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Awe5ome

How should I play Des Moines?

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So I got DM not too long ago and I'll be honest she's not living up to expectations, I've tried bow on, island hugging, being that idiot at max range spamming shells at targets, the point is a lot of different tactics. However, every single tactic I try I find myself dead before being able to do any significant damage. Being bow-on only works against other cruisers and the few 15" armed BB's and you're generally moving really slow making you a sitting duck to any attacks Island hugging is great till a DD spots you then you eat 1-3 citadels because you're most often broadside and if you're like me and don't have the legendary mod you're also not moving. And staying at max range only leads to plunging fire going through the 27mm armour and citadeling you. However, I do see why this ship is amazing, 5k AP with 60-degree auto bounce angles, good HE that can set tons of fires and a 5s reload. And I have had amazing games where an enemy Mino comes out broadside and you blap it with 4 citadels and 20k damage, but most of the time I just end up with some BB's AP shell going through the front window of my DM bouncing off the captains beard and burying itself in the boiler room for 26k damage. And I mean I play a radar Minotaur so DM shouldn't be as hard since it has more armour. But regardless, if you have sufficient in-game experience with Des Moines and have consistent success, please share some tips thanks!

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As a DD main the DM is one of those ships that does horrible, it never peforms, I suggest using a BB instead

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Stay close to islands and use them as cover, do not try to lead the charge and use your consumable suite to support the team while delivering rapid salvos of medium range firepower.

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Like everything else in tier 10 that is not a BB...

Very very carefully....

High tier matches are passive because this is the current meta... IMO its to passive for my play style...

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18 minutes ago, SkaerKrow said:

Stay close to islands and use them as cover, do not try to lead the charge and use your consumable suite to support the team while delivering rapid salvos of medium range firepower.

^^this

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Post some replays?

 

I used to play the DM with range mod exclusively around islands. You have to realize that you are using the island(s) to block fire, not just for the sake of being around them. The armor or lack thereof shouldn't really be that relevant except in extreme cases.. usually if a DD spots you and other ships can shoot at you, you are already doing it wrong. Most of the time that means creeping around the island and shooting at the furthest left or right target until it disengages or dies and then rinse and repeat. Once enough ships are off the board or at least your flank, you can try to make more aggressive moves.

 

Spoiler

This is an old video, but perhaps still instructive of the above: 

 

 

You really have to know the safe islands to work though, and unfortunately many of the craptastic higher tier maps have few of them. Therein lies the main issue with this tactic: if you're not on the right island or on a map devoid of right islands, it can be very easy for the enemy to overrun your spot, and you don't really have a means of escape. This is where the LM comes in; it gives the DM some open-water capability such that you can get off islands that become untenable. With the LM you can even play the ship like any old cruiser, though I would argue it is a less impactful way of doing it. 

 

That being said, you don't need the LM to be successful; but I think it is more difficult to get consistent results out of the ship without it. 

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I had a more experienced friend tell me the DM has been power crept as of late with the high DPS HE spamming machine guns. That it takes away the DM's advantage of being able to bounce some AP. He told me it's better to hide completely now and shoot over islands and from behind smoke.

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Never have much luck with mine, a Yamato blew mine up in the first 90 secs of a match yesterday.. CV spotted me, got deted by a single AP hit from extreme range.. Didn't fire a shot=(

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I play my Salem ( Which is just like Des Moines except it has “Super Heals” in exchange for really bad Radar.) much like a Cruiser mixed with Battle Cruiser. If you see a heavy BB odds are you are not going to want to engage it in open water fight. Now if you are facing only a DD or CA that is alone or perhaps 1 escort ship with it, go ahead and move in to engage it by all means. I get the benefits of my Salem’s captain being Missouri’s BB captain, which means it has BFT and AFT on it for buffed secondaries and AA. So not only does Salem become more of a no fly zone, but also gets over 7km secondaries for dealing with ships in close quarters fights. Secondaries don’t do too much, but are a bit of added bonus anyway.

Now there are some tricks I can pull in Salem that will not work in Des Moine and Vice versa. If you are caught in bow tanking fire spamming contest with Salem vs Des Moines the Salem will typically win thanks to the sheer amounts of HP it can restore. But when facing DDs the Des Moines beats Salem in Radar capabilities. Salem’s Radar is so bad I swapped it out for hydro.

Des Moines class are one of the top Heavy Cruisers in the game in terms of durability and main gun firepower, but they do have some rivals these days. Hindenburg, Alaska, Moskava, Stalingrad, Yoshino, and Kronkstadt. While of course these ships can be vulnerable to Des Moines / Salem AP shells if caught broadside, they can pose a worthy challenge if you are both angled and exchanging salvoes, which means if undisturbed in one on one face off with both ships in full health it can take a while unless mistakes get made. Not to mention they often carry longer ranged guns which allows them to open fire first if both ships are spotted.

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2 hours ago, Admiral_Thrawn_1 said:

Des Moines class are one of the top Heavy Cruisers in the game in terms of durability and main gun firepower...

I stopped believing this in 2016, which is also basically when I stopped playing it.

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7 hours ago, Awe5ome said:

So I got DM not too long ago and I'll be honest she's not living up to expectations, I've tried bow on, island hugging, being that idiot at max range spamming shells at targets, the point is a lot of different tactics. However, every single tactic I try I find myself dead before being able to do any significant damage. Being bow-on only works against other cruisers and the few 15" armed BB's and you're generally moving really slow making you a sitting duck to any attacks Island hugging is great till a DD spots you then you eat 1-3 citadels because you're most often broadside and if you're like me and don't have the legendary mod you're also not moving. And staying at max range only leads to plunging fire going through the 27mm armour and citadeling you. However, I do see why this ship is amazing, 5k AP with 60-degree auto bounce angles, good HE that can set tons of fires and a 5s reload. And I have had amazing games where an enemy Mino comes out broadside and you blap it with 4 citadels and 20k damage, but most of the time I just end up with some BB's AP shell going through the front window of my DM bouncing off the captains beard and burying itself in the boiler room for 26k damage. And I mean I play a radar Minotaur so DM shouldn't be as hard since it has more armour. But regardless, if you have sufficient in-game experience with Des Moines and have consistent success, please share some tips thanks!

You've got this far and you don't know what to do?  You're lost man.  Ask Sir Bonesalot or even JT and Chad.  Amazing that we are raising such children.

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DM isn’t horrible as suggested, situational maybe, but far from horrible. Played a CB the other night where I had good positioning to catch broadsides and we slaughtered our opponent and I did 190k damage. Positioning and knowing where the enemy is is key, map awareness. I highly recommended the legendary module. It’s hugely helpful for DM playstyle IMO. Since the OP probably doesn’t have legendary module I recommend acceleration module in slot 4 instead of rudder shift

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Dm is one of the most misplayed ships. If you dont have the leg. mod go with range. Try and find good island cover for each map. When shooting dont be afraid to chain fire

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Don't play to far forward. Find a good cover spot where you can still support your DD's and be patient, let them come to you at start of match. More so if your friendly BB has not moved up at all. Once they do move forward with them using island cover if possible to keep hopefully fleeing enemy in range. Always have an escape plan. Don't Yolo out into cap, don't get isolated from your team mates.

Try and make it to the second half of the battle where you will be much more effective and usually do more damage. Keep an eye on the mini map and where the DD's are or might be as well as friendlies. Don't let BB's get to close or flank you. Bug out first using your pre planned escape route. 

Be patient! 

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9 hours ago, Awe5ome said:

, I've tried bow on

I would suggest not doing that.

 

You really need to know other ships well when you play DM. she has slightly better armor in her bow in exchange fro armor in the upper belt. these two changes are super important. What it means is battleships with guns 15' and below cant overmatch you. but any battleship with 16" or above can. so when you see ships like bismark, you could go bow in if you needed. otherwise this tactic will result in you getting nuked.

 

Her guns are phenomenal. IMO these are easily some of the best guns in the game. You do need to juggle your ammunition. If someone is showing any sort of side, go to your AP. furthermore try to run expert loader. within the small times people think they will have to swing out a turret or torps, you can load AP from HE, and punish them. The ship is frail outside 15" guns, so you should really use the edges of islands to shoot over them and if possible remain unspotted while you dunk on people who have no hope of returning effective fire.

 

plunging fire from BBs does not exist in this game. Basically unless they overmatch the shells never fall at an angle steep enough to beat autobounce. technically you can at like 23km

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DM is very team-dependent because that's her design. You get behind island, tailing your team's DDs, be the "do not disturb" ship enemy DDs stay away from.

The trick is positioning where your friendly CRs and BBs can support, basically force enemy team to have to push in to dislodge you. Meanwhile, take potshots at enemies who're not aiming in your direction.

Will add, DM's more devastating when learn to aim her AP correctly. It is the undisputed king of pressuring BBs given both its RoF and excellent penetration power; only BB belt armor and angled CR can block it. At close range, save for dueling a DD, her DM AP can punch into even BB citadels; aim below the front turret for best results.

The only DDs I fear in DM are Khab, French DDs, Harugumo, and Kitakaze. But with proper support, they usually aren't a problem.

Hydro is better than DF most battles since CVs don't usually attack near DM.

Finally, don't fall into trap of just spamming HE on BB if only hitting where it's already on fire--switch to AP. For some reason it's psychologically unnerving to BB players to hear thunk thunk in addition to burning!

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