WoT: Looking over the sights of 8.8

So the public test for the 8.8 patch has been open for a few days now, and this is the first time I have been able to write about it. Overall I am quite excited by a number of the features of this update.

Headlining the update is the introduction of the second Soviet medium tank line. From the patch notes it appears that the line actually goes from Tier VI to Tier VIII, being researchable from the T-34, and then merging into the Tier IX T-54, with an addition second Tier X medium tank being added from the T-54. On one level this does not mean very much for me – I am not really playing around much with Soviet mediums – but by happenstance I am actually prepared for it, inasmuch as I currently own both the T-34 and the T-34-85. I was going to transfer the T-34 crew on, but instead I will just create a new crew for one of the Tier VIs and retrain the T-34 crew into the other.

The German heavy line is also being renovated, with an impact on the German Tier VI mediums. A Tier IV German tank is being introduced, the current VK3001H is being moved to Tier V and converted into a heavy, and the VK3601H is also being converted into a heavy. Meanwhile a new Tier VI German medium is being introduced. According to For the Record owners of the VK3001H (like myself) will have the new Tier VI placed into their garage, with a free garage slot, and 100% crew. Not bad. I have to say I am really looking forward to playing with the new German vehicles.

Quite a few other higher-tier German vehicles are having their engines changed and otherwise being tinkered with. While I am sure some will scream nerf at this, from what I have been able to ascertain the paranoia is unwarranted.

There are also two new Chinese premium vehicles being added, but I am not currently interested in them. I know there has been a fair bit of talk that one of them is a bit overpowered – I guess we will just have to see.

The update will also see the return of some old maps: Serene Coast, Komarin, and Swamp. I have very fond memories of the last two from when I first started to play the game, and I will be interested to see how they reworked all three. There is also an Encounter map-mode being added to Mountain Pass, which I think could also be a lot of fun. In addition a new map is being added called Tundra.

There are then a series of “minor changes” some of which I do not think are so minor.

To begin with there is apparently going to be a reworking of the stats page, with one very significant change – a reworked Global Rating system that sounds like it is designed to function along the lines of the Efficiency or WN7 ratings. I wonder if this is an attempt to supplant them, but my gut feeling is it will take publishing the formula for that to happen – which apparently Wargaming is not going to do, so we do not even get to the discussion as to whether the formula is sound.

National voiceovers are also being introduced, though apparently the Americans and UK will share a single voiceover. I have to say I have a slightly wicked temptation to indulge in a little “Wargaming is anti-British” rhetoric. That may in fact be the case, but I am more inclined to believe Wargaming just couldn’t be bothered to create a second set of English voices. Also I have the horrendous feeling anything they would create might be over-the-top British: “tally-ho chaps let’s give Gerry Hun a darned good kicking” kind of English. Otherwise I am looking forward to this change. Whether I keep the national voices on all the time is another matter, but I might just do that.

What I think is one of the real treasures of the update is that if you earned a Battle Honour, Epic Medal, or Platoon Medal and are on the losing side you will still get the 1.5 bonus to credits and experience that the winning team get. If there is one weakness of World of Tanks it is that a poor team can negatively impact your own earnings. Well, this sounds like the start of righting that wrong. While I wish it would go a step further – there was a mission a while back that made the top three damage dealers also get the winner’s bonus which I would love to be permanently implemented into the game. This is a step in the right direction however.

Speaking of missions apparently there is going to be an interface to track progress for doing various missions, by which I take they are going to become an increasingly prominent part of special offers.

The final change which I am going to mention is another favourite – spall-liners are getting a new function in that they will reduce the chance of crew injury – the larger the spall-liner the greater the effect. I imagine this is going to make the heavy and super-heavy variants especially be more competitive when it comes to deciding what equipment to use.

So all in all I have a lot to look forward to this update. Some new tanks I am looking forward to playing, and a few small changes to the game which I think will very much improve my enjoyment.

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8 comments
  1. Hi there,

    What really piss me off about the 8.8 is the removing all the engines from high tiers German tanks and no compensation in XP for that. I spend more than 50K XP on E-75 on last engine and now I have to do that again. The same thing for Tigers, Panthers, VK45, so I removed the XP check on my elite tanks to start to accumulate again the XP needed for new engines. I my opinion this is robbery.
    I hope the buff for Tigers to compensate somehow all the above. In rest seems to be a good patch as you described above.

    Have fun,

    Xantya/Shun_tzu

    • stnylan said:

      While I do find that a bit annoying, I must say it does not make me particularly irate – but then I only have a handful of vehicles affected with smaller xp grinds and plenty of free xp if needed.

      • I read today a clarification, if you own an elite tank you will receive an elite tank also after patch 8.8. So no compensation is needed and I worried for nothing.

        Have fun,

        Xantya/Shun_tzu

      • stnylan said:

        I wonder if that just means that the tank retains its elite status – in other words so you can still use crew acceleration and the like. I mean, when they have amended other tanks and added modules (like with the VK1602 Leopard) the new modules were unresearched but the tanks retained the elite status even so.

  2. mrrx said:

    Buffs for my Tigers are good. I own both, still, and haven’t been playing the Tiger II partly in anticipation.

    I’ll be curious about this new rating. I like the XVM provided rating the most, to gauge how good a player is – notwithstanding all the objections about how its derived. With that, and the number of battles a player has played, I could dump the XVM mod which I think is a Wargaming goal.

    I could care less about new tanks, they get introduced much faster than I’ll ever play through them. I half-heartedly want to work towards German Technical Engineer, but moreso want a Froggie Tier X TD. That’s all I need.

    • stnylan said:

      Yes I am sure that is their goal – but until they are open with the formula I just cannot see any in-house rating establishing much trust. Also, when it comes to ratings they are now playing catch-up. XVM especially, but also the WN-series of ratings have history and pedigree. Wargaming’s rating is in the position of a challenger, and it will be interesting to see how Wargaming deals with being in that situation in their own game.

  3. FooWasHere said:

    The “the top three damage dealers”-mission was the most significant game play satisfaction improvement this far. The battle honour mission might approach it.
    I think this will be a very nice patch.
    /Foo

    • stnylan said:

      Agreed. I think with that mission criteria being permanent and this battle honour boost would be just about perfect.

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