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World of Warships Supertest: U.S. Tier IX Premium Battleship Illinois

4 min read

Historical background

At the end of the Second World War, the U.S. Navy found themselves in a bit of a pickle. Out of the six planned Iowa-clas battleships, two were still under construction. In 1948, plans were made to convert the USS Kentucky, the most advanced of the two, into an Anti-Aircraft Battleship. For that purpose, the ship’s main armament would be replaced with the same 203 mm guns as the Des Moines-class, keeping the same auto-loading mechanism but in quadruple dual-purpose turrets. This main battery was also meant to be used as anti-air. Don’t ask me why it’s not the case in the game… As far as we know, three designs were proposed with this armament. F with only 2 turrets, G with 3, and H with 4.

When it comes to the secondary battery, it was composed of a whole lot of twin 127 mm/54 batteries with the number varying from one design to the other. Scheme F had twenty of them, Scheme G had sixteen, and Scheme H had fourteen. Due to the extra weight brought by that armament and to clear firing angles as much as possible, the superstructure, especially on Scheme G and H was reduced in size as much as possible. The anti-air would be completed with modern twin 76.2 mm AA mounts with either three of them for Scheme F or six of them for Scheme G and H.

Scheme F
Scheme F – Credits to Tzoli
Scheme G
Scheme G – Credits to Tzoli
Scheme H
Scheme H – Credits to Tzoli

Sadly, none of these designs ever came to be. Other designs would later be proposed to convert Kentucky into a guided missile battleship in the mid-1950s but at the end of the day, both her and Illinois were sold for scrap at the end of the 1950s.

When it comes to Illinois in World of Warships… Let’s just say that Wargaming got incredibly lazy. In the game, it literally is just an Iowa with the main battery turrets swapped for the 203 mm quadruple turrets and the 40 mm Bofors being replaced by 76.2 mm twin mounts. So… yeah, quite a massive disappointment here.

If you want to learn more about the Kentucky conversion proposals, here is a video from Drachinifel covering them:

Ship’s preview

Ship’s commemorative flag

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

icon_module_Hull_installed

Illinois

icon_module_Engine_installed

Propulsion: 212 000 hp

icon_module_Suo_installed

‎Mk9 mod. 1

icon_module_Artillery_installed

203 mm/55 RF Mk.16 in a turret

General Characteristics

TierIX
Health81 100 HP
Torpedo Damage Reduction25 %
Displacement59 331 tons
Dimensions
Overall length270.43 m
Beam32.95 m
Overall height (keel to the highest point on the ship)32.95 m
Freeboard4.6 m
Main Armament
Maximum Firing Range18.480 km
203 mm/55 RF Mk.16 in a turret3 x 4 203 mm
Secondary Armament
Maximum Firing Range6.950 km
127 mm/38 Mk.12 on a Mk.32 mount10 x 2 127 mm
Maximum speed32.5 knots
Turning Circle Radius930 m
Rudder Shift Time17.16 s
Surface Detectability15.86 km
Air Detectability11.66 km
Detectability After Firing Main Guns in Smoke10.49 km

Main Armament

3 x 4 203 mm/55 RF Mk.16 in a turret
 Maximum Firing Range18.480 km
 Reloading Time10.0 s
180 Degree Turn Time30.0 s
Optimal firing angles at the front30°
Optimal firing angles at the rear30°
Sigma1.8 sigma
Maximum Dispersion245 m
Shells
Type of Projectile HE – 203 mm HE/HC Mk25
Alpha Damage2 800
Penetration capacity 34 mm
Explosion size12.9 m
Fire chance14 %
Projectile Speed823 m/s
Air Drag0.333
Projectile Mass118.0 kg
Type of ProjectileAP – 203 mm AP Mk19
Alpha Damage5 000
Projectile Speed762 m/s
Air Drag0.356
Projectile Mass152.0 kg
Projectile Krupp2 919
Projectile Detonator0.033 s
Detonator threshold34 mm
Ricochet Angles60° – 67.5°

Secondary Armament

10 x 2 127 mm/38 Mk.12 on a Mk.32 mount
Maximum Firing Range6.950 km
Reloading Time4.0 s
Sigma1.0 sigma
Shells
Type of ProjectileHE – 127 mm HE Mk32
Alpha Damage1 800
HE penetration21 mm
Explosion Size5.7 m
Chance to Cause Fire5 %
Projectile Speed792 m/s
Air Drag0.347
Projectile Mass24.5 kg

Anti-air Armament

10 x 2 127 mm/38 Mk.12 on a Mk.32 mount
Sector firing range0.1 km – 5.8 km
Hit chance75 %
Sector’s damage48
Sector’s damage frequency0.29 s
Sector’s damage per second168
Flak clouds number8
Flak cloud damage1 610
16 x 2 76.2 mm/50 Mk.22 on a Mk.33 mount
Sector firing range0.1 km – 4.0 km
Hit chance75 %
Sector’s damage151
Sector’s damage frequency0.29 s
Sector’s damage per second529
24 x 2 20 mm Oerlikon on a Mk.24 mount
Sector firing range0.1 km – 2.0 km
Hit chance70 %
Sector’s damage80
Sector’s damage frequency0.29 s
Sector’s damage per second186

Consumables

Consumables
Slot 1
Slot 2
Damage Control Party
consumable_PCY009_CrashCrewPremiumWork time: 20 s
Cooldown: 80 s
Repair Party
Number of charges: 4
Work time: 28 s
Cooldown: 80 s
HP regeneration speed: +0.66%/s
Casemate damage regeneration: 50%
Citadel damage regeneration: 10%

The Armor

External armor protection:

Front and rear armor protection of the middle section:

Main deck:

Citadel armor protection:

Turrets armor protection:

Hidden armor protection inside the stern:

Personal Opinion

As of right now, this ship looks pretty damn promising. While she “only” has a 10s reload time on her main battery compared to Des Moines, it’s still quite an impressive firepower with that twelve-guns broadside and good firing range. Also, the fact that she has the standard U.S. battleship dispersion is well compensated by the Artillery Plotting Room Modification 2, unique to U.S. battleships.

Besides the firepower, she has the hull of an Iowa with a lower citadel and, of course, the improved Repair Party. As a cherry on top, for close-range engagements, she even gets an improved dispersion on her secondary battery.

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