Combat Portal
Aerial Combat Day Battle Night Battle
Jet Assault  · LBAS  · AACI Battle Opening  · Artillery Spotting  · Anti-Installation Cut-in
Support Expedition  · Special Attacks  · Friendly Fleet
Map Mechanics and Nodes  · Evacuation

Combat is a major component of the game in Kantai Collection. Combat is accessed through the Sortie menu by selecting a map to send a fleet. Multiple mechanics weave together to create an intricate combat dynamic. For more detailed explanations on the various combat mechanics, please see the individual pages below. Exercises also consist of one surface combat.

Combat Phases

In each node, combat will consist of at least one, up to several Combat Phases. The number of combat phases depends on the node type, with each node type using a different set of combat phases and order. More information on Nodes.

In no particular order, the combat phases are made out of Aerial Combat, Battle Opening, Day Battle, Night Battle, Land-based Aerial Support, and Support Expedition.

Formation Selection

If the fleet currently deployed has 4 or more ships, the player will be prompted to pick a fleet formation before every battle. Fleets with 3 or less ships will not have a fleet formation prompt and will default to Line Ahead.

  • Sunk ships and ships evacuated with a Command Facility 
    are not counted.
  • Diamond Formation requires 5 or more ships present in the fleet to be selected.
  • Enemy fleets do not have these restrictions. Enemy fleets in Diamond formation with fewer than 4 ships lack formation graphics on the battle screen.
Formation Shelling Torpedo Anti-Submarine Night Battle AA Flagship Protection Notes
Damage Accuracy Evasion Damage Accuracy Evasion Damage Accuracy Evasion Damage Accuracy[1] Evasion
Line Ahead
単縦陣 (Tanjuu-jin?)
  100% 100% 100% 100% 100% 100% 60% 100% 100% 100% 100% 100% 100% 45%
Double Line
複縦陣 (Fukujuu-jin?)
  80% 120%[2] 100% 80% 80% 100% 80% 120% 100% 100% 90% 100% 120% 60%
輪形陣 (Rinkei-jin?)
  70% 100% 110% 70% 40% 110% 120% 100% 100% 100% 70% 110% 160% 75%
梯形陣 (Teikei-jin?)
  75% 120% 140%[3] 60% 75%[4][5] 130% 110% 120% 130% 100% 90%[6] 130%[6] 100% 60% Single vs Single fleet battles
60% 120% 60% 100% 80% 110% Single vs Combined fleet battles (either way)[7]
Line Abreast
単横陣 (Tan'ou-jin?)
  60% 120% 130% 60% 30% 140% 130% 120% 110% 100% 80% 120% 100% 60%
警戒陣 (Keikai-jin?)
  50% 80%[9] See
100% 70%[10] See
100% ?? See
50% ?? See
110% Medium Upper half of the fleet
100% 120% 100% 90% 60% ?? 100% ?? 110% High Bottom half of the fleet
Accuracy Exceptions
Formation Day Shelling &
Carrier Attacks
Torpedo Attacks ASW Night Battles
Vanguard (Both) vs DD[11] 110% 120% ? ?
Double Line vs Line Abreast 100% N/A 100% N/A
Echelon vs Line Ahead
Line Abreast vs Echelon
  • Exact values were datamined from KanColle Kai for the Vita. Testing on the browser version has corroborated these results.
    • Values for Vanguard and the new Echelon are vague as they weren't introduced for KanColle Kai.

Flagship Protection

Flagship Protection is when a non-flagship protects the flagship from being targeted by receiving the attack instead. When activated, a "curved shield" animation plays in front of the flagship's banner.

  • Activation rate is determined solely by the selected formation. If activated, a ship with HP above Minor Damage (小破) is randomly selected to be the protector.
    • If no ships are above Minor Damage, flagship protection cannot activate.
    • Having more ships above Minor Damage does not increase the rate.
  • It may activate on any type of attack, including shelling, torpedo, ASW, airstrike, and support.
  • Submarines do not protect surface ships and surface ships do not protect submarines.
  • Installations cannot perform protection, and cannot receive protection if they are flagship.
  • In Combined Fleets, the escort flagship does not receive flagship protection.

Vanguard Formation

  • Vanguard is only available during Events, and is usable on any map during this time.
  • The modifiers on Vanguard Formation refer respectively to the "upper half" and "bottom half" of the fleet.
    • For a fleet with 6 or 7 ships, the top row applies to ships 1 to 3, and the bottom row applies to the remaining ships.
    • For a fleet with 4 or 5 ships, the top row applies to ships 1 and 2 and the bottom row applies to the remaining ships.
  • Attacks from support fleets are affected by the top row multipliers, meaning the 50% damage modifier is applied.
  • Vanguard has a further post-cap evasion modifier for all ships in the fleet.[1]
    • For ships at the upper half: Non-destroyers get a 5% bonus. Destroyers get a 20% bonus.
    • For ships at the bottom half: Non-destroyers get a 20% bonus. Destroyers get a 40% bonus.
    • Exception: Ships in position 4 of a 6 or 7 ships fleet receive the upper half bonuses, despite being bottom half ships for all other purposes of vanguard.
    • This bonus applies to shelling and torpedoes, but not airstrike.
  • Bottom half ships have increased chance to be targeted.
    • The targeting is determined as follows:
      • 1. Randomly select any ship from the fleet.
      • 2. If the selected ship is an upper half ship, randomly select any ship from the fleet again.[2]
    • Target rate per ship (without flagship protection) based on the above procedure:
Number of Ships 4 5 6 7
Upper Half 12.5% 8% 8.33% 6.13%
Bottom Half 37.5% 28% 25% 20.4%

Choosing a Formation

Formation Selection Screen

When selecting a formation, its modifiers will be applied to the entirety of the next battle node whenever applicable. Picking another formation will discard any previous formation bonuses and penalties and use the new modifiers instead. Each formation has a general use-case archetype based on its modifiers.

  • Line Ahead: All-out surface combat formation.
  • Double Line: All-around, high accuracy formation.
  • Diamond: Anti-Air formation.
  • Echelon: Mixed surface-ASW combat formation.
  • Line Abreast: ASW formation.
  • Vanguard: Defensive/evasive & anti DD/PT Imp formation (event only).

Victory Conditions

A damage gauge that is displayed at the post-combat screen for each fleet, using the following calculation:

[math]\displaystyle{ \text{Damage%} = \dfrac{\text{Fleet HP lost}}{\text{Fleet HP}} }[/math]

The following conditions must be met to attain each rank:

Victory State Rank Common name Conditions
Victory Total Victory: S
Perfect S
  • Sink all enemy ships, while taking no damage in return.
  • In Short Battle Nodes, take 0 damage.
Victory: S
S rank
Victory: A
A rank
Tactical Victory: B
B rank
  • Sink the enemy flagship and have fewer ships sunk than the enemy.
  • If the enemy flagship survives and the Damage % gauge is at least 2.5x less than the enemy's.
  • In Short Battle Nodes, take between 10% and 20% damage.
  • If any of the ships sink, this is the maximum rank obtainable.
Defeat Tactical Defeat: C
C Rank
  • The enemy flagship survives and the Damage % gauge is between 0.5x and 2.5x less than the enemy's.
    • Also applies when sinking any ship during the battle.
  • If the enemy flagship is sunk but the enemy has fewer sunken ships, as well as having the Damage % gauge between 0.5x and 2.5x less than the enemy's.
  • In Short Battle Nodes, take between 50% and 20% damage.
Defeat: D
D rank
  • If the enemy flagship survives and the Damage % gauge is less than 0.5x of the enemy's.
  • If the Damage % dealt is 0.05% (essentially 0).
  • If both fleets deal no damage to each other.
    • This applies to submarine vs submarine battles and air battle nodes.
  • Ships are sunk but not enough to meet the conditions for E.
  • In Short Battle Nodes, take heavy damages.
Defeat: E
E rank
  • The enemy flagship survives and the number of sunk ships in the fleet meets the minimum kill requirements.
    • Not meeting the requirements for a D Rank.


  • B-ranks are the minimum victory requirements for:
    • Obtaining drops.
    • Clearing a map without a boss gauge.
  • Drops (both rate and pool) scale based on rank obtained. Some drops might be exclusive to higher ranks.
  • Perfect S (Total Victory) ranks count as a regular S-Rank.
    • Perfect S is fulfilled if all ships' final HPs on battle ended is greater than or equal to initial HPs on battle started.
    • So it's possible to obtain a perfect S if the only damaged ship has used a Repair Goddess in battle, and her final HP is still greater than or equal to her initial.


At the end of combat, one girl is picked as the MVP. She gains exp and morale bonuses. For more details, please see Experience and Rank and Morale and Fatigue.

The way MVP is determined is:

  • The girl who deals the highest total damage (sum of all attacks during the combat) is awarded MVP. This damage is not weighted.
  • If multiple girls are tied for damage, the MVP goes to the topmost girl in the fleet order.
    • As such, if no damage is dealt to the enemy, the flagship automatically receives MVP.
  • Battles ending in an E-Rank have no MVP.
  • In a Combined Fleet, each fleet has its own independent MVP.

See Also