Air Exploit?

Gary Grigsby’s War in the East: The German-Soviet War 1941-1945 is a turn-based World War II strategy game stretching across the entire Eastern Front. Gamers can engage in an epic campaign, including division-sized battles with realistic and historical terrain, weather, orders of battle, logistics and combat results.

The critically and fan-acclaimed Eastern Front mega-game Gary Grigsby’s War in the East just got bigger and better with Gary Grigsby’s War in the East: Don to the Danube! This expansion to the award-winning War in the East comes with a wide array of later war scenarios ranging from short but intense 6 turn bouts like the Battle for Kharkov (1942) to immense 37-turn engagements taking place across multiple nations like Drama on the Danube (Summer 1944 – Spring 1945).

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ComradeP
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RE: Air Exploit?

Post by ComradeP »

(70-90 per turn)

At least initially, they are almost always higher, the last turn I checked had 235 training losses, but that might be due to increased losses in my version.
I see your really a glass half empty guy.

No, I'm just trying to make sure you don't fall into the all too common mental trap of "what I've destroyed is enough to hurt the Soviets". You really need to destroy more Soviet aircraft to make an impression.

My production estimate was based on the initial production, so for 49 turns it's much too low. At the start of the 1941 campaign, the Soviets produce 263 aircraft per turn. At the start of the 1942 campaign, they produce 719 aircraft per turn. The actual production in June 1942 will be slightly lower when you get there in a 1941-1945 campaign as all aircraft production starts maxed out in the 1942 campaign.

You can destroy 263 aircraft through bombing and intercepts, but destroying 719 isn't particularly likely unless the Soviets make some serious mistakes with their deployment.

For the Soviets, a war of attrition is a war they can win, and the losses you inflict on them just are not enough to turn the war in your favour.

As an aside, I'm getting some pretty decent results with my own air base bombing campaign (against the AI), but again only around 350-400 aircraft per turn, tops, at the moment, mostly due to how few bombers actually participate in the bombing missions and how few aircraft are actually destroyed. Currently, there seems to be no real direct relation between the amount of aircraft stationed at an air base and casualties from a bombing run, which is rather frustrating.
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Mehring
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RE: Air Exploit?

Post by Mehring »

No, I'm just trying to make sure you don't fall into the all too common mental trap of "what I've destroyed is enough to hurt the Soviets". You really need to destroy more Soviet aircraft to make an impression
I hear what you're saying, but it seems to me that it's not merely a question of crunching planes. Like the Russian tank situation, if production gets going the Germans are not going to be able to kill enough to keep up. But by repeatedly trashing and degrading in terms of morale and experience, the structures in which the machines fight, they will be able to delay their own loss of practical battlefield superiority, potentially long enough to win the game outright.

I've never presented bombing Russian airfields as a way of gaining quantitative superiority against a competent Russian player, but one of delaying loss of battlefield superiority. Damaging the formations they fight in, best expressed in the losses screen as machines destroyed, is the best indicator of having made an impression, of having inflicted meaningful and potentially decisive damage to the ability of Russian formations to fight effectively.
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kirkgregerson
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RE: Air Exploit?

Post by kirkgregerson »

ORIGINAL: WarHunter

Let me see if what I'm reading is being interrupted correctly. Version 1.03 up to the latest 1.04beta.

The axis player needs to bomb Red Air force bases to win the air war.

The soviet player needs to bomb axis airbases to win the air war.

Interdiction is the best ground attack method.

Air to Ground Attack helps soften up a target, but is hard to decipher how much good it does.

City bombing has changed alot between 1.03 and current beta.

The axis player has no way to help his allies with aircraft upgrades.

Anything to add?


yes, Axis minor allies don't seem to be able to support attacks made by German units. I've seen this many times with Rom air units (un-used) within 3-5 hexes not fly any support for German units on the attack or defense. Not sure this is a bug or WAD or just getting unlucky 'roll' for them to commit. Believe I've seen Rom air support Rom units.
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RE: Air Exploit?

Post by jomni »

ORIGINAL: WarHunter

Let me see if what I'm reading is being interrupted correctly. Version 1.03 up to the latest 1.04beta.

The axis player needs to bomb Red Air force bases to win the air war.

The soviet player needs to bomb axis airbases to win the air war.

Interdiction is the best ground attack method.

Air to Ground Attack helps soften up a target, but is hard to decipher how much good it does.

City bombing has changed alot between 1.03 and current beta.

The axis player has no way to help his allies with aircraft upgrades.

Anything to add?

Yes. The air war is a distraction. This is not WITP or Bombing of the Reich. Win or lose in the air, it's the ground war that will determine the real winner.
So don't fuss too much about it unless you want historical accuracy. :)
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RE: Air Exploit?

Post by Great_Ajax »

Air power was often a decisive element in the ground battles and provides many useful tools to shaping the ground war and not to mention that it plays a significant role on morale for the ground troops. If properly modeled, it would add a new layer of strategy to the game. For example, interdiction in the game is practically useless when in reality the Germans used this to great effect when airgroups where assigned this specific mission over a specific interdiction area or zone. Air interdiction used by both sides on river crossing sites were decisive points with furious air battles erupting over control over the air at these crossing points. It was extremely difficult for either force to cross a river if the enemy possesed air supremacy. The Soviets were successful (at great cost) at delaying the Germans crossing the Luga and the Germans used interdiction quite successfully to shut down river crossings over the Dnepr around Kiev.

Trey

ORIGINAL: jomni
ORIGINAL: WarHunter

Let me see if what I'm reading is being interrupted correctly. Version 1.03 up to the latest 1.04beta.

The axis player needs to bomb Red Air force bases to win the air war.

The soviet player needs to bomb axis airbases to win the air war.

Interdiction is the best ground attack method.

Air to Ground Attack helps soften up a target, but is hard to decipher how much good it does.

City bombing has changed alot between 1.03 and current beta.

The axis player has no way to help his allies with aircraft upgrades.

Anything to add?

Yes. The air war is a distraction. This is not WITP or Bombing of the Reich. Win or lose in the air, it's the ground war that will determine the real winner.
So don't fuss too much about it unless you want historical accuracy. :)
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RE: Air Exploit?

Post by arras »

ORIGINAL: Ketza

I think the fact that this type of mechanic benefits the side with the most airframes makes it appear "unfair".
And what is wrong with that? Having more planes in the battle should give you advantage.
ORIGINAL: KetzaAs the Axis you have to realize at some point you are not going to have air superiority everywhere and have to develop tactics to try and stop this type of attrition or at least make it painfull. You also have to choose where you are going to fight and concentrate.
But that is character of this game. It is designed to basically replay WWII. Axis are going to not have air superiority at one point. And Soviet player may bring that earlier by concentrated targeting of Axis fighter forces.

Bye the way Axis have enormous advantage in quality, I hardly kill any of his fighters in the airbattle, even if I enjoy numerical superiority.

Do somebody suggest that Axis player should be able to prevent any bombs falling on his bases when Soviet player sends concentrated air raids with lot of aircraft? Because that is what players seems to complain about.
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RE: Air Exploit?

Post by Ketza »

ORIGINAL: arras
ORIGINAL: Ketza

I think the fact that this type of mechanic benefits the side with the most airframes makes it appear "unfair".
And what is wrong with that? Having more planes in the battle should give you advantage.
ORIGINAL: KetzaAs the Axis you have to realize at some point you are not going to have air superiority everywhere and have to develop tactics to try and stop this type of attrition or at least make it painfull. You also have to choose where you are going to fight and concentrate.
But that is character of this game. It is designed to basically replay WWII. Axis are going to not have air superiority at one point. And Soviet player may bring that earlier by concentrated targeting of Axis fighter forces.

Bye the way Axis have enormous advantage in quality, I hardly kill any of his fighters in the airbattle, even if I enjoy numerical superiority.

Do somebody suggest that Axis player should be able to prevent any bombs falling on his bases when Soviet player sends concentrated air raids with lot of aircraft? Because that is what players seems to complain about.


I never said it WAS unfair I said it SEEMED unfair. The fact that the Soviet Air Force eventually eclipses the Luftwaffe is historical and I have no issue with that.

What I think has happened in some cases is Axis players are getting overwhelmed sooner then the historical timeline because they have not developed a doctrine that prohibits or makes painful the process of bombing Axis airfields into the dust early in the game.

I merely pointed out a few things that have helped me keep the Luftwaffe a viable force as I have not seen it destroyed in my games as others have had happen to them.

I would like to see an air mission to cap your own airfields however. I think it would be a benefit to both sides.
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Baelfiin
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RE: Air Exploit?

Post by Baelfiin »

I recent bombing attacks the red air force is able to bring 80 plane raids versus over 300 flak guns and wind up taking losses of _maybe_ 4 planes. In a raid with 20 ish russian fighters and 70 plus bombers being intercepted by 39 german fighters, russians lost 2 fighters and one bomber to 10 germans fighters and 16 bombers destroyed on the ground.

This particular base was 10 hexes behind the front lines stacked with piles of Flak. One would think that with the escorts outnumbered by twice as many interceptors, there would be a lot more soviet losses.

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RE: Air Exploit?

Post by 76mm »

ORIGINAL: Baelfiin

I recent bombing attacks the red air force is able to bring 80 plane raids versus over 300 flak guns and wind up taking losses of _maybe_ 4 planes. In a raid with 20 ish russian fighters and 70 plus bombers being intercepted by 39 german fighters, russians lost 2 fighters and one bomber to 10 germans fighters and 16 bombers destroyed on the ground.

The results in my game are completely and utterly different. Any attempts to bomb German airfields results in slaughter for the Russians with virtually no German losses.
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RE: Air Exploit?

Post by Mehring »

ORIGINAL: 76mm

ORIGINAL: Baelfiin

I recent bombing attacks the red air force is able to bring 80 plane raids versus over 300 flak guns and wind up taking losses of _maybe_ 4 planes. In a raid with 20 ish russian fighters and 70 plus bombers being intercepted by 39 german fighters, russians lost 2 fighters and one bomber to 10 germans fighters and 16 bombers destroyed on the ground.

The results in my game are completely and utterly different. Any attempts to bomb German airfields results in slaughter for the Russians with virtually no German losses.
Baelfin got lucky, that's an unusually poor performance from interceptors. Probably the interceptors never made contact and if the 300 FlaK were small calibre, they shoudn't touch level bombers.

I just raided a Finnish fighter base and 100+ interceptors sortied downing about 40 of mine for no loss. That was a highly unusual result though, possibly specific to Finnish fields.

The only bombers in my experience that cause little or no damage are tactical, on both sides. 76mm, would you mind posting some screenies showing your raid composition and interceptor levels?
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davetheroad
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RE: Air Exploit?

Post by davetheroad »

Some of the soviet aircraft weekly production rates quoted earlier looked a bit high to me so i checked my figures.
I only have 2 sets of statistics, a web set and from Glantz quoting russian sources.

web
41 - 15735
42 - 25436
43 - 34900
44 - 40300
45 - 20900
the figures appear to be off the total year production

glantz
41 - 8200
42 - 21700
43 - 29900
44 - 33200
45 - 8200

how do these compare to the games production?

The following figures from glantz are interesting
total aircraft and number with field forces
jun 41 - 20000/9200 46%
jan 42 - 12000/5400 45%
jan 43 - 21900/12300 56%
jan 44 - 32500/13400 41%
jan 45 - 43500/21500 49%
may 45 - 47300/22300 47%

What does the soviet airforce in the game represent?
the field force or the total pool of airframes?

If it is the field force then a historical or greater production rate will
result in a larger than historical field force as a lot of those airframes produced
are going into the pool and not the front.

If it is the total pool is there a mechanism to stop the soviet player from
adopting the normal gamer strategy of piling the whole lot
at the front because it does not cost anything and would not be the historical
logistical and organisational nightmare.

As far as the game is concerned are there any feedback mechanisms, positive or negative,
which keep the aircraft numbers within reasonable historical constraints?

for example if the luftwaffe is 'wiped out' does the game engine transfer aircraft from elsewhere
to maintain a bare minimum in the east. I understand that once they realised they were not going to
win this is what the german high command did, maintaining the minimum level of reinforcements they
thought they could get away with.

for the soviets is there a mechanism to cap the number of available aircraft at the front at the
historical maximums of 45- 55% or thereabouts.
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RE: Air Exploit?

Post by jomni »

Well the German player has a chance of reducing Soviet production by taking the factories before they are evacuated early in the game. But easier said than done.
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RE: Air Exploit?

Post by 76mm »

ORIGINAL: Mehring
76mm, would you mind posting some screenies showing your raid composition and interceptor levels?

I don't think I have any, and I player server games, so can't go back to a save to get screenies. And given past peformance, I'm not eager to conduct any more bombing raids to show the results.
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RE: Air Exploit?

Post by ComradeP »

By the way, the key component of the exploit isn't just bombing German air bases a few times, as losses tend to be high, but to do so over and over and over, until at some points the fighters are so tired that they can't fly missions anymore. You could also launch lots of recon missions first, or just small air base attack missions with a handful of fighters to wear down the enemy fighters.

In my game with James a while ago, he launched so many recon missions that my fighters were all too tired to do much later in the turn, so bombers flew unescorted ground support and interdiction missions with predictable results.
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Zebedee
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RE: Air Exploit?

Post by Zebedee »

Superb posts by Trey. Encouraged by Joel's past comments on being willing to revisit the air war at a later time so I'll keep fingers crossed that we can move away from the problems Mehring highlights in this thread into something with a bit more depth and nuance.

Just on the WiE vs WitP:AE - it's not quite the comparison to make. This game has an obvious close relationship with the original WitP. How far that extends is difficult for me to judge though.
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RE: Air Exploit?

Post by marty_01 »

ORIGINAL: ComradeP
For the VVS, destroying a handful of planes for every couple of air base bombing missions whilst losing dozens is a rate of attrition that they can sustain perfectly, it's more difficult for the Luftwaffe. The primary problem isn't necessarily the number of destroyed aircraft, as German aircraft production's pretty decent, but the loss of morale and experience by the targeted air groups, which in turn will result in higher losses, starting a downward spiral that the Axis player can't halt.

The ingame early 1942 Red Airforce isnt losing dozens of aircraft for each Luftwaffe plane being detroyed in these massed air base attacks. The Red Air is loosing at a rate of 1:1 and better(!!) against the Luftwaffe. Lets not sugar coat this.

I'd be more than happy to post the ongoing Soviet Air base Attack results I am experiancing.
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RE: Air Exploit?

Post by Hard Sarge »

and what has the German ground forces been doing all this time ? to cripple the SU Air, you need the ground forces taking them out, cripple a AF and then over run it, most of my pockets and breakthough were done with the idea of taking out as many AFs as I could along the way

if these are games started in 41, 42 the SU should still be more concerned with trying to rebuild his airforce, then in taking out the LW, by the Off moves in 43, 44, yea, then the SU airforce may be able to pound the Luft into the ground, but over all, sounds like people are not using what they have, to get done what has to be done, to allow these tactics to be used
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RE: Air Exploit?

Post by ComradeP »

The ingame early 1942 Red Airforce isnt losing dozens of aircraft for each Luftwaffe plane being detroyed in these massed air base attacks. The Red Air is loosing at a rate of 1:1 and better(!!) against the Luftwaffe. Lets not sugar coat this.

It would depend on the amount of missions flown and whether the Soviet player launches so many missions that CAP is too tired to fly. The first missions are generally bad, after that things get better.

I'm not sugar coating it in the least, the way the VVS can cheese the Luftwaffe out of existence is one of my pet peeves.

Luckily, the aircraft commitment oddities Emir Agic noticed and the ones I had also posted about on the tester forum have been partially resolved, so the air war makes a bit more sense now.
to cripple the SU Air, you need the ground forces taking them out, cripple a AF and then over run it

That really takes a lot of bombing missions and if the Soviet player has less than 100 planes at an air base, he won't necessarily feel the pain with hundreds of aircraft being produced each turn.
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RE: Air Exploit?

Post by Mehring »

Same old arguments flying with insufficient if any justification.

You do not cripple the Russian air force by destrying all its planes. You do so by destroying their air regiments' morale and experience levels. This is best achieved by bombing their bases and destroying their planes, but destruction of planes is the means to another end not an end in itself. Given that German fighters win every time vs Russians, priority is degrading Russian level bomber regiments as they are the units that can hurt you.

Bombing Russian bases will only delay their achieving air superiority against a competant player, and rightly so. Anyone bemoaning the Russian ability to beat the Luftwaffe ought to read history.
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ComradeP
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RE: Air Exploit?

Post by ComradeP »

Same old arguments flying with insufficient if any justification.

You do not cripple the Russian air force by destrying all its planes. You do so by destroying their air regiments' morale and experience levels. This is best achieved by bombing their bases and destroying their planes, but destruction of planes is the means to another end not an end in itself. Given that German fighters win every time vs Russians, priority is degrading Russian level bomber regiments as they are the units that can hurt you.

The main question is whether that's possible, reducing Soviet morale and experience enough. For some reason, Axis air group morale also seems to be "pulled" to the national morale and even light losses cause a dent in experience/morale regardless of how many kills they have. The Soviets only need a 40-50 morale/experience air force as they rely on numbers.
Bombing Russian bases will only delay their achieving air superiority against a competant player, and rightly so. Anyone bemoaning the Russian ability to beat the Luftwaffe ought to read history.

We are "bemoaning" that the VVS can achieve front-wide air superiority against the Luftwaffe in 1942 through cheesing the Luftwaffe to death. If you think that's what historically happened, the VVS achieving front-wide air superiority in 1942, it is not the "moaners" that need to read up in history.
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