Monday 8 April 2013


Is it my imagination, or have tanks with autocannons started doing more damage since release World of Tanks release 8.4 came out, a few weeks ago?

You know what I mean by autocannons, don't you? Those guns that fire bursts of small shells in rapid succession. Their penetration is usually almost as good as the regular gun for the tank, but their damage is a good deal less. Their accuracy is also less, so the shells spray out like from a sub-machine gun rather than a sniper's rifle.

Up close they are deadly: they can pump all shells from the burst into you, and usually their high rate of fire means they can keep hitting you while you try to line up a shot - disrupting your aim and often causing you shoot over or under them.

At range, however, it is my recollection that they used to cause much less of a problem. For a start, usually only one shell from the spray might hit you instead of all of them; and I got the impression that their penetration dropped more rapidly at range. That would make sense: a small projectile slows down more through air-resistance than a large projectile.I got used to ignoring autocannons hitting me from afar. The shells just bounced off, and didn't even rock the tank much - so didn't affect aiming as much.

Since release 8.4, though, I have the impression that their penetration doesn't drop off like it used to. I'm getting killed by them. Shells that used to bounce off are now blowing me up. In WoT, nothing is more embarrassing than being destroyed by a Leichttraktor, especially if you can't even see him*.

I tried swapping the guns on a few of my tanks to try out the autocannon for myself, to see if it feels different. But the problem is that I can't remember how it felt to use an autocannon before: I never liked the Leichttraktor, and always got tanks with 'proper' guns on them. So I've no means of comparison, except as a target! What I can say, is that when I earlier dismissed the, it was before I learned how auto-targetting worked. Now when I'm using an autocannon, I've learned to target my opponent, then right click to lock on to him before shooting, so that my gun automatically follows him as I circle around him. That's made using an autocannon more fun for me. But not enough so that I've stuck with it. My play-style is not naturally to rush into the thick of things, circle-strafing and using my speed to get me out of trouble. So I replaced my autocannon with bigger calibre guns again.

* well, almost nothing. Drowning yourself or falling off a cliff to your doom are still more embarrassing. Also, last night some guy killed himself (but not me) by ramming my KV-1. That was pretty funny!

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