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Spotting, Scouting and Experience Gains11/28/2017 4:09:10 PM
Published By: LittleWhiteMouse
Spotting, Scouting and Experience Gains

Wouldn't it be nice if people were encouraged to dig invisible ships out of smoke?   Well good news:  They are.  And now we know roughly by how much.
 
 Scouting and controlling vision in World of Warships wins games.  This is, in part, what makes destroyers and aircraft carriers so influential within a match.  When there is a pronounced skill disparity between ships of these types between the two teams, the results of the battle can feel so terribly one sided.  However, as important as providing vision for your team and blinding the enemy was, for a long time there was no credit or experience reward for this winning behaviour.  It wasn't until patch 0.5.12 in September of 2016 that scouting was properly rewarded.
 
But this raised the question -- how rewarding was it?  Could a player earn enough through scouting to supplement the lower damage that would often result from playing a more passive role?  I had the opportunity to sit down with Boyarsky, the Publishing Director of World of Warships North America, while I was in the process of writing my review for USS Kidd.  He was kind enough  to talk a little about the rewards a player receives for scouting in World of Warships.  But first, let's get into some definitions.
  • SCOUTING: The act of trying to detect and spot the enemy team.
  • DETECTING:  This is the act of initially discovering an enemy vessel and lighting them up on the minimap.  
  • SPOTTING:  This is the act of providing vision onto a detected enemy vessel and through the vision you provide, enabling your team to target them and do damage.
 Boyarsky described all these rewards in terms of equivalencies of damaging a same-tier enemy ship.  In this manner, it's easy to compare how rewarding scouting can be versus doing the damage to the enemies yourself. This will be described as an X% of XP/Credits for full HP damage to a ship.  Thus, if someone would earn 10,000 credits for removing all of the hit points of an enemy ship and detecting provided 1% of this, the reward for detecting an enemy ship would be 100 credits.
 
Note that these rewards vary per ship-type being played.  This comes from a combination of risk-reward factors and economy reasons to encourage player behaviour.
 
The Root of all EvilHere's a rough guide on how experience and credits are earned in World of Warships.  This was taken from "The Root of All Evil", a document Wargaming circulated early on in the game's release.  The values here may not be exact as things were modified with the economy change in 0.5.12.
  • For Damage, you're awarded by the percentage of a ship's hit points you remove, not the amount of raw damage done.  Thus, 10,000 damage done to a destroyer is worth more than 10,000 damage done to a battleship.  This scales depending on the tier disparity between ships.  You earn more for damaging a higher tiered ship than you would a lower tiered ship.
  • Frags award the equivalent of doing 15% of the ship's hit points in damage.  Sinking enemy ships is important and awarded accordingly.
  • Shooting down Aircraft also provides rewards.  Shooting down 40 aircraft rewards roughly the same amount as removing 100% of the hit points of a similar tiered ship.
  • The more Base Capture and Base Defense points you earn, the better.
  • Rewards do not scale linearly.  As an example, if you destroy one cruiser you get one whole pie. Two destroyed cruisers bring about one whole pie and one more with a bite taken out of it. Should you destroy three cruisers, two whole pies will be the reward.
  • Rewards scale with tiers. For XP, a two-fold difference is possible between Tiers I and X. For credits, the difference may be even bigger.
  • We do not yet know how damage tanking affects experience and credit earnings.
 
Detecting
There's a reward provided for being up on the front lines and discovering the location of hidden enemy ships.  When an enemy vessel that isn't visible is lit up, the ship responsible receives a small reward for this action.  The reward breakdown is as follows:
  • CV receive 0.75% of XP/Credits for full HP damage to a ship.
  • BB receive 1.50% of XP/Credits for full HP damage to a ship.
  • DD receive 2.00% of XP/Credits for full HP damage to a ship.
  • CA receive 3.25% of XP/Credits for full HP damage to a ship.

This reward is received every time you light up an enemy vessel that has been invisible for at least 30 seconds.   

 Immediately it should become apparent that cruisers benefit most from detecting enemy ships and with good reason. Cruisers risk the most providing direct sight upon enemies.  They're also the most likely to be equipped with special consumables to allow them to do so, with Hydroacoustic Search and Surveillance Radar.   Aircraft carriers benefit the least from this mechanic as they risk much less when detecting enemy ships.
 
In order for this to pay off, a cruiser would need to detect ships 30 times within a match to earn the equivalent of doing damage enough to sink one enemy ship, while a destroyer would have to do this 50 times within a match.  Just looking back over one of my own replays, even with taking a forward, aggressive stance in a destroyer, the solo-detection opportunities numbered no more than a dozen occurrences.  This would yield the equivalent of doing approximately 25% of the experience and credits earned for doing direct damage instead.
 
Spotting
 While a game spent detecting enemy ships will not yield very much in the way of rewards, spotting can be much more engaging.  Spotting is the act of providing constant vision upon enemy ships for allies that would not be able to see the ships themselves.  Every time an ally does damage against a ship they could not detect without help, the ship providing the vision receives a spotting reward.  Unlike in Wargaming's other IP, World of Tanks, the reward is not split between the two ships, but instead the spotting vessel receives a bonus.  This bonus scales directly to the percentage of health done to a ship -- not the total damage dealt.  Thus, a spotting ship earns more rewards for 1,000 damage done to a destroyer than it would for 1,000 damage done to a battleship.
  • BB receives approximately 10% of the reward for full HP damage to a spotted ship.
  • CV receives approximately 20% of the reward for full HP damage to a spotted ship.
  • CA receives approximately 30% of the reward for full HP damage to a spotted ship.
  • DD receives approximately 40% of the reward for full HP damage to a spotted ship.
There are, of course, some immediate complications.
  • The attacking ship must not be able to detect the enemy target at all.
  • In order to collect the reward, the spotting ship must have vision upon the target at the moment the attacker's shells or torpedoes land.
  • If multiple ships are spotting, the reward is calculated individually and then divided by the number of ships providing vision.  So a destroyer that was spotting with the assistance of 4 other ships would receive 40% of the damage done as a reward divided by 5.
  • You do not get any spotting rewards for Damage over Time effects, such as Fires or Floods.

It doesn't take a whole lot of imagination to see how a destroyer in particular could earn a tremendous amount of experience and credits without ever firing a shot.  If a destroyer could sneak over to the far side of the map and continually spot the enemy team, the rewards should be really high, right?  Well, kinda...


Aircraft carriers are particularly adept at scouting, but it's not an easy job by any means.  They have to be aware of the range of enemy anti-aircraft batteries and the intercept speeds of enemy aircraft.  An allied CV providing vision can help their team utterly dominate their opponents.
 
Challenges with Scouting
The problems with dedicating yourself to maximizing the rewards with scouting are threefold.
  1. Team composition.
  2. Limited opportunity to do direct damage
  3. Visibility when a ship fires both within and outside of smoke.

Team composition can largely dictate how much experience will be earned in a given match from scouting. Aircraft carriers can dominate the spotting and detection gains, diluting the amount of rewards earned by surface vessels.  Radar equipped ships can keep destroyers at arm's length and limit the amount of movement around the map.  A battleship-heavy game will have less spotting opportunities as their gun bloom will make them visible to almost everyone on the map, barring island cover. 

For surface ships, actively scouting can often preclude you from doing damage yourself.  Launching attacks gives away your position and for ships like destroyers and some cruisers, this can be a death sentence if you've moved to extend your vision as far out as possible.  
 
But the real kicker is the way visibility changes when firing guns.  How can you spot ships for your allies when the enemy keep giving their position away to the whole map when they fire their main battery?  This greatly dilutes the amount of rewards available for ships within the battle line.   The changes in smoke have also mitigated this, with ships sitting in smoke capable of detecting enemies firing their guns from beyond -- allies are no longer reliant upon having a friend scout for them while they're hiding. 
 
Consumables have become the answer in some regards.  Clever use of a Smoke Generator can provide cover and concealment for your allies while simultaneously limiting their line of sight.  You can then scout beyond your own smoke screen and relay all of the targeting information for your allies.
 
Hydroacoustic Search and Surveillance Radar have become all the more important in the scouting game, especially for cruisers.  Proper coordination with allies can allow such ships to reap large rewards as the well timed use of these spotting abilities unmasks and sees the destruction of previously-concealed targets.  Even without doing the direct damage themselves, being able to hoover up the equivalent of 1/3rd to nearly 1/2 of damage done to a ship is no small prize.
 
Summary
Scouting can provide a handsome supplement to the rewards already earned within a match from doing direct damage, however, it takes a concerted effort to maximize the amount a player can gain in this way -- often at the expense of doing  damage themselves.
 
 Detection Rewards:
  • CV receive 0.75% of XP/Credits for full HP damage to a ship.
  • BB receive 1.50% of XP/Credits for full HP damage to a ship.
  • DD receive 2.00% of XP/Credits for full HP damage to a ship.
  • CA receive 3.25% of XP/Credits for full HP damage to a ship.
Spotting Rewards:
  • BB receives approximately 10% of the reward for full HP damage to a spotted ship.
  • CV receives approximately 20% of the reward for full HP damage to a spotted ship.
  • CA receives approximately 30% of the reward for full HP damage to a spotted ship.
  • DD receives approximately 40% of the reward for full HP damage to a spotted ship.

Scouting rewards are divided among all of the ships providing vision. 

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