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World of Warships Supertest: British Tier IX Battleship Duncan

7 min read

Historical background

So… it’s time to look at high-tier British battlecruisers and it’s also time to empty my local shop’s supply of bleach to wash my eyes. Good God, are Duncan and St. Vincent ugly. I don’t know if it’s the British who wanted to scare the enemy to death or if their sense of aesthetics died during the early 1920s but these things are making me cry blood.

Duncan is based on the G3 design of battlecruisers from the Royal Navy. This design was made as part of an answer to the expansion programs made by the United States and Japan. One of the main criteria of the design was that it would match the 32 knots estimated speed of the American Lexington-class battlecruisers. Another problem was that the design had to be able to use existing dockyards.

Out of the various proposals, G3 was the one selected as it presented a well-optimized design; saving weight so that the desirable speed could be achieved while also keeping a compact hull. As such, the ships were meant to be armed with nine 16.5-inch (419 mm) guns in three triple turrets; two superfiring at the front and the third one located between the front superstructure and the funnels. The design was accepted at the end of 1920 with four ships ordered. However, changes were made when plans were finalized in 1921. The main battery caliber was brought down to 16-inch guns (406 mm) and the design’s engine power was also brought down from 180 000 horsepower to 160 000.

In the end, the Washington Naval Treaty of 1922 saved everyone’s eyes as G3 had to be canceled due to the limitation on the allowed tonnage of ships that could not exceed 35 000 tons. All of this wasn’t for nothing though as some of the design choices of G3 were later implemented on the Nelson-class battleships.

If you want to learn more about the G3 design as well as the other battlecruisers designs from the Royal Navy, here is a video from Drachinifel covering them:

Ship’s preview

Ship’s camouflage

For the classic reminder, this is a ship in testing, anything can change so don’t look at her like she would already be released.

Modules

Hull
Engine
Gun Fire Control System
Main battery
Torpedoes

icon_module_Hull_installed

Duncan (A)

icon_module_Engine_installed

Propulsion: 160 000 HP

icon_module_Suo_installed

Mk IX mod. 1

icon_module_Artillery_installed

419 mm/45 Mk.I on a Mk.I mount

icon_module_Torpedoes_installed

‎622 mm Mk I

icon_module_Hull_installed

Duncan (B)

icon_module_Suo_installed

Mk IX mod. 2

Stock Ship

General Characteristics

Tier IX
Health 66 900 HP
Torpedo Damage Reduction 23 %
Displacement 47 438 tons
Dimensions
Overall length 262.74 m
Beam 32.29 m
Overall height (keel to the highest point on the ship) 30.7 m
Freeboard 5.42 m
Main Armament
Maximum Firing Range 17.220 km
419 mm/45 Mk.I on a Mk.I mount 3 x 3 419 mm
Secondary Armament
Maximum Firing Range 6.950 km
152 mm/50 BL Mk.XXII on a Mk.XVIII mount
113 mm/45 QF Mk.I/III on an RP10 Mark II BD mount
6 x 2 152 mm
8 x 2 113 mm
Torpedo Armament
Maximum Firing Range 10.000 km
622 mm PR Mk II
2 x 1 622 mm
Maximum speed 32.0 knots
Turning Circle Radius 910 m
Rudder Shift Time 23.0 s
Surface Detectability 15.34 km
Air Detectability 11.55 km
Detectability After Firing Main Guns in Smoke 15.19 km

Main Armament

3 x 3 419 mm/45 Mk.I on a Mk.I mount
 Maximum Firing Range 17.220 km
 Reloading Time 30.0 s
180 Degree Turn Time 30.0 s
Optimal firing angles at the front 30°
Optimal firing angles at the rear 30°
Sigma 1.5 sigma
Maximum Dispersion 193 m
Shells
Type of Projectile  HE – 419 mm HE Mk Ia
Alpha Damage 6 150
Penetration capacity  70 mm
Explosion size 2.73
Fire chance 47 %
Projectile Speed 792 m/s
Air Drag 0.31
Projectile Mass 995.0 kg
Type of Projectile AP – 419 mm AP Mk IIa
Alpha Damage 13 050
Projectile Speed 747 m/s
Air Drag 0.235
Projectile Mass 1 157.0 kg
Projectile Krupp 2 548
Projectile Detonator 0.015 s
Detonator threshold 70 mm
Ricochet Angles 45° – 60°

Secondary Armament

6 x 2 152 mm/50 BL Mk.XXII on a Mk.XVIII mount
Maximum Firing Range 6.950 km
Reloading Time 12.0 s
Sigma 1.0 sigma
Shells
Type of Projectile HE – 152 mm HE Mk V
Alpha Damage 2 150
HE penetration 25 mm
Explosion Size 0.54
Chance to Cause Fire 9 %
Projectile Speed 884 m/s
Air Drag 0.362
Projectile Mass 50.8 kg
8 x 2 113 mm/45 QF Mk.I/III on an RP10 Mark II BD mount
Maximum Firing Range 6.950 km
Reloading Time 5.0 s
Sigma 1.0 sigma
Shells
Type of Projectile HE – 113 mm HE 5crh
Alpha Damage 1 700
HE penetration 19 mm
Explosion Size 0.38
Chance to Cause Fire 8 %
Projectile Speed 746 m/s
Air Drag 0.329
Projectile Mass 24.95 kg

Torpedo Armament

2 x 1 622 mm PR Mk II
622 mm Mk I
Reloading Time 55 s
Maximum Distance 10.000 km
Optimal firing angles 71°-91°
Damage 21 067
Flooding Chance 355%
Speed 67 knots
Surface Detectability 1.7 km

Anti-air Armament

8 x 2 113 mm/45 QF Mk.I/III on an RP10 Mark II BD mount
Sector range 0.1 km – 5.8 km
Hit chance 75 %
Sector’s damage 24
Sector’s damage frequency 0.29 s
Sector’s damage per second 81
Flak clouds number 4
Flak cloud damage 1 260
4 x 4 40 mm/39 Vickers QF Mk.VIII on a Mk.VII mount
10 x 2 40 mm/56 OQF Mk.1/2 on a Mk.IV mount
Sector range 0.1 km – 3.5 km
Hit chance 75 %
Sector’s damage 134
Sector’s damage frequency 0.29 s
Sector’s damage per second 469
10 x 1 20 mm Oerlikon Mk.I on a Mk.IIA mount
Sector range 0.1 km – 2.0 km
Hit chance 70 %
Sector’s damage 21
Sector’s damage frequency 0.29 s
Sector’s damage per second 74

Consumables

Slot 1
Slot 2
Slot 3
Slot 4
Damage Control Party
consumable_PCY009_CrashCrewPremiumWork time: 15 s
Cooldown: 80 s
Repair Party
Number of charges: 3
Work time: 20 s
Cooldown: 80 s
HP regeneration speed: +2.0%/s
Casemate damage regeneration: 50%
Citadel damage regeneration: 10%
Engine Boost
Number of charges: 3
Work time: 120 s
Cooldown: 120 s
Speed bonus: +8%
Defensive AA Fire

Number of charges: 3
Work time: 40 s
Cooldown: 80 s
Damage from continuous DPS: +50%
Damage from flak explosions: +300%

Fully Upgraded Ship

General Characteristics

Tier IX
Health 75 200 HP
Torpedo Damage Reduction 23 %
Displacement 54 390 tons
Dimensions
Overall length 262.74 m
Beam 32.29 m
Overall height (keel to the highest point on the ship) 30.7 m
Freeboard 5.42 m
Main Armament
Maximum Firing Range 18.942 km
419 mm/45 Mk.I on a Mk.I mount 3 x 3 419 mm
Secondary Armament
Maximum Firing Range 6.950 km
152 mm/50 BL Mk.XXII on a Mk.XVIII mount
113 mm/45 QF Mk.I/III on an RP10 Mark II BD mount
6 x 2 152 mm
8 x 2 113 mm
Torpedo Armament
Maximum Firing Range 10.000 km
622 mm PR Mk II
2 x 1 622 mm
Maximum speed 32.0 knots
Turning Circle Radius 910 m
Rudder Shift Time 16.4 s
Surface Detectability 15.34 km
Air Detectability 11.55 km
Detectability After Firing Main Guns in Smoke 15.19 km

Main Armament

3 x 3 419 mm/45 Mk.I on a Mk.I mount
 Maximum Firing Range 18.942 km
 Reloading Time 30.0 s
180 Degree Turn Time 30.0 s
Optimal firing angles at the front 30°
Optimal firing angles at the rear 30°
Sigma 1.5 sigma
Maximum Dispersion 208 m
Shells
Type of Projectile  HE – 419 mm HE Mk Ia
Alpha Damage 6 150
Penetration capacity  70 mm
Explosion size 2.73
Fire chance 47 %
Projectile Speed 792 m/s
Air Drag 0.31
Projectile Mass 995.0 kg
Type of Projectile AP – 419 mm AP Mk IIa
Alpha Damage 13 050
Projectile Speed 747 m/s
Air Drag 0.235
Projectile Mass 1 157.0 kg
Projectile Krupp 2 548
Projectile Detonator 0.015 s
Detonator threshold 70 mm
Ricochet Angles 45° – 60°

Secondary Armament

6 x 2 152 mm/50 BL Mk.XXII on a Mk.XVIII mount
Maximum Firing Range 6.950 km
Reloading Time 12.0 s
Sigma 1.0 sigma
Shells
Type of Projectile HE – 152 mm HE Mk V
Alpha Damage 2 150
HE penetration 25 mm
Explosion Size 0.54
Chance to Cause Fire 9 %
Projectile Speed 884 m/s
Air Drag 0.362
Projectile Mass 50.8 kg
8 x 2 113 mm/45 QF Mk.I/III on an RP10 Mark II BD mount
Maximum Firing Range 6.950 km
Reloading Time 5.0 s
Sigma 1.0 sigma
Shells
Type of Projectile HE – 113 mm HE 5crh
Alpha Damage 1 700
HE penetration 19 mm
Explosion Size 0.38
Chance to Cause Fire 8 %
Projectile Speed 746 m/s
Air Drag 0.329
Projectile Mass 24.95 kg

Torpedo Armament

2 x 1 622 mm PR Mk II
622 mm Mk I
Reloading Time 55 s
Maximum Distance 10.000 km
Optimal firing angles 71°-91°
Damage 21 067
Flooding Chance 355%
Speed 67 knots
Surface Detectability 1.7 km

Anti-air Armament

6 x 2 113 mm/45 QF Mk.I/III on an RP10 Mark II BD mount
Sector range 0.1 km – 5.8 km
Hit chance 75 %
Sector’s damage 23
Sector’s damage frequency 0.29 s
Sector’s damage per second 81
Flak clouds number 4
Flak cloud damage 1 260
4 x 8 40 mm/39 Vickers QF Mk.VIII on a Mk.VI mount
10 x 2 40 mm/56 OQF Mk.1/2 on a Mk.IV mount
Sector range 0.1 km – 3.5 km
Hit chance 75 %
Sector’s damage 144
Sector’s damage frequency 0.29 s
Sector’s damage per second 504
18 x 1 20 mm Oerlikon Mk.I on a Mk.IIA mount
10 x 2 20 mm Oerlikon Mk.I on a Mk.IIA mount
Sector range 0.1 km – 2.0 km
Hit chance 70 %
Sector’s damage 71
Sector’s damage frequency 0.29 s
Sector’s damage per second 249

Consumables

Slot 1
Slot 2
Slot 3
Slot 4
Damage Control Party
consumable_PCY009_CrashCrewPremiumWork time: 15 s
Cooldown: 80 s
Repair Party
Number of charges: 3
Work time: 20 s
Cooldown: 80 s
HP regeneration speed: +2.0%/s
Casemate damage regeneration: 50%
Citadel damage regeneration: 10%
Engine Boost
Number of charges: 3
Work time: 120 s
Cooldown: 120 s
Speed bonus: +8%
Defensive AA Fire

Number of charges: 3
Work time: 40 s
Cooldown: 80 s
Damage from continuous DPS: +50%
Damage from flak explosions: +300%

The Armor

External armor protection:

Front and rear armor protection of the middle section:

Armored deck under the funnels:

Citadel armor protection:

Turrets armor protection:

Hidden armor protection inside the bow and stern:

Personal Opinion

Overall, Duncan looks quite good but is far from being without flaws. In terms of main battery, there is definitely nothing to complain about as she gets the same AP as Lion with short-fuse and also the battlecruiser dispersion. The fact that she doesn’t get the thermo-nuclear HE is also particularly appreciable as the last thing we need is a line of Thunderer. The firing range is limited but at least the ship is fast and can close the distance easily thanks to the good concealment. She also gets great firing angles that will allow the ship to remain well angled and not exposed the squishy citadel.

Talking about the citadel, the armor on this ship will forgive absolutely nothing. The citadel sits well above the waterline and it’s particularly thin behind the 3rd turret. Also, the front and rear athwartships can easily be nailed by enemy battleships that can overmatch the 25 mm bow and stern.
Long story short, may it be angled or broadside, chances are that this ship will get clapped hard.

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