World of Tanks Sees 230,000 Years of Play Time in 2012 December 20, 2012Posted by Wilhelm Arcturus in entertainment, World of Tanks, World of Warplanes, World of Warships.
Tags: Type 59, Wargaming.net
And the year isn’t even done yet.
Wargaming.net sent out a press release about 2012 that included an info graphic with some statistics about World of Tanks. And, since I like that sort of thing, I thought I would pass it along.
Those are some nice round numbers, which means they are probably reasonable estimates, at least if you subscribe to the theory that the more precise a huge number is, the more likely it is to be bullshit. That particular theory arose from a study of United Nations statistics, where there appeared to a correlation between precision and simply making things up.
Interesting to see that the Soviet KV series of tanks is so popular in its various forms. And then there is the Type 59 in China, which is still for sale on their server still and is, of course, a Chinese tank. It is no longer an option in NA/EU.
As for next year, Wargaming.net has this to say:
Our key objectives for the year 2013 are many – deliver two new online free-to-play worlds, continued the expansion of World of Tanks with creative and passionate new content, and further reinforce our ties with our community,” said Wargaming CEO Victor Kislyi. “We will also continue to explore new possibilities offered by the free-to-play MMO space to provide players with unique gaming experiences and unite as many people as possible in our free-to-play universe.
I suppose we shall see.
Monday Morning Panda Blues October 1, 2012Posted by Wilhelm Arcturus in Blizzard, entertainment, World of Warplanes.
Tags: Mists of Pandaria, Nostalgia, Trion Worlds
Last week there was the usual rush to declare victory or defeat, at least on the sales front, when it came to Mists of Pandaria.
Retail sales were pegged at 600-700K units, which is down considerably from past expansions. Of course, that is only physical boxes shipped. There are only pulled-from-various-orifices estimates on digital downloads. (Some of which were pretty positive.) Only Blizzard knows the real answer there, though if there is no press release from them you can guess that they did not set any records. We will have to wait for the quarterly report for those numbers if that is the case.
Blizzard was pushing the digital side pretty hard, and the option does come with the advantage of having everything pre-loaded and ready to go come launch.
And Blizzard itself is offering free server transfers due to queues on a few servers. Eight US servers with long queues does not seem like a lot compared to the full list of servers, but how many MMOs get queues after 3 months, much less after nearly eight years?
Another press release I don’t expect to see is one announcing how much money Trion Worlds raised from their own little jab at Mists of Panadaria.
Trion Worlds announced their own “buy our expansion and save a panda” offer, where they declared… well, I’ll used their blurb.
Trion Worlds, Inc. will donate US$1.00 to Pandas International for each copy of Storm Legion that is pre-ordered through StormLegion.com, worldwide (excluding Alabama, Massachusetts, and South Carolina, even though we really wish they’d let us), between 12:00am PDT September 26, 2012 through 11:59pm PDT October 3, 2012, up to a maximum amount of US$10,000.00. Know why we have to do that? Maine. Weird, right? We don’t know what they have against Pandas, or why $10,000 is a magical number, either. This contribution is not tax deductible, but it would be pretty awesome if it were. Pandas International is a tax-exempt 501(c)(3) organization located at P.O. Box 620335, Littleton, Colorado 80162, whose mission is to ensure the preservation and propagation of the endangered Giant Panda.
The reason I suspect that we won’t see a follow up press release on this because even if they make the 10,000 mark, it would still be during the same week when Blizzard sold more than 600K boxes. And if they don’t make that mark… well, really nothing to brag about then. This sort of publicity works better for somebody like The Oatmeal, who just wanted to annoy someone, than as a method to sell game boxes.
Then there is actually playing the game itself. I have a number of friends who pre-ordered the expansion because… well… its WoW and they always get the expansion… who seem reasonably happy. I did hear more than once a little bemusement that after the panda starting zone it was a bit of a bummer to then have to work their way through all of the old content to get to the rest of the expansion with their new character.
One friend failed to outsmart the system by using a refer a friend bonus to grant levels to their new panda monk. Unfortunately, impatient with the starter zone, they apparently applied those levels right away and ended up with a level 30 monk they didn’t know how to play. Let that be a warning to you.
I decided to give the new panda starting area a look. I think one of the smarter things that Blizzard did was opening up the full selection of races to all players, regardless of which expansions they own. Selling boxes is a good boost to income, but keeping people subscribed is the winning strategy.
Anyway, a new panda warrior was born.
The panda starter area is very nice and does not, I gather, degrade Asian culture for western consumption, or play to western stereotypes of Asian culture, since nobody seems to be out there protesting. I guess pandas are too cute… or Victoria’s Secret models are too thin.
My patience for starting a new character in WoW is fairly low at this point, but I made it pretty far into the tutorial. The monkeys who climb on your back and need to be shaken off might be a joke too close to home for some who spend too much time in Azeroth, but the whole thing is good for new players as it introduces new game concepts at a measured pace. It might be too slow for veterans, but you will come out of it knowing the basics of the game.
The only real surprise was that on a Sunday afternoon I only saw a single other person in the starter area. I realize that, being on the conveyor belt of such an area, you won’t run into a clump of people, but just one seemed quite sparse. But my own server, Eldre’Thalas, seems to be somewhat sparse overall these days. I couldn’t even take care of my item level needs at the auction house the previous week. It has fallen quite a ways from the launch of Wrath of the Lich King, when the queue to get on during the first few days was 700+ players deep at times.
But, nice though the starter area is, it did not respark any desire for WoW in me. I did not run out and buy the expansion or decide to stay subscribed.
There is still a great deal of nostalgia for WoW in our regular group. The topic comes up now and again, even when I am not making videos designed to ignite those emotions. But our own time in the game peaked about the time our server’s population did, during Wrath of the Lich King. WoW has moved towards the point EverQuest occupies in my heart. The disappointing part is that, unlike EverQuest, we cannot go back to revisit old WoW as Blizzard washed it all away with Cataclysm.
And the world keeps turning.
Dragons: April Fools Comes Early to World of Warplanes March 30, 2012Posted by Wilhelm Arcturus in entertainment, Humor, World of Warplanes.
Tags: April Fools, Dragons, Wargames.net
Or so I hope. This press release just showed up in my mail.
Here Be Dragons!
Majestic Dragons Add Fire to World of Warplanes
30th March, 2012 — Wargaming.net, the award-winning online game developer and publisher, is proud to announce the next faction to join the current set of nations in the highly-anticipated flight combat action MMO World of Warplanes: dragons! The all-new line of majestic creatures will set the sky on fire when the game enters its beta stage later this year.
The initial tech tree will include 12 dragons and will eventually expand to more than 60 creatures. Each mystical animal will have its own peculiarities and strategic employment. Players can upgrade several key characteristics including fire intensity level, color, number of claws, horns, wingspan and skin thickness.
The addition of these fire-breathing beasts will add more diversity to the gameplay since a dragons’ behavior requires a different approach in terms of controls and tactics.
“Adding dragons into World of Warplanes has been one of the most challenging aspects of game development so far,” said Wargaming.net CEO Victor Kislyi. “Dragons are so different from planes; they are much more edgy and self-willed, but if you put in just a little more effort, they will serve you well. I’m happy we’ve finally announced them!”
There are, of course, screen shots.
A dragon tech tree.
And an accompanying video up on YouTube.
Just setting us up for the big “April Fools!” post on Sunday, right? Please?
Tags: Aces High, Air Warrior, Kesmai, Massively, Stellar Emperor, Stellar Warrior
Syp, in his role as the Game Archeologist over at Massively, has not one but two GREAT posts up about one of the early powers in online gaming, Kesmai.
Granted, my enthusiasm for Kesmai is such that even a favorable passing reference to them gets you to at least one thumbs up. But here we have two posts full of details and memories.
His first article covers the Island of Kesmai, one of the early ancestors to modern MMOs, created in parallel to MUD1, while the second article covers the life of the company with a heavy focus on their game Air Warrior.
And while I could complain about his failure to mention MegaWars III and Stellar Emperor (a game I won at one point) along with some other titles, like Stellar Warrior, I think I will just join his nostalgia parade by adding in my own memories of Air Warrior. All that comes after this could have been his for his article if only he had talked to me… and when you read it… if you read it… you’ll have to decide if that is a warning against ever talking to me!
I have mused a bit on Air Warrior in the past. Now I am going to try and dig deep into the recesses of my brain for really old tales.
I will say up front, to avoid repeating it with every entry, that these are all “as I recall it” memories, many of which I am sure have been distorted by the passage of time. Some of them are, no doubt, flat out wrong.
These are thing that happened from 1988 to 1990 in my personal timeline and involve the original versions of Air Warrior running on GEnie. If your own personal time frame is different, think a minute before you tell me, “Oh no, that is not the way it was!” This isn’t Air Warrior II or Air Warrior III or the AOL or Game Storm version. This is the really old shite!
I was a party to many of these things below, though surely not as many as I remember. Time does that. Feel free to correct or add to my recollections in the comments. But don’t call me a liar, I swear all this is true to some degree!
On with the show.
World of Warplanes Alpha Gameplay Footage March 6, 2012Posted by Wilhelm Arcturus in entertainment, World of Warplanes.
Wargaming.net put up a video of some World of Warplanes action that was apparently part of their alpha test.
It looks pretty good, though any company video has to be cherry picked clips. I still want to see it when it comes out. You can get to the video here if you are reading this via RSS or mobile device.
You can sign up to be part of the alpha test at the World of Warplanes web site.
I will be waiting until thing get a little further along.
My 2012 Sorta-MMO Outlook December 22, 2011Posted by Wilhelm Arcturus in Diablo III, entertainment, World of Warplanes.
Tags: 2012, Guild Wars 2, Neverwinter, Path of Exile, Torchlight II
At about this time last year I wrote a post about my MMO Outlook for 2011.
There were six games I was looking forward to in 2011 that were… mostly… in the traditional MMORPG, virtual world, shared experience with thousands of fellow players mold. The real question was on which of the six would I be able to focus. It seemed likely that I would only have time for one, so there was a choice to be made.
Two of the candidates were pushed out into 2012 (TERA and Guild Wars 2), one was cancelled (The Agency), and two I played in beta (DCUO and SWTOR) and decided to pass on. The choice ended up being Rift, which is where the instance group is playing currently. Despite my “Oh no, not another fantasy MMORPG!” initial reaction, and probably because that was exactly what it was, it filled the niche for our group.
Sitting here now and looking out at 2012, I find that the MMOs I am looking forward too… really aren’t traditional shared virtual worlds.
There is a shared experience in each, be it cities, towns, lobbies, or chat channels. But the actual world in which you adventure, those are instanced. You an your group are on your own and you will never run into anybody who is not on the guest list one way or another.
Guild Wars 2
The game is certainly the most traditional looking of my choices for 2012 when comparing to other MMOs. The original Guild Wars was fully instanced with just cities available as locations where players could interact with the population as a whole. But the people at ArenaNet never claimed it was an MMO.
This time around they are stating that it is an MMO with a persistent world, with dynamic events, described as being scalable and to “encourage impromptu group play,” seeming to be the primary draw in that regard.
And, of course, it will solve all the problems from which current fantasy MMORPGs, and their players, suffer. Or so one might be lead to believe reading some of the fan comments.
Still, the game does appear to be trying to break some past trends while keeping its subscription-free business model. (Hey, Guild Wars was free to play back in 2005! What trend setters!) That ambition alone, along with the no subscriptions, is probably enough to get me to buy the box.
But I also own two Guild Wars boxes, and it was never sticky enough to get me to stay, so we’ll have to see how they do this time around.
And now we get into the items that are either Diablo III or very much like Diablo III, and where any MMO pretense starts sliding away. No shared virtual worlds here.
I will, almost assuredly, buy this game. But the true key to this list is whether I will play it with other people. While I played a lot of the original Diablo with other people, Diablo II settled down into an almost all solo affair. Part of that was the syncing of maps, where joining up with somebody would redo the random elements of your world to match theirs and your maps would be gone. And part of it was the scaling difficulty levels in Diablo II. Back in Diablo, we would sometimes just play in the same game but in different areas just to be chatting and such. In Diablo II the monsters all scaled up as people were added, so three people running around solo wasn’t a viable option. You had to stick together.
Then there is the group size aspect of things. Diablo III, like its predecessors, will be limited to four players. Given our regular group runs five people regularly, and can get expanded up to eight pretty quickly, this means it will be a game played on off-nights, which means no regular group.
So while I might play Diablo III, it may just get the treatment I give most games I play solo, which is a mention or two and a summary. Unless Blizzard loses its roots and fails to capture what made the Diablo games great, in which case it likely be one complaint post and silence ever after.
Torchlight II is clearly trying to be the Diablo III you want versus the Diablo III Blizzard is going to give you. It will offer LAN play, server options, up to eight players in a game, PvP games, 100 levels, pets, fishing and so on. Look at the comparo chart.
All done by a team that includes people who made the original two Diablo games.
The problem, for me, is that Torchlight, as solid as it was, did not capture the “feel” of the Diablo games. Much like one of my early and often complaints about WoW, it has a very cartoon feel to it, in the Team Fortress 2 sort of style. It failed on the atmosphere aspect of the Diablo essence, though it certainly had the simplicity part down.
So Torchlight II certainly gets past the group size issue and has many things to recommend it… and I will almost certainly buy it. But will it end up being a side game I play solo, or something the whole group can dive into?
Path of Exile
I wrote about Path of Exile the other day. This is another entry in the Diablo-like category.
If I can summarize the game badly, it is attempting to be Diablo 2.5 with a Guild Wars world and a free to play business model. All of which may be very good things indeed. Rather than the lobby system, it will have shared towns ala Guild Wars, where you can group up and then go out and adventure in instanced zones and dungeons all with Diablo style clicky game mechanics.
The problem is that while I give it high marks for graphic qualities and capturing some of that foreboding feel of Diablo, it hasn’t really grabbed me.
Now, to be fair, the game is in closed beta and has a ways to go. And I haven’t played all that much.
It could be a contender, but I get the feeling we won’t be talking about a go-live date for quite a while yet.
Honestly, I don’t even know where Neverwinter is going these days. It started off sounding like a LAN party D&D adventure with five player groups. Perfect.
But times have changed, Atari has been a pill, Cryptic has been bought up by Perfect World Entertainment (who is also Runic’s publisher for Torchlight II), and things seem to be bending to become a free to play MMO style game with the addition of Cryptic’s usual player created content system being added on.
All of which sounds fine on the surface. I have been known to pine for an overland Forgotten Realms campaign MMO.
However, my experience in software development shows that things that start in one direction and then bend to another often fail to come together as well as one might like. Ask me some day how the multi-server, no single point of failure, custom voice banking app development environment aimed at financial institutions with over a billion dollars in assets worked out when after launch it was decided it should become a canned, fits on one box, minimal configuration necessary, to be sold to the low end, price sensitive credit union and local bank market.
And only ask if you’re buying the beer.
Okay, maybe it won’t be that bad. It is a multiplayer game that is now going to be integrated into a more MMO-like environment. Cryptic has done the MMO thing a few of times now and has no doubt learned a thing or two. It could go smoothly this time!
The real killer for this though is that it is not likely to be shipping in 2012. Go Zubon predictions! It is already slated for “late 2012,” and we know how that works out.
World of Warplanes
I will play this. It will be free to play, free to download, I will try it.
Yes, there are many questions, like how will controls work. Somewhere at the simple F-15 Strike Eagle from my Apple II days end of the spectrum seems more likely than the IL-2 Sturmovik “so many damn controls I can’t keep track” end. This will piss people off.
And it will probably be much like World of Tanks as far as business model, where money buys faster advancement, gold planes, and special ammo. This will also piss people off.
My only real hope though is that it will capture the fun of World of Tanks in airplane form. For all of its faults, I have fun playing World of Tanks, which should be the key metric, right?
So What Will It Be?
My list last year was in search of a single game out of six that would stick. That, as I said, came to pass, with Rift being the winner.
This year it looks likely that I will play all of the items on my list, at least if they manage to ship in 2012. The distinct lack of subscription fees certainly help on that front. Six boxes to by at most, and maybe just three really, since three of the games seem to be going the online free to play route.
The real question is whether any of them will make it into the regular group as a title we play together.
As with last year, I am going to end this post with a poll. This time around though, it will be multiple choice. Which of the games on my list will you play if they are available. I included a “none of the above” option, but only click that if you do not click anything else.
What else might come along in 2012 that I should be looking for and which fits in the sorta-MMO or MMO genre?
World of Warplanes Reveals Some American Planes December 20, 2011Posted by Wilhelm Arcturus in entertainment, World of Warplanes.
Wargaming.net’s press release this morning, and they have a press release every week at a minimum, was all about World of Warplanes.
World of Warplanes Unveils USA Aircraft
Initial American Tech Tree Revealed
London, UK, Paris, FR and San Francisco, CA (20th December, 2011) — Wargaming.net, the award-winning videogame publisher and developer, is proud to introduce the initial tech tree of the American warbirds for its anticipated aerial action MMO World of Warplanes. The line of aircraft will be available with the game’s release and will feature two warplane branches to explore.
Along with the American line, World of Warplanes, now in its Closed Alpha stage, will feature the German and Soviet tiers upon its release scheduled for 2012. The first iteration of the American tech tree will feature a line of light fighters together with the unique branch of carrier fighters not available for other nations. Among others, players will be able to test the famous models including the F4U Corsair, the F4F Wildcat, the P-51 Mustang, and the F-86A Sabre.
“We are proud to reveal the initial American tech tree,” said Victor Kislyi, Wargaming.net CEO. “Throughout the course of WWII, the US planes proved to be extremely powerful and efficient machines, and we could not but include them into the primary stack of World of Warplanes nations.”
Find more about World of Warplanes at:
About World of Warplanes
World of Warplanes is the flight combat MMO action game set in the Golden Age of military aviation. The game continues the armored warfare theme marked in the highly-acclaimed World of Tanks and will throw players into a never-ending tussle for air dominance.
World of Warplanes will allow players to build full-scale careers as virtual pilots offering machines from several key eras, from1930′s biplanes to the Korean War jet fighters that led the way to modern air forces.
World of Warplanes will feature a wide range of warbirds, each of them unique in their effectiveness and behavior. Virtual pilots will choose from three main warplane classes – single-engine light fighters capable of engaging enemies in close dogfights, heavy fighters with their deadly straight attacks, and strafing aircrafts, the fearsome threat to ground targets.
Every plane will feature multiple variations of ammo types, engines, and other crucial modules, and their various combinations will allow players to pick the optimal configuration for the most effective behavior in combat.
The initial American tree looks a bit sparse.
Granted, the World of Tanks trees looked pretty sparse when they were initially announced as well. Now however, after a year of work, there are an amazing number of tanks in game. So I expect this will fill out as well.
I do have to wonder what a jet-powered P-51 will look like, and why they chose that.
Oddly, they included a set of pictures of the American P-39, which is not on the tree at the moment.
They did include some nice pictures of the Boeing P-12 as well, though I have never seen a picture of one painted as such. (I did see one at the USAF Museum once.) And this plane is on the tree and belongs there.
Given how much fun World of Tanks has ended up being, I am interested to see how World of Warplanes develops. I do wonder how they will deal with controls and if flight sticks and the like will become a serious differentiator among players.
World of Battleships Web Site Now Live! September 13, 2011Posted by Wilhelm Arcturus in entertainment, World of Warplanes, World of Warships.
As with the World of Warplanes site, there isn’t much there yet. There is some artwork.
I am not sure how representative of the actual game the art is.
And there is a brief overview of the game.
The players have three main classes of ships at their disposal:
- Aircraft carriers that provide both naval and air support
- Battleships and heavy cruisers able to scarify the enemy with their looks alone
- Light destroyers with speed and agility as their strongest points
All the machines have their unique combination of firepower, speed, armor, and endurance. A pack of nimble destroyers will tire out their opponents, huge battleships can batter down any target with a couple of main caliber salvos, aircraft carriers are capable of covering the allies from air or routing an aircraft cell towards the enemy.
I guess that covers some of the questions I asked. Or maybe not. Carriers just add to the range question. And I wonder how carrier aircraft will be handled?
And then there are the trailers they posted earlier in the year, during Gamescom.
So a little bit of information, but a lot of questions are still unanswered.
Question of the Day September 5, 2011Posted by Wilhelm Arcturus in entertainment, World of Warplanes.
Tags: Quote of the Day, Wargaming.net
Wargaming.net did an interview with MMO Crunch about World of Warplanes the other day. There isn’t really much information in the interview. Wargaming.net didn’t seem ready to talk about much of substance about the game at this point.
So, perhaps sensing that nothing substantial was going to get passed along, the interviewer decided to go for the “wouldn’t this be totally cool” level of questions. And so this was asked:
This one’s a long shot, but I need to ask it. When a plane is shot down, will the wreckage crash onto the battlefields in World of Tanks?
Now wouldn’t that be cool? At least the first time it happened?
Wargaming.net agreed that it would be cool but, no, that won’t be happening.
Musing on Battleships August 19, 2011Posted by Wilhelm Arcturus in entertainment, World of Tanks, World of Warplanes, World of Warships.
Tags: Jutland, Storm Eagle Studios
Battleships have always held a fascination for me.
Certainly as a young boy, seeing pictures and drawings of battleships bristling with armament left an impression.
But things martial do tend to attract young boys.
Tanks, airplanes, and battleships all figured heavily in my childhood play, day dreams, and drawings. (Something actively discouraged by most female relatives of mine, yet subtly encouraged by nearly every male relative. You see how this works.)
And while I might consider myself having missed the golden ages of tanks or airplanes, they still exist and have continued to evolve during my lifetime, if more slowly than before. (The US Air Force flies planes built before I was born and plans to keep flying some of them until after the actuarial tables say I am likely to have passed on.)
But I was born after the age of battleships.
The US Navy maintained a few during my lifetime. One is parked, in storage, about an hours drive from my home. It is waiting to be turned into a museum.
Fleets of steel clad battleships though, that idea faded as a strategic force nearly a century back, and even then the battleship concept was never really put to the test. The list of battles involving battleship forces is relatively short, and the more decisive engagements tend to reflect either mis-match forces or leadership.
On that list there is the one battle that represented the clash of mass naval forces, matched in size, quality, and leadership in the style foreseen by the naval powers of the time: Jutland.
And that pretty much ended up a draw, with both sides claiming victory and pretty much returning to the same state of affairs as before the battle.
So if you study history and want to compare equipment and tactics you are at something of a loss when it comes to battleships.
With tanks you have the western desert and the eastern front. For aircraft you have pretty much the whole European theater to study. Battles between aircraft carriers dominated the war in the Pacific.
But for battleships fighting as their creators envisioned, you have Jutland, a battle that spawned many theories but decisions.
Part of this is because the era of the modern battleship was so short, lasting from the late 19th century to the end of World War I and the coming of the aircraft carrier. Compare this to the age of sail, which ran from the mid 16th century up to the ironclads of the US Civil War and contains a long list of battles to study and compare.
And, likewise, there have been a number of good games representing the age of sail, full of broadsides and laying along side to board. The actual ship to ship combat was a high point of Pirates of the Burning Sea, which I felt hit very close to the mark in the balance between realism and playability. Pity about the rest of the game.
And, of course, there is plenty of supporting literature to put you in the mood for wooden ships. I’ve been through all of Patrick O’Brian and most of C. S. Forester‘s tales, all of which I highly recommend.
So when Wargaming.net announced World of Battleships (see, I’m closing in on an actual point here… somewhere) I started thinking about games I’ve played, or at least seen, involving that narrow span of time when battleships ruled the waves. And they all seem to center around one battle.
I remember being up at The Outpost, a hobby and game store up in San Carlos, and watching very earnest men moving tiny lead models of ships around on a very large felt-covered table, measuring distances and consulting tables and charts, in order to simulate the clash of forces at Jutland.
I recall playing Avalon Hill game Jutland with a friend in a room that quickly turned out to be too small for the effort. Plus the measurements and accounting took patience we barely possessed, and there was the danger of pets and siblings messing things up. But the alternatives were more like AH’s War at Sea, which pulled back for a more strategic view and gave little feel for ship combat except in a very abstract sense.
And neither option lived up to Wooden Ships & Iron Men.
More recently I tried out Storm Eagle Studios’ game called, naturally, Jutland. Imagine that. It is a 3D modeled simulation of naval combat in the age of the “modern” battleship. And while it suffered from some of the interface maladies that tend to come with war games from smaller studios (along with some annoying copy protection for just the demo), I probably could have dealt with that had it not been for the scale of combat, something hinted at in the previous two memories.
Getting the camera hauled around to the point where I could see at least a squadron of my ships in some detail meant not being able to see the enemy except as specks on the horizon, or the rest of my own fleet, which was likewise tiny bumps on the ocean surface.
The thing that always comes back to slap me in the face is that, compared to the age of sail, combat with 20th century battleships takes place at pretty extreme ranges. When the heavy guns of a fleet range out from 20-35km, there is no laying along side or yardarm to yardarm broadsides.
And while battleships are big, that sort of range makes them seem pretty small all the same. I have seen the USS Iowa from the highway as we drove past Suisun Bay. It was certainly less than 5 miles away, and it seems unimpressively small at that distance, despite being nearly 900 feet in length.
Which makes me wonder how Wargaming.net plans to address this.
As I said about World of Warplanes, the sky is big and it needs to be because WWII aircraft move fast. They have said they plan for a 13km by 13km airspace in which to fight 15 vs. 15 battles. (Which seems small to me, but we’ll see.)
For battleships the ocean is big and it needs to be, not because they move fast (the best can scoot along at about the same rate of speed as the fastest tank in World of Tanks), but because their guns can reach out and hit just about anything they can see. A flat 13km by 13km square of ocean would be a battleship bloodbath.
Given Wargaming.net’s past game plan, which is quick 15 vs. 15 battles where combat commences very rapidly, I am trying to figure out how they will fit this into the same plan.
If you start everybody too close to speed things up, it is aim, shoot, and over.
If you go for smaller ships, destroyers or cruisers, it then ceases to be World of Battleships.
If you lay things out in real world distances, with the sides out of sight of each other, the match takes a long, long time.
So how do you make a game that involves quick(-ish) action, keeps to a reasonable scale, and yet does not throw realism completely out the porthole?
Tanks were easy. Warplanes at least have antecedents in things like Air Warrior. But battleships?
I suppose we will have to wait and see.