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Lea_Flamma

IJN Cruisers - Captain Skills Discussion

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Hi there,

a quick question, as the numerous searches I have done so far returned mostly outdated info, pre 0.8 that is.

 

I am pushing up the IJN Cruisers line right now, currently stopped at Tier 7. My plan is to train a captain along the way till I reach the Zao. That is why I am cherry picking my captain skills in such a way, that they will be useful on the Tier X Cruiser. But since it is my second month of playing, I am not quite sure, what would work best on that ship. I've been playing mostly DDs so far, so the whole Cruiser buisness is slowly getting to me.

 

My plan was to... For the first 10 points pick:

Expert Loader

Adrenaline Rush

Survivability Expert

Concealment Expert (am 2 points short of this)

 

For the remaining 9 points I am a bit puzzled. Considering the fact, Zao can have the lowest detection of all Tier X Cruisers, as well as quite slow turret rotation, I was considering Radio Location. But then some guides and discussions I saw had some rather poor opinions about this skill. A lot of people offered Demolition Expert as a must have pick, but a shift from 19% to 21% does not sound that big with an over 13s reload time. I can see this skill much more useful on a DD that can turbo spam shells. Superintendent seems to be quite potent, for the additional Repair Party as well as Hydro. But what of the last two points? Priority Target and Preventive Maintenance? Ekspert Marksman? Last Stand seems a bit like a waste for a Cruiser.

 

On the other hand, I have read a lot about AA-Build Zao, am curious how viable it would be right now with the 0.8 changes.

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Expert Loader does not help much. Priority Target is more important.

Turret Traverse is important, but depends on preferences. Adrenalin Rush is a must have, at least for later.

The extra HP are a waste of points on a cruiser. 

Concealment Expert is a solid pick.

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6 minutes ago, Lea_Flamma said:

Hi there,

a quick question, as the numerous searches I have done so far returned mostly outdated info, pre 0.8 that is.

 

I am pushing up the IJN Cruisers line right now, currently stopped at Tier 7. My plan is to train a captain along the way till I reach the Zao. That is why I am cherry picking my captain skills in such a way, that they will be useful on the Tier X Cruiser. But since it is my second month of playing, I am not quite sure, what would work best on that ship. I've been playing mostly DDs so far, so the whole Cruiser buisness is slowly getting to me.

 

My plan was to... For the first 10 points pick:

Expert Loader

Adrenaline Rush

Survivability Expert

Concealment Expert (am 2 points short of this)

 

For the remaining 9 points I am a bit puzzled. Considering the fact, Zao can have the lowest detection of all Tier X Cruisers, as well as quite slow turret rotation, I was considering Radio Location. But then some guides and discussions I saw had some rather poor opinions about this skill. A lot of people offered Demolition Expert as a must have pick, but a shift from 19% to 21% does not sound that big with an over 13s reload time. I can see this skill much more useful on a DD that can turbo spam shells. Superintendent seems to be quite potent, for the additional Repair Party as well as Hydro. But what of the last two points? Priority Target and Preventive Maintenance? Ekspert Marksman? Last Stand seems a bit like a waste for a Cruiser.

 

On the other hand, I have read a lot about AA-Build Zao, am curious how viable it would be right now with the 0.8 changes.

SE is more a DD pick. Priority Target is my First pick on every Cruiser. 

 

I slot Radio Location only for CWs in Zao. There are for sure some good builds. 

 

Mine is: PT, EL, EM, AR, SI, DE, TA, CE. 

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Well, Zao has what... 40k hp? SE adds 3500 to that. That's almost what, 8.5% of hp? It is the lowest HP Cruiser in the game for Tier X I believe. And since it's also the stealthiest, I thought that the ability to quickly adapt to the type of enemy you will be facing is important, hence the Expert Loader? Like if you have a bearing and HE loaded but suddenly a boradside Cruiser appears, reload time of 13.8s and 6.9s is a massive difference.

 

What of the Basic and Advanced FT?

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35 minutes ago, Lea_Flamma said:

SE adds 3500 to that.

That's literally less than 1 additional BB-AP penetration worth of health.

Also you have to put Zaos health in perspective, yes it's low but Zao relies on dodging rather than tanking and has a bunch of heals to boot to help it survive.

 

37 minutes ago, Lea_Flamma said:

What of the Basic and Advanced FT?

Only if you find really need additional AA and find yourself getting molested by CVs more often than not.

In that regard if you want to go AA go BFT or MAA, consistend DPM is more reliable than hoping for additonal dmg from flak bursts.

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My recommantadion captain build for IJN cruisers since version 0.8: PM, EM, DE, CE, AR, SI(Inspektor), fighter, SE (take it in that order)

  • PM to reduce those quite often occuring gun or rudder defects
  • EM for faster turret traverse
  • DE for getting more of those juicy fires
  • CE still a must have especially for these open water IJN cruisers
  • AR for getting more shells and torps out
  • SI for the additional heals in T9/10 (+T8 Atago) and the additional defensive AA consumable which seems to help the IJN AA more than any other skill

The last 4 points (fighter + SE) are just a personal preference. Up to there it should be a solid IJN CA build.
There are other usefull skills / skill combinations for those last 4 points which others might prefer:

- vigilance: 

- RPF

- prio target: If you think you need it you should swap position with PM then. For me it's like: I'm spotted - I'll be shot - don't need to know how many.

- manual FLAK: especially if WG nerfs FLAK damage while buffing DPS AA damage in upcoming "urgent patch"

- BFT: see man.FLAK

 

About SE: it's ~8% more HP. In tier 9+10 you'll get maybe 50% extra health from heals out of that additional HP (so it's maybe worth 5000 HP on ZAO). Its one BB pen or several overpens. Or several HE hits. For me it's worth it. But I'm playing these IJn cruisers in an agressive kiting style dodging lots of shells (>1kk pot. damage occurs regularly). Every bit of HP helps - or as I like to say: having it is better than needing it.

 

Upgrades:

Slot1: secondary+AA module  (but main arty+torps is also good)

Slot2: Rudder Module

Slot3: AA Module (+2 flak bursts) swap it for accurcy if CV population drops in future

Slot4: rudder shift

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So Demolition Expert is still a good pick for Zao? I thought it would be more useful on something that can spam HE Shells. With the long [edited]reload it's somewhat... Seems like a waste of points to me.

Can you clarify, what you mean by Inspector? At first I thought you speak of Vigilance, but later comments made it clear, you are not. I haven't found a skill with that name.

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50 minutes ago, Lea_Flamma said:

So Demolition Expert is still a good pick for Zao? I thought it would be more useful on something that can spam HE Shells. With the long [edited]reload it's somewhat... Seems like a waste of points to me.

Can you clarify, what you mean by Inspector? At first I thought you speak of Vigilance, but later comments made it clear, you are not. I haven't found a skill with that name.

Demolition Expert is a very useful skill for IJN cruisers, and especially a Zao with the legendary module. With the relevant signals mounted and the skill you get a 24% fire chance on 12 very accurate guns.

He  meant the skill Superintendent which is named differently in other languages, Inspekteur in German for example.

 

I would however point out that his build is quite inefficient and not competitive. Taking SE and the Direction Center is a waste of skills. You are better off taking Expert Loader, to quickly switch between HE and AP, and either Vigilance if you want to hunt DDs or Torpedo Armament Expert, if you want to specialize in the 12km torpedoes. You can also use the 4 points for RPF.

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7 minut temu, Aragathor napisał:

Demolition Expert is a very useful skill for IJN cruisers, and especially a Zao with the legendary module. With the relevant signals mounted and the skill you get a 24% fire chance on 12 very accurate guns.

He  meant the skill Superintendent which is named differently in other languages, Inspekteur in German for example.

 

I would however point out that his build is quite inefficient and not competitive. Taking SE and the Direction Center is a waste of skills. You are better off taking Expert Loader, to quickly switch between HE and AP, and either Vigilance if you want to hunt DDs or Torpedo Armament Expert, if you want to specialize in the 12km torpedoes.

I intend to pick the 12km torpedos actually... Was considering the shorter range ones with Torpedo Acceleration for some close range brawl stuff. But ehh... So so idea.

 

For now I am sitting on Expert Loader, Adrenaline Rush, Survivability Expert and Concealment Expert on the Tier VII. My next priority would be Radio Location, as I love this skill and its utility. That leaves me with 5 points to spend, so either Demolition Expert or Superintendent and maybe Expert Marksman or Jack of All Trades, or perhaps Priority Target and Preventive Maintenance.

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9 minutes ago, Lea_Flamma said:

I intend to pick the 12km torpedos actually... Was considering the shorter range ones with Torpedo Acceleration for some close range brawl stuff. But ehh... So so idea.

 

For now I am sitting on Expert Loader, Adrenaline Rush, Survivability Expert and Concealment Expert on the Tier VII. My next priority would be Radio Location, as I love this skill and its utility. That leaves me with 5 points to spend, so either Demolition Expert or Superintendent and maybe Expert Marksman or Jack of All Trades, or perhaps Priority Target and Preventive Maintenance.

You really don't want those three in your initial 10p. You are hobbling your performance with them. Especially with the SE.

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52 minutes ago, Lea_Flamma said:

For now I am sitting on Expert Loader, Adrenaline Rush, Survivability Expert and Concealment Expert on the Tier VII

Expert loader is good but not "first pass" good, take Priority target unless you have the situational awareness of a demi-god.

And while AR is a must have, most CAs especially IJN ones (even more so the Myoko and Mogami until you have the 203s) have such a bad turret traverse that you definitely should take EM first.

Survivability expert is just  plain rubbish on cruisers (less than 1 pen from BB-AP at best)

52 minutes ago, Lea_Flamma said:

My next priority would be Radio Location, as I love this skill and its utility. That leaves me with 5 points to spend, so either Demolition Expert or Superintendent and maybe Expert Marksman or Jack of All Trades, or perhaps Priority Target and Preventive Maintenance.

Make sure you have SI when you hit T9, that extra heal can make a massive difference. Getting points after 13-14 takes a lot of time so make that a priority.

Radio location (if you want it) should be left until you have the important skills i.e. PT -> EM -> SI -> CE -> AR (basic build for most high tier CAs & BBs) Then you can follow up with any of DE, EL, RL, maybe PM ect.

I would advise against JAT, since Zao does not have that many consumables that would profit from a quick reload (unless you're forced to rush in with hydro, are under heavy fire or constant CV attack)

Last point: RL on Zao is more or a CW/Ranked skill, in randoms they are usually a bit further back and thus not in direct contact with enemy dds

and even if the DDs are close by you don't have any means to spot them unless they misplay heavily anyway (since catapult-plane spotting was nerfed to the ground), so at best it's Vigilance++

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4 minuty temu, rnat napisał:

Expert loader is good but not "first pass" good, take Priority target unless you have the situational awareness of a demi-god.

And while AR is a must have especially on IJN CAs, even more as the Myoko (and Mogami until you have the 203s) have such a bad turret traverse that you definitely should take EM.

Survivability expert is just  plain rubbish on cruisers (less than 1 pen from BB-AP at best)

Make sure you have SI when you hit T9, that extra heal can make a massive difference. Getting points after 13-14 takes a lot of time so make that a priority.

Radio location (if you want it) should be left until you have the important skills i.e. PT -> EM -> SI -> CE -> AR (basic build for most high tier CAs & BBs) Then you can follow up with any of DE, EL, RL, maybe PM ect.

I would advise against JAT, since Zao does not have that many consumables that would profit from a quick reload (unless you're forced to rush in with hydro, are under heavy fire or constant CV attack)

Last point: RL on Zao is more or a CW/Ranked skill, in randoms they are usually a bit further back and thus not in direct contact with enemy dds

and even if they are close you don't have any means to spot them unless they misplay heavily anyway (since Catapult plane-spotting was nerfed to the ground)

That's a lot of useful info right there. I might use the free respec to check out the PT>EM>SI>CE path. Might use free exp to hasten the captain progression so I can get the AR a bit faster.

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Vor 1 Stunde, Aragathor sagte:

I would however point out that his build is quite inefficient and not competitive. Taking SE and the Direction Center is a waste of skills. You are better off taking Expert Loader, to quickly switch between HE and AP, and either Vigilance if you want to hunt DDs or Torpedo Armament Expert, if you want to specialize in the 12km torpedoes. You can also use the 4 points for RPF.

Well, as you don't disagree with the first 15 points I don't know why the suggested build is "inefficient" or "not competive". However I agree that it also depends on what you play (random, clanwars, ...). For those last 4 points I already said it's a personal preference. And I suggested the other options you mentioned. I guess eveybody should have a good feeling about what to do with those 4 points if he has played the other 15 on that captain.

 

Well for me "expert loader" is a waste. Only works if all guns are already loaded. I wouldn't mind shooting "wrong" (but powerfull IJN) HE at a perfect broadside than AP in several seconds. However - skillpoints supports personal preferences. There's not "the one and only" build.

 

Vor 51 Minuten, rnat sagte:

Make sure you have SI when you hit T9, that extra heal can make a massive difference.

From my point of view: Having SE + regular 3 heals or having Superintendant 4 heals doesn't make a huge difference regarding total HP. That 4th heals will not be a lot more worth than those 3500 additional HP from SE (whis is also a greater HP base pool to heal back from). Why? Because most damage will be taken from AP where you can't heal back a lot from. Especially those citadels you still eat in IJN cruisers on a regular basis. And sometimes you even run out of time to use those heals if you played the first 10 minutes quite safe.

The reason I would I would prefer SI (T9+) if I had to chose:  The additional consumables on fighter and def AA - especially with reworked strong T10 CVs.

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Vor 38 Minuten, Lea_Flamma sagte:

That's a lot of useful info right there. I might use the free respec to check out the PT>EM>SI>CE path. Might use free exp to hasten the captain progression so I can get the AR a bit faster.

I would suggest PT, EM, DE, CE and SI a little later (maybe after AR). Right now at Myoko it gives you only +1 consumable which you don't need in every game.

From DE you profit every salvo. Would be my recommended first 3 point skill for IJN any day any tier.

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54 minutes ago, Skurios_Volleys_Fan said:

From my point of view: Having SE + regular 3 heals or having Superintendant 4 heals doesn't make a hughe differnence regarding HP. That 4th heals will hardly make up those 3500 additional HP from SE. Most damage will be taken from AP where you can't heal back a lot and sometimes you even run out of time to use those heals.

If you don't eat either citadels or torp hits to the mid-section of your ship you can usually get out most of all your heals. Heck i usually get most out of 5 heals on my Hinden.

If you don't have time to run another heal chances are

1) you didn't take enough dmg to justify popping it earlier so what use would have SE been unless you die literally in the seconds before the 2nd or 3rd heal comes off cooldown

2) you didn't take enough dmg that game period. no use for SE either

And even if you only get half of your last heal that's still about as much as SE would give you.

48 minutes ago, Skurios_Volleys_Fan said:

I would suggest PT, EM, DE, CE and SI a little later (maybe after AR). Right now at Myoko it gives you only +1 consumable which you don't need in every game.

From DE you profit every salvo. Would be my recommended first 3 point skill for IJN. 

True if he carries this captain from the Myoko to the Ibuki/Zao without free-exping the ships. [edited to clarify]

DE is more valuable at this tier, my concern was that he could not have enough points at hand once he reaches T9 if he picks several other skills first.

I probably should have made it clear that DE was better on the Myoko and Mogami instead of just putting down the build for T9+10.

 

  • Cool 1

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Okay, I've read through what you posted and a bit of clarification. Yes I intend to free exp the captain to speed up the point gain as I level from Myoko to Zao. I am currently sitting on 10 points with a free respec.

 

Myoko is so far a nice surprise, as its AP can actually hurt things, something I was struggling with on the Aoba. I remember getting the ship into an operation and deleting the first met Cruiser with one salvo of AP. Wonderful feeling to get a ship from 100 to 0 in one barrage.

 

So, summing up all the info, I should go for:

PT > EM > DE > CE > SI > AR > 4 points left;

That makes Radio Location a possiblity. Also Expert Loader and Survivability Expert as an alternative. Or perhaps Torpedo Armaments Expertise in place of SE.

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36 minutes ago, Lea_Flamma said:

Okay, I've read through what you posted and a bit of clarification. Yes I intend to free exp the captain to speed up the point gain as I level from Myoko to Zao.

Apologies, I didn't notice my answer was misleading or at least unclear. I meant free-exping the ships or at least significant portions of them, as that would mean loosing out on the captain exp from playing them.

I've corrected this in the relevant post.

 

36 minutes ago, Lea_Flamma said:

Myoko is so far a nice surprise, as its AP can actually hurt things, something I was struggling with on the Aoba. I remember getting the ship into an operation and deleting the first met Cruiser with one salvo of AP. Wonderful feeling to get a ship from 100 to 0 in one barrage.

Funny thing btw: You have basically the same 203s (with different names) and the same shells on them from the (upgraded) Furutaka to the Ibuki, with the differences being in turret rotation, range and (on Ibuki only) reload.

The massive up in firepower you experience on the Myoko is form the number of guns, not their characteristics (they all had their accuracy buffed to Zao-levels)

Seeing your lowish number of games i suspect you've just gotten better at aiming.:cap_like:

Cheers and may the RNGsus bless you. ^^

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22 minuty temu, rnat napisał:

Apologies, I didn't notice my answer was misleading or at least unclear. I meant free-exping the ships or at least significant portions of them, as that would mean loosing out on the captain exp from playing them.

I've corrected this in the relevant post.

 

Funny thing btw: You have basically the same 203s (with different names) and the same shells on them from the (upgraded) Furutaka to the Ibuki, with the differences being in turret rotation, range and (on Ibuki only) reload.

The massive up in firepower you experience on the Myoko is form the number of guns, not their characteristics (they all had their accuracy buffed to Zao-levels)

Seeing your lowish number of games i suspect you've just gotten better at aiming.:cap_like:

Cheers and may the RNGsus bless you. ^^

Well maybe? I couldn't hit a citadel for the love of my on the cruisers for the past five tiers. With Myoko it's somehow easier. I started training with the ship in the current operation and can usually end the game with around 10-15 citadels. Although am still mostly bamboozled how the damage is calculated. I shoot two volleys at a BB, both get 7-9 penetrations. One does around 6k dmg without citadels, the second does 1.5k. I am learning about armor layers and stuff, so there is that... Also not to broadside to enemy Cruisers and BBs... Got down from 40k to 3.8k in one salvo yesterday. That hurt a bit.

 

Thanks a lot for the info and help. I haven't considered DE to be worthwhile on those ships, but I will test it out.

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On 2/5/2019 at 3:25 PM, Lea_Flamma said:

Although am still mostly bamboozled how the damage is calculated. I shoot two volleys at a BB, both get 7-9 penetrations. One does around 6k dmg without citadels, the second does 1.5k.

Citadel => 100% of shell dmg

Penetration => 1/3 or shell dmg

Overpen => 10% of shell dmg.

Shatter/Bounce => no dmg.

 

WG produced a decent explanation that goes into more detail (the whole "how it works" series is pretty good if you're interested)

Spoiler

 

 

Some of the things that happen semi-regularly and can throw you off:

-hit+penetration of a main gun, secondary gun or AA mount which will count as a pen, but will do dmg exclusively to that module => no dmg to the ship (you might get incapacitations or module destructions though)

-hit+penetration of a torpedo bulge but non-penetration of the armor belt behind it => penetration with no dmg since torpedo bulges have no hp and don't count towards hull dmg

-hit+over-penetration (shown) for 43% of shell dmg happen presumably if your shell over penetrates some part (e.g. the superstructure) but then re-enters and explode in another part of the target

-hits on a semi-saturated or saturated part of the ship => half or expected or no dmg. c.f. video in the spoiler

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On 2/5/2019 at 2:25 PM, Lea_Flamma said:

 

That makes Radio Location a possiblity. Also Expert Loader and Survivability Expert as an alternative. Or perhaps Torpedo Armaments Expertise in place of SE.

Going to jump on the bandwagon and also say, pick any other skill than survivability expert. The added HP might seem nice on paper, but every other viable 3 pointer surpasses it in utility.

 

- Vigilance helps both you and your team to dodge torpedoes easier.

 

- Super intendent provides extra consumables and if you can dodge or disengage longer staying power thanks to an extra heal.

 

- Torpedo armament and the 12 km torps can give you better zoning and higher damage potential.

 

Survivability expert enables you to survive 1 extra BB pen or a couple if extra HE pens from a 203 mm armed cruiser. This might make a difference some games, but the other skills can make a difference or be used in every game.

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Last stand is actually a viable pick on Zao. You depend on your mobility a lot. Your engine room might not get broken vast majority of the time, but your rudder might get knocked out more often then you would expect. And let me make this clear, if your rudders is out, you will die.

On other hand Demolition Expert is redundant. You have 17% base fire chance with 12 really accurate guns. 2% won't really do you that much good and you can profit a lot more from other skills like one extra skill for 1 and 2 points. Priority Target is always great same as Adrenaline rush. Expert loader on Zao is quite good to take that opportunity AP salvos since IJN both AP and HE are quite good.

As for anyone still arguing for DE, watch How it Works: Fire. With Zao accuracy, you will, more often then not,  keep hitting same part of a ship so you can only start 1 fire in that location (to if enemy doesn't have a skill). So once that fire is burning, all your extra fire chance is wasted. With Zao, roughly every other salvo will start a fire. You really don't need that extra 2%.

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