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Friday, February 19, 2016

Fleet Friday: World of Warships Patch 0.5.3

The latest patch for World of Warships has a long list of new, enhanced and corrected features. You can see a list of them all on the official web site, or watch the video while Dasha Perova tells you all about them.

To be certain, the single biggest addition to the game in this patch are Team Battles. I've not personally participated yet. I've only been exploring the new commander skills made available. So I will be writing mostly about those on this post. Specifically, I am going to discuss my new builds for both my Kiev and Fubuki destroyer.

But before I get into that, I just want to say it's nice to see some new achievements added to the game. I've already been a recipient of several new awards in the nine games I've played since the patch. Four were granted retroactively (I think.)

  1. Initial Capital - Earn 100,000 credits
  2. Money Bags - Earn 1,000,000 credits
  3. Junior Naval Designer - Research a New Ship
  4. Naval Constructor - Research 10 Ships

The first I earned was Naval Warfare Tactics, which you get for actually knowing how to play the game... er, I mean for capturing an enemy base or capture point.

I don't think this changes how much experience one gets for capturing, it's just a recognition if the importance of accomplishing the mission. I expect to get quite a few of these as I'd rather claim victory than sink the most ships on a losing team - though sinking ships also has it's own set of new achievements.

But what I really want to talk about are the changes to my two current favorites: the Kiev and the Fubuki. I've been playing them exclusively for the past two weeks and have been having a lot more fun and less frustration. So what's changed? Well, a lot.

The Last Stand skill, which allows a ship to make way and maneuver when the engine is incapacitated, was move to skill level 2 from level 4. This is a god send for aspiring destroyer captains. It takes until about Tier VII to get the skill at level 4. Now even starting captains will have it if they upgrade to a 3 skill point captain when they start a new destroyer tree. That's huge!

It was replace at level 4 with Survivability Expert. This skill increases the maximum hit points of a ship 400 points per tier of the ship. In other words, a Tier VIII Fubuki gets an additional 3200 hit points. This doesn't make a big difference on a battleship, but its literally life or death to a destroyer.

However, the Fubuki is not the ship I'm interested in applying this too, though I did. The ship I see benefiting from this most is the Kiev. They nerfed the hit points on the Kiev hard last patch. They took 3000 away, and gave it fewer than the Ognevoy. That hurt. But now you can get 2800 of them back, and you can bet your ass that's the first thing I did. Now my Kiev has 15,600 HP and I'm loving it. Just last night I was chasing an Kongo and harassing the hell out of it. It was a blast for both of us though I'm certain I enjoyed mine more. ;-) Here's my current Kiev captain.

I was two skill points short of getting the skill and keeping all the others I had before. I had to accept a nerf to my guns. However, I am about three games away from getting Advanced Firing Training back. For now I'm just having to consider where my guns are currently pointed and plan appropriately. I've not really noticed the decrease in firing rate from losing Basic Firing Training. If you're playing your Kiev correctly that's a beat-them-to-the-kill skill IMO. Tactically the skill has little effect as once I've got you in my sights you're still going to die.

The other skill I am very interested in is Torpedo Acceleration. This give your torpedoes a 5 knot increase in speed with a penalty of -20% range.  Before a 62 knot torpedo would cover a kilometer in 31.35 seconds. With Torpedo Acceleration that goes down to 29 seconds. It's only a bit over two seconds faster, but that's two seconds less reaction time for your adversary.

But to me that's not the most important reason for taking this skill. It gives me a really good reason to spend the experience and money on the Fubuki's 15 kilometer torpedoes. I'd not had a compelling reason to believe the expense had a tangible payout before. The 15 kilometer torpedoes had a 5 knot speed penalty and I wasn't convinced the spread at 15 kilometers was narrow enough to be a real threat. I was content to use the 10 kilometer torpedoes with the narrower spread and faster speed. Now I have no speed penalty while getting two extra kilometers with which to play. I can cover beyond the far edge of most capture points without having to enter it and give my presence, if not my precise location, away. And right now lower tier players who've never run into a Shimakaze aren't thinking about torpedoes beyond 10 kilometers all that much. If I have anything to do about it they soon will be. :D Here's my Fubuki captain's skill build incorporating the recent changes.

I'm going to have a real dilemma when I get another skill point. I've two extra right now that I've parked on level 1 Secondary Armament and Ship Survivability. With one more I could take those two, and one of the level 2 skills, and get Concealment Expert. So, how do I choose? Make an already long torpedo reload even longer, or run the risk of having my engine knocked out at a crucial moment in the game? It'd be easy to say with better concealment I wouldn't get my engine knocked out, but that would be stupid. I'm not that good, and even if I was we all know shit happens. You're opponent can always out play you on a bad day. I think I'd take the longer reload, but getting two more points at that level will make for a long wait and should I push forward to the Shimakaze it might actually hurt my future game play. Yeah, I know: first world problems. 

Lastly I want to thank the developers with all my heart for adding the following.

"Once you leave a battle, the state of your armament panel will be saved, including:

  • The last selected type of shell
  • Torpedo cone width and the condition of AA guns/secondary armament (on or off)
  • For aircraft carriers, only the condition of AA guns/secondary armament (on or off) is saved"
Hallelujah! I owe you folks a beer! And that's it for this edition of Fleet Friday. Stay safe and see you all on the high seas.

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