Thursday, May 30, 2013

Taming the Tiger II

I'm continuing to play the Tiger II with much greater success than my first time around. I have broke through the 40% win rate and upped my average damage while 'grinding' out the E75. The next 'On Track Event' is imminent but the SEA server has already announced that the E100 will be the star of the show and since it's a global event..... BOOYA. I chose wisely this time. I've got 90k on the Tiger II so the next couple weeks will be nice. I can finish off the experience needed for the E75 with some increased income on my Tiger II. Overall I'm liking the playstyle, and once again I'm gobsmacked that I couldn't make this bad boy work previously. Damn I was a noob. My name should have been Noobius_Maximus.

A few more like this please.

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Get Ready To Test (WOT 8.6 Inc)

The 8.6 public test server will be starting in a few days (thank you FTR). I am looking forward to testing out the new, and 'balanced' arty. I've been holding off buying the Tier VII Object 212 while simultaneously grinding the Tier VI GW Panther in anticipation of the changes. I'll likey buy the Object as I anticipate it will be a bit cheaper now, as opposed to when it is moved to Tier IX, but we will soon see. If arty is completely gimped now, of course, I may re-think that.

I'm trying to get the GW Tiger unlocked because it's like a two-for-one tech tree special. For the first time Wargaming will be unlocking tanks replaced by new tanks......sounds confusing, but it's not. If you have an arty unlocked, and it is moved and replaced, you will get both unlocked. The GW Panther is being moved to tier VIII so I would have the new tier VI unlocked as well as the Tier VIII GW Panther. Same for the GW Tiger so it may make sense to get it now (I'm 80k away though so doubtful if I'll get it completely done without the use of free xp).

Arty, however, will no longer be punished with the experience penalty of -50% removed so it may not be worth it to grind the full 160k on the GW Panther... if you see what I mean. It will all depend on what the new arties cost to unlock and their credit cost to buy as well as their performance. I'm not a huge arty fan but I do like the change of game-play, I seem to be good with them, and the more people cry about too many arty, the more I want to play them!

The other things I am looking forward to include:

Tank Destroyers will also stop being punished. The -30% experience co-efficient will be removed. I will likely start grinding my Object 704 once again especially with the additional changes to the camo values (nets, and premium camo now add a set, cumulative value rather than an unknown multiplier based on the vehicle). Tank destroyers, I am predicting (and you heard it here first) will the the new target of whiners everywhere IF arty is indeed balanced (nerfed). 'OMG nerf tank destroyers I'm sick of being killed by invisible tanks waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa' will the the post of the day. Seriously, mark my words. First it was the Type 59 whine threads, then the focus really turned to arty, and next will be TD's. I guarantee it (no money back however as this is free after all). I really believe that some people would just rather have 15 heavies line up opposite each other and shoot till only one person remained.

I'm also looking forward to the nerf of premium ammo (depsite having some fun with the M4 Derp) and the penetration changes which should make heavy armor, well, heavy again. Lets face it, the premium ammo for credits debacle has really ruined parts of the game. I took my M4 Derp out and had 16 kills in two games. I also tried HEAT on the Hetzer and it really is an instant win button. I could almost 1-shot any tank I faced and make money at it as well. In the higher tiers armor is irrelevant as fast tanks with high pen rule the field. Hopefully this will make a difference and I say this as a medium tank player. Lets get back to balanced I say.

I will also start to play my beloved VK3002DB (don't care what it's called now I will also refer to it as the DB) which will get an MM reduction (in value, not tier). I'm already rocking this little tank (1400 efficiency) so I can't wait. The Indien Panzer will also get weighted less so I will likely dust it off as well (60% win rate atm). The new(ish) Tier IX and X meds will also be weighted lower but I'm not there yet so, meh.

There will be some economy changes as well and I've read a lot of conflicting (and translated) accounts of what is going to happen. I do know that Tier X will get a 10% boost or so to income and some of the lower tiers may or may not get a boost as well. There is some discrepancy as to whether lower tier Premium tanks will be affected but Tier VIII premiums will not get a boost. It's nice to see some positive changes to the economy because it is difficult to run upper tier tanks (especially now since some of them depend on premium ammo). In addition with all the new tanks in the game there is potentially a lot to buy. There are a few tanks I would love to buy but money is holding me back (and the fact I don't have time to play them all). They include:

  1. Tier IX E50- sold this but now I want it back. I'm fickle that way.
  2. Tier IX Patton- curious as to how it plays even though I was a bit average with the Pershing.
  3. Tier VIII T69- a pershing with an autoloader eh....... see above.
  4. IS7- yes I know it's one of the worst Tier X's atm but I've had it unlocked for over a year and feel I should buy it.
  5. Tier VII KV-13- I miss this and would rate it as one of my top 3 tanks in the game. Sold it a few months ago.
  6. Tier VII T25/2- I've been holding off on this because I want to play the Hellcat a bit more. Never enough time.....
  7. Tier VIII T-44...sigh, I keep thinking I should unlock the T-54 even though I sold this tank a couple months ago because I was sucking with it.
  8. E75- not yet unlocked but I'm over half way there so it's on the list.
Wow, looking at that list I realize I should start playing all my premiums more. Thanks to my compulsive nature, and the fact I have more money than sense, I have ALL the tier VIII premium tanks except the Lowe, and the T-34. Ahem, yes, that is a lot. Add in equipment for all those tanks and holy jeebus, that's a lot of cash I'd need to get them all. Realistically I' should sell off some of the tanks I currently have to house the new ones but will that ever happen?

Friday, May 24, 2013

Fortuitous Friday: WTS Pneumonia and Sexual Stereotypes

WTS: Bacterial Pneumonia, persistent strain impervious to two different antibiotics. Tired of sleeping? This strain is gguaranteed to let you stay up late coughing. Provides constant wheezing. Free inhaler if you act now!

Bloody hell this is a pesky little infection I have here. I never really understood how serious pneumonia was until I go it. It knocks the crap out of you and I can see why it does actually kill people. I first got sick on the 8th of April and was coughing by the 12th. I am now on my 3rd round of antibiotics which must be pretty potent because they are working. I should hope so for $80. I've been coughing and sick for 6-weeks now and I must say I'm sick of it (see what I did there). On the plus side I am starting to get better but damn it's been a while. I'm looking forward to being able to play with New Mouth To Feed for longer than 5 minutes at a time before needing to puff on my (temporary) inhaler.

And speaking of New Mouth To Feed, she is turning the ripe 'ole age of one this weekend. We are just now beginning to feel like we can get our 'regular' lives back as she is starting to sleep well in the evenings. This is a fun age, I must admit, and the 12-work-days (two and a half real weeks) I was forced to stay home with my illness was actually kind of nice. I am in danger of becoming forgotten at work, however, as my pat leave was followed by a two-week holiday and then over two full weeks off for the pneumonia. It's a damn good thing I'm very good at my job.

So family and friends will be in attendance which will be fun. I hope. I generally hate gatherings of people and when you toss into the mix my mother (with some very special issues of her own), my untill recently estranged father AND his new wife things are bound to get interesting.... and by interesting I mean horribly stressful. If it was up to me I'd just celebrate the occasion with the three of us but when it comes to social responsibilities and engagements I defer to She Who Will Be Named Later. I generally have a hard time initiating these things and most times, in fact, I don't even realize that they should be done. Social relations aren't my particular forte so She Who Will Be Named Later who excels in sociability is in charge of these matters. Just tell me where to go, when to be there, and how much I'm allowed to drink and I'll be happy.....or at least I can manage my anxieties appropriately. I'm always fine once the event gets going but the lead up to it is always anxiety-inducing.

So what do you get a 1-year old who has more stuff than she can possibly use? That's right, MOAR STUFF. I really have to restrain myself when it comes to buying things. I'll see something cool (everyone loves toys) and get it without thinking 'oh yea, she has lots of cool things already' and that doesn't include the basement room full of hideous pink shit that people insist on giving us because she's a girl. I've had to buy her clothes from 'the boys section' not because I wish she was a boy, but because I can't bear putting her in a pink top that says 'too cute'. The difference between boys and girls clothes is remarkable. I'm waiting for the pink new-born mini-skirt and half-tee combo that says 'Future Whore' on it. The boys section, of course, is filled with shirts that say 'little devil', and 'heres trouble' and the like. I really can't relate to what appears to be the norm.

Sigh, as I said, I'm not great with social-relations and such but I sure find people interesting to study. If only I could put everyone in a zoo where, when I felt like it, I could pop in to watch them. I'd take my daughter and she'd be wearing a shirt that says: "I'm a person first, and a girl second and I'm allowed to wear something that doesn't objectify me based on stupid sexual stereotypes. You bastards." Hmmm..that may be a lot to fit on a shirt. I may have to put the 'You bastards' on the back.

Happy Friday Everyone!

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Taming the Tiger

Being both a sucker for punishment, and a stat-obsessed fool I decided to buy back the Tiger II and give it another go. Several thousand battles (and two years) ago I was quite the noob. I rage sold the Tiger II because I just couldn't win with it. Every time I encountered that 39% win rate in my service record I cringed. My efficiency was anything but, and my average damage and kills per game was horrendous. I've looked at the tank several times over and don't understand why I couldn't make it work with its decent armor (when angled) and Tier IX gun. I do remember that I sold it after a 20-game losing streak (successively in one session).

My Secret Shame

I've hated those crappy stats, and more to the point that I couldn't make the tank work for ages. The German line was my first heavy line (mistake the first) and though I knew the Tiger I wasn't the epic legend of real-life, in-game, I had heard good things about the Tiger II. The problem was that I was new to the game (2k battles or less) and somewhere along the way someone told the me the Tiger II could brawl. Sure, it could brawl, but the problem was that's all I tried to do and 'brawling' for me involved a lot of facehugging and (embarrassingly enough) circle strafing. Yes, I know. For shame. I basically played it like one should play the IS3 (sans circling of course) and got my ass handed to me time and time again. I didn't even know enough to try to hide my lower plate and to be honest I'm just learning about side-scraping now (works very nicely in the Tiger II).

The recent 30% off special saw me re-buy the Tiger II and put it into my regular rotation of tanks. My objective is two-fold: get ready for the (probable) on track event for Germany (discounted E75, yes please), and improve those god-awful stats of mine.

So far, so good. In fact I want to travel back in time and slap my fool self for using the Tiger II so badly. It's a beast- a hell of a nice tank IF you know how to play it or, at the very least, don't play it like an idiot. I have a game I'm going to (eventually) do a video for which could be the absolute best game I have ever played, in any tank. Ever. And that's saying something when my total battles is nearing 10,000. I'll be happy to sell it and move on to the E75 but for now it is performing well which just highligths the fact that there are no bad tanks- it's only the people using them.

Thursday, May 16, 2013


So many disgusted noises I could make this morning, or alternatively bad words I could use. They are all floating around my head, never fear, but I'll spare you having to see them in print. It's not, after all, your fault... or is it? Not unless you were one of the skill-less asshats valiant teammates I got facerolled fought with last night. Over, and over, and over. In one of my most frustrating sessions in a very long time I ended the night with 7 wins and 23 losses.

Not bad enough, having to suffer the losses, I was (on several occasions) subjected to a wide variety of abuse and/or strategic advice from team mates who had died. With XVM running I noted that in 99% of these cases said team mate had a sub 950 efficiency and a below 50% win rate. Post game stats showed the vast majority of them would have done more damage by flinging wet noodles at the enemy. There were no breaks last night. I loaded into battles twice with platoons of top-ranked players from top-ranked clans (win rates in the 60-70% range and efficiencies topping 2500) on my own team, and we still lost.

The Gods of Tanking were against me last night and the writing was on the wall early as I sat down at the computer. I had a post on one of my You Tube videos where the commenter stated: "You shouldn't turn off in-game chat because you won't be able to read what intelligent players are saying'. Yea, right. Hardy-fucking-har.

So as not to brood all day (yes, I'm like that) I'm trying to put a positive spin on it so I did manage to have my best game ever in my T71 (a tank I struggle with) and, in fact, one of my best scouting games ever. I know the T71 isn't necessarily a dedicated scout but I currently have a bush-scout set up (camo, binocs, camo-crew, and premium camo) so when I loaded into Malinovka there was only one thing to do: sit in a bush. Well, many bushes to be exact and the enemy deciding to leave their western flank open (I loaded from the buildings side) was rather nice. Once we secured hill I relocated to hunt down those pesky arty. Having 4 arty per side was a boon in this case (especially the T92 who was one-shotting tanks I was spotting) and I managed to get 5400 in spotting damage and earned pile of credits. (I'll edit this post later with the screen shot) along with the scout and patrol duty medals.

I also managed to earn 600, 000 credits as once I could sense the losing streak was going to be bad I switched to premium tanks. As an added lol, out of sheer frustration I suicide-scouted with my Type 59, and even though we lost I still earned 41k (for 30 seconds of work) in profits and killed an arty. Maybe I should do a suicide scout experiment in the Type 59 to see if that makes a difference to my win-rate or earnings. In any case, all was not lost I must grudgingly suppose.

But wait, I'm not done. This morning I read about the upcoming changes to penetration and HEAT ammo on For the Record and was struck by just how much the game is biased toward (no, not Russians though I bet you were waiting for that) fast tanks. The new 'nerfs' which see the penetration of HEAT (also known as 'gold' or 'premium') ammo go down while the cost goes up. Way up in some cases. While reading through all the details (yes, I read them all) I was struck by two thoughts.

First the increasing cost of premium ammo begins to negate the so-called 'removal' of the pay to win aspect of World of Tanks. By increasing the costs you may deter some players from using it so often, or you may shift the balance to those of us (yes that includes me) who have either money to spend on actual gold rounds (not me) or who have a lot of premium tanks, and premium accounts (yes, me). Remember my earlier statement? I made 600k in 30 games (23 of them losses) with my premium tanks/account. For the rest of the week I could easily spam HEAT in my Hetzer or M4, (or IS4 for that matter), and not go broke. The point of making 'gold' rounds available for credits was that it was accessible to everyone. That accessibility is now removed to a certain degree.

The idea is to make armor meaningful again but, and this is the second bit, it is clear that the game favors fast-moving tanks. Maybe the devs (or player base) feel this is best as it means games are fast and exciting, I don't know. What I do know is that a Tier IX medium tank having 330 penetration (with HEAT) while a Tier X heavy tank has 340 pen (with HEAT) seems a little unbalanced to me. I play with some medium tanks that have dreadful penetration (VK3002DB with 130 in tier IX games is a bit challenging I will say) and do very well (1400 efficiency). It makes me wonder what I could be doing with the T-54 and its 330 penetration. Officially the T-54's HEAT goes from 350 to 330 pen while the IS4's (and IS8) HEAT goes from 400 to 340. Lol, what?

I'm deliberately not discussing the upcoming arty nerfs yet as I'm waiting for the full announcement. I know that accuracy, splash radius, damage, and rof are being nerfed (GW Panther goes to 7.1 accuracy lol) but they keep saying there is something 'good' for arty. I'll remain skeptical until I see it.

Online games are ever changing. I've played my share of MMO's so I know that. I do think Wargaming is doing a good job overall but I worry that their model of 'add more tanks' as content is beginning to take it's toll. Powercreep (where each new tank has to be just a bit better than the last to make people want to play it) is not just evident, but is becoming a way of life in WoT. I'm pretty old. I remember when the Object 704 and it's dreaded BL-10 was, well, dreaded. Now the 750 damage it can (when it hits) inflict isn't that scary at all especially when you can just flank the old dinosaur in your fast light and pen the shit out of it with your auto-loader which dishes out 900 damage in half the time it takes the Object to reload.

Balance is difficult and the more tanks you add the harder it becomes. The newest German additions getting match-maker re balancing (my precious VKDB and new Indien Panzer get lower weights) is just an example. I wish they would have sorted out the HEAT/Arty issue before adding more un-balanced tanks to the pot. Do people really want more tanks? Is this fun? I know that every once in a while I do want to try something different but surely having the different classes of tanks (medium, heavy, light, spg, destroyer) mixed with different tiers is good enough isn't it? I haven't even touched the Chinese line (and don't plan on it) and just dabbled in a couple British Tank Destroyers. I really do miss the old days where each end -game tank (and there were only a few) played very differently and took a different set of skills to use. The IS-7 was king of the fast heavies while the Maus was a force to be feared. The US tanks sucked (but now they are all that's required in the end-game to win), the few Object 704's you encountered shook your rivets in fright, and medium tanks had to wolf-pack to succeed.

Rose-colored glasses or fact? What do you think?

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Realtime WoT News & Blog updates at one place!

Realtime WoT News & Blog updates at one place!

Pretty cool if you ask me. I enjoy it because the NA forums are blocked at my work and this lets me puruse them....on my lunch break, of course. I can't read the full topics but meh. The EU forums are open to me (strangely enough) but I can't log in to post :(

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Breaking My Heart: "new game modes - not anytime soon"

"new game modes - not anytime soon"

This quote from the WoT head-honcho from here.

Of all the things they focus on I wonder why this is always the last despite it being wanted so badly by long term players.

It really breaks my heart- so much so that I have nothing to say. I've said it all before and don't feel like revisiting the issue. 9500 battles in and I'm still playing so they must be doing something right but OMG I'd like a new game mode soon.

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Bulletin Board Funnies

One of the things I used to do here on my blog is make fun of the people I work with. None of them, of course, know about this blog so I'm safe..... I think. It's been a while, so if you missed the last one heres the scoop. My work-place has an electronic bulletin board where they list things for sale. I like to peruse it not only for the potentially good deals, but it's an interesting look into peoples lives- whether they know it or not. My favorite, so far, was the posting for both a wedding ring, and a striptease video. Hmmmmm....perhaps if one had been used the other wouldn't have been for sale?

In any case here's the latest: some bedding which, I would say, may not lend to the most peaceful sleep, and who, other than college kids in in the 1980's perhaps, would actually use this?

Gives me a whole new perspective on the lady who put this up for sale.