World of Warships USN and IJN Battleships Overview

World of Warships USN and IJN Battleships Overview by Scowen

So, a reference guide based on your comments as to how each USN and IJN Battleship play. As in, how each ship should be played and what to be careful of. If you have a conflicting opinion about anything written below then do say so.


III – South Carolina:

Pros – decent armor and better guns than the Kawachi
Cons – I’ve seen DDs with their engines shot out move faster, No AA – Lokiorin

IV – Wyoming:

Pros – Fire… ALL THE GUNS!
Cons – No AA at a time when CVs are starting to enter the game, no spotter plane, slower than it’s IJN counterpart – Lokiorin

Good for running away while dealing damage as there are more guns on the ass – wtfOP

IV – Arkansas Beta:

Pros: it’s a stock Wyoming, so turrets and secondaries galore. 6 upgrade slots available and can train captains for no penalty.
Cons: it’s a stock Wyoming, so you have no AA and low range. – Teledildonic

V – New York:

Pros – Fire… ALL THE GUNS… again
Cons – AA is still terrible, though improving, No spotter plane, slower than it’s IJN counterpart -Lokiorin

I disagree that lack of AA is a con. It has enough AA on the last hull to take out a plane or two from a T4 carrier squadron. It’s not great, but it’s actually better off than most T4 ships. – Spazerbeam

VI – New Mexico:

Pros – 12 hard-hitting guns with plenty of punch, AA is much improved, Spotter plane lets you range with the big boys
Cons – Out-ranged by other at-tier ships without spotting plane, big ship = big target for CVs, slower than it’s IJN counterpart – Lokiorin

Pros: 12 guns total, and in a good caliber too. You can citadel any cruiser you come across, given a good broadside. The armor on the New Mexico makes it difficult to citadel. Cons: Although it is outranged by other ships, this is generally only a problem at the start of the game, and that’s what the scout plane is good for. The +16% range mod is still mandatory. – Spazerbeam

VII – Colorado:

Pros – with final hull upgrade has a huge AA compliment, plenty of range on the guns, well armored
Cons – Fewer guns than it’s predecessor, suffers from being “average” when it’s predecessor was exceptional – Lokiorin

Pros: Bigger guns means more citadels. Nagatos and Pensacolas in particular are free citadels. The last hull is an AA monster. Add on the two AA captain skills and the AA range mod, and the Colorado is a beast. I’ve gotten the clear sky achievement with it before. Cons: The real reason the Colorado sucks is because it gets crappy matchmaking at T7. When you get placed in low tier games, you can citadel Wyomings and New Yorks left and right. However, when you have to fight Atlantas and Iowas, life gets painful real quick. Self-defense against DDs is difficult due to the low number of guns and the lack of speed. – Spazerbeam

VIII – North Carolina:

pros: very good range (27k with upgraded fire control equipment), good speed (27.9 kn), decent armor, VERY good AA. as much HP as same tier japanese BB (a first for US BBs), fairly stealthy compared to range (15k detection range).
cons: high dispersion values, not very maneuverable – trymetal95

IX – Iowa:

Pros: Incredible AA.
Cons: None, really. – syanda

Pros: Three hard-hitting triple-barrel guns. Rear gun aims quite a bit further forward than on the North Carolina, and the guns are a fair bit more accurate as well. With the bow facing the enemy and angled a bit, you will take very little, if any, damage from AP from all ships save the Yamato. The Superstructure is a tad bugged apparently, which results in an upper-limit to the HE damage that can be done to it. The Iowa is, I’m fairly certain, the fastest Battleship out there. At just shy of 31 knots, she’s a speedster. Extremely good AA means you will shred planes that make the mistake of flying over or past you, however…
Cons – …as good as your AA is, it isn’t good enough to kill more than one or two Tier 9 bombers on approach before they drop. If the CV captain is stilled, he will hit you with several full spreads. This ties into the other problems: the Iowa is a big ship, and though her rudder shift is respectable, it takes a while to get that big ass around. Anticipate as best you can the torpedo bombers and your AA will lessen the blow, but expect to eat a lot of plane-launched torps. In addition, though the frontal armor is great, don’t show your broadside unless you absolutely have to. Nagatos, North Carolinas, Amagis (especially) will all wreck you if you give them a clean shot. T9s and 10s will too, obviously. The stern is fairly weak – up close, you can be Citadelled straight through the stern by the Iowa’s own 406s, and up close on the sides… well, your citadels are big targets. I have a number of Iowa kills painted on my hull from knife fighting and getting the first salvo off after the first pass. As fast as the Iowa is, she loses speed very quickly with any kind of maneuvering. A slight 1/2 turn will cut your speed by a third. Lastly… because she is huge, it can be tough to avoid suicide rammers at times. Do your best.
All in all, the Iowa is an incredibly potent ship. Treat her well, and she’ll treat you well. Abuse her, and you’ll feel the pain. I recommend pairing it with either a USN CA or a Fighter loadout CV if you have friends. Also, always prioritize torpedo squadrons with AA, but try to leave squadrons with a single plane alive. They’re easier to dodge, not threatening, and force the CV to wait longer to rearm. – Terrachova

Cons – While it is a great ship, if you do not angle your armor, lesser tier battleships like the New Mexico will eat it for lunch in a close quarters battle. In fact, I’ve witnessed that even with angled armor, at shorter ranges, the Iowa will take serious crippling damage. To me, it seems that the Iowa is at its best at longer ranges. – NoZoupForYou

X – Montana:

Pro: 12 cannons means you’re flinging a whole lot of shells at the enemy, increasing your chance of citadel hits not to mention giving you a very good DPM. Some of the strongest AA in the game makes CV’s hesitant to engage you or any ships near you.
Cons: Outranged by the Yamato and has issues taking the Yamato on 1v1 as his bigger cannons means more penetrations regardless of angle. Partially solved by focusing other ships near the Yamato and letting CV’s / DD’s / Cruiser deal with it. – flamuchz

Reply to the above comment by flamuchz: I would add a couple things to the cons… particularly related to her size and the AA. As good as the AA is, against T10 torp bombers, it isn’t good enough to kill more than one or two before they drop fish. Then, the size issue comes into play. The Montana is a big ship, and she isn’t really agile. Expect to eat a lot of torpedoes if you don’t have proper CA/fighter cover. – Terrachova


II – Mikasa:

Pros: As the only BB at tier II, it’s got a solid chunk of HP. Turns very tightly, and has more secondaries than there are stars in the night sky.
Cons: Gun range is less than detection range, and with just 4 main guns the DPM is paltry until the secondaries join in. The speed will make you question if Zeno wasn’t right after all. – Novale

III – Kawachi:

Pro: Not the South Carolina. Better guns, better manoeuvrability, faster.
Cons: The range is absolutely horrible. This means that you’ll be taking plenty of hits to get into firing range if you’re in open water. The base range of 8.9 is crippling, and the upgraded 9.9 is just marginally better. Stick together and use cover/islands to help close the distance if you don’t want to get ganged up on.
– leemobile

IV – Myogi:

Pros – hard hitting, uber range guns; + spotter plane
Cons – probably the worst accuracy of all the ships in game, if you hit something that will be 80% RNG and only 20% aiming – Shongi85

At least it’s fast. Only 3 large gun pairs means you’re at the mercy of the RNG. Accuracy feels poor. Range is excellent for it’s tier though.
Sniping at range might be tempting, but the accuracy is still mediocre at best, so you’re better off shortening the engagement range using your speed. Don’t get too close though, you don’t want a Wyoming shotgunning you in the face. – RageMachinist

IV – Ishizuchi:

Pros: Premium matchmaking (only see tier V), decent gun layout and pretty solid speed for a tier 4 battlecruiser. Very strong secondary. Very high fire chance on HE shells. Cons: Weak AA, weak armour, poor AP shell penetration. Don’t bother against Standard Dreads. Guns are also relatively short ranged. -bathoz

V – Kongo:

Amazing ship for its tier, it’s quite accurate at long range. Some of my best games played in this ship. – Me

Mixed feelings about this one, i either have a very good game or a very bad one. Sometimes my shells go shotgunmode then the next game they shoot like a sniper rifle. – simplyone90

Has a good main battery, good AA, good secondaries, decent armor and great speed. Possibly the most well-rounded ship I’ve played. Very flexible due to the speed and gun range. – Novale

VI – Fuso:

Deadly broadside shots due to the 6 turrets. Very poor range with the standard hull, an amazing ship once upgraded. – Me

Pros: Has 12 main guns and enormous range, along with pretty decent armor. Is very, very tall.
Cons: Much of the AA is short-ranged. Slower than Kongō, though still faster than the USN equivalent. All those guns make for a very large citadel area. Has trouble penetrating the citadel of the New Mexico, in my experience. – Novale

VII – Nagato:

A brawler, great at getting close and personal. Average reload times, slightly bigger guns than that of the Fuso. – Me

VIII – Amagi:

Pros: High top speed, 10-guns, flat firing arc and good dispersion has gotten them nicknamed as railguns.
Cons: As a battlecruiser, it has pretty poor armour. Also has less AA than it’s US counterpart. -syanda

IX – Izumo:

Weak armour but the first IJN BB to receive triple barrel turrets. 3 Turrets on the front of the ship is great for T-boning the enemy. Unsure exactly as to what the optimal play-style for this ship should be. – Me

X – Yamato:
Pros: All-range attacker. Has long range main battery that hits hard, and fast firing secondaries that, when fully-upgraded, reach out to 10km.
Cons: Poorer AA than Montana, main battery takes forever to turn. Long reload time. -syanda


VI – Warspite:

Pros – 15in guns gives you the biggest baddest guns at tier, thick armor and torpedo belts, premium match making, amazing rudder shift time, and deceptively good acceleration
Cons – Your turrets turn like they are hand-cranked… by hamsters – Lokiorin

**Generalizations from Aerroon

  • South Carolina > Kawachi (Kawachi has poor accuracy and range. South Carolina is better because of it.)
  • Wyoming >> Myogi (Myogi only has 6 guns – Wyoming has a huge advantage in damage.)
  • New York < Kongou (Kongou is simply a lot faster and with way more range providing way more utility.)
  • New Mexico < Fusou (These are pretty even, but the Fusou is faster and has considerably more range so she ends up outdoing the New Mexico in my opinion.)
  • Colorado < Nagato (While the Nagato is considered poor the Colorado is considered horrible. Nagato has better range and is faster while being pretty similar in other aspects to the Colorado.)
  • North Carolina = Amagi (Both are excellent ships and more or less equal. North Carolina’s higher range might come in handy, but rarely.)
  • Iowa >>> Izumo (Izumo’s poor armor is too weak to fight the Iowa. They both have good AA though.) Montana > Yamato (Yamato’s turret rotation is too slow. More powerful secondaries can’t even make up for having lower damage output than the Montana. Yamato also has worse anti-air. Main thing is higher caliber but whether it does anything good is questionable – even if it penetrates better this also means there will be more overpenetrations.)
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