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  1. How to Republique (Tier X French Battleship) Cutoff Date: 25 May 2018 The Republique is the rapier of Tier X battleships. It is not a medieval instrument of savagery such as a claymore, but a precise thrusting weapon, designed to punch holes in the enemy fleet formations and strategies, enabling exploitation by other fleet vessels. Like the rapier, the Republique is a light and nimble weapon, fast and agile, delivering pinpoint but critically damaging blows consistently. However, much like the rapier, it is about finesse and less about brawn, and in such instances can be easily broken. The Republique is a unique ship when compared to other Tier X battleships. It has a relatively smaller health pool (well Conqueror has it beat), less guns, and worse still, the guns it does possess are not even the largest caliber in the game. Yet for all of this, it has strengths in accuracy, a strong rate of fire, and speed. When I think about what the Republique should be targeting, I am convinced that the top priority is cruisers. This ship was designed to punish cruisers who like to maneuver and get greedy in between shots against battleships. The faster reload (21 seconds) often catches cruisers in mid-turn and leads to citadels and penetrations. This punishment is enough that even Zao’s in excess of 15km do not relish an engagement with a Republique. The Republique really is the answering the high explosive spamming heavy cruisers that dominate the higher tiers. That said, the guns are accurate enough to inflict heavy damage to destroyers and battleships as well, and broadside ships beware, the velocity of these guns can and will reach even the most hardened of citadels. Definitions and Notes: Early Game is the first six minutes of the game and/or when less than five ships have been eliminated from the enemy fleet. The Mid-Game is described as the period between 13:59 and 6:00 minutes remaining in the game and/or 8 to 4 ships remaining on the enemy team. The late game is the final 5:59 remaining in the game and/or the last three ships remain on the enemy team. I normally only write these up after 100 games of play, however in this instance I am making an exception due to real life work that is impacting my timeline for write-up and production. Early Game: I am by trade an aggressive player. Give me a ship with a lot of speed, good health, and fast firing guns, and I will be right in the fray, on the flank of course. As soon as possible, mash the W key to full speed and start vectoring to one of the caps on the edges in (Domination) or to the flank (Standard). If you spawn in the middle, do not stay there. Given your relatively weaker side armor, you will not be able to sustain an assault from two flanks. You will eat pens and sink early. As you move forward, hopefully, others will gravitate towards your movement. A top tier BB moving with a sense of purpose, tends to pull in support, because folks tend to gravitate to players who have an idea of what they want to accomplish early. One of the added benefits of having the BB moving early and with the fleet is that they provide muscle to any planned push and can also be the first sign, when a push needs to turn into a kite. I found that being on the flank, I would move quickly and engage targets as they popped up, often dealing critical early damage (with AP). As soon as I fired and was detected/targeted by 1 ship, I would engage the Engine Boost, and start my push. If I encountered unfavorable numbers, I would turn and kite. Amazingly, I would draw a lot of early cruiser and battleship fire, which often resulted in my own cruisers avoiding those deadly barrages. Furthermore, the closing speed of the Republique allowed the battleship to get closer to cruisers than they want before they could afford to turn out. Suddenly, they would be faced with the turn of doom, it rarely ended well. Another great advantage is that you often can get to positions before the enemy fleet can get to hardened areas (islands and channels) and in doing so could catch them as they were slowing into their cozy spot. Numerous Des Moines and Neptune/Minotaur’s were severely damaged and subsequently eliminated by this early aggression. However, in the early game you need to remember two key points, know when to turn around (because torpedoes) and understand your Damage Control and Damage Repair abilities. Damage Control is used when you have got two plus fires and Damage Repair is used when you have about 8-10k (or more) healable damage. If used together with the build I have described below, and kiting away, you will almost always survive the barrage, buy time, hurt some cruisers, and live to fight to the mid-game. As a rule, a destroyer inside of 10km should draw your fire, if your secondary batteries are popping off on a destroyer, your main battery should be following suit. A couple of pens can eliminate half health destroyers early from the match. Mid-Game: The mid-game is one of the most crucial points for the battle with the Republique. A good captain will read the mini-map and take stock of how the battle is progressing around the map. You as the Republique have a unique ability to flex to areas on the map, no other battleship can. For example, many battleships can flex their guns to the other side of the map at a moment of crisis, but only the Republique can boot scoot boogie to the area offering its health pool in addition to the gunnery. Continued management of damage repair and damage control parties is important. Also, if in a push that is going well, detaching to help the soft flank is not a terrible idea, many battles have been won from this. This is the point in the game where the Republique should stand alone, shine, and farm pushing enemy ships and hammer others unaware of its presence in the flank at mid-range. The key is to keep moving, keep the enemy off balance. Additionally, this is a great spot to isolate an individual battleship, hunt him down, and eliminate it. The Republique is strong in solo battleship play. Its guns, can deal quality armor piercing and high explosive alpha damage and this is backed by a nasty array of secondary batteries that can ignite decks, putting enemy battleship captains in the tough spot of choosing between the damage over time and the possible premature use of damage control. It should be noted, this is usually the point in the game where I use the most high explosive, as ships angle to my threat, I simply switch it up and burn them to the waterline. At this point, continued focus on enemy cruisers is still a priority, but battleships are also a priority. Obviously, a destroyer inside of 10km remains a critical concern. Late Game: At this point in the game, you need to be able to carry your team. Grabbing remaining enemy battleships by the belt buckle is great. Your secondary’s and powerful armor piercing in a brawl is second to none and your faster reload almost always guarantees you will get the first strike. So many battleships have succumbed because of the glorious reload, which by this point, if played correctly, should be even faster because of Adrenaline Rush. If the destroyers are eliminated push. If they are not, push. Your torpedo belt is solid and you can afford a torpedo or two (as long as you have 30k health left). Late game aggression often carries. Obviously manage the caps, points, and clock. If you do not have to risk your ship, let the caps do the work and simply make the enemy make the move by going to the area where you are strongest. Funneling an enemy fleet to the least desired approach (a narrow) where a friendly cruiser or destroyer can torpedo is ideal and sets up conditions for victory, especially if you are using high explosives to set fires. Strengths: The following are an assessment of the real strengths of the Republique; Rate of Fire – With Main Armaments Modification 3 you can attain a 21 second reload. Throw in Adrenaline Rush and you have created the Scharnhorst of Tier X battleships. However, the difference is that this AP is a lot more powerful than that of the Scharnhorst. The rate of fire is great for catching ships trying to turn out and punishing them mid-maneuver. Most players enjoy the Scharnhorst because of the availability of ammo when you want to have it. The same goes for the Republique as the ammo is more readily available than it’s near peer counterparts, and this allows for more opportunities to punish mistakes. Throw in the high velocity, and it’s almost certain to hurt where you want it to. Speed – Give me a battleship with speed boost and a healthy base speed of over 31 knots. Throw in the proper signal and you can easily dash from one side of the map to the other. You can run down other heavy cruisers as well, poor Hindenbergs. Accuracy – This is almost a must have. If you only have eight barrels, those eight barrels need to be consistently hitting the intended target. For me, the ability to drop over half of your shells onto a target at 18km is a nice change. Velocity – At 840m per a second, the shells move with a purpose. It is also important to note that both the high explosive and armor piercing shells move at the same speed, so no extra guessing when shooting at a target and estimating your lead. High Explosive Ammunition – People seem to not understand that the high explosive shells coming from this battleship are almost as bad what the Conqueror dishes out. The base value is 6,300 damage and the fire chance is equal to that of Conqueror at 48 percent. When a battleship noses in, protecting the health pool of the ship, it is time to sling fire, and every 20 seconds, the other player can expect at least one. I am still baffled as to how the Conqueror draws such ire and the Republique quietly assumes a similar role when it wants to bully. Armor Piercing Damage – At 14,500 damage per a shell, a hit to the citadel on cruisers can be back breaking early in the match. The Republique boasts the highest damage per citadel hit, right along with Yamato and Musashi. The armor piercing shells combined with the velocity have great penetration on ships, even those with lowered citadels. I have found success on more than a few occasions against angled battleships who supposedly do not have a citadel…and yet I will land one. These shells are heavy at 1321kg, and hit hard. Weaknesses: Like any other ship, there are weaknesses to even the mighty Republique. Below are my thoughts on the ships limitations; Two Turrets and Eight Barrels total – If I am engaging another Republique and we are moving to the brawling phase (inside of 10km), I tend to aim higher on the belt as they angle in and target the forward turret. Ships like the Grosser Kurfurst or Montana can fire enough shells to incapacitate the front turret. In doing so, the Republique becomes extremely handicapped and anemic in the damage it can put out. Furthermore, it must expose more broadside to bring the rear turret into play. For this reason, the lack of turrets is a factor, as one incapacitation will knock out 50 percent of the main firepower. Susceptible to High Explosive Shell Damage – The 32mm armor surrounding most of the ship makes it highly susceptible to 203mm and 150mm plus Inertial Fuse High Explosive ammunitions. Ship eats Armor Piercing Penetrations – The lower armor on the Republique makes it eat a ton of penetrations in angles that I have not experienced while playing other battleships. I make this comment to the exclusion of Yamato and Musashi, and really can compare its superstructure to having similar qualities of that found in the Grosser Kurfurst. Because of this, I have seen the Republique eat 10 to 20k armor piercing salvoes despite all efforts to provide an appropriately angled armor scheme. Inability to Fully Exploit Vulnerable Ships – I expand on this further in the achievements portion of the write-up. The Republique can and will punish ships that start turns due to itshigher than normal rate of fire. The problem I found is that punishment is often hit and miss. In a Montana, a cruiser turning broadside is usually punished more effectively (devastating strike) than that of Republique, because all too often you will only manage a single citadel hit. The Montana you will likely realize two or even three citadels. While the punishment is still there and likely more regularly, do not expect to take guns out of play every time a ship goes broadside. The punch just is not as potent and because of this, many will get to limp away to fight another day. I have seen this a lot when dealing with British CLs and American CAs such as the Des Moines. Throw in a damage repair party for higher tier cruisers and the citadel hit is survivable. The early mass disruption of early play, by removing key cruisers is not realized in ways that Montana or Grosser Kurfurst can in the removal of these ships. That said, I have seen numerous times where I can land multiple citadels on several different cruisers as they maneuver to reach their island parking spots, which generally makes their cruiser force far more cautious overall. There is a significant trade off here. General Lack of Tankiness – Well, during my playtime with the Republique, I found that on average, I was tanking between 1.2 and 2.2 million potential damage and usually getting a dreadnaught when I survived. When I compared that to other battleships such as the Yamato or Grosser Kurfurst, I found the ability to sponge up potential damage to be a bit wanting. In many respects, the Republique is much like that of the Conqueror, looks good on paper, but eats penetrations galore and therefore struggles to maintain health over the course of a battle. Anti-Air is Susceptible to Damage – If you are taking high explosive damage from shells or even airstrikes, your Anti-Air will be vulnerable. Even the larger caliber guns seem to break rather easily. Because of this, your ability to sustain a strong bubble of protection around your ship, is usually mute by the mid-point of the game. Recommended Ship Modules: These are my recommended ship modules. I did play around with the modules and found that steering gears are inferior to damage control because of the way this ship eats high explosive damage and fires. Main Armaments Modification 1 – I recommend this skill because it helps protect your main turrets, of which you only have two. You lose your main batteries, and your game will become frustrating very quickly. Damage Control System Modification 1 – The Republique tends to burn rather well because of its 32mm armor around the ship. Because of this, I recommend DCSM1 because it will offer you a lower percentage chance to turn into burning balsa wood. Aiming Systems Modification 1 – My thought process for taking this module is simple, maximum shells on target. You have eight barrels maximum, and to make the guns have maximum benefit, I found the seven percent improvement to dispersion a great boon for landing shells on targets. Damage Control System Modification 2 – When I initially started playing the Republique, I was running Steering Gears Modification in this slot. After getting cooked to a crisp over and over, I elected to switch the module out for DCSM2, which turned out to be a significant improvement. I tended to survive more battles and I was able to have a higher average damage per battle because I was in the fight longer. Concealment System Modification 1 – In conjunction with the captain skill Concealment Expert, you can get the Republique’sdetection down to 13.2km, which for a battleship is solid. You are on par with heavy cruisers of equivalent tier and other tier X battleships, save the Conqueror, because it is perfectly balanced and working as intended. Main Battery Modification 3 – With MBM3, the Republique can reduce the base rate of fire down to 21 seconds. This effectively turns the Republique into the Scharnhorst of battleships, but now it’s a tier X monster. As I will reiterate, the biggest difference between the two is that the Scharnhorst has a much smaller caliber gun than that of Republique, which can punch even larger angled ships in ways the Scharnhorst could never replicate at its tier. After some early damage, the rate of fire will fall below 20 seconds when working in conjunction with Adrenaline Rush, and three salvos a minute is a deadly prospect for a battleship captain to have and be able to tap into. Recommended Captain Build: This is based off a 19 point captain build, which should be a requirement for those aspiring to sail in a Tier X ship. (1pt) Priority Target – As I have stated in the past, knowing how many barrels might be looking at my ship at once is important because I know whether or not I need to turn away, hit the engine boost or go dark and live to fight another day. This single skill point is so underappreciated, and all too often by BB mains. (2pt) Adrenaline Rush – So, you already have a 21 seconds reload. Why not shave another second or two off of that while you are in the midst of battle. The faster that reload, the more dangerous this ship becomes to everything around it. I can specifically recall being low health and baiting two cruisers to yolo me. Neither of them survived and I was able to pull off a ram on a third enemy BB, cleaning up the flank for our team and securing victory from the jaws of defeat. This skill is a must have. (2pt) Expert Marksman – You will be turning and maneuvering wildly to avoid incoming fire. Because of this, every extra degree of turning on your guns you can get, the better. This is especially important as your rate of fire and limited number of barrels all need to be hot, all the time. Wasted shots because of slow turning turrets is how games are lost. (3pt) Basics of Survivability – So, when I first started playing the Republique, I had Superintendent instead of Basics of Survivability. Problem was, I kept dying before I could ever get to my extra heal charge. Solution, take BoS over Superintendent. It worked. I have been able to reduce damage over time (fires/flooding) and this has saved my ship numerous times. French battleships burn easy and anything that reduces even a few ticks of burning should be given considerable thought for use and implementation. (3pt) Basic Firing Training – This skill selection served two purposes. In a knife fight, your secondary’s get the extra buff they need, and look rather impressive given the rate of fire. Secondly, your Anti Air gets a 10 percent bonus to damage, which never hurts, especially once you start losing a few mounts to high explosive damage. (4pt) Advanced Firing Training – The bonus to secondary and anti-air battery damage is huge. You can reach ships in excess of 10km, and your AA bubble extends to 6.2km. The larger these bubbles, the less likely DDs and CVs will be foolish enough to test the defenses. This skill has been a boon when kiting enemy BBs who are pushing and just letting them get tagged and lit with fires. The moment they use damage control, you load up the HE and give them another permanent fire. (4pt) Concealment Expert – So under-appreciated, but so crucial in reducing the Republique’s profile. Being able to creep to the 1 or 2 and 9 or 10 lines undetected is critical (unless you chose to engage sooner) to having a strong flanking position. Additionally, the bonus to dispersion from enemy fire is also helpful in dodging the mid to long range shots. Recommended Signals: (In order of priority for the Republique); India Delta, Sierra Mike, November Foxtrot, India Yankee, Mike Yankee Soxsix, Victor Lima, India X-Ray, and November Echo Setteseven. Health and speed, then consumables and weapons improvements. Bonuses to AA are last and I usually just used the last two slots for commander experience and free experience flag farming in lieu of the above. Map Strategy: With my map strategy, you will quickly notice a theme, and this is in large part because if you look at the Warships Wiki page for the Republique, the player who wrote up the Republique playstyle and my own are in agreement. Normally, I use images to help enhance my thoughts on this, but my space on the forums is just about used up and I am using a work computer, so this will be limited to words only as I cannot access Imgur. Basically, never go mid early. Islands of Ice – As for the islands of Ice, I cannot stress enough that Republique is strongest going to the edge of the C can and then after pushing through the edge and flanking, going back to the middle of C. The ship is also adequate going to the edge of A, but can be bottled up, because the island structures. Haven – This might be the strongest map in the game for Republique. The gun arcs can clear most islands and the ships speed allows it to get around easily on this smaller map. Again, start by going north or south of the caps in the mid, and then sweep through using the speed to crush through in a push or kite away as necessary. I have kept entire groups of ships engaged almost single handedly, while the rest of the fleet exploits the smaller forces on the opposite side. The openings in the islands around the caps also make for great shooting spots (sometimes even undetected) against destroyers and cruisers making perilous movements. Two Brothers – You guessed it, the Republique operates best on the 1/2 or the 9/10 line of the map. Pushing or kiting as necessary. Tears of the Desert, Warrior’s Path, Mountain Range, Ocean, Hotspot, Trap, Land of Fire – Just to sum up the rest of these and not to sound redundant, go to the edge, dominant and ideally push through. Then return to the middle of the map and mop up/farm as necessary. Moving through the objectives and clearing the edge should be complete by about the 14:00 to 10:00 mark remaining in the game. This gives you ample time to get back to the middle of the map, and then crush remaining forces. At this point, being in the middle of the map should not be a worry as the potential for cross fire should be greatly minimized by the loss of enemy ships on the flank you have just pushed through. Remember, if you are kiting on a map, you are trying to wear your attacker down, so that at some point, you can turn around and become the aggressor. Constant kiting should never be your goal…and if you are stuck in this situation it is because the enemy is overextending and focusing solely on your position, and therefore giving up invaluable strategic advantages elsewhere on the map. Common Achievements: For me, almost every time I survived in this ship, I came away with a Dreadnaught Achievement. Due to the ship’s less than desirable armor durability, you tend to soak up a lot of damage. Because of this, when you do survive, you will earn Dreadnaught, which is always nice, but it feeds this ship’s need for larger heals. The second most common achievement I earned was Confederate. Because of your faster than normal rate of fire, you tend to spread your damage out over a game across a wide variety of targets. This nets a lot of hits and chunk damage over the course of a game, which tends to lead to Confederate achievements. This helps to continue to fuel commander XP, especially on weekends like the one we had over the Memorial Day weekend. The third most common achievement I observed was High Caliber. Again, much like Confederate, the damage was all over the place and stacks up quickly, allowing for easy High Caliber earnings. The fourth most common I saw was First Blood. For me, First Blood achievements are usually earned from being at the front of the fight and in the thick of it early. Sure enough, give a battleship a high rate of speed, engine boost, accurate guns with a fast reload…and it played like it should be, this achievement should be commonplace. That said, early passive play will not be rewarded and maximum range shooting will rarely net you these kinds of rewards. Uncommon Achievements: As for uncommon achievements, the first that comes to mind for me is Devastating Strike. Yep, I said it and will stand by it. I say this because of the lack of barrels the Republique brings to the fight. You have eight of them, and while that is sufficient to score citadel hits (trust me, you can average four to six a game no problem), they usually come once a salvo. When I say this, I am talking the mid ranges for BB play, the 9km-15km range, where you can usually achieve some sort of surprise on your target, and they have no expectation of someone targeting their broadside. Inside of this range, I found most cruisers tend to go blap, splat, and other from these guns as does the squishy cheek of Yamato. Another uncommon achievement was Fireproof. Alas, you burn a lot, but maybe a bit too easy. However, I did manage to pull a few off by surviving the fight to the bitter end. Another set of Achievements I earned goes back to my aforementioned conversation about the undervalued High Explosive ammunition. Arsonist and Witherer Achievements are possible, and I earned several of them during the course of my 100 games with this ship. Think about it, you got nearly 50 percent fire chance per a shell…every 20 seconds. If you want to slow cook your opponents because they are a bow tanking Yamato, by all means, farm away. Is it the most efficient source of damage? No, I still prefer the AP, but when the enemy stops giving you his side, fires tend to be the next step to victory. Rare Achievements: I have yet to see anything close to a Clear Skies achievement in this ship. The Anti Air is very strong, but the ship is highly susceptible to HE and the AA mounts quickly melt away, even the larger caliber ones. This leaves you with less than mediocre AA by the mid to late game, and thus and inability to answer CV air attacks, even Tier VIIIs. Because of this, the closest I came to clear skies was around 15 aircraft. Another rare achievement was Kraken. The lack of Krakens was probably more due to play style than efficiency of the ship, although Kraken is a difficult achievement to earn in its own right. The Republique is good for chunk damage, but I often found it was sort of in the middle on A) not being able to devastate a ship like a Montana or Grosser, but also B) not having a fast enough rate of fire after crippling a cruiser to finish it. This led to less kills, despite a high number of my games having 200k plus damage. Shoot, even my 330k damage game only netted four kills, in a game with a balanced deployment of ships of all types (no CV). I never experienced an opportunity for Unsinkable, this is probably more due to smart management of repair and damage control resources. As your heal charges do not rise to that of the Conqueror’s, attempting to farm Unsinkable Achievements is not recommended. Conclusion: The Republique is strong on the flank supporting a primary objective. It is great at punishing cruisers and consistently providing aggressive (high damage per a minute) fire support. The rate of fire is consistent with games well in excess of 300k, much like that found in the Hindenburg. 200k games can be commonplace in the right hands. Understanding your strengths and weaknesses as well as a smart build, is key to survival to the late game, where you can overcome anyone else, given your rate of fire and secondary damage. It is my feeling that the Republique is the best battleship at tier X, when compared to counterparts (to include Conqueror) because the of the rate of Fire and ability to remain dynamic throughout the battle. You may not get a Kraken, but smart team mates will easily clean up what you maim throughout the battle! As always, I look forward to other thoughts and considerations regarding the Republique. If you have a different build or playstyle, please share, as this is here for community improvement. If you have a different configuration for clan battles, feel free to share as I mostly focused on the random (PvP) 12 versus 12 playstyle.
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