Strategic bombing...what steps did Andav take to limit it and how worried was he. How much did it cause a dispersion of forces? How much did it really hurt?
Stratigic bombing outside of the Home Islands really did not cause me a lot of concern. It probably should have bothered me more in Java. The Heavy Industry in Java has fuel sources and magically goes into the pool so keeping it running as long as possible should probably have been a higher priority. By the time the Allies were bombing the oil and refineries in the DEI and area I was not really getting anything through any more so it did not really bother me. It was a mission which was not targeting my bases or troops.
When witpqs bombed the ship repair yard at Singapore, that really hurt. I was using it heavily and did not have supply for repairs.
In the Home Islands, the biggest pain was fires storms on a couple of key cities that had late war fighter production. This burned both engine production and air frame production. In the future, I would try to hide some of this in Manchuria or spread it out a bit more. One thing I was very happy to see was the bombing of Heavy Industry in the Home Islands. At that time I have over 3 million banked and was pretty much out of fuel in the Home Islands so it was a raid which did not mean anything to me. The bombing of the Light Industry really hurt since i had plenty of resources which could be converted to supply.
Once the allies are in sweep range, P-47s will clear the way for the bombers (in theory). We (really me) had a running joke about Bomber Sweeps and about the fighter jocks sleeping late. Even without escorts or prior sweeps, the bombers would have success especially if they lacked coordination. The first waves might get chewed a bit but subsequent waves would face less and less opposition and score many hits.
As Japan, you really come to appreciate the AA units you have especially the ones with the 12cm gun. Placing these where you expect the Allied bombers to attack is a priority. If destroyed, they are high on the buy back list.
One very underappreciated challenge for the Japanese late war is the managing of supply. You have no extra and each supply point becomes precious. I used a lot of Lowpe's tricks of stockpiling supplies and then releasing them with specific bases requesting extra. If might take two days to get supply somewhere. It is one of the few simple joys to see a base fill with supply.
Very nice. There is, not mentioned, the VP won by bombing industry/resources etc on the HI. I messed up a little in my game by not realizing VP were awarded for bombing resources and the Allies had lots of uncontested runs.
For Japan, AA is immensely important. There never is enough, and I went hunting thru the TOE even going so far as to air transport some units in the hopes the AA devices went. I can remember doing that with the late war 40MM...which is such a step up from 20 and 25mm.