C:MANO AAR: Bay of Bengal 1999

Started by IICptMillerII, December 31, 2017, 12:44:12 AM

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Quote from: Sir Slash on March 06, 2018, 10:18:04 AM
Fantastic read CatMiller!  :bd:   Any chance of the Olympia being able to take out those damned-hard to sink Destroyers?

Thanks for the feedback, glad you're enjoying it!

I have Olympia running deep at flank speed to try to catch up to at least the Udaloy. The enemy DDGs are too far away however. Olympia is only equipped with torpedo's for anti-surface work, meaning she has to be pretty close to the enemy in order to engage them. She is equipped with tomahawks, but they are land strike only.

An over abundance of land strike missiles, and not enough anti-surface missiles is going to be a main point of my AAR post.


"45 minutes of pooping Tribbles being juggled by a drunken Horta would be better than Season 1 of TNG." - SirAndrewD

"you don't look at the mantelpiece when you're poking the fire" - Bawb

"Can't 'un' until you 'pre', son." - Gus

Sir Slash

Thanks for the explanation CptMiller. I thought it was a bit of a long-shot anyway.
"Take a look at that". Sgt. Wilkerson-- CMBN. His last words after spotting a German tank on the other side of a hedgerow.


Quote from: Sir Slash on March 06, 2018, 11:51:28 PM
Thanks for the explanation CptMiller. I thought it was a bit of a long-shot anyway.

Not to spoil anything, but in this next update, you get your wish. Stand by, making the post now!


Light at the End of the Tunnel

The last update was long and frustrating. I'm hoping that this update will be the opposite. However, once again I am reminded that the enemy gets a vote. After an hour or so of inactivity, my AEW aircraft detects bogies.

Its possible that, because I have moved closer to the Indian coast, I'm now able to detect coastal patrol aircraft. It is also possible that this is a strike group forming, and we could have another air battle on our hands. If another large scale raid is launched against my carrier, I doubt the ship based defenses will be enough to defeat it. At this point, I believe over 75% of my SAMs have been used up. The screening force is even worse off, having only a handful of SAMs left to defend itself with. The good news is, there is plenty of undefended airspace to intercept enemy bombers with my CAP aircraft, and well before they come within firing range of my ships.

After monitoring the new bogies for a little while, I can at this point safely assume they are in fact coastal patrol aircraft, and not a strike group forming up.

More time passes until the silence is broken by some good news. The Udaloy has succumbed to its flooding and has sunk!

This is great news. Now, there are only two enemy ships left, and though they are well armed defensively, they appear to be out of offensive weapons. At this point, they are also stopped in the water, and are not attempting to close with my carrier. Could this be the Indian navy signaling to me that they wish to de-escalate?

I will continue to distance myself from them, while making my way towards the Sri Lankan coast, my primary objective. I'll also re-direct Olympia towards the two DDGs. If they continue to stay where they are, its possible Olympia could get in range to fire off some torpedo's at them. Until I get word from higher authority that the Indians are no longer hostile, I will continue to treat them as such.

More time passes, and the two DDGs come back alive.

They are not on an intercept course with me. My guess is they're screening me. Tactically, this is wise of them. They are at a distinct disadvantage if they tried to close in and sink my ships with naval gunfire, and they cannot or will not disengage completely with me. Thus, this is their only viable option. I do wonder why they do not just break contact and retreat. I believe this comes down more to mission making and AI scripting than tactical prudence. Regardless, as previously mentioned this is their most prudent tactical maneuver given their situation.

More time is allowed to pass, and it becomes apparent that the DDGs have split up. One is traveling straight north, while the other is parallel to my forces.

This is not the most prudent tactical choice. There is safety in numbers, especially when it comes to defeating missiles. Regardless, if the enemy insists on making a mistake, I am not going to correct him. My ASuW aircraft are almost ready, and the now split DDGs should be easier targets.

After passing more time, my ASuW aircraft become available. I now have 17 SLAM armed Hornets ready to go. The plan is simple, hit each DDG with a flight of 6 Hornets, and if either of them survive, hit them again with the remaining Hornets and follow up with HARM equipped aircraft if necessary. If all goes to plan, this should be the last major exchange of the battle.

The first strike package of 6 Hornets is launched.

Minutes later, the first volley of 12 SLAMs is fired at the closer DDG. While this is occurring, the second strike package is launching and forming up.

As expected, as the SLAMs close in on the first DDG, it begins firing SAMs defensively.

As mentioned earlier, the Sovremenny is a very capable ship. Based on its own merit, and my previous luck, it is possible it takes more than these 12 SLAMs to get through to inflict damage. The DDG fires off volley after volley of SAMs, whittling away my SLAMs. One SLAM gets in close, but is defeated. The first volley against the closer DDG has failed.

The second strike package is flying to the West to come up behind the farther DDG in the hopes that this will make the fired SLAMs harder to engage. To help with this, I turn the jammers on my screening ships on. I'm not sure how much of a difference this will make, but its worth a try.

The second strike package fires its SLAMs.

Damn! The second DDG turns and begins firing SAMs at my SLAMs.

As with the first strike, the second strike is defeated by the DDGs. Time for the HARMs to try. The strike against the closer DDG will be 4 Prowler equipped HARMs and 4 SLAM equipped Hornets. Maybe the mix will be enough to overwhelm the defenses of the DDG and damage/sink it. 

The SLAMs are fired first. The Prowlers are approaching their weapon release point. Shortly after the HARMs are fired.

After the DDG fires a few volleys of SAMs and shoots down half of the SLAMs, the SAMs suddenly stop coming. A lucky break?

As the SLAMs close, the point defenses on the DDG come alive, but in vain. All 4 SLAMs make it through and obliterate the enemy ship.

Unfortunately this means I've wasted 4 HARMs. The good news however, is there is now only 1 Indian ship left in the water, and I may be able to let Olympia finish her off. As if to confirm this, as my Hornets return to the carrier, I am told that there are no more SLAMs in the magazines. A few Hornets will re-arm with SLAMs, the rest will have to be given new loadouts. Although, unless the Indian navy throws another fleet at me, this shouldn't be a problem.

Olympia, travelling quickly to catch up to her prey, finally gets close enough to the second DDG to fire torpedos. However, because she has to travel quickly and did not have time to slow down before firing, both guidance wires for the torpedo's broke. This shouldn't be a big issue however, as the DDG should be an easy target.

The torpedoes acquire their target and home in.

The first torpedo hits...

Quickly followed by the second torpedo.

Amazingly, the DDG has not been killed. Instead, it has come about to face Olympia!

The DDG has definitely been damaged however. It can only make 7 knots. Olympia creeps towards the wounded DDG at a silent 5 knots, trying to get back in range to finish off the last enemy ship.

She gets in range and looses two more torpedoes. This should be the end of the last DDG.

The first torpedo closes on the DDG and...

Misses! It begins coming around for a re-attack as the second torpedo closes in.

The second torpedo hits home and finishes off the DDG.

Finally, I have cleared the Bay of Bengal of all hostile forces. The way is clear to the Sri Lankan coast.

Boy did I speak too soon...

Sir Slash

Damn! How many ships/planes do the Indians have?  :o
"Take a look at that". Sgt. Wilkerson-- CMBN. His last words after spotting a German tank on the other side of a hedgerow.


Quote from: Sir Slash on March 07, 2018, 10:50:51 AM
Damn! How many ships/planes do the Indians have?  :o

Too many!  ;D

I believe I make mention of this at the beginning of the AAR. Essentially, whoever decided to remake this mission from Fleet Command in CMANO decided to juice it heavily. Both the Indian navy and air force get a massive boost. You could make the argument that in this scenario, the Indians have a legit blue water navy. On top of that, the CAG the Nimitz is carrying in the vanilla version of this mission is half strength for some reason, and you also have half the time to complete the mission. I added more time to the scenario (I added an extra 12 hours) and made the CAG composition more realistic, based on what the Nimitz actually deployed with in its 1998-99 cruise.

A quick note on the current situation: the fact that I was not able to properly interdict and shoot down the Indian air force the last time it appeared due to the presence of the BCGN has really come back to haunt me. I have some pretty significant doubts about my ability to defeat all the anti-ship missiles the bomber wing is capable of firing. My plan right now is to get as many CAP aircraft into the air as possible and then frankly, hope for the best. One thing is for sure, this mission is going to end with quite the grand finale!

Sir Slash

I'm still here CapMiller and waiting on that bodacious finale.  :bd:
"Take a look at that". Sgt. Wilkerson-- CMBN. His last words after spotting a German tank on the other side of a hedgerow.


Quote from: Sir Slash on March 13, 2018, 09:58:04 AM
I'm still here CapMiller and waiting on that bodacious finale.  :bd:

More updates will follow soon. Thanks for your continued interest!



Finale Part One

This is it. This will be the final engagement of the battle. Attacking me is what looks like the entire bomber wing of the Indian air force. I immediately turn all jamming and radars on my ships off to make them harder targets, though I suspect his won't help much. I've also tasked by screening force to rapidly close with the rest of the Task Force. I'm going to need to combine all of my remaining SAM systems if I'll have any chance of defeating this attack. Finally, I've assigned all available CAP aircraft to a carrier defense mission. Right now, the total CAP force consists of something like 8 Tomcats and 10 Hornets. I have more aircraft being re-armed, but they will not be ready in time. It's down to these 18 or so aircraft to defend the Task Force.

The closest Backfire is 180nm away, nearly in weapons range. I'll be lucky to get planes off the deck before the Backfires start lobbing VAMPIRES at me. I've set the Tomcats to only fire their Phoenix missiles at the bombers, while Sparrows and AMRAAMs will be used to shoot down both bombers and incoming VAMPIRES.

The stage is set for the final showdown.

The first two flights of Tomcats are in the air. The second they clear the deck, they begin burning towards the incoming bombers. Shortly after, another 4 aircraft are pumped into the air. One of the many impressive features of the Nimitz is her ability to pump aircraft into the sky. In just two minutes, 8 of my CAP aircraft are in the air. That's nearly half my total CAP force.

Moments later, the first flight of Tomcats fires a Phoenix at the closest Backfire.

The closest enemy bomber is only 145nm away from my carrier, but it has a missile fired against it. With any luck, I will be able to get enough Phoenixes off to force the enemy bombers to go defensive before they have a chance to volley fire VAMPIRES.

Damn! I've spoken too soon again. Its not all bad news however. Another Phoenix has been fired against the second Backfire bomber. At this rate, it is likely that the enemy bombers will get a few missiles off, but I may be able to close the distance enough to intercept the rest before they get a chance to fire.

A duel of missiles develops.

I have both Phoenixes being fired against the Backfires and Sparrows being fired against the VAMPIRES streaking towards their targets. It is unlikely that my Sparrows hit their targets however, as the VAMPIRES are high flying missiles. This makes them difficult to shoot down due to their altitude and speed. Still, even knocking a few VAMPIRES down before they get to my Task Force would help immensely.

This is also an excellent example of fire discipline. My flights know who is shooting at what, thus no missiles are wasted on already engaged targets. This is due to the datalink between planes, as well as communication between the Radar Intercept Officers, the number 2 seat in the Tomcats. It is likely that as missiles and aircraft close, and a furball begins to develop, a lot of this coordination will be lost. But for now, I'm thankful for the efficient use of munitions. Its worth noting that CMANO does this automatically, without me as the player needing to do anything. CMANO appears daunting at first, with all of its menu's and complex simulations of a multitude of weapons systems, but generally speaking all the player needs to do is give relative orders and the tactical AI takes care of the rest.

Getting back to the action. The first Phoenix closes on its target. The bad news is, the Phoenix is nearly out of fuel and the target has both turned cold and gone defensive, giving it the kinematic advantage. The good news is that the active Phoenox has been picked up by the second Backfire, who has also gone defensive because of it. This is good news because it means the second Backfire won't be able to fire its VAMPIRES for another few precious seconds, and gives the Phoenix targeting it a kinematic advantage. The Backfire is losing speed by going defensive, which makes it an easier target for my yet to maneuver Phoenix missile.

Moments later, we score our first kill! The second Phoenix targeting the second Backfire connects with its target, splashing it. That Backfire had not yet had a chance to fire its VAMPIRES. Hopefully, more successful interdictions like this follow, reducing the VAMPIRE threat to my depleted Task Force.

However, there is a problem.

There are a lot of bombers coming. Right now there are 10 in the air that my various radars can see, and there are likely more being launched. It is possible that the Indians send more bombers at me than I have missiles to shoot them down. If that is the case, I'll have no choice but to close in and try to splash bombers with guns.

The first two VAMPIRES fired by the first Backfire bomber are closing in on my ships.

It appears that they are targeting the screening force. This is both good and bad news. The bad news is, the screen force has precious few SAMs left, and will likely have to rely on their point defense weapons to defeat the incoming missiles. The good news is, the VAMPIRES aren't going after my carrier. It is a harsh reality of surface ships in a CVBG that they are ultimately more expendable than the carrier and while tragic, their loss is much preferred to losing the carrier.

So far, it appears the two incoming VAMPIRES will be defeated by the combined efforts of AAMs, SAMs and point defense weapons. However, if the Indians are able to volley fire VAMPIRES at my ships, it is doubtful that they (at least the screen by itself) will be enough to ward off disaster.

A SAM misses, and an AMRAAM hits. One VAMPIRE left, which is quickly re-engaged by the flight of Hornets closest to it. Again, I'm thankful for the datalink and good coordination between plane and ship, as more missiles aren't wasted against the sole remaining VAMPIRE. I cannot afford to wantonly fire off missiles at this point.

Luck is with the second VAMPIRE. Two more AMRAAMs are fired, and the VAMPIRE slips past them both. Then, it happens.

USS Ford is struck by the massive anti-ship missile and immediately begins to sink. This is a frustrating loss. Sometimes despite your best efforts, luck just isn't on your side. In this case, my bad luck has cost me a guided missile frigate with a compliment of around 225 sailors and officers.

The battle rages on.

Another Backfire is shot down, while more are forced to go defensive instead of firing their deadly VAMPIRES. I have all of my CAP aircraft burning to close the distance with the bombers to keep the pressure on them. It is now more important than ever that I reduce the amount of VAMPIRES fired at my ships.

More Backfires are destroyed, and none have yet gotten another opportunity to fire on my ships.

Then the inevitable furball develops.

The fighting gets close, and at least one Backfire is shot down by Sidewinders. It takes multiple hits from the smaller, shorter ranged heat seeking missiles to bring down the large Backfires. Despite this, I'm glad at how the situation is developing. As long as my fighters are tangling with the bombers, the bombers cannot fire VAMPIRES at my ships. There is some danger that my fighters can be engaged and destroyed by the radar guided tail guns on the Backfires, but this is a risk I'm willing to take to keep my ships safe. My fears are not realized however, as all my fighters remain unscathed.

Soon, there is only one Backfire left, with a Phoenix closing in fast.

The Phoenix finds its target, and with that, the last bomber is shot down and the airspace is now clear.

However, there are more blips appearing on the radar. Could these blips just be more coastal patrol aircraft, or is it an indication of another wave of bombers?

A few minutes later, two more blips have appeared, bringing the total to 3. They are all headed along a similar vector as the previous bomber attack was. It is safe to assume this is another wave of bombers. I quickly take stock of my CAP aircraft. I only have a handful of Phoenix missiles left, but I have an abundance of AMRAAMS. Further, my aircraft are already in position to intercept the incoming bombers. I'm not out of the woods yet, but I am certainly in a better position than I was for the first wave.

As my aircraft position themselves to intercept the new wave of bombers, I realize that in order to keep this CAP going, I'm going to have to refuel the aircraft in the air. Luckily, I have a few Sea Shadows equipped with tanker wing drogues. I set up a quick refuel mission for them to orbit behind my CAP fighters, to refuel any that begin to run low. The downside is, the Sea Shadows wing tanks do not carry an abundance of fuel, so it is likely that some of my CAP aircraft will be forced to return to the carrier regardless. Still, a little is better than nothing.


I have no idea how, but the new bombers are already firing their VAMPIRES. All my ship sensors are off, and these VAMPIRES have been fired from even farther away than the first wave. They must be blind firing in my general direction. This is not good.

One of the VAMPIRES is shot down by a Sparrow as it closes on my CAP fighters. The second makes it through. Its up to the ships to take down the second VAMPIRE.

We get a classification on the new bombers. They are older Tu-16 Badger bombers. Less capable than the Backfire, but still a threat.

The second VAMPIRE is shot down from SAMs fired from my carrier group of ships. I breathe a sigh of relief.

Things are getting confusing with the second bomber wave.

Its mixed up with the coastal patrol aircraft, and there are some new ground based contacts as well. They are emitting aerial search radars and appear to be short ranged. These are likely Indian SAM sites protecting the airfield. It may be worth launching a SEAD strike against these targets, though there likely isn't enough time left in the scenario for such a strike to be carried out to completion. Plus, it would do me little good. For reasons I will explain in the post battle analysis, I cannot attack the airfield itself.

More of the Badgers are shot down, mostly by AMRAAMs as I'm out of Phoenixes at this point.

The Badger is a slower, less sophisticated aircraft than the Backfire. This means it is easier to engage and shoot down, among other things.

Then I detect a third type of bomber, the Tu-95 Bear G. This is yet another aircraft capable of firing VAMPIRES at me. But now, I am in a difficult position. Most of my CAP aircraft are queuing up for refueling. I have precious few aircraft that are still patrolling on station. Aerial warfare is very fuel intensive. This has become a fight of logistics more than anything else at this point.

I order most of my Tomcats to RTB. They are out of Phoenix and Sparrow missiles, and are generally low on fuel. Better to have them safe on the deck re-arming then flying around with only short range weapons, and the potential to take fuel from the tankers that my Hornets need. Most of my Hornets have all of their AMRAAMs left, and I'll need them to intercept this third wave of Bear bombers. One flight (two aircraft) of Hornets carries 12 AMRAAMs, which is more than enough to take on a wing of bombers by themselves. As long as I can keep at least 1 flight of armed Hornets in front of the incoming Bears, I should be ok. So far, so good.

I get a very bizarre radar return from an unidentified bogey.

Its flying above the service ceiling of most contemporary fighters, and flying at an incredible 1350 knots when its first detected. As I maneuver the closest flight of Hornets to the Indian coast back towards the carrier, the bogey moves as if tracking them. It would appear that this is some kind of long range missile that has been fired at my Hornets, and is being guided by some type of radar that doesn't immediately register as a weapons tracking radar. Odd.

Yup, its definitely a missile. Its gone active against my Hornets now. The Hornets should be able to kinematically defeat the missile, as they are turned away and the missile has been airborne for a while now.

Suddenly the source of the missile is revealed.

The Soviet made Mig-25 Foxbat! This scenario continues to throw surprises at me. The Foxbat was a Soviet interceptor aircraft that was designed to fly high and very fast in order to intercept NATO bombers. It caused quite the stir in NATO countries when its capabilities were first learned of, and even inspired the development of the American F-15. Now, I'll get a chance to experience why so many defense analysts were worried by the Foxbat.

The first missile fired by the Foxbat is defeated, but there is another one on the way.

The second missile is also defeated, and the Foxbat appears to disengage and turn back towards the coast.

A few moments of relative peace go by. My Tomcats are now all RTB, and many of my Hornets are refueling at the aerial tankers. The situation seems almost under control.

Nope. More VAMPIRES in the air, this time with only a single flight of Hornets between them and my ships.

At this point, I am at a loss for words as to how to properly describe the situation.

Unfortunately I am going to have to break the finale of this AAR up into two parts. In what has become a theme for the past few updates, the enemy continues to exercise its combat voting rights by keeping the battle going. I was hoping to finish up this AAR in this update, but seeing how long this update is at this point, I've decided to cut it here and (hopefully) finish everything out in part two. I know there was a long gap between this update and the last one, which I apologize for, but I can promise that part two of the finale will be out by tomorrow evening. I am just as eager to finish this up as I suspect many of you are.

Sir Slash

No, no. I'm in no hurry until my heart stops pounding.  :hide:
"Take a look at that". Sgt. Wilkerson-- CMBN. His last words after spotting a German tank on the other side of a hedgerow.


Finale Part Two

Most of my Hornets are refueling. Only one flight stands between the enemy bombers and my ships. Two VAMPIRES are on their way, with more likely to follow. As we resume the scenario, the flight of Hornets gets close enough to the VAMPIRES to fire AMRAAMs at them.

You'll notice that the AMRAAMs are not technically in range of the VAMPIRES yet. The reason they can be fired at this range is due to the rate of closure and the fact that the VAMPIRES are non-maneuvering targets. Simple physics will get my AMRAAMs close to the enemy missiles. After that, its up to the seekers to inertially guide the AMRAAMs home.

Moments later, with still half of their fuel/flight time, the AMRAAMs close with and destroy one of the VAMPIRES. The second manages to miss two AMRAAMs and continues on towards my ships. The flight of Hornets press on farther to engage the enemy bombers.

One of the flights of Hornets currently refueling is able to fire off an AMRAAM shot at the closing VAMPIRE. This is likely the wingman of the aircraft currently in the process of refueling.

It's a bit of a wild shot, but if its able to knock down the second VAMPIRE then I'm all for it.

The AMRAAM misses, and none of the other refueling aircraft are in a permissible weapons envelope. The VAMPIRE continues on.

One of the Sea Shadows on refueling duty is able to identify one of the SAM sites near the Indian airfield with its ELINT suite.

Even though the SAM site is now identified, none of my ELINT equipped aircraft are able to get an exact fix on its location, so I am unable to fire any Tomahawks at it.

There is little time to be frustrated however, as the second VAMPIRE is now within SAM range of my ships. Two missiles streak out to intercept it.

At the same time, my flight of Hornets begins engaging the incoming bombers with AMRAAMs. Hopefully this flight is able to keep these incoming bombers distracted long enough to prevent more VAMPIRES from being fired.

In a heart pounding moment, the first friendly SAM fired at the VAMPIRE misses its target. Luckily, the second SAM finds its target, and the immediate threat to my ships is once again eliminated. Its really coming down to the wire.

The closest Badger bomber is shot down by the flight of Hornets, with the second Badger behind it already being engaged by another AMRAAM. However...

Damn! The Bear bombers, farther back behind the Badgers, are able to fire off another two VAMPIRES.

The two new missiles quickly close on my Hornets, and two more AMRAAMs are fired after them.

One of the VAMPIRES is shot down, but the other makes it through. This is becoming a theme...

Both Badger bombers are hit by AMRAAMs, but neither are shot down. However, both turn tail and head back to base, with more AMRAAMs following them. I order my flight of Hornets, now running low on AMRAAMs, to burn for the Bear bomber to the rear. Hopefully they can close the distance fast enough to get missiles on the Bear before its able to fire on my ships.

Two of the three flights refueling finish and begin heading towards the enemy bombers. They have 3/4ths fuel load and plenty of missiles. At the least, they may be able to interdict incoming VAMPIRES as they make their way to the intercept point.

The bad news is, there are still more bombers appearing over the airfield. This is getting a bit ridiculous.

Another AMRAAM slams into an already stricken Badger bomber, but still it refuses to fall out of the sky. Then, his wingman is hit by an AMRAAM. A few moments later, the first Badger is hit by a third AMRAAM, yet still refuses to go down.

Then there is a spasm of good and bad news. First, the remaining VAMPIRE is shot down by the refueled Hornets making their way to the intercept point. At almost the same moment, this happens:

The enemy bombers that appeared above the airfield are identified. More Bears. This is not good. These Bears are able to fire their missiles at ranges that are on the edge of my ability to interdict. What's more, there is another Foxbat flying around near the coast, chasing down any of my aircraft that get too close.

Just after taking this screenshot, an intercepting Foxbat starts firing missiles at my Hornets. Then, I get a message that one of my ASW helos ran out of fuel and had to ditch. The situation is now completely absurd.

The two incoming VAMPIRES are shot down by my SAMs, but moments later more VAMPIRES are fired.

At this point I decide to task all of my Hornets to intercept incoming VAMPIRES. It is clear that I will not be able to get close enough to the Bears before they are able to fire their missiles. I'm better off positioning the Hornets to shoot down the fired missiles.

A bit of a brawl occurs. Some Bears are shot down, then a Foxbat gets in and fires a few missiles at my Hornets, but all of them miss. More VAMPIRES are fired, and yet more bombers appear in the sky over the airfield. The circus refuses to end.

There is some good news however. My ELINT aircraft have finally nailed down the locations of the enemy SAM and radar sites, and I begin engaging them with the Benfold's Tomahawks. Finally, I can put the massive stockpile of these weapons to some use.

With the good news comes more bad. I now only have 1 CAP flight left in the air with radar missiles. And there are yet more bombers being launched from the airfield. In another few minutes, more VAMPIRES are in the air, and I've expended the last of my AMRAAMs.

My ships are dangerously low on SAMs and it appears that there will be plenty more VAMPIRES on the way. There is one saving grace. A handful of my SLAM equipped ASuW aircraft have re-armed. Each aircraft carries two AMRAAMs. I may have to launch these aircraft as close in defense of my ships against the incoming VAMPIRES.

As if to illustrate the point, a single VAMPIRE, dodging everything thrown at it, closes on the Benfold.

Seconds later, the inevitable happens:

The Benfold is sunk.

To add insult to injury, there is a Foxbat chasing down my aircraft that are returning to base, and 5 more Bear bombers bearing down on my remaining ships.

Suddenly it becomes clear what the Foxbat's real target is. Its going for my AEW aircraft!

There have been enough disasters and ridiculous circumstances in this battle. I'm not losing my AEW aircraft. I immediately retask the closest Hornet flight, armed with only Sidewinders and with 20 minutes of fuel left to intercept the Foxbat.

A knifefight ensues.

Absurdly, both Sidewinders fired at the Foxbat miss. The Foxbat presses on the AEW aircraft. I retask two more Hornets to turn around and use their remaining Sidewinders on the Foxbat, but it might be too late. Suddenly, the Foxbat turns and gives my Hornets one last chance to fire a Sidewinder. It's a hit!

The damn thing survives the hit however. My Hornets close in and fire guns. The first volley misses. Then, the second Hornet in the flight gets an opportunity and fires the last remaining Sidewinder. It hits the Foxbat, and kills it for good. I order the Hornets to RTB.

The Bear bombers are starting to get uncomfortably close, but for some reason have not fired any missiles yet. Its time to intercept them. I have a single Tomcat that is armed and ready to go. He will fly alone and lob Phoenix missiles at the incoming Bear bombers. I also have a single Hornet with AMRAAMs also ready to go. He will also be launched by himself. Generally speaking, it is a cardinal sin to fly without a wingman, but desperate times call for desperate measures. Besides, it is already clear based on the events of the battle thus far that there will be quite the shake up in the chain of command of this carrier group.

The Tomcat gets in range of the Bears, and fires all 4 of his Phoenix missiles.

I've set both aircraft to expend all of their munitions, including their guns. This is a desperate act, but a necessary one.

Consistent with my luck this entire battle, all 4 Phoenix missiles miss their targets. It's time for the AMRAAMs and Sparrows to have a go, then the Sidewinders, and then cannon.

As this engagement begins to unfold and Sparrows and AMRAAMs are launched, the Tomahawks fired by the Benfold smash into their targets, destroying a long range search radar. The Benfold gets vengeance from the grave, though it is little consolidation for the loss of the ship.

All radar missiles are fired, and we manage to score 4 hits. 3 Bears have been shot down, with one more being hit and damaged.

2 of the Bears turn tail, while the 3rd decides to keep coming. The Hornet goes after the 3rd Bear while the Tomcat chases the other two down.

The Hornet hits its target with a Sidewinder. A few moments after being hit, the Bear falls apart in mid air. The Tomcat closes with one of the fleeing Bears and engages with a Sidewinder, but misses. Then, as he screams past the Bear, the bomber lets off a rip of its tail guns. Seconds later, as the Tomcat is swinging back around, another burst of tail gun fire chases after it. Luckily, both bursts miss the Tomcat. As the Tomcat comes back around, the Bear, already damaged from a previous missile hit, succumbs to its damage and falls out of the sky. Now there is only one enemy bomber left, and he is running.

I order the Tomcat, now out of all missiles, to RTB while the Hornet with one Sidewinder left pursues the remaining Bear. Another one on one brawl erupts. The Hornet fires its last Sidewinder and misses, then fires a burst of its cannon which also misses. Then the Bear returns fire with its own cannons, but also misses. The Hornet closes in from the front and fires a burst head on, but misses again. The Bear fires at the Hornet as it pulls away and misses. The Hornet turns, closes in for another burst, and lets loose. It's a hit! But the Bear stays airborne. The Hornet comes around again and lines up a head on shot. He fires, and hits! The Bear's cockpit is shredded by 20mm rounds, and the aircraft finally tumbles from the sky.

The skies are clear and all aircraft are RTB. I allow around 20 minutes of game time to pass as my aircraft return and land on the carrier. Then...

More bogies appear. A whole lot of them too. They appear to be mostly smaller aircraft, such as the Su-17 Fitter and the Mig-27 Flogger.

As if the situation could not get any more absurd.

Its time to take inventory of the situation. There are 30 minutes left in the scenario time. All of my CAP aircraft are still rearming. I have a handful of SLAM and AMRAAM equipped Hornets ready to go. My ships SAM batteries are nearly dry, and reduced to close in SAMs like the Sea Sparrow. I've lost two ships and at least a dozen aircraft. The battle has been raging now for 35 hours and it appears there is no end in sight.

The good news is, I have caused some pretty significant damage to the Indian bomber fleet, and completely destroyed the Indian surface fleet. The threat of a naval invasion against Sri Lanka has been averted.

The bad news is, I simply do not have the combat power necessary to continue to reduce enemy capability. The single biggest limiting factor is my inability due to the scenario to strike the enemy airfields. This will be explained and discussed in the post battle analysis that will follow this final update.

My conclusion is this: I am withdrawing my Task Force to the Southeast of Sri Lanka, and requesting additional assets if continued action against the Indians is required. The Olympia will remain on station and patrol the coast of Sri Lanka, providing intelligence data as well as engaging any remaining Indian naval vessels that attempt to approach the Sri Lankan coast.

This is the final sitrep. I allow time to run out, and the scenario comes to an end.

This is the final screen showing the scoring:

India suffered the following losses:

1x MRK Nanuchka I [Pr.1234 Ovod]
1x D 61 Delhi [Pr.15]
1x RK Osa II [Pr.205U]
1x D 51 Rajput [Pr.61ME Kashin II]
20x Sea Harrier Mk51
5x Tu-16K-26PM Badger G Mod
1x BPK Kresta II [Pr.1134A Berkut A]
1x BPK Kara [Pr.1134B Berkut B]
1x RKR Admiral Nakhimov [Pr.1144.2 Orlan, Ex-Kalinin]
1x S 44 Shishumar [Type 209-1500]
3x Ka-28 Helix A
1x R 22 Viraat [Hermes]
1x S 71 Chakra [PLARK-670 Charlie I]
1x BPK Udaloy I [Pr.1155 Fregat]
1x EM Sovremenny I [Pr.956A Sarych]
1x EM Sovremenny I [Pr.956 Sarych]
10x Tu-22M-2 Backfire B
2x MiG-25PD Foxbat E
1x Tu-16N Badger A
6x Tu-95K-22 Bear G
1x Radar (Flat Face B [P-19])

The US Navy suffered the following losses:

7x F/A-18C Hornet
1x F/A-18C Hornet
3x F-14D Tomcat
3x SH-60B Seahawk
1x FFG 36 Underwood [Perry Class]
1x DDG 51 Arleigh Burke [Arleigh Burke Flight I]

Note: The Seahawks were not shot down, but had to ditch due to running out of fuel.

This concludes my AAR of the scenario Bay of Bengal 1999. It certainly was a wild ride. I hope everyone here who has read from the beginning has enjoyed reading this as much as I have enjoyed making this AAR. As mentioned above, there will be a post combat analysis post by me in the coming day or so where I will go into detail about various things, like why I could not engage the Indian airfields, or my thoughts on my overall performance. Stay tuned for that. I'll also end that post with a bit of a surprise announcement.

In the meantime, feel free to post any feedback you may have, whether it is tactical or technical. Do you think Admiral Miller will keep his command? Or are the losses suffered too great? Further, do you think Task Force Nimitz was able to accomplish its mission given the circumstances? Any and all feedback is most welcome.

Thanks again for sticking with the AAR till the bitter end!

Pete Dero

Thanks for a very entertaining AAR.

Sir Slash

My hair wasn't grey before this AAR began, it is now.  :o   I'd put Admiral Miller up for every award known to Navy History. This was like a modern-day Jutland of the east with nobody supposing so many enemy targets could be handled with so few, but costly, losses. My opinion. Question, would engaging the Vampires closer to your ships been more effective--regarding the many misses I mean?
"Take a look at that". Sgt. Wilkerson-- CMBN. His last words after spotting a German tank on the other side of a hedgerow.