Renewed Strongholds in Update 9.17.1

If the mere mention of Strongholds spins your head faster than an exploding ammo rack, you’re not alone. Strongholds was originally a way for some players to get involved in the World of Tanks metagame, but the mode ended up being too complicated and demanding.

Battles for Strongholds make Clans defend their territory six times a week, and when defeated, they lose resources. Game sessions can take forever, and the complexity of getting past level IV creates a barrier to entry so high you need a ladder. At least, you've all told us that much, so now we're going to set things right and inject a healthy dose of fun into Strongholds.

In Update 9.17.1, we’ll roll out a set of comprehensive changes to the mode and its key elements -- Skirmishes, Strongholds economic system, Reserves, etc. -- all designed to make it easier for tankers to jump in and have fun. To start, we’ll replace Battles for Strongholds with a new format called Advances, while also opening battle rooms for legionnaires and adding all-new “War Game” challenges.

Read on for more details.

New Mode: Advances

Battles for Strongholds resemble Darwin’s evolutionary theory of “survival of the fittest,” where stronger Clans attack weaker Clans to avoid being pillaged. As a result, Clans that upgraded their Strongholds to level V get frequently attacked and lose resources that require a lot of effort to get back. When you add compulsory Stronghold defense six days a week, many Clans said “bye-bye” to the mode. 

To break this vicious cycle, we’ll replace the current format with Advances. In Advances...

  • Battles begin at a fixed time and matching is automated, so it’s impossible to choose a Clan to attack. Instead, you're matched against a Clan from the queue; the members of which have the closest skill level to your Clan members
  • Clans don’t need to defend their Strongholds six times a week anymore
  • Participation isn't mandatory, unlike Battles for Strongholds. It’s totally up to you and your Clan
  • Defeat doesn’t end in structures being pillaged, and the defeated Clan doesn’t lose Industrial Resources
  • The amount of Industrial Resources winners earn depends only on their Stronghold level
  • Clans can invite legionnaires to their Advance detachments

Advances are available for detachments in tier X vehicles. They also include a series of battles with the option to change the vehicle set for each battle, though, you must play one more battle to define which Clan attacks or defends.

Open Battle Rooms

Once we open Battle Rooms for legionnaires in 9.17.1, they can take part in Advances and Skirmishes after receiving an invitation to join a Clan's detachment. There's a special interface for it like in Team and Tank Company Battles.

Volunteers can easily find a team for battles in the Stronghold mode. Clan players who fight as legionnaires will earn Industrial Resources for both their Clans and those they fight for.

Revised Stronghold Economics

Starting in 9.17.1, there's only one Industrial Resource Storage. You won’t have to channel players to structures and transport Industrial Resources between them.

As there will be no structures to pillage (and Clans won’t lose their Industrial Resource if they lose), we’ll also change structure building and reserve preparation costs to better suit this new setup. Players earn an equal number of Fame Points during an event on the Global Map. That means all who fight in a Stronghold battle receive the same amount of Industrial Resources regardless of whether they fought until the end or were ousted at the beginning.

Changes to Building and Demolishing Structures

Good news for new Clans with no Strongholds yet: you’ll no longer need to create one to try out the mode -- we’ll take care of that.

With no pillages, the process of building structures changes, too:

  • To upgrade the Command Center, you must ensure that the total level of buildings meet the requirements for its upgrade. In other words, Clans need to upgrade more than one or two buildings
  • To avoid regrets after demolishing a structure accidently (or on purpose then having serious second thoughts about it), we’ll remove the opportunity to rebuild and demolish them altogether
  • Finally, you can forget about opening Zones and the frustrating Clan member limits they have. With the Strongholds revamp, you’ll be able to create a structure on every construction site

New Reserves Classification

Reserves are divided into three groups. Instead of activating just one at a time, you’ll be able to have two (from the first and second groups) simultaneously: 

  1. Reserves that provide additional Crew and Free XP
  2. Reserves that give additional Credits and vehicle Experience
    NOTE: The effect of Battle Payments and Additional Briefing will differ depending on the battle mode -- they will provide fewer additional rewards in Random Battles, and more in Clan battles. So, if you really want to rake in the dough, play Clan battles. 
  3. Reserves that increase Combat Reserves efficiency and the amount of Industrial Resources earned. (These are enabled in a battle room before an Advance or Skirmish.)

Combat Reserves

Currently, the gap between the power of Combat Reserves for different levels gives one team an edge over others (a strong team gets even stronger). On top of this, using two reserves simultaneously significantly affects the outcome of the battle.

We’ll decrease the influence of Combat Reserves, which should eliminate the gap between Clans with different reserves:

  • The efficiency of Combat Reserves depends on a battle level (VI, VIII, or X), regardless of their actual level
  • Clans can only use one Combat Reserve (Airstrike or Artillery Strike) in Stronghold battles (Skirmishes or Advances)
  • The Combat Reserve level only influences the amount of Industrial Resource
  • Reserves that influence the Industrial Resources get restrictions depending on the battle mode: High-Capacity Transport can be used in all battles and Requisition can only be used in Advances
  • We’re adding level XI and XII Reserves with a larger effect than level X. To earn them, you’ll have to upgrade the Command Center to level X or get special Clan achievements. We’ll describe the latter in more detail soon

"War Games" Replaces War Departments

With the removal of pillages and mandatory battles, it would have been a cinch to reach the top levels of Stronghold development. As a result, War Departments (now mainly used by top Clans who earned their stripes in combat) would be available to more players. Everyone would have access to a structure that gives Gold, Premium Account time, Credits, and other resources with no quantitative limitations. This would disrupt fair play, so to prevent this, we decided to remove War Departments altogether and add a new competitive format: challenges dubbed “War Games.”

In War Games, Clans that participate in Skirmishes and Advances compete for rankings in different categories. Top Clans and legionnaires get in-game Gold, advanced level XI and XII Reserves, and other rewards. This way, Clans that used to get bonuses from War Departments can keep their leading positions by competing with each other.

Lastly, because we're getting rid of pillages, the Quartermaster Unit is getting removed as well.

All Clans that have these structures and reserves will be compensated.