- Though she’s based on a British cruiser, she has access to HE shells.
- She has a powerful torpedo armament, capable of doing nearly 62,000 damage per salvo. Torpedoes may fire individually.
- The Perth is wonderfully agile with a small turning circle of 640m and decent rudder shift time of 7.6s. Very wiggly.
- She has good concealment, starting with a 9.8km surface detection range with her camouflage.
- The Perth uses the British spotter aircraft consumable. This lasts for a full three minutes per charge as opposed to just 100s.
- Her Smoke Generator is active for 90s, generating smoke the entire time. This allows her to lay more smoke clouds than any other ship currently in the game. While the individual clouds don’t last very long, this thing poops out smoke for days and allows her to remain mobile while staying concealed.
- She cannot be used to train British Captains. The HMAS Perth is the first of the Commonwealth ships which count as a separate nation.
- She’s very squishy, with a small hit point total and insufficient armour to provide any kind of protection from large caliber (203mm+) shells from heavy cruisers or battleships, which can overmatch her bows and deck plating with their AP shells.
- The Perth does not have access to the special British AP shells. She uses normal fuses and detonators, making her AP perform more akin to standard cruiser guns. These are the same weapons as found on the HMS Belfast.
- Her HE performance is modest at best with only a 9% chance to start a fire per shell.
- Short ranged main battery at 12.8km. This makes engaging certain ship types exceedingly dangerous especially at close range.
- She is incapable of firing her main battery from concealment in open water, even when fully upgraded for stealth. She must make use of her consumables or terrain to be able to attack without being spotted.
- Her turret rotation speed is on the slow side at 7′ per second.
- The Perth has a poor AA compliment and does not get access to Defensive Fire.
The Perth shares much in common with the Leander-class, at least superficially. But the manner in which you use her guns and smoke will largely define this new premium vessel.
Options, Upgrades & Consumables
- Damage Control Party
- Hydroacoustic Search
- Spotter Aircraft or Catapult Fighter
- Smoke Generator
Module Upgrades: Four slots, standard cruiser options.
Premium Camouflage: Tier 6+ Standard. This provides 50% bonus experience gains, 3% reduction in surface detection and 4% reduction in enemy accuracy.
The Perth sits inside a cap circle in the early minutes of a match, smoke deployed and steaming ahead at 1/4 speed. Her guns are hammering the approaching Red Team, lobbing high explosive shells onto the bows of Battleships and cruisers. The Perth can often find herself as a front runner — taking position of caps and strategic locations to put early pressure on the enemy. Just make sure you have an escape plan in mind before engaging. Your smoke will only last so long.
Turning Radius: 640m
Rudder Shift: 7.6s
Hit Points: 27,100
Citadel Protection: Up to 100mm
Bow & Deck Armour: Minimum of 13mm (immunity up to 180mm AP shells)
The Perth plays a dangerous game with a New York-class Battleship. Using the island, she approached within 4.0km of the American and crept out using smoke at 1/4 speed to unleash a point blank assault using high explosive shells and individually launched torpedoes. The fish of the Perth can deliver monstrous alpha-strikes, ideal for putting down unwary ships that get too close.
- 10 clouds @ 1/4 speed (8.1 knots). Maximum of 2 clouds active — usually just 1.
- 18 clouds @ 1/2 speed (16.3 knots). Maximum of 3 clouds active — usually just 2.
- 30 clouds @ 3/4 speed (24.3 knots). Maximum of 4 clouds active — usually just 3.
- 30 clouds @ 4/4 speed (32.6 knots). Maximum of 4 clouds active — usually just 3.
- 31 clouds @ 4/4 speed + signal (34.1 knots). Maximum of 4 clouds active — usually just 3.
Moving at full speed while deploying smoke, the Perth is able to provide concealment for this Gneisenau as she opens fire without the German Battleship having to slow down. Unlike destroyers, she can maintain this level of concealment for over a minute and a half. This can be up to four and a half times longer than normal smoke. This is much easier for a Battleship to remain within than trying to stop suddenly to take advantage of a cloud dropped in her path. With this setup, the Perth can still provide vision for the Gneisenau against enemy Battleships at range without worrying about being seen herself so long as she keeps her guns silent, while protecting her allied BB from return fire.
AA Battery Calibers: 102mm, 20mm, 12.7mm
AA Umbrella Ranges: 5.0km, 2.0km, 1.2km
AA DPS per Aura: 38 / 7 / 11
The Perth’s worst nightmare: Skyraider Dive Bombers from the USS Saipan. Struck by three bombs, she burns from bow to stern. The Perth has very little in the way of AA defense and enemy carriers should take full advantage of this.
- The Perth is a squid. She squirts all of the ink.
- She’s a challenging ship to use to influence the game. While she can remain hidden, her offensive power is a bit lacking outside of her beautiful torpedoes barring recklessness on the part of the enemy.
- As a support ship, she can selflessly use her smoke to cover larger ships without them having to slow down for well over a minute. Coordinating with team mates is key. This can be quite powerful when used correctly but may be outside the scope of pick up matches in Random Battle games.
- The Perth is super squishy against anything outside of enemy destroyers and some light cruisers. You’re not going to win duels if you trade blows.
One of the neat side effects of the Perth’s smoke is that it ships begin sailing in close formation to take advantage of it. This ends up looking really cool. Here, the Perth leads a Fiji-class cruiser as they engage enemy Battleships without being spotted in return.
- For Random Battle Grinding:
Mouse: Eh, no. First and foremost, the Perth cannot be used as a trainer short of her own dedicated Captain. There are no other Commonwealth ships. In addition, she’s premium consumable-hungry. I can’t stress enough the importance of taking at least two, maybe even all four slots as premium versions, so this will eat into her credit earning potential. So for credit earning and captain training, she gets two strikes.
When it comes to earning experience or completing missions, my feelings are mixed. My damage totals usually sat between 40,000 and 90,000 in the Perth. I only managed a single 2000+ base experience game, with most sitting between 1,100 and 1,300 on a win. This often wasn’t enough to top the team roster on the results screen. To be fair, I did win far more than I lost. Still, I would pass on her specifically for those interested in finding a ship to grind for experience, training, credits, signals or mission rewards.
- For Competitive Gaming:
Mouse: Let me be honest: there are better ships for this. She doesn’t have great hitting power short of taking advantage of the bumbling incompetence of your enemies. And while the Perth can be used as a support vessel, it’s of a very limited fashion. She’ll be forever vulnerable to dive bombers and she’s super squishy. Her smoke, while amazing, kind of makes her a one-trick pony. You have to risk a lot to get the Perth to perform and any competitive team will punish you for the slightest misstep.
Lert: I would say no. Her mediocre speed, low gun range and lack of primary firepower hold her back in a way that a decent set of torpedoes and interesting smoke can’t really balance out.
- For Collectors:
Mouse: Hells yeah. Commonwealth represent!
Lert: It’s the first Commonwealth ship in the game, and worth nabbing for that reason alone. Time wil tell what other Commonwealth ships will eventually make it into the game. She’s also a storied ship, having fought at Java Sea and survived, only to be torpedoed and sunk at Sunda Strait.
- For Fun Factor:
Mouse: I really had a lot of fun in this ship. I think it was because it prompted some of my team mates to work in close support with one another to make use of her wonky smoke. But that stayed with me. There was also the fun of using torpedoes and fires to really put the hurt on enemies. Yeah, it was a blast. Of course, I do like the Atlanta, so take this recommendation with a grain of salt. If you enjoyed the Leander? The Perth will suit you. If you didn’t? Best to steer clear.
The Leander with the Perth off her rear port quarter. These two ships share many similar characteristics but the differences in their ammunition is the most telling. They work very well in support of one another, shortening the window in which they have no cover from smoke.
- For your first slot, Main Armaments Modification 1 is your best choice. From experience, I can say that she loses weapon mounts frequently. I had my torpedo tubes destroyed several times and my guns temporarily knocked out regularly. Alternatively, if you’re horrified by the possibility of being detonated, Magazine Modification 1 will help you considerably. I was not detonated in my test games with the Perth but you never know…
- For the second slot, Aiming Systems Modification 1 provides its usual benefits. This is less useful on a cruiser than a Battleship, however. A good alternative is Main Battery Modification 2. This accelerates her turret rotation by almost a full degree per second at the cost of her reload speed. As the Perth will be throwing herself about often in order to dodge fire, this can help keep guns on target.
- For your third slot, as ever, Damage Control System Modification 1 is the only really vaguely decent one. Hint-hint, Wargaming.
- For the fourth slot, take Steering Gears Modification 2. This will improve your rudder shift time from 7.6s down to 6.1s. As the Perth is rarely (if ever) stationary, this depreciates the value of Propulsion Modification 2 so I would avoid it.
The Perth can be a very premium-consumable hungry vessel. The merits of taking a premium Damage Control Party are pretty self evident. You don’t have a lot of hit points to spare and even a single fire can eat away at far too much of that precious health (especially if there are dive bombers hunting you). Taking a premium version of her Smoke Generator is also a pretty obvious move. This increases the charges from 2 to 3. More importantly, this reduces the reset timer from 4 minutes down to 2 minutes and 40 seconds, which is huge.
Of the other two consumables, it’s a little more open ended. To keep the Perth’s guns singing at range, it may be worthwhile upgrading her Spotter Aircraft to reduce the reset timer from a punitive 6 minutes down to 4. This will allow you to easily use it three times within a match as opposed to just twice. On most other ships I couldn’t recommend this with a straight face, but on the Perth? It’s quite valuable.
Recommended Captain Skills
- From the first tier, it’s actually difficult to recommend Basic Fire Training because of her poor AA values. Still, this does provide a little bit of help and it’s certainly the strongest choice at this tier. This will provide a boost to her secondaries too and the Perth does end up in sub 5km fights often enough.
- From the second tier, both Expert Marksman and Last Stand have a lot of value. The latter is obvious enough — your engine and steering gears are almost as vulnerable in the Perth as they would be in a destroyer. The former provides a 10% boost to your turret rotation speed, changing a 180′ rotation from 25.7s down to 23.4s. This really helps given how much you’ll be throwing the ship about. If you’ve taken Main Battery Modification 2, this will combine to reduce her turret rotation to 20.6s for a 180′ turn or 8.74′ per second.
- From tier three, grab Superintendent right away. This provides an extra charge of your Smoke Generator. Note that you should keep an eye on your play style before taking this skill. If you’re using the premium consumable already and not running out on your matches, then there’s no point on taking this. Alternatively, Vigilance is a great skill for helping spot torpedoes early.
- At tier four, Demolition Expert is wonderful. This will increase your chances to start fires from 9% to 12% per shell. Beauty!
- And finally, at tier 5, Concealment Expert is the most valuable. This will reduce your surface detection range from 9.8km down to 8.6km. Keep in mind this will not allow you to stealth fire either your torpedoes or your main battery from open water. Alternatively, Jack of All Trades is interesting because it reduces the reset timer on your Smoke Generator, from 2 minutes and 40s with premium to 2 minutes and 16 seconds.
A special thank you to NikoPower for providing access to the Perth, PigeonofWar for answering my questions and to Lert and Zoup for their contributions to the article. Also, a big thanks for the support offered by KJar, Argh_My_Liver, EroSun, MagisterAurelius and “Large Handsome Dog” (you know who you are). They helped keep me sane while trucking through the writing process. Lastly, a very special thanks to AfroSquirrel for that one game we ended up together in testing that was super fun to play.