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SeaGladius

DD Spotting

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Lately it seems that there are a lot of “gunboat” DDs that don’t have the best concealment in game.  So they don’t really try to spot for the team.  Instead they are lurking around islands waiting to ambush someone.  It’s then left to me, a Cruiser player, to do the spotting - or more accurately, sail up to the cap and wait to get spotted, then quickly turn away while the enemy team opens up on me and reveals their position.  I’ve been doing this in a Roon, which is tough enough to get away with this tactic, and it’s been working pretty good.

But this tactic doesn’t spot enemy DDs that hold their fire, and often, they’re left in the cap circle with no one to stop them because the Kitakazes and Harugumos on my team are busy blazing away at BBs, instead of flushing out the enemy DDs.

How would you guys deal with this?  How do you flush out a DD that is more stealthy than your own DDs?

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You can play a DD and spot

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Smart DD play in the radar and super stealth meta, is not to race into the cap to be first to die.  You give the game a few moments to flesh out, give the evil red DM or Wooster a chance to pointlessly fire their radar or (better yet) get them driven off when you flank the position and your team targets them.

DDs alive and capping 10 minutes in are more valuable then those doing so two minutes in.

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2 hours ago, Camo68 said:

You can play a DD and spot

So I just unlocked the Hindenburg, though I still need to earn enough credits to buy it.  I’m thinking that the next line I grind will be the American DDs.  I definitely don’t want this thread to turn into “those stupid DDs aren’t doing their job, and I’m suffering because of it!”  I’d like to learn some things instead.

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2 hours ago, Warped_1 said:

Smart DD play in the radar and super stealth meta, is not to race into the cap to be first to die.  You give the game a few moments to flesh out, give the evil red DM or Wooster a chance to pointlessly fire their radar or (better yet) get them driven off when you flank the position and your team targets them.

DDs alive and capping 10 minutes in are more valuable then those doing so two minutes in.

This is all true, and I found a lot of success in my Russian cruisers by punishing those DDs that tried to push into caps early.  Perhaps I’m more frustrated now in my German cruisers by my relative inability to punish those DDs because I can’t spot them myself, and my slower ROF doesn’t allow me to get off as many shots when they do get spotted.

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In random matches most high tier DD players know that they will have little real support so they play more cautiously as a result. To go into cap and/or push up to spot early in the match is 1) quite risky & 2) difficult to disengage when committed.

So the short answer is you want to division up with a DD player who trusts you to work with him. 

While this can happen in randoms it is far more common that you commit yourself to a course of action, the enemy show up, and you turn for support only to see your team mates high tailing it back to spawn leaving you to sink or swim. There are only so many times this can happen before you alter your tactics accordingly and play a lot safer.

 

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From a DD player's perspective (and one who understands that spotting & killing enemy destroyers makes it much easier to pile up ridiculous numbers in the late game):

When I spawn in to a high tier battle, several things determine how aggressively I'll push the objectives/go for spotting:

  • Team compositions.  If there's a lot of radar on the enemy team, and particularly if two or more of those radars are divisioned together, I have to play much more cautiously until I know where those radar ships are.  I also need know what enemy destroyers I'm up against; pushing into a full health Daring in my Harugumo isn't necessarily the best idea for example, as even when I "win" the ensuing gunfight I'm probably going to lose a large chunk of my health pool.
  • What friendly ships spawned near me.  I am going to feel much more comfortable pushing into a cap if I have multiple friendly cruisers near me, or if I have a stealthier DD that I can follow into the objective.
  • How the closest friendly ships are equipped.  I have zero confidence in a Gearing sitting there with no camo or signals, so if that's the friendly destroyer who spawned near me then I'm treating it like I have no other DDs nearby.
  • How those friendly ships behave during the first 30 seconds of the match.  If the Kagero I was hoping to help spot for me turns out for the border (or doesn't connect), then there goes that plan.  Same if my friendly cruisers all turn toward a different cap or just sit motionless in their spawn.
  • Whether or not I have Radio Location on my build.  One of the tough things about strong high tier gunboats which basically require IFHE, such as Daring or Harugumo, is that it's very difficult to fit RL into your captain build (even with a 19 point captain).  With Harugumo in particular this can be crippling in the early game, as the ship maneuvers very poorly and doesn't have hydro to offset the threat of torpedoes coming from an unexpected direction.  More so, not having RL lessens my ability to dump blocking torps in the direction of an enemy destroyer trying to push into me.

Take these things into account when you're in a cruiser as well.  You can help in several of these points simply by asking what their early plan is and telling them that you will support them when they push the cap...obviously that won't always help as some players pay little attention to game chat and others are actively hostile toward anybody suggesting anything to them (no matter how politely it's suggested), but it's worth a shot.

Some good suggestions made above which I'll second are to get some high tier destroyer play under your own belt (this helps not only in understanding what your friendly DDs can or can't do, but also in predicting what enemy destroyers are likely to do) and/or div up with a good destroyer player.  Also keep in mind that while getting a cap advantage early in a battle is helpful, it is not always necessary in order to win the game and can actually harm your chances of winning when it costs too much of your team's overall health pool without inflicting significant damage to the enemy.

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Harv, thank you for your response. That was exactly the kind of perspective I was looking for!

I’ve always looked at early cap control as the way to win the battle.  I’ve played way too many games (wins and losses) where the team with the most ships loses because they let the other team sit on the caps for most of the game.  But obviously, throwing your ship away to try and get that cap is counterproductive.

It sounds like the real answer is communication, so you know how to best support your team.

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I'm a potato DD skipper, but even I know caps fights early are generally dumb. My rule is to avoid the fight unless I know I have overwhelming support. Sometimes better spotting and radar force a fight I don't want, but then the goal is to disengage. 

I find when I play classes other than DD I spend most of my time fuming about bad DD play, so my solution is to be the bad DD.

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