April 12, 2020

Rule the Waves 2 Game 1 - November 1926


The last six months have not seen a victory on the scale of Texel, but we have continued to win most of our engagements. The biggest loss was one of our fast battleships and a pair of British battlecruisers in a night action, and the largest cause was the stupidity of the British commander, who allowed his flagship to be destroyed in the opening moments of the engagement.

In the past six months, we've laid down two battleships, 2 CLs and a quartet of destroyers. We have ships about to commission as well, 8 destroyers, a CVL and a CL. What will replace them is an open question, although after serious losses to air attack off the German coast, the staff would suggest an emphasis on carriers.

The current fleet

Ships under construction

May 1926

One of our submarines torpedoes and damages a German BB, while one of our KEs is sunk by a mine. We lose 7 merchants and 1 sub while sinking 2 of their merchies. BBs Suffren and Texel laid down. Germany lays down 1 CL, 1 AMC, Italy 2 KE, Japan 1 CA, US 1 BB and 1 CA. UK commissions a BC. 250 VP for blockade.

Battle at Dogger Bank. 2 BBs and a CV with destroyer screen encounter a light German force, and begin to chase down a CL. They eventually manage to bring it to a halt and pound it until it sinks. The result is a minor victory, 698 VP to 0.

June 1926

We commission 4 subs. BC Lille finishes reconstruction. Our spies steal plans for Austrian BC Lissa. Breakthroughs: Lightweight fittings, 3 and 4 in twin dual purpose mountings. We lose 1 merchant to their subs, but sink 1 in return. Germany lays down 1 AMC, 1 CL, the US 1 CA. Germany commissions 1 BC, 1 AMC. UK commissions 1 BC, 1 CVL, Japan 1 CVL. 220 VP for blockade. Design work begins on DD Baliste.

CA Latouche-Treville intercepts a German raider off Brittany. It turns out to be a CL, which takes the first 11" hit in the opening moments of the engagement. Our ship quickly gains the upper hand, pounding the CL. It sinks after a 75-minute engagement. It's a major victory for us, 1093 VP to 58 VP.

July 1926

Enemy dominates the seas around Norway (somehow), costing us 160 VP. BB Marengo commissions into the Navy. German ship AMC Roche sinks after hitting one of our mines.Enemy subs sink 5 merchants, while raiders get 2 and our subs get 1. They lose 2 subs and we lose 1. 4 DD of the Baliste class are laid down, along with 2 Emile Bertin class CLs and 4 SS and 4 SSC. Germany lays down an AMC and a CVL, the UK 2 DD, Japan 1 CL. Germany commissions 1 BC, 1 AMC, the US 1 CA. 240 VP for blockade. Design work begins on CV Bearn, a derivative of CL La Fayette with 41 planes on 17,000 tons.

We launch a raid on coastal shipping in the German Bight in great strength, with 9 battleships and our CV. We run into their battlecruiser group early on, and trade fire at long range. Our ships then come under repeated air attack, with British BB Benbow and our BBs St Louis, Iena and Massena taking torpedo hits. The Germans run east, but we follow, pounding them as best we can. One of the German BCs, a modern ship of the Freya class, ends up closing with us, and we pound it at close range until a turret hit sets the magazines alight. We then chase down a pair of older BCs and engage them at close range, pounding them mercilessly until both sink. A few of our destroyers wander too close to their battlecruisers, and two are sunk. BB Ocean also gets into trouble with some of their battleships, and we maneuver to cover her as we withdraw. The Battle of the German Bight is a major victory gaining us 2 prestige and 13,796 VP, while the Germans get only 5,932.

August 1926

BB Bouvet finishes her reconstruction. We select the Loire 101 as our new medium bomber. Our subs and theirs each go 1 for 1 against the merchies, while their raiders get 4. Germany lays down an AMC, 3 KE and a CL, the UK a DD, the US a CA, Japan a CL. Germany commissions 1 AMC, Italy 1 KE, Japan 2 DD. 220 VP for blockade.

We have another cruiser battle at Dogger Bank. It turns out to be another extremely close-range night melee, only we have no destroyers, and the British battlecruisers who have joined us badly botch their tactical handling, resulting in their flagship being sunk within 20 minutes. In the dusk, the tables appear to turn, with the German BCs being roughly handled and later sunk. However, As the sun fully rises, German BBs appear and mange to sink both BC Glorious and BB Charlemagne. Our last ship, CL Surcouf, is sunk by German torpedo bombers. Astonishingly, the Battle of Dogger Bank counts as only a minor victory for the enemy, costing us one prestige, and giving them 20,662 VP to our 11,002. Public opinion against Britain sours for their incompetence in the opening stages of the battle.

September 1926

A German DD is sunk by a mine. We lose 2 merchies to subs and 1 to raiders. Germany lays down 1 BC, 3 KE, UK 1 CA, 4 DD, Italy 2 KE. Germany commissions 1 AMC, Italy 2 KE, Japan 1 DD, US 1 BC. 240 VP for blockade.

We launch another coastal raid, which sees one of our CLs squaring up against 2 of theirs. An unlucky engine hit slows our ship, although the odds are evened when one of their ships brews up after a turret hit. We quickly gain the upper hand, and pound the other CL as well as several of their destroyers, although one of our destroyers takes a torpedo and goes down. We begin to withdraw, but air attacks on ships nearby (but not under my control) sink CL Lalande. Other nearby ships take out the second enemy CL while my force withdraws. Somehow, the result of the Battle of Borkum Riff is a major victory for us, granting one prestige and 2,734 VP as opposed to 1,333 VP for them.

October 1926

Our spies steal blueprints for German CL Amazone. Breakthrough: Advanced penetrator alloys. Our subs sink 2 merchies for no losses, while theirs take 3 of ours but lose 3 in return. One falls to a raider. Germany lays down a CL, Italy 2 KE, the US a CVL and a CA. Germany commissions an AMC, the UK a BB, Japan a CA. 250 VP for blockade. We buy Britain's new Bristol Bulldog torpedo bomber to reequip our torpedo squadrons.

CA Latouche-Treville intercepts a German raider near the Shetlands. The German CL turns to run, but our CA stays with her and manages to land a couple of hits. Dusk falls, and we briefly lose her, but reestablish contact at closer range. This time, a hit slows the German ship and we close, eventually pounding her below the waves. We gain 1,093 VP to only 45 for the Germans.

February 1927


We are victorious! Germany has agreed to return Alsace-Lorraine, and the war has been brought to an end. While the Army has received the lion's share of the credit, we of the Navy have not been forgotten, and our budget remains reasonably healthy.

Unfortunately, even a reasonably healthy budget is a major step down from what we had in wartime, and we will have to make hard choices. After some initial mothballing, we will balance the budget next month when La Fayette commissions, but we will need to make further cuts if we want to lay down significant new construction, such as Bearn, or more new destroyers. We have recently made advances in that area allowing us to have twin turrets, and the staff would propose a design with four twin 4" turrets.

Our current fleet

Ships under construction

November 1926

Caiman begins reconstruction. The Loire 101 enters operational service. We lose one merchie to subs and 2 to raiders, and sink a sub in return. Germany lays down a BC, the UK a DD and a CL. Germany commissions 1 AMC, 1 KE, Italy 3 KE, US 1 CVL. 250 VP for blockade. Design work begins on CV Bearn (again).

Destroyer action in the North Sea. We seem to get more hits in general, but DD Epee takes a torpedo early in the action and sinks. Our superior gunnery tells, and while some of their force flees to the north, we manage to halt four of their destroyers. Eventually, damage fores our fleet to turn for home, and Escopette sinks on the way from numerous shell hits. When the dust settles, it turns out that we're down those two ships, while the Germans lost 5 destroyers and a corvette. 933 VP for us, 524 VP for them.

December 1926

CL Jurien de la Graviere commissions, along with 6 new destroyers. Our spies steal plans for the Italian BC Regina Elena. Breakthroughs: Secondary director for CL, Double gun mounts on DD, Triple turrets on CL. (This is weird, because we've been doing that for years.) BC Nantes hits a mine and will be in dockyard hands for 2 months. One of our mines sinks German AMC Stella. Our subs sink 2 merchies for 1 loss, while their raiders get 3 of our ships. Germany lays down 2 DD and 3 KE, the UK 1 DD, Italy 1 KE, Japan 1 CL. Germany commissions 5 KE, Italy 2 KE, Japan 1 CVL. 210 VP for blockade. Design work begins on DD Escopette.

Cruiser battle off Norway. 5 capital ships (1 BB and 2 BC from us with 2 British BCs) and our CV are on patrol near Stavanger. Our recon patrols detect them to the west, but before we can arrive, dusk falls. We don't particularly want another night encounter after Dogger Bank, and turn for Stavanger to wait out the darkness. The Germans get bored and turn for home, leaving us with a draw.

January 1927

2 DD commission into the navy. A compromise peace is reached with no border changes. Germany lays down 2 DD, Italy 1 KE, Japan 1 BB. Germany and Italy each commission 1 KE, Japan 1 CL.


  1. April 13, 2020Alexander said...

    Losing Charlemagne hurts, but we're cutting through the German battlecruisers at quite a rate. I'm not sure how much more fearsome their battleships are though? It would be best not to go up against them again without any air cover, at least not within reach of their aircraft, so you're probably right about carriers being our next construction project.

    Could we get a look at the plans for Bearn, as well as alternate designs? Bearn would presumably be relatively quick to build, being similar to La Fayette, relatively small as carriers go, and we've already done the design work. On the other hand, what I really want is ships of around twice her tonnage, capable of maybe 32kn, with armoured flight decks, so I'd like to see what the most capable carrier we could build would cost, and how much longer we'd have to wait until it was ready for service.

    Other designs that are less urgent, but perhaps worth looking into if we have the capacity, would be more of our rather successful CAs (probably an update of Latouche-Treville, but a 2x4 10" mini-Dunkerque would also be an option), or even some larger CLs like the unfortunate Lalande, because eventually we'll want some more modern ships with colonial facilities.

  2. April 13, 2020bean said...

    There are limits on carrier size based on what level of carrier tech you have, and I'm pretty sure your super-Bearn would exceed them, although I'll push it to be as big as possible. As for Bearn herself, I can provide both 17,000 ton (40 plane) and 18,000 ton (45 plane) options. My concern is that we're in a spot where more ships is probably better. We lost at least 2 CLs to air attack, and had a couple of BBs damaged.

    As for battleships vs battlecruisers, it's mostly a matter of how they're used. We'll start seeing the BBs soon enough as their dwindling BC force starts to run out.

  3. April 13, 2020Alexander said...

    What's our current limit on carrier size? How many were you planning on building next year? If we lay down two, we could spend perhaps 3,500/month (so half again what La Fayette costs) on each, as long as we don't start any cruisers.

  4. April 13, 2020bean said...

    Current limit is 24,000 tons. On that, I was able to get a La Fayette derivative with 16 4" guns, 57 planes, and a 1.5" armored flight deck. If I eliminate the armored flight deck, I get 69 planes. In either case, cost is around 2,900 for 24 months.

  5. April 14, 2020Alexander said...

    What's the cost of a Bearn for comparison? And how much protection does 1.5" of flight deck armour provide? Say if took the same hits Franklin did?

    I've been working on the basic assumption that each inch of belt armour protects against an inch of gun calibre, which absolutely fails to account for range/velocity etc, and all the other factors that let you calculate an immune zone. I don't really know how much deck armour is required, other than that ships usually have substantially thinner decks than belts (but maybe that is due to weight constraints?) or how bomb weight compares to shell calibre.

  6. April 14, 2020bean said...

    Bearn is 2,229/month for 23 months. Unfortunately, I don't know quite what model it uses for bomb penetration. For guns, I can extract the tables for a couple of our weapons to give you some idea of what we're looking at. Decks are always thinner because they're much larger (and thus heavier) for a given thickness, and also because shells have much less penetration against decks, for reasons discussed in my series on armor. 1.5" is definitely not nothing, particularly against bombs common in 1926, but it would probably make more sense to put the weight into TDS given combat experience.

  7. April 14, 2020Alexander said...

    For the extra cost, I'd pick one of the 24,000 ton designs. You could well be right about the TDS - torpedo bombers are, if anything, more of a threat than dive bombers, and I seem to recall the Japanese losing several carriers to submarines during WWII. Still keen on armoured flight decks in general though. Any ships we build now have a good chance of still being in service into the '40s, so protection that would still be relevant then would be nice. Perhaps we'll just have to prevent the bombers getting through.

  8. April 14, 2020John Schilling said...

    My understanding of the model is that it takes 2" of deck armor to stop all those annoying "shell splinters damage hull / machinery" hits; I think 1.5" stops 75% of those and so forth. I've usually tried for 2" on capital ships and heavy cruisers for that reason, but at this point it may be a bit much for heavy cruisers and fast battlecruisers. Same deal for shell splinters killing your gun crews, but for turret top and secondary battery armor.

    Also, armor-piercing bombs are a separate technology; if we don't have it yet our enemies likely don't either. With 1920s airplanes, torpedo bombers are definitely the shipkillers and I concur with torpedo defense being a high priority.

  9. April 14, 2020Alexander said...

    Does that imply that deck armour of greater than 2" is mainly for protecting against long range gunfire, rather than bombing? Thanks for the info, it gives me a better idea of the trade off between the designs.

  10. April 17, 2020bean said...

    The war with Germany has ended. Ultimately, we chose to reclaim Alsace-Lorraine, and eschew any other victory achievements that would be visible on the world map. We have already begun to scrap some of our oldest ships and mothball others, but more discussion will be needed on our future course of action.

  11. April 17, 2020Chris Bradshaw said...

    How does the game model Alsace Lorraine's truly spectacular coal & steel production? Lack of steel seems to have been a big contributor to IRL warship production delays, especially in wartime, but does RTw2 try to simulate that?

  12. April 17, 2020bean said...

    It doesn't. I just made up getting Alsace-Lorraine back from Germany (we got a neutral peace on a "we can fight on if needed), although our budget is currently higher than theirs, so maybe there's some truth to it.

  13. April 17, 2020Alexander said...

    Fair enough. I say keep the pressure up, and see if they are in the mood for round two when our Suffrens and carriers are ready.

  14. April 18, 2020bean said...

    February 1927 is up.

  15. April 18, 2020Alexander said...

    If we scrap all the mothballed ships, send the 21kn BBs to the reserve, and send Kleber to the Far East, so we can scrap Jeanne d'Arc, we still won't have quite enough to start a Bearn. What else could we do to save money? Will we have to wait until more ships are finished? I think the arguments in favour of carriers still apply, but if we have to wait for a while, I suppose we could use some 2,000 ton DDs. Could we see the design for one? The Italian BC looks very outdated. Would Kleber have any chance against one?

  16. April 23, 2020bean said...

    Played the next year last night. Got Bearn laid down. Nothing particularly exciting otherwise.

  17. April 23, 2020Alexander said...

    The 24,000 ton version? How did you manage to find the money? Or did you wait a few months before starting construction?

  18. April 23, 2020bean said...

    Yep, the 24,000 ton version. I waited a couple months after the design finished, and started it a little bit before enough construction finished to make it fiscally neutral. We had plenty of cushion.

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