Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Testing, Testing...World of Tanks Public Test 6.7 Review

As previously mentioned I am currently embroiled in a love-hate-love-like-can't stop playing-will never play again- relationship with World of Tanks. It's not actually all that bad- I am exaggerating for dramatic effect (actually it is that bad but I want you to keep reading so I thought I'd soften the blow). I am still playing and would like to say I am not raging, but that would be a bold-faced, outright lie. If any of you have had the misfortune to be on any of my teams which are, em, shall we say, sucking, you'll have seen some fair, but firm, criticism in the local chat.

Well I certainly think it's fair in any case. I mean, isn't asking why 4....that's four.....platoons of clanned tankers (that's 12 supposedly organized tankers) at tier 7+ decided to rush off down one side of the map and leave the other flank open (predictably resulting in a humiliating loss) fair? Once past tier 6 I believe most people would have a clue, but it seems I was a bit optimistic in thinking that.

In any case this isn't a WoT flame or rant (though don't get too comfortable as I'm sure more are to come). In an effort to keep the game fun I have jumped onto the public test server where I get the chance to try out various tanks (thanks to the 10X experience and credits and the 10k gold gift) and where I don't give a crap how bad the teams are.

The server is merged so there are a mix of EU, and NA players, but predominantly the players are Russian. Unless you tweak a few settings in the directory the whole thing is in Russian. Neither the tweak, nor the Russian is a big deal. At this stage I know the game well enough that I can navigate the menu in any language. I have found this experience to be refreshing with different players, play-styles, and languages coming together nicely......except, of course, for the obligatory idiots from America making fun of the 'commies', their language, and their women.

I know the one or two jerks I've run in to don't represent America as a whole, and to be fair every Russian player there could be making fun of me and I wouldn't know. I can't be bothered to cut and paste into translator so what do I know? I have also lived in America and know it to be a diverse, wonderful place full of lovely people- and jerks- as is anywhere in the world. I simply point out that these players are acting like idiots and move on.

The test server is a breath of fresh air and has allowed me to try out a variety of tanks I was interested in without the pain of grinding for the experience or credits. The test has also introduced the new Chinese Medium Type 59 premium which is an underwhelming Tier 8 tank I spent 10,000 gold on. Even though the gold was free I'm regretting buying it as I could have converted a lot of my experience over and tried some upper tier tanks I've had my eye on. If they are thinking of charging 10k for this thing on the live server there is going to be a lot of broke, disappointed tankers out there.

The decals aren't pictured as I have tweaked my settings and they have been removed.

It's okay, don't get me wrong. It's armored to the teeth, but the speed suffers and the gun is underpowered. It pays well in terms of experience and credits, of course, but I don't think it's any better than other tier 8 mediums. It will, as with the Lowe, allow people with less experience to jump straight into the higher tier matches (as did the Lowe) which will, of course, decrease the fun for those of us with a bit more experience (as tactics can go out the window quick with inexperienced players).

Low profile, high-armor turret = hull down tactics

I'm all for 'Wallet Warriors'. We are keeping this game free for the rest of the players (I've spent $150 in total so far). There is no denying, however, that those who buy tanks may not be as experienced (ie good) as others and the team could suffer. I have also seen very good Lowe drivers who have made a real difference to the outcome.... but not often. When a tank pays off weather you win or lose, what's the incentive to do well? It's also a sniper tank so it's most often used as a 'camper' which increases the frustration of teammates dying on the front.

But I digress......

The test server has also introduced the new light tanks. The German tree has seen the addition of a tier 5 (one more past the Leopard) and the Russian tree has new tier 4's and 5's. The new Russian lights (T-50's) are ridiculously over powered (OP!) to the point where they are going to completely alter the game. Really. I'm not kidding.

The new face of evil

They are so fast, so tough, and so hard to kill that most of the game is spent in your own base trying to kill them (unsuccessfully) before they kill your artillery. I have completely given up playing arty on the test server as I've been killed a few times before I've even loaded.....they are that quick.

On the plus side all the people complaining about arty will soon shut up when a pack of these things annihilates them. I saw a Tiger II get killed by a T-50 (Russian light Tier 5) and the Tiger wasn't a bad player. Go ahead and laugh if you will....it'll soon be your turn. If they don't nerf them I'm certainly going to start driving one. It's a great griefing tank. Drive around at 72 km/h weaving and darting, tagging tanks, killing arty, and generally being a nuissance? Yes please!

On the plus side they won't last long. I've seen a few of the drivers immediately exit a battle when there is no arty claiming it's 'no fun'. I can boldly say that if these things hit the live server most arty players will soon stop playing arty which will make those light scouts pointless. It will also increase the boldness of the heavy tank drivers who, not fearing arty, will plow forward killing all the non-heavies in their path. It will, in short, further cement this game as Heavy vs Heavy only which is currently prevalent in the 'end game'.

There! And you thought there would be no proper analysis and just a bunch of complaining today! Ha! I Can Has Brains?

Not mentioned, but the Jumbo Sherman is a beast. Note the stock 152 armor turret which is lost upon upgrading. I'm never upgrading! A lot of fun.


  1. Americans making fun of commies? As someone who understands Russian... you really don't want to know what the Russians are saying about us. As if the TK'ing last test server wasn't a good enough sign of their intentions...

  2. Ya, I ran into a few stupid Russians last night as well with:

    Yanki go home.

    They seemed unimpressed when I pointed out that I was, in fact, at home while playing the game, and that Yanki, was spelled 'Yankee'. They did manage to spell 'Fuck you' correctly, so I guess they weren't as stupid as I suggested they were ;)

    The fact is there are just as many stupid Russians, Canadians, Britians, and whatever, per captia, as there are Americans. Stupidity is a universal human trait, I've found.

    Haven't run into any team killers yet though....

  3. been my experience that i have no idea what the russians are saying, but they don't seem to mind shooting at me if i am in there way. Ramming is more common on the test server too, almost always a RU in the name too.

    I personally saw a Chaffee circle kill a Tiger the other day and a T-50 circle kill a IS. These things have HIGH pen weapons for there type [134 pen on the Chaffee and @100 pen on the t-50]. The Chaffee and T-50-2 have 600 hp so you'll need to hit them a lot before they buzz saw your arty, not easy for most tanks under tier 7. I see a lot of base rushes and circle battle's coming.

    All in all I too am locked in a love -hate with WoT ... and will be there when the patch hits, buzzing in circles and loving every moment before the nerf.

  4. Ya, time to get my griefing gloves on... I've got 150k worth of free experience and I plan on being one of those jerks that makes the dev's nerf the T-50-2 ;)

    Can't beat em, join em!

    Seriously though, me and everyone else on the test server have been screaming long and loud these things are going to be a problem so it's no their heads now.

  5. Hey Gank,

    Good to know about those T5 Lights. I've taken a bit of a break from WoT in order to spend some time with Red Orchestra 2. I definitely don't want to miss out on any of that griefing goodness, so I'd better get back in soon so I can get some cash building up to be ready for them!

    Have ya been able to check out RO2 yet? There are quite a few of us 116th running in the Beta now, and our server is actually ranked #2, right behind Tripwire's own. Really, that was more of a 'perfect storm' of timing, but we certainly aren't going to throw it out.

    If your into First Person Immersion, then the game is a Masterpiece! I'm not exaggerating in the slightest when I say I have no doubts that some people will suffer from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder from playing this game. The ambiance and voice acting are top notch, and the in-game characters talk to each other (to give you some basic info), blurt out insults, or scream for mommy when shot. Incredible step up from the first one!


  6. How much EXP is it from M$ to Jumbo?

    TY for your reply!

  7. @Anonymous- I used around 50k free experience to unlock the Sherman Jumbo and (nearly) fully upgrade it. It's a great tank and one that I will be using. It starts better than it ends up imo as the stock turret is 152-152-152 armor which is absolutely ridiculous for a T6. The upgraded turret is a significant decrease in armor and ultimately the tank turns into an Easy 8 with a bit of better frontal armor. I'm going to experiment tonight with the old turret and see how it goes. So far I'm 5 wins, 2 losses, with 5 kills.

    @ Deathmongrel- hey, nice to hear from you. I was pretty certain I was going to try RO2 but I'm starting to have my doubts.....I've never really been big into FPS games and after watching some Youtube footage of the Beta it seems to follow the same die-respawn-die-respawn format. The realism, immersion, and setting will likely win me over....as will the $35 price tag which I think is very reasonable.

    @116th- grats on your server ranking in RO2! Nice work.

  8. @ Anonymous- in a addition the Jumbo Sherman is a massively better tank than the T1 heavy, and you can use it to skip the T1 and unlock the M6 (?) Tier 6 heavy...a win-win as that T1 is so horrible.