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Found 5 results

  1. Rina_Pon

    Zao (mid 2020)

    1. Nerf CV AP bombs 2. Nerf Venezia
  2. XxxGr1ffinxxX

    moskva

    so if you read through my previous thread, i'm currently up to the donskoi. now any other time, it would be an 'oh yeah thats cool' but if anyone wasnt aware, in patch 0.9.5. the glorious moskva will become a coal ship, at least i think. so i'm in a bit of a pickle here, seen as though the donskoi is pretty new. theres a total of 245k experience to grind, so its going to require both of the following: playing donskoi a lot grinding narai w/atlanta, free xp camo and flags now i know the latter is possible, hell i got 100k free xp for grinding narai for not even a week. but i dont want to rely on that completely, nor do i want to trust the donskoi's normal xp earning rate will be enough but thats only the xp side of things, next up... 20 million credits tHAT, wont be a problem because i grinded like 15 mill with narai grinding so the whole point of this, is actually asking, what is the moskva like? i've only played her in space battles (aurora i belive?) and in CB a few times. apart from that, i dont have a big idea in terms of her so lets list what i know pros the best shell velocity in game, paired with high AP penetration makes for a good cruiser/knife fight bb monster 62k hit points i believe, sitting high up there for the most hitpoints for cruisers, excluding super cruisers 27mm bow and stern i think? or mid-ship. making french/german 380mm AP not much of a problem better reload than the donskoi's 180mm guns.... wow stock 19.1km firing range, something like 23/24km w/3mill range mod make a BB a BBQ cons massive size, turns like a truck, long rudder shift you have worse concealment than some battleships your big size, like i said, plus not having the ability to bounce 406+mm guns makes engagements very awkward AA is meh (even AA cruisers have become meh) big citadel will mean back to gulag for you well like i said this is based off my limited knowledge. if there are playstyle tips, i'd love to hear em!
  3. Greetings, fellow captains! Today, I’ll be reviewing another tier 8 premium aircraft carrier Kaga which is the only Japanese premium CV in the game. Previously, I have reviewed Ark Royal and Enterprise. Feel free to read them if you haven't do so. A. Technical & historical overview Until the early 1940s, she was one of the biggest aircraft carriers of the Imperial Japanese Navy. Initially laid down as a battleship, she was redesigned during construction to become a carrier. The ship had good armor protection for her type, carried quite numerous air group and powerful secondary battery guns. Historically, she took part in the strike on Pearl Harbor together with the other IJN aircraft carriers. During the Battle of Midway, she met her final demise after being heavily bombed by the aircrafts from USS Enterprise that she had to be scuttled by IJN destroyer Hagikaze to prevent her from being fallen into enemy hands. B. Comparison with premium CV of same tier a) Raw plane hitpoint (HP) without addition factors Let’s start the review by looking at Kaga’s planes and comparing them with those of other tier 8 premium aircraft carriers. Kaga uses tier 7 A6M5 Zero rocket attackers (RA) with 1330 HP per plane, making it the second worst RA after Graf Zeppelin’s in term of hit points. It is also the same stock RA used for Shokaku. Secondly, Kaga uses tier 7 D4Y3 Suisei dive bombers (DB) with 1580 HP per plane. Due to being a tier 7 plane, its HP is the lowest among the other tier 8 premium CV. Lastly, she has tier 7 B6N Tenzan torpedo bombers (TB) having 1600 HP per plane. This is again the weakest TB among those of other tier 8 premium CV due to being one tier lower. Next, let’s look at the raw collective plane HP of Kaga. In an attacking flight of RA comprising of two planes, the total HP is just 2660 HP which is second least after Graf Zeppelin because the latter also has 2 RA per attacking flight. However, her TB & DB have the most amount of HP per attacking flight because there are 4 planes each. This is also true for her the squadron which bring 12 planes per squadron having a total of 19200 HP and 18960 raw HP respectively. The total HP of RA per squadron is, however, the third least after Graf Zeppelin and Saipan. b) Hangar capacity with Flight Control Modification 1 upgrade Flight Control Modification 1 is the fifth slot upgrade that adds 2 more aircrafts on the deck for each type of plane. With the usage of this upgrade, Kaga has a total of 102 planes comprising of 26 RA, 38 DB and 38 TB. Based on Figure 4, she has the most number of aircrafts ready on deck among the other tier 8 CV, premium and tech tree included. This enormous capacity is however balanced by having lower tier planes comparing to her peers that can be easily taken down by same or higher tiers AA. Kaga’s massive plane reserve can make up to 3 full squadrons for each type with 2 extra planes with FGM1 upgrade installed. Players can simply use TB right off from the beginning of the match to attack any enemy ship within sight, DD included. Rotations of plane type usage is however advised to avoid losing too many planes of the same type to AA of higher tiers. c) Aircraft restoration time with Air Supremacy commander skill and FGM1 upgrade Flight Control Modification 1 reduces plane restoration time by 5%. Aircraft Supremacy is a commander skill that also reduces plane restoration time by 5%. With both of the upgrade installed and skill taken, the aircraft restoration time of Kaga is reduced by 10% and the final time taken for all the planes to be completely restored are shown in Figure 5. It is shown that only her DB is the fastest type of plane to be restored per unit at 1 minute 4 seconds. Her RA takes the longest time among her planes to be restored per unit at 1 min 29 sec. Her TB takes 1 min 21 seconds to be restored, comparing this to her colleague, it is second slowest after that of Saipan. Collectively, it would take 5 min 24 sec just to restore a fresh attacking flight and 16 min 12 sec for a new full squadron of TB. The long restoration time are compensated by a large hangar capacity at 102 planes. With that being said however, her player must not waste too much planes during early attacks that would make her completely invulnerable to being deplaned. d) Aircraft cruising and maximum speed with Improved Engine commander skill Figure 6 and 7 show the aircraft cruising and maximum speed respectively after taking Improved Engine commander skill which gives extra 2.5% speed to the aircrafts. Her rocket attacker is her fastest plane type cruising at 147.6 knots followed by dive bomber at 145.6 knots. When compared to other RA of tier 8 premium CV, hers is second slowest after that of Graf Zeppelin. They can move up to maximum speed of 187.6 knots by expending speed boost. The speed of her DB is average compared to that of the others. Being a lightweight Japanese plane, her TB is the second fastest after that of Graf Zeppelin at 136.3 knots of cruising speed. During the usage of engine boost, her TB can fly up to 176.3 knots of maximum speed. High TB speed is crucial to reach the target faster because torpedo is her main source of damage thus increasing the damage output. e) Strike planes i. Rocket attackers Maximum rocket damage: 2200 Rocket armor penetration capability: 27 mm Base fire chance of rocket: 8% Kaga uses Type 3 No. 6 Mk. 27 rockets that can deal up to 2200 damage per rocket and penetrate up to 27 mm armor with 8% raw fire chance. The maximum damage per rocket is just slightly better than Indomitable’s rocket with 100 more damage. In term of armor penetration capability, her rocket is on par with those of Indomitable and Enterprise. The chance of setting target on fire is also abysmally low just more than Enterprise’s rocket by 1%. Kaga has 8 rocket attackers in a squadron with 4 attack flights. One attacking flight has two RA that carry only 4 rockets per plane. Therefore, there are 8 rockets per attack run which are useful only on destroyers and for finishing low-HP targets off. The pathetic penetration capability means that they will have trouble causing damage on high tier battleships’ plating. Just like the other IJN CV, Kaga’s rocket aiming reticle is also circular shaped. ii. Dive bombers HE bomb maximum damage: 8800 HE bomb armor penetration capability: 54 mm HE bomb raw chance of setting target on fire: 50% Kaga uses Type 90 No. 50 Mk. 2 HE bombs which are unique when compared to the other IJN aircraft carriers that use AP bombs. Her HE bombs can deal up to 8800 damage per bomb with 50% base chance of setting target on fire. They can penetrate up to 54 mm armor. Everything about Kaga’s HE bombs is just mediocre at best. They do not have ridiculously high damage and excellent armor penetration capability like that of Saipan but at least they can be used on destroyers and most cruisers. They can reliably hit the superstructure of battleships and inflict fire on them. There are 12 planes per squadron of Kaga’s DB. Each plane carries one HE bomb. There are four planes in an attacking flight. Therefore, Kaga can drop 4 bombs in an attack. Just like the HE bombs on other CV, the bombs are dropped from quite a high altitude. Nevertheless, here is the advantage of her HE bombs; the aiming reticle is marginally smaller than that of Saipan and Lexington. There is also a slight forward movement during the start of the aiming run. This means that her player can start the HE bombing run quite early and then adjust the aim accordingly to accurately hit the target if the target does not try to maneuver. iii. Torpedo bombers Torpedo alpha damage per unit: 5400 Torpedo speed with Torpedo Acceleration skill: 55 knots (50 knots without) Torpedo range with Torpedo Acceleration skill: 4 km (5 km without) Torpedo activation distance with Torpedo Acceleration skill: 886 m (806 m without) Torpedo base flooding chance: 30 % Kaga utilizes Type 91 mod. 1 torpedoes that have 5400 alpha damage per unit with 50 knots base speed and 30% raw flooding chance. Unlike the other IJN CV, she can drop 4 torpedoes per attack that sail in a slightly diverging cone pattern. Because of this, she can potentially deal up to 21600 per torpedo drop excluding the calculation on damage reduction by anti-torpedo bulge and saturated parts on the ship. In a full squadron of 12 TB, her torpedoes can potentially deal maximum 64800 damage given that all torpedoes hit the targets. When compared to the other tier 8 premium CV, her damage per torpedo is not as high as that of Enterprise and Saipan but the potential damage per attack run is second best after Saipan’s. Her torpedo sailing range is also second longest after Graf Zeppelin’s at 5 km without taking Torpedo Acceleration (TA) commander skill. Being made in Japan, her torpedo is also the fastest among the other tier 8 premium CV. Unfortunately, these come with a disadvantage of having the longest torpedo activation distance at 806 m without taking TA skill. Any enemy who is aware of her incoming TB will quickly maneuver to avoid her torpedoes because long arming distance allows for fast reaction of torpedobeating. f) Secondaries Minimum firing range: 4.50 km Maximum damage per secondary HE shell: 3300 Fastest reload time of secondary guns: 5 sec HE shell penetration capability: 33 mm Base chance of secondary shell causing fire on target: 17% Kaga is equipped with three different secondary guns which consist of six turrets of dual 127 mm/40 Type89 A1, ten turrets of single 203 mm/50 3rd Year Type mod. A and two turrets of dual 127 mm/40 Type 89 A1 mod. 2. Therefore, there are a grand total of 26 secondary guns abroad her. Similar to the other tier 8 CV except for Graf Zeppelin, her secondaries can shoot up to 4.5 km. Her 203 mm/50 3rd Year Type mod. A secondary guns are the biggest guns that she has. They can penetrate up to 33 mm armor with 3300 alpha damage per hit. This is the main battery used on IJN CA. Any DD that gets hit multiple times with these big caliber secondary guns will lose insurmountable amount of HP. Although her secondary guns are not as powerful as those of Graf Zeppelin, they can even kill any DD that underestimate them provided that the DD fails to escape her secondaries and has low HP. g) Self-defense anti-air Long range AA = 0.1 – 5.8 km Long range AA aura damage per second = 115.5 dps AA explosions within far range AA = 5 flaks with 1470 AA damage each Short range AA = 0.1 – 2.5 km Short range AA aura damage per second = 86.45 dps Effective AA damage of overlapping ranges = 201.45 dps Kaga has the weakest AA among the other tier 8 CV. Her AA guns consist of 14 units of double 22 mm/60 Type96 Twin mod. 1, six units of double 127 mm/40 Type89 A1 and two units of double 127 mm/40 Type89 A1 mod. 2. Her raw effective continuous AA damage is just 201.45 dps. Her long range AA guns spawn up to 5 AA flaks that last for 1.51 seconds every 5 seconds. An AA flak could deal 1470 AA damage to hostile aircraft. Her AA is really anemic that even a non-AA-specced top researchable hull Akizuki has slightly better overlapping AA at 242.025 dps. Even Ryujo with top researchable hull has 204.05 dps effective continuous AA which is 2.6 dps stronger. Fortunately, this weakness is complemented by having Combat Air Patrol (CAP) Fighters consumable that are automatically launched from the hull once she is detected by surface or air. Just like other CV, there are 4 automated fighters that orbit the hull within 3 km radius for 10 minutes. These fighters will automatically engage and kill any hostile aircraft that enters their operating range. Only four hostile aircrafts will be taken down due to 1:1 tradeoff rule. If her player finds themselves being sniped by enemy CV, using the Patrol Fighters summoned by strike squadrons and staying with allied fleet for extra AA protection with precaution is advised. h) Hull hit point Kaga was originally planned to be one of the Tosa-class battleship under Eight-Eight Program but with the cancellation of the project, she was converted into CV. The fact was represented into the game as she has 54200 HP, the highest HP pool amongst Tier 8 premium CV. Together with Survivability Expert commander skill, she has a total of 57000 HP. Nevertheless, that skill is meant to buff the HP of her planes instead of the hull. Therefore, her player should never expose the ship to enemy’s line of sight and get shot to death just because she has the highest HP pool among the tier 8 premium CV. i) Maximum detectability range by sea and air with standard Type 1 camouflage Among the other tier 8 premium CV, Kaga has the second-best concealment by surface at 12.22 km with Saipan having the best concealment by surface at 11.87 km as she is the smallest tier 8 premium CV. As for the concealment by air, she is ranked third after Saipan and Indomitable. She will be detected by hostile aircrafts once they enter her 10.9 km air detectability range. Without camouflage, she has around 12.58 km concealment by surface. Since she is a premium CV, she owns a permanent camo by default, thus her player should always enable the camo auto-resupply option. Having a good concealment means that the players can be fairly close to the frontline, but one should always be aware of the presence of flankers especially DD that would try to CV snipe. j) Hull speed, rudder shift and anti-torpedo bulge protection As a CV with the heaviest tonnage at tier 8 and the hull of a BB, Kaga is pathetically slow. She moves at base maximum speed of 28 knots. In fact, she is the slowest tier 8 CV, the tech tree ones included. She also turns like a big fat pig because of her poor rudder shift at 14.4 seconds and 1.08 km turning radius. Once she gets caught in the open, she will not be able to position herself to avoid the impending doom from the shells of angry surface ships. In addition, she will not be able to outrun any ship that goes after her. Even high tier battleships can catch up to her but why would you chase a CV in a BB when you can snipe her from 20+ km away? She has average torpedo protection bulge at 22%. Still, please be reminded that a player should never use her to tank torpedoes for the team. k) Squadron’s patrol fighter consumable Just like the other tier 8 CV including the tech tree ones, all her strike squadrons can summon 5 Patrol Fighters that orbit in 6 km diameter for 60 seconds. One strike squadron has up to three charges of Patrol Fighters. Therefore, the fighters can be summoned 9 times per battle. One fighter has 139 base HP that can be buffed up to 339 HP by taking Survivability Expert skill. Even with SE being taken, these fragile fighters will not hold up long against AA of hostile ships because they hit the AA flaks during their determined operating route. They are only useful to provide temporary spotting when her player tries to aim the rocket or bombs on enemy DD. Nonetheless, they can be used to pseudo-protect allied DD from being harassed by enemy air strikes. C. Recommended build You are advised to take the following commander skills in the order shown below. This captain can also be used on tier 10 Hakuryu. As usual, always take Aircraft Servicing Expert as a CV’s first skill to reduce the aircraft restoration time by 5%. Since Kaga has fast torpedoes with annoyingly long arming distance, Torpedo Acceleration should not be taken because it will lengthen the arming distance even more. Instead, take Improved Engine as your second skill to buff up the speed of the strike squadrons by 2.5%. Fast plane speed is required to reach the targets faster thus increase the damage output. Take Aircraft Armor as the third skill for continuous AA damage reduction by 10%. For the fourth skill, pick Survivability Expert to add extra health to the strike squadron by 250 HP. These two skills are important so that at least 4 out of 12 planes in a squadron survive the heavy AA of multiple ships to drop their ordinance. For the fifth skill, take Sight Stabilization to increase the aiming speed of your dive bombers and torpedo bombers by 15% and 7.5% respectively. Pick Concealment Expert as the sixth skill to reduce the hull and squadron concealment by 10%. With CE taken, your hull detectability range is reduced to 11 km whereas your TB squadron has much better concealment at 6.75 km! The specialty of IJN TB is their stealth thus taking CE will significantly improve the TB’s concealment. Making stealth attack is thus somewhat possible because the enemies may not notice the presence of the TB squadron hence, they react slowly. AA guns will not operate too until the TB is detected. For the seventh skill, pick Improved Engine Boost to increase the engine boost time of the strike squadrons by 10%. Last but not least, take Last Gasp as your final skill so that the engine boost will be fully restored for your final attack group of strike squadron. For the upgrades, consider taking the following. The first two upgrades are no-brainers because they are the basic upgrades for all CV regardless of tier. With Air Group Modification 1, your planes will return faster to the hull by 20%. They will also escape from the hostile AA faster after dropping their payloads. Aircraft Engine Modification 1 synergizes well with Improved Engine Boost skill to give a total of 20% extra engine boost time. With these upgrade and skill, the TB squadron has 48 seconds of engine boost which is 8 s longer than the usual 40 s boost without any. For the third upgrade, always take Torpedo Bombers Modification 1 for extra 5 seconds of TB aiming time. This is so that the TB can fly longer under AA flaks while aiming the hit on enemy ships. With this upgrade, you can start the TB aiming run 5 km from your target ship. For the fourth slot upgrade, take Torpedo Bombers Modification 2 for extra 7.5% HP of TB squadron. The aerial torpedoes are her main source of damage thus extra health on her tier 7 TB is always helpful to withstand the excellent AA of higher tier ships so that at least the main attack group will be able to drop the torpedoes. Together with Survivability Expert skill, one TB has 1920 HP with is 320 HP more than without any skill and upgrade. For the final upgrade, take Flight Control Modification 1 that gives extra 2 planes for each plane type in the reserve and shorten the aircraft restoration time by 5%. If you feel confident that you can preserve your planes well, take Concealment Modification 1 instead to further reduce your hull concealment to 9.9 km and your TB concealment to 6.07 km. D. Recommended playstyle Kaga’s playstyle is quite different from the other IJN CVs’. Be reminded that she has tier 7 planes instead of tier 8 ones. Therefore, you should always know which ships should be avoided to prevent early plane losses. First of all, you have rocket attackers that fly in a squadron of 8 planes. A squadron has 4 attack groups with 2 rocket attackers per group. Each attack flight carries 8 rockets in total. This is the plane type that you should use first when you are the bottom tier in a tier 10 match. Use RA to scout the enemy positions and the direction they are going. These rockets are good against DD thus use them to attack the DD. Smart enemy DD players will always turn their AA off and move towards your RA so that when your RA squadron detects them, you have already made a pass over them. Therefore, you can use your Patrol Fighters consumable once they are detected so that you can turn your RA squadron and start your aiming run. Remember that you only have 5 seconds of aiming time thus always keep your view on the enemy DD detected by your Patrol Fighters given that they are not obliterated by enemy AA. If the enemy DD hides in the smoke and then open fire on your allied ships, always observe the DD’s shell arcs so that you can aim your rockets right at the beginning of the arc spawns. You should not hesitate to use these planes until they are depleted if you are the bottom tier and the enemies refuse to separate from each other. Secondly, you have reliable HE dive bombers that fly in a squadron of 12 planes with 3 attacking flights. There are four DB in an attacking flight with one bomb per plane. This is the plane type that you should begin with if you are the middle tier in a tier 9 match. Scout the enemies with the bombers in the first 3 minutes and hit any isolated target. You can use these DB to hunt enemy DD. If you are going to bomb DD running away from your DB, only start the bomb aiming when the pre-aim indicator passes the bow of the DD. You have exactly 7 seconds to hit your target once the bomb aiming starts. Unlike the other CV, the DB gain extra forward movement when you start your aiming run thus you can initiate your aiming run earlier than you would for other CV. To hit DD with these bombs, drop in front of their running path because the bombs are dropped from quite a high altitude despite having small reticle. Make sure that the aiming reticle is parallel to the target ship. If the aiming reticle is angled or perpendicular to the target, you will not get any bomb hit at all. That’s why you should approach your enemy from their bow or stern instead of their side. To preserve these DB, always pre-drop once before you send the remaining 8 planes to attack the targets. To avoid hitting AA flaks especially the ones that are spawned during DFAA usage, always brake before they spawn and then maneuver the DB squadron accordingly. Remember that DFAA buffs up the AA damage per flak cloud by four times; any planes that are hit by the flak will instantly die. You can even use these HE bombs to hit the superstructure of BB of tier 8 and lower. India X-Ray and Victor Lima signals will collectively buff the fire chance of these bombs by 2%. It is advised that the players use them. Lastly, you have decently fast torpedoes carried by TB that also fly in a squadron of 12 planes. You fly this plane type first if you are the top tier in the match. Spot the enemies and hit anything that you find including DD if you are confident enough to hit them. However, it is always better to use these torpedoes on enemy BB due to their big size and sluggish movement. Her arming distance is the longest at 806 m without Torpedo Acceleration skill. Do not take TA because it will further increase your arming distance thus cripple your aiming stage. If you are familiar with the old J5N Tenrai Type 91 mod. 8 module of Hakuryu that dropped 4 torpedoes in an attack run with 1 km arming distance, then you should have no problem using Kaga’s torpedoes. By taking Torpedo Bombers Modification 1 upgrade, you can start the torpedo aiming run 6 km from your target. As you are approaching them, speed up to reduce the contact time with the enemies’ AA. Always use the squadron’s Repair Party once you enter the AA zone of your enemy. Do not worry about AA flaks because the attacking flight flies under them whereas they do nothing against the reserve flight(s). While aiming the torpedoes, only use your mouse to make any slight movement according to your target’s movement. Do not use A & D keys because they make the torpedoes path spreads out bigger and will not shrink. Drop the torpedoes before the yellow region makes contact with the enemy ship because the torpedoes will not armed in that region. If the enemy moves into your TB, drop early so that at least one torp hits the bow of the enemy ship. If they move away from your TB, drop diagonally behind them so that at least one torp will catch them from behind. Those torps are really fast; thus, they should be able to outrun your enemy. Unfortunately, the gaps between the four torpedoes are quite huge that they might slip pass small ships such as CL and DD. If they stop to let the torps swim past them, try to rotate your TB and drop perpendicular to them. You are not supposed to do this however if you have pre-dropped once because you might be left with 2 or 1 TB in the final attack flight. If you still insist on doing this with the final attack flight, make sure you have taken Last Gasp skill because it refills your engine boost completely for the final flight so that you can accelerate to the side of your enemy ship while reducing the contact time with AA. Although having massive hangar size and plane capacity, it is always recommended to preserve your planes because any plane loss would create a snowballing effect that would render you useless once you have completely deplaned yourself to combined hostile AA. Here is a tip for plane type rotation. Let’s say you start the match with TB and then you attack the enemy ships with that initial squadron. If at least 6 planes are survived during that attack, then you can use TB too in the next follow up attack. Otherwise, change to other type of plane such as RA or DB. This should also apply to DB as well. Since you have a good hull concealment at 11 km when you pick CE skill, you can move closer to the combat area if you have at least 4 allies in front of you. As for the map awareness, always watch the last known location of enemy ships on the minimap especially the DD because they usually move along the border to your spawn location to take you down. E. Skill floor, skill ceiling, and team carry potential Skill floor: Very low / Low / Fairly low / Medium / Fairly high / High / Very high Skill ceiling: Very low / Low / Fairly low / Medium / Fairly high / High / Very high Team carry potential: If you are able to possess at least one full squadron of each plane type in the hangar, then it is highly possible to carry the team regardless of the tier of the match. For new CV players in general, Kaga is fairly forgiving due to her massive plane capacity that would scare any ship of lower tiers than her. You have 102 planes with the FGM1 upgrade installed that it is almost impossible to be completely deplaned if you carefully select your targets. Still, it is always be safe to preserve the planes as much as you can due to her low tier planes with 3 tier difference against tier 10 AA. If you have mastered Kaga, then she is very deadly in your hands. You can easily take down your opponent when you are the top tier in the match. Even when you are the bottom tier, you can still damage the enemies without the fear of being deplaned early in the match. It is also fairly easy to get High Caliber and Confederate achievements if you are skilled enough to get average 120k damage per battle. F. Should you get her? For Random Battle If you are a good high tiers CV player with at least 50k average damage per battle in 100 random battles, then Kaga is definitely worth for you. You can use her torpedoes to attack the big ships and use the fairly trustworthy HE bombs against CL and DD. If you are new to reworked CV gameplay, then please consider practicing with tier 4 CV first instead of simply buying her. You can even use Kaga to retrain the IJN CV captain if you move him along the tech tree line. For Ranked/Competitive For tier 8 Ranked or Clan Brawl, you can use Kaga if you are a skilled CV player in general. Expect that people are running AA spec in competitive environment when CV are allowed, so you should never attack enemy ships that are clumped up together to avoid early plane losses. Always look for enemy that is straying off from their fleet then use anything that you have in your disposal to exterminate it. Due to her massive plane capacity on hangar, you can even try to snipe the enemy CV if the other enemies are staying together. G. Final verdict Garbage = Completely inept and critically in need of several buffs to make her relevant. Mehbote = Average ship. Has strengths and drawbacks. A couple of buffs are needed to make her slightly advantageous. Gudbote = A strong ship that has apparent competitive strengths and unique features that make it very pleasing. OVERPOWERED = A ship with very clear benefits over all of its same tier competitors and unbalancing the game with its presence Kaga is indeed a gudbote but not as overpowered as her old RTS God mode. In the past, she could drop up to 6 torpedoes in a strike with decent arming time and godly torp alpha damage. Due to the CV rework, her torp alpha damage has been significantly reduced but that does not mean she is rendered completely useless. She is still viable in Random and even in Competitive environment. If you are skilled enough, you can get good damage and possibly carry the team to victory! I would say that she is the complete opposite of Saipan because she exercises quantity over quality whereas the latter emphasizes quality over quantity. Her planes are truly made of paper but hey, you have a lot of them to strike your enemies! Therefore, go out there and assert dominance on your opponents by showing the glorious aviation power of Imperial Japanese Navy! H. Speshul thanks Screenshots provider [TENGO] Kitsune_Ivy Raw data collector [KNCOL] NozoWeeb Proofreader [KNCOL] How_To_Play_This Original review format by [WG-CC] LittleWhiteMouse
  4. Greetings, fellow captains! This time, I will be reviewing the best tier 8 premium aircraft carrier Enterprise. Since she has been removed from the premium shop, this review will mostly uncover the reason why she is no longer purchasable. A. Technical & historical overview A Yorktown-class strike aircraft carrier that combined a number of key characteristics typical for this type of ship: a large air group, superbly assembled take-off and landing equipment that allowed her to launch a large number of squadrons, good speed and powerful AA defenses. Historically, she participated in more major actions of the war against Japan than any other USN ships. On three occasions during the Pacific War, the Japanese announced that she had been sunk in battle, inspiring her nickname The Grey Ghost. B. Comparison with premium CV of same tier I apologize for not including Indomitable in these comparisons because her release on the premium shop was right after this review was completely composed. a) Plane hitpoint (HP) without another addition factor Firstly, let’s look at the base/raw HP of Enterprise’s planes and the comparison with the other three tier 8 premium CV. Enterprise uses F6F Hellcat rocket attackers (RA) that has 1400 HP per plane, making it the second tankiest RA per unit after Saipan. She utilizes SB2C Helldiver with 1980 HP as dive bomber (DB) and TBF Avenger with 1800 HP as torpedo bomber (TB). Again, those two plane types are the second tankiest after those on Saipan. Meanwhile in an attacking flight of RA, the planes have the most HP compared to all tier 8 premium CV. For both attacking flights of DB & TB, the planes have the second most HP after Kaga’s. These are the same for the total HP of all planes in her whole complete squadron. Despite losing to Saipan in term of RA HP per unit of plane, Enterprise’s full squadron of RA has more total HP because she brings 12 planes in one squadron instead of 6 for Saipan. b) Hangar capacity with Flight Control Modification I upgrade Flight Control Modification I is the fifth slot upgrade that adds 2 more aircrafts on the deck for each type of plane. With this upgrade installed, Enterprise has 20 RA, 16 DB and 16 TB on her hangar from the beginning of the match, summing up to 52 aircrafts. Based on the figure above, she is the second tier 8 premium CV having the most number of RA after Kaga. She has the same number of DB with Graf Zeppelin. For the number of ready TB on her deck, she is second after Kaga with 38 TB followed by Graf Zeppelin with 14 TB. After taking off a full squadron of 12 RA, she is left with 8 RA on her hangar. A full squadron of her DB and TB consists of 9 planes each. She will have 7 DB and 7 TB left after taking off a full squadron of each plane type. All of these remaining planes on deck cause the follow-up squadrons to be incomplete. To overcome this, her player is advised to drop off the ammunition once for TB and DB or twice for RA into the sea/terrain for a complete follow-up squadron formation. This is elaborated more in the recommended playstyle later. c) Aircraft restoration time with Aircraft Supremacy commander skill and FGM1 upgrade Other than adding two extra aircrafts on the deck, FGM 1 upgrade also shortens the aircraft restoration time by 5% whereas Air Supremacy commander skill gives 5% reduction to the time taken for aircraft restoration. By taking both of these upgrade and skill, the aircraft restoration time for Enterprise is reduced and the final restoration time taken for all three types of aircraft on her deck are shown in the figure above. One rocket attacker only takes 44 seconds for restoration which is the shortest among the tier 8 premium CV. One torpedo bomber only needs 54 seconds for restoration which is the shortest compared to the others. However, the dive bomber restoration time takes 5 seconds longer than that of Kaga which is 69 seconds for Enterprise compared to 64 seconds for Kaga. In conclusion, her RA and TB take less than one minute for restoration per unit which is unique when compared to the other tier 8 CV. d) Aircraft cruising and maximum speed with Improved Engine commander skill The figures above show the aircraft cruising and maximum speed respectively after taking Improved Engine commander skill which increases the aircraft speed by 2.5%. Rocket attackers are the fastest plane type that Enterprise has which cruise at 164.0 knots and can reach up to 204.0 knots with engine boost usage. When compared to the other tier 8 premium CV, her RA is second fastest after Saipan’s at 180.4 knots of cruising speed. However, her TB and DB are the slowest among all tier 8 premium CV at 123.0 knots and 128.1 knots of cruising speed respectively. Fortunately, the slow speed of these planes gives them excellent maneuverability, allowing them to turn fast with maximum deceleration if someone decides to turn back to attack the same target. e) Strike planes Rocket attackers Maximum rocket damage: 1900 Rocket penetration capability: 27 mm Base fire chance of rocket: 7 % Enterprise uses 5-inch FFAR as her rocket which has maximum damage of 1900 per rocket with 27 mm armor penetration capability and 7% raw chance of causing fire. She has 4 attack runs in a full squadron with 3 planes per attack run. One plane brings 6 rockets. Therefore, she has 18 rockets per attack run. The aiming reticule is horizontal-shaped similar to HVAR rockets on Lexington. Based on the graph shown above, her rockets armor penetration capability is 27 mm which is tied up with that of Kaga. They are very excellent against DD and good on lightly-armored cruisers. For BB, you need to aim for the superstructure especially for high tier BB as they are heavily armored. But here is the conundrum; the rockets are not good against targets with saturated damage on superstructure. If such case happens, just hope that the target will catch fire with the 7 % base fire chance. Her rocket base fire chance is also the worst compared to the other tier 8 premium CV. Dive bombers AP bomb maximum damage: 5900 Potential AP bombs maximum damage per strike run: 35400 Enterprise utilizes AN-M62 AP bomb that deals 5900 damage per bomb. Since there are only two tier 8 premium CV with AP bombs, Shokaku is added to the comparison for more diversity. Enterprise bomb is not as strong as that of Shokaku and Graf Zeppelin as they have less penetration capability, meaning that they citadel less BB. But to make up for that, she drops 6 bombs per attack run compared to 2 for Graf Zeppelin and 3 for Shokaku. If she manages to score 6 perfect citadel on her target, she could deal up to 35400 damage per attack run. This is really deadly against cruisers of lower tiers such as Aoba and Yorck which are easy targets for Devastating Strike. Due to having 6 AP bombs in an attack run, her drop reticule is really huge when compared to that of Shokaku. The drop reticule is oval shaped just like the bombs on other CV except for Graf Zeppelin. Starting from update 0.8.4, the bombs drop closer to the edge rather than the centre of the aiming reticule. Getting consistent multiple citadels in a single attack seems to be a difficult task especially against small-sized CL such as Smolensk. Still, her bombs are special because their aiming is not affected by movement unlike other AP bombers of other CV of which the aiming reticule will not shrink during maneuvering. This allows players to line up perfect alignment on target while having the aiming reticule shrinking to maximum accuracy at the same time. Torpedo bombers Torpedo alpha damage per unit: 6467 Torpedo speed with Torpedo Acceleration skill: 40 knots Torpedo range with Torpedo Acceleration skill: 2.8 km Torpedo activation distance with Torpedo Acceleration skill: 430 m Torpedo flooding chance: 52 % Enterprise uses Mk.13-2 torpedoes which are the same torpedoes used by Saipan and Lexington. One torpedo deals 6467 damage which is the highest among the other tier 8 premium CV only to be tied up with Saipan. In a strike run, she could drop 3 torpedoes and potentially deal up to 19401 damage omitting the damage reduction by torpedo bulge on target. In a full squadron of 9 TB, she could hypothetically deal up to 58203 damage given that all planes survive from being shot down by AA and all 9 torpedoes hit the target(s). Enterprise has slow torpedoes moving at 35 knots that taking Torpedo Acceleration commander skill is really essential. With TA skill, the torpedoes move at 40 knots with 2.8 km range which is the shortest among tier 8 premium CV other than Saipan. However, the major advantage of her torpedoes compared to the other tier 8 premium CV is that she has the shortest aiming distance at 430 m and by taking TA skill, her player can drop the torpedoes closer than that of other tier 8 premium CV to the target so that the target has less reaction time to dodge them especially if it is BB with bad maneuverability. f) Secondaries Minimum firing range: 4.5 km Maximum damage per secondary HE shell: 1800 Reload time of secondary guns: 6 seconds HE penetration capability: 20 mm Chance of secondary shell causing fire on target: 5 % Enterprise is equipped with eight turrets of single 127 mm/38 Mk24 secondary guns that could fire up to 4.5 km without any other modifier. Her 4.5 km secondary range is standard for all tier 8 CV excluding the secondaries monster, Graf Zeppelin. The HE penetration capability of Enterprise’s secondary guns is just 20 mm which means they are not made for secondary brawl against BB and CA. If you found yourself doing this, you are playing her wrong. It is not worth speccing for her secondary because it is not the way you should play her. g) Anti-aircraft capability Long range AA = 0.1 – 5.8 km Long range aura damage per second = 77.0 dps (100% hitrate) AA explosions within far range AA = 4 flaks with 1400 damage each Medium range AA = 0.1 – 3.5 km Medium range aura damage per second = 315.0 dps (100% hitrate) Short range AA = 0.1 – 2.0 km Short range aura damage per second = 367.5 dps (95% hitrate) Enterprise has a very excellent AA capability among the other tier 8 CV. Her AA guns consist of 50 units of single 20 mm Oerlikon Mk4, eight units of dual 40 mm Bofors Mk1, six units of quadruple 40 mm Bofors Mk2 and eight units of single 127 mm/58 Mk24. Her raw AA damage per second sums up to 759.5 dps excluding the hitrate and reduction due to overlapping AA auras. Her AA flaks spawn for 1.51 s every 5 s from 3.5 km to 5.8 km range with 1400 damage per flak. Other than having reliable AA guns, she also has 4 AI-controlled carrier-based fighters that automatically orbit the hull within 3 km radius for 10 minutes once the hull is spotted. With these outstanding AA defenses, any attempt by the enemy CV for carrier-sniping will be unimaginably difficult unless if the enemy CV somehow manages to dodge the flak and drop torpedoes at point blank range without Enterprise’s fighters engaging the hostile TB on time. Therefore, her player is advised to always move her if such threat were to happen. h) Hull hit point Enterprise’s hull has base HP of 51400 that ranks her the third among the other tier 8 premium CV. Together with Survivability Expert commander skill, she could have up to 54200 HP for her hull. The skill is intended to buff up the HP of her planes and by doing so, her hull is buffed up by 2800 HP. The extra hull on HP still does not mean that her player should get her into enemies’ line of sight and be a target. f) Maximum detectability by sea and air Among the other tier 8 premium CV, Enterprise has the second worst maximum concealment at 14.14 km by sea and 11.02 by air; her concealment is only better than Graf Zeppelin. Historically, Yorktown-class aircraft carriers are relatively large when compared to the other tier 8 premium CV with overall length of ≈251 m which, when represented in the game, causes her to have low concealment. To sum up, being too close to the combat area is dangerous because any player who pays attention to their enemy might snipe you down. It is recommended to take Concealment Expert commander skill as one of her level 4 skill to reduce her concealment down to 12.73 km which is considerably safe for high tier CV. j) Hull speed, rudder shift and anti-torpedo bulge protection Enterprise moves at 32.5 knots which makes her second fastest tier 8 premium CV after Saipan. Her rudder shift time is 13.1 seconds with 1.07 km turning circle radius. Comparing to other premium tier 8 CV, this means that she can dodge torpedoes slightly better than them. However, it does not mean you should attempt to do so. Her torpedo bulge is also the best among tier 8 premium CV at 28%. Again, this does not mean that her player should take some torpedoes. k) Squadron’s patrol fighter consumable One of Enterprise’s specialty is her squadron’s patrol fighter consumable. One summonable patrol fighter has approximately 360 HP. When used, it summons a dreadful squadron of 10 fighters that will patrol a circular area of 7.2 km diameter for one minute. One strike squadron can only summon up to 3 patrol fighter squadrons once at a time with 10 seconds reload after the fighters squadron timer expired, got shot down or engaged hostile aircrafts. The fighter patrol radius is really big that it can cover the entire capture point such as B point on Shard map. The proper usage of these fighters will be discussed later in the recommended playstyle section. C. Recommended build Assuming you already own Enterprise, you are advised to take the following commander skills in the order shown below. The first four commander skills are basic skills for all CV regardless of tier. Take Improved Engines as your fifth skill to buff up your aircraft cruising speed by 2.5%. With this skill, the RA will cruise at 164.0 knots whereas the DB and TB will cruise at 128.1 knots and 123.0 knots respectively. Faster speed means that the planes will travel within AA auras in shorter duration thus slightly reducing the AA damage to them. This is to ensure that most planes will safely arrive to their target and drop their ammunition. Next, take Concealment Expert and Sight Stabilization skills. You can take CE first followed by SS as your final skill or vice versa. CE reduces your hull and squadron detectability by 10%. By taking it, your hull surface detectability is reduced to 12.73 km whereas all of your squadrons have a reduced detectability of 9 km. SS provides some benefits to your attack aim; it gives extra 7.5% of aiming speed for the rocket attackers & torpedo bombers and extra 15% of aiming speed for the dive bombers. This allows the aiming reticules to be shrunk to the minimum size faster especially for rocket attackers and dive bombers. For the upgrades, consider taking the following. The first two upgrades from left are no-brainers because they are the basic upgrades that all CV should have. Take Attack Aircraft Modification 1 to increase your rocket aiming time from 5 to 7 seconds. This is important if your rocketing target is a DD so that you have extra time for aiming in case if the enemy DD is smart enough to turn off her AA and by the time she is spotted again, the RA might still be in aiming phase that you have sufficient time to attack the DD. For the fourth slot upgrade, you can choose to take either Torpedo Bomber Modification 2 or Dive Bomber Modification 2. These upgrades give extra 7.5% of health to individual HP of the type of designated strike aircraft. The effects of taking either of these upgrades together with Survivability Expert skill are shown below. Maximum hitpoint of TB with SE and TBM2 = 2135 Maximum hitpoint of DB with SE and DBM2 = 2328 Personally, I would take TBM2 because the torpedoes are more reliable than the AP bombs with wonky dispersion. You might argue that the TB squadron already has heal that taking TBM2 is kind of useless. Due to the recent AA buffs of which AA focuses on a single plane rather than the final attack reserve group, I find that the heal is sort of iffy; thus taking TBM2 might be better than DBM2. If you are confident that your TB can drop their ordinance on enemy ships after surviving the combined AA of a few grouped ships, then take DBM2 instead and hope that you get more than 2 bomb hits per attack on enemy ship. Lastly, take Flight Control Modification 1 for 5% faster aircraft restoration time and adding 2 more aircrafts to the hangar for each plane type. D. Recommended playstyle If you are an owner of Enterprise and consistently get good result playing her, then feel free to skip this section. If you own her but are having difficult time playing her and getting good result, kindly read this section. This section will cover the tips for the usage of all the attack squadrons and your summon fighter consumable. First of all, rocket attackers is your second main source of damage after your torpedo bombers. The RA are really fast with 164 knots cruising speed and 205 knots maximum speed with engine boost usage. Always use them to scout the enemy and know the position of their DDs. If you get into a tier 10 match, drop your rockets into the ocean/onto the terrain once and let the other three attack runs/groups/flights scout the enemy team. If you encounter a DD during the scout, slow down and take your time to aim and hit it. If you somehow overshoot the enemy DD because of sudden encounter when you are moving at maximum speed, summon your fighters by pressing the button assigned for it. 10 AI-controlled fighters will spot the enemy DD for you so that you know where to lead your rocket aiming reticule. Please be mindful that it takes roughly 4 seconds for your rocket attacking group to detach from the squadron into the attack mode. Therefore, you can start your attack run 3 km from your target. Accelerate using the speed boost if the target is running away from you. With AAM1, you have only 7 seconds to aim and hit your target. If you are going to attack the same target, slow down after your RA passes it by 2.5-2.8 km, make a U-turn and start your attack run. If you slow down after 3.0 km, your RA might hit the flaks that spawn starting from 3.5 km distance during the turn. Your AP bombs are useful against battleships, large cruisers, Kaga, tier 6 CV and a few heavy cruisers. The citadel hits are not always consistent. Sometimes, you might get regular penetration or over-penetration if you drop the bombs from lowest altitude. If the enemy maneuvers during your bombing attack, your bombs will probably be ricocheted. To overcome these problems, always drop your bombs from maximum altitude for CL and medium to slightly high altitude for BB & CA. If you are going to bomb multiple ships using a single DB squadron, always plan your bombing targets ahead to maximize your damage output while minimizing your plane losses. Starting from update 0.8.4, the bombs fall closer to the edge of the aiming reticule more often and more rarely at its center. Refer to the following diagram for the distribution of the AP bombs at maximum aiming tightness. Yes, the bombs distribution is that bad! If you are unfortunate like me, you will get no hit at all even if the target ship is fully inside your aiming reticule. To marginally mitigate this problem, do not aim in a way that the crosshair of the aiming reticule is on top of the target ship. Instead, make sure that the longer vertical line inside the crosshair is on the broadside of your target. Slingshot is highly recommended for the usage of the AP bombs. It is a technique of which the bombs are dropped into the sea/onto a terrain from a distance that the remaining dive bombers will be launched/thrown forward at high speed without taking any AA damage including damage by AA flaks. This is useful if you have to attack a threat of excellent AA or grouped enemy ships without losing too much DB during the attacking phase. For Enterprise’s DB, the slingshot distance is about 7–8 km. If the target is moving towards your DB with speed boost, start from 8 km and then adjust your bomb aiming accordingly. If they do not bother to move at all, then start your slingshot at 7 km. For a target running away from your DB, your bombers might be thrown outside of their 3.5 km AA range, causing the target to spawn AA flaks. Try to decelerate and maneuver your bombers to avoid those flaks. If you are the bottom tier ship of the match and the higher tier ships are grouped up together, find any straggler to be bombed. Do not even hesitate to bomb an isolated DD because overpen hits are better than nothing. Lastly, you have strong torpedoes that can be dropped on basically everyone in the enemy team. Together with TA skill, the torpedoes move at 40 knots with slightly diverging pattern. The short arming distance of 430 m means that you can drop fairly close to the enemy ship. If the enemy does not pay attention to your TB and moves in a straight line, all of your torpedoes might hit them. If they turn inside that they are facing your TB, drop earlier and hope that the torpedoes will arm before hitting the bow or any part of the enemy ship. If they turn outside, just do an angled drop and hope that at least one torpedo will catch the running ship. In case if the three torpedoes do not hit the ship running away, try to flank them and drop from the side. Your TB has repair party consumable that heals 10% of your TB total health. Always instantly use it as soon as your TB enters the AA zone(s) of enemy ship so that the entire squadron will not be depleted quickly. You can also use it when the hostile fighters are engaging your TB. You know that your TB are being engaged by hostile fighters when you start to hear the sound of the fighters’ machineguns. Press the button assigned for the squadron repair party to survive the engagement. But, this does not guarantee the survivability of your TB because it is heavily RNG-dependent. Therefore, try not to attack an enemy with active catapult fighter or let your squadron enter a summon fighter zone. An attacking flight of TB can drop up to 3 torpedoes per attack provided that all the attacking planes survive from enemy AA. If enemy ships are clumped up together that all your TB might die before even dropping their payload, drop the first three torpedoes into the sea/onto a terrain and let the other 6 planes attack them. Your TB are also good against ship hiding in smoke. If an enemy ship conceals itself in smoke, just drop your torpedoes into the smoke to flush them out or mess up their positioning. If they do not pay enough attention to your TB or if they do not have allied (opposing for you) ship or squadron to help spotting your TB for them, they might catch one or two of your torpedoes! Squadron’s summon fighters consumable is an indispensable tool for Enterprise due to their huge patrolling radius. Its primary purpose is to spot the enemies for your team and as stated a few paragraphs back, it helps your rocket aiming run against enemy DD with AA guns turned off. Its patrolling diameter is 7.2 km that it could potentially cover the whole capture point to cause an area denial against enemy ship especially destroyers that might try to approach the capture point. If an enemy ship tries to get into the capture point with the summon fighters consumable being active, your teammates might be able to shoot it unless if the opponent decides to lay down in smoke. Other than area denial, the summon fighters are good for team AA support especially for your team’s DD. If you see a ship in your team especially DD being harassed by enemy CV or in most cases, the enemy CV spawns summon fighters on a smoking allied DD, it is your job to give them AA support by summoning fighters over them. With a total of 10 fighters, the summon fighters are able to decimate an entire enemy squadron given that the opposing CV captain does not pay attention to where their squadron is flying into. You can even use the summon fighters consumable to kill any catapult fighters used by enemy ships (cruiser and battleship) so that the catapult fighters will engage your summon fighters instead of your attacking squadron. For example, you are trying to attack a North Carolina with TB but the BB is using catapult fighters for self-defense against your TB. A North Carolina using Direction Center for Fighters skill has 4 catapult fighters. Therefore, summon your patrol fighters using the button assigned for them so that the hostile catapult fighters engage them instead of your TB. You can even destroy enemy’s spotting aircraft using this tactic too! The summon fighters can also be used for potential allied BB sniping against enemy CV. This is a useful tactic if you are in a division with two BB that use spotting aircraft such as Enterprise-Amagi-Monarch division. Keep in mind that the AA of most tier 8 CV can extend up to 5.8 km only. Thus, you can summon your patrol fighters 9.6 km from the enemy CV then ask your allied BB or the BB you are in a division with to use spotting catapult plane to snipe it from a distance. Be wary that the enemy CV could use this tactic against you too. If such case happens, move your hull away from the hostile summon fighters. Fly your attack squadron to the edge of the summoned hostile fighters’ area and then summon your own patrol fighters. This will negate the spotting threat against you. E. Skill floor, skill ceiling and team carry potential For new CV players in general, Enterprise is neutrally forgiving. With AS skill and FGM1 upgrade, her plane restoration time is really fast when compared to other tier 8 CV with one unit of TB and RA takes less than one minute for restoration. Only the DB takes 1 minute 9 seconds for restoration per unit. Even with this advantage, her player should always be preservative with their planes especially against ships of higher tiers. If you have remarkably became skilled at Enterprise, it would be easy for you to decimate the enemy team especially if they decide to stay apart from each other and you are the top tier of the match. The rockets are very devastating against destroyers. In addition, the AP dive bombers are good against cruisers and battleships. With these two armaments, you can opt not to use torpedoes at all during the first 13-15 minutes of the match. It is easy to get High Caliber and Confederate in this CV once you have fully mastered it. F. Should you regret for not getting her? Why is this section titled like that? Well, it is because Enterprise is no longer available to be purchased in the premium shop and the armory. The following reasons are why you should regret your decision for not purchasing her while she was still for sale. i) For Random battle Yes, Enterprise is very viable in Random battle regardless of which tier you end up in. Her planes are relatively tanky and if you lose 3 or 4 planes while attacking the enemies, they regenerate fast enough that you will get another full squadron in a short time. If you are the top tier in the match, you can single-handedly carry the whole team given that your team does not derp too much. ii) For Ranked/Competitive Are they still doing King of The Sea at tier 8? For tier 8 Ranked, Enterprise is a great support ship with her enormous squadron of patrol fighters that can protect your friendly destroyers against enemy CV attack. Your plane armaments are good enough to kill or at least damage any lone enemy ship that tries to flank your team. In addition, your hull AA is excellent that any CV snipe attempts by the enemy CV can be unpleasant for them. As my final conclusion for this section, I would say that Enterprise is relevant in any game mode. Congratulations if you own this marvelous CV! Contrariwise, I feel sorry if you do not manage to get her while she was being sold. If you adore Enterprise due to her being the most decorated USN ship during the war or because you are just a weaboo who fall in love with her Azur Lane self, you might have purchased it when she was in the premium shop. G. Final verdict Garbage = Completely inept and critically in need of several buffs to make her relevant. Mehbote = Average ship. Has strengths and drawbacks. A couple of buffs are needed to make her slightly advantageous. Gudbote = A strong ship that has apparent competitive strengths and unique features that make it very pleasing. OVERPOWERED = A ship with very clear benefits over all of its same tier competitors and unbalancing the game with its presence Indeed, she is the most overpowered tier 8 CV. She has decent strike capability, excellent plane restoration time and is able to provide good AA support for the team. The only tier 8 CV with the closest playstyle to her is USS Lexington which has access to HVAR rockets with better penetration value. However, be reminded that Enterprise has a few advantages compared to Lexington. For example, one torpedo bomber on Enterprise is restored 18 seconds faster than that of Lexington. At the hands of unicums, Enterprise can easily dominates the battle due to her strong influence. H. Special thanks Screenshots providers [TENGO] Kitsune_Ivy [TT-R] TopTierR [HTBT] Denarmo Raw data collector [PURU2] Aiharaterumi Proofreader [KNCOL] How_To_Play_This Original review format [WG-CC] LittleWhiteMouse P/S: I am not LittleWhiteMouse. The next one will be Kaga 's review but it may be done in February due to me having to work extra time and playing Kancolle.
  5. Greetings, fellow captains! I will be reviewing all premium aircraft carriers (CV) in World of Warships PC excluding Indomitable because it has not been released yet. I am going to start with Ark Royal first because she is a tier 6 CV. A. Technical & historical overview The first British aircraft carrier of the new generation. She was equipped with a continuous flight deck and modern equipment for aircraft landing and takeoff. She was infamous with the contribution of the sinking of Kriegsmarine BB Bismarck. B. Comparison with CV of same tier a) Plane hitpoint (HP) without another addition factor First of all, let’s have a look at the HP of planes of Ark Royal and the comparison with the other three CV of tier 6. Ark Royal uses tier 5 Blackburn Skua rocket plane (rocket attacker/RA) that has 1820 HP, making her the second tankiest rocket attacker among the other tier 6 CV. For the dive and torpedo bombers, she uses the tier 4 Fairey Swordfish having 1550 and 1500 HP respectively. These put her on par with the upgraded DB & TB modules on Ryujo. In an attacking flight, Ark’s DB & TB seem to have HP advantage over those on the other tier 6 CV except for Ranger’s upgraded DB. This is due to the fact that she brings 3 planes per strike run compared to the others; for example, Ryujo brings 2 TB per strike run compared to Ark’s 3. Needless to say, these hold true for the total HP of planes of the entire squadron. Ark has maximum 9 planes in a squadron compared to a maximum 8 for Ranger & Ryujo with Ranger’s DB having 9 planes per squadron. b) Hangar capacity From the beginning, Ark Royal has 14 planes of each type, summing up to 42 planes in total. For the rocket attackers (RA), Ark has the highest number of them compared to the other tier 6 CV. Meanwhile for the DB, she is on par with that of Ranger. Compared to the other tier 6 CV, she has the most number of TB just like the RA. Considering her planes are all downtiered, she is given more planes compared to the others. If Ark takes a squadron off her flight deck, she will have 5 spare of that type left. This is because she can have up to 9 planes in a complete squadron for each type of plane. To avoid losing too many planes in an initial attack, a player can do squadron shortening which I will discuss later in the recommended playstyle section. Squadron shortening is recommended in order to get a full squadron of planes in the follow-up attacks. c) Aircraft restoration time with Air Supremacy commander skill Aircraft Supremacy is a 1-point commander skill which reduces the aircraft restoration time by 5%. Based on Figure 5, Ark Royal’s planes have the shortest restoration time for all types of plane except for the DB which is the same as that of Ranger. This makes sense as her planes are all downtiered with RA being the only type of plane at tier 5 as the highest tier of plane that she has. Faster aircraft restoration means that she is unlikely to be deplaned fast compared to the other tier 6 CV such as her British counterpart, Furious which has the longest aircraft restoration time of all types of plane. However, this does not mean that a player should waste their planes to AA especially against tier 7 & 8 ships. d) Aircraft cruising & maximum speed The graphs in Figure 6 and 7 show the aircraft cruising & maximum speed respectively after taking Improved Engines commander skill which increases the plane cruising speed by 2.5%. For all types of plane, Ark Royal has the slowest planes out of all the other tier 6 CV. This is again because her planes are tier 4 biplane Swordfish. The TB & DB are the exact same plane used for Tier 4 Hermes‘ DB. Her planes are easily shot down by AA because the slower your planes in AA aura, the more AA damage they receive and the easier they get shot down. The planes also turn around very slowly in hostile AA aura. This is again why squadron shortening is required which will be discussed later. Since the RA are the fastest plane type, you can scout using them first and hurt enemy DD for initial attack. e) Strike planes i) Rocket attacker Ark Royal uses RP-3 60lb HE No! Mk.I rocket which is exactly the same rocket found on the upgraded RA module on Furious. Your strike loadout is 3 RA attack runs in a squadron with 3 planes each. One plane brings 4 rockets. Therefore, you have up to 12 rockets per strike just like Furious & Ranger. The maximum damage you could deal using one rocket is 1500. Just like Furious’ rocket, you can only penetrate up to 25 mm armor and have merely 5% base fire chance without modifiers. The rockets are good against DD but not so much against cruisers and BB unless if you hit their non-saturated superstructure for that slight fire chance. The aiming reticule is small, circular-shaped just like Furious’ and Ryujo’s rockets. ii) Dive bomber Ark Royal has 40lb G.P. bombs which are the same bombs found on tier 4 CV Hermes. The drop reticule is also fairly small like that of Hermes, allowing precise drop on small targets such as DD. Just like the other Royal Navy CV, Ark also uses carpet bombing technique but the bombs drop faster unlike Furious which drops bombs from slightly higher altitude. The strike loadout is 3 strike runs per squadron with 3 planes per strike run and 8 bombs per strike. Thus, she can drop up to 24 bombs in a run compared to 12 on Furious and 3 on Ranger. As shown in Figure 10, 11 and 12, Ark’s bombs have the least maximum damage per bomb, lowest penetration capability of merely 18 mm of armor and lowest chance of setting targets on fire. Indeed, they are that bad! Most of the time, you will only get shatters on BB especially those of higher tiers than her. The fire chance is not even great that you need to use Demolition Expert commander skill and fire combat signals just to increase that 9% fire chance. The bombs are only good for DD hunting because they drop accurately and as fast as rockets. It is like almost a guaranteed death if a DD player is up against a skilled Ark Royal player with those fatally accurate bombs, providing that the Ark player knows how to lead the bombs. iii) Torpedo bomber Once more, Ark Royal utilizes the same torpedo from Hermes which is Mark VIII that deals up to 5200 damage per torp with 45% base flooding chance. Compared to Ryujo’s and Ranger’s torpedo, Ark Royal’s deals the least damage per unit only to be tied with that of Furious. However, here comes Ark’s torpedo advantage over the others of her tier. Instead of dropping two torpedoes per attack, Ark can drop up to three in her 3 attack runs per squadron and 3 planes per attack run. As shown in Figure 14, her torpedo potential damage per attack run is the highest among the other tier 6 CV at 15600 damage. Based on Figure 15, Ark is second after Ryujo in term of torpedo damage potential in a full squadron despite having one more TB in a a squadron compared to the latter. This is because Ryujo has massive torpedo alpha damage per unit to begin with. Just like the other Royal Navy CV of tier 6 and above, Ark Royal torpedoes have converging drop pattern. With Torpedo Acceleration commander skill, her torpedoes move at 40 knots with merely 1.9 km range just like Furious‘ as shown in Figure 16. This is to avoid any cross-dropping attempt such as trying to drop from behind and then from the side. Enemy ships might be able to outrun torpedoes dropped from behind especially DD & CL/CA with high speed. An attempt for follow-up drop from the side is not a great option either because the TB squadron flies and rotates slowly that some of them might be taken down by AA during the attempt. Even with TA skill, her torpedoes have 376 m activation distance which means that player can drop them really close to the enemy ships so that they have more chance of hitting the latter. f) Secondaries Ark Royal is equipped with eight turrets of dual 113 mm/45 Mk III UD secondary guns which shoot every 5 seconds, dealing 1600 maximum damage per hit. Their 4 km minimum range is the same as those of other tier 6 CV except for Ranger which has extra 0.5 km of range. There is nothing special with these secondaries because 4 km range is short and her secondary shells can only penetrate up to 18 mm of armor. There is no worth of speccing into her secondaries because it is not the way a CV should be played usually. g) Anti-air Long range AA = 0.1 – 5.8 km Long range aura damage per second = 94.5 dps (100% hitrate) AA explosions within far range AA = 4 flaks with 1190 damage each Medium range AA = 0.1 – 2.5 km Medium range aura damage per second = 231.0 dps (100% hitrate) Short range AA = 0.1 – 1.5 km Short range aura damage per second = 38.5 dps (95 % hitrate) It could be said that Ark Royal has mediocre AA at her tier. She is equipped with four quadruple 2-pounder 40 mm guns and eight quadruple .50 inch miniguns as her AA armaments. Together with 4 carrier-based fighters that patrol the hull within 3 km range for 10 minutes, she could take down any enemy planes that attempt to CV-snipe her. However, player should always move her hull to minimize hits by enemy plane-borne torpedoes. h) Hull hit point Based on Figure 18, Ark Royal is the second tier 6 CV having the most HP at 44500. Survivability Expert commander skill is intended to increase the HP her planes. As a good effect of it, Ark’s hull has extra 2100 HP, giving her a total of 46600 HP in total. Nevertheless, the extra HP does not mean that her player should get into enemy’s line of sight and tank damage like all the other BB should. i) Maximum concealment by sea & air Ark Royal has the worst concealment among the other tier 6 CV. Her huge concealment is reasonable if she is assigned as a tier 7 CV but unfortunately, CV has been removed from odd tier after the CV rework. In a small map of 36 km × 36 km size such as Straits & New Dawn, she can be easily detected by enemy ships. It is worth taking Concealment Expert commander skill as one of her skill to reduce her massive concealment down to 12.57 km. Obviously, her player should always mount camouflage for extra 3% concealment reduction. Since she is a premium ship with permanent camouflage, her player should always enable the camo auto-resupply. j) Hull speed, rudder shift & anti-torpedo bulge protection Being a British CV, Ark Royal boasts a fast speed among the other tier 6 CV at 31 knots without speed combat signal. She is merely 0.5 knots slower than Furious. The drawback is her long rudder shift time at 12.8 s which makes her the sluggiest tier 6 CV at dodging shells and torpedoes. Unlike Ranger and Ryujo, she has a good anti-torpedo bulge which gives her 28% torpedo damage reduction. This does not mean that she is made to tank torpedoes because if she does, she would be sunk too eventually. k) Squadron’s patrol fighter consumable There is nothing special with the summon fighter consumable on Ark Royal. Just like the other tier 6 CV, one patrol fighter squadron only has up to three fighters that rotate within 2.5 km radius in exactly one minute. One attacking squadron can only spawn up to 3 patrol fighter consumable with 10 seconds reload between each summon. The summon fighters are only useful during late game to protect the remaining surviving ships in the team and to spot enemy DD for easier aim using bombers/rocket attackers. C. Recommended build Consider taking the following commander skills in order of the numbers shown. The first four skills are no-brainer because they are the most basic skills that a 10-point aircraft carrier captain must have. Do not switch the order of Survivability Expert and Aircraft Armor because AA reduction is more important than having extra HP on planes, making your slow planes to survive slightly longer in AA aura. Taking Improved Engine skill is important in order to achieve 100.4 knots cruising speed based on Figure 6. The faster your planes are within AA aura, the lesser the damage taken by them. Taking Demolition Expert as your 7th skill is important too because based on Figure 9 and 12, the base fire chance of rockets and bombs are really small to begin with. By taking DE, your bombs get a flat bonus of extra 5% of fire chance, giving them up to 14% fire chance whereas the rockets get extra 1% fire chance. Mounting India X-Ray and Victor Lima signals are considered as wise actions too because they increase the fire chance of bombs by 1% each. The last commander skill that should be taken is Concealment Expert because of her having the biggest concealment among all tier 6 CV as shown in Figure 19. You really don’t want to be sniped by BB using spotter floatplane during early game because of her gigantic concealment in a small map such as Straits of which you spawn horizontally in east or west. Upgrade-wise, you should consider taking the following. Attack Aircraft Modification I is important to add extra 2 seconds to the default 5 seconds of rocket aiming. The torpedoes aim fast enough that taking the TB modification is less worthy unless if you have trouble leading and aiming them. Torpedo Bombers Modification II is essential because the TB plane has the least HP and most of the time, you will end up fighting against ships of tier 7 & 8 with insane AA that could easily shoot down tier 4 Swordfish planes. By having TBM II, your slow TB squadron might live slightly longer in overlapping AA of multiple ships. D. Recommended playstyle and tips The playstyle differs based on enemy composition and the tier of the match you get into. If you are the top tier in the match and there are only up to two DD per team, you can start with DB first. Find the enemy DD to be shot by your teammates and at the same time, use your precise carpet bombs to hurt them. Smart enemy DD will always turn off their AA to avoid early detection by your planes. If this happens, you can summon your fighters to spot them so that you know where they are heading to for leading your bombing run. If you are familiar with Hermes’ bombing, then you should have no problem hitting DD with Ark’s bombs. Always drop slightly in front of the DD for about ½ of the DD’s total length. If the enemy DD is using speed boost, aim further than usual. Always accelerate using the engine boost while you are doing the bombing run. If you end up in a tier 7 or 8 match with 3 or more DD per team, always start with rocket planes. Even without any DD in the match, start to spot using RA first. Your DB is considerably precious that you cannot waste them too early in the match. For DB and TB, always do squadron shortening. This is done by dropping the payloads of your first strike run into the ocean/terrain so that you will have 8 out of 9 planes in the next squadron. Do not simply use the same type of plane unless if you are playing in weekly Scenario. For the DB, your main target is of course DD and soon submarines when they will be released. If you are going to drop the bombs on cruiser or BB, always drop on the superstructure. Although the bombs will shatter most of the time, just pray so that the good RNG is with you so that your enemy catches a fire or two from those bombs. For the TB, your main targets are isolated capital ships which are BB and CV of which you should never attack the latter first. Start your attack run roughly within 4 to 3 km from your target. If you have TBM I installed instead of AAM I, you can start the attack run from 5 km, allowing your attacking flight to fly below the AA flaks 5 seconds longer than 10 seconds by default. Always speed up during your attack run because at 100.4 knots of cruising speed, you might miss your target completely. Do not hesitate to use the Engine Cooling consumable if you run out of engine boost during your attacking run. Try not to turn within the AA range of enemy ships because all of your planes turn too slow that a lot of them will be taken down during the turn! After attacking a target with TB, you can look for another target especially isolated BB for a chained drop. If there is nobody else, turn around after the TB are completely out of the AA range of the previous target. E. Skill floor, skill ceiling, and team carry potential Ark Royal is fairly forgiving for everyone who is new into CV. The short plane restoration time as shown in Figure 5 means that any player should never be effectively deplaned in the late game unless if they intentionally hit the AA flak bursts multiple times in successive runs. This does not mean that a player should waste their planes by attacking enemies who are clumped together, creating massive AA blobs. Plane quantity management should be taken into practice while playing in tier 7 and 8 matches especially. If you are an average or decent CV player in general, Ark might limit your effectiveness in the game even after you have mastered her. As a top tier ship, you have medium to high carry potential due to your decent strike capability. Unfortunately, you have low carry potential in tier 7 or 8 battles due to ridiculous AA versus plane’s survivability difference. Most of the time as bottom tier CV, you will only be able to spot enemy ships from a distance if you do not want to lose your planes for late game usage. F. Should you buy this premium CV? For Random battle Definitely not. Ark Royal is heavily punished by -1/+2 matchmaking that you will always face enemies of tiers higher than you. If you consider yourself an average or lower-than-average CV player in general who are barely able to line up perfect strikes against targets of good or decent AA, this CV is not for you. Do not bother buying her if you are going to play only in Random! Enemy ships of higher tiers will happily take down your planes for easy AA Defense Expert achievement. For Ranked/Competitive Individual-skill-dependant. Ark Royal is barely viable for Ranked only if you know the basic of CV. If you have zero knowledge about reworked CV gameplay or is literally bad at it, do not bring this CV to ranked. Bring other ship type that you are already a master of! In a Ranked or Competitive battle where CV is allowed, always expect the others to have AA-spec setup or at least decent AA to fend off against aircrafts. In Ranked, your only task as Ark Royal is to hunt DD with your rockets and carpet bombs; spotting them for your team and defending cap is your main priority. Other than that, have fun hunting Normandie or stock Bayern with meh AA while having your downtiered planes taken down by any cruiser. For Scenario Totally worthwhile. If you are going to grind for decent credit or collecting elite commander experience (ECXP) using a 19-point commander, Ark Royal is good for you regardless of your skill level. All tier 6 Scenarios other than Defense of the Naval Newport are good for Ark Royal. Bring all the economic or special signals that you have to maximize your credit/exp/commander exp net outcome. Since she is a premium CV, you could gain decent credit even without those extra modifiers as long as your team and you manage to complete the Scenario with 5 stars. If you are going to learn playing CV or just simply want to use CV in Scenario for combat missions, then Ark Royal is appropriate for you. In conclusion, I would say that it is not worth to buy this ship for Random battles due to the frequent uptier to tier 7 or 8. If you are going to buy her solely for Scenario or Coop battle, go on. If you are a competent or a unicum CV player who could dodge AA flaks well and be patient with super slow planes in heavily concentrated AA auras, she might be worth of you. If you are just a historical ship collector due to her involvement in major historical events such as the sinking of the Bismarck, then just get her and let her be a port queen. Last but not least, you can also buy her if you are a weeeeeeeeb and love her in Kancolle/Azur Lane that you must own her in WoWs too. G. Final verdict Garbage = Completely inept and critically in need of several buffs to make her relevant. Mehbote = Average ship. Has strengths and drawbacks. A couple of buffs are needed to make her slightly advantageous. Gudbote = A strong ship that has apparent competitive strengths and unique features that make it very pleasing. OVERPOWERED = A ship with very clear benefits over all of its same tier competitors and unbalancing the game with its presence Yes, she is pretty meh in my humble opinion. A couple of buffs or adjustments are needed to make her viable in Random. She should have special matchmaking restriction of which she should always be the top tier in Random instead of fighting against tier 7 and 8. Alternatively, just make her a tier 4 CV with lower alpha damage per torpedo. On the other hand, player should be given the choice to use an alternate DB module that utilizes Furious’ bombs for better armor penetration by keeping her slow tier 4 DB and the same bomb ellipse as that of Furious. If one could say that Saipan is a tier 10 CV in disguise of tier 8 CV, Ark Royal is the complete opposite of that as she is a tier 4 CV masquerading as a tier 6 CV. H. Special thanks [KCSEA]zDeviousXp Proofreader [PURU2]Aiharaterumi Raw data collector [TENGO]Kitsune_Ivy Provider of screenshot of glorious Ark Royal P/S: I am not LittleWhiteMouse.
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