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Re: Leading with Escorts (was Directional screens (armor dropped

From: Thomas Anderson <thomas.anderson@u...>
Date: Sat, 16 Jan 1999 14:01:17 +0000 (GMT)
Subject: Re: Leading with Escorts (was Directional screens (armor dropped

On Fri, 15 Jan 1999, Sean Bayan Schoonmaker wrote:
> >Have to agree with Dean. We've seen and concurred that, given the
> >nature of FT, it makes little sense to build escorts as a war machine
> >(they may have other reasons to exist such as scouting, showing the
> >flag in peacetime etc) and that they should be left behind when
> >serious battle is joined. They pop usually long before they are in
> >range (under the theory I can wham a few rounds at range into a
> >cruiser or DN to minimal effect and no reduction of enemy fire or I
> >can totally eliminate two or three corvettes thus removing them
> >completely and forever from the firing equation).  Leave your escorts
> >and corvettes at home. Unless you have things like sensor rules and
> >handing on targets because then having a screen of corvettes or
> >escorts out to gain info and acquire targets for the big hammer (your
> >caps and cruisers) makes a lot of sense - which may well how things
> >really end up operating. As it stands, heavier ships are a better
> >buy.
> I disagree; escorts are still effective at several tasks, such as
> (ADFC/PDS) and exploiting damaged ships or opennings after the first
> They have the thrust to keep out of the firing arcs of heavier weapons
> after the big-slow-bruisers start turning like cows.

is this true under FB rules? i was under the impression ship size now
made no difference to thrust (if a ship has a certain mass fraction for
drive, it has a certain thrust, irrespective of absolute mass), and so
can have thrust 6 battleships if you want. thus, some of the advantages
escorts go away.

there are, however, some things that escorts are clearly best at. to
escorting bigger ships (hence the name). they can deploy around your
battle squadron and provide air defence more effectively than bigger
could, and they can be used as sacrificial SM decoys. the reason for
is that the defence weapons are quite short-ranged, and so by spreading
the ships out, you can cover more area. this is why escorts are used as
air-defence and especially asw ships today, and why the advent of 
long-range air	defence missiles such as standard/sm2 has seen bigger
defence ships such as the Ticonderoga emerge. i think.

if you use sensor rules, they're good as scouts, too. they also have a
psychological edge against some players - people will ignore the little
ships as not being a threat, so they have a better chance of surviving.
and they do fare better against SMs, nova cannons and other area-effect


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