World of Warships

Effects of Engine Boost Change on Aircraft Carrier Planes in 0.8.4 (With Tables!)

WorldOfWarships2 - Effects of Engine Boost Change on Aircraft Carrier Planes in 0.8.4 (With Tables!)
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With the recently announced changes coming to Aircraft Carriers, I would like to take the time to further analyze and discuss one of the changes that (I believe) has not garnered the discussion and scrutiny that I believe it deserves.

The Engine Cooling consumable has been standardized for all aircraft. Now the consumable will give the same increase in speed at all tiers – 35 knots (40 for Japanese aircraft and attack aircraft of all nations) and equally slow down the aircraft by 17.5 knots (20 for Japanese aircraft and attack aircraft of all nations). The change will reduce the effectiveness of squadrons as scouts and also the strike potential at the highest tiers.

This would be the Engine Boost consumable that allows planes to either greatly speed up or slow down in order to perform any number of desired actions or maneuvers. For example, speeding up in order to decrease the time between strikes, speeding up in order to decrease time spend inside any number of AA zones, slowing down in order to plan out an attack, or slowing down in order to make sharp turns to stay on station and make successive attacks. The current behavior of the Engine Boost is, in my opinion, a bit obfuscated due to the lack of any display of the minimum speed aircraft can fly at, and there was no (as far as I am aware) public mention of what factor the boost is. Due to some datamining, I discovered that all of the dive bombers and torpedo bombers have a boost/slow factor of 140/80, meaning that they are capable of increasing speed up to 140% of the base speed and decreasing speed to 80% of the base speed. Rocket attack aircraft have a slightly reduced 135/83 factor. Under this system, changes in the base speed of aircraft can have a large effect on the maximum and minimum speeds possible, as it is a factor of the base speed. The standardization proposal that WG have announced would make matters more easily understood, but does bring with it some serious consequences.

The first major effect is that this is notable plane speed nerf for all tiers of aircraft, but a significant nerf for Tiers VIII and X. While Tier IV will see little or no change at all, Tiers VI and above will see a serious decrease in the capable maximum and minimum plane speeds. This means that aircraft carriers will spend more time: traveling to the target, re-positioning aircraft, in the various AA zones, as well as a change in how planes handle in flight. Being unable to speed up as much brings with it a whole host of potential issues, but being unable to slow down anywhere near as much (around 8-10% decrease in slow down capability) is also a potential shakeup of the current flight handling characteristics.

In order to more properly understand this change, I have made a series of tables to compare the various plane types among the different nations.

First, the rocket attack aircraft.

Aircraft Tier 0.8.3 LIVE Minimum Speed 0.8.3 LIVE Base Speed 0.8.3 LIVE Maximum Speed 0.8.4 Minimum Speed 0.8.4 Maximum Speed
F3F Gulfhawk IV 100.43 knots 121 knots 163.4 knots 101 knots 161 knots
A4N IV 89.64 knots 108 knots 145.8 knots 88 knots 148 knots
Gloster Sea Gladiator IV 88.81 knots 107 knots 144.4 knots 87 knots 147 knots
F4F Wildcat VI 126.99 knots 153 knots 206.6 knots 133 knots 193 knots
A6M2 Zero VI 115.37 knots 139 knots 187.7 knots 119 knots 179 knots
Hawker Sea Hurricane VI 103.75 knots 125 knots 168.8 knots 105 knots 165 knots
F6F Hellcat VII 132.8 knots 160 knots 216 knots 140 knots 200 knots
A6M5 Zero VII 119.52 knots 144 knots 194.4 knots 124 knots 184 knots
F4U-1D Corsair VIII 140.27 knots 169 knots 228.2 knots 149 knots 209 knots
N1K2-J Shiden-Kai VIII 125.33 knots 151 knots 203.9 knots 131 knots 191 knots
Supermarine Seafire VIII 112.88 knots 136 knots 183.6 knots 116 knots 176 knots
Me-155A VIII 112.88 knots 136 knots 183.6 knots 116 knots 176 knots
F8F Bearcat X 146.08 knots 176 knots 237.6 knots 156 knots 216 knots
A8M Rikufu X 136.95 knots 165 knots 222.8 knots 145 knots 205 knots
Westland Wyvern X 116.2 knots 140 knots 189 knots 120 knots 180 knots
Read:  General CV nerfs are not fitting the individual CV styles - An Opinion about CVs in 0.8.6.0

Second, the torpedo bombers.

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Aircraft Tier 0.8.3 LIVE Minimum Speed 0.8.3 LIVE Base Speed 0.8.3 LIVE Maximum Speed 0.8.4 Minimum Speed 0.8.4 Maximum Speed
T4M IV 70.4 knots 88 knots 123.2 knots 70.5 knots 123 knots
B4Y Jean IV 89.64 knots 97 knots 135.8 knots 77 knots 137 knots
Fairey Albacore IV 89.64 knots 97 knots 135.8 knots 79.5 knots 132 knots
TBD Devastator VI 89.6 knots 112 knots 156.8 knots 94.5 knots 147 knots
B5N2 Kate VI 102.4 knots 128 knots 179.2 knots 108 knots 168 knots
Fairey Barracuda Mk.II VI 97.6 knots 122 knots 170.8 knots 104.5 knots 157 knots
TBF Avenger VII 96 knots 120 knots 168 knots 102.5 knots 155 knots
B6N Tenzan VII 106.4 knots 133 knots 186.2 knots 112 knots 173 knots
SB2C Helldiver VIII 100 knots 125 knots 175 knots 107.5 knots 160 knots
B7A Ryuusei VIII 109.6 knots 137 knots 191.8 knots 117 knots 177 knots
Fairey Speafish VIII 106.4 knots 133 knots 186.8 knots 115.5 knots 168 knots
Ta-152C-1/R14 VIII 144.8 knots 181 knots 253.4 knots 163.5 knots 216 knots
BTD Destroyer X 104.8 knots 131 knots 183.4 knots 113.5 knots 166 knots
J5N Tenrai X 116 knots 145 knots 203 knots 125 knots 185 knots
Westland Wyvern X 113.6 knots 142 knots 198.8 knots 124.5 knots 177 knots

A note that it remains to be seen if premium aircraft carriers will be excluded from this change, although I highly doubt they will be as this is a sweeping mechanics change. So RIP to Graf Zeppelin speed demon planes, a near 17% decrease in maximum speed.

And lastly, the dive bombers.

Aircraft Tier 0.8.3 LIVE Minimum Speed 0.8.3 LIVE Base Speed 0.8.3 LIVE Maximum Speed 0.8.4 Minimum Speed 0.8.4 Maximum Speed
SBU Corsair IV 79.2 knots 99 knots 138.6 knots 81.5 knots 134 knots
D1A Susie IV 78.4 knots 98 knots 137.2 knots 78 knots 138 knots
Fairey Swordfish IV 78.4 knots 98 knots 137.2 knots 80.5 knots 133 knots
SB2U Vindicator VI 93.6 knots 117 knots 163.8 knots 99.5 knots 152 knots
D4Y2 Suisei VI 109.6 knots 137 knots 191.8 knots 117 knots 177 knots
Fairey Barracuda Mk.II VI 97.6 knots 122 knots 170.8 knots 104.5 knots 157 knots
D4Y3 Suisei VII 113.6 knots 142 knots 198.8 knots 122 knots 182 knots
SB2C Helldiver VIII 100 knots 125 knots 175 knots 107.5 knots 160 knots
B7A Ryuusei VIII 116 knots 145 knots 203 knots 125 knots 185 knots
Fairey Speafish VIII 104 knots 130 knots 182 knots 112.5 knots 165 knots
Ta-152C-1/R14 VIII 144.8 knots 181 knots 253.4 knots 163.5 knots 216 knots
BTD Destroyer X 104.8 knots 131 knots 183.4 knots 113.5 knots 166 knots
J5N Tenrai X 121.6 knots 152 knots 212.8 knots 132 knots 192 knots
Westland Wyvern X 113.6 knots 142 knots 198.8 knots 124.5 knots 177 knots
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Note that Enterprise actually uses Tier VIII dive bombers (the same as Lexington upgraded).

The numbers generally speak for themselves. For Tiers VI+ it is a substantial nerf to the maximum plane speed and a noticeable nerf to the minimum plane speed. This will absolutely have an effect on how planes handle in the game as well as how many planes are damaged and lost to AA. More time will be spent in AA for sure and combined with the forced start match delay, it will be longer until initial spotting and subsequent attacks and be carried out (at least until the carrier can get into a forward position).

This "standardization" is a significant nerf, one that I am not entirely sure is needed or justified. It will be very interesting to see how this plays out, but knowing the current attitude of the very vocal players this change will likely just breeze right through and be hailed as universally good and "a step in the right direction." Unfortunately, I would not be able to test this on the PTS due to minimal storage space but I will be watching closely and I hope that this change is documented and tested in some detail when the opportunity arises.

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