Recalling Vipers when out numbered by Raiders??

The Cylons have rebelled. The alliance of the Twelve Colonies falters. Take control of the Colonial Fleet and save humanity from an endless war.
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Panzer_Spaniard
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Recalling Vipers when out numbered by Raiders??

Post by Panzer_Spaniard » Tue Dec 17, 2019 6:46 pm

Hey all,

I have been doing some war game exercises with different feet compositions based of concentrated punches.

2x Mk2 Jupiter Battlestars
>2x Mk2 Viper squadrons
>2x Raptors (normal)
>Guided missiles (due to skirmish fleet cost)

2x Atlas Carriers
>1x Viper squadron
>1x Taipan Squadron
>1x Raptor Squadron

Total: 2 heavy Battlestars, 2 carriers, 6 Viper squadrons, 6 Raptor Squadrons, 2 Bomber/anti capital squadrons.

Faced off against:

2x Arachne
>1x Raider Prototype
>1x Cluster bombs

2x Cerberus
3x Raider Squadrons
1x Heavy Raider Squadron

2x Argos
>3x Raider Squadrons
>Guided missiles (due to skirmish fleet cost)

Total: 2 Assault carriers, 2 Super Heavy Carriers, 2 Command Ship Carriers, 12 Raider Squadrons and 2 Raider Prototypes (14 squadrons total fighters), 2 Heavy Raider Squadrons.

The mission was defensive in nature, three transports waiting for their FTL drives to recharge. My Mk2 Jupiters formed up forward to my Atlas carriers, and upon a hard to port maneuver at flank speed, ended up fore and starboard of the carriers to cover them.

All fighters scrambled and put on cover detail to the transports, Raptors were assigned to cover around the rearmost Atlas an await orders; Mk2's commenced flak fire to starboard and assumed defensive posture, Atlas carriers assumed offensive posture and commenced fire at the closest target that was just outside of Dradis range.

Flak intercepted munitions, and weakened some Raider squadrons, however the majority of the massed fighter wave was able to pass through. Vipers and Taipans were pulled from defensive duties on the transports, and each assigned to a Raider squadron. At this time, through flak fire, one of the Mk2's is boarded by raiders, but is able to repel and keep up the fight, however, having to position itself port side to the nearest enemy after sustaining heavy damage to starboard armor.

Currently, one transport has taken heavy damage, and needs navigation repairs, and two squadrons of vipers have been lost, one while making the attempt at a combat landing. Converged fire from a Mk2 and an Atlas bring down one Arachne, and then the second is soon to follow. Raptors are dispatched to board the carrier targets. One raptor squadron is intercepted and destroyed in flight.

Cylon squadrons begin pulling back, two wings of Vipers have sustained massive damage, and are recalled; even under defense of other wings of Vipers, retreating Raiders are able to mop up these Vipers as they move off towards their ships.

Mk2's forge ahead through the Cylon lines, using support fire from the Atlas's and directed rocket fire from the remaining raptors as they run sorties, an Argos is destroyed, followed by a Cerberus. Taipan bombers pursue and destroy any Raiders that were unable to retreat to their base ships, and then turn their attention on the remaining Argos, supported by the more damaged Mk2. The Atlas's and the still very fit to fight Mk2 are able to recall what Vipers they had left, and quickly dispatch the last Cerberus.

Outcome: Colonial victory

Losses:
Cylon
>6 ships, 14 wings of fighters, 2 support wings

Colonial
>4 Viper Squadrons, 2 Raptor squadrons, unknown number of marine casualties.

No transports destroyed, all hostiles removed from the area.

My question is this: How do I maintain better air superiority in this instance? Upon each attempt to recall my vipers, they were cute to shred, even when escorted with a defensive wing, who also suffered more damage. 32 Viper pilots, and 4 Raptor crewman overall is not a terrible trade for taking out Cylon carriers, command ships, and more than twice the amount of fighter squadrons; however seeing as Colonials are unable to field more fighters if a squadron cannot be recalled for repair, the air battle could have gone much differently and the transports could have been lost.

Suggestions? I feel like for the most part, my tactics were sound, and fighter pilots know what they signed up for, but from a high level and meta perspective, I want to know how to be better.

Thanks for reading, I really am looking forward to feedback.

Lieutenant Duran
Battlestar Trajan
Lt. Duran
Battlestar Trajan
BSG-91

BossDos
Corporal - 5 cm Pak 38
Corporal - 5 cm Pak 38
Posts: 37
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Re: Recalling Vipers when out numbered by Raiders??

Post by BossDos » Tue Dec 17, 2019 8:10 pm

Thanks for your Sitrep Lieutenant.
To answer your question in short, you can't.
If you got time, I will try to explain why.

You made the best out of an awful situation.
It is war, you will always lose good men, that is inevitable. People die in war, that's the nature of our profession.
But for what did they die? They hurt the Cylons, they hurt them a lot.
Your Pilots and Crew destroyed 6 capital Ships of the Cylons at a loss of a few dozen vipers?
I'd take this any day, better a dozen dead pilots, then thousand of dead crewmen.

You are in the not very admirable position, that you have to choose for what people die.
Don't ever question what you could've done differently to change that. Question for what that did die. That might not sound easy, but it will be in some time.
We are traders of death, we trade the lives of good men for very small things. It is a choice we made, now we need to live with it.

Your Pilots did exactly what they should, they died so civilians could survive. It's cruel, but it is what they signed up for.
They knew what was coming when they first sat in the seat of a viper. And they were brave enough to not falter.
Now it is your job as an officer of the colonial fleet to honor them and make every life count.

Do what you do and make the Cylons pay their prize.
Kill for the living and kill for dead.

Rear-Admiral McGregory of the Battlestar Hekate signing off.

Panzer_Spaniard
Corporal - 5 cm Pak 38
Corporal - 5 cm Pak 38
Posts: 37
Joined: Thu Apr 04, 2019 6:20 pm

Re: Recalling Vipers when out numbered by Raiders??

Post by Panzer_Spaniard » Tue Dec 17, 2019 10:46 pm

*Crisp salute*

Thank you very much, Admiral.

The situation with the civvie transports, our fighters, and their fighters felt like a Catch 22 or a zero sum game in regards to having anything less than a Pyrrhic victory for the air battle.

The civilian transports have to move off station, out of harms way from Cylon guns and munitions. Therefore they must be escorted, and the only ships capable of keeping pace are fighters. The fighters are outnumbered 2:1, and even with flak, there's next to nothing to be done in the presence of overwhelming squadron superiority.

Sir, given the forces at hand for Colonial Fleet, and the hindsight of what the enemy brought to bear, is there anything from my after action report you can see that you would have executed differently? I maneuvered, deployed, and fought by the book, for all intents and purposes, yet something still feels wrong.

I would appreciate any and all feedback command would be willing to give.

*Holds at attention*
Lt. Duran
Battlestar Trajan
BSG-91

BossDos
Corporal - 5 cm Pak 38
Corporal - 5 cm Pak 38
Posts: 37
Joined: Sat Jul 15, 2017 4:02 pm

Re: Recalling Vipers when out numbered by Raiders??

Post by BossDos » Wed Dec 25, 2019 2:10 pm

Grab yourself a seat Lieutenant, I'll try to... illuminate you as best as I can.

Your question is a good one, one that every commanding officer should ask himself. What could I have done differently?
But what you said also states were you failed, you played by the books. Sadly the Cylons never learned to read or their taste in books is vastly different.

Your objective was to save the civilian transports and you did so by deploying your fighter into a fight they could've never won.
There are two different approaches to this and you will never know which one would've been the better.

You employed your fighter wings and sacrificed them, which is fine if we go by books and everything we learned in the fleet academy.
But you also sacrificed good men and one of your strongest weapons against the Cylons. Yes, they will always outnumber us.
They are Cylons, for every raider we shoot down, they build two new.
We can't win on this behalf, we can't win by numbers, but by outsmarting them.

I don't know if it would work out, you yourself need to see if it would do so.
But you could've employed a spearhead, a heavy cruiser and a pair of frigates or cannon boats that would act as bait.
They impose a direct threat to which the Cylons need to answer.
Hold back your fighters as long as you can, let them come for you, running straight into your guns.
And then after thinning their ranks employ your vipers. For that, you don't need to let them in their launch bays that is far too risky.

Hold your fighters behind the mainline of your ships, let your fast ships form a spearhead to cover the civilians.
And then strike for the Cylons when they are focusing on your cruisers and battlestars, they can pack the punch, they are designed to.
That would be my approach, but perhaps it could be wrong to do so.
You always risk losing mainline battleships this way, which can hurt you more than a few lost vipers.

But with the fleet composition that the Cylons employed I deem the risk worth it. They didn't bring a lot of guns to bear.
The only risks would be arachnes, which you could've easily overpowered and after that, they don't have tooths anymore.
Cerberus cant bite back and their talons are a joke.
Hit them where it hurts them, without their carriers the Raider wings are easy prey.

Exploit the weaknesses of them, they try to force to play their game. But never let yourself be played by a frakking toaster.
If they want to employ fighter superiority let them do so and play your own game.
They want dogfights? Well let them run into flakfields and firing arcs of heavy ordnance.
Hurt them where it really matters.

I hope that insight helped a little bit Lieutenant and now get your ass to your raptor and off my ship.
We both got toasters to hunt.

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