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Air Exploit? - 6/28/2011 11:04:19 PM   
Michael T


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I have read the odd post that refers to this so called 'air exploit'. I am not familiar with it. But I believe it involves the Soviets bombing the Luftwaffe out of the game in 42. Can some knowledgable players please enlighten us as to its modus operandi and its effects. Can it be countered? Is a fix required?

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RE: Air Exploit? - 6/28/2011 11:27:12 PM   
ComradeP

 

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Although I'm not using the term myself, if it indeed indicates the ability of the VVS to wreck the Luftwaffe, it refers to the VVS launching large numbers of air base bombing missions that the Luftwaffe can't hope to counter, because fighter groups become tired after a while and AA isn't particularly effective.

It's very difficult for the Luftwaffe to hit Soviet air bases at a good loss ratio, although there are certainly situations where it can be done.

For the VVS, destroying a handful of planes for every couple of air base bombing missions whilst losing dozens is a rate of attrition that they can sustain perfectly, it's more difficult for the Luftwaffe. The primary problem isn't necessarily the number of destroyed aircraft, as German aircraft production's pretty decent, but the loss of morale and experience by the targeted air groups, which in turn will result in higher losses, starting a downward spiral that the Axis player can't halt.

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RE: Air Exploit? - 6/28/2011 11:45:56 PM   
Michael T


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Do the devs and playtesters see this as a problem to be fixed? Or are we players supposed to invent our own tactics to prevent/mitigate it?

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RE: Air Exploit? - 6/28/2011 11:51:23 PM   
Scook_99

 

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There is a whole lot of quiet on this, so I think they are taking a look-see and gathering data before coming up with ideas or changes.

EDIT: Not to mention, the all the other things to look at 1st, continual testing, and bug fixes on everything before this. I would say it could be a problem, but maybe one that the Soviets didn't do, as in continual bombing of German air fields round the clock.

< Message edited by Scook_99 -- 6/28/2011 11:54:57 PM >

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RE: Air Exploit? - 6/28/2011 11:56:02 PM   
Michael T


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I would love to see a list of things that 'they' are looking at.

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RE: Air Exploit? - 6/29/2011 12:01:35 AM   
Pelton


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Yes basicly they use by-planes an general junk to "tire" the fighters out then bomb the crap out of the fighter bases. It takes until about the summer of 42. Once your fighters are down to a few hundred then they simply bomb the bomber bases and you got zero for planes by 43.

A few guys have upped the fighter intercept to 150 or higher and this seems to help, but no ones played long enough to see if it helps in the long run.

An exploit is 100% withen the rules, your just exploiting the weaker rules that help your side. Its not cheatting, just taking full advantage or some game imbalances. This is normal for any game and they generally get nerfed early on after a game goes gold.

Mybee there is some way the GHc can over come this that most of us have yet to figure out and its not an exploit.

Time will tell.

Pelton

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RE: Air Exploit? - 6/29/2011 12:10:04 AM   
Michael T


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Just an idea but what if you deploy your Luftwaffe further back to the rear. I think generally the German aircraft have a better range. Perhaps you could remain within range of the front line but out of range of the Soviet planes. Whats the range of these bi-planes? It might force Ivan to deploy so far forward he risks getting his airfields over run.

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RE: Air Exploit? - 6/29/2011 12:17:56 AM   
Michael T


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It appears a U-2 has a range of about 9 hexes. A Bf 109 about 19. Shouldn't be too hard to avoid the bi-planes.

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RE: Air Exploit? - 6/29/2011 12:20:02 AM   
Scook_99

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: Michael T

I would love to see a list of things that 'they' are looking at.


http://www.matrixgames.com/forums/tm.asp?m=2840730

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RE: Air Exploit? - 6/29/2011 12:29:04 AM   
JAMiAM

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: Michael T

Just an idea but what if you deploy your Luftwaffe further back to the rear. I think generally the German aircraft have a better range. Perhaps you could remain within range of the front line but out of range of the Soviet planes. Whats the range of these bi-planes? It might force Ivan to deploy so far forward he risks getting his airfields over run.

That should help, as well.

To counter this tactic in my game with Speedy, here's what I'm doing with some degree of success. We'll see how it works long-term.

Keep your air assets concentrated. Try not to have airbases all over. Keep them clumped in a few adjacent hexes, on rail lines. This way, they get better replacements, are mutually supporting, and the attacking air units will likely have to fly over multiple flak concentrations.

Generally stack your units with two Airbases, and one HQ.

One of the Airbases, fighter-heavy, the other bomber-heavy. The HQ should have extra AA SUs attached. Strip some from your Korps/Army HQs if necessary. If the Soviet player is going heavy on airfield attacks, he won't have as much left to cause your land force too much grief, and you can rely on the divisional AA assets for protection against Ground Support. By splitting the two airbases between fighters and bombers, you don't give the Soviets any fighter rich targets to pick on, and split the losses between fighters and bombers. The Germans have/accumulate huge numbers of bombers in their pools and if you lose some of those on the attacks, it isn't too much of a problem. They'll get replaced easily enough. Primarily, what you need to do is track the fighter losses.

Keep a close eye on your pool levels. If some of your fighter groups are getting too low on replacements, then temporarily outfit the groups with older airframes that you may have in abundance. In order to better micromanage this, you might have to set all your air goups to only do manual upgrading. This will necessarily add a high degree of micromanagement to the game, but you can be reasonably certain that if your opponent is attempting this tactic, he is also going through a lot of micro, as well.



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RE: Air Exploit? - 6/29/2011 1:33:04 AM   
Sabre21


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I try to always stack my airbases with ground units that are in light wooded or city hexes. It makes it pretty tough to find them. If your opponent can't detect them, they can't be bombed. At least if they do attack the ground unit will provide AA support.

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RE: Air Exploit? - 6/29/2011 4:57:11 AM   
Scook_99

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: Sabre21

I try to always stack my airbases with ground units that are in light wooded or city hexes. It makes it pretty tough to find them. If your opponent can't detect them, they can't be bombed. At least if they do attack the ground unit will provide AA support.


I like that, but generally I can only come up with HQ units to stack with. Light woods I use all the time.

Some things I do: move intercept above 100 and drop require to fly to 0. If I am getting the worse end, move back the flyboys on rails and let them sit out of action until they recover. In mud and blizzard, my standard practice is to move back my Luftwaffe, as I don't find much use in bad weather for them. It seems to help preserve my planes and pilots into 1944.

edit: Soviet recon AC don't seem to be produced in high quantities, so if you can find Soviet airbases in 1941-42, I try to bomb them into oblivion. If they can't fly recon, they can't find your air. It isn't working out so well, but I am going to keep playing with this.

< Message edited by Scook_99 -- 6/29/2011 4:59:46 AM >

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RE: Air Exploit? - 6/29/2011 5:07:55 AM   
jomni


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I just thought of something.  Doesn't the game use the staging base concept.
So you can put all your Air Bases in the rear except for one empty base in the front.
Is this a valid tactic? I don't personally do this by the way.

< Message edited by jomni -- 6/29/2011 5:08:18 AM >


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RE: Air Exploit? - 6/29/2011 5:31:02 AM   
WarHunter


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My soviet PBEM opponent decided to target the Finn air force for destruction. May 1942 this is all that is left of it.
We slugged it out through the Blizzard, mud, snow and clear weather. Finally all that was left to do was send the survivors back to the reserve.







Attachment (1)

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RE: Air Exploit? - 6/29/2011 5:44:43 AM   
heliodorus04


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Sabre21

I try to always stack my airbases with ground units that are in light wooded or city hexes. It makes it pretty tough to find them. If your opponent can't detect them, they can't be bombed. At least if they do attack the ground unit will provide AA support.


Doesn't this fall apart immediately if your opponent decides to look at the map in "Bomb Airfield" mode? Then they're magically highlighted in red, assuming he has done reasonable recon earlier in the turn.

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RE: Air Exploit? - 6/29/2011 6:29:04 AM   
gradenko_2000

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: WarHunter

My soviet PBEM opponent decided to target the Finn air force for destruction. May 1942 this is all that is left of it.
We slugged it out through the Blizzard, mud, snow and clear weather. Finally all that was left to do was send the survivors back to the reserve.

Do you have a before picture?

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RE: Air Exploit? - 6/29/2011 7:23:43 AM   
JAMiAM

 

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Honestly, trying to hide your airbases is an exercise in futility. The engine spots them easier than all other targets, and even in bad terrain it will allow higher detection levels (all the way up to 10) to be achieved. Unless the woods are on the rail lines, there's really no point to it, IMO.

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RE: Air Exploit? - 6/29/2011 7:25:52 AM   
WarHunter


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This is turn 36, When the flower of the Finnish Air force was in full bloom.
Turn 48 was the previous post and the aftermath of concentrated bombing.







Attachment (1)

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RE: Air Exploit? - 6/29/2011 8:47:18 AM   
Speedy

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: JAMiAM


quote:

ORIGINAL: Michael T

Just an idea but what if you deploy your Luftwaffe further back to the rear. I think generally the German aircraft have a better range. Perhaps you could remain within range of the front line but out of range of the Soviet planes. Whats the range of these bi-planes? It might force Ivan to deploy so far forward he risks getting his airfields over run.

That should help, as well.

To counter this tactic in my game with Speedy, here's what I'm doing with some degree of success. We'll see how it works long-term.

Keep your air assets concentrated. Try not to have airbases all over. Keep them clumped in a few adjacent hexes, on rail lines. This way, they get better replacements, are mutually supporting, and the attacking air units will likely have to fly over multiple flak concentrations.

Generally stack your units with two Airbases, and one HQ.

One of the Airbases, fighter-heavy, the other bomber-heavy. The HQ should have extra AA SUs attached. Strip some from your Korps/Army HQs if necessary. If the Soviet player is going heavy on airfield attacks, he won't have as much left to cause your land force too much grief, and you can rely on the divisional AA assets for protection against Ground Support. By splitting the two airbases between fighters and bombers, you don't give the Soviets any fighter rich targets to pick on, and split the losses between fighters and bombers. The Germans have/accumulate huge numbers of bombers in their pools and if you lose some of those on the attacks, it isn't too much of a problem. They'll get replaced easily enough. Primarily, what you need to do is track the fighter losses.

Keep a close eye on your pool levels. If some of your fighter groups are getting too low on replacements, then temporarily outfit the groups with older airframes that you may have in abundance. In order to better micromanage this, you might have to set all your air goups to only do manual upgrading. This will necessarily add a high degree of micromanagement to the game, but you can be reasonably certain that if your opponent is attempting this tactic, he is also going through a lot of micro, as well.





It will be interesting to see how things develop. I'm still fairly confident you'll have no real LW to speak of by the end of 42. Don't forget you have a buffer of 5 months additional plane production before I started the air campaign. You'll have seen what happened to Keke's LW over 6 weeks in our on going 43 campaign. Let's see how this pans out though.....time will tell

< Message edited by Speedy -- 6/29/2011 8:48:58 AM >


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RE: Air Exploit? - 6/29/2011 10:44:33 AM   
gradenko_2000

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: WarHunter
This is turn 36, When the flower of the Finnish Air force was in full bloom.
Turn 48 was the previous post and the aftermath of concentrated bombing.

Holy Hell! From 353 ready aircraft down to 75. I saw the Finns managed to kill 207 planes between those shots, but is that even one turn's worth of Soviet aircraft production?

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RE: Air Exploit? - 6/29/2011 11:50:37 AM   
Mehring

 

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The simple technique for prolonging Luftwaffe air superiority or parity with the VVS is to keep bombing the VVS. The Luftwaffe's inability to obtain a decent loss ratio or find Russian airbases are the arguments of people who haven't found a way to do this or even to follow tried and tested and often proffered advice.

Is it unrealistic that the Luftwaffe should have to bomb Russian bases in order to protect their own? Apparently yes, but then it's also unrealistic that a Luftwaffe engaged in intensive tactical support should maintain as many air worthy planes as it does, when not bombed. Nobody would argue that base bombing is the historical way the air war was fought out in 41-42 but there is a certain balance of gameyness which will have to make do until the air game is set straight.

Until the air model is sorted, bomb for victory!

< Message edited by Mehring -- 6/29/2011 11:51:33 AM >


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RE: Air Exploit? - 6/29/2011 12:43:23 PM   
arras

 

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Is it really exploit if player engages in unhistorical tactics and ends up with unhistorical results?

How about changing Axis tactics instead of complaining that Soviet player is not restricted to play it the dumb, historical way..?

I would say that problem lies elsewhere. Is impact of air support on ground combat so insignificant that player can spend all his air sorties bombing enemy airfields and not protecting/supporting his units? ...that is valid for both sides of course. I am not suggesting I know the answer, I am just asking.


< Message edited by arras -- 6/29/2011 12:45:11 PM >

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RE: Air Exploit? - 6/29/2011 12:56:44 PM   
Pelton


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HQ build-up was and exploit and Russian players cried a river. It had nothing to do with Russains players using different tactics.

Same goes for the air exploit and the 1v1 = 2v1 attacks for Russians on the ground, a change of tactics is not an answer. A change in the rules is.

Its generally the rule: What works in closed beta never works when a game goes public.

Pelton

< Message edited by Pelton -- 6/29/2011 12:58:39 PM >

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RE: Air Exploit? - 6/29/2011 2:05:40 PM   
heliodorus04


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Pelton

HQ build-up was and exploit and Russian players cried a river. It had nothing to do with Russains players using different tactics.

+1 QFT pwnage.

I agree with many people's points here. The air war is an a-historic mess that reflects World War 2 air doctrines, strategy, and tactics in no way at all. It's a completely different strategy game within the game.

Since I never played WitP AE, I'm curious how that game's air war compares. If it worked there, why doesn't it here?


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RE: Air Exploit? - 6/29/2011 2:21:53 PM   
ComradeP

 

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quote:

The Luftwaffe's inability to obtain a decent loss ratio or find Russian airbases are the arguments of people who haven't found a way to do this or even to follow tried and tested and often proffered advice.


OK, so how many Soviet planes do you destroy through bombing each turn? Over 300? Because that's what you need just to cope with production and actually reduce VVS aircraft strength.

The Soviets have plenty of air bases in general, and there's no need for them to gather large amounts of aircraft at a single air base.

Against a smart Soviet opponent who doesn't have much more than 100, if that, aircraft at his air bases, getting a favourable loss ratio that will also reduce VVS aircraft strength is rather difficult. On most turns in my vs. AI games, the Soviets do more damage to themselves through training missions than I can do through bombing air bases. Of course, that's against the AI, which is not too smart when it comes to dispersing air groups.

Also keep in mind that even slight losses can cause a dent in an air group's morale, and even if you can wrestle with the VVS for a while, if you end up with ~60-70 morale air groups, losses will mount when the Soviets start to get serious about their aircraft production.

quote:

Since I never played WitP AE, I'm curious how that game's air war compares. If it worked there, why doesn't it here?


Because it's far more detailed. WitP:AE's focus is on naval and air operations, the ground war is not too detailed. Even then, WitP/WitP:AE's air model also suffered and to a degree suffers from some problems, judging by the AAR's in their respective forums.

< Message edited by ComradeP -- 6/29/2011 2:23:55 PM >


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RE: Air Exploit? - 6/29/2011 2:43:15 PM   
gradenko_2000

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: heliodorus04
Since I never played WitP AE, I'm curious how that game's air war compares. If it worked there, why doesn't it here?

The air war in WITP-AE is a fair bit more accurate there than here, but that also has to do with the scale of the game: Daily turns mean that the system simulates individual planes going out on individual sorties, as opposed to the level of abstraction in WITE where the weekly time frame requires that the system "fudge" a bit on what an air group should be capable of doing.

There are also still a few balance points that long-time/experienced WITP-AE players sometimes take issue with, especially when you push the system to the limits, such as the value of max altitude dives and very very large raids of aircraft.

Having said that, where WITP-AE does well in the air-war, the large amount of abstraction in the ground war*, and the obstuse-ness of the supply system are the ones that tend to cause grumblings in their particular community.

* As with the ground war here in WITE, a lot of it is caused by the players not being beholden to the precise manner of the calculations involved. While I certainly understand why Mr. Grigsby prefers it to be this way, I personally disagree with his stance on it, even though I play his games like a fiend all the same.

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RE: Air Exploit? - 6/29/2011 2:57:59 PM   
Mehring

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: ComradeP

quote:

The Luftwaffe's inability to obtain a decent loss ratio or find Russian airbases are the arguments of people who haven't found a way to do this or even to follow tried and tested and often proffered advice.


OK, so how many Soviet planes do you destroy through bombing each turn? Over 300? Because that's what you need just to cope with production and actually reduce VVS aircraft strength.

The Soviets have plenty of air bases in general, and there's no need for them to gather large amounts of aircraft at a single air base.

Against a smart Soviet opponent who doesn't have much more than 100, if that, aircraft at his air bases, getting a favourable loss ratio that will also reduce VVS aircraft strength is rather difficult. On most turns in my vs. AI games, the Soviets do more damage to themselves through training missions than I can do through bombing air bases. Of course, that's against the AI, which is not too smart when it comes to dispersing air groups.

Also keep in mind that even slight losses can cause a dent in an air group's morale, and even if you can wrestle with the VVS for a while, if you end up with ~60-70 morale air groups, losses will mount when the Soviets start to get serious about their aircraft production.




If the Russians don't pack their air bases, as the SAD bases are disbanded, they will ultimately be unable to deploy their airforce.

Here's a screenie from T49, the last turn I recorded playing axis in pbem-






Attachment (1)

< Message edited by Mehring -- 6/29/2011 2:58:53 PM >


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RE: Air Exploit? - 6/29/2011 2:58:07 PM   
Sabre21


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quote:

ORIGINAL: heliodorus04


quote:

ORIGINAL: Sabre21

I try to always stack my airbases with ground units that are in light wooded or city hexes. It makes it pretty tough to find them. If your opponent can't detect them, they can't be bombed. At least if they do attack the ground unit will provide AA support.


Doesn't this fall apart immediately if your opponent decides to look at the map in "Bomb Airfield" mode? Then they're magically highlighted in red, assuming he has done reasonable recon earlier in the turn.


The recon is what is needed. Undetected airbases don't get highlighted. I try and eliminate as many recon assets as possible when I find them, but that gets more difficult as the war progresses. Right now even a few recon aircraft can detect most airbases. There is some discussion on the tester forum about FoW with some changes coming in the near future for us to look at.

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RE: Air Exploit? - 6/29/2011 3:00:25 PM   
el hefe


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The problem here is that the Germans fighters up to 1943 were able to knock down Soviet planes at will WHEN they were available. These Soviet attacks on airfields, while occasionally successful, should be taking horrendous losses if they are being intercepted by German fighters. The main problem I see in the game which I have expressed in detail in the tester forum is that neither player can mass his air forces like they can with the ground forces at decisive points on the battlefield. The result is that the air power potential is diluted by the AI choosing what air battles to get involved in. There is a whole new game that could be played with an overhaul in the air model. The interesting thing about the air battles that is completely not reflected here is that the German air supremacy could not be everywhere and the Soviets could and did gain local air supremacy from the near beginning of Barbarossa. The Soviet Air Force in 1941, even with its horrendous losses, played a decisive role in delaying some German advances and almost all of the local counterattacks. Air supremacy on both sides played a vital role in the morale of the ground troops throughout the campaign and really every campaign and operation since WW2. It would be a huge undertaking to get it right but it would add a very decisive element to the game.

Trey


quote:

ORIGINAL: Mehring

The simple technique for prolonging Luftwaffe air superiority or parity with the VVS is to keep bombing the VVS. The Luftwaffe's inability to obtain a decent loss ratio or find Russian airbases are the arguments of people who haven't found a way to do this or even to follow tried and tested and often proffered advice.

Is it unrealistic that the Luftwaffe should have to bomb Russian bases in order to protect their own? Apparently yes, but then it's also unrealistic that a Luftwaffe engaged in intensive tactical support should maintain as many air worthy planes as it does, when not bombed. Nobody would argue that base bombing is the historical way the air war was fought out in 41-42 but there is a certain balance of gameyness which will have to make do until the air game is set straight.

Until the air model is sorted, bomb for victory!



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RE: Air Exploit? - 6/29/2011 4:19:25 PM   
arras

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: Pelton

HQ build-up was and exploit and Russian players cried a river. It had nothing to do with Russains players using different tactics.

Same goes for the air exploit and the 1v1 = 2v1 attacks for Russians on the ground, a change of tactics is not an answer. A change in the rules is.

Its generally the rule: What works in closed beta never works when a game goes public.

Pelton

I will immediately drop my case as soon as you show me which rule exception or "special" ability causes so called "air exploit".

So far I do not know one. Same mechanics apply for Axis and Soviet side. Soviets do not get magical bonus on airbase attack, do they?

Then somebody should explain me, why concentrated effort of Soviet player to bomb axis airfields, especially fighter airfields should have no effect on ability of Axis player to wage air war. Because to me it seems perfectly valid and logical.

What would be logical for axis players to do in this case seems to me to ask developers logical question, why they can not adjust their production to match their strategy and that of their opponent?

(in reply to Pelton)
Post #: 30
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