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Aratnomis

Help on "battlecruiser" style play - how can I make an impact?

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Hi all,

Firstly I think this may be my first post I have started a topic on, so please be kind.

Background first, I am a BB main (80%) I enjoy a brawling style and have played a lot of German BBs and the USN secondary BBs. 

I recently got HMS Thunderer and it requires a significantly different style of play, that I am calling "battlecruiser", reliant on mobility, stealth, mid range accuracy and regular change of ammo types. I think this applies to a number of BBs (Thunderer Ishizuchi, Hood, Amagi perhaps) and some of the super cruisers like Agir and Siegfried.

Here is my problem, I find I lack impact. In the Thunderer, I dont feel as though I have the carry potential of a more aggressive BB style. I find optimum engagement distance around the 15-17km mark and keep mobile and use the rudder shift to dodge incoming fire. That distance means that torps or not a huge issue but HE spam can be as Thunderer suffers badly from it. I find I am swapping ammo types often but even though accuracy is very good I am still getting used to flight times as I normally fight closer.

I am an average player but would like to improve. Would be grateful for any tips an tricks for this style of play. Not just improve damage that seems Ok 115k or so - but have more impact.

 

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I don’t have Thunderer, but it looks fun and I would be eager to see what advice you get - thank you for starting the thread.

I have always been a BC fan and have Hood, Alaska, Scharnhorst, Gneisenau, and Prinz Eitel Friedrich; and Izmail and Kongo are also arguably BCs. I’ve found angling to be critical, never getting caught broadsides. But the biggest impact with these ships besides staying alive may be found in their speed - using map awareness to get to a spot on the map where you can blunt an enemy push, or reinforce your flank from collapsing. This means a slow and cautious start and fast redeployment as the battle unfolds.

I am still learning, but I can guarantee using their speed early, or leading a solo charge in these ship types (with my skill set at least) is definitely not the way; and my horrid Scharnhorst WR is shocking proof. Especially with the brawling type German ships. Torpedoes are great to finish off late game BBs, not charge in early and get focused down only to fire 3 misses as I see so many people, including me, consistently do.

Edited by SuperComm4

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9 minutes ago, SuperComm4 said:

I don’t have Thunderer, but it looks fun and I would be eager to see what advice you get - thank you for starting the thread.

I have always been a BC fan and have Hood, Alaska, Scharnhorst, Gneisenau, and Prinz Eitel Friedrich; and Izmail and Kongo are also arguably BCs. I’ve found angling to be critical, never getting caught broadsides. But the biggest impact with these ships besides staying alive may be found in their speed - using map awareness to get to a spot on the map where you can blunt an enemy push, or reinforce your flank from collapsing. This means a slow and cautious start and fast redeployment as the battle unfolds.

I am still learning, but I can guarantee using their speed early, or leading a solo charge in these ship types (with my skill set at least) is definitely not the way; and my horrid Scharnhorst WR is shocking proof. Especially with the brawling type German ships. Torpedoes are great to finish off late game BBs, not charge in early and get focused down only to fire 3 misses as I see so many people, including me, consistently do.

Agreed, I play my Scharn more of a "battlecruser" and the Gnei in a more brawling mode (though I haven't played either much recently tbh). I have found that with the thunderer, as you close - especially late game you end up taking inordinate amound of damage from HE - went toe to toe with a Worcester late game and that HE made a mess of me and I ended up killing him with my last salvo after he had finished me off. Thunderer seems very effective kiting - getting enough interest from a bunch of ships on a flank and then maintaining a distance and using improved accuracy to my advantage... but once again - this style lacks.....impact.

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1 minute ago, Aratnomis said:

Agreed, I play my Scharn more of a "battlecruser" and the Gnei in a more brawling mode (though I haven't played either much recently tbh). I have found that with the thunderer, as you close - especially late game you end up taking inordinate amound of damage from HE - went toe to toe with a Worcester late game and that HE made a mess of me and I ended up killing him with my last salvo after he had finished me off. Thunderer seems very effective kiting - getting enough interest from a bunch of ships on a flank and then maintaining a distance and using improved accuracy to my advantage... but once again - this style lacks.....impact.

I do remember reading that Thunderer is a mid to long range ship, and I think it has thinner armor plate that is causing the HE issue. 

While I do not know if the desired playstyle for Richelieu is long range archery, it’s the only way I’ve found success in it. Literally not even moving from spawn until targets are spotted, then coming alive and going where needed. I’m not a big fan of that style of play, but I knew the ship was better than I was playing it.

As I consider Thunderer, it would seem like that is the best playstyle for it. Also, I’ve found enemies in Thunderer are brutal trollers when they fire careful HE salvoes just after you put a fire out. They then go dark, and either HE troll again after disappearing for a bit, or pop a broadside cruiser with one AP salvo. While I hate always being on the receiving end, that seems to be a successful style for it.

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53 minutes ago, Aratnomis said:

Hi all,

Firstly I think this may be my first post I have started a topic on, so please be kind.

Background first, I am a BB main (80%) I enjoy a brawling style and have played a lot of German BBs and the USN secondary BBs. 

I recently got HMS Thunderer and it requires a significantly different style of play, that I am calling "battlecruiser", reliant on mobility, stealth, mid range accuracy and regular change of ammo types. I think this applies to a number of BBs (Thunderer Ishizuchi, Hood, Amagi perhaps) and some of the super cruisers like Agir and Siegfried.

Here is my problem, I find I lack impact. In the Thunderer, I dont feel as though I have the carry potential of a more aggressive BB style. I find optimum engagement distance around the 15-17km mark and keep mobile and use the rudder shift to dodge incoming fire. That distance means that torps or not a huge issue but HE spam can be as Thunderer suffers badly from it. I find I am swapping ammo types often but even though accuracy is very good I am still getting used to flight times as I normally fight closer.

I am an average player but would like to improve. Would be grateful for any tips an tricks for this style of play. Not just improve damage that seems Ok 115k or so - but have more impact.

 

I would play some CA lines to get the hang of the cruiser side on "Battlecruiser".

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If you have good maneuverability on a battleship, then one of your most effective strategies will be to take a position that enables you and your teammates to cross-fire an enemy. Essentially, you want to create a situation where the enemy either has to show broadside (or a bad angle) to you, or to your other battleships. Battlecruisers can be ideal for this, so long as you can recognize when it’s a viable strategy, and when it will cause you to over extend into danger. 

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Go after other cruisers. Don't bother using you speed to scout, but provide AA support with groups of ships. And don't be afraid to run over DD's that stand between you and other cruisers. Always retreat from BB's unless they are on very low health-and remember to angle. Battlecruisers are not meant for brawling.

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1 hour ago, black_hull4 said:

Go after other cruisers. Don't bother using you speed to scout, but provide AA support with groups of ships. And don't be afraid to run over DD's that stand between you and other cruisers. Always retreat from BB's unless they are on very low health-and remember to angle. Battlecruisers are not meant for brawling.

 

Thats fine for straight up cruisers - however some are very effective brawlers (looking at you Scharnhorst). The Thunderer ( like cruisers) lacks close in tools, but can at a pinch brawl a bit. Thunderer HE is very effective against DDs, accurate and so many incapacitations.

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@Soshi_Soneplayes Hood a lot and might be able to give some tips.

I will say that the ships you listed to not play alike.  Hood, for example, is very resistant to AP, when well angled, and HE generally whereas Thunderer is covered in 32mm plating that HE spammer love to far and Yamato/Musashi/Shikishima overmatch,  Tier VII Hood is more survivable against Tier IX Musashi than Tier X Thunderer is.

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32 minutes ago, Helstrem said:

@Soshi_Soneplayes Hood a lot and might be able to give some tips.

I will say that the ships you listed to not play alike.  Hood, for example, is very resistant to AP, when well angled, and HE generally whereas Thunderer is covered in 32mm plating that HE spammer love to far and Yamato/Musashi/Shikishima overmatch,  Tier VII Hood is more survivable against Tier IX Musashi than Tier X Thunderer is.

Thanks @Helstrem, For sure I feel more comfortable in a straghy up BB fight with the hood. I thbink if I was to narrow down, I would say how to I translate damage (115k+) into impact - I know my data set is too small to make any assumptions, but I dont feel my damage in the Thunderer translates into impact and hence little control on win or lose for my team.

 

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1 minute ago, Aratnomis said:

Thanks @Helstrem, For sure I feel more comfortable in a straghy up BB fight with the hood. I thbink if I was to narrow down, I would say how to I translate damage (115k+) into impact - I know my data set is too small to make any assumptions, but I dont feel my damage in the Thunderer translates into impact and hence little control on win or lose for my team.

Focus on AP use.  HE is lower impact because, barring a few cruisers, HE cannot citadel, HE alpha is lower and fire damage is 100% repairable.  AP damage sticks better.  Make sure you are in the fight for as long as possible.  You are still in a BB and want to draw some enemy fire and inflict damage.  Sinking early means you can't impact the rest of the match, hiding in the back means you don't impact the crucial first phases of the match.  You need to find the balance of aggression and caution. 

Also keep in mind that ships like Warspite and Hood predate the British BB line and do not have improved HE, but do have good AP.  Hood and Duke of York are the only BBs that have improved AP penetration angles like US Navy CAs and Royal Navy CLs.

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I really like Siegfried. Basically you look around and as soon as someone shows broadside you quickly turn and make him pay for this. And in return Siegfried has good enough armor to stay mobile and turn around. Moskva has comparable playstyle but she's too vulnerable on turns and it sucks. Stalingrad works better than Moskva because guns have more punch. Alaska is more static because shell arcs are not good at longish distances so your effective range is limited, you have to sit nose in closer to the enemy.

My style is to look at as many ships as I can and hit where it hurts the most. Again, so far Siegfried works best for me because she's ideal ship for this playstyle. And I don't even want to try Aegir because I'm pretty sure I'll suck in this ship.

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2 hours ago, dimzzy said:

Alaska is more static because shell arcs are not good at longish distances so your effective range is limited, you have to sit nose in closer to the enemy.

I haven't played Alaska in a while, but I always tried to play it more like a cruiser killer than a Battlecruiser (which has a different meaning depending on who you ask, anyway). In that, I'll start more towards the flank and to the rear with BBs because while she is tanky, she does not hold up to well against BBs for prolonged times. Play around your concealment, meaning look for targets that have not spotted you.

And then it is all about using your mobility to get around to find the broadsides of those CL/CAs, nuke them with AP and burn some BBs with a bit of HE. Don't try to win any DPM matches though, you will lose most of them against CLs. You don't want to be with your BBs, but to the side so Cruisers have to decide against whom they want to angle and hopefully get crossfired anyway.

Overall she is a fun ship but it always takes me a few games to get back in the rythm.

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21 hours ago, Aratnomis said:

however some are very effective brawlers (looking at you Scharnhorst).

Meh...I never considered the Scharnhorst to be a battlecruiser.

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15 hours ago, shinytrashcan said:

I haven't played Alaska in a while, but I always tried to play it more like a cruiser killer than a Battlecruiser (which has a different meaning depending on who you ask, anyway). In that, I'll start more towards the flank and to the rear with BBs because while she is tanky, she does not hold up to well against BBs for prolonged times. Play around your concealment, meaning look for targets that have not spotted you.

And then it is all about using your mobility to get around to find the broadsides of those CL/CAs, nuke them with AP and burn some BBs with a bit of HE. Don't try to win any DPM matches though, you will lose most of them against CLs. You don't want to be with your BBs, but to the side so Cruisers have to decide against whom they want to angle and hopefully get crossfired anyway.

Overall she is a fun ship but it always takes me a few games to get back in the rythm.

I have a tonne of free xp and am thinking of picking up Alaska - thanks for your thoughts

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11 minutes ago, black_hull4 said:

Meh...I never considered the Scharnhorst to be a battlecruiser.

What do you consider battlecruisers in game? In my mind the super cruisers (eg alaska siegfied etc) and the BBs that rely on speed and stealth and maneuverability (eg Thunderer, Bourgogne, hood, scharnhorst etc) rather than alpha and brawling.

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1 hour ago, Aratnomis said:

What do you consider battlecruisers in game?

Faster ships with light armor but battleship size guns, as well as enlarged versions of similar cruisers(resemblances between Wichita/Dallas & Alaska). Scharnhorst & Thunderer have too much armor to be battlecruisers, in my opinion. Also if the ship was given that title by the navy it served in/was designed by.

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2 minutes ago, black_hull4 said:

Faster ships with light armor but battleship size guns, as well as enlarged versions of similar cruisers(resemblances between Wichita/Dallas & Alaska). Scharnhorst & Thunderer have too much armor to be battlecruisers, in my opinion. Also if the ship was given that title by the navy it served in/was designed by.

Scharnhorst was referred to as a battlecruiser  by the Royal navy when in service - the Germans referred to it as a capital ship - but splitting hairs and I understand what you are getting at. I am referring more to a style of play in WoWs where Thunderer cannot play a typical BB role. I beg to differ on the armour, it doesnt have any effective armour against the HE it faces or AP, and relies on stealth and rudder shift rather than angling to avoid damage.

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