The massively-multiplayer blow-em-up World of Tanks is one of Wargaming.net’s strategic battle games available free-to-play online. Keep in mind I’ve only played about 135 matches, which seems like a lot, but it can require much more to master the game. Also keep in mind that for several of those matches, I had access to every tank, fully loaded.
Newest Addition – Chinese Tanks
The game is hugely successful, because there is a wide variety of tanks to choose from. In the original version, you fought in teams together: Americans, Russians, French, British and Germans. There are no country v. country battles.
The latest addition is Chinese tanks. All of them have not been rolled out yet. According to PR coordinator Jamie King, there have not been release dates set. The Chinese tree currently has 17 tanks and several are replicas from other countries.
My favorite Chinese tank so far has been its elite level 10 tank, the 113, (The most expensive tank at 3.5 million), which is considerably faster than most of the other heavy tanks in its class other than the French. Of course, with speed you are sacrificing the strength of the tank’s armor.
Mastering the game is more about finding the tier you are best at, not which country you choose. Countries play together as one and are just split up. Even the voicework is the same for each country. You are allowed to select from a tier of tanks in each country, including light, medium, heavy, self-propelled guns (SPGs) and tank destroyers.
Within those tank trees you can select the tank with the stats most suitable to you. As a newbie, I find the tank tree a bit confusing. I’m not a numbers person, so looking at stats for individual tanks can be exhausting. The tanks often have slight variations in their equipment and stats, and it’s up to you to figure out exactly which one to start with.
Typically the light tanks are “scouts.” They immediately head to the goal, either an enemy base or a particular flagged area and spot enemy tanks. Though they don’t have a lot of advanced armor or weaponry, they are vital to highlighting the enemy’s position for their teammates.
The medium and heavy tanks have various roles. Often, the brave ones face enemies head on in one-on-one shoot-outs to take their base or to kill as many enemies as possible. Others choose to protect home base from intruders. SPG (artillery) tanks hide in a central location and use the shift key to attack from above (my personal favorite). Although you might get a little flamed for taking what is considered the “wrong” role, the path you take is entirely in your control.
Your team within the tanks can gain more experience in each game, and you can upgrade individual parts, like guns, tracks, health packs, repair kits and ammunition.
- As soon as you are done with one battle, you can immediately rev up for the next one. You can team up and strategize plans of attack with folks. Once you have a handle on the controls, it’s up to you how to attack.
- There are dozens of tanks to choose from, and even though premium capabilities are bought with real-life cash, you can also earn these items the old-fashioned way – grinding. Battle after battle. Map after map. You can earn money to purchase not only premium tanks, but also gold bullets, which are of much higher quality and can give you a real advantage in gameplay.
- As I mentioned earlier, learning the elements of each tank, in each class and in each country can be confusing. Thankfully, there’s a Wiki to guide you along. It still takes a lot of time to get to know the game and its various features, which are extremely varied.
- The biggest con for me is also a pro in some ways. This is a real-life battle. You have to face rough terrain, water and long spurts where you may never encounter a single enemy. That makes it a very realistic game. However, to add to the realism, you can only die once. Yup, no respawns. After that, you can watch other tanks on your team continue to battle or go back to the garage.
- There are also a limited number of maps in the game, so constant gameplay can be a bit tiresome. However, this is also an opportunity to learn the maps as you replay them.
- There can be an exciting feeling hiding among the bushes and waiting for just the right opportunity to blow out an enemy tank’s track or cause them to explode. It is frustrating when the rest of the team isn’t doing as well and you lose, but you still get some experience and money for participating.
What’s your take on World of Tanks? Or, would you consider playing it, particularly with the addition of the Chinese tanks? Sound off in the comments below.