WoWS: Katori Pre-Review

Made by Cr, one of our readers!

How it should look like gameplay-wise. I’ll keep this updated when I’ll get more information and comparisons.
Nice HP (22k, same as Aurora), but poor armor.
Primary armament:
Only four 140mm guns, of the same model and with the same number of barrels as the Tenryu. So the raw damage per shot is lacking, but compensated by the 10 rpm (might vary), the good shell velocity and a whooping 10% fire chance.
Accuracy is unknown for now, but should be pretty good.
The main advantage of this ship’s armament is its base gun range: 13.49km! It is the best gun range of the whole Tier III and it will even be able to outgun most Tier IV ships.
Put a captain with AFT skill on it and you’ll spam incendiary shells from very far. (16.88km. Wow.)
Secondary armament:
A double 127mm battery doesn’t sound that good, but it comes with a comfy 3.5km range (4.2 with AFT skill). Even with 10 rpm, raw damage will always lack so it will mostly be used to repel DDs.
Silly thing: the battery is located at the stern of the ship, and cannot shoot at targets located at the bow.
Accuracy unknown for now, but should be good at least at close range.

Here again, the same armament as on the Tenryu, so these are powerful (24.8 alpha) with a good range (7km). But instead of two triple-launchers able to cover both sides of the ship, the Katori has one double launcher on each side, which drastically reduces the strength of its salvos. Only two torps per salvo with a detection range of 1.2km make them much easier to avoid. But if one hits, it will still hurt badly.
The only advantages of the Katori over the Tenryu is its torpedo arc, which is very wide and allows to launch them without having to turn the whole ship in a super-obvious torp attempt. You can also switch easily between your two torp sets by dodging.
DPS isn’t disclosed in the link, but if it follows the same logic as the others ships, it should have:
-6 DPS (=30 dmgs every 5 sec) at 5km range for the dual 127mm (6km with AFT).
It should theorically (/!\RNG) take 35s to take down one of the bombers of a Tier IV Hosho. Rather weak.
Main use will be to stack up with others ships’ basic AA fire and deal damage over the long term.
-24 DPS at 3km range for the 25mm guns (3.6km with AFT).
Combined to the 6 dps of the 127mm, the resulting 30 dps is enough to rekt one bomber per 7.3s on average.
Here, we begin to talk.
AA is practically non-existent on Tier III ships, so this one will come handy when the ship will be thrown against carriers into Tier IV and maybe V matches. Most opponents shouldn’t expect a Tier 3 to be able to threat their plane, so you could suprise (and annoy) them a bit.
The good range could be used to provide some cover to nearby friendly ships and division mates.
Useless feature when top Tier.
Uuuuuugh. 18 knots, the same as Aurora and Diana. Even Battleships will catch you up.
Turning radius is very small, but rudder shift time is way too long for a cruiser.
Quite dispappointing. You will be able to invisi-shoot targets, but with AFT skill and not as much as you could expect.
Planes will only spot it right before to enter in its AA radius (at the same moment if AFT skill is active). Surprise!
Probable gameplay:
You have the hull points, but you don’t have the speed or armor to escape or take punishment. Stay as far as possible from the frontline (like you had a choice. lol) and spam HE at enemy BBs while staying out of their range. As they are spotted early in game and their Damage Control Party has a long cooldown, setting them multiple times on fire once they used it will be very rewarding. Just let them burn quietly. 😉
Torpedoes have a limited role here, as your speed won’t allow you to use them early in the battle. They will find their use in the late-game, when anything attempts to close the distance with you.
In Tier IV-V matches, stay near friendly BBs. They will attract fire for you while in exchange of your AA cover.
Worth it?
Well.. We don’t even know if it will be in the tech tree, bundled or only obtainable through missions, but let’s consider for now that it will be on regular sales without anything special.
If you can deal with a super slow ship, it can be a good platform to train your IJN CL captain. I hope it will have a Preferential MM (so TIV max), as it would definitely be a plus for the ship.
Moreover, it would make it the perfect ship to play in division with a duo of Auroras, as they share the same speed and range abilities, but this one exchanging some firepower for adding some AA and torps to the mix. All must focus on the same targets for insane fire chances.
But always keep in mind 2250 golds for a Tier 3 is expensive compared to the Murmansk’s 3000 golds (for a Tier V) and pure robbery compared to the price of a Tier 3-5 tank. I’ll probably wait -30% sales to come one day.