2. World of Tanks (PS4) General hints and tips part I - The GarageUpdate notes

Introduction

The standard "hints and tips" part is divided into two sections here, since there is a massive amount of information. The first section will cover the garage and basically all the non-battle related information. Don't read all of this before launching the game because there is a lot of information. If you liked the videos or you want to play this game anyway, I recommend that you play a couple of battles and then read at your own pace. Once you have played, it will be easier to understand all of the aspects of this amazing but complex game. Even if you only want to get all of the trophies, I recommend that you understand most of this information as it will simplify your task.

Tank experience

Tank experience (XP) is earned by playing battles. It is linked to the tank that participated in the battle, and cannot be spent on another tank. Experience is spent to upgrade tanks and to research the next tank in the tech tree (as explained in the "tank modules" paragraph).

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Free experience

There is another type of experience you earn from battles that is called "free experience". The earnings are equal to 5% of the normal experience you get in the battle. If you earned 1200 XP in one battle (including all multipliers), then you will receive 60 additional free XP. This free XP can be spent on any tank which will make it easier to get to specific tank packs. Always save it to research the first pack of a new tank in order to avoid being stuck with a non-upgraded tank.

Currencies

There are two currencies in the game:

Silver is earned through battles. The better you perform, the more silver you will get. It is spent to refill and repair your tank after the battle, to purchase tank packs or new tanks, to train new crew, and to buy certain equipment.

Gold can only be purchased with real money. If you visit the forums, they also have competitions and the winners will be awarded various amounts of gold. Gold can be converted to silver (1 gold = 400 silver), used to convert XP from elite tanks to free XP (1 gold converts 25 unused XP to free XP), used to buy premium tanks and premium consumables, used to buy premium time (it's probably the most efficient choice to spend gold), or used to buy garage slots.

You can earn all of the trophies without spending a single gold coin so don't worry. Also, someone paying for gold will not have an advantage in battle, as skill and team play matters the most.

Tank statistics

In the garage, you can see all of your tanks. By pressing cn_T you can get more information to see the tank details. You can also press cn_X, select upgrade, and then press cn_T. The most important tank statistics are:

Tier: It represents the overall power of the tank. A tank will never change tier and will always fight tanks of similar tiers. To access higher tier tanks, you will have to research them.

Type: There are 5 types of tanks in the game, and this is a very short description of them.

Light tanks are usually fast and lightly armored. They are good at spotting enemies, destroying other light tanks, and flanking heavier tanks from the side and rear.

Medium tanks usually have relatively weak armor as well and are a bit slower. However, they usually have more life and a better cannon. Well used, they can deal damage to any target (by targeting weak spots) and reposition if needed. Those 2 types of tanks must avoid shots to keep from being immobilised.

Heavy tanks have the best overall armor, and good cannons as well, but they are slow. They still have weak points so don't consider them invulnerable.

Tank destroyers have the best regular cannons and accuracy, as well as a good camouflage. Think of them as snipers, and shoot from afar (but not from the base, stay on the battlefield). They don't have a turret, so they have to face their target.

Artillery is the last type and they don't shoot like the others. They have an indirect fire mode and can shoot targets behind cover. They also have the biggest gun and range of the game, but they lack any real accuracy. They are usually slow and very weakly armored. More detailed strategies per type will be given later in this guide.

HP: How much damage the tank can receive before exploding. 99% of deaths in battle occur because the tank's HP dropped to 0. So the higher the value, the longer you will last.

Damage: The damage inflicted if your shell penetrates your opponent's armor. Note that in battle, the value can go up to +50% or down to -50%. Explosive shells (the yellow ones) inflict less damage than indicated, according to the thickness of the enemy armor.

Shell per minute: How many shells you can fire per minute. This value is affected by the crew experience.

Penetration: Shows which armor you can pierce with this cannon, if the shell hits without angle on the enemy armor. More details of the penetration system are covered in the next section of "hints & tips"

Accuracy: This apparently strange value shows how far your shell can deviate when you fire. The unit is in meter, for each 100m between you and your target (so the closer you are to the enemy, the more chances you have to hit your target). This value is affected by the crew experience.

Armor: How thick your armor is. The turret and the hull have different armors, but please note that the real value is more complex because there are weak spots and strong spots on each tank. The armor is almost always weaker on the side and rear, so never expose those areas carelessly to your opponents.

Speed: The maximum speed your tank can reach. For some tanks, you need to drive downhill to reach this value. However, the acceleration and reverse speed are never shown. The acceleration is affected by the crew experience.

View range: How far you can detect enemies. As long as they are not detected by someone in your team, they are invisible. This value is important, especially for light and medium tanks. More details in the hints and tips part 2.

Most of these values can be subject to complex recalculations. But to simplify, let's say that the result is lower when your crew is not at 100%, and you can get bonuses if you pick specific perks, skills (for the crew), and when you install equipment on your tank. This will be covered later in this guide.

Tank modules

By pressing cn_S, you have access to many menus to upgrade your tank. This section is meant to explain the first and the most important one: upgrading tank modules. Tank modules are parts, like the cannon or the engine. They are usually grouped in packs. To upgrade your tank, you will have to research a pack with tank XP, and then purchase it with silver.

When you are in the upgrade menu, you can see all packs of modules in a tree. You can only research a pack if the previous pack is researched. The last pack of all tanks (except tier 10 tanks obviously) is the tank of the next tier. If you want to research a pack, you need to spend the XP of this tank. You are not obliged to buy it, but if you want to, it will cost you silver. Once you have bought it, it is automatically installed on your tank, and it will now perform much better.

If you have researched all packs, including the next tank, your tank will be "Elite". The crew will earn experience faster, however your tank experience will become useless since you don't have anything else to research on this tank. I recommend to always look at all the packs of a tank you want to purchase, because your tank will behave MUCH better when upgraded. Never judge a tank if it's not fully upgraded.

If you have researched a specific module, and this module is shared by another tank, you won't have to research it again on the other tank. This can significantly cut the time to upgrade another tank, so this is one of the reasons why it is better to always research all modules before going to the next tank.

Buying a tank

In order to buy a tank, you need to fulfill all of these requirements:

* To have one garage slot available. You are granted 5 slots at the beginning of the game (this might increase with future updates of the game). A tank takes one slot, so if all of them are filled you cannot purchase another tank, unless you sell one of yours first or buy a slot for 300 gold.

* To have researched the tank. Tier I tanks are automatically researched, and they also are in your garage when you start the game. By playing with those tanks, you will earn experience that can be used to research other tanks.

* To have enough silver. Tanks are expensive and the cost is higher for each tier.

SELLING TANKS

If you sell a tank, you will get some silver back. You'll get approximately half of the buying price of the tank, plus all the non-complex equipment (such as binoculars) previously installed. All consumables are sent back in the inventory. Please note that it is not possible to sell more than 5 tanks within 24 hours.

Crew

The crew is a vital part of your tank. The crew moves, fires, repairs, etc. your tank. After each battle, they earn crew XP. You can see how good they are by looking at the bottom bar of the tank statistics in the garage. The more filled the bar is, the better your tank will perform. Since the formula is complex and based on the PC version, it would be very long and useless to explain it in detail. To give you an estimation, let's say that the statistics affected by the crew (acceleration, hull rotation, turret rotation, accuracy, aim speed, reload time, view range) are slightly better (5% better) when the crew is is at 100%. If the crew is only at 75%, you will get a 11% penalty.

If you transfer a crew from one tank to another, you will go back to 80% (tank of the same type) or 75% of training progress (new type of tank), and you will have to get back to 100% by gaining more crew XP.

Once your crew reaches 100%, you can start learning perks and skills. They are both incredibly useful, so do not overlook them. The idea is that a skill gives you a bonus according to the % you have learned. At 50%, it would give you half of the benefits of the full skill. Skills have the compass symbol (looks like an "A") on their icon. A perk will give you a huge benefit as well, but only when you reach 100% of training.

When you have reached 100% on a skill or a perk, you can start learning another one. Keep learning to constantly improve the behavior of your tanks!

If you reassign a crew to another tank, the skill learning will stop until your crew is back at 100% again. However, all previously learned skills and perks will still be working.

The big difference between the PC and Xbox versions is that on Xbox, instead of individualising the crew XP and the skill system, the captain represents the whole crew. The formulas have not been changed and the skills/perks have the same behavior, so only focus on the skill and perk part. This is one of the main differences between the two versions.

I recommend that you train the "sixth sense" skill first, as it will help you to stay alive on the battlefield. I hate playing without it to be honest. Then again, it's up to you. "Mentor" is useful if you plan to have more than 10 other skills after, and it will take a huge number of battles. Otherwise, I would recommend "Brother in Arms" which gives you a small bonus to crew efficiency, and then skills that make sense with the tank type that you're currently using.

Light and medium tanks should have skills that improve the view range and mobility. Artillery tanks and tank destroyers benefit a lot from the camouflage. Repair is useful for most tanks, with perhaps the exception of artillery tanks because when they take fire, they usually die very fast. The defensive perks (against fire, jack of all trades) are useful if they can diminish a weakness of your tank. I would recommend using the anti-fire upgrades on German tanks, for example.

Tank equipment

Tanks can receive up to 3 pieces of equipment, regardless of their tier or type. By pressing cn_X and then selecting equipment, the player can open the menus with the 3 equipment slots. Select any slot, and a list of compatible equipment will appear. They all cost silver (some equipment can cost up to 600.00 silver). If they have the golden gear symbol, it means that they are "complex". A complex equipment can't be sold, unless you pay 10 gold. If you don't want to pay gold for the game, consider that you will never get the silver back, so spend it carefully. If it doesn't have the symbol, you can dismount/sell (it's the same thing) and you will get the full amount of silver back. Complex equipment are not necessarily more powerful, but this depends on your playstyle.

I'll give you some insights about some pieces of equipment that I use fairly often:

Ventilation: It gives a 5% boost for the crew experience. If the crew is fully trained, you will have 105% of effective training. It is very useful and I use it on every tank that can equip it. You will accelerate faster, turn faster, reload faster, be more accurate, etc. The benefit is very small, and you might not even notice it, but it's there. Always my number 1 choice.

Gun Rammer: Increase the fire rate by 10%. Very useful for all tanks except light tanks. Light tanks don't rely on dealing damage as much as the other tanks. All other tanks would hugely benefit from this amazing equipment.

Suspension Bar: Your tracks are more resistant, so you will get paralyzed less often. Very useful for all tanks that rely on speed, such as lights and mediums.

Coated Optics: Increase your view range by 10%. You will spot further all the time. This is incredibly useful for every tanker that needs to spot for himself or for the other. Very useful for light, medium and heavy tanks.

Binoculars: Increase view range by 25% after 3 seconds of full immobility. The turret can move, but not the hull. If you move, the binoculars will stop being active. You can check if it is active at the bottom of your screen. It will have a green halo if active, and just the regular icon if not. This is very useful for tank destroyers (they are immobile very often), and for passive scouting (lights can be effective with binoculars, but you need to be immobile for 3 full seconds, so you need to spot from a position that is not spotted by the opponent).

Camouflage: Another piece of equipment that takes effect after 3 seconds of immobility. Good for tank destroyers and for artillery tanks, since both are immobile and don't want to be spotted. Many passive scouts can use this, but there is much better equipment for them. This is never good for medium or heavy tanks, since they are meant to move and be on the front line.

Enhance Gun Laying Drive: Your aim time is reduced by 10%. This is very useful for artillery tanks, which have horrible aim times, and also for some Russian tanks which suffer from long aim time as well.

Vertical Stabilizer: Your accuracy on the move is less penalized (-20% penalty). Mostly useful for medium tanks because they need to fire while moving up or circling around targets. Although remember, a medium tank is not a sniper.

Toolbox: Gives +25% to the repair speed. I never use it, but if your tank is constantly damaged, it could prove useful. I'm thinking about those tank destroyers that turn slowly and their track is a favorite target for the opponent. I'm still not very convinced about this equipment.

Some other equipment protects the ammo rack (wet ammo rack) and the engine (cyclone filter), so you can equip them if you feel that those modules are easily destroyed. For the explosions, they only reduce the damage from non-penetrating shells.

Consumables

Shells and consumables are grouped in the same menu. Your tank has a limit of shells that depends on the current cannon. You can pick any type of shell compatible with the cannon, usually there are 3 possibilities.

There are many types of shells, and I will cover the main ones.

Armor piercing shells (AP): They use the regular mechanic: basically, if a shell hits an opponent, it has a certain probability to penetrate its armor. The penetration mechanic is covered in the second part of the hints and tips. If a shell penetrates, then it deals the average damage value with a random coefficient (from 50% to 150% damage). They leave a white trail when you fire one, and this is the most common shell in the game.

Highly explosive (HE): They use a slightly different mechanic that the regular AP. If they penetrate, they deal the average damage value with a random coefficient (from 50% to 150% damage). So far, nothing new, except that the average damage value is always very high. However, they have low penetration. If they don't penetrate the armor, they still do damage, but it's reduced according to the difference between the penetration value and the armor. Basically, the tougher the armor, the lower the damage output.

Artillery tanks always use explosive shells, and since they have a very high caliber, they damage tanks in an area of effect. There is an achievement for killing 2 targets with only 1 artillery shell. You can use explosive shells on almost every other tank, and it has some benefits: you can deal small damage to a target that is too strong for your regular AP shells. You can deal tremendous damage if you target a weak spot or a very light tank. Artillery shells can also be very effective to destroy modules. Since you can deal more damage and destroy more modules, you can easily reset an opponent that is capturing your base. However, artillery shells usually fly slowly to your target, so prepare to lead your target if it is moving.

Artillery shells leave a yellow trail when fired.

APCR: Premium shells that have the same mechanic as the regular AP shells. They have higher penetration values, but you can buy them either with gold, or with a LOT of silver (press Y to switch currency in the menu). Some tanks (all medium tier 10, and some other tanks) shoot APCR by default. If it is the case, the cost is similar to a regular AP shell. Don't waste those shells if you buy some, keep them for heavily armored targets that you can't circle (or the weak spots are too small from the distance). They leave a red trail when fired.

HEAT: Premium explosive shells. They only add more radius for the area of effect. Since I don't play much artillery, I never use them so I can't provide extra advice.

About the other consumables, some recommendations:

Basically, until you know exactly what you are doing, I strongly recommend to put a first aid kit, a repair kit and a fire extinguisher. You can put the premium version if you can afford it, but it's not necessary and I never use those.

When you know your tank really well, you can change the configuration. Ex: if you put a Toolbox and the crew skill to repair, you can afford to skip the repair kit. Or maybe you want to buy the premium once, but never use it (only to benefit from it's passive effect).

The fire extinguisher can be skipped if your tank almost never catches fire. German tanks have engines on the front, right behind the glacis (big weak spot), so they absolutely need it, but other nation's tanks are less vulnerable from fire.

Med kit is always recommended, but the perk "Jack of All Trades" can help you if you still have issues with crew members dying on you.

Customise

If you press cn_S in the garage on any tank, you can select the customise menu. This menu gives the player the ability to add a painted camouflage on your tank, and even 1 or 2 decorations (symbols). While the decorations don't have any effect in game, they're often used to show where you are from (you can place most of the country flags). The camouflage is separated in 3 seasons: winter, summer, and desert. Each map will use one of these, so if you want to be prepared for all maps, you'll have to buy the painted camouflage for all seasons. The most common is summer, if you have to choose. These camouflage will slightly improve the camouflage value of your tank, so it is harder to spot. Don't use gold on that even if you have plenty, it's not worth it.

How to check and understand your stats

https://console.worldoftanks.com/en/stats/players/

Type your Gamertag, or any Gamertag you want to check, and search. It will give the detailed stats of the player, and it is updated a few times per day. You can check your own stats to see where you fall, and you can compare yourself to virtually anyone. If you log in, by using the email linked to your Gamertag (no need to create an account), then you have access to "my service record" in which you actually have the compare tool.

First of all, your stats will change a lot, especially at the beginning. You can start thinking about it after 100 battles at least. Mine still change after 6000 battles so don't believe that you can't improve. Stats are usually different according to the type of tank you are playing. For example, an artillery player will have a lower hit ratio due to the lack of accuracy of his tank. If you don't play much artillery and light, aim for 70% or more.

The most relevant and universal stat is the win ratio. Keep this as high as you can by following the hints and tips page 2. You want to keep and win ratio above 50%. Less than that proves that you are, in average, dragging your team down. It's not the end of the world and we all start without great skills. It only proves that you have to pay attention to the game: why did you lose, why did you die, how could you have changed your behavior to be more useful? Maybe you rushed alone, maybe you just stayed behind the base and did not support your team. Maybe you shot before your reticule had fully shrunk and missed. This is the main stat you want to constantly improve.

The average XP per battle will improve with the tier you play (staying low tier will limit this stat), but overall it gives you an idea of how useful you are on the battlefield. 400 is good when you start at low tier, but passed tier V you want to do better. If you reach tier 10 you should aim for 700 or more. It will improve at the same rate as your win ratio, both values are tied.

The other stats will vary a lot, according to the type of tanks you play. Every type of tank should allow you to deal more damage that you receive, including light tanks. Tank destroyer players should aim for more than 1, as they are the tanks designed to deal a lot of damage before they are spotted and killed.

You can also go on the forums and play with friends / acquaintances to improve your skill, it helps tremendously. More details in the next paragraph!

Playing with friends

The game allows you to play in a platoon, with up to 4 other people. In both teams, there will be around the same number of people in platoons. The matchmaking, explained in the next page, takes always the highest values among the tank in the platoon. For example, a regular tier 3, 4 and 5 in the same platoon will use the matchmaking of the tier 5 tank only. It means that they will see tanks from tier 3 to tier 7 only. I can only recommend you to have the same tier in your platoon to avoid surprises. You will not be allowed to select very different tiers anyway.

I recommend a few things though:

*Don't all use the same tank, except if this is a well rounded tank, like a medium. The less variety / flexibility you have, the more your opponent will take advantage of the tank weakness. 5 artillery seems fun, and probably is, but it won't lead you to victory. No one will spot for you anyway.

*You shouldn't all go in the same portion of the map. You should stay close, and make sure you can cover yourself, but don't all go exactly in the same spot.

*Communicate, either in the in-game chat.

Special offers and events

When you launch the game, there is a list of events that are occurring. Usually, there is a pack with a tank that is available only for a limited amount of time. If you play with gold you might want to take a look. However, the other type of event is more interesting: you can have more experience or silver per battle if you fight with a specific tank / tier / type. Basically, they tell you what you need to play and what is the bonus. Don't overlook them, the silver boost is always welcome, and if you have a crew XP bonus, play all your favorite tanks. Crew XP is the longest thing to improve, so if you get a 50% bonus for example your main tank crew will hugely benefit from it.

About premium

WoT is a free to play game. This means that it is free to download, but there are micro-transactions in the game: you can pay for in-game benefits. Free to play games sometimes have a bad reputation because they usually try to get the most money out of the players before they are bored or disgusted. The main issue is generally that payers will be more powerful than non payers ("pay-to-win"), or that the non payers will progress very slowly.

WoT has very limited options that give you a boost for playing with premium. The main one is to buy premium ammunition (they are expensive if you don't pay with gold), however you can totally win and be the most dangerous opponent without it. I bought some with silver and almost never use them. This doesn't prevent me from being MVP quite often.

However, WoT has a slow progression. It means that if you don't like the game, you will feel that it is a painful grind. This is why I wrote this guide: I hope that if the mechanics are more clear, you will enjoy the game. With or without premium and gold, you would still get all achievements at the same speed because the longest and hardest ones are not tied with the tank tier. If you just want the trophies, you don't need to spend any gold.

If you want to spend some, here are my recommendations:

*A premium account will give you 50% silver and XP after each battle, so basically, you will progress faster. Don't activate that until you are experienced with the game, to get the most of it.

*You can buy garage slots, but wait for a sale: sometimes 30% off, and sometimes there is a special sale (10 for the price of 5). As I'm writing these lines, they are 50% off.

*You can keep a few amount of gold to sell complex equipment, BEFORE selling your tank. You will get the silver back.

*You can buy a premium tank, but they are always very expensive, so don't buy a high tier (they cost an insane amount of gold). They are already elite, and will bring a bonus (more silver, or more XP). They can be good to train a crew or to farm silver. I still prefer the premium account though. Please note that premium tanks are not more powerful than the others, but they usually have one or 2 stats above average (and some below average of course). Some can be very fast, or very armored. Learn to play against them, they always have weaknesses.

*Premium shells can be bought with silver. Don't get used to those because a smart player with regular shells is more dangerous than a stupid tanker with gold shells. Premium consumable (big repair kit, auto fire extinguisher, etc) gives a passive bonus to protect your tank. If you want, you can try them, and try not to activate them in battle, to benefit from their passive bonus until the end of the game.

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