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Posted on May 9, 2011 in Electronic Games

World of Tanks – PC Game Review

By Brian King

World of Tanks Review by Armchair General

World of tanks is a perfect mixture of historical vehicles, exciting team play, and sophisticated technology trees.

World of Tanks. Massively multiplayer online game. Published by Wargaming.net. Free to play. Accounts start at US $6.95 for 1250 in-game gold.

Rating, Screenshots, and Pro Tips on Page 4

Passed Inspection: Free to play, with very few limitations. Nearly infinite variety of tanks, tank upgrades, and crew skills to explore. Destructible terrain. Solid graphics. Quick and reliable matchmaking. Active developer team with lots of planned enhancements.

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Failed Basic: Quick matchmaking doesn’t always yield fair matchmaking. Some may find the gameplay a bit on the slow side for a shooter. Clan Wars not included in North American release. The grind may be nearly insurmountable in higher tiers without spending real money to upgrade account.

Today I begin another match of World of Tanks with the same anxious anticipation I’ve felt for my previous 1500 outings. Fourteen of my mates in a mix of scouts, heavy and medium tanks, artillery, and tank destroyers fan out into their respective positions. Some form into an ad hoc maneuver force aimed at directly engaging and destroying the enemy team and their 15 tanks. Others, driving tank destroyers and self-propelled guns, take up a more defensive stance. As I power my elite Sturmgeschütz III into position in Prokhorovka to await the inevitable first screen of enemy scouts I can’t help but reflect on the drawing power of this title by Wargaming.net, appropriately dubbed World of Tanks.

The Initial deployment

For many of our readers familiar with World War II, it will be easy to imagine two teams of 15 tanks from various nations slugging it out on a battlefield in 15-minute live-action battles. Once you let go of the reality problems of Americans, Russians, and Germans all firing on each other, and once you accept that each armor model is not intended to be an absolute 100% incarnation of the original, you emerge with a highly playable approximation of what combat among these steel beasts might have been like. My best description of the game is a 3rd person shooter with RPG elements. Each player controls one complete tank and can actively fire, move, text chat with mates, and watch the destruction unfold. More complex functions are handled automatically by the tank crew such as loading guns, fighting fires, working the radio, and fixing blown tracks. Thankfully, for those of us not inclined to delve into the minutia of operating a complex machine like a tank, this is not a hardcore simulation. My five-year-old son can play the game quite well.

I’ve parked in my favorite position on this map, which is on the reverse slope of the railroad track embankment. I’m focusing my gun on the village up ahead anticipating a scout will pass through. It is critical to destroy him before he can identify the location of our team’s artillery. A hapless medium M3 Lee emerges, apparently unaware of his vulnerable position or his inferior vehicle. I zero in on him and let a couple shots go and watch him brew up. I retreat back down the embankment and wait for more enemy …

The daily grind

World of Tanks is promoted as a totally free game, and as such it succeeds brilliantly. Just download it and you are good to go. Any person with a somewhat decent computer can play this game and experience almost every dimension it offers—it just takes a little more time and effort to play entirely for free versus paying customers’ time and effort. The armor units are broken into 10 tiers, and each tier you advance unlocks larger and larger tanks. With some unfortunate exceptions, you will almost always play against people only a tier or two above or below your own. This helps keep things fair, and enjoyable. In fact, I would argue that this game is just as fun at tier 2 as it is to command the behemoths at the top tiers. I thoroughly enjoy playing the PanzerJaeger I as much as I do the JagdPanther. However, the game is designed to entice you to keep playing, keep advancing, and eventually to start paying real money to reduce the pain of the grind. In theory you could reach any tank you’d like and not pay a dime of real coin.

For the purpose of this review, I include my experience playing the open Beta for several months as well as the ensuing release version of the game. Rather than play an unlocked account provided by Wargaming.net, this review is drawn on my experience playing the game as a vanilla player. Having said that, and speaking as a cheapskate, I personally would recommend paying at least the bare minimum (approximately $14.95 per month) so that you can unlock the premium account for 30 days and gain an additional 50% experience and in-game spending credits for each battle you fight. The main thing this does is make your rise up the tiers that much faster—for me this was important. If you spend even more real money beyond the minimum you can then buy all sorts of perks such as premium tanks, more powerful shells, and decadent German chocolate to make your crews perform better. Bottom line is that you can play the game for free for as long as you want and definitely long enough to determine if you feel it is worth your hard earned money.

Now I see our maneuver force starting to be whittled down by a combination of strong defenders and accurate artillery. A few more units came my way and I was able to destroy them with the help of a partnering Stug III. I can look at the game mini-map and see the tides have turned now, and things are about to get ugly for my team. For a moment I am distracted by the beauty of the landscape as the trees wave in the breeze, smoke rises peacefully from the Lee in front of me, and a pair of butterflies find their way in front of my gun sights. The graphics are very attractive and realistic.

The heat of battle

There is surprising depth to World of Tanks, more in fact than I could give proper justice in such a short review. Each tier has multiple tanks and tank types, which means that even with 30 units in a battle you will see a wide variety of makes, models, and nationalities. Additionally, each tank has several upgrades which become available as you gain experience using the model. The showroom-fresh Tiger tank is a far cry from the battle-hardened elite Tiger with the vaunted long 88 gun. In essence, each model of tank is a game within a game as you fight in battles, gain the experience, and then add new and improved technology to each chassis. Getting your tank crews trained magnifies the depth of each vehicle type. Crews must first become masters of a particular tank, and then they can enhance secondary skills such as using camouflage, becoming expert mechanics, or improving their firefighting skills. Taken together, I suspect there are millions of paths a single player could take to wind through the tech trees.

As one example, there are 35 models of tanks on the default German tech tree. Each tank has 5-10 upgrades. After a month of extensive game play since release (500 battles) with Tank Destroyers and Artillery in the German line, I’ve made it to Tier 6. To explore every tank on every tree would take months.

The meat of the game is conducted on the field of battle, as you might expect. Two sides face each other on a one kilometer square slice of battlefield. This is where you find out if your investment in that new motor will pay dividends as you speed into the enemy camp to kill that M7 Priest. Was it worth it to pay top dollar to ventilate your crew compartment? Can your medium tank shoot just a little bit better now to hit that IS-3 heavy on the other hill before he crushes you? Each battle also presents immediate challenges such as stopping enemy attacks on your base, smashing an enemy force in open battle, destroying the SU-152 that just destroyed six of your mates, or using your artillery in counter-battery mode to take out the artillery on the enemy team. The team that works together the best usually ends up winning, but be warned that cooperation is a fickle beast with so many random players.

As I alluded to at the top, this game has staying power. I’m excited each night to sit down with World of Tanks and fight in another battle. I usually stay up too late with the "just one more battle" syndrome familiar to many gamers. I’ve joined a clan. I’m playing in tournaments. I’ve skinned my tanks. I’ve read strategy guides and perused World of Tanks forums. The mixture of real history and tanks combined with the action and challenges of team combat is a potent mix for military history enthusiasts such as myself.

Now I’m in trouble. My fellow Stug III was taken out by enemy artillery and I’ve retreated off the embankment altogether to avoid the advancing enemy units. I snapped at a couple but wasn’t able to take them out. There are a few friendlies left on the team, but we are too spread out to be an effective defense. One tank never left our start position—I suspect the player is away from his keyboard. His wife probably called him at an inopportune time to improve his diaper change crew skill…

Capture the flag, again

As much as I enjoy playing this game, it does have some links missing in its tracks. No game is perfect.

One of the biggest complaints I hear every day, and almost every game, is regarding the peculiarities of the matchmaking system. Each tier should, in theory, play tiers that are relatively equal, though sometimes you might find yourself the low man on the totem against tanks that are 4, 5, or even 6 tiers higher than you. You might find yourself facing a team that is almost all tank destroyers, while you are overloaded with medium tanks. You might draw a team that has six artillery pieces, making it difficult to run in the open. Each of these instances will result in some unhappy players. However, this should smooth out as more players join up and the pool of potential tier members increases. In the meantime, I endure these trials without much fuss since it happens to everyone. There are also in-game medals you can earn for killing tanks in tiers above you …

Some other issues players have mentioned include: the lack of game types (currently just Capture the Flag); various bugs in projectile trajectories; particularly over-powered or under-powered tanks; some maps have defects which slow down the gameplay; Clan Wars (the strategic element of the game) is not active as of yet; artillery units are too powerful or too weak depending on who you ask; spotting mechanics are wonky at times; lack of sophisticated in-game team collaboration tools; and so on. The good news is the developers are very active with this game and as I write this a major patch is imminent. Not unusual in the game industry these days. Player feedback is recognized as an important building block of the continuing evolution of the game, which is the main reason I’m willing to accept a few blemishes on the chassis while appreciating the game as a whole.

World of Tanks is a perfect mixture of historical vehicles, exciting team play, and sophisticated technology trees. Fundamentally the game is no more complicated than jumping in a tank, moving forward, and shooting whatever you see. However, the depth of the game becomes apparent once you start truly cooperating with other team members on the map while simultaneously working in your garage to find the perfect upgrades for your vehicles and crew. Since this can all be done without spending a dime, we can’t help but endorse this game wholeheartedly.

The endgame is here. Our last couple of units have folded back into a defensive box, but there is no hope. The combination of strong enemy heavy tanks and the constant pounding of artillery means my beloved Stug is toast in short order. The match ends in defeat. I collect my experience – reduced because of the loss – and I head back to my garage to repair my tank, resupply my shells, and see how close I am to the next tier so I can move up to a JagdPanzer IV. Turns out I have a LONG way to go. I straighten my uniform, rally my crew, and roll back out to the next battle. The lure of the next tier, the next kill, the next medal, the next achievement, etc. all conspire to keep me grinding happily along in this World of Tanks.

Armchair General Score: 93%

About the Author:

Brian "Siberian_HEAT" King has been with Armchair General magazine since inception in 2003. An avid player of wargames on the PC, some of his favorite series of games have been The Operational Art of War (Talonsoft/Matrix Games), Combat Mission (Battlefront), and Battlefield (EA).  Brian manages the websites of Armchair General as well as the 10 magazines of the Weider History Group. When time allows from normal duties he can be found writing reviews. When offline he can be found riding mountain bikes, playing with his kids, or reading books about the Zombie Apocalypse.

Screenshots:

Most screens provided by Wargaming.net to compensate for my average graphics (Radeon HD 4850). The first few do show my progress in the tech tree and my two current favorite tank destroyers.

Pro Tips:

  • If you try to fight alone you are more likely to become a wreck than a Rambo. Stay with teammates.
  • Light recon units generally should not engage in combat. Instead try to spot enemy units and then let artillery kill them.
  • Heavy tanks constitute your armored fists. They do the heavy lifting of engaging in close combat.
  • Medium tanks are your maneuver force.  They can get around the map quickly, but aren’t as good in close combat.
  • Artillery units generally stay in the rear and look for targets using their special overhead view.  They die quickly if found by enemy tanks.
  • If you play a tank destroyer, consider defending your base rather than being the tip of the spear.  Tank Destoryers are easily flanked so they should engage targets as far away as possible.
  • The mini-map is a critical piece of your tactical planning.  Use it to see where your friends are going, and more importantly where your enemies are located.
  • If the enemy has artillery, try to put a building, steep hill, or even a wrecked tank between yourself and them.  This helps protect you from incoming shells.
  • Never show the enemy your rear.  This is the weakest part of your tank.
  • Never retreat uphill.  You go slower and die faster.
  • Your first victory in each tank every day is called a daily double.  You get double credits and experience for that one game.  Play all your tanks at least once per day to cash in on this bonus.
  • You only have a few slots in your garage.  If you don’t want to spend any money to buy more slots you will have to sell tanks to make room for more advanced models. Be sure to move your crews and remove all consumables before selling.  These can then be transferred to your new tank.
  • Unless you are trying to quickly progress through a tank you don’t enjoy playing, your best bet is to research all upgrades on your tank to give it elite status.  Not only does this result in faster crew training if you keep playing that tank, but many of those upgrades will be immediately available on the next tier up because you’ve already unlocked them.
  • If you are reluctant to spend money training your crew when you buy new tanks, you can wait and train individual crew members.  If you spend money on just one, train the commander. A commander at 100% training for that tank passes some of his skill to all other members of the crew. This is an important advantage.
  • There is no such thing as "stealing a kill." Everyone should shoot until the unit is dead no matter what.  A unit with 1% health is just as likely to go on and kill 5 of your teammates.  It happens.

37 Comments

  1. That diaper change guy could have been me!

  2. Proven fact: The more damaged your tank is, the greater the chance that u activate your tanker gene and score the batlle of your life :)

  3. I have to say, that was a beautifuly written review, that captures all of the reasons why I, along with thousands of others, play this game =)

  4. Nicely written, I enjoyed reading this :)

  5. Le jeu est sympathique et je trouve que l’ensemble est tres bon.
    Il y a juste un grave défaut : le manque de nouvelles cartes.
    A chaque fois on se dit encore cette carte ! je l’ai déja faite des dizaines de fois et cela devient lassant de connaitre chaque coin, et de revivre au meme endroit le meme senario.

    SI AU MOIN UN DIZAINE DE NOUVELLES CARTES NE SONT PAS CREES JE VAIS HELAS ABANDOONER CE BON JEU PAR ENNUI…TROP REPETITIF TOUJOUR LE MEME DIZAINE DE CARTES…C EST LASSANT !

    (Rough translation: The play is sympathetic nerve and I find that the unit is very good. There is just a serious defect: lack of new charts. Each time this chart is still said! I already did it tens of time and that becomes wearying to know each corner, and to revive at the same place same the senario. SO WITH THE MOIN TEN NEW CHARTS ARE NOT CREATE I GO ALAS ABANDOONER THIS GOOD PLAY BY TROUBLE… TOO REPETITIVE TOUJOUR SAME TEN CHARTS… C WEARYING EAST!)

  6. Just know that this game is still buggy and has many issues, like spotting system being mostly broken. Also game has glitched on me and used up my gold that you have to pay real money for, which was met with rudeness and no refund by their support. So beware.

    • Did support tell you to pound sand or what? How much real money did you lose?

  7. You had to be the most lucky guy in the world of tanks…
    You had the chance to fight with tanks with 1 or 2 tier up you tier… I have the baddest luck in the world… I fight 99% with 3 and 4 tier above me… I´m allways the low in chain of thanks, but one thing is true…
    IT´S A HELL OF A GAME…
    And i have a blast playing hit…
    Hetzer with 105 gun rule in battle field.

    • What a joke how much was this guy paid for this its the biggest lie ever and he should never be allowed to write again

      can you say he is taking bribes what an smeg head

  8. The game is great fun, and has very good potential, but with that being said, stay with standard account. Do not give WG any of your hard earned money until they fix some issues.

    The so called “few” bugs are the major mechanics of the game and in essence game killing. The spotting system is not just “wonky” but a complete failure. The matchmaking system is supposed to work better with more population, but is actually worse when more people are online. And the tank imbalance is so bad that after about 6 months of being on the market I foresee nothing but heavy tanks in matches. Of course you will have the holdouts wanting the tank destroyers or SPGs. Mark my words though, a rough guess of 80-90% of tanks will be heavies.

    I really do enjoy the game when matchmaking and spotting system are working somewhat descent, albeit it is only about 10% of the time. If people want to see the bugs get fixed, tell WarGaming by hitting them where they will actually listen, their pocketbook.

    • I agree about the “too many heavies” theory. As someone who enjoys playing the low tiers immensely I would like to see an implementation of Clan Wars where some battles can ONLY be fought with lower tiers. For instance more remote territories have to be fought with light tanks, while territories closer to each capital have to be fought with heavier and heavier stuff. That is just me.

      Naturally this same concept could be used in real gameplay by having a checkbox somewhere that says you want the matchmaking system wait as long as it takes to find a group of players near your tier level.

      Thanks for reading my review!

  9. WoT WAS a great concept.
    …but after the release of the game i was shocked its stil advertised as free to play ,even if you cant team up with your friends for free (you or your mates need to be premium to do so).In short: no platoons or companies for free players.Your doomed to play with complete strangers with IQ lover than 2 digits….(tactics are vital part of gameplay)The irony of all : they do made a friend list <—–LOL

    So if you play for free its just a demo of the game because the important game modes are locked.
    I know the developers need money.Just like in every other game.
    In other free to play games developers make special items so premium users can get the advantage they need, but they let you have the access to the full game(with all game modes).And most of them make good money.
    Basicly you can say that WoT developers / owners are very greedy and shady.

    About Gameplay: 98% of time you will find your self at the bottom of the table.That is: you will play against bigger tanks that you cant even hurt(you can forget destroying).At lover level its not that bad because you basicly can hurt 2-3 lvl bigger tanks.But once you reach lvl5 you will fight lv9-10 tanks.You wont hurt those no metter how good you are.

    About difference in nations and the spotting system aint that bad as many people say .

    OVERALL:
    save your time and money .
    keep away from this game.

    Just a HardCore Gamers modest opinion. OG

    • All game modes are currently available O.o there is only “Base Capture” mode available, and all future modes will be available to free players. even Clan Wars will be playable by free players.

      i have NEVER fought ANYONE more than 4 tiers above me and i’ve played atleast 1500 matches. the matchmaking server is reasonably fair, depending on your tank TYPE you may appear to be lower than you think. and you dont complain when you in your KV blows away a pskfw 2 luchs in one shot now do you? :)

      you WANT to play a game where people with money can BUY their advantage!? O.o no advantages can be bought with money in WoT it is a skill game, even if they’re two tiers above you, you can help other people by dragging their attention away, poking out for a shot when he’s not looking….if you’re one on one with him how did you end up like that? (yes your team may have failed you and died and now your stuck) or did you charge in and die to him because you didn’t strategize? this isn’t battlefield, it takes TIME to reload and you can be outnumbered.

      platoons, i do complain are not free, but me and my friends play the odds by hitting “battle” at the same time and usually make it into the same battle ;)

  10. Good game, nice review.

  11. Sorry but you got it all wrong.

    There are serious bugs in the game which includes light of sight, to hit calculations, damage when you do hit and “invisi” tanks (likely part of the line of site bugs).

    Worse of all though is the terrible absolutely awful implementation of self-propelled artillery. How much vodka the producer and dev team where drinking when they dreamed up this idea is anybody’s guess. Masses batteries of artillery measured in dozens or hundreds of tubes was used in WW2 as area denial but individual artillery was never used as a tank hunter.

    To hit a object like a tank require you to know precisely, within a few feet, of where you are and where your target is. That capability didn’t exist in WW2. Instead you fired sighting shots and walked the artillery onto the target before the entire battery used the aiming settings at which time the entire battery fired for effect. In WoT it was simplified to a point of ridiculous. The artillery gets a drone’s eye view of the battlefield and any of your tanks that views an enemy tank is the same as a forward observer. The result. is artillery is often the number one tank killer in a match, very, very unrealistic.

    The game also launched with no clan (guild) fighting. You can create or join a clan but no clan warfare yet. There are limited maps that are small and have choke that prevent tank maneuvers. Grinding is mind numbingly boring and you success in a battle is more the quality of your pickup group rather than your own skills.

    All in all if you like playing an arcade tank sim have at it but don’t expect too much fun as the game currently stands. You might be better off picking up a old copy of M1 Tank Platoon or similar tank sim.

  12. also in a couple of months there adding in even more tanks. a couple of french russian american german and the american christie tank….. now all i need is my graphics card fixed btw never underestimate an enemy of your tier especially arty 1 can kill an army.

  13. Also, anyone noticed the American tanks chosen are developmental models (In tiers 1-4) Except the Stuarts, at least a few years older than the German & Soviet models, and often unrealistically modeled too…

  14. Thanks all for reading my review. I have a list a mile long of things I wish were in this game, even beyond the list I put into my review. There is a game called Alien Swarm, which was a free game on Steam about a year ago. While in the pre-game loading area players can all draw on a map of the level so they can (hopefully) agree on the route they are going to take. This seems like something that is sorely needed on WoT to get the herd of cats to all go in an intelligent direction. I would also like to see dual-monitor support a la Supreme Commander so the mini-map is enlarged on screen two.

    I admit there are 2 factors which weighed heavily in my mind when putting together this review. First, the fact that it is free to play. For me this counts for a lot because there is no risk to playing, and you can play a game that is basically complete for a single player forever (or until they change this). Second, the fact that the developers are actively working on problems and have a long range plan to improve the game. I understand from talking to some players that because they are Russian there are some communication problems, and the fact of the matter is the game’s main fan base is currently in Russia which has left some in North America scratching their heads on why patches and such happen here last. Still, they do listen, they do have plans for more tanks, clan wars, and similar goodies – so I’m willing to cut them SOME slack for some of the current problems.

    So, you can’t go wrong downloading and trying the game – but if you are the least concerned about the many issues remaining to be fixed, I encourage you to wait on paying real money and see what happens. I can only speak for myself in saying it is worth the 15 bucks a month to earn more credits and XP plus have the ability to platoon with my son and my friends. If you have 3 friends who all play and platoon, you could take turns buying premium each month and save some coin that way. You just have to make sure the platoon leader is online so you can all join him LOL.

    Thanks again for the comments.

  15. As I was typing this I just got a press release and a video showing 2 new maps that are about to be released (Mountain Pass and Prairies). One looks like something in a mountainous region, with fighting taking place along and in a river bed. I saw some tanks grinding up hills so this might be problematic (like trying to get across the map on El Haluff). The second looks a lot like Prokhorovka in that it is gently rolling hills with long fields of fire. Could be pretty cool.

  16. The biggest problem with the game so far is the complete and total failure to balance the various tank trees. As it is now, the vast majority of competitive tanks are Russian, with very few German and American tanks being competitive when faced against their Russian counterparts. Furthermore, rather than listening to player complaints about the balance, the developers use win/loss ratios to determine what should be buffed and nerfed. This has led to some rather extreme cases, like the Tiger tank that literally cannot fight and win against anything in its own tier. If you like Russian tanks, by all means, play and enjoy this game. But if you want to drive American or German tanks, be prepared for a long, frustrating game.

  17. Great review! I think a lot of the issues listed in the comments section are sort of isolated. I haven’t had a problem with hit detection. I think perhaps the line of siight issue is there, but not overly problematic. I’ve been in 100+ matches and have been quite please.

    But I disaggree that the balace issue will get better with time. Seems to me, most multiplayer games loose players the further you get away from release. And there seems to be fewer players now than with the Beta.

    I’ll check back in from time to time to see if it’s better…but I won’t hold my breath!

  18. Part 2.

    Besides the bugs and very questionable artillery simulation there are a few other big frustrations.
    1. The code that matches up tanks in random battles is flawed. That is if you have a light or medium tank you have a high probability of finding yourself opposite a heavy tank with armament insufficient to even dent the opponent. The makes the grinding even slower and more painful as you will never rack up many kills and have to be content as a suicide scout.
    2. In another late night of drinking the producer and devs sat around and thought, wouldn’t it be cool to model tanks from the early years of the Cold War and have them fight WW2 tanks. Yes, now you too can experience the fun of having to fight a T-54 tank with a Sherman! Hooray to instant death :)

  19. nice review, i enjoyed reading it.

    the game could be really funny, but unfortunatelly one of the biggest issues (at least for me and many others), the matchmaking probably wont get “fixed” as the developers said themselves, that ít works as intended and they dont want to change anything about it!

    devs seem to be active? hmm well… active in a way… they add more and more content (tanks, nations) but they cant fix the issues mentioned in the review for over half a year now (played the beta a long time). they also dont give any feedback what so ever in “official discussion threads” in their forums… it is said they do that in the russian forums… cant confirm that, as i dont speak russian…

    it could be an awesome game, but right now im constantly discouraged to keep playing every evening after some matches. mainly because of the matchmaking. when i still drove tier 1-2 tanks it was a blast, as those tiers are only mixed with each other.

    as long as it stays like this, wargaming wont see a cent of real money from me.

  20. Great game, I’m hooked fir the past 3 months. Some say it’s got lots of bugs, maybe true but IMO they don’t take away from huge amounts of fun! And money wise, I was honestly surprised that you can actually just buy the cheapest package for just $6 and that gives you a great boost to buy better tanks! Alot cheaper then some other “free-to-play” games I know where cheapest packages start at $30

  21. Great idea, shame potential of game is lost in a terrible tier system,with dev’s confirming equally tiered tanks are not balanced against each other, so you end up matched against tanks you can not damage in large amounts of matches . Because the maps favour Heavy tanks play style , they have all the advantages the game offers and basically make the other tanks types pointless. Also the historical balancing the dev’s introduced seems only to nerf german and american vehicals, but buff’s soviet vehicals with no logical reasons .After 7 months playing the major player complaints have not been addressed , patches have been promised but not delivered.

  22. I played WoT for about a month and enjoyed the first 5 tiers (1-5). Anything after that is a waste of time and god forbid money. As a tier 6 tank you will frequently be put into games with tier 8,9 and 10 tanks which are vastly more powerful than you. This makes grinding for those higher tiers very painful and no fun at all. The game has serious issues with balance. Now with the new patch, if you accidentally kill a team member you will get 0 credits and next to nothing in exp. Couple that with an incredibly annoying and immature gaming community (that do not know how to play as a team) and you can see why I quit the game. Could have been a good game, but I think the devs are after a quick money return and are not bothered about keeping customers, expect a high turnover of active players.

  23. Since there patch this game should be called WORLD OF LAG it is virtualy unplayable and is being ignored by the developers of the game I personally wouldent pay to play this game and after trying it with the lag issues I dubt that ill be back till there is MAJOR work done on it.

  24. Well, I see a lot of bitching (excuse my french) about how bad the game is, how terribly flawed it is, and especially how it is unfair that you don’t have everything for free in-game O_o (one dude even asks for “free gold” lol)
    Dudes and dudettes, keep in mind that you can download the game for FREE, play every nation and tank available for FREE,it’s just up to you if you have the patience to get to the top tiers without spending a dime. Nobody asks for money in this game if you don’t want to pay! Sure, they try to convince every player to spend money, but they don’t force you in any way! I started with the same thoughts – “won’t pay a dime for this game, it says it’s free so why spend anything?” but now i pay for premium every month because I like it and appreciate the work of the developers, regardless of the few problems the game has.
    I bet when all of you bitch about devs not fixing this and that you don’t take a moment to reflect at today’s capitalistic world and realize that probably they need more paying customers to employ more programmers which in turn can tweak the game in real time,and also help with development; they aren’t probably sitting on a billion dollars as Blizzard is so they can hire 1k programmers and have the game fixed by tomorrow, they either need time or more paying customers or, better yet, both!
    The game indeed has the flaws everyone is complaining about (balance, a few bugs) but it’s playable, and fro free! You play it, you assess it, and if you love it you’ll pay real money, if you hate it you just uninstall the game client, it’s that simple! For those who fall in between there is still the option of playing from time to time, for FREE

  25. Right after I read the review, I downloaded the game. It’s now my favorite game! I’ve only played about 40 matches so far, so the maps haven’t gotten boring yet (but I survived EIGHT years of COD, so maybe I don’t get bored easily!). At tiers 1 & 2, the matches play very well, as even with 2cm popguns you can ravage what’s out there. I haven’t beefed up to Tier 3 yet. I respect the opinions that the grind gets heavy at higher tiers. But these lower tiers are just darned FUN, even when you’re teamed with chuckleheads, which isn’t that often.
    I think a new mode, where a heavy/medium/light ratio is set in proportion to historic ToE’s, would be fun. Not so arcadey – each class would need to fulfill its historic role.

  26. The beta was very fun and game play enjoyable. In the live environment customer support is poor. Buying gold was easy (taking your money) but getting it into my account was difficult. Trying to get support from their financial support department was a nightmare.Not a recommended experience for a micro transaction dependent company.Play free if you like but I do not suggest buying gold.

  27. WoT- Wow I really enjoyed playing this game and my boys (3) also got involved to the point that each of them would take turns all day long. Thanks to this site is why I found out about this game. We only played the free version for about a month. We did not buy into the game just checking it out when TROJAN VIRUSES started to attack on a daily basis even though our firewalls and other protections fought it off it continued. Sadly we needed to delete the game and warn those around us to stay away for that reason. Until something changes we will have 4 sad boys (yes myself included). :^(

  28. After a few weeks of playing this game I believe the name should have been ” World of Russian Tanks ” History has shown us that Germany produced the best most sophisticated armor of the second world war. They just couldn’t produce enough of them. On the other hand Russian armor suffered for a lack of adequate radios and inferior optics. This is hardly modeled in the game. This web site (http://wiki.worldoftanks.com/Battle_Mechanics#Earning_Experience) tries to convince the reader that Russian ordnance was superior to that of the German
    ” Penetration

    Before we move into the mechanics, a bit of explanation about the penetration values used in World of Tanks. Germans and Russians tested their guns in different manners. Both used different armor, armor densities, and angle of attack. Also, the Russians required a higher standard of guaranteed shell penetration. Here is what Overlord says about penetration values.
    ”{Abbreviations expanded and spelling corrected}
    “In-game, we use the Soviet penetration system with 0 (90) degree armor slope and 75% guaranteed shell penetration (which is more than the 50% guaranteed penetration used in German penetration system). That’s why German guns have, as you say, deflated stats in-game.”
    75% guaranteed shell penetration is defined as “75% of shell splinters behind the test target”.
    “The way we calculate pen data for German guns is the following:”
    German penetration data – 30 degree penetration data (the most common) is converted into 0 degree German penetration data.
    0 degree German penetration data is converted into Soviet 0 degree data.
    the outcome is usually quite close to 30 degree German penetration data.
    This means: in general, German 30 degree armor slope penetration data is equal to 0 degree Soviet penetration data (because of guaranteed penetration gap).
    The main difference lies in guaranteed penetration coefficients, which are lower in German systems.
    NOTE: There are also a few minor game balancing tweaks, so not every conversion is perfect.
    NOTE: The collision model to calculate hits is a simplified version of the tank, so its possible there are some superficial areas where a shell can pass right through without hitting anything.
    Update: Wargaming should breakdown how they converted from other nation’s penetration tests to the game standard on the forums at some point.
    Penetration Mechanics
    Once you have hit the enemy, the game then calculates where the shot hit the enemy, at what angle you struck the armor, the effective thickness of the armor (based on the angle), speed, width, and weight of the shell, whether you penetrated the armor, and if so, what was in the path of your shell after striking the armor. A shell can indeed pass clean through a tank.
    Note that shell speed falls with distance traveled and thus, AP ammunition can get significant reductions in penetration when firing at distant targets. HE ammunition penetration is not affected by distance.
    At 100m – gun has 100% penetration (+/- 25% random)
    At 500m – approx -20% to -25% to it’s penetration value (varies based on the exit velocity of the shell from the gun).
    With distance, from 100m to 500m, penetration degrades linearly.
    If all the above was not enough to calculate, Penetration value varies every time you fire your gun. This variation can be up to a 25% plus or minus penetration value and is based on a Gaussian (normal) distribution curve. Shell Damage also varies in the same manner.
    Shell Normalization
    When a shell hits armor, and if it does not bounce/ricochet, it will dig in and try to penetrate at a 90 degree angle. Typically, it only increases the angle of attack by about 10 degrees.
    Overmatch — Shell Size
    In WOT, overmatch is currently modeled so that when the caliber of the weapon is 3 times greater than the thickness of the armor, than overmatch (no chance to ricochet) occurs.
    Overmatch — Penetration
    Wot adds an additional version over overmatch based upon when the shell’s penetration is more than 2 times greater than the thickness of the armor. When this occurs, shell normalization is increased by an undisclosed amount.

    Chewie, on the WoT forums, made a good post about penetration. ”
    Regardless of the bull crap indicated above, history has clearly shown us that Russian tanks did NOT out perform their German counter-parts but simply out produced them. Artillery in the game is stupid. It totally dominates the game and makes tank to tank fighting nearly impossible on most maps. The maps are not large enough for 30 tanks to be fighting it out. Working your way through the research tree is useless. It takes many hours of playing to gain enough experience to research your higher tiered tanks; at which time it become more difficult to earn the credits to purchase upgrades and newer tanks. It is very easy to lose credits to expensive repairs and ammunition at anything past tier 7 armor. BUT… If you have purchased about $35 worth of Gold then you can buy a tier 8 tank that costs almost nothing to use; Making this a Pay-to-win game. It is clear from the domination of the Russian tanks in the game that there was, if not a little bias, then surely a LOT of disinformation. Lets remember who wrote the Russian history books. Stalin, and NO one was going to tell him he was wrong. Anyone he thought that would never lived to tell him.

  29. I was trying to find a way to get in contact with the guy who wrote this review, but I couldn’t find anything, so I’ll post a comment on here and hope it works.

    The matchmaking system is causing people to leave this game in droves. Hordes of people are on the forums constantly, trying to get this changed because we like this game, and would like play. But, the way the matchmaking system works, it’s not worth playing, much less paying for. The reviewer above stated observations regarding this topic and how it was detrimental to gameplay. It has only gotten worse since this review was written, and unless Wargaming does something to avert it, it will only continue to get worse. World of Tanks is destined to sink in the US because of this, and not only do the developers refuse to make any changes, they refuse to even acknowledge that there’s a problem.

    My purpose from writing this is to see if Armchair General would perhaps be interested in hosting a petition for the matchmaker being made into something more fair and balanced, or at the very least writing an article on the subject. The idea being that, while Wargaming may consciously ignore the pleas of hundreds of its’ players, they’ll have a harder time ignoring attention from a reputed publication able to broadcast their failings on a larger scale.

    If anyone thinks I’m exaggerating, read the comments on this review. If that’s not enough, make a WoT account, and read some of the plethora of posts written on the forums, begging for a change. We’ve been asking for this since closed beta, and we’ve been holding out this entire time, hoping the game would realize its’ potential. Now that it’s plainly obvious the player base is shrinking (someone on the forums knew 5 people who got to the middle tiers and quit, and I know 3, along with myself; that’s 9 people alone, from just a very small sampling) and the game as a whole is suffering, it’s time for some more drastic action.

    Since this publication has endorsed this game, it stands to reason they’d be willing to engage in some actions to help make it more successful, in this case, saving it from its’ own developer’s irrational stubbornness. If we could start a petition here, and if it did actually have an impact and cause Wargaming’s devs to rethink their strategy and actually listen to their players, you’d have a lot of happy people on your hands.

    My email is listed above, and I’ll be checking this thread periodically. Hope for a positive response :D

  30. I will echo Chris’s comments and add that even on the European server with the higher pop count one of the main complaints in their forums is also the horrid Matchmaker program.

    Now we have heard from the sycophantic fawnbois and developers that the Matchmaker is “working as intended” and I believe it is!! It is intended to make the mid tiers as miserable as possible to force people to spend RL money to bypass them by converting xp using gold, or to purchase a “wallet warrior” tank suck as the Lowe.

    I for one have never given a penny to WG and won’t until the game is out of beta. I don’t care that they want to change the numbering convention that ALL of the rest of the computer world uses and call their version 0.6.4 a release version. Heck they admit that their “end game” which is version of a 40 year old board game (Risk) is still in beta. So which is it, release or beta?

    The game is F2P and I for one am not quitting, in fact I am playing more and more on their dime using up their server time and bandwidth that they are paying for. Maybe when they go bankrupt they will listen.

    Don’t forget the average American has 4X the income of the average Russian and I for one don’t believe the BS that the Russian server has over a 100 thousand players. Even then it would barely be making more then the US server just based on disposable income alone.

    So to get off my soapbox….Chris I support your quest and you can count my vote as one of them.

  31. Hey guys. I was just curiois to see how the WoT going outside Russia (yup, I’m the russian guy, noway related to developers team, but playing WoT from time to time).
    I see you like it, I’m glad
    Happy sniping :)
    And, yes, this is extremely popular game here (though a bit hardcore for some teenage girls, but they do they best anyway :)) and belive it or not, it has more then 500K active subscribers (not all of them paying of course). Arguing about salary size as a reason to spend or not 10USD per month for premium account, I can say that $10 is not something I will be bit…ing about. Some would, may be. People are silimar everywhere.
    Enjoy the game and happy fragging!
    Too bad we cant play overseas due to technical limitations.

  32. This game is very unbalanced (russian tanks are over powered).
    Only good thing is the graphics.
    Do not waste your money or time on it.

  33. “The game is F2P and I for one am not quitting, in fact I am playing more and more on their dime using up their server time and bandwidth that they are paying for. Maybe when they go bankrupt they will listen.”

    Exactly the conclusion I have reached. I’ve opened up enough tanks to enjoy the occasional game, but until the bugs are fixed I see no point in paying to play against invisitanks and the matchmaking system.

    I would prefer not only a fix but an official apology from the developers to the entire WoT community, their attitude to their (potential) customers is absolutey appalling.

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