From: Northwestern Georgia, USA
Use of picket ships isn't gamey. Even if it was it would be a small thing to avoid a much larger one.
As we all know, the game operates in 24-hour segments while real life takes place by seconds. In the war, you get notice that a large enemy carrier force is visible, you can make the decision to scrub your mission and turn your fleet around. But not in the game. Instead, your force sails blithely forward the entire 24 hours, right into the teeth of the enemy.
In the real war, the Allies nearly always knew the location of the Japanese CVs - or, at least where they weren't. It was rare for the Allies to commit major ships in the unknown. The use of pickets ships - which is historical, by the way - best models this situation. In the real war, where you lived by the second, picket ships might be thrown out a few miles or more. In the game, where we live by 24 hours, we have to multiply that distance accordingly. So we deploy DDs or xAKs in front by 10 or 15 hexes. By doing so, we minimize the 24 hour vs. 1 second problem.
Neither side really had the ability in 1942 and 1943 to used massed waves of nighttime bombers to shut down major enemy airfields. The Japense used an occasional Washing Machine Charlie to lob a couple of bombs at Henderson Field, but that was about it. More importantly, Japan didn't have the ability to do it even had they wanted to. Aircraft were available in much smaller numbers and were much more dispersed. IE, in real life, Japan wouldn't strip the entire DEI of patrol airacraft and bombers on the assumption or belief that the Allies were about to attack New Guinea. But in the game, with the near-magic ability to transfer 500 planes across the map in two or three days, we have another proposition entirely.
I'm not fond of night bombing because it's skewed and opens up things that I don't think could've happened. It's not a matter of wishful thinking, but rather a preference that the game more closely modeled actual capaibilties. By the same token, I wish we could more carefully model the use of picket ships, but we can't, so we have to do the best we can.
That's my argument and I'm sticking to it!