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World of WarPlanes General Article: More Than Tanks in the Sky

By Garrett Fuller on October 31, 2011

World of Tanks continues its meteoric rise of awesome action among the ranks of non-traditional MMOs. The game hits the target on more levels than a laser sighted cannon blast. Wargaming.net is not finished with all of the history, tank, and war-game enthusiasts out there yet, as World of Warplanes remains in development and the footage we saw was fun and exciting. Gamers who love the historic battlegrounds and features of WoT will enjoy the dogfights in the sky for World of Warplanes. Let’s go through some of the upcoming features of World of Tanks as well as a look at World of Warplanes.

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For World of Tanks 7.0 there is a lot coming for players. New maps begin the expansion along with some new tanks for players to command. The biggest feature that has everyone excited is the Universal Camouflage you can give your tanks. This will be visible by other players and everyone is excited to skin their tanks to their own preference. Also the camo will be realistic to the game environments. With 7.1 to quickly follow the team is looking to introduce some of the French historical tanks in the game. Wargaming.net is committed to remaining historically accurate with its design hoping to appeal to all of their tank enthusiast players.

Battle mode is another feature which will allow you to garage up to five tanks in order for a single battle. The question here becomes do you throw down with your best tanks first? Or do you wait and save your heavy hitters for the final assault in the game? It's like Marvel v. capCom in that you make your lineup before each battle. Either way players will have a lot of options with the new patches coming out.

World of Warplanes will be similar in style to World of Tanks but takes combat up into the air with a variety of planes from history. The team was specific about using planes from the era of 1930 to 1960 which is considered the golden age of aviation. Stopping at 1960 gives them a way to use the early jet fighters before really getting into the high tech super jets we have come to know in modern air warfare. It also allows them to still use bi-planes from the 1930s and actually have battlefields that highlight this early era of aviation.

There is no cockpit view for World of Warplanes, the team wanted to have the game be half flight simulator but also be very strong in the hardcore action department. Giving the player a view of their plane as they fly puts them into the action cinematically. Some of the planes do have a rear pilot which is AI controlled. We talked extensively about the boundaries on the maps in World of Warplanes as players will likely try to fly away either up or out of bounds. One thing the team feels strongly about is that you can be shot if you go out of bounds of the map. There is no safe area in the fight. There is also a flight ceiling on the map so players cannot just continue going up into space.

Players can also target various parts of the plane when attacking. You can hit the wings or main body of the plane, but you can also try and shoot the pilot. You cannot kill the pilot, but hitting him will impact how the plane flies for the rest of the battle. In the demo we saw planes take damage and have their maneuverability impacted. Once hit they became slow moving smoking wrecks barely able to fly. When shooting there is definitely some skill learning to get used to, but they wanted to give players the feel of shooting in a dogfight.

We spoke a little about the breakdown of the time line in World of Warplanes and it comes down to four tiers. Tier 1 will be bi-planes and the classic dogfights of history. Tier 2 will be the single engine planes. Tier 3 begins with the double engine planes and some larger aircraft. Tier 4 will be the early jets. Another thing that the game feels strongly about adding is the idea of test jets that never made it past the testing phase. Staying true to history but living in fantasy still you may see some of the early test jets in the game as playable aircraft.

World of Warplanes is nothing short of impressive and will give gamers and amateur pilots alike a reason to celebrate the battles of the sky.  World of Tanks continues to offer some amazing updates and customizations for players. Overall, content to do their own thing as it were, Wargaming.net continues to deliver and the historical action games look very exciting. Hopefully soon we will see their naval battleship game and just how that will work out.

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