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The following is a review of Maya, the tier VII premium Japanese Heavy Cruiser, was sponsored by my patrons on Patreon who helped me afford this ship. To the best of my knowledge, the statistics discussed in this review are current as of patch 0.12.3 Please be aware that her performance may change in the future. When World of Warships was new back in 2015, one of the more frequent subjects of conversation between players was which ships they hoped to see added to the game. There was a short-list of favourites that came up time and again including: Anything German Yudachi (poi!) Insert your favourite Iowa-class ship here While never a top pick, Maya came up in these lists often enough. I think Maya sticks in my memory most because of dseehafer's "Know the Difference" threads from way back when. I was so very excited for all of the future possibilities for tech tree lines and premium ships and I couldn't wait to see them materialize. Taken from this thread by our dearly departed dseehafer. Takao's funnel is pictured on the left with Atago on the right. That funny thingie (dseehafer didn't know what it was and I certainly don't either!) is further forward on Atago. Additionally, as dseehafer points out, there are three pipes running down Takao's funnel while Atago only has two. You can see this difference if you compare Takao's funnel to Maya's in game. So the ship we have in game is Takao, not Atago. Suffice to say, I've been waiting for Maya for a long time. I had largely given up hope after seeing Wargaming clone Atago yet again to make ARP Maya back in November of 2020. I was delighted to see the ship make an appearance finally in April of 2022. Now, I have an unfortunate track record of getting my hopes up too high as of late, so let's see if I can keep my expectations reasonable and my discourse civil. Quick Summary: A down-tiered Takao-class cruiser with Shimakaze's high-speed, short-ranged torpedoes and eight, slow-firing guns instead of ten. She has access to the Main Battery Reload Booster and Repair Party consumables. PROS: Solid hit point pool for a tier VII cruiser of 39,200hp Has anti-torpedo bulges and damage reduction Good firing arcs on guns and torpedoes Quick, hard-hitting torpedoes Very fast with an unmodified top speed of 35.5 knots Access to a Repair Party consumable Access to the Main Battery Reload Booster consumable CONS: High-sitting citadel with weird geometry. Slow main battery reload Poor gun handling with a slow traverse speed for a cruiser Torpedoes have a short, 8km range Wide turning circle radius and slow rudder shift time Terrible AA firepower Large surface detection range Has depth charges instead of an air strike Overview Skill Floor: Simple / CASUAL / Challenging / Difficult Skill Ceiling: Low / Moderate / HIGH / Extreme For an inexperienced player, Maya is a good choice. She has a lot of hit points. She has a heal. You don't need to worry about which commander skills you take to make her guns work properly. The biggest strike against her is that she's a cruiser and cruisers are harder to use than battleships (generally speaking) but whatever. The only other areas of concern is micromanaging her consumables and the short range of her torpedoes. The former is more a reflection of her skill ceiling than her floor. If you forget to use her Main Battery Reload Booster, she sill works -- not as well, admittedly, but she still works. Attempting to use her torpedoes, though ... that's going to get some new players killed. They're very short ranged for a Japanese heavy cruiser. Outside of using smoke or island cover to setup ambushes, you need to expose Maya to return fire in order to drop a salvo. And there's also the Atago-trap, where the disparate launchers encourage players to show their flat broadside in order to launch both salvos off a single side. Yeesh. For expert players, Maya rewards careful use of her consumables. Otherwise, she's like most other tier VII heavy cruisers. It's all about map control, awareness and using and abusing whatever vision control mechanics you can. Her carry potential is there with her heals, speed and Hydroacoustic Search, but her low damage output and crappy stealth put a hard limit on the shenanigans she can reliably perform. Options You'll want to build Maya for stealth and speed to play to her strengths. This is an ambush-cruiser, you want to hit things hard and then disappear after putting out a couple of salvos (be those torpedoes or gunfire) and then play the waiting game until the next opportunity to strike. Choosing options that will exemplify this play style will serve you best. Consumables Maya has American Light Cruiser numbers of consumables. There's a LOT to go over. Her Damage Control Party is normal for a cruiser, repairing all critical damage, dousing fires and plugging floods for 5 seconds. She is also immune to such during this time. This has a 60 second reset timer and comes with unlimited charges. In slot two, you have the choice between Defensive AA Fire and Hydroacoustic Search. The former increases your sustained AA DPS by 50% and flak damage by 300% for 40 seconds. It comes with three charges to start and it has an 80 second reset timer. The latter (which is the consumable I recommend taking) is active for 100 seconds and will detect all torpedoes at 3.5km and enemy ships at 5km. It has a 120 second reset timer and starts with three charges as well. Slot three has a Catapult Fighter. She launches 3 aircraft which stay on station, orbiting the ship at a range of 3km for 60 seconds. It comes with three charges and has a 90 second reset timer. Her Repair Party is next. This is a slight downgrade over Atago's version of the consumable, starting with only two charges instead of three. Each charge heals back up to 14% of the ship's hit points over 28 seconds, with 50% of all penetration and citadel damage and 100% of fire, flooding and ramming damage. It has an 80 second reset timer. Finally, she has a Main Battery Reload Booster in slot #5. This increases her main battery reload speed by 50% for 15 seconds (dropping from 16.5 seconds to 8.25 seconds). It has three charges and a 60 second reset timer. Upgrades As a tier VII cruiser, Maya lacks the 5th consumable slot which makes Atago so wonderfully stealthy. Otherwise, her upgrade options should look familiar. Start with Main Armaments Modification 1. In slot two, you'll want the Special Upgrade, Hydroacoustic Search Modification 1. You can buy this for 17,000 in the Armory. Otherwise, default to Engine Room Protection. Aiming System Modification 1 remains optimal in slot 3, sadly. There's no variety here. And finally, take Steering Gears Modification 1 in slot 4. Commander Skills The ARP Maya commander from the crossover. Her voice lines are saccharine-sweet sounding. Is it just me or do her eyes not face the same direction? Nothing surprising here. Build for concealment and improve her consumables. High value skills include: Concealment Expert (4pts) - duh Superintendent (3pts) - An extra charge on all consumables is very nice. Grease the Gears (1pt) - Maya's turret traverse is slow. This helps fix it, upping it from 6º/s to 6.9º/s Priority Target (2pts) OR Incoming Fire Alert (1pt) - Pick one, not both. This will help keep you alive if you find your situational awareness could use a little help. Adrenaline Rush (3pts) - Paired with her Repair Party, you can min-max reload times versus survivability needs. After picking up these, you can go for more "nice to have skills", including (but not necessarily limited to): Last Stand (1pt) - Maya's steering gears are vulnerable to near misses from HE shells. Radio Location (4pts) - More valuable on stealthier ships, but this is still handy, both in late-game scenarios for running down lurking smol-botes and in early game to keep an eye on unseen enemy approach vectors. Heavy AP Shells (3pts) - More damage when broadsides are available. Situational and a minor boost for such a high cost, admittedly. Demolition Expert (2pts) - Bribe RNGeebus into slightly higher chance of setting a fire. It has the added bonus of making your depth charges cover a wider area. Enhanced Torpedo Explosive Charge (3pts) - A good skill for PVE-mains who want to secure kills in the oh-so-common jousts with bots. It's too expensive for PVP modes, generally speaking. Pick and choose what works best for you. I've been playing with a 10 point commander (ARP Maya) so I went with Last Stand > Priority Target > Superintendent > Concealment Expert. Camouflage Maya has two permanent camouflage schemes, her normal Default and Japanese Lacquer. As usual, the default camo comes with a palette swap option if you complete the second part of the Yamamot Isoroku collection under your Profile Tab. There's not much difference between Maya's two palette swaps for her default camouflage. The base is a dark, blue-grey. The alternative is a darker, charcoal grey. I'm of the opinion that her Japanese Lacquer camouflage looks fantastic, but it's pricey for just a cosmetic swap. Firepower Main Battery: Eight 203mm/50 guns in 4x2 turrets in an A-B-X-Y superfiring layout. Secondary Battery: Twelve 127mm/40 guns in 6x2 turrets with three turrets per side. Torpedoes: Sixteen tubes in 4x4 launchers in wing mounts by the funnels, with each launcher's firing arc covering one quarter of the ship with very little overlap directly abeam. Secondary Battery Let's start here, mostly because they're not really relevant and I can cover this quickly. Like most cruisers, Maya's secondaries are largely forgettable. Though they do have a nice range, good fire chance per shell and their rate of fire isn't terrible, with only six guns per side, she just doesn't put out the volume of fire to impress anyone. She will land incidental hits, especially when you're making a close-range torpedo run, so they might start the occasional fire or earn you a Close Quarters Expert badge on the rare occasion. You can pretty much ignore and not worry about these weapons. Main Battery Maya has a miserably slow damage output with her guns. Even with her Main Battery Reload Booster active, she struggles to compete. Her 16.5 second reload speed is the culprit. This is half a second slower than the ten-gun Atago, but with eight guns instead of the usual ten of most of the high-tier Japanese heavies; so that's doubly bad. Add on sluggish gun handling and much of Maya's gameplay boils down to "hurry up and wait" before you can pull the trigger again. This is a ship that takes bites out of the enemy's health but it takes her a long time to chew before she goes another helping. Her smaller broadside also makes her individual salvos much less fearsome; so you don't even have that shock-damage ability that might make an opponent go all squirrelly and prompt mistakes. As such, I didn't enjoy much success in hunting my preferred Atago prey: destroyers. Maya just didn't hit hard enough to make them question their life decisions. It's not all doom and gloom though. Maya has Japanese heavy cruiser accuracy which makes sniping targets at range comfy. Individually, her shells have a good fire chance, though with that slower reload, her average fires per minute is poor. Her 15.28km range is good enough and well outside her surface detection range, so it's quite simple to fire, dodge and go dark if enemies look to make a meal of you. Maya's AP penetration is decent without the need for any gimmicks to make the ship viable. I have no complaints about the hitting power or ballistics of these guns, it's really just down to how many shells she can put down range over time. Her consumable doesn't alleviate this to any significant degree, unfortunately. Like the consumable found on San Diego, it's a band-aid applied to a cracked femur. Maya is crippled by her low damage output. The 15 seconds when the consumable is active brings her closer into line with other heavy cruisers at her tier, but many of those ships have nine or ten guns, not eight. Even if Maya's consumable was active for 30 seconds instead of 15 seconds, she would still be well behind Myoko's HE damage output. Now this disparity in DPM affords her some perks. We've already seen she has a heal, so that's definitely worth something. On top of this, she gets some pretty interesting torpedoes. Guns graphic dump time! Have a DPM graphic that makes Maya look absolutely trash-tier! Yay! Inflammatory graphics! There's lots to keep in mind when looking at a DPM chart. For one, note the scale. We're going up to 250,000 DPM on the AP graph and only 200,000 on the HE & SAP graph. Second thing to note, these are the HEAVY CRUISERS only. The Light cruisers make most of these ships look terrible (seriously, Atlanta spits out 315,000 HE DPM alone). Third, these charts are DPM over a single minute, assuming with the ships labelled as "Boosted" using their consumables for 15 of those 60 seconds. Maya's DPM is terrible, no matter how you slice it. You're not burning down anything quickly. Still, DPM isn't the be-all, end-all. You can't appreciate how annoying this graphic was to make. This is what happens when I experiment. Anyway, Maya's not a good fire starter. Unlike the other graphic, here are all of the tier VII cruisers (minus clones). All told, Maya's not that far behind most of the other heavy-cruisers.. Please be aware that this graph assumes some impossibilities, such as 100% accuracy, and always landing hits on unburned sections of ships. It also doesn't account for the innate fire resistance of target vessels which will nearly halve these numbers. So in practice, Maya's going to struggle to light 2 or 3 fires per minute; barely enough to tax a battleship's Damage Control Party by herself. Maya's gun firing arcs are okay and almost good. Generally speaking, I want to see guns being able to fire 30º off the bow and stern and Maya gets pretty darned close. Japanese 203mm AP shells have some of the lowest penetration values among similar sized guns. While on paper they have enough punch to still best most cruiser belts up to 15km, in practice this limits their ability to land citadel hits reliably against other heavy cruisers to around 12km or 13km once you account for angling. Still, there are some pretty thin-skinned cruisers out there, so don't be afraid of huckin' some AP at the sides of an Omaha or Shchors if they flash their sides at any range. Much ado is made about Japanese cruiser dispersion. It's better than "normal" cruiser dispersion, sure, but it's not so much better that it'll drop your jaw. These are two dispersion plots calculated over on the World of Warships ShipBuilder site (URL in the graphic). It's a fun site to poke around -- you should check it out! As with all third party sites, take the info you find there with a pinch of salt; there's always new info being discovered about the game. Torpedoes I got SUPER excited when I saw Maya's torpedo armament at first. The looked like SHIMAKAZE (tier X, Japanese destoyer!) torpedoes! Holy cow! Shimakaze torpedoes! Maya's A M A Z I N G ! Except they're not Shimakaze torpedoes. Well, they are if you combined like the worst aspects of each one of Shimakaze's three torpedo options. So you get the shortest range, the weakest warheads, the largest detectability aura and the worst flooding chance. BUT ER MAH GURD! SHIMAKAZE TORPEDOES AT TIER VII~! WHOOOOOO! MOUSE SAID IT SO IT MUST BE TRUE! Seriously though, these torpedoes are weird momos. I haven't found anything like these fish elsewhere in World of Warships, though admittedly I didn't look too hard (I was too caught up on the Shimakaze comparison, I'm not going to lie). When I first began analyzing this ship, I thought surely this must be Maya's gimmicks: She's a torpedo cruiser! Her guns are crappy so her fish can be amazing! You'll notice past-me was jumping to a whole lot of conclusions without actually sitting down and having a good think about things. Play-testing quickly shook my romantic notions about these fish. They don't suck -- they hit too hard and they're too fast to be a complete write off. She's also got those delicious fire angles from her sister-ship Atago (they're actually even better than Atago's with more overlap directly broadside). But outside of PVE modes, they are very hard to use with any reliability (in co-op, they rock, tho, but torpedo-armed ships rule the roost there, so that's no surprise). The fault here is her poor concealment. If you slapped these same torpedoes on her bigger sister at tier VIII? Not so much of a worry. As a platform, Atago could make these work more readily. There's only 1.33km between Atago's surface detection and the 8km range of these fish. At a speed of 35.5 knots, Atago can cover that in less than 14 seconds. Maya has to contend with more than 3km difference. That's 33 seconds. Your opponent has to be asleep at the wheel for Maya to get away with a suicide rush like that unscathed. Well, unless you pick on something with a horrid reload, like California! (Gotta twist the knife, @SaiIor_Moon! ) Like brawling in a battleship, you need to pick your moment in order to make Maya's fish work. You want an isolated target, preferably one that's distracted and either the cover of smoke or the use of an island to help close the distance so they don't have time to react to what invariably ends up being someone's dramatic end, and it's often Maya being sent to the bottom and not her prey. So yeah, nice fish, shame about the range. Even more of a shame about the surface detection of the ship, tho. Better luck next premium. For a Japanese heavy cruiser, Maya has good torpedo coverage off each side, with each launcher covering a quadrant of the ship. Be careful, though, you still have to give away significant broadside in order to launch torpedoes. I'm not sorry for my colour choices. Summary Maya deals damage slowly, carefully. You don't buy this ship because of her striking power. You buy her for her durability (more on that later). She needs time and opportunity to take out her opponents, which means having a patient hand at the tiller. That's not me. I'm not patient. Maya's firepower drives me nuts. VERDICT: Comfortable guns but they fire too slowly. Powerful torpedoes but they're too short ranged. Durability Hit Points: 39,200 Bow & stern / superstructure / upper-hull / amidships-deck: 16mm / 13mm / 25mm / 29mm Maximum Citadel Protection: 25mm anti-torpedo bulge + 102mm belt Torpedo Damage Reduction: 19% This is a comparison between the tier VII cruisers that have access to a Repair Party consumable plus the Myoko-class cruisers. Myoko has the highest hit point pool of the non-healing cruisers at tier VII with 39,200 hp -- the same value that Maya has incidentally. Maya has some pretty good durability traits for a tier VII cruiser. She starts with a lot of hit points. She has access to a Repair Party consumable. She has anti-torpedo protection, including external anti-torpedo bulges. Her deck plating is reinforced. Let's start with her health and heals. Health and Healing Potential Having access to a Repair Party for any mid-tier cruiser is a big deal, proving extra staying power over the course of a match. There is some reason for caution here. Unlike battleships, cruisers are much more likely to be subject to "rapid unscheduled disassembly", being one-shot by salvos of shells or torpedoes. A Repair Party doesn't do you much good if you can't survive what initially stripped away your health in the first place. That said, cruiser heals, including Maya's, are more capable of recovering citadel damage, queuing up to 50% of all penetration damage instead of just 10% like a battleship's might. So if you do get smacked in places you REALLY don't want to be hit, there is some solace that you can claw back some of the hurt done to you. Just don't make it a habit. Maya pairs this healing benefit with one of the largest hit point pools at her tier, with only Toulon having more and Myoko having just as much. This has the added benefit of making her individual healing charges meatier -- gotta love percentage based mechanics when you have bigger base numbers than the competition. Though this has no impact on fires or flooding, neither of these tend to be a significant threat to cruisers with their faster Damage Control Party. Still, in the age of submarine pings, it's worth keeping an eye on damage-over-time effects. Thus Maya's big hit point pool and heals make her more resistant to damage than many of her tier mates, though she's not the best in that regard. Though Maya has a Repair Party, it's a neutered Repair Party, coming with fewer base charges than her contemporaries. Maya starts with only two charges of her heal instead of the usual three. So instead of being exemplary when it comes to health and healing potential, Maya is merely "very good". Oh noes, how terrible. The are a few remarkable features regardling Maya's armour scheme. First is the presence of her large anti-torpedo bulges. When angled, this provides an extra layer of protection against AP shells of 356mm calibre or smaller. The second is her 29mm deck armour, which provides some protection against light cruiser calibre HE and overmatching from anything smaller than a 419mm AP round. Third, you have to keep that enormous 13mm superstructure in mind. It's an easy, enormous target that gives away a ton of damage. Armour & Citadel Protection Cruisers don't have it very good at tier VII, at least not in terms of being able to shrug off incoming shell fire. Once you hit tier VIII, there's limited opportunities to face tank certain calibres of AP rounds, with most cruisers able to auto-ricochet 356mm AP shells and German and American heavy cruisers can shrug off as high as 381mm AP rounds too which is pretty cool. Down here at tier VII, though, anything 229mm or larger in calibre will overmatch Maya's snoot or butt and slam into her stepped citadel and do unspeakable things to her hit point pool. Unfortunately, every battleship that she might face presently has guns that big. There's even a lot of cruisers throwing shells around at that size. Even Cheshire can do it! Cheshire! I hate saying good things about Cheshire! How dare, Maya!? How dare!? So angling against large calibre rounds in mid-tier cruisers doesn't work so well. You need to dodge those, though it would be preferable if you didn't get shot at by them in the first place. Still, it's not all doom and gloom. Maya has some pretty trollish facets to her armour. First, her amidships deck cannot be overmatched by anything smaller than a 419mm AP shell. Similarly, her deck plating is immune to 152mm HE shells or smaller, provided they come from tier V, VI or VII cruisers not packing the Inertial Fuse for HE Shells commander skill. This includes relative immunity to small-calibre HE rockets and some bomblets off Royal Navy carriers. This really isn't going to result in her shrugging off much in the way of extra damage; her deck is a relatively small target, but every now and then it might save you from incidental hits. Similarly, her anti-torpedo bulges present a void to incoming shell fire. A shell which penetrates the bulges but fails to get through her belt underneath won't do anything. For incoming AP rounds smacking her at an angle, these bulges also present an additional ricochet check which may help keep her alive. For all of this admittedly mixed praise, I wouldn't call Maya's armour and citadel scheme good, though. It's merely 'okay', even for a cruiser. Your best hope here is to not get hit if you can at all help it. Her high-water citadel placement amidships means she gives away citadel damage quite often. In addition, her enormous superstructure is an easy spot to bullseye for bombs, rockets and shellfire. And while she does have some anti-torpedo protection, with a cruiser's hit point pool, even individual torpedo hit can be crippling. Peel the anti-torpedo bulges back and you can see Maya's stepped citadel profile with her 102mm / 127mm belt armour. Maya has weird citadel geometry that's rather common in Japanese ships. This ship doesn't angle well against incoming AP fire, but there are few tier VII cruisers that do. Summary Maya is tougher than the average tier VII cruiser, but this rarely demonstrates itself in any dramatic manner. She's not a battleship. She's not meant to "tank" hits, just sponge up a few and keep coming back. Her heals allow her to stay in the fight a little longer than she otherwise might, so long as you play her cautiously. Don't think you'll come out the other side of a suicidal torpedo run lemon-fresh scented, or be able to trade body blows with another cruiser to make up for her terrible DPM. VERDICT: Good, but not a game changer, I'm sorry to say. It feels like a poor trade for such poor hitting power. Agility Top Speed: 35.5 knots Turning Radius: 780 meters Rudder Shift Time: 10.13 seconds 4/4 Engine Speed Rate of Turn: 5.6/s at 28.3kts Main Battery Traverse Rate: 6º/s Alright, this was an attempt to keep the clutter WAAAY down. In this comparison, I have the most agile tier VII cruisers (Gorizia, Chumphon and Fiji), then all of the Japanese cruisers at tier VII (Omono, Tokachi, Maya and the Myoko-chorus) and then the least agile cruiser at the tier (Lazo). I hope this gives a reasonable indication of comparative agility. Let me know what you think and if I should include more / less. I want to make sure these are readable, but I know that some people look to these graphics for more than just the ship I'm presently covering. Maya's fast. She's not the fastest cruiser out there. The French cruisers, with their Engine Boost consumables are faster. Algérie can push 35.8 knots, Toulon manages over 36. Maya's strength is that speed consistently without worries of cool downs. Speed is life in World of Warships and Maya's long legs give her flexibility to pull off some shenanigans, but only SOME shenanigans. Not all of 'em. This isn't S-tier sprinting, merely a satisfying B-tier speed which facilitates a few tricks, so don't get greedy. Maya can shift from one flank to the other, making sure she's where she needs to be to get her guns to where they will do the most good. She can run down exposed ships, like submarines and destroyers that desperately need killing 1. You can even catch a carrier on occasion, which is good fun when a gap in the enemy lines presents itself 2. She can control engagement distances, ensuring the big bads don't get close and that her guns, torpedoes and concealment work efficiently. Now you'll note that I didn't mention Just Dodging™ here, though I should hasten to specify that I'm talking about avoiding shell fire. Maya's quick, but she's not that quick. An extra three knots over most other cruisers isn't enough to throw off most players' aim unless they're yeeting shells from across the map with close to ten second flight times. So Maya needs to exercise the same cautions most cruisers do when there are bored battleships about. I should add that Maya doesn't turn especially quickly either. Her rudder shift time is definitely on the poor side of the mean (she's the second worst at her tier) but her rate of turn falls beneath the 6º/s rotation threshold that I prefer on my cruisers for that kind of gymnastics. The only plus side with her slower rate of turn is that she doesn't QUITE out turn her turrets, but they're not fast-turning either, so it's a close race. So Maya's fast in a straight line, but she's not an agile ship. Her high speed does lend her some better handling characteristics, but it doesn't make up for a large turning circle radius or sluggish rudder shift time. VERDICT: Fast but not nimble. Anti-Aircraft Defence Flak Bursts: 2 + 1 explosions for 1,330 damage per blast at 3.5km to 5.8km. Long Ranged (up to 5.8 km): 84dps at 90% accuracy (75.6 dps) Short Ranged (up to 2.5 km): 217 dps at 85% accuracy (184.5 dps) I don't have much to say about Maya's triple-A (heh, rhymin'). It's perfectly average for a tier VII cruiser. In terms of sustained AA DPS, she's putting out comparable numbers to München and Zara; neither of which are particularly impressive specimens, but they're nowhere close to the worst at this tier. Against incoming planes, her sustained damage output is evenly split between her large calibre and small calibre weapons, so losing the latter to HE splash effects will only halve her output instead of outright mauling it to uselessness. Like most ships at this tier, she puts out enough damage to bloody the noses of tier VI carriers, likely shooting down a plane or two unless they oblige you into face-planting into what few flak clouds she puts up. While Defensive AA Fire may help, Maya doesn't put up the numbers to flirt with becoming a credible threat to CV predation. Tier VIII carriers can easily have their way with her without worrying about casualties. You're best served by deploying your Catapult Fighter well in advance of approaching aircraft and Just Dodging™ your way through the worst of it as most cruisers must at this tier.... and at most tiers. Maya's AA defence is perfectly acceptable ... if you're fighting tier VI AI bots that don't know how to dodge flak. VERDICT: Average and forgettable .Vision Control Base/Minimum Surface Detection: 12.4 km / 11.16 km Base/Minimum Air Detection Range: 7.16 km / 6.44 km Detection Range When Firing in Smoke: 7.32 km Maximum Firing Range: 15.28 km Living up to Expectations Maya is a tier VII Atago, right? RIGHT??? WELL! One of Atago's defining features is how stealthy she is! It's really quite frightening that a heavy cruiser packing ten 203mm guns and sixteen torpedoes, has a sub-10km surface detection range. I still have fond memories of the early seasons of Ranked Battles where I would use Atago's stealth to follow a few kilometres behind friendly destroyers towards the caps. When they face-spotted the other DD, my Atago could engage, emerging from seemingly out of nowhere and deciding the fight with a couple of well placed salvos. Maya can't do that. When top tier, Maya's surface detection ranks 52nd out of 80 cruisers. Atago ranks 16th out of 101. When mid tier, Maya ranks 69th (nice) out of 101 cruisers. Atago ranks 11th out of 104 cruisers. When bottom tier, Maya ranks 66th out of 104 cruisers cruisers. Atago ranks 12th out of 100 cruisers. This, more than anything else precludes Maya from playing in a similar manner to Atago. Forget Maya's Main Battery Reload Booster. Forget her shorter ranged torpedoes. Atago has excellent surface detection range for a cruiser, competitive no matter what her matchmaking might be. Maya's never better than on the poor side of average. This might seem so different when put into practice. Indeed, outside of very specific Ranked Battle scenarios like I listed above, the Atago-clones and Maya will play quite similarly; keeping in the second line, taking shots of opportunity where possible and pulling back when the heat starts coming their way. The difference between the two demonstrates itself in the mid-to-late game. Atago can come off her chain and become a super-sized destroyer; taking caps, hunting down destroyers, making torpedo runs against enemies pushing forward and do all of this from stealth. Simply put, Maya can't. She risks being spotted far too soon to make any of this viable unless your opponents are just handing you the win. Where Atago is a dynamic, aggressive ship. Maya is forced to remain more passive without risking suicide. And this all comes down to how stealthy they are. Reality Check Forget Atago. Maya's concealment almost mirrors that of her tier VII contemporary, Myoko. Myoko cannot pull of Atago shenanigans, but she doesn't have to. She's a second-line heavy cruiser that provides good fire support and happens to have torpedoes that can punch people's noses in if they get careless. Maya does the same. The difference is that Maya's torpedoes are easier to use on the attack and hit harder. Like Myoko, in order to use them, she needs set up ambushes in order to make them work from concealment. Otherwise, you'll just have to accept that you'll be spotted while you punch fish up their noses. You're only running down destroyers (and submarines) when the lolibotes make a terrible, terrible mistake. You've got a Hydroacoustic Search consumable, so make good use of it in those scenarios. Maya's game play is perfectly viable, it's just lacking the high-skill ceiling of her higher-tiered sister-ship. You're a support heavy cruiser that can brawl in a pinch. Play like one. Just like our avatars, @Lert pilots Maya, a sleek black cat while I'm a pink weeb in ARP Maya. Somehow the pink atrocity is sneakier. VERDICT: A ship-defining weakness for fans of Atago. Otherwise, she's just a heavy cruiser with below-average concealment. Anti-Submarine Warfare ASW Armament Type: Depth charges Number of Bombs per String: Nine Number of Strings Carried: Two Reload Time per String: 40 seconds Drop Pattern: Rolled off the rear deck on either side of her stern and then directly aft (port / starboard / port / starboard / astern x5 ) Maximum Bomb Damage: 4,600 Fire / Flooding Chance: 19% / 36% Maya drops her nine depth charges over 8 seconds (1 second intervals between each drop after the first). Going flat out at 35.6 knots, there's about 765m between the first depth charge and last. Add in the 800m blast radius and Maya covers a line 2,365m long where her bombs can potentially damage a submarine. You can see (if you squint) Maya's depth charge drop pattern. She lacks depth charge throwers to yeet her bombs to each side, instead rolling them off the ship's stern. So... the bad news: Maya has depth charge throwers instead of an air strike. Depth charges are much harder to use against submarines, especially for a cruiser and ESPECIALLY for a cruiser without a lot of concealment. The good news is that if you do get a chance to use them, Maya's going to brutalize whatever she hits. Depth charge efficiency varies a lot between the nations and Japan comes up with the third-best behind the Americans and British. At tier VII, the best depth charges do 5,100 damage, so Maya's not too far behind. For non-direct hits, this difference is even more minor, with Maya's individual bombs doing 1,518 damage versus 1,683 from the Americans. Still, a full string is only capping out at 13,662 damage, which is usually enough to kill a tier VI submarine if you can land everything. Against tier VIII submarines, you're going to need two strings to sink a full health sub. Of course, even getting yourself into a situation where you can drop depth charges in the first place means that SOMEONE has screwed up and it's usually going to be the sub. I love doing depth charge runs on subs -- it's super satisfying. But like brawling or wiping out a squadron with a flak explosion, depth charge runs aren't common. It's hard to get the practice in against opponents who are fighting back as the opportunities just don't come up often enough. Maya's lack of an airstrike is a weakness, not because her depth charges are bad -- it's just that air strikes can be used so much more frequently in practice and usually without risking your ship which makes it so much better overall. Oh well. Two fun and engaging mechanics at once! VERDICT: For depth charges, it's not a bad armament. But an air strike would be better. Final Evaluation Because Atago exists, Maya looks crappy. It's not a fair comparison at all, really. Atago is just so much better overall as a concept. I'm very much reminded of how Wargaming didn't want me comparing California to Arizona (Arizona is just so much better than California). You give up too much with Maya: You lose two guns, reload time, 2km range on her torpedoes, 1.8km worth of concealment and a healing charge and for what? You get a consumable that band-aids her lower shell output and slightly better (but not good) AA power. All of this to be slotted one tier lower. It's not worth it. It's just not worth it. For Maya to get a fair shake, you have to pretend that Atago doesn't exist and compare her instead to her tier-mate, Myoko. So let's abolish Atago (and all of her clones) from history. Let's pretend they don't exist and never existed. Can THAT make Maya palatable? Can that make her look reasonable? Let's look at her with a fresh pair of eyes and compare her instead to Myoko; a much more reasonable and fair assumption, honestly. Compared to Myoko, Maya gets: + Healing (!) + Much better torpedo angles (!) + Harder hitting, faster torpedoes + 0.5 knots more ship speed + Slightly more stealth + Improved (but not good) AA Defence But she gives up: - Two fewer guns (!) - A much longer main battery reload (!) - Dependency on a consumable to make up for her crappy DPM - 2km less torpedo range - Depth charges instead of an air strike That looks kind of better, I think. It's almost a fair trade? Maybe almost? The healing factor sort of makes up for the lower DPM. When she's analyzed this way, it's her torpedoes that are the stylistic X-factor. If you think you can make them work through guts or reckless zeal, then maybe this ship has some merits for you. And were it just based on that, I could probably shrug my shoulders and leave it at that. I'd rather have Myoko, personally, but I couldn't fault someone that found the heals + living-dangerous torpedo ranges and fire arcs appealing. I wish I could leave Maya's analysis with something cheerful and cautiously optimistic like that. Sadly for Maya, Atago DOES exist. For the price asked Maya doesn't look very good in my estimation, not when Atago is such an easy upsell. The cynic in me sees Maya and she looks like a vehicle to sell more Atagos to those that don't already have her. For those that do, the positive feels that Atago inspires may prove bait enough to make players impetuously pull the trigger hoping for more of the same. It would have worked on me (SHIMAKAZE TORPEDOES, AWMEHGERRR!) Maya's a pass in my book. She's not terrible, but she's far from good -- a solid MEHBOTE. She'd need more stealth to make me sit up and take notice. If they packaged her with something closer to a 10km surface detection range? Yeah, then she'd be very interesting. Then I could engage in some aggressive destroyer hunting. Then I could maybe put her depth charges to a bit more use. Both of those features alone would be pretty fun. They're also stupidly powerful and decide games (I have a type, I can't help it). That failing, then it comes down to the usual suspects of looking for more damage output or maybe better heals to at least make her feel solid and competitive in most matches. As it is, she just doesn't do damage quickly enough nor does the have the staying power to tickle my fancy. Thank you for reading! Mouse out! 1. All lolibotes and submarines desperately need killing. 2.) That gap's gotta be pretty freakin' huge for Maya to sneak her fat butt through without getting spotted.
Now that it has been released from NDA, here is my build for the new Japanese Premium Tier 7 Cruiser: Maya Link for those who can't watch embedded I'll be playing and talking about her on stream tonight in just a few minutes Stream Link