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JamesTomb

Actually effective AA?

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I just got focused down by a Hak, in my Wooster. Took awhile because I 'just dodged' a lot of torps, but between having to negotiate terrain and avoid showing too much broadside to the reds it was only a matter of time. I got maybe a dozen planes over the 4-minute span.

Anyhoo, it started to legit make me angry that one of the strongest AA ships in the game can't actually defend itself from CVs. I'm not even talking about the first drop, or Soviet single drop nonsense, but repeat drops within your AA envelope, from planes that supposedly have lower health than most.

So anyway, I guess what I'm asking is whether AA actually does any good whatsoever. Are there any captain skills or upgrades that make a real difference? Is there really any mano-a-mano way to deal with CVs? I looked at the AA equipment option and it seems to be useless. Faster reload on DFAA? Yeah, that'll help.

Yes, yes, I know that...

#1 -- AA takes out planes over time, so strong team AA or a bad CV driver will result in less effective squadrons by the end of the game. But that don't help me in the short term, or in the end-game if the CV hasn't been deplaned by then...by which time half my AA has been knocked out.

#2: Bro, group up with other ships to create overlapping flak! That's great. When it's possible. Which it usually isn't. If I need to move up to support a capping DD, or it's late-game with few ships left on either side and I need to take a cap -- what then? If a competent CV driver focuses you, can you actually defend yourself for any length of time, in any ship?

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4 minutes ago, JamesTomb said:

I just got focused down by a Hak, in my Wooster. Took awhile because I 'just dodged' a lot of torps, but between having to negotiate terrain and avoid showing too much broadside to the reds it was only a matter of time. I got maybe a dozen planes over the 4-minute span.

Anyhoo, it started to legit make me angry that one of the strongest AA ships in the game can't actually defend itself from CVs. I'm not even talking about the first drop, or Soviet single drop nonsense, but repeat drops within your AA envelope, from planes that supposedly have lower health than most.

So anyway, I guess what I'm asking is whether AA actually does any good whatsoever. Are there any captain skills or upgrades that make a real difference? Is there really any mano-a-mano way to deal with CVs? I looked at the AA equipment option and it seems to be useless. Faster reload on DFAA? Yeah, that'll help.

Yes, yes, I know that...

#1 -- AA takes out planes over time, so strong team AA or a bad CV driver will result in less effective squadrons by the end of the game. But that don't help me in the short term, or in the end-game if the CV hasn't been deplaned by then...by which time half my AA has been knocked out.

#2: Bro, group up with other ships to create overlapping flak! That's great. When it's possible. Which it usually isn't. If I need to move up to support a capping DD, or it's late-game with few ships left on either side and I need to take a cap -- what then? If a competent CV driver focuses you, can you actually defend yourself for any length of time, in any ship?

The first necessary step is an evaluation, you need to know the impact of your AA over the CV, most importantly how many strikes per flight it gets on you. That number will help you calculate the time you can sustain air attacks. Once you know the time you can survive being under the CV aura you can decide your course of action, for example you may realize moving up to support that capping DD means you'll die to the CV. In consequence you can't move up to support unless you consider your ship is a good price to pay for achieving whatever is you set to achieve. 

It might not be intuitive or evident but moving up to support the capping DD might be the equivalent for the CV to showing broadside to a BB. 

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17 minutes ago, JamesTomb said:

whether AA actually does any good whatsoever

Does it do some nonzero amount of good? Sure, why not.

Is it anywhere near effective? No, not since the carrier rebork.

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I played a game in a full AA Worcester against a sub-50% Nakimov that threw his planes at me all game. Over 80 planes downed, 60 of which were strike aircraft, and he kept hitting me right up until I sank him and ended the game.

He was the last enemy ship in the match and I almost went down before he did, due to damage sustained from air attack.

As has been said many times in many ways by many people, AA is a placebo light show to make surface players feel like there is some kind of two-way interaction going on. It is a bad and dysfunctional mechanic. The game I described above was an uphill and narrowly fought battle even against a garbage player.

More recently I've been playing full AA Annapolis. It lacks range, but can uniquely muster 9+4 flak. It also has over 300 long-range DPS, which in theory should be quite difficult to deal with. In practice, it's still highly dependent on the competence of the CV player. The bad ones lose full squadrons in a second, the decent ones still manage to get off a drop or two.

You know, and then you go on the forums and there are the typical apologists bleating that you didn't play perfectly so that's why the interaction was bad. The reality is that counterplay against CVs is heavily skill-capped in favor of the CV player, and the rework did nothing to change that. If anything it made it worse.

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8 minutes ago, SuperSSL said:

The bad ones lose full squadrons in a second, the decent ones still manage to get off a drop or two.

So you want it to make it impossible for any CV player, not to land attacks bad or good interesting logic :Smile_teethhappy:  Again people want AA that will make them untouchable against CVs :fish_glass: But of course, according to certain players being untouchable is balanced, and not OP at all :Smile_smile: Proves by his own words AA works but doesn't work because it doesn't shot down all planes and isn't untouchable against CV :fish_palm:

Edited by LastRemnant
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Number of planes shot down means even less now with tactical bombers since they're cooldown based. Doesn't matter how many tactical planes you down, it'll always be a full squad.

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AA makes pretty patterns on the screen..that's it.

Can't have CV fun being spoiled, just ask the CV guys.

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I hope WG is gathering  data for an AA rework, because it will be impossible to avoid at some point.

Just a couple of examples where the current system don't make sense:

-Catapult fighter that are obsolete against tactical squadrons and most squads that carry only 1 drop (they won't have enough time to even start shooting at the planes before they leave in most cases).
-Skip bombers that can literally drop outside of the AA range
-300 knots jet that can fly through fighters without the fear of ever seeing them catching up.
-AA mounts that are destroyed and never repaired. While a CV can regenerate planes during the whole duration of the battle. Moreover, tactical squadrons will always be 100% full and failure to shoot down a single plane due to neutered AA directly increase CV advantage over the surface ship (as if needed...)

AA wasn't perfect before, but a lot of new content introduced during the last year made it significantly worse/inadequate in some scenarios. It is just being rendered slowly ineffective over time.
The longer they wait to address it, the more difficult and tedious the fix is going to be. They are acquiring a tech debt that will cost them, eventually. One way, or another. 

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Main issue i have in this iteration of the game is AA.

WOWS seem to want that squadron of planes to get at-lest 1 drop on surface ships regardless of the persons cv's skill level (or tier), So that the cv/pilot doesn't feel cheated with playing that ship and can have some fun. But this just makes people with actual skill in cv's be-able to make multiple drops from the same squad.

The only thing having "good" AA does now, is to make it more annoying for the cv to attack you, (since they need to dodge flak) and this may make them more inclined to attack someone else. For most ships with a good Health Pool and armor, this might be a viable tactic. but for "Pure", low hp, low armor/no armor AA platforms... yeah not real good.

Not to mention the other side effect of staying spotted MUCH longer, and ofcos the planes become invulnerable during a drop doesn't help either.

So, to answer your question... NO... there is nothing more you can personally do. Changing tactics/Captain skills/upgrades/flags will not make a large difference. And fitting your ship for MAX AA might not be the wisest course of action for this WOWS iteration.

 

 

 

Edited by Retarie

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2 hours ago, LastRemnant said:

So you want it to make it impossible for any CV player, not to land attacks bad or good interesting logic :Smile_teethhappy:  Again people want AA that will make them untouchable against CVs :fish_glass: But of course, according to certain players being untouchable is balanced, and not OP at all :Smile_smile: Proves by his own words AA works but doesn't work because it doesn't shot down all planes and isn't untouchable against CV :fish_palm:

Not really.

More to the point is that despite claims to the contrary, large amounts of AA and flak under the current system don't really change the conversation much. It's more of an indictment of the current mechanics than making any particular demands about what they "should" be--that would be all you, reading things into my comments due to your personal bias and toxicity.

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No matter how good your AA happens to be - CVs are pretty much guaranteed to get a drop off on you ......you know...reasons

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5 hours ago, JamesTomb said:

So anyway, I guess what I'm asking is whether AA actually does any good whatsoever. Are there any captain skills or upgrades that make a real difference? Is there really any mano-a-mano way to deal with CVs? I looked at the AA equipment option and it seems to be useless. Faster reload on DFAA? Yeah, that'll help.

No. As it currently is AA is literally designed to be defeated by CVs and allow even bad CV players to field viable strike wings all game long with no input from you whatsoever. Proponents of CVs will tell you to defeat them with "positioning", but that is honestly quite insulting given that you naturally cannot outposition something that is well over 6x faster than you, possesses far more flexibility than you, any terrain makes you much weaker and with how this game is played around map control where grouping up is at best ineffective.
A full AA build will typically give you +1 plane kill and as such is never worth taking.

Edited by El2aZeR
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4 hours ago, LastRemnant said:

So you want it to make it impossible for any CV player, not to land attacks bad or good interesting logic :Smile_teethhappy:  Again people want AA that will make them untouchable against CVs :fish_glass: But of course, according to certain players being untouchable is balanced, and not OP at all :Smile_smile: Proves by his own words AA works but doesn't work because it doesn't shot down all planes and isn't untouchable against CV :fish_palm:

1: AA can be destroy, so a wise CV will just wait for your AA to be damage/ reduce to drop on you

2: if you spec for a full AA build, you need an advantage out of it.

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Ah yes, people posting random screen shots to make their point.. forgot about that. Let me join the club.:cap_viking:

Atlanta is MAX AA.

Tier 8 KAGA B. Fed me planes all game. Person is mostly a BB player not many games in a cv

shot-21_12.31_13_12.05-0190.thumb.jpg.1c49fc1bb2503aee2795428dd8cca674.jpg

Tier 6 Bearn, Took me out from about 3/4 health with 2 squadrons. This person has a lot of games in CV's :cap_wander:

shot-22_04.14_14_28.57-0550.thumb.jpg.ec8c81ac021c3009f4692c8bfc99429e.jpg

Edited by Retarie
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3 hours ago, Karstodes said:

1: AA can be destroy, so a wise CV will just wait for your AA to be damage/ reduce to drop on you

2: if you spec for a full AA build, you need an advantage out of it.

by wise CV do you mean experienced and capable?

In which case, a wise CV simply dodges your flak, laughs as he loses a couple planes due to continuous damage, still get his full strike in, and cycle his planes so he never runs out.

If you spec for AA, you are spec'd for failure.

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Thanks, all. This is about what I figured. I have a couple strats for dealing with CVs, mostly involving not being anywhere near where they're sending their planes. Seriously, if I see a Pobeda or Nakhimov pull up to an island behind a cap, as far as I'm concerned that's his cap. I'm going somewhere else.

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4 hours ago, El2aZeR said:

Proponents of CVs will tell you to defeat them with "positioning"

Well, "defeat" is a very strong word to use against something you are not actively hurting. I would say is something more like twarting their evil plans by not playing right into them... In the end is always about time, you hope to buy at least enough time to give you an advantage over the enemy as they are under the same pressure you are.

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So, I recently started to play more CVs just to get a better understanding of how to counter them (lol) and to get more experience playing something that wasn't a battleship or cruiser. I decided I wanted to try being more of a support role, so I chose every single fighter skill I could (including interceptor) on both my Audacious and Immelman. The result was terrible. I can't even come close to using all of the fighter consumables, mostly because I simply can't get to where the enemy CV is going to be in advance to drop fighters. Even if I do get a successful drop and I get a handful of plane kills (my record is 6... yay), I've now succeeded in not spotting for my team and not doing any actual damage. Fighters are completely ineffective against the likes of Nahkimov, where it can just do one attack run and the fighters just don't have time to do diddly squat. 

A teammate or someone here on the forums made a half-decent suggestion: what if CVs could drop fighters by selecting a point on the minimap rather than physically having to fly over to where they want the drop? 

I'm not a good CV player, so I struggle to do much damage in anything except an Eagle (which I played as a rental and got 230k damage). Still, I know AA is a joke. Ships like Mahkimov and FDR just laugh it off. 

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I play a lot of CV, and I play a lot of other ships.  I'm a good player, but not a unicum player and tend to play mostly T6 to T8 (wide assortment), with some dabbles into T9 and T10 for good measure, but little experience playing T10 CVs.

As a T6 to T8 CV player there are some games where I can do a lot and avoid AA,  and some games where the AA is tough and I don't do as well.  As a T6 to T8 non-CV player, there are some games where CVs are just a nuisance and other games where I have to work hard to mitigate them.  

In aggregate, I've discovered there are very few unicum CV captains out there playing T6 or T8 CVs, and in the few percentage of games I run T9 or T10 I haven't seen many there either (but not enough games to know). 

All said, within my play frame (mainly T6 to T8), and my "good" play experience, I don't see any significant balance issues with CVs 

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11 hours ago, LastRemnant said:

So you want it to make it impossible for any CV player, not to land attacks bad or good interesting logic :Smile_teethhappy:  Again people want AA that will make them untouchable against CVs :fish_glass: But of course, according to certain players being untouchable is balanced, and not OP at all :Smile_smile: Proves by his own words AA works but doesn't work because it doesn't shot down all planes and isn't untouchable against CV :fish_palm:

He literally spec's out a Tier 11 ship, in a line supposably 'strong in AA' to max AA build and is still taking, '...a drop or two...' from most competent CVs. That's the normal amount of drops from a flight anyway. His full AA build hasn't done anything to impact the outcome of this interaction, aside from a small exp bump.

Let's just think about the equivalent counter in any other class encounter.

- DD lit by DPS spec'd Worchester in radar? That DD is getting crushed, or making it out severely damaged.

- CA/CL meeting Kremlin at ~12km full broadside? Deletion or severe damage through overmatch if they manage to turn away

- BB ambushed from island cover by fully loaded Shima? Torpedo soup and early return to port

 

What's the comparison here? Each of those ships meeting its preferred counter will destroy it or win the engagement in a manner that significantly impacts the following play of the opposing player. Now comparing the CV interaction: if the CV player is slightly competent at flack dodging, they get the normal amount of strikes-per-flight off on the AA spec'd ship, then return to carrier to launch a brand-new wave, maybe against the same ship if he's feeling plucky. Then they repeat this over the course of the entire match.

This is why AA sucks, and nobody spec's into it seriously aside from for laughs. When planes were a limited resource, fighting an AA ship like this would've deplaned a CV in short order, with significant impact on the CV's later match play. With the current plane regeneration rates and AA destruction by late match, the net effect is that if a CV focuses you, all you can do is hope your team wins the match so you might be allowed to shoot him a few times as he runs to the corner of the map.

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The dislike for damage to planes vs. # of planes down continues.

 

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effectiv AA is a myth it doesnt exist.    AA only works against completely garbage CV players competent cv players ignore it and destroy or eternally spot their target.

 

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26 minutes ago, Qyygle said:

Let's just think about the equivalent counter in any other class encounter.

- DD lit by DPS spec'd Worchester in radar? That DD is getting crushed, or making it out severely damaged.

- CA/CL meeting Kremlin at ~12km full broadside? Deletion or severe damage through overmatch if they manage to turn away

- BB ambushed from island cover by fully loaded Shima? Torpedo soup and early return to port

I'm not defending AA nor saying the interaction is good, but all your examples have an equivalent in the Planes taking full Flak bursts and getting insta-deleted, with 2 important nuances:

  • Critical failure doesn't translate into ship deletion for the CV
  • There's a lot less player agency in forcing planes into Flak 

Those are the aspects that need attention: Consequences for misplay and player agency in counterplay.

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