Each ship has a certain combat tier assigned to it. It determines the maximum level of enemy and ally ships that can be encountered in the battle.
The information below is current as of patch 0.5.9.0.
|Ship Tier||Ship Class||Battle Tier|
Other matchmaking restrictions:
- As of patch 0.5.8.0, matchmaker will make matches with an equal amount of top tier Battleships and Cruisers and with the same amount of Carriers of the same tier.
- As of patch 0.5.9.0, matchmaker will limit aircraft carriers to one per team in battles where the top tier ship is of Tier VIII, IX, or X.
- As of patch 0.5.9.0, matchmaker will once again attempt to uniformly distribute ships of different nations between the teams. (Example: If two Soviet Gnevny destroyers and two Japanese Minekaze destroyers are present, the matchmaker will attempt to put one destroyer of each nation on each team.)
Divisions of up to three ships can be created. Currently divisions can only have one carrier (and a random team can have no more than two Carriers).
Matchmaker treats all the ships in the division as having the highest present tier; so if, for example, a tier 3 and a tier 7 ships division together, matchmaker views both of them as tier seven ships and will assign them to battle accordingly. For that reason, it is never a good reason to division with ships that vastly differ in tiers (so-called "fail divisions") -- you will weaken your team, and draw the wrath of your teammates.
Ship Performance Factors
For each ship there are five main performance factors that provide a basis for comparison of any one ship against another in game. There are an additional two performance factors for those ships which are armed with aircraft or torpedoes. These performance factors are expressed on a relative scale of 0 (worst) to 100 (best). Each performance factor is calculated or influence from a combination of other individual factors as follows:
- Survivability is a measure of the ship's ability to take damage and keep fighting. Its mainly all about hit points. The T10 BB's IJN Yamato and the USA Montana share top Survivability factor in-game with 100. The GER T1 PB Hermelin and the USSR T1 PB Orlan share the worst with 9.
- Artillery is a measure of the ship's firepower with its main and secondary guns. The main battery firing range in kilometers and the number, type, and positions of the main battery and the secondary armament guns contribute to this factor. The the USA T10 BB Montana has the top Artillery factor in-game of 94. The IJN T2 DD Tachibana has the worst with 1.
- AA Guns is a measure of the ship's anti-aircraft defenses and its ability to defend itself from air attacks. The number and caliber of the on-board AA guns contribute to this factor. The USA T10 CA Des Moines has the best AA Guns factor in-game of 90. The USA T4 CV Langley, the IJN T4 BB Myogi, the IJN T3 BB Kawachi, the USA T3 BB South Carolina, the IJN T2 BB Mikasa, the IJN T2 DD Tachibana, the USSR T2 CL Diana and the USA T2 CL Chester have the worst because they are not armed with any AA Guns.
- Maneuverability factor is a measure of the ship's ability to maneuver, make turns, and maintain speed while turning. Three other factors affect Maneuverability, the ship's "Maximum Speed" in knots, its "Turning Circle Radius" in meters, and its "Rudder Shift Time" in seconds. The IJN T5 DD Minekaze has the best Maneuverability factor in-game of 95. The USA T4 CV Langley has the worst at 7.
- Concealment factor is a measure of the ship's ability to remain undetected by the enemy. The Concealment factor is a calculated parameter influenced by the ship's "Surface Detectability Range" and an "Air Detectability Range", each are also specified and expressed in kilometers. The IJN T2 DD Umikaze has the best Concealment factor in-game of 97. The USA T10 CV Midway has the worst at 5. The Type-1 Camouflage presumably further reduces the detectability range by enemy ships by 3%.
- Torpedoes is a measure of the torpedo capability of those ships which carry torpedoes. The number, type, and position of the torpedo tubes and the range of the torpedoes contribute to this factor. The IJN T10 DD Shimakaze has the best Torpedo factor in-game of 60. The IJN T2 DD Umikaze and Tachibana have the worst rating which is 4. Those ships not armed with torpedoes have no Torpedo factor.
- Aircraft is a measure of the aircraft capability of those ships which carry aircraft. The total number of squadrons, number of planes, and the type and capabilities of each of the planes: fighter, dive-bomber, or torpedo-planes; determine the Aircraft factor. The USA T10 CV Midway has the best in-game Aircraft factor of 79. USA Cruisers beginning with T5 CL Omaha and IJN Cruisers beginning with T4 Kuma carry 1 to 3 fighter/recon aircraft. Only CVs have an Aircraft factor.
A ship is spotted when another enemy ship or aircraft gets close enough to detect it. This mainly involves two sets of values.
The first set of values is Detection range, which is divided into two categories
- Surface Detectability Range: This is the range at which a ship will be detected by an enemy ship. A Line of Sight (LoS) is required between the spotting ship and the ship being spotted. A ship will not be spotted if there are no enemy ships within this range.
- Air Detectability Range: This is the range at which a ship will be detected by an enemy aircraft. This is usually shorter than the surface detectablity range. Unlike surface detection, catapult launched aircraft can spot enemy ships within 4 km of itself regardless of LoS, beyond that range they need LoS to the ship. Carrier based aircraft are not restricted by LoS at all when detecting enemy ships.
The second set of values is View range, which is also doubles as a ship's render range. It is indicated by the outer limit of the grey cone on the player's minimap in battle. Any ship outside of this range can not be detected by the player, while any allied ships and spotted enemy ships outside of it will not be drawn on the player's screen but will be displayed on the player's minimap as outlined icons. In general, the taller the ship the higher its view range will be. Therefore battleships tend to have very long view ranges (in excess of over 20 km), while destroyers usually have shorter view ranges than other ship classes.
Aircraft carriers have unlimited view range, while aircraft (both catapult launched and carrier based) have a view range of 11 km. In most cases, view range has little impact on ship to ship detection, because it is usually far higher than the detectability range of the ships being spotted. The only time view range has any appreciable effect on ship to ship detection is when the spotting ship has a lower view range than the target's detectability range, such as a destroyer attempting to spot certain battleships. In these cases, the target is spotted not at its detectability range but at the moment it enters the view range of the spotting ship.
In the diagram to the right, assuming all ships are enemies to one another, the destroyer (pink) can detect the cruiser (orange) as the cruiser is within the destroyer's view range (pink dashed line) and the distance between the two ships is smaller than than the cruiser's detectability range (orange line). However, the destroyer can not detect the battleship (blue) even though the distance between them is smaller than the battleship's detectability range (blue line) because the battleship is outside of the destroyer's view range (pink dashed line).
The cruiser on the other hand can detect the battleship, as it is within the cruiser's view range and the distance between them is smaller than the battleship's detectability range, however the cruiser can not detect the destroyer even though it is within the cruiser's view range because the distance between them is larger than the DD's detectability range.
The battleship can not detect either the destroyer or cruiser even though the battleship's view range encompasses both of them because their distance to the battleship is larger than their respective detectability range.
If the destroyer and the battleship is on the same team while the cruiser is on the opposing team, the destroyer will spot the cruiser for the battleship and it will appear as a solid icon on the battleship's minimap and be rendered in its main view. If the destroyer and the cruiser is on the same team while the battleship is on the opposing team, the cruiser will spot the battleship for the destroyer but it will only appear as an outline in the destroyer's minimap and not rendered in its main view.
There are a few factors that can affect spotting:
- Firing main guns. This greatly increases a ship's detectability range for a duration of 20 seconds, allowing it to be spotted at a distance higher than the ship's base detectability range. In general, the bigger caliber of the main guns the bigger the increase will be. The value increased is different for both surface and air detection.
The detection formula is as follows: [caliber in mm] x 3 x 10 for visibility from ships [caliber in mm] x 2 x 10 for visibility from airplanes e.g. firing 203mm rifles will increase visibility from airplanes by 4060 meters.
The patch 0.5.5 intends to change the visibility mechanics: if the ship was not spotted before the salvo, it will dissapear immediatly after firing, and won't have the 20 second visibility penalty
- Firing AA guns and secondary guns. AA guns and secondary guns that are actively firing also increases a ship's detectability range. The increase is 1.3 km by surface and 2 km by air. For secondary guns, much like with main caliber, the increase in visibility lasts for 20 seconds since the last shot.For AA guns, the increase is only aplied as long as they are actively firing. It is often recommended for Destroyers to switch off their AA guns so as to not reveal their position by firing at passing enemy aircraft, however this is only relevant if the ship has AA that is longer range than their detection range by air.
- Fires. A ship that is set on fire will have 3 km added to their detectability range (2 km by air) for as long as it's on fire. The increase does not stack with multiple fires.
- Smoke screens. Smoke works by blocking LoS. If a ship is inside a smoke screen or have a smoke screen between it and all possible spotters, it can remain undetected even when there are enemy spotters within its detectability range. For air detection, smoke is considered as being at the same height as flying aircraft, therefore a catapult launched aircraft needs to be close to or over the smoke screen in order to detect any ships hiding beyond it. However, an aircraft can not detect a ship that is inside the smoke screen itself even if the aircraft is flying directly over the ship.
- Engine Boost. Destroyers using this consumable to increase its speed and acceleration will have 0.2 km added to their detectability range for as long as they are accelerating or moving at top speed. The penalty is not applied if the ship is decelerating or comes to a stop while the consumable is still active. note: this is no longer the case as of patch 0.5
- Proximity spotting. At 2 km ships will automatically detect each other regardless of LoS, making it possible for ships to be detected even if they are hiding inside a smoke screen or behind terrain. The consumable Hydroacoustic Search can extend this auto-spot range for a limited duration.
- Upgrades, skills and camouflage. A ship's detectability range can be decreased by using certain upgrades, skills and camouflage. The bonuses from each of them can also stack together, so a Kagero (with base surface detectability range of 6.8 km) fully decked for concealment can have a surface detectability range of only 5.24 km.
Launching torpedoes will not increase a ship's detectability range. Sailing slowly or stopping completely will not reduce a ship's detectability.
Both catapult launched and carrier based aircraft have a detectability range as well, at 4 km for catapult launched aircraft and 8 km for carrier based aircraft. The distances are the same for both surface and air detection.
Torpedoes are detected at different ranges according to its type, the values are the same for both surface and air detection. The consumable Hydroacoustic Search can help detect torpedoes by providing a flat proximity spotting range that is higher than the range the torpedoes are normally detected for a limited duration. Once a torpedo has been spotted, it will remain spotted for the duration of its run.