Yamato-class battleship, Yamato (1945): King of the Monsters!

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Warship Yamato


Yamato, at the Battle of Cape Bonomisaki (April 1945)


Category: 軍艦 / Warship

Sub Category: 戦艦 / Battleship

Class: 大和型 / Yamato class

Design number: A140-F6

Temporary name: 第一号艦 / No.1 Ship

Rough History

Yamato(大和) is a name-ship of Yamato class Battleship that completed in 1941. Name was taken from old name of Nara-pref, and it is one of the another name of Japan. Lots of Japanese warships were using another name of Japan (Fuso, Akitsushima, Shikishima, Yashima, Mizuho Shinshu-Maru etc.), but the Yamato is the most famous another name.

English Wikipedia translate it to “Great Harmony”, but actually there is no such meaning. There are various theories about origin of the word “Yamato”, but almost all theories says the kanji “大和” (yamato) was used only pronounce of kanji without regard to the semantically. (read more: Ateji - Wikipedia)

Project of New Capital Ship was started since 1934. In that time, Japanese newer battleship is only Nagato class, and other battleships are very old so they needed to replace them. Also, London Naval Treaty limited Japanese battleship than UK and US. To overcome this inferiority, Japanese Navy decided to build battleship that larger than Panamax size with superior 18-inch cannons. At first, they re-start the project of 20-inch and 18-inch guns. Originally, this project was started for next-gen battleship of Eight-Eight Fleet. They prohibited to call it 18-inch for secrecy and they call it “Type 91” alternately. Afterwards, in the order to experimental production of 18-inch gun in July 1934, IJN named it “Type 94 40 cm naval gun”.

Around this time, Japan was isolated by the militarism policies. Because of it, in July 1934, Prime Minister Okada decided to discard naval treaty. Because of it, in October, IJN General Staff ordered new battleship with 18-inch guns to IJN Technical Department.

his project get design number A140, and 22 design were considerate. Finally, design A140-F5 was submitted to the Imperial Diet. To camouflage real-size of battleship, they also submitted fake destroyers and submarines. Specification of Design A140-F5 was bellow.

  • Trial displacement: 65,200 t
  • Waterline length: 253 m
  • Max width: 38.9 m
  • Depth: 18.667 m
  • Draft; 10.4 m
  • Main gun: 3x Type 94 40 cm triple
  • Secondary gun: 4x 15.5 cm triple
  • High angle gun: 6x 12.7 cm twin
  • Machine gun: 12x 25 mm twin & 4x 13 mm quadruple
  • Aircraft: 6
  • Speed: 27 kt
  • Cruise range: 16 kt/ 7,200 mile
  • Power: 135,000 SHP
  • Main engine: 2x Turbine (75,000 SHP) & 2x Diesel (60,000 HP)
  • Protection: prevent 18 inch gun at 20,000~30,000 m

Design A140-F5 planned to equip diesel engine. It was the first attempt for them so they did not have enough experience. During the experiment, prototype of diesel engine had fatal problems and they decide to cancel the A140-F5. Because of it, they start to make the new plan A140-F6. It had conventional steam turbines and this plan become a Yamato class.



The No.1 Ship, under fitting-out works (September 20, 1941)

The “No.1 Ship” was ordered in August 21, 1937. It laid down in November 4, 1937 and construction started. In that time, around 20 years have passed since they build last battleship so it was very difficult project. However, construction was progressed properly and 6 months shorter than planned.

No.1 ship was launched in August 8, 1940 and named Yamato. Since then construction was progressed, but in October 1939 they forced to move up the deadline. Further more in March 1941, deadline was moved up again. At this point, scheduled completion date was end of January 1942 but Ministry of Navy moved up the deadline again in July. By this order, construction was significantly accelerated and completed in December 16, 1941. She was deployed at 1st Squadron of Combined Fleet with Nagato and Mutsu.

In February 12, 1942, flagship was changed from Nagato to Yamato, and in March 29 she participated the Battle of Midway. In this battle, she never fought and returned to the port. Afterwards Japanese Navy and US Navy fought a fierce battle around Southern Pacific, but she did not fought and did only modification to add AA equipment.

In December 1943, she was joined Bo-Go operation. During this operation, Yamato transported IJA 1st Independent Mixed Regiment to New Ireland island. During this operation, USS Skate (SS-305) discover her and attacked with Mk.14 torpedo. In this attack, no crew injured but surprisingly 3rd main gun magazine was disabled by flooding caused by only one torpedo. She entered Truck island, but factory ship Akashi could not repair this damage so she need to return to Kure naval base. She docked and get restoration work and modifiaction. In this modification, they removed two 15.5 cm turret on midships and install additional AA guns.

After modification, she moved to southern seas and did training etc. After a while, in May 28, 1944, the Allied forces start to landing operation to Biak island. To intercept it, Yamato, Musashi and 2nd Torpedo Squadrons dispatched (Operation Kon). But just after the Battle of the Philippine Sea (JP: Battle of offshore of Mariana Islands). Japanese navy cancelled the Operation Kon and this force joined with 3rd Air Squadron for escort. During this battle, Yamato fired main gun AA shells but there weren’t noticeable results and one of the escort target, aircraft carrier Hiyo was sunk.

Next large battle for Yamato is Battle of Leyte Gulf (JP: Battle of Philippines Sea). It was the last naval battle between battleship and battleship, but Yamato could not fought against US battleships. She assigned with Kurita fleet to attack enemy landing forces but she fought against only Taffy 3 (force of escort carriers and escort destroyers for air support). It was the first opportunity for Yamato that fire main gun to enemy ship, but 46 cm gun could not get noticeable results.



Yamato, at Battle of Layte Gulf

After overwhelming defeat of Japan, US forces start to invade Okinawa island. To intercept it, Japanese Navy and Army started desperate last counterattack, “Operation Kikusui”. This is the largest suicide operation, and Yamato joined part of Operation Kikusui 1, Operation Ten-go. Now this operation is known Maritime Special Attack.

She leaded the 2nd Fleet (Yamato, Yahagi, Fuyutsuki, Suzutsuki, Isokaze, Hamakaze, Yukikaze, Asashimo, Hatsushimo, Kasumi) and dispatched to Okinawa in April 7, 1945. They spends slightly left fuel oils for this operation, but they couldn’t do anything. Hundreds of aircraft from 11 aircraft carriers flocked to the last fleet of IJN and destroyed almost all. Withstood more than two hours but finally she sunk. About 3,300 crews were on boarded on Yamato but only 276 crews was survived. Wreckage of Yamato was scatted on sea bottom of East China Sea. Now, this battle is called Battle of Cape Bonomisaki.



The last of Yamato (April 7, 1945)


Afterwards, in 2199, the Gamilons Empire start to invade the Earth. Humankinds formed the Earth Defense Force but inferiority was apparent. The sea evaporates and radioactive contamination progresses so mankind will be destruct within one year. At this time, one message comes from outer-space. That message said that come to planet Iskandar to take Radioactivity removal device, and they attached blueprint of warp engine. This engine was mounted on Space Battleship Yamato (they camouflage the building of new spacecraft by the wreckage of Yamato), and she dispatched to outer space to save the earth. End of the strict battles against the Gamilons Empire, they succeed the mission and revived the earth. Since then she has been active in various battles.


More historical photos





Construction of the battleship Yamato

Battleship Yamato. October 24, 1944 Battle of the Sibuyan Sea

Battleship Yamato. April 6, 1945 The day before the battle of Bono-misaki


Battleship Yamato. April 7, 1945 Battle of Bono-misaki





For protection, Yamato class had excellent armor. Generally able to prevent 46 cm gun

Fig 1 ~4 are based upon drawing written after war by the designers of Yamato.


Fig 1, profile of Yamato

  • VH, VC: Hardened (Cemented) Armor
  • MNC, CNC and NVNC: Rolled Homogeneous Armor
  • DS: Structure steel for splinter protection



Fig 2, frame 96 (Around 2nd main turret)



Fig 3, frame 135 (Around boiler room)



Fig 4, frame 176 (Around 3rd main turret)



Center sectional view of Yamato, from “Naval Shipbuilding Technology Overview”

注排水区画: Water injection/ draining compartment (FL.C.?), a section for damage control.


  • Engine room
    • Main belt armor (waterline): 410 mm VH
    • Main belt armor (underwater): 200-45 mm NVNC
    • Deck armor (horizontal): 200 mm MNC
    • Deck armor (inclined): 230 mm MNC
    • Bulkhead (bottom): 100-50 mm CNC
    • Side splinter protection: 16 mm DS
    • Deck splinter protection: 9 mm DS
  • Ammo stowage
    • Main belt armor (waterline): 410 mm VH
    • Main belt armor (underwater): 200-75 mm NVNC
    • Magazine bottom armor: 80-50 CNC
    • Deck armor (horizontal): 200 mm MNC
    • Deck armor (inclined): 230 mm MNC
    • Side splinter protection: 16 mm DS
  • Main gun
    • Barbette: upper 550 mm VH, lower 490 mm VH
    • Turret front: 660 mm VH
    • Turret side: 250 mm VH
    • Turret back: 190 mm NVNC
    • Turret roof: 270 mm VH
  • Secondary gun
    • Barbette: 25 mm DS + 50 mm CNC
    • Turret: 25 mm HT
  • Main steering room
    • Roof: 200 mm MNC
    • Side: 300-360 mm VC
    • Bottom: 25 mm DS
  • Auxiliary steering room
    • Roof: 200 mm MNC
    • Side: 250 mm VC - 300 mm VH
    • Bottom: 20 mm DS
  • Funnel
    • Uptake: 380 mm MNC (“honeycomb” armor)
    • Some part of funnel: 50 mm CNC
  • Watertight compartment
    • Number of watertight compartment: 1,147

Photos of interior and armor schemes


Yamato designed to prevent below:

  • 2 t bomb, dropped from lower than 2,200 m
  • 1.5 t bomb, dropped from lower than 2,600 m
  • 1 t bomb, dropped from lower than 3,400 m
  • 800 kg bomb, dropped from lower than 3,900 m
  • 46 cm AP shell, fired from more distant than 20,000 m - 30,000 m



45 caliber Type 94 40 cm naval gun / 四十五口径九四式四十糎砲

The most symbolic weapon of Yamato. The world’s largest naval gun actually mounted on the vessel. It was separate charge type and there aren’t “first-stage ammo stowage”.

  • Rate of fire: 1.5-2 per minute
  • Elevation: -5° / +45°
  • Elevation rate: 8°/s
  • Train: about 150°
  • Train rate: 2°/s
  • Loading angle: +3°
  • Shell stowage: 120 per shell room + 180 per shell feeding room, 100 shells per each barrel
  • Ammunition
    • Type 91 AP shell
      • Type: APC
      • Projectile weight: 1,460 kg
      • Explosives: 33.85 kg
      • Velocity: 780 m/s
    • Type 1 AP shell
      • Type: APC
      • Projectile weight: N/A
      • Explosives: 33.85 kg
      • Velocity: 780 m/s
    • Type 0 Common shell
      • Type: HE
      • Projectile weight: 1,360 kg
      • Explosives: 61.7 kg
      • Velocity: 805 m/s
    • Type 3 Common shell
      • Type: Incendiary Shrapnel
      • Projectile weight: 1,360 kg
      • Incendiary tubes: 25 mm type (incendiary 23 g), 1056
      • Stays: 504
      • Velocity: 805 m/s

Japan 40 cm/45 (15.7") Type 94 - NavWeaps


▼Original drawings▼



Side view



Front view



Top view



Layout of shell room (lower image)


60 caliber 3rd Year Type 15.5 cm naval gun / 六十口径三年式十五糎五砲

Main gun for Mogami class and Oyodo class light cruisers. Barrels of secondary gun of Yamato was taken from Mogami class. Turret for Yamato is NOT taken from Mogami class.

  • Rate of fire: 5-6 per minute
  • Elevation: -7° / +55° (some people says 75°)
  • Elevation rate: 10°/s
  • Train rate: 5-6°/s
  • Loading angle: +7°
  • Ammunition
    • Type 91 AP shell
      • Type: APC
      • Projectile weight: 55.87 kg
      • Explosives: 1.15 kg
      • Velocity: 920 m/s
    • Type 0 Common shell
      • Type: HE
      • Projectile weight: 55.87 kg
      • Explosives: 3.1 kg
      • Velocity: 920 m/s

Japan 15.5 cm/60 (6.1") 3rd Year Type - NavWeaps


40 caliber Type 89 12.7 cm high angle gun

Standard Japanese naval AA gun during WW2. Yamato mount several types of shield.

  • Rate of fire: 14 rounds per minute initially, 8 rounds per minute sustained
  • Elevation: -7° / +90°
  • Elevation rate: 6-7°/s
  • Train rate: 6-7°/s
  • Loading angle: any
  • Shell stowage: 300 rounds per each gun
  • Ammunition
    • Type 0 Common shell
      • Type: HE
      • Projectile weight: 23.45 kg
      • Explosives: 1.88 kg Shimose
      • Velocity: 700-725 m/s
    • Type 3 Common shell
      • Type: Incendiary Shrapnel
      • Projectile weight: 23.45 kg
      • Incendiary tubes: 20 mm Otsu type (Incendiary 10g), 37
      • Stays: 16
      • Velocity: 720 m/s

Japan 12.7 cm/40 (5") Types 88 and 89 - NavWeaps


Type 96 25 mm Machine Gun / 九六式二十五粍機銃

Japanese most famous naval AA gun machine gun during WW2.


▼Types of shells▼



  • Common
    • Explosives: TNT 66 % + Aluminum 34 %, 15.3 g
    • Tracer: N/A
    • Fuse: Impact
  • Tracer Common
    • Explosives: TNT 66 % + Aluminum 34 %, 20.4 g
    • Tracer: Red, 5.7 seconds (about 2,600 m)
    • Fuse: Impact
  • Tracer Common Kai 1
    • Tracer: Blue (2.9 s, 1,600 m) ⇒ Red (5.7 s, 2,600 m)
    • Fuse: Impact
  • Tracer Common Kai 2
    • Tracer: Yellow, over 4.5 seconds
    • Fuse: Impact
  • Tracer Common Model 2
    • Self-destruction: 3,000 m (7 sec) - 4,100 m (12 sec)
    • Tracer: Yellow, over 4.6 seconds (2,600 m)
    • Fuse: Impact
  • Tracer Common Model 2 Kai 1
    • Self-destruction: 4,000 m (10 sec) - 4,500 m (16 sec)
    • Tracer: Yellow, over 6 seconds (3,100 m)
    • Fuse: Impact
  • Tracer
    • Explosive: N/A
    • Tracer: Red
    • Fuse: N/A
  • Tracer Kai 1
    • Explosive: N/A
    • Tracer: Blue ⇒ Red
    • Fuse: N/A
  • Tracer Kai 2
    • Explosive: N/A
    • Tracer: Yellow
    • Fuse: N/A
  • Tracer Indicator (Paint shell to indicate submarines)
    • Tracer: Yellow
    • Paint: Green
    • Fuse: Impact
  • Incendiary Common
    • Explosive: TNT 66% + Aluminum 34 %, 5.7 g
    • Incendiary: Yellow phosphorus, 13 g
    • Tracer: N/A
    • Fuse: Impact
  • Incendiary Common
    • Explosive: TNT 66% + Aluminum 34 %, 5.7 g
    • Incendiary: Yellow phosphorus, Amount unknown
    • Tracer: N/A
    • Fuse: Impact
  • Armor-Piercing
    • Special filling: Red Iron Oxide
    • Tracer: Yellow, 8.65 g
    • Fuse: N/A
  • Armor Piecing Model 2
    • Special filling: N/A
    • Tracer: Yellow
    • Fuse: N/A
  • Training shell

Inside Layout

All fuel tanks are placed on bottom of ship. This is a unique future of Japanese battleships: they did not use fuel tanks for torpedo protection. It because in the result of test during Taisho era by the Vice Admiral Hiraga, they thought spaced protection is better than liquid protection. In the examination around 1935 IJN find advantage of liquid anti-torpedo protection but it was not adopted for Yamato class.

I indicated compartments that will affect to in-game damage models. Note, this drawing shows early-built state, so there are some difference between 1945 state. (eg. secondary gun magazine on center of hull)


Midship section




Red: Ammo stowage

Green:Inside equipment

Orange: Fuel tanks






Examples of historical research of IJN Yamato 1945

Examples of historical research of Yamato 1945 (from Wikipedia)

Probably the wooden deck was painted black. Also, perhaps at the last battle she rise the flag “非理法権天”.


1/700 艦NEXT『大和』「非理法権天」旗取付、海面プレート走航波表現追加 - 目指せ百艦


In the legend, Japanese samurai Kusunoki_Masashige used this flag. Also the “Kikusui” mark on the funnel is his symbol.

Data at early-built state

  • Standard displacement: 64,000 t
  • Trial displacement: 68,200 t
  • Full-load displacement: 72,809 t
  • Max length: 263.40 m
  • Max width: 38.9 m
  • Average draft at trial state: 10.4 m
  • Main boiler: 12x Ro-Go Kampon boiler
  • Main engine: 4x Kampon turbine
  • Power: 153,553 SHP
  • Speed: 27.46 kt
  • Aircraft: 6 (F1M2 / E13A)

Data of Yamato 1945

  • Crew: 3,332
  • Main gun: 3x 46 cm/45 Type 91 cannon, triple mount
  • Secondary gun: 2x 15.5 cm/60 3rd Year Type cannon, triple mount
  • High Angle gun: 12x 12.7 cm/40 Type 89 AA gun, twin mount
  • Machine gun
    • 52x 25 mm Type 96 machine gun, triple mount
    • 6x 25 mm Type 96 machine gun, single mount
    • 2?x 13 mm Type 93 machine gun, twin mount
  • Depth charge: A little?

Pros & Cons


  • Mighty 46 cm naval gun
  • Excellent armor
  • Better speed
  • Over 150 barrels of machine gun


  • No VT shell for AA gun
  • Slow turning speed of turret
  • Weak armor for secondary gun
  • Hundreds of machine guns will crash weak PCs

All resources


(Eds.) Makino Shigeru[牧野茂], Fukui Shizuo[福井静雄] (1987) “Navy Shipbuilding Technology Overview[海軍造船技術概要]” KON NICHI NO WADAISHA [今日の話題社]

Hara Katsuhiro [原勝洋], (1999) “Secret Histories of Construction of Battleship Yamato [戦艦大和建造秘録]”, KK Best Sellers
(most of drawings are comes from here)

Japanese Battleships 1897-1945.epub - Japanese Battleships 1897-1945: A Photograpic Archive R A Burt
Jane’s Fighting Ships of World War II.pdf “Jane’s Fighting Ships of World War II” by McCurtie, Francis

Battleships Yamato and Musashi.pdf - Battleships Yamato and Musashi, Janusz Skulski and Stefan Draminski

The Battleships Yamato and Musashi: Selected Photos from the Archives of the Cure Maritime Museum

図解 日本帝国海军全舰船1868-1945 戦舰・巡洋戦舰

Each weapon pages of NavWeaps

Links on each section






Thank you to re-upload my old suggestion!!
Yes, Yamato 1945 is definitely needed. I want to fire all machine guns to destroy enemy (& my) PC!!


If and when other nations can be furnished with reasonable equivalents (probably dipping into paper projects), this is a definite must-add.

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Aye, dipping into paper ships will probably be a must for the nations that can do so (unfortunately, Italy, China, and Sweden would be out of luck granted).

On the suggestion topic, this is a definite must-have on my list!

+1, Yamato is the battleship.

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You’re welcome! At first I hoped that you would add it yourself, but a lot of time passed and I got worried

Looking at pictures of these 2 shells the Type 1 seems slightly longer what differences/advantages would either shell bring if any?

Type 1 is a Type 91 with a slightly different windshield to help accommodate for dye bags, there are few if any functional advantages besides a decrease in error from multiple ships firing upon one target, where the dye bags would indicate whose splashes belong to whom for better error correction upon subsequent salvoes.

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Ah I see for some reason i thought the slightly longer nose made it have but better penetration values but it is what it is. I guess it doesn’t matter much which one they add then.

я уже не могу дождаться когда улитки введут этот прекрасный линкор я ради него только начал играть в ворлд оф варшипс

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Would be awesome!! I’m already finish with tha Japanese tree ^^

What about her sister ships (Mushashi and Shinano)? premiums?

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Type-1 would be an improvement over the Type-91. They’re not necessarily the same. But you are correct that they are variants to some degree. Aside from that, I do wonder how the shell torpedo mechanic would work as Japanese shells were known to glide underwater for a certain duration of time and still function. Forgot what its called but it is something that was developed.

Shinano would be a tech tree. Musashi would probably be a Premium. Although the Yamato could be a premium Musashi and Shinano are tech trees as they were improvements of the Yamato class.

Suggestion passed to the developers for consideration.