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Meatshield_No13

Experience with Conqueror unique upgrade so far

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So I haven't seen much discussion regarding the Conqueror Unique upgrade so far. I also haven't noticed any sources such as CC's touching on it in any detail beyond a passing mention of their thoughts and opinion. Granted I haven't exactly done a strenuous search for it either. Flamu does touch on it in his video (embedded video starts at Conqueror). The following is also all subjective based on my experience and playstyle. For at least a bit of context I use both AP and HE, I try to apply both as the situation warrants, so this approach is going to alter my perception as I am seeking AP opportunities constantly as opposed to someone who may be content with using the HE.

Spoiler


 

 

Here's a Too Long Didn't Read: I pretty much agree with Flamu's take with one exception, the ability to dodge shells. I think he didn't properly explore that particular aspect (to be fair he probably didn't have the luxury of time), it's an aspect I am still exploring with the ship but I have found success with outright evasion of salvos (mostly BB) and preventing sustained fire from rapid fire high arc shells from keeping a consistent bead on me. I will go into more detail below for those that are interested.

 

First up a pair of pictures showing two different module setups, one maximizes rudder shift and turret rotation on the idea of getting maximum benefit out of the upgrade. The other simply equips the unique module and leaves it at that. I'm also planning to try out a module setup that maximizes rudder shift but keeps MBM3.

Spoiler

shot-18_08.16_18_14.09-0497.thumb.jpg.2d5ddff94a62c76a26521a6974b21669.jpg

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So to clear something up straight away, the unique upgrade is not going to do much for allowing a quicker full "U-turn" maneuver. LittleWhiteMouse has discussed this before but the turning circle doesn't change, nor does the speed bled (at least from incidental observation, I haven't done any hard testing), and that's the big parts of a U turn, the only part that changes is how quickly the rudder reaches max to port or starboard (the majority of a U turn you make with the rudder full hardover already, so the module does nothing once it reaches that position). Additionally the rudder shift time displayed in port is the time it would take the rudder to shift from max Port to max Starboard. From neutral to max Port/Starboard it is half that time.

With a full rudder shift setup the Conqueror has 8.3 seconds (4.15 from neutral), that's good for a BB, 10.4 seconds (5.2 from neutral) with only the unique module. For context with no rudder shift modules at all it is 17.3 seconds (8.65 from neutral). What I have found so far is this module is great for active evasion when operating at a distance, due to shell flight times at distances of 15km (conditionally 12km depending on velocity) or more you can with active management and performing serpentine maneuvers (think "~~~" and you have an idea) simply dodge shots. Under fire from ships like a Minotaur/Worcester/DM/high arc DDS, ships that have a tendency to walk their gunfire to you, you can frustrate their aim by presenting a target that is rapidly shifting back and forth much more than your size would imply. Due to travel time they have to constantly update their aim far more intensely versus another BB, which leads to far more misses. The downside is this sort of maneuvering requires near constant input maintenance from you, so it can be easy to sometimes simply fail to sustain the turning when you have to focus your activity/attention on something else. It is definitely more demanding of constant attention and fine control than a Conqueror without the module.

Evading BB salvos, if you have experience rudder juking BB salvos in cruisers you have a good foundation for applying this to the Conqueror with this module, it essentially becomes a fat cruiser after all. The same basic principle applies here, watch them close, jam the rudder the instant they fire (assuming distance allowable, otherwise it becomes predictive guessing), the one downside is the other usual accompaniment of dropping speed is far less sustainable in the Conqueror, so you are probably going to have to rely purely on just rudder for some instances. Bow on or stern also applies, feint softening the angle to bait the shot and shift back far quicker than they anticipate, the aspect profile greatly helps here. However this has obviously much less success against Yamato and Musashi because of all the 32mm plating you are slathered in.

I have not had the (mis)fortune yet of seeing how this setup fares against CV strikes as CVs aren't common and I want these events to occur naturally in the course of gameplay rather than trying to force it in a potentially unrealistic/untenable situation.

In short the basic evasion principles that you would normally employ get turned up to work very well with surprising agility. You can be a surprising evasion tank at a distance and pull rapid back and forth movements to keep DDs guessing if a situation demands you charge down a DD in smoke. You can bait torps by looking like you have committed to a turn you can't easily correct (however it still wont save you against point blank, you need to make them blink, so it's imperative you have a read on the driver). As for torpedo avoidance in general I haven't noticed any difference, if you have made passive torpedo evasion a routine I can't find a way to quantify the difference, with passive torpedo evasion I have no way of gauging whether the module helped or not. Active evasion, yes it helps, but in most of those situations either the DD launched too soon giving you the window, or even with the increased agility the DD held it's nerve and you are still eating torps.

 

Now the downsides, well the pictures show the biggest one, you lose the concealment. The Conqueror doesn't have the armor plating, HP or cool-downs to sustain itself under concentrated fire, it will die quicker than the other BBs even with that heal. Concealment is a major factor in staying alive and going dark when necessary for recuperating. The additional factor which for some may not be as pertinent is you lose the significant ability to surprise ships by cruising in dark to around 12km delivering a punishing AP strike and then slipping away, this is however pertinent to me because I employ AP, so keep that in mind I feel this module reduces the capacity of the ship to make these sort of sneak attacks.

This all leads to what I consider the biggest "downside", the playstyle the module encourages emphasizes distance based gameplay to maximize time to evade and maintaining that crucial stealth buffer, which drastically cuts back surprise AP strikes. So in short: It encourages sniping, and cuts down on AP opportunities, lending itself to the stereotype of a "Sniping HE spamming BB from the border".

The other final downside is the playstyle requires a lot more active maneuvering input than what some people may be used to with a BB, please don't misinterpret me, this is not me saying BB drivers are lazy sailors. It is more the fact that your rudder shift is so long that you can easily spend around 15 seconds not inputting because you are simply waiting out the actual rudder. Unlike this build where you could be actively shifting every 6-8 seconds, so it's requires significantly more player input and up-time to maximize the potential of compared to the standard stealth build.

So all in all I don't consider the upgrade a useless option, I think it offers an interesting alternative, it may not be conforming to the stealth meta as people want/expect but it definitely provides benefits that I feel one cannot properly grasp just by looking at numbers and drawing a conclusion from that. But the playstyle it encourages/shapes is not going to be for everyone.

 

Finally repeat, have not run against CV strikes so far, so that is an element to consider that I can't give my opinion on yet, depending on how you wish to weigh that.

 

I welcome any input from others, especially if others have played the Conqueror with the Unique module.

  • Cool 3

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I'll give you an upvote for sharing your research.

 

I don't own Conqueror yet but from my experience as CA and DD player, Conqueror doesn't really do well when it comes to dodging shell, BB in general sucks at that. I had the occasion to try the space République and with speed boost you can actually do some pretty decent dodge as far as BB are concerned but again, this is a BB not a CA so you will evade the first salvo but by the time you try to regain your former position the ennemi will have his gun loaded so one sec to late to react and it's a guarantee heavy damage. Also if you're doing a 1 vs 1 I suppose you can win if you play this way but in a 2 vs 1 you will only dodge 1 salvo not the second.

 

As you mention, Conqueror doesn't have really good armor so it will not help against HE spammer CA, especially CA with high velocity shells. You'll probably handle fairly well Des Moines, Worcester and Henri shells but dealing with Zao, Moksva and Hindenburg shells will most likely be a pain. Also keep in mind that 1 v 1 scenario are rare and there is always a CA or BB waiting behind an island to blap you. 

 

IMO, the legendary upgrade is very situationnal. Conqueror main strenght is her concealment allowing her to basically blap someone and go invisible. If you're in a heavy DD game where you'll be spotted anyway, then I can see that module to be actually pretty good but in a BB + CA games, your concealment will saves you from all that HE spam as well as Yamato lolpen.

 

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Credit to you OP for trying the upgrade out.  Even if I had that upgrade I wouldn't slot it.  As soon as Conqueror's Legendary Upgrade values was made known, I immediately lost interest.  Conqueror's concealment is one of her 3 core advantages:  Firepower, Mega Healz, Cruiser Concealment.

 

Her full stealth build detection ranges have bailed me out of so much trouble, especially when that Repair Party is on that long cooldown.  That is when Conqueror is at her weakest, and being able to say, "Thanks for playing, but I'm disappearing for now" to your attackers is a massive advantage.  When sh*t's going bad and you got multiple ships spamming with your ship on fire (which worsens your detection range), DCP & RP on cooldown, you NEED that great concealment to break contact and dictate your engagement.

i9wjBTv.jpg

That Full Stealth Build on Conqueror has gotten me out of a lot of trouble.  A LOT OF TROUBLE.  I play my ships very aggressively to a fault and I managed to maintain a whopping 71% Survival% with her while maintaining good performance.  Anything that worsens that core, underrated Conqueror strength is a big "Nope" for me.  It helps her pick her fights.

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Update with some more games. This time trying out full rudder with MBM3 setup. So far I think this is the best "all rounder" setup, it's the closest to the stealth build with 2 modules swapped over to maximize the rudder response.

I actually looked at my Zao, DM, Minotaur and Moskva, all of which run the rudder mod (the usual one, not the one that takes the conceal mod slot).

Conqueror: 8.3, 820m

Minotaur: 8.3, 660m

Des Moines: 6.9, 770m

Zao: 6.1, 840m

Moskva: 8.7, 1050m

I just wanted to show those numbers because I didn't expect the Conqueror to actually be that close, granted I don't have Hindenburg or Worcester to compare them also. But again I continue to find merit in the approach of treating the ship like a Cruiser and outright evading at a distance.

Conversely the continued emphasis of "keep away" to evade tank is starting to get to me because I find myself switching to HE more as the AP opportunities are less, and I am not particularly found of that aspect.

 

So I still hold, viable alternate playstyle choice if you are comfortable with long range shooting and high input/high maintenance maneuvering required from yourself as a player.

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Admittedly a small necro here. 

But I wanted to close out my thoughts and opinion on the upgrade. As stated previously this is all subjective based on my play style, preferences and approach. 

To begin after more experience with it I have personally now demounted the upgrade and am back to running a full stealth build. I am going to reiterate my previous findings, this module has greater value the further away you are from the enemy. Greater shell travel time allows greater evasion response, and this module further improves on that capacity. Distances starting roughly at 15km and increasing from there is where you want to be to fully exploit this module. It is a high maintenance setup though, it requires good awareness of the ships in your immediate section of that battle, awareness of current enemy interest in you and greatest of all constant rudder input. There is no value to be gained if you don’t regularly to near constantly shift with the rudder. If used right you can frustrate a surprising number of salvos, but again high player uptime cost. 

 

The downsides remain what I have repeated previously, loss of stealth and ability for surprise attacks, and also one that admittedly doesn’t come up much, cap control such as stalling, holding or actually capping. Out of all BBs the Conqueror is one of the few that can risk playing into a cap earlier than most once the battle has progressed and ships have thinned out enough that vision is less consistent and focus fire is harder to achieve. However for me personally the biggest reason for returning to the stealth build is because the unique upgrade sacrifices the ability to make those close in attacks (usually involving AP) and skirt closer to the current engagement. I did not enjoy that I found myself playing further out with the unique upgrade and leaning more and more on HE instead of a more even mix of AP and HE. That was the dealbreaker to me, the loss of what I consider the ability to push the tempo/seize the initiative, the stealth enabled me to close in and deliver punishing and sometimes lethal strikes to the visible frontline of the enemy (sorry, not sorry Cruisers). Then immediately retreat slip into stealth and use the heal to recuperate, I found the Conqueror great at this sort of “pop and drop” play. The upgrade for me threw too much of this away. 

 

To sum up and essentially repeat myself. There is value using it in long range evasion play. I’m actually annoyed I didn’t think to record potential damage because I think I was consistently scoring higher amounts with the upgrade but I cannot back that up with data. But if accurate it would be a combination of increased visibility to the enemy and greater rudder response. 

I didn’t like it because it reinforced long range HE shelling and surrendered too much of what I considered one of the very few ways a Conqueror can actually push the tempo/seize the initiative. 

 

I believe that that ultimately the upgrade isn’t junk, and has value, but that value forces you to think very much differently to the current concealment meta. This ultimately means the upgrade is going remain niche and see very limited use.

Edited by Meatshield_No13

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It all depends on your playing style, and whether that fits the upgrade (and vice-versa).

After about 40 games with the upgrade, I must say that I love it.  My winning percentage has gone up and the amount of damage that I cause has increased at least 30%.  I also live much longer.

With the upgrade, dodging shells from opposing BBs > 12km away is absolutely easy and also (obviously) improved at any range.  You can then burn them to the ground with your HE from that distance, which starts a fire with almost every salvo.

I really don't understand what is not to like with the upgrade?  What does it take away?  Even with the loss of the stealth module (only 10%), I find the trade-off more than worthwhile.

I will never go back to the original configuration of the ship after my experience thus far with the upgrade.

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I'm on the 4th stage and with concealment being flattened to 10%, stealth is not going to be that much of a factor anymore. Being able to play the conq as a fat cruiser, would be an intersting alternative playstyle

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