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Premium Ship Review: Yahagi


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HolycowwhatisYahagiMouseandisitanygoodnowthatitisfinallyout?
Well, I'm glad you asked.  Yahagi is a typical Japanese premium.  You may begin groaning now.

What Good About Her:  Torpedoes, mostly.  Yahagi has two center line mounted, quadruple torpedo launchers.  These torpedoes deal 17,233 damage each with a 60 knot top speed and a 12km range.
What's Bad About Her:  Torpedoes, mostly.  Yahagi's torpedo launchers have horrible firing arcs, a 120 second reload timer and a 1.6km detection range.  This gives enemies about 10 seconds worth of reaction time.

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Yubari players should find this familiar.

Is that All?  No, let's break it down by section:

Firepower

I've already gone over her torpedoes, so let's talk about her guns.  Yahagi has only six of them and they're pretty bad, even with their 14.9km range.  With a nine second reload, you're not winning any DPM races even with her improved HE damage.  Furthermore, her AP penetration is the worst at her tier, behind Omaha and Marblehead.  She has less than 100mm worth of AP penetration at 7km and with terrible ballistics to match.  If you're familiar with Royal Navy 152mm gun ballistics, Yahagi's are slightly more floaty than those.  She has some 76mm secondaries, but these have only 12mm worth of penetration so...

Durability

Yahagi has a modest hit point pool, slightly on the small side.  Her cardinal sin, however, is her 60mm citadel belt which sits over the waterline for the length of the ship between her two masts.  Her extremities are also only 13mm thick, so she can be overmatched by 203mm AP shells, so watch yourself.

Agility

This is admittedly pretty good.  Yahagi has some long legs with a 35 knot top speed and great rudder shift time.  Her turning radius is on the chubtacular side at 690m, which in turn hurts her rotation rate.  Still, that quick rudder shift is nice and that top speed is nicer.  On top of this, she has access to the Engine Boost consumable, providing an extra 8% speed for 120s.  Slap on the Sierra Mike signal and activate this consumable and Yahagi will do almost 40 knots. Speed solves a lot of problems in World of Warships, I ain't gonna lie, so this is pretty nice to have.

Anti Aircraft Firepower

The big one until patch 0.8.9 rolls around and applies a big ol' kick to the junk to Hosho.  Yahagi's personal AA defense is pretty good, but only for personal use.  It's too short ranged to lend support to anyone, but it has enough volume of fire at those ranges to bruise a squadron, not stop it outright.  She has a fighter consumable, first of all, so that will make some CV players a little gun shy.  Keep in mind, there's only 2 fighters in the air group, so it's not like it's going to gut the incoming squadron all by itself.  She does not have access to Defensive AA Fire.

Refrigerator

She's pretty good here..  She has access to Hydroacoustic Search and her aforementioned Catapult Fighter to help with detection, so that's good.  Her surface detection is 11.34km base, getting down to 9.9km with Concealment Expert on your commander and her camouflage.  This isn't great, but it's not bad.  I give it a pass.

Overall Impressions

She's a Japanese Omaha with worse guns, more speed and better torpedoes.  Her fragility will let you down in all sorts of short-lived, hilarious ways.  But that speed and those fish are going to make her pretty good in the hands of an expert player.  Her fire chance isn't terrible either, so she's going to pretty competitive in the harassment department.  Just watch out for Royal Navy battleship HE shells, they will ruin your day even if they don't hit you.  They break everything

Overall, if I had to play a six gun Japanese cruiser, I'd much rather have Furutaka, but that's because Furutaka is bloody amazing.  Yahagi is not.  Yahagi is very not amazing. 

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