From: La Salle, Colorado
In case Stanislav doesn't have the chance to jump in (he is deeply involved in finishing off RA 3.0) these are his comments Posted at the start of the RA Thread as to the aircraft industry:
This scenario assumes, that with Yamamoto assuming the position of the Aeronautics Department's head in 1936 and becoming the Naval Minister later, he intensifies Japanese naval aviation development a bit, and attempts to optimize the utilization of limited engineering and production resourses. Chief engineers of aircraft design teams are given slightly greater input in formulating development directions and cooperation between various aircraft manufacturers is assumed to be somewhat improved.
In particular, the concept of dedicated land-based interceptor is abandoned and the Mitshubishi fighter design team under Jiro Horikoshi remains free to concentrate all of its efforts on modifying A6M and creating its successor A7M. Horikoshi's proposal to install the more powerful Mitsubishi Kinsei engine on Zero is approved in 1942, instead of late 1944, and A7M is developed to use Mitsubishi Ha-43 engine, as he desired, from the beginning. A6M3 is developed into a whole line of Zeros that sacrifice range in favor of superior armament and pilot protection, and eventually are officially designated as pure land-based models. IJN maintains the policy of sticking to just one single-engine fighter airframe, until Kawanishi team develops N1K1-J Shiden as a private initiative (this happens slighltly earlier than in RL, because alternate projects of land-based interceptors, that tied Kawanishi resourses, do not exist). It is adopted as a stopgap measure until availability of A7M.
As a side effect of greater effort put into development and production of Mitsubishi Kinsei (Ha-33) and Mitsubishi Ha-43 engines, several planes that historically used these engines are added to the mod (if they existed only as prototypes by the war's end), or accelerated.
Aircraft weapon development is streamlined, with a push for unification with IJAAF in this area (historically, IJN and IJA did cooperate in aircraft weapon production, in this scenario their cooperation becomes much broader). Instead of attempts to produce licensed German machine guns, that ultimately failed to provide the fleet with sufficient numbers of them, IJN switches to the more powerful Army 7.7 catridge and eventually adopts 12.7 Ho-103, the first aircraft HMG developed in Japan. This allows for improved armament on some planes, mostly 2E bombers.
This scenario also assumes mild overall boost to Japanese aircraft industry (at the cost of reduction in starting resources). As a result, several planes that historically faced severe problems with transition from prototypes to mass production, such as B6N, D4Y and G4M2, become available a bit earlier. G8N1, the Japanese 4E bomber that was successfuly tested but not mass-produced in real life, becomes available in 1945.
In addition, there are many minor tweaks to various aircraft, intended to make their statblocks and performance closer to historical. The changes that can affect gameplay most noticeably include:
-Early Japanese fighters (Ha-35 Zeros and Ki-43) have their high-altitude MVR reduced.
-G4M has slightly better durability, G3M sligtly worse, to give G4M an edge over the older plane it historically had.
-E16A1 Paul no longer has artificially reduced normal range.
-Ki-44 uses Nakakima Ha-34 engine, instead of Ha-35, for historical accuracy.
-Late Ki-61 versions are slightly improved. Ki-100s are significantly improved. In RL they were supposed to be good, particularly Ki-100, but in AE they are very underwhelming.
-Ki-67-Ib does not lose the ability to carry torpedos.
-Old Russian fighters no longer have unparalelled MVR. Their clear superiority to Nate has to go.
Following aircraft were added to this scenario (all but new Zeros and G3M4-Q existed in RL as prototypes or even production models):
-A6M3b Zero. Replaces A6M3a and emphasized armor and weapons instead of range.
-A6M4, A6M4-J, A6M8-J. Successors to A6M3b that follow the same design philosopshy but use Mitshubishi Ha-33 engine.
-A7M3. The historical successor to A7M2. Carrier-capable and features 6x20mm armament. A7M2 factory upgrades to it, instead of A7M3-J.
-B7A3. The historical armored successor to B7M2. Uses Mitsubishi Ha-43 engine.
-D4Y5. Mitshubishi Ha-43, armor. D4Y3 upgrades to it. (D4Y4 was a kamikaze plane in RL.)
-G3M4-Q. ASW patrol version of Nell.
-G8N1. Fast, tough, long-ranged 4E bomber.
-J6M1. IJN version of Ki-83.
-N1K4-A. Carrier-capable Shiden.
-N1K5-J. High-altitude interceptor Shiden. Uses Mitsubishi Ha-43 engine.
-Yasukuni. IJN version of Ki-67. "Yasukuni" might actually be the name of the naval unit, that employed these bombers in RL, but I can't find any other designation for them.