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The following is a VERY hasty review of HSF Harekaze II. This ship was provided to me by Wargaming for review purposes at no cost to myself. To the best of my knowledge, the performance discussed here is current as of patch 0.10.3. Please be aware that her performance may chance in the future.= So, first things first. It may be obvious to some but it isn't obvious to others. HSF Harekaze II is not HSF Harekaze. HSF Harekaze II does not come with multiple hull and camouflage options like her predecessor did. If you're hoping to play with Japanese 100mm/65 guns or a cute kitty camo, this isn't the ship for you. HSF Harekaze II comes with a singular armament of three German 150mm/55 SK C/28s as found upon the ship during the events of the High School Fleet: the Movie (2020) (or is it the OVAs?) to which this crossover ties in. The original Harekaze was a true hybrid with good guns (using her 100mm/65s) and good torpedoes. Harekaze II is a torpedo destroyer with German destroyer consumables and three of their 150mm guns (but weird ammo). Between the servers melting and the limitations imposed by the licensing agreement, HSF Harekaze II was not available for Community Contributors to play-test before her release. So this is kinda rushed. The last time I had a hold of her was August 11th 2020, where I wrote the following to Wargaming (she was play-tested under the working name "Arashi"). Oh, past-me. So young. So optimistic. So "hasn't just spent the last three days recovering from vaccine reactions so she probably isn't grumpy like I am now". I'ma rip this ship a new one. Harekaze did not get the German 1/4 HE penetration. Her gun performance remains very niche. Her AP shells allow you to citadel select cruisers with minimal citadel protection at very close ranges. However, having only three guns with a 5 second reload time precludes her from having anything close to competitive damage output with her small main battery. Harekaze II is a torpedo destroyer and her individual performance is dictated by how well you can land those incredibly powerful fish. However, unlike most Japanese torpedo destroyers, she turns things upon its head with her access to a Hydroacoustic Search consumable. Harekaze II has the potential to be a strong forward scout, good at projecting vision for her allies. This is a very high risk play, however, as she does not have the firepower, speed or health to survive an encounter that goes pear shaped. Before we begin... A bit of a caveat for this review: It has been made as quickly as I could. I played ten games in this ship yesterday as soon as I got up, made notes and compared them to my older notes back when this ship was called Arashi. I then borrowed my Fen Yang data-set (from January 2021) and began updating it. There are no pretty graphs in this review, just screenshots of crap I C&Ped into notepad. I did this for expediency's sake; each pretty graphic is anywhere from 30 minutes to several hours worth of work which would have added literal days to this reviews production. These collaboration ships are never on sale for very long and I wanted to get my take on this ship while it's still out there. If you want to hear more about elements I did not cover, such as fire setting, AP fusing angles versus destroyers, etc, I have the info available. So without further ado: PROS Large calibre guns for a destroyer providing good penetration and punchy individual shells. Excellent gun arcs and a 360º gun rotation on X-turret. Whoo! ♪ Love me some good gun arcs. Hard hitting torpedoes. Great concealment with a surface detection as low as 5.37km. Access to a German destroyer Hydroacoustic Search. Her permanent camouflage provides 50% bonus commander training. CONS Tiny hit point pool for a tier VIII destroyer. Bad gun handling. Poor main battery DPM. Not very fast or agile. Her AA defence is a joke. She uses a German Smoke Generator with shorter smoke duration time. Entirely reliant on never being spotted ever. Overview Skill Floor: Simple / Casual / CHALLENGING / Difficult Skill Ceiling: Low / Moderate / High / EXTREME I'm normally pretty forgiving when it comes to evaluating the skill floor of torpedo destroyers. Her potential is through the roof. Actualizing that potential is another matter entirely. That doesn't make her powerful, per se, but it does mean you have to respect a Harekaze II in the hands of an expert more than you might a Kagero, for example; especially if she's in a division. Still, I gotta give HSF Harekaze II a bump up in difficulty for new players, if only because her survivability is so terrible. If you pull the trigger against the wrong target with your guns, you are doomed. If you over-extend, you are doomed. If you over-estimate the duration of your smoke: also doomed. Options Consumables HSF Harekaze II has German-destroyer consumables instead of those from a Japanese-destroyer. Her Damage Control Party is standard. It has a 5 second active time, unlimited charges and a 40 second reset timer. Her Smoke Generator is that of a German destroyer. It starts with 3 charges and it has a 160 second reset timer. It emits smoke for 20 seconds with each cloud having a 450m radius which is normal enough. However, the clouds only last for 69 seconds (nice) instead of the expected 89 seconds for a Japanese destroyer. We come back to normalcy with her Engine Boost. This provides the usual 8% speed increase for 120 seconds with a 120 second reset timer. It comes with 3 charges to start. And finally we have her glorious Hydroacoustic Search consumable. This has 3 charges to start, 100 second active time and a 120 second reset timer. It detects torpedoes up to 3.5km away and ships up to 5km away. This is identical to that found on ships like Z-23 or Z-35, for example. For those curious, this is still a step behind Loyang's and Siliwangi's. Upgrades It may appear that there's a variety of choice here, but there's really not; at least if you're worried about optimization. Take Main Armaments Modification 1 in your first slot. If you're allergic to Fun and Engaging™ game-play, then Magazine Modification 1 will help mitigate that somewhat. The special upgrade Hydroacoustic Search Modification 1 is the best choice in slot two. Engine Boost Modification 1 is the next best choice. Each of these will cost 17,000 from the Armory. If you can't (or won't) afford that, then default to Engine Room Protection. Harekaze II is a torpedo destroyer. Play to your strengths. Take Torpedo Tubes Modification 1 in slot 3. If you want to pretend that you can prop up this ship's weaknesses than take either Aiming Systems Modification 1 or Main Battery Modification 2 to assist with aiming and gun handling respectively. You do have an honest choice in slot four. You won't be sitting in smoke often, so Propulsion Modification 1 may not give you the mileage you might be used to with other destroyers, however I still think it the better of the pair. Otherwise you can put a tiny bit more precision in her agility with Steering Gears Modification 1. Finally, take Concealment System Modification 1 in slot five. Commander Skills Build for and prioritize survivability, stealth, speed and torpedo performance. In a perfect "I'll never be spotted never mind shot-at" world, your 21pt commander should look something like this: There's a lot of wiggle room here. At tier 1 you can swap for Grease the Gears. At tier 2, take Priority Target or Last Stand if you prefer. At tier 3 you do not want to deviate from the two skills listed, but if you can free up points from a tier 4 skill (or two), then Adrenaline Rush or Superintendent aren't terrible picks. At tier 4 you absolutely must keep Concealment Expert. Given Harekaze II's low speed, I strongly recommend Swift in Silence (it's a permanent Engine Boost while hidden) but between that and Radio Location you can drop one (or both) to free up points for other choices. Though you gotta wonder, if you're never supposed to be seen, do you really need Survivability Expert? Seems to me like that 'never being spotted' thing is a bit of a pipe dream, no? Camouflage The original Harekaze absolutely spoiled players for choice. It came with both the High School Fleet themed camouflage and a more traditional Japanese destroyer camo as her inclusion into the game predated the expanded use of content filters we now enjoy in port (before, if you disabled being able to see the High School Fleet camo, the game demounted the camo). This latter changed the geometry of the ship to appear "normal" removing the fantastic elements from the anime and, provided you completed the first part of the Isoroku Yamamoto collection, it also provided an alternate palette. Finally, you could later buy the infamous (and amazing) Isoroku camo which turned your ship into a kitty-cat. Harekaze II has no such options. She comes with a single camo which also means you cannot palette swap her skin if you disable viewing the High School Fleet content with your port-filters. It provides the following bonuses: A 3% reduction in surface detection ranges. A 4% increase to the dispersion of enemy gunfire. A 10% reduction to post-battle service costs. A 50% increase to commander experience earned. A 50% increase to experience earned. (These bonuses are identical to the optional "Isoroku" camouflage on the original Harekaze. However, Harekaze's default camo had 100% bonus free experience instead of 50% commander experience found here). No fun kitty camo here. Summary HSF Harekaze II has German-destroyer consumables. She should be built as a torpedo-destroyer with her upgrades and commander skills. Her camouflage options are limited to a single camo unlike her predecessor. Firepower Main Battery: Three 150mm/55 guns in 3x1 turrets in an A-X-Y superfiring arrangement. Torpedoes: Eight tubes in 2x4 launchers mounted fore and aft of the rear funnel down the centre-line of the ship. Gun fire arcs are: A-Turret: 312º X-Turret: 324º with a full 360º traverse. Y- Turret: 314º While HSF Harekaze II may be using German guns, she's using very Japanese ammunition. And this is very good ammunition to be clear (despite it's faults). If she had more than just three guns to play with, this destroyer's main battery firepower might have been interesting in game rather than simply academically. Here's what it gives you: Her AP penetration is excellent for a destroyer; well above and beyond German and Soviet destroyer AP penetration. This makes her a credible threat to most broadsiding cruisers up to distances of about 8km or so. Her HE shell damage is much higher than expected for a German styled weapon. HSF Harekaze II's shells deal a maximum of 2,500 per hit instead of the wimpy 1,700 of German shells. They have very high fire chance for a destroyer-mounted 150mm shell at 11% per hit. Here's what you're not getting from their German heritage: Improved German 150mm-gun dispersion. Improved German 1/4 HE penetration. Improved (60º to 67.5º) auto-ricochet angles. Look, there is so much I could talk about with these weapons. The interaction of their fuse sensitivity with destroyer hull angles, their long (for a destroyer) fuse timers and how this interacts with her AP penetration over distance, how good they are at setting fires, etc. But the simple fact of the matter is that HSF Harekaze II does not have enough barrels to make these guns work effectively. Harekaze II's weapons are weapons of opportunity. If you see a vulnerable, low-health target? Feel free to open fire. It doesn't matter if it's a destroyer, cruiser, battleship or carrier. Otherwise, don't bother. It's never worth giving your position away and making landing torpedoes harder. You know you're in a rough spot when the Japanese torpedo destroyers look like better gunships than you. Taking HSF Harekaze II into a knife fight is the wrong move against nearly any full-health opponent you can name. Her AP performance is at least respectable which makes her much more of a threat against low-health cruisers and battleships; especially to the former if they flash their sides. I put this together for three reasosn. First, Harekaze II's AP shells are really neat. I popped a low-health München at 6.5km with a brace of citadel hits which felt amazing. Second, it's an excuse to show off how different HSF Harekaze II's AP shells perform compared to other German 150mm armed destroyers. Third, it also allowed me to show one of the many differences between the old German destroyer 150mm performance (Z-39) and the new (Maerker). Torpedoes Tier VIII destroyer torpedoes have this annoying habit of being "almost amazing". There's always something wrong with them. Maybe they don't hit hard enough. Maybe they're really slow. Maybe the destroyer simply doesn't have enough of them. This is, of course, to encourage players to continue to look every upward and push onto those tier X destroyers where such flaws are reduced (if not absent entirely). For HSF Harekaze II, that issue is range. Let's be clear: HSF Harekaze II's torpedoes are some of the meanest at her tier. They hit like trucks. They're fast. She fires a good spread. While the detection range (and reaction time) of Japanese fish is notoriously over-generous, their biggest flaw is that they put these fragile and flighty destroyers within Surveillance Radar range. Their 10km reach just isn't ideal and an extra 2km would make a world of difference in their efficiency, which is exactly why they don't have it. Each torpedo hit from HSF Harekaze II chunks the red team of up to 20,967 damage, so even a trio of hits is a decent battle result. Four to five is a solid game and should put you near the top of the team lists. Six or more and you should start to feel sorry for the Reds. While this may not seem like a tall order, the reality is that you're as much reliant upon your own skill set as your are on the misplays of the Red team in order to get these kinds of results. Torpedo destroyers are generally very inconsistent, with high peaks and low valleys when it comes to individual games. Their volatility is what makes them so exciting ... and frustrating. Worse, their efficiency can be neutered by something as simple as an overflying group of enemy aircraft that had no intention of dropping on her. HSF Harekaze II, like all torpedo-destroyers, works best when they don't see the attack coming. A wary target may not be able to avoid every torpedo thrown at it, but it's the difference between scoring multiple hits or getting MAYBE one. Between the time it takes to setup, get into position and her own reload, she can't put enough fish into the water to guarantee a reasonable result that way. This is, of course, nothing new. It's a common lament for all torpedo boats out there. Except for Asashio. Asashio don't play by those rules. Asashio makes her own damn rules. Both versions of HSF Harekaze use Kagero's torpedoes. The original Harekaze uses her stock fish while HSF Harekaze II uses her upgraded ones. VERDICT: Her guns suck not because they aren't good, but because she doesn't have enough of them. Her torpedoes are great, though. Durability Hit Points: 13,300 Bow & stern/superstructure/upper-hull/deck: 19mm / 13mm / 19mm / 19mm No. Just, no. HSF Harekaze II's effective health is pathetic for a tier VIII destroyer. VERDICT: Very, very bad. Agility Top Speed: 35kts Turning Radius: 640m Rudder Shift Time: 4s 4/4 Engine Speed Rate of Turn: 7.0º/s at 29.1kts A top speed of 35 knots is the basement of acceptable destroyer speeds. Anything less than that and it's a crippling flaw. So HSF Harekaze II's speed is barely adequate and will (frankly) get her into a lot of trouble. This is a ship that lives and dies by controlling engagement distances. While her excellent concealment does wonders for assisting her with this, without speed to back it up, it's by no means an easy contest. The worst case scenario for HSF Harekaze II is being pursued; especially by a ship equipped with either Hydroacoustic Search or worse Surveillance Radar. Her 35 knot top speed just isn't enough to open up the distance, If you touch her rudder at all, that speed falls below 30 knots and most cruisers going flat out can not only keep pace, but actively gain upon her. To this end, it's hard not to look favourably upon the commander skill Swift in Silence. The extra speed at least allows her to play keep-away from (most) cruisers. I'm recycling this from my Z-35 review for the sake of saving time. HSF Harekaze II has almost identical performance to Kagero, Harekaze, Asashio and AL Yukikaze. VERDICT: Okay, but only just. Anti-Aircraft Defence Short Ranged (up to 2.5km): 14dps at 95% accuracy (13.3dps) No. Very no. She struggles to shoot down summoned fighters, to say nothing of attacking planes. VERDICT: Even worse than her durability. I AM HAVING SO MUCH FUN RIGHT NOW! Vision Control Base/Minimum Surface Detection: 6.84km / 5.37km Base/Minimum Air Detection Range: 3.06km / 2.48km Detection Range When Firing in Smoke: 2.96km Maximum Firing Range: 11.4km There is a lot of good going on here. First thing's first, the Kagero-class (and related) destroyers are the stealthiest ships within their Matchmaking. They have the surface detection to outspot everything else out there. Similarly, HSF Harekaze II's aerial detection is downright excellent. Planes have to be literally over-top of her in order to spot her which makes rocket attacks difficult unless the CV knows well in advance where the destroyer is (or is going to be). And let's not ignore the fact she also gets access to Hydroacoustic Search, giving her the ability to screen for enemy fish and the potential (I stress: potential) to spot concealed enemies. The only downside, really, is there's not much HSF Harekaze II can do with this great concealment offensively on her own. As great as her Vision Controll toolkit is, what can she really do with it other than to play keep away? Taking the Radio Location and Swift in Silence commander skills are nearly a must to give her both the advanced warning and extra speed necessary to ensure she can control engagement distances on lurking lolibotes. While she may be able to outspot anything she faces, she's not agile enough to come about in the short span of time between spotting a destroyer heading her way and when they make up the difference in surface detection and spot her right back. With HSF Harekaze II's fragility and poor DPM, this is rarely an encounter she comes out the better for if it comes down to trading fire. And if you do the smart thing and keep your guns silent and run away, you're still going to sacrifice a big chunk of her admittedly small health pool. The bad news with taking Radio Location is that it warns ships that you're lurking in the area, which hurts the efficiency of her torpedo ambushes. But it's not like you can really afford to go without. To this end, HSF Harekaze II's Vision Control is so damn frustrating. It's god-tier, but slapped on a boat that can do almost nothing with it. I got myself killed time and again making bold plays for my team -- spotting lolibotes, contesting cap circles and hoping against hope whatever group of random players I was teamed up with would take advantage of the forward positions I was taking. You can guess how my average game went. In a division, HSF Harekaze II's god-tier concealment and access to Hydroacoustic Search are worth so much more. But for her own merits, she's just a sneaky torpedo destroyer that doesn't have to worry about getting hit by enemy torpedoes. This is a list of all of the tier VI through X destroyers, ranked by their fully upgraded surface detection range. When there's a tie, I sort them by the following criteria. First, lower tiered ships get preference over higher tiered ships. Next, I sort them by the date of their nation's inclusion into World of Warships (Japan, USA, USSR, Germany, etc). Tech tree ships have preference over premiums. After that, I try and go by release date but that's not strictly adhered to. VERDICT: So damn good and so damn frustrating. Final Evaluation Forward scouting in HSF Harekaze II is ... well, it's a bit of a loser move outside of divisions. I want to play HSF Harekaze II like Haida II, the Cobra Chicken Boogaloo. Her great concealment and that long-range Hydroacoustic Search? It's SOOOO good when it works. If it works. I must stress both that 'when' and 'if'. If you can't rely on your team mates to shoot at what you spot, when you put yourself up on the firing line like that, you're just going to die and lose. It takes only a mildly aggressive enemy destroyer to see you off. And if you're stupid (or stubborn) enough to stick around when they've already sniffed you out once and know they can outfight you, then this happens: I must stress that even an Asashio can outfight you. HSF Harekaze II just plain sucks at dealing with enemy lolibotes outside of those she can outspot by a mile (and I do mean a literal 1.6km mile) or those who walk into one of your torpedoes. To this end, even trying to contest cap circles is an idiot-play and will only serve you well if your opponents are idiots. Given the quality of Random Battle teams, this means it will happen just often enough to make you think you can pull it off on the regular only to wonder why it fails so spectacularly when one of the Reds decides to do more than run screaming from the cap-buoys. This takes the potential of this ship in solo-play from amazingly versatile to a one-trick pony. You spam torpedoes. That's it. Your team mates will get mad at you for not spotting, for not pushing caps, for not sticking your neck out and pew-pewing that low-health target but HSF Harekaze II's just not built to take those kind of risks without backup. I was genuinely terrified whenever I saw a Kidd, Cossack or Lightning on the enemy team, to say nothing of the higher tiered A-tier gunships. While this is a common lament in most torpedo destroyers, I kept (stupidly) trying to play the forward spotter and I kept feeding myself to these destroyers. Now I admit, that's my own damned fault for playing her this way, but I had to prove to myself that attempting this without division backup wasn't viable. I would have been much better served thinking myself a Kagero that had already taken a broadside from a British battleship and thus, low on health, I should play cautiously. This largely means discarding what makes HSF Harekaze II interesting: her Hydroacoustic Search. In solo play, don't try and use it aggressively. Pretend it's not there. Use it to screen for torpedoes for your team. This all changes in a division, of course, but for solo-play? Without good team mates? No. Very no. So that leaves HSF Harekaze II to be evaluated upon how well she dispenses torpedoes. And in that regard, she's really no better than Kagero with one fewer degrees worth of torpedo arc off her stern. Is HSF Harekaze II good? Well, 5.37km surface detection + Hydroacoustic Search is good. 21,000 damage, 67 knot torpedoes with a 10km range are good. The rest of her isn't. You need to bring a friend along to do the shooting for you if things get hot. Do I like this ship? No. Would I recommend this ship? No. She's a pale shadow of the original HSF Harekaze and if Wargaming wanted to sell a 150mm armed version of her, they should have figured out a way to monetize buying another upgrade slot on her original hull. I suppose that causes all sorts of issues with the crossover license, so that's my guess why we didn't see it. HSF Harekaze II's implementation just makes the original look all the better, so go buy that one instead if you want a piece. I won't be playing this ship going forward unless in a division where I can count on my team mates to shoot what I light up. Then she's fun. But alone? No. If I want to play a tier VIII dedicated torpedo destroyer solo, there's always Kagero, Asashio, AL Yukikaze, etc. Conclusion Not bad. This review took me a little over 30 hours to put together from start to finish, including getting those 10 games in and a good night's sleep besides. Please let me know if you want me to spend some time turning those notepad screenshots into pretty graphics. Otherwise, I'm putting this one to bed and begin the next one. Thank you very much for reading and a very special thanks to my Patrons on Patreon for helping keep my lights on.
chibikun34 posted a topic in Player Feature and Gameplay SuggestionsNot sure if the ppl in charge of events look here, but it would be nice if these ship events would come around more often. They come when im broke asf, but leave when i got money to blow, lmbo.
rufus374 posted a topic in Player Feature and Gameplay Suggestions@Hapa_Fodder, @Kalvothe @Mademoisail NA Community Team, Can you please elevate a request to include all the duplicate premium hulls in the Campaign tasks and other ship specific tasks/events in the future? For example, in the Five Epochs of the Navy Campaign, Mission 4, Task 9 includes the Asashio as one of the required ships, but does not recognize my Asashio B as a suitable ship for the task. I know that there are other tasks in this Campaign that include ships like the Sims and Myoko, but exclude their duplicate ARP and Black hulls. I am enjoying the new campaigns and content and like the inclusion of lower tiers and PVE, but I would also like to be able to use all the available ships in my fleet, especially ones that I paid for. Thank you.