I finally have some time to play this mighty scenario, so here goes!
For the most part my plans didn't involve major changes to the opening layout. I'm going to take half an hour for ELINT assets to spread out and get a better read on the situation, before making heavy fighter sweeps in the north. Once I've taken a chunk out of the enemy fighter cover I'll try a coordinated TLAM strike to reduce the coastal airbases in the middle and north of the theatre. I suspect I'll be on the defensive in the south, and I'll try and grind down the enemy before raiding their southern airbases. Low cloud is going to complicate any LGB attacks, which means buddy lasing from well within the medium air defence envelope, which will definitely be dangerous. I'm moving TG Virginia due east, in a somewhat risky move, to bring them inshore as quickly as possible, in the hope that I can use their long-range SAMs to interfere with enemy air activity in that region. Other than that, no major changes.
So the battle commences, and it immediately becomes clear that the Russians aren't going to sit around politely while I take half an hour for sensor readings. Within minutes I've got an SSN close aboard TG20, and another near the Ike. ASW helicopters sink the two intruders, but it's very likely that the Russians have gotten a good read on at least one of my carriers. It only takes a few minutes before I'm getting reports of large numbers of attack aircraft launching and forming up over northern Norway, confirming my suspicions. Things are going to get warm at TG 20, and I start scrambling fighters to get ready to greet the attackers.
Down south the situation isn't any better, as swarms of Russian aircraft start pushing into southern Norway. My hasty response isn't well coordinated, and I fumble to bring in interceptors from various bases as the threat grows and grows. Before long I'm trying to fend off Mig-31s, and somehow get my short-ranged F-16's into the fight without losing them all. At first it seems like the Mig-31s are on a high-speed southern dash to nowhere, before I realize they're pointing right at my NATO AWACS. Flee AWACS, flee! Intervening fighters manage to get those Mig-31s, and I manage to destroy an incoming Mig-29 raid, after which I try to pull back and disengage while dealing with the remaining Su-27s and Mig-31s. The enemy is far enough south that they're in SAM range now, so I turn on the radars and start using long range Nike shots to try and force them to turn and break lock. I haven't hit anything that way, but I think the disruption is proving useful.
As all this is happening I realize that I've made a mistake about the northern strike. It's not headed for TG 20. It's headed south into Norway, and I haven't got a lot in position to intercept it. My Norwegian fighter defences are already seriously depleted, and I probably won't have time to re-arm (even on quick turnaround) before the attack arrives. My CVGNs are too far away for newly launched fighters to get there in time to intercept. I'm bringing in my Marine F-18s (who might make it in time) and the UK cap (who will probably have to refuel in Norway), and a few CAP F-14s that may be close enough to interfere. I suspect I'll be launching Norwegian-based aircraft with attack loadouts just to use their defensive missiles and keep them from being caught on the ground. (Will those crafty Russians be making SRBM attacks in coordination with the arrival of the Su-24s? Hmmm... Maybe I should launch sooner?)
About this time another SSN contact appears, this one close by TG De Ruyter - as if I don't have enough to do already. My helicopters are closing in, but they're all dipping sonar only, with no MAD, which means their prosecution rate is slooow. Hopefully they'll localize before the SSN can attack. Worse, if the SSN has radioed to the Oscar that's out there somewhere, then TG De Ruyter may be in deep trouble before long.
With the northern attack headed south, I have a large number of fighters in the air east of TG 20 with nothing to do. Since the Russians are sending most of an Su-27 squadron out to meet them, I decide to engage them rather than hang around uselessly. That exchange goes well, but as I start wrapping it up I get urgent ESM reports of Mig-31 radars over northern Norway, Not one or two of them, but 12 of them. A full squadron! With that much power something major's going on. This has to be the heavy aviation anti-carrier raid, and I've just used up most of my airborne Phoenixes! Perfect timing...
Assorted minor items:
It looks like most of the Medium ASW missions are not set to the 1/3 rule. Similarly the TG20 North Flank Barcap is not set to the 1/3 rule. I'm not sure if this is deliberately done to make a surge at the start?
The reference points for many of the close ASW missions are relative fixed, instead of relative rotating.
When the Fencer raid starts forming up the support Fencers have their radars on, which gives a nice positive ID and raid warning to NATO. Perhaps they would be more discreet with radars off?
I was wondering why the CF-18s are on an allied side, instead of under player control? The ones on intercept went charging up into the furball and got stomped by long range missile shots without accomplishing much.
I haven't looked at the Mig-31 WRA yet, but are they set to RTB upon use of their long-range missiles, or are they hanging around to use their short range missiles? I've managed to kill a number of them at medium ranges, when I suspect they might have been able to safely disengage and RTB earlier.