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Monday, January 30, 2012

Tool Hammers WoT Tips Part 2

If you missed the first installment of Tool Hammers World of Tanks Tips you can read it HERE. In this installment Tool will go over some helpful tricks to make you an overall better player.

Welcome to my second installment of Toolhammer9000’s tips, tricks and techniques. This installment I would like to discuss some general tactics that can be applied to all tanks.

Beneficial habits to develop

When facing higher tier, better armed or more heavily armored opponents there are a few things you can do to increase your survivability, profitability and overall enjoyment of the game. To increase enemies bouncing rounds off of your tank and minimize the damage you sustain you should develop these habits.

ANGLE YOUR ARMOR – the single most important thing you can do is angle your armor, in open field combat this means instead of squaring your armor face to face with an opponent turn your tank so that your frontal and side armor are at an approximately 45 degree angle to the enemy. This will increase the effectiveness of the armor plating and give you the best chance to bounce the enemy round.

In addition to the open field method there are ways to angle your armor using the hard cover technique. Hard cover is anything that cannot be destroyed or shot through. To employ this tactic using a building or mountain you must first position your tank nose first into the cover with just the slightest bit of side is exposed to your enemy. This allows your turret to be pointed slightly to the side giving you a shot but not exposing your frontal armor at all. The resulting side that you are exposing to the enemy will be facing the enemy at such a steep angle it will be nearly impossible to penetrate. The only disadvantage to this technique is that you will take rounds to your tracks and turret but only after your aggravated opponent has figured out what you are doing and takes corrective measures. By this time you should already have multiple hits on the enemy.  See provided illustration for clarification.


Tank vulnerabilities

Hit zone skins – These are overlays designed by non developer third parties that show the vulnerable sections of each tank. The colors represented are red for engine and transmission, white for ammunition rack, orange for commander, dark blue for driver and teal / pink for lighter armored portions. These add-on have been deemed allowable by the developers and can be downloaded from the internet.  I have personal experience with this add on’s and noticed that my situational awareness increased significantly when I used them, however they become obsolete with each patch.

Knowing where to strike the enemy for maximum effect is a huge advantage, one thing I have learned is that the commander’s hatches and lower hull plate armor on almost every tank is extremely vulnerable. The commander’s hatch is generally located on the very top of the turret and the lower hull plate armor is the section on the front towards the bottom of the tank. The commander’s hatch is round in shape and has prismatic (mirrors) squares all the way around. Two tanks that have very weak hatches are the E-75 and the American T-95 tank destroyer, these tanks are nearly impossible to penetrate from the front but when aiming for these hatches you can have huge success even with a much lower tier tank.

In contrast if you find yourself in a fierce firefight slugging it out with someone who can and is dealing damage you should again angle your armor, continue to move back and forth and traverse your turret slightly to the left and right. This will make your opponent have a higher chance of bouncing rounds or missing intended weak spots.

There is one thing in World of Tanks that will ruin your day faster then any other……. ARTY, mainly heavy arty. A skilled heavy artillery player can mash your tank to bits and leave you sobbing with a huge repair bill. My current tier 7 artillery the M40/M43 has the 203 mm cannon and can potentially deal out 1850 hit points worth of damage (that’s game ending with just one shot) and it’s not even the largest artillery available.

The best defense against artillery is terrain and hard cover. Being aware of your surroundings and the commonly used artillery paths will allow you to stay in the fight longer, making more money and experience points.

The illustration above shows how to tuck against a sand dune or hill to avoid artillery fire, this area of the sand dune or hill is called the “arty shadow” and is usually halfway to three quarters of the way up the hill depending on the angle of the hill. The worst place to sit is at the bottom portion of the hill due to the false sense of security it provides.


Goals to look forward to

I would like to briefly discuss some of the superstar vehicles I have had the pleasure of operating and explain why I enjoyed them so much. Who knows you may choose to grind to these tanks and enjoy them as much as I did.

Jagdpanther – This was by far my favorite vehicle to operate. I maintain a 76 percent win percentage including several 6 plus kill matches. My best match was with 8 kills (still unbeaten by any of my vehicles). When fully upgraded this vehicle was incredibly accurate, carries a powerful 105 mm gun and is agile enough to thwart light tank attacks providing a fun powerful tier 7 tank destroyer that is generally matched with lower tier tanks.

E-75 – coming in second place was the E75 which is a tier 9 heavy on the German tree. This brute is a real joy to use with its very heavy and sloped front armor and turret which bounces all but the heaviest rounds fired at it.  When fully upgraded this beast is equipped with a 128 mm main gun. With this setup this heavy can stand toe to toe with anything in the game and usually fare pretty well.

T50-2 – This light tank is a blast to drive, its top speed of 72 kmph and superior crossing traverse make it uber agile and a real thorn in the side of the enemy team. The fully upgraded gun for this tank is relatively powerful and it reloads quickly. I have on several occasions been able to avoid the business end of a heavy tank by staying on the backside of their turret traverse and wreaked havoc by shooting the softer armor on the rear and sides but expect to solo engage heavies over a tier 6 and live to tell about it. The longer you stay alive in this tank the higher your teams chances of winning.

Lowe – Ah my Lowe, I have just shy of 750 battles with this gem. This tank while more lightly armored then its other non premium tier 8 counterparts is a real sniper. The accuracy on the Lowe’s gun is second to none and the penetration will provide damaged components and injured crews for even the most heavily armored opponents. If used correctly this tank can be a very valuable asset to any team.

There are many other vehicles I have operated and enjoyed but these are my favorites overall. Except for a few just absolutely awful tanks most vehicles in the game have strengths and weaknesses making them enjoyable to play.

As always stay tuned for more installments on Keyboard Required.

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