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The following information is from a video game, and may or may not be historically accurate.

The United States uses tougher but slower ships in their campaigns. The heaviest unit in the game, unfortunately, goes to the Japanese - at least until the Iowa mission expansion.


United States Navy/Royal Navy[edit]

The USN features generally tougher units. A lot more of the USN is playable since you play them throughout the campaign.

Playable Warships[edit]

Elco PT Boat[edit]

Battlestations Elco PT Boat.JPG
ArmamentsAA Weapons: .50 calibre machine gun x2, 20mm machine gun x1
Torpedoes: Torpedo tubes x4
Depth Charges: Depth Charge Rack
ClassPT (Patrol/Torpedo Boat)
Speed50 knots
Strong againstTorpedo Bombers, Submarines, Destroyers
Weak againstBigger warships, machine guns, anti-aircraft fire

The Elco controls similarly to the Gyoraitei, and you get to control these small, swift boats for the first two missions of the campaign. Both have a single depth charge rack and both are too shallow to be struck with torpedoes, making both types of PT boats highly effective against enemy submarines. Both are also easily sunk with machine gun fire.

Power-wise, the two are roughly comparable. The Elco lacks the massive cannon the Gyoraitei has, making the Gyoraitei effective at longer ranges. The Gyoraitei's cannon is also a flak gun, which allows it to strike at high-flying dive bombers, whereas the Elco only sports machine guns, which lack the power and range to strike high.

The Elco, however, sports two more torpedo tubes than the Gyoraitei, making the Elco superior in attacking warships at closer ranges. The Gyoraitei's cannon is difficult to aim, especially against fast-moving surface targets, especially Elcos. This means that a typical battle between a Gyoraitei and an Elco tends to favour the Elco. The Gyoraitei's slow loading time for its cannon and single machine gun also detriments it against the Elco's fast-firing triple machine guns.

One notable PT boat is PT-109, which is under the command of Lieutenant John F. Kennedy. It only makes one appearance, in Defence of the Phillipines.

Official Description: There are several PT (patrol torpedo) boat designs in service with the U.S. Navy, but the most common is the 80-foot long model built by New Jersey's Elco Boat Company. These sleek, very fast boats - well-armed with torpedoes, depth charges, and 20mm antiaircraft guns - are capable of engaging any target, be it in the air, on the sea, or below it. However, they are very vulnerable to enemy fire, particularly machine gun fire, and are best employed to harass enemy merchant shipping or to attack submarines.

Clemson class[edit]

Battlestations Clemson DD.JPG
ArmamentsAA Weapons: 40mm machine gun x1, 20mm machine gun x1
Artillery: 4"/50 cannon x4
Torpedoes: Torpedo tubes x4x2
Depth Charges: Depth Charge Rack
ClassDD (Destroyer)
Speed40 knots
Strong againstSubmarines, Patrol boats
Weak againstCruisers, Battleships, Aircraft

The Clemson is an old, venerable warship and you can easily tell by its massive smokestacks. Its weapons are quite outdated now, but it can try to hold its own against enemy warships, particularly the Minekaze-class. For the first several missions though, all you'll have is the Clemson, and it should serve you well for the first missions. Once you manage to get your hands on the Fletcher-class though, you'll learn to love it far more than the Clemson. It's a good warship, but as one of the weakest in the game, it will have issues trying to find its place in the battlefield.

Notable Clemson-class warships include the Gamble, Kane, Parrot, Tucker, Walker, and Worden.

Official Description: These venerable destroyers have been in service since 1919, but they are still worthy ships that are useful in a variety of roles. They carry a depth charge launcher, making them capable of engaging enemy submarines, and they feature a number of torpedo tubes, which gives them a powerful punch against larger ships. unfortunately, they are quite weak in the antiaircraft role, thanks to their small number of AA guns and the fact that they do not mount any dual-purpose guns.

Fletcher class[edit]

Battlestations Fletcher DD.JPG
ArmamentsAA Weapons: 20mm machine gun x4, 28mm quad machine gun x1
5"/38 dual-purpose gun x5
Artillery: 5"/38 dual-purpose gun x5
Torpedoes: Torpedo tubes x6
Depth Charges: Depth Charge Rack x2
ClassDD (Destroyer)
Speed40 knots
Strong againstDestroyers, Submarines, Patrol boats, Aircraft
Weak againstCruisers, Battleships

Probably one of the best and most famous destroyers, the Fletcher-class is capable of attacking all kinds of targets given its weaponry, and like the Fubuki, is a jack-of-all-trades. Unfortunately this means it cannot truly excel in any area - save perhaps the anti-aircraft role. If they can get in really close, they can even torpedo battleships, although that is a difficult manoeuvre to accomplish.

Heavier warships can have an easy time sinking Fletchers, particularly those of cruiser class and above. The Fletcher may be a jack of all trades, but heavier armour can still prevent it from causing much damage to a heavier opponent. At the same time, bigger guns will have an easy time penetrating the Fletcher's thin hulls.

Notable warships of this class include the Dewey, Jenkins, Monaghan, John D. Ford, Perkins, Hotspur, and Sands.

Official Description: The Fletcher class has a state-of-the-art destroyer design that came into service in early 1942. Much larger than normal destroyers, it is nearly comparable to a light cruiser in both size and armament. rmed with the new dual-purpose 5" guns, it is particularly strong in the AA role, though it is also a formidable submarine hunter thanks to its dual depth charge launchers. In addition, both its torpedo tubs mounts can swivel to either side of the ship, allowing it t unleash a salvo of torpedoes that can put down an opponent of any size. These are very potent warships.

Atlanta class[edit]

Battlestations Atlanta CL.JPG
ArmamentsAA Weapons: 20mm machine gun x8, 20mm machine gun x3, 5"/38 dual-purpose gun x16
Artillery: 5"/38 dual-purpose gun x16
Torpedoes: Torpedo Tubes x6
ClassCL (Light Cruiser)
Speed30 knots
Strong againstDestroyers, Aircraft
Weak againstCruisers, Battleships, Submarines

A substantial step up from the Fletcher class, the Atlanta-class has done away with depth charges and most torpedoes in favour of more guns. Since it has dual-purpose weaponry, it is quite effective against both ships and aircraft. Unfortunately, it uses the same cannon as the Fletcher-class destroyer, so it will have difficulty sinking heavy targets. The Cleveland class is a stronger light cruiser, more adept at sinking other cruisers.

Notable warships of this class include the pathfinder - Atlanta - as well as the Oakland, Ogala, Phoenix, Argonne, and the Sacramento.

Official Description: These modern light cruisers have only recently entered service. Originally designed to lead destroyer divisions, they carry a very large number of 5" dual-purpose guns, which gives them three times as much firepower as a destroyer. As a result, they make excellent antiaircraft platforms, as they can put a tremendous amount of flak into the air. Unfortunately, because of the light shell fired by the 5" gun, they are unable to effectively engage heavier surface targets, and generally struggle against any ship larger than a light cruiser. However, they do carry torpedo tubes, which gives them a chance against bigger opponents.

Cleveland class[edit]

Battlestations Cleaveland CL.JPG
ArmamentsAA Weapons: 20mm machine gun x3, 40mm machine gun x4, 5"/38 dual-purpose gun x12
Artillery: 6"/53 gun x12 5"/38 dual-purpose gun x12
ClassCL (Light Cruiser)
Speed30 knots
Strong againstDestroyers, Aircraft
Weak againstHeavy Cruisers, Battleships

Arguably one of the best light cruisers in the game, this ship far surpasses the Kuma and the Atlanta in terms of raw firepower. While it lacks the Atlanta's number of flak cannons, the Cleveland has 6" guns, which cause considerably more damage, but the same reload as a destroyer's guns. This makes the Cleveland operate more like a heavy cruiser. It doesn't carry torpedo tubes, so it isn't much use against a battleship. The armor is also fairly weak, and tends to go down quickly under sustained fire, making it a ship that can dish it out but not take it. It appears on only a few maps however.

Cleveland's weapons fire so quickly, many players remark half-jokingly that it has no reload time whatsoever.

Interestingly, this is the only ship in the game that visually has depth charges, but it cannot use them.

There are only two warships of this class that make an appearance in the game: the Cleveland and the Denver.

Official Description: These state-of-the-art cruisers are just coming into service now at the start of the war, and they are probably the best ships of their type in the world. Their main weapon battery of twelve 6" guns gives them very considerable firepower against any ships lighter than a battleship. This is backed up by twelve 5" dual-purpose guns, making for a broadside of awesome porportions. These dual-purpose guns also form part of an excellent AA suite, which affords the Cleveland heavy antiaircraft firepower in any direction. Although they do not carry torpedo tubes and are thus useless against battleships and the like, the Cleveland class is superior as a carrier escort.

Northampton class[edit]

Battlestations Northampton CA.JPG
ArmamentsAA Weapons: 20mm machine gun x4, 28mm quad machine gun x2, 5"25 flak cannon x4
Artillery: 8"/55 cannon x9
ClassCA (Heavy Cruiser)
Speed28 knots
Strong againstDestroyers, Cruisers
Weak againstSubmarines, Battleships, Aircraft

These heavy cruisers are similar in most respects to the Mogami and Takao class of heavy cruisers of the Japanese. The Mogami and Takao's guns are slightly smaller than the Northampton's, but they have ten guns versus the Northampton's nine. Additionally the Mogami and Takao both have torpedo tubes, something the two cruisers can use against the Northampton in close-ranged broadside engagements.

The two machine guns in the crow's nest of the ship allow for easy targeting of individual enemy aircraft approaching from the front, but since aircraft almost always appear in groups of three or more, they are of limited use.

Because this ship has its flak guns separate from its artillery (not DP), it can attempt to use them to destroy other warships' turrets while the artillery can continue doing what they do best.

Notable warships of this class include the Houston, Chester, Astoria, Minneapolis, and Chicago.

Official Description: Commissioned in 1930, this class of heavy cruiser is powerfully armed, carrying nine 8" guns in triple turrets, along with a varied anti-aircraft suite However, they carry no torpedo tubes, which puts them at a disadvantage against heavier opponents - they are forced to engage solely with gunfire. Nevertheless, these are potent ships, ideally suited to carrier escort duty or as the flagships of a cruiser division. The Houston is currently serving as the flagship of Admiral Thomas Hart, commander in chief of the US Asiatic Fleet.

York class[edit]

Battlestations York CA.JPG
ArmamentsAA Weapons: 20mm machine gun x4, 5"/25 flak cannon x4
Artillery: 8"/50 cannon x6
Torpedoes: Torpedo tubes x6
ClassCA (Heavy Crusier)
Speed28 knots
Strong againstDestroyers, Light Cruisers
Weak againstHeavy Cruisers, Submarines, Aircraft

The only Royal Navy heavy cruiser, the York class unfortunately isn't all too impressive. It is in fact the weakest heavy cruiser in the game, but it can still give smaller ships a run for its money. Interestingly, it is also the only Allied heavy cruiser to sport torpedo tubes. These can give it a chance, but given how few it has (compare the York's six to the Mogami's twelve) it can't cause much damage with them. Additionally, they lack dual purpose guns as well as a large AA suite (the Atlanta class has 27 AA guns, versus the York's eight). As a result, they are best used against light cruisers and destroyers.

There are only two notable warships of this class that make an appearance in the game: the class' pathfinder - the York, and the Exeter.

Official Description: Built in the 1920s, these were the only heavy cruisers ever commissioned by the Royal Navy. They carry a wide range of armaments, including six 8" guns and torpedo tubes, meaning they are capable of engaging any target. However, as a result, they do not excel in any one area, which can make them less effective in a particular role than a specialized ship. In particular, their small number of torpedo tubes means that they struggle against heavily armoured opponents.

King George V class[edit]

Battlestations King George BB.JPG
ArmamentsAA Weapons: 20mm machine gun x3, 28mm quad machine gun x4, 5"/50 dual-purpose gun x16
Artillery: 14"/45 cannon x10, 5"/50 dual-purpose gun x16
ClassBB (Battleship)
Speed20 knots
Strong againstDestroyers, Cruisers
Weak againstSubmarines, Aircraft

The King George V class is the third-biggest warship in the game, next only to the Iowa and the legendary Yamato. Although it could stand up to its own against other battleships, other battleships could still put the hurt on this leviathan. Submarines are its biggest problem, so always give it destroyer escort when possible, especially anti-aircraft units.

If this ship has a weakness, however, it is its turrets. The KGV class has ten cannons, a whopping eight of which are in two quad turrets. The destruction of a single turret will knock out four cannons in a single strike, allowing other ships to easily move in on it. Therefore, the destruction of a main gun will eliminate 40% of the entire ship's long-range weapons.

There are only two warships of this class. The pathfinder - King George V - and the Prince of Wales.

Official Description: These modern British battleships have very heavy armour and can withstand all but the largest enemy guns. They also have enough firepower to sink any ships they encounter. They could have had even heavier armament but were built according to the Treaty of Washington, which restricted the maximum size of battleships. Their main weakness is that their 14" guns are mounted in just three turrets. If one of these malfunctions or is damaged, then much of their firepower is lost. Only one ship of this class, the Prince of Wales, is in the Pacific at this time, where it serves as the flagship of Admiral Tom Philips, commander in chief of the British Eastern Fleet.

Renown class[edit]

Battlestations Renown BB.JPG
ArmamentsAA Weapons: 20mm machine gun x4, 28mm quad machine gun x2, 4.5"/45 dual-purpose gun x12, 5"/35 flak cannon x4
Artillery: 15"/42 cannon x6
ClassBB (Battleship)
Speed25 knots
Strong againstDestroyers, Cruisers, Aircraft
Weak againstBattleships, Submarines

Either the official description is wrong or the Renown doesn't have 20 dual-purpose guns - if it does have that many dual-purpose guns, the Renown is in fact an able antiaircraft platform. It would be capable of engaging enemy bombers at high altitude as well. It appears to be lacking in the machine gun role, however, so it can be easily torpedoed as any ordinary battleship would. However despite the description saying its AA suite is light, don't get complacent - the Renown-class has a better AA suite than the description makes out, capable of seriously hurting torpedo bombers, though it is advisable to keep fighters around as swarms of bombers will overwhelm them.

Interestingly, the Renown is one of the fastest battleships in the game - it goes 25 knots, five knots faster than most other battleships, including the New York, Prince of Wales, and Fuso classes. This is because the Renown is technically a Battlecruiser, a battleship with lighter firepower and better speed, though, excels in neither. However, other battleships can also match this speed - Kongo, as well as the largest battleships in the game - Iowa and Yamato.

Unfortunately, the Renown class is the weakest battleship in the game - it is tied with the Yamato and Iowa for having the fewest turrets on a battleship (three) and doesn't pack the Yamato's overall attacking power. Although it is weak, it is not by any means a sitting target - especially against smaller ships.

There are only two warships of this class. The pathfinder - Renown - and the Repulse. In the Solomon Islands multiplayer map a ship called the Revenge appears. Revenge was actually a Revenge-class battleship. The Revenge and Renown-classes are related, two of the planned eight Revenge-class battleships were redesigned and became the Renown-class, whilst another - HMS Resistance - was cancelled.

Official Description: Built during World War I, these British battlecruisers are rather outdated now. They carry a relatively small number of main guns and are lightly armoured in comparison to modern battleships. As they were built prior to the emergence of attack aircraft as a viable weapon, they also carry a light AA suite, which makes them very vulnerable to air strikes. Nevertheless, they remain a potent adversary for any enemy shipping lighter than a battleship.

New York class[edit]

Battlestations New York BB.JPG
ArmamentsAA Weapons: 5"/45 dual-purpose gun x8, 20mm machine gun x4, 40mm machine gun x4
Artillery: 14"/45 cannon x10, 5"/25 dual-purpose gun x8
ClassBB (Battleship)
Speed20 knots
Strong againstDestroyers, Cruisers, Battleships
Weak againstSubmarines, Aircraft

These aged, venerable battleships are similar to the Fusō in that they are old and have received improved armour and engines. The New York class, however, will have issues prevailing against the more heavily-armed Fusō class - but it can still shred other ships, particularly of the heavy cruiser class.

Regardless, the battleships of both sides are roughly identical, so similar tactics should work for both. If the New York has a weakness, it's due to its lack of secondary cannons, which prevents it from having a very fast refire rate against smaller, swifter ships. This battleship is definitely made for long-range attacks with its 14" guns.

The New York class is the second strongest Allied battleship in the game, and has the most number of turrets of any Allied battleship, making it the most comparable to the Fusō class.

Notable warships of this class include the pathfinder New York, Nevada, Oklahoma, West Virginia, and Tennessee. However, many of these ships (in fact, all but the New York) were not actually New York class ships, but due to the lack of other ship models, such as the Pennsylvania-class or New Mexico-class, this ship is used as a substitute.

Official Description: These American battleships were launched before World War I but were updated with improved engines, thicker deck armour, and new fire control towers, bringing them up to modern standards. They carry ten 14" guns mounted in five dual turrets, giving them considerable firepower, and are a capable opponent against all but the heaviest modern battleships.

Iowa class[edit]

Battlestations Iowa BB.JPG
ArmamentsAA Weapons: 5"/38 dual-purpose guns x20, 40mm machine gun x2, 20mm machine gun x1
Artillery: 16"/50 cannon x9, 5"/38 dual-purpose guns
ClassBB (Battleship)
Speed25 knots
Strong againstEverything
Weak againstSubmarines, Aircraft

These massive battleships are actually quite fast. Comparable to the Japanese Yamato, four of these leviathans face off in the Battle of the Sibuyan Sea. Standard battleship tactics work, but great care must be taken to avoid torpedoes especially, since these ships have very little armour at the waterline. A mass of torpedoes, coupled by shells from Yamato and Musashi, are the main way of taking down the Iowa-class.

Dive bombers have little to no effect on the warship due to its strong deck and belt armour. Destroyers, surprisingly, can cause quite a bit of damage at close range due to their torpedoes - but destroyer shells will merely bounce off of the Iowa's hardened exterior.

The Iowa was in fact so powerful during the Second World War, it was in service until 1991.

Notable warships of this class include the pathfinder Iowa, and her sister ship, the New Jersey.

Official Description: The Iowa-class battleships were the most powerful and advanced battleships built for the United States Navy. Designed as 'fast' battleships, these ships had very high top speeds and were capable of escorting a quick carrier force. Mounting nine 16"/50 naval guns in three turrets as main guns, combined with the improved radar tracking system, no ship can beat the Iowa-class in a long range combat, and the large number of 5" secondary batteries provide excellent anti-air protection. Although Yamato's armour is slightly better, the high speed and manoeuvrability can mean victory for the Iowa in a duel between these super battleships.

Lexington class[edit]

Battlestations Lexington CV.JPG
ArmamentsAA Weapons: 5"/25 flak cannon x4, 40mm machine gun x3, 20mm machine gun x4
ClassCV (Aircraft Carrier)
Speed20 knots
Strong againstAircraft
Weak againstEverything Else

Use typical carrier tactics when captaining a carrier. Don't expose it to attacks, use its air wing, all that jazz. It can be quite an antiaircraft ship, but sending it into battle is tantamount to suicide. The Lexington is the only ship in its class.

Official Description: The Lexington was the first fleet carrier to enter service with the USN and is still the largest aircraft carrier in the world. She was originally designed as a battlecruiser, and she still carries some heavy armament as a reminder of her past. This, however, does not stop her from carrying a complement of aircraft that is just as large as any other carrier afloat. Known to her crew as the "Lady Lex", she is a veteran ship with a highly trained crew and is one of the most valuable assets the USN has in the Pacific.

Yorktown class[edit]

Battlestations Yorktown CV.JPG
ArmamentsAA Weapons: 5"/25 flak cannon x8, 40mm machine gun x2, 20mm machine gun x1
ClassCV (Aircraft Carrier)
Speed20 knots
Strong againstAircraft
Weak againstEverything Else

Again with the Yorktown, use standard carrier tactics. Interestingly, the Yorktown has more flak guns but less machine guns than the Lexington. Theoretically, this makes the Yorktown more vulnerable to low-altitude bombers but less vulnerable to high-altitude bombers. Regardless, aircraft carriers in all their forms sport tough antiaircraft armament. Only warships pose a significant threat to them.

Notable warships of this class include the pathfinder - the Yorktown, Hornet, Wasp, and the ever-famous USS Enterprise.

Official Description: The Yorktown-class carriers are the most modern aircraft carriers the United States has, and they are built according to the latest carrier design theories. They carry a large complement of fighter and bomber attack aircraft and are capable of effectively engaging any target. Their only weakness is light underwater armour, which means they are vulnerable to torpedo attack. The USS Yorktown is currently serving as the flagship for Rear Admiral Frank Fletcher, as a part of Task Force 17.

Narwhal class[edit]

Battlestations Narwhal SS.JPG
ArmamentsAA Weapons: .50 calibre machine gun x1
Artillery: 5"/25 cannon x1
Torpedoes: Torpedo tubes x4 (fore) Torpedo tubes x2 (aft)
ClassSS (Submarine)
Speed30 knots surfaced, 25 knots submerged
Strong againstCruisers, Battleships
Weak againstPatrol Boats, Seaplanes, Dive bombers, destroyers

Use typical submarine tactics when commanding the Narwhal. There are no differences as to the Narwhal and the Type B, but keep in mind that as a submarine you can't engage other subs, not even with torpedoes (you can on the surface, but not while underwater). Interestingly enough, you can see other submarines when they cross under you. At point-blank range, submarines can fight each other in what is more or less an underwater dogfight. However, torpedoes rise to the surface quickly, and as such they need to get close to target an enemy sub with torpedoes. In most circumstances, however, it is simply more prudent to dive.

Notable warships of this class include the class' pathfinder - the Narwhal - as well as the Tautog and the ever-famous Nautilus.

Official Description: Built in the late 1920s and commissioned in 1930, this submarine class was designed for hunting down enemy commerce ships, either with its deck-monted 5" gun or with its six torpedo tubes. like all submarines, it is very vulnerable when on the surface, thanks to its lack of armour and firepower, but when submerged it is a danger to any ship.

Non-Playable Ships[edit]

The US has a distinction from the Japanese in that one of their aircraft carriers, and one aircraft along with it, are completely non-playable.

Hermes class[edit]

Battlestations Hermes CV.JPG
ArmamentsAA Weapons: 20mm machine gun x1, 28mm quad machine gun x1
ClassCV (Aircraft Carrier)
Speed20 knots
Strong againstAircraft
Weak againstEverything Else

The Hermes class sports very little armament and only one type of fighter. Fortunately, the four wings of Hawker Hurricanes it deploys more than compensates for its lack of weapons. It appears only in one map as an adversary - the map is Attack on Force Z and is a necessary target to prevent the enemy from spawning Hawker Hurricanes. Since it has only machine guns, sending high-altitude level bombers at it is the way to go.

The Hermes is the only warship of its class.

Official Description: HMS Hermes was the first aircraft carrier commissioned by the Royal Navy and was only the second ever built in the world. Although she is a veteran ship with a long and noble past, she suffers from several design flaws - such as having a very small hangar, which means she carries a comparatively light complement of aircraft compared to modern carriers. She has recently been assigned to the British Eastern Fleet to provide air cover as the Royal Navy prepares to challenge the might of the IJN.

De Ruyter class[edit]

Battlestations De Ruyter CL.JPG
ArmamentsAA Weapons: 28mm quad machine gun x5
Artillery: 6"/53 cannon x7
ClassCL (Light Cruiser)
Speed30 knots
Strong againstDestroyers, Light Cruisers
Weak againstHeavy Cruisers, Battleships, Aircraft

Not much can be said about the De Ruyter, as it only makes a single short appearance in Battle of the Java Sea. Its guns are, power-wise, comparable to a Cleveland-class, but unlike the Cleveland it doesn't sport enough of them to put out a constant stream of shots on an enemy warship - which is good for you.

Although it doesn't demonstrate its AA power at all in the entire game (as Java Sea is a ship-only mission, and the only mission it appears in), it can be inferenced from its specs that it is most effective against enemy torpedo bombers, since dive bombers tend to fly high and avoid machine gun fire.

The De Ruyter is the only ship of its class.

Official Description: This Dutch light cruiser entered service in 1935. Carrying seven 6" guns, it is reasonably well armed for a light cruiser, and has the firepower to effectively engage any target up to heavy cruiser size.However, as it does not carry torpedo tubes, it is unable to engage battleships at all, and should not attempt to do so. The De Ruyter is also quite weak against air attacks, as its AA gun platform has a restricted fire arc.

Higgins Boat[edit]

Battlestations Higgins Boat.JPG
ArmamentsAA Weapons: .30 calibre machine gun x2
ClassLCP (Personnel landing craft)
Speed50 knots
Strong againstNothing
Weak againstEverything

Just strafe them and sink them with machine gun fire. Considering they only appear in the challenge mission Saving Tulagi, you will only have aircraft to use against them. Unlike Daihatsus, which are slow, easy targets - Higgins Boats move twice as fast, so work swiftly when having to strafe them down.

Official Description: These small, wooden, shallow-draft boats were the brainchild of New Orleans shipbuilder Andrew Higgins and allow for the rapid deployment of men and material onto enemy-held beaches. Without these remarkably innovative little boats, the invasion of enemy islands would be difficult, if not impossible. However, they are very easy to destroy, and their machine gun armament is of minimal danger to any opponent.

LST Mark 2[edit]

Battlestations US Landing Ship.JPG
ArmamentsAA Weapons: 20mm machine gun x1, 28mm quad machine gun x1, 4"50 dual-purpose gun x1
Artillery: 4"50 dual-purpose gun x1
ClassLST (Vehicle Landing Ship)
Speed20 knots
Strong againstNothing
Weak againstEverything

The only role these ships have in the campaign is that they need to be protected in Strike on Tulagi. You will never captain or even have to attack these ships.

Official Description: The landing ship tank (LST) is a recently commissioned amphibious assault ship, designed for landing heavy equipment and large numbers of troops on enemy beaches. Known to their crews as "large slow targets", these ships are lightly armoured and are very vulnerable to attack. They do carry some AA armament and a single 5" main gun, but they are no match for any warship.

United States Naval Air Force[edit]

Unfortunately the F4U Corsair does not make an appearance in this game. This is due to the fact that it entered service after the Battle of Midway, although there are several other historical discrepancies that argue that other aircraft were introduced fully before their time as well.

Playable Aircraft[edit]

F2A Buffalo[edit]

Battlestations F2A Buffalo.JPG
Armaments.50 cal machine gun x4
200kg bomb x1 (optional)
Strong againstAircraft, PT Boats
Weak againstShips

The Buffalo is probably the weakest fighter in the game, useful primarily for bringing down enemy bombers. They won't do much against a Zero - the Wildcat is a better and the P-40 is the best (although the P-40 doesn't appear in multiplayer). With its wing-mounted cannons and short, stubby wings, it doesn't really excel in any area, although it works just fine in situations where it appears. It's a better interdiction air unit than a fighter.

Official Description: The Brewster F2A Buffalo has been in service aboard US Navy carriers since 1939. However, it has been largely unsatisfactory, being too unstable and underarmed, and too heavy for carrier operations. It has been largely phased out of operation and been replaced by the Wildcat on all carriers. Nevertheless, it is still in service with the British and Dutch air forces, as well as the U.S. Marine Corps squadrons.

P-40 Warhawk[edit]

Battlestations P-40 Warhawk.JPG
Armaments.50 cal machine gun x6
200kg bomb x1 (optional)
Strong againstAircraft, PT Boats
Weak againstShips

This fighter is one of the best the USAF has to offer. The Wildcat is a solid substitute, but some find the P-40's guns to have more convergance, and thus easier hits. You'll find the P-40 a good land-based fighter when you need it, but performance-wise doesn't differ much from the Wildcat.

Official Description: Coming into full production in 1940, the P-40 represents the latest installment in Curtiss' "Hawk" line of aircraft. Commissioned by the US Army Air Corps, it is a land-based fighter that has already served with distinction against the Japanese in China as part of general Claire Chenault's volunteer group "The Flying Tigers". Although it has shown that it can hold its own against modern Japanese aircraft, new aircraft designs are emerging that will soon render it obsolete.

F4F Wildcat[edit]

Battlestations F4F Wildcat.JPG
Armaments.50 cal machine gun x4
200kg bomb x1 (optional)
Strong againstAircraft, PT Boats
Weak againstShips

Oddly, the Wildcat is in fact superior to the Zero in this game; it climbs faster and turns harder than the Zero. Its guns, however, are mounted on the wings, making aiming and hitting a target more difficult. This is especially given the order which the guns fire - they fire three on the left, then three on the right. This means if a target is on the side you'll fire and land three direct hits - but the next wing will fire after that and miss three times before you'll get your three hits again. The Wildcat is a very good fighter indeed; the Warhawk is comparable, but it has a better firing pattern.

Official Description: The F4F is the Navy's main carrier-based fighter and has been in full service since August 1940. Initially designed as a biplane, it was redesigned as a monoplane and given a larger engine to make it competitive with other designs such as the F2A Buffalo. The Wildcat is slower than the Japanese Zero but can absorb far more damage thanks to its armour plating and self-sealing fuel tanks.

SBD Dauntless[edit]

Battlestations SBD Dauntless.JPG
Armaments.50 cal machine gun x2
1000 bomb x1, Depth charge x2
Strong againstDestroyers, Light Cruisers, Land installations, Submarines
Weak againstFlak Cannons, Fighters

The SBD Dauntless was the main dive bomber for the US Navy. It is a very good bomber, on par with its Japanese counterparts, although not as manoeuvrable. The ability to equip depth charges makes it more alike the Judy than the Val. It also sports nose-mounted guns, allowing you to lead your target less and have fewer issues aiming. If you drop the plane's load, it becomes a surprisingly good fighter, almost as good as a Wildcat. Rather than landing or crashing your Dauntlesses, have them act as fighters and have them tear up as many Zeros as possible before going down. The SBD AI pilot wasn't programmed for dogfighting much, though, so you'll have to command one of them yourself for maximum effectiveness.

Official Description: Commissioned as a combination scout/bomber aircraft, the Dauntless entered service with the Marines in late 1940 and with the US Navy in early 1941. It is now the Navy's foremost carrier-based bomber. Although it is slower and less manoeuvrable than its Japanese equivalent, the Aichi "Val", it is an excellent dive-bomber thanks to its very good flight characteristics. It is also able to absorb heavy amounts of damage.

TBD Devastator[edit]

Battlestations TBM Devastator.JPG
Armaments.30 cal machine gun x1
Aerial torpedo x1
Strong againstWarships
Weak againstAircraft

Not at all similar to the Kate, the TBD Devastator is an old, colourful plane that makes it instantly recognizable. The Devastator is still painted in its pre-war safety colours, with the yellow and orange wings supposedly making it easier to distinguish should it be forced to ditch. The Devastator is still a fine torpedo bomber, if a bit of an easy target. Manoeuvrability and stability aren't main issues when comparing it to the TBF/D Avenger, so use it as a torpedo bomber whenever possible. Unlike the Avenger, it isn't useful for anything else since it can't equip bombs or depth charges. It is equipped with a single machine gun, making it the most lightly armed aircraft in the game. However, because it is mounted directly on the nose, its accuracy is quite high.

Official Description: The Devastator has been in service with the US Navy as a carrier-based torpedo bomber since 1937. When it entered service, it was the most advanced plane of its type in the world; however, the rapid advancement in aviation technology meant that the Devastator is now considered obsolete and was replaced in early 1942 by the TBF/D Avenger.

TBF Avenger[edit]

Battlestations TBFM Avenger.JPG
Armaments.30 cal machine gun x2
Aerial torpedo x1, 1,000 lb bomb x1, depth charge x1
Strong againstWarships
Weak againstAircraft, machine guns

Some call it the TBF Avenger, some call it the TBM - it doesn't matter. The TBF is manufactured by Grumman, the TBM made by General Motors. Therefore, for this guide's purposes, it uses the TBF/TBM to refer to either version (although technically the game uses the Grumman version). The Avenger is equipped with two wing-mounted guns - they are extremely inaccurate and are best used for peppering ships to disable their machine guns. Dogfighting with a TBF/TBM is not recommended at all.

That said, the TBF/TBM is the most versatile aircraft of its kind - it can be equipped with most commonly an aerial torpedo for attacking enemy ships, but also with a 1,000 bomb, making it an able dive bomber too (although when ordered to dive bomb it in fact performs a level bombing manoeuvre, only with a single bomb). It can even be equipped with a single depth charge for attacking enemy submarines. The SBD Dauntless, however, is able to equip two depth charges, as well as its 1,000 lb bomb - thus making the SBD a far more effective dive bomber and sub hunter than the Avenger. Still, the SBD can't equip torpedoes.

Official Description: The TBF Avenger is a three-seater aircraft that is due to enter service in early 1942, replacing the TBD Devastator as the Navy's main carrier-based torpedo bomber. Simple in construction, it will be the largest single-engine aircraft in service anywhere in the world. Stable in flight and capable of carrying a variety of payloads, including torpedoes, bombs, and depth charges, the Avenger's main weakness is its slow speed, which makes it vulnerable to both fighter attack and AA fire.

Fairey Swordfish[edit]

Battlestations Fairey Swordfish.JPG
Armaments7.7mm machine gun x1
Aerial torpedo x1, 200 lb bomb x1
Strong againstWarships
Weak againstAircraft

Despite being a biplane, this plane is actually pretty good. As a biplane it is slow and easily shot down, but it did manage to pull off several victories in history, and so with a little bit of skilled piloting and luck it can do the same here. Ordinary torpedo attacks work with this biplane, so one can use it to great effect against enemy shipping.

Official Description: The Fairey Swordfish is the Royal Navy's foremost carrier-based torpedo bomber, and has been in service since 1936. It is horribly obsolescent compared to other nations torpedo bombers, being a biplane of metal and fabric construction with a low speed compared to other aircraft. Nevertheless, it has already achieved legendary status, thanks to its attack on the German battleship Bismarck , as well as the groundbreaking strike on the Italian Navy's port at Taranto, where numerous warships were sunk at anchor in a surprise torpedo attack. Many nations paid great interest to this achievement, in particular the Japanese.

B-17 Flying Fortress[edit]

Battlestations B-17 Flying Fortress.JPG
Armaments.50 cal machine guns x13
450 lb bombs x24
Strong againstDestroyers, Cruisers, Carriers, Land installations
Weak againstBattleships, flak cannons, fighters

They don't call it the Flying Fortress for nothing. This massive four-engined bomber sports a lot of air defences. It sports so many in fact that it can be used as a fighter if necessary. Additionally, when launched in sufficient numbers, its tail guns protect each other and pursuing enemy fighters will get shot down in considerable numbers. Additionally it also flies so high that enemy anti-aircraft have difficulty hitting it. The weakness of the Flying Fortress is its speed and its engines, which are its weakest point. With a payload of 24 bombs, it is more than capable of laying waste to just about anything that isn't a battleship. It will have obvious issues, however, attacking small fast targets, particularly destroyers and PT boats.

Like most level bombers, it is possible to take control of these machine gun turrets and use them yourself against enemy fighters.

Technically the Fortress shown in-game is shown incorrectly for the game era's, in 1941-1942 the USAAC was still using olive green camo, which was used until around January 1944, and the model is the B-17G, which did not enter service until Autumn 1943, it would be more correct if the Fortresses were olive-painted B-17Cs.

Official Description: Since 1938, the B-17 has been the USAAF's main heavy bomber. Capable of carrying an 8,000 lb payload of bombs nearly 2,000 miles, it is ideally suited to service in the Pacific. The B-17 is a very robust aircraft, capable of sustaining vast damage and still remaining airborne. It has received the nickname "flying fortress" thanks to the 13 turreted .50 caliber machine guns it carries for defence. A formation of B-17s is a formidable prospect for an attacking fighter pilot.

B-25 Mitchell[edit]

Battlestations B-25 Mitchell.JPG
Armaments.30 cal machine gun x1
Aerial torpedo x1
Strong againstDestroyers, Cruisers, Carriers, Land installations
Weak againstBattleships, flak cannons, fighters

An inferior bomber compared to the B-17, the B-25 is still a fine bomber that outclasses its Japanese counterpart, the G3M Nell. Although it has forward firing machine guns and crosshairs to go with it, it should not be used as a dogfighter under any circumstances. It can, however, use these guns to attack PT boats and cargo ships, and may be pretty useful as a bomber destroyer. Fighters should always be an escort for the B-25s, especially if enemy fighters are near its target.

Official Description: The B-25 is a medium bomber that has been in service with the USAAF since early 1941. It has already gone through several redesigns. The latest version, the B-25D, has been given three forward-firing .50 caliber machine guns, which alongside its 3,000 lb payload, make it an excellent plane for attacking enemy shipping.

PBY Catalina[edit]

Battlestations PBY Catalina.JPG
Armaments.30 cal machine gun x3
.50 cal machine gun x2
Aerial Torpedo x2, Depth Charge x2
Strong againstWarships, Submarines
Weak againstAntiaircraft fire, aircraft

A submariner's most dangerous adversary, this aircraft, like its IJN counterparts the Emily and Mavis, have sonar attached to them. Worse still they can hit submerged submarines with two depth charges. The absolute worst part of this is how they can do all this while airborne and immune to a submarine's torpedoes. Surfacing won't have any effect either - depth charges dropped on a surfaced submarine will sink it immediately, especially on a direct hit.

If you're flying a Catalina, you'll find it handles more like a bomber than any other kind of fighter. You'll also find you can't order it to land and reload. Instead you have to manually take the controls and reload it yourself by landing in the water near a shipyard. Fortunately you don't need to get very close to the shipyard and certainly not inside it.

Catalinas are extremely fragile and should generally not be used as torpedo bombers - although sometimes that's all they're useful for. Dedicated torpedo bombers, like the Devastator and Avenger, are better given their smaller profile, but if Catalinas are around you may as well put them to work.

Official Description: The Catalina is a venerable aircraft, having been in service since 1936. It is an excellent design and has been produced in greater numbers than any other flying boat. It is used in many roles, such as reconnaissance, transport, search and rescue, and convoy escort. It is also particularly valuable against submarines, especially since the introduction of sonobuoys, which allow the Catalina to detect submerged submarines and attack them with depth charges.

P-38 Lightning[edit]

Battlestations P-38 Lightning.JPG
Armaments.50 cal machine gun x5, 20mm machine gun x1
Strong againstAircraft
Weak againstShips

Without a doubt the best fighter in the game, the P-38 Lightning can tear up Gekkos and Zeros alike. Nicknamed by the Japanese as the "fork-tailed devil", it certainly lives up to its name. While the Gekko matches it performance-wise, the Lightning's profile is much, much smaller; making it more difficult to hit, and therefore is a hard target to say the least. Additionally, its forked tail means that enemy fire can pass through it, while the average fighter would be hit in this area because it only has one tail.

This aircraft only appears in the Iowa Mission Pack.

Official Description: The P-38 Lightning was designed as a high altitude fighter, and after numerous problems with the prototypes the plane finally entered service in late 1941. It's a land-based fighter with twin engines, heavy armour and superior weaponry, ideally suited for the Pacific theatre, with long range and excellent performance. Its speed and climb combined with the focused firepower made it a fearsome opponent of the Japanese planes.

Non-Playable Aircraft[edit]

These aircraft can unfortunately not be flown under any circumstance. The US has fewer non-flyable aircraft than the Japanese, but some (most notably the Hawker Hurricane) would have been quite useful.

Hawker Hurricane[edit]

Battlestations Hawker Hurricane.JPG
Armaments.303 cal machine gun x6
Strong againstAircraft
Weak againstShips

Unfortunately the Hawker Sea Hurricane cannot be flown in-game. It is encountered as the only aerial adversary in Attack on Force Z, where the power of its six forward firing machine guns is all too apparent. More than capable of tearing bombers apart and the Hermes capable of spawning more for all the ones you shoot down, it seems the Hurricane's only weakness is the carrier that spawns it. It lives up to all its glory in this map - unfortunately, that glory isn't yours.

Official Description: The Hawker Hurricane has been the Royal Air Force's main single-engine fighter since 1937, and has been produced in huge numbers. It proved its merit as a fighter plane in the Battle of Britain, where it accounted for more enemy kills than all other defences combined, including all ground and air defences. It is a simple design, consisting of a welded metal frame with fabric stretched over it, but its six-wing mounted machine guns give it excellent firepower. A version known as the Sea Hurricane operates on the Royal Navy's Fleet Carriers.

Douglas DC-3[edit]

Battlestations DC-3.JPG
Strong againstNothing
Weak againstEverything

Making appearances only in the tutorials and once in a cutscene during the campaign, the DC-3 has and never will appear on the front lines in this game. It has many, many names, the official one being "Dakota", and others including "Skytrain" and the "Gooney Bird". It doesn't have any weapons at all, but since it makes only a few appearances, don't worry too much about it.

Official Description: Known as "The Plane with a Thousand Names", this transport plane has been in service with civil airlines since 1936 and is given credit for the 500% increase in airline passenger traffic since that time. Seeing its potential as a military transport, the US Army commissioned a military version, designated the C-47. Called the "Dakota" by its manufacturers and the "Skytrain" by the USAAF, it is an incredibly versatile aircraft used for a number of roles, including reconnaissance, glider towing, and paratrooper carrier.