|[BT] Blue Turret
This week we take a look at one of the older clans on the North American Server: Blue Turret. They established themselves in Africa before SSGS took them under their wing and brought them along for NASA. After spending some time developing with SSGS, BT became a force of nature on their own, and since then, they have been a regular fixture on the Clan Wars map.
We interviewed these BT players to learn more about the history of the clan:
Mass_ [BT] - Formerly Massacre6491, Commander of the Blue Turret World of Tanks Division
Parckie [BT] - Deputy Commander, The main thing I handle is recruiting and in-game battle calling
Manaphy180 [BT] - I'm pretty new to the rank of Deputy Commander. I basically fill in for Mass_ or Parkie if they need something done. I also handle the treasury
Mass_ - BT initially started as a Team Fortress 2 clan, and this was way before me. After Team Fortress settled down a bit, they all disbanded and went their separate ways to another clan, OWS. After that fell through, they reformed into [BT]. The closed beta for World of Tanks had just come out, and I started playing with a few friends. After a while, I got more and more excited about the Clan Wars aspect of the game, and I started up a clan the first day you were able to. The other people I started the game with didn't join in with on that, but I recruited a few other people, and they started recruiting more people. From just me, it went all the way up to 100 scrubs battling on the Clan Wars map in the Mediterranean, while NASA is fighting for control of all of Europe. After a little bit, we were picked up by SSGS and came to where we are now.
Mass_ - When we first joined SSGS, the popular term for us and Clans like us was "Pet Clan." This is obviously the more derogatory term, but Pet Clan is probably the best way to say it. We did whatever they wanted. In turn we got a little bit of respect by wearing the tag of SSGS, because at the time they were one of the best clans in the game, probably Top 10 if not Top 5. We got a little bit of Gold for being part of NASA as we were a small sub-clan of SSGS, the little bit we were around. Eventually, we got to the strength where we were just a little bit worse than SSGS. Then push came to shove on the Clan Wars map between other clans, and we eventually became on par with SSGS.
Mass_ - Well, really it was that we always had the support of SSGS and Gates. Not only SSGS as a whole, but I had all of BT continually trying to get better and better, to the point where we were on par with SSGS. Once it got to that point, it became less about us being a sub-Clan and more to being a brother Clan, kind of like Batman and Robin where Robin eventually became Nightwing type of scenario.
Manaphy180 - If you have the chance to be part of these Clans, like SSGS or whatever Clan, get in as many training rooms in as you can. Practice. Learn the skills of their trade; how they do it. Seize the opportunity to work with any Clan Wars experienced Clans and just get better.
Parckie - Just literally go to their Clan profile and look up the leadership and start PM-ing Deputy Commanders, Commanders or Diplomats. The main thing with diplomacy is that it starts off pretty slow, because you have to gain trust as you work with a Clan longer and longer. There are a lot of Clans on the map that BT works with, like Anvil, FORGE, DFA, our brother clan SSGS and RUSS, and we have worked with them for years now. We just know their Commanders, and they know that if they say something, BT will do it. So, the main thing is just trust and don't go back on your word, because that is not fun.
Mass_ - One important thing, especially for a small Clan -- a shout out to a small Clan we worked with for a little bit, REBEL. They just went around basically saying, "What can we do to help?" Basically, they wanted to go out and earn some respect. They were a small Clan and no one really knew who they were, so they wanted to go and help anyway they could. They wanted to clear LZs, and basically, if you are a really small Clan, you want to gain that rapport with Commanders and with people in general, as it will help out.
Parckie - Every month, we make a topic on our forum as a goal topic that we look forward as a community and set a goal for ourselves. Right now, we want to make ourselves a top 10 Clan. We want to recruit the players that put in the time and effort, train, and get to the activity and skill level to compete with anyone in the game. Progressively this year, we've moved up the rankings, our Clan stats have gone up and we've held more land, and have had more consistent activity. As far as our future goes, our goal is to be able to compete with any Clan in the game and have a good chance at winning. We're always looking for the next battle caller or strat that's going to give us the advantage. We're always looking to improve or make our Clan better. Based on where we're going, I think we'll get there.
Manaphy180 - As a group goal, another thing is our sub-Clan, HT. They're a really good group of guys. They haven't been around for too long, but they have been on land here and there. One of our goals is to catch them up like SSGS did with us to improve their skills and knowledge and eventually get them to be our equals.
Mass_ - Well, when we first took land, it was actually when NASA changed all their colors and their logo. We took land just a little bit before that all the way over in West Africa. I think it was the Canary Islands; that little island all the way to the west. We had probably 80 players, but we barely fielded a full team. Back then, we were recruiting what we could get. If you had a tier X, we were going to recruit you. Eventually, we weeded out those players, or those players got tier Xs and continued to get multiple tier Xs, I'd say 80 or so players with 1 team. This is before tank locking and before the LZ HQ rule that they put in to prevent NASA-type situations.
Parckie - I'm more of a new-school member; I joined in 2013, but as far as this year goes, we have had a lot of great wars. We had a three-month-long battle with Hardware Rus. Recently, we fought Aces and Red Sky and had some real close games with both of them. Had a two-week war with RDDT up in Canada, which was a lot of fun. We did really well on Port. So, yeah, we had a lot of close battles. The battles we enjoy the most are the ones that are close, where you really get to see the skill cap of a player and you win or lose by two or three tanks.
Mass_ - Since we have been doing this so long, my memory is kind of skewed, but I'm sure there are battle here and there back in Russia and before then. I would say recently, any of our battles with Hardware Rus or RDDT have been probably the most fun I've had in Clan Wars in a very long time. I don't have much love for Hardware, but they were always very fun battles except on Mines. I hated that map.
Manaphy180 - I'm actually newer than Parckie, but when I joined it was about the middle of the Hardware Rus battles, and my favorite thing was going night to night fighting Hardware Rus on Mines for like 4k a night just back and forth. I went through a lot of Gold, but I think it was really fun and a great way to get our skill level up.
Mass_ - I'd say not just North America per se is the cause of it. I think more or less the egos of all the Clans that are on the map right now are most conducive to the constant state of war that we are pretty much in. I mean in Canada right now, we are pretty good as far as friends go, but in the central US, HAVOK and RELIC have always been going at it since the map opened up.
Parckie - Yeah, I think on the North America map, compared to Europe, there are not a whole lot of stalemates or just people who have land and based on the power supremacy, no one is going to have a power struggle anymore because there is just so little land. I mean, you have top 20 Clans in like two or three territories. You have the top 25 Clans that aren’t even on the map right now, just because the NA map is so sparse that clans are forced to fight each other.
Manaphy180 - Just looking at the mainland USA, you can get maybe two Clans right smack in the middle like HAVOK and RELIC taking up a huge piece. Then, you have nine landing zones for the other 28 out of the top 30 to all compete for. I'd say it is hard to make Gold for those guys, but if you are a top clan you can still make a nice living as long as you get yourself isolated.
Mass_ - Especially for this map, older-school clans are used to getting Gold back on the European map; they try to get the same amount on the west map, and there is not enough room for that. The way the map is and the way the Gold pots are all within one spot. So you put them in one area and people are going to be fighting over them, especially clans like RELIC and HAVOK who are used to getting at least 10k per the main Clans. That is just the minimum they get and then they have sub-Clans, you know, HAVOK sub-Clans and RELIC sub-Clans etc., all competing for the rest of the Gold pots.
Mass_ - Really, it's just stable. We have a lot of friendly Clans around us (ANVIL, FORGE, DFA, SSGS, SPICY). We weren't all here originally. ACES and RS were here back when the Americas came back up from the Campaign. Volt had a huge swath of land in Northwest America and Southwest Canada. Then, a war broke out, and the winning side divided up the territories, and we've been here since.
Parckie - We also like the maps; there's a lot of Lakeville and Mountain Pass, a little bit of Karelia and Ruinberg. The maps that we're playing on now, we generally like. And, we landed here originally to get in the back door of ACES and Red Sky - there was a riot, and we took it to get in on a different front. So, we just got here, because that's where we needed to be to finish up the war.
Parckie - Leadership, in my opinion, is just something that you have. You can tell based on someone's charisma, their articulation if they are a quick thinker, if they have an inclination to be a leader. We look for guys in BT that have an inclination to lead, and groom them into it. Sometimes, people come from another Clan and have that experience, and we can throw them into the fray. The main thing is you start small, like with tank companies or tournament teams. We have a BT vs. BT scrimmage a couple nights a week where we train FCs to go against each other. We teach people what to do and look for, what to key off of, why they lose a battle and prevent it. It's mainly training through repetition.
Parckie - We expect people to put in more than they take, and I think that really rings true for our members. Looking at our roster right now, you can't pick one. We have our old school members like Mr_Breaker and Garuda, and BenHoltz who have been around forever. We have some new leadership like Savageone and camperboy102 who have done a great job recruiting. We have several new members who stepped into pretty big roles in the past couple weeks.
Mass_ - If I did have to pick one, I'd say Killswitch303 - he's our most consistent member, our best artillery player. You can count on him to do whatever you need; he has every tank you could need, does everything well, and field commands. He's one of the best people we have in the Clan as far as pure character goes.
Manaphy180 - We've had a lot of guys who have filled very big roles. One of the most recent guys promoted, probably Camperboy, I know he's new to recruiter and everything, but he's on a lot. He does more than he has to, which is what I look for. There are many people who do that, but I just picked him, because he's kind of new to the role, and I think he's done a good job.
Mass_ - For Campaign 1, I'll admit we weren't as prepared as we could have been. We didn't think the lower tiers were going to be like they were. We thought we could just put our skill in the tanks and roll whatever we faced. That didn't happen at all, and we paid for it big time - we didn't get any land in Stage 1. In Stage 2, we made friends with FORGE and PBKAC in the east, and in Stage 3 those friends paid off, and we were able to tie for first place in Stage 3. As far as the next Campaign, we currently are working internally to determine the tanks that'll work the best. We're trying to find tanks' tier X equivalents and figuring out what can play which role. We're talking to friends about where we'd all land, how we'd set it all up.
Parckie - Invisible tanks.
Mass_ - Give us the T-50-2 pre-physics on Malinovka. With our caliber of arty players using pre-nerf arty, we can't lose. Even me in the -2, we couldn't lose, even though having me in a -2 would be an advantage for the other team. Plus, give us someone like iPurposely or even better, give us whiskey_dod.
Manaphy180 - Some sort of homing shells would be pretty sweet. If you'd add those in to the next update, we'd appreciate it.
Mass_ - I'm thinking they'd have to be at least Sturmtiger-sized shells (rockets). I'm still waiting for that tank. Once I found out that's going to be in the game, I don't care how long I have to wait, I'll wait. If it's a Premium, that's one Premium I would get to see people to rage - it would bring a joy to my heart.
Mass_ - I just want to give a shot out to the entirety of Gentlemen Gaming (GentCo). SSGS and their sub-clan MEN, and to our sub-clan HT, Heavy Turret.