Good day everyone,
Brief Q&A for you all from a developer meeting with NA and EU community people, mostly focused on update 9.21, HD maps, and plans for the New Year:
Working on HD maps requires a lot of resources and time. When we make the transition to HD maps it needs to be done be done with all of them, because we can’t support of mix of SD and HD maps at the same time.
At the moment we are working so that we have enough maps converted to HD for their release- but we don’t want to mention any dates. We’re almost there, about month instead of years. We don’t want to upset the playerbase by announcing a date and then having to push it back.
We are pleased to say though that we’re far enough along with converting HD maps that we now can start thinking about creating new ones, or even returning old maps. For example, we can imagine new maps with Asian themes, or be inspired by maps from the Console version of the game. The variety of maps is very important for us and, without any promises, the location of one of them is where we work.
We know that the current set of maps is not ideal and we are working on improving it. We like the idea of giving players the ability to “block” some maps, but we need to think about the basic gameplay, introducing similar functions, so that they do not break the basic mechanics of the game. It seems easy to enter, but only if you do not take into account the list of things that such a feature can potentially break. For these reasons, we do not plan to introduce a map blocking system yet. Nevertheless, our developers are considering the question of how to make players first drop out the cards on which they would like to play, and we do not reject any options for realizing it. First though, we need to deal with technical obstacles along the way.
When translating to HD, our priority was to keep the basic gameplay of these maps intact directions, shelters, and so on. Nevertheless, we changed some things to make them fit better with HD cards, but we have people who spend a lot of time checking everything very carefully. If you find changes that negatively affect the gameplay – let us know! We want to make the game more beautiful without breaking it.
We have already fixed hundreds of issues with climbing areas, but our players are very persistent and continue to find new ones.
We’re not considering ever implementing collidable guns, we think that’s a very bad idea from a gameplay perspective.
Looking over the Japanese heavies, we don’t think they are crazy overpowered, but we do get the pain they inflict on skilled players as they’re pretty easy for inexperienced players to play. There’s certainly a lot of emotional weight to it, and we’re considering carefully looking at it. We’re thinking we really need to look at how the general issue of shells and how they are used generally.
We have a lot of ideas for new tanks, but we can’t really share anything right now. You can expect some great stuff next year however!
We’ve made a lot of changes to tech lines over the past year in order to give them more meaning. We consider all options for removal or replacement of tanks and we vote internally for the favored solution, whether that’s splitting a tree in two and allowing people to grind both the old and new tank, or making the old machine a relic.
We are going to keep working on this of course and hope to reach some tanks that have kind of remained in the shadows for a while, like some of the clan wars reward tanks, as an example. However, it will take awhile to get to those.
Current data shows the balancer is working as expected, but there are still some issues. We are aware that it needs more work and we’re going to continue making more adjustments.
It is a very complex system and we need to be cautious when it comes to making any adjustments.
New Year Events
This year we’re having another in-game event to celebrate the new year with our players. Those of you who played last year will be familiar with it, but we’ve made some changes we hope will please the players.
The event garage will be customizable, with different styles and effects that can be applied to the snowman, Christmas tree, house and so on.
We also changed the crafting system and replaced recipes with a machine that creates toys based on the rewards received from the crates.
We are going to test the new effects, colors, styles and all of that on Tiers 8 through 10. This is a complete reworking of the texturing system in the game engine- and we’re just beginning. We plan on releasing the function in phases, each one will add new features to allow players to really make the appearance of their tank unique.
Players who bought emblems and camo for gold will be able to keep them when the new system launches. Players who bought them on loan for silver will be compensated appropriately.
The amount of camo bonus you gain will not be changed in any way with the new system- it’s just being applied to the tank hull.
The new camouflage elements can be purchased permanently for gold, and can also be loaned out for silver/credits. This rental will now be based on the number of battles, not real time. We’re experimenting a bit to see which one players like more- time based or battle count based.
We’re also still working on pricing for the new system. We’re going to spend time with this and see what players like about it and then communicate the actual pricing as we near closer to release.
Some elements, like the historical camos, will be limited to certain nations. Others will be available to every nation however.
Regarding styles sets, we do plan to introduce certain themed styles, perhaps themed around historical events. This isn’t something that will appear immediately though, right now we’re focusing on creating a system that works for everyone.