You're forgetting the part where your FIGHTERS also are attacking in formation and en masse.
Are you talking about NF at night or fighters in general during the day here?
I'm talking about any fighters. The attack in "day" formations, pass after coordinated pass. And I'm not facing NF yet in my game, although they only differ in the plane and gun stats in the DB. I've faced Nates at night in China in 1942. They are wonder weapons in how the whole formation finds my bombers. If you have a beef with fighter losses it's because out of 20 intercepting you get 20 attacking, and then the bomber weapon stats take over. Would 20 planes with no radios, no radar, and no ground direction get a flight of 20 onto a bomber formation? Nope. So if you're going to compare, make it apples to apples. The bomber guns are statted for them to have cooperative firing, as they do in day. Maybe those stats are stepped down at night; I don't know. You don't think they are. But the fighters also perform exactly as they do in the daytime too. The way you want it the bombers would be lone lambs waiting to be pounced on by a formation of fighters, all of which intercept just as they do in broad daylight.
I have done lots and lots of night bombing in 1942. I've done lots in 1944 and 1945 versus the AI. It is simply untrue that accuracy at night is the same or better than daytime. While fighter losses may be considered high, it is also an option for the defender to not mount a night CAP. Avoid a pavlovian response to every stimuli. AA works well at night.
If you 'simply' categorically say something is untrue evidence would be a big help in getting someone to understand that better.
My AAR contains at least 100 night bombing attacks and probably more.
In my experience with the evince of many NF and day fighter interactions with night bombing I've come to the conclusion that it is the case. I'll try to run a test to provide more evidence, but you'll find plenty of examples of NF vs B-29s in the past 5 pages or so of my AAR vs Jockmeister.
You are assuming huge B-29 raids against NFs in the late war. Very different circumstances than 7 B-17s against non-NF in 1942. That's one problem, of many, with HRs. Everything looks like a nail when you have that hammer.
If there is no HR against night bombing then not putting up a CAP is simply not an option.
Again, I refer you to my AAR.
A fairly large field can be shut down, and I think we've already been through this part earlier in this or another discussion, Bull! If you put CAP up the bombers at least don't have as much accuracy. When oil is involved late as Japan, any amount of saving points there is worth the fighters you lose, but it's just too bad it's so many per day.
Again, you, as the defender, only see what got through. You don't see what bled off. Yes, CAP day or night can disrupt accuracy, but at a cost in fighters. As it should be. You don't get freebies here. You get a choice. The issue is what is the exact amount of inaccuracy caused to non-disrupted bombers at night versus the same force by day? Same altitude, same pilots, same fatigue, etc, etc. And we are never going to be told that. And you can't test for it unless you want to run a very large set of trials. In my 1942 experience the accuracy is worse, leavened by the ability to come in lower, since my experience is AA is less effective too. Is it a 1:1 trade-off, night for low altitude? I don't know for sure. Some days yes, some days no.
For my AI 1944-45 experience with B-29s I will say that daytime altitude is VERY important in Manpower attacks. There is a big difference between 9000 feet and 25,000 feet. Doing 9000 feet over the HI in daylight is suicide. Over Miri it might not be. I never used B-29s on Borneo. I had lots of other 4Es for short-range.
Also, the part that keeps being forgotten in these interminable night bombing threads is the opportunity cost argument. Night bombing planes get lost A LOT and do not complete their missions. In my 1942 experience it's 30-50% as a rough rule. Very many times the unit will not launch at all. But for those that launch but RTB the supplies are still consumed for no result. And the most important thing is those night bombing planes are not available for use the next daylight phase. They're used up.
So the attacker is making a deal: he flies at a time when he can go lower and maybe get better targeting, and have some but less AA response, he may still have to fight off fighters but also maybe not as many since many players ignore night CAP, but in exchange he gives up a large portion of his asset, often misses the target, incurs higher ops losses on landing, and does not have the planes for use in higher-accuracy missions the next day. It is a trade off.
For the defender the same. Night CAP means those fighters are not available the next day. They have higher ops losses from landing accidents. If they fly they are shot down in numbers which approach (I have no data) daytime levels, BUT they also have the same chance to disrupt and/or turn back the bombers, just as in the day.
On balance, except for the special rules involving Manpower attacks and Fires, the advantage seems to be on the defender here, even or especially if he doesn't night CAP. His opponent is giving up 30-50% of his planes and the defender isn't losing fighters to combat or higher ops losses.
For this reason I have pulled way back on night bombing in my game, except for Manpower. And Mike hasn't even night CAPed much. He did a few times, but then I suspect saw what others here describe--it's a bad ROI, at least in 1942. And in many ways it's a bad ROI for the attacker too. Which doesn't mean I think it should be banned. Sometimes it's useful, and it's always useful to complicate your opponent's planning. Just as he can complicate yours by once in a while night CAPing. All you do with HRs on issues like this is channel player behavior into narrower and narrower boundaries.
The majority here disagree, obviously.
I don't care about majority rule. It's a weak argument.
The HR for night bombing is one of the few that is truly necessary especially in the early game.
I'm in the early game. And it really isn't necessary. Ask my opponent. On a good day I can get 30 4Es up. OTOH, ask him about his AA losses recently at Palembang in daylight. Night bombing works for both sides. But a lot of early war Japanese players don't do it because they're, what? Drunk with power? In love with 70-Oscar escort wings? Dunno. But few do any until they think they need to. You don't like getting creamed in late 1944 by overwhelming air power? Welcome to Allied World, The 1942 Tour.
It's too powerful against precise targets and your opportunity cost doesn't fly.
I have stopped almost all HI/LI night attacks, even at 1000 feet, because it really isn't accurate. Very much the opposite. Manpower is different. That I'm still doing sometimes. For precise targets such as oil or refineries I do day now almost all the time.
But opportunity cost DOES fly. The beta changes have led to many more lost and confused formations than in the official.
If the bombers risk 10-20% losses during the day for virtually no gain every mission against a decent CAP, but can hit the same base virtually uninhibited although with smaller numbers less often and lose very few planes, (while taking big chunks out of whatever night CAP happens to be flying), plus still effectively shut down the base or take out the oil, which does it look like would be more effective?
I reject your premises, as I've said. Please don't put words in my mouth. They ARE inhibited if there is a CAP and AA. They start with a good chance of fewer numbers. AND they are less accurate unless low, which gives the AA that is working more of a chance. And then they have a greater chance of crashing on landing. You forgot to mention that last one BTW. Night bombing is not "free." It's just different.
The advantage is virtually never for the defender in a night bombing situation. It can be for short periods in one point, but only later when NF are around and flak is improved.
Again, I disagree. Day fighters used on night CAP are magically effective, as above. AA works, but less in my experience. I will say though that many Japanese players are very bad at placing AA where it needs to be. But the biggest hole in your position is this: You as the defender never see the two biggest negatives to the thing--lost and confused planes still eating supply, and ops losses.
Gotta add a post-script: If night bombing is so great, free, and easy, why don't the Japanese do it more?
< Message edited by Bullwinkle58 -- 8/22/2013 8:39:50 PM >