The Official Unofficial Guide to Warships

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M4A1-S

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Preface
This is a starting guide to Warships, while it may be comprehensive in certain areas, I only know so much after playing for 2 and a half years and can only explain things so well. This is a baseline for starting out, not a guide on how to play. You may also be asking why I'm doing this, it's because I'm bored and felt like improving my writing skills with a topic that I know about. If you want a crash course, look here (Parts might be outdated)

1. The Beginning
So, you want to try and play World of Warships? I must give you credit as this is not a game most people think of playing. This game will test your patience and devotion to our lord and savior RNGesus. Your journey is going to be long and hard, probably also infuriating. That however is a matter for another day.

If you have not already, download it through the Wargaming Game Center, not through steam as this will save you a lot of headaches later down the line. Choose the Ultra client if you can, it makes the game sound a whole lot better.
 
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M4A1-S

EGO Addict
Senior Manager
2. Nations
The choice of starting nation is a very daunting task when there are so many to choose from. I'm going to try and outline them all here, though take my words with a grain or two of salt. I will not be covering CV's or Aircraft Carries, as you should not be grinding them out to start. This will also have some gaps where I do not have experience in some ships. This will also not cover Premium ships, which should not be bought until you gain a good amount of experience in the game.

The United States Navy, the most powerful naval force by the end of WW2 by sheer production numbers. These are some of the easier ships to play as they are very forgiving.

Destroyers:
These are the best all-around destroyers in the game, they have decent guns, good health pool, and good torpedoes after T6. They are a jack-of-all-trades, master of none type of ship, as they don't excel in any one part.

Cruisers, Armored:
These are the ships that excel at team-support. Their consumable set of surveillance radar and hydroacoustic search or Defensive AA allows for you to support your team more than most other cruisers, and with hard-hitting guns and quick reload at T10 allows you to even take on battleships solo once you master the ship.

Cruisers, Light:
These ships can support the team even more than the Cruisers, Armored if played well. They do not have the firepower to sail with the team, having only 152mm guns and weak armor, they can not push as well as the Cruisers, Armored. They excel at bombarding ships with HE shells from cover, AA fire support with Defensive AA, and anti-destroyer warfare with surveillance radar and hydroacoustic search.

Battleships:
These ships excel at accuracy and alpha damage (Maximum damage possible per salvo). They can tank damage and provide deadly fire support in the right hands. they are very slow compared to other ships until T8, though they have 16in (406mm) guns from T7 up that are extremely good. They are Medium range ships, and can't really snipe or brawl too well.

The Imperial Japanese Navy, some of the highest quality hotels on the sea were made from their steel. These are highly specialized machines.

Torpedo Destroyers:
These destroyers have the best torpedoes in terms of damage in the game, only needing a few hits to cripple or sink even the mightiest battleships. They lack almost everything else however, their guns may have high damage though their reload leaves more to be desired. Their concealment is top-notch though, allowing for closer engagements without being seen.

Gunboat Destroyers:
These destroyers have very quick-firing guns and can put a hail of shells into the air scaring almost any threat. They are large, turn poorly, and take damage like no other. However, this is made up for by the sheer amount of DPM these ships can pump out T8 and up and the extremely good torpedoes carried.

Cruisers:
These cruisers excel at HE damage and accuracy. Their armor is lacking, but make up for it with maneuverability. They are made for the technique called "Kiting" where you angle your ship to minimize incoming damage, and maximize outgoing damage.

Battleships:
The kings of Caliber. They have the largest guns in the game, a whopping 18.1in (460mm) on the Yamato. They are extremely powerful but need protection as they have many weak spots that can be exploited by enemies.

The Paper line for the game, known for Stalinium and Soviet Bias.

Gunboat Destroyers:
Very poor concealment
Very good top speed (second only to its French counterpart), but the steering is terrible!
Excellent main gun, great for long-range attacks.
Shorter range torpedoes, not very useful in most cases.
Have more blood, and can carry healing or smoke consumables.
The top tier has exaggerated side protection and is effective against the destroyer's main guns, but can be severely damaged by large-caliber shells.

All-rounder Destroyers:
Not bad for torpedoes and good main guns.
A very large variety of consumable kits
Air defense that works fine as a destroyer
Players need to have good control over whole battle situations

Light Cruisers:
Very poor steering as a CL
More fragile armor
Long-range and good ballistics.
Because of the smaller caliber, the direct damage is lower, but the ignition rate is very good.
Very good long-range radar, high threat to destroyers

Heavy Cruisers:
Good armor that absorbs a lot of damage.
Very strong AP, but at the cost of poor HE effects
Very good ballistic performance and range, good accuracy
Radar is long-range but short duration and of limited use.
Good at flanking the enemy or drawing enemy fire.

Battleships:
Good resistance to conventional HE shells.
Poor AP protection on the broadside, except at the top tier
Extremely strong main gun at close to medium range, but dispersion very poorly at long range.
Long damage control duration and short cooling time, but a limited total number of uses
Recommended for players who have a good foundation in German BBs play

The Royal Navy, known for being so garbage at tank design that somehow their warships turned out ok (Except for the Hood).

Destroyers:
These little guys have some of the best annoyance factors in the game. They have quick-firing guns with good range and great fire starting chances. Their torpedoes have single fire capability allowing for extremely accurate torpedo salvos. Their unique smoke screen allows them to hide quickly and reposition without worrying about smoke lingering for your enemies to use.

Cruisers, Light:
They are good at murdering everything, with short fuse AP they can melt light-armored ships and destroyers with extreme ease. They also get access to a smokescreen, which is unusual for cruisers and can become deadly in the right hands. In terms of armor, they have no armor, even on their citadel which is extremely easy to penetrate resulting in deaths becoming commonplace. They do get a heal, which is also unusual for the earlier tiers allowing for them to recover from near-death situations. This works as British shipbuilders put half the hull into a teabag, and once the ship catches on fire, it mixes with water and heats the tea, making your ship come back.

Cruisers, Armored:
Have very good HE shells. High damage and high ignition rate. But at long range, the shells take longer to travel.
There are special healing consumables that can restore large amounts of HP.
Possesses torpedoes, but average attributes
Not bad for air defense, but if hit by a carrier attack, it's going to very hurt
T5~7 used to be badly armored, but the side protection of the top tier ship is very good. When facing Hindenburg's AP shells 10km away and other AP shells with worse penetration, it could completely choose to meet the shells with its side without being penetrated to the citadels. But never let the vertical armor of the stern been hit!

Battleships:
These are the epitome of cancer. They fire HE like meteors from the heavens and inflict fires like it's 1666 London. The AP is good but outclassed by the HE. Reference the same cancer heal joke as above.

He was made to rule the waves across the seven seas To lead the war machine To rule the waves and lead the Kriegsmarine

Destroyers:
There's not much to say other than that they've been outclassed by other destroyers that are more concealed and have better torps or guns. They have access to Hydroacoutsitc Search, allowing them to screen for torpedoes and ships if pushing smokescreens.

Cruisers:
The cruisers of the Kriegsmarine are some of the best all-rounder cruisers as they get a bit of everything that a cruiser would want. Range, Armor, Torpedoes, Good guns, Great HE penetration, and the best hydroacoustic search in the game. They do everything well, and a good Kriegsmarine cruiser can hold flanks solo if needed.

Battleships:
The kings of armor and secondaries. Their accuracy leaves a bit to be desired, though that's not the main point of these ships. Their armor is unrivaled and can take hits like no other battleship (Except Kremlin). You use your armor to your advantage and make other bb drivers wish they could tank like you can while mowing them down with secondaries.

Really good at running away like the French are known for. Hoist the white flag while you're at it.

Destroyers:
Really good gunboats, good torps at tier, except for 10 where they're outclassed in range. They're great Kitiers and with different mechanics on damage saturation, they play differently to other destroyers. This isn't a great line to start due to a lack of smoke and high concealment.

Cruisers:
Very good speed, and good guns, but not the best until T8. Excellent Kiters with a reload booster to cut reload in half to punish cruisers and destroyers that get too close. Not a great line to start with as there are too many gimmicks to manage as well as a lack of decent armor at tier.

Battleships:
They're hard to play well as a starter line, the gun caliber is going to be an issue in up tiers, and until T10 is going to be the smallest caliber of the tier. If you like getting HE spammed from high heaven, go for it but until you get more experience, avoid.

Well, they're a branch with only one-line, so I'll try to explain.

Destroyers:
They're a mix of Soviet, British, and American Destroyers that get gimmicks. Long Smoke Gen, Radar at T8+, and Deepwater Torpedoes. Deepwater torps can only hit Cruisers, Battleships, and Carriers, which might prove a challenge to remember and as such not a good line when they're outclassed by other lines. though against those ship types they can hit, they are monsters of damage. Not recommended for a first line to grind.

Another one-line branch, with SAP and being really OP in the right hands

Cruisers:
There are no HE shells, but there are special SAP shells. This causes an extremely high amount of direct damage but does not cause fire. SAP will pose a very significant threat to the destroyer.
Weaker AP shells, never use them unless you can make sure they penetrate the citadels or the SAP is completely ineffective at doing damage!
Torpedoes with long-range and quick reloads, which you can use from time to time in your spare time (make sure you don't hit your teammates), will surprise you!
Has a special smoke generator that can be used at any speed to conceal itself. But please note that the concealment distance after firing in the smoke is very bad compared to the same type!
No defensive anti-aircraft fire and no water listening, but fighters and spotting planes can be used from very low levels.
Very Poor Air Defense
Early boats with 152mm cannon are weaker, but when you switch to 203mm cannons, they are really powerful
 
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M4A1-S

EGO Addict
Senior Manager
3. Guides
There are plenty of mechanics to learn, there are a couple of people who we normally suggest to watch for an understanding of mechanics.

Linked are some youtubers that we look at to give us advice and should be able to explain the game a lot better than us.





4. Advice from Old Timers
We've got a lot of experienced players in the clan, I've got some advice from them to pass down to potential people.

Houndini:
Find a ship that matches YOUR playstyle, don't try to change your playstyle to match a ship.

Me:

Trigger Discipline is one of the biggest skills needed, know when to shoot to punish the enemy, but also know when to go dark and hold off.

Mulligey:
Situational Awareness is key. Look at the minimap for where your team and the enemies are. Know your team's capabilities and your enemies. Takes a while to learn, but it is the most important skill.
 
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M4A1-S

EGO Addict
Senior Manager
Reserved #1, More edits will be added down the line and noted here.

Edit 1. @sheeeif has contributed line overviews for the ships that I had not been able to cover. Thank you for your contribution to UK CA, Soviet Line, and Italian CA!
 
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