I thought I'd do some testing and try to figure out why a certain ship in a stack is picked out first when the fleet is bombed and what role Air Defense values play in this. In the editor, I took a Destroyer and Aegis cruiser and assigned them equal values to have a base. I then adjusted a single value at a time on the control ship. Here are my findings. First off, the Air Defense value. This works like regular combat. When a bomber goes to bombard a ship, the ships Air Defense value acts like an attack value, and is checked against the bombers defense. So, the standard combat formula applies, Attackers Attack Value[ship's Air Defense Strength] divided by (Attackers Attack Strength+Defenders Defense Strength). If the bomber makes it through the Air Defense of the target ship, then the Bomber's Bombardment Value is checked against the Ship's Defensive Strength. Again, the standard combat formula applies. If the bombardment ROF is 4, then I'm assuming each volley is checked against the ships Defensive Strentgh to see if each volley makes it through or not. Now regarding vessels. Two scenarios apply. One is where the ships are stacked, and the other is where the ships are side by side or close together. In the case of the stacked ships, the HP Bonus and Defense Strength are the factors. If one ship has one point more than another ship with 2 greater points of defense strength, the HP bonus is the deciding factor and the ship with the HP bonus is hit first. But, if the other ship's defense value is high enough, it overides the HP bonus on the other ship, and the ship with the greatest defense strength gets hit first. The game apparently has some sort of ratio parameters here. HP bonus seems to trump defensive strength until the defensive strength reaches a certain ratio against the HP bonus. EXAMPLE: one ship has 2 HP bonus, but another ship's defensive strength is say, 10 points higher than the ship with the HP bonus. The other scenario where ships aren't stacked but are close to each other. In this intsance the defense value and the cost of the ship are the factors. I tested this out. I had the destroyer and cruiser at equal values across the board, but I made the destroyer cost 1 shield above the cruiser. The destroyer was hit first. I then bumped up the destroyer's defense values quite a bit. This resulted in the cruiser being hit first. So, when ships are close to each other and not stacked, the bombers will go after the ship with the lowest defensive value and the highest build cost. Again, I believe the game has some sort of ratio parameters it follows here. One thing I did notice about stacked ships. If you have a ship that has the most hit points and highest defense, but it's marked as a king unit. All the other ships will take the hits and sink before your "king" ship is hit. I noticed this while playing El Justo's TCW scenario. I marked some unbuildable ships as king units so they could be upgraded later with newer technolgies. This aspect is somewhat realstic. The capital ship (Carrier or Battleship) is usually escorted by smaller ships. In an air attack, the smallers ships(especially modern ones) would be the vanguards for air-defense and presumably receive the first hits. Anyways, I hope this information is useful to some, if not many. I found these results interesting and wanted to share them. If I am wrong about any of these conclusions, please feel free to correct me, and share your findings.