Several people have commented on the heavy losses Allied night fighters (NF) suffer, especially under the beta patch, so I thought I would dig out some historical information on both NF and German Nachtjagd (NJ) to compare with the game. The table below summarises the information available to me for the end of the war, when the strategic bombers returned to Germany after concentrating on supporting D-Day.
Looking at the data it seems to me that in WitW:
• German NJ losses to Allied NF are much heavier than they should be.
• Allied NF losses to German NJ are much, much heavier than they should be.
I think the current beta patch seriously over-estimates the ease with which night fighters could find each other.
A – Losses to all causes. In 1943 the Luftwaffe believed that the cause of losses was split evenly between aerial combat, flak, technical faults and fuel shortages.
B – included in the total claims.
C – The RAF rarely knew what had caused a loss as the aircraft would simply fail to return. RAF losses are therefore to all causes – air combat, flak, mechanical failure, pilot error, etc.
D – Not all intruder claims were for night fighters; about 20% were aircraft such as Ju 34s, Ju 52s and He 177s. A portion of the Ju 88s claimed may have been bomber versions.
E – Sorties by Mosquito bombers in Bomber Command only.
F – Including Mosquitos bombers and 100 Group aircraft.
G – Estimated by Bomber Command operational research.
1 – From Gebhard Aders, History of the German Night Fighter Force
2 – From Martin Streetly, Confound and Destroy
3 – From Confounding the Reich, Martin Bowman & Tom Cushing
4 – From Mosquito by Sharp and Bowyer
5 – From The Strategic Air Offensive Against Germany Vol. IV by Webster and Frankland
In addition to the 100 Group operations, between March 1943 and February 1945 RAF Fighter Command flew 7,177 Intruder sorties against airfields, knows Luftwaffe training areas and transport targets, claiming 200 aircraft destroyed for the loss of 93 aircraft. They did not specifically target night fighter bases but some of the claims will have been for night fighters.
Some of the German operational losses were an indirect result of the NF offensive as airfield lights had to be turned off, navigation beacons were jammed, and NJ resorted to low level flight across a blacked-out country to avoid being found.
The remarkably low Mosquito NF loss rate is due to the technical superiority of the Mosquito and its centimetric radar, the initative being held by the RAF as to when to fly (weather could be good over the UK bases but poor over the Luftwaffe’s landing grounds), and also I suspect the main mission of NJ pilots, which was to shot down bombers rather than to engage their escorts.
< Message edited by Ralzakark -- 4/9/2016 4:04:58 PM >