Shikishima — Japanese Tier X battleship.
The project of a battleship developed shortly before Japan entered World War II (Design A-150). The design of the ship called for a main battery of six 510 mm guns in three twin turrets. In all other respects, the ship’s characteristics were similar to those of Yamato-class battleships.
Playstyle-wise, with only short-ranged AA, a high, poorly armoured citadel, and being one of the largest ships in the game, Shikishima is not meant to be played as a brawler, or as the vanguard of a formation of ships, but with decent accuracy and outstanding sigma (even better dispersion than Yamato), as well as the largest guns of the game means that it can and will be able to fairly easily overmatch battleship- and cruiser-sized plating. As a battleship, your target should be other battleships and heavy cruisers. You should shoot AP at their broadsides, and with good ballistics, you can theoretically penetrate the citadel from any angle as the AP shells will fuse on time if you shoot through a heavily-armoured bow or broadside. Poor vertical dispersion, as well as having only six barrels means that landing shots on target from long distance will pose a challenge, but Shikishima makes up for it with a stock reload of 27 seconds (which can be further decreased with the right captain skills and mods, such as Main Battery Mod. 3) that allows for it to squeeze opportunistic salvos at fast cruisers and battleships alike, incidentally making it a great platform for hunting cruisers. However, these 20in guns will not save you should you encounter lightly armoured cruisers (such as Smolensk), as well as destroyers (which is a given), as the AP shells will simply over-penetrate their thin armour. Ideally, Shikishima should be played as the second or third ship in a formation, with cruisers and destroyers serving as AA screens and mopping up smaller targets, such as those aforementioned light cruisers and destroyers, giving you the time to focus on deleting CAs and BBs from the map. If worst comes to worst then Shikishima does have a pretty good array of secondaries which can whittle down destroyers.
Furthermore, with only six guns in three turrets; sustained HE spam, fires, floods, and turret destruction is her worst nightmare, as a) taking out a turret decreases firepower by a third, b) having more HP is irrelevant against fire and floods. Keep in mind that you are essentially a Yamato with larger guns. Your hull shares the same strengths and weaknesses – you can be penetrated by AP in the stern and “cheek”, and being a battleship that can virtually threaten any other ship in the game regardless of armour you will be a large target for every ship in the game. In the right hands, Shikishima captains can make this ship shine in mid- to late-game, and provide valuable fire support to fellow teammates. Just keep in mind that your ability to overmatch the armour of enemy ships does not make you invincible.
Highest per-shell alpha in the game.
Extremely good penetration with her armor piercing shells.
Good high explosive resistant armor.
Good accuracy relative to her tech tree counterpart Yamato.
Ability to overmatch 32mm plating, which is standard tier 8-10 battleship plating.
Pretty good secondaries which can obliterate smaller, lightly-armoured vessels when given the chance.
Low barrel count, with only 6 shells.
Large citadel with a poor shape that makes her very susceptible to citadels from battleships.
Low damage output due to lack of shells.
Poor vertical dispersion, which causes shells to go over and under the target Shikishima is firing at.
Excessive overpenetration at close range against most cruisers, leading to situations that could get the player killed.