World of Tanks Advanced Tank Tactics Guide
World of Tanks Advanced Tank Tactics Guide by wordsmith
Since I didn’t mention all combat techniques in WoT basic tactics guide I will share with you some of my experience which could be described as advanced.
I would divide this article into 3 sections:
1. Individual tank handling
3. Group tactics
1. Individual tank handling
1.1. Garage management.
First rule of thumb for me is transfer the crew from previous tank and train each man in Regimental school for 20.000 credits. From 100% trained crew member you will usually get 90% exp after that so it’s not so hard bring it again to 100% in combat. If you have much gold you could use Tank academy training but I’ve never tried myself. If I would decide to spend 300 gold I would train Commander with priority (because he gives bonus 10% of his own exp to other crew members) and maybe Gunner or Loader too.
As for tank upgrades I would say suspension is the first thing to upgrade, then some engine and later turret + gun. After all most of the turrets need new suspension + engine upgrade anyway. When the gun has more ammo type available I usually get 20% HE rounds and rest AP. But it also depends on tank and gun it is using, f.e. when I tried 10.5cm /L28 short barrel gun on VK3601 I used HE shells only for the fun watching those big balls of fire
It is also advisable to buy another 1-2 tanks (preferably from other category) so when your tank is destroyed in battle you could quit that battle and play game in another tank from garage until the previous battle is over. This way you could train simultaneously several tank crews, earn more money (especially with premium account) and of course you are playing instead of just watching and waiting.
One thing to mention is Experience transfer. When you research all new equipment for particular tank you will receive “Speed up crew training” option. If it is NOT checked all experience you will earn with this tank from now will be available to transfer to so called Free experience. Free experience could be then used as normal experience to buy new upgrades but this could buy ANY possible upgrade – means if you buy new tank you don’t have to struggle with its basic equipment you could buy at least new suspension or engine for it. Transfer cost 4 gold for 100exp (so f.e. for 1000 gold you can transfer 25.000exp). Note that you earn Free experience also when earning regular experience but very slowly (up to 10% of experience earned is Free exp increase). This is especially useful when purchasing high tier tanks which usually struggle with insufficient suspension and engine. In case you check the “Speed up crew training” option your crew will not earn experience but will just improve its combat ability up to 100%. After they reach the 100% it is no longer advisable to check the “Speed up crew training” because it has no effect on special abilities increase as far as my observation goes.
Ramming is special combat technique using you tank weight and speed combo to damage enemy tanks. In combat it means that you have one extra shot – with your tank as a bullet. As it is clear you can use it only if you have some speed (preferably more than 35-40km/h) and some weight (more than your opponent). This technique is very effective way to pick up SPGs and smaller TDs, but could be also a good way how to deal with fast light/medium tanks like scouts. Ramming almost always means damaging also your tank – if you ram significantly lighter tanks at least track damage – so use it wisely. I use it also a stopper of heavy tanks too (when I drive a Panther), ramming the side of heavy tank it will stop it effectively leaving it as sitting duck target to friendly TDs and SPGs.
Note: I find the Panther tank (fully upgraded o.c.) very good at ramming because of its 47 tons travelling at 48km/h rolling over anything from tier 5 or lower.
1.3. Tank potential
Always use your tank to its maximum potential – meaning don’t charge in TDs or SPGs unless you have to or don’t charge head-on in light tank group of enemy which will surely destroy you leaving your team without your support. This basically means when you driving a- :
– fast light tank – be a scout and try to scout for your team, try to hunt enemy scouts and try to survive because maybe in late game your tank could be used for fast cap of enemy base and help win the game
– medium tank – stick with others, support SPGs, TDs and heavies, move around the map where you help is effectively used
– slow heavy tank – your speed excludes fast movement so your best use to steamroll enemy or as static defense of some important chokepoint, as heavy tank you usually have big gun able to damage enemy heavy tanks too so do so and don’t waste your bullets on light tanks moving around which you most probably miss
– light TD – hide in cover and wait for light tanks to arrive, if encounter heavier opponent use HE shells to hammer it, as light TDs are good in hiding you could decide not to shoot at all and just recon your part of map and report enemy movement to your team
– heavy TD – stay back and have clear line of fire, wait for medium/heavy targets and rip them apart, later follow the main combat group and support them in assaults
– SPG – focus on targets which you most surely will hit (static or disabled), means hiding enemy TDs, SPGs and heavy enemy tanks (they are slow), in case of heavy SPG your shells could be the ones which helps to destroy even tier9-10 super heavy tanks so when enemy has some of those, try to hammer them with priority – you will help your team with that.
This chapter is about terrain types and how to combat in different terrains. Every terrain has its specifics so good tank commander needs to adapt when moving from one terrain type to another. Sometimes the terrain is not strictly one type but combination of types. Again it’s not nuclear physics, just use your brain and you should do fine.
2.1. Open area
I will start with basic open terrain which is fact plain with free movement across it. This terrain is ideal for tank warfare because offers very good mobility. It is also good for sniping if there are some bushes to hide or some rocks which could be used as shield. Open areas favor attackers, are easy to penetrate and therefore requires larger battle groups to operate. Specific open areas are forests which are very good for hiding however keep in mind that if any enemy scout penetrates the forest too you are visible to enemy.
Open area is best for fast moving tanks, TDs and Heavy tanks could move behind and snipe any spotted enemy. This also applies to defense so when engaging enemy through open areas expect snipers if enemy has some TDs (see chapter 3.1. Evaluation).
2.2. Urban combat
Urban areas are very specific, because every city is different. In general it offers good mobility but for a price that every street is possible chokepoint. As a bonus streets are very good defense vs enemy arty fire, but also your friendly arty has same problem hitting enemy tanks. In urban areas the best is to move in groups 2-3 maximum 4 tanks because more tanks block each other and decrease the combat value of whole group. Also keep in mind not to block your teammates when they try to hide behind wall or when they try to shoot enemy ahead. When you see 2-3 friendly tanks in one street the best you could do is to move in another street to cover wide area and also you could possibly flank enemy tanks encountered.
Streets are made for flanking so get use to it – flank when it is possible and try to think that any uncovered street could swarm enemy tanks. Always be on alert and look around. Streets are also good cover vs heavier enemy tanks so f.e. when you encounter some super heavy tank just avoid it and cap base behind it, it’s the best you can do.
Chokepoints are areas on map which serves as bottleneck – they are like pipe with only 2 exits covered from sided. Chokepoints prohibits any large moving therefore are easy to defend. SPGs are very good to hammer any enemy units trying to pass chokepoint but requires also some spotters so don’t forget to cover chokepoints with some units. As it is clear assaulting chokepoints is extremely difficult and should be avoided. Every chokepoint in WoT maps could be flanked so my advice is to defend chokepoints and flank from other direction. Successful defend can weaken enemy and make him vulnerable to attack from another direction. Arty is very important when defending or assaulting chokepoints. Also some good gun carrier is good too (Heavy tank or Heavy TD). Classic chokepoints are west canyon/middle path in Lakeville or east canyon in Karelia maps.
Hills are form of open plain but with the advantage of cover behind hill. Keep in mind that moving up the hill your speed decreases and on contrary moving downhill your speed increases very fast. So when pursuing enemy who tries to climb hill shoot him when his speed drops and also when you are chased by enemy use downhill as booster which gives you fast acceleration.
3. Group tactics
On start of every round press “Tab” and check the opponent army. Evaluate enemy combat group and compare it your combat group and to your tank. Things to notice are:
– what map is it… on some maps some units types have advantage or disadvantage, like SPGs suck on urban maps (Himmelsdorf or Ensk), if there are some Chokepoints (easy to defend, assign TDs or Heavy tanks there), if it is open map group of Mediums/Heavies could decide it etc
– which tanks of enemy group should I avoid (or charge only with support of heavier tanks)… later when those threat are destroyed you can move more freely around map
– arty distribution – does enemy has high tier SPG? does my team have adequate SPG?… if you should rather stick to urban/rocky areas where you are protected from enemy arty fire
– what friendly tanks should I stick to… to support them or just combine our firepower
After round starts and everyone starts moving notice how the firepower is distributed, which tanks goes which way. This is especially useful for Heavy tanks because during combat their speed prevents them from fast relocation so they need to pick their position on map careful. In general when round starts Heavy tanks should either guard base or important chokepoint or move with large group of other tanks to assault enemy base. The best position for Heavy tank is close to middle of the map because then it can relocate relative quickly to the part where it is needed. In my Map guide I would say that they should stick to RED zones (areas which connect friendly and enemy bases) but it depends on map too.
Remember that combination of units is what gives you advantage. Group of lights tanks moving together without any stronger gun is not very smart use of those, except the case they are going to cap fast enemy base. I have seen many suicidal groups of light scouts destroyed for no or very little advantage. Those scouts could be better used in later game so think before rush and look around you.
Cooperation with you teammates could be the factor which would decide whether you loose or win. So in principle always think also about your teammates and consider you sitting also in their tank what would you do. For example:
– if you charge enemy try to move aside (especially in narrow streets) so also your teammates have clear shot on enemy from behind you
– block opponent tank from retreating by sitting behind it, once I blocked this way an enemy VK4502 in a street fight and he was not able to escape other our tanks which then ripped it apart, remember that even if your destroyed you are still a impassable road block which could be effective especially in urban areas
– if you see no one is covering some map point or even your base do so or at least notice the others, some players do not pay much attention to map but if you tell them they eventually listen
– try to cover your artillery especially if it is a higher tier SPG and you know that enemy has some super heavy tanks, also arty could pick up enemy arty so if you are pissed of enemy HE shells dropping on your precious heavy tank either pick the enemy arty or protect yours so he can then splash that enemy arty
– remember that even Medium or Heavy tanks could do the scouting for your arty, it is called “Force recon”
Some players just don’t pay attention to map (either because they’re busy or they just watch somewhere else) so look on map from time to time and alert friendly units when you see enemy units approaching. It is also good practice to inform your teammates about most dangerous tanks, position or also its health status. F.e.: enemy Tiger2 56%, moving along railway to our base… you will help others to evaluate the situation and to organize offense/defense better. Try not to spam discussion with irrelevant chat if the communication channel is needed for combat. Communication is important so use it.