I'm a CV player who's been playing since launch, I've personally been enjoying the rework, and have been playing on both CVs and surface ships. I have noticed that this is not a popular opinion however, and that a lot of people are struggling with CVs currently, so I thought I'd make a guide to help people understand whats happening, and some tips on how to beat CVs.
Bare in mind that this is as of 0.8.2, things of course, are subject to change.
When Planes attack, their Engine noise changes volume and sound, when you hear this, maneuver hard, the carriers attack will be less accurate if they have to move the planes while attacking.
When using priority sector, switch sides as the planes come in to attack, time it right and the planes will have to attack and leave while always under enforced AA.
beating the "Slingshot Drop", when you see AP DBs drop over open ocean, watch where they are going, if it looks like they're headed for you turn hard ASAP and try to go undetected if you can, they have limited maneuvering and may overshoot you, turning sideways on will help minimize the damage they can do.
BBs and Crusiers are best at killing CVs now, but this can usually only happen in the CV over-extends or the game is almost over, DDs are in quite alot of danger going after CVs.
Destroyers seem to be struggling the most, and for good reason, the changes affect their ability to harass and cap, and they seem to get detected and nuked with no options.
First and foremost, if you're not AA spec, turn of your AA, it makes you much easier to find and kill, you are not safe in smoke either, turn it off, You can get hit and killed because of your AA, The tracers point right to where you are, and an observant CV will find you your AA probably won't do much anyway. Doing this helps not just in smoke, but in the open, its a lot harder to find you, and even harder to hit you if you're not being spotted by something else. I've overshot DDs with attack planes many times due to this. If a CV attacks you and flys past, once you're undetected, make a big change in course, its more likely to miss if you're not where they expected you to be.
HE Dive bombers, while not as bad as they used to be, are still quite scary, best thing to do is to turn hard and fast, and try to be perpendicular to the direction of attack, or even better, sail straight at them, it lowers the window to hit you,which won't let them drop whenever they want, and might mean they'll miss.
With Torpedoes, keep your speed up and don't sail in straight lines, usually with DDs, you want to turn into the torps, as typically CVs drop closer to try and guarantee a hit. With torps, cross dropping on DDs works well, one will force them to sail straight, the other goes from the side, don't let the CV corner you, dodge, weave, and hide.
If you're trying to kill a CV, know that you will be focused by them, you're not gonna escape easily if you're getting close to them. Its very risking going after CVs for DDs now, stalk them as long as possible, but once your spotted, you will pretty much be constantly spotted and under attack, try to get torps off at them and keep them spotted so the bigger ships can shoot them.
Dodge and Weave, keep the AA up and try to stick to BBs. CVs will usually go after them, which means they won't hit you and you can punish them. AP Dive bombers are you enemy, but they have to drop close to do alot of damage, so turn hard and fast.
AP DBs are your mortal enemy, they can nuke your health quickly and there may not be much you can do, stay in a group, and maneuver hard to avoid these best you can. Keep in mind that to do real damage, CVs typically need to drop from lower heights or risk over pen, so try and force an early drop if you can.
AP DBs and Torp bombers can cause alot of damage over time, but they really can't do much in a burst. AP bombers need to drop at mid-high heights to Citadel, so they're going to be less accurate. Active maneuvering and efficient damage control can get you alot of the way there. Try to take torps on the side, as they are less likely to cause flooding, and keep close to Cruisers. with BBs its all about damage minimization, not avoidance, as if you time things out, you can sustain through the strikes, and let your allies punish the CV for their trouble. Use your consumables efficiently, and try to time things out so you have some defensive option when a strike hits.
Things to keep in mind:
CVs will go for easy targets first, get with other ships and maneuver hard to avoid hits.
will occasionally get very attached to sinking specific ships for no reason, punish their poor choices whenever possible.
Fighters are great, but time it right, go for it once their committed.
The longer the planes are in AA range, the more damage they'll take, try to delay strikes as long as possible.
DDs, please turn of your AA, and hold your fire in smoke when there is a CV around, you're giving your location away and making hitting you much easier.
DDs: dodge, weave, and turn off AA
CLs: stick with BBs and shoot planes
CAs: dont go alone, find friends to shoot planes with
BBs: sustain and minimize damage, draw CVs attention from your teammates, you're the tank, not the DPS here.
If I missed anything, or you have questions, Let me Know!
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