The tier 8 premium German battleship Tirpitz is a heavily armored battleship that unlike many other high tier battleships sees its main belt armor extend along the majority of the waterline. The Tirpitz was designed to withstand a beating from incoming fire at close to mid ranges and its armor layout reflects this by being incredibly difficult to penetrate along the side of the ship. The downside to this armor design is that you simply cannot cover an entire ship with extremely thick armor and thus the Tirpitz sacrifices some protection from fire that comes from above more vertically and thus bypasses the well protected sides. This World of Warships Tirpitz armor guide will break down the Tirpitz’s armor based on levels of protection, outline key citadel areas, and also provide both a side view/vertical view.
Armor protection is sorted with green armor being the weakest, followed by yellow/orange, and finally red armor being the most protected areas of a ship. For sections with multiple layers of armor the outer most layer of armor is listed and then is followed sequentially until the inner most armor layer is reached. Keep in mind that not all areas receive maximum damage and focusing on the areas outline as citadel, powder magazine, and propulsion system will lead to maximum damage(if you can penetrate).
World of Warships Tirpitz Armor Guide
Surprisingly the Tirpitz’s armor although mighty is fairly straightforward from a design standpoint. This view does not show the entire forward/aft ends of the ship since they are non-vital parts of the Tirpitz and are largely unprotected. The Tirpitz unlike many other battleships has above average armor across the entire side hull and the belt armor extends the majority of the length of the Tirpitz. Starting at the top is the “armored amidships” area that has armor 160mm thick which then increases to 315mm on the hull in the “main belt “top”” area.
Closer to the waterline the main belt armor receives a huge protection boost due to a 120mm armored plate angled at 70 degrees inwards being added along with an additional 45mm armor plate that makes it extremely difficult to penetrate the Tirpitz just above and below the waterline. This 120mm angled piece of armor and 45mm armor plate covers up to the top of the powder magazines and most of the citadel area to make it very difficult to penetrate the Tirpitz’s citadel. Finally the “main belt “bottom”” area drops down to 170mm hull armor with an additional 45mm sitting behind it. The armor in all of these areas, especially around the waterline, is extremely difficult to damage reliably and is one of the strengths of the Tirpitz. Keep in mind that the powder magazines add an additional 57mm and the barbettes add a whopping 340mm.
Outside of the hull/citadel/main belt armor you have the main turrets that are very large and well protected. Unless you are in a battleship and get a clear shot on the sides of the turret or use plunging fire to punch through the 130mm roof armor you will find a hard time damaging a main turret. The coning tower is larger than most ships and like other battleships is extremely well protected with armor 350mm thick. The superstructure is mostly very thin however the secondary turrets located amidships have armor 55mm thick.
Frontally the Tirpitz is not significantly strong but due to the large bow that is angled significantly it can be difficult to penetrate if your shell hits at an extreme angle. If a Tirpitz is driving with its bow pointing at you there are three different bulkheads standing between you and the vital areas of the Tirpitz. Extending from the top deck down to the top of the main belt “top” area is a 145mm armored bulkhead. From here down to the top of the main belt “waterline” area is a 220mm armored plate and extending beneath this is a 180mm bulkhead. For battleships if you can land a shot on any of these bulkheads you stand a good chance at penetrating them, however getting through the angled bow can be tricky but also easy if the Tirpitz is angled slightly to one side. Also, the lower you aim the greater chance you have at striking the powder magazine if you do end up penetrating the bulkheads.
While the Tirpitz is vulnerable to plunging fire you still need to be cautious as to where you want your shells or dive bombers to attack. Area #1 is the 120mm angled plate that from the side was angled at 70 degrees but from above is 30 degrees(only from a pure vertical point of attack). The area beneath this outer rim of armor doesn’t house anything critical and you are better focusing elsewhere. Area #2 is the top of both powder magazines and extends just past both main turrets. This area has a 50mm top deck with an additional 100mm armored deck sitting above the powder magazine. Keep in mind that hitting a main turret will mean you will be dealing with 130mm roof armor and potentially additional turret armor/barbette armor. Since the main turrets are very large this makes these two areas difficult to penetrate effectively since you often end up hitting a main turret.
Finally area #3 is the weakest of the bunch at 50mm deck armor with an additional 50mm armored deck beneath it. Avoid hitting the top of the coning tower and towards the rear main turrets since you will run into additional armor. Outside of the small pockets of additional armor this area is very vulnerable to plunging fire and dive bombers and beneath it lays the citadel.