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World of Warships Final Review: Japanese Tier VII Premium Cruiser Maya

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Ladies, Gentlemen, Weebs, the special sister is finally here in her real form and not some crappy copy-paste of Atago for a collab. The Japanese tier VII cruiser Maya will be available starting on Friday 29th in the Armory for 8 800 doubloons or in the Premium shop for 28,94€ for the most basic package.

Is she worth it? How is she performing compared to Myoko? Here is my opinion on the subject.

Historical background

Maya was the 3rd ship of the Takao-class of heavy cruisers from the Imperial Japanese Navy. The ship was laid down in December 1928, launched in November 1930, and commissioned in June 1932. Alongside her sisters Takao, Atago, and Choukai, she was one of the most modern cruisers of the Japanese Navy.

The ship spent most of her early career in training as part of the IJN 2nd fleet. During this time, it was discovered that the Takao-class was suffering from stability and seaworthiness issues due to their top-heavy design. While Takao and Atago were rebuilt to fix these issues, Maya and Choukai were deployed in 1937 as part of the Second Sino-Japanese War. As such, the ships weren’t rebuilt as extensively.

Later on, the ship would take an active part in the Second World War. She was providing fire support during the Invasion of the Northern Philippines. She was also deployed in the Dutch East Indies and took part in the sinking of HMS Stronghold, USS Pillsbury, and USS Asheville.
In April 1942, Maya was part of the fleet in charge of pursuing Task Force 16.2 led by Admiral William F. Halsey after the Doolittle Raid but failed to establish contact with them.

From August 1942, Maya would take part in the Battle of Guadalcanal and would be part of the operation that saw the sinking of the USS Hornet. She would later be damaged by a dive bomber from the USS Enterprise that crashed on the ship. The fire that broke out forced the crew to jettison the torpedoes to avoid an explosion. She was brought back to Yokosuka for repairs in January 1943 and in March, Maya was back to business for the Battle of Komandorski Islands against US cruisers and destroyers with both sides being damaged in the engagement.

With the ever-growing threat of enemy carriers, Maya would undergo in early 1944 a conversion into an anti-aircraft cruiser. Her 3rd main battery turret was removed as well as her aircraft hangar in favor of a whole lot of 25 mm AA guns in single and triple mounts, 13.2 mm machine guns and six twin 127 mm dual-purpose secondaries.

She would put a new anti-air armament to good use during the Battle of the Philippine Sea during which her combat group was stormed by aircraft from the USS Bunker Hill, Monterey, and Cabot.

Finally, it is during the Battle of Leyte Gulf that her story would end. While escorting the battleships Yamato, Musashi, and Nagato alongside her sisterships Takao, Atago, and Choukai, the group was attacked by the submarines USS Darter and USS Dace. Darter scored four torpedo hits on Atago that quickly sank and Takao was heavily damaged by two more. Maya was misidentified as a Kongou-class battleship and was hit four times by USS Dace. The ship sank in 5 minutes taking 336 crewmen with her.

In World of Warships, we are getting Maya as she was at the time of her sinking. WG decided to not give her the 13.2 mm machine guns but honestly… these would have been as useful as swearing at incoming planes. She has the usual traits of Japanese heavy cruisers but is also equipped with a Main Battery Reload booster and even comes with a Repair Party.

Ship’s preview

Ship’s commemorative flag

The Good and the Bad

The Good

  • IJN cruiser dispersion
  • HE shells with high alpha damage and fire chances
  • Torpedoes with high damage and flooding chances
  • Fast torpedoes
  • 2nd Highest HP pool among tier VII cruisers
  • High top speed of 35.5 knots
  • 29 mm deck
  • Access to the Repair Party consumable
  • Access to the Main Battery Reload Booster consumable

The Bad

  • Horrendous damage output
  • Very long main battery reload
  • Torpedoes with only 8 km range
  • Fragile rudder
  • Thinly protected turrets
  • Much worse rudder shift than Myoko
  • Exposed citadel and can easily get demolished

The camouflages

The permanent camouflage of the Maya provides the classic bonuses for tier VII ships:

  • -3% to surface detectability range
  • +4% to maximum dispersion of shells fired by the enemy at your ship
  • -10% to the cost of ship’s post-battle service
  • +50% to experience earned in the battle

There is also the Japanese Lacquer camouflage giving the same bonus (and that is pretty much the only reason why you would want Maya).

Modules

Hull
Engine
Gun Fire Control System
Main battery
Torpedoes

icon_module_Hull_installed

Maya

icon_module_Engine_installed

Propulsion: 130 000 HP

icon_module_Suo_installed

‎‎Type7 mod. 1

icon_module_Artillery_installed

203 mm/50 3rd Year Type No.2 in a Model E turret

icon_module_Torpedoes_installed

Type93 mod. 1

General Characteristics and Playstyle

Tier VII
Health 39 200 HP
Torpedo Damage Reduction 19 %
Displacement 15 810 tons
Dimensions
Overall length 203.76 m
Beam 20.74 m
Overall height (keel to the highest point on the ship) 26.32 m
Freeboard 4.51 m
Main Armament
Maximum Firing Range 15.280 km
203 mm/50 3rd Year Type No.2 in a Model E turret 4 x 2 203 mm
Secondary Armament
Maximum Firing Range 5.600 km
127 mm/40 Type 89 on a Model A1 mount
6 x 2 127 mm
Torpedo Armament
Maximum Firing Range 8.000 km
610 mm Quad
4 x 4 610 mm
Maximum speed 35.5 knots
Turning Circle Radius 780 m
Rudder Shift Time 10.1 s
Surface Detectability 12.78 km
Air Detectability 7.16 km
Detectability After Firing Main Guns in Smoke 7.32 km
Consumables
Slot 1
Slot 2
Slot 3
Slot 4
Slot 5
Damage Control Party
consumable_PCY009_CrashCrewPremiumWork time: 5 s
Cooldown: 60 s
Defensive AA Fire

Number of charges: 3
Work time: 40 s
Cooldown: 80 s
Damage from continuous DPS: +50%
Damage from flak explosions: +300%
Fighter
Number of charges: 3
Work time: 60 s
Cooldown: 90 s
Number of fighters: 3
Patrol radius: 3.0 km
Repair Party
Number of charges: 2
Work time: 28 s
Cooldown: 80 s
HP regeneration speed: +0.5%/s
Casemate damage regeneration: 50%
Citadel damage regeneration: 33%
Main Battery Reload Booster
Number of charges: 2
Work time: 15 s
Cooldown: 60 s
Effect: -50% Main battery reload time
Hydroacoustic Search
consumable_PCY016_SonarSearchPremiumNumber of charges: 3
Work time: 100 s
Cooldown: 120 s
Torpedo spotting range: 3.5 km
Ship spotting range: 5.0 km

When it comes to the playstyle, Maya isn’t trying to reinvent the wheel. She presents the same playstyle as the rest of the Japanese heavy cruisers. Roam around, be sneaky, farm stuff with HE, etc. The only real difference from the rest is that Maya is equipped with a Main Battery Reload Booster consumable. This booster will allow her to capitalize on enemies’ mistakes like destroyers getting spotted in close proximity, battleships using their Damage Control Party too early, and such.

Also, compared to Myoko, her direct competitor, she has a Repair Party consumable that makes her the most enduring tier VII cruiser after Toulon. The problem is that, while on paper, she is able to tank more than others, her actual impact on getting the W is terrible. The reason is simple, her damage output is atrocious.

No replay this time because I just couldn’t bring myself to play this ship again. As much as the initial version was nice, Maya, as she is now, is trash and a big downgrade to Myoko generally speaking.

Main Armament

4 x 2 203 mm/50 3rd Year Type No.2 in a Model E turret
 Maximum Firing Range 15.280 km
 Reloading Time 16.5 s
180 Degree Turn Time 30.0 s
Optimal firing angles at the front 31°
Optimal firing angles at the rear 30°
Sigma 2.00 sigma
Maximum Dispersion 130 m
Shells
Type of Projectile  HE – 203 mm HE Type0
Alpha Damage 3 000
Penetration capacity  34 mm
Explosion size 0.84
Fire chance 17 %
Projectile Speed 840 m/s
Air Drag 0.337
Projectile Mass 125.8 kg
Type of Projectile AP – 203 mm AP Type91
Alpha Damage 4 700
Projectile Speed 840 m/s
Air Drag 0.337
Projectile Mass 125.8 kg
Projectile Krupp 2 468
Projectile Detonator 0.033 s
Detonator threshold 34 mm
Ricochet Angles 45° – 60°

The firepower of Maya is terribly disappointing and well behind that of the other tier VII cruisers.

To begin with, Maya only has eight guns compared to Myoko with ten. On top of that, her reload is worse with 16.5s (even Atago has 16s) and she has lower damage per hit for the HE. You would think that it would be compensated by the main battery reload booster and, boy, would you be wrong. With only up to three charges of booster and each lasting for 15 seconds, you will just get one or at best two extra salvos per usage. While it will be nice to punish destroyers, capitalize on a battleship using its damage control party or catch a cruiser broadside with the AP, overall, it’s absolutely not enough. Every single game I played after the nerfs, I was just thinking about all the extra impact I could have had with another tier VII cruiser.

In one word like in a hundred, the firepower of this ship is just non-existent.

Secondary Armament

6 x 2 127 mm/40 Type 89 on a Model A1 mount
Maximum Firing Range 5.600 km
Reloading Time 5.0 s
Sigma 1.0 sigma
Shells
Type of Projectile HE – 127 mm HE Type0
Alpha Damage 2 100
HE penetration 21 mm
Explosion Size 0.41
Chance to Cause Fire 8 %
Projectile Speed 725 m/s
Air Drag 0.34
Projectile Mass 23.45 kg

Decoration/10.

Torpedo Armament

4 x 4 610 mm Quad
Type90 mod. 3
Reloading Time 120 s
Maximum Distance 8.000 km
Firing angles at the Front 37° for one launcher
78° for both launchers
Firing angles at the Rear 37° for one launcher
74° for both launchers
Damage 20 967
Flooding Chance 355%
Speed 76 knots
Surface Detectability 2.5 km

The torpedoes of Maya are most of the time useless but definitely a strong tool when going in close combat or ambushing stuff from behind islands.

Because of their short firing range and high speed, you can’t properly use them on enemies when kiting away unlike on the Myoko with her 10 km torpedoes. You will use them when attacking a ship from around an island or obviously in close-quarter engagement. At this point, because of the high damage per hit, even against battleships, you will only need a few hits to get rid of your target. This is especially true when dealing with ships of the same tier or lower.

Obviously, in high-tier battles, it will be a lot more difficult to get these torpedoes in action because the ship is far more likely to get demolished in the process. Games also tend to be more passive and you don’t have the concealment of the Atago to sneak around.

Anti-air Armament

6 x 2 127 mm/40 Type 89 on a Model A1 mount
Sector range 0.1 km – 5.8 km
Hit chance 90 %
Sector’s damage 24
Sector’s damage frequency 0.29 s
Sector’s damage per second 84
Flak clouds number 3
Flak cloud damage 1 330
27 x 1 25 mm/60 Type 96 on a single mount
13 x 3 25 mm/60 Type 96 on a triple mount
Sector range 0.1 km – 2.5 km
Hit chance 85 %
Sector’s damage 62
Sector’s damage frequency 0.29 s
Sector’s damage per second 217

The anti-air of Maya, even though she is in her late-career configuration, is quite bad. Fletcher for example already has better anti-air. Soooooo… yeah… so much for the heavy AA armament. That’s just the Japanese 25 mm anti-air armament for you.

Even against tier VI carriers, Maya won’t be safe with that combined low DPS and low number of flaks.

The Armor

The armor of Maya is the same as that of Atago in terms of layout but at the same time, it is worse. While Atago has a 41 mm deck to protect her against HE from cruisers and AP shells from high-tier battleships, Maya only has a 29 mm deck. While it is enough against some light cruisers’ HE and against AP shells of a caliber of 410 mm or smaller, everything above will be able to overmatch it and heavy cruisers will penetrate it without issue.

Also, just like Atago, Maya has a fairly fragile rudder.

External armor protection:

Front and rear armor protection of the middle section:

Citadel armor protection:

Turrets armor protection:

Final Opinion

Weeeeeell… Unless you are a massive fan of the Atago-class cruisers or the IJN Navy as a whole, I really cannot recommend Maya. While she is durable compared to other tier VII cruisers, her game impact is laughably low due to the poor damage output.

It really is an Atago brought to a lower tier and with both knee caps busted with a rocket-propelled sledgehammer.

Recommended Build

For the Maya, I recommend the following commander build and upgrades:

This concludes my review of the Maya. Thank you for reading this article!

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Have a good one and see you soon!

Also if you are new to the game or want to get back to it, feel free to use my Recruiting Station code for free goodies such as Premium ships, premium time, and more: https://warships.net/yuzorah

Have a good one and see you soon!

4 thoughts on “World of Warships Final Review: Japanese Tier VII Premium Cruiser Maya

  1. At least she’ll look pretty in port with that lacquer camouflage…

  2. As for her torpedoes, in the game she still carries the pre Long Lancers (Type 90 instead of type 93).
    According to several sources the IJN CAs (except Aoba and Furutaka cl***es) were re-equipped with Type 93 Long Lancers during the course of war, but I will have to check (La Croix/Well’s book about IJN cruisers should help here).
    I am almost sure that Chokai and Maya were euipped with Type 90s in late 1941, but as her number of torpedo tubes was changed from 4×2 to 4×4 during her conversion it would make no sense to ***ume that she kept her Type 90 torpedoes (which in fact were the predecessor of the famous Type 93).

  3. According to La Croix / Well (Japanese Cruiser of the Pacific War, for me the refernce book), p.329, the authors state that during her modification 1943/1944 Maya’s topedo armament was changed from 4×2 tubes to 4×4 tubes. With this, the ship received Type 93 torpedoes (Long Lancers), so she no longer then carried tho older Type 90 torpedoes.

  4. Maybe it is due to game balance reasons that she has the Type 90 rather than the Type 93?

Comments are closed.