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About Kongo_Pride

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  1. Kongo’s Treatise of Tier VII Destroyer Gameplay (Part I) Period of Observations: (1 December 2017 - 8 April 2018) Sources: Warships Today, WOWs Wiki, Personal Experience Introduction: It is goal of this writeup to provide players an in-depth context that they can use to help them better understand Tier VII Destroyer gameplay. This write-up will provide players with an in-depth guide to running destroyers at Tier VII, the strengths and weaknesses of each ship, and personal recommendations on the strengths of these ships. Lastly, this work will provide my thoughts on which ships are performing well within their tier, and which ones are in desperate need of improvement. Tier VII destroyers can be one of the most rewarding and challenging classes of destroyers to play in the game. Rewarding in that, usually, on decent games, you can haul in the experience, credits, and the fact that most of them, when played correctly can carry a game with ease. Challenging in that you suffer from two unique aspects, which often impair the Tier VII destroyers when playing against counterparts of a higher tier. These two aspects are concealment and rate of fire and or turret traverse. A common theme with Tier VII destroyers is that they have terrible concealment when set against destroyers of both higher and lower tier. To give a perspective of this, at their best, with all modifications available, Tier VII DDs have a range of 5.8km to 6.9km in concealment over the total of 9 ships giving them an average concealment of 6.53km. The other tiers they face have variables as well, but almost none as bad as Tier VII, save Tier IX because of the poor concealment of the Russian Tashkent. For example, Tier V, ranges from 5.4km to 6.8km over 10 ships but has an average concealment of 5.83km a total of .7km better than the more “powerful” higher tier VII destroyers with a sample of 10 ships. Tier VI has a range of 5.8km to 6.8km and averages 6.32km concealment across 10 ships. As for Tier VIII, there is a clear difference, and it often shows when the two meet in contests when knife fighting is about to occur. Tier VIII boasts concealment of 5.4km to 7.9km and has an average of 6.02km across nine ships. Tier IX is the one tier where Tier VII can compete, but only because of the advent of the Tashkent and its movement to pure gunboat at the following tier and it certainly has an impact because there is only six ships in the tier. I promise you, in a knife fight, no Tier VII is going to win against the Tashkent on guns alone with near peer health pools. The Tier IXs have a range of 5.5km to 9.1km and average 6.67km. Even with the terrible concealment of the Tashkent, the tier average is just .14km worse than the Tier VII average. What this clearly illustrates is that Tier VII destroyers are handicapped against almost every other tier of destroyer they encounter on the battlefield, and this is often exploited to the benefit of those wily DD drivers. Knowing a Mahan or other poor concealment DD is going to contest the same cap as you provides you with the ability to properly address their plan of action and attack them accordingly. Turret traverse can also be a factor in determining a knife fight for destroyers. Looking at the tier just above, you can quickly determine that Tier VIII destroyers have benefited from a major improvement in turret traverse over their previous tiered counterparts. The Mahan for example is no where near the speed of the Benson when getting those turrets trained on a target, and it often takes longer to bring all guns into the fight. The 180 degree turret traverse of the Mahan is around 12 seconds, while the Benson can get the same task done in 5.3 seconds. This means their guns are involved in the knife fight far quicker than that of their lower tier counterpart. The Russian DDs Minsk and Leningrad also suffer from this when compared to the Kiev and Ognevoi. The Minsk is at 19.1 seconds in the turret traverse and the Leningrad at 27.7 seconds. This put my Tier VIIs at a severe disadvantage when facing the turret traverse of the Kiev at 14.8 seconds or the Ognevoi at nine seconds. This slower turret traverse is noticeable, especially in close quarters, where the slightest turn throws off the aiming systems. The rate of fire is also a concern especially when going against higher tier DDs. This coupled with turret traverse put Tier VII DDs in a unique position in that they will often be the first one spotted and in a knife fight, will often be outgunned by the time they can even bring their barrels to bear on a target. That is not to say there are not strengths in these ships, but it is a very clear disadvantage for the whole tier, that makes them vulnerable when facing off with +1 peer or higher tiered ships. All of this negativity aside, they can be great work horses and will take care of their captain as long as the captain takes care of the ship. The strengths of this tier cannot be understated. At this point in the DD line, most of the destroyers are nearly developed as far as maximum number of guns or are at least well on their way. The amount of gun muzzles and refined torpedo power really let’s this tier shine and commit to persistent damage with main batteries while complimenting their main battery with deadly stealth torpedo attacks, save the Minsk. For many of the lines, stealth torpedo launchers are progressive and are realized at different points throughout the lines. Tier VII destroyers really begin to come into their own with stealth fire torpedoes at this tier with many having 8km plus torpedo systems. The Mahan for example allows stealth fire torps, albeit they are slow and deal substandard damage for their tier. A fun metric, is taking the distance of all torpedo launchers at this tier and comparing it to the stealth. On average you gain a 2.1km buffer between stealth and torpedo maximum range. Obviously, the Minsk is not a stealth boat, but does factor into this overall equation. I found that most of the time, if I was in a gun fight with a lower tier ship that was spotted, by a fellow DD, they usually did not escape the fight alive. The firepower for the tier is often overwhelming for lesser tier DDs with smaller health pools. However, when the enemy spotted me first, I was often forced to charge into their designs eating cruiser fire to get to my prey. In many instances, you merely end up trading because they see you and set up a trap all the while allowing their team to weaken you a bit. This also complicates “stealth” torpedo boats who would prefer to get in close to maximize the number of torpedo hits they can land while minimizing the chances of an enemy ship turning out from such an attack. Ideally, a DD captain wants as little distance between him and his target as possible, because people will not sail in straight lines forever…although I am sure, most DD drivers would prefer this. That leads me to my thoughts on what makes the best ship for Tier VII destroyers. The Gadjah Mada is clearly the best destroyer at Tier VII. It is followed in this ranking by the Leningrad in second and the Blyskawica in third, but only by a hair’s margin. The Maass takes up the fourth spot followed by the Minsk in fifth. Beyond that, rounding out the bottom performers is the Akatsuki, Shiratsuyu, Sims, and finally the Mahan. The Gadjah Mada is clearly number one in my book for a variety of reasons. First, it brings six guns to the fight and when bolstered by Basic Firing Training, that’s six barrels every 4.5 seconds rattling away and enemy ships. Throw in your adrenaline rush and you are a monster at your tier. Furthermore, it benefits from the second-best stealth for the tier. The ships excellent performance is in much thanks to this concealment edge it has over its near peers. It allows the Gadjah to get in close, and let loose powerful deep water torpedo barrages against unsuspecting enemy battlewagons. And that of course, leads us to the torpedoes. The torpedoes are fairly fast at 61 knots, have decent range for their tier at 8km, and pack a wallop doing almost 16k damage per a hit. Their almost undetectability makes them really strong against all enemy ships outside of destroyers. Even for all this, the Deep Water Torpedoes can be a bane for the Gadjah, as they are ineffective in knife fights against other DDs. That said, I would still recommend this line and DD class as a great DD trainer because many players want to launch torpedoes first once spotted and then switch to guns when ideally, they should be hitting with guns first and then switching to torpedoes. The Pan Asian line helps players learn to use their guns on instinct, which many times leads to easy one on one wins against other destroyers. Lastly, the smoke, you have so many charges, you can literally go an entire battle unseen should you so chose to. The Leningrad is easily the second-best destroyer in the tier and nearly as good as the Gadjah. Despite its extreme speed, excellent guns, and good torpedoes, it suffers from two key drawbacks. First, the turret traverse is sluggish, and secondly, the concealment is not ideal. However, when fitted with a speed boost module, this destroyer can bring the fire-rain for days. Unfortunately, it is not great at contesting caps in the early game like the Gadjah can. It simply cannot sneak in without drawing attention and cruiser fire. Therefore, you must skirt the edges and punish enemy DDs that get over zealous and expose themselves. You will note, I averaged higher damage with the Leningrad over the Gadjah, but that does not tell the full tale as the Gadjah’s damage was of a higher quality and was done against more than just cruisers and battleships. Coming in third is the Blyskawica or as I call it, the Blister Boat. I only started playing the Blyskawica AFTER the stealth nerf and have zero comparison of how it performed before it was “nerfed.” So, all I can say is, I am number two with it on the NA server and that the destroyer is still very very strong. I say this because the broadside of the Blister Boat can unleash devastating strikes against other destroyers. A spotted destroyer inside of 8km of any tier will regret it as I have seen damage in excess of 3k per a volley against them. Furthermore, the 11 percent fire chance often left enemy battleships and cruisers burning out of control for most of the match. That said, it struggled against full fledge Russian gun boats because they are simply faster and have the ability to tag it from greater distance. The arcs of the shells are good, but are just a bit more floaty than the Russian counterpart, and this was often the catalyst for defeat in knife fights in excess of 8.5km. Another downside is the torps are a bit slower at 57 knots and the damage is a bit more mediocre at just over 14k. Again, concealment is an issue, a common theme at this tier. However, I found this to be a solid pick for Tier VII destroyers, more than capable of holding its own in a knife fight or simply kiting an enemy ship and burning it down to the waterline. That brings us to my recommendation of the fourth best overall DD in the tier, the Maass. What does the Maass have going for it? Well, it has poor concealment, mediocre guns, and torpedoes that are so-so for damage. So, what is it? Well, there are two really great strengths for this destroyer. First, your torpedoes are not sets of three like the Blyska mentioned above. So, you are able to put eight fish in the water and they have an additional .5km distance. This .5km saved my neck on more than one occasion. Second, your AP shells can hurt, a lot. The arcs are good and I was able to citadel cruisers up to ranges of seven or even eight kilometers out. However, the most important piece to this little tin can, is the hydro acoustic search. This gives you the edge in a cap. You can literally bully other destroyers, dodge their torps, and hunt them down in their smoke. So many good DD captains met their doom to this hunter, especially once they smoked up and were stuck in their smoke as I closed the gap with hydro running. And that is what makes this destroyer so special. However, due to its insufficient damage, it certainly is no competitor with the top three. Pulling in at the middle of the pack is the Minsk. The Minsk is certainly not a pay to win ship like the Leningrad. It has poor torpedoes and because of this, I averaged almost 14k less damage a game than the Leningrad. The reality is obvious. Ships that have longer range torpedoes tend to do more damage because they can combine their fire and dot damage with that of a flood or even just a torpedo hit and have a greater effect. Otherwise, the Minsk is a solid boat for those grinding the line and should have no difficulty in kiting away and racking up the WTR. That said, it is my personal opinion that WG missed something here when they released Leningrad, which is clearly superior in so many other ways followed by the Minsk, which is clearly in the same family, but inferior in almost all regards. And with that, we move from the gunboats, to the torpedo boats. When I first learned this game, I started off as a torpedo boat captain, running stealth IJN cruisers and destroyers. I love the idea of sneaking up, using stealth torps and landing hits. However, with this tier’s poor concealment, the gun boats have clearly taken the edge over their counterparts who must rely on stealth attacks, but are often faced against Kamikaze, Kagero, and Benson DDs, which all easily out-spot them. Throw in the German DDs and Lo Yang with their hydro and the days of the IJN DD are numbered. Furthermore, nerfs to their concealment, smoke, and torpedo detection have greatly influenced their fall from the peaks of supremacy at this tier since their inception to the game. The Shiratsuyu simply lacks the 16 torpedo fire power it once had, the teeth were clearly removed and the Akatsuki has a concealment of 6.4km, which puts it at risk of getting spotted before launching torps and getting gunned down. The guns and mediocre health pools of these destroyers is simply not enough to contest and or compete with its near peer brethren. That said, when they do get off a good strike, they can devastate cruisers and battleships alike from Tier V all the way to Tier IX. This is really what makes them just a cut above the bottom feeder destroyers of the tier. Next up, we have the Sims. I like the destroyer, do not get me wrong, but it is certainly lacking in gun utility. The designers clearly wanted to give a Tier VII DD a chance against a CV and I appreciate that. However, the lack of Carriers makes this destroyer a support destroyer with a anti CV gimmick that is only useful some of the time. The torpedoes are wretched, slow and deal minimal damage. They feel like Tier II-III torpedoes with a longer range. In fact, when you look at them in comparison…that is what you are getting. This is atrocious. Next, throw in the mediocre guns because you only get four and there you have it…the Sims. Did I mention a while back they nerfed the armor on this DD? Reason, unknown. Effect, just a more mediocre destroyer than before. But because it does have good turret traverse and can be used in a CV division, it is just saved from the grasps of bottom DD. Nobody likes to see a good ship nerfed, many would likely prefer to see a weak ship improved so that it can compete with other ships in its peer group. The Mahan is at the bottom, both in Warships Today, total and last two weeks pulls, but also in my own experience as well. For those that think the Mahan is up to standard of its peers, I would politely disagree for a trifecta of reasons that ultimately sink this ship. First, the Mahan suffers from the worst concealment of any other Tier VII destroyer, which means alpha strike are often given to the opposing destroyer captain. A Mahan can at best muster a 6.9km detection range, and too often many DDs will have hit them twice taking a 5k chunk from their health pool before they are even able to respond in combat. And the response is usually short lived because they must smoke and slow down, taking even more damage in the process. As a bully, this ship suffers from the fact that everyone can see it…and everyone can hurt it before it can hurt them. Next, the second issue with the Mahan is the torpedoes. They are fairly slow. Even though she has the range, they rarely hit. This also plays into her main battery. The main battery is floaty and outside of 6 to 7km, she simply cannot hit or put out the damage necessary on a maneuvering target. Thus her damage is much lower than that of her counterparts. In Warships Today she is almost half the destroyer of the top tier, and even in my own player she is only two thirds capable. It is clear for these reasons that the Mahan is weak, poor concealment, bad torps, and bad gun arcs. Now, I love a bad ship and would love to see her improved. Wargaming could easily fix this by giving her the same concealment as the Sims (6.6km at best) and following this up by improving Sims torpedo damage to that of say the Clemson at 11k? Just my thoughts on how to improve this disaster. So, in Conclusion, there is a lot to be consumed here. I will be following this up with a later post on how to properly play a destroyer and avoiding Low Confidence Destroyer Play, which should not be misconstrued as passive play. It is all too common and I feel it needs to be addressed (Part II). But for, now, I wanted to give the community my thoughts on Tier VII destroyers and what they are capable of. I will also address commander builds that worked for me in my Destroyers (Part III) and how to farm WTR in destroyers and which classes are best for it (Part IV). More to follow…and as always looking for feedback and thoughts from likeminded players. See stats attached for my individual performance, overall performance of the destroyers, and last two weeks from a snapshot.
  2. Looking for some Help (please?)

    You are welcome to link any of my previous write ups on the forums here.
  3. I will simply let the picture do the talking. Please explain how this is useful and or legible for newer players?
  4. Kelorn's CCSummit18 Travel Blog

    nice. Now get back to work being a CC!
  5. It is not the Minsk nor the Gnevny, but it should give you some pointers. Feel free to look me up if you are interested in other thoughts on Russian DDs.
  6. Favorite ship from the WW2 Pacific theater

    Kongo votes for Kongo
  7. Get the carriers! -The Bull
  8. I look at this a different way. If I am in my Radar Mino or New Orleans...I hit my radar and decimate the DD spotting me as I have a 2 on 1 advantage...the DD is smoking me into the cap because he is a division mate. It's a massive win as I call for fire on the now prioritized DD target. There is a difference between detected and targeted.
  9. And here I thought this thread was going to be about the Tier 7 CV and Two Tier 8 AA ships like a Kut and Kidd.
  10. Is HMS Hood worth it?

    Hood is not OP. Unlike Colorado, she is fast, but she is big and her armor is typical British and eats pens. That said, you have a very large health pool and sustain A LOT of punishment. Her guns, well you got eight 14 inch barrels. They punch well on cruisers, but often bounce on well angled BBs. Furthermore, eight shells leads to less dev strikes. You have to use her to wrack up damage over time. Sustaining your own health pool while you whittle down your enemies. It gets similar results to other BBs...but the guns aren't going to always do it in one salvo like a lot of players prefer to see.
  11. Ports 40% off

    *goes to get some*
  12. Time for a French BB subforum

    Yeah...when Niko was still around these things were fixed within minutes of requesting one. I know I did it twice with him and it was amended immediately, yet somehow WG NA is dumbfounded by the thought of making a new forum subgroup now. How difficult is it to do? Needless to say I am boycotting any contribution to French BB play until WG fixes it.
  13. Who have you seen in game

    Yeah, it was a great game. Well played by your team. I try to make it interesting every match...glad I could give you one of those nail biters, even if I didn't win, I did have a lot of fun. I did over 150k that game...just could not escape the BB rush.
  14. Perhaps an ingame main screen drop down menu with links to the wiki and key CCs and related tutorial content?
  15. Please stop WG

    Agree with OP. Please change this.