I have been playing carriers since 4:00 CT this morning, so I have formed some first impressions about how they function, how they are balanced, etc.. So here they are!
I think that WG was right to not buff AA yet, I'm shooting down plenty of planes when in my Konigsberg, and when I'm in a carrier, I'm losing plenty of aircraft. Most of the time the first strike gets through, but by the second strike I'm taking hits, and by the third, I either have one or zero aircraft left. By the end of my most recent game, I was out of aircraft, last on my team, and enemy ships closing in. I did notice that once I ran out of planes, they started regenerating, but not fast, maybe 1 plane every 30 seconds or so. All in all, I think that the AA so far is well balanced, I'm not easily wrecking squadrons with my AA, but I'm also not getting free reign over the battle when playing a Carrier.
So far I think that the controlling of squadrons is great and easy to learn if you know how they work in PC (There are on screen prompts about launching squadrons, speeding up/slowing down, and recalling.). I have run into some difficulty with the camera though, when executing a tight turn, its near impossible to keep up with the camera, which is an issue because the camera being behind the squadron is essential to controlling them how you want to. Plane health feels decent, maybe a little lower than I would have hoped, but functional. Maneuverability is great, until I initiate a strike, at which point my squadrons immediately get less agile, which is fine, but that also means that I have a hard time hitting destroyers and even cruisers (The torpedo bombers can hit occasionally, but I've never gotten a hit on a cruiser or a destroyer in the dive bombers.). The speed bar (whatever its called) is nice too, letting you speed up your aircraft until their engines start to overheat. The main issue I have is with the damage output of the dive bombers. I get through and enemy Wyomings AA, I'm coming in front a good angle and I've led the target enough, I let the bombs drop… two hits, nice! How much damage? 2,000, and maybe a fire if I'm lucky. Maybe this means that the dive bombers are meant to be used on ships with less armor, but I have yet to be able to hit a cruiser, let alone a destroyer, with dive bombers. The aiming cross-hair with the bombers is also hard to manage, near as I can tell, it doesn't widen if you try to maneuver (the torpedo bombers does), so Its a little hard to correct yourself if you started your strike aiming a bit to the left. Over all, I think that the Squadrons control pretty good, the torpedo bombers are exceptional, and the dive bombers either need some work, or are just really hard to master.
The changes to the fighter consumable are perfect, provided you change your use of it to fit its new stats. Fighters have changed from passive spotting to active AA booster, my Konigsbergs fighter shot down aircraft with ease, but also received return fire from tail gunners and was shot down multiple times. The aircraft carriers use of consumables also seemed pretty good, as the game activates your damage control when you are on fire and your fighter(s) when enemy aircraft enter your detectability range. The only issue I see is with the automatic damage control, as it will activate with a single fire, and veterans of the game know that you never put out a single fire. That issue is very small though, and only really comes into play if you are under attack by enemy surface forces. The aircraft consumable is pretty good as well, it cools down the engines of the aircraft you are controlling, allowing you to go faster for longer. In all, the consumables also feel well balanced, with the only issue being extremely minor, as you shouldn't be coming under attack by surface forces anyway (As long as your team isn't a bunch of potatoes.).
4.) Commanders and Upgrades/Modules
The commander skills feel good, basic health and speed boosts for your aircraft, or survivability for your carrier. I do wish that we had more good inspiration options, but that will come later when more carrier captains become available. Generally, the Modules and Upgrades give aircraft health and speed boosts, and the hull b for the carrier. All of this feels good, but theres not anything specialized for one play style or another yet.
Honestly, if I was told that this was the full release of carriers, I would 80% believe it. The issues I see are small, I haven't seen any glitches, and the game feels well balanced. The devs have done a fantastic job, this is a big update, and you can tell that they have been working hard. If anyone on the legends team is seeing this, you've done a great job, and keep up the good work!
Edit: I forgot to mention spotting, I am constantly spotting DD's. So Destroyer captains, watch out, use your smoke screen, and brace for impact.
2nd Edit: With further playing I am liking the carriers more and more, just make sure that you are looking around, triggering your fighter can do a lot to ward off a carrier strike. Also, stick with your team, as the little loading screen text says: "Operate in formations, a lone ship is a perfect target for the enemy."
- [PSA] Airstrike Event Breakdown (& Aircraft Carriers Quickstart) – FEB 1st | FEB 15th
- Idea for better Carrier/Player interactions (rework pt 2)
- Creating CV vs CV counterplay with a fourth aircraft type
More about World of WarshipsPost: "My First Impressions of Aircraft Carriers" specifically for the game World of Warships. Other useful information about this game:
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