When WG announced the rework, several statements were made:
1 - It would reduce the skill gap between good/average/poor CV pilots
2 - It would remove alpha strike in favour of more DOT based damage
3 - AA would be rebalanced.
Lets look at each point and see how the rework faired.
1. The rework has made the skill gap more noticable. Not only have the reworked CV's gained, from the stats of CV's in game I have played with/against, around 10% - 15% increase in WR across the board, the difference between a good and not so good pilot has infact increased. This could be down to the more aware using the plethora of bugs/exploits - despawning fighter consumables probably being *the* most highlighted one - but when *every* skill group of CV pilots seeing improved win-rates, it's not down to awareness of "ingenious use of game mechanics".
2. Removing Alpha strike in favour of Damage over Time. Whilst one "squad" of the reworked attack aircraft may not nuke a target on the single drop, the size of squadrons allowing multiple drops is achieving the same effect as before. Send out 1 squad, nuke 1 target. This is a failure of the design. When HE bombers on the Clickway do the same or more damage as AP bombers, requiring less timing sensitive drop angles to achieve the same damage continues the failures of the Midway adjustments prior to the CBT's and 0.8.0 release. The sheer insulting damage that air launched torpedo's do now, a tiny fraction of what they used to do, even if you can launch 2x to 3x the number of torps from a squadron. Not to mention that you've single handedly neutralised DD's with Rocket Attack aircraft - which you can't undo without either making them utterly useless, or reworking the maneuverability statistics of every destroyer in game.
3. AA rebalancing. This is a joke. Ships that, *in game*, are described as "AA cruisers", and fully AA specc'd either utterly destroy lower tier carrier aircraft, or fail to disrupt/destroy equal or higher tier squads. Some of this could have been resolved with giving carriers either an equal tier or +1/-1 MM. But as you removed half the tiers of CV's, this would meant some specifically designed AA ships would never face CV's. The +2/-2 banding for CV's means they can either utterly dominate or get crushed, neither leading to a pleasant experience. How this was not forseen in the initial stages *before* it reached the closed beta tests, or at a bare minimum when 0.8.0 was being finalised for release.
Through the CV beta testing I highlighted points of failings in the rework: T4 damage was utterly anaemic, T10 throughput was too high/torp damage too low, Tier differences causing problems, AA being frankly broken. Now, I'm not going to insult the designers or the initial testers of the rework, I just find it hard to believe that the solution arrived at and published was "the best we could come up with". Did no-one even consider the increase in CV power as a game progresses? At T8-T10, this has made the game even more stale and campier than it was before, hard to believe I know. Rather than breathing new life into the game, it's instead grinding it to a halt. Carrier spotting is still as powerful as it ever was, and whilst before a DD could eventually deal with air spotting, now it's nigh impossible; If a carrier wants to spot you, they will and you can't do anything about it - assuming you survive the Rocket strike in the first place. As usual, it's DD's and cruisers that are suffering the most, especially since the recent flooding changes seem to only benefit BB's who still can't install WASD hacks. What you've managed to do, a polar opposite to one of you desired aims stated from last year, is drive more players into the BB queues, because - frankly - destroyers and cruisers are rendered nigh useless when a carrier is on a team. Who needs a DD to scout when a CV can do it better with less risk? Who needs a cruiser when they have lower strike rates at killing aircraft.
I'm not going to even get started on CV economy.
How to fix it?
The AA rework should be redacted as soon as possible.No if's, no but's just replaced with the pre 0.8.0 system.
Carrier tiers. Carriers should be given +1/-1 MM until the odd tier ships are introduced, then given MM equal to their tier only. No other ship class is either so hammered or hammering as a CV. No meaningful balance metrics can be gathered whilst the existing +2/-2 MM remains in force.
Minimum launching distance for Rocket Attack Aircraft should be introduced. Unless you are wanting to kill off destroyers in game. Half the DD's in game have rudder shifts that can't effectively dodge incoming strikes in time. Or vastly decrease the sigma and/or increase the radius of the attack area.
Torpedo and Bomb damage needs to be reworked. When a full air-dropped torp spread (6) can hit a Yamato and do only 3k, yet an HE comb salvo can do in excess of 25k, something is amiss. T4 and T6 torp loads needs re-addressing, dropping 1 torp (T4) or 2 at tier 6 is utterly dis-satisfying. Many people whom may have been attracted to CV play with the launch of 0.8.0 find it lack-lustre and probably give up.
Every issue that 0.8.0 was supposed to fix has remained, and arguably increased. The skill gap has widened; alpha striking remains; powerful spotting and now CV's can't even attempt to protect their team. Yes I preferred the RTS style. Yes it was more taxing but it was more rewarding. Knowing which ships you could strike, what ranges you could attempt engagements at, knowing you had a finite resource to use wisely. All of that is gone. You can throw your planes away scouting with aplum knowing you'll have more in a minute - secure in the knowledge that as the game progresses your infinite supply becomes much more powerful. Yet the starting experience at T4 is soul destroying.
The carrier is *the* biggest mover and shaker on any team. Regardless of the strike potential, and your inability to prevent such from the opposite number, the power of spotting intelligence is no less than it was prior. Who cares if you spend the first 5 minutes perma spotting the team if you know your side is making the most of it. I took part in 3 of the closed tests, it was enough to make me sell all my carriers once 0.8.0 released. Why? Because any sort of challenge there was in CV's has been removed. Now it's all RNG. Rather than making the new game play exciting or engaging, it's either mind numbing tedium or facerolling. And judging by how the competitive scene is, you've made them late game jungle carries. Their impact is far greater than before with next to zero counterplay, which speaks of bad design, sorry. No other class has such a disparity between individual skill. A good player can make a turd shine. Now with the CV's not only can he make it shine like a diamond, he can reach up inside one's rectum and pull your eyes out to show you the beauty of his turd.