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Ling27

Rebel Bombers: Help me understand a numbers thing.

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As many of you may know, I am in the military, and working on the Imperial Naval Commander's manual in my free time.

But rewatching New Hope brought up a few questions that I needed to air. We know that 30 Combat Ships were deployed, 8 Y-Wings of Gold Squadron, as well as 22 X-Wings from Red and Green squadrons were what attacked the Death Star itself.

8 Y-wings would require 16 crew (pilot, co-pilot, and if each has an astromech thats 24 crew) and 160 proton bombs.

In Last Jedi, while I understand the Star Fortress bombers were a bit of a touchy point, 4 would require the same number of crew, allowing for the purchase of more bombs, as each carries 1000 proton bombs. (And while we see most of them explode, that is mainly due to a TIE smashing into one, then setting off a chain reaction that also destroyed nearby ties, and other stuff)

So why would the Rebel Alliance use something that costs more to purchase, likely repair, train pilots, ect. The Rebels werent working off Zerg tactics.

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According to the Last Jedi visual dictionary it was used in helping to route Imperial holdouts from fortifications. A single one of these as you've said carries something like 1048 bombs, which is absolutely devastating compared to a single Y-Wing's munition capacity.

The problem is that the SF-17s need perfect circumstances in order to be used effectively, they need to have air superiority, they need to have a screen/distance from planetary guns as they could easily be shredded. (Hence Poe's attack run on the Mandator's turrets). They're slow, large and exposed, glaring weakpoints like the munitions bay, and standard rebel/resistance doctrine was to fly them close together to fend off starfighter attack, which ultimately proved to be their undoing in the Last Jedi. The bomb's various turrets are slow and cumbersome meaning that tracking fighters could also prove more difficult, with limited arcs. Friendly fire I am sure is a real concern as well, especially all packed together like that, even if there is Star Wars tech like IFFs that stop the guns before a friendly becomes targeted.

It is great if you need to carpet bomb something from safety, with its slow crawl being great for bomb accuracy and a lot of bombs on one target...  So for the Rebel Alliance/New Republic to use it, it makes great sense. They were on the rise/at the top of military power and could go toe to toe with the Empire in its final years, and could command the skies and have more resources to throw ... but for the resistance to use it, makes no sense. Other than for cinematic and plot purpose.

Another point to keep in mind, with the rebels/new republic going against the Empire, they were far more established throughout the galaxy. With fortresses (as previously mentioned) and with the Empire stretched so thinly across the galaxy, coming up against an ill-equipped imperial fortress/garrison but with strong walls, Y-Wings just might not be able to do the job and the threat against the behemoth bombers could be negligible at best...

Just what I see, I could be completely wrong haha

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Because the Alliance couldn't just purchase Y-Wings nor other fighters in great numbers. Let alone build them themselves. They just stole some fighters here and there and made do with what they could get your hands on...

Also, there were Y-Wings with only 1 pilot...

 

BTW... Playing as the Rebels, I sometimes just randomly throw together ships and a few fighters and  only then I put on the most reasonable upgrades... for role-playing reasons...

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I think there is another reason. George Lucas really like in the past to borrow many "visual" elements from WW2. So Disney took the same path.

I think the Resistance B/SF-17 heavy bomer is suppose to be the new child born of the B-17 Flying Fortress ;)

So don't try to look too far why that bad concept :P

b17-mighty-8th-arrives-pat-speirs.jpg

maxresdefault.jpg

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My main arguement is that it doesnt have to be the Star Fortresses exactly. You'd think it could be something that carries 100 bombs instead of 1000.

The Y wing isnt cost effective regardless. Something bigger would have worked just as well, maybe not as big as a star fortress. But I also understand the use of the star fortress. Both have their own roles. But there doesnt seem to be a good middle ground between fighter/bombers and heavy bombers.

Edited by Ling27
clarifying

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10 minutes ago, Ling27 said:

My main arguement is that it doesnt have to be the Star Fortresses exactly. You'd think it could be something that carries 100 bombs instead of 1000.

The Y wing isnt cost effective regardless. Something bigger would have worked just as well, maybe not as big as a star fortress. But I also understand the use of the star fortress. Both have their own roles. But there doesnt seem to be a good middle ground between fighter/bombers and heavy bombers.

Y-wings aren't just bombers, but fighters as well.  This seems crucial given how ubiquitous TIEs were, and the limited resources of the Rebels to field specialized craft.  The Alliance did eventually demonstrate a need for a heavier bomber with the B-wing, which they designed from the ground up; the Old Republic during the Clone Wars didn't seem to need anything heavier, interestingly enough.  A planetary security force can justify space superiority fighters, but not a heavy bomber.  If they aren't in planetary militias, and they aren't war surplus, how will they wind up in Alliance hands?

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I know someone out there can provide details and screenshots to support my vagueness, but the use of Y-wings by the Rebellion had a whole story behind it that has been further shown/fleshed out in material that takes place before ANH. They were older starfighters that the Rebels were able to get ahold of, basically.

You know how the Y-wings have their engines exposed? Somewhere (Clone Wars?) they show Y-wings when they’re new and have their “skin” on. There is an episode of Rebels where a bunch of old, stripped Y-wings are saved from a scrapyard operation so the early Rebellion can have some more squardons. They were desperate enough to raid junkyards.

Later Y-wings could lock their ion turret in place and do without a gunner. Though, from what I hear about the Age of Rebellion RPG, a 2-seater Y-wing with a PC pilot and gunner is pretty tough.

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