A Comprehensive Azur Lane Beginner's Guide

A Comprehensive Azur Lane Beginner's Guide
Last updated:
February 28, 2024

Embarking on your journey in Azur Lane can be a overwhelming experience, especially for newcomers.

This guide aims to streamline your introduction to the game, from ship selection to resource management.

Let's dive in!

The Ultimate Azur Lane Beginner's Guide

Navigating Through Basics

in game select your ship starter in azur lane

Choosing Your First Ship

Your initial choice among the starter ships will influence your early game experience.

Each starter has unique strengths, and while you'll eventually have the opportunity to collect them all, focusing on one initially can streamline your progress.


Z23 is renowned for her exceptional firepower among the starter destroyers.

She's capable of dealing significant damage to enemy ships, making her a valuable asset in combat.

Focus on enhancing her firepower through equipment and skills.

Equipments like the Improved Hydraulic Rudder and the High-Performance Fire Control Radar can boost her offensive capabilities and agility, allowing her to dodge incoming fire

Prioritizing Z23's limit breaks can further enhance her damage output and durability.

Her unique skill, Iron Blood Vanguard, boosts her own firepower, making her an even more potent unit.

USS Laffey

Laffey offers a balanced mix of torpedoes and gun damage, providing flexibility in handling various combat scenarios.

Her high evasion rate also allows her to dodge enemy attacks effectively.

Enhance Laffey's torpedoes and gun efficiency to make the most of her balanced attack capabilities.

Equipping her with the Quadruple 533mm Torpedo for torpedo efficiency and the Twin 127mm (MK12) for gun damage can maximize her combat effectiveness.

Additionally, focusing on improving her evasion through equipment and skills will increase her survivability in battles.

Laffey benefits greatly from limit breaking, as it improves her overall combat performance.

Her skill, Soloist of the Seas, increases her firepower, torpedo, and evasion stats, reinforcing her role as a versatile fighter.

HMS Javelin

Javelin stands out for her exceptional evasion, making her the hardest starter ship to hit.

This attribute allows her to stay longer in battle, dodging enemy attacks while delivering consistent damage.

Capitalize on Javelin's evasion by equipping her with gear that further enhances this trait, such as the Steam Catapult, which improves her speed and evasion.

Focusing on skills that boost her torpedo attacks can also complement her ability to evade enemy fire, allowing her to strike back with powerful torpedoes.

Javelin's limit breaks significantly enhance her evasion and torpedo capabilities.

Her skill, Dancing Waves, not only increases her evasion but also has a chance to trigger a powerful torpedo attack, making her a top-tier choice in dodging and counterattacking.

Making Your Choice

When choosing your starter ship, consider your preferred gameplay style:

  • For aggressive playstyle and high damage: Z23 is your go-to choice.
  • If you value versatility and adaptability: Laffey offers a balanced approach.
  • If you prioritize survivability and evasion: Javelin excels in avoiding damage.

Gacha System and the Pity Mechanic

in game build gacha details in azur lane

The Gacha System Explained

Azur Lane's gacha system allows you to obtain new ships using a currency known as Wisdom Cubes.

These cubes can be earned through gameplay or purchased with real money.

The gacha pulls are categorized into different construction types, each with its own pool of ships:

  • Light Construction: Generally offers destroyers (DD), light cruisers (CL), and some carriers (CVL). It's known for its lower cost and higher efficiency for new players.
  • Heavy Construction: Features a broader range of ships, including heavy cruisers (CA), battleships (BB), and battlecruisers (BC). It's ideal for players looking to strengthen their fleet with powerful frontline units.
  • Special Construction: This pool includes aircraft carriers (CV) and some of the game's most powerful units. It's recommended for players aiming to acquire top-tier carriers and specialized ships.
  • Limited Construction: Available during special events, featuring event-exclusive ships. It's where players spend most of their cubes, trying to obtain rare and powerful ships before the event ends.

Understanding the Pity Mechanic

The pity mechanic in Azur Lane mitigates the randomness of gacha pulls by ensuring you receive a Super Rare (SR) ship after a certain number of unsuccessful attempts.

  • Pity Points: Each pull in the construction menu adds a point to your pity counter. The number of points required for a guaranteed SR ship varies depending on the construction type and is usually disclosed during events.
  • Guaranteed SR Ship: Once you reach the required number of pity points without obtaining an SR ship, your next pull is guaranteed to yield one. This mechanic provides a safety net, ensuring that your investment of cubes and resources eventually pays off.
  • Event Banners and Pity: During limited construction events, the pity mechanic often resets with the start of a new event. It's crucial to plan your cube expenditure, especially if you're aiming for specific event-exclusive ships.

Enhance Your Initial Team

in game ship stats enhancement details in azur lane

Fleet Composition and Optimization

Balanced Fleet Composition

Your fleet should include a mix of ship types to handle different threats.

Typically, a balanced fleet consists of a front line (Vanguard) of destroyers (DDs) and cruisers (CLs/CA), and a back line (Main Fleet) of battleships (BBs), battlecruisers (BCs), and aircraft carriers (CVs/CVLs).

Each ship type serves a specific role, from tanking damage to providing heavy firepower or air support.

Synergistic Skills

Pay attention to ship skills that complement each other.

Some ships offer buffs that can significantly enhance the capabilities of other ships in your fleet.

For example, pairing carriers that increase air strike damage with ships that specialize in anti-air capabilities can create an excellent defense against enemy aircraft.

Limit Breaking and Retrofitting

Limit breaking increases a ship's stats and sometimes adds new skills or equipment slots, significantly boosting its effectiveness.

Retrofitting, available for specific ships, can transform an outdated unit into a powerful ally with enhanced skills and stats.

Prioritize limit breaking and retrofitting ships that will contribute most to your fleet's overall strength.

Mastery of Gear and Enhancements

Gear Selection

Match gear to a ship's strengths.

For example, equip destroyers with torpedoes that enhance their torpedo stat, or fit battleships with high-caliber guns to increase their firepower.

Understanding the stats and effects of each gear piece allows for tailored optimizations that can be game-changing.

Enhancements and Skills

Regularly enhance your ships to improve their stats.

Prioritize enhancing the stats most relevant to each ship's role in your fleet.

Additionally, skill leveling is vital for maximizing a ship's combat effectiveness. Focus on leveling up key skills that significantly impact performance.

Advanced Combat Strategies

in game combat gameplay in azur lane

Manual Control Mastery

While auto-battle is convenient for farming and easier stages, manual control is essential for tackling more challenging content, such as high-level event stages, hard mode maps, and PVP battles.

  • Torpedo Dodging: Manual movement allows you to avoid incoming torpedoes, significantly reducing damage taken. Keep an eye on the water for the characteristic trails torpedoes leave and move your vanguard ships out of their path.
  • Skill Timing: Manual control lets you time your ship skills more effectively, especially those with significant impact or long cooldowns. For example, waiting to use an airstrike until enemy ships are grouped together can maximize damage.
  • Barrage Triggering: Some ships have skills or equipment that trigger powerful barrages. Positioning your fleet to ensure these barrages hit the maximum number of enemies is crucial for efficient clearing.

Fleet Composition and Synergy

Building a fleet that synergizes well can exponentially increase its effectiveness.

This involves more than just combining powerful ships; it requires understanding how different ships’ skills and abilities complement each other.

  • Cross-Fleet Buffs: Some ships offer buffs that apply fleet-wide, not just to their own squadron. Combine ships across your main and vanguard fleets to enhance each other's strengths.
  • Debuff Stacking: Ships like Helena, whose Radar Scan skill debuffs enemies to take increased damage, can be paired with heavy hitters to exploit this vulnerability. Stacking multiple debuff sources can amplify this effect.
  • Specialized Fleets: Tailor your fleet composition to the specific challenge you’re facing. For instance, anti-submarine warfare (ASW) capabilities are essential for maps with submarine threats, requiring ships equipped with sonar and depth charges.

Equipment Optimization

The right equipment can significantly enhance a ship's performance.

Understanding the nuances of gear and how it complements your ships’ abilities is key.

  • Main Gun Calibration: For battleships and cruisers, choosing the right main gun—whether it prioritizes rate of fire, firepower, or a balance of both—can greatly affect their damage output.
  • Torpedo Selection: Fast-reloading torpedoes may offer consistent damage, but slower, more powerful torpedoes can be devastating if timed correctly. Consider your play style and the ship's role when choosing.
  • Auxiliary Gear: Don't overlook the impact of auxiliary gear. Items like the Repair Toolkit or Fire Suppressor can drastically increase a ship's survivability, while the Steam Catapult can boost an aircraft carrier's effectiveness.

Taking Advantage of Terrain and Positioning

Some stages feature terrain elements that can either hinder or help your fleet.

  • Island Navigation: Use islands for cover to limit the angles from which enemies can attack, reducing the amount of incoming damage.
  • Ambush Points: Certain maps have predictable enemy spawn points. Positioning your fleet to immediately engage these enemies can prevent them from fully deploying their firepower.

Resource Management

in game resource item rewards in azur lane


Oil is the primary resource for engaging in battles. Managing it efficiently is crucial for maintaining a steady progression and for participation in events.

Use fleets with lower oil costs for farming and daily missions to conserve oil for more challenging content.

Pay attention to the oil cost when limit breaking ships, as it increases their consumption.

These not only provide essential resources but also oil, helping maintain a balance between consumption and acquisition.

Events often require significant oil expenditure. Save oil in anticipation of events by reducing unnecessary sorties and focusing on essential missions.


Coins are used for a variety of purposes, including ship construction, gear development, and facility upgrades.

Focus on essential upgrades that offer immediate benefits to your fleet, such as dock expansions and gear enhancements.

Avoid spending coins on low-priority upgrades or constructions that don't significantly benefit your current objectives.

Regularly complete commissions, especially those that yield high coin rewards, and participate in daily missions.

Selling excess gear can also provide a steady coin income.


Gems, Azur Lane's premium currency, are pivotal for enhancing your gameplay experience.

They're best used for permanent upgrades rather than consumables.

Expanding your dorm allows for more ships to gain passive EXP, speeding up the leveling process. This is one of the most efficient uses of gems.

Increasing your dock space is crucial as your fleet grows, allowing for more ships to be collected and used.

Occasionally, gems may be used for special packages that offer significant value, such as those containing wisdom cubes, limited construction ships, or special gear.

Evaluate these deals carefully to ensure they align with your needs.

Wisdom Cubes

Wisdom Cubes are used primarily for constructing new ships.

Managing them wisely is essential, especially for F2P (free-to-play) players.

Limited-time events often feature powerful or exclusive ships.

Saving cubes for these events maximizes your chances of acquiring them.

Engage in at least the minimum number of constructions required for daily quests to optimize cube usage while still progressing through quests.

Final Thoughts

Starting Azur Lane doesn't have to be daunting.

With the right strategy, focusing on effective ship selection and resource management, you'll find yourself enjoying the game and contributing to the vibrant community.

Remember, every captain's journey is unique, so embrace your path and set sail towards victory.