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TheEntireGermanEmpire

A case for Secondary Spec German Battleships

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After playing them a while and watching around for a bit, I find myself a bit of the oppinion that KM BB's tend to be a bit on the weak side, which is supported by the stat comparison between diff. TX BB's.

Now, before you grab your pitchforks and torches, let me lay down my case for you.

German BB's have certain advantages and disadvantages. Well, not exactly a newsflash right there.
On the pro side we have:

  • the infamous turtleback armor,
  • good secondaries
  • good speed.
  • (large health pools)
     

On the contra side we have:

  • inaccurate trollish main guns
  • weak torpedo protection
  • weak AA
  • and especially at T10,  huge size and slow turning.
  • bad concealment


Now the issues I think plagues German BB's the most is the ineffectiveness of secondaries compared to the investment you have to make to them even useable, combined with the lack of accuracy from the main guns.
Especially after starting up at the IJN line with the Fuso, this really strikes home. It is comparatively easy to score nice amounts of damage in the Fuso with several citadels due to the accuracy and range of the main guns.


German BB's suffer in this regard from the "brawler" aspect. You should, or rather, rarely can brawl at the start of the game without the risk of getting overwhelmed and burned to the bottom of the sea. Overextending is a threat a Yamato/Montana etc. rarely needs to consider since she is effective at longer ranges. So you have an inherent "advantage" by being able to influence the game from an earlier stage before the strengh of a German BB can come to it's own. In theory this should balance itself out, but the meta has long been very campy and not pushy.
The big point I'd like to make here is - only a small investment with CP's and modules is required to make the guns perform the entire game. At the start of the game you can blab enemy ships reliably right until the end.
Skill EM and AR and you've pretty much buffed your main guns as much as you can. Done, 15 points left for things like SI,  Fire Prevention, CE and all the other goodies, especially tanky stuff. You also can slot accuracy, reload and/or range to boost your main guns.
If you want to use your ship for what it is basically designed to be, a secondary power house, you need to spend a large amount of this limited ressource. Man. Secondaries, AFT, BFT... that is 11 points out of 19 gone.
Those 6 points difference is huge. That could give you CE and SI, for example. You also loose the slots for the modules, further reduce your shooting power. And the gain you receive from that is... well fun when it works, but the price you pay for little damage and a few fires in total is too much to be actually viable (unless you go full ham and spec IFHE, at which point you might as well scream SHOOT ME! at the top of your lungs).

It is fun, but all in all too pricey, the sacrifices made too high. The lack of CE with a base detection of 15.9km means you're effectively unable to disengage most of the time. Either that or I just don't get it. Yes, I'm kind of crap in the GK, so that is entirely possible. I could have specced tanky long ago, but if I wanted that, I'd not have chosen the KM BBs in the first place.
So I'd wish for one of the following to occur:

 

  • significantly buff the damage potential of secondary guns to reflect the investment made
  • slightly increase accuracy on the main guns
  • significantly reduce the skill costs of secondary related commander skills to match their current output
  • give the secondary battery mods an effect on the main guns too, but not as pronounced as the respective main battery mod


My favourite would definately be one of the last two, but... hope dies last.

Now, ladies and gents, grab your pitchforks.
Or change my mind, I'd happily accept that as well.

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while asking for any kind of BB Buffs at high tiers is always a bit iffy, I agree that if one of the T10s needs one it'd be the Kurfürst. I'm not really sure it does need a buff, maybe instead the other T10s should be tuned down to match it, but that's sort of a different discussion...

 

I'd add one thing to your list of possible buffs (good on you for specifying you only want one of those btw^^),  and that would be a buff to the turret angles. The current 45° off the bow are just horrific, and go a long way towards negating the main point of the Kurfürst, its tankiness. Buff those to 35° off the bow and suddenly your ship can actually use its main firepower and armour scheme without getting penned to hell and back, especially in a closer range fight...

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Good one on the firing angles... I totally forgot about that. Being able to use more than half of the firepower once in a while would be nice too... 45° with slow rudder shift and turning radius means you cannot bring your aft about, fire and swing back to angle like some more mobile BB's can.

And also thank you for not pitchforking me ;) I'm aware that buffing BBs is.. a controversial topic, but I think I can lay claim to not being a BBaby since I spread out to all the ship types (and slowly spread out into other nations as well).

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I have all German BB's from TVI to TX.

 

AA is fine... My GK is 98. Friedrich De Grosse 92. Bismarck & Tirpitz 72-79, Gneisenhau & Scharnhorst 79-81and even my Bayern is 62... Not to be sniffed at.:cap_rambo:

 

Main armament accuracy is down to how you shoot and what upgrades you have equipped. I regularly get citadel hits from them...

 

Game play styles in my opinion are what make them good ships... I have taken my GK against 4 ships and sunk all, coming away with 1/3rd health but coming away alive.

Almost all of my Kraken awards have come from German BB's..

Secondaries work better if you have Manual Fire Control.

 

 

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29 minutes ago, TheEntireGermanEmpire said:

German BB's have certain advantages and disadvantages. Well, not exactly a newsflash right there.
On the pro side we have:

  • the infamous turtleback armor,
  • good secondaries
  • good speed.
  • (large health pools)

You forgot hydro as a benefit. It's very valuable and should not be underestimated.

 

And for point investment, BFT is actually not a necessity. Your secondaries are not going to be gamebreakingly better with the skill or vastly more garbage without it. Investing these three points elsewhere to improve the tankiness of your ship goes a long way in making secondary spec less punitive. I would hardly ever recommend a full secondary spec, rather going for a mixture with the first 3 pt skill being SI or BoS (tending towards BoS) and after 14 pts for Manual secondaries and AFT, go either the other 3 pt skill or FP and a 1 pointer to conclude the build.

22 minutes ago, TheEntireGermanEmpire said:

Skill EM and AR and you've pretty much buffed your main guns as much as you can. Done, 15 points left for things like SI,  Fire Prevention, CE and all the other goodies, especially tanky stuff. You also can slot accuracy, reload and/or range to boost your main guns.
If you want to use your ship for what it is basically designed to be, a secondary power house, you need to spend a large amount of this limited ressource. Man. Secondaries, AFT, BFT... that is 11 points out of 19 gone.
Those 6 points difference is huge. You also loose the slots for the modules, further reduce your shooting power. And the gain you receive from that is... well fun when it works, but the price you pay for little damage and a few fires in total is too much to be actually viable (unless you go full ham and spec IFHE, at which point you might as well scream SHOOT ME! at the top of your lungs).

6 points difference between 4 point investment and 11 point investment? I think that math doesn't add up. Worth noting though, as a high tier German (don't secondary spec at lower tiers), you basically get turret traverse better than some others have with EM, so that is 2 points you don't need to invest. If you avoid BFT and account for the need of EM on other BBs, the cost of secondaries drops to 6 points, which becomes vastly more manageable than 11. Most likely you'll not spec into Concealment, so you can consider secondaries a trade against concealment and 1 survival skill (BoS, SI, FP, you cannot get all three).

 

IFHE is memes, I'd likely not take it and just be happy that 128 mm guns can pen superstructure, cruisers and DDs, over previous 105s. Honestly, if you want to play IFHE memes, go get a 19 pt captain with the spec on Gneisenau.

31 minutes ago, TheEntireGermanEmpire said:
  • significantly buff the damage potential of secondary guns to reflect the investment made
  • slightly increase accuracy on the main guns
  • significantly reduce the skill costs of secondary related commander skills to match their current output
  • give the secondary battery mods an effect on the main guns too, but not as pronounced as the respective main battery mod

Option 2 would be best, though I'd mostly apply it to FdG. I understand WGs logic to not buff viability of secondaries, as it is automated damage and it already is okish on some ships. So, buffing that is kinda silly, as German BBs already are among the more braindead.

 

Kurfürst has other things to make up for it, like the ton of armour and hp and mostly 60 mm bow plating that trolls Yamatos.

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I think with all the hidden / almost impossible to reach citadel stuff etc (montana, republique, conqueror), I might better off shooting a broadside GK instead of a broadside Montana nowadays.

 

At least I know I'll have some sort of good pen damage.

 

Old days' strength is today a weakness IMO for German BBs. Pity.

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6 minutes ago, Migantium_Mashum said:

I have all German BB's from TVI to TX.

 

AA is fine... My GK is 98. Friedrich De Grosse 92. Bismarck & Tirpitz 72-79, Gneisenhau & Scharnhorst 79-81and even my Bayern is 62... Not to be sniffed at.:cap_rambo:

 

Main armament accuracy is down to how you shoot and what upgrades you have equipped. I regularly get citadel hits from them...

 

Game play styles in my opinion are what make them good ships... I have taken my GK against 4 ships and sunk all, coming away with 1/3rd health but coming away alive.

Almost all of my Kraken awards have come from German BB's..

Secondaries work better if you have Manual Fire Control.

 

 

I'd like to point out that the ratings are largely worthless and not really indicative of a ship's strengths or weaknesses. I mean, GK has the same survivability rating as Republique.

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Secondaries are supposed to be a gimmick. It would be wrong to let bot guns take care of enemies for you and win your games efficiently.

You are supposed to to aim yourself and take out enemies yourself.

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Just now, ColonelPete said:

Secondaries are supposed to be a gimmick. It would be wrong to let bot guns take care of enemies for you and win your games efficiently.

You are supposed to to aim yourself and take enemies out yourself.

So what are they there for? I use them on DD's whilst I use main armament on other Battleships and Cruisers...

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3 minutes ago, Zimbit said:

I think with all the hidden / almost impossible to reach citadel stuff etc (montana, republique, conqueror), I might better off shooting a broadside GK instead of a broadside Montana nowadays.

 

At least I know I'll have some sort of good pen damage.

 

Old days' strength is today a weakness IMO for German BBs. Pity.

50 mm deck armour shatters 32 mm HE. 80 mm deck armour shatters anything but RN HE. It still is a strength.

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Fair points with Hydro, BFT and my bad on-the-fly-math.
Comparing turret traverse, we have the atrocious 72s on the Yamato,  Montana and Conqueror sit comfortably at 45s (38,3s with EM) vs GK's 40s. Republique tops that with 36s.
So, yes, EM is kind of "build in".
Still, even 6 points feels much for the expected damage you can get out of secondaries (plus the inherent risks you run trying to get them to work and the main guns that also "pay" for that. And lets not forget that you pay with up to 3 module slots for that, either.)

If secondaries are a gimmick, they should be costed appropriately to cost as much as a gimmick.
 

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1 minute ago, Migantium_Mashum said:

So what are they there for? I use them on DD's whilst I use main armament on other Battleships and Cruisers...

Sounds like a good tactic.

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2 minutes ago, FishDogFoodShack said:

I'd like to point out that the ratings are largely worthless and not really indicative of a ship's strengths or weaknesses. I mean, GK has the same survivability rating as Republique.

My GK took down 29 aircraft in a game once... hardly worthless...

 

Being able to survive is down to the player not the ship, if you know how to attack you can achieve great results..

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1 minute ago, Migantium_Mashum said:

My GK took down 29 aircraft in a game once... hardly worthless...

 

Being able to survive is down to the player not the ship, if you know how to attack you can achieve great results..

Could you however not have achieved greater results in another BB from an earlier stage though?

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1 minute ago, Migantium_Mashum said:

So what are they there for? I use them on DD's whilst I use main armament on other Battleships and Cruisers...

Smaller ships that cannot take the damage over sustained time. A DD will not be able to stand getting focused by a GK for long, nor can a ship like Cleveland that has no armour.

 

Also, in BB vs BB fights, if both angle, secondaries can have a decisive role, if neither gets good shots at the other and the enemy is dumb enough to stay within secondary range.French are better at this burning ability, but they in exchange have less penetration.

3 minutes ago, TheEntireGermanEmpire said:

Fair points with Hydro, BFT and my bad on-the-fly-math.
Comparing turret traverse, we have the atrocious 72s on the Yamato,  Montana and Conqueror sit comfortably at 45s (38,3s with EM) vs GK's 40s. Republique tops that with 36s.
So, yes, EM is kind of "build in".
Still, even 6 points feels much for the expected damage you can get out of secondaries (plus the inherent risks you run trying to get them to work).
And lets not forget that you pay with up to 3 module slots for that, either.

If secondaries are a gimmick, they should be costed appropriately to cost as much as a gimmick.
 

It costs how much to go for AA build on a USN ship? Don't like your AA/Secondary build for its cost? Don't do it then.

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1 minute ago, Migantium_Mashum said:

My GK took down 29 aircraft in a game once... hardly worthless...

 

Being able to survive is down to the player not the ship, if you know how to attack you can achieve great results..

You've managed to completely miss my point. Bravo.

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1 minute ago, TheEntireGermanEmpire said:

Could you however not have achieved greater results in another BB from an earlier stage though?

How could I answer that given I was in my GK?

Just now, FishDogFoodShack said:

You've managed to completely miss my point. Bravo.

Not intentionally...

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I have the GK unlocked, need  funding  to buy it, but have played extensively during  the space event. And i agree on the fact that if i would have wanted a tank build, i would play the Monty. Going without  CE is suicidal. To improve the situation i would do a simple thing: move thee Manual secondary skill to a tier 3 skill, so you can go Manual ( instead SI), Ce, aft e ifhe

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53 minutes ago, Tyrendian89 said:

while asking for any kind of BB Buffs at high tiers is always a bit iffy, I agree that if one of the T10s needs one it'd be the Kurfürst. I'm not really sure it does need a buff, maybe instead the other T10s should be tuned down to match it, but that's sort of a different discussion...

 

I'd add one thing to your list of possible buffs (good on you for specifying you only want one of those btw^^),  and that would be a buff to the turret angles. The current 45° off the bow are just horrific, and go a long way towards negating the main point of the Kurfürst, its tankiness. Buff those to 35° off the bow and suddenly your ship can actually use its main firepower and armour scheme without getting penned to hell and back, especially in a closer range fight...

 

This.

 

The overall armor and tankiness is actually the biggest advantage, not the secondaries.

(Too bad it also seems to somehow get more double-fires, even with Fire Prevention...)

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36 minutes ago, TheEntireGermanEmpire said:

KM BB's tend to be a bit on the weak side

271.gif

 

 

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5 minutes ago, Migantium_Mashum said:

How could I answer that given I was in my GK?

Well could you have taken down those 29 Aircraft with another BB more effectively while taking less strikes? Could a better dispersion have caused more hits/damage, infuencing the play of the target and thereby the outcome of the battle? In short, if you had the advantages of a montana e.g., would you have fared better?

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They should look over the whole secondary thing in general though. If it is just a gimmick, why make such a huge song and dance routine and have it as a selling point for certain ship branches? Going secondary builds are a fun novelty that while I do enjoy it, it requires such a huge investment that sometimes you are at a disadvantage trying to play to a ships supposed strength.

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16 minutes ago, TheEntireGermanEmpire said:

Well could you have taken down those 29 Aircraft with another BB more effectively while taking less strikes? Could a better dispersion have caused more hits/damage, infuencing the play of the target and thereby the outcome of the battle? In short, if you had the advantages of a montana e.g., would you have fared better?

Could he have shot down less planes or maybe taken more citadels if he had been a Yamato? Sure, Kurfürst isn't the plane shredder Montana can be, but it still is respectable among the BBs. And while the dispersion is lacking, it isn't like the ship has nothing over a Montana.

13 minutes ago, ollonborre said:

They should look over the whole secondary thing in general though. If it is just a gimmick, why make such a huge song and dance routine and have it as a selling point for certain ship branches? Going secondary builds are a fun novelty that while I do enjoy it, it requires such a huge investment that sometimes you are at a disadvantage trying to play to a ships supposed strength.

Why make a huge fuss about USN AA? It's a nice extra and so are German secondaries.

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2 minutes ago, Riselotte said:

Why make a huge fuss about USN AA? It's a nice extra and so are German secondaries.

Because the effectiveness of AA is arguably higher than that of secondaries. And while Carriers are very rare, the point and module cost of getting a pretty good AA spec for a BB is much lower than getting usable secondaries.

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1 minute ago, Riselotte said:

Could he have shot down less planes or maybe taken more citadels if he had been a Yamato? Sure, Kurfürst isn't the plane shredder Montana can be, but it still is respectable among the BBs. And while the dispersion is lacking, it isn't like the ship has nothing over a Montana.

True, I was just trying to argue that, while it is workable, its not like that alone means the ship is not in need of some help.

After wasting some time at work I more and more come to the conclusion that a buff in turret firing arcs would be the first thing to do without impacting many other game mechanics.

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