So I got the tier 6 italian cruiser Trento mission from a container and unlocked the ship yesterday. The ship's stats looked quiet underwhelming. I bought Main Armament Mod 1, Steering Gear Mod 1, Aiming Systems Mod 1 and Propulsion Mod 2, added premium consumables (for 2 smokes instead of 1) and selected the fighter to add a bit of AA protection although the spotter plane would also be useful, given the short range of the main batteries. However due to the long cooldown I find the spotter plane mostly useless in general.
Dropped into my first battle – it could have been worse. Tier 7 matchmaking and no CVs, only 1 DD per side – ours was a French T7 (Vauquelin). More on that later.
It was a standard battle with only 2 base caps but for reference I will use the terms "cap A, cap B" later.
So we scattered in the usual way when the battle started. I headed towards the middle, or DD also went there for some spotting. Left flank looked pretty empty so I tried out my torpedos. A whopping 2 of them launched and started to drift off (at 51 knots). Sea mines. But the reload looked quiet nice, only 23 seconds without any captain skills. OK, this might be something useful after all. So I turned a bit to drop the other side's torps as well, and by the time I had turned back on course the first set of torpedos was almost reloaded, so after 6 or 7 more seconds I launched a third wave, just for aera denial. Then I turned right where some cruisers had been spotted. I took some long range shots against an Omaha and a Pensacola – when the anouncer voice declared a penalty against me for team damage. What had happened ? Well our destroyer, who earlier had sped off towards the B cap area of the map had decided to change locations and rush at full speed towards A cap, the direction towards which I had launched my torpedos earlier. They are slow, 51 knot torpedos with a 12 km range so they float around quiet a while and the French boat with speed boost was fast enough to move into the hazard zone. Wether he was annoyed that I dared to fire torpedos from behind (although by the time I launched them noone from our team was in that direction) or wether he completely tunnel visioned – he drove into one, intentional or not. So – no more torpedos because I didn't want to risk an outright ban.
Time for more gun fire. The results were – mediocre. The guns are accurate enough against straightliners, but the shell arcs are not particularly good so good luck hitting fast maneuvering targets. The long reload means that any misses (and you'll get those) really hurt your damage output. And if you hit the damage is so-so. If you can hit the broadside of an enemy, booth AP and SAP work well enough. If the enemy ship is not broadside then neither will work particularly well. And against the Sinop of the enemy team that popped up from behind an island I wasn't able to score anything but scratches on the paint, so time for a heroic bailout using the smoke. That works, but there are drawbacks: The duration is very short. It really is nothing but a cloak while you hightail towards cover. But since the smoke moves with you (meaning there isn't a large area but a moving smoke cloud) people still have a fairly good idea where inside the smoke you are, so blindfiring is a thing. I received multiple hits despite being smoked up.
With more than half of my HP gone by now and a penalty invoked against me I restricted myself to taking potshots from as far as the guns could reach, with little effect despite scoring hits.
In the end we lost.
If you expected some tale of an epic battle, sorry to disappoint, but it wasn't. It was a slow, thankless toil. The gimmicks that this ship has – just don't work very well. All your ammo will only do damage against broadside targets, and against BBs you will not do a lot of damage even then. I fired at a Bayern's superstructure and scored damage, but not much – dissapointingly little given those were 203 mm shells. The torpedoes – the range and quick reload is meaningless if your idiot team finds the time to move in to intercept. I was pondering wether torpdo acceleration might be a thing, but boosting the torps from 51 to 56 knots while losing 2 km range doesn't seem like much of a bargain either.
All in all it was a joyless, unfun experience. I can see this ship doing reasonably well in operations or co-op where bots offer inviting broadsides. I played two more battles in co-op after this first one, in order to get rid of the penalty, and picking off yoloing broadside bots was working. However BBs – in one of the co-op battles I was just blabbed by a hitherto unspotted Richelieu bot from across the map. We're talking devastating strike, from 100 to 0% hp. The huge, high citadell sure makes this a vulnerable ship.
So this is it. It's an ok freebie. If WoWS was a fairground the Trento would be one of those weird cheap plastic "things" you win at the lottery, that you carry around while you're there, trophy-like, and toss in the garbage after returning home.
I can't see myself grinding this line once it gets released. There is no fun in doing that, and no great ships at the end of the tech tree to reward you for the pain if you do. It's just a tick in the checkbox for WG, Italian cruisers, yup, we've got those.
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