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DaBung

DD vs DD Gun Fights

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38 minutes ago, Camperdown said:

Although it is difficult to argue with don't die, it does not really touch the essence. The essence is: when to take risk. I find in a DD there is no reward without risk, so the more important question is: how do you judge whether a risk is worth it, while you are under intense pressure at the knife edge. The answer to that is: if you die too often, and your trades are not good enough, reflect on which situations you should take less risk in.

How right you are!

 

Many years ago on this very forum, I opened a thread titled "Taking a Bullet for your Team", where I expounded on when and how to take risks and make sacrifices in order to work towards a victory. On the assumption that damage to one's ship does not, in fact, carry over into the real world - a fact that a large part of the player base seems puzzlingly ignorant of, judging by their in-game actions - I based my own reasoning around the tenet that one should avoid taking unnecessary damage to one's ship. As for what would inversely constitute useful damage - if I may call it that - I think most of us would agree that there are many situations when taking some damage, or even being sunk, can help secure a victory for the team.

 

So when I formulated my above post - the one you quoted - I did indeed fiddle with some alternative catch phrases. The short and snappy "Don't die in vain" came to mind, as did the more prosaic "Don't die needlessly". With the vague ambition of setting down the full philosophy, I thought about the somewhat more cumbersome "Don't die unless your death represents a useful sacrifice which will, although being somewhat inconvenient for your own personal game experience at this time, advance your team's chance of ultimately winning the battle". The problem was, none of these has the elegance of that golden piece of advice I received in the battle chat all those years ago:

 

"Don't die."

 

This simple phrase has stayed with me ever since. It contains both a highly useful piece of advice from the sender, and a friendly wish for the continued well-being of the receiver. I've taken it to heart - and if it were up to me, I would propose that it be added to the list of quick-command messages that is available in the battle chat.

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Thanks for the advice! This is mostly stuff I try to do already, though I need to improve I most these aspects. I think ignoring the team moaning and choosing battles more carefully is a good point. 
 

I generally try to avoid fighting other dds with guns and stealth torp them instead with blind launches (and I am quite decent at this. Trouble is that it is the good dds will avoid this and I often find getting or not getting a cap comes down to me gunning down the other DD. Like in ranked yesterday where we lost over contesting C, and the DD fight was the decider. If I ran away then I am not sure what would have happened, reality is we had to take one of their caps. 

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I have had the time now to read through all the posts in more detail. Thanks for the advice again I appreciate it (particularly is this much detail).

 

A few people have mentioned knowing your ship, I mostly play British DDs now and am currently at the lightning. I have a pretty good idea of their strengths (good firepower, reasonable concealment, mediocre torps, high utility smoke, defensive hydro, amazing manoeuvrability, slow, heal at high tier) but is there any advice specific to them? 
 

The general feel I get is that strategy is the the hardest part of this game (positioning, forward thinking, etc), you can be the best fighter is the game a still get owned with bad strategy. 

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56 minutes ago, DaBung said:

 

A few people have mentioned knowing your ship, I mostly play British DDs now and am currently at the lightning. I have a pretty good idea of their strengths (good firepower, reasonable concealment, mediocre torps, high utility smoke, defensive hydro, amazing manoeuvrability, slow, heal at high tier) but is there any advice specific to them? 
 

 

Most of the RN specific advice goes for most DDs really.
That being said, you probably know by now that they are excellent cap contesters.
Great short range dpm, deadly single launch torpedoes against heavier ships trying to push you/sit stationary, and hydro to keep you safe.

A tip that works for all RN DDs is for when you intend to farm a heavier ship (typically BB):
Save your smoke and don't open up on him until he fires his guns.
As soon as he does fire his guns, immediately smoke up and commence farming him.
Due to BB's terrible smoke firing penalty, you will hardspot him through that smoke and get a guaranteed opportunity to free farm him for 20 seconds (the BB's gun bloom timer).
Weaker RN DD players will often blow the smoke early when engaging a lone BB, thereby often denying their team vision and losing a damage farming opportunity for themselves.
And if he keeps firing while you sit in that smoke, good for you, you get to farm even more.

RN DDs are generally excellent at harassing any kind of ship with their smokes, so utilize them wisely.
You have many smokes available, so try using them to be that annoying pest that always seems show up at the worst times to get chip damage in.

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46 minutes ago, DaBung said:

any advice specific to them?

It's probably occurred to you already, but a coal hydro mod makes your run time with the relevant consumable utterly ludicrous; I have one on pretty much all my hydro-equipped RN DDs, but I would especially put one on T8 and up - the hydro is a key part of why the RN DDs can be so fearsome, so you might as well get the most out of it.

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1 hour ago, DaBung said:

A few people have mentioned knowing your ship, I mostly play British DDs now and am currently at the lightning. I have a pretty good idea of their strengths (good firepower, reasonable concealment, mediocre torps, high utility smoke, defensive hydro, amazing manoeuvrability, slow, heal at high tier) but is there any advice specific to them?

Feel like I need to chip in here because it's very much my wheelhouse, I'm quite the connoisseur of murdering destroyers in destroyers :)

 

Lightning is one of the best if not the best at T8 for DD vs DD knife fights because most DDs get outspotted by what they outgun, or outgunned by what they outspot. Lightning outspots and outguns just about everything, so you get the opening salvo(s) and have very good DPM and godlike forward angles, it's built for exactly this.

 

-Don't pick a fair fight with akizuki or her bigger sisters, they have problems with agility and concealment but will rip your head off and shlt down your neck (Duke Nukem reference)

-Dont pick a fight with the french if they have reload booster available, you outspot them hard, keep them spotted for a while so your team softens him up a bit before you go in for the kill

 

Some general advice for DD vs DD fights, if it's a fair fight, don't go for torps, that's precious seconds the other guy is already taking your health away, you won't land those torps anyway. Only use torps in a DD vs DD fight if you have to run hoping for a lucky strike or if you know you're going to lose the fight anyway and torps give you a chance of killing the other guy after you're dead. In a fair fight, the guy grabbing his torpedoes almost always loses, you're 5K HP down in the trade because you wasted time launching torps.

Pop hydro before going in the fight, to make sure you don't eat a torp and because there's a chance the other guy will pepega smoke up and sit there, if he does, be agressive, go to his smoke hydro active, open up on him as soon as you have him hydro spotted, he can't return fire because you see him, he cant see you. Germans can do this better for obvious reasons, but Brits can do this too, your hydro is mostly defensive but not entirely defensive. This works more often against American DDs because they have this weird smoke-fetish "My smoke lasts 3 hours so I have to sit in it when I use it" They don't want to "waste" their smoke to escape. Push into their smoke and farm them for free. For the love of god don't try this against Germans you will die :)

 

After the smoked up american is dead, feel free to "borrow" his 3 minute long super smoke to farm his friends :fish_haloween:


Watch out for DDs with "tricks" like germans doing smoke+hydro to farm you for free, or USS black doing smoke+radar to farm you for free, there's methods to deal with them but don't overload yourself with learning everything at once. I spend 90% of my time in this game playing DDs and hunting enemy DDs, not many people specialize in this, it's not easy, but it's incredibly valuable to a team, you already got a bunch of good advice here. Good luck sir.

 

If you want to win DD vs DD in a torpedo boat, you need your team, this is why I don't like torpedo boats. Take Yugumo as an extreme example, the way you beat a kitakaze in a Yugumo is flawless positioning so you outspot kitakaze for awhile while your team softens up the kitakaze before you fight it, or possibly just outright kill it without you ever being seen. If your team is bad, a torpedo boat will rarely beat a gunboat. You want good concealment and excellent guns, torpedoes are almost an afterthought for this playstyle.


2 more tips before I go

- When you fight Russians, you outspot or out-dpm them, often both. What Russians do is attack you and run away from you while they fight you, if you end up in a situation against something like a Grozovoi fighting you while he runs away from you, or you run away from eachother, stop shooting him, go dark. He wants you to continue fighting as the distance between you increases, because Russians fight using superior ballistics. As the range between you goes up to 7km and more, it becomes very hard for you to hit him, but he doesn't notice any difference, as the distance between you increases, you'll land less shells, he'll continue landing shells as if he were right in your face.

 

- When you fight anyone, the guy who does the chasing while shooting is at a disadvantage, the guy who does the fleeing while shooting has an advantage, because the guy who does the fleeing shoots a guy who is approaching, his shell travel time is shorter, this dynamic tends to help torpedo-focused DDs a little bit against gun-focused DDs, they tend to be the ones running. The guy who does the chasing shoots a guy running away from him, his shell travel time is longer. Russians, again, are the exception here, because their ballistics are so good they don't care. At long range, Russians win, it's that simple. At 10km you're throwing confetti and Russians are shooting lasers, they pay for their lasers with poop agility and poop dpm, but they have lasers, you don't.

My personal favorites

T6 ) T61 (with Gunther Lutjens) - Best at literally everything, because balancing department made an oopsie.

T7) Gadjah Mada (with quan rong) - Excellent DPM, great concealment, best forward firing angles for attacking other DDs, good for farming damage when your job killing DDs is done.

T8) Lightning in competitive / Akizuki in random battles
T9) Jutland in competitive / Kitakaze in random battles
T10) Daring in competitive / Grozovoi in random battles

One more because I can't help myself and am passionate about this particular niche playstyle
On most ships RPF is incredibly useful, it gives you information about where the enemy is, the enemy can use it against you, theoretically, but 95% of players are too dumb to pull it off. There's many ways to use RPF that are straightforward (where is the squishy torpedoboat I want to find and kill) - There's ways that are less straightforward (Is RPF switching? Am I about to fight one or two guys?) And there's a last way in which RPF is beneficial that is not obvious - It increases your damage output. Lets say you do 3K per salvo, RPF makes it so your guns are pointed in the right direction when the fight begins, that's a 3K damage head-start for you because the other dude is wasting a few seconds turning his guns your way. RPF is unironically more useful than 5% faster reload or whatever even in the actual fight itself.

 

Oh, these are you first 17 skillpoints for DD hunting duty - the only real exceptions are the french and some russians. I know, 17 mandatory skillpoints is a lot, there's only 4 left for "diversity"

Don't care, if you want to go kill DDs, you spend these 17 points before you spend the last 4 on whatever, the last 4 points don't even matter, depends on the boat.
17.thumb.JPG.be970520a09b2ad9a2539ee6ca40c60d.JPG

 

Also, general advice for british DDs, not related to DD hunting duty : Reposition, reposition, reposition. You have a bunch of short duration smokes, it's there so you can

A) Disengage whenever you want to
B) Waste CV's time
C) Reposition, smoke up, do damage, reposition, smoke up, do damage, rinse repeat. You have to be all over the place in Brits.
But if you want to be a useful teammate and want cruisers/battleships to send you flowers, you do this after you did your job, killing the other DD.

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11 hours ago, GarrusBrutus said:

One of my favorite DDs is the Udaloi. It's a real multitool gunboat dd. I've specced it full gunboat with gives it a detection range of about 9km. Some might say that it's a weakness compared to low det range DDs, but you can also use this feature to your advantage. Once you get spotted you know there is a DD relatively close. So instead of keep going forward and engaging in close quarter combat vs f.e. a smaland you already start to kite. If the enemy DD is dumb and opens fire, you will always trade favorably as you're already turned away.

I never considered poop concealment on some Russians can be a good thing, sometimes I love this stupid forum, always someone who can share even more stuff.

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1 hour ago, DaBung said:

I have had the time now to read through all the posts in more detail.

I'm only an average DD player, so I won't offer any knowledge or discuss any of the posts above, except that it might sometimes be of help to train DD/DD combat in CoOp... yes, those bots are on the more stupid side. But they are relentless... and they will allow you to train your "knife fighting" moves. Like when to switch out of the periscope view when shooting and suchlike...

 

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After CE, RPF is very useful, if you can afford it.

It basically allows you to always find the enemy DD, minimizing your profile to his possible torpedoes and having your turrets pre-turned towards him. All of that is very important.

Sometimes you don't want to engage (he has much more hp, or more support, or you're trying to cap), but RPF gives you a big advantage if you decide it's time.

 

What else?

Be very aware of enemy radar and long-range hydro. Basically don't engage the DD unless you know which one it is and the enemy radar ships are accounted for.

Preferably engage a DD whose smoke is on cooldown, while yours is available.

If you have support, you can engage the DD in a knife fight, then pop smoke once he returns fire: your teammates will temporarily spot him for you, so you can farm him a bit more safely. Just be wary of torpedoes. And make sure your smoke will be useful later as well.

 

Also, don't obsess about killing the DD.

Sometimes just spotting his teammates and screening your BBs from his torps is enough. Once that flank is won, you can move in and sink the DD without hurry.

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3 hours ago, tocqueville8 said:

Also, don't obsess about killing the DD.

Yes, well, you can obsess over it somewhat if you're good at it and you like doing it, but if the situation has a big chance of you ending up dead, you should wait for a better opportunity. Even if you play DDs super agressive and actively hunt DDs, your N°1 job is staying alive, everyone behind you is screwed if you're dead.

You're the most important ship in the game, no pressure :fish_cute_2:

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Is it because u can’t hit shoots? Try zooming out a bit due to your slow shells and DD fast speed u need quite a bit of lead.

zoom out 1-2 scale from the max then try again, helps quite a lot. 

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18 hours ago, DaBung said:

Thanks for the advice

Would you also like replays? I know I can link some of mine and I'm sure others have some. While I don't narrate mine you'd still be able to break down what I do and I would be happy to answer any questions you'd have about stuff in them. 

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One thing that often helps in DD vs DD, is releasing some torps in a tight spread prior to engagement towards a spot you expect that DD to turn when engaging or disengaging you. Later in the engagement, by the time those torps reach the enemy DD it may force a hard steering correction by the enemy DD, which will throw of the other DD's aim or reduce the amount of turrets on you, while you get a couple free salvos. And if lucky, you may get to torp the enemy DD if it went broadside to you at the wrong time.

 

It's also often a good idea to keep your zoom out of max zoom for leading.

 

Of course, keeping some torps for close range engagement is always good policy...

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Also, it's a good idea to launch torps at enemy DDs that are pushing towards you:

- dodging them might require some attetion, so they won't be able to shoot at you at the same rate

- if they have to go nose-in to avoid the torps, they'll have fewer turrets to shoot at you. This is especially important at low and mid tiers, where DDs don't generally have twin turrets, but individual mounts, so less frontal firepower.

 

If you're the one pushing in, don't bother with torps and focus on dodging theirs as well as shooting.

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While all of the above is a pretty good read the majority learns: playing the game:

 

(2 minute span)

- yoloooo

- bonzaiiiiiii

- dump torps

- die

 

giphy (2).gif

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5 hours ago, Figment said:

One thing that often helps in DD vs DD, is releasing some torps in a tight spread prior to engagement towards a spot you expect that DD to turn when engaging or disengaging you. Later in the engagement, by the time those torps reach the enemy DD it may force a hard steering correction by the enemy DD, which will throw of the other DD's aim or reduce the amount of turrets on you, while you get a couple free salvos. And if lucky, you may get to torp the enemy DD if it went broadside to you at the wrong time.

 

It's also often a good idea to keep your zoom out of max zoom for leading.

 

Of course, keeping some torps for close range engagement is always good policy...

BTW I never, ever use wide spread for torps. Wide spread is simply to easy to avoid.

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2 minutes ago, Camperdown said:

BTW I never, ever use wide spread for torps. Wide spread is simply to easy to avoid.

You'd think that, but sometimes two wide spreads laid over one another (like with Benson) can net you some more likely hits from a distance as ships might dodge the entire narrow spread with acceleration.

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First of all: some DDs you don't want to engage. Ever. High tier french DDs for instance, you should stay away from them until they are sufficiently damaged that you can deal a killing blow, and even then expect to take some damage in return.

 

Learn that disengaging is a ok tactic, without overcommitting. If you think that an enemy cruiser is backing the enemy DD, deny the challenge and wait for a better time. 

 

As far as the actual gun engagement goes: play with rudder and accelerating/braking to bait shots, learn to hit targets that are running away, learn the basics of gunnery and dodging.

 

Have fun!

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11 minutes ago, Camperdown said:

never, ever use wide spread for torps. Wide spread is simply to easy to avoid.

Rarely use wide spread, not never. Stacking multiple wide spreads over eachother as Figment said works great in some scenarios, for example on smoked up DDs, for area denial or to stop a push you know is coming down a narrow path.

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Well:

- know your ship and their ship, including potentially rare builds

- try to make the fight as unfair as possible

- prioritize your own survival 

And since you're in a clan: -practice. Grab another couple of guys and practice dd duels in training rooms. This will greatly improve aim, situational awareness and the right use of consumables. 

 

The one thing to keep in mind is that the mindset has huge implications. Do not panic. I for example am rather relaxed when taking a fight because I know I'm good at it. Thus the psychological stress is reduced. It will be the same foryou once you practice and get better. 

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This is all very helpful, thanks all. Sorry not had time to like all the posts 😆 Something helpful in most of them! I will probably re-read these a few times as I learn with my Lightning. Practice is needed I think! 

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I am wondering if it’s a bad thing to abandon flanks if there’s nothing you can do there as a DD... it’s a common issue I face: cv, other dd (probably with better stealth or skill) or radar. I know if I stay I will probably die, but I leave I massively disadvantage my team there. Basically I am wondering if it’s better to stay alive or support the team in these cases? 

 

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19 minutes ago, DaBung said:

I am wondering if it’s a bad thing to abandon flanks if there’s nothing you can do there as a DD... it’s a common issue I face: cv, other dd (probably with better stealth or skill) or radar. I know if I stay I will probably die, but I leave I massively disadvantage my team there. Basically I am wondering if it’s better to stay alive or support the team in these cases? 

 

It depends is my, not very helpful, answer.

 

If it's all going pear-shaped on a flank, remember the cardinal rule: stay alive.

 

Depending on which ship you're in, you can sometimes still do a lot for your team with a fighting retreat from a flank that is going Olympic-standard sideways. Let's think about your Lightning specifically though: you have very good stealth, so the enemy will have to try harder to find you and/or burn radar. Also, if your anti-plane kung fu is strong, you can make the CV waste time trying to find/sink you (put islands between you and surface opponents to avoid getting sunk by them when the CV does find you) - the more time the CV has to spend on you, the more time he's leaving your allies unmolested. Lob single fire torps at opponents who are getting close; if you get hits, hurrah, but also try and get them to show broadside to your allies.

 

That's all assuming that the enemy is certainly going to win that flank for whatever reason; if you just picked the 'wrong' flank (in terms of opponents on that side) and your allies can hold against the opposition, then you can either choose to stand with them, but be a bit more conservative (to avoid getting scragged by radar etc.), or head to the other side of the map. In the latter case though, you'll lose time relocating, and you won't escape from any CV that's in play anyway.

 

Do recall that, in the event you're worried about a CV, your side has one too; there is also sometimes scope for using chat to tell your side what you're up to, although it's pure luck whether or not you get people who can make productive use of the information...

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29 minutes ago, DaBung said:

I am wondering if it’s a bad thing to abandon flanks if there’s nothing you can do there as a DD... it’s a common issue I face: cv, other dd (probably with better stealth or skill) or radar. I know if I stay I will probably die, but I leave I massively disadvantage my team there. Basically I am wondering if it’s better to stay alive or support the team in these cases? 

Delay the advance of the red team but stay alive - retreat in an organized mode - just do not leave running and totally abandon the flank.

Keep them spotted - send torps down to make them think twice of advancing etc.

Just don't run away.

 

BtW - your Lightning has very good concealment, it is very agile, has hydro and many short smokes....it can be a menace just by being there....you are rather safe from CVs (smokes) - stay at a safe distance from the radars - once radar is on cool-down get in and send a few torps towards the radar -  you have good guns to scare any DD that might want to make a meal out of you - smokes to disengage - no need to run. Retreat in an organized manner.

 

 

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41 minutes ago, DaBung said:

I am wondering if it’s a bad thing to abandon flanks if there’s nothing you can do there as a DD... it’s a common issue I face: cv, other dd (probably with better stealth or skill) or radar. I know if I stay I will probably die, but I leave I massively disadvantage my team there. Basically I am wondering if it’s better to stay alive or support the team in these cases? 

 

@Verblonde and @Saltface gave good advise already, but I add my personal modus operandi: if I end up on a flank were I face a better enemy DD, the attention of the enemy CV and maybe even radar ships, it depends heavily upon what my teammates on that flank do if I spot enemy ships. If they the radar cruiser or DD, but go blasting salvos only the enemy BBs, I kindly tell them that I won't waste my ship supporting them and then sail to greener shores (and either targets...).

Trying to support a bunch of braindead potatoes will in the end only lead to one thing: me getting sunk and a lost flank as they start to run as soon as there's nobody left to spot for them.

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