British non-turreted TDs are largely underappreciated due to their feeble armor. We address this long-standing issue as part of an all-around Tech Tree revision, increasing their protection to help them reclaim a place among conventional assault TDs. With thicker protection up front and on the sides, they no longer suffer from glaring armor weaknesses and can be an intimidating force leading the attack or helping allies. With that, let's dive into the details!
Why Revise Them?
TDs on the FV215b (183) line won't exactly set the Thames on fire (er, not that you'd want to) when it comes to mobility, but it's not their job to win races. These Brits pick their battles and have enough damage potential to put heavily-armored enemies to sleep working as assault guns or supporting the team from the frontline. Thick armor, excellent DPM (over 2,000 at Tier V; sweet, huh?), a great fire rate, and easy gun handling let them meticulously destroy the opposition, compensating for below-average mobility.
However, this otherwise great picture is spoiled by chinks in their (figurative) armor. Though their (literal) armor seems solid on paper, we all know listed values don't tell the whole story. If you took them for a stroll, you must have noticed they're riddled with weakspots—the commander's cupola. And once you're spotted, you become target number one. Enemies don't even have to go the extra mile to send you to the scrap heap; just shoot the "head," and away you go. As a result, playing it safe works best for these TDs, which contradicts their "close-range assault guns" narrative. Update 9.21 should set them back on the right course.
The AT 2 was quite formidable thanks to its armor. Opponents below Tier VII could hardly get a scratch on it. We took some of the AT 2's frontal, side and rear armor to keep it from being OP. It's now far less bouncy from the front. However, it's not all bad news for those who fancy this Brit: changes to side plates should give it an edge at sidescraping.
The large thinly-armored section on the right side of the AT 8 made it extremely easy to cripple, even for low-tier opponents. Add to that three barely protected cupolas on its top, and there you have it—a soft target living on borrowed time. Update 9.21 boosted its efficiency by eradicating the massive weak spot to the right. Cupolas received better protection, too.
The AT 7 and AT 15 had little hope of soaking up damage from the front or when their gun mantlets and cupolas were targeted. We increased armor thickness for these weak spots to gear up these two tanks for a more active role in close-quarters fights.
Feeble frontal armor and a thin gun mantlet made the Tortoise a soft target for Tier IX and X tanks. Update 9.21 improves both and gives the vehicles a thicker superstructure roof. It retains a vulnerable main gun cupola though, with a glaring weak spot at its center.
The Churchill Gun Carrier was underappreciated because of its low alpha and unimpressive-for-its-tier penetration, often leaving players thoroughly underwhelmed in the heat of battle. After feedback, we went through the 32-pounder parameters. Alpha damage and pen went up, while DPM stayed as is. This Brit literally exists to carry a gun, and now it can carry it proudly! The AT 15 and Tortoise that equip the same 32-pounder benefit from greater pen stats and alpha strike, too.
Why Replace the "Death Star?"
This revision won't be complete without a rewarding experience at Tier X. With the entire line redesigned for close-range assault and support, we wanted the top tier to incorporate all the line's distinctive traits. This way, you can figure out whether it's worth the grind soon after you start the line.
No one would argue that a FV215b (183) staring at you is just about the worst thing any tanker can see on the battlefield. It's universally feared for its gun, capable of one-shotting most Tier IX and X tanks. However, its alpha damage comes at the cost of low speed, a long reload, limited accuracy and sub-par ammo count, which is nowhere close to the line's overall narrative. This is where the all-new FV217 Badger steps in, forcing the FV215b (183) to retreat as a special vehicle. Unlike the Death Star, it inherits a combination of decent armor, solid DPM, and excellent rate of fire from its brethren down line, but gets more of these in every department. Capable of dealing a whopping 4500 DPM, the Badger won't fail to put a round downrange with true British composure. Then, it'll move on to rain devastation on the next unlucky tanker...
How Will It All Work?
The FV217 Badger might be yours for the taking, no grind required, if you have the FV215b (183) researched and purchased when 9.21 releases. Read the transition details and look forward to a detailed overview!
We're looking forward to your thoughts and questions on the latest balance changes. Take the revised TDs for a drive during Common Test and please join the discussion over on the forum.