Content of the article: "Common BB complaints categorized by skill + solutions"
Hello, my name is rhulkb27 on NA.
I have just recently completed my IJN BB grind, and I have thoroughly enjoyed it. My battleship play has improved significantly throughout the course of the grind, starting with dark green and teal pr in the lower tiers and capping it off with dark purple pr in the t9 and t10. My improvement was a result of both personal reflections and advice given to me by experienced battleship players. As such, a lot of the complaints and solutions that are written in this guide come from myself. I'm writing this guide so hopefully people can learn from my experience and reach a higher level of bb play.
This guide assumes you already know basic game mechanics such as amour thickness, angling, overmatch, and ap and he pen. All of that is purely objective and you don’t need a guide to learn it, as such I have not included it here.
Note: This guide is based heavily on the one written for destroyers by u/Dolphin_Princess. That guide can be found here.
BAD (0-750 PR) – “Torpedoes are OP!”
This probably a complaint every battleship captain at some point when they were very new to the game. It is mainly due to a lack of experience, as the counterplay for this is very simple.
Solution: Vary your path and do not sail in a straight line. Pay attention to your concealment circle; if there are no ships spotted in your concealment range yet you are still spotted, it likely means there is a dd closeby. Make intentional random maneuvers and you will almost always dodge incoming torpedoes. Another good tip is to pay attention to your priority target, if the indicator suddenly shows one less ship targeting you, and then a couple of seconds later it flips back to what it was before, it could mean a destroyer shot torpedoes at you.
BELOW AVERAGE (750-1100 PR) – “I cannot win because my teams are always garbage!”
This is the classic complaint that a below average player will give. It shows a bad mindset, that you are blaming your teams for your losses instead of myself. Out of all the issues baring players getting to the next level, I would say this one is the biggest. It prevents you from reflecting on your own play and learning from it.
Solution: Always assume friendly players are potatoes. Play the game as if you need to carry your team every match, and always value your own ship over your teammates. If this means you play selfish, so be it; if you are to reach the next level, you need to understand that every time you sacrifice your health for your teammates, you are giving a worse player more responsibility for winning the game.
Additionally, after every game, look towards your own play and figure out what you could have done to have a higher impact on the match. It doesn’t matter if it’s a win or a loss, there is always room for improvement.
AVERAGE (1100-1350 PR) – “Team no support”
This complaint usually comes from those BBs who like to play “aggressive” and get really close to the caps and subsequently get farmed out and die in 5 minutes. Then they complain that their team didn’t rush in with them. This is a stupid proposition. Battleships are primarily a zoning tool that are used to gain map control or prevent the enemy from gaining map control. They do not require assistance of their teammates to have match impact because the whole point of having high alpha long-range guns is to be a metaphorical “fleet in being”. Your mere presence on a flank is as scary or punishing to the enemy as 3 cruisers combined.
Solution: Wows is a game which is somewhat unique in that it heavily favors the defender. In that sense, the bb players that push in and die and expect their team to support them have a fundamental mindset error. It is that making a concerted effort to push a cap is often a worse choice than holding or kiting out that flank.
This is not to say that you should never push a cap in a battleship. Always keep sight of your win condition. Usually in wows there is a push flank and a kiting/holding flank. Pay attention to the other flank and make your movements accordingly. For example, if you are on a push flank and your friendly kiting flank is collapsing faster than your push flank is pushing, then you should push into the enemy team at this point, because if you don’t then your team has no hope of winning.
GOOD (1350-1550 PR) – “Whenever I play battleships everyone is always bow in and when I see broadsides I always miss”
This complaint is symptomatic of a player who understands fundamentally what their role is as a BB player but is being held back by sub-optimal positioning choices. Additionally, often times I hear players at this stage blaming their mediocre performance in bbs on “bad aim”. I can say with absolute confidence (from my own personal experience) that aim is not a significant factor in performing well in BBs. It is almost always because of positioning, not aim.
If one positions badly, they will rarely see broadsides. Thus, they expect that in order to get to the next level they must hit every single broadside accurately. However, if they improved their positioning, they would see a greater number of broadsides, and by extension hitting more broadsides (just based on probability of hit chance).
*Note that the second paragraph is my own theory that I made based on my own observations – I don’t have any concrete data to support it.
Solution: Make your positioning in battleships more intentional and direct. Don’t only think of which flank to go on, also think of the specific squares that you will have the most impact on. This is based on a number of factors, such as the size of your friendly force, size of the enemy force, or the positioning of your friendly bbs. Always try to create crossfires or simply how to put maximum pressure on the enemy.
Battleship positioning in general is something that is pretty complex and warrants another guide on its own to explain all the nuances, and I wouldn’t be able to do it justice by explaining it in full details here. Maybe ill write a guide on it at some point. Regardless, at this point I would highly encourage you to watch the top players play battleships on twitch. You can learn a lot on positioning just by watching how super unicums position, learning why they positioning the way they did, and incorporating it in your own gameplay.
With regards to aim vs positioning, I’ll draw a specific example from myself; I average 28% hitrate in yamato and 30% in Izumo, which are some of the worst among my friends and clanmates. Yet, in terms of pr and wr I have some of the highest. I attribute this fully to my positioning.
VERY GOOD (1550-1750 PR) – “HE spam is OP”
Contrary to the rest of these complaints, this one is personally one I have never ever had, but I have heard it a lot. HE spam is something that is mitigated by positioning. There are a few key tips you should learn and apply and you will get a whole lot better at mitigating HE spam.
Solution: Read this guide: https://forum.worldofwarships.com/topic/223218-a-quick-guide-to-dealing-with-he-spam/ (again, thanks to u/Dolphin_Princess).
Take every single point to heart and apply it in your gameplay. I honestly had no clue why people complained about HE spam until I read this guide. I realized that every single thing in there I had already figured out on my own to apply just through careful postgame reflection of my own gameplay. It shows how important that aspect is to improving in this game.
The one I would like to put heavy emphasis on is being stern in. This is a skill that I actually learned from playing cruisers before IJN BBs, and I found that it is extremely effective with BB play as well. There is really only two situations when you should be bow in.
- Your team has already effectively won your flank, and you have decided to run down the rest of the flank in order to get to the enemy spawn as fast as possible. You should only be bow in to the enemy team when you are 100% sure you will trade very positively and come out of the engagement alive.
- It is a clear stomp and you need to save your damage averages.
GREAT (1750-2100 PR) – “Battleships are inconsistent in their match impact – some games you get a ton of damage and some games you do nothing”
This is something I personally struggled with a lot as I was learning high level bb play. This is usually symptomatic of overcommitting to a position and only moving like 3-4 squares for most of the match. At this point, your early game positioning is strong, but you are not able to judge game flow to get the most impact out of your bb.
Solution: Always think 5 minutes into the future. In 5 minutes, where do I predict the enemies to be? Where do I expect the enemy destroyers to be? Where will my friendly bbs be in 5 minutes (so I can make a crossfire with them potentially)? Which grid squares will maximize my match impact 5 minutes later? Where can I go to secure my win condition in 5 minutes? When do I need to start moving to get into this position?
A result of this is that you will find yourself being much more mobile in any given battle, moving from flank to center, to flank, to enemy spawn as necessary. One key thing that you must realize is that even though you have a lot of range as a battleship, you also have a surprise factor. If you always shoot your guns, you constantly give up your position and make it easier for enemy ships to keep tabs on you, dodge your shots, and even potentially predict what your destination is and adapt accordingly. An aware enemy can drastically lower the impact you have after repositioning.
UNICUM (2100-2450 PR) – “I am not able to use battleships’ heath to its full potential”
These players struggle with Aggression control. They will position well but they do not efficiently manage their hp and use it as a resource to have more impact. Oftentimes they will end the match having gotten a lot of damage but still be on ¾ to full health, leaving the question “How or when could I have positioned more aggressively and used up more of my hp resource to have a better impact of the match”. Or, they will misjudge a threat and push into a position to have more impact, but they will lose much much more hp thAn they intended to trade away.
Solution: This is currently the level I am on. I am trying to find the answer to this myself :P. Maybe in a couple of months when I find the solution, I will update this guide. Or maybe if any super unicum sees this guide they will offer their thoughts on it.
SUPER UNICUM (2450+ PR) – “No counterplay toward CVs”
Thanks for Reading
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