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#3620836 - 08/05/12 09:07 PM BoB2 v 2.12 beta, test campaign for Luftwaffe (includes 2.12 patch readme/announcement)  
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Hi all!

Am beta testing the new campaign engine for BoB2 which will be rolled out with the 2.12 update in a few weeks. The campaign has had a major tuneup, especially the Luftwaffe side, so that will be the focus.

Your strategic and tactical advice welcome!

July 1940 was an unsatisfying month for the Luftwaffe. In attacks on convoys and ports, the LW managed only to destroy 77 RAF fighters and damage 43, for the loss of 66 fighters and 123 bombers. But Reichmarschall Goering has issued orders to begin Adlerangriff, the destruction of the RAF.

Hitler's Directive No. 17

Goering specified the key targets of the Luftwaffe to be Fighter Command airfields, the coastal radar towers, and aircraft production facilities.

The Luftwaffe strategy of the day is summed up by the gruppe commander of JG26, Adolf Galland:

"Our method of attack would this time be in far greater numbers than before. We still did not want to engage in aerial combat over English soil because that would mean a shorter stay in actual combat, and we had to make sure that we had enough fuel to get back to our bases. By engaging combat in mid channel it meant that we could dogfight for more than twice the time and not only was it only a short distance back to base, but if we ditched, our rescue would be guaranteed.

If we attacked in large numbers, then we know that the RAF would detect this and we would draw greater numbers of fighters from their bases, then we would bring in a second wave that would give us an absolute advantage. "


Our campaign begins on August 12!



We have the following resources at our disposal:



(Cat A units are at full readiness, Cat B at partial readiness and Cat C are non operational.)
Critically we have, 14 gruppe 109s at Cat A and 4 at Cat B, 2 gruppe 110s at Cat A and 6 at Cat B (the 110s are not faring well against the RAF).

Against this, our intel estimates the RAF has the following:

That is, 304 Spitfires and 544 Hurricanes of which we estimate about 650 are operational. Our spies tell us RAF production is currently at about 35 Spitfires and 62 Hurricanes per day. (Though this hardly seems possible, as we are producing 109s at 35 per day, and 110s at 23 per day.)

Here is the state of affairs on August 12. No raids have yet been directed against RAF targets and we have many options:



For this first phase of Adlerangriff, on the 12th of August, the game AI has allocated 40% resources to morning, 30% to midday and 30% to afternoon operations (we can vary this if we wish, but will leave it as is for now).

This means we have the following gruppen available:

7 Ju87 Stuka
4 He111
2 Ju88
4 Do17
7 Bf109
3 Bf110

As this is a flight sim, not just a war game, we will fly with Galland in JG26, every time that unit enters combat.

So, kamaraden! What shall we hit this morning (and where):

a) RDF (radar)
b) Fighter command airfields
c) Coastal command airfields
d) Aircraft production facilities (fighter or bomber)
e) Ports
f) Convoys (there are two which have been detected leaving Thames estuary)
g) Other production facilities (oil, power, support industries)

To help your deliberations, some resources below:

Map of identified RAF airfields: http://i715.photobucket.com/albums/ww152/whirlybirda2a/RAF_airfields_1940.jpg
Comparative analysis of RAF vs Luftwaffe intelligence: http://www.airpowerstudies.co.uk/APR%20Vol%203%20No%203.pdf
Fighter Command AOB 8 August: http://www.battleofbritain1940.net/document-31.html
Historical summary of BoB timeline: http://bobgamehub.blogspot.dk/p/about-battle.html




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#3620846 - 08/05/12 09:26 PM Re: Help me win a BoB2 (v 2.12 beta) test campaign for Luftwaffe [Re: HeinKill]  
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Great idea, an interactive AAR!

I'd have to go with raids on the two radar stations in sector c, followed by the bombing of the fighter airfield on the coast in sector c.

#3620874 - 08/05/12 10:37 PM Re: Help me win a BoB2 (v 2.12 beta) test campaign for Luftwaffe [Re: HeinKill]  
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Smithcorp Offline
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Hit the fighter factories!

#3620924 - 08/06/12 12:41 AM Re: Help me win a BoB2 (v 2.12 beta) test campaign for Luftwaffe [Re: Tigerwulf]  
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Originally Posted By: Tigerwulf
Great idea, an interactive AAR!

I'd have to go with raids on the two radar stations in sector c, followed by the bombing of the fighter airfield on the coast in sector c.


+1


Rabbits, break right and climb.
#3621076 - 08/06/12 07:48 AM Re: Help me win a BoB2 (v 2.12 beta) test campaign for Luftwaffe [Re: HeinKill]  
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Yes, good choices - knock a hole in the RDF at Rye (high level radar) and also Dover (low level radar) in the first wave and hit Lympne (and Hawkinge) with the second wave. There are also RDF masts at Foreness and Pevensey which we might target.

We are asset heavy at this stage in the campaign, so we have capacity for more raids on coastal RDF.



@Smithcorp: We can hit the fighter factories to try to trim/disperse fighter production. Most are tucked away inland where I would be hesitant to attack until the RAF has been attrited significantly, but there is the Supermarine factory at Woolstone which is still located on the coast and a major Spitfire production site according to our intel.

Here is a recon photo from yesterday:



To hit this, we could use the same tactic as above. Knock out the radar station on the Isle of Wight at Ventnor, then go after the Supermarine factory.

Here is what I propose then (still open to other ideas). The first wave of raids will target the RDF:

0730-0800:
Ju87s escorted by 109s to attack RDF at Rye, Dover, Pevensey and Foreness
Ju87s escorted by 109s or low level Bf110C7s (unescorted) to attack RDF at Ventnor and Poling

0830-0900
Escorted He111s to attack RDF at Rye, Dover, Pevensey and Foreness
Escorted Ju88s to attack RDF at Ventnor and Poling

0930
Do17 recon of above

1000
Follow up raids on RDF targets if needed

This should blind the Tommies and set us up by mid morning for an undetected approach to RAF 11 Group airfields at Lympne, Hawkinge and Manston, and a heavy raid on the Supermarine factory.

Am I being too cautious? This first day with full LW resources at our disposal can be decisive. If we don't need follow up raids, we will still have assets unused with the current plan, primarily Ju87 and Do17 gruppen, with Bf109 or Bf110 escorts.

We could throw these against the 11 Group airfields at Tangmere and Westhampnett after we knock out Ventnor and Poling?





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#3621082 - 08/06/12 08:06 AM Re: Help me win a BoB2 (v 2.12 beta) test campaign for Luftwaffe [Re: HeinKill]  
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Cool Heinkill. What about your approach routes - direct or dogleg? Are you planning any misdirections like aiming at one target then splitting the force to your real objectives?

#3621084 - 08/06/12 08:14 AM Re: Help me win a BoB2 (v 2.12 beta) test campaign for Luftwaffe [Re: HeinKill]  
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Definitely go against Tangmere and Westhampnett as well.


Rabbits, break right and climb.
#3621112 - 08/06/12 10:15 AM Re: Help me win a BoB2 (v 2.12 beta) test campaign for Luftwaffe [Re: HeinKill]  
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Zero Niner Offline
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I would suggest the following target types in order:
1. Radar - blind the RAF
2. Fighter Command airfields - doesn't matter if they have a zillion Spitfires, they're no use on the ground
3. Fighter production - factories to slow down manufacturing. Include ancillary facilities like power stations, raw materials and supporting factories like engines, if they have an affect in-game.

Sorry, never played BoB but that's what I think I would do.

#3621125 - 08/06/12 10:59 AM Re: Help me win a BoB2 (v 2.12 beta) test campaign for Luftwaffe [Re: Smithcorp]  
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Originally Posted By: Smithcorp
Cool Heinkill. What about your approach routes - direct or dogleg? Are you planning any misdirections like aiming at one target then splitting the force to your real objectives?


Good questions. As these are coastal targets, I'm hoping to hit them before the RAF can rally a large response. So I'll use two staffeln of dive bombers per target, with a gruppe of fighters as escort for the RDF targets, and send them in at about 10,000 feet so they don't get picked up by the British RDF until they are well over the Channel. The egress will be straight out to sea, and I might set up a 'return escort' for mid channel, to pounce on any RAF that try to pursue.

For the larger medium bomber raids, I will use a dogleg. No point trying to hide them by sending them in too low as they will be in Gruppe strength bombers with at least 1-2 gruppe escort. Send the easternmost raids all toward Dover and then split them, and the Westernmost raids toward Portsmouth.

Originally Posted By: Zero Niner
I would suggest the following target types in order:
1. Radar - blind the RAF
2. Fighter Command airfields - doesn't matter if they have a zillion Spitfires, they're no use on the ground
3. Fighter production - factories to slow down manufacturing. Include ancillary facilities like power stations, raw materials and supporting factories like engines, if they have an affect in-game.

Sorry, never played BoB but that's what I think I would do.


Good overall strategy I think!

You don't need to have played BoB, the strategy options and dilemmas are the same as they were in real history. Goering chose mid August to ignore the RDF, believing his raids were having no impact on it (because the British kept transmitting, even when they could no longer receive, just to fox the LW).

We could choose to do the same, or keep knocking the RDF out in the hope we can create a blind corridor to the key RAF sector airfields around London.

Raids on fighter production factories and support factories definitely have an impact in game. I'm not an expert on where Spits and Hurricane production was concentrated though. No point knocking out a factory producing Blenheims! Anyone with more 'intel' on Brit fighter production is welcome to chip in.

Later we'll have to decide whether to switch targeting from RAF airfields to London targets, but that's a month away yet...


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#3621201 - 08/06/12 01:38 PM Re: Help me win a BoB2 (v 2.12 beta) test campaign for Luftwaffe [Re: HeinKill]  
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I'll be so watching this.


Are there scripted events, like the Blitz that could throw the planning off?


I'd push in one attack in the afternoon on RDF stations in A or D. The blinder, the better.

#3621204 - 08/06/12 01:40 PM Re: Help me win a BoB2 (v 2.12 beta) test campaign for Luftwaffe [Re: HeinKill]  
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Zero Niner Offline
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Why bother with London? Strategic bombing of population centres have never had the desired effect, Douhet was wrong.
Better to focues on targets of military value.
Unless the game gives you VPs for bombing London, of course...

#3621220 - 08/06/12 01:57 PM Re: Help me win a BoB2 (v 2.12 beta) test campaign for Luftwaffe [Re: Zero Niner]  
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Originally Posted By: Zero Niner
Why bother with London? Strategic bombing of population centres have never had the desired effect, Douhet was wrong.


Well, even Guernica didn't have any positive effect (like immediately forcing a Republican surrender) whatsoever, but as the military oath backintheday was based on loyalty to the Fhrer, you basically just did what he said. And if he, or Fatso, insisted that London was to be wiped out, the Luftwaffe simply had to follow suit.


I'd like to know how the campaign engine handles this though and whether an ahistorical "total air domination" victory is possible or not.

#3621283 - 08/06/12 03:42 PM Re: Help me win a BoB2 (v 2.12 beta) test campaign for Luftwaffe [Re: Heretic]  
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Originally Posted By: Heretic
Originally Posted By: Zero Niner
Why bother with London? Strategic bombing of population centres have never had the desired effect, Douhet was wrong.


I'd like to know how the campaign engine handles this though and whether an ahistorical "total air domination" victory is possible or not.


When the game AI is running the LW campaign, there are two options 'historical' or 'optimal' strategy. The historical strategy shifts attacks from the airfields to London in Sept, giving the RAF player a break from constant airfield attacks, as happened in 1940. The optimal strategy keeps the pressure on the airfields, without pause.

The only reason for a LW player to adopt this strategy is that the RAF AI tries to interdict all raids, even against civilian targets, drawing on resources from 12 Group in the north, which otherwise might not be engaged.

So if we think the RAF can be beaten by drawing them up to fight, then targeting London is as valid as targeting airfields, docks or industry.

(There are no Victory Points as such. The way victory is judged by the game engine is that X% of RAF squadrons must be adjudged 'Cat C' or non operational, because the goal is air superiority. When this trigger is reached, Sealion is launched. A squadron can be sent into Cat C by severe losses, severe fatigue or severe morale decline.)


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#3621345 - 08/06/12 05:12 PM Re: Help me win a BoB2 (v 2.12 beta) test campaign for Luftwaffe [Re: HeinKill]  
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Originally Posted By: HeinKill
Yes, good choices - knock a hole in the RDF at Rye (high level radar) and also Dover (low level radar) in the first wave and hit Lympne (and Hawkinge) with the second wave. There are also RDF masts at Foreness and Pevensey which we might target.

We are asset heavy at this stage in the campaign, so we have capacity for more raids on coastal RDF.

@Smithcorp: We can hit the fighter factories to try to trim/disperse fighter production. Most are tucked away inland where I would be hesitant to attack until the RAF has been attrited significantly, but there is the Supermarine factory at Woolstone which is still located on the coast and a major Spitfire production site according to our intel.

Here is a recon photo from yesterday:

To hit this, we could use the same tactic as above. Knock out the radar station on the Isle of Wight at Ventnor, then go after the Supermarine factory.

Here is what I propose then (still open to other ideas). The first wave of raids will target the RDF:

0730-0800:
Ju87s escorted by 109s to attack RDF at Rye, Dover, Pevensey and Foreness
Ju87s escorted by 109s or low level Bf110C7s (unescorted) to attack RDF at Ventnor and Poling

0830-0900
Escorted He111s to attack RDF at Rye, Dover, Pevensey and Foreness
Escorted Ju88s to attack RDF at Ventnor and Poling

0930
Do17 recon of above

1000
Follow up raids on RDF targets if needed

This should blind the Tommies and set us up by mid morning for an undetected approach to RAF 11 Group airfields at Lympne, Hawkinge and Manston, and a heavy raid on the Supermarine factory.

Am I being too cautious? This first day with full LW resources at our disposal can be decisive. If we don't need follow up raids, we will still have assets unused with the current plan, primarily Ju87 and Do17 gruppen, with Bf109 or Bf110 escorts.

We could throw these against the 11 Group airfields at Tangmere and Westhampnett after we knock out Ventnor and Poling?





Maybe we are being too cautious. We could be daring and Hit the other fighter fields in tangmere and westhampnett.

I'm of the mindset that a continuous supression of the radar sites in kent and using that as a bulge into the factories later on including the airfields south of London.

Fighters on the flanks can keep the RAF at bay as bombers can go through the radar gap, sweeping through north kent and back out east continually flanked by the fighter gruppen.

#3621398 - 08/06/12 06:15 PM Re: Help me win a BoB2 (v 2.12 beta) test campaign for Luftwaffe [Re: HeinKill]  
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How about using small raids of 110's against the coastal airfields, with a detached escort of 109's in trail? I found this worked rather well in my past LW campaigns in BoB2: such raids could do considerable structural damage to the airfields and, more importantly, they ate away the strength of the RAF.


Undercarriage lever a bit sticky was it, Sir?
#3621458 - 08/06/12 07:55 PM Re: Help me win a BoB2 (v 2.12 beta) test campaign for Luftwaffe [Re: HeinKill]  
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I thought that historically the Germans didn't have a clear idea of what the CH radar was certainly early in the war, i.e. BoB timeline. Add in the problem with bombing an open lattice metal structure and deeply entrenched bunkers for the equipment and knocking out the radar was not an easy option even for dive bombers.
Years ago I had a good look over the Canewdon CH station and it is completely intact with no bomb damage at all.

#3621471 - 08/06/12 08:14 PM Re: Help me win a BoB2 (v 2.12 beta) test campaign for Luftwaffe [Re: HeinKill]  
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@Johan: definitely going to try that after this morning's start to Adlertag! Ouch.

As agreed, we went in hard with dive bombers in gruppe strength escorted by 109 gruppen 65% as tied escort, 35% as return escort. Targets were the coastal CH and CHL RDF stations:



I've locked in III/JG26 so that whenever Galland flies, I'm in the cockpit. At the start of this phase, he's taken on a pretty raw bunch of pilots. High on morale, but low on skill.



The routes are plotted so that all the eastern raids go in together, to draw the RAF east, while the western raids, with further to go, are more dispersed. The plan was that they would attract less heat...



As the easternmost raids split, the RAF went in hard against our center and caught the Stukas out mid channel.



We managed to hit Foreness RDF in the north without interference, but were intercepted at Dover and then Rye.




III/JG26 with Galland in the lead was sweeping ahead of the Stukas over Fairlight RDF.



The RAF went for the slower dive bombers and JG26 began carving them up.



I(Galland) bagged one Spit




And winged a Hurricane


But by then was low on alt and ammo and had to climb out. As I did, I overflew the CH station, and it looked very much intact, which intel later confirmed. The Stukas had been turned back by the heavy resistance.



JG26 had faired pretty well though. Galland claimed 1 kill, 1 damaged, while the gruppe claimed 3 Spits and 3 Hurricanes destroyed, with 10 Hurricanes damaged, for no losses. Galland was not impressed though, and chewed his men out. 'We were outclassed today'.



Now it was time to send the heavies against the RDF, in the hope that the RAF had scrambled its frontline units and would be struggling to get numbers up in time against the level bombers. Recon was showing only Rye and Poling RDF had taken significant damage from the first raids.

Again, the main force built up over northern France, while I tried to sneak one raid in against Ventnor, which had not been damaged in the first round of raids either.



We should not underestimate the ability of the RAF to get aircraft up and into the fight!

The raids on Dover and Foreness were heavily intercepted, though our escorts held them off bravely.



At Pevensey we were met by no less than 3 squadrons.



And we never reached Ventnor, the RAF hitting us at altitude, mid channel, and breaking up the attack despite a strong defence by the mixed 109 and 110 escort.



INTEL REPORT

The RDF stations are not going to be easy meat. Recon reports only Foreness took heavy damage, while Dover, Pevensey, Rye and Poling were only lightly damaged. Ventnor and Fairlight were unscathed.



We did succeed in bringing the RAF up to fight, so that we could knock them down. The morning claims total 17 Spits and 20 Hurricanes destroyed, with 23 damaged.

These victories came at a cost.

8 109s, 17 Ju87s and 16 He111s destroyed, and 41 aircraft damaged.



It is 1030 on Adlertag and battle is well and truly joined!

Your thoughts, kamaraden?

Do we dare send our bombers over against their airfields yet? It seems the British have no trouble seeing us while we are well over the Channel, and meeting us in force.


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#3621529 - 08/06/12 10:09 PM Re: Help me win a BoB2 (v 2.12 beta) test campaign for Luftwaffe [Re: HeinKill]  
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Looks like you might need to try low-level attacks on the CH stations. And maybe also exploit the RAF's willingness to send up squadrons with some heavily escorted smaller raids, so the fighters can get amongst it.

I've never played the LW campaign in BOB2, does the RAF recognise fighter sweeps and stay down?

#3621592 - 08/07/12 12:06 AM Re: Help me win a BoB2 (v 2.12 beta) test campaign for Luftwaffe [Re: HeinKill]  
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Can we send a free fighter sweep in front of another attempt at the CH?


Rabbits, break right and climb.
#3621604 - 08/07/12 12:21 AM Re: Help me win a BoB2 (v 2.12 beta) test campaign for Luftwaffe [Re: HeinKill]  
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RDF supression is always going to be an ongoing tactical consideration, I would knock out the big fighter stations (Biggin Hill, Kenley, Hornchurch, North Weald, etc) that can handle more squadrons, the little coastal fields are fairly limited in what they can service so there's not much point in expending an undue amount of time focusing on them at first if you want to go after strategic resources like factories and oil refineries.

I also wouldn't waste my time on convoys, historically those convoys carried little of value and were often even empty. You really need dive bombers to knock them out and your dive bombers would be better employed against the RDF system until the RAF has been attrited to the point where they can be used against the smaller airfields.

That's my $0.02AUD anyway, love the new splash screen artwork too!


Let's pretend I got the BWOC badge to embed here.

Wenn ihr sieg im deine Kampf selbst gegen, wirst stark wie Stahl sein.
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