From: La Salle, Colorado
I will Post the Japanese Change Log for 6.0 at this point. The previous version of RA was felt to be TOO strongly favoring Japan so we made a conscious effort to move the Mod back more towards the Allies. The Allies get many more toys in this version of RA than previous editions and this should make it fun and wild for game play.
Here is the extensive Japanese Change Log:
Reluctant Admiral Change Log
September 23, 2013
Emergency fleet programs modifications.
1) Yamamoto's increases influence postulated by the mod brings a greater degree of awareness regarding the possibility of a protracted war, as Japan slides into conflict in 1941. To facilitate the expansion of the Kaigun, Yamamoto orders expansion of the existing Nagasaki and Yokohoma/Yokosuka yards plus the building of a small yard at Shanghai and a much larger yard at Port Arthur. The cost of these expansions—particularly at Nagasaki--is staggering.
2) Having already studied and prepared for the Circle Four program. Implementation begins immediately in mid-1939. In final form the 4th Circle consists of the following:
a. Two Shokaku-Class CVs (Ryukaku and Taikaku)
b. Two B-64 Class Command Cruisers (Kawachi and Kasuga)
c. Two Tone-Class CA (Iwaki and Hikari)
d. Six Yahagi-Class CLs to begin replacing the nine aging Sendai and Nagara-Class CLs.
e. The final 14 DDs of the Yugomo-Class
f. Expedited building of the Akitsuki-Class AA DD.
g. The final various I-Boats and Ro-Class SS before a complete streamlining of the Sub Arm
2) The Circle Five program is not even discussed. A conference between the Naval General Staff and the Navy Ministry is held in September of 1941, soon after the historical beginning of war preparations and the American announcement of the Two Ocean Bills, but nine months before the historical adoption of the Circle Urgent program. This, by the way, also explains why reconstruction of the shadow carriers happen faster (Junyo, Hyo, etc…). Several additional ships are ordered:
a. Two more Shokaku-Class (Renkaku and Amagi)
b. Two more Tone-Class CAs (Ibuki and Kurama)
c. The final three Yahagi CLs. These are eventually converted into the Aso-Class CVL
The Circle Urgent program is formulated at this meeting. The full program is not activated until August of 1941 (one month earlier than IRL), but some of its parts that were not clearly unfit for peacetime needs, including construction of the new cruisers, were gradually put into action before this date (just like IRL the shadow fleet reconstruction began before IJN officially started its shift to war footing). More importantly, extensive work on future "mobilization ships" designs and construction schedules was done ahead of time, to be put in action in case war is inevitable.
While the Circle Urgent program is still primarily concerned with the needs of the initial blitzkrieg and doing what can be done rapidly, foundations of, let's call it the "Circle Perimeter" program are laid down well in advance, instead of being put together in haste in 1942-43.
3) After the Supreme War Council decides to go to war in November 1941, another conference between Naval General Staff and Navy Ministry is held that puts the Circle Perimeter program in action.
4) Additional features of the Circle Urgent program compared to RL:
-Provisions for rapid conversion of a large number of smaller merchant ships and trawlers into auxilary escorts and mine warfare ships, as well as fast merchants into auxiliaries and landing transports. This does NOT result in actual changes to the database - Japan's ability to convert well over a hundred of merchants into patrol boats within December of 1941, then even more xAKs into auxilaries and AKs early in 1942 is not historical, IRL those processes were far less drastic.
-Provisions for rapid arming of the merchant fleet in case of a conflict. MOSTLY does NOT result in actual changes to the database, as the bulk of the Japanese transport fleet already starts the game with anti-air armament. However, the most valuable xAPs and tankers receive minor upgrades later in the war. Deficit of AA guns prevents anything more extensive.
-Construction and conversion of new major naval units during the last pre-war year happens as it already happens in RA.
-Measures are taken to expand production of antiaircraft armaments for IJN. Production of 127/40 Type 89 gun is stopped completely in favor of 100/65 type 98, and 127/50 3rd YT is prepared to be phased out as soon as orders for the last ships of the Yugumo class is completed. As in RL (but earlier) production of 120/45 type 10 is restarted, because this gun was the one most suited for mass production and covering the obvious shortages of 100/65 mounts. This is necessary to explain faster AAA upgrades.
-Subs are streamlined with the new single-type I-Boats replacing all the differing specialized subs.
-A general agreement on providing for Army's amphibious operations is worked out during the discussion of the Circle Urgent plans in IGHQ. According to it, the Navy takes the entire responsibility for design and construction of all types of ocean-going ships, with a certain share of budget and construction facilities set apart for the Army's needs. So that we won't have bullshit like Army submarines and escort carriers. Fulfilling said agreement, the first series of tank landing ships is laid down in late 1940, with the first ships available shortly after the war's outbreak:
-A program of increasing IJN's convoy-escorting capabilities is set forth, but the only thing that actually gets done within the bounds of the Circle Urgent is mass reconstruction of old destroyers into escort ships (already applied in RA). Laying down of Etorofu-class escorts in 1941 is considered, but not proceeded with, due to lack of funds and materials, consumed by more immediate needs. However, designs for the new classes of ASW ships are drawn at this stage, creating a basis on which wartime construction programs will be built.
5) The Circle Perimeter program, adopted in late January of 1942, is based on the assumption that Japan needs to exploit the wealth of DEI, and further expand military production to protect the defensive perimeter around its conquests and soon-to-be-conquests, and the deficit of merchant tonnage, already significant at the beginning of the war, is the biggest obstacle to that. Therefore, naval production priorities for 1942-1943 are established as (1)merchant shipping; (2)escorts and other light forces necessary for protection of shipping; (3)aircraft carriers (the final pair of Shokaku-Class (Katsuragi and Kasigi plus ordered conversions of the 7th—8th—9th Yahagi CLs into CVL form); (4)destroyers; (5)submarines; (6)large surface combatants. Most orders for ships that weren't laid down yet previous circles are canceled, to streamline planning. The two guiding principles for newly constructed merchants and escort forces are simplification of construction, with no considerations for commercial efficiency, possible post-war use or long-term reliability; and standardization of designs, adopting designs from existing ship classes wherever possible. As designs for "mobilization ships" were partially prepared in advance in this alternative, their production begins faster.
6) Additional features of the Circle Perimeter program compared to RL:
-Designs of standard transport ships are prepared by the Naval Technical Office during 1941. They are similar to designs of RL 2nd War Standard Programme, except with improved compartmentalizion and double-bottom compartments, to increase survivability. This most likely will NOT result in any changes to the database, Japanese merchant production in-game is already sufficient. Rather, this change should explain, why it is sufficient.
-Only 11 subchasers of the Ch-28 class are ordered (those laid down before the adoption of the Circle Perimeter program), and the concept of the large subchaser is abandoned thereafter, to conserve manpower and resources. Similarly, no orders are placed for minsweepers of the W-19 class, beyond the first four which were laid down before the war. Escorts of the Etorofu class and its successors are not ordered, due to being too big and expensive for immediate construction.
-According to the Circle Perimeter programm, the fleet's light and escort forces should be composed of following classes of ships:
(a)The Class A destroyer, that should be able to handle both anti-air and anti-submarine protection duties, as well as torpedo attacks. Unfortunately placing 3 twin 100/65 Type 98 turrets on a Yugumo hull will add over 6 tons of topweight, and a similar weight increase due to flak and DCs addition IRL forced Japanese to remove the turret #2. So, no real changes from RA as it is, continue to build as many Akizukis as possible and accept decrease in torpedo capabilities.
(b)The Class B destroyer, primarily meant to serve as a cheap, fast escort for convoys and slower (due to inclusion of slow shadow fleet carriers in the fleet) carrier taskforces, with reduced anti-surface capabilities. An enlarged Matsu type, with 1400 tons of standard displacement and 2x2 100/65 type 98 guns in open mounts (note that these mounts, unlike closed turrets, installed on Akizuki DDs, had practically the same weight as 127/40 Type 89 mounts, an increase in displacement provides for one extra barrel). Deliveries of this class will begin around May of 1943.
(c)The large escort. Based on the hull of the Sokuten/Hirashima minelayer class
, instead of the bigger and more expensive Etorofu. Said minelayers were only slightly smaller than later C/D-class escorts, had good seaworthiness, and after wartime modifications that increased their oil storage had endurance of about 3800-4000 nm at cruise speed. Not as good and capable as Etorofu/Mikura/Ukuru escorts, probably even somewhat worse than C/D, but big enough to carry sufficient ASW equipment, suitable for production in large numbers and following the principle of using existing projects when suitable. Armament (initial) of 2x1 120/45 10th YT, 2x3 25/60, 60 DCs. Deliveries of this class will begin around December of 1942, with initially all ships using diesels, and a subtype running on steam turbines introduced later. Later in the war an extremely simplified version of these escorts, based on this
will be introduced.
(d)The coastal escort. A very small, cheap subchaser with a wooden hull, suitable for building on every small commercial shipyard. Basically, the RL Cha-1 class. These ships should be used for protection of coastal convoys, and port defense. Deliveries of this class will begin around June of 1942.
-In addition, the same Sokuten hulls will be used as the basis for construction of new minelayers and minesweepers in modest numbers.
-The Circle Perimeter program is modified when planning production for 1943. SBD/SBT LSTs are initially planned to replace slower SS LSTs in late 1942, and orders for them are greatly expanded when the need for a fast transport for resupplying forward garrisons becomes apparent. Deliveries begin in June of 1943.
7) Other changes:
-In second half of 1940 an expanded technical mission is sent to Germany to learn of German experiences regarding modern naval warfare. Among other things it optains blueprints for large-calibre automatic cannons (both Rheinmetall 37mm and Bofors), passive hydroacoustics devices, and ground AAA fire control stations.
-As IRL, Japanese experiment with the 40mm Bofors gun (37mm Rheinmetall guns are rejected, apparently Germans themselves considered them inferior for naval use), but mass production is never achieved. A few very late-war ships might carry 40/60 Type 3 guns in single mounts.
-PT boats development starts before the war, and is based on German S-boats (Lurssen boats). Lack of resources prevents mass construction until 1943, but early introduction of this class of ships allows to overcome most of the early teething troubles by that time (IRL T51 boats were an S-boat knockoff, but the hastily created project was a failure, with insufficient seaworthiness and speed). Non-seaworthy small boats are not considered to be an effective weapon, and only begin to be produced in any numbers in early 1945, to protect the Home Islands.
Kido Butai and Kaigun Re-Organization
With a firm vision of the ships being constructed through Circle Four, Yamamoto works to completely re-organize the Kaigun and creates a modified version of the Kido Butai. The struggle between concentration and dispersal of carriers plays out and the Japanese decide to embrace a new Carrier Division of 2 CVs and 1 CVL (as they did in June of 1942) escorted by at least two fast heavy cruisers or battlecruisers, a CL, and 6-8 DDs. Foreshadowing US Task Groups, KB consists of three Carrier Divisions that can operate independently or separately. As new CVs come on-line the Japanese attempt to maintain the 2 CV—1 CVL set-up: Hiyo—Junyo—Nisshin…
STARTING FORCES (Capital Ships):
KB-1/KB-2 (Two WARP Speed TF on Dec 7th)
CV: Akagi, Kaga, Ryujo and Shokaku, Zuikaku, Shoho
BC: Kirishima, Hiei
There are four new construction Akatsuki-Class AA DDs present.
Saipan (HQ Combined Fleet):
BB: Nagato and Mutsu
CVEs: Taiyo and Hosho
CV: Hiryu, Soryu, Zuiho
BC: Kongo and Haruna
Shoho is completed in time for Dec 7th.
BBs: Fuso, Yamashiro, Ise, Hyuga
The only additional starting forces for Japan on Dec 7th, compared to IRL, in this version of RA is Shoho and 4 DDs. That is it.
CV: Junyo (March), Hiyo (June), Ryukaku (Aug)
CVL: Nisshin (Dec 41) and Ryuho (July)
CA: Iwaki (Sept), Hikari (Nov)
CV: Taikaku (Feb), Renkaku (Sept)
CB: Kawachi (Jan), Kasuga (May)
CA: Ibuki (Aug)
CV: Amagi (Jul), Katsuragi (Nov)
CVL: Aso (Jan), Taiho (April), Unryu (Sept)
CA: Kurama (Jan)
CV: Kasigi (Jan)
Sho-Kai Class carries 75 Aircraft and is a slight improvement off of the Shokaku.
Aso-Class carries 33 planes and converted from the hulls of three enlarged Yahagi-Class CLs.
No Taiho or Shinano as normal.
Add six of the new Yahagi-Class CLs and you have the Japanese OOB.
AIRCRAFT CARRIERS (RELUCTANT ADMIRAL)
(1) The wartime CV production is 3 pairs of Shokaku-Kai carriers (almost identical to Shokaku, but slightly larger, carry 75 planes, and get a small number of Japanese Bofors copies added to their armament in the 1/45 upgrade).
(2) Three Yahagi-Class CL hulls are converted into excellent CVLs of the Aso-Class carrying 33 Planes, 31 Knots, and retain some of their CL armor protection. Very similar to the Independence-Class built from the American CLs.
(3) Kaiyo is removed from the queue. Several large APs (Brazil Maru and Asama Maru Classes) are provided with the option of converting to Kaiyo-class CVEs from 12/42. These CVEs do not have organic airgroups.
(4) Late-war planes are replaced with 1943's models for carriers that arrive in 1944-45. Experience is set to 60 for airgroups on large carriers (the initial PH six currently have airgroups with pilot experience from 60 to 70, by comparison in Scen 1 their experience is 70-75).
(5) Flak armament tweaked. Besides small changes for realism, AA rocket launchers are replaced with more 25/60 triples/quadruples everywhere.
(1)Usual range/speed/displacement small realism tweaks...
(2)The number of AAMGs is brought to the historical maximum or slightly above for appropriate classes in final upgrades, but most of them are installed much earlier, in 1943 or early 1944.
(3)Fuso and Ise classes get a full line of normal upgrades, hybrid conversions are optional. I personally find these classes not very useful in surface combat late in the game (too slow to survive night combats, particularly once USN torpedoes heal, weaker in a daylight gunfight than most old USN battleships), but options can't hurt.
(4)Mutsu class has its AA armament further increased at the end of 1944, compared to the stock (but is not fully converted to a floating AA battery as IRL).
(5)Kawachi class is made a little less hardcore, belt thickness, speed, radius, aircraft complement are reduced to prediction for the B-64 project.
CRUISERS (RELUCTANT ADMIRAL)
(1) Modifications from the previous versions of RA are copied. Small-calibre flak upgrades for heavy cruisers are brought more in line with my earlier work for the Perfect War mod, however, they are available on later dates in RA.
(2) The Tone class is corrected to Durability 58, belt armor 140. It is unclear why its durability and protection are reduced in stock, while IRL Tones were the most sturdily built and heavily armored IJN cruisers.
(3) Effective range for 5500-ton cruisers is reduced to 5000(14) across the board, to reflect their RL state by 1941 (see Lacroix/Wells p.555). Flak armament and its wartime upgrades tweaked, with the final configurations reflecting the most interesting RL versions of AAA armament and its positioning, but avaialable earlier than IRL.
(4) As surface Allied superiority often proves an even worse problem than air superiority by 1944, all conversion of old cruisers to CLAAs (provided for Tenryu, Kuma and Nagara classes) are optional. A player can keep them all as surface combatants. Nagara CLAAs also keep their torpedo armament.
(5) 6 Yahagi-class cruisers (as Oyodo, but constructed as destroyer leaders with full armament) are present in the mod currently (slots 106-109). I've noticed that the cost of Agano vs Oyodo was just 26 400 vs 31 160 thousands of yen (again, from Lacroix/Wells). This, of course, does not fully reflect relative complexity of construction, but it still made me more inclined towards the latter type. Also, it is far closer to what the RA mod player are already familiar with.
(6) There are no Katori-Class Training Cruisers in RA. Instead the oldest five CLs are converted to that role.
(7) With that in mind the last three Sendai-Class CLs are constructed in 1925-26 so the Ayase, Minase, and Otonase are available for use.
FIRST-CLASS TORPEDO SHIPS (RELUCTANT ADMIRAL)
(1) 120/45 guns on Mutsuki-class destroyers are changed from the 10YT (DP) to the historically correct 3YT (non-DP), so that these ships have practically no AA potential at the beginning of the war, as they should.
(2) Upgrades for the Mutsuki class are tweaked in line with the most optimal historical configuration. Less reduction in anti-surface armament during the late war, but ASW potential is reduced (AA potential is lower too, due to #1).
(3) The Mutsuki class APDs are not converted to escorts late in the war (that didn't happen IRL), upgrades are tweaked accordingly.
(4) Destroyer upgrades are tweaked. Reduction in surface armament in late-war upgrades is nonexistent or much less severe. In particular, torpedo armament is always retained. However, much fewer automatic AA guns are installed in the same upgrades. If surface combat was as important IRL as it is in the game, Japs would do the same.
(5) As the result of points above, Japanese destroyer fleet generally has far weaker and almost bordering on nonexistent AA armament throughout most of 1942. However, as Akizuki-class destroyers start to appear in large numbers, upgrades happen earlier than IRL, and some upgrades actually switch pure naval guns from DP guns (although usually the same 127/50 3YT, which have pretty bad AA stats), and other DP guns aren't removed (as every old player should know, DP guns are the core of any TF's anti-air defense; they have a chance of firing at any attacker, while automatic guns seem to only protect a ship which carries them), the anti-air potential of IJN combat screen rapidly increases far above the stock levels.
(6) 14 Yugumo-class destroyers (including 6 late-war hulls) are removed from the scenario (slots 159-166 and 2938-2943). The remaining 14 DDs of this class are available earlier, in 1942 - first two months of 1943. The Yugumo class is moved to slots 153-166.
(7) Shimakaze is removed from the scenario.
(8) 18 Akizuki-class desroyers are added to the scenario (slots 142-148 and 8235-8249). Also, all Akizuki-class destroyers arrive early (before the end of 1944). 10735-10756
(9) Matsu and Tachibana classes are modified. Their standard displacement is increased to 1500 tons, and they carry 2x2 100/65 T98 guns as their main armament. Quintuple and sextuple torpedo launchers are used instead of quadruple (using larger torpedo launchers was planned for these classes IRL, but they were not ready in time). Matsus can upgrade to Kaiten carriers in mid-1945.
(10) 9 Tachibana-class destroyers are added to the scenario for late 1945. In addition, other destroyers of Matsu and Tachibana classes arrive much earlier, starting from July of 1943. There is no large numerical increase, because these types are larger than in stock.
SECOND-CLASS TORPEDO SHIPS
(1)20 old 2nd-class destroyers of Momi and Wakatake classes are converted to numbered patrol boats, undergoing a major reconstruction (using old AA weapons removed from first-line ships). The PB-51 class of patrol craft is added to the scenario. Armament includes 1x120/45 3 YT, 1x2 40/61 T91, 2x4 13.2 T93, 1x2 53cm torpedoes, 48 DCs. Speed 25 knots, endurance 5000(14).
Wakatake (PB-51), Kuretake (PB-52), Sanae (PB-53), Asagao (PB-54), Fuyo (PB-55), Karukaya (PB-56), Yugao (PB-57), Hasu (PB-58), Kuri (PB-59), Tsuga (PB-60), Nire (PB-61), Take (PB-62), Kaki (PB-63), Ashi (PB-64), Sumire (PB-65), Hishu (PB-66), Kiku (PB-67), Susuki (PB-68), Tsuta (PB-69), Yomogi (PB-70) are included in this class.
Kaya, Nashi - decomissioned 1940 IRL, become PB-71 and PB-72 (slots 416-417).
(1.2) Added upgrade options for those destroyers of Momi and Wakatake classes that start the war converted to APDs.
(2) 2 old destroyers of Momo class begin the war as second-rate escorts. Not reconstructed beyond replacing cannons with DCs and AAMGs.
(3) The Tomozuru class is renamed to Chidori class, for historical accuracy. All TBs remain classified as TBs, insread of Es, as they retain their torpedo armament.
(4) 120/45 guns on unupgraded Minekaze and Kamikaze classes are changed from the 10YT (DP) to the historically correct 3YT (non-DP), so that these ships have practically no AA potential at the beginning of the war, as they should.
(5) 6 old Minekaze-class DDs are convered to APDs in 1941, instead of 2 (Tachikaze to Nadakaze, slots 317-322), to compensate for absence of Momi/Wakatake APDs. These ships undergo a thorough reconstruction with installation of DP guns and increase of radius at the expense of speed. Those APDs have options for both APD and E upgrades for late war.
(6) All ships of Minekaze and Kamikaze classes (that aren't converted to APDs and escorts) receive upgrades to the Kamikaze class standards.
(1) The only historical class of escorts in the scenario is Shimushu. All other escort classes presented in the scenario are derived from Sokuten/Hirashima minelayer class, rather than Shimushu class. Also, all escort hulls differ only in their degree of simplification and adaptation for rapid building techniques, no building of different-sized ships.
(2) The first class of new escorts is Matsuwa class, first ships laid down in the last months of 1941 and entering service in late 1942. Consists of 12 ships (slots 353-364). 725 tons of standard displacement; initial armament of 2x120/45 3YT (non-DP guns), 2x3 25/60 T96, 60 DCs; Speed 20 knots, Radius 4000 (14).
(3) The second class is Miyake class, first ships laid down in second half of 1942 and entering service in second half of 1943. The slightly improved variant of the previous class, the main differences are replacement of old 120/45 3YT guns with 10YT DP guns and 120 DCs. Consists of 10 ships (slots 365 - 374).
(4) The third class is Okinawa class, built through 1943 to 1945, with the first ships entering service at the end of 1943. A simplified and improved design, with slightly increased fuel storage. 730 tons of standard displacement; initial armament of 2x120/45 10YT, 3x3 25/60 T96, 120 DCs; Speed 20 knots, Radius 4500 (14). 48 ships (slots 375-412).
(5) C and D class escorts are using the same hull and basic armament as Okinawa class, but less powerful and simpler to make engines. Armament is the same as IRL. Speed is slightly higher, while endurance is lower. Consists of 157 ships (slots 416-546, 613-622 and 6981-6999).
(6) Only 10 subchasers of the Ch-28 class are ordered (Ch-28 through Ch-37, those laid down before the adoption of the Circle Perimeter program), and the concept of the large subchaser is abandoned thereafter, to save manpower and resources for construction of large escorts and destroyers.
(7) 3-ship historical Ch-251 class is added to the scenario (slots 8337-8339).
SUBMARINES (RELUCTANT ADMIRAL)
(1) Fuel requirements are reduced across the boards. As far as I can see, the fuel loads in the game roughly correspond to maximum load in tons of liquid fuel IRL, but stock Japanese submarines violate this rule, with fuel loads up to three times higher.
(2) Durability is reduced for some smaller subs and transport subs.
(3) Radar upgrades happen several months earlier.
(4) The KD8 medium submarine class is added to the scenario. Includes 15 boats (slots 1132-1146).
(5) Five ST class submarines are added to scenario (slots 1160-1164).
(6) 3 B3 class submarines (slots 1078-1080), 18 K6 class submarines (slots 1132-1148 and 1158), 18 KS class submarines (slots 1159-1176), and 10 STS class submarines (slots 1177-1186) are removed from the scenario.
(7) All midget submarines of B,C and D classes (slots 7976-8039) are removed from the scenario.
AMPHIBIOUS TRANSPORT SHIPS
(1) 4-ship historical Kibitsu Maru LSD class is added to the scenario, arriving from December 1943 to 1945 (slots 2991-2994).
(2) 16-ship historical SS LSI/LST class is added to the scenario. The number of ships is lower (16, slots 7385-7399), but they are available early in 1942-early 1943.
(3) Type SB (previously T-101) LSI/LST class is available from summer of 1943, and the number of ships in it is increased to 95 (slots 7441-7499 and 8575-8599) as production continues throughout 1945.
(4) The number of Type 1 LSI/APDs is increased to 50 (slots 7411-7440 and 8550-8596), as the fist ship become available in mid-1943 and production continues until the end of the scenario.
MINE WARFARE SHIPS
(1) 3-ship Ajiro minelayer class (slot 2898 and 14407-08) is added to the scenario (IRL this class consisted of 1 ship, not represented in stock), arriving in late 1943-early 1944.
(2) 12-ship Kamishima minelayer/minesweeper (convertable both ways) class (slots 14410-21) is added to the scenario for late 1944 and 1945 (IRL this class also consisted of only one ship).
(3) 2-ship Eijo minelayer class (historical) is added to scenario (slots 2899-2900).
(4) W-19 destroyer minesweeper class consists of only 4 ships. 13 more ships starting from W-23 are not ordered, with priority being given to escort construction and, later, smaller minelayers on a standardized hull.
(5) W-101 minesweeper class (historical ships made from captured British hulls) is added to the scenario (slots 624-625).
(6) Many small changes to flak upgrades are introduced for practically every class.
AUXILARIES, GUNBOATS, MERCHANTS, ETC
(1) The old former cruiser Asahi (slot 14405), reconstructed as a submarine tender, is included in the scenario.
(2) Three very old Japanese cruisers (Yakumo, Izumo, Iwate, slots 14402-4) are included in the scenario as patrol gunboats. Just don't expect them to participate in naval combat...
MOTOR TORPEDO BOATS
(1) All Japanese motor torpedo boats in the scenario belong to S-30 class, purchased from Germany or built on license: http://www.navypedia.org/ships/germany/ger_mb_s30.htm
(2) 200 new S-30 class large MTBs (slots 880-885 and 8040-8115, 8120-8234) replace 585 MTBs and MLs from the previous versions of Reluctant Admiral. Deliveries begin in May of 1943 and end in January of 1946. Note that expanded PT boats production also replaces the midget submarines' wartime production.
(1) In-game fuel loads on various cargo ships, auxiliaries, escorts, and mine warfare ships are reduced by 1/3, to compensate for the reduction of their cargo loads compared to stock. These ships effectively take less fuel to travel the same distance. In some cases, where data regarding historical fuel loads is available, it is used instead of the normal reduction, as the game seems to burden Japanese auxiliaries and small ships with excessive fuel consumption anyway.
(2) Many upgrades are tweaked. In general, the number of AAMG increased on many classes, but is often lower than in stock before upgrades.
(3) Displacements and other stats on Japanese warships are brought in line with data provided by Jentschura (and most of the sources). Capital ships usually have lesser displacements than in stock, many older destroyers have bigger (past pre-war reconstruction), and so on.
This is FatR's Commentary on Japanese Air Development:
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 resources. 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 (the Jack) is abandoned and the Mitsubishi 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 Kawasaki 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 cartridge 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 successfully 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 slightly 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 torpedoes.
-Old Russian fighters no longer have unparalleled 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 and serve as IJN Ground-Based Interceptors.
-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.
SPECIAL THANKS to the Air Design Team of RA: FatR, BKlooste, NYGiants59, and JWE/Symon. Air Artwork Thanks go to Red Lancer.
Another important note is that these changes are split about 90% for the IJN and 10% for the IJA. The Army's OOB doesn't hardly change whatsoever.
Other Air Notes:
All forward IJN air units start with modern aircraft and are at full strength
A Training and Cadre Program is instituted in 1940 by Yamamoto which causes nearly all IJNAF units to see a net reduction of 10-15 points in experience on December 7th. The benefit to this change is later IJN pilots start with higher experience in 1942 and 1943.
The air complement to the ground units of the 9th Air Fleet also starts at cadre strength with minimal experience and older aircraft (Claudes, Nells, Mavis) in Kyushu on Dec 7th. When fully trained and filled out this powerful unit provides 3 Daitai of Fighters, 2 Daitai of Level Bombers, 1 Daitai of Dive-Bombers, 1 Daitai of Torpedo Bombers, 3 Chutai of Short-Range Air Search and 3 Chutai of Long-Range Air Search.
The need for improved Carrier Air Search is recognized at the start of the war and a later sees the addition of five Chutai-Sized Judy units.
Several Air Units start in different locations for the beginning of the war.
The IJA takes near exclusive control of China freeing up IJN units to redeploy to 5th Fleet, 4th Fleet, and other commands. Several IJA units have their experience adjusted reflecting recent fighting in China.
Starting locations of some IJA units (namely Infantry Divisions that start spread out in component pieces) as well as many IJN are changed
The 88MM AA gun is adopted as a heavier choice for several units
All engineers and engineer vehicles are brought in line with Da Babe’s standard. Once this is completed, there are slight additions made to IJN Construction, Base Force, and HQ units. A total of nine small Construction Bn are created through 1942-1943.
SNLF units are allowed to combine into Assault Brigades (roughly 210 AV). No additional SNLF units are added they are simply renamed and allowed to fight as Brigades.
The guns taken off of the CLs converted to ‘Training Cruiser’ are turned into several small CD units that are then added to the OOB at war’s start. The large number of 5” and DP 5” guns taken off of the CVs, BBs, BCs, and CAs during upgrade to 3.9” AA are then changed into CD units that deploy to various bases in 1943/1944.
Beyond the December 7th starting forces, Naval Guard units do not exist. These troops are reformed into Atoll Defense Units who combine their infantry strength with that of Coastal Defense Artillery. Those guns taken off of the Japanese ships appear HERE throughout 1942—43—44.
A major new command is added with the creation of the 9th Air Fleet in Kyushu. This command has an Air HQ, 3 Flotillas, and 3 large Base Force units. They all start at cadre strength (20-25%) and are mobile Day One of the war.
Several Bases start in a more developed state at war’s beginning. Saipan is the greatest beneficiary of this development. The war’s start finds it as Combined Fleet’s Forward Operating base.
Shipyard changes are already noted.
Merchant shipyards are slightly reduced reflecting the total war approach
Heavy Industry is slightly expanded to reflect new factories created
Armaments and Vehicles are increased
A major refinery is added in Manchuria reflecting the Japanese work there during the war
The Home Islands see a net reduction of over 30% to their starting fuel and supply stocks forcing the player to grab the resources and oil centers in the DEI as quickly as possible.
Saipan AF-4, Pt-4, Fort-4 reflecting this base being Combined Fleet’s Forward Operating Base
New Garrison Requirements
My goal is to SLOW DOWN the creation of massive stacks moving across the board as well as tie down additional troops allowing for a slower start with real consequences for offensives reaching into China and/or India. Add JWE's changes to movement on the map and we may actually serve to achieve this goal.
This is what I've done:
Changsha 350 +50
Siangtan 100 +50
Hengyang 150 +50
Shaoyang 50 +30
Kweiyang 100 +40
Changteh 150 +110
Sian 300 +100
Yenan 350 +70
TOTAL +650 Required
Peiping 450 +70
Tientsin 350 +30
Tsingtao 250 +50
Suchow 150 +30
Soochow 150 +30
Wusih 100 +40
Nanking 350 +70
Hangchow 200 +40
Hankow 250 +30
Wuchang 250 +50
Amoy 100 +40
Canton 400 +40
TOTAL: +640 Required
Prome 10 +10
Toungoo 10 +10
Meiktila 10 +10
Shwebo 20 +20
TOTAL: +50 Required
Jamshedpur 20 +20
Asanaol 20 +20
Howrah 20 +20
Madras 200 +120
Columbo 100 +40
Trincomalee 50 +30
Bombay 250 +70
Delhi 200 +75
TOTAL: +395 Required
The Development Team of Reluctant Admiral
For those who haven't followed the Design of the Mod, let me mention the work done by everyone to get it ready to go:
FatR--Chief of Aeronautics focused mainly on the new and modified Aircraft. He also helped in finding a number of bugs within the 'test' versions of the Mod.
Michael--Provided an Allied perspective and made sure there was a little 'something' in this for the Allies. He also served as an excellent sounding board.
JuanG--Held my hand in the design process and truly was a major help for ideas, comments, and proposals. Many of them made their way into the Mod. Should mention some of his ship art is in this for the Kawachi-Class BCs and few other vessels.
JWE/Symon—For all the support and work helping with all facets of the Mod through suggestion, support, and good old fashioned badgering!
BK--Massively helped in the air development and design area with FatR. He must have 150-200 Posts in the two Design Threads. Invaluable help and suggestions flowed through him.
Red Lancer--Provided VERY NICE new aircraft art for at least a dozen or so planes. They are PERDY!
SuluSea—For all the magnificent Loading Screens, Scenario Art, Ship Art, and Naval Combat Screen
Gary Childress—For the Ship Art. Outstanding!
Damian--Perhaps he should be mentioned too for his checking of the revamped Japanese economy by use of Tracker. Very helpful.
Thanks to our playtesters and readers looking for various mistakes within the Mod!
This Mod started back over in WitP when Alikchi (he deserves a big thank you as well) and I got into a heavy discussion of the 4th Circle Plan. From that discussion I did a bunch of reading on Admiral Yamamoto and was struck by the foresight he had in seeing many issues facing Japan. Many of us know this in the general history but few have actually read what he said and/or wanted to do. This scenario reflects many of his wishes as shown in 2-3 of his biographies, Kaigun, and Sunburst.
It has been fun designing this creation. I am NOT a Computer person! My wife Paula and friend Michael (my aide and opponent) will testify to that. The creators of AE deserve magnificent credit for the Editor they have brought to life. It is intuitive and easy-to-use (relatively). Even with this said the Mod could not have been created without those mentioned above and the dozens who contributed their thoughts to the scenario.