World of Warships

USN Alternate CV Line Proposal

WorldOfWarships2 - USN Alternate CV Line Proposal
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I’ve done various ship proposals in the past on the forums, this will be my first foray into doing them on Reddit and in a different format than I typically have.

Rationale

WG has explicitly said that at some point we can expect the now-unused carrier models from the USN and IJN lines to come back. But they don’t want them as an alternate line with similar mechanics, out of concern that they will overlap too much with the existing lines. So I figured it was worth a shot to figure out how an alternate line with different mechanics would work.

History

I’m trying to cleave closely to historical capabilities of USN carriers during the period, and use that as a basis for mechanical differences between this line and the existing USN carrier line. This is also intended to be a capability showcase, demonstrating the technical and doctrinal aspects of USN carriers and aircraft that differentiated them from the carriers of other nations.

One of the big things is that USN carriers started early on to merge together the fighter role with the attacker. US fighter aircraft of all types frequently had multiple hardpoints for bombs, and often carried them on combat sorties. This was part of how they carried so many fighters as part of their airgroup(by the end of WWII, more than 2/3 of the planes in carrier airgroups were fighters).

In terms of technical innovation, the USN led the world in radar and electronic technology during WWII. This lead to sufficient miniaturization and automation to make it possible for single-engined aircraft to significantly benefit from radar(please don’t shoot, this doesn’t mean ingame flying radar) and onboard jamming, while this sort of technology was mostly confined to multi-engined aircraft for other powers.

Balance

There are two main balance goals for these ships, to make them different from the existing USN carrier line, in both squadron effect and playstyle, and to make them more based around consumable utility. If the existing CV lines are to be taken as the base setup, much like the USN and IJN lines were starting out, this line should offer superior consumable utility similar to KM hydro, or French MBRM.

In terms of the first goal, as allued to above these ships use bomber wings that have fighter speed and performances. This makes them much faster, with short boost and lower durability than a conventional dive bomber. The attack run is a glide bombing run of about 40-50 degrees, making it somewhat less consistent in positioning than the typical dive bomber run. They maintain typical USN accuracy on bomb drops however.

In addition, to further differentiate them and to prevent the smaller decks of the alternate carriers from becoming a problem, the carriers all use 1-overtiered planes with smaller squadrons than the main line. Squadrons attack in fewer runs, with 2-run wings being not uncommon. This significantly increases squadron durability while retreating if they have good health to start with. To compensate for this, unlike Saipan, Enterprise, and Kaga which offer more ordnance than typical carriers of their tier, these ships generally have less ordnance across the entire squadron.

Weapons-wise they are generally comparable to the USN line, using rockets, HE dive bombers and 3.4km torpedoes. It’s not possible to dig up too much exotic ordnance for the USN, and doing so would generally be more sensible on a line that was focused around exotic strike as its differentiating factor. A potential German or even Russian line might find some good traction there.

Consumables

I’ve hinted about consumable utility twice before, so I’d best deliver on it, right? Both of the line’s consumable utility systems originate from electronics development, but only one is actually directly an electronic system.

For all 3 ships, they posess an altered patrol fighter consumable. It has a higher number of aircraft in the squadron than the normal fighter, giving it better durability under AA fire and letting it deal damage more quickly and defeat standard fighter consumables. Its patrol radius is larger, meaning it covers more area and can restrict a hostile CV’s options more significantly. Most powerfully, though, is that it can be deployed at a(small) distance from the squadron using it, making it require less diversion from the squadron’s path to cover allies and opening up options for offensive use.

I expect this will get changed on normal patrol fighters(again), but I will note that to prevent this from becoming a spotting option, the squadron should possess no surface spotting ability.

Tier(standard) Fighter Count Radius Throw Range
6 6(3) 3km(2.5) 4km
8 10(5) 3.6km(3) 4.5km
10 14(7) 4.2km(3.5) 5km

This is based off of airborne radar, specifically the development of AEW radar and employment on US carriers to extend the range at which the carrier could detect incoming strikes and coordinate interceptions. The USN possessed an extremely sophisticated interception ability by the end of WWII and in the postwar era, and this is intended to capture that ability in consumable format while not simply destroying enemy wings anywhere on the map.

Starting at tier 8, they also possess an alternative to the standard TB repair consumable. This is based off the use of converted attack aircraft as jamming platforms by the USN. This consumable doesn’t jam the search radar consumable, but rather the secondary battery fire control radars of ships, reducing their long-range AA and secondary capabilities. Mechanically it applies a debuff(which is a thing WoWS can do now!) to every ship within a fixed radius that limits the maximum range of their AA and secondary guns. This can be used to drive a torpedo strike in with less opposition or to shut down hostile secondary guns allowing allied ships some breathing space or getting them ahead in a damage race.

Tier Radius Duration Max AA Range Max Sec Range Reload
8 6km 40s 4km 6km 240s
10 8km 60s 4km 6km 240s

Tier differences are intended to make the tier 8 version less able to disable ships other than the target without undertaking significant risk of damage, and to prevent it from being quite as much of a boon to allied ships, especially another carrier.


Tier 6 – USS Independence

The Independence class were designed as a quick conversion to increase the number of flight decks available to the USN at a point when carrier numbers were dwindling. Ironically, this is actually the latest ship here by commissioning of the first ship in the class, as the Essex class carriers were constructed faster than expected and reached commission first.

The Independence class was however the first USN CV to operate a primarily fighter airgroup, as they quickly lost their DB complement(SBD’s had trouble with the hangar), and generally operated relatively few Avengers, eventually being planned at the end of the war to become pure fighter carriers.

Survivability

HP: 39000

Armor: 127mm belt and bulkheads, 51mm deck, 19mm ends plating, 16mm hangar plating.

It’s… a carrier! Suffice to say that the Independece class despite being a converted cruiser is not a particularly impressive ship defensively. The huge hangar is going to be farmed, and you don’t even have the 25mm deck plating that Ranger gets. Oh, and less HP than all the other carriers too.

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Airwing

Stock:

Fighter

FM-2 Wildcat

HP 1100
Speed 210 kts
Attack Size 2
Squadron Size 4
Attack Count 6
Weapon HVAR
Damage 2000
Pen 33.5mm
Hanger Respawn 70 s

Bomber

FM-2 Wildcat

HP 1170
Speed 210 kts
Attack Size 2
Squadron Count 6
Attack Count 2
Weapon 250 lbs AN-M57
Damage 5400
Pen 32.5mm
Fire chance 33%
Hanger Respawn 81 s

Torpedo

TBY Sea Wolf

HP 1410
Speed 174 kts
Attack Size 2
Squadron Count 4
Attack Count 1
Weapon Mark 13-2 Torpedo
Damage 6467
Speed/Dist 3.9km @ 35 kts
Flood Chance 52%
Hanger Respawn 88 s

Elite:

Fighter

F6F-5 Hellcat

HP 1300
Speed 216 kts
Attack Size 2
Squadron Size 4
Attack Count 6
Weapon HVAR
Damage 2000
Pen 33.5mm
Hanger Respawn 83 s

Welcome to the first taste of rocket mediocrity, this squadron is faster and has somewhat less overall HP baked into fewer planes. HVAR’s strike slightly harder than FFAR’s but the total damage output is much lower due to the loss of aircraft relative to the Ranger.

Bomber

F6F-5 Hellcat

HP 1380
Speed 216 kts
Attack Size 2
Squadron Count 6
Attack Count 2
Weapon 500 lbs AN-M64
Damage 7300
Pen 42mm
Fire chance 41%
Hanger Respawn 96 s

This wing breaks the rules a little bit as it’s overall as good or better than the standard USN DB on Ranger(drops more damage total and has a very similar total of HP*speed). This is to provide Independence with a bit more comparable strike power to Ranger as the ship is for transitioning into the line weirdness. It’s still reliant on getting in and out quick as the DB squadron has less real HP and relies on lower exposure to AA in order to be comparably durable. Make that extra bomb in each attack count.

Torpedo

TBM-3 Avenger

HP 1780
Speed 168 kts
Attack Size 2
Squadron Count 4
Attack Count 1
Weapon Mark 13-10 Torpedo
Damage 7916
Speed/Dist 3.4km @ 34 kts
Flood Chance 65%
Hanger Respawn 92 s

They’re Avengers, but a bit tougher to make up for the lost planes. Also they get the hardest-hitting torpedo in the USN line. Savor it, because it won’t be coming back. This wing offers comparable durability as the Ranger or Ryujo wings, and superior damage in a single attack, but having 2 instead of 3 attacks means that it deals the least damage, especially relative to Ryujo.

Defenses

Secondaries:

None! At least on the fully upgraded hull. I suppose WG might leave in the stock hull with 2 127mm guns, but let’s be real that’s not going to save you from anything, and would take away HP and AA power.

AA:

Short Range 0-1.5km
Short Mounts 8×2 20mm/70
Short DPS 247
Mid Range 1.5-3.5km
Mid Mounts 10×2+2×4 40mm/5
Mid Bursts 7
Mid DPS 357

Carrier AA is usually pretty sturdy and this is mostly no exception. The one issue mostly comes down to completely lacking any long-range AA on the upgraded hull, and 2 127mm’s is not anything other than a single burst even if they were here. So most ships can set up a good attack angle before braving the Bofors and Oerlikons. Many of the Independences finished the war without 20mm guns, so things could be a lot worse.

Summary

Independence is different from but still a lot like Ranger. Her squadrons focus on compactness and high durability, but except the DB squadron aren’t very competitive in aggregate damage terms. Overall unless that DB squadron can be kept alive for a long time and in constant use, Independence will deal slightly less damage than Ranger, but should have better endurance due to having larger return wing sizes and overall lower respawn times relative to HP and damage. She gets the most basic fighter patrol, but it should make up a little bit of that edge in warding off the enemy carrier(s).


Tier 8 – USS Yorktown

Probably fairly obvious given that Independence and not Bogue was the Tier 6. The Yorktown class is a bit complicated by the fact that only Enterprise received significant modernizations as the other members of her class had been lost. Hence this ship represents a “what if” using Yorktown’s hull number and name with Enterprise’s fit as of 1946 and an airgroup of late-war types.

Survivability

HP: 53700

Armor: 102mm belt and bulkheads, various 25-38mm plating on the flight deck, hangar deck, and sides. 21mm fore/aft plating and 19mm hangar plating elsewhere.

Slightly more HP than Enterprise, same armor scheme.

Airgroup

Stock:

Fighter

F4U-1D Corsair

HP 1360
Speed 228 kts
Attack Size 3
Squadron Size 6
Attack Count 8
Weapon HVAR
Damage 2000
Pen 33.5mm
Hanger Respawn 89 s

Загрузка...

Bomber

F4U-1D Corsair

HP 1440
Speed 228 kts
Attack Size 2
Squadron Size 6
Attack Count 2
Weapon 500lbs AN-M64
Damage 7300
Pen 42.5mm
Fire Chance 41%
Hanger Respawn 104 s

Torpedo

TBM-3(Q) Avenger

HP 1620
Speed 168 kts
Attack Size 2
Squadron Size 6
Attack Count 1
Weapon Mark 13-10 Torpedo
Damage 7916
Speed/Dist 3.4km @ 35 kts
Flood Chance 65%
Hanger Respawn 101 s

Elite:

Fighter

F4U-4B Corsair

HP 1480
Speed 236 kts
Attack Size 4
Squadron Size 8
Attack Count 8
Weapon HVAR
Damage 2000
Pen 33.5mm
Hanger Respawn 83 s

I hope you like the Corsair a lot, because there’s a bunch of them coming. The Corsair would become the USN’s basic fighter/bomber for roughly the next 9 years, eventually being phased out during the Korean War. This particular Corsair is a bit more modern than the -1D, but has misplaced the magic 5th rocket pylon from Midway. Each attack wave has more planes, but the total damage output is lower and the reload time on the wing is slower.

Bomber

F4U-4B Corsair

HP 1540
Speed 236 kts
Attack Size 3
Squadron Size 8
Attack Count 2
Weapon 1000lbs AN-M65
Damage 9200
Pen 53.5mm
Fire Chance 52%
Hanger Respawn 98 s

I’m reasonably certain that the game actually lets you do something like this, having a 3-3-2 dive bomber pattern(after all, you can take off with 8 planes out of 9, right?). This squad is like most USN DB probably the best on its carrier, offering a lot of upfront damage at high speeds. It can’t loiter as long as the SB2C squadrons, nor does it deliver quite as much payload. However having 2 squadrons that can deploy fighters quickly allows for more flexibility in supporting allied battleships.

Torpedo

AM-1(Q) Mauler

HP 1950
Speed 181 kts
Attack Size 2
Squadron Size 6
Attack Count 2
Weapon Mark 7D Torpedo
Damage 5567
Speed/Dist 3.0km @ 35 kts
Flood Chance 45%
Hanger Respawn 121 s

I’m not sure if the game has had a Mauler yet, but here it is anyways. For those wondering, the Mauler did indeed come in a Q conversion for jamming. The Mauler is notorious for being the 3-torpedo plane, but this loadout was rare in service, and a -1Q would never carry it alongside conventional Maulers as they had to carry extra drop tanks to compensate for deleted internal tanks to fit the jamming operator.

Ingame this is not as durable, fast, or damaging as Saipan’s BTD wing. It benefits from having jamming as an option on approach, but this limits its sortie rate significantly as it cannot attack as effectively if the jamming is on cooldown.

Defenses

Secondaries:

8×1 5”/38, 15 rpm

4.5km range

Not going to wow anyone given you get at most 4 guns with lousy range.

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AA:

Short Range 0-1.5km
Short Mounts 16×2 20mm/70
Short DPS 494
Mid Range 1.5-3.5km
Mid Mounts 5×2+11×4 40mm/56
Mid Bursts 10
Mid DPS 521
Long Rnage 3.5-5.8km
Long Mounts 8×1 5”/38
Long Bursts 4
Long DPS 107

Carrier AA is generally pretty dangerous and this is roughly normal. Versus Enterprise Yorktown trades away significant amounts of short range AA for superior mid range AA. Both ships struggle with poor long-range AA firepower however, which is seeming like it will plague this line consistently(spoilers!).

Summary

Yorktown has more immediate impact than Lexington, but can’t sustain it as long. All the wings require longer to reload after destruction and deal similar to lower amounts of damage. If they can use their speed the wings are about as durable despite lower aircraft count, but this is reliant on avoiding bad situations and excessive maneuvering. At this point though the ship can lean more on opportunities to exploit jamming to shut down AA balls and back up secondary pushes, or use its fighters to clear paths and defend allied ships from air attack.


Tier X – USS Essex SCB-27A Conversion

Mostly this is because I like the way the converted Essex class looks and it justifies newer aircraft without seeming too out of place. This is an early Korean War refit, so it gives the USN a little bit of that 1950’s flavor that some of the other nations get. The elite airgroup is essentially identical to that one of the carriers deployed to Korea might have used, including the rough ratios that it was composed of.

Survivability

Hitpoints: 57,900

Armor: 64mm hangar deck, 38mm main deck with no belt.

TDS: 25-35%. Blisters give very high TDS depth.

The most notable deviations from the Essex-class design in the SCB-27A conversions is the significantly increased displacement at full load, this was accomplished by increasing the beam of the ships considerably. The displacement was used to strengthen the flight deck and increase the ship's overall topweight.

This is less HP than the other Tier X carriers, but more problematic is that Essex does not have an armored deck and will therefore take full damage from HE bombs and rockets. Expected durability against enemy carriers or pursuing destroyers will be fairly poor.

Airgroup

Stock:

Fighter

F8F-2 Bearcat

HP 1660
Speed 242 kts
Attack Size 4
Squadron Size 8
Attack Count 8
Weapon HVAR
Damage 2000
Pen 33.5mm
Hanger Respawn 92 s

Bomber

F8F-2 Bearcat

HP 1760
Speed 242 kts
Attack Size 3
Squadron Size 9
Attack Count 2
Weapon 1000 lbs AN-M65
Damage 9200
Pen 53.5mm
Fire Chance 52%
Hanger Respawn 75 s

Torpedo

AD-1(Q) Skyraider

HP 2010
Speed 179 kts
Attack Size 2
Squadron Size 6
Attack Count 2
Weapon Mark 13-2 Torpedo
Damage 6467
Speed/Dist 3.9km @ 35 kts
Flood Chance 52%
Hanger Respawn 92 s

Elite:

Fighter

F4U-5 Corsair

HP 1720
Speed 260 kts
Attack Size 4
Squadron Size 8
Attack Count 8
Weapon HVAR
Damage 2000
Pen 33.5mm
Hanger Respawn 88 s

This is pretty much more of the same thing, and it compares in a similar way as the Yorktown’s wing to Lexington. The one downside is that you still haven’t found that magic 5th wing pylon, so the difference in rocket impact per attack is not that notable. There is a more modern rocket, the 6.5” ATAR, but that’s both a shaped charge weapon and unpredictable as the formulas for weapons aren’t quite clear yet.

Bomber

F4U-5 Corsair

HP 1830
Speed 260 kts
Attack Size 3
Squadron Size 9
Attack Count 3
Weapon 1000 lbs AN-M65
Damage 9200
Pen 53.5mm
Fire Chance 52%
Hanger Respawn 82 s

-5 Corsairs had a centerline bomb pylon, which enabled carrying a loadout like this 3×1000 lbs drop. This wouldn’t be very common operationally as it leaves no hardpoints for drop tanks, but in WoWS where aircraft can only use a single munitions type this is the best bomber possible. Versus Midway the drop is heavier in damage but lacks the 4th run, meaning it overall deals less damage.

Level Bombers: AD-4(Q) Skyraider

HP 2230
Speed 190 kts
Attack Size 3
Squadron Size 6
Attack Count 2
Weapon Mark 13-2 Torpedo
Damage 6467
Speed/Dist 3.9km @ 35 kts
Flood Chance 52%
Hanger Respawn 106 s

This is a very high-impact torpedo wing, especially given the various nerfs to torpedoes that have taken place. The downside is that its total HP and speed give it a hard time attacking targets, and it will need to depend on jamming hostile AA in order to setup a good attack. Even then if it starts taking casualties the wing will become inaccessible for use in fairly short order.

Defenses

Secondaries:

8×1 5”/38, 15 rpm

5km range

AA:

Short Range 0-1.5km
Short Mounts 9×2 20mm/70
Short DPS 278
Mid Range 1.5-4km
Mid Mounts 14×2 3"/50RF
Mid Bursts 12
Mid DPS 1020
Long Rnage 4-5.8km
Long Mounts 8×1 5”/38
Long Bursts 4
Long DPS 107

Poor AA in the long and short brackets, but has the second-strongest mid range zone in the game(Minotaur's is better). This makes Essex difficult to approach but relatively safe during the final stages of an attack run, and it has a hard time project AA power far away from the ship. Defensively this is good at killing planes but poor at preventing damage and careful play can avoid the powerful mid-range aura. Also there are secondaries, I guess.

Maneuverability and Concealment

Speed: 31 kts.

Turning Radius: 1050m

Detectability: 15.4km surface, 14.9km air.

Surface detectability goes up due to bigger superstructure, air stays the same. Also the beamier ship should mean a moderate decrease in turning circle. Biggest downside is 31 knots, which means this ship is going to get hunted by destroyers ruthlessly. It’s very possible for a destroyer to sneak up on this ship and end it, either with torpedoes or by directing fire onto it from allied ships.

Summary

Essex can make opportunities for itself, and it has to as it lacks a strong punch option of the mainline strike squadrons on the other tier X carriers. The main killing potential is from the TB squadron, but this either requires use of limited consumables or defanging a target ship with repeated rocket and bomb strikes.

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