Ensuring that the vehicle roster stays fresh, exciting, and relevant as the game evolves is the promise we made at WG Fest. And we're kicking this year off by delivering on it with the very first update of 2017.
This revision begins with the German Tech Tree. The growth it’s been through since the game's release messed with the tree’s very structure: today, vehicles united into one branch (and supposedly similar in play style) often differ a lot. Here, we set things right with comprehensive balance changes and the introduction of completely new tanks. Now, let’s get to the full change list.
The Maus heavy branch (as we know it now) is quite a bumpy ride. The VK 45.02 (P) Ausf. A and VK 45.02 (P) Ausf. B. are miles apart from the Tier X Maus in terms of gameplay. Firstly, after careful consideration, we decided to replace the two with the VK100.01P (Tier VIII) and Mäuschen (Tier IX). If you researched the Tier X Maus, they will be credited to you as researched as well. Everything you've come to expect from heavies, the newcomers are somewhat slow, yet well-protected and pack a punch. Secondly, to further smoothen the succession within the line, we’ll improve the Maus’ combat parameters. It’ll receive thicker frontal and hull armor. The gun handling is going to get easier thanks to a quicker reload time (reduced from 14.9s to 12s) and improved gun stabilisation—one of the best in the game, which isn’t surprising if you consider its sizes and speed.
We heard the requests to keep the VK 72.01(K) as a unique reward to Clan players. It will remain this way. The fan favourite VK 45.02 (P) Ausf. B and its predecessor VK 45.02 (P) Ausf. A will form an alternative branch ending in a new vehicle: the Pz.Kpfw VII.
Researchable from the VK 45.02 (P) Ausf. B, the Pz.Kpfw VII will mount the 12.8 cm Kw. K. 46 L/61 gun, providing a playstyle that’s quite different from the VK 72.01 (K). Also, the latter will get a number of improvements including easier gun handling, an increased penetration value for the Pzgr. 42 shell (the 15 cm Kw. K. L/38), and a larger ammo load of 35 rounds. On top of that, the VK 72.01(K) and the Pz.Kpfw VII are getting significantly thicker frontal armor. To compensate for it, we’ll reduce their maximum speed from 43 km/h to 33 km/h.
If you favor the E-100 line, this bunch will receive a few improvements as well. The E-75 will benefit from better gun stabilisation, while the E-100 will get a much-deserved increase to AP shells penetration. Starting in 9.17.1, it’ll be capable of piercing through 246 mm with 150 mm gun. Finally, moving down the tiers, the Tiger (P) and Tiger I turrets will become more resistant to enemy shells thanks to thicker turret armor.
Upon analyzing the combat stats of mid-tier medium tanks, we decided to improve gun handling and boost their mobility a little. Moving to top-tiers, the Tier IX E-50 and Leopard Prototyp A will get a considerable power-up:
- The Leopard Prototyp A's large size, paired with its poor gun depression, often makes it a fairly attractive target. To make it better on uneven terrain, we’ll set its gun depression at -8° (previously -6°).
- The alternative E-50 gun, 8.8 L/100, will receive a major power boost: better accuracy, rate of fire, and gun stabilisation. Moreover, starting in 9.17.1, you’ll be able to mount it on the Panther II.
Although originally designed as vehicle for ambush warfare, the Grille 15 currently plays a lot like a medium tank. Its technical characteristics will be tweaked to make it more suitable for ambush combat: we’ll give it a less powerful engine and worsen its gun handling. Its maximum reverse speed will go down as well.
Update 9.17.1 will introduce a series of tweaks to punch up underperforming Premium vehicles and make battles more enjoyable for them:
Lastly, we’ll increase APCR shell penetration with the 8.8 cm Kw. K. 36 L/56 gun for absolutely all vehicles that have it.
We’ve put a lot of work into these changes, and we're looking forward to rolling them out and seeing what the experience is like for you!