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Moggytwo

Fixing the design direction of the BB skill tree

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I want to discuss the design direction the post-rework BB skill tree, and how this could be improved.  WG have tried to give multiple builds, but they've really only focused on two aspects - secondary builds and long range builds.

The main issue with this concept is that they haven't focused on the main build that most BB's should be taking - the mid-range build.  The reasoning behind this comes with the way most BB's should be played.  As a BB you want to be assisting your DD's and cruisers with your map presence, and you want to be encouraging the enemy BB's and cruisers to move away from the caps through your map presence and damage potential.  You do this by pushing into a range that makes the enemy feel that they have to drop back a bit or they'll take too much damage, while being able to manage your damage intake to survive to the end game.  Obviously this positioning is all about balancing an aggressive position with managing your incoming damage.  If you and your team do this well, your larger ships should be much closer to the caps than the enemy, making capping them simple for your teams DD's, and making any enemy DD that tries to counter cap very vulnerable.

The issue with the post-rework BB skill tree is that the majority of BB's (by which I mean those that are not secondary builds, and not sniping builds, which should actually be most BB's in the game!), have now been made into sniping BB's with the poorly considered implementation of the Dead Eye skill.  What should be the main BB build is one that works best in the 13-16km range.  Anything that buffs accuracy at long range should be removed from the game.  What you want is a balanced damage increase at mid-range, that then drops off significantly and noticeably at ranges above 16km.  This will encourage BB's to move up to the ranges they should be working at.

We could do this with a change to the Dead Eye skill.  There are obviously multiple ways to do this, but an example would be: "Your AP autobounce angles are improved by 10° while within your base surface concealment range, however outside this range they are reduced by 5°."  This would mean that for something like an Ohio, if you were within 17.3km of your target, you would have autobounce angles of 55-70°, while outside this range, you would have an autobounce of 40-55°.  This would enable you to still do some damage outside these ranges, but would heavily encourage you to move up to mid ranges.  I have chosen an autobounce buff for this example, but you could buff other aspects of damage output, the main concept is that when when within your base concealment range, you become more powerful, while outside it you become less powerful.

You could then have other skills that mesh with this, for example you could change Super-heavy AP shells to be: "When between your base air concealment and surface concealment ranges, your main battery reload is reduced by 10%."  This is encouraging the average player to try and find that mid-range, while making them not want to push in excessively, and will sub-consciously introduce the concept of maintaining a balanced position.

You could also adapt survivability skills, for example reworking Fire Prevention to not reduce the number of fires or fire chance, but to instead be: "Fire damage per tick reduced by 10%, and fire duration reduced the closer you are to the ship that set the fire, starting at 100% duration at your base surface concealment range, down to 50% duration at half your base concealment range."  This means the closer you are (up to a point), the less time you'll burn.

All of these are encouraging mid-range play.  Unfortunately WG have forgotten that this is actually the primary desirable ranges for most BB's, and have instead focused only on sniping and secondary play, which should both be less common (but still valid of course) play styles.

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I agree with your diagnosis, but not your solution.  The problem I see is that 1) BBs cannot effectively dodge incoming fire and 2) DPS has become too high and to unconditional.  People keep complaining about BBs hiding in the back and then proposing things that make BBs want to hide in the back more.

HE, particularly from the large caliber British guns and fast firing CL/DD guns is too potent.  SAP from large caliber guns looks to be more of the same.  These shells cannot be effectively mitigated.  AP should be the dominate shell type for at least BBs, but it simply isn't as good as HE for most ships.  The ranking for many BBs is AP and HE went each is appropriate > All HE > All AP.  For a player who just wants to load shells into his tubes and fire, and there are many such players, HE is better.

 

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24 minutes ago, Helstrem said:

HE, particularly from the large caliber British guns and fast firing CL/DD guns is too potent.  SAP from large caliber guns looks to be more of the same.  These shells cannot be effectively mitigated.  AP should be the dominate shell type for at least BBs, but it simply isn't as good as HE for most ships.  The ranking for many BBs is AP and HE went each is appropriate > All HE > All AP.  For a player who just wants to load shells into his tubes and fire, and there are many such players, HE is better. 

This is where you can use skills to help, as I outlined in the OP.  If you clearly took less HE damage in the mid range through the Fire Prevention skill than you did when at longer ranges, then this would encourage players to move to those ranges.  It's easy to take a fire and burn at full damage for full duration at 20km range, but if you move into 15km range and suddenly you take less damage per fire, and the fires burn for much less time, you could balance the skill so that a mid-range BB will take less fire damage than a long range BB.

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2 minutes ago, Moggytwo said:

This is where you can use skills to help, as I outlined in the OP.  If you clearly took less HE damage in the mid range through the Fire Prevention skill than you did when at longer ranges, then this would encourage players to move to those ranges.  It's easy to take a fire and burn at full damage for full duration at 20km range, but if you move into 15km range and suddenly you take less damage per fire, and the fires burn for much less time, you could balance the skill so that a mid-range BB will take less fire damage than a long range BB.

Sure, but a skill that reduces the autobounce angles is yet another "Increase offense, kill stuff faster" skill that makes players want to hide in the back so they aren't the ones targeted.

Also, and I know this isn't just you, but conditional skills suck.  It becomes too much to memorize what does what under what circumstances.

Edited by Helstrem
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They need to do a few things:

1) Nerf HE spam and high fire chance starters like the Thunderer 

2) Encourage BBs to get into mid range using simple skills. 

3) Nerf certain CVs at higher tiers and boost AA capability and/or rework many planes a CV can carry 

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interesting idea...   reduce BB fire duration if at a range of 12km or less from spotted enemy ships...  call it standby firecrews or something :)

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If they change the activation of dead eye from "there are no visible enemies" to "there are visible enemies", you are have the inverse situation of BBs running away to keep emeries outside the detectability radius, instead pushing to mid range or give up concealment to stay farther back, forcing them to choose and eventually making it harder for them to disengage.

 

Also, splitting AA buff into different skills was a bad move, especially so considering they kept the cost on those skills. Buffing secondary armament should also improve AA, as most secondary armament on BBs happen to be dual purpose.

There should also be skills to help BBs push, like having more resistance to fire and improved torpedo detection, or even more speed to help them catch up to kiting BBs (alternatively, skills that help snipers should decrease their mobility so they can't keep running away forever). Or things like having allies nearby decrease fire duration, to help them push with support from cruisers and DDs.

 

WG, in their infinite wisdom, did the very opposite, predictably so.

Edited by T4rgetDown

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ooo yes... make dead eye only effective if doing less than 50% of max speed.  or rudder is locked in place for x seconds after firing...  

 

so all the dead eye snipers have their dispersion bonus, but are now an easier target to hit...

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On 1/24/2021 at 11:25 PM, T4rgetDown said:

There should also be skills to help BBs push, like having more resistance to fire and improved torpedo detection, or even more speed to help them catch up to kiting BBs (alternatively, skills that help snipers should decrease their mobility so they can't keep running away forever). Or things like having allies nearby decrease fire duration, to help them push with support from cruisers and DDs.

I agree. The point I was trying to make is that you can use captain skills to encourage players into mid range where most BB's should be. If you feel noticeably more effective in mid range and less effective at long range, then players will naturally feel compelled to want to operate in those ranges. 

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I will say it once again, and keep saying it till it's fixed! Wargaming needs to make THESE changes, ASAP.

1) Buff Improved Secondary Battery Aiming to -50%. -35% dispersion is NOT cutting it, I have already done secondaries tests in controlled environments and the hit rates for ALL battleships are not even close to up to snuff, even against battleships. For destroyers it's even worse because Dazzling's +20% dispersion affects secondaries. Literally, the difference between a battleship like say, California (with no secondary dispersion buff built-in) and Oklahoma (which DOES have -40% better dispersion) equates to what, a 10% better hit rate roughly for Oklahoma? and this just gets worse in Randoms, I've seen hit rates drop by like 10%.

2) Fix Grease the Gears. It currently works in reverse, buffing faster turret traverse more and buffing slower turret traverse less. So that's bass-ackwards (case in point, my California went from 48.6s turret traverse time to 50s turret traverse time. It got SLOWER. Which is a literal war crime.)

3) Fix Dead Eye. We all know it's WAY too good of a skill. -10% dispersion on main battery is NOT A SMALL CHANGE. And honestly, the current condition to keep Dead Eye active is killing brawling, because everyone's constantly running away to maintain Dead Eye. It's dumb, and the snipe meta is ok on a few ships, not ALL THE SHIPS. Anyways, I suggest (credit to another poster on here for this idea) to take the fire and flooding duration penalty off of Super Heavy AP shells, and tack that onto Dead Eye. OR make Dead Eye a flat -5% dispersion buff, with maybe a reload nerf tacked on instead of the distance condition. 

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BBs really dont need skills to increase their lethality, they are already the top of the damage boards for the most part. What WG should have introduced is skills that provide survivability bonuses for ships that are getting into it and fighting for extended amounts of time. Imagine getting a slight cooldown on your damage control for every 100,000 potential damage, or getting a free heal after getting set on fire 10 times. The details of my proposal isnt important but the idea is rewarding players that are able to stay in the fight longer than people that just yolo to their death with more ability to stay alive.

WG should be rewarding active BB players that perform well in the mix of things, not the ones hiding way in the back who die immediately if they actually have to deal with someone firing at them. 

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A couple related thoughts:

Objectives could provide some sort of combat bonuses, proportional to how close you are from it. For example, bonus reload or bonus cooldown on consumables, similar to AR skill but related to how close from an objective (cap) your ship is.

Rework Fire damage, reduce the amount of HP directly lost but apply a debuff to ship performance while the ship is on fire.  

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3 hours ago, SaiIor_Moon said:

1) Buff Improved Secondary Battery Aiming to -50%. -35% dispersion is NOT cutting it, I have already done secondaries tests in controlled environments and the hit rates for ALL battleships are not even close to up to snuff, even against battleships. For destroyers it's even worse because Dazzling's +20% dispersion affects secondaries. Literally, the difference between a battleship like say, California (with no secondary dispersion buff built-in) and Oklahoma (which DOES have -40% better dispersion) equates to what, a 10% better hit rate roughly for Oklahoma? and this just gets worse in Randoms, I've seen hit rates drop by like 10%.

I am going to agree with you on this one in particular. Being able to firing secondaries off of both sides of the ship is not worth going from +60 to +35. The dispersion bonus may be cut in half, but it feels like the hit to actual accuracy was far far worse. An extended brawl in a Bismark against another BB at 5km should be be closer to 100 hits and not 35. This is even more noticeable against DDs and am no long afraid of being in secondary range of BBs in a healthy destoryer..

Edited by Dmarvin
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3 hours ago, SaiIor_Moon said:

I will say it once again, and keep saying it till it's fixed! Wargaming needs to make THESE changes, ASAP.

1) Buff Improved Secondary Battery Aiming to -50%. -35% dispersion is NOT cutting it, I have already done secondaries tests in controlled environments and the hit rates for ALL battleships are not even close to up to snuff, even against battleships. For destroyers it's even worse because Dazzling's +20% dispersion affects secondaries. Literally, the difference between a battleship like say, California (with no secondary dispersion buff built-in) and Oklahoma (which DOES have -40% better dispersion) equates to what, a 10% better hit rate roughly for Oklahoma? and this just gets worse in Randoms, I've seen hit rates drop by like 10%.

2) Fix Grease the Gears. It currently works in reverse, buffing faster turret traverse more and buffing slower turret traverse less. So that's bass-ackwards (case in point, my California went from 48.6s turret traverse time to 50s turret traverse time. It got SLOWER. Which is a literal war crime.)

3) Fix Dead Eye. We all know it's WAY too good of a skill. -10% dispersion on main battery is NOT A SMALL CHANGE. And honestly, the current condition to keep Dead Eye active is killing brawling, because everyone's constantly running away to maintain Dead Eye. It's dumb, and the snipe meta is ok on a few ships, not ALL THE SHIPS. Anyways, I suggest (credit to another poster on here for this idea) to take the fire and flooding duration penalty off of Super Heavy AP shells, and tack that onto Dead Eye. OR make Dead Eye a flat -5% dispersion buff, with maybe a reload nerf tacked on instead of the distance condition. 

1) Your test was misleadingly inaccurate.  When so much of a build is changed you cannot simply force a 1:1 test with how it was and compare the results.  You had a desired result and you set the test up to produce that result.  Your test ignores the 10% increased RoF of the main battery.  It ignores the benefit of any hits that happen at longer ranges than the old secondaries could reach.  It ignores the benefit of any hits obtained by secondaries that under the old system wouldn't shoot at anything at all because the designated target was out of their arc of fire.

Bluntly, taken by itself, the secondary build for German BBs is stronger than it used to be.  The problem is that the mild buff it received pales in comparison to the ridiculous buff long ranged fire from BBs and cruisers received.  This means that in actual practice the slight buff to German secondaries is a relative nerf.  Other navies secondaries, other than perhaps the US BBs with natively boosted accuracy, were, of course, taken out behind the woodshed and shot in the back.

2) You are correct on this one.  The ships that need the skill the most get the least out of it.

3) Dead Eye is absurdly overpowered.  A 10% reduction in the size of the ellipse is a 19% reduction in the area of the ellipse, which if your aim is good then the removed portion of the ellipse was almost all just water rather than target which increases the percentage of the ellipse occupied by target disproportionately.  I guesstimate about a 30% accuracy buff overall, if you can aim.  I don't have a fix for the skill.  I think it should just be outright removed.

Edited by Helstrem
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4 minutes ago, Helstrem said:

A 10% reduction in the size of the ellipse is a 19% reduction in the area of the ellipse

:cap_wander_2:... :cap_hmm: ... :cap_book:... :cap_wander:

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1 hour ago, Helstrem said:

1) Your test was misleadingly inaccurate.  When so much of a build is changed you cannot simply force a 1:1 test with how it was and compare the results.  You had a desired result and you set the test up to produce that result.  Your test ignores the 10% increased RoF of the main battery.  It ignores the benefit of any hits that happen at longer ranges than the old secondaries could reach.  It ignores the benefit of any hits obtained by secondaries that under the old system wouldn't shoot at anything at all because the designated target was out of their arc of fire.

Bluntly, taken by itself, the secondary build for German BBs is stronger than it used to be.  The problem is that the mild buff it received pales in comparison to the ridiculous buff long ranged fire from BBs and cruisers received.  This means that in actual practice the slight buff to German secondaries is a relative nerf.  Other navies secondaries, other than perhaps the US BBs with natively boosted accuracy, were, of course, taken out behind the woodshed and shot in the back.

2) You are correct on this one.  The ships that need the skill the most get the least out of it.

3) Dead Eye is absurdly overpowered.  A 10% reduction in the size of the ellipse is a 19% reduction in the area of the ellipse, which if your aim is good then the removed portion of the ellipse was almost all just water rather than target which increases the percentage of the ellipse occupied by target disproportionately.  I guesstimate about a 30% accuracy buff overall, if you can aim.  I don't have a fix for the skill.  I think it should just be outright removed.

Well, I mean, I'd do the same test multiple times, but it takes like 14-19 minutes to complete each time in its current configuration XD And yes, this test is NOT taking into account main battery fire AT ALL, correct. Because it's not secondaries. I'm testing ONLY secondaries in these tests, naught else. Also, I WAS testing at the greater secondary range in the case of California (that is, 8.5km, which is longer range than it was originally, at 7.56km), so that complaint is actually incorrect. And finally, unfortunately, I do NOT have the data from pre-patch tests, otherwise I would be using it to compare to, so that's really unfortunate. But from what I'm seeing, since I'm literally doing the tests by hits vs shells fired, to get the hitrate, is that the hitrates are DEFINITELY lower than before. 

Buuut on the flipside, I'm glad you can at least agree with 2) and 3), so that's nice. Trust me, I agree with you on Dead Eye, in its current iteration, it's just too good to not take.

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1 hour ago, ArIskandir said:

:cap_wander_2:... :cap_hmm: ... :cap_book:... :cap_wander:

When the diameter is reduced by 10% the area is reduced by 19% because the reduction is area is the outside ring.

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7 minutes ago, Helstrem said:

When the diameter is reduced by 10% the area is reduced by 19% because the reduction is area is the outside ring.

And this concept would apply to secondaries dispersion as well, right? That's why you thought my tests were "inaccurate"? I wonder how this diagram would look if it was done for secondaries dispersion ellipse....what sort of values would we get?

I don't fully understand this kind of math just yet, I don't think...

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12 minutes ago, SaiIor_Moon said:

Well, I mean, I'd do the same test multiple times, but it takes like 14-19 minutes to complete each time in its current configuration XD And yes, this test is NOT taking into account main battery fire AT ALL, correct. Because it's not secondaries. I'm testing ONLY secondaries in these tests, naught else. Also, I WAS testing at the greater secondary range in the case of California (that is, 8.5km, which is longer range than it was originally, at 7.56km), so that complaint is actually incorrect. And finally, unfortunately, I do NOT have the data from pre-patch tests, otherwise I would be using it to compare to, so that's really unfortunate. But from what I'm seeing, since I'm literally doing the tests by hits vs shells fired, to get the hitrate, is that the hitrates are DEFINITELY lower than before. 

Buuut on the flipside, I'm glad you can at least agree with 2) and 3), so that's nice. Trust me, I agree with you on Dead Eye, in its current iteration, it's just too good to not take.

My point was that no matter how many times you run that test the results will be irrelevant.  Its very structure is built to make it seem like a secondary build is weaker than it was due to being less accurate than it was.  It isolates the one aspect that is weaker while eliminating all the aspects that are stronger.  Yes, secondaries are less accurate against designated targets, by about 10%.  That doesn't mean secondary builds are weaker (they are, but only because sniper builds got buffed so ridiculously) as things like the 10% main battery RoF buff more than compensates for the secondary accuracy nerf, and that is before the longer range and all secondaries being able to fire at targets of opportunity.  

Just now, SaiIor_Moon said:

And this concept would apply to secondaries dispersion as well, right? That's why you thought my tests were "inaccurate"? I wonder how this diagram would look if it was done for secondaries dispersion ellipse....what sort of values would we get?

I don't fully understand this kind of math just yet, I don't think...

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Not really, no  I mean, it probably applies, but that isn't the point I am making.  When you set it up to just test secondary accuracy against a single, designated target within range of the old secondary build and you aren't using the main battery you are basically throwing all the offensive advantages of the new secondary build out the window and focusing only on the nerfed aspect and then declare secondary builds nerfed.  It isn't an accurate representation of how things stand.

Basically, if the only changes to the skills had been to the secondary skills then the German secondary build would actually have been mildly buffed.  The problem is that Dead Eye, and the no concealment, high RoF cruiser builds, have turned any kind of pushing into nigh suicide, which makes the actual buffs to the secondary build moot.  Of course the nations that don't have built in improved secondary accuracy got nerfed, but that is a slightly different subject.

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2 minutes ago, Helstrem said:

My point was that no matter how many times you run that test the results will be irrelevant.  Its very structure is built to make it seem like a secondary build is weaker than it was due to being less accurate than it was.  It isolates the one aspect that is weaker while eliminating all the aspects that are stronger.  Yes, secondaries are less accurate against designated targets, by about 10%.  That doesn't mean secondary builds are weaker (they are, but only because sniper builds got buffed so ridiculously) as things like the 10% main battery RoF buff more than compensates for the secondary accuracy nerf, and that is before the longer range and all secondaries being able to fire at targets of opportunity.  

Not really, no  I mean, it probably applies, but that isn't the point I am making.  When you set it up to just test secondary accuracy against a single, designated target within range of the old secondary build and you aren't using the main battery you are basically throwing all the offensive advantages of the new secondary build out the window and focusing only on the nerfed aspect and then declare secondary builds nerfed.  It isn't an accurate representation of how things stand.

Basically, if the only changes to the skills had been to the secondary skills then the German secondary build would actually have been mildly buffed.  The problem is that Dead Eye, and the no concealment, high RoF cruiser builds, have turned any kind of pushing into nigh suicide, which makes the actual buffs to the secondary build moot.  Of course the nations that don't have built in improved secondary accuracy got nerfed, but that is a slightly different subject.

At the same time, its really bad only getting 80 hits in COOP in a bismarck, against 4 ships at less than 4kms, which ive had happen more than once since the patch.

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3 minutes ago, Princess_Daystar said:

At the same time, its really bad only getting 80 hits in COOP in a bismarck, against 4 ships at less than 4kms, which ive had happen more than once since the patch.

And you had one as the designated target and were broadside enough to that target for secondaries to actually bear on it?

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1 minute ago, Helstrem said:

And you had one as the designated target and were broadside enough to that target for secondaries to actually bear on it?

Yup, for sure been focusing on making sure i had it.

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14 minutes ago, Helstrem said:

And you had one as the designated target and were broadside enough to that target for secondaries to actually bear on it?

No offense, but I don't think I'm getting all that you're saying. All I know is that I tested a California at 8.5km out against a Tier 7 Colorado non-moving, non-firing bot, and got the hit rate percentage by dividing the number of hits vs total number of shells fired. I don't see how this in itself is "inaccurate" as you claim. Or is that math incorrect? It seems to make sense to me, not taking into account ANYTHING ELSE. Not pre-patch data, not original firing range, not whatever else you're talking about. I mean the ship, as it is, right now, its hitrate percentage in this controlled test environment.

I mean, if I'm really missing something here, then I guess I'll just leave it to the experts to figure out all this stuff, I guess. I don't want the wrong information, after all. This is about finding the true hit rates of secondaries, and whether Improved Secondary Battery Aiming is up to snuff, because I don't think it is at all. And you say I didn't take anything else into account but secondaries, and this is true, because this test is literally just about secondaries, naught else. It's NOT about secondaries efficiency. It's about secondaries accuracy.

Edited by SaiIor_Moon

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Just now, SaiIor_Moon said:

No offense, but I don't think I'm getting all that you're saying. All I know is that I tested a California at 8.5km out against a Tier 7 Colorado non-moving, non-firing bot, and got the hit rate percentage by dividing the number of hits vs total number of shells fired. I don't see how this in itself is "inaccurate" as you claim. Or is that math incorrect? It seems to make sense to me, not taking into account ANYTHING ELSE. Not pre-patch data, not original firing range, not whatever else you're talking about. I mean the ship, as it is, right now, its hitrate percentage in this controlled test environment.

Because you aren't testing the build.  You are testing one aspect of it, finding that aspect isn't as good as it used to be and based on that saying the entire build is nerfed.

A better test would be a time to kill test using the main battery as well.  That would at least factor in the 10% main batter RoF boost.  Even there it leaves out the greater range, which extends out how far away the aforementioned RoF boost kicks in, and the ability to get the occasional secondary hit on other targets of oppotunity.

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With Manual Fire Control for Secondaries, the designated target was facing a 60% increase in the odds of being hit.

Now, a maximum possible secondary battery set-up doesn't duplicate that.
The non designated targets are given "normal" accuracy (adjusted by Secondary Battery Modification 1, if installed) and the designated target faces a 35% increase in the odds of being hit by guns able to fire upon it (on top of the improvement from Secondary Battery Modification 1, if it is installed).

The net result is that secondary battery targets, are not facing the same odds of being hit when compared to what the pre-rebork set-ups were capable of.
Secondary Battery Modification 1, plus Advanced Firing Training, plus Manual Fire Control for Secondaries produced more hits on target.
Even removing MFCS is still an improvement in the odds of hitting a target versus the current maximum possible combination of Upgrade Modules & Captain's Skills.

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