World of Warships – First Look: Tier X German Aircraft Carrier Manfred von Richtofen

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Here we are, top of the line: Tier X German aircraft carrier Manfred von Richtofen. A ship with a name of this pedigree deserves to be fearsome, so let’s root around under the hood and see what we get.

+ Most of the T10 CVs we have in the game are very clearly purpose-built designs. Just as clearly, Manfred von Richtofen is not. You can see she’s built on top of a battleship hull; in this instance, it’s the hull of an H-class battleship, represented in game as Tier IX Friedrich der Grosse. Her health pool is right where you’d expect in the mid 60’s. Surprisingly, she is the stealthiest Tier X aircraft carrier, with an aerial detection radius larger than her surface detection. In fact, her aerial detection is downright huge, something like 2km higher than any other Tier X carrier. I honestly think there’s a typo or some transposed numbers here.

+ Armor-wise, Richtofen has a surprising amount of protection for an aircraft carrier, seemingly based on the battleship hull she’s built on top of. Her belt armor is 150mm – which still trails Midway’s 178mm – but is nothing to sneeze at. Additionally, she carries an armor belt of some kind all the way to the bow, where it drops off to 60mm. Also, unlike all of the other German carriers to this point, Richtofen invests some armor in her flight deck, moving from the 25mm we’ve seen up to this point to 50mm here at Tier X. Interestingly enough, she still lags behind most other Tier X carriers in this department: Midway’s flight deck is 87mm, Hakuryu’s is 95, and Audacious’ is 102mm over the citadel of the ship (though it tapers off to 25mm at the fore and aft end). Before you ask: yes, she retains the famous German turtleback, though you have to play some funky games with her armor layout to see it: there we go, 150mm there on the angle inside the 150mm belt.

+ Her secondary armament is comprised entirely of the same dual-barreled 105mm turrets we saw previously on Parseval. They are finally off the flight deck, as Richtofen packs six of these just below each side of the flight deck, each with a range of 7.2km. You should be able to buff these out to around 10km or so, but let’s get into testing to see if she or any of the others have the improved secondary dispersion that Graf Zeppelin does baked-in to the hull. I’ll wager they don’t.

+ As you would expect of a top tier carrier, Richtofen’s AA aura is appropriately punishing. She moves up to quite a few of these double-barreled 55mm Gerats like those found on Kurfurst and Hindenburg. Man, I wish they’d slap a few of these things on Z-52.

+ Hey, would you look at that: low plane health. Yup, Richtofen’s Messerschmitt attack planes trail even Hakuryu’s Mitsubishi’s in terms of health. They’re pretty quick, though, 172 knots, which is good; they’ll need it in order to survive runs against the cruisers these AP rockets are designed to harass. This is a tier where you run into Minotaur and Worcester; I can’t imagine it being much fun to drive planes with this little health into those AA bubbles. Guess we’ll see in testing. The interesting part is that these AP rockets now move up to BIG HIT numbers: 5k per rocket, with 6 rockets in each salvo. These things now hit like Hindenburg shells. Consider me intrigued, but it’s still all about the penetration values and reticle size and bounce angles and such, so there are still a ton of question marks here.

+ The torpedo planes are Focke-Wulf TA152s, just like those found on Graf Zeppelin; and, just like Graf Zeppelin, the planes themselves are crazy fast for the tier, blowing out every other nation by around 30 knots of speed. Unfortunately, the ordnance they are carrying to target is still these bizarrely slow 25 knot torpedoes. Oof. I really do like the idea of aerial torpedoes that hit hard with a good flood chance on fragile planes; the sort of attack you save for big moments in a game or punishing bad positional mistakes. But these torpedoes are so slow, I still have no idea how players are expected to land hits reliably, if ever.

+ Lastly, the dive bombers. I kvetched pretty hard about Parseval’s AP bombers being strictly inferior to Shokaku’s down at Tier VIII, and for the moment, that is true. Moving up to Tier X it might still look that way… BUT, as with her torpedo planes, Richtofen’s dive bombers are Focke-Wulf Ta152s, and they are STUPID fast. This gives them an interesting advantage over Hakuryu’s dive bombers: Richtofen’s bombers will spend far less time hanging around in AA auras and can get around the map quicker. This is good, because these planes have a radically low amount of health. These are like Ryujo dive bomber levels of plane HP. They need all the advantages they can get, since the bombs do less damage than Hakuryu’s.


  1. 0:43 She’s not the only one. T8 Kaga, which existed IRL, can clearly be seen, at the bow, to show her 8-8 battlecruiser pedigree – and if Amagi’s hull hadn’t been wrecked in the Great Kanto Earthquake, she would have been the same. The difference is that the Allied ships which were converted from Washington-cancelled or other abandoned battlecruisers (including Courageous and Glorious) had a more complete reconstruction.

    The problem I see with making a secondary meme captain for this ship is that it’s a huge investment. It’s not like the Graf Zeppelin, which you can drop a German BB secondary-spec captain in for fun at the drop of a hat. Because she’s going to be a tech-tree ship, that’s a commitment – unless the other mounts for him are all going to be German secondary-heavy premiums (of which, it must be admitted, we will soon have quite a few).

    • Of the T10 carriers currently in the game – which is what I said I was talking about – then yes, Richtofen is the only one. There are plenty of other CV conversions throughout the other tiers, including Langley, Kaga, and others.

  2. I cannot believe war gaming is throwing around fake ships like they think we believe they are real I am a naval nut and I demand wargaming to fix the armor values and remove the richthofen and replace it with a ship that was actually planned

    • I don’t believe anyone ever said the ships were real. We’re talking about a German carrier line, we’re well into the realm of fantasy here. Were there any actual German CVs planned beyond the Hipper conversion (T6) and Flugzeugtrager B (T8)?

    • @SeaRaptor no … no there was not anything else planned

      The wargaming that we knew is long gone when the first Soviet ship appeared that’s when I stopped playing the game

    • @Julie Clark So… October 2015? That’s been a while.

    • @SeaRaptor yeah nowadays I just play minecraft and hopefully snowrunner but I kind of miss wows

    • Muhammad Attallah Arkan Ihsani

      @Julie Clark nah dude wargaming changed when they added the stalingrad, everything soviet after that doesnt know what balance is.

  3. Thank you for this series. I hope the carrier Manfred von Richthofen is able to compete with any of the other tier X carriers.0
    I do not know if the CV fleet was needed. The Kriegsmarine has not finished a single CV.
    All the best!

  4. i don’t know how to express the feeling when i’m in a T8 Cruiser in a tier 10 match against these AP rockets. If i’m quick enough, maybe i can angle the ship so the rockets ricochet

    • In theory, this ought to be possible; the trick is you have to ask yourself what else you’re risking by doing so. This is a mistake a lot of players make. They see a set of torpedo bombers coming in so they immediately begin to maneuvering… and in the process of doing so, eat a huge salvo from a battleship. If they had just stuck with their course, they would have eaten a couple of weak(ish) CV torps instead. Cruisers are going to find themselves making those kinds of tough decisions with these AP rockets in the field, presuming they are any good.

    • @SeaRaptor i feel like the light cruisers may struggle against these AP rockets, i usually play USN CL and normally park behind an island. I don’t know if the light armor can shrug off any AP rockets

    • @Victor von Doom Too many unknowns at present to say one way or the other, but I share the concern. Just have to see how she plays.

  5. I agree that the torps need a buff in speed for T8 &T10, also maybe replace the DBs with some JU 87 Stukas which would be slower but have more hp. Overall I’m liking the way the ships look.

  6. They ought to flog the graphics artist who did NOT put the Red Barrons camo on this thing!

  7. I don’t know. They look DOA. Its hard enough to hit with US torps and these things are slower. BD are less powerful than Haks but you get less health and less planes and almost the same speed. Not seeing a great line here.
    If they upped the torps to 35 at least and make the BD retical a basicly cannot miss that would be great.
    Only good thing right now is the stealth but with out secs they have 0 defence against DD

    • I have concerns about them at the moment, I just have to hope that they make adjustments and changes during testing.

    • @SeaRaptor agreed. Unlike the forums I think WG does know what there doing so I think they will change course.
      I am also interested in the new prem German cv you talked about as well.

  8. That 155mm as though XD, faced one with my midway yesterday, her bombers fly high.

  9. CynicallyObnoxious

    *laughs in insanity* Im sure itll be fun grinding CVs again

    • The T4 won’t be; the rest… maybe! Depends on how good these planes turn out to be.

    • CynicallyObnoxious

      @SeaRaptor If theyre like Zepps it wont be I hated all my T8 cvs one reason why I quit the game this past November I just utterly hate how WG runs their game

  10. I find it weired how completely detached they are from Graf Zeppelin, i thougth they would get high caliber guns, like 203s or even 280s for tier 9 and 10

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