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Mane Batteries - Lion Review

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So, having played through Lion and bought the Conqueror, here's my review of the Lion, the tier 9 RN tech tree BB.  For my reviews of the  Monarch, KGV, and Queen Elizabeth, links are below.

Note: I am an average to (maybe) a bit above average player who plays mostly solo, so this is from that perspective. Also, while I did consult numbers and stats, my reviews are primarily based on the feel of the ship and my performance in her. This is of course a limited sample size, and is affected by my playstyle (which is generally fairly aggressive leading to occasional overreaches and a low survival rate.) Your mileage may vary depending on your playstyle and skill level. 

 

Lion is absolutely worth grinding through the steaming pile of crapknown as Monarch. 

The Lion is another KGV variant, like Monarch, but it actually fits in for its tier. Monarch, as I discussed in my review of her, just couldn't cut it at tier 8. You can't just give a t7 BB 381mm guns to make a tier 8, which is pretty much what WG did. Monarch felt like a tier 7.5 at best. But with the Lion, they got it right. The combination of the 406mm main battery, more hp, and the superheal make her far more survivable than Momarch and I was able to consistently deal more damage, even with her stock 406mm guns. I didn't try the 419s as I wanted my Conqueror quicker and didn't want to spend the xp (I have Missouri already, so I wasn't keeping another t9 BB) but the 406mm guns were fine. 

 

Her speed isn't great, but it's good enough. Her maneuverability isn't great, but it's good enough. Her AA is, yup, good enough. But she shines in the two key areas for a BB: survivability and gunnery. (She also has outstanding stealth, but that plays into survivability.) Lion is a bit squishy, but like high-tier British CLs, she bounces back if not focused or hit for high alpha. The key to killing Lion is high-alpha strikes; you can take off chunks of HP easily but she will heal them back even more easily. With her excellent stealth, she can slip away, heal, and get back in the fight , and repeat this process as needed. I have found that I don't even engage Lions or Conquerors unless I dont have a better target, I have a good enough shot to likely knock them out, or I have several teammates also focusing fire on them, because that superheal means I'm wasting my DPS if I can't deliver a knockout blow. 

 

Because the key to her survivability is her superheal and using her stealth to buy time to heal, positioning is key with Lion. I tend to brawl with my BBs, which definitely hurts me with Lion and Conqueror, although I'm trying to learn to be more patient. You can't get stuck in too deep. It's not smart to be leading the push. You need to have an exit plan to get out of sight and heal. You don't need to stay back at the edge of your range lolsniping, but don't be tempted to close in, especially early game, unless your team is playing aggressive, and even then, you should try to be on the second line as these function best as support BBs early to mid-game; playing them as really big cruisers is the way to go. You need to be back where you can use your stealth or terrain to disengage if you start to get focused, or if another BB gets into a position to hammer you. A single Yammy or Kurfurst salvo can ruin your day, but being able to pull back makes a huge difference .You need time to do damage with these ships. 

Lion is not a ship that's going to earn you a lot of dev strikes. Every so often, you get a chance to wreck a CA for a dev strike when you have AP loaded at the right time and get a broadside, or more commonly you'll be able to delete a DD with a full salvo of HE, but for the most part Lion nibbles at her prey. Her AP is passable but her HE is amazing. Angling does not matter to Lion. Bow-on meta does not matter to Lion. You can and will stack multiple fires on almost every salvo. So your damage rolls will often be low for each salvo, but when your opponent pops damage control, you can light them up again and watch their hp keep dropping. Your damage total will sneak up on you; quite often I'd look at the damage counter and have no idea how I got up to 100k damage. You need time to get there though, so Lion is a hard ship to carry in when your team is timid and getting steamrolled. You can absolutely carry a game at the end; once the teams are thinned out, if you're in range of a comeback, you can often make a difference. As such, as others have pointed out, Lion is a ship that is most effective playing the long game and staying alive. 

 

Her guns catch up to her peers in size (406mm compared to the undergunned Monarch's anemic 381mm weapons) and feel very accurate. Whereas German BBs can be effective anti-DD platforms simply by wading in with secondaries, a Lion can wreck a DD easily anywhere within 10-12 km with a single salvo of her HE. And being able to engage effectively without regard for a target's angle is a huge benefit when dueling an enemy BB that's smart enough to deny you a citadel shot. Like Missouri, stay angled and only use your back turret when you can wiggle your tush to get the shot off safely. Effective angling is important. 

 

Pros: 
Gunnery is laser accurate 
After being outgunned consistently by peers in KGV and Monarch, you finally upgrade to 16" guns; she matches the USN BBs she faces, as well as stock t9-10 KM and t7-9 IJN BBs. She hits hard. 
She has OUTSTANDING stealth, allowing you to spring ugly surprises on occasion or back off and heal. 

The superheal can give you a massive chunk of HP back. Anything that doesn't kill you is easy to shrug off.


Cons: 
Takes time to do damage, rendering her difficult as a carry ship. 
Very difficult to dodge torps due to size and turning radius, and takes a lot of damage from torp hits. 

Could be small sample size, but I lost main battery turrets to incapacitation way more often than any other BB I've ever played. The #2 turret seems especially prone to incapacitation. Highly recommend you take the main battery modification that improves their survivability in slot 1. 

 

Final verdict: Outstanding BB. T9 is a good tier for BBs; Izumo's a bit rough but Iowa / Missouri and Friedrich are great ships, and the Lion joins that club. 

 

Also, ten games into Conqueror and I'm in love. Just like the Lion, except 12 guns and you can keep them all in action while still angling effectively. 

 

Previous reviews: 

 

Edited by poeticmotion
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Very nice review poeticmotion, +1! Seems like Lion is that "light at the end of the tunnel" that is Monarch. My son recently finished his Monarch purgatory and says pretty much the same about Lion as you do.

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This review further improves my faith in the Lion.

 

Thanks Op~ /^.\\ b

 

Im just about nearly halfway away from getting enough xp for her, I personally think the Monarch is good ship while KGV is a somewhat relieving mixed bag after Queen Elizabeth aka the crappier Kongou and the irritating Iron Duke.

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51 minutes ago, Rolkatsuki said:

This review further improves my faith in the Lion.

 

Thanks Op~ /^.\\ b

 

Im just about nearly halfway away from getting enough xp for her, I personally think the Monarch is good ship while KGV is a somewhat relieving mixed bag after Queen Elizabeth aka the crappier Kongou and the irritating Iron Duke.

 

I think the KGV is solid, the bar is set pretty low for tier 7 BBs.

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The Lion just feels right and is a notable Tier IX keeper for me (not sold when I used up all my free exp on the Conqueror rather than the Nelson). The Monarch got dropped like a dead butterfly although I expect she may get buffed given the nearly unanimous shade thrown her way on the forum. Like the German Tier IX BB Friedrich der G, Lion is a solid performer.

Spoiler

59d4de62045d8_Lionawardx4.jpg.b5163457fdd02266d3cc387872a3e8c7.jpg

[Very good review: +1]

Edited by Stauffenberg44
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49 minutes ago, Kapitan_Wuff said:

 

I think the KGV is solid, the bar is set pretty low for tier 7 BBs.

I really enjoyed KGV but tier 7 is not a bad tier for BBs IMO. Gneis and Scharn are two of the most fun BBs in the game, Colorado is much better than her reputation, and Nagato is pretty solid.

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6 hours ago, poeticmotion said:

I really enjoyed KGV but tier 7 is not a bad tier for BBs IMO. Gneis and Scharn are two of the most fun BBs in the game, Colorado is much better than her reputation, and Nagato is pretty solid.

 

I didn't care for Nagato or Colorado. Not going to call them "bad" but they for me where not enjoyable to play. Gneis was my favorite for sure (excluding premiums cause nothing stands up to the Scharn) but KGV is giving Gnies a run for top non-premium t7BB.

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50 minutes ago, Kapitan_Wuff said:

 

I didn't care for Nagato or Colorado. Not going to call them "bad" but they for me where not enjoyable to play. Gneis was my favorite for sure (excluding premiums cause nothing stands up to the Scharn) but KGV is giving Gnies a run for top non-premium t7BB.

I fully agree. Colorado is too slow for my tastes and I'm generally not a fan of IJN BBs because they don't fit my playstyle.  But neither of them is a bad choice for someone more comfortable with a more traditional BB since KGV and Gneis/Scharn are so quirky (if you try to play them like a traditional BB you're not going to do well.)

Edited by poeticmotion

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Another good review Sir - thanx +1 , but still I am left curious about the 419/mkII gun set up - looks like I'll have to grind'em  - just played my 2nd game in her and she feels good...

Edited by chopshop64

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3 hours ago, chopshop64 said:

Another good review Sir - thanx +1 , but still I am left curious about the 419/mkII gun set up - looks like I'll have to grind'em  - just played my 2nd game in her and she feels good...

I use the 419s on my Lion. The reload time, range, and turret rotation is identical to the 406s. The 419s have a tad more damage and a 2% increase in fire chance over the 406s.

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1 minute ago, ReddNekk said:

I use the 419s on my Lion. The reload time, range, and turret rotation is identical to the 406s. The 419s have a tad more damage and a 2% increase in fire chance over the 406s.

thanx Sir - guess if I decide to keep her id mount them - I'll go for hull and gfcs first -

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I'm starting to think that they had to compensate for the fact that RN BB designs were simply inferior and so gave it the three crutches of Heal, Concealment and HE.  The armor is...more often than not just enough to pi** an incoming shell off.  Torpedo protection is equally abysmal, if not worse.  Not sure how many other ships there are that can take as much damage so quickly and yet be mostly unable to return said damage at anything near the same rate.  It's more of a nibbler, as was said.  Lion is really not that impressive to me; so far I did better in FDG and Izumo.  Without the wildly exaggerated concealment and [edited] heal, I believe wholeheartedly this thing would be an unplayable turd.  People jump to the conclusion this means it is fantastically OP, but that just isn't the case.  The thing is given significant handicap advantages because it is unable to compete without them.

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I'm a bit confused on the "Pro: Gunnery is laser accurate"   I have yet to experience what I would consider "laser accurate"  I must be doing something wrong.

Good ship overall, just need new batteries in my lasers I guess.

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You do not have to use HE against DDs in this ship.

 

The short-fuse AP are devastating against those fat high-tier DDs.

 

I have already devastating striked Gearing and Khabarovsk with AP in this ship. It is probably too OP but kinda hilarious to see the result.

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