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Pukovnik7

Battleship thoughts / favourite battleship

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I came back to World of Warships at long last, and since I couldn't wait to get past the lumbering behemots of World War I battleships (same thing which caused me to quit playing, now that I think about it), I bought the Vanguard.

 

First two playthroughs, I died like a kitten. I thought maybe it was a mistake to buy it, but then I realized: I bought it for the same reason why it is my favourite real-life battleship (well, aside from being damn beautiful ship). It is basically a battleship-grade battlecruiser. No Iron Duke-esque "die of old age before reaching battlefield and then die of old age again while waiting to slug it out" style slugging matches for this one. I was a cruiser player for a long time, but I quit playing cruisers because I got bored of the torpedoes. But I still remember that playstyle with fondness.

 

So the Vanguard is perfect for me, though I am still figuring it out. Cruise between the islands, pop up, deliver the burnination Mk.1, slip away. Never, ever reveal the full broadside to the enemy - you either have to be approaching or retreating from the enemy at the sharp angle - even up to 90 degrees. This will make it impossible to use all the turrets at the same time thanks to limited firing arcs. Fire frontal turrets, swing [edited], fire aft turrets, conceal them again. When retreating, same procedure, but with order reversed. As a result, 

 

Ship is fast, as fast as an older cruiser, which fits the playstyle perfectly. One problem I have is that it appears to turn like it is running on fine Russian vodka, but this is not so much of an issue as you will be running from cover to cover anyway - no staying in the open. "Hit and run" playstyle is further helped by its highly accurate main battery - if you miss, that will be because you did not aim well. This is especially true at shorter ranges, making it a bane of cruisers and destroyers alike (but also providing a potential for reverse - 'ware the torpedoes!).

 

But if you are caught in the open, may God help you. Cruisers are Vanguard's favourite prey, except it catches fire as enthusiastically as it causes the same. Long and tall citadel meanwhile do it no favours against enemy AP rounds, while ship's length and anemic turn speed mean that it is vulnerable to enemy torpedoes. In short: if you see enemy cruiser within torpedo range, delete it, even if ten enemy battleships are shooting at you (and if there are ten enemy battleships shooting at you, your only choice is to run away - which is kinda difficult if you are leaking like a sieve). Vanguard's speed enables it to close range quickly, but low range on main armaments means that enemy battleship(s) will start shooting at it long before Vanguard can start returning the favour. This again speaks to its role as a cruiser killer, where lack of range is much less of an issue. Its 381 mm main guns simply do not have the penetration of other similar-tier battleships, which means that HE is main damage dealer here - though AP rounds are nothing to sniff at, I have found much more success when spamming HE. If somebody had different experience, please comment - I'm really interested.

 

Verdict: If you want a firethrowing cruiser with 15 in guns and battleship armour, she's all yours. If you want a "proper battleship", stay the h*ll away. One thing is certain: if you don't know how to pick your battles, you will die quickly.

 

https://i.imgur.com/CaBdcXj.png

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Vanguard is the choice of connoisseurs.

 

Simple people cannot play her well! ;)

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14 minutes ago, gopher31 said:

Vanguard is the choice of connoisseurs.

 

Simple people cannot play her well! ;)

My thoughts exactly. As much as I like her and as much of a cruiser player I am, I'm still far from playing her consistently: one game I will obliterate everything in my path, another I will die without achieving anything of note.

CaBdcXj.png

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FYI, the Royal Navy 15" guns (QE, Warspite, Hood, Vanguard, Monarch) don't get the napalm shells. As a firestarter, Vanguard is about on par with tier mates like Richelieu and Bismarck. Heck, I suspect the extra pair of guns of the IJN T8s makes up for the lower fire chance per shell.

 

1/4 pen rule helps with direct damage against some targets, though.

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As for me, it's probably a toss-up between Musashi and Jean Bart. Depends on my mood for the day which one I prefer to play.

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1 hour ago, Pukovnik7 said:

I bought the Vanguard

This is what is wrong with this game....

 

And if You would ever compare Your stats with those of an - only - average player, You would see that yourself. And if You would have only an ounce of responsibility within You, you would go the low way of playing lower tier ships until you got at least a bit of an idea of how to play this class.

 

I pray to RNGesus that I only ever meet me on the opposing team... :cap_cool:

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You could have played Kongo. Similar playstile, easier and cheaper.

 

Vanguard has a super fast rudder. If that is slow for you, never try any other battleship at that Tier or higher.

Her AP is strong. Focussing on HE is a waste of potential.

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I have not given my Vanguard enough of a work out honestly, but I do love the Hood she’s great fun for that flanking hit and run job, the Kongo was a wonderful trainer for this play style too. 

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1 hour ago, Deckeru_Maiku said:

This is what is wrong with this game....

 

And if You would ever compare Your stats with those of an - only - average player, You would see that yourself. And if You would have only an ounce of responsibility within You, you would go the low way of playing lower tier ships until you got at least a bit of an idea of how to play this class.

 

I pray to RNGesus that I only ever meet me on the opposing team... :cap_cool:

For what is worth, I nailed a battleship and a destroyer this round with Vanguard. And do pray tell, how do you get an idea of playing a class without actually playing it? Lower class ships helped me absolutely nothing in playing Vanguard: cruiser playstyle is completely different, playstyle with older battleships is completely different. It took me all but five minutes to realize that. Difficult part is actually developing the style for the ship.

59 minutes ago, ColonelPete said:

You could have played Kongo. Similar playstile, easier and cheaper.

 

Vanguard has a super fast rudder. If that is slow for you, never try any other battleship at that Tier or higher.

Her AP is strong. Focussing on HE is a waste of potential.

With British battleship line, I have never had to use anything but HE at all. Though until Vanguard I have only played older British battleships and cruisers.

Rudder response is fast. Turn diameter however...

2 hours ago, Uglesett said:

FYI, the Royal Navy 15" guns (QE, Warspite, Hood, Vanguard, Monarch) don't get the napalm shells. As a firestarter, Vanguard is about on par with tier mates like Richelieu and Bismarck. Heck, I suspect the extra pair of guns of the IJN T8s makes up for the lower fire chance per shell.

 

1/4 pen rule helps with direct damage against some targets, though.

Thanks. Though I'm not sure whether that will make a difference: I have noticed that with Vanguard it is best to stand off to quite a distance and snipe enemy ships, which basically means HE spam.

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7 minutes ago, Pukovnik7 said:

For what is worth, I nailed a battleship and a destroyer this round with Vanguard. And do pray tell, how do you get an idea of playing a class without actually playing it? Lower class ships helped me absolutely nothing in playing Vanguard: cruiser playstyle is completely different, playstyle with older battleships is completely different. It took me all but five minutes to realize that. Difficult part is actually developing the style for the ship.

Kongo would have helped you. And even other BB teach you positioning, angling, target selection, ammo selection. Tier VIII is a MUCH harsher enviroment to learn.

10 minutes ago, Pukovnik7 said:

With British battleship line, I have never had to use anything but HE at all. Though until Vanguard I have only played older British battleships and cruisers.

Rudder response is fast. Turn diameter however...

Which can be a waste of potential on some UK battleships. And that is also the reason they are not the best teachers for learning how to play battleships.

Ammo and target selection are very important.

The fast rudder helps a lot with torpedos and together with her speed she turns decently.

14 minutes ago, Pukovnik7 said:

Thanks. Though I'm not sure whether that will make a difference: I have noticed that with Vanguard it is best to stand off to quite a distance and snipe enemy ships, which basically means HE spam.

And that is wasted potential. She does more damage with AP. Select the right targets, get into the right positions.

Vanguard can take way more punishment than any cruiser. It is better for the team when Vanguard gets shot at instead if your teams cruisers. Get closer, get shot at.

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44 minutes ago, ColonelPete said:

 Kongo would have helped you. And even other BB teach you positioning, angling, target selection, ammo selection. Tier VIII is a MUCH harsher enviroment to learn.

1 hour ago, Pukovnik7 said:

Maybe I shouldn't have jumped in with the Vanguard after that multi-year break I took from the game, but then part of the reason I took the break was because I got bored of the cruisers and battleships both and couldn't afford a battlecruiser / fast battleship back then (other part was some RL stuff going on).

Well, thanks to Vanguard being fun to play, at least now I have enough accumulated XP to get Myogi and then work towards Kongo. So I'll try your suggestion. Thanks.

1 hour ago, ColonelPete said:

Which can be a waste of potential on some UK battleships. And that is also the reason they are not the best teachers for learning how to play battleships.

Ammo and target selection are very important.

The fast rudder helps a lot with torpedos and together with her speed she turns decently.

Yeah, I get the impression I am relearning everything from scratch now.

45 minutes ago, ColonelPete said:

And that is wasted potential. She does more damage with AP. Select the right targets, get into the right positions.

Vanguard can take way more punishment than any cruiser. It is better for the team when Vanguard gets shot at instead if your teams cruisers. Get closer, get shot at.

I will need to work on positioning, but it often seems that enemies (at least in PvP) often focus on the Vanguard. So when I try to act as a "meat shield" (which I did a few times), I die quickly. When I fire from further away, I still get shot at more than almost any ship in vicinity. Might have to do with my tendency to avoid central straits for fear of torpedoes, I don't know.

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Vanguard is imo a fun ship due to its superior handling and accuracy, but I wouldnt call it a good ship. Tier8 has fantastic BBs, both tech tree and premium, and vanguard just cannot stand up to the likes of north carolina, amagi, massachusetts... the list goes on.

 

You are taking a BB slot with something that can only barely do BB things. Its strengths (concealment, AA) are somewhat meaningless due to reworked CVs and AA.

 

Oh, and please don’t play the vanguard as a max range he sniper. If you want to play a BB like that (sigh), put in the work and play the RN tech tree line. They are actually intended for that tedious role.

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4 hours ago, arttuperkunas said:

Vanguard is imo a fun ship due to its superior handling and accuracy, but I wouldnt call it a good ship. Tier8 has fantastic BBs, both tech tree and premium, and vanguard just cannot stand up to the likes of north carolina, amagi, massachusetts... the list goes on.

  

You are taking a BB slot with something that can only barely do BB things. Its strengths (concealment, AA) are somewhat meaningless due to reworked CVs and AA.

 

Oh, and please don’t play the vanguard as a max range he sniper. If you want to play a BB like that (sigh), put in the work and play the RN tech tree line. They are actually intended for that tedious role.

It is fun, that is why I'm playing it... but I've been playing British battleships for quite a while, so Vanguard is taking a fair bit to adjust to.

And yeah, Vanguard is it seems played best as a large cruiser / cruiser killer. But as I said, I'm still figuring it out. If I don't, I'll wait for KGV, but overall I've actually had much more fun when playing cruisers than battleships. So I'd rather make effort in adjusting to Vanguard.

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1 minute ago, Pukovnik7 said:

It is fun, that is why I'm playing it... but I've been playing British battleships for quite a while, so Vanguard is taking a fair bit to adjust to.

And yeah, Vanguard is it seems played best as a large cruiser / cruiser killer. But as I said, I'm still figuring it out. If I don't, I'll wait for KGV, but overall I've actually had much more fun when playing cruisers than battleships. So I'd rather make effort in adjusting to Vanguard.

It might be tier 8 gameplay that you need to adjust to more than the ship itself. Tier 8 is in the tier 10 matchmaking bracket, so it's basically end game gameplay. For that reason, as others have said already, it would be better for the other 11 people in your team if you worked your way up the tiers, learning the game, before jumping into the end game. In the end, the ship itself matters less than the player, as even a Vanguard will do well if played by an expert (indeed, especially if played by an expert - it has IMO a somewhat high skill floor to be played effectively).

 

Vanguard is a bit of an odd ship ship. Probably at its best seeking flanks to lay down accurate AP salvos on broadsides. Then again, there are tier 8 ships that really do that better, like the Richelieu. I'm not sure what niche the Vanguard does better than other ships, which is probably the reason why it is generally considered meh/weak premium.

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8 hours ago, arttuperkunas said:

It might be tier 8 gameplay that you need to adjust to more than the ship itself. Tier 8 is in the tier 10 matchmaking bracket, so it's basically end game gameplay. For that reason, as others have said already, it would be better for the other 11 people in your team if you worked your way up the tiers, learning the game, before jumping into the end game. In the end, the ship itself matters less than the player, as even a Vanguard will do well if played by an expert (indeed, especially if played by an expert - it has IMO a somewhat high skill floor to be played effectively).

 

Vanguard is a bit of an odd ship ship. Probably at its best seeking flanks to lay down accurate AP salvos on broadsides. Then again, there are tier 8 ships that really do that better, like the Richelieu. I'm not sure what niche the Vanguard does better than other ships, which is probably the reason why it is generally considered meh/weak premium.

Yeah, might be the case.

 

Well, I've figured that I would use lower tiers in PvP for now and only use Vanguard against bots in coop, as it is by far the most fun ship to play out of the ships I have (Caledon, Bellerophon, Wakeful, Orion, Acasta, Iron Duke, Vanguard - only Caledon is almost as fun to play as Vanguard is, though with a focus on close-range torpedo attacks, and its lack of HE shells annoys me to no end). And Vanguard is proving a good ship (at least against the bots): it can avoid enemy gunfire, and I often get enemy shells deflected almost by accident thanks to the zig-zag maneuvers I always do whenever I'm being shot at. So while it is best used against cruisers, it can hold its own against most battleships. I have noticed one issue: Vanguard's gun accuracy lends itself to long-range gunnery, but when I tried using AP rounds at any range, I always get either overpens (it seems to happen most at long range) or deflections (mostly when I try to use them at close range). I have never managed to destroy an enemy ship with AP rounds, not even a cruiser.

 

That being said, I am moving away from long-range gunnery with Vanguard. While my playstyle with her is best described as "island peek-a-boo", using islands for cover and landing a barrage on a cruiser / destroyer / battleship (in order of priority) whenever one shows itself in a "window", I am getting more comfortable with getting in close - so long as there is a convenient island nearby to hide behind if necessary. Some of the maps are quite open however, so it is hard to avoid.

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44 minutes ago, Pukovnik7 said:

but when I tried using AP rounds at any range, I always get either overpens (it seems to happen most at long range) or deflections (mostly when I try to use them at close range). I have never managed to destroy an enemy ship with AP rounds, not even a cruiser.

 

While my playstyle with her is best described as "island peek-a-boo", using islands for cover and landing a barrage on a cruiser / destroyer / battleship (in order of priority) whenever one shows itself in a "window"

1) do you know how AP shells work ? If you haven't, please read the wiki https://wiki.wargaming.net/en/Ship:Gunnery_%26_Armor_Penetration

You need to understand the ricochet angles and overmatch mechanics, and also arming threshold and fuse time. This is the key to success with AP shells. Otherwise, you can shoot at angled belt all day and do absolutely no damage, even on a cruiser with 27mm plating as you don't overmatch that with 380mm guns.

A simple rule to follow would be : if a ship is angled and the vector angle between your guns and the plating is less than ~45°, don't shoot the belt if you can't overmatch (in your case, you can overmatch up to 25mm of armor so up to light cruisers, but not heavy cruisers or BBs). between 45 and 30° you have a chance to ricochet, less than 30° the ricochet is automatic. Some ships have improved pen angles and can hit at 30° or less.

regarding overpens, I don't know exactly the arming threshold for Vanguard, but you don't have short fuse and low threshold like hood or duke of york, so to deal pen damage you have to hit the thick part of the belt on cruisers and not the 25/27mm part. (even that doesn't guarantee it won't overpen at short range).

 

 

2) if you park next to an island and restrain your aim to only a portion of the map, hoping someone will pass in front of you, you have little positive influence on the match. you can't catch a broadside on another flank, you can't defend, you can't push. Sometimes you can do that when the situation requires it, but you have to look at the minimap and change your plans accordingly.

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5 hours ago, meuhbat said:

1) do you know how AP shells work ? If you haven't, please read the wiki https://wiki.wargaming.net/en/Ship:Gunnery_%26_Armor_Penetration

You need to understand the ricochet angles and overmatch mechanics, and also arming threshold and fuse time. This is the key to success with AP shells. Otherwise, you can shoot at angled belt all day and do absolutely no damage, even on a cruiser with 27mm plating as you don't overmatch that with 380mm guns.

A simple rule to follow would be : if a ship is angled and the vector angle between your guns and the plating is less than ~45°, don't shoot the belt if you can't overmatch (in your case, you can overmatch up to 25mm of armor so up to light cruisers, but not heavy cruisers or BBs). between 45 and 30° you have a chance to ricochet, less than 30° the ricochet is automatic. Some ships have improved pen angles and can hit at 30° or less.

regarding overpens, I don't know exactly the arming threshold for Vanguard, but you don't have short fuse and low threshold like hood or duke of york, so to deal pen damage you have to hit the thick part of the belt on cruisers and not the 25/27mm part. (even that doesn't guarantee it won't overpen at short range).

 

 

2) if you park next to an island and restrain your aim to only a portion of the map, hoping someone will pass in front of you, you have little positive influence on the match. you can't catch a broadside on another flank, you can't defend, you can't push. Sometimes you can do that when the situation requires it, but you have to look at the minimap and change your plans accordingly.

1) I understand that the enemy needs to be broadside to me ideally (I have been using angling to prevent enemy penetrations). Problem I think might be that I sometimes (often?) target too high, and so shells skim off the armoured deck. A few times when I targeted a battleship AP shells were simply defeated by armour (due to Vanguard's 15 in guns?), while against cruisers overpen is far more likely. I try to avoid shooting into water, but maybe that would be better to shooting too high? I also noticed that both skims and overpens happen at long range as well, and latter may happen even with HE shells.

EDIT: Well, I just broadsided enemy Iowa-class battleship. AP shells to waterline, from basically point-blank range. It went up in flames. So it appears the problem was that I was shooting too high.

EDIT2: Confirmed. AP shells to the waterline from close range do wonders on enemy battleships and heavy cruisers. For light cruisers I switch to HE, assuming they didn't get murderized by an ally or my own secondaries. That switch time reduction upgrade really does wonders for this ship.

 

2) I don't park next to an island. What I do is that I cruise from an island to island and engage targets of opportunity, using islands as a cover while guns are reloading. A few times I ambushed a cruiser at close range that way, though I generally target ships that are out in the open and preferably engaging other ships (so essentially catch them into crossfire - ideally when enemy is end-side to me and belt-side to whomever he is engaging). I do have to say that Vanguard's lack of aircraft is a bit of a pain when doing this, though it is not too bad - there is a minimap which also shows what my allies are seeing, and I have just recently discovered that minimap also has main battery target indicator, so you can shoot even targets you don't see (so long as shells can clear the island summit). I don't get a lot of kills that way, but if it helps, it is worth doing. Especially as after first few run-ins, I now avoid engaging enemy battleships in any situation where they might actually return fire (last time I did so I actually managed to hold my own against an enemy battleship by utilizing that zig-zag approach that was mentioned, but it turned out that he had buddies with him and seeing how I only engaged to try and save an ally who was on his last sliver of health... yeah, it did not go well).

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