Matrix Games Forums

Forums  Register  Login  Photo Gallery  Member List  Search  Calendars  FAQ 

My Profile  Inbox  Address Book  My Subscription  My Forums  Log Out

Why so low morale in my air units?

 
View related threads: (in this forum | in all forums)

Logged in as: Guest
Users viewing this topic: none
  Printable Version
All Forums >> [New Releases from Matrix Games] >> Gary Grigsby's War in the West >> Why so low morale in my air units? Page: [1]
Login
Message << Older Topic   Newer Topic >>
Why so low morale in my air units? - 7/27/2020 9:06:28 AM   
Hoggorm


Posts: 199
Joined: 1/31/2016
Status: offline
I currently play the Breakout and Pursuit 44 scenario and wonders a bit about the low morale of my Fighter bomber air units. They have little to no fatigue (usually between 0-3, 8 at the most), but suffers heavily from low morale. Their numbers there is around 20 after a week of flying.

I had them rest for a week due to bad weather. When it cleared up again all had a morale above 54. I had them flying every day for one week, so as to support a push of my ground units. They do not seem to suffer lots of losses, and the fatigue is still low but nearly all had a very low morale.

Everyone is quite experienced as well. Everyone with a morale less than 54 I put on rest. Now, most units have rested for two weeks and their morale is still not above 54... That is 7 days of flying in one month, and I still have to rest them for another week minimum.

I find it strange since my ground war is going rather well if I should say so myself. I would think this would impact the morale of everyone participating. However, if I should be very correct my fighter bomber air crew is not really participating as they are resting instead :D

According to the manual, if I read it correctly "Air group unit morale will decrease due to aircraft being damaged or destroyed in combat".

Anyway, since I have few losses I am sure I do something wrong here and was hoping for some advice on the topic.
Post #: 1
RE: Why so low morale in my air units? - 7/27/2020 11:24:08 AM   
loki100


Posts: 9268
Joined: 10/20/2012
From: Utlima Thule
Status: offline
its usually damage. Damaged planes get a morale hit and FB/Tac bombers get a lot of AA hits on missions.

In effect someone has come close to killing your pilot(s), they survived but are not that happy.

The solutions are all around intensity/number of days etc. Lower these and they maybe don't come close to getting killed twice in a week, one damaged plane may not undermine their morale so much.

Of course, esp in the summer of 44 you want lots of missions, so its not an easy trade off

_____________________________


(in reply to Hoggorm)
Post #: 2
RE: Why so low morale in my air units? - 7/27/2020 11:53:44 AM   
Hoggorm


Posts: 199
Joined: 1/31/2016
Status: offline

quote:

ORIGINAL: loki100

In effect someone has come close to killing your pilot(s), they survived but are not that happy.

Of course, esp in the summer of 44 you want lots of missions, so its not an easy trade off



I can understand that. I would be frustrated too :)

You are right that I want lots of missions, and that is the issue. The mentioned demoralizing week I had over 300 FB fly every day in a size 3 (or 2?) target area. When doing so I saw interdiction levels of up to 8 and 9 in almost all target area (!). I've never seen numbers like that, and even wrote a topic about it here on the forums.

The next week I could summon no more than about 150 FB. I targeted a 2-hex area, and flew no more than three of the week’s days. This time I only got 1 interdiction at most.

Obviously the first solution takes too much toll on the pilots, but the other solution really does nothing. According to the manual, an interdiction level of 1 gives no negative effect on the enemy at all. 2-5 gives one MP reduction per hex for motorized units, but no effect on regular infantry. That happens only from interdiction level 5...

(in reply to loki100)
Post #: 3
RE: Why so low morale in my air units? - 7/27/2020 1:38:06 PM   
GloriousRuse

 

Posts: 818
Joined: 10/26/2013
Status: offline
Airpower burn rate is indeed one of the fine balancing acts of the game. Beyond the weighting and timing of resources, a few points:

Flying at units is never cheap, but it can get downright expensive if they’ve stacked the formations with flak. I recall one point in game where hurricanes were running interdiction on a hex with three divisions and a total of nine flak attachments. It was a slaughter - 12+ aircraft lost per strike. You can imagine the others didn’t have a great time either. The larger “over units” area you fly, the more chances of this happening. And if you’re triggering adjacent flak fire, then you might find squadrons that have gone into that flak belt three or more times a week...

Flying to open space usually decreases the toll substantially. If you have the miles, routing the flight to its destination in a way that doesn’t fly right through massed flak also helps.

But the real question is “what do you need a 9 for?” Besides vanity and obviously higher being better than lower. To my mind, the 9s are either because you’ve tagged a unit for destruction or the Germans have a single supply route with an obvious choke. Perhaps as a massive movement shredder, but as you’ve noticed, that’s a one time proposition. As the allies in ‘44, you can put up a steady layer of 4-6 type interdiction with the occasional higher pin point. Asking for more than that is going to eat into the FBs and cause gaps next week. So if you’re spending your 9s on a rifle regiment 30 miles back that you have no plans for...is a higher attrition rate on the handful of trucks going to that unit really worth it?

In converse, placing 9s over a panzer division that is a likely a reserve activation, or you’re about to attack, etc. , this can pay off handsomely.

(in reply to Hoggorm)
Post #: 4
RE: Why so low morale in my air units? - 7/27/2020 1:55:27 PM   
Hoggorm


Posts: 199
Joined: 1/31/2016
Status: offline

quote:

ORIGINAL: GloriousRuse

But the real question is “what do you need a 9 for?”


Well, I never said I need a 9. I just realize that that was what I got given the effort put into the Air Directive. Still, again, if I read the manual correct anything less than 6 will give no impact what so ever on infantry units. Hence such a mission is just waste?

Interdiction level 2-5 will do so that motorized units loose on MP per hex.

Also, as mentioned, going for 9 seem to really take a toll on the air force, and leaves the sky basically open for the next few weeks, so in retrospect it was not worth it...

(in reply to GloriousRuse)
Post #: 5
RE: Why so low morale in my air units? - 7/27/2020 2:26:44 PM   
loki100


Posts: 9268
Joined: 10/20/2012
From: Utlima Thule
Status: offline
don't underestimate low level interdiction. It all adds in friction and attrition even before it is sustained effort to start costing MP or actually cull elements.

Those 1-4 belts hit resupply, disrupt moving elements and so on. Do enough of it and it really degrades the axis forces.

Its easier to do a slow escalation with the stategic bombers, if you fly only a few days and at low intensity you can keep a lot of bombers in action week after week. Now that fits neatly into the VP system (or damaged factories), you may be low for a few turns but at a point you pass the ability of the axis to repair as you just keep on turning up again.

With the tactical air its a case of asking yourself why are you bombing. if this is the big offensive, or the Normandy landings, then its worth a burn out for the short term gratification. If you are simply turning the screw, dismantling the axis forces, then reducing your effort to the point where you can deliver week in/week out is a better point. In the end that way, you deliver more bombs.

_____________________________


(in reply to Hoggorm)
Post #: 6
RE: Why so low morale in my air units? - 7/27/2020 11:19:33 PM   
cfulbright

 

Posts: 2730
Joined: 5/7/2003
Status: offline
The issue is you're flying seven days a week. That is guaranteed to crater morale for FB's that are dive-bombing down to low level. You should fly FB's three days a week and then almost every air group will be available the next week. Think about it: flying seven days a week alternate weeks and flying three days a week every week averages out to about the same number of strikes. The advantage of three days a week is that you'll always have your air groups available if and when you need them.

Cary

(in reply to Hoggorm)
Post #: 7
RE: Why so low morale in my air units? - 7/28/2020 10:15:46 AM   
loki100


Posts: 9268
Joined: 10/20/2012
From: Utlima Thule
Status: offline
to reinforce Cary's point.

You have 2 options.

Go all out in week 1 - drop 100 bombs, use what is left in week 2, drop say 30 bombs and it gets no better in week 3 (as your units regain morale etc)

Or 50 bombs week1, 50 week 2, 50 week 3 and so on. Here not only do you not run down your combat formations you can set a few back as a reserve and replace those that need to stand down.

Now there are times when the big blow out is what you need, say a big set piece offensive or if you know the weather is going to get a lot worse, but in the main looking for that point where your effort is self-sustaining is the challenge

In the war, for various reasons the Western Allies were good at the second approach. Even during 1940 the RAF was standing down fighter formations before they were burnt out. On the other hand the Luftwaffe tended to the first so by the end of the Battle of Britain the Luftwaffe was effectively unusuable.

Roger

_____________________________


(in reply to cfulbright)
Post #: 8
RE: Why so low morale in my air units? - 7/29/2020 11:11:54 AM   
Hoggorm


Posts: 199
Joined: 1/31/2016
Status: offline
quote:

ORIGINAL: cfulbright

Think about it: flying seven days a week alternate weeks and flying three days a week every week averages out to about the same number of strikes. The advantage of three days a week is that you'll always have your air groups available if and when you need them.

Cary


quote:

ORIGINAL: loki100

to reinforce Cary's point.

You have 2 options.

Go all out in week 1 - drop 100 bombs, use what is left in week 2, drop say 30 bombs and it gets no better in week 3 (as your units regain morale etc)

Or 50 bombs week1, 50 week 2, 50 week 3 and so on. Here not only do you not run down your combat formations you can set a few back as a reserve and replace those that need to stand down.


That makes sense :)

Then my first question is if it matters what days an Air Directive is flown at? I've read that it is useful to have recon on days 1 and 7 so that they can verify damage done before the week starts and after it ends. But let’s say I have 5 more air directives. Does it matter what days they fly on if I do not fly on day 1 and 7? Is there any difference in flying 2,3,4 or 2,4,6? And should I alternate the days other ADs fly? So, if I've chosen 2,3,4 on one AD, should another have 4,5,6? What are your thoughts on this?

The reason I'm asking is that the AD specify specific days, not days as a number. This leads me to think that what days I choose may have an impact?

The other question is regarding weather. If the weather for next week is reported to be heavy rain. Do you rest all your aircrews or do you still set up ADs? I've done both and see that even through a week with heavy rain reported it appears as if the weather may be better for parts of the week, and then ADs might be flown. At what weather should I definitively not fly?

(in reply to cfulbright)
Post #: 9
RE: Why so low morale in my air units? - 7/29/2020 3:35:11 PM   
cfulbright

 

Posts: 2730
Joined: 5/7/2003
Status: offline
I'll be interested to see Loki's response on this. Here's mine.

Assuming you're playing with Fog of War turned on for both sides, do recon days 1/2/3/7. That gives lots of strategic recon before the bombers go in, and then I have after-action recon.

I used to do bombing on days 2/4/6 and 3/5/7 (I set some air directives to one and some to the other) to force the Luftwaffe to fly intercepts every day and tire them out, assuming that the air groups would recover during the off days. But someone posted in the past month that you should do your bombing (particularly your Ground Attack bombing) on days 5/6/7, because it leaves the Axis units weakest at the start of the ground phase, and there's no difference in morale recovery whether your air groups fly three days in a row or have alternate days off. I don't know the absolute true answer on this, but in my current game 5/6/7 seems to work fine without low morale, though it may be a little "gamey".

If I see heavy rain or snow in the current turn I rest all the air groups in strategic bombing directives as well as air superiority directives over the Channel. I actually set the air groups' Mission Setting to Rest because even though they won't incur fatigue or lower morale if their AD's are scrubbed, they don't get the benefit of Rest if they're set to Day/Night or Night Only. Also, morale recovery through Rest occurs in both the friendly air phase and the enemy air phase, so I always rest my Ground Support air groups during the friendly air phase, then reactivate them for the ground phase. Likewise after the friendly air phase I rest my all air groups in the Ground Attack, Strategic Bombing, and Recon air directives. You can filter for these in the CR and then do the universal Mission Setting to set them all to Rest.

I leave Recon going in bad weather because they very seldom get low Morale, so don't need the rest and might be able to sneak a peak even in bad weather. I also leave Naval Patrols going in bad weather because I need friendly water once I've launched an amphibious invasion in either the Med or across the Channel. By the way, for Strategic recon I set Requested AC to two planes per target for the first turn I fly recon over a new target, then (try to remember to) lower it to one plane per target on subsequent turns. I think this may increase quality of recon on that first turn and also reduce the likelihood of shot down recon planes.

By the way, the weather changes at the end of the Axis turn, not the beginning of it. So whatever weather you see this turn for the Allied air phase also applies to the Axis in their next turn. This is "works as designed" and is based on the idea that the Allies had better weather forecasting due to their weather stations in Greenland, Iceland, etc. So no need to wonder how you should set the air groups that fly in "Enemy Air Phase": Ground Support, Air Superiority, and Naval Patrol. (Night Intruder which should only ever be set to Friendly Air Phase - and Naval Patrol) because of next turn's weather.

That may have been a lot of information. Let me know if you have questions on it, and as I said I'll be interested to hear what Loki says about the first things I wrote.

Cary


(in reply to Hoggorm)
Post #: 10
RE: Why so low morale in my air units? - 7/29/2020 6:53:40 PM   
GloriousRuse

 

Posts: 818
Joined: 10/26/2013
Status: offline
I’m not Loki, but it’s interesting that so many people recommend parsing out the days for GA. I tend to think of GA as the tool I need to absolutely guarantee victory at a chosen point, so I almost always pile on all seven days of attacks. The goal to my mind is that after the GA-unit, the on-top and retreat ave interdiction go in, and then the GS goes in...the Germans don’t have a functioning unit anymore. But then I’ve noticed I tend to be a far bigger fan of a few (or, in Italy, possibly just one) attack that absolutely cannot fail rather than looking for several options and seeing what plays out.

(in reply to cfulbright)
Post #: 11
RE: Why so low morale in my air units? - 7/30/2020 8:27:52 AM   
Hoggorm


Posts: 199
Joined: 1/31/2016
Status: offline

quote:

ORIGINAL: cfulbright

Assuming you're playing with Fog of War turned on for both sides, do recon days 1/2/3/7. That gives lots of strategic recon before the bombers go in, and then I have after-action recon.



Does this apply for strategic recon only, or do you use this strategy for normal recon as well?

quote:

ORIGINAL: cfulbright

But someone posted in the past month that you should do your bombing (particularly your Ground Attack bombing) on days 5/6/7, because it leaves the Axis units weakest at the start of the ground phase.



I would not know, but I find this strange. That would mean that the Axis “heal” during the air phase?

One turn is one week long. So, what happens on day 5,6 and 7 in your air phase happens on the last three days of the ground phase as well? Am I correct?

If you are correct, this should mean that it would be better to bomb early in the week, as this will be the start of your ground phase? However, what I experience as a week of gameplay in my ground phase, actually happens simultaneously throughout the week. I’m not sure I explained my thinking very clear here, but the point is that the ground phase is a week long, and do not differentiate one day from another?

quote:

ORIGINAL: cfulbright

If I see heavy rain or snow in the current turn I rest all the air groups in strategic bombing directives as well as air superiority directives over the Channel. I actually set the air groups' Mission Setting to Rest because even though they won't incur fatigue or lower morale if their AD's are scrubbed, they don't get the benefit of Rest if they're set to Day/Night or Night Only. Also, morale recovery through Rest occurs in both the friendly air phase and the enemy air phase, so I always rest my Ground Support air groups during the friendly air phase, then reactivate them for the ground phase. Likewise after the friendly air phase I rest my all air groups in the Ground Attack, Strategic Bombing, and Recon air directives. You can filter for these in the CR and then do the universal Mission Setting to set them all to Rest.



Somewhat similar to my previous thoughts I do not fully understand the difference between flying in friendly or enemy air phase. Isn’t the idea that everything happens at the same time? Considering real world rest and mission flying. If I were to fly in my friendly air phase, but rest in my enemy’s air phase. When do I actually rest in the real world?

In relation to the game: is the rest not applied in the logistics phase, as everything else? Hence it does not matter if you rest during periods of your turn. I would imagine that a unit is first rested if it did not fly during your turn and is set to rest when this is checked in the logistics phase?

I would also appreciate if someone could explain for me the difference of flying in Enemy, own or both air phases 😊

quote:

ORIGINAL: cfulbright

I leave Recon going in bad weather because they very seldom get low Morale, so don't need the rest and might be able to sneak a peak even in bad weather.



Do you consider, or change, what altitude the recon flies in in bad weather? I would imagine flying at a lower altitude would increase the likelihood of seeing something? You say you fly a very small number of aircraft on recon missions. That makes sense as you only need one photo to get an idea of what is out there. But how large an area can one group of about 12 recon aircraft cover? What is a too big area?



(in reply to cfulbright)
Post #: 12
RE: Why so low morale in my air units? - 7/30/2020 8:30:29 AM   
Hoggorm


Posts: 199
Joined: 1/31/2016
Status: offline

quote:

ORIGINAL: GloriousRuse

I’m not Loki, but it’s interesting that so many people recommend parsing out the days for GA. I tend to think of GA as the tool I need to absolutely guarantee victory at a chosen point, so I almost always pile on all seven days of attacks. The goal to my mind is that after the GA-unit, the on-top and retreat ave interdiction go in, and then the GS goes in...the Germans don’t have a functioning unit anymore. But then I’ve noticed I tend to be a far bigger fan of a few (or, in Italy, possibly just one) attack that absolutely cannot fail rather than looking for several options and seeing what plays out.


This is what I saw as well. It was very effective. However my air force was basically shut down due to morale for the next two or three turns, and that was not very productive... So the net effect was worse than hoped for unfortunately...

(in reply to GloriousRuse)
Post #: 13
RE: Why so low morale in my air units? - 7/30/2020 11:24:47 AM   
loki100


Posts: 9268
Joined: 10/20/2012
From: Utlima Thule
Status: offline
to pick up on a couple of issues in your questions to Cary.

Time

This is, to use the good Scots word, a guddle. There are a number of iteractions you just have to accept as being an artifact of the different phases.

So during the air execution phase what happens is recon builds up (hence the advice about recon on D1), planes repair from damage (so that it helps to stagger your missions), pilots train and are allocated. All this is in detail in the turn log.

What doesn't happen, is that when you do GA has any impact on the situation when you move onto the ground phase. Equally (I believe) there is no repair (of assets such as factories) during the air execution phase.

The reason for the advice to recon on D7 is it then gives you as much info as possible for planning both your ground moves and your next set of air directives.

The other oddity is interdiction. This is laid down in the air phase but mostly only triggered in the ground or logistics phases (when movement happens). Thats in part why its so hard to see what it actually does (there is no battle report per se). To add to this, if a battle does take place in an interdicted hex, all the planes involved in that suddenly show up in the battle report screen.

Enemy/Friendly phase

This only affects GS missions. You can turn on/off the GS indicator as you conduct your own ground phase, so that say a few opening hits on weak regiments don't use up your allocated aircraft. You can also turn it off at the end of your ground phase. That means no GS for your side in the enemy phase.

The value of this is situational. If you are the allies then do it maybe in the early game when the Luftwaffe can really concentrate (but if so think to protect your formations using an AS mission instead). For the axis, its maybe useful if you think you are going to attack next turn and want to preserve your planes.

In a MP game there are a few nasty tricks around GS. If you think your opponent is going to use, stacking up a pure fighter (with a lot of fighters) GS can really give them a bad week, esp if you notice they are sloppy about assigning escorts to their GS. So its all part of the cat and mouse, feint and bait that is how to get the best out of the Luftwaffe (or to give it a bloody nose)

< Message edited by loki100 -- 7/30/2020 11:25:53 AM >


_____________________________


(in reply to Hoggorm)
Post #: 14
RE: Why so low morale in my air units? - 7/30/2020 12:33:50 PM   
GloriousRuse

 

Posts: 818
Joined: 10/26/2013
Status: offline
A seven day press shouldn’t shut down your tac air unless you really stick your foot in it...certainly not for three more weeks. I can almost guarantee your issue will not be resolved by exact day tweaks. Which is a common theme in WitW - we have the tools to fly at precisely 7:11 AM at 12,762 feet while carrying three extra rounds of machine gun ammo, so we just assume that the answer must be in some deep wisdom of the Pareto optimal configuration of the most minuscule detail...but most of the time it’s just we did something fundamentally off the mark.

(in reply to loki100)
Post #: 15
RE: Why so low morale in my air units? - 7/30/2020 5:55:57 PM   
cfulbright

 

Posts: 2730
Joined: 5/7/2003
Status: offline
quote:

Do you consider, or change, what altitude the recon flies in in bad weather? I would imagine flying at a lower altitude would increase the likelihood of seeing something? You say you fly a very small number of aircraft on recon missions. That makes sense as you only need one photo to get an idea of what is out there. But how large an area can one group of about 12 recon aircraft cover? What is a too big area?


I don't change altitude for recon based on weather. I always use low-altitude for tactical targets, and medium-altitude (except for the F-9's) for strategic recon.

Cary

(in reply to Hoggorm)
Post #: 16
RE: Why so low morale in my air units? - 7/31/2020 9:19:53 PM   
Hoggorm


Posts: 199
Joined: 1/31/2016
Status: offline

quote:

ORIGINAL: loki100

Enemy/Friendly phase

This only affects GS missions. You can turn on/off the GS indicator as you conduct your own ground phase, so that say a few opening hits on weak regiments don't use up your allocated aircraft. You can also turn it off at the end of your ground phase. That means no GS for your side in the enemy phase.



I see! Thank you!


quote:

ORIGINAL: GloriousRuse

...but most of the time it’s just we did something fundamentally off the mark.


I guess that is true for me... I'm still learning the game, and there is a lot of details to miss...


quote:

ORIGINAL: cfulbright

I don't change altitude for recon based on weather. I always use low-altitude for tactical targets, and medium-altitude (except for the F-9's) for strategic recon.


I understand! Thank you.

(in reply to loki100)
Post #: 17
Page:   [1]
All Forums >> [New Releases from Matrix Games] >> Gary Grigsby's War in the West >> Why so low morale in my air units? Page: [1]
Jump to:





New Messages No New Messages
Hot Topic w/ New Messages Hot Topic w/o New Messages
Locked w/ New Messages Locked w/o New Messages
 Post New Thread
 Reply to Message
 Post New Poll
 Submit Vote
 Delete My Own Post
 Delete My Own Thread
 Rate Posts


Forum Software © ASPPlayground.NET Advanced Edition 2.4.5 ANSI

0.254