World of Tanks 1.7.1 – Double Barreled tank review (Is the grind worth it?)

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Double barreled tanks are a new unique concept in the game, and as they share autoreloader type mechanics, there isn’t any heavy tank you can directly compare to it. However, for the sake of a review I’ll be comparing these new tanks to their most similar counterparts at the tier and tell You if the new line is worth it.

As to how good these tanks are, I personally feel that we should approach these tanks in reverse tier-wise, as it kinda sorts them from worst to the best.

After reviewing these vehicles, we will look at the grind.

Tier X – ST-II

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The ST-II is the ultimate double barreled tank you will be going for. Beginning at tier VIII and leading to tier X, the new double barreled tanks are unique concepts that have a very specific and at times highly rewarding playstyle, but it doesn’t mean they are good, and as far as the ST-II is concerned, it is far from that.

Firepower

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ST-II has some bizarre firepower, and I like to call “hit or miss”.

  • Gun handling works rather well, it doesn’t take long to aim (thanks to amazing soft stats) and the accuracy is alright.
  • One exceptional but relatively useless factor is that the turret traverse soft stats are insanely good, when turning the turret you barely (if any at all) lose any accuracy and don’t have to re-aim, but there is a pretty big caveat – turret traverse is pretty bad, so if a tank is trying to get a quick peek at you, you will likely fail to turn fast enough to face him.
  • When firing on the move, ST-II seems alright at it, some shots might miss but it isn’t rare for a double shot to hit things on the move at relatively large distances. Where  this tank
  • Great at peek-a-boo exchanges with nearly 900 guaranteed alpha (as long as both shells penetrate).
  • -8 gun depression is handy. Makes a lot of advantageous positions unusable for other Soviet vehicles actually usable.
  • Gun reload is meh compared to other tanks at the tier, cannot mount tank gun rammer and that somewhat cripples 1v1 potential unless you can manage to succesfully double shot.
  • Personally, I found it extremely confusing when single shotting both guns, as after firing a single gun the camera “snaps” to the other, which is sometimes very disorienting.

Overall, it can definitely work at tier X, especially when under cover by your teammates. 900 alpha damage with double shots will make this gun system rather fun to play, albeit sometimes rather infuriating.

Armor

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As far as armor is concerned, it is the same as the regular ST-I. The tank cannot reliably get hull down as the massive cupola is always visible and isn’t very hard to penetrate (albeit you can use your both guns to cover it up, but risk getting guns disabled). When it comes to the hull, thanks to the shape it is rather hard to properly sidescrape and upper plate has a very obvious weakspot.

Side hull armor is rather decent, but isn’t something you can rely on with the side upper plate armor being angled to the sides, meaning any kind of sidescraping will be futile.

Mobility:

The mobility is really underwhelming and is my main concern with this tank. The top speed is really low and the tank doesn’t accelerate very well, and while it can do 40 km/h, it isn’t consistent and can dip well below that.

Verdict:

ST-II is rather underwhelming compared to other tier Xs, but can still be competitive provided it is allowed to exchange with other tanks and reload both shells often. While the firepower can be quite fun and effective, mediocre armor and mobility really doesn’t let this tank shine.

 

IS-3-II

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IS-3-II is a lot better tier for tier compared to the ST-II. It loses a lot of those weakspots and maintains rather competitive firepower advantage, making this a quite decent tier 9.

Firepower:

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There isn’t much to say about the firepower. Guns work very similarly to the tier 8 premium Object 703. The reload time is competitive, albeit marginally, and the handling behaves rather well. Overall, it is very similar to ST-II and will be rather fun to play with at tier 9. Oh and it gets good  gun depression, something that will help a lot when it comes to armor protection.

Armor

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This is where IS-3-II completely outshines the ST-II. The turret armor is very good, and this makes it rather hard to penetrate without high-pen premium shells. The cupola is very small and with some wiggling it can be quite hard to hit. Hull armor is also IS-3 type (hence the name), but a lot thicker, and having bounced some premium shells off of upper plate, it works rather well. If you can manage to use your good gun depression and get hull down, the turret armor becomes very very effective, having bounced even premium spamming Strv 103B’s multiple times.

Mobility

If you like the IS-3’s mobility, this tank is basically the same. Acceleration is decent but top speed is not great.

Verdict:

IS-3-II is actually a really decent tier IX heavy. Having the ability to double shot with decent handling, reload time and effective armor, this is a far better tank tier for tier compared to the ST-II.

 

IS-2-II

Shall we leave the best for last?

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The IS-2-II has amazing handling and reload on its guns, great double shot charge time and also rather alright armor.

Firepower:

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The gun handling is very good for a heavy tank, with really good aim time, accuracy and amazing fast double shot preparation time. Pair that with rather fast reload time for 300 alpha damage, you can have 600 alpha damage bombs ready within 15 s., meaning most 1v1 fights, as long as you are careful with your double shot, are easy to win. Did I mention the gun depression is quite good?

Armor

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The turret is quite great and will be hard to penetrate thanks to small weakspot and relatively high thickness. However, I wouldn’t count on the hull armor, as it is only 100mm thick and most tier 8s shouldn’t have much trouble penetrating you. If you can get to utilize your gun depression, this is again a quite great hull down warrior.

Mobility

While top speed rather sucks at 34 km/h, it will consistently maintain that speed. It’s not the best but definitely not the worst and it doesn’t feel very sluggish.

Verdict

IS-2-II is a rather great tier 8 heavy. Having great firepower with fantastic handling and DPM, armor that can work in situations but with mediocre mobility to compensate, this tank is quite enjoyable when it comes to fighting medium tanks or in hull down positions.

 

Overall verdict

While the new double gun mechanic can be very fun and effective, the ultimate reward is rather underwhelming. If you have everything grinded out, this is obviously going to be your next tank line.

If you are half way finished through the game, I would consider grinding it, it can be competitively decent, really fun but it’s up to you to test it out.

As a new player, avoid this line. While it has some good tanks leading to tier X, it ultimately isn’t worth the effort.

 

The grind

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IS-2-II

To unlock the vehicle on the KV-3, you will need 51.300k XP.

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The 85mm gun at tier 8 is really not good. While WG has buffed the penetration to decent levels, the alpha damage and the inability to mount tank gun rammer will hurt a lot, meaning you have to get the top gun fast (and it isn’t very expensive).

With the top gun unlocked, you can choose to grind the IS-3-II with stock turret or spend another 17k XP to get the better turret. While theoretically the stock turret isn’t horrible, if you are planning to grind this tank, get the turret. This will significantly buff the survivability and firepower of this tank with faster aiming time, reload, accuracy and double shot charge time.

Suspension isn’t required to fully kit out the tank, skip it.

Grind the IS-3-II next or fully kit out IS-2-II if you really like it.

 RESEARCH COST TO UNLOCK NECESSARY MODULES (WITH TURRET) AND IS-3-II: 201.060 XP

 

IS-3-II

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ST-II costs 217.000k XP to research, sorry for cutting it out of the frame.

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To start with, avoid the optional (red in pictures) 122mm gun.

 It is far too expensive to be considered an upgrade of any sorts. Also, you cannot mount the upgraded turret with the optional 122mm gun without upgrading suspension unless you use torsion bars, and the stock turret is not very good.

Since none of double barreled tanks can mount a rammer, this is your advised progression:

100mm gun -> Enhanced turret -> Mount torsion bars in equipment screen -> Top 122mm gun

This will require 90k XP in total and is a far better choice than wasting another 49k on a worthless optional 122mm gun.

Here it depends on what you personally want, the ST-II or a fully upgraded IS-3-II.

RESEARCH COST TO UNLOCK NECESSARY MODULES (WITHOUT OPTIONAL GUN AND SUSPENSION) AND ST-II: 307.800 XP

23 thoughts on “World of Tanks 1.7.1 – Double Barreled tank review (Is the grind worth it?)

  1. Interesting article, thanks. I think you forgot to put the top gun on IS-3 (normal) for comparison (175 pen is not the top gun, i believe it is 212 or 202)

    1. tanks.gg is a great resource for that. The only stat they don\’t show is camo rating for some reason.

        1. That\’s really bad. Where else would we check the armour details and hidden stats for newer tanks. I don\’t understand why can\’t WG implement armour layout for tanks like in WOWS. The in game armour mods are still buggy and clunky.

          1. because they are p2w morons
            they want us to PAY for 3rd party sites just to be able to see their moronic armor models without real weakpoints

            1. You really don’t even understand what pay2win is if you think a service like a paid model viewer site is pay2win.

  2. Yay, a new Russian heavy line! Yay, another fancy new mechanic! I really can\’t hold my horses.

    Is this really what the game needs right now I wonder …

  3. Good write up Veroxx. Tried the tier 8 (IS-2-II) on the test server earlier today. First time using double barrel mechanic. Fun and easy enough with just a 2 sec hold-to-fire for the 100mm guns. Tank is decent overall and fun to use, with good dpm, gun dep, and aiming time/acc. Turret is sturdy, Hull is meh and the top speed should be 38km/hr (like 703). I\’ll free xp from KV3 (can\’t go back to it after donkey years for 51k xp grind on a standard account), and grind the rest of the IS-2-II modules in Frontlines (like many other stock tier 8s last year).

  4. Mostly agree with that preview.

    The tier 8 is extremely fun, the guns reload fast and are more than capable for tier 8. And because of the bad hull armor I\’d say the tank is rather well balanced.

    The tier 9 is also a lot of fun, the mobility is nice, the turret is strong, the stock grind is good thanks to the 100mm guns, and the top gun is comparable to the 703-II with a very slight reload time advantage but most importantly very good pen.

    The tier 10 suffers from the ST-I/IS-4 type hull just like those two tanks. The front is not Armored enough to reliably bounce shots head on, sidescraping is uneffective because of the cheeks, reverse side-scraping is not efficient as it takes forever to turn around and be in position (this is what makes the IS-4 bad imo, better traverse would make the tank so much better), and side armor is okay but flat. The turret weakspot isn\’t that big and that weak, but it\’s still there and it makes it worse than the tier 9. And as far as the gun goes, even with the double-shot mechanic 10.7s reload does not feel justified when you have tanks like the S.Conq that have 400dmg shots our every 6.8s, or the 430U which has better armor and mobility and the same alpha for a much faster reload.

    Imo the ST-II needs a buff. Either make its armor stronger so it can tank damages during reload, either buff the reload to the same RoF as the fully upgraded tier 9. Or mobility. One of these three things needs a buff. Not all of them though otherwise it becomes too strong, but imo mobility or dpm needs to get better if the tank aspires to become competitive.

  5. ST-I cannot hulldown? HAAHhahahahaaa…. it\’s one of my all-time favorite tanks and i never had issues with that. Aside of that: its a brawler… Just get out there and slap them hard. And if you are not man enough to do so… well… raise the snout a bit.

  6. Ok so, this is all well and good but I might as well ask – were double barreled tanks ever considered in real life? As in, are there at least blueprints or studies on the viability of such a system, or is the subbranch yet another WG-made fakefest?

    1. ST-II is an actual thing that existed in blueprints. IS-3-II and IS-2-II are obviously made up vehicles. However, double barreled tanks existed and might exist in the future, check german VT-1 / VT-2.

    2. Not many that did see action mind you. But AC-4 Sentinel had a dual barrel variant. KV-7 or the Obj 227 was one they built and tested. Russia even used the same idea from that, to make a T-34-3 “not the Chinese one” with a 76mm, and two 45mm next to it. As in a volley tank. There is also the M4A3 HVSS and ofc the MTLS-1G14.

  7. At least the stock guns are not 100% useless on tier 8. As 212 stock pen is what the IS-M has elite. Tho ofc it lacks caliber to overmatch most stuff.

    Tho still, on paper it doesn’t look that interesting. If the 703 got the 100mm they tested. And the IS-2 got he 122mm, as he lacks armor. It might have made it more appealing.

  8. Why does the tank go from two very flexible troll gun platforms to the PREDICTABLE sluggish ST-II? Very questionable, Will there be a faster smaller gun mini branch or something? Hopefully they re-balance the tier X double gun around a faster platform. Make the hull cheeks weaker or slightly reduce cupola armor in exchange for some mobility. What is some? 3-5 specific power and/or 5-10 top speed

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