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shinytrashcan

Can someone explain Albermarle to me?

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I just got to the T8 RN heavy cruiser, it sucks. I mean it really, REALLY sucks.

How do you make this thing work? So far, this thing has neither the range, nor the agility to do anything in open water in the current meta with BBs avoiding the circles on the map like they are made of lava. And the guns aren't even that great, honestly I think they are rather bad. Armor is technically there, but all of the significant parts that are not overmatched are arranged in a convenient shell-catcher design to ensure anything hitting you is a citadel. So what is the point of this thing?

It doesn't help that most of my teams after getting this were literally so bad that we either ran out of points by the 10 minute mark, or the reds had already 1000pts. Currently I am really frustrated with this POS that I don't know if I actually want to continue to Drake or Goliath.

So, what am missing about this ship?

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Albemarle's only real redeeming feature is the guns, and the ability to out-hp virtually every other tier 8 cruiser in an isolated fight.  

It's a weird boat.  Normal dodging is out of the window because your ONLY goal is to get shells to go high.  Turn *in* not out, accelerate towards the enemy if nose in, slow down if kiting away.  If the shells hit low or catch the step on the citadel you're in for a world of pain.  However, most people also go super hard for shooting your center mass, so you can bait a lot of shots that should otherwise kill you if you're at about a 20 degree angle.

Certainly not for everyone, and you need to be pretty ok with the spotter plane cause your range is pretty anemic, but she still has a heal, and if you're not dead, you can still do damage. 

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This the only cruiser line I stopped at T7, based on what I had read here. Everything else either T9 or T10.

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It is a British cruiser.

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The Albemarle is not a bad boat, but it suffers from limited range in a meta where having limited range just isn't very fun.  The upside is that it it's one of the tankiest Tier 8 cruisers against DD/cruiser caliber weaponry and will beat almost any other Tier 8 cruiser in a head to head gun fight, but of course the downside is that it doesn't deal very well with camping BBs.....

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28 minutes ago, ToxicSymphony said:

Albemarle's only real redeeming feature is the guns, and the ability to out-hp virtually every other tier 8 cruiser in an isolated fight.  

It's a weird boat.  Normal dodging is out of the window because your ONLY goal is to get shells to go high.  Turn *in* not out, accelerate towards the enemy if nose in, slow down if kiting away.  If the shells hit low or catch the step on the citadel you're in for a world of pain.  However, most people also go super hard for shooting your center mass, so you can bait a lot of shots that should otherwise kill you if you're at about a 20 degree angle.

Certainly not for everyone, and you need to be pretty ok with the spotter plane cause your range is pretty anemic, but she still has a heal, and if you're not dead, you can still do damage. 

Thanks for the advice, especially on the dodging part. I was wondering at first what the hell I was doing wrong, but after a look at the armor layout it made sense. It is a really bad design, imho (from a game perspective, no idea about historic performance etc.).

I was actually thinking whether taking the Spotter plane expert skill (50% less consumable action time, but also 50% less cooldown with 2 extra charges) might be worth it for the line. Not that I particularly like using spotter plane, but I guess that's a matter of practice.

2 minutes ago, yashma said:

The Albemarle is not a bad boat, but it suffers from limited range in a meta where having limited range just isn't very fun.  The upside is that it it's one of the tankiest Tier 8 cruisers against DD/cruiser caliber weaponry and will beat almost any other Tier 8 cruiser in a head to head gun fight, but of course the downside is that it doesn't deal very well with camping BBs.....

I actually had one or two fights against cruisers, and the issue was always that you can't angle against the cruiser and all the BBs shooting at you from 15-20km range. With the current meta it feels like you are more or less useless in the first ten minutes until the BBs are done camping. Then, depending on the result of the snipe fest, you can either push or kite for damage.  So far it is not a fun experience.

Does this at least get better with Drake and Goliath, or should I just abandon the line at this point?

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4 minutes ago, shinytrashcan said:

Thanks for the advice, especially on the dodging part. I was wondering at first what the hell I was doing wrong, but after a look at the armor layout it made sense. It is a really bad design, imho (from a game perspective, no idea about historic performance etc.).  she shares a cit layout with neptune, which is not a good thing to do haha.  And absolutely always run accel mod, the w/s jukes are what save you. 

I was actually thinking whether taking the Spotter plane expert skill (50% less consumable action time, but also 50% less cooldown with 2 extra charges) might be worth it for the line. Not that I particularly like using spotter plane, but I guess that's a matter of practice. I'd say just skip it, realistically you need the range early on in the game, then 5 minutes later once that fight has progressed.  Making that up-time shorter isn't going to help you out.  

I actually had one or two fights against cruisers, and the issue was always that you can't angle against the cruiser and all the BBs shooting at you from 15-20km range. With the current meta it feels like you are more or less useless in the first ten minutes until the BBs are done camping. Then, depending on the result of the snipe fest, you can either push or kite for damage.  So far it is not a fun experience.  Against cruisers of your tier you're entirely capable of just going nose in and using your front turrets, one of the biggest things to know is whether its safe to do so or not.  Even if only using the front guns, never go fully nose in :)

Does this at least get better with Drake and Goliath, or should I just abandon the line at this point? Drake is better in some ways, worse in others.  It gets citadeled less frequently, though gives up the ability to block any higher tier BB shells whatsoever, as the entire exterior is overmatched by everything 406 and up, whereas albemarle can actually bounce those shells off the citadel plating (which sounds very concerning, but its something you just get used to).  Goliath has more armor than either, and is a better boat overall.  

 

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4 minutes ago, ToxicSymphony said:
12 minutes ago, shinytrashcan said:

Thanks for the advice, especially on the dodging part. I was wondering at first what the hell I was doing wrong, but after a look at the armor layout it made sense. It is a really bad design, imho (from a game perspective, no idea about historic performance etc.).  she shares a cit layout with neptune, which is not a good thing to do haha.  And absolutely always run accel mod, the w/s jukes are what save you. 

I haven't dared to touch Neptune yet, either, for exactly the same reason. That armor scheme seems just like a recipe for obliteration, or some rapid unscheduled decommissioning.

I was actually thinking whether taking the Spotter plane expert skill (50% less consumable action time, but also 50% less cooldown with 2 extra charges) might be worth it for the line. Not that I particularly like using spotter plane, but I guess that's a matter of practice. I'd say just skip it, realistically you need the range early on in the game, then 5 minutes later once that fight has progressed.  Making that up-time shorter isn't going to help you out.  

Noted, I thought if the playstyle persists all the way up to Goliath that it might help, but if not even better. More points for other stuff.

I actually had one or two fights against cruisers, and the issue was always that you can't angle against the cruiser and all the BBs shooting at you from 15-20km range. With the current meta it feels like you are more or less useless in the first ten minutes until the BBs are done camping. Then, depending on the result of the snipe fest, you can either push or kite for damage.  So far it is not a fun experience.  Against cruisers of your tier you're entirely capable of just going nose in and using your front turrets, one of the biggest things to know is whether its safe to do so or not.  Even if only using the front guns, never go fully nose in :)

Gotcha, thanks for that. Will try to remember this.

Does this at least get better with Drake and Goliath, or should I just abandon the line at this point? Drake is better in some ways, worse in others.  It gets citadeled less frequently, though gives up the ability to block any higher tier BB shells whatsoever, as the entire exterior is overmatched by everything 406 and up, whereas albemarle can actually bounce those shells off the citadel plating (which sounds very concerning, but its something you just get used to).  Goliath has more armor than either, and is a better boat overall.  

From what I have seen of Drakes armor layout it is almost functionally identical, with a armor strip external to the citadel as part of the TPS and 27mm upper belt. Deck is 30mm, and nose 25mm. No real differences on the external side, but maybe I missed it? However, the citadel is much smaller on Drake, without the ingenious shell catcher built-in.

I will give her a bit more time to see whether I get used to her. Don't really want to drop that much fXP to skip her, anyway.

 

 

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For all the hate I bestow upon Albe I actually did remarkably well in it.  I'd like to say its just in spite of all of the things, but the boat really does not suck as much as her reputation would lead you to believe.  

That's generally how to dodge in all cruisers nowadays.  Either you fire while you're already approaching your maximum angle (and unspotted) or you progressively move towards an island while retaining angle towards the opposition.  Gone are the days when freely turning out in open water was ever a good idea (not that it was). 

The thing with Drake is the cit is more inboard, and you risk deletion far less than Albemarle.  The shell velocity is quite low, but with range mod you get significantly more range.  

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I hated it until I developed the skills to not show my sides anywhere, progress cautiously, and perfect the role of support cruiser. One area where it's really potent is DD hunting. I never learned to actually like it, but I remember taming it over time. Once it reached elite status, I forgot about it and moved on.

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1 hour ago, ToxicSymphony said:

It's a weird boat.  Normal dodging is out of the window because your ONLY goal is to get shells to go high.  Turn *in* not out, accelerate towards the enemy if nose in, slow down if kiting away.  If the shells hit low or catch the step on the citadel you're in for a world of pain.  However, most people also go super hard for shooting your center mass, so you can bait a lot of shots that should otherwise kill you if you're at about a 20 degree angle.

spot on summary. 

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10 hours ago, shinytrashcan said:

Does this at least get better with Drake and Goliath, or should I just abandon the line at this point?

Personally I think the Drake is (was?) one of the best Tier 9 cruisers , although it still suffers a bit from poor turret angles and a weak armor scheme.  The Goliath really fixes a lot of the survivability problems with great turret angles, a little better armor and a massive HP pool.  It still takes the odd chunk damage, but the heal usually compensates.

 

*edit

 

Of course the new meta isn't as friendly towards them, and I haven't played them enough this patch to really asses how strong they are now.  They're still good, but things might be a little harder than before. 

 

9 hours ago, ToxicSymphony said:

For all the hate I bestow upon Albe I actually did remarkably well in it.  I'd like to say its just in spite of all of the things, but the boat really does not suck as much as her reputation would lead you to believe.  

That was my experience with the RN CAs when I first got them.  I thought they were mediocre, but I still did great with them.  It took me a little while to finally figure out they were actually just good in ways that aren't all that visible on paper.  

Edited by yashma

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It needs looking at. Maybe a range buff and a deck reinforcement. Because It can be hit hard. Terrain and movement is your only option, but never get caught is the key. This ship screams support even though it is a heavy cruiser.

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Any time I see a Able I cannot wait to farm crits off it.

At the same time I realized that I am just there to feed opponets until sunk. The guns are good and thats about it.

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I thoroughly enjoyed the British light cruiser line all the way up to tier 10. The heavy cruiser line on the other hand I just couldn't make work. I'm not that good so it's not surprising but recently came back to it to try to finish due to the cruiser missions in the Hizen event. Yup, still not good and with the current meta it's possibly even worse. Farmed by carriers and burned to death by almost everything plus taking odd citadel hits from every angle. Range is always an issue and pushing up to have something to shoot at is risky. They are quite adept at dealing with spotted destroyers.

I never got to Goliath but I know when I see one it's the first ship I target as it's a damage piñata.  

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1 hour ago, SteelRain_Rifleman said:

It needs looking at. Maybe a range buff and a deck reinforcement. Because It can be hit hard. Terrain and movement is your only option, but never get caught is the key. This ship screams support even though it is a heavy cruiser.

Yeah, in the current meta the range is what frustrates me most. By the time I am in range to farm something I either have to expose myself so much compared to the rest of the team that I am the preferred target, or I have to wait for the game being practically decided. Playing what appears to be a pure support ship is really frustrating.

The guns I kinda get used to now, but they are not really my thing yet. Which is weird, considering I have much less problems with e..g. USN CA HE and AP. From what I can say my average damage is also comparable to my other T8 cruisers, if not better than a few of them. No idea though really what that is worth though.

4 hours ago, yashma said:
5 hours ago, ToxicSymphony said:

For all the hate I bestow upon Albe I actually did remarkably well in it.  I'd like to say its just in spite of all of the things, but the boat really does not suck as much as her reputation would lead you to believe.  

That was my experience with the RN CAs when I first got them.  I thought they were mediocre, but I still did great with them.  It too me a little while to finally figure out they were actually just good in ways that aren't all that visible on paper.  

Well, with the T5-T7 that was my impression too. I could even make the limited range on Surrey work (though I had kind MM most of the time) but with Albermarle and being constantly put in T10 games it is just a pain. Once you get spotted every BB from the back is targeting you and with the large caliber guns at T10 that means the thing has virtually no armor except that shell-catcher citadel.

It is just not a pleasant experience, currently.

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I enjoyed grinding the Surrey, thought the Albemarle was meh, and enjoyed the Drake. Just my impressions.

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Albemarle is simply what happens when WG lazily re-use Neptune's hull on a ship without the smoke or handling of Neptune. 

 

Between the awful turning, awful acceleration, huge citadel, bad turret arcs and overall poor firepower you really have nothing but the super-repair, which relies on not getting hit too hard too quickly.

Others are right to say that you should try and generate cruiser 1-on-1's but that's very hard, and if the red cruiser is smart it'll still have good options, Baltimore can absolutely nuke you with AP, the Japanese cruisers have better ballistics and accuracy and will trade well with you at range, despite the repair. Being a cruiser bully doesn't work when there are only 3 cruisers per team scattered between the inevitable 5 battleships. Your anti-destroyer ability (low ROF, no radar, bad chase angles) is also terrible.

Exploit the repair where possible, fight relatively close in but not too close, high-alpha is dangerous. Ultimately Albemarle's worth what WG paid for it - practically nothing.

 

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