World of Tanks veterans may remember the fabulous American MTLS-1G14 Premium Tier III light tank introduced in 2011. It was the first vehicle with a twin gun in the game and sparked interest among players, as it offered unusual and exciting gameplay.
Many of you have requested on numerous occasions to add more of these double-barreled tanks to the game, and now they’re finally on their way!
We’re still working on their gameplay, features, and characteristics, but we can already share with you some ideas on their mechanics. First, a brief historical introduction.
Looking Back in Time
The first designs of tanks with multi-barreled guns appeared back in 1941. Soviet engineers worked on a three-barreled version of the T-34, called the T-34-3, and two- and three-gun versions of the KV-7, but none of these prototypes ever left the drawing board. One of the most famous projects of this type is the two-gun version of the ST-1, named the ST-2. This modification is the most well-known to players, although it was never brought to life in metal.
Several factors kept us from implementing this mechanic in World of Tanks. First, its historical background: In real life double-barreled tanks rarely even reached the prototype stage. It was difficult to assemble a whole branch from existing historical vehicles.
Another is game design issues: We wanted to introduce the opportunity to shoot two guns harmoniously — without disrupting the existing mechanics.
Finally, technical considerations: We couldn’t implement these mechanics until the autoloader for Italian tanks was released, so we’ve been waiting for this day to come for a long time.
The Prototype 1: The First and Only
We’re going to start these brand-new mechanics on Tier VIII vehicles in Supertests in the near future. Instead of testing specific tanks, we created a test tank: the Prototype 1.
The tank has two guns of the same caliber and can shoot three different ways:
1. Cyclic (regular): Firing one gun that reloads after each shot.
You shoot the first (active) gun. Immediately after this, the gun begins to reload, and the second one is active. You can shoot the second gun after a short delay — a pause that's better known to players as reloading shells inside the autoloader. If you've played Italian tanks with an autoreloader, you should be familiar with this mechanic.
2. Sequential: Shooting both guns alternately.
Shooting in this mode works one of two ways:
- After a pause, you shoot from the second gun while the first is loading: In this case, the reloading of the first gun resets, and it begins loading again. The tank automatically switches to the first gun. The second gun we just shot from won't reload until the first one is loaded, because both guns reload in turn.
- You wait for the reload of the first gun to end, and only after that shoot from the second one: In this case, it’s more like the classic "shot-by-shot" mode, but only from different guns.
3. Double shot: Simultaneous shots from two guns.
The most entertaining way. To shoot two guns at the same time, you need to hold the left mouse button to prepare the shot (this takes a few seconds). Reloading progress is displayed inside the scope area. When the preparation is complete, a double shot automatically occurs. If you release the left mouse button before the end of preparation, the shot preparation resets. No shots — single or double — will happen.
After a double shot, both guns are blocked and do not reload for some time. Once unblocked, the guns start to reload alternately.
Penetration, Damage, and Change of Shells
Penetration and alpha damage for each of the two shells are calculated separately. Accordingly, one shell may penetrate armor and cause damage, while the other may fail to penetrate or ricochet. It's also possible for both shells to penetrate the armor but deal different amounts of damage.
- When playing with the Prototype 1, you will have to situationally choose which gun to fire.
You need to take into account the specifics of a particular game situation and make one shot somewhere and a double shot somewhere else. For example: If you need to finish off an opponent with a small amount of HP, it's logical to make one shot. But if you're faced with an enemy driving sideways, it makes sense to take a double shot and then roll back to cover to reload. Try to think in advance which is the most effective in a given situation.
- The main shooting modes should be cyclic and sequential.
Spamming with double shots is not a good idea. A tank with two guns is a versatile vehicle, so you shouldn't concentrate on only one of its features.
- You must sacrifice some gameplay comfort for the ability to shoot from two guns.
The concept of a double-barreled vehicle is not final. It's very likely these machines will have mediocre mobility, a high turning speed, and more. We need to test the viability of our concept and refine their mechanics to make sure this type of tank is well placed to fit the World of Tanks ecosystem. The decision to introduce them into the game is not final, and depends on the test results.
We're continuing to work on this promising class with unique gameplay — stay tuned.