USS Helena (CL-50)

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Italian Fleet
P 420 Sparviero Pack
Brooklyn-class, USS Helena (CL-50), 1943
General characteristics
1188 peopleCrew
13327 tDisplacement
7Number of section
165 / 76 / 76 mmMain fire tower armor
95 / 127 / 51 mmCitadel armor
16 mm (steel)Hull armor
17 mm (steel)Superstructure armor
Primary armament
3 x 6 inch/47 Mk.16 cannon5 x Turret
600 roundsAmmunition
-5° / 40°Vertical guidance
Secondary armament
2 x 5 inch/38 Mk.12 cannon, mount Mk.284 x Turret
900 roundsAmmunition
Anti-aircraft armament
4 x 40 mm Bofors L/60 Mark 2 gun4 x Turret
8000 roundsAmmunition
4 roundsBelt capacity
156 shots/minFire rate
20 mm/70 Oerlikon Mk.II autocannon12 x Turret
1800 roundsAmmunition
60 roundsBelt capacity
450 shots/minFire rate
8020 Ge icon.pngPurchase
Sl icon.png0/3600/2500Repair
10000 Sl icon.pngCrew training
1000000 Sl icon.pngExperts
1500 Ge icon.pngAces
190 × 2 Talisman.png % Rp icon.pngReward for battle
50 × 2 Talisman.png % Sl icon.png140 × 2 Talisman.png % Sl icon.png100 × 2 Talisman.png % Sl icon.png


GarageImage USS Helena (CL-50).jpg

The Brooklyn-class, USS Helena (CL-50), 1943 is a premium rank IV American light cruiser with a battle rating of 5.7 (AB/RB/SB). It was introduced in Update 1.93 "Shark Attack".

General info

Survivability and armour

Armour on Helena is pretty strong for a light cruiser, as it can definitely hold out against large calibre HE shells. One should remember that Brooklyn-class cruisers oftentimes could survive a torpedo hit, so if you have enough crew, you can easily tank one or even two torpedoes. Your main concern while playing Helena should be high calibre AP shells, as they can wreck your ship in no time, especially if they are coming from fast reloading guns like American 5"/38, or if they are shot at you by a ship with lots of guns like IJN Suzuya.

Turret face armour is 165 mm, side, rear and top armour are 76 mm, 76 mm, and 51 mm thick respectively, and mantlets are 100 mm of RHA. Barbettes are 152 mm of rolled cemented armour. Secondaries are protected only by 32 mm of antifragmentation armour, so expect them to be knocked out as soon as any high calibre shell hits them.

Bow ammo magazines are protected by 51 mm of antifragmentation armour on the top and sides, and 127 mm of antifragmentation armour in the front. They are also hidden deep below the waterline and behind fuel tanks, which makes them a very difficult target. Aft shells and charges are protected from the top and rear by the same armour as bow magazines, but since there are no fuel tanks, they get 120 mm rolled cemented armour as side armour. Rear of the bow ammo stowage and front of the aft ammo stowage are protected by 95 mm of rolled cemented armour. Ammo elevators are protected by 127 mm of antifragmentation armour.

Bridge is protected by 127 mm of antifragmentation armour on the sides and 57 mm of the same armour on the top.

Thanks to the unit system (engines and boilers are alternating inside the hull) it's very hard to disable propulsion on the ship, even with a torpedo.


Write about the ship's mobility. Evaluate its power and manoeuvrability, rudder rerouting speed, stopping speed at full tilt, with its maximum forward and reverse speed.


Primary armament

Provide information about the characteristics of the primary armament. Evaluate their efficacy in battle based on their reload speed, ballistics and the capacity of their shells. Add a link to the main article about the weapon: {{main|Weapon name (calibre)}}. Broadly describe the ammunition available for the primary armament, and provide recommendations on how to use it and which ammunition to choose.

Secondary armament

Some ships are fitted with weapons of various calibres. Secondary armaments are defined as weapons chosen with the control Select secondary weapon. Evaluate the secondary armaments and give advice on how to use them. Describe the ammunition available for the secondary armament. Provide recommendations on how to use them and which ammunition to choose. Remember that any anti-air armament, even heavy calibre weapons, belong in the next section. If there is no secondary armament, remove this section.

Anti-aircraft armament

An important part of the ship's armament responsible for air defence. Anti-aircraft armament is defined by the weapon chosen with the control Select anti-aircraft weapons. Talk about the ship's anti-air cannons and machine guns, the number of guns and their positions, their effective range, and about their overall effectiveness – including against surface targets. If there are no anti-aircraft armaments, remove this section.

Usage in battles

Describe the technique of using this ship, the characteristics of her use in a team and tips on strategy. Abstain from writing an entire guide – don't try to provide a single point of view, but give the reader food for thought. Talk about the most dangerous opponents for this vehicle and provide recommendations on fighting them. If necessary, note the specifics of playing with this vehicle in various modes (AB, RB, SB).


Tier Seakeeping Unsinkability Firepower
I Dry-Docking Tool Set 6 inch Mk.35 AP Anti-Air Armament Targeting
II Rudder Replacement Fire Protection System Smokescreen 6 inch Mk.34 HC Auxiliary Armament Targeting
III Propeller Replacement Shrapnel Protection Ventilation 5 inch AAVT Mk.31 Primary Armament Targeting Improved Rangefinder
IV Engine Maintenance New Pumps Ammo Wetting 6 inch Mk.34 HC
This is a premium vehicle: all modifications are unlocked on purchase

Pros and cons


  • 2 x triple-mount 6 inch and 2 x dual-mount 5 inch cannons can fire straight ahead, allowing decent firepower while only exposing a small silhouette towards the enemy
  • Extensive use of antifragmentation armour, rendering Helena as almost HE-"proof"
  • Best citadel armour out of all light cruisers in the game
  • One of the highest main calibre fire rates out of all light cruisers (10 rpm)
  • Very hard to disable all of the engines with one torpedo hit, thanks to unit system of machinery (transmission and engines are alternated inside the ship)
  • Highest ammo count out of all cruisers
  • Shells and charges are hidden below waterline, are protected by loads of antifragmentation armour, rolled cemented armour and fuel, making it very hard to one hit kill Helena
  • Second thickest turret face in the game (only Chapayev and Sverdlov have thicker turret armour)
  • Second best AA in game in terms of amount of guns, best AA in game in terms of ammo and flexibility (out of all light cruiser that is)
  • Mobility is comparable to other ships (except top tier Japanese and Italian cruisers)
  • Bridge is protected by 127 mm of antifragmentation armour
  • One of the highest crew counts in the game


  • Citadel and ammoracks are well armoured, but other parts of the ship are protected by only 16 mm of antifragmentation armour
  • There are some shells hidden inside barbettes, so unlucky hit may cause heavy fires or even one hit kill a ship
  • Auxiliary turrets have their first stage ammo stowages unprotected, so unlucky hits may cause heavy fires
  • Second worst 152 mm penetration in game (but it's still enough to kill any vessel)
  • Turret No. 3 can shoot only when retreating or when showing broadside
  • No torpedo armament


Describe the history of the creation and combat usage of the ship in more detail than in the introduction. If the historical reference turns out to be too long, take it to a separate article, taking a link to the article about the ship and adding a block "/History" (example: and add a link to it here using the main template. Be sure to reference text and sources by using <ref></ref>, as well as adding them at the end of the article with <references />. This section may also include the ship's dev blog entry (if applicable) and the in-game encyclopedia description (under === In-game description ===, also if applicable).


Excellent additions to the article would be video guides, screenshots from the game, and photos.

See also

Links to articles on the War Thunder Wiki that you think will be useful for the reader, for example:

  • reference to the series of the ship;
  • links to approximate analogues of other nations and research trees.

External links

Paste links to sources and external resources, such as:

  • topic on the official game forum;
  • encyclopedia page on the ship;
  • other literature.

Brooklyn Navy Yard Ships
Cruiser, Light (CL)  USS Brooklyn (CL-40) · USS Helena (CL-50)
Cruiser, Armored (CA)  USS Pensacola (CA-24)

USA light cruisers
Omaha-class  USS Raleigh (CL-7) · USS Trenton (CL-11)
Atlanta-class  USS Atlanta (CL-51)
Cleveland-class  USS Cleveland (CL-55)
Brooklyn-class  USS Brooklyn (CL-40) · USS Helena (CL-50)

USA premium ships
Motor torpedo boats  58 ft PT-3 · 94 ft PT-811 · Elco 80 ft PT-109 · Elco 80 ft PT-556
Sub-chasers  165 ft PC-466 Carmi
Destroyers  Bennion (DD-662) · Cowell (DD-547) · USS Phelps (DD-360)
Light cruisers  USS Helena (CL-50)