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Wednesday, May 05, 2004

My assessment of Privateers Bounty is that it is too easy to damage enemy ships

I have been struggling to understand why the Dutch did better in the First Anglo-Dutch War than they do in simulations with Privateers Bounty. My latest theory is that it is too easy to inflict damage on enemy ships (generally). A counterpoint to that is that English 2nd Rates, such as the James and Triumph act as if they were super-dreadnoughts, in their ability to take Dutch fire and not take crew or hull damage.

I suspect that part of the issue could be that using the English burden as a defense factor may not actually be representative of real ship performance. Of course, I have been using a "hull value" for more than a decade, and it was based on dividing the burden by 3. So I have been doing the same thing, myself. I have used a variation of Paul Hague's detailed rules that I developed in 1990, so that I used his "firepower factor", which took the broadside weight, in pounds, and divided by 20. I calculate the "hull value" by dividing the English burden, in tons, by 3. Thus, the Mermaid (5th Rate), of 1651, would have a hull factor computed as follows:

hull factor = 286/3 = 95.

I always round the hull factor. For the "firepower", I do something different. I fix the calculation so that if a ship has a broadside weight greater than zero, then the minimum value is "1". The calculation is:

Round(0.5 + (BroadsideWt / 20)).

Namely, I add 0.5 to the result of dividing the broadside weight by 20, and round the result to the nearest integral value.

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