[Sandbox Results] New Balance: What's Next?

Commanders!

We appreciate that many of you took an active part in testing and discussing the New Balance on the Sandbox server! The main thing we want to emphasize now is that the changes tested on Sandbox will not end up on the live servers in their current state.

For these ten days, we have been watching your reactions and feedback on forums, social media, and other online platforms. Your active discussions suggest that the key idea of Sandbox works: you have the opportunity to test, discuss, and assess possible changes before they find their way to the main version of the game.

Feedback, Questions, Doubts

The complex rebalance that was subjected to testing consisted of many parts, and several reasonable doubts and questions were brought up to us by the community.

The main questions that we received from you during the test are as follows:

Shell and HP Pool Rebalance

  • How will this affect gameplay?
  • Will the vehicles have an even harder time playing in the bottom tier position? Will Tier VIII vehicles fight against Tier X opponents with the same level of performance?
  • Which vehicles will become more relevant in the new system, and which less?
  • What will happen to vehicles that have low penetration values for standard shells in the first place?
  • How will everything affect Premium vehicles?

We understand and share your concerns about these issues. The main purpose was to check how increasing the vehicles’ lifetime in battle and enhancing the role of the armor may affect the game balance before introducing any changes to specific vehicles. Thanks to Sandbox testing, we now have the necessary data to keep making progress with our research and future development.

Changes to HE Shells

You quite rightly noted that the new mechanics of causing damage with HE shells did not become more understandable and predictable, which means that the implementation of this idea did not work as intended. Also, it was a mistake to remove penetration from the parameters of HE shells.

We wanted to rework not only the mechanics of causing damage with HE shells but also specific parameters of this shell type.

SPG Rebalance

Our goal when testing artillery was to add more diversity to gameplay and decrease the overall duration of the stun effect. The tested SPG rework makes sense only in conjunction with the shell rebalance. We will get back to the SPG rebalance once a new solution for the shell rebalance has been designed.

One thing can be said for sure, armor-piercing shells turned out to be ineffective and undesirable in the shell paradigm currently tested on Sandbox.

It is already clear that the new paradigm of shells and the reworked HP pool of vehicles, together with the mechanics of HE shells and SPG rebalance, require further improvements and are not ready for release in their current shape.

Confirmed Hypotheses

Tech Tree Changes and the Collectors' Vehicles

The Tech Tree interface became more user-friendly and transparent. There is now a universal layout for vehicle types inside the Tech Tree. You don't have to start researching a new branch from low-tier vehicles, which will spare the time, experience, and effort, especially of players primarily interested in high-tier vehicles.

Your concerns were mainly related to the vehicles moved from the Tech Tree to the Collectors' Vehicles section of the in-game Store and the assumption that they would disappear from the game for good. However, we'd like to assure you that is not going to happen.

If these changes go into the main version, these vehicles, including those of Tier VI–X, will be accessible and available for purchase with credits. There’s no need to rush into researching these vehicles as you will be able to buy them at any time after the potential update goes live.

Durability Increase for Low-Tier Vehicles

On the Sandbox server, we additionally increased HP of all Tier I–VI vehicles, which made the power progression from tier to tier smoother and more consistent. The results fully justified our expectations. Your feedback showed us that the cost of mistakes in battles was reduced, and low-tier vehicles now survive for a longer time. The average duration of battles also increased together with the overall comfort of playing in these vehicles.

Please note that we will finalize the exact values of the HP increase after we have analyzed the data from this test.

What's Next?

Today, the Sandbox server will shut down. Now we have plenty of statistics and your feedback, and we are waiting for the results of the questionnaire. Thank you for filling it in by the way. We hope you like the reward for helping us out!

We will not release the new balance as you saw it on Sandbox. We need some time to conduct a complex analysis and understand what kind of adjustments are needed.

Several solutions implemented on the Sandbox server were successful, but some of them still need to be adjusted. As a result:

  • We will proceed with the HP increase for low-tier vehicles, the rework of the Tech Tree, and the implementation of Collectors' Vehicles, at which point we will share more details in the near future.
  • Other changes, including the shell type rebalance, HE mechanics, and SPGs rework require a thorough review, and will not be released anytime soon.

 

We will also keep in mind the vehicles that were supposed to be checked when the new balance test occurs. We'll be ready to talk about our future steps and potential updates for all features and vehicles around mid-March.

We would like to emphasize one important message once again: any global changes will not go into release without being tested by the players first.

Thank you again for your participation and all the feedback that is so important for us to keep moving in the right direction and for us to make the right decisions.

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