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The Economics of Signals


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In every match, I see most of the ships either rocking no signals or only a few signals. I did a bit of calculation and was reminded of the reason for this. Here are the signals I have on my Massachusetts and their individual cost:

IY 96k
JYB 24k
VL 193k
IX 114k
MYS 48k
NES 96k
SM 120k
ID 120k
total: 810k

OK, here's a match where I did reasonably well and came in at the top of the winning team. Note that even with extra economic boosters and over a million credits in gross earnings, without a Premium account I'm still shy almost 200,000 credits if I factor in the cost of previously-purchased signals.

shot-24-01-29-09-31-48-0642.jpg

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  • Snargfargle changed the title to The Economics of Signals
25 minutes ago, Snargfargle said:

The Economics of Signals
By Snargfargle

 

In every match, I see most of the ships either rocking no signals or only a few signals. I did a bit of calculation and was reminded of the reason for this. Here are the signals I have on my Massachusetts and their individual cost:

IY 96k
JYB 24k
VL 193k
IX 114k
MYS 48k
NES 96k
SM 120k
ID 120k
total: 810k

OK, here's a match where I did reasonably well and came in at the top of the winning team. Note that even with extra economic boosters and over a million credits in gross earnings, without a Premium account I'm still shy almost 200,000 credits if I factor in the cost of previously-purchased signals.

shot-24-01-29-09-31-48-0642.jpg

Signal flags have a cost, and there are times when I don't bother to hoist them because the benefits are outweighed by the cost.

For Co-op and random battles? 
Well those aren't what I'd call 'special occasions', so I might only hoist Sierra-Mike speed flags on BB's that have a top speed of less than 30 knots.
That's a personal whim, in an effort to get the ships close to the action sooner and help them maneuver 'smartly'.

Most of the time I just let signals accumulate in my inventory and only hoist them when I'm particularly motivated or in a very competitive situation.

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Since I run DDs mostly, I always load a non-det signal and buy them in bulk from the armoury. I noticed that detonations were happening more often in randoms and it can be avoided - so it must be avoided. Sometimes I run speed and smoke signals depending on the ship.

For ranked, on a DD I was running up to 8 signals. But the truth is I struggle in ranked still.

For brawls, I usually do not run any signals. Just doesn't seem worth it and the matches are over fairly quickly. 

 

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I managed to always wear the necessary signals in any PvP mode as a F2P without ever directly purchasing any of them. 

The trick is temperance... you can't play more matches than what it is sustainable to play!

You have a fixed, reliable stream of free signals that can be aquired through BP and the daily signal containers (if you value performance over coal). Coupled with a variable amount from the events you should be getting enough to comfortably sustain about 80-100 PvP matches/month. Btw, that's the average amount of matches you need to play to complete almost every event/grind the game throws at you...

Probably some fine tunning will be needed to manage your signals as the distribution of what you get is fairly uneven, so it helps to have a sizeable base stock of all the different signals. You'll need to adjust your play choices to fit your signal pool, for example when you run low on healing signals you might want to play DDs/Subs/CVs that don't use healing. 

Some signals are more widely used, like the speed signal. Those signals are always in high demand so you'll want to use your signal discount coupons to stock on those whenever possible. Always try to take advantage of the discount coupons for "speed" and "healing" signals, those 2 are the most critical and generaly used among all the signals. 

 

 

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I always run fire and heal flags since I'm a BB and some cruiser kind of player. I spend coal on em, and always choose coal for rewards boxes. Its worked fine for me, left me with enough coal for Lutjens, a couple ships, unique upgrades etc along with those flags. 

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I use appropriate economic signal flags on most every ship (either a few to max allowed flags depending on the tier & specific ship). With fewer ships on my NA account - I seem to accumulate more than I use. For my EU with more ships I tend to run out of some of the more useful signal flags where I usually just use silver credits to replace these as it's easy to increase ones silver credit balance over time (even F2P without premium time). The signals give various bonuses so I figure why not use them as desired.

Edited by Aethervox
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I use secondary flag signals for secondary missions in all modes.  I like to smoke CLs so I use the smoke flag in Brawls and Ranked.  For the most part I don't use the flags, although they seem cheap enough and I have nothing else to spend my pile of silver on.  

Edited by Captain_Rawhide
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Im running 5-9 signals every PVP game at tier 6 and above, and I run a det signal on every ship every game. Even after the Salvage Event, Im on eternal Premium Time. Not having any problem with the economy.

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I use the 50% off coal coupons in the armory any time I feel I may be getting low on any particular signal.  I have an over abundance of most signals though.  How often do players comment about getting “more crappy flags” in their SCs or Santa crates? Seems like most folks have enough.  Those credit prices in the armory are way out of line in my opinion.

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Im an DD player and always run full signals. I make plenty of credits and buy signals 100 at a time about once a month. Pretty much a personal choice, but I do give people who detonate a “Well Done” and let them know in chat that there is a flag for that.  

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2 hours ago, Pugilistic said:

Im running 5-9 signals every PVP game at tier 6 and above, and I run a det signal on every ship every game. Even after the Salvage Event, Im on eternal Premium Time. Not having any problem with the economy.

Course you've also spent over 10G's on this game.

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Coop main benefit, I don't really need to use them at all. 

 

Main usage is in Mainz/Bayard to maximize operation earnings of either silver/capt or free xp when needed. 

Bourgogne, JB, and Incomparable get a speed flag to guarantee they can keep up with the cruisers/dds in the race for damage when there is a battleship mission I need to work on. 

Kitakaze gets a det flag as that is my once a quarter RB reset, I run a blue xp booster and play it once a day 

 

When the released the hydroand smoke flags I did occasionally have to buy those for clan battles, but never have went out of my way for others that I can remember. When I log in tomorrow I'll try to get a count. 

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I never use signals in coop and a few in random . I am counting on equality as many do not use signals. In high tier randoms esp. when I use hig end boostersI use a number of signals, ranked full kit. This way I can mange the signals numbers. Buying Indian Delta with coupons for coal. Might buy a few from RB if necessary.

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Some signals are a must have on ship but some are none (unless you play clan battles and ranked)

A must have are heal signal, shorter fire signal, speed signal, detonation signal.

Now with every other you can do without, wont make that big of an impact, but those 4 really have great boost to your stats and survavibility.

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15 hours ago, Snargfargle said:

Note that even with extra economic boosters and over a million credits in gross earnings, without a Premium account I'm still shy almost 200,000 credits if I factor in the cost of previously-purchased signals.

That's how this game is wired. WG stopped granting signals for achievements for a reason.  

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I only buy speed and detonation signals from armory, the rest I don't use if not available ... but I do have about 200+ of each because I play a lot less these days but still get them from containers and such in decent ammounts ...

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2 hours ago, 100 Krakens said:

That's how this game is wired. WG stopped granting signals for achievements for a reason.  

Yeah didn't one of them say, in stream, it's because "people were farming detonation flags"

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13 minutes ago, Itwastuesday said:

Yeah didn't one of them say, in stream, it's because "people were farming detonation flags"

Since I never used the things except in Ranked (and only then if I was playing a DD), the 90 times I was detonated in in 15,125 games (0.6% detonation chance) gave me close to a thousand anti-det flags, which I still have because every time I use a few, I generally get them back from containers.

shot-24-01-30-04-37-52-0684.jpg

The main reason that they changed the way that signals were obtained was so that PVE players had a chance to get them too.

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I rarely use more than 4 signals at once, whether it's Randoms or Ranked (even less in Operations):

  • detonation on DDs and CLs
  • flooding chance on CVs and some DDs
  • healing on some BBs and cruisers
  • fire/flooding duration on some BBs and large cruisers, possibly a SS
  • fire chance on some DDs and cruisers, mostly CAs because the benefits are relatively bigger
  • secondaries on some BBs, Napoli and Graf Zeppelin
  • speed on some BBs and DDs
  • smoke duration on Italian and Commonwealth ships, mostly. Maybe SSs and support CVs, in the future?
  • ramming on SSs and some BBs
  • hydro/Def AA on...something, I guess. The impact is small because of how the consumables and the demand for them overlap.

I buy some every time the coupons renew, but only for credits. Coal? Fuggetaboutit!

Edited by tocqueville8
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3 hours ago, Snargfargle said:

The main reason that they changed the way that signals were obtained was so that PVE players had a chance to get them too.

Nope. The main reason was to make players BUY signals instead of EARNING them.
It was just another case of WG giving the finger to skilled players.  

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Outside of competitive CB/Ranked I basically do not use anything except the very occasional detonation and heal flag. And even on destroyers, unless its an open water gunboat that is prone to having a metric ton of large HE rounds splashing around it I'll usually forgo the det flag in randoms. When one's chances of being detonated are around 0.6% per match on average it isn't worth the additional expenses... especially since I can simply re-enter battle these days with the exact same ship within a minute.

Yes one does have some notable benefits from running the flags in matches. But with how quickly teams typically win or lose in randoms? I'll keep those assets for game modes where my own play has a larger impact because of less players per team.

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4 minutes ago, Wolfswetpaws said:

Well, wouldn't the "skilled" players be able to earn enough to afford the signals?  😉 

Having signals only earned by the best players was a broken system because only the best players could then afford to fly the best signals, which gave the best players even more of an advantage over the average player.

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3 minutes ago, Snargfargle said:

Having signals only earned by the best players was a broken system because only the best players could then afford to fly the best signals, which gave the best players even more of an advantage over the average player.

In the early days of my WOWs account, I wasn't the best player and I had to "buy" signals, if I wanted to use them often.
So, I was frugal and didn't buy them.
Occasionally I'd be motivated to use them, but most of the time I didn't.

Eventually I "got gud" enough to have a reasonable chance to kick my opponent's aft more than they kicked my own.
At that point, I figured that I didn't *need* to use signal-flags, most of the time.
What was more important was that I continue to hone my game-play and improve my capability to out-think my opponents and win that way.

The "percentages" of improvement weren't significant on many of the signal-flags, with the 100% anti-detonation flag being appealing only in competitive matches (in which only a portion of incoming ordnance might trigger a detonation check anway).

Some people like hoisting signal-flags.  That's fine by me.
I hoist some and don't bother with others according to my preferences, too.

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