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Premium Ship Review - SMS Emden


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LittleWhiteMouse #1 Posted 24 May 2016 - 09:11 PM

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The following is aimed at new(ish) players looking to find a little more information about various ships from events, for premium currency or for real-world cash.  The goal is to allow players to make an educated decision before parting with their time and money and to find premium vessels that suit their chosen style of play, whether that is competitive, cooperative, or simply for fun.  The idea here is to elabourate on information not commonly available through reading statistics and provide some (heavily) biased anecdotal evidence to encourage or dissuade you from making your purchase.  The usual disclaimers apply:  everyone knows the Matchmaker clearly loves me because I spend money so that's why I occasionally get really good games, not because I have any particular skills of note.

 

Other articles in this series:

 
Without further ado:

The Tier 2 German Dresden-class Light Cruiser

Emden

 

Quick Summary:  Modeled with her iconic fake funnel, the Emden is a rather fleet footed, low tier protected cruiser.  She is fragile, agile and under gunned but with a blistering rate of fire.
Cost:  1500 Doubloons.

 

Closest in-Game Contemporary:  Dresden
Degree of Similarity:  Clone / Sister-Ship / Related Class / Similar Role / Unique
As her sister ship, the Emden is very similar to the stock Dresden with only a few small changes.  The first is cosmetic -- the Emden is uniquely modeled with a fourth (fake) funnel behind the bridge to disguise her. Upgraded, the Dresden gets two extra 105mm guns and is slightly faster.

 

PROs

  • Low caliber main armament benefits from Basic Fire Training, Expert Marksman and Advanced Fire Training skills.
  • Fantastic rate of fire, starting at 15rpm per gun.
  • With Concealment Expert, she can fire from stealth on the surface.
  • Quick for a low tier cruiser at 24.0 knots.
  • Good rudder shift of 4.9s, small turning circle of 420m.

CONs

  • Very poor performance on AP & HE shells
  • Low chance of starting fires per shell @ 4%
  • Range is on the short side with 8.9km which is lower than her surface detection range.
  • Poor ballistics on shells leading to a lot of float time.
  • Little to no armour and small hit point pool.

 

Sister ships, Dresden (foreground) and Emden (background).  The Emden is, in almost every respect, a partially upgraded Dresden with the stock hull and an improved rangefinder.  Note the extra, dummy funnel on the Emden just behind her bridge.

 

With patch 0.5.6, several ships have joined the in-game tech tree to be purchased for Doubloons.  Among these are the two German premium vessels -- both legends from history.  I have already reviewed the Tirpitz, but it was high time I cobbled together a review of the Emden.  With this article, all of the ships that will be available with the patch have been covered with only a few stragglers left to go. 

 

Options

Like many low tier ships, you're not given a lot of choice with the Emden.

Consumables:  One slot

  1. Damage Control Party

Module Upgrades:  One slot.  The Emden can choose between Main Battery Modification 1 and AA Gun Modification 1 only.
Premium Camouflage:  Type 9 (Tier 2-5 standard).  This provides 30% bonus experience gains, 3% reduction in surface detection and 4% reduction in enemy accuracy.

 

Artillery

Primary Battery:  105mm x10. Six are mounted on limited traverse turrets on deck on each side.  The other four are located in gun emplacements along the hull, two to each side.  
Secondary Battery:  None (see below).

 

As a protected cruiser, the Emden is armed with two rows of guns down each side of the ship.  This gives her a broadside of five guns from a mix of turret and casemate mounted rifles.  At 105mm, these are among the smallest caliber main armaments found in the game -- smaller than most destroyer guns found even at these tiers (with the only exception being the Tachibana at 76mm).  As you might expect, the HE and AP performance of these weapons is rather pathetic with a combination of low alpha strike and poor fire chance for the high explosive rounds.  In addition, her shells have poor ballistic arcs, lobbing up into the air over even modest distances.  These flaws are  (partially) compensated by an aggressive rate of fire.

 

There is a ray of sunshine, though, for those of you already lamenting returning to the German 105mm rifles.  With using Destroyer-caliber weapons, the Emden can take full advantage of the synergy of the Captain Skills, Basic Fire Training (10% faster reload rate), Advanced Fire Training (+20% main battery range), and Expert Marksman (+2.5'/s gun rotation speed).  Upgraded, this gives her a 10.7km gun range, 3.6s reload time and boosts her turret rotation speed to 14.4s.  This is almost, but not quite enough to make her feel viable at her tier, though it's a long way from feeling competitive.  Most of the cruisers the Emden faces are armed with 152mm rifles (to say nothing of the 305mm armed Battleships) with similar to, or longer ranges.  Even with these bumped up stats, it takes her a long time for her guns to make an impression on anything but the softest skinned targets.  It takes one more skill to complete the Emden and make her truly the devil -- and that's Concealment Expert.  This opens up the meta to allow you to fire from the surface without being spotted between the ranges of 9.5km and her maximum range.

 

So, the Emden gunnery is best described as fun, but lackluster.  You will put a lot of pew-pews into the air but they're not going to do very much -- or not very quickly at least.  You can't win any DPM races grace simply that your shells will either bounce off (if they're AP) or explode for zero damage (if they're HE) against any target with a semblance of armour.  This hurts her potential maximum DPM -- something the other ships won't struggle with near as much when they shoot you back.  You can hope to stack fires and may enjoy some success if you can manage it.

 

In regards to her secondary armament, despite having eight deck mounted 52mm guns rendered on the ship, these are inactive.  They don't even count as AA guns.

 

Maneuverability

Top Speed:  24.0 knots

Turning Radius: 420m

Rudder Shift:  4.9s

 

Like many low tier ships, the Emden has great handling, ideal for engaging targets within the claustrophobic. island choked maps that populate the low tier games.  Unlike some of the other protected cruisers, the Emden has fairly decent top speed, especially for a tier 2 ship.  She's easily able to outplace any Battleship she may encounter along with heavier protected cruisers like the St.Louis, Diana and Aurora.  This can help keep her alive.  Opening up the distance gives you more time to dodge incoming volleys by wiggling your ship about while peppering your opponents with a steady barrage from your 105s.  This is also invaluable for changing course when destroyers launch their near point blank torpedo strikes at these tiers.

 

If you're looking for a high-alpha damage attack from the Emden, you'll have to get creative.  By which I mean you'll have to ram your opponents to death.

 

Durability

Hit Points:  17,100

Citadel Protection:  Up to 9mm.  Yes, really.

Anti-Torpedo Bulge:  Haha, no.

 

True to their Light Cruiser designation, the Dresden-class has very little in the way of armoured protection.  Anything can and will penetrate her and can do so catastrophically, including close-range high explosive fire from cruiser caliber guns.  With 17,100 hit points, the Emden cannot trade blows with anything short of a destroyer.  You must use your agility to dodge and avoid fire and use islands to protect your ship if you come under concerted attack.  Keep in mind that the Emden will be facing ships like the Kawachi, South Carolina, Bogatyr and St.Louis regularly.  These are not vessels you want to get into a slug match with.

 

Expect to take module damage often, losing guns as well as your steering gears and engine regularly.  Proper management of your Damage Control Party is imperative for success in this ship.

 

Concealment & Camouflage

The Emden comes with the standard low tier, Type 9 camouflage which provides a 30% bonus to experience, 3% concealment bonus and 4% disruption to enemy accuracy.  This brings her surface detection down to 9.3km before Captain Skills, meaning that without Advanced Fire Training or Concealment Expert, the Emden will always be spotted beyond the range of her guns.  This 400m gap isn't enormous but it does mean that short of lying behind islands and lobbing shells towards enemies being ranged by your allies, you will never be able to ambush a foe with the first salvo.  This also makes it more difficult to disengage, as you will have to claw your way outside of your own gun range before you can disappear from an engaged enemy.

 

Anti-Aircraft Defense

AA Battery Calibers:  7.92mm

AA Umbrella Ranges:  1.2km

The Emden has four self-defense machine guns for anti-aircraft firepower but she won't normally encounter any aircraft from her tier 1-3 opponents.

 

Overall Impressions

Summary:

  • Guns are fun, but not terribly effective with low alpha, long flight time, and short range.
  • No armour really to speak of.  Takes citadel and critical hits from all sources.
  • Nice and agile with a decent speed for a tier 2 cruiser and good wiggle potential.
  • Unable to sneak up on enemies, has trouble disengaging because of her range issues.

 

The story of the Emden is downright amazing.  Seriously, if you haven't looked up what happened to the Emden, do yourself the favour -- watch this video and then get back to me.  This video concisely covers some of the fine points of the ship and crew's history but it only scratches the surface.  Don't worry, I'll wait.

 

Pretty cool, right?  This ship is downright legendary.  And if you haven't skipped anything in the review so far, you'll be aware that her performance in World of Warships does not live up to the legend.  Frankly, I don't know how the SMS Emden could, given that we don't have any commerce ships for her to raid or ports for her to sneak into and bombard.  World of Warships is a game about massed naval action, not commerce raiding. 

 

I love the Emden, but more specifically, I love the Emden's history.  I'm able to separate the two and say that she's not a very good boat in World of Warships.  You can make her work, that's for certain, but she amounts to a partially upgraded Dresden in game play terms, and I don't think anyone would call the Dresden terribly competitive.  She can hold her own.  A good Captain can make her work, but it's definitely an uphill battle.

 

Would I Recommend?
The Emden is sold through the in game tech tree for 1,500 Doubloons.  Is she worth it?
 

  • For Random Battle Grinding, the Emden is not a very good trainer or credit earner.  She struggles to do damage.  She's very fragile so she can't be up front easily capturing points in a Domination Map. Simply put, she's going to struggle to do things in game that will consistently earn you experience and cash to finance your fleet and train up your crews.  This only changes if you drop a very experienced (15pt) Captain into her with a specific set of skills.
     
  • For Competitive Gaming, see above.  She's a fun ship, not a good ship.
     
  • For Collectors, very yes.  It's the Emden for crying out loud.  You don't have to be a Germanophile to appreciate the importance of this vessel to 20th Century warfare.
     
  • For Fun Factor, certainly if you like the pew-pews.  There's more pew-pew per Emden than the St.Louis, Bogatyr, Aurora or Diana which are all very pew-pew based ships.  The difference being that the Emden's pew-pews are more P-U than pew.  But if you like seeing a lot of guns cycling while being super wiggly, the Emden is a good purchase.

 

Outfitting your Emden

Recommended Modules

It's so easy making recommendations for these low tier ships.  The choice presented before you is between Main Battery Modification 1 and AA Gun Battery Modifaction 1.  Here's a hint:  You'll never see airplanes in your Emden outside of a fail division.

 

Recommended Consumables

You only have a Damage Control Party for your consumables.  You'll certainly see a lot of use out of the premium version of this consumable which will drop the reset timer down to Destroyer levels of 60s.  However, this will quickly eat into any profits you might be making on the Emden.  Though you're unlikely to ever lose money with this ship by buying this premium consumable, you will not be making many credits if you have a bad game.

 

Recommended Captain Skills

If you're a crazy nutter and you must have a dedicated Emden Captain, here's what I would recommend:

  • From tier 1, Basic Fire Training is your first choice.  Yes, I know, Situational Awareness seems like a good idea (and it probably is), but you need to get inside of your own detection range to shoot with the Emden anyway until you have a 15pt Captain, so always act like you're spotted.  Grab Situational Awareness on your second pass when you can.
  • For the second skill, Last Stand is most useful.  You have no armour.  You're going to take a ton of critical hits, even from near misses from high explosive shells that land near your stern.  This will take some of the strain off your Damage Control Party.  Expert Marksman can wait for your 17th or 18th skill point.
  • From tier 3, Vigilance will help you avoid the low tier torpedo soup that's so commonplace on those claustrophobic maps.  A good alternative is High Alert to speed up the recovery of your Damage Control Party.
  • You should take Advanced Fire Training at tier 4.  This will increase your range from 8.9km up to 10.7km.  But if you're not struggling with the range, perhaps a more interesting choice is Demolition Expert.  This will bump up your fire chance on your shells to 7% which is almost respectable given their ridiculous rate of fire.  Your mileage will vary.
  • At tier 5, if you've taken Advanced Fire Training, then Concealment Expert opens up the meta of being able to fire from the surface from stealth.  This will drop your surface detection range (combined with camouflage) to 8.2km.  Your guns add 1.3km to your detection range when you open fire, giving you a small window from which to pew-pew without reprisal.

 


Edited by LittleWhiteMouse, 24 May 2016 - 09:11 PM.

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dseehafer #2 Posted 24 May 2016 - 09:12 PM

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Little to no armor? What an 80mm turtleback at tier 2 isnt good enough for you?

 

I cant speak for Emden, but my Dresden is pretty tanky. And they are sister ships


Edited by dseehafer, 24 May 2016 - 09:14 PM.

CREATOR OF THE "A DETAILED LOOK AT" AND THE "WHAT'S THE DIFFERENCE??" SERIES!! 

KlnDiJZ.gif

"The whole strategy of the war turns at this period to this ship (the Tirpitz), which is holding four times the number of British capital ships paralyzed, to say nothing of the two new American battleships retained in the Atlantic."

- Winston Churchill

 


Killjoy1941 #3 Posted 24 May 2016 - 09:16 PM

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View Postdseehafer, on 24 May 2016 - 03:12 PM, said:

Little to no armor? What an 80mm turtleback at tier 2 isnt good enough for you?

 

That just means she gets punched black and blue all over by HE, kind of like Bogatyr.

 

That said, I swear Emden is quaint German slang for "machine gun" and "LOL." It's some of the most fun you can have at tier 2.



Viper069 #4 Posted 24 May 2016 - 09:19 PM

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View Postdseehafer, on 24 May 2016 - 04:12 PM, said:

Little to no armor? What an 80mm turtleback at tier 2 isnt good enough for you?

 

I cant speak for Emden, but my Dresden is pretty tanky. And they are sister ships

 

I have both and the Dresden is hands down the better ship.  Unless you just have money that needs spending, I wouldn't bother.  The Dresden has always been much fun for me to play.  I've burned down many a T3 BB's with her.

Lert #5 Posted 24 May 2016 - 09:21 PM

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I love my Emden, but I agree with LWM. It's just not a very good ship in WoWS. For collectors though, she's a must-have, especially at the price.

(Above stats not guaranteed accurate. I'm a supertester and test ships don't always register correctly)

 

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Xannari #6 Posted 24 May 2016 - 09:22 PM

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Karl von Müller certainly had a good little ship here. Well, if we're being brutally honest, his ship had a good little Karl von Müller here rather than the other way around, because the ship itself is, all things considered, absolutely nothing remarkable, but this guy was very smart, and had balls of steel.

 

But I do have to say, "unable to sneak up on enemies" makes me think back to the several times I had in the Tachi where I was given a mild heart attack by an Emden coming around the corner at point blank. I even remember one time I put the ship on autopilot to very quickly run over and grab a drink, and I came back after having rammed one.

Pure skill


Here, you can find the rationally expected ranges of damage a type of ship across a tier range is capable of, as well as what to expect from me in game. As I calculate them, of course, because these take a really long time

My expected results per match     Damage ranges of tier X battleships


AquaSquirrel #7 Posted 24 May 2016 - 09:24 PM

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Thanks for the Review as always Mouse.

 

I love this little ship. I love the fact that is has the fake funnel, I love the paint job on it, I love it's history.

I take mine out from time to time (especially when I get friends to pick up the game) and I defiantly feel it's an up hill battle but oh is it fun to throw those shells around.


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715 #8 Posted 24 May 2016 - 09:27 PM

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Now does anyone think that this is the best tier 2 premium?

"I know nothing!" - Sgt. Schultz


LittleWhiteMouse #9 Posted 24 May 2016 - 09:28 PM

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View Post715, on 24 May 2016 - 04:27 PM, said:

Now does anyone think that this is the best tier 2 premium?

 

I prefer the Tachibana for best at tier among the premiums.

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Killjoy1941 #10 Posted 24 May 2016 - 09:29 PM

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View Post715, on 24 May 2016 - 03:27 PM, said:

Now does anyone think that this is the best tier 2 premium?

 

Probably is right now. I mean, the competition is Mikasa or Tachi, and Emden can at least perform to server average for the average player without sticking a 10-15 point captain on her.

MidnightShamalan #11 Posted 24 May 2016 - 09:34 PM

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How to Troll:

 

1) get Emden

2) BFT

3) AFT

4) Demo Expert

5) bathe in the tears of your enemies



715 #12 Posted 24 May 2016 - 09:35 PM

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View PostLittleWhiteMouse, on 24 May 2016 - 04:28 PM, said:

 

I prefer the Tachibana for best at tier among the premiums.

 

I just realized I have a Tachibana and have yet to take it out for a spin...

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dseehafer #13 Posted 24 May 2016 - 09:37 PM

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View PostKilljoy1941, on 24 May 2016 - 03:29 PM, said:

 

Probably is right now. I mean, the competition is Mikasa or Tachi, and Emden can at least perform to server average for the average player without sticking a 10-15 point captain on her.

 

Dont forget about Diana
CREATOR OF THE "A DETAILED LOOK AT" AND THE "WHAT'S THE DIFFERENCE??" SERIES!! 

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"The whole strategy of the war turns at this period to this ship (the Tirpitz), which is holding four times the number of British capital ships paralyzed, to say nothing of the two new American battleships retained in the Atlantic."

- Winston Churchill

 


Killjoy1941 #14 Posted 24 May 2016 - 09:37 PM

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View Post715, on 24 May 2016 - 03:35 PM, said:

 

I just realized I have a Tachibana and have yet to take it out for a spin...

 

She's amusing in the stupid sort of way. After you're certain you've gotten a DD dead with torps, try firing AP at it before they hit.:teethhappy:

Killjoy1941 #15 Posted 24 May 2016 - 09:38 PM

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View Postdseehafer, on 24 May 2016 - 03:37 PM, said:

 

Dont forget about Diana

 

Ooohhh... Forgot about her. I don't have one though, so no idea if she's any fun or good.

AVR_Project #16 Posted 24 May 2016 - 10:07 PM

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Emden is the only German Premium ship I have for training purposes.

Waiting for the Tirpitz, though.

Sadly, the Ishizuchi is the only IJN premium...   Atago at the end of the month.


So much has been lost, so much forgotten. So much pain, so much blood. And for what? I wonder. The past tempts us, the present confuses us, and the future frightens us. And our lives slip away, moment by moment, lost in that vast, terrible in-between. But there is still time to seize that one last, fragile moment. To choose something better, to make a difference.  -- Babylon 5


Morpheous #17 Posted 24 May 2016 - 10:18 PM

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I did all my tier 2 missions in this ship, and quite frankly it is a little beast. Granted I am a better player than I was and have a good captain in it, but I was doing 50k games, 3 in a row.  Just start LOTS of fires and burn them up.

DelroyMonjo #18 Posted 24 May 2016 - 10:20 PM

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Using the Emden;  Load HE,  press W key to go,  keep finger on left mouse button entire battle.  Reap coins.  Repeat.


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BrushWolf #19 Posted 24 May 2016 - 10:21 PM

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View PostKilljoy1941, on 24 May 2016 - 04:38 PM, said:

 

Ooohhh... Forgot about her. I don't have one though, so no idea if she's any fun or good.

 

It is a fun ship, I have it on my EU account.

  

 

Ich lasse mir doch nicht mein Schiff unter dem Arsch wegschießen. Feuererlaubnis! (I'm not letting my ship get shot out from under my arse. Open fire!) Ernst Lindemann Captain KMS Bismarck

 


crzyhawk #20 Posted 24 May 2016 - 10:32 PM

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View Postdseehafer, on 24 May 2016 - 04:12 PM, said:

Little to no armor? What an 80mm turtleback at tier 2 isnt good enough for you?

 

I cant speak for Emden, but my Dresden is pretty tanky. And they are sister ships

I'm somewhat pathetically in the top 10 listed for both Emden and Dresden with 100+ games.  Dresden is much tankier than Emden although I don't know why.  She's faster and accelerates better as well, likely because of the turbines.  She's got one more gun that's a-historical.  Dresden is all around better.

 

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