Azur Lane is a charming mix of side-scrolling shooting and RPG, with a sprinkle of gacha elements on top.

In this game, you collect human representations of World War II warships called “shipgirls”. If that’s not enough of a head-turner then you’ll be happy to know that the game also has unique battle mechanics.

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How Battles Work In Azure Lane

In Azur Lane, you position your ships in two rows: the front row (Vanguard) and the back row. There are 3 slots for each of these rows, so you have to strategize which ships you’ll bring and how you’ll place them for the incoming encounter. Certain ships can only be deployed in front while others are the opposite.

Once the placements are finished, the map starts scrolling and enemies will appear in front of the player’s fleet. The player must navigate their ships to destroy enemies and obstacles while mitigating damage on their side. The goal of every encounter is to reach the boss which is situated at the end of the level.

With that out of the way, let’s dive into the tier list. Additional information like ship type and whether the ship is allowed for the Vanguard or the Back Row are provided.

S-Tier

Azur Lane Tier List S Tier

You’ll have the best experience playing this game if you have a handful of these ships at your disposal. They have excellent stats and skills that fit in most situations the game throws at you.

Ship

Type

Placement

Helena

Light Cruiser

Vanguard

Yukikaze

Destroyer

Vanguard

Centaur

Light Aircraft Carrier

Back Row

Akashi

Repair Ship

Back Row

Friedrich der Grosse

Battleship

Back Row

San Diego Retrofit

Light Cruiser

Vanguard

I-13

Submarine Carrier

Back Row

Roon

Heavy Cruiser

Vanguard

Enterprise

Aircraft Carrier

Back Row

Seattle

Light Cruiser

Vanguard

Georgia

Battleship

Back Row

Nagato

Battleship

Back Row

U-47

Submarine

Support

Gascogne

Battleship

Back Row

Unicorn

Light Aircraft Carrier

Back Row

Essex

Aircraft Carrier

Backline

Azuma

Large Cruiser

Vanguard

Warspite Retrofit

Battleship

Back Row

Ayanami

Destroyer

Vanguard

Monarch

Battleship

Back Row

A-Tier

Azur Lane Tier List A Tier

Ships that constitute the game’s current meta. Not as powerful as those above, but can still dominate the game, especially in the hands of players who know what they’re doing.

Ship

Type

Placement

Mikasa

Battleship

Back Row

Neptune

Light Cruiser

Vanguard

Amagi

Battle Cruiser

Back Row

Illustrious

Aircraft Carrier

Back Row

Montpelier

Light Cruiser

Vanguard

Z23 Retrofit

Destroyer

Vanguard

Kitakaze

Destroyer

Vanguard

Bismarck

Battleship

Back Row

Eldridge

Destroyer

Vanguard

Swiftsure

Light Cruiser

Vanguard

Laffey Retrofit

Destroyer

Vanguard

Saint Louis

Heavy Cruiser

Vanguard

Yat-Sen Retrofit

Light Cruiser

Vanguard

Ping Hai Retrofit

Light Cruiser

Vanguard

Ning Hai Retrofit

Light Cruiser

Vanguard

Bunker Hill

Aircraft Carrier

Back Row

U-101

Submarine

Support

Vestal

Repair Ship

Back Row

Saratoga Retrofit

Aircraft Carrier

Back Row

Graf Zeppelin

Aircraft Carrier

Back Row

Minneapolis

Heavy Cruiser

Vanguard

Jintsuu Retrofit

Light Cruiser

Vanguard

Duke of York

Battleship

Back Row

Portland Retrofit

Heavy Cruiser

Vanguard

I-168

Submarine

Support

King George V

Battleship

Back Row

B-Tier

Azur Lane Tier List B Tier

Ships that constitute the game’s current meta. Not as powerful as those above, but can still dominate the game, especially in the hands of players who know what they’re doing.

Ship

Type

Placement

Jean Bart

Battleship

Back Row

Izumo

Battleship

Back Row

Javelin

Destroyer

Vanguard

Hood

Battle Cruiser

Back Row

Z1 Retrofit

Destroyer

Vanguard

Queen Elizabeth

Battleship

Back Row

Shouhou

Light Aircraft Carrier

Back Row

Hyuuga Retrofit

Aviation Battleship

Back Row

Albacore

Submarine

Support

Mogami Retrofit

Heavy Cruiser

Vanguard

Little Bel

Light Cruiser

Vanguard

Kizuna Al

Destroyer

Vanguard

Columbia

Light Cruiser

Elite (Special)

Ark Royal

Aircraft Barrier

Back Row

Aurora

Light Cruiser

Vanguard

Ibuki

Heavy Cruiser

Vanguard

Tirpitz

Battleship

Back Row

North Carolina

Battleship

Back Row

Cleveland

Light Cruiser

Vanguard

Kaga

Aircraft Carrier

Back Row

Nicholas Retrofit

Destroyer

Vanguard

U-81

Submarine

Support

C-Tier

Azur Lane Tier List C Tier

Average ships that can hold their own but have a hard time standing out. There are too many better ships in the upper tiers.

Ship

Type

Placement

London

Heavy Cruiser

Vanguard

Newcastle Retrofit

Light Cruiser

Vanguard

Kawakaze

Destroyer

Vanguard

Belfast

Light Cruiser

Vanguard

Hiryuu Retrofit

Aircraft Carrier

Back Row

Wichita

Heavy Cruiser

Vanguard

Arizona

Battleship

Back Row

Sirius

Light Cruiser

Vanguard

Prinz Eugen

Heavy Cruiser

Vanguard

Souryuu Retrofit

Aircraft Carrier

Back Row

Shoukaku

Aircraft Carrier

Back Row

Kagerou Retrofit

Destroyer

Vanguard

Curlew Retrofit

Light Cruiser

Vanguard

Zuikaku

Aircraft Carrier

Back Row

D-Tier

Azur Lane Tier List D Tier

These are poor choices if you want to build a fleet that would carry you through the game’s endgame content. Consider dropping these ships immediately once better ones come along.

Ship

Type

Placement

Curacoa Retrofit

Light Cruiser

Vanguard

Fumiruiru

Aircraft Carrier

Back Row

Akagi

Aircraft Carrier

Back Row

Taihou

Aircraft Carrier

Back Row

Sendai Retrofit

Light Cruiser

Vanguard

Tanikaze

Destroyer

Vanguard

Shangri-La

Aircraft Carrier

Back Row

F-Tier

Azur Lane Tier List F Tier

Try to avoid these ships entirely if you can. They have very little value except in early to mid-game. If you’re set on building the best fleet you can, then these ships should have no place in your roster.

Ship

Type

Placement

Isuzu

Light Cruiser

Vanguard

Zeppy

Aircraft Carrier

Back Row

Chaser

Light Aircraft Carrier

Back Row

Anniversary Kizuna Al

Aircraft Carrier

Back Row

And there you go. A definitive ranking guide for Azur Lane’s available shipgirls. There’s certainly more to the game than just owning powerful units.

But when you have a solid core of ships, you’ll be in a good position to tweak your team to your liking, while avoiding the frustration that comes when the game’s difficulty spike kicks in.

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