Interview with Victor Kislyi


Who is Victor? An entrepreneur or a gamer?
I am a chess player and a physicist. Obviously I am a video game player, since the late 80s I started at those semi-legal game clubs that played games on really old computers. For me, doing business is more than building your empire like in Civilization. You start small, you expand, you build cities, and before you know it you send people to Mars. Building this company came from my passion, I wanted to make games that I want to play myself.

The company is growing, how do you manage it all? Is managing Wargaming different from ten years ago than it is now?

Yes, it is certainly different. I have to teach myself now. At a certain point you have to be serious about administration, finances, legal matters and things like taxes. The most difficult thing is to manage people. You have to put the right people in the right place and structure the company in such a way that there is a right combination of global, local, products, services and administration. I spend most of my time with people. I don’t actually spend much time behind the computer except playing games. I am mainly concerned with talking, presentations, coaching, things like that. I read books and follow courses to keep myself informed. It is a non-stop drive to achieve that professionalism that is difficult to achieve. The world is changing very fast, so I have to keep up.

The Wargaming Nexus mobile branch was announced two months ago. How will it differ from the existing Wargaming Mobile?
Wargaming Nexus is divided between Eastern European cities such as Minsk. Wargaming Mobile is located in Berlin and deals with its own projects. Wargaming Nexus is looking for external projects, so people who have an idea or prototype and who show potential. They have to assess those projects and if they are approved, these people will help make their game a reality with Unreal as their main technology.

Loot boxes and micro transactions are increasingly being discussed, how do you feel about that?
If a law comes to prohibit certain things, then we must ensure that we comply. The fact is that micro transactions work pretty well. We ourselves do nothing with loot boxes. We do micro transactions to let the player save time in our games. It is just like the internet plan of a hotel. You can get free internet, but then you get a low speed. If you want more, you pay. People know what they buy, also in our games. We don’t cheat on them. Gamers are smart, you can’t sell them something they don’t appreciate. If our players see that we play dirty tricks, they will revolt. Our forum will be flooded with complaints. We have made unintended mistakes, such as the pricing of certain micro transactions, but we were told that at the time. We learn from that.

World of Tanks, World of Warplanes and World of Warships have been running successfully for some time. The player base is still great after all these years. How do you see the future of those titles?
It’s about the quality of the service. As an example: World of Tanks had about a hundred updates over nine years. Now we are releasing the Steel Hunt mode, a Battle Royale. We had once done this as an April joke, but it was very well received. So we decided to work it out further and officially bring it into the game. One of the differences is that you upgrade your tank while playing. For the rest, it has continued to innovate. New tanks are no longer that exciting, we have around a thousand in play. But more maps, game modes, competitions and the like ensure that people keep coming back. For example, we now also bring dive boats to the World of Warships, to bring more tactics to that game.

Every year on gamescom you have new experimental things to show, such as VR and AR. When will we be able to play it ourselves?VR devices are not yet part of our household. They improve VR technology, but the price remains one thing. Before we actually release something, we want a lot of potential users. VR must therefore become mainstream. Tired for AR

0 thoughts on “Interview with Victor Kislyi

  1. \”We ourselves do nothing with loot boxes.\”

    Yeah ok, never mind the Christmas loot crates in WoT, or the many times loot crates got sold in WoWs (dunno about WoWp).

    1. In WoWp, you can earn a loot crate very week by logging in and playing a battle every day of the week. I like and support this kind of random content crates (also containing premium time/planes and gold sometimes) you can earn.
      “We do micro transactions to let the player save time in our games. […] Gamers are smart, you can’t sell them something they don’t appreciate. If our players see that we play dirty tricks, they will revolt. Our forum will be flooded with complaints.“
      – paying to have to play your game less always leaves a bit of a bad aftertaste, but I can live with that in WoT (as long as you don’t go full GR Breakpoint/Ubisoft with everything)
      – read the forum much recently? also I am certain that there are enough casual potatoes buying €100+ bundles making you think those are a fine idea (spoiler: them ain’t)

      1. Crates you can earn is perfectly fine because you pay nothing for them (in WoWs there’s up to three daily containers you can get just by playing and farming exp).

        It’s the paid loot boxes that are an issue, especially in WoWs. In WoT the way they work you’re guaranteed to at least get a full return of your investment in terms of in-game goods (mostly gold), but in WoWs they’re much more similar to slot machines where there is no middle ground and you either win big, or don’t win at all.

  2. “We have made unintended mistakes, such as the pricing of certain micro transactions, but we were told that at the time. We learn from that.“
    True, and then you try again after a year or two.
    We still remember the proposed nerfs to penetration over range for all tanks, tested on the supertest. This was globally dismissed as stupid by the majority of players involved yet a couple of years later you have over-armored all heavies accomplishing pretty much the same system as the one that was disliked by players.
    You listen, but you certainly do not learn or improve. Hence why more and more people leave and you’re having a much harder time keeping new players.

  3. They will go through bone like butter. You need at least sixteen pigs to finish the job in one sitting, so be wary of any man who keeps a pig farm. … That means that a single pig can consume two pounds of uncooked flesh every minute. Hence the expression, “as greedy as a pig“.

    Snatch (2000) – Alan Ford as Brick Top

  4. I have never received bad value from X-Mas loot boxes. As such, I will not hesitate to rebuy as soon as they are available.
    Butthurt comes up once said whiners don\’t get a t8 prem on every box they open.
    Whining will exist no matter what WG will do. They could give a T10 CW tank in the lootboxes and said whiners will bitch on why they got the 121B(the shittiest T10 CW tank) and not something else.

    1. You have bought imaginary pixel on which WG has hanged an over-inflated value (since they have no real world value) in a service that ends as soon as WG wants to switch the servers off.

      That is by definition bad value.

      Now I\’m not saying you can\’t have fun with what you got out of the boxes within the game environment but the value is close to 0 since you can not sell anything on and it\’s all imaginary stuff anyway.
      You basically shredded your money to all intents and purposes.

      1. Spending money on entertainment is fine since instead of getting something material you receive emotions and memories. If you bought a premium tank or whatever and you’re having fun with the game then it’s money well spent.

    1. I think this interview was done before the closure of the offices in Finland. Victor is talking about releasing the Steel Hunt mode in it while that happened a month ago.

  5. hey Victor maybe stop killing your own game or at least remove the people that are. 1.6.1 and still no tanks for bonds.

  6. \”New tanks are no longer that exciting, we have around a thousand in play.\”

    goddammit, you ruskie imbecile. we want tanks. we want all of them ingame! especially if they are based on real models, and balanced, and contributing to the gameplay experience and encourage collecting! and, even though you ain\’t a physicist, ~600 < 1000.
    we want a tank game we can identify with and enjoy spending money on without it leaving any bad aftertaste.
    as soon as WoT shuts down its servers (whenever that may be), people will never invest in any WG game (outside the Wo-trilogy) ever again. there will not be a second success like WoT. Put all your money on WoT, listen to your players as long as they are putting enough heart into this game and try to improve it. If during another vodka-filled night you think you have to start a new game/franchise, tie it to WoT as much as possible (ingame currencies, premium time, CW events etc) to at least give it a chance.

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