WoT Tankfest Q&A (27.06.2017)

Interviewed were Thaine Lyman (L) (ex-Activision employee, now at Wargaming) and Vyacheslav Makarov (M).

Q: First, I’d like to ask about the event itself, and then we can look at the questions of the Facebook users.
L: A great achievement is the Tiger collection here at Bovington. To see them in reality, especially Tiger 131, in working condition and in the game, fills us with pride and happiness.

Q: First question is about premiums – why are newer premiums much better than old ones?
M: This is most likely about the Defender and Chrysler, well, we’ve worked on these vehicles while working on the Maus branch in parallel. The main idea was to return the role of armor into the game, since players were complaining that they weren’t able to tank as much on HT and that they’re getting penetrated all the time. So we hurled tanks into the game which were well-armored. The problem is that after many years of development and changes to the game, and the increase in penetration on tier 10 we cannot reliably tell how a tank will behave in random battles. Regarding the Defender, we’ve likely overbuffed it and thus removed it from sales for as long as it takes to change the matchmaker at minimum. A good example is the Type 59 – it’s a good tank after the matchmaker changes and became an ordinary vehicle. We might have overbuffed Maus and Type 5 (which will soon be nerfed), but this is the process of returning armor to the game. It’s a different story with the Chrysler. Statistics showed that it’s not overbuffed. Yes, it’s very strong at the front, but it pays for this with speed, bad depression, rear turret. All of this makes it unique and it’s a hard enemy from the front, but a normal tier 8 tank. We currently have tier 8 tanks which are quite weak for their tier and this is what we want to fix. I once talked about a pyramid shape, where tier 10 are at the top and after that, it’s only declining. Currently, there is a huge difference between tier 10 and 8 tanks. And we want to change that by buffing tier 8’s and lower.
L: We’ve realized that there is a bad testing process of new tanks and we’ll change that in the future.
M: Another problem is the rate of introduction of new changes. There were times where we didn’t have the chance to fix the mistakes of the last patch before a new one was due to be released. We really want to introduce many novelties, which the game really needs, but in the development process, errors do happen, and we’re currently balancing between new content and fixing the errors.
L: Long ago, premium tanks were a bit worse than their regular counterparts. We don’t want to work this way anymore where people who spend real money on a tank get “kicked in the balls”. It’s kinda unfair. So now we look at premium and regular tanks as equals. But sometimes, we make mistakes and I hope our viewers can understand that we do realize that we made a mistake and will be more careful with future tanks. But many tier 8 tanks will soon be buffed.
M: Yes, we have a list of tanks that will receive buffs very soon (one-two months) and yes, the KV-5 is in this list.

Q: Well, this leads to the next question: what will be done about old premiums?
M: Yes, old premiums will receive a buff. Some are easy and we’d like to keep the uniqueness of the vehicles, but sometimes it’s quite difficult.
L: As you know, some old premiums have a preferential matchmaker, which additionally interferes with rebalancing.

Q: Another question revolves around premium ammo. With new tanks, the need to use premium ammo seems to rise (for example Chrysler).
M: We try to balance premium ammunition with in-game economics and are currently thinking of removing the price in gold. So that this ammunition is simply a more expensive ammo type in the game. This would give us the option to vary the shell price more widely. But this is just a concept now.

Q: There were recently vast changes to artillery. What is your opinion on it right now, can we expect more changes?
M: Arty needs some minor corrections, but it’s looking good right now.

Q: When will the USSR buff come, for example IS-7?
M: This is planned in the next 2 patches.
L: Planned, but there are also many other tanks awaiting a buff.

Q: When will the Polish branch come and how will it look?
L: The branch will come, but we can’t disclose dates. We didn’t want to release it earlier since it would’ve been a copy of other nations.
M: We’re currently receiving projects from the Polish archives. When we have 10 tanks, we’ll start adding them to the game. But it’s very difficult to find something so we cannot make any promises on dates.

Q: Regarding matchmaker. The players really like the new matchmaker, but how does it look to you “from the inside”?
M: Well, it’s good, but we’ll have to work further on it, especially on low tiers.
L: Of course we have to work on the matchmaker. And we’re quite happy that the two problems players complained about the most – artillery and matchmaking – were basically solved in one patch. Of course, there’s still work to be done, but such huge changes have to be monitored, and if statistics and feedback show that something has to be changed, we’ll change it.

Q: Will there be changes to personal missions?
M: To put it bluntly, yes. We’re waiting for statistics and will work based on it.

Q: Regarding Ranked battles. Many like the mode, but the rewards are questionable – meaning the improved equipment.
L: Yes, we’ve noticed the feedback of the players. This is a test season. We’re trying many new things in it – matchmaking, ranks, economy, rewards and bonds. The best players can buy two improved equipments for bonds, and this is not much. Bonds are currently present in ranked battles only, but we have plans to include them everywhere else as well.
M: We can include bonds in marathons, and I think there are more possibilities to reward the player and give him something valuable.

Q: When can we see new modes in the game?
L: The 30 vs 30 test went well. We as well as the players liked it, but we can’t say when it’ll go live.

Q: When will new HD maps come?
M: HD maps will have to be implemented all at once. The render technology is done, we’re currently working on the maps themselves.

Q: Will TOG II be sold?
L: This depends on the region.

Q: Will there be platoons for more than 3 players?
M: Only in special modes.

Q: Will there be more fun-modes, like WoT 8-bit or Tank racing?
L: Yes, there will be such modes in the future.

Q: What about Sandbox, will it be continued?
L/M: Yes. It has it’s own capabilities and has already helped us greatly. It allows to try things out which may not appear in the game at all.


38 thoughts on “WoT Tankfest Q&A (27.06.2017)

  1. “We try to balance premium ammunition with in-game economics and are currently thinking of removing the price in gold. So that this ammunition is simply a more expensive ammo type in the game.”

    It’s all fine and dandy but this won’t fix the main issues with premium ammo…


        1. It IS the solution some people believe in, including myself. However, keep in mind Blitz and console do not run by the same team. From those shxtstorm in the last few months and WG’s reactions on that, I highly doubt do they even capable to figure it out.


    1. There are things that could be done to help with the issue. It might complicate the mechanics a bit, but I believe for the better. I’m looking at the way War Thunder and Armoured Warfare approach different shell types. There are no better and worse ones, but the ones more and less suitable for the particular enemies and engage distances.

      In WoT terms each type of shell would have it’s advantages and disadvantages. Heat already works close to how it should, being dodgy against spaced armour, and only needs it’s dmg reduced. APCR should also lose some dmg and have drastically increased pen drop off over the distance. Add to that the pen calculation determining if the shell will pen the enemy through, exiting on the other end and make overpenetration resulting in halved damage, so against paper tanks AP or even HE would be better than other types of ammunition. And there you have it, a rock-paper-scissors mechanics where you can’t simply press “2” for win.

      And then make all shells cost more or less the same and get away with calling any of them a “premium”.

      Liked by 1 person

    2. The only “problem” with premium ammo is that some people like to whine.

      The gold price should have been dropped long ago, or better still never been there.


  2. Wonder about the prem buffs. I did find it funny when people cried about the defender and Ck about how OP they were armor wise, same for Maus and Jap heavies. Well you wanted armor to be back in the game and got it in those tanks……
    Now you want armor to be removed from those tanks. just goes to show people will find a reason to bitch and cry about EVERYTHING.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. The problem never was with armour but with premium shells.

      People were complaining because the retardedly high penetration of premium ammo with almost 0 drawback nullified armour on tanks and instead of nerfing premium ammo WG overbuffed the armour and removed weakspots so they can resist premium shells as well.

      Liked by 2 people

    2. Well. Some sub average bot-like players like Murazor want heavy tanks to be invournable frontally without weakspots.
      That is the problem.

      AFAIK, no one whour are OK at this game has ever whined like you describe. But then they are not subject 52% WR bots either.

      The problem is premium ammo. But WG is not changing that since prem ammo brings them to much cash. They are instead trying to force as much prem ammo usage as possible upon their players.


    3. … You’re confusing armour with invulnerable weak spots, people were complaining that you could load gold and just lol pen pen at almost any angle through any part of their tank, not that their cupola’s or lower plates were being penned. The Defenders lower plate has more bloody armour than the IS-3’s upper plate, how is it balanced when you come round a corner in a Mutz, find a defender waiting there, plant a perfect shot into his lower plate from 50 meters and watch it bounce because you don’t have 225+ pen with standard ammo at tier 8 and aren’t running around with a full gold set up.

      Type 5, weakest point frontally is 280mm without angling apart from the tiiiiiny sloped and rounded cupola whilst it gets a HE derp gun that doesn’t need to aim, they can roll out, snap any part of your tank and do 450+ dmg and roll back before you’re even aimed at their cupola. They just need to make the drivers vision hatch 240mm thick, then if you play it badly tier 10’s can pen you with normal ammo if they know where to shoot. If you angle you can still bounce plenty.

      Now I don’t have a problem with the Maus armour as much, lower plate is pennable, maybe nerf the turret front by 5-10mm so you’re actually pennable with normal ammo in that weak point when not angling, but the thing that makes it broken is it’s stupid gun now. Not only are you almost impenetrable if you know how to angle whilst pushing with 3200 hp (that’s 50s+ continuous firing from a russian med to kill you IF he pens every shot) but you get insane dpm and good gun handling. The Maus needed the armour buff or the gun buff, not both.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. “We try to balance premium ammunition with in-game economics and are currently thinking of removing the price in gold. So that this ammunition is simply a more expensive ammo type in the game. This would give us the option to vary the shell price more widely. But this is just a concept now.”

    Please show me a list of the people who still use gold to buy premium ammo…
    The problem is not that premium ammo is Pay2Win because it costs gold. The problem is that premium ammo is Pay2Win because it costs so much credits the only way you can afford to spam it is to buy premium vehicles and premium tanks.

    And there is a huge difference between a normal player who just fires a few rounds per game, and a player who fires nothin but gold. The gold spammer will have much better results because he will pen more shots and do more damages thus get more XP. And to achieve that you need to pay real money or spend like 5 battles grinding credits for 1 battle spamming gold

    THIS is the problem with gold/premium ammo.
    There is no way a currency change will make things better.
    Increase their price and it will be even more pay2win.
    Decrease their price and the spam will get even bigger to a point where even the buffed Maus will have troubles surviving.
    Remove the gold currency option and… well nothing changes.

    The only way to fix the problem is to hardcap the amount of premium rounds you can carry in battle (thus avoiding full-gold spams and giving more players a chance to be at equal level with others while forcing uniscums to actualy aim sometimes) ; AND to chaange the way it works (increased pen for ddecreased damages, this way pressing ‘2’ is not always the best option, and it will be more worth it to think about what ammo type to use). No more spam, no more always-best-choice ; just another type of ammo that can still fuckup the whole concept of armor but not as easily and not for as long as now.

    Any other rework will simply not work. Unless it involves removing premium ammo at all, but in this case lots of buffs and nerfs would be needed for all tanks to take this change into account. Too much effort when there are solutions that are much more simple.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. yep .. AP – APCR – HE, all should be used equally in game, with different mechanic.
      AP – standard, 50/50
      APCR/HEAT – high penetration, low damage
      HE – low penetration, high damage

      simple rock paper scissor logic .. no idea what is so difficult about it.

      well… wait — I know – money 🙂

      Liked by 2 people

      1. If APCR did half the damage then people would still use it and whiners would still whine.

        Look at all the whine about HE on the Type 5, and that does a fraction of the DPM a decent AP shell would do at tier X.


        1. Maybe people complain about the Type 4 and 5 HE because you can’t do anything to defend yourself from it since if it hits it does damage no matter the angling or wiggling of you tank while your ”decent” AP shells with superior DPM can bounce?


        2. Yes, when you sidescrape the superbuffed Maus perfectly and a Type 4/5 still derps you for almost 700 that is totally fair and people shouldn’t be complaining…

          I agree about people still complaining if apcr did half the dmg people would still complain though. People complain because that they get their tank in a great position and people just press 2 and they take damage still 90% of the time.

          Maybe in the future there can be a big pen/dmg overhaul but for now a quick fix is as stated in the first point, a cap on the number of premium shells that can be carried. Obviously this would need to be balanced for each tank and would take a patch or 2 to get right, It’s a bit unfair if you just make it 10% of total ammo capacity, so a strv 103b with great t10 pen and almost never needs gold, and a comet with awful t7 pen and needs a large amount of gold to deal with anything that is a heavy or even higher tier mediums can carry the same amount. But if you limit for example russian meds to a max of 8-10 heat rounds, you won’t see them firing it through other med turrets that often, they’ll have to decide to waste it on a target that is easily pennable if they get a better position, or save it in case they bump into a heavy.


  4. I would prefer all tanks to be buyable for silver (credits) – even if I have to pay 40 000 000 it’s OK.
    Premium tanks (for real money) should be normal nation tree tanks with special camouflage, or special (visual) equipment – but not with different (and better) game stats.
    or they could introduce “premium tank tree” where each tier would be premium tank, for significantly higher XP/credit cost (like 10-50* higher)

    Liked by 1 person

  5. “Q: Regarding matchmaker. The players really like the new matchmaker, but how does it look to you “from the inside”?”
    (with some random nonsense answers from M and L)

    What?! What the actual fuck?! Who the fuck came up with this joke of a question?
    All I one can read is the that the current MM is total and complete failure in 9.19, especially with tier 8 and with platoons and the emphasis on it prioritizing the 3/5/7 template.


  6. I was skeptical when I heard Thaine Lyman was coming to WG. Considering how he has managed to screw up past games with “balance” before. And yet again he shows a lack of basic understanding for why most are concerned.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. M: Arty needs some minor corrections, but it’s looking good right now.
    FU! Play ranked battles then tell me how well it’s working. They need to lay off of the vodka because artillery is pure cancer in that game mode. And the Maus and the Type 5 was buffed to ludicrous levels and they put it live. I have zero faith in their ability to do anything but run this game to the ground.


  8. Thank you Thaine, your (so, the Companies) View to the improved Equipment and … lets say strange … Opinion that the Matchmaker is close to good showed me to better spend my money on Steam for other games.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Comparing the Ravioli with the WZ-111, you realize it is worse in almost every way, so my question is “will the Ravioli get pref MM at least?”, it also needs a speed and acceleration buff like there’s no tomorrow. At these parameters, you have to commit to a flank and can’t fall back. The tank having no armor, makes it a sad experience to play whenever the flank you commited to collapses.

    Another tank that needs buffs is the Emil I which can’t compete in tier 10 battles with 241 mm of penetration with premium ammo


  10. Like hell the Chrystler isn’t overbuffed!
    It’s not just the front, it’s the sides too!
    Did this guy even play the game?


  11. For ranked battles they either have to implement roaming or allow us to play it at any time, or else it gives an unfair advantage to players with certain gaming schedules.


  12. The obvious solution is to buff the tank income by about 50%. The premium shells need to stay more expensive than the regular ones. Also this will fix the issue that will ensue when you will get players with better equipment due to ranked battle rewards, which not everyone affords to play due to economics of the game. What can be the imbalance that can appear? Too many credits? so more tanks for the players? Food being affordable for all players, making it an option, not a luxury?


    1. That would have a bad effect on the ‘pay 2 progress’ income of WG. They are a bit greedy, but a company needs money to keep this product running. So messing with the economy isn’t always a better thing.


      1. So you pay money to buy regular tanks?
        The part with the food is not in the ‘pay to progress’ part, it’s in the ‘pay to win’ part.


  13. Manyou like ranked battles?
    Try ‘Most dislike ranked battles’ instead.
    I have yet to meet someone who likes ranked battles.

    And MM isn’t solved, neither is arty. Both still present huge problems.

    And buff some T8 tanks. Try Every single one except those released in last year (Liberte and onwards).


    1. It gives rewards that you can’t get anywhere else, that give you an advantage in regular games.
      It’s not about liking them, it’s about keeping up and staying competitive


    2. MM and arty are better then before but not fixed indeed… I have no problem while playing mediums and lights, but when you play heavies, the MM and arty are a pain in my ass. You are always bottom tiered, so your armor is not relavant and you don’t have the mobility to flank or dodge arty raining down on you.


    3. @Whatever

      Yep, every standard t8 heavy would need a huge buff, which would then mean that every t7 would need a huge buff, every t6 then 5 and so on, they’re going to literally buff and rebalance every standard tank in the game just so they don’t have to nerf 4-5 t8 premiums which will be nerfed by proxy anyway when everything else is buffed, it’s mind boggling stupidity.

      If the new CW campaign were to start today on the t8 stage and Premium/special tanks were not banned all you would see would be Defenders, Patriots, maybe some Liberte’s and Chryslers for specific situations, skopion G’s with the odd udes/strv s1 and a couple of Lorraines with WZ 132’s and m41GF’s for lights.

      If 2 equal clans with equal players set up with a prem vs standard set up : 5 defenders, 2 patriots, 2 m41gf’s and 1 lorraine 40t vs 5 is3’s, 2 t32’s, 2 wz-132’s and 1 50 100 the premium set up will win every time


      Well at least arty doesn’t hit you as hard anymore, if you play meds and lights you now get hit by arty 90% of the time because of their accuracy and aim time buff, you can still be penned for 1k+ and non pens can still do 650+ dmg depending on the arty. Now multiply that with 3 arty in the game and the arty “nerf” was actually another heavy buff. Most arty players will just ignore heavily armoured tanks and focus on the meds and lights because that’s who they actually do damage against


  14. “Thaine Lyman (L) (ex-Activision employee, now at Wargaming)”

    Activision……No wonder WoT is going down the shitter lately. That actually explains a lot!


  15. “Players like the new template MM”

    go read the 9.18 WG article on the front portal of WOT ‘discuss’ its at page 19 long within 3 days

    its 90% players AGAINST the new 9.19 template MM

    Tier 8 is ruined
    Tier 6 is ruined
    both mostly get bottom tier MM 65% of battles
    then middle tier 25% battles
    only 10% top tier

    the new 9.18 template MM was nice most including myself liked it a lot, single tier battles were refreshing and interesting, were!

    then 2 ‘patch updates’ then the 9.19 patch and its back to the total shit it always was

    WG, never play there own game, so they simply don’t know or don’t care or both


    1. ^This, the first iteration was awesome. The one and two tier battles are awesome and most tiers were playable. Tier 9 was godtier in the first iteration of the new mm.

      But I think playing tier 10 wasn’t really rewarding enough in the eyes of the devs, because you were almost never top tier against tier 8’s.

      However, they should have kept it like the first iteration. I was having a blast playing my Leopard PTA back then.

      Liked by 1 person

  16. (a) The new MM is better than the +3 that I remember playing when I started playing WoT in 2011.
    (b) prem shells are not an issue, and if you cannot earn enough silver to afford them, then your doing it wrong.
    (c) the data for the 252U is different on EU and RU servers. On EU the thing over performs and is thus OP, while on the RU server it under performs. This tends to suggest it is driven in different ways. So either WG will need to alter the characteristics of the same tank between EU and RU, or just not sell it again on EU.
    (d) Arty has become an infection in ranked battles, and needs to either be removed from ranked or nerfed again even harder.
    (e) ranked battles are unpopular, players only play due to the bonds
    (f) Chrysler is not that OP when compared to Object 252U/Defender.
    (g) to asfd – Emil 1 is a very good tier VIII heavy if you cannot make it work you are doing it wrong.
    (h) I agree with Homer J (above) about the whine with regard to Type 5 and 4 HE guns. The armour might be too much, but the low alpha, slow ROF, and poor dpm does not make the guns OP.
    (i) Wondering how they will buff the KV5 and still keep it balanced
    (j) No one has mentioned the super test nerfs to the bat chat, which are just appalling.


  17. MM is good??? T8 always facing 9 and 10 is good??? Is this person drunk or something??? Better buy binos to see real money again WG with those employees. Activision must have thrown him out of the window or something and WG rushed for losers


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