The last ship being introduced with the update 0.8.8, here is the Puerto Rico that we could as well call Minitana or Alaska+1.
The Puerto Rico is based on the CA2-D project of battlecruiser (or Large cruiser as Alaska was called to fool the congress). This project along others would eventually lead to the Alaska-class of large cruisers.
The design was presenting the same 305 mm guns as the Alaska-class but in 4 triple turrets instead of 3. The armor was also impressive on this design and was close to those of battleships of the time.
In World of Warships, the Puerto Rico represents fairly well the design from what I could see with the exception of the secondary batteries. The CA2-D project was meant to carry twin 127mm/38 gun turrets but the Puerto Rico carries the more modern twin 127 mm/54 gun turrets that can be found on the Montana or the Ohio. Surprisingly, they didn’t give her the 76.2 mm AA guns.
The Puerto Rico presents very strong armor protection and retains the underwater citadel combined with a spaced armor that was already on the Alaska.
The bow section
The external plating of the bow is the classic 27 mm of armor that you can find on all U.S. heavy cruisers. This will allow you to bounce 381 mm AP shells and under.
Inside the bow, there is a first casemate with 38 mm of armor. Just under it, there is a nice 305 mm thick bulkhead as well as the citadel’s athwartship (surrounded in black). There is, then, the classic armor tapering of U.S. warships with the lower parts of the athwartship being 254 mm thick and then 76 mm thick.
There are also 2 229 mm thick casemates on the sides to protect the internal citadel from shells that would slip between the main belt and the athwartship.
The middle section
The deck of the Puerto Rico is 38 mm thick giving her protection to the more and more frequent capacity to overmatch 30 mm platings that battleships have in high tier. The sides are, sadly, “only” 30 mm thick so still vulnerable to overmatch from 431 mm shells and above.
The Main belt is 254 mm thick for the biggest part but there is also a small 216 mm section.
When it comes to the citadel protection, the sides are 57 mm thick. It is a way better protection than the Alaska with her 229 mm main belt and 26 mm citadel side armor. With cruisers, I would say that you can forget about scoring a citadel on this ship.
The horizontal protection is decent with a 119 mm main armor deck and 19 mm citadel deck. Now, while the armor thickness isn’t great, since the citadel is quite deep, the ship MIGHT have a good protection against AP bombs. Sadly, I can’t remember right now how I was doing against the Alaska with my Hakuryu.
The stern section
As usual, the stern is the exact same as the bow with 27 mm external plating.
Just like on the bow, there is first the 38 mm casemate and then we have the 305 mm bulkhead with the citadel’s athwartship that then tapers to 254 mm and finally 76 mm of armor deep below the waterline.
For the superstructure, we have the classic 16 mm of armor except for the conning tower with 279 mm of armor. The secondary battery turrets are protected by 64 mm of armor and their barbettes are 38 mm thick.
Frontal protection: 325 mm
Sides: 152 mm at first then 133 mm
Back: 133 mm
Roof: 127 mm
Barbette: 330 mm for the upper part and 70 mm for the lower part
Overall, these are solid turrets for a super-cruiser and the face presents a nice slope.
When comparing to the Alaska, the ship isn’t a pure improvement and reminds me a bit of the Kitakaze vs Harugumo case.
While you gain in tankiness and firepower (even though here it’s debatable because worse accuracy, worse range and longer reload), you lose in range and a lot in concealment (17.6 km vs 15.5 km detection by sea). You also have much worse maneuverability and for some reason (even though here, it’s logically a bug) a tier IX radar.
I will wait for the tests on the ship but for now, I’m not 100% convinced.