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vak_

Priority Target is the perfect embodiment of why I consider captain skill rework a huge disappointment

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Well said OP. I too as a DD find the lack of PT in my new DD builds just hurting my SA and increase the work load. +2

Edited by TaxDollarsAtWork

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One the best critiques of the rework I’ve seen. And yes, the PT increase hurts. WG gave us a bunch of fun skills. But they increased the price of several crucial core skills, with the result that you really can’t use the new skills. Superintendent for BBs is the worst. You don’t gain much unless you’re Russian and now you have another 4pt skill you have to take with CE and FP. And secondary build forget it, especially for Mass and GA who can really use that 5th heal. Disappointing when you not only can’t use new skills but can’t even have the same level build as previously.

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1 hour ago, vak_ said:

It "just" gives you a little bit more information about the tactical situation

I think it gives a lot more than a bit of info about what's going on around me. I am one of those players that rely on PT. I messed with the skills and played a few games without it and it was extremely hard for me to be effective . Not having it on DD's is horrible. Plus on lower skilled 10 point DD captains you can not replicate the old skill tree with just the ten points. The 10 pointer were playable then. So now I will have to drop concealment expert on all lower point captains just to have PT and LS. Going to make for some lousy games for those ships and my team mates. I have no clue what goes in the fecal material heads of WGing to think up stuff like this. There are so many great suggestions from the forumites here and they had to pick these new and some weird conditional skills.  Plus this rework really messed with some of the premium/coal/steel ships many like me worked hard to get.

Yesterday was the first time in a long time i sat in front of my computer and I just could not get myself to launch the game. Went outside and messed with the cars for hours. Anyway this patch has really effected my liking of this game so much I just don't care to spend money on it anymore. I watched a bit of that WOWS stream the other day with Conway and Caysantos and the way they were talking up this rework,  everything was fine just incensed the heck out of me. Had to shut them off.  I wish I had a job like them where I could screw things up all day everyday and still get paid. 

Hats off to the OP for writing this, I agree completely. :Smile_honoring: As he states when they baked in Situation Awareness that was an awesome good will action on WGings part back then. Now....I don't know. What changed from then till now? Who I really making these awful decision?  I guess I could suck it up and adapt to the new play, but I don't think I really want to.

 

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Edited by JBR40
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+1 for this nice summary! I actually found myself ditching Last Stand for PT. With the latest patch a light version of LS is now baked in (you keep 20% engine power, but your rudder can still be jammed completely) which means there are far fewer situations where I really needed it. However, especially for newer players LS was very helpful and thus mandatory (and on cruisers it is now a 1pt skill, go figure), so baking that in to some extent is actually a big plus in my book.

PT is also very useful in hit-and-run DDs like Daring. Often I start firing and only smoke when the indicator goes up, that way you can often get a few more salvos or even save a smoke altogether.

Somehow though, I can't shake the suspicion that they simply made the more popular skills more expensive since they were "too popular" and lesser used ones cheaper to encourage their use, without realizing why people would use them. AR and SI on BBs is another example for this.

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As a DD main, I think PT incredibly unfair in that you can tell if I am locked on to you while I am in stealth. If you cant see me, you should not be able to have that info. Till I learned to run around with Torps selected, because switching from guns to torps let others know torps were launched (which also leds to the mind games you alluded too). It is an unfair advantage IMO, especially to BBs in the late game.  I would like to see it changed to reflect only ships you have detected or made into a 4 point skill like RDF  

Also I think, for DDs/CLs anyway, Incoming Fire Alert is better because it give you a chance to avoid salvos from ships you are not focused on while battling others.

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2 minutes ago, The_Necromancer_015 said:

As a DD main, I think PT incredibly unfair in that you can tell if I am locked on to you while I am in stealth. If you cant see me, you should not be able to have that info. Till I learned to run around with Torps selected, because switching from guns to torps let others know torps were launched (which also leds to the mind games you alluded too). It is an unfair advantage IMO, especially to BBs in the late game.  I would like to see it changed to reflect only ships you have detected or made into a 4 point skill like RDF  

Honestly, I have to disagree here. Not so much with the analysis of how PT can be used to figure out if a DD is stalking you, that is spot on. But I don't think it is unfair, since you still have the stealth advantage as a DD; I would not change how PT works.

This is the "thinking mans game" part, where using information and situational awareness can make the difference and can give an unlikely edge to a player. Many BB player complain about not being able to do anything about DDs stalking them, and not many use the tactic you describe. But those that do I would reward with better chances. RPF is much more straightforward and requires less thinking to get most use out of it, so it should be more costly. Overall, using information that the game provides and deduce non-trivial things like the position of an unspotted DD or the fact that torpedoes are incoming should not be punished and instead encouraged. After all, this type interactions and skill-based gameplay and interactions is what makes this game interesting (to me at least).

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53 minutes ago, AJTP89 said:

One the best critiques of the rework I’ve seen. And yes, the PT increase hurts. WG gave us a bunch of fun skills. But they increased the price of several crucial core skills, with the result that you really can’t use the new skills. Superintendent for BBs is the worst. You don’t gain much unless you’re Russian and now you have another 4pt skill you have to take with CE and FP. And secondary build forget it, especially for Mass and GA who can really use that 5th heal. Disappointing when you not only can’t use new skills but can’t even have the same level build as previously.

And you are forgetting MFCS, which was straight up nerfed without having its cost lowered. I'd suspect WG would even bump its cost to 5 if they had an extra lane of skills so you can take more skills with 21pts...or so they said

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7 minutes ago, shinytrashcan said:

Honestly, I have to disagree here. Not so much with the analysis of how PT can be used to figure out if a DD is stalking you, that is spot on. But I don't think it is unfair, since you still have the stealth advantage as a DD; I would not change how PT works.

This is the "thinking mans game" part, where using information and situational awareness can make the difference and can give an unlikely edge to a player. Many BB player complain about not being able to do anything about DDs stalking them, and not many use the tactic you describe. But those that do I would reward with better chances. RPF is much more straightforward and requires less thinking to get most use out of it, so it should be more costly. Overall, using information that the game provides and deduce non-trivial things like the position of an unspotted DD or the fact that torpedoes are incoming should not be punished and instead encouraged. After all, this type interactions and skill-based gameplay and interactions is what makes this game interesting (to me at least).

if you are in the late game and are detected you do know a stealth ship is around. you should not be able to get a clue if I am targeting with guns or torps, having the guns ready in case you run into enemy DD you didnt realize was there while stalking others is important , because sometimes the first few shots means the difference in a DD knife fight  . It is an unfair advantage IMO

Edited by The_Necromancer_015
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3 minutes ago, The_Necromancer_015 said:

if you are in the late game and are detected you do know a stealth ship is around. you should not be able to get a clue if I am targeting with guns or torps, having the guns ready in case you run into enemy DD you didnt realize was there while stalking others is important , because sometimes the first few shots means the difference in a DD knife fight  . It is an unfair advantage IMO

Again, I don't think it is unfair, but that is just my opinion. As I said, I agree with you on how PT can be used from both a DD and BB perspective, it is just how we evaluate the facts where we differ: the opinion part.

If it helps, you can press 'x' to select/deselect the target which has the same effect has targeting it with torpedoes in that the counter goes down. That way you can keep the counter low without switching to torpedoes constantly (which also zooms in your view of the ship and restricts your FOV somewhat, which I don't like). Also good for messing with the indicator to play mind games.

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2 hours ago, vak_ said:

So, why did I decide to talk about Priority Target (PT) skill in particular? In a nutshell, it's because I consider its cost change an epitome of what's wrong with the captain skill rework: lazy and questionable design choices that are blatantly disrespectful to the player base and that overshadow all the good things about the rework (more on that later).

Importance of PT

Many players, including yours truly, consider PT a must-have skill for Random battles. Note — unlike most other skills it doesn't actually affect your ship. PT doesn't make your guns load faster, or increase your HP, or make you more stealthy. It "just" gives you a little bit more information about the tactical situation, in a game which is often lauded here on the forums as the "thinking man's game", a game where twitchy lightning-fast reflexes aren't enough to win — instead, a cool-headed knowledgeable individual who plans ahead will prevail most of the time.

A quick comment on the phrase which I see from time to time; "this skill isn't useful because you should always assume that you're being targeted when you're spotted". I am of the opinion that this statement is wrong. When you're being targeted, there are things that you should be doing, for example keeping an eye on the enemy ships, in order to see who exactly has their guns trained on you, so that you can start evading and properly angling when you spot the telltale puffs of smoke. Not only does this take concentration and make it hard to line up your own shots; shifting the rudder and speed juking also decreases the average pace when you're trying to go from point A to point B. Oh, and often times the enemy ships aren't even spotted (including DDs, by the way). If you always assume every enemy ship is targeting you, you just won't be as efficient, period. It pays to know if someone is locked in on you. Of course, there are ways to mislead PT users (for example, I often target lock right before my salvo as to not spook the target, or mess with the enemies in my DD by switching from guns to torpedoes and back) — but nevertheless, having more information is a good thing. This is why I personally run PT on literally every single ship I own. I especially value it for hectic situations, for example knife-fighting destroyer engagements, where there is just simply no time to track the surroundings and see who is "looking" at you — in this case PT count can tell me if I should immediately start disengaging (e.g. turning away and activating smoke).

What happened to PT?

Most people reading this post will probably already know this, but I'll reiterate just in case: in the rework the PT skill now costs two points instead of one in the old system. Of course, this isn't the only skill whose cost got inflated; but at least for most other such captain skills the pill was slightly sweetened. For example, Adrenaline Rush (another very popular skill) is now three points instead of two, but at least you get a continuous AA damage bonus with it. With PT, WG just increased the cost by 100% and changed nothing else.

And by the way, I can't help but draw a parallel to what happened to another very popular skill which also "merely" provided you with tactical information. As some of you might recall, the alert that you get when you're spotted by the enemy used to be a captain skill, which also used to cost one skill point. It was called "Situational Awareness", and here is what happened to it in patch 0.5.9 back in 2016:

A popular skill, Situation Awareness, which displays a notification about the detection of enemy ships, is being given to everyone by default and removed from the commander-skills tree

This is intended to make the gameplay more enjoyable, as both beginners and more experienced players that would habitually pick the Situation Awareness skill for all their ships can now focus on other skills instead.

The contrast to the current situation is striking.

A Missed Opportunity

I am not saying that I hate everything about the new rework. I really like the new captain selection UI, for example — it's night and day comparing to the old clunky system. I also appreciate the fact that you can re-use captains on multiple types of premium ships, which makes the new grind somewhat less painful, and makes special captains even more beneficial. While I'm irked by the new captain XP cap (~70% increase is a lot; for example, in the previous total captain rework in 0.6.0 the increase was just ~10%) — I do understand that special signals sort of broke the economics of CXP, though this is mostly a self-inflected injury by WG. Heck, I'd even be willing to give them the benefit of the doubt with shoddy decisions like the introduction of Dead Eye (at least here they tried to do something new, though it's strange that they're pushing people into the very boring back-line camping meta), or gimped secondary builds. Hopefully, the spreadsheet will soon tell them that these things need to be re-balanced.

But I absolutely abhor the laziness with which they approached some parts of the skill rework, in a fashion that erases all the good will that I would have from the decent parts of it —- and I'll repeat, PT is the perfect case in point. Is it too much to ask to avoid blatantly exploitative things like simply doubling the cost of a skill that most people use? And I'm even more angry since now I can't see myself running many of the new DD skills because of the way the point values work out. At first glance, these skills seem interesting, and I do appreciate the thought WG has put into them. Swift in Silence (+8% speed when un-spotted)? Cool, this could do great things for slow torpedo DDs. Dazzle? Nice, more survivability when I get hit by radar or when I boop someone for cap reset and then drop back into concealment. Consumable Enhancement? Neat, seems to synergize well with DDs that have a lot of consumables. Torpedo speed boost doesn't gimp range anymore? Great, boats with slow fish can really benefit from it. But then I played around with captain points, and here is the thing. Last Stand is a must-have for DDs, and as I've mentioned above, I also consider PT too important to skip (not to mention that I've gotten too used to it in the past five years; playing without it would land me in hot water due to force of habit and make me angry). That's 5 points right there, 16 remain. This means that I can either get 3+3+3+3+4, or 3+3+4+4+2 -- as you can see, picking a second fourth level skill in addition to the must-have CE would deprive you of two 3-pointers, and there are just too many valuable skills there to pass up (SE, AR, SI, torpedo reload, gun reload) — none of them are new. The only DDs where I might go for two 4-pointers are the ships that really need the gun range (ahem Okhotnik) — and AFT isn't exactly new either. By making PT cost two points, WG effectively deprived me of running any of the new shiny DD skills in practically all my builds, if I'm optimizing for efficiency. What a poor design decision on their part!

All in all, this isn't how you increase player loyalty, this isn't the way to make people want to play your game more and to spend money on it. Come on, WG, you can do better. Please, please don't continue giving me reasons to quit this game; the past couple of years have already provided me with plenty.

For crying out loud, dude!  Make your post more terse and to the point.  This post is far too much of a wall of text and NOT a terse and to the point discussion of the topic at hand.

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If im not wrong, there's a similar case for Demolition Expert. It's 33% cheaper, but 50% less effective.

As for the laziness of the skill rework, basic stuff is missing. There's no indicator for when the conditional skills are active, the personnel file that allowed you to manage Commanders quickly is gone. Simple information with tooltips for players that don't follow news and come into a brand new environment is missing. These should have been day one things.

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4 minutes ago, warheart1992 said:

If im not wrong, there's a similar case for Demolition Expert. It's 33% cheaper, but 50% less effective.

The cost reduction for DE varies by ship type.  It's a level 1 skill for some ship types and a level 2 skill for others.

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4 minutes ago, Crucis said:

The cost reduction for DE varies by ship type.  It's a level 1 skill for some ship types and a level 2 skill for others.

It's a level 1 skill for BBs and 2 for DDs and Cruisers. I can't imagine a scenario where a BB takes the skill even for a single point unless going for a secondary build. 

 

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I still don't know why they changed anything. Never saw anyone start a thread about 'Ermagerd the Captain skills need a rework!!11'.

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16 minutes ago, warheart1992 said:

It's a level 1 skill for BBs and 2 for DDs and Cruisers. I can't imagine a scenario where a BB takes the skill even for a single point unless going for a secondary build. 

 

Even for a dead secondary build, it is worthless now.

For other ship types, where it costs more, it is a no go.

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2 hours ago, AJTP89 said:

You don’t gain much unless you’re Russian and now you have another 4pt skill you have to take with CE and FP.

Well... if you are British you get nearly 13k potential hp recovery.

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1 hour ago, LunchCutter said:

I still don't know why they changed anything. Never saw anyone start a thread about 'Ermagerd the Captain skills need a rework!!11'.

I believe the issue was there was essentially only a few builds that turned up time and time again for most ship types. You didn't *have* to take them to do well but realistically they gave the clearest benefit for most players.
It was clear a few skills like Priority Target , Adrenaline Rush, Superintendent and Concealment Expert were just more worthwhile for almost every ship compared to other skills.

The skill hungry gunboat destroyers/superlight gun cruisers were really the only ones to make difficult choices because BFT, AFT etc

LWM's "standard boring battleship build" photo had started to be a bit of a meme. The biggest schism was Basics of Survivability vs Jack of All Trades and one more from PT/PM/EL.
Likewise generally Secondary Battleships had a choice how down the secondary rabbit hole they went, but the consensus seemed to be either all the way or not at all.


There were exceptions; I did find an interesting build for my Massa'/Georgia Captain that used Advanced Firing Training, Concealment Expert and Fire Prevention but didn't need Expert Marksman or Manual Secondaries. Which I found worked because Massa' and Georgia already had such secondary good accuracy.

Likewise I found the biggest choices came with the Italian Heavy and British Light Cruisers who used SAP or just AP so didn't care about the DE & IFHE skills and had a fairly standard build for their first 10 points but then quite a few options to experiment with.


Anyway as it is, I'm not convinced that this has fixed it.
For most battleships it basically comes down to: Emergency Repair Expert vs Fire Prevention Expert to take alongside Dead Eye
Which is arguably a bigger choice than the old "difficult dilemma" of Basics of Survivability vs Jack of All Trades

Likewise for a secondary spec battleship, which 3 out of the four relevant 4pt skills to get from:

Close Quarters Combat, Improved Secondary Battery Aiming, Emergency Repair Expert & Fire Prevention Expert (maybe even CE but eh).

It's still very early days, maybe time will show that there are some hidden gems amongst the cheaper skill points but I somewhat doubt it.

Edited by SoothingWhaleSongEU
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Thank you for this post, @vak_ Why can't WG just "give" Priority Target to all captains as they did the "Detected" skill several years ago. Just like the old 1-point "Detected" skill, PT just gives situational awareness and does not affect ship characteristics. Seems a likely candidate...

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I will never not select PT.  

It's just too integral.  I couldn't imagine playing and being "blind" to this info.  (Maybe if you are a BB sitting in the back with dead eye, you can get away with it) or CVs.  With cruisers or DD's its a must have, any time you need to bail on a flank and kite you are flashing that broadside completely blind.  There could be no one looking at you or half the team.

Mind you it does have its "downsides" if the stars align.  Sometimes I purposely don't target a ship a I want to shoot, to entice them to do a dumb. (i.e. if they are sailing broadside, don't scare them into turning.  Or try to bait a turn if they are bow on)  However, I can't control if other players on my team are targeting the same ship, so whether or not that works is completely unknown to me, even though sometimes it appears to generate the results I want.

Regardless of the mind games that can be played with PT, the benefit far outweighs any potential negatives, knowing ships are targeting me has worked out far more for my benefit.  TBH if were assigning a point cost based on "value" of the skill PT should be a 4 pointer.  Realistically though, because of its necessity, it should just be baked in.  There should really be no "must have" skills if the point of the rework was to increase build diversity.

 

As a last addendum...there should NEVER be skills completely dedicated to AA.  Even now, there aren't always games with CV's.  It's frankly stupid in my opinion to waste skill points to counter a ship type that may not even be in a game rendering you spec useless.

Edited by Taco_De_Moist
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3 hours ago, Crucis said:

For crying out loud, dude!  Make your post more terse and to the point.  This post is far too much of a wall of text and NOT a terse and to the point discussion of the topic at hand.

You really can't help yourself can you? 

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I aprove and endorse this thread.

PT at 2 pts has being my single major complain since announced 

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I think this points out an issue (problem? reason?) with how WG views things vs. how we view things.

WG bases balance decisions on popularity.  If PT is so popular (and I do use it), is the skill underpriced at 1 skill point?  How valuable is it to know that 3 people are targeting you vs. 1 or even zero.

But WG's decision on PT and other parts of the skills rework has cause a number of issues, including that a 10pt build (and captain) just isn't worth as much as it was.

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5 hours ago, AJTP89 said:

One the best critiques of the rework I’ve seen. And yes, the PT increase hurts. WG gave us a bunch of fun skills. But they increased the price of several crucial core skills, with the result that you really can’t use the new skills. Superintendent for BBs is the worst. You don’t gain much unless you’re Russian and now you have another 4pt skill you have to take with CE and FP. And secondary build forget it, especially for Mass and GA who can really use that 5th heal. Disappointing when you not only can’t use new skills but can’t even have the same level build as previously.

I haven't looked into the BB skills as closely yet, beside trying out the Dead Eye build and looking at what happened to secondaries. But with DDs I was disappointed indeed. WG tried to create an opportunity for different build paths, but IMO the best build is still with mostly old skills, it just costs more now. That's what I mean by missed opportunity.

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