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Premium Ship Review Gremyashchy12/26/2016 9:15:34 AM
Published By: LittleWhiteMouse

The only real change to the Gremyashchy since I first reviewed her was the inclusion of camouflage for premium ships.  And she looks rather dashing her in her off-white scheme.

 
Quick Summary:  A Soviet Gnevny-class destroyer with improved  agility, concealment , torpedoes and HE rounds.
Patch & Date Written:  0.5.16.0 -  December 25th, 2016
Cost:  Originally only sold individually or as a part of a pre-order bundle in Spring of 2015.  During Christmas of 2016, many players reported acquiring them through the "Santa's Secret Stash" promotion.
 
Closest in-Game Contemporary
Anshan, Tier 6 Premium Pan-Asian Destroyer
Degree of Similarity: Clone / Sister-Ship / Related Class / Similar Role / Unique

I got quite upset, once upon a time, when various players reported that the Anshan was effectively a tier 6 Gremyashchy. I made it a personal mission to dispel this illusion, perhaps a little too vehemently. The two ships do share a lot of similarities, but the Anshan is a far cry from the second coming of the Gremyashchy. While superficially similar, the Asian destroyer doesn't have the same agility, high explosive shells or stealth capabilities of the pre-order vessel.
 
PROs
  • Good muzzle velocity and flat shell trajectory with her 130mm rifles with an impressive 11.9km range.
  • Excellent AP performance with a high alpha strike of 2,500 per shell.  Quite capable of stacking citadels upon cruisers that leave their broadside exposed at medium to close ranges.
  • Better HE performance than any contemporary Soviet Destroyers, with 1,900 alpha strike and a base 9% to start fires with each hit.  This makes her one of the best fire starting Destroyers in the game.
  • Very good torpedoes with an 8km range and 14,400 maximum damage.
  • Tiny turning circle of 510m and short rudder shift time of 2.7s
  • Excellent concealment values while firing, giving her a 1.0km stealth firing window even without premium camouflage or Captain Skills.
 
 CONs
  • Very low armour values of 10mm along nearly the whole length of her hull.  British 152mm AP shells will easily overmatch this preventing her from being able to angle against it.
  • Horrible gun traverse, with a 5° per second turret rotation (36s for 180°).  The ship easily out turns them.
  • Poor fire angles on her #3 turret.
  • Torpedoes are slow at 55 knots.
  • Large surface detection range for a tier 5 destroyer at 7.0km base.

  
The sun sets on 2016.  I'm very curious to see how much the game will change in 2017 and what effect it will have on the various premium ships I've looked at over the last year.

 
Nothing has really changed on the Gremyashchy since I first reviewed her.  However, the game has changed around her over the last year.  Soviet and British cruisers have joined the ranks.  So too have German Battleships and another handful of Japanese Destroyers.  The module system got tweaked and Captain Skills were overhauled.  Finally, and perhaps most significantly, Matchmaker changes pit the Gremyashchy more and more against what could be considered more fair opposition for this relic of the past.
 
To be certain, the Gremyashchy is a fossil.  Like the Warspite, she's a snapshot of World of Warships from an earlier time, representing norms that no longer exist.  She used to be a middle-road destroyer with worse gunnery and brawling ability to the USN Nicholas and significantly worse torpedoes to the IJN Minekaze.  She couldn't hold a candle to these two rival destroyers in their chosen areas of excellence and this made her seem a bit of a poor choice overall -- so much so that many players passed up the chance to purchase her when she was available.  I cannot stress this enough:  The Gremyashchy was often overlooked in favour of the Yubari and Sims at the time.  Those that saw her merits loved her, but she was so often dismissed.
 
With the typical attrition of the player base over time, the Gremyashchy has become an increasingly rare sight until recently.  While it remains possible to earn a Gremyashchy through a Super Container, the 2016 Christmas Promotion, "Santa's Secret Stash" has yielded a significant number of these ships to the player base.  This is by no means guaranteed, of course.  The more premium ships a player owned already, the more likely they were to draw this ship as the loot containers seemed loathe to duplicate vessels already owned.  While some seemed to acquire her with ease, others have gone through a long frustration of receiving anything but.
 
To this end, I thought it prudent to revisit the Gremyashchy and express what all the fuss is about. 
 
 
Options
The Gremyashchy is very predictable when it comes to her options.  All of her consumables and module slots are standard for her nationality.  There's nothing out of the ordinary here.

Consumables:
  • Damage Control Party
  • Smoke Generator
  • Engine Boost
Module Upgrades: Three slots, standard destroyer options.
Premium Camouflage: Tier 2 to 5 Standard. This provides 30% bonus experience gains, 3% reduction in surface detection and 4% reduction in enemy accuracy.
 
 
Firepower
Primary Battery: Four 130mm rifles in four turrets in an A-B-X-Y superfiring configuration
Torpedo Armament:  Six 533mm torpedoes in 2x3 dorsal launchers.
 
Let's start with Torpedoes.
 
Like the Molotov, the Gremyashchy is armed with a weapon system of a comparable Soviet ship several tiers higher than it.  While the Molotov gets the same guns as the tier 9 Dmitri Donskoi, the Gremyashchy gets a similar torpedo armament of the tier 8 Tashkent.  If this raises a few alarm bells; it should.  The Tashkent's torpedoes are terrible for a tier 8 ship.
 
All joking aside, the Gremyashchy has torpedoes that now compete very closely to its tier 5 counterparts, but this wasn't always the case.  To best understand the Gremyashchy's weapon systems and why they're considered so overpowered, you have to look at her competition when she was first introduced.  Her only contemporaries at the time were the Minekaze and Nicholas, but these ships were very different at the time of their inception.  Let's start by comparing their torpedo armaments from the Closed-Beta era.
 
Values were pulled from World of Warships Closed Beta, around Patch 0.3.1.3
 
While it's perhaps common knowledge that the Minekaze was a better torpedo ship when compared to the Gremyashchy, it's important to appreciate just how much better the Minekaze was.  While both ships had comparable hitting power with individual torpedoes, the Minekaze fired her torpedoes 50% faster than the Gremyashchy.  Her fish moved at higher speeds regardless of which armament she elected to use.  With her 1.1km surface detection range advantage over the Gremyashchy, she could get closer to her prey to help guarantee hits or sit way back and never risk detection with her 10km torpedoes.  The Nicholas' torpedoes were designed for close quarters brawling.  Let's look at how things have changed.
 
 
Note the drop in reaction times.  Tier 4 and 5 is always a kick in the teeth for novice Battleship Captains that don't appreciate that you need to dodge torpedoes long before they're spotted.
 
 
The Minekaze has fallen a long way since Closed Beta.  While she retains a blistering rate of fire, that's about all she can now claim.   When we look at the Gremyashchy, she appeared to only be a modest torpedo boat in Closed Beta.  However, it would be hard to argue  that she's not one of the most attractive torpedo platforms at tier 5 currently, with only the Kamikaze, Mutsuki and T-22 being comparable or better.  It should be noted that her torpedo armament does not stand head and shoulders over her competition, but that it merely remains competitive.  She has the slowest torpedoes at tier 5 and one of the largest surface detection ranges.  This requires her to launch torpedoes from further out, making it more likely for her to miss from minor course adjustments of her prey.
 
The Gremyashchy doesn't have better torpedoes than any of her tier 5 counterparts.  However, she is no longer outdone by them to any significant degree like she was when she was introduced.  Now let's take a look at her Guns.
 
Main Battery
There are only a couple of downsides to the Gremyashchy's guns.  The first is the most obvious:  She has horrible gun traverse rates. Needing 36s to complete a 180° rotation, this can feel downright punitive until Captain Skills or modules are used to accelerate it.  Still, even with all of the boosts available, the Gremyashchy can and will out turn her guns with even the smallest adjustments of her rudder.  This will often get novice Gremyashchy players in trouble as they'll abstain from conducting any maneuvers at all while under fire, leading to predictable deaths from enemy gun and torpedo fire.  The second setback is a minor one.  Her #3 rifle has her fire angles impaired by a pair of 12.7mm machine gun mounts.
 
These drawbacks aside, it's hard to see the Gremyashchy's main battery as being anything but superior to her contemporaries at tier 5.  In fact, it's not until you stack her against tier 7 ships that her performance begins to wane.  Like her torpedoes, this again wasn't always the case.  The Nicholas used to be a much better close-range gunnery platform to the Gremyashchy, back before the changes to AP and HE shells around 0.3.1 and through to 0.3.1.3.  This saw AP and HE switch places in terms of primacy where destroyer shooting was concerned and the Nicholas never really recovered.  After 0.3.1.3 in Closed Beta, the Gremyashchy began standing on par with the Nicholas or exceeding her and she's never really looked back since.
 
Currently at tier 5, the Gremyashchy hasthe best AP shell, the second best HE shell behind only the premium Kamikaze-class Destroyers.  Yet she's the best fire starter at her tier.  On top of this, she has the excellent ballistic arcs found on the IJN ships yet without the range limitations.  The Gremyashchy has a 1km reach advantage over the Nicholas and T-22 and only falls behind them in terms of rate of fire. 
 
It gets worse when you compare her to the lead of her class.  She dodged the 0.5.2 nerf that shaved 300hp off of Soviet HE shells and dropped their fire chance from 9%,which the Gremyashchy retains, to 7% (this was later buffed back up to 8%).  On top of this, she doesn't suffer the 2.0km additional surface detection range "tax" added to all Soviet 130mm Destroyer caliber guns.  This allows her to stealth fire from the surface while stock at a range of 10.9km or greater.  Once combined with Captain Skills and camouflage, this stealth-window gets absolutely insane.
 
Summary
Perhaps now you can start to see the issue with the Gremyashchy.  She has not only an excellent main armament but she also has an excellent torpedo armament.  No other destroyer at her tier mixes these two systems to the same effect.  She doesn't meet any serious challengers to this kind of balanced mix of main battery & torpedo armament until the tier 7 Destroyers and she can almost keep up with those!
  • Best overall gun performance at her tier.
  • Highly competitive torpedo armament.
  • Capable of using both weapon systems from concealment while stock.
  • The only real downside is her sluggish turret traverse.
  • Arguably the equivalent of a modest tier 7 destroyer in terms of firepower.
 

 The Gremyashchy's guns are horribly overpowered with ridiculous stealth characteristics.  However, don't overlook her torpedoes.  They are phenomenal in their own right.  While leaning on only a single weapon system will still net you great games, using the right combinations of AP, HE and Torpedoes will allow you to utterly dominate in a given match.
 
Maneuverability
Top Speed: 37.0 knots
Turning Radius: 510m
Rudder Shift Time: 2.7s
 
If you were hoping to see some form of moderation appear here, you're out of luck.  Back in patch 0.3.1, the Gremyashchy had her turning circle kicked down from 630m to its current 510m.  This was countered by a 6.0s rudder shift time, but clearly that didn't stick.  So now she enjoys the best of both worlds and it's not like every other destroyer can say the same.  She has the tightest turning circle at her tier and a very competitive rudder shift time. It should be noted that this agility comes with the price of being quite apt at out turning her turret traverse.  While this may be frustrating, remember short of lining up a kill shot, it's always preferable to focus on evasion over doing damage in a destroyer.
 
She's not the fastest destroyer (that honour goes to the Minekaze at 39.0 knots) but her own top speed is competitive enough to keep pace with everything she might face.
 
 
Durability
Hit Points: 13,100
Maximum Protection: 13mm
Min Bow & Deck Armour: 10mm
 
It probably comes as no surprise that the Gremyashchy is lightly armoured.  What may surprise some of my readers is that she's more lightly armoured than most other destroyers at her tier -- and this can be a real problem thanks to the inclusion of the Royal Navy cruisers. It takes a minimum of 11mm of armour to be able to bounce the 152mm AP shells that the British cruisers fire.  Though the Gremyashchy has these values along her deck and turret faces (as do all destroyers), she does not have them along her hull.  This makes it impossible for her to angle against incoming AP fire from British warships and attempt some lucky ricochets -- something that all of the other destroyers can.  This may seem like a small weakness, but it's worth keeping in mind.
 
 
Concealment & Camouflage
Surface Detection Range: 7.0km
Air Detection Range: 3.6km
Minimum Surface Detection Range: 6.1km
Concealment Penalty while Firing: +3.9km (vs 11.9km gun range)
 
 This is the last piece of the puzzle which describes exactly why Wargaming will not sell the Gremyashchy anymore.  She doesn't suffer from the same concealment penalties that have afflicted Soviet and German Destroyers.  The original concealment penalty calculation when firing guns is 0.03 times the shell diameter.  Soviet Destroyers add an additional 2.0km to this range and German Destroyers add 3.5km to this range.  Not so the Gremyashchy.
 
The result is that while stock, she has a 1.0km stealth firing window (1.3km with her camouflage) when using her main battery.  When Captain Skills are thrown into the mix, this can allow the Gremyashchy to sit just beyond 10km of an enemy and pour fire into her without risking detection.  Keep in mind, at these ranges she can potentially citadel a light cruiser with her AP rounds or accurately place HE shells on each separate section of a Battleship to maximize fires.  This is also close enough to continue pelting an enemy destroyer with a reasonable chance of landing shells on target even when they evade.
 
Short of Wargaming overhauling the stealth-firing mechanics for the game as a whole (such as changing the stealth firing penalty to shell diameter * 0.04 or higher) , the Gremyashchy will always be overpowered in this regard.
 
 
A mid-tier CV's worst nightmare:  An alert Gremyashchy within gun range.
 
Anti-Aircraft Defense
AA Battery Calibers: 76mm / 37mm / 12.7mm
AA Umbrella Ranges: 3.0km / 3.2km / 1.2km
AA DPS per Aura: 4 / 23 / 17
 
For a mid-tier Destroyer, the Gremyashchy's anti-aircraft firepower is rather decent.  It's not great by any means. I wouldn't trust it to shoot down anything before it made its attack run, but it may bruise any planes sent to linger around her in order to keep her spotted.  Most of the time, though, you're best to just leave this turned off.
 

Overall Impressions

Skill Floor: Simple / Casual / Challenging / Difficult
Skill Ceiling: Low / Moderate / High / Extreme 
 
The potential for this ship is enormous.  Like many destroyers, she's not quite user-friendly enough that just anyone will be able to take her out and score big each and every time.  Without an appreciation for stealth mechanics, without respecting ammunition choices and proper consumable management, the Gremyashchy will fail to deliver.  The tools are all there, don't get me wrong, but a novice can still easily mishandle this little monster.
 
 But in terms of raw carry potential?  The sky's the limit.  If you see one of these ships on the enemy team, take any opportunity to delete it as of paramount importance.  In the right hands, there are some ships on your team that do not stand a chance -- full stop.  Slow "brick" Battleships are meat on the table.  Light Cruisers without long-range detection consumables like Radar or Aircraft are horribly vulnerable.  A Gremmy player that knows how to ride the knife edge of detection, that keeps map awareness up and juggles shell management like a boss will give any team a very, very bad day.
 
Pray you can detonate the fiend.
 
Mouse's Summary:
  • What weaknesses?  Seriously...
  • Good guns, good torps, good stealth, good concealment, good agility...  Need I go on?
  • Let's hope that any changes to stealth firing in the future also affect the Gremyashchy, or she's only going to get worse.
  • In her current state, she belongs at tier 7.

Studying the Gremyashchy is fascinating.  In writing this review, I spent a lot of time looking up her original stats from back in Closed Beta.  This is no easy feat.  Wargaming no longer appears to host the Patch Notes from those times on the North American or European Servers and a lot of changes were undocumented.  It was only through reviews and replays that I could get a clear image of what she was compared to what she is now.  This got particularly frustrating when I might be able to find out everything I wanted for the Gremyashchy but then not find any stats on the Nicholas or MInekaze with which to compare her to.  Changes were rampant back between patches 3.1 to 3.1.3 with a see-saw of gunnery statistics as the primacy of AP was diminished and HE became dominant.  It has to be said that the Gremyashchy came out of Closed Beta in a very healthy state.  This isn't something all Premiums can boast (I'm looking at you, Atlanta).

 But it wasn't just the changes to Closed Beta that put the Gremyashchy on top.  It's been the continued refinement (some might describe it as an erosion) of the balance at tier 5.  The 3.5km surface detection penalty while firing on German Destroyers looks downright punitive in the current meta.  It makes the 2.0km surface detection penalty on the Soviet Destroyers look downright manageable.  The Minekaze is a hollow shell of her former self.  And if rumours are to be believed, the Kamikaze-class will no longer be made available for purchase in the future.  It's clear the environment at tier 5 is becoming all the more forgiving for the Gremmy as serious competition is being shackled by more moderated stats. 
 
I seriously considered measuring the Gremmy not against the tier 5s but against the tier 7 destroyers.  It was shocking to see just how close she came to the likes of the Leningrad.  While she's lacking on DPM, as she is presently, I do think she could slot in at tier 7 provided stealth gunnery does not change in the future -- yes, I think she's that powerful.  It would be a tough sell which is why I wussed out and decided to instead focus on her Closed Beta statistics.
 
 
Cross drop?  No problem.  The Gremmy's agility makes dodging fish look easy.
 

Would I Recommend?
Like the Imperator Nikolai I, there's only two ways presently to acquire the Gremyashchy.  The first is to find her in a Super Container earned through the daily experience grind.  The more Premium ships you own, the more likely you are to finally get one, so that's pretty cool.  I can only imagine how awesome it would feel to get her this way ... and how frustrating it must be if you've pinned your hopes on this.
 
The other option is with the Christmas 2016 sale where players could buy different sized loot containers.  I wish there was some actual data on the odds of earning a rare ship through this promotion.  There are a lot of anecdotal experiences that can be found on Reddit or the official forums.  It seems that similar to Super Containers above, the more Premium Ships a player owns, the more likely they are to acquire a Gremyashchy.  But this is by no means certain.  Anyone hoping to beat the odds should be careful with their coin.  Getting the Gremyashchy, while it seems to be possible, may not be likely.

  • For Random Battle Grinding

The Gremyashchy is a PUB stomping monster.  She's a perfect choice for someone looking to help train their Soviet Captains, to earn a few extra credits or simply to farm awards like Kraken Unleashed.  I cannot recommend her enough for this.

  • For Competitive Gaming
If you have the option of using the Gremyashchy in some form of competitive arena, then she's an excellent choice. 
  • For Collectors

Meh?  For many of us in the West, the Gremyashchy has more value as a rare-ship in this game than for her historical achievements.  She is one of the few Soviet Warships that saw surface action in WWII, engaging German Destroyers.

  • For Fun Factor

She's one of my most played ships for a reason.  I just wish I didn't feel so dirty afterwards...


How to Equip your Gremyashchy
There should be no real surprises here.
 
Recommended Modules
As a tier 5 ship, there's only three module slots to contend with. 
  • For your first slot, take Magazine Modification 1 to reduce buzz-killing, horrendous kablooies.

  • You have a choice for your second slot between Aiming Systems Modifaction 1 and Main Battery Modification 2.  Which you take largely depends on the Concealment rating of your Gremmy.  If you specialize her through your Captain Skills for range and stealth, the former will be more valuable as you will not need to maneuver your ship as often.  Without them, then the latter is the better choice.  This will keep your guns on target longer and offsets any loss to your DPM as a result.

  • Guess what?  The third slot modules are still terrible.  Take whichever one you like.

Recommended Consumables

As a destroyer, I strongly recommend taking a premium version of your Smoke Generator.  This will add an extra charge, but more importantly, it will also reduce the reset timer to 80s from 120s.  It's up to you if you want to use premium versions of the other two consumables.  I personally use a premium Damage Control Party, but most games it's largely superfluous.  Those few times it has come in handy, it's more to bail out my own stupidity than any necessity predicated by ship performance.
 
Recommended Captain Skills
The big choice with the Gremyashchy is whether to push for Concealment bonuses right away or to linger in the lower tiered skills for more quality of life improvements.  Here's how it breaks down.
  • At the first tier, Basic Fire Training is your best choice.  This bumps up her rate of fire to 13.2rpm.

  • There's no surprise that as a destroyer, you'll want Last Stand first and foremost.  However, you'll also (desperately) want Expert Marksman.  And lastly, Torpedo Armament Expertise is also highly coveted to reduce that reload timer, but consider this a tertiary skill.

  • At tier 3, Superintendent is still the best choice, if only for the extra charge on your Smoke Generator.

  • At tier 4, there are two skills worth considering.  Advanced Fire Training may seem like the obvious choice.  This will increase your range up to 14.3km and boost your stealth firing window from 1.2km (with camouflage) to 3.6km.  However, with discipline, you can just as easily manage without it and take Demolition Expert instead to increase your fire chance to 12% per shell.

  • If you didn't double up on tier 4 skills, then Concealment Expert is the best choice at tier 5.  Without Advanced Fire Training, this increases your stealth firing window with torpedoes AND guns to 1.9km.  With Advanced Fire Training, your gun window opens up to 4.3km which is stupidly overpowered.
 
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