrier - is it still a CVL?

  23. February 22, 2020bean said...

    It won't let you, apparently. Threw all sorts of errors when I tried.

  24. February 24, 2020Alexander said...

    Maybe go for more cruisers for now, and have a rethink about whether we want to convert the remaining Duquesnes. There might be the possibility to strip enough weight off during the conversion that they qualify as CVLs and don't need an engine upgrade (though that could be expensive too). If we do decide to scrap them that's not terrible - a lot of potential conflict areas will be within reach of our land based aircraft. Later we can build new carriers that will be more capable and cost effective to operate.

  25. February 26, 2020ADifferentAnonymous said...

    Waiting on the remaining Duquesne conversions makes sense to me, especially since their planes can't attack ships yet. And depending on how technology goes, we might be able to make the final convert-or-scrap decision with a purpose-built CV sketch to compare to.

  26. February 26, 2020bean said...

    Plan for tomorrow:

    Focus on modernization of the CL and CA forces, laying down an improved Infernet when the CV conversion finishes, and an improved Kleber when she completes. Work on getting the rest of our units up to date, too. Expand the docks for the next BB.

  27. February 27, 2020bean said...

    I played tonight, but it looks like I forgot to save the progress, so this week's post will be late.

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