When aiming in World of Warships you have to take into account several factors that can drastically change whether you do damage to an enemy ship or not. You first have to start with knowing what ship you are in and determine whether your guns are powerful enough to penetrate an enemy ship’s vital areas. You also should learn the angle at which your ship’s shells travel at since some ships fire shells at shallow arcs while other ships in a way “lob” shells at a very high arc. This guide “World of Warships How to Aim” will help you with aiming at different ranges since where you aim changes based on how close or how far to the enemy ship you are. This guide will not however go over the armor of specific ships or classes which will help you fine tune your shots to cause maximum damage, for armor specific guides check out the armor guide page below.
Below each section will go over how to aim at different ranges based on the ship you are playing and also the enemy you are firing on. Each specific line relates to a general range(close – mid – long) you are to the enemy and helps you with lining up a shot when it comes to distance. Leading a target and also hitting important areas is a whole different topic and researching armor layouts for ships will help you with hitting specific areas of a ship. This guide simply helps you aim vertically at different ranges to help you hit ships at any range. A general rule of thumb is the further away a ship is the higher you should aim up from the waterline. This is due to your shells coming in at a steep angle(plunging fire) and if you are aiming at the waterline you will not being aiming at the center-mass of the ship.
In each image ranges are based off of the percentage of your standard firing range. This is a rough measurement to use while in game since each ship has different shell arcs, speed, penetration, and firing ranges. Some ships have spotter aircraft that can extend their firing range over the normal 100% limit which is why in each image it is labeled as 100%+ to take that into consideration.
Battleships vs. Battleships |World of Warships How to Aim|
When coming across an enemy battleship while you are playing one you should be trying to land massive hits with armor-piercing shells in most scenarios. When a battleship is at close or mid range which roughly equates to 60% or less of your main firing range you should be aiming along the waterline or just above it. This allows you to have the best chance to penetrate the key citadel areas and cause a massive amount of damage. If after at least two salvos you aren’t causing at least moderate damage then you can adjust your aim higher. At long range (60% or more) you need to adjust your aim higher on the enemy battleship since otherwise your shells will have a higher chance of falling short or hitting the thick side hull armor. By aiming higher just below the main deck line you will give your shells a better chance at missing most of the thickest armor on a battleship.
Cruisers vs. Battleships |World of Warships How to Aim|
In a cruiser versus battleship scenario you still are capable of penetrating most battleships with armor-piercing rounds at up to 50% of your maximum standard firing range. An exception to this rule is if you are in a light cruiser(tier 5 and under) and in which case your chances are very small with AP rounds. If a battleship is showing its broadside to you at close range firing off a few AP rounds to see if you can penetrate/citadel them might pay off. Otherwise switch to HE as it will provide more damage over the long haul. Like before after you are in the 50%-100%+ of your firing distance you should start aiming higher up on the battleship to give yourself the best chance to land most of your shots.
Destroyers vs. Battleships |World of Warships How to Aim|
In a destroyer your AP shells are virtually useless against a battleship at any distance. As a result it is best to aim higher up on a battleship at any range so that you give your shells the highest probability to hit the battleship and thus with HE cause more fires.
Battleships vs. Cruisers |World of Warships How to Aim|
If you are in a battleship against a cruiser your rounds have ample penetration to cut through almost any cruisers armor at any range. Knowing this I find that aiming closer to the waterline(but still slightly above it) at longer ranges allows you to land more heavy/citadel hits. Since cruisers are more narrow than battleships you shouldn’t aim as high as you would on a battleship at long range or else you will be firing to far.
Destroyers & Cruisers vs. Cruisers |World of Warships How to Aim|
If you are in a destroyer against a cruiser you approach it very similar to a battleship. At close and mid range you firing close to the waterline so that you are hitting most of your HE rounds and causing module damage/fires. At longer ranges you aim slightly higher to give yourself a better chance at not falling short of your target. The only difference there is if you are in a cruiser fighting against an enemy cruiser is that at close/mid range you might be able to citadel them with armor-piercing rounds. This is heavily dependent on what cruiser you are in and which one you are firing at so trial and error is the best way to find out what to use AP on.
Battleships, Cruisers, & Destroyers vs. Destroyers|World of Warships How to Aim|
Finally, against destroyers virtually every ship should simply aim just above the waterline to give the best chance of hitting the destroyer. High-explosive rounds are the best bang for your shot against destroyers since they will cause great damage and knock out many modules. However, if you are in a destroyer against another destroyer you can go for the kill quicker at 6km or less by firing AP which might cause higher HP damage.