Because the 11th Anniversary of the EU Server and the 12th Anniversary of World of Tanks is approaching I’m going to make some nostalgic articles about the game.
From over-powered tanks to crazy fantasy vehicles, we are counting down 15 controversial vehicles in World of Tanks.
Number 15 – Bat.-Châtillon 155 58
When the Bat.-Châtillon 155 58 was introduced in patch 0.7.4, it moved the goal post. This French SPG had a full rotating turret, quick aim time, it was incredibly maneuverable, and to top it all off, it was equipped with a 4 shell autoloader that can fire once every 6 seconds.
In patch 0.9.18 WG nerfed it all together with every artys into oblivion.
Number 14 – Rhm.-Borsig Waffenträger
Patch 0.8.9 saw the introduction of an entirely new line of German tank destroyers. These no longer depended on their armor, but on their stealth. And the tank that succeeded in that better than any other, was the Rhm.-Borsig Waffenträger. It was able to keep up consistent fire without getting spotted thanks to its fully rotating turret, and its best gun was- ironically enough- the stock gun. So without any grinding, you instantly had a stealthy mass murderer in your hands, and scores of enemies threw their hands in the air in utter frustration, after having been killed by yet another Borsig, which they weren’t even able to spot during the entire game. However, if the Borsig did get spotted and caught in the open, it was usually game over rather quickly for this tin can, which had virtually no armor. And thanks to the changes to the TD class such as the camo nerf in patch 0.9.1, or the view range nerf in patch 0.9.6, alongside the many map changes designed to reduce the effectiveness of long range snipers, the Borsig has lost a little bit of its mojo.
Number 13 – T18
The seal clubbers tank of choice at tier 2 has been the T18 for a long time. It combined great speed and armor with a gun that can one-shot even some tier 3 tanks. Then you put a 100% brothers in arms crew in it, stacking camo, equip the tank with modules such as improved ventilation, and you end up with an absolute axe murderer. The T18 was nerfed several times over the years, but it remained one of the go to tanks for rofl stomping the enemies. However, the days of stat padders in T18s have come to an end, as the T18 is due to be taken out of the game in its current form, and reintroduced as an … artillery.
Number 12 – FV304
There are SPGs, and there are SPGs, but there is only one FV304. This was by far the most trollish artillery in the entire game. But why? It’s got a terrible range, low damage, penetration and splash radius. So it’s crap, right? Far from it. FV304 was faster than most light tanks and could take on the role of scout when it was needed, it also fired fast and was accurate. FV304 also has an incredible gun arc allowing it to hit targets other artys cannot hit in their wildest dreams. Sure, it got nerfed in patch 0.9.3. Sure, it’s an SPG that haters gonna hate. But it was iconic.
Number 11 – Marder II
And here we have another seal clubber, the Marder II. If you are new to World of Tanks, you are probably going to say “What the f*ck are you talking about? The Marder II is crap.” And you would be right. But it hasn’t always been crap. Many years ago when World of Tanks was still young and players were able to drive their tanks at full speed towards a cliff, only to come to a complete stop when they hit a magic wall, in those days the Marder II was the seal clubbers go to tank of tier 3. It was agile, had a fantastic gun with a wide gun arc, and an insane camo rating. When fully decked out with a highly trained crew, there was very little that could stop it. But the nerf bat came down hard on the Marder II on multiple occasions, it was eventually nerfed into oblivion in patch 0.8.0 and finished off for good in patch 0.8.9.
Number 10 – M4 Sherman
Welcome to one of the meisters of the derp, the M4 Sherman, the tier 5 Medium tank for the Americans. But why is it on this list, you might ask. It’s a perfectly fine tank, a good one even, but it’s not overpowered. Right? Well not so fast. You see, the M4 Sherman can use a 105 millimeter Howitzer derp gun, and that Howitzer can shoot HEAT premium shells. Before patch 0.8.6, these HEAT shells had an insane amount of penetration, a whopping 150 millimeters. With that the M4 was able to ROFL stomp its way through the battlefield, one-shooting many tier 5s and lower tier targets, and severely crippling most tier sixes. This really became a problem since the premium shells only cost 2800 credits, and with a premium account you could easily afford to shoot HEAT exclusively and still run a profit.
Patch 0.8.6 put an end to that. The shell price was raised to 4000 credits, and the penetration of the HEAT shell was reduced from 150 to 104 millimeters. This effectively ended the M4 Shermans HEAT infused reign over the battlefield. Well it was fun while it lasted. A lot of fun actually.
Number 9 – M18 Hellcat
Imagine a turreted tank destroyer as stealthy as the Rhm.-Borsig Waffenträger. Now imagine you give it a top speed of 72 kph, tone down the gun a notch, and make it a tier 6. Well that would be completely crazy. So naturally you can find it in World of Tanks. It’s called the M18 Hellcat, and it used to be the strongest Tank Destroyer of its tier. By a mile. Its gun was pretty good. Its speed and agility were second to none for a TD, and its camo is the stuff of legends. Combine this with an absolute lovely view range, and the Hellcat was a stat padder’s dream. Of course, there are those who don’t like it, when someone else has something nice. So they called for nerfs. And WarGaming did not listen. So they cried some more, and were ignored. Then WarGaming decided that TDs are hurting the game, so they nerfed maps for TDs, they took the camo bonus away from TDs, and they nerfed the living daylights out of the Hellcat. That was in patch 0.9.3, and the Hellcat has never really recovered ever since.
Number 8 – Type 59
Perhaps one of the most hated tank in the game, the infamous Type 59. It had one reputation: It was completely over-powered. But in reality it really wasn’t. The Type 59 is a good tier 8 medium tank, nothing more, nothing less. As a premium tank is earns the player a lot of credits, but so is the nature of premium tanks. So why all the hate, then? In order to understand that, we have to go way back into the early days of World of Tanks. The Type 59 of that era had very strong armor, was highly mobile, and it received preferential matchmaking. At most it would see tier 9s, and back in the day the battle tier spread was much larger than it is today. And that meant that the Type 59 was regularly top tier, and it would shoot tier 5 tanks. And let’s be honest, who wouldn’t like that? As you can imagine its popularity skyrocketed, to the point where Type 59s were the predominant tank in battles of its tier. Wolf packs of Types would maraud the maps, picking off enemies one by one. And since this tank was one you could purchase with real money, it was perceived as pay to win, by some people. The tank became so popular that WarGaming put an end to selling it, and in January 2012 the tank was removed from the shop. And since then, the Type 59 is only handed out on special occasions.
Number 7 – FV215b (183)
What do you get when you mount an artillery cannon to the chassis of a tank? You end up with the tank that has the highest alpha damage in the game. Of course we are talking about the FV215b (183). Equipped with a 183 mm cannon, this monster can one shot tier 9s, and even some tier 10s. Of course, all that damage comes at a price, and that is the price of the premium HESH ammunition, which sets you back a whopping 8000 credits per shell. There is other bad news too. Its cannon is just about the most inaccurate gun in the game, its reload is measured in days, and it carries just 12 shells of ammunition. Sure, there are better tier 10 tank destroyers in the game, but the sheer presence of a loaded and ready to fire FV has enemies shaking in their boots, and the braves once often don’t live to regret their mistake. This is a doomsday cannon on tracks, apart from the nerfs and removal from the tech tree in version 0.9.21 it is the only tank that deserves to be called “Death Star”.
Number 6 – T57 Heavy
From one tier 10 to another, say hello to the first Heavy tank on our list, the T57 Heavy. It marks the end of the American Medium tree, which is filled with auto–loaders, and the T57 Heavy is no exception. It can empty its clip of 4 shells in 6 seconds, and its reload time is less than 24 seconds. With more than 3200 DPM, at that time it was outstanding. It’s an offensive power house. That is why some people hated it. They called it OP, they called it broken. And then there was the other side, the people who owned one. Some of them actually wanted it buffed, and pointed to its sluggish speed, slow aim time, and miserable global win rate. But so is the nature of auto loaders. They have an incredible burst damage potential, and players on the receiving end often don’t react too kindly to being burnt down in 6 seconds. It got slightly nerfed in patch 0.9.3.
Number 5 – Tiger
Most of the tanks on this list are either OP, perceived as OP, or hurt the gameplay. But our pick for number 5 is different. Here is a tank that was feared on the battlefields of World War 2. It is the infamous Tiger. And the best part is, you can actually drive one in World of Tanks. Just imagine the excitement. So it is no surprise that many new players first research the German tech tree, in order to get their hands on this monster. It has to be epic, right? So they get in it, drive out, feeling so completely safe, this is a heavy tank after all, and a mighty Tiger no less, and then they get shot to bits. Then they ask themselves: “What is going on here? It is now that they begin to realize that World of Tanks plays it fast and loose when it comes to historical accuracy. It pits tanks from the early 1940 against post World War 2 tanks, prototypes like the T29 that never saw any combat, or O-Nis, that never existed in the first place. Experienced players know this fact all too well and simply shrug it off. They just move on, and right they are, because at the end of the day, World of Tanks is just an arcade shooter with pre and post-world war II tanks.
Number 4 – T-50-2
The T-50-2 was a tier 5 soviet light tank. It reached its maximum speed of 72 kph with ease and it accelerated like no other tank in the game. It was the closest thing to an actual racing car in World of Tanks. Before physics were introduced, T-50-2 drivers could navigate the battlefield at full speed without any regard for the terrain. But after patch 0.8.0 that changed. They were sliding all over the place. It was hilarious fun. But here is the problem. It wasn’t at all historical. We spent hours upon hours to find out anything about the T-50-2, but except that it was apparently called Object 211, we could not find anything. If it ever truly existed, it sure as hell did not have a 550 HP engine. In patch 0.8.7 it was replaced by the MT-25, and no one really cares about that one. Then in 2019 WG added it back as the Well-Deserved Reward.
Number 3 – AMX 50 Foch 155
All that whining about overpowered high tier tank destroyers probably started more than 10 years ago in patch 0.7.5, when the AMX 50 Foch 155 was added to the game. This tier 10 tank destroyer was the first of its kind to feature an autoloader, capable of firing 3 shots in 10 seconds for a total damage of well over 2500, killing many of the tanks it would meet in one clip. But that wasn’t all. The Foch had very strong frontal armor and was very quick indeed, courtesy of its 1200 horsepower engine. And it was stealthy, too. Needless to say that players cried out and demanded that the Foch be nerfed. They cried for a long time, and in early 2014 they finally got their wish, when in patch 0.8.11 the Foch had its armor weakened, its speed lowered, and its alpha damage reduced by 100 per shot. There are more extreme vehicles in the game these days, but we think that the power creep of late in World of Tanks may have started with this one, the AMX 50 Foch 155.
Number 2 – KV-1S
This one simply had to show up eventually, the dreaded KV-1S. This power house at tier 6 combined great mobility and decent armor with a devastating 122 millimeter cannon. One KV-1S was dangerous enough, but when in a platoon in a tier 6 game, these machines were simply unstoppable. This tank was over-powered for years. The calls for nerfs in the community went on for just as long, but WarGaming didn’t react. So the years went on, and the KV-1S continued to troll at tier 6. Probably sick of all that whining, Wargaming eventually caved in, and the nerf of the KV-1S was coming, and it was to be split into two tanks. That was in 2013. It took more than a year for that to actually happen, but in the fall of 2014, the KV-1S was finally changed. It was moved down a tier, and a new tank, the KV-85 took its place. The KV-1S became a tier 5 for some time. Then it was moved up next to the KV-85. It kept its former speed and agility, and one weapon of choice is a 122 millimeter Howitzer with a massive 450 alpha damage, allowing it to one-shot just about any lightly armored tank lower of its tier. So in essence, WarGaming shut up the player base by agreeing to nerf the KV-1S, and then they proceeded to turn it into another one-shot monster.
Number 1 – Waffenträger auf E 100
You saw that one coming from a mile away, didn’t you? Of course the Waffenträger auf E 100 simply has to take the top step on the podium. And it is easy to see why. Just look at the thing. No tank has ever looked this way, and probably never will. Something like this belongs in a Sci-Fi Movie, and not into World of Tanks. What on earth were WarGaming thinking when they decided that the end of the 2nd German TD line would feature a completely ridiculous Fantasy Tank. The list of issues with this idiotic design is so long, that it deserves its own article. (Soon™)
So let’s focus on the main issues. The WT auf E100 was a tank of the extremes. For starters, this thing had the worst camo in the entire game. It got spotted by everything and everyone. And it is a huge target with a gigantic turret that has no armor. Tier 1 tanks could penetrate it, and Artillery will make it a priority, just itching to drop a tasty HE shell on top of it for maximum damage. Its reload took the better part of a minute, and once it has emptied its clip, it had to hide all the way in the back, like a coward. But on the other hand, it had the most brutal stopping power of any tank in the game. It could clip any tank it met in less than 10 seconds, giving the term burst damage a whole new dimension. Not only that, but the 12.8cm cannon was extremely accurate and fast aiming. That’s hitting weak spots, easy mode. Its impact on the game play was quite severe, and not in a good way. It promotes a campy play style. Nobody wants to get clipped by one of these monsters, and the WT auf E100 driver too couldn’t afford to take any risks, and had to play very passively. And there was another problem with this tank. Many tanks leading up to it, share the same strengths and weaknesses. Great guns, good camo, and no armor. But since the WT auf E100 has no camo, you have to throw everything you have learnt prior, out of the window. A top tier tank should never require a completely different approach to the game, than the tanks that proceeded it. That’s just bad design. It is perhaps one of the biggest blunders that Wargaming has ever committed.
In version 0.9.15 WG removed the WT E 100 directly from the game and replaced it with the Grille 15.
Do you agree with our list? Which tanks do you think are the most controversial ones? Do you want to see more content like this in the future? Let us know in the comments.