World of Tanks

Developers Q&A: Maps, Vehicle Balancing, Mods & Battle Changes

Final article on the World of Tanks Developers Q&A with the Russian Community Contributors. This one will be bigger than the previous ones and covers a range of topics like: Rules Maps, Vehicle Balancing, Mods and Battle Changes.

Last but not least, I would like to thank again Bolnoj, for compiling all the information, and finally to Prex, one of our Discord Moderators for helping complining all the information.

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Rule violations, maps, vehicle balancing, mod implementation and in-battle changes

  • What about the “idiots”? Letting people know they are really walking on thin ice and should quit it?
    • You could shoot him to let him know that. And if there is a whole platoon of them? And they randomly decide to block you from all sides or push you somewhere for lolz? They will attempt to solve TK-ing, but pushing and blocking? They will try to do something with it. Wargaming said “We have a solution for the CIS region,  for all popular CCs to unite and proclaim a campaign for “clean game” promoting fair play.”
  • Wargaming want to start accepting replays with blocking/pushing, make an email account where you would send a replay, it will get processed, if it was accepted and the offender was punished – the sender would get encouraged(possibly with in-game bonuses). Perhaps one day it will become an in-game Karma with likes and dislikes like in a lot of games
    • They are actually serious at making commendations a thing, and at the same time expanding the report system
  • All Chat return?
    • Wargaming said very blatantly No. Only after the toxicity is majorly reduced
  • Are there any built-in mods you wish to implement?
    • They have some mods they want to put in-game, such as expanded statistics of the battle session in-game, zoom-out, setting the default x of the sniping mode, minimap, and a lot of the popular mods in fact. A clean client right now and a clean client two years ago are two really different clients in terms of functionality, so a lot of mods have been already integrated
  • Why not make all of that mod stuff in 1.0, so that when people return to the game it will be easier for them?
    • Apparently, they swore an oath that 1.0 will not have any special features besides new engine and HD stuff and music. Any feature that makes it into such major releases destabilises everything and brings pain. “Visual changes are so serious,” Pankov says, “it’s basically a new WoT-like game.” So they just want to do that, and they’ll need some time to optimise it after release, too. We have so many different types of PCs as our player base it takes a LOT of time to stabilise. The most important thing for us to do is, come to a consensus on what to do and what not to do So many ideas and people running around.
  • A lot of things that seem really easy to do from a user viewpoint can be really hard technologically and consume a lot of time.
    • WG: “If we want to make, say, Personal Missions 2.0 to be released in October, we start work on them two months ago.” (H: he said it in an interesting way, I’m not sure if it’s truth). We are working on UI scaling, both for small notebooks and big 2K and 4K monitors.
  • Changes to +-25% RNG?
    • WG: NO.
  • Buying premium tanks for bonds?
    • WG: As they are currently – no, plans for this in the future – probably.
  • Is this okay T8 platoons get matched only to T10s?
    • Yes.
  • Shorten the time before battle – those 40 seconds of countdown?
    • No, but they have considered making a minigame of sorts of it in the future. They cannot significantly shorten the timer, we need to make sure at least 80% of the players are ready. The worst computers people use to play WoT are the computers that literally cannot load certain maps.
  • Wargaming also have a system that will replace the Wargaming League, but it is still in development, however, you could still earn physical money at that. Wargaming League was outdated and people were tired. They want something close to the game as it is and interesting – more standard formats, more tiers etc. The announcement will come until end of summer this year. Their goal is to test it and have the first tournament until the end of the year. Cannot comment on details of the format. Wargaming wants to make it more interesting for common players, so they don’t just cheer for NaVi, they can learn from what’s happening and use their skills in battle. WG: “What will replace Wargaming League will be majorly different from what we had before. First person view probably will be available.”They also want to support certain third-party tournaments, like the personal achievements ones that use something like a Ladder.
  • There will be new fun events this year.
  • They will see how they can balance the tanks within same class and tier to negate power-creep, but they say it will be hard, as they have “shaken the fishtank” a lot recently, but they are not in any rush to do it. “You buff some – others get worse, you nerf some – you create OP tanks somewhere else.” They want to really be considerate about it.
  • We are looking into the “turbo battles” problem with battles finishing in about 3 minutes with one team completely dominating the other. And they have 80 pages+ research papers about it. Apparently, it can’t be “generalized” and “classificated” because of different tanks, different players, different maps, etc. Also, apparently the average battle time has in fact increased over the last 1.5 years. They understand power-creep exists, and perhaps it was inevitable. Giving new mechanics to tanks is something they do to counter power-creep. WG: “If we nerf all of the tanks to certain level to slow battles and annihilate power-creep – we’d have a literal revolution with torches and pitchforks.” Super Conqueror is on special watch already. Meta of the game always changes with changes to the game, it’s a never-ending process, can’t stop it. Rebalancing of tanks takes a lot of time as well. Balance isn’t a mathematical thing, it’s a state, it’s not an “every character has 50% chance to win against any other”, it’s a shifting state that WILL keep shifting as long as we keep adding new tanks. Mathematical balance is not achievable. WG said, “In most of the games, new is better because devs want the players to be interested in the new thing. We cannot separate player skills from goodness of the vehicle that easily, especially with Obj. 268v4 at the moment.” They are working on some bots that will help us analyse the power of the tank we are testing. “We need a bot that will behave as a 48% player”
  • There were a lot of complaints about Update 1.0 maps specific issues. What can you say about this?
    • Not a problem, if we see something not OK – we will change it.
  • Also, Pankov stands corrected, as apparently the changes to gold rounds price are not going to come in 1.0, but in the next patch after it. No test can give them 100% correct information about the tactics and behaviour of the players, only thing they can do if release them. First, they wanted to transfer the maps to 1.0 “as is”, but soon found it to be impossible, as with the new engine the picture changes so much, and also some maps had to get remade, like Erlenberg. If new version of Erlenberg does not work in 1.0, we will forget about having it in-game whatsoever. Stalingrad was already forgotten about, it was hopeless. A lot of boosts and climbs on certain maps had to get removed because they didn’t think it was okay for the game to have them.
  • Maybe they’ll try to organise several streams with the mapmakers for them to explain why everything is the way it is on the maps and why certain maps seem to have one side in favour of the other.
  • At least 5 maps are in development right now. Mirror maps don’t work great. The house on Redshire base will get removed. Windstorm might get removed, not sure. Mines will still be available for Tier 10. They have some experiments going on about expanding small maps, because now with the new engine it’s much easier to change maps. They do acknowledge turbo battles exist and they are a problem.
  • Another one of the reasons turbo battles happen is the view range inflation. WG had a really big argument about LT10 view range before 9.18. Right now it’s easy to get to the max levels of view range, unless you have the T-100, in which case it’s pretty hard. Two factors always conflicting – view range and camo. There isn’t a lot of ways you could boost your camo, and a max level for each tank, but view range gets boosted by a lot more things. And the battle gets boosted no matter how big the map is due to faster inflation of view range compared to camo.
  • The statement of “if arty doesn’t get better with the changes it got – we’ll have to remove it” still stays, and it wasn’t a joke. But it had another addition to it: “return everything as it was.” Arty should not be playing solely for damage, that’s not what we want from it. Wargaming thinks arty is fine for now, though we keep monitoring it just in case. They will also see what we can do with M44, as it’s not okay that arty is in top of average damage dealt compared to most other tanks of its tier. And they’ll definitely see into the minimal stun time being too high for some arties.
  • Perhaps they could increase repair costs for people who self-drown. Amway’s idea: “What if the more times you get hit by stun, the lower the stun time gets, so if you’re a poor heavy that gets arty spammed, you could at least play instead of being perma-stunned?” That’s an interesting idea, perhaps it could make it into the reworked crew skills.
  • Limit the amount of LTs in battle, so poor players cannot die that easily in one of the most important classes for the team at the first minute of the game in great numbers, creating an instant loss. WG: “Every limitation hurts the MM greatly.” So, no. We’ll see what can we do to allow player-made show matches in training rooms with proper functionality(allowing a greater amount of observers, Attack/Defense mode etc.).
  • No premium accounts for several hours/several battles.
  • Loot Boxes – they liked them, they won’t get in permanently, will probably appear for events such as New Years, Christmas, etc. However it’s very good as a way to distribute rewards as a buyable thing, but only for events.
  • -+15% pen like in Blitz?
    • WG: No.
  • Wargaming is planning something for PvE.
  • Server-based replays with any player’s PoV available are being worked on.
  • They are really needed for new wargaming league replacement plus its already a thing on consoles, so it’s easier for us to work at them.
  • Wargaming place to announce something nice for veteran players in the future, especially since we have a pretty big date on the horizon, and no, it’s not Wargaming turning 20 years old, no, it’s something close to the end of the year.
  • Fun modes: something in May, something in Summer (Football Mode), something in Autumn and the New Year.
  • They really want 3D customisation to happen this year, perhaps in the new year event we could already receive canisters to put on the tank
  • Type 5 is not seeing any changes to it currently
  • HE rounds are only being timidly contemplated and experimented with right now
  • Apparently, Type 5 is very fine statistically, perfect curves ranging from bad to good players
  • Still, don’t know what to do with HE and HESH. HE needs to be remade, as it doesn’t do what it should, no reason to have more than 2-3 of them to shoot at occasional Lorraine or Waffle. Unless you have an HE gun of course. WG stated, “What we have now if pretty realistic compared to our world,  but not really interesting gameswise and really unpredictable.”
  • Vspishka’s idea: “Give the repair kit a function to unflip the tank and keep going because waiting for an ally to flip you is a lost cause” WG doesn’t like the idea with the repair kit but accept that they should think to give the flipping problem their attention.
  • Perhaps lowering costs to the Directives, the equipment and crew perk “consumables” you buy with bonds is possible, as when they made them, they were very afraid of negative feedback by players. With the new tanks for bonds, some changes to bond economy could be made.
  • No seeing your stats for the specific update  – too much data, we’d want it but not in the foreseeable future.
  • Personal Missions 2.0 will still have only one mission for a class available at a time, because when it’s like that, it urges the players to modify their behaviour in battle to achieve a certain goal.  And WG doesn’t see it as a bad thing, in fact, they like it. The only problem with it is the specific requirements for each mission demanding things unreasonable to do in most battles. But the Personal Missions 2.0 promise to have “different requirements”, so hopefully they’ve taken that problem into consideration.
  • They’ll have yet another one tutorial this year.
  • Wargaming has a “knowledge base” or however they have again renamed it in development, several blocks of it being developed, one of them is the expanded hint system (hitting alt when hovering over a tooltip will produce a graphical mini-video showing how this works).
  • Also expanding the current tutorial, micro-personal missions for new players. WG: “We are making bots to help ourselves test things, but if we properly configure them, we could use more of them in tutorials.” A little “encyclopedia”, though that’s not the correct word, more like a little handbook that adjusts to whatever the player is doing, identifies  “wrong” behaviour and gives advice.
  • A lot of this has already been properly designed, this is why they are speaking of it freely, release dates are about this year.
  • New referral program being worked on, it won’t just be a new tank instead of that trash, something different is promised
  • Tanks of all tiers will be customisable in the future
  • Historical battles only as PvE
  • Why can’t stock tanks have some number of battles of guaranteed top tier? WG said it’s actually not a bad idea and they would like to do it. If PvE was a thing right now, stock tanks could just get sent to PvE some first battles.
  • Something was planned for Chinese mediums in 9.22, most notably T-34-2 and WZ-120. This came up from a discussion of stock guns vs guns that offer a variability of gameplay vs redundant guns that need to be removed. Still enough of a reason to suspect it wasn’t just a “remove some guns” that was planned, but a proper buff like they do usually, but it was postponed.
  • Unification of grind, especially in terms of the amount of modules needed to be researched is in plans. Also perhaps ST-I can get the D-25 stock gun removed from it…perhaps. Yet complete unification “5 modules for each tank” is not a good idea, low tier grind with their lots of modules have players see a lot of easily achievable goals that immediately award them.
  • Perhaps WG is going to do something about the minimap pingers. Could receive the same amount of muteness or even more for continuously pinging the minimap annoying everyone that you do for spamming messages.
  • “Why not make an event like Day Without Arty? Why not make a server without arty? I would pay for that”
    • WG: “Because arty is part of the gameplay at the moment. Because it will lead to degradation of the game experience, in any shooter game on open space there is always attraction between players that pull them in a pack, the more open a game is – the more profitable is this behaviour. What arty is doing right now is preventing packs.”
  • Tier X economics will not change, the game was designed the way to make high tiers unprofitable and they’re not changing it now, especially with all of the free stuff you can get from various sources, including premium tanks from marathons.
  • T-22 medium is forgotten, closed, nothing is planned for that tank whatsoever.
  • No researchable hulls; they were scrapped in exchange for 3D customisation.
  • Right now “checking off” a map you don’t like is not being worked on, especially with the new unstable MM and the limited pool of HD maps in 1.0.
  • Perhaps later, when they can handle the MM easier and the amount of maps is greater, they’ll think of it.
  • Maybe as a new feature for prem acc, nothing is sure yet
  • No plans for changing the bond equipment, they are still waiting to gather more statistics on that.
  • If hull customisation influencing the tank’s characteristics(sandbags in armour model, bushes on the tank, etc.) is ever going to happen, if definitely isn’t going to do so in the first iterations of the 3D customisation system, although they are making it sound like they really do not like the idea. What with people covering themselves in layers of tracks to increase armour? That’s why they’ve been removing the track present on some tanks from the armour model in the recent HD models.
  • The first iteration of Personal Missions will not go away when the second one comes out, but the second, as mentioned before, is going to be pretty different.
  • WG has some plans to finally buff the CW tanks, and Personal Missions tanks will be looked into as well.
  • WG will definitely work on implementing some sort of “bulletin board” for clans, because recruiting people to clans via the game chat or even the forums is really not working out so well
  • Crush mechanics not gonna be changed, for now, the tank on top will still get as much damage
  • Being able to play as the AFK player: no.
  • Maybe WG is gonna add some hidden characteristic to display when they will again rework the garage lobby interface
  • WG: “We don’t know if it’s still there or not but for a long time in the XML files of the client there was the “Armour Fatigue Factor” set to be zero. What does it mean? Think for yourselves, dig in the old versions of the game.”
  • “Ending ranked battles with T8 or T9?”
    • “We think about it, universally and regionally, we don’t see a solution yet~” (Dev 2 speaks) “We look at the ships, they hold their ranked seasons on different tiers, those competitive seasons. So, let’s think, this season definitely T10 because it’s started already, the next one is sure to be T10 only as well, then – we’ll see. No specific plans yet, but the system we have is ready to do it.”
  • Question from Jove, 3 million sub Youtuber, to Anton Pankov, one of the most famous WG devs out there “How much do you earn?”
    • “I earn enough, but I earn less than you do, because I know how much money you make.”
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23 comments

  1. “There isn’t a lot of ways you could boost your camo, and a max level for each tank, but view range gets boosted by a lot more things.”

    There is 8 ways to boost viewrange and 7 ways to boost camo. So I call bullshit.

  2. “Tier X economics will not change, the game was designed the way to make high tiers unprofitable and they’re not changing it now, especially with all of the free stuff you can get from various sources, including premium tanks from marathons.”

    Yeah… what marathons? When was the last one again?

      1. There have been at least 3 marathons – T25 pilot spring/early summer if I remember correctly and that was rather easy tier 8 prem, than T-34-85M thats imho very good one – on par with Bromwel , japanese Tiger (HT no. VI) which isnt so good but stil only JP prem.HT. Valentine cant be considered as marathon.
        So far it was good imho – if I remember correctly IS6 or first (there have been 2 WZ marathons, havent there?) WZ – have been rather nolifer events.

  3. Is this okay T8 platoons get matched only to T10s?
    Yes.

    This is why I sync drop and only play solo now, oh and use pref matchmaking tanks almost exclusively

    Their is NO fun in facing a e100 or IS7 in my lowe, or even in my defender

    This is why their losing players >.<

      1. What planet are you from? Do you seriously think the player base is not decreasing because you still see 30 players in each battle?

    1. Oh, and when 1.0 comes around… get ready for an AVALANCHE of new players. WoT has never been healthier player count wise.

      1. Do you have any statistics to support that claim? From the data i have seen on sites like wot-news it seems that the playerbase (on EU server, havent checked RU) is decreasing. Its not a radical drop as some people claim but still number of players active each week has droped by about 130.000 players (from 1.066.000 on Feb 20 last year to 929.000 on same date this year.

  4. why is T-22 medium forgotten? not fair for others players who didn’t have the chance to get him.
    another way for get him is throu personal mission like obj. 260.
    so many options are there, and they just said closed case.
    im disappointed.

  5. Turbo matches are not caused by op or creep power tanks but by crowding blue_purple people in one team and crowding reds and oranges eventually a green one in the other one…and done, match is done in max 3 minutes.
    People are asking for moore than 3_4 years for a skill mm in witch people of diferent skills put in teams in an even number….but wg will never do that…so battle of 3 minutes will continue to haunt us for many years fre now on.

    1. That is my view too. There is no fix for turbo mm in the sense of tank balance and template mm. Just like these things cant prevent bad player behavior (lemming trains, suicide rush, or 2-3 tank holding a flank against 5 because the 5 tank are too scare to go out in a same time and flank). The fix will be introduce skill tiers in MM based on personal rating in a fashion +-1 tier. Or players below a certain skill level are separated and lay in a starter league. That will be good for red players and anyone above them too.

  6. obj 268 v4 is op. But if you nerf mobility then its ok… Because at this moment it’s faster than most meds. And the reverse speed… lol. TD’s should not do what superheavies do.Now they do it much better than even super C does. Thats why it’s broken.

  7. “Super Conqueror is on special watch already.”

    So Brits have only one really strong tank (ok, Caernarvon now is OK but it has nerfed mobility :() so let’s watch it and eventually nerf it.

    🙁

  8. That is not possible because of the reverse speed. it goes faster backwards than maus forward 🙂
    But my point was that maus can be in right place in 1 min but this tank in 30 sec.

  9. I dont do tier 8 platoons anymore.I rather play solo on tier 8 as the mm is still crap.You go into battle and your team is made up off yellow,orange,red and a few green players while the enemy team has mostly yellow,green and blue players and unicum sometimes.What is really going to happen with the tanks that has pref mm.Is WG just going to decide what they want to do with them or are they willing to to allow us the owners of those tanks give feedback to them before they make any changes.And when they do decide on changes will all the servers be allowed to give feedback or is it just the Russian server because lately it looks like if the Russians dont like it it gets changed to their liking and screw the rest that players on the other servers.I mean everybody shouted the WT E100 td is OP.Why cant they bring it back with the 128 mm gun.Itl be on par with the new Foch td.WG should start reading websites like this and not just focus on forums where if you complain too much you get banned or flagged to their liking.

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