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3ishop

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It wouldn't? If I take the example overseas forts (like the many european holdings in india) that would be a gamer changer. Suddenly a indian power without naval supremacy would face the problem of either committing to a prolonged siege that may never end or an assault on the fort. And that situation is able to happen thanks to the usage of a supply lines. Now if it was a big army, so you navy can't fully resupply it, I would think its better to have some supply than no supply at all, so not entirelly useless (preferable than just not being able to do stuff).
Oh well, leaving as a debuff totally depends on what you want the game to be. If you want to make conquests way easier, like how it works now, then it makes sense gameplay wise for that case. But if you want the game to be not just a map painter, then a debuff isn't enough.
Even so I don't see how is that bad gameplay wise for non-naval powers to struggle to capture coastal provinces. One of the points I made at the beginning in the thread was navies didn't felt important in warfare. And if having a navy helps and can make you hold a coastal fort then it's exactly what I want to go for.
Lest's not forget, assaulting forts was a thing and artillery usage too. Of course all of this will snowball into the problem that eu4 sieges don't work at all for a system like this. Forts use magic manpower, artillery for some obscure reason isn't available in 1444 and assaulting forts barely makes sense and it's always bad unless the fort has less than 1k garrison. Then you gotta balance it out so its hard to supply coastal forts too... This is kinda why I avoided to suggest any idea of supplying troops using navy and suggesting forts could be resupplied in the main post, it snowballs and looks more like an idea of eu5.

Like I said I don't see Pdox making it so navies can be put on a supply mission due to it breaking the game. AI either getting stuck in never ending sieges and then peacing out after 5 years or wiping out their manpower and getting debt spiral with suicide assaults.

It's not that they will struggle, it would be next to impossible. You make it so you need ships or be a land super power to be able to take a coastal fort. England will have no issues with the 100s years war despite their last real world holding of Calais actually fell in only 7 days with no need for France to use a navy to blockade it.

Artillery does exist in 1444, it's just not that powerful or effective. Same way we have undermining which was common but time consuming and things like trebuchets, that's how you can get wall breeches without having any units of artillery in the army. They are representing those guns that started to see use on the battlefield but covering their added benefit during sieges.

Yeah assaulting them is bad and why it's currently broken, you need to change a lot more than just the fleet mission but also the entire assault mechanic. Attacking a fort was generally bloody and expensive but in EU4 it is just suicide.

That's a good observation that I forgot, sea tiles in eu4 don't have weather conditions that would cause attrition to ships like land. In fact ships only take attrition if faced a specif coastal battery (which you can ignore by having maritime) or going outside of your naval supply range.
Yeah, it's also skipping over that even during the Napoleonic wars there wasn't the top tier ships sitting outside of blockaded ports but would generally be light ships that could deal with merchant ships but were fast enough to escape any larger warships. France did manage to sneak out a few times to move ships from port to port during the war. Something more like the HoI detection system would help there to make smaller forces able to act out more.
 

Arizal

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@Xary Moft Thanks for the good words. I happen to think the devs could have tackled a lot more problems and design flaws before calling it a day and work on mission trees and monuments, which I’m not shy to say I dislike.

Military access should probably still ne restrained, as you say. One way if doing that could be to restrain it to overlords, meaning a dependant subject (not a tributary) couldn’t ask for military access. I’m often just waiting that my subjects gain the military access I’m after…

Also, maybe AIs should grant military accesses to only countries they like and countries they don’t dislike which are at war against their rivals, as opposed got right now when they can give military access even to countries they dislike.

As for the penalty for straits, I would imagine the movement speed could mimic the one for disembarkment speed. I’m not sure attrition is the solution here, though. It seems counterintuitive if there is a fort. In the absence of logistics, I think a combat modifier and a movement speed penalty might be enough to incentivize the ottomans, Spain, etc to control their straits. It slows reinforcements and gives a chance to their enemies go have a big combat advantage.
 
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Xary Moft

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Like I said I don't see Pdox making it so navies can be put on a supply mission due to it breaking the game. AI either getting stuck in never ending sieges and then peacing out after 5 years or wiping out their manpower and getting debt spiral with suicide assaults.
Yeah, it doesn't work in eu4. Kinda why I went for transportation of troops and military access.
It's not that they will struggle, it would be next to impossible. You make it so you need ships or be a land super power to be able to take a coastal fort. England will have no issues with the 100s years war despite their last real world holding of Calais actually fell in only 7 days with no need for France to use a navy to blockade it.
I mean if it was balanced in a proper way the english wouldn't be able to do. And by all accounts even with the current system of siege a 7 day siege wont ever happen unless the fort is empty nor england even holding calais to 1558. The way I was thinking is ships wouldn't be able to fully supply forts early game at all, with basically only food supply and barely any reinforcements (like 10 men pur month). England would need to dedicate their entire fleet for such matter leaving itself vulnerable to a french counter-attack at sea. With technology and larger ships you would probably be able to supply those forts but then you also unlock betters forts with more garrison, so more men and material to supply them, the only key diference is that later in game you would have more ships. On the other hand the enemy land power would probably have a ton of artillery that can blitz the fort and cause a ton of damage to the garrison in a short amount of time.
Artillery does exist in 1444, it's just not that powerful or effective. Same way we have undermining which was common but time consuming and things like trebuchets, that's how you can get wall breeches without having any units of artillery in the army. They are representing those guns that started to see use on the battlefield but covering their added benefit during sieges.
I meant in eu4 artillery doesn't exist in 1444. You only unlock it way later. It would need to be added, and probably use more as a way to cause moral damage to a enemy garrison in a fort.
Yeah assaulting them is bad and why it's currently broken, you need to change a lot more than just the fleet mission but also the entire assault mechanic. Attacking a fort was generally bloody and expensive but in EU4 it is just suicide.
I would go really far into changing mechanic. Some ideas I have is to add moral to the garrison in the fort. So if you make an endured long siege (lests say 1 year) of constant artillery attacks (and other siege tactics) the garrisons moral would go down, allowing for the possibility of a successful assault on the fort. This would prevent the extreme case of a land power that has the resources to take fort not being able to bc assaulting is suicide and the enemy is constantly reinforcing the fort in time. Needles to be said the combat for assaulting the fort would need to be changed more, the terrain for example doesn't have any affect, assaulting calais is the same as assaulting a fort in a mountain. Making it so that assaulting on plains where the fort lacks defense advantaged should be easier than a mountain. And now with the moral for garrisons I said early, it would cause interesting side affects that the player no longer needs to deplete fort to 0 garrison when assaulting, the garrison might just surrender in the middle for your assault when the moral runs out. The attacker getting a lot of loses (I think it's 5x) could be maintained to represent it was still bloody.
Yeah, it's also skipping over that even during the Napoleonic wars there wasn't the top tier ships sitting outside of blockaded ports but would generally be light ships that could deal with merchant ships but were fast enough to escape any larger warships. France did manage to sneak out a few times to move ships from port to port during the war. Something more like the HoI detection system would help there to make smaller forces able to act out more.
And complety agreed, hoi4 does a good job making blockades and the chances of ships sleeping though a blockade possible. EU4 only gives the option for light ships to be the most cost-effective ship at blockades, who if you build heavy ships in the province they are blockading on you can then procced to kill them.
 
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Xary Moft

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@Xary Moft Thanks for thé good words. I happen to think the devs could have tackled a lot more problems and design flaws before calling it a day and work on mission trees and monuments, which I’m not shy to say I dislike.
No problem. This might be a bit of topic for this thread but since you toched on the subject what designs flaws do you think mission tree's and monuments have? I also have a quite share of problems with them but I do like to hear yours.
Military access should probably still ne restrained, as you say. One way if doing that could be to restrain it to overlords, meaning a dependant subject (not a tributary) couldn’t ask for military access. I’m often just waiting that my subjects gain the military access I’m after…

Also, maybe AIs should grant military accesses to only countries they like and countries they don’t dislike which are at war against their rivals, as opposed got right now when they can give military access even to countries they dislike.
Exactly! Those ideas would work really well, at least for sure it would prevent the AI spamming military access it does nowadays (and has weird consequences of AI placement of troops).
As for the penalty for straits, I would imagine the movement speed could mimic the one for disembarkment speed. I’m not sure attrition is the solution here, though. It seems counterintuitive if there is a fort. In the absence of logistics, I think a combat modifier and a movement speed penalty might be enough to incentivize the ottomans, Spain, etc to control their straits. It slows reinforcements and gives a chance to their enemies go have a big combat advantage.
Fair, after some thoughts it occurred to me that attrition could be cheesy (aka you could bypass it if you time it well between month tics) and would generate weird stuff if you don't time it well.
Disembark speed makes sense (you basically doing it anyway). And you are right, considering the current mechanics a combat malus is probably the best solution available for a opportunity cost between movement of troops in the strait.
 

k4sp3r00

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Seeing eu4 dev team committing to balance the game, reducing power creep and fixing bugs has motivated me to make this thread and try to help them. My objective is to talk about some of the major complains about navies in eu4 and other stuff I think it can be improved on. From there we can determine some solutions as a suggestions.
I can almost say in full confidence that everyone in the community had some kinda of problem with navies, from personal experience every time I ask someone what do they think of navies in eu4 they say "the navy is broken".
So we will slowly talk them in 4 categories for better understanding. Do remember you can't talk about one without taking into account about the other, these problems are all connected with each other. Also It may take some time to read. ;)

Admit it, you at least heard someone say this about eu4, they aren't wrong, they do feel useless. This isn't a unknown issue, in the past (1.30) blockades were changed to make navies feel more impactful. But even after those changes, it still feels relatively useless and people keep complaining, why? There are some answers to this. To start of most of these complains are because of warfare, since outside of warfare (trade, piracy, subject liberty desire etc) the navy actually preforms well and doesn't feel useless. Now eu4 is based on land armies, so it isn't surprising the navy usually preforms a supportive role for the army, since you can't gain land without using a army or occupy land without an army. Thanks to that the navy already feels not that important. That is fine as long the supporting role of the navy is useful and has impact. Looking at the feedback right now, that isn't the case. Lest's go layer by layer of what the navy would normally do in a war.
Here are some examples:

-Imagine you are Byzantium and managed to gain naval supremacy against the ottos to block the strait. So what now? You would think you would block their access, but no, they will still cross and get you since they own both sides of one strait or they will just ask military access to all nations in the north (crimea etc) walk all that way to get to you.
-
Here is another example, you are Portugal AI and england gets declared by burgundy, your navy combined with england achieved navy supremacy and you think you would be safe. Worry not, burgundy got military access to all western europe, even your ally castile to get to you.
-You are the papal states ande declared war on venice, you managed to get naval supremacy while their army was still on their island, one person would think you managed to trap them. But they still crossed to the mainland since they owned both sides of the strait, despite not having naval supremacy.

-You are the PLC and declare war on denmark (that has a holding in latvia), now you probably need to use your navy to get into denmark, but no need, the denmark AI asked most of the northern HRE military access so you can just walk to mainland denmark and enforce your demmands.


I believe you can see where I'm driving at, military access is one major problem. Military access in eu4 allows your army to enter enemy land from neutral parties AND on top of that it's so easy to get them. But eu4 doesn't stop there, there's the "conditional access" mechanic, if one party gets access everyone in the war gets it. The results are usually that the player doesn't even need to ask military access, the AI (even if it is the enemy one) does it for the player.
The moment eu4 military access becomes something hard to get, something that isn't always a guarantee or be abused by the AI, or simply making it impossible to invade someone from a neutral party, navies suddenly become a necessity. You now would want to use one of the biggest advantages of navies, which is the transport of personnel (at the moment only colonizers have some use for that) to certain places.
A counter point to this is the AI (it's always the AI, I can't cout how many good things were cut bc of the AI) doesn't know how to naval invade or transport troops, the eu4 devs showed in the dev diaries claim that the AI can now naval invade properly in 1.32, if that's the case I no longer see any reason not to change military access. It would help so much the importance/use of navies for non-colonizers.
The other major problem is blockading crossings and straits. Should owning both sides of a crossing make it possible to always cross it? I do like to hear people thoughts on this one. The current way it's a double edge sword, while it gives the players some strategic reason to take the straits, it makes the navies more useless. But on the other hand if we make navies able to block straits even tho you may own both sides of it, it makes the crossings lose strategic value. I don't have any ideas on how to improve this one, I can only say that personally I would prefer that navies could block the passage of troops even tho you may own both sides, it will make navies feel more important and the crossing can still maintain their uniqueness, which is to allow troops to pass one side to another without the use of transport ships.
If we wanted to make navies even more important, it would be the supply system. Sadly EU4 doesn't have a supply system and probably never will, since the devs said adding new mechanics are out of the picture. It is something we can hope for eu5, "Amateurs talk about tactics, but professionals study logistics".
Regardless if we make navy important, we need to improve the naval combat so it doesn't feel broken and unbalanced. Naval combat saw many improvements over the years. In 1.30 it was addressed the biggest complain about navy combat with the added mechanic of "Ship disengagement chance". But the power creep and balance of naval combat remains to be fixed.
If you have any experience in naval combat you know what I'm talking about and this is generally the reason why people say "navy is broken".
A lot of people argue the main culprit of the problem is Global naval engagement. If you don't know, unlike the combat width of land warfare, the naval engagement width of the two participants are independent, that means one participant could have wider engagement width than the other. The results are obvious, the guy with the most width has the best advantage so he wins, since he has more ships in the fight. The naval game is so determine by how much ships are in a fight that it was only natural when galleys were changed to 0.5 width they became the kings of the high seas.
You may ask me, are there any modifiers or any disadvantage to this... the answer is no. I remember in one game, Portugal had 400 heavy ships while France only sent 100 to battle, it was a diference of 4 to 1, but since France had better global naval engagement it destroyed Portugal ships and on top of that it captured most of them. France advantage of more heavies in battle was enough to win. If this was land combat, Portugal would had won.
I'm yet to see a strat that overpowers someone having more width. Which is why the biggest feedback and the solution people come up with is to make naval engagement the same as land, both sides should have the same engagement width. Strait up remove all modifiers and make both sides have equal amount of global width in battle. The theory goes It would make naval warfare more accessible for common naval nations. It's the easy fix problem that people come up with, "oh that thing is a problem? REMOVE IT" but I doubt it can be that simple to solve it and I think it would create some unforeseen side effects (like maneuver pips would be useless in battle). And what if PDX doesn't want to remove it? In my honest opinion, you don't even need to remove that modifier and make it work the same as land combat, you can just nerf most of those modifiers and make them really hard to get and stack. This is a power creep problem, lests try balacing it first before going into the idea of "removing it".
For example:
Admirals maneuver pips should only give 5% or less (3% or 2% are ideal), also all 20% global naval engagements should be cut to more than half to a maximum of 10% while all others that had 10% would get 5% or removed.
If are wondering "woah those values look so low" you are right, but don't forget, its a enormous advantage 1 more ship engaged in battle against your opponent and you need to consider that those are all % modifiers (and that naval engagement width increases by tech), so it is actually quite balanced.
For example lest's use 3% pur pip:
A 2 maneuver admiral that would give 6%, at dip tech 12 gives he would add 3 width, that's 1 heavy. A 6 pip (18%) would add 9 width, 3 heavies. If we compare to old values a 6 pip admiral would add 30 width (10 heavies). That's a dip tech 12, imagine at dip tech 24...
You still maintain maintain your higher quality from having good admirals but it wont be a power creep. Some may argue it does not resolve the "problem", after all one side still has more ships engaged than the other. But it wont be a giant diference of more than 10 heavies, that's beyond overkill and can only be countered if you had the same modifiers. This way I think it would maintain the integrity of the naval combat system while allowing weaker naval nations not to get trashed so hard they enter into another dimension.
Of course this requires testing, I did not test this. It's all theory and math. I don't have the time to do a mod and test this stuff. If you wanna do it for the funs of it, go right ahead and please share the results. I may be wrong here, and the best solution may be to strait up remove it. Just remember when doing the tests to give the side with less width double the ships of more.

Now we are moving on to naval ideas. If you take naval ideas, no one can beat your navy, even GB, they need naval ideas. That's a fact and has been proven. The power creep of naval ideas is insane, it has moral, naval engagement and heavy/galley combat ability. Those alone are enough and yet we aren't even counting the rest of the idea group and its policies. While I do agree that if you have more quality you should win, I don't think you should annihilate your enemy because he didn't had naval. That doesn't happen when you select quality ideas, nor in the land combat. You can get neat buffs but they don't make you be able to preform 10 heavies against 60 and somehow annihilate them. There's no other idea group in the game besides naval ideas that makes someone take that certain idea so he wont get trashed. Naval ideas need to get it's naval modifiers nerfed. The naval engagement width could/should be remove, the heavy/galley combat ability be reduced by 5% or 10%. You could even trade some naval modifiers with a simple army bonus like "marine training 10% ICA". This way you could keep some pretty minimal army quality while focusing on your navy. And although naval ideas makes you win battles thanks to superior naval quality, it wont trash everyone ships that didn't got naval ideas. Hopefully.

Before GB needs a nerf, their naval modifiers are too powerful. It's a bit tiring hearing people complain about that. The national ideas guarantee more than 20% naval moral and god tier admirals, this should be enough but GB gets more. I know the memes of "GB rules the waves" but look, they weren't invincible and it's not healthy for the game balance to have Doom ships that are unable to be sink patrolling the seas. My suggestion would be to strait up remove one modifier, for example heavy ship combat ability (20% moral is too iconic). If changes were to occur on global naval engaged width, it would be an indirect nerf to GB (their god tier 6 maneuver admiral wouldn't increase their combat width by 60%) so maybe its possible to just nerf the modifier by -5% instead of strait up removing it. This still requires some testing.
Other stuff like naval theocracies should have their naval moral reduce to 10%. Naval theocracies are a bit overpowered at the moment. There's probably more balance complains I could write, but I can't remember everything.
I have other complains for example on why cannons are the only thing that does damage in both fire phase and shock phase (this created the meme of the natives canoes having 1 cannon). I believe this system could be innovative like land combat, where fire phase is the actual fire phase (cannons or arrows go brr) and the shock phase is the moment where your crew boards ships. But alas that probably is asking too much, it probably falls into the trap of reworking something/add new mechanic. The devs stated they don't want to add new stuff until everything is fixed/balanced so this can wait. But at least it sounds like something cool on paper.
Now a sad flaw about the navy is the lack of ship diversity in game. All ships designs are european. This makes the navy the same everywhere, it's bland, borin, you know there's a lack of flavour and there isn't nothing unique about it. You may well be China but your ships will be european, only things preventing this is the skins packs. But we know the Chinese didn't build ships like the portuguese, nor did the Indians and the natives etc. Different types of ships should be unlock with tech (like how land armies work) depending on your tech group you would get a certain type of ship. Tech groups exist for a reason. Furthermore some nations could/should even get special type of ships. Iberian nations should have the latin caravel as their special unit. And you know you want the "turtle ship" for Korea. Those are only a few example for unique ships types. This would immediately create a feel of unique ships and make navies more diverse than ever, just like land armies are. I know this is something possible to do, I remember seeing mods do it. While this might be something a bit awkward to implement and I do admit personally I'm not a fan of the army system of selecting unit types, I dislike more that everyone uses the same european style type of ship design and there's no variation of ships. Also if we have a system like this and we aren't getting a new one, might as well use it. By using it, it would be more creative, unique and fun to have different kind of ships for each tech groups battleing between each other. Skin packs don't count. The special ship desings for certain countries is something Im toying around because it has great potencial, but probably not necessary.
If you are wondering on what grounds would different ship types be, there's some stuff, for example the sailor cost, the ducats/maintance for the ship, the width of the ship, the amount of cannons, hull size and speed. There's actualy a lot of stuff to make different ship designs.
The main problem is that the only source of damage for ships are cannons. So I can see that it would be hard to balance it out or if it is impossible to work. I'm also not sure if this goes too far from the devs agenda on not pushing too far and breaking the game. And the community may not like the idea of different ship types for countries and actually prefers that everything remains the same for the sake of balance and simplicity. Although that would be rather strange, keeping tech groups for the army and making their army units late game weak compared to western ones but for ship warfare everything is the same... for me we are better of using the system already in-game. What are your guys thoughts?

EU4 tech's are a bit weird and institutions are already changing them to the better. But I want to point out that eu4 technology tree is "wrong". Ignoring the fact that the eu4 wiki has the dates when you unlock each tech in game wrong (for example dip tech 7 is supposed to be in 1492 but in game its set to 1479), the historical dates when you unlock ships are also wrong. For example the portuguese caravel was first use in 1450, but in eu4 we unlock the caravel in 1500s. I can only guess the reason for this was because while iberian nations were using it (like Portugal and Castile) most of western and the rest of the world wasn't? I have no idea. But this is no excuse for wrong dates and only proves my point that we probably need unique ship types. Furthermore it isn't just the caravel wrong, stuff like carrack and galleons are also wrong. I'm no expert in naval history but I know for a fact that most naval units in the tech tree are wrong, so If a kind soul that knows more could be enlighten us on what are the actual dates of the ships, it would be great. This way we may help PDX to get some of the dates fixed.
I believe some people may be thinking now "this doesn't look like a big flaw" well compared to others before (like the power creep of naval combat) it isn't, but it is still a big error to only be able to unlock a ship more than 50 years later of it's creation. Also while PDX is at it, I suspect that the in-game tech's should correspond to the eu4 wiki, since dip tech 7 unlocks the extra colonial range. If thats the case, eu4 wiki makes sense for claiming to be in 1492 (discovery of the new world), but in game it is set to 1479, there are other tech's in other dates too. I don't have the time to list all of them. Im not sure if this qualifies as a "bug" but the tech's need to get checked and get their dates fixed.
I think no one has complains about the need to fix the dates in the technology. But if you have voice your concern down there.

That about sums up. Don't ask me why the tech tab has more space between it and the others, I dont know how to fix it. Please be respectful and I would like to hear people thoughts about this and their suggestions on the issues I presented. Maybe you can write others flaws which I forgot or didn't had time to write. Also some feedback on the new suggestion would be great, I took a lot of time to reflect about them but Im no lord genius that will get everything right. Even if they sound good, they can have some obscure drawback that could make stuff worse than the current state (most stuff is theory and from personal experience, I do not have the time to mod and test this stuff).
I am a naval apologist and I feel the current situation is good.
1. Navies feel useless
Yes it is true. You cannot cheese by blocking straits as easily. This has always been bullshit cheese and I'm not sad to see it go. Blockades are impactful after the changes outright and the popular opinion comes from people that have not played after the changes. Both the money and the WS give enough bonuses to care about them. Not helping with land wars is false since you get warscore which is good for wars that don't end in 100% WS and these certainly exist. The military access debate is a dead horse and it is not half as bad in reality as you make it out to be, the opinion mapmode reliably tells who will give access and who won't to your enemies and you will often run into cases where military access will not be granted even though you need it. Either way you still need transports to cross the seas to islands or the new world so they are far from useless. Transports are also key to any sane WC because (very historically) troops move faster by sea than by land. Indeed logistics which you mentioned are key here, you could move those 10 provinces by land yes but it's 10x faster to do it by sea and WC (and eu4 itself to a lesser extent) is all about efficiency so you do move by sea. Heck I would even argue it is in many cases profitable to get transports for shifting around troops even if you are going to do literally nothing else naval in that game.

2. Naval combat
Your analysis is false. Yes naval combat snowballs, no it is not combat width alone that causes the snowball. Any and all naval quality modifiers (except maybe durability) allow snowballing of the combat and morale in specific is key (more so than combat width) as it is morale specifically that makes the fights cascade in terms of game mechanics allowing those 100v400 wins. This is not a problem since, much like land combat, you can feed in ships piecemeal to counter this somewhat, at least forcing the other party to fall back and repair which takes a long time. This is counterintuitive and ahistorical but certainly works. It also means that because naval combat takes a long time, you can in theory end up in a situation where neither side truly has control of the seas which is fun and mostly historical (in your example the 400 ships would at the very least be able to blockade stuff or screen transports for years or even decades before being fully wiped by the stronger fleet). The same example brought up capture chance. It is pretty negligible in my experience unless you take the doctrince which is a meanigful decision since the other doctrines are good as well. You cannot run a fleet off of nothing but captured ships unless you have a massive advantage. If your Portugal vs France example was indeed such a stomp I assume there must have been some other forces in play like dice rolls or godlike admirals, one measly bonus does not tip the scales that much in any situation much less against Portugal who has both the -morale per ship sunk and disengage chance modifiers helping prevent these kinds of stomps which in my experience certainly do their job, something you did not contest either. What comes to naval ideas I do not agree. Even currently they are considered the weakest idea group. If you ever decide you need naval ideas they must be able to actually do their thing which is giving you a free win in the seas 99% of the time. Even you yourself said you prefer maritime which I admit I do too. If naval was nerfed there would be no reason to play naval ever! You would just go maritime instead. This is true for SP and MP. Having a "wasted" slot hurts equally in both and naval is the epitome of a wasted slot in most cases as it does literally nothing but win you the seas. Maritime at least helps leverage any possible advantage gained from winning the seas. The options to leaving naval as is are that no one plays naval or that naval loses its identity as a naval idea group. Both bad options. What comes to GB in particular their OPness compared to other naval nations comes purely from the coastal buff. Fight them on the high seas and no biggie. Fun gameplay, yes? Better yet they act as a naval endboss like so many land nations for land wars. Also I can confirm that they are not unbeatable with proper play. I won Oman vs GB on the seas, even fighting on the coast though it was rough. Other naval bonuses should not be nerfed either I think. You must remember that people do not value fleet bonuses at all. They must be good for people to care. Also admirals were brought up. Admirals being OP is historical as it gets and is fun gameplay. Actually caring when that god admiral dies is enjoyable gameplay in my book even if it subjects you to the whims of the RNG.

3. The rest
Personally I think the naval game is fun and balanced, with the complaints you forget the many good parts of the system like the transport/light/galley/heavy split. Many players will ignore naval forever because eu4 is a complicated game and navies are the last thing to learn about which makes sense. Forcing people to play navies would fuck any noobs in the ass so you must also be allowed to just not do navies in some cases. Naval trade empires were also mentioned in several cases. This being the republic etc. that just grabs the trade provinces and literally nothing else. I don't see how being able to just outright win in the seas if you want to breaks this playstyle. Imagine you couldn't for a minute. Your venezian empire suddenly loses its whole fleet for no good reason. We both know that you won't recover from something like this, ergo it cannot happen. This would be worse than a coalition war in most cases. Also, with that kind of gameplay the bigger limitation is the land war part. It's not so easy to do the "grab the trade provinces" part of the strategy. Often you just get fucked by having a smaller army which was not necessarily the case historically and which is not fun gameplay. At least I agree. Tech and ship types would be good improvements. I don't know if people care enough about naval stuff for the devs to actually spend yet more time on fixing it though especially since the current system is mostly right.
 
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I am a naval apologist and I feel the current situation is good.
In my opinion (which is strictly limited to SP), main problem is that AI is very weak at managing its units, and it's especially frustrating in case of fleets. It seems to me that AI is equally bad at both land and naval war, however in case of land war it's toned down by huge impact of FoW and slow speeds of armies. Fleets are much more mobile and it's much easier to get most of important sea tiles always visible.

From what I've seen in 1.31 and 1.32, AI is almost always cowardly sitting in nearby ports when allied or their own small fleets are engaged in unequal fight. It would make much more sense to join a battle, and then retreat together if outcome is unfavorable, because damage would be spread onto more ships and there is a chance to keep more ships alive (and then got repaired in port after retreat). Also, retreat province doesn't have to be the nearest one, it could be used to escape from port which is sieged by land forces, yet AI never does it. Also, throwing all best forces into the fight, even if it's unequal, makes more chance to sink some enemy ships, or at least deal heavy damage to some of them. No, they prefer to coward out and be destroyed piecemeal.

On the other hand, other enemy fleets consisting of light ship and transports may carelessly wander through open seas, ready to be intercepted and destroyed. Allied fleets fail to help each other if countries are distant enough, e.g. England and Spain.
 
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Thanks, @Xary Moft Your idea about siege replenishing is interesting as well. I guess it could work like the defensive edict, for a minimal level of complexity. That way, a fort would still be possible to take, but it would take longer when it's coastal and supported by a fleet, which I think is the goal here.
I am a naval apologist and I feel the current situation is good.
I am not going to answer to all your comments because I have no imput to give on naval combat, but this piked my curiosity :
1. Navies feel useless
Yes it is true. You cannot cheese by blocking straits as easily. This has always been bullshit cheese and I'm not sad to see it go.
Yet that's exactly the role those straits had historically. How were you supposed to take Constantinople without controling the Bosphorus, or Copenhagen without surrounding it with a fleet? Removing the role of straits removes an important element of strategy, albeit one you don't see very often.
Blockades are impactful after the changes outright and the popular opinion comes from people that have not played after the changes. Both the money and the WS give enough bonuses to care about them. Not helping with land wars is false since you get warscore which is good for wars that don't end in 100% WS and these certainly exist.
You are right. Blockade was made interesting lately since you directly gain money and warscore for them and wreck your ennemies. Thus a big napoleonian empire against GB in late game could be in trouble. It's not logistic, but it gives some use to fleets.
The military access debate is a dead horse and it is not half as bad in reality as you make it out to be, the opinion mapmode reliably tells who will give access and who won't to your enemies and you will often run into cases where military access will not be granted even though you need it.
I disagree on that. I think probably the most important military access I missed was the one time I invaded Byzantium and the Ottomans (my rivals) didn't give military access. Otherwise, since there is the dual military access mechanics, usually you get military access even from the people who hate you. It's not only about who is willing to give you military access, but also about who is going to give military access to your friends and ennemies. Too often, you end up being able to walk the whole world without much difficulties.
Either way you still need transports to cross the seas to islands or the new world so they are far from useless.
I need a navy for just a few situations in EUIV. Often, those happen late game and I don’t need to invest in fleets until much later.

- invade England (and even then, if I take the islands in Scotland I can probably invade it without naval dominance)
- invade the Ottoman Empire (if i have enough troops, I can pass by the Caucasus, though)
- invade Indonesia
- take a foothold in America
- take Japan
- take Ceylon

That's all. True it can depend on where you are playing, and a landlocked country won't have a fleet, but as it is it doesn't feel like fleets have the importance they had in real life. Maybe Liberty Desire could be affected by the strenght of your fleet, to at least simulate that if your fleet is completely sunk you have no way to reach them? Otherwise, logistics, the system the devs refuse to add, would be an obvious key to make the control of the seas necessary. I mean by logistics attrition if you don't bring enough supply to your troops in hostile territory a continent away (or even a few provinces if there is no direct route to your country). Occupying a single province shouldn't be enough to supply a large army
Transports are also key to any sane WC because (very historically) troops move faster by sea than by land. Indeed logistics which you mentioned are key here, you could move those 10 provinces by land yes but it's 10x faster to do it by sea and WC (and eu4 itself to a lesser extent) is all about efficiency so you do move by sea. Heck I would even argue it is in many cases profitable to get transports for shifting around troops even if you are going to do literally nothing else naval in that game.
You are right on this, but the problem is still that once you have a foothold in a region, even one single province, you can bring 80k people there without any problem. Portugal invading India from Goa will have no problem fielding huge armies whereas historically it would have been a... logistical nigtmare.
 
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I mean if it was balanced in a proper way the english wouldn't be able to do. And by all accounts even with the current system of siege a 7 day siege wont ever happen unless the fort is empty nor england even holding calais to 1558. The way I was thinking is ships wouldn't be able to fully supply forts early game at all, with basically only food supply and barely any reinforcements (like 10 men pur month). England would need to dedicate their entire fleet for such matter leaving itself vulnerable to a french counter-attack at sea. With technology and larger ships you would probably be able to supply those forts but then you also unlock betters forts with more garrison, so more men and material to supply them, the only key diference is that later in game you would have more ships. On the other hand the enemy land power would probably have a ton of artillery that can blitz the fort and cause a ton of damage to the garrison in a short amount of time.
Not really, it's such a short distance that they could supply the fort if they set ships to it, otherwise it's an ability that wont work. While ships get bigger over time so does the size of the forts and their garrison. Expect that to balance each other out. Only thing would be some nations that get larger can support larger fleets.

Ultimately the only use of it would be to drag out the siege to try and peace out overtime. You'd be excepting you couldn't win the land war and that doesn't really help in the long run. Unless you go British style and just take their colonies and leave their armies at home but the current system already allows that.

I meant in eu4 artillery doesn't exist in 1444. You only unlock it way later. It would need to be added, and probably use more as a way to cause moral damage to a enemy garrison in a fort.
I know, it's my point. The units we get and intended to cover those used in combat. We do have some of the earlier and less effective ones which were only useful for sieges. They were less for harming people and more for damaging the defences/buildings.