I don't suppose the two sides of this very old argument will ever agree I don't think those looking for a more historic type game want to simply replay hstory. What they are looking for are perhaps more of the challenges their historic counterparts faced.
Granted, never will happen. But thats what the forums are for. Intelligent debate.
Why didn't the Japanese close down the Guadalcanal campaign by parking 150 Betties and 150 Zeros on rabaul like you could in WitP? Maybe it was not quite so easy to do as in WitP? Or maybe not quite so effective as that strategy in WitP?
Well the Japanese in real life didnt have the luxury of knowing what the allies were capible of. They also didnt know the allied order of battle, ect. The WitP player (both sides) has a much better grasp of what tactics to use, what their forces are able to do and more importantly what their opponents are capible of.
Let us not forget that in the real war there were political issues to be dealt with as well as military ones. In addition to the in-fighting between the various branches of the armed forces (of every nation depected) there was also the individual nationialistic politics. India was in the midst of a revolt, China was divided not only between nationalist and communist, but countless warlord states as well. Australia and New Zealand was wanting their troops committed to the North African campaign brought home to defend, which gave Churchill fits. None of this, and much much more, is portrayed in the game, nor can it be.
Why did the allies once established on Guadalcanal not knock Rabaul out with a couple of 200 4E bomber raids from there? Or even before they landed from PM? Perhaps rather than them not thinking of it it just wasn't that easy or effective?
That one is easy to answer: I stated that you probably couldnt stop the 4E bombers, but you could put a dent in them. Well, this is a case in point. Park 300 B-17s on Guadalcanal and then have 4 Jap BBs bombard it. Japs were constantly shelling the airfield there. Now would you park valuable, hard to replace aircraft on a front line base that is getting shelled nightly, or would you put Marine air units there (since no one cared about the Marines, except the Marines)? I know what I would do. Naval bombardment is one way to put a dent in the 4E bombers.
I am certainly not going to disagree that the massing of force is not both a good tactic/strategy and a very effective one. Just about any half way decent military leader tries to do this.
My problem is that in WitP this is too easy to do. And the costs are too cheap. And if anything the effects, which you would expect to be big, are exaggerated. At least with the air model.
I fear that when the allies have sunk a good proportion of the Japanese CVs and have many Essex class CVs themselves the game probably does become a bit of a boring procession. I suspect that the Allies can probably island hop too quickly to give the Japanese much hope of holding out for long. But I may be pleasently surprised. Not too surprised though as in my most advanced games I'm the allies But the interesting part of the war is the first 12-24 months as the initiative is held by one side then the other.
So I am less concerned with mass Essexs in late '44 than mass 4Es in '42 or any of the other unhistoric strategies that many of us either house rule or resist from using. Besides that did happen, while mass carpet bombing raids by 4Es were from 44 onwards and even then used surprisingly little if they were as effective as you suggest. Personally I attribute the St Lo breakout to the US massing a strong enough thrust and the Germans finally running out of highly defendable bockage countryside and defenders in general rather than the carpet bombing.
Cant say I disagree with most of this. As for "massed bombers" in '42, I have a hard time lisening to anyone whine on this. Where exactly are you going to "mass" them and what are you going to hit? Lets examine the options:
1) China. Yes you could, but you would run out of supplies fairly quickly I think, I have never tried it, so I dont know for sure.
2) India / Burma. depends on style of play of course, but as the Japs I prefer to not get into a war of attrition in this area. Its a battle the Japs will lose in the long run, so that means basically everything from Tavoy north gets pasted early and then after that what? Going to accomplish this with or without "massed" bombers.
3) Timor / Kendari / Ambonia. Kendari and Ambonia are well out of escort range, so maybe a good area to train your interceptor squadrons, but as #2 above, eventually these will all be flattened. Japs can always drop in and bombard the allied bomber base also if they get too carried away.
4) Rabul via Moresby (historical). Im going to break this into 2 sub-parts:
4a) Historical -- Japs could hit Morseby with escorted bombers and Rabul was supported by many other airfields in the area, meaning not all thier planes had to base at Rabul. The allies on the other had, dont have that luxury. Moresby is all they have (initially). Other bases in the solomons is good, but not really good for basing "massed" bombers because of the shore bombardment thing. So this means you would be risking your bomber "mass" at a base that you would also have to have its CAP based at, which reduces the numbers of bombers you could "mass" there.
4b) My gambit -- as the Jap player I place a very high priority to taking this menace for no other reason to deny it to the allies. I am not alone in this theroy.
Thats it. That is your choices for "massed bombers" in '42. Not exactly the doom and gloom that people make it out to be. Now one thing I will say is I do NOT agree with the game in the least on 4E bombers being in the "naval attack" role. My personal belief is that they should be allowed to "naval search" (which will occasionally attack a target) but not "naval attack". And I think this is really what people are upset about more than anything.
The mass 4E bombing prior to troops attacking was found to create a problem that nobody seemed to think of. Manuever on a battlefield strewn with bomb craters is difficult at best and can throw the manuever formations into chaos. Imagine trying to recreate this in WITP by using a disruption factor being added to the attacking troops. Counter productive isn't it?
Very true. And on the mobile battlfieds of Europe, that was a problem. In the jungle, there neither side is "blitzing" anything, I dont think it would be much of a problem. In fact, it is entirely possible it would be benefital. Clearing away the concelement hiding the Jap positions, and creating cover for advancing forces.