History and Real Life Armament and Statistics
The 1942 type destroyer was the predecessor of the 1944 type destroyer, the latter of which is already represented in the game as the Z-52, The tier X German destroyer. The 1942 type destroyer was a testbed for diesel propulsion, as it was more efficient and easier for the Kriegsmarine to access. In fact, the 1944 class, which includes the Z-52, was designed as a mass-produced diesel propelled destroyer with lessons learned from the Z-51. Only one 1944 type destroyer was ordered, laid, and launched: Z-51. While fitting-out, it was sunk by allied bombers on March 21, 1945. Z-51 could manage 36 knots and had an armament of 4 × 1 128 mm L/45 LC/34s, 4 × 2 37 mm Flak LM/42s, 3 × 4 20 mm Flakvierling 38s, 2 × 3 533 mm torpedo tubes, and 50 mines. Dimensions are: displacement standard – 1982 long tons, overall length – 114.3 meters, waterline length – 108 meters, beam – 11 meters, and drought – 4.37 meters.
The recommended tier range for the Z-51 is 7-9. However, with its subpar torpedo salvo size of only 6 torpedos and with only average gunnery, it won’t be able to compete with other tier IX destroyers without significant buffs and there isn’t really a reason to get it. The Z-51 could be in tier VII, but I believe it should be in tier VIII because it’s guns are okay and the torpedo armament has potential. Its gunnery is the exact same (at least in number of guns and caliber) as the stock Z-23 and it could be given Z-52 torpedoes to make up for the low alpha strike and small wedge of only 6 torpedoes. Additionally, the ratio of reload time per torpedo could be decreased to make Z-51 fire her small torpedo salvos somewhat rapidly, adding onto the already low reload time of German torpedoes.
Using ratios between a ship’s displacement and its surface detection, the surface detection radius would be about 7.2 km and the air detection radius would be about 3 km. Likewise, the number of hit points would be about 13,000. The top speed could stay at 36, as that about the average speed of tier VIII destroyers, or be increased to 37 knots to supplement its role as a torpedo-oriented ship, which I will discuss later. I believe that the Z-51 be fairly maneuverable due to it being a smaller ship. The ship could have a rudder shift time of around 4.5 seconds and a turning radius that is almost as good as the Benson and Hsienyang: 580 meters.
The main gunnery is made of four 128 mm L/45 LC/34s, two on the bow and two on the stern. The reload time is 4 seconds, the rotation speed is 8 degrees per second,and the firing range is 9.85 km. Maximum damage for HE is 1,500 and maximum damage for AP is 3,000. Judging from the line drawing, it appears that only the B turret has the room necessary for 360 degree rotation. The reload time can be reduced to 3.6 seconds with BFT.
The six torpedoes are split in two triple torpedo tubes. The torpedoes have range 10 km, speed 67 knots, and maximum damage of 14,400; the torpedo tubes rotate at a rate of 25 degrees per second. I stated that the Z-51 should be given Z-52 torpedoes with a shorter reload. The Z-52 has four torpedoes per tube that reload for 90 seconds, so the time for one torpedo to reload is 22.5 seconds. We can reduce this ratio to 18 seconds per torpedo and multiply it by three torpedoes in each tube, giving the torpedo tube reload time for the Z-51 to be 54 seconds. This can be reduced to 48.6 seconds with TAE.
The Z-51 has 4 × 2 37 mm Flak LM/42s and 3 × 4 20 mm Flakvierling 38s as it’s AA suite. According to the Wargaming Wiki page for the Z-39, the AA dps of four double mounts of 37 mm Flak LM/42s is 41.2 and the AA dps of two quadruple 20 mm Flakvierling 38s is 12. The Z-51 has three Flakvierlings so the total dps would be 41.2+18=59.2. I don’t know the exact miss chance, the wiki has multiple discrepancies on AA stats, and I’m not an expert on AA in World of Warships so I don’t know if this AA suite is horrible, mediocre, or decent.
Function and Niche
Non-tech-tree ships often have a special gimmick, and the gimmick of the Z-51 is it’s short torpedo reload time, so the niche of the ship is rapid torpedo firing from stealth. The guns are average and can help it defend itself, but don’t expect it to win gunfights against true gunboat DDs or against any cruiser.
The Z-51 could just be given the standard set of consumables given to high tier German destroyers: damage control party, smoke generator, speed boost, and hydroacoustic search. The damage control party and speed boost would be the default destroyer consumables as there really is no point in changing them. However, changing the smoke and hydro would affect the balance and playstyle of the ship. The smoke has two options: short length with extra charges and short cooldown similar to the British destroyers or a standard German smoke with medium length with medium charges and normal cooldown. If it gets the former, it reinforces the purpose of the ship being stealthy and normally only using the smoke for disengagement and hiding from aircraft. If it gets the latter, it plays more like a stock Z-23. The hydroacoustic search could be either the Z-23 and Z-46 100 seconds/3.5 km torpedo detection/5 km ship detection or the Z-52 120 seconds /4 km torpedo detection/6 km ship detection. Instead of a change in playstyle, this is a direct buff, and I believe is unnecessary because hydroacoustic search is not very useful if you aren’t getting up close in ambushes and not staying in smoke for very long. One last thing about the Z-51 is that in real life, it had a radar, meaning it is possible to give it a radar consumable. There are two options: give the Z-51 the option to switch it for hydroacoustic search or make it its own slot. The latter is a really bad idea because it would mean a destroyer with radar, hydro, and smoke all at once; it would be completely unbalanced. The former is a decent idea but like a powerful hydro, there really is no use for it on a torpedo boat; you aren’t trying to flush out the enemy destroyers and get close up, you’re trying to avoid them and torpedo the enemy battleships and cruisers.
The Z-51 has five options on how it is available: steel, coal, free experience, doubloons, and a mission chain. Steel already has enough ships and the Z-51 is not very appealing compared to the other available ships; it’s an average ship. It could be available for doubloons or as a final/intermediate reward a mission, but I believe it should be available for coal because there are no higher tier destroyers available for coal and coal is available for casual players and easily available. The cost for it could be about 180,000 coal.
Here I’ll list the options you have available to balance the ship.
What it already has:
- 13,000 hp
- 7.2 km surface detect
- 3 km air detect
- Four 128 mm guns
- Two triple torpedo tubes
- Buffed Z-52 torpedoes
- Eight 37 mm guns
- Twelve 20 mm guns
- Standard destroyer damage control
- Standard destroyer speed boost
- Standard tier VIII/IX German destroyer hydroacoustic search
- Either British-destroyer-like smoke or standard tier VIII German destroyer smoke
- Give it radar as an alternative to hydro
- Give it radar as a separate slot
- Make it tier VII
- Lower torpedo reload
- Lower detection radius
- Give it Z-52 hydro
- Lower cost
- Buff AA
- Increase maximum speed
- Raise torpedo reload
- Raise detection radius
- Raise cost
- Nerf AA
- Decrease maximum speed
I would like to see what other people think of this draft for a new ship. I would like to hear about if it is too mediocre/overpowered, the torpedo reload is too fast/slow, its AA suite is bad/okay, it’s too expensive/cheap, about the consumable choices, it’s too slow/fast, it’s too/not stealthy, too/not maneuverable, etc.
Source: Original link
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