Saturday, 27 July 2013

World of Warstuff!

I am liking the added impetuous to play the WarGaming.Net games because you are now able to do a bit of tanking and then - for variety - do a bit of flying. Switching between tanks and then warplanes alleviates the repetitiveness, I just wish that they had managed to integrate the games in some way - maybe though shared XP or a new special combined score or something.

This idea of a switch-able battlefield has me thinking about giving the WarGames.Net competitor - War Thunder - another look, as the notion of a combined battlefield is high on their priorities. I shall login to War Thunder again this week to see what they are up to and compare the systems.

War Thunder is prepping it's players for the next phase of it's massive
on-line battlefield experience with teaser artwork like this. But can they
overcome World of Tanks when it is already so well established?
New tanks and planes to play with
When I started my 'free' World of Tanks account experiment - to see how far I could get without spending a penny (er, so to speak) I never imagined I would still be going. I had a very limited goal - to get to the Stug tank destroyer and the Panzer IV medium tank - and I am amazed that I have actually surpassed this by some way (although it's taken me some time).

This week I progressed on to two very formidable tanks and reached the heady level of tier VIII in the game. As you know, I am a big tank destroyer fan and so I was very excited to earn the infamous JagdPanther with it's outstanding 10.5cm AT gun!

This is a real hunter, and in the German tradition of hunting for a fixed position this long range sniper demands a 'stand off' approach in spying out it's prey. To give you an idea about the sort of damage this predator can do here's a score sheet, check out the prey (click to enlarge in a new window)...

A Tiger II and a T-29 are a very satisfying haul, but again you have to pick those targets and pick the placement of your shots on those targets. The IS-3 which I also terminated was a particularly enjoyable ammo racking!

Ironically, the second of the two heavy-weights that I moved up to was the Tiger II - The King Tiger...

This massive lump of armour is my current project and is in need of a lot of upgrading to get the best out of it and I have yet to reap the benefits of this tanks legendary potential.

All up in the air...
That all said, it seems my strategy for World of Warplanes is completely the reverse of that for it's tanking stable mate. Instead of racing after bigger and more technologically advanced weapons my favoured aircraft are the quaintly antiquated!

The tier II Kochyerigin TSh-1 attack aircraft.
I have stuck doggedly to my tier II choice of attack aircraft, a obsolescent Soviet bi-plane, even when more modern and powerful planes are available. Though in the case of fighters I have plumped for something a little more high-tech - well, for the 1930s that is - and added the early model Polikarpov I-16 to my hanger...

Though, again, this is as far as I am tempted to progress as this lovely little monoplane was the classic underdog which took on the far superior modern enemy planes - like the Me109 - in the early stages of The Great Patriotic War. It often fought side-by-side with bi-plane warplanes and saw action in the Spanish Civil War and the war between China and Japan that was a prelude to World War Two.

To be honest I have no interest whatsoever in progressing beyond these bygone battlers.

On the game side itself I am finding the limited variety of maps in the Beta a little wearing. Furthermore I do hope that when the full game is released and more players join that you will find yourself matched more appropriately with aircraft of the same era - though my experiences of the World of Tanks Match Maker system tells me not to expect historical parity.

Finally, I do miss proper specialised multi-engined bombers. The ground aircraft included are a lot of fun, don't get me wrong, but so far I have not seen the real advantage of ground attack - most people seem to be interested in fighter element and I haven't seen a situation where the attack aircraft have won a game.

So, addressing this, perhaps with specialised bombers, might add the impetus needed for fighters to attack bombers in an attempt to fend off raids AND for your fighters to defend you. At the moment they seem to fairly much leave you to your fate!

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