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Praevasc

How can a Gneisenau be used to turn the tide of a losing battle?

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The Gneisenau is quite a special ship.

At the very beginning I failed a lot, despite having positive winrate with the Bayern, because I mistook the Gneusenau for a Bayern with torpedoes. This was worsened by having a long streak of battles where every battleship who was AFK, or was shooting HE from the furthest corner of the map, or was changing direction only once in every 10 minutes, seemed to be assigned to my team, so I have a lot of work ahead of me to put my winrate into the positives. I now seem to be able to achieve a slightly positive winrate, but there are many situations which I could salvage with other ships, but never able to do with a Gneisenau.

 

  • If the two teams are tied, I can usually help in turning the battle to our favor.
  • If we have a slight advantage, I usually manage to use it to increase our advantage significantly.
  • However, if we are losing even slightly, I am utterly and completely useless.

 

With other ships I can often manage to turn slightly losing battles around. With my favorites ships, I can occasionally even turn badly losing battles around.

Not with the Gneisenau.

 

If everything is going smoothly, I sail along with another BB, supporting her, while spotting, dealing a lot of damage, protecting the group, and when most ships already engaged each other, I can quickly slip in, attack them from a side they are the most vulnerable, and cause enough damage and confusion to allow my teammates to easily wrap them up.

 

However, when my team is doing badly, usually by being top tiered with another top tier BB who hits reverse as soon as the battle starts and then heads as far from the battle as possible, then I am utterly useless. If I keep up with the fleet who is staying behind, the enemy takes all the caps and wins. If I try anything even carefully aggressive, I get focused on and killed quickly while most of my team hides behind islands doing nothing.

 

So, what can a Gneisenau player do when the team is disorganized and the enemy has the initiative?

Of course, it's hard to play any ship when the team is disorganized, but when driving other ships, bad teammates don't hurt me as much as when driving the Gneisenau.

 

For the record, I have a level 10 captain, with priority target, expert marksman, superintendent and advanced firing training.

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Gneisenau is one of the few ships that can sink three enemies in close succession easily.

Get close, torp left, torp right and focus your guns on a low HP ship and with luck the enemy has three ships less. Enough to turn a battle. The trick is to recognize when to push and when to wait.

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12 minutes ago, Praevasc said:

many situations which I could salvage with other ships, but never able to do with a Gneisenau

wegqewgwe.jpg

 

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On 9/18/2018 at 10:47 PM, ColonelPete said:

Gneisenau is one of the few ships that can sink three enemies in close succession easily.

Get close, torp left, torp right and focus your guns on a low HP ship and with luck the enemy has three ships less. Enough to turn a battle. The trick is to recognize when to push and when to wait.

Yes, that's true and I know it. I do exactly that, usually sinking two and damaging another two.

However, I can only pull such things off when my team is doing OK. Without support I die before getting even close to torpedo range. So if my team is not pushing, I have to wait (so the enemy is getting more and more advantage as time passes), or else I die very quickly if I try to push without enough support.

 

On 9/18/2018 at 10:51 PM, aboomination said:
  • If the two teams are tied, I can usually help in turning the battle to our favor.
  • If we have a slight advantage, I usually manage to use it to increase our advantage significantly.
  • However, if we are losing even slightly, I am utterly and completely useless.

After I lost almost all of my first 10-15 battles, I think I can say the above obervations apply if you subtract that failure at the very beginning. All the battles my team won, I did as I described.

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6 minutes ago, Praevasc said:

Yes, that's true and I know it. I do exactly that, usually sinking two and damaging another two.

However, I can only pull such things off when my team is doing OK. Without support I die before getting even close to torpedo range. So if my team is not pushing, I have to wait (so the enemy is getting more and more advantage as time passes), or else I die very quickly if I try to push without enough support.

You can also do this when the enemy is pushing and the lead ships are overextending and too far ahead of the rest. Especially at the end of the battle there are not many ships left and enemy ships can be far apart.

The big problem with Gneisenau is that she is not a sniping ship and you have to get close to make her perform well, which is difficult if your team lacks teamplay.

Sometimes it is better to survive longer and wait for an opportunity to get close.

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Just now, ColonelPete said:

Sometimes it is better to survive longer and wait for an opportunity to get close.

So it seems my biggest mistake is that when I see that a front is collapsing, I try to rush there to help out, but then die in the process... So you would suggest that in such a situation I should rather let the front collapse, and wait until the enemy strike is no longer so concentrated into one direction? I was afraid of doing that, because I thought not trying to save my teammates would mean an even bigger advantage for the enemy.

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1 minute ago, Praevasc said:

So it seems my biggest mistake is that when I see that a front is collapsing, I try to rush there to help out, but then die in the process... So you would suggest that in such a situation I should rather let the front collapse, and wait until the enemy strike is no longer so concentrated into one direction? I was afraid of doing that, because I thought not trying to save my teammates would mean an even bigger advantage for the enemy.

depends on the exact situation, way too much so for any blanket statements we could make to be much use... Gneisenau is a ship that can really turn the battle if it gets into the right situation, but depending on how the battle goes that can sometimes be difficult. You seem to already know what that "right situation" is, more or less - I'd say now it's more about gathering more experience so you can sniff out those right situations more often.

No ship (or captain) can win 100% of the time - sometimes you just have to accept that your team is better at throwing than you are at carrying.

Tell you what... how about you upload a replay or two of battles that you felt "argh what the heck am I supposed to do now", share them here, some of us can watch them and maybe give you a few pointers.

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3 hours ago, ColonelPete said:

Sometimes it is better to survive longer and wait for an opportunity to get close.

Yes, this.

 

3 hours ago, Praevasc said:

So it seems my biggest mistake is that when I see that a front is collapsing, I try to rush there to help out, but then die in the process... So you would suggest that in such a situation I should rather let the front collapse, and wait until the enemy strike is no longer so concentrated into one direction? I was afraid of doing that, because I thought not trying to save my teammates would mean an even bigger advantage for the enemy.

 

Doesnt really help when you die aswell, does it? No ship (or BB for that matter) can withstand focus fire for long. But a Gneisenau can withstand fire from some ships for quite some time. Long enough to close the distance, use torps and so forth.

Until then, you have to try to punish Cruisers as much as possible from further away. The occasional Citadel is not hard to achieve even with only 6 guns :Smile-_tongue:

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Vor 12 Stunden, ColonelPete sagte:

Gneisenau is one of the few ships that can sink three enemies in close succession easily.

#lol

He said "easily"!
 

Zitat

Get close, torp left, torp right and focus your guns on a low HP ship and with luck the enemy has three ships less. Enough to turn a battle. The trick is to recognize when to push and when to wait.

Yeah that's every German T7 BB driver's wet dream, but of course it only works out in a tiny, tiny fraction of attempts because if you drive in between three other guys, you just get focused down and die before you're even in torp range (6 km). Also better none of the three other guys have torps of their own because chances are, if they do, they're either longer range and/or more than yours or their ship is harder to hit or their ship is too resilient.

 

And with only a 10pt commander, the secondaries are also too weedy to be a lot of help in this kind of maneuver. I tried all manner of builds on my Scharnhorst (same secondaries) during the last free commander redistribution week - with 19 skill points to play with. At that level, it starts to get interesting but it's just nowhere close to Bismarck levels. I'd say you'd have the best chances to pull it off with CE instead of AFT but you still have to use the terrain and all the stars have to align just perfectly.
 

Zitat

Sometimes it is better to survive longer and wait for an opportunity to get close.

 

 

They key thing with higher tier German BBs seems to be your timing for the push needs just to be spot on, and if it isn't, you die a quick and useless death. This has been brought to a very fine point in the top tiers with the recent addition of more OP HE spammers like the IJN gunboat DDs and Worcester, but the very same thing is of course also going on at Tier VII, and Gneisenau doesn't even have the hydro to counter torps, just the short-lived catapult plane whose torpedo spotting range recently got nerfed. I doubt there's actually a quick and easy recipe for success here.

 

(Hence my recent suggestion to give them a main gun dispersion buff upgrade in slot 2, so you can opt for a build that lets you snipe a bit better at the expense of some tankiness.)

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18 minutes ago, Nautical_Metaphor said:

#lol

He said "easily"

If the opportunity presents itself, it is easy. The hard part is getting the right constellation. But it's easier to do than in any of the other T7s.

1 hour ago, Nautical_Metaphor said:

Yeah that's every German T7 BB driver's wet dream, but of course it only works out in a tiny, tiny fraction of attempts because if you drive in between three other guys, you just get focused down and die before you're even in torp range (6 km). Also better none of the three other guys have torps because chances are, if they do, they're either longer range than yours or their ship is harder to hit or their ship is too resilient.

 

And with only a 10pt commander, the secondaries are also too weedy to be a lot of help in this kind of maneuver. I tried all manner of builds on my Scharnhorst (same secondaries) during the last free commander redistribution week - with 19 skill points to play with. At that level, it starts to get interesting but it's just nowhere close to Bismarck levels. I'd say you'd have the best chances to pull it off with CE instead of AFT but you still have to use the terrain and all the stars have to align just perfectly.

Gneisenau and Scharnhorst do not have the same secondaries except on Gneisenau A hull. Top hull on Gneisenau carries 11x2 12.8 cm secondaries which have 31 mm pen base. While 10.5 cm guns don't do a whole lot except vs DDs, these 12.8 cm guns can shred even same tier BBs (and with IFHE, they'd hurt T8+ too). With 10 point commander, I already got AFT and while they don't hit often, I at times got up to 25k raw damage on ships just from them. These secondaries are, within their range (8 km), the best German secondary suite right after Kurfürst (which has 5x2 12.8 cm and 2x2 15 cm guns per side, compared to Gneisenau's 6x2 12.8 cm).

 

Personally, I'd use PT, AR, BoS, AFT, Manual Secondaries, SI, EM (or PM + DCCA) for 19 pt as a more generalist secondary captain or replace SI and EM with IFHE and DCCA/PM on a full on secondary build vs even T8s.

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Get on a flank, angle and push into them. Get those (specced) secondaries going and be ready with the torps. Pick your targets wisely, though - her accuracy is trolly and rewards patience.

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2 hours ago, Nautical_Metaphor said:

They key thing with higher tier German BBs seems to be your timing for the push needs just to be spot on, and if it isn't, you die a quick and useless death. This has been brought to a very fine point in the top tiers with the recent addition of more OP HE spammers like the IJN gunboat DDs and Worcester, but the very same thing is of course also going on at Tier VII, and Gneisenau doesn't even have the hydro to counter torps, just the short-lived catapult plane whose torpedo spotting range recently got nerfed. I doubt there's actually a quick and easy recipe for success here.

 

(Hence my recent suggestion to give them a main gun dispersion buff upgrade in slot 2, so you can opt for a build that lets you snipe a bit better at the expense of some tankiness.)

5% less fire resist in exchange for getting good dispersion is just insane, given slot 2 basically is filled with underwhelming options for pretty much all ships.

 

The T7 Helena is annoying, but far less so than Worcester and Gneisenau has 50 mm deck plating, making it the second most HE resistant ship at T7 (after Hood). IJN gunboats don't even exist at T7 and the occasional matches against Akizuki and Kitakaze, it's not hard to get away with 32 knots of speed. Yes, you need to actualy get a feeling for when you can push, based on knowing what you can take on and how. But well, even the line said to be for noobs requires some skills to perform well. And when you know what you are doing, Gneisenau can be extremely influential. I think I earned the most Kraken in this ship.

 

Also, in regards to counter-push, Gneisenau is fast and you in my experience, you can actually try to kite enemies if you are confronted with strong foes. Often, this leads to their faster units overextenting, where you can try make a quick turn and then run them down one after the other, given the ship is, as said before, fast.

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Vor 4 Stunden, Riselotte sagte:

Gneisenau and Scharnhorst do not have the same secondaries except on Gneisenau A hull.

This explains a lot actually. Thanks for the correction.

I even checked it in the Wiki before writing that post but turns out of course forgot to hit that "top" link again.

Back when, I unlocked Bismarck long before the Gneisenau captain actually reached 10 points, never got comfortable with the ship cause too few guns for my limited aiming skills back then, and more or less blew past it as fast as possible.

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Did anyone try the following tactic with the Gneisenau: if you don't start at the very middle, then go with full speed to the edge of the map, especially one where there are islands near the edge, and try to get behind them as soon as possible, never slowing down. Most battleships would not dare turning their guns towards you, because most of my team is on the other side.

I think it is very risky, and to get a statistically significant measurement I would need to play at least 50 battles this way... which, if the strategy turns out not to be viable, would make my score look like the biggest noob.

 

I guess this could have the best chances in a game with few destroyers and no carriers...

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6 minutes ago, Praevasc said:

Did anyone try the following tactic with the Gneisenau: if you don't start at the very middle, then go with full speed to the edge of the map, especially one where there are islands near the edge, and try to get behind them as soon as possible, never slowing down. Most battleships would not dare turning their guns towards you, because most of my team is on the other side.

I think it is very risky, and to get a statistically significant measurement I would need to play at least 50 battles this way... which, if the strategy turns out not to be viable, would make my score look like the biggest noob.

 

I guess this could have the best chances in a game with few destroyers and no carriers...

 

Imo Gneisenau is made for going into the action rather than going to the outside^^

Because of good secondaries and Torps. Basicly you lose those when you are on the flank. And the dispersion is just meh when you have to shoot constantly from longerrange.

 

The best option is to learn WHEN to make the push. I have a couple of vids from my Gneisenau here, but it would take some time to upload them if you are interested.

1 game is basicly like, i couldnt do much for a loooong time and mostly we were behind on ships, while we had 2 caps but at some point we were behind on points aswell. Had like 40k damage till the last 3 mins or so, and ended with 162k~, when i solo killed enemy BB and CV + some damage on a Budyonny.

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17 hours ago, DFens_666 said:

Because of good secondaries and Torps. Basicly you lose those when you are on the flank.

I didn't mean staying on the flank, just using the flank to speed by and get into their back, then going towards the center again.

 

17 hours ago, DFens_666 said:

1 game is basicly like, i couldnt do much for a loooong time and mostly we were behind on ships, while we had 2 caps but at some point we were behind on points aswell. Had like 40k damage till the last 3 mins or so, and ended with 162k~, when i solo killed enemy BB and CV + some damage on a Budyonny.

Seems interesting, I would gladly watch it if you found the time to upload it.

 

17 hours ago, Hedgehog1963 said:

How about some replays?

When I'll have time to do lots of missions in a row (and make enough space for the videos, and time for myself to research how to make and upload them) and find a battle where I can ask relevant questions, I'll consider it.

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3 hours ago, Praevasc said:

 

When I'll have time to do lots of missions in a row (and make enough space for the videos, and time for myself to research how to make and upload them) and find a battle where I can ask relevant questions, I'll consider it.

 

How about just uploading replays.  Or are you afraid to?

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4 hours ago, Praevasc said:

When I'll have time to do lots of missions in a row (and make enough space for the videos, and time for myself to research how to make and upload them) and find a battle where I can ask relevant questions, I'll consider it.

you can enable replays somewhere in the options menu in-game.

 

then upload them to this website.

 

https://replayswows.com

 

oh and don't forget to post the link of your replay in the main post so everyone can view it straight away.

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