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GrimConquerer

Zao (Senjo): Upgrades and Captain Skills?

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Hello Fellow Captains!

 

After 2 months of on and off grinding with my Ibuki, which I hated at first but have come to appreciate as I have played her, I will have finally unlocked my Zao today. I was wondering from my fellow Zao captains, what upgrades do you use and what are your respective captain skills? My Ibuki captain was created when I first started playing WoWS and will most certainly need a retrain as his skills are not fit for a IJN cruiser and would very much appreciate help in anyway in guiding him to the right skills. I would also like some guidance on upgrades that best work for the Zao. Any help is appreciated!

 

Thanks and Fair Sailing!

 

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For me, I prefer the following skills and modules:

 

Main Battery Mod 1

AA Mod 2

Fire Control Mod 3

Damage Control Mod 1

Steering Gears Mod 2

Concealment Mod 1

 

Basic Firing Training

Situational Awareness

Aiming Expert

Superintendent

Advanced Firing Training

 

That's as far as I've gotten with captain's skills; I will probably pick up the stealth skill when I can.  I take BFT and AFT for the AA boost.  

 

EDIT: I should elaborate to say that this module set up is designed for maximum range and stealth.  You actually have a narrow window outside of 17.2km in which you can fire without being detected.  IMHO, the stealth values of the IJN cruisers are one of their biggest assets, so maximizing it is a big gain.

 

Edited by SeaRaptor00
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14 to be exact, he's been my go to captain for the entirety of the IJN CA line.

 

Would you recommend the Main Battery Mod 3 over the Range Mod to make up for the lack of ROF? I took it with Range with the Ibuki due to its low damage output but with the Zao's low firing trajectory, would a ROF increase be more tennable or would an increase of range be better?

Edited by GrimConquerer

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14 to be exact, he's been my go to captain for the entirety of the IJN CA line

 

I think mine has 15 or so, ill pull my list for you
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Captain skills:

T1: Basic fire training and basics of survivability

T2: expert marksman

T3: high alert and superintendent

T4: Demo Expert

 

I plan on adding situational awareness and vigilance to that

 

Mods:

Main battery mod 1

Gun Fire Control mod 1

Gun Fire control mod 2

Damage Control 1

Steering 2

Concealment 1

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For me, I prefer the following skills and modules:

 

Main Battery Mod 1

AA Mod 2

Fire Control Mod 3

Damage Control Mod 1

Steering Gears Mod 2

Concealment Mod 1

 

Basic Firing Training

Situational Awareness

Aiming Expert

Superintendent

Advanced Firing Training

 

That's as far as I've gotten with captain's skills; I will probably pick up the stealth skill when I can.  I take BFT and AFT for the AA boost.  

 

EDIT: I should elaborate to say that this module set up is designed for maximum range and stealth.  You actually have a narrow window outside of 17.2km in which you can fire without being detected.  IMHO, the stealth values of the IJN cruisers are one of their biggest assets, so maximizing it is a big gain.

 

Is it still 10 seconds after firing before you go camouflaged again? I remember reading somewhere that the Ibuki's biggest asset was that its ROF could help you time when ships saw you after firing to make up for not having Situational Awareness. I took the Serpentine approach instead of the Stealth approach when it came to the Ibuki so its a switch for me to go to stealth but welcomed.

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Is it still 10 seconds after firing before you go camouflaged again? I remember reading somewhere that the Ibuki's biggest asset was that its ROF could help you time when ships saw you after firing to make up for not having Situational Awareness. I took the Serpentine approach instead of the Stealth approach when it came to the Ibuki so its a switch for me to go to stealth but welcomed.

 

Twenty (20) seconds, I believe.  Odds are - depending on the situation - you'll draw some return fire while you are visible.  However, if you don't like your position or find too many big, bad BBs shooting at you, just stop firing and change locations.  
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Is it still 10 seconds after firing before you go camouflaged again? I remember reading somewhere that the Ibuki's biggest asset was that its ROF could help you time when ships saw you after firing to make up for not having Situational Awareness. I took the Serpentine approach instead of the Stealth approach when it came to the Ibuki so its a switch for me to go to stealth but welcomed.

 

There is one hole in his 'stealth' build. He has the base range with a reduced turret traverse so he can increase the rate of turret fire. His ship is more of an AA support vessel setup
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I have a 16 point captain this is what I am using. 

 

level 1:  Basic Firing training and Situational Awareness. 

level 2:  Expert Marksmen

level 3:  Superintendent 

level 4:  Advanced Firing training (demo expert isn't worth it, IJN fire chance is already high and demo expert adds such a small amount there isn't much point)

level 5:  Preventative Maintenance, Though Concealment expert would be good too, both are worth it. 

 

Modules:

slot 1:  Main Battery modification 1

slot 2:  Gun Fire control modification 1 (its an IJN cruiser AA isn't a priority, also more often than not there isn't a carrier to worry about)

slot 3:  Gun Fire control modification 2 (the range is much more useful than the fire rate, and the turret traverse isn't the best so why make it worse)

slot 4:  Damage control modification 1 

slot 5:  Propulsion modification 2

slot 6:  Concealment system modification 1

 

Setting up for invisifire on the Zao is kind of pointless, the window is to small and the minimum range is to high.   You are better off just maneuvering to avoid fire.  Which is one reason I didn't use the concealment expert skill, that it would allow you to sneak around a little easier if you chose it. 

 

 

 

Edited by ClockworkSpectre
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Just out of curiosity, how do you guys like the Zao? Perhaps give a short breakdown of it's performance?

 

Currently the best T10 cruiser in the game.  Its also my favorite ship. 
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Just out of curiosity, how do you guys like the Zao? Perhaps give a short breakdown of it's performance?

 

Second this, I see many people favor the Zao but cant get through the grind to get her. I also here the Hindenburg is giving her a run for her money but the grind is just as intense. 

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View PostClockworkSpectre, on 30 November 2015 - 03:30 PM, said:

slot 2:  Gun Fire control modification 1 (its an IJN cruiser AA isn't a priority, also more often than not there isn't a carrier to worry about)

 

I've been seriously considering giving up my AA setup on Zao; I only see CVs about half the time, so it feels like a bit of a waste.

 

Setting up for invisifire on the Zao is kind of pointless, the window is to small and the minimum range is to high.   

 

It's very situational, but it can come in pretty handy in the right circumstance.  Also, it doesn't require anything fancy: just the range mod (Fire Control 2) and concealment mod.  Most people end up taking those anyway.  It's just handy to know that you have the capability, even if the window is narrow.
 

There is one hole in his 'stealth' build. He has the base range with a reduced turret traverse so he can increase the rate of turret fire. His ship is more of an AA support vessel setup

 

 I'm not following something.  My mods are range boost (Fire Control 2) and concealment.  I am not a fan of Main Battery 3 (which increases RoF at the cost of turret speed).

 

Edited by SeaRaptor00

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I have a 16 point captain this is what I am using. 

 

level 1:  Basic Firing training and Situational Awareness. 

level 2:  Expert Marksmen

level 3:  Superintendent 

level 4:  Advanced Firing training (demo expert isn't worth it, IJN fire chance is already high and demo expert adds such a small amount there isn't much point)

level 5:  Preventative Maintenance, Though Concealment expert would be good too, both are worth it. 

 

Modules:

slot 1:  Main Battery modification 1

slot 2:  Gun Fire control modification 1 (its an IJN cruiser AA isn't a priority, also more often than not there isn't a carrier to worry about)

slot 3:  Gun Fire control modification 2 (the range is much more useful than the fire rate, and the turret traverse isn't the best so why make it worse)

slot 4:  Damage control modification 1 

slot 5:  Propulsion modification 2

slot 6:  Concealment system modification 1

 

Setting up for invisifire on the Zao is kind of pointless, the window is to small and the minimum range is to high.   You are better off just maneuvering to avoid fire.  Which is one reason I didn't use the concealment expert skill, that it would allow you to sneak around a little easier if you chose it. 

 

 

 

 

this is pretty good set of skills for my german cruiser line.. i like it... but for the tier 5 skill im debating whether to use jack of all trades or preventative maintenance... which one do you think is better? i also heard that preventative maintenance doesnt reduce the chances of having your modules completely destroyed like your aa guns, secondaries, and main guns
Edited by StaticDreams
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I have a 16 point captain this is what I am using. 

 

level 1:  Basic Firing training and Situational Awareness. 

level 2:  Expert Marksmen

level 3:  Superintendent 

level 4:  Advanced Firing training (demo expert isn't worth it, IJN fire chance is already high and demo expert adds such a small amount there isn't much point)

level 5:  Preventative Maintenance, Though Concealment expert would be good too, both are worth it. 

 

Modules:

slot 1:  Main Battery modification 1

slot 2:  Gun Fire control modification 1 (its an IJN cruiser AA isn't a priority, also more often than not there isn't a carrier to worry about)

slot 3:  Gun Fire control modification 2 (the range is much more useful than the fire rate, and the turret traverse isn't the best so why make it worse)

slot 4:  Damage control modification 1 

slot 5:  Propulsion modification 2

slot 6:  Concealment system modification 1

 

Setting up for invisifire on the Zao is kind of pointless, the window is to small and the minimum range is to high.   You are better off just maneuvering to avoid fire.  Which is one reason I didn't use the concealment expert skill, that it would allow you to sneak around a little easier if you chose it. 

 

 

 

 

I disagree with your assessment on Demo expert. because it's additive and not multiplicative it's a MASSIVE buff to your fire chance.

 

Assuming that Yanmy you are trying to set on fire has a 65% base fire reduction chance, plus whatever other skills they have, say your 22% fire chance is reduced to 10%.

 

The addition of Demo expert raises it to 13%, which means each round is THIRTY percent more likely to start a fire.

 

 

 

 

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 I'm not following something.  My mods are range boost (Fire Control 2) and concealment.  I am not a fan of Main Battery 3 (which increases RoF at the cost of turret speed).

 

you had a diff mod listed

 

 

I disagree with your assessment on Demo expert. because it's additive and not multiplicative it's a MASSIVE buff to your fire chance.

 

Assuming that Yanmy you are trying to set on fire has a 65% base fire reduction chance, plus whatever other skills they have, say your 22% fire chance is reduced to 10%.

 

The addition of Demo expert raises it to 13%, which means each round is THIRTY percent more likely to start a fire.

 

 

 

 

 

this^

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Alright here's mine.

IJN cruiser are specialized with their main gun and torps, not like their counter park USN cruiser are specialized in AA. So all the modules I chose the main batteries modifications.

For the captain skill, first, second and third line no need to explain, but for the 4pt one, I choice the Domilition expert which incresed the fire chance to 22% instead of the AA because like I said earlier, IJN are not specialized in AA, and you'll find your shells are so easy to light up those BBs. The last 5 point I will chose the concelment expert which will decrese Zao's concelment to 10km, makes yourself much more safer. After that, the other 3 points (actually 4, i dont count the last one since it cost 9999999 exp) I will preferred the "Situation Awareness" and "Basics Survivability". 

 eol4xAC.jpgR60Dn9n.jpg

 

Edited by Jason_Yang_JY

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Currently the best T10 cruiser in the game.  Its also my favorite ship. 

 

Definitely my favorite ship, even though I am only statistically mediocre in her.  I am slowly working up the German cruiser line as well, as Hindenburg looks like a worthy competitor.

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Definitely my favorite ship, even though I am only statistically mediocre in her.  I am slowly working up the German cruiser line as well, as Hindenburg looks like a worthy competitor.

 

I have heard this, from what I've read, it's seems that the Hindenburg AP is no questions superior as well as having a larger health pool and a faster ROF. It seems the Zao has better armour, concealment, and fire chance which lends me to believe that HE and stealth will be the way to go as many of you have suggested. I am currently at the Yorck in the CA line and struggling but am hopeful as what I've read as shown that the Hipper up is a great CA line.

 

 

this is pretty good set of skills for my german cruiser line.. i like it... but for the tier 5 skill im debating whether to use jack of all trades or preventative maintenance... which one do you think is better? i also heard that preventative maintenance doesnt reduce the chances of having your modules completely destroyed like your aa guns, secondaries, and main guns

 

I've heard from Mesrith in his BB guide that it is unclear as to what Preventative Maintenance covers and his PMs to the devs as well as Supertesters has had no luck. For now, we must assume it only protects modules such as steering and the engine as I have not noticed any considerable increase in survivability with secondaries and AA with this skill present on my Nagato. Regardless, this is a very good skill set for German CA line and will readjust accordingly. 

Edited by GrimConquerer

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Another question I'd like to ask, more economical that anything: 

 

Since the Zao is priced at 20,000,000 Credits, what would your opinion be on me selling my Mogami and Ibuki to cover half the cost while reclaiming the upgrades used in the Ibuki to apply to the Zao?

 

Or a more general question:

 

Is it advisable to sell your lower T ships, even T8 or 9 depending on what you play with, and cannibalizing their upgrades to attain a T10? Or should one just grind through the credits and pay for her without selling off one's fleet?

 

This is a general question as well as it ties in with the economy of WoWS and the struggles of attaining credits to purchase and replenish these ships, not just the Zao but many high level tiers. I'm not complaining about the economy, I'm well aware that T8-10 are the weeding out zones for truly dedicated players that want to continue participating in WoWS even through extreme grinds and am a paying premium member myself. I'm wondering if it's advisable to sell lower T ships to attain a T10 despite the economic hit I will take playing the Zao. Of course I would purchase the Ibuki and Mogami at a later time if I so choose to play these ships again, (Mogami unlikely as it has been continually nerfed with regards to its HE ability as well as its 155mm turrets, Ibuki however has grown on me strangely and I would actually like to buy her again in the future, an odd thought I know) but I would also like to have my first T10 ship in my possession. I just lack the patience to grind credits again in my Tirpitz as the grind through the Ibuki took a lot of work and energy that I would simply have to reproduce in paying for her. 

 

Thoughts?

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I disagree with your assessment on Demo expert. because it's additive and not multiplicative it's a MASSIVE buff to your fire chance.

 

Assuming that Yanmy you are trying to set on fire has a 65% base fire reduction chance, plus whatever other skills they have, say your 22% fire chance is reduced to 10%.

 

The addition of Demo expert raises it to 13%, which means each round is THIRTY percent more likely to start a fire.

 

 

 

 

 

Im pretty sure the demo bonus is applied before the enemy ships base fire reduction chance is factored, not after. There is no reason as to why it would be factored after the targets fire reduction is applied.

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I disagree with your assessment on Demo expert. because it's additive and not multiplicative it's a MASSIVE buff to your fire chance.

 

Assuming that Yanmy you are trying to set on fire has a 65% base fire reduction chance, plus whatever other skills they have, say your 22% fire chance is reduced to 10%.

 

The addition of Demo expert raises it to 13%, which means each round is THIRTY percent more likely to start a fire.

 

 

 

 

No anti fire chance modules/skills are nearly that effective, I don't recall the math exactly but the most you can reduce actual chance of being set on fire is very small, only a couple percent roughly. 

 

Also, just from actually playing the ship, I have never had a hard time roasting battleships without the skill.  I mean, if you feel the need to use it, fine, but I am just saying there isn't really a need for it. 

 

 

Is it advisable to sell your lower T ships, even T8 or 9 depending on what you play with, and cannibalizing their upgrades to attain a T10? Or should one just grind through the credits and pay for her without selling off one's fleet?

 

That is kind of up to you.  I went up the tech trees pretty fast, I get the confederate award a lot so I had a ton of exp flags.  So the rate I was getting exp outpaced my credit gain pretty bad.  I sold previous ships as I went up the line almost every time to get the last of the credits I needed for the next ship.  BUT, I also have a couple premium ships so I didn't need to keep anything for the sake of grinding credits.  I suppose it depends on your own specific situation.... do you use premium time, do you have premium ships and so on.  After I got to tier 10 on a couple lines (I have the Yamato, Zao, Shimakaze) I went back later and re-bought the ships I had fun in, like the Kongo and Aoba. 

Edited by ClockworkSpectre

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I sold Ibuki - she's not really anything special, and gets the same matchmaking as Zao - and kept Mogami (those 155s are sweet and fun to play from time to time).

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