Transcript: Victor Kislyi Meets World of Tanks Players

*Edit* Added Photos, provided by WGNA.


As you may know recently Victor K. visited the NA office, I made a transcript of the footage available for you:

10.0, we cancelled it, is gone, what was all that about?
Well, now matter how good the game was 6 years ago, recently because, you know, having more than 150 million players in the game, we have 400 tanks now as compared to approximately 100 back in the days, 40+ maps, E-sports, Clan Wars… some people who are playing the game for 6 years kinda of evolved as WoT players too. So for the last let’s say, a year or a year and half, we were still very kinda immersed into thinking about new stuff which we can add to the game and kinda forgot a little bit about the old good game, those things which made players happy in the beginning and because of the balance issues and much more complex mathematical model behind it and now we have servers all around the world, is not just you know like Russia, Europe and America, we have players in South-east Asia, in Japan, in Korea, in China, in South America, so all resulted in the fact that the game probably needed more attention on its core and our players were more and more vocal about that and we did a mistake of not listen good/well enough for that and we were in the middle of preparing this next, big Rubicon 10.0 kinda of patch and we were a little “deaf” towards what players were crying on the forums and in the video blogs but then we realized “Okay, something is really wrong”, we jumped on it, we just brought the best people including those 2 guys who invented the game and made it successful in the first couple of years and analysed everything so data, met with the players, met with the videobloggers and “omg” the picture was not so good. We had 2 choices, keep going pretending like nothing is happening or be honest and and transparent about the fact that we were kinda screwing up, we chose the the latter. We admitted, I stood in front of camera and said sorry we screwed up, we have to cancel, can, postpone, like, we are not going to release this Rubicon thing, instead, we are going to roll back and see what’s wrong with the game and fix it in the first place, that’s what happened.

We immediately did a lot of significant changes to the leadership of the tank development team, some people had to go, some good new people came in and 9.14 actually was a good example of our turning of this big huge ship towards what players really want and we are going from now on,we are going to be this, from now the player feedback is going to be the total part of our strategy. And yes, we were saying this before, every company says like you know “we will listen to our players” but it takes special procedures, special attention, time, people (like what we are doing now) to actually be listening to the players and then following up and just actually do what they are asking.


Guy with narrator voice and cheesy ass music in the background: “All together we managed to release updated 9.14 which was greatly appreciated by players and this is just the beginning. To make players happy, the company will continue to search for top professionals across the globe. Victor told us about the staff changes that will improve the game and help avoid similar mistakes in the future. First of all, Slava Makarov and Serb will be working in the game again, they help shape the game at the very beginning and created a great game that everyone liked.
Secondly, western professionals have joined the team, Thaine Lyman from the USA who previously worked on CoD and Destiny now heads WoT development. Neil Pettit a former British submariner and a experienced manager is at the helm of the Minsk studio.

The New Physics in 9.14 appear to be very well received and everyone seems to really like them and in particularly here in the NA when we did the update, the amount of people with their headphones on, then started making noises because of all the new sounds had happened, were wonderful.
Well obviously what happened in the 9.14 is just the beginning, we have tons of things planned for 9.15, 16, 17, etc and this list (of planned things) this time is comprised from the players desires and from those request from forums, from meetings like these, our community Managers work, you know, asking what they (players) want. So there’s is not going to be something ground breaking in 9.15 and I will tell you why, ok, the things that are going to be there for sure is we will buff something like 10 old premium tanks, is just so happen that those Premium tanks are not good/comfortable to play and the players cry out loud that “Come on, you are selling this and this and is not up to…”
-Bennet: I saw the list, I agree. I think all the tanks we picked and we are going to buff, they are all good, they are all the right tanks to pick.


Guy with narrator voice and cringe music in the background: Besides this, Rampage mode will be gone for good in the next update. However, some of the modes mechanics can reappear in the game in the future.

Victor K: The biggest thing we have to do before we think about anything else big is the rebalance and its gonna be a huge project, Its actually undergoing now. So let me please explain you how we will do, obviously now we have 400 tanks, more than 40 maps, players who play for 6 years, etc and the methodology we were using for balance, for matchmaking, for premium tanks kinda was a little bit outdated from 2011 or 12 when we launched the game.

Guy with radio voice and cringe music in the background: Victor stressed that the full scale rebalancing will help take the game to the next level. It is essential to diversify the game and ensure that gameplay is different and unique for each vehicle type and nation.

Victor K: The whole rebalance needs to be done, tanks, nations, classes, the usage you know, shooting distances, speeds, traverse, etc. Of course the New Physics will play role in that because it changed the gameplay by definition. We were under the misconception before, ok, if players don’t like matchmaking, we just fix matchmaking, ok, they don’t like this or that map, let’s take them out, etc. So, that’s why for our friends at balance we will take some extra time to make sure to analyse everything and to suit everything and make those changes, you know, nicely so they don’t break the whole system.


Questions mostly from people I don’t recognize:

I hate arty, all my friends like AkulaV, they arty arty too. Is there anything you can do to fix it?
*sigh* I can hear you…like yeah, everybody hates artillery apart from, artillery players but like in this biological ecosystem there is no way we just cut it out and everything is good. Arty is a class in WoT, it has its purpose, is it overpowered today? Too easy, too sneaky? Yes, but we’re going to balance, rebalance it, nerf it or up it, whatever is required as a part of this overhaul rebalancing with attention to maps (changes in maps), other classes, shooting distances, matchmaker, etc.

What are your thoughts in the current map on the current map pool and map design and what changes can we expect in the future?
Maps also are part of this ecosystem and this is probably the most tricky part, you understand, map is a couple of scare miles, a battle lasts for 15 minutes, 30 guys and girls, ok, mostly guys, are trying to destroy each other in various types of tanks in those maps.

What can be done to fix the matchmaker and balances regarding tiers and tank types?
You know, I am a physicist myself so I know something about maths, statistics, physics and it is being worked as a part of this overhaul rebalance and again, matchmaker is a part of this system. We tried but there is no such as easy solution as +- 1 level or just platoon of one tier allowed, this are kinda of good ideas but we need to see how they work to an extent in conjugation with rebalance of tank classes.

What can be done to reduce griefing in random battles?
The other aspect of it is, we understand that people use now more often bad language because they are frustrated more often and is the whole thing of this rebalance and bringing back the game you love.


What you feel of having a positive feedback system in place besides just the negative options right now?
You know, you are absolutely right, that’s a very good question and the answer will be very short, we should absolutely do this, like “click, chose players name, say thank you, send kudos”. We are kinda trying to address this with your dynamic platoons, you can click on the player of your team, invite him to platoon and then you can tell him whatever you want good or bad things, right, but the extremely line, facebook style, thumbs up/kudos is an easy solution, I will put this on the list, we will make it.

Bennet: If we only recording this and we could hold you… oh wait we are… That’s a great example of listening to the players, that’s it, we can do that, we gonna do that. He said so.


When we look ahead, to the next year for tanks, I am super excited about the rebalancing, the fact that we are doing rooting branch, everything ecosystemically balanced, you know, I cant wait to turn up knowing what’s next year, I am really really Jazzed (RG: or jizzed? will go with Jazzed…) about it but if there was a message to the you wanted to get people people to take away from your time here with the players and people watching on the video, what would be the message about WG that you want them to hear?
Well, of course I’m so happy to be where I am and I’m so happy for Wargaming for where it is, ok, we had ups and downs, we had all this problems, you know, Rubicon and that’s why we are talking and some players are very unhappy but philosophically like in general, I’m so happy to be in a gaming company which is making games which I love, strategy games, combat games, tactical games, team-play games, I’m so happy to be playing this games, to make good business out of it.


Guy with radio voice and cheesy ass music in the background: Viktor said, that we finally realized our crucial mistake, we weren’t listening to players. Now players are viewed not just as buyers but as part of the game and as important as vehicles, maps and physics, all employees now have the same motivation.

Viktor K: And this simple very true phrase is just 2 words, “Happy Player”, and at Wargaming if you look at us very philosophically, what we do, we are little magicians who are putting together in the right balance this challenge and happiness for you. Whatever hypothesis you have, you have to test making sure that players like it, making sure that is making players happier and then roll it out, so, from now on “Happy Player” is our main phrase.


And a extra bushy man for you:


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Transcript: Victor Kislyi Meets World of Tanks Players

62 thoughts on “Transcript: Victor Kislyi Meets World of Tanks Players

    1. Hohumm4sh3d says:

      Sod that I would love to play more than 10 different maps in a day. As it stands it seems like you get cycled through 4-5 maps in a couple of hours max 😐

    1. Darth_Clicker says:

      The babies playing the game have to have something to whine about when mama is not around to serve milk and cookies.

    2. jetpowerfie says:

      Artillery is the most frustrating class from either end. Arty players hate their arty most of the time too. That’s why I like to usually give the enemy a chance to face me head on as I charge for point blank kills at the end.

      I didn’t say it was a fair challenge. Arty rebalance/rebuild is definitely needed. Probably a rebuild of the damage system for HE and more benefit for hunting down hidden targets vs the ones that are RIGHT THERE prime for the easy points.

      1. Nigmata says:

        Arty will stop…oh wait! You hate arty too?

        Instead that, need rebalance gold ammo (nerf it, halfe damage for high pen…), cos meds and LTs kill TD and HT from front…

      2. jetpowerfie says:

        Like I said above, (I love my M44) but arty needs a rebalance/rebuild. I love countersniping, but some games I’m helping my team LOOSE by diverting my DPM to a target that isn’t really hitting anything to begin with. (But blind counter battery shots are the best, especially when in sync with your platoon mate :P)

  1. qwertypresser says:

    So, the only pieces of information I picked up by watching this video is, Victor Kislyi is CEO of Wargaming, Wargaming has an office in San Francisco, and that World of Tanks is screwed up. Two of these things I already knew.

    It would have been nice to learn more, or anything, about how WG plans on fixing their mess.

  2. MysteriousRJC says:

    The ONLY reason they are looking at anything is that masses have started heading to AW and their piece of the pie is going to shrink because now people see a viable alternative

      1. UNUNUMUS says:

        Everybody I know who plays WoT prefers it over AW, we all have AW installed, we just prefer WoT

      2. jetpowerfie says:

        Same. AW is just lacking that 5 year polished feel as some bits of it just feel out right clunky or awkward (but sure is a gorgeous game! I wish my computer could run it higher. )

      3. I’ve dabbled with AW PVE. Not spent any money on it yet. I must say that if WoT didn’t exist I’d probably play AW all the time. As it is WoT got there first.

  3. Anonymous says:

    yeah, they said have players in South-east Asia, in Japan, in Korea, in China, in South America but in this last no have a server in comparison of the otrer places, im tired tof the angloparlant gamers said me “taco” when i speack spanish whit another gamer, for the love of god im not “mexican”, and that is annoying…

      1. Anonymous says:

        when I talk to another player I write in english, but in platoon I write in spanish, because everyone with play platoon speak Spanish, what is wrong with that ?, also when I read another language like french or portuguese nobody says anything …

        this is not a thing of the language you speak, is on the behavior of quite a few players who discriminate against others, and often i had “friendly fire” and I say “go back to you contry taco”

      2. English is the Lingua Franca these days is all. Also, you do realise that a double-tap on the TAB key allows you to talk to a platoon mate without the rest of the players seeing it? Just so you know I despise people who call people names based on their ethnicity, or anything else. Sad to relate there are people like that the world over.

      3. Anonymous says:

        when I talk to another player I write in English, but in the squad I write in Spanish, because everyone with game platoon speak Spanish, what is wrong with that ?, also when I read another language like French or Portuguese nobody says anything …

        this is not a thing of the language you speak, is on the behavior of quite a few players who discriminate against others, and often have had “friendly fire” and I say “go back to you contry taco”

      1. The equivalent recipients of, frankly unacceptable, comments on the EU server are generally the Polish players. Unfortunately in the anonymous arena that is the internet there have been people who take cheap shots and there always will be. Many of them are children. That’s the way to deal with them.

  4. WG lost a lot of players and is now trying to fix the cluster****…we will see if they move fast enough or if they will take more than 1 year to fix all the crap.

    1. they already said not to expect anything groundbreaking before a year. But is they manage to fix te delayed renders, fps lags I’ll be happy. Even is all the maps i get to play are Malinovka, Ruinberg, Fiery sailient ( another malinovka), and Sighfried Line. Altough I miss Hidden vilage and Pearl river a lot….

  5. There are not 40+ maps in the game. There are about a half dozen. That’s it. Getting more and more boring playing Himmelsdorf for the (literally) 10,000th time. I really wish that they would bring back EVERY SINGLE MAP they have removed. Players bitching about this or that map have succeeded only too well. Far too many maps are gone.

    1. UNUNUMUS says:

      I have a feeling it’s your fault for playing Himmelsdorf for the 10,000th time. With 12 maps in the pool thats 120k battles. If an average match lasts 7 minutes, that’s 14,000 hours /583 days you’ve wasted driving a virtual tank.

  6. Some of the comments were right on. Buffing some of the old premiums is a couple years overdue. When was the last time you saw a Lowe in a battle? Once upon a time that was a boss tank. Now its been nerfed and power creeped in to the ground.

    1. Varia Vespasa says:

      I play my Lowe often enough, its fine as a tank. People are just more into speed speed pew pew pew now and the Lowe isnt fast…

  7. Migsaec says:

    I still find it amazing that people still complain about arty. Arties are like lottery machines now, they miss their shots like most of the time now unless they take 3 years to aim their shot.

    The only times I get hit by arty is the times where I sit still in a spot for like 20 seconds or drive predictably when trying to dodge arty(like driving forwards and backwards repeatedly).

  8. TDMillard says:

    I hope these changes lead to good things. I can barely go three matches without losing the will to keep playing.

  9. Anonymous says:

    Hopefully this will find its way in WOT Blitz specially the part where he acknowledges the frustration of players leading to obscene language [due to the unbalanced match making]

  10. Gkirmathal says:

    Good to hear they are doing some good self-reflections 🙂

    I hope they will seriously pick up the pace on the less development-heavy-tasks, such as re-balancing vehicles, which is more a foot soldier job (read: repetitive) and can be done in a smaller time-frame. (So WG, need foot soldiers with good analytic skills? Who likes to bite into such editing work? I’m looking for a new job opportunity!)

    But that is also the thing I worry about: their time-frame.
    Knowing it took ages for them, almost literally, to finally change some things which could’ve been done in a shorter time-fram and easier way ; Hellcat and KV-1S anyone?

    I do hope they realize this fact, are prepared to invest in this aspect and K.I.S.S > keep it simple and stupid where it requires it. Cause that saves time and money.

  11. Anonymous says:

    Arty is overpowered and easy? Is he talking of the same game? I could live with the reload & aim time which is boring as hell (good to have a break, tho) but it’s a lottery to land a shot even close to where aimed. Skilled or not doesn’t matter, it’s all about luck with dat outrageous RNG. It’s killing all fun to play it, and it’s still ruining my games when arty actually hits me in my proper tenks. Hoping to get the spg15 soon so I can retire that class in my garage.

  12. This whole meeting is pure BS and they just say what players want to hear without thinking a word of it.

    Why ?
    If the guy who said that arty was overpowered is a dev, then either he is just saying this to make players shut up, either he is completely retarded and does not play his own game. So I hope they’re just getting bored with that topic and say “yeah yeah you right now stfu” and not that they actualy consider nerfing the least accurate least fun class in the game. It needs complete rework. Not just a nerf. Heavily nerf damages, but heavily buff accuracy and aim time, and reload. So arty does not oneshot anymore but is able to actualy do something in battle.

  13. FuZero says:

    nothing more than blablabla… sorry the guy from WG NA who is so incorporate and happy and eating everything … uffff …. for a second i was not sure if its not in North Korea and Kin Jong Un….

  14. Tyrud says:

    @RitaGamer For the record (no not your predecessor), the word is in fact ‘jazzed’, as in to be excited for something. Cheers on the transcript, even though Victor said very little.

    1. Hello, yeah that was just me bored as heck doing transcript (as I know some of you prefer reading instead of watching so I spoil you like that, if have the time), it was just the way that Barnnet was all over his boss, the word version with the “I” seemed more appropriate. 😛

  15. […] 2016年になって、WGはWoTの開発姿勢が誤っていた事を認め、よりプレイヤーを満足させる良いゲームを作っていくと声明を出し、態度を変えた(参考)。実際にチート対策やマッチングメイカーの改善、自走砲のリバランス等に取り組み、ユーザーの声を聞き入れ姿勢を見せている。 […]

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