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HMS HOOD: Battlecruiser or Battleship?

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It's a battlecruiser but not a true battlecruiser (true battlecruisers are the vessels built specifically for the battlecruiser's original role)

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No. Battlecruiser can refer to any lighter battleship. There is no specific class designation in game, but there have been people who pushed for it. Sorta like CA and CL. No nation can really be defined as 'battlecruiser', but Hood, Scharn, Kongo, and the likes

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Ultimately the lines between battleship, fast battleship, and battlecruiser are all pretty arbitrary. Ships are a spectrum.

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The exact definition of "battlecruiser" is kind of a slippery concept but was generally understood around the period of the First World War (the only time that a lot of them were built) to be essentially a battleship with a longer and skinnier hull to increase speed.  They were often more lightly armed than contemporary battleships, but not always.

Wargaming defines such ships as battleships.  This is why Hood, Kongo, Amagi, Myogi and Prinz Eitel Friedrich are all classed as battleships in the game.

In the 1930's and 40's, some oversized cruisers were designed by several navies (although few of them were actually built.)  These were not elongated skinny battleships but rather just enlarged cruiser hulls that could accomodate larger guns.  The archetypical example of this is the Alaska but it also shows up in the game in the form of Kronstad, Stalingrad and Azuma.  These are classified as cruisers in the game.  They were sometimes called "large cruisers," "heavy cruisers" or "battlecruisers" by navies, though.  (Alaska was called all three of those things at one time or another.)

Real ship designs frequently just didn't correspond to set categories.  Some people call the Scharnhorst class battlecruisers mainly on the basis that they were relatively fast and lightly armed compared to most other battleships of their time.  Some people say Hood was not a battlecruiser because it was actually bigger than many contemporary battleships.  It's just not a term that ever really had a concrete definition.

 

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The only phrases more calculated to cause an argument than "Battlecruiser" are the two word phrases "Large Cruiser" or "Pocket Battleship".

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Battlecruisers are a WWI era concept where battleships simply gave up something to get more speed. The British reduced armor and the Germans reduced the size of the guns both to reduce weight and thus increase speed. Those are the two main types of battlecruisers.

This definition was largely thrown out of the window in the WWII era. The Germans produced the Gneisenau and the Scharnhorst, which had full battleship armor and smaller guns just like WWI era German battlecruisers so British called them battlecruisers even though I think the Germans considered them battleships. In the game they are all classed as battleships.

The super/large/unregulated cruisers like the Alaskas could also could also be considered as battlecruisers but they weren't called that officially for political reasons. At least the Alaska class lacked several features that capitol ships featured like heavier torpedo protection.

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5 hours ago, I_Am_Taras_Bulba said:

I am confused, I just saw a video where they called the HMS Hood a battlecruiser. Wouldn't the ship be in the cruiser section?

Battle Cruisers were essentially faster, lighter armored, and often lighte armed Battleships. The idea came back in WWI as an idea to make Battleships fast enough to chase down and destroy cruisers, but as the Battle of Jutland tragically demonstrated they were no match for Battleships often times. However later Battlecruisers were able to blur the lines between Battleships and Battle Cruisers as well as even Cruisers for that matter. Some designs such as Scharnhorst class could be classified as fast Battleships, although some still classified them as Battleships or Battle Cruisers. Which Battleships and Battle Cruiser designs did eventually merge into the fast Battleships which solved the problems of speed, firepower, and armor by being able to combine all 3 into a single warship, although they did have the matter of cost to build them.

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Correct me if I'm wrong, but the interesting bit of the battlecruiser race was the Germans took a different approach...Whereas the Brits went with BB caliber guns and cruiser armor, the Germans went with cruiser guns and BB armor.

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A battlecruiser is basically a fast battleship that has weaker armour. Battlecruisers are closer to being BBs than they are cruisers. They don't have a battlecruiser category in WoWs so WG just calls her a BB.

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On 2/16/2019 at 3:55 PM, Iron_Salvo921 said:

A battlecruiser is basically a fast battleship that has weaker armour. Battlecruisers are closer to being BBs than they are cruisers. They don't have a battlecruiser category in WoWs so WG just calls her a BB.

Hood's armor also isn't weaker like the Kongo's or Renown's were.  Hood has a 305mm belt backed by a turtleback.  She has a 51mm deck and an armored hull all the way up to said deck.

Hood was called a Battlecruiser because that is what the British called ships with big guns that could exceed 26 knots.  What Hood really was, in practical terms, is the first Fast Battleship.  Sure, the Royal Navy called the Queen Elizabeth's Fast Battleships, but that was only true in relation to the 21 knot Dreadnoughts.  The WWII concept of a fast battleship is first seen with Hood.

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On 2/13/2019 at 2:26 AM, _1204_ said:

No. Battlecruiser can refer to any lighter battleship. There is no specific class designation in game, but there have been people who pushed for it. Sorta like CA and CL. No nation can really be defined as 'battlecruiser', but Hood, Scharn, Kongo, and the likes


On 2/13/2019 at 2:24 AM, Starfleet1701 said:

It's a battlecruiser but not a true battlecruiser (true battlecruisers are the vessels built specifically for the battlecruiser's original role)


On 2/13/2019 at 8:10 AM, Admiral_Thrawn_1 said:

Battle Cruisers were essentially faster, lighter armored, and often lighte armed Battleships. The idea came back in WWI as an idea to make Battleships fast enough to chase down and destroy cruisers, but as the Battle of Jutland tragically demonstrated they were no match for Battleships often times. However later Battlecruisers were able to blur the lines between Battleships and Battle Cruisers as well as even Cruisers for that matter. Some designs such as Scharnhorst class could be classified as fast Battleships, although some still classified them as Battleships or Battle Cruisers. Which Battleships and Battle Cruiser designs did eventually merge into the fast Battleships which solved the problems of speed, firepower, and armor by being able to combine all 3 into a single warship, although they did have the matter of cost to build them.


26 minutes ago, Helstrem said:

Hood's armor also isn't weaker like the Kongo's or Renown's were.  Hood has a 305mm belt backed by a turtleback.  She has a 51mm deck and an armored hull all the way up to said deck.

Hood was called a Battlecruiser because that is what the British called ships with big guns that could exceed 26 knots.  What Hood really was, in practical terms, is the first Fast Battleship.  Sure, the Royal Navy called the Queen Elizabeth's Fast Battleships, but that was only true in relation to the 21 knot Dreadnoughts.  The WWII concept of a fast battleship is first seen with Hood.

:Smile_great:I would call the  Giulio Cesare  Battle Cruiser as well and have been saying so for some time she has the speed of a cruiser without the armor of a  BB   IE   If a  tier  5-6  BB  Gets close and catch's her in the open she's sunk like any other Battle Cruiser

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On 2/13/2019 at 8:10 AM, Admiral_Thrawn_1 said:

Battle Cruisers were essentially faster, lighter armored, and often lighter armed Battleships. The idea came back in WWI as an idea to make Battleships fast enough to chase down and destroy cruisers, but as the Battle of Jutland tragically demonstrated they were no match for Battleships often times. However later Battlecruisers were able to blur the lines between Battleships and Battle Cruisers as well as even Cruisers for that matter. Some designs such as Scharnhorst class could be classified as fast Battleships, although some still classified them as Battleships or Battle Cruisers. Which Battleships and Battle Cruiser designs did eventually merge into the fast Battleships which solved the problems of speed, firepower, and armor by being able to combine all 3 into a single warship, although they did have the matter of cost to build them.

As was stated, the Battlecruisers were designed to chase down cruisers and had the speed to outrun anything they could not outgun. The issue is they used in something they had never been designed to do: fight in a main fleet action. They were never designed to slug it out with battleships, and that is reflected in the loses at Jutland.

 

On 2/16/2019 at 1:23 AM, Purg473 said:

Correct me if I'm wrong, but the interesting bit of the battlecruiser race was the Germans took a different approach...Whereas the Brits went with BB caliber guns and cruiser armor, the Germans went with cruiser guns and BB armor.

The German BB and BCs all had smaller caliber guns then their British counterparts. They made for it with a much better AP shell then the British had.

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The bottom line is where do you define a cruiser, as in battle cruiser? Or a battleship or fast battleship? 

The Graf Spee had only top speed of 28.5 knots. (Other reports state 26 knots). But 11" guns. 

The Hipper had a top speed of 32 knots. 8" guns, but fired far more rapidly. 

Ironically the Graf Spee had more armour (Probably why she was slower, in addition of the unique power of Diesel engines as the main engines.) 

The Iowa class could get to 32 knots, with 16" guns, and 12+ inches of armour. 

Then you have the Yamato which could only go 27 knots, but had 18.1" guns, and 16" of armour. The latter two there is no argument they were battleships. 

Basically technology and purpose changed the notion of what battleships and cruisers could be from 1920-1947. 

I think it's a testament to the builders and designers (Before CAD, all drawings were done by hand.) No robots, everything built by hand, or at best by crane. 

The Graf Spee (Deutschland class) even had welded hulls, which saved weight (From riveting). Welding thick metal is far more difficult that welding aircraft components. 

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