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LittleWhiteMouse

Premium Ship Review #121: Exeter

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Good work as always. As for me ...

I disagree with the Angry Youtuber rating. She's a gud mehbote or a meh gudbote, to me. But that's just my opinion, based on my experiences playtesting her and my own play style. Correspondingly, I would also put her skill ceiling a step lower. However, these are the opinions of someone who's not as good at driving squishy cruisers as Mouse is, which might taint my opinions.

This difference also extends to my recommendations. I would say 'no' for random battle grinding. She can do work, she's effective, but she doesn't quite do one of the primary tasks of a premium ship: seamlessly train captains. Unfortunately the RNCL line still lacks this. She would've been a better captain trainer if she had been pushed to T6 and kept her smoke.

Finally, I've said it before in another thread and I'll say it again here; one of the greatest sins a premium ship can be, is a shadow of what it could be; a ship not reaching - not even approaching - potential that she has shown capable of. Duke of Yuck is guilty of this, and now Exeter.

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Thanks for the review Miss Mouse! :Smile_honoring:

( Lol when I asked how your day was going earlier and you said you were having to work instead of having fun you were not kidding.)

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Thank you for the review.  I am heartened that you made it through the Great Meme War of 2019. Never forget.

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Ok, we can fix Exeter in 3 easy steps.

1. Make a community enforced ban on people playing this ship with low winrates.

2. Use above average and unicom players to inflate stats.

3. Wargaming moves Exeter up to tier 6 because it is over performing. 

Everyone's happy.:cap_like:

Personally, glad that I can earn this ship, cause I ain't buying in this condition. Glad that Alaska can be earned for free too. I get my goodies without supporting the questionable choices WG has been making.

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2 minutes ago, Commissar_Carl said:

Ok, we can fix Exeter in 3 easy steps.

1. Make a community enforced ban on people playing this ship with low winrates.

2. Use above average and unicom players to inflate stats.

3. Wargaming moves Exeter up to tier 6 because it is over performing. 

Everyone's happy.:cap_like:

Personally, glad that I can earn this ship, cause I ain't buying in this condition. Glad that Alaska can be earned for free too. I get my goodies without supporting the questionable choices WG has been making.

Nice.

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This has been an inordinately long time coming. As LWM observes, October 2016 for the release of RN CL. November 2016 for the release of Belfast, but in January 2017 IFHE was rolled out differentiating her captain build, and then in October 2017, Belfast was removed from sale.

In the 28 months since the release of RN CL as a line, we've had one accompanying cruiser for sale, for 12 months, and for 9 of those months she was a poor trainer on the basis of wanting the IFHE skill. Although I'm not a huge proponent of captain trainers, I do feel that's a bit of a missing niche which has been far more quickly filled elsewhere.

 

With the release of Exeter I guess the cynic can rejoice that now the RN has had as many premium cruisers released for it, as the Russians have had 'large cruisers' or the Pan-Asians have had period, or that the Americans have had released in the last... oh two weeks I guess. Good times. Catching up.

While it's nice that Exeter's been given out as a mission reward, the cost has been fairly high. Intrinsically I see Exeter as a T5 hull, but if you're going to gimmick her I'd make her fun and T6. Aside from producing a somewhat bland sounding ship (I'm not sure there myself, she's still the first time we have decent ballistics on a platform with the RN CL hydrofoils) it has other ill-effects:

  • By putting Exeter in her rebuilt configuration at T5, but leaving her plenty strong you make any branch with York in it problematic, a T6 York will look UP or need to be OP to compete
  • If there's a T5 rebuilt Exeter, the odds of getting a non-rebuilt one, as she appeared at the Battle of the River Plate are well... nil. York could have as the tree ship 'inherited' the rebuild while keeping her distinguishing canted funnels and maybe some of the bridge features
  • The six or seven people who use the Smoke Screen Expert captain skill on British cruisers will be discombobulated
  • I would rather have had firepower than repair
  • Exeter still very much looks like a ship well configured to hunt some of the weaker T5 cruisers, overmatching the floating citadel magnets Omaha and Emerald and having very competitive stealth
  • Putting very strong T5's in just hits the other T5's all the harder, leaving them competing with both T7's and better same-tier ships
  • Why are WG giving the CC's such short notice again? It's usually been better, but Le Terrible I think was 'surprise' and again so is Exeter, and $35 for a package is not nothing
  • It reminded everyone that the Dutch navy existed and fought at Java Sea in particular, we now have two of the Allied participants, class representatives of the Japanese but no Dutch...
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I agree with her going to tier 6.  Maybe someday, after the dust has settled, they will let this happen.  I will play with her in the present form but I think I'm going to have to practice before I'm any good in her.

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mmm, not sure I agree with the OVERPOWERED rating, but definitely a firm Gudbote

 

I do find the guns a bit wonky though with a prevalence for shells to fall short of the aim-point, oddly more often at closer ranges than further away.

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I was sunk by an OMAHA (OMG!) earlier today when out on a perfectly honest seal clubbing expedition in my Exeter. definitely not OP. 

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Thanks for the review, and sorry that you keep getting burned by WG's handling of these promo premium ships. As someone who's done/followed a bit of game development work, I know that the path not taken can be really heartbreaking.

I'm not sure that I can get behind the overpowered rating for this ship (those slow firing guns plus her vulnerability from every angle just don't hold up), and I think that Lert's Meh-Gudbote/Gud-Mehbote assessment is more in line with where she actually sits. Her advantages are subtle, and I suspect that only fairly skilled players will be able to fully harness them to notable results. Time will tell, and I'll be curious to see where her performance sits in a couple of months.

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Not buying her without the smoke, unless I totally and utterly fail at winning her. No doubt some sort of basic package will be offered after the Java Sea event closes.

Now we need a proper premium CL; Arethusa would be nice, and we have all the basics in Huang He (including the original main armament that you can take from Leander; we just need the visual modelling tweaked back). Alternatively one of the later Crown Colony-class cruisers, i.e. a three-turret Fiji with enhanced mid-short range AA capability, at T7 (perhaps with a slight ROF buff to keep her DPM competitive with Belfast and the tech tree). No radar.

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Still have the Dido class to perhaps be a prem CL for the UK, a sort of Atlanta-like ship. As for Exeter.... I would have preferred her to go up to 6, as well, just because that would mean divisioning up with Leanders without penalty and also using it in tier 6 ops. Basically I'm lukewarm on tier 5 premiums in general, the last year or two.

--Helms

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Great review, as always.  Much appreciated @LittleWhiteMouse.  +1

The only error I noticed was the repeated reference to Royal Navy"light cruiser trainer", as opposed to heavy cruiser trainer.

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28 minutes ago, Ace_04 said:

The only error I noticed was the repeated reference to Royal Navy"light cruiser trainer", as opposed to heavy cruiser trainer.

With the full consumable suite she used to have before the big nerf she synergized quite well with a RNCL's captain skills, despite the different gun caliber. Now, less so. That's what she meant. She's a heavy cruiser but worked well as a trainer for the CL line.

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Thanks for the review Miss Mouse. I too was a little surprised that Exeter was going to be a T5; even without the added fun of historical matchups involving Perth, Leander, Graf Spee and Pensacola (the closest thing we have in-game to Houston) it would have been better and more historically accurate to put her at T6.
A few points though:
--From what I can tell from Sea Lord Mountbatten and others, although Exeter can be OP against other same-tier cruisers, she doesn't have the rate of fire to deal with DDs quickly, and she falls apart when T6 and 7 cruisers and all battleships get involved. An OP ship needs to be OP against all comers, not against just a specific class and tier. So I agree with Lert that she's a mehbote with great guns.
--Fiji and Flint also have smoke at T7, not just Belfast. Did you just forget them or is there something about Belfast's smoke that I don't know?
--With the most recent hotfix, Exeter is getting a narrow spread instead of a wide one.
--For the life of me, I cannot figure out why people hate the Duke of York so much in its present configuration. I don't know what she was like in testing, but she performs admirably presently. HE is British, AP hits like a truck (and much harder than King George V's AP) the AA is murderous (I once shot down 37 Shokaku planes during the first week of 0.8.0, while carriers were at the height of their power) and Hydro helps with not only avoiding destroyer torpedoes, but with jousting with Mutsu, Ashitaka, Kii, Tirpitz, Gneisenau and Scharnhorst (since their torpedoes aren't Russian, players will often fire them off in time for Duke of York's hydro to detect them). Even the nerfed Repair Party can be countered by running premium consumables and superintendent. Her sluggish reload certainly is a problem, and one that would keep me from using her in any sort of competition, but that's the only thing that holds her back. It's certainly not enough to make her a garbage bote, a steaming pile of mediocrity.

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17 minutes ago, Nine_Lives_ said:

Thanks for the review Miss Mouse. I too was a little surprised that Exeter was going to be a T5; even without the added fun of historical matchups involving Perth, Leander, Graf Spee and Pensacola (the closest thing we have in-game to Houston) it would have been better and more historically accurate to put her at T6.
A few points though:
--From what I can tell from Sea Lord Mountbatten and others, although Exeter can be OP against other same-tier cruisers, she doesn't have the rate of fire to deal with DDs quickly, and she falls apart when T6 and 7 cruisers and all battleships get involved. An OP ship needs to be OP against all comers, not against just a specific class and tier. So I agree with Lert that she's a mehbote with great guns.
--Fiji and Flint also have smoke at T7, not just Belfast. Did you just forget them or is there something about Belfast's smoke that I don't know?
--With the most recent hotfix, Exeter is getting a narrow spread instead of a wide one.
--For the life of me, I cannot figure out why people hate the Duke of York so much in its present configuration. I don't know what she was like in testing, but she performs admirably presently. HE is British, AP hits like a truck (and much harder than King George V's AP) the AA is murderous (I once shot down 37 Shokaku planes during the first week of 0.8.0, while carriers were at the height of their power) and Hydro helps with not only avoiding destroyer torpedoes, but with jousting with Mutsu, Ashitaka, Kii, Tirpitz, Gneisenau and Scharnhorst (since their torpedoes aren't Russian, players will often fire them off in time for Duke of York's hydro to detect them). Even the nerfed Repair Party can be countered by running premium consumables and superintendent. Her sluggish reload certainly is a problem, and one that would keep me from using her in any sort of competition, but that's the only thing that holds her back. It's certainly not enough to make her a garbage bote, a steaming pile of mediocrity.

  • Overpowered ships certainly do not need to be overpowered against all opponents.  If you tick all of the boxes, yeah you're OP.  But being unable to deal with X, Y or Z as effectively does not necessarily preclude a ship from similarly being bad for the game.  Musashi sucks against destroyers and aircraft carriers but that makes her no less of a monster, for example.  In Exeter's case, she is hands down the best tier 5 cruiser, bar none.  That's not damning in of itself (something has to be the best, after all, and Furutaka held the title here since Murmansk lost the crown without being OP).  However, the rate at which she dominates same tier and lower tiered opponents is patently unfair.  She's similarly an uncomfortable and thorny target when up-tiered, comfortably staring down tier 6 cruisers as an equal, rather than at a disadvantage.  It's only at tier VII where some cruisers (and only some) give her pause.
     
  • I'm not following you here.  I specifically named ships with Smoke Generators and lower surface detection in my example.  Flint, Belfast, Huanghe, Perth, Leander.  Fiji is chubby, so she didn't make my list.
     
  • Yes, I'm aware of the narrow spread, I have been for a while.  This is one of the frustrating things about being a CC -- knowing things, but not letting on that you know things.  The list of stuff just gets so hard to track sometimes.  Wargaming let me (and the other Community Contributors) know about it more than a week ago, but because this was under NDA, I wasn't permitted to disclose it.  Failing to mention the issue with her fire angles when I didn't know when the patch that was going to correct it was going to drop would seem like an obvious omission.  Simply failing to bring it up would prompt comment which would prompt discussion which might tip-toe ever closer to the NDA.  So, better to feign ignorance, be thorough as I usually am and shrug my shoulders when the patch contents and fix were finally disclosed.
     
  • Take King George V, give her heavy cruiser dispersion (yes, really) but remove her Repair Party entirely.  Give her Duke of York's AA power but also add Defensive AA Fire,  Hydroacoustic Search and a cruiser's Damage Control Party.  BAM, there's the old Duke of York.  She was one of the most fun ships I have ever played.   The current Duke of York isn't bad -- it's bland.
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34 minutes ago, LittleWhiteMouse said:
  • Take King George V, give her heavy cruiser dispersion (yes, really) but remove her Repair Party entirely.  Give her Duke of York's AA power but also add Defensive AA Fire,  Hydroacoustic Search and a cruiser's Damage Control Party.  BAM, there's the old Duke of York.  She was one of the most fun ships I have ever played.   The current Duke of York isn't bad -- it's bland.

The only thing Duke of York really has going for her now are American heavy cruiser-type AP bounce angles, and an improved vertical dispersion (versus King George V).  Not a bad ship to play, but nothing really exciting to talk about.

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