I would think the cost of buying out these air groups would have to be close to 15 days worth of PPs. More for 2e and 4e bombers. Since a regiment/brigade is around 600 points, shouldn't a fighter squadron cost around the same??
I've really struggled with this aspect to be honest.
On one hand, theyre only airframes, not actual airgroups/pilots. On the other hand, I do not think they should be a 'given' by any means, and should definately incur a cost.
Another factor is the most I can make each 'group' (ie. packet of aircraft) cost is 255PP (ie 5 days worth give or take).
Currently I'm working with fighters being in the 7-10PP range per airframe, with airframes in groups of 16-30 depending on when and where. This puts the price of most of those groups in the 120-250 range.
Medium bombers are a little more expensive, heavies (especially pre-44) notably so, with group sizes of 6-12 for the latter. Specialist craft like recon and patrol aircraft also come in smaller groups, though their prices are less than those for heavies.
I've also tried to account for overall availability of an airframe in how much it costs - extra B-17s in '42 are rare and expensive, as are P-38s and other craft with limited availability at the time (in the Pacific - many of these were prioritized to Europe).
Likewise, as the war goes on groups become cheaper, even for aircraft of better performance (A 16 aircraft P-40E unit in early '42 costs 140PP, or 8.75 per airframe, while a 24 aircraft P-40N1 unit costs 200PP, or 8.33 per airframe). As airgroups are not removed from these offmap bases, their has the effect of firstly building up a pool to draw upon if needed given the resources, and also of making later war groups offer more for the same cost, conveniently representing the better position the allies enjoyed as the war progressed in terms of equipment numbers.
As it stands there are;
130 groups for the USAAF, representing 2304 airframes, for a total cost of 24890PPs (498 days worth). The bulk of these arrive in between late '42 and early '44.
70 groups for the USN/MC, representing 1224 airframes, for a total cost of 11930PPs (239 days worth). Their arrival dates are similar to the USAAF groups.
50 groups for the RAF/FAA/IAF, representing 894 airframes, for a total cost of 8740PPs (175 days worth). A notable portion of these arrives mid-late '42, with the rest spread though the later years.
I have yet to finish the Commonwealth or Minors, but I expect these to be something like 35 groups and ~600 airframes and 15 groups and ~200 airframes respectively.
As I've said to John, this is really a shot in the dark, and I reckon a lot will depend on the allied player actually playing and the situation at hand - in some games an extra 20 F4F-4's in mid-42 may seem like a waste compared to other options, whereas in another it could be a bargain. The best way to find out is to actually try it.
< Message edited by JuanG -- 7/8/2014 3:56:54 AM >