River class (K-246)

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Italian Fleet
P 420 Sparviero Pack
River class (K-246)
River class (K-246)
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GarageImage River class (K-246).jpg

The River class, HMS Spey (K-246) is a rank IV British gunboat with a battle rating of 3.3 (AB/RB/SB). It was introduced in the Operation H.E.A.T event during Update 1.89 "Imperial Navy".

General info

Survivability and armour

The River class does not have much in the way of armour. The hull of the ship is made from 8 mm thick steel, with the super structure being made of 4 mm thick steel. This is enough to repel damage from low calibre machine-guns, but does little against the cannons and auto-cannons commonly found at this battle rating. The only armour on the ship is around some of the gun shields.

Armour Layout

  • Ship Construction
    • Hull: 8 mm steel
    • Superstructure: 4 mm steel
  • 5 mm Anti-fragmentation armour - Main calibre (102 mm) turrets gun shields
  • 12.7 mm Hardened armour - AA (20 mm) turrets gun shields


The River class is not particularly fast being about the same speed as a destroyer, it is however fairly manoeuvrable for a ship its size. Despite this you must remember the River class is no small vessel, you need to be aware of your surroundings the likely direction of enemy torpedoes if you wish to avoid them in time.


Primary armament

Main article: Mark XIX (102 mm)

The primary armament of the River class consists of two Mark XIX 102 mm cannons, located at the front and rear of the ship. These are powerful cannons at the River class's battle rating; the HE shells can cause devastating damage to torpedo boats and sometimes kill them in single shot. Even against larger ships the HE shells can cause significant damage, which coupled with the high rate of fire (3 - 3.9 second reload depending on crew) allows you to kill enemy vessels very quickly.

Primary Armament

  • 1 x 102 mm Mark XIX cannon, forward turret, 200 rounds of ammo
    • Horizontal guidance: ±180°
    • Vertical guidance: -4° / +60°
    • Horizontal targeting speed: 10°/s
    • Vertical targeting speed: 10°/s
  • 1 x 102 mm Mark XIX cannon, aft turret, 200 rounds of ammo
    • Horizontal guidance: ±180°
    • Vertical guidance: -3° / +60°
    • Horizontal targeting speed: 10°/s
    • Vertical targeting speed: 8°/s

Secondary armament

Main article: QF Mark VII (40 mm)

The River class has a very powerful secondary armament of two 40 mm QF Mark VII auto-cannons. These are mounted in turrets on each side of the ship, just aft of the mid point. The positioning of these turrets mean they can both engage vessels on the same side, in an 80 degree arc from the front of the ship, this allows them to cause substantial damage to enemy ships within this area.

The 40 mm QF Mark VII is an extremely potent weapon, with a good rate of fire, and a shell large enough to pierce most armour found at this tier it is capable of causing incredible amounts of damage to both enemy ships and aircraft.

Secondary Armament

  • 2 x 40 mm QF Mark VII auto-cannon, mid-ship turrets, 2000 rounds of ammo each
    • Horizontal guidance: ±180°
    • Vertical guidance: -10° / +90°
    • Horizontal targeting speed: 40°/s
    • Vertical targeting speed: 34°/s

Anti-aircraft armament

In addition to its 40 mm secondary turrets the River class also has a pair of single Oerlikon Mk.II 20 mm auto-cannons mounted on each side of the bridge for anti-aircraft use. The Oerlikon's have a decent rate of fire and damage and are more than capable of taking down most aircraft you will face with little issue. It is also possible to use them against lightly armoured enemy ships, however their damage is fairly limited and their mediocre gun depression coupled with high mounting location means they cannot effectively engage targets at less than about 200 m range.

Special armament

The River class can carry a truly staggering assortment of depth charges, of three different types. The first component consists of 34 Mk.VII depth charges which are dropped into the water from two dispensers on the stern of the ship (in the same manner as on the Flower class). The next component of the River class's depth charge armament consists of 48 Mk.VII depth charges distributed evenly between 8 depth charge mortars (6 chargers per mortar). There are four mortars on each side located at the rear of the ship, two mortars on each side launch depth charges directly out the side of the ship, with the other two are angled, pointing rearwards at approximately 45°. The final component is a 24 shot Mk.10 Hedgehog mortar (with another 24 depth charges in stock to reload it). This mortar is mounted on the bow of the ship and is capable of rapidly shooting 24 depth charges covering an area between about 200 m and 400 m directly in front of the ship.

Usage in battles

The River class's size allows you to choose to spawn at either the destroyer / large ships spawn or at the small ships (torpedo boats) spawn, which spawn you choose will determine how you play the River class. At the large ships spawn you can play as a mini destroyer and use your decent cannons to enage enemy ships at longer distances.

When taken into battle with the small ships the River class can be used as somewhat of a brawler. You can use your large calibre guns to devastate smaller torpedo boats (if you can hit them) and use the secondary 40 mm cannons to consistently shred fast moving targets. The River classes large size, some armour, and fairly large crew means it can take a reasonable beating, however ships of powerful auto-cannons can still rapidly deplete your crew, and short range torpedo attacks are always a major threat.

A safer option can be to keep out of the immediate area of the main fight use your impressive armament to rain down destruction from a distance, while being somewhat safer from enemy return fire and torpedoes.

Pros and cons


  • Good primary armament
  • Lethal secondary armament can be used effectively against ships and aircraft
  • Adequate Anti-aircraft armament
  • Carries an astounding amount of depth charges
  • Fairly manoeuvrable (considering its size)


  • Fairly slow
  • Very large target
  • Armour is lacking
  • Turrets susceptible to damage, leaving you in precarious situations


The River-class frigates were developed in the early 1940s on the same premise as the preceding Flower-class corvettes; quick and cheap to build convoy escort vessels which would protect merchant shipping in the North Atlantic from the ever growing axis submarine threat. Unlike the Flower-class corvettes however, River-class frigates were larger, had a longer range and were overall more suitable for operations in the North Atlantic.

Production of the River-class frigates began in 1941, with the first vessels being completed in the following year. Overall, over 150 River-class frigates would be built throughout WW2, of which only 17 were lost in combat actions.

River-class frigates primarily served with the Royal Navy, but they also served with many other nations during WW2, such as Canada, Australia, the USA, France, Netherlands and South Africa. They remained popular even after the war, serving with Denmark, Norway, New Zealand, India, Portugal, Egypt, Argentina, Chile and many more nations! The last River-class frigates were decommissioned from military service during the 1970s.

- From Devblog


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

See also

External links

Britain boats
Motor torpedo boats  Brave class (P1011) · Dark class (FPB 1102) · Dark class (FPB 1102) TD · Fairmile D (617) · Fairmile D (697) · Fairmile D (5001) · MTB-1 1 series
  MTB-1 2 series · Vosper 1 series · Vosper 2 series
Motor gun boats  Dark class (FPB 1101) · Fairmile A (ML100) · Fairmile B (ML345) · Fairmile C (312) · Fairmile C (332) · Fairmile D (601)
  MGB-61 · MGB-75 · SGB (S304) · SGB (S309)
Gunboats  River class (K-246)