The Admiral Yamamoto class is a class of cruisers built in the KIN and in service with the former and the newer KISDF. The two ships: Admiral Yamamoto and Admiral Von Tirpitz, are considered the first 46 cm gun-armed cruisers ever built by the KIN. A third named Admiral Togo was completed to a standard that allowed her to be classified as her own class. Though outdated, both ships still pose a threat to enemy cruisers. They are both currently in active service mainly in the AFOH, and occasionally the AIF.
At the time both ships were built, the KIN navy was a navy focused on battleships, battlecruisers and carriers. Little attention was paid to cruisers, destroyers and fast attack craft, though limited funds were spent wisely on submarines to scout for enemy fleets, as well as sinking enermy merchant ships. However, as time when on, new warships were needed to escort the new breed of carriers, while the battleships were fighting in the battle line. Thus the idea of a cruiser was born. But the navy had strict expectations. The new ships were to be heavily armed to deal with other enermy cruisers, and fast enough to catch up to carrier fleets. So the plans for the two ships were drawn up.
The two ships were considered very small by comtemperary standards. The ships had an average with of 40 metres, but a rather small length of 285 metres. This gave them a small, compact hull from where as much firepower was crammed. During a rebuild, torpedo bulges were added, and because they would form an important backbone of the then small KISDF force after they had scuttled their ships, an emblem was placed on the bow, signalling that they were important ships.
The two ships started their life with 2 46 cm triple guns, 2 40 cm triple guns, 10 14 cm guns in casemates, 13 47 mm RF guns and 4 Type A Torpedo Tubes. This was deemed enough firepower to escort carrier taskforces, but in reality, the AAA defence was lacking, and the torpedo firepower was not considered good.
During their refit, Admiral Yamamoto received new 46 cm guns, and had all her 47 mm guns replaced by 13 Triple AAA guns. 2 more Type A Torpedo Tubes were added, along with 4 excellent MK 45 5 inch guns, 2 Depth Charge Launchers for 60 depth charges and 2 Triple Torpedo Tubes. This increase in firepower gave her a better chance against enermy cruisers.
Admiral Von Tirpitz has a different rebuild. All his anti-ship guns were removed, and 6 MK 45s were added for long range AAA defence. 4 Triple AAA mounts were also added, and he carried no less than 100 depth charges.
The two ships were lightly armoured compared to modern standards, but were well protected at the time they were built. They were protected by a belt armour of 600 mm armour, with 400 mm inside and 200 mm deck. The superstructure was given similar protection schemes.
During their refit, the belt was extended all the way from bow to stern, and the deck armour was replaced by 400 mm armour. Despite this, they both remained under protected by modern standards, something which the KISDF knew about.
The two sisters saw little front line duties as fighting ships, but saw much service as carrier escorts. Over the years, both ships would be responsible for escorting 6 different carriers and would lead scouting groups. The only times they ever fired their main guns were at shore bombardment roles, something they proved good at. At one instant however, both cruisers fired at a few pirate cruisers, but due to their huge firepower, the pirates quickly redrew. This battle, however, proved the concept a good one, and the design would help design the KISDF Endevor, which had the same main gun arrangement.
When the KISDF was formed, the two sisters were put at as reserves, though they occasionally made short cruises, though they made little impact to any war. After the scuttling of the KISDF however, both ships were pressed as frontline ships until enough ships could be raised. During this time, they made several cruises to hunt down enemy merchant ships and cruisers, but without any success. As soon as the KISDF could raise enough ships, both cruisers were transfered to the AFOH to form part of the Second Cruiser Division, where they are serving today.
- Despite the usual tradition, the Admiral Von Tirptiz, like the Ersatz Raider, is refered to as a he, rather than the usual she.
- The current ships are actually replicas of original ships that were scrapped a long time ago.
- Both ships are named after famous admiral of the Japanese and German navy