Are we finally going to fix the gunners?

0.16 km base and 0.21 km top firing range (realistic battles) is borderline useless. We’ve been living with this rushed decision for many years now and lots of people want their wasted ~5000 crew XP points back. Either remove AI gunners or revise the way they work so they’re not OP when they DO fire. Surely we can reach a compromise?

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Was there ever a point re-allocation or refund when they did the crew crunch on Aviation when they added tanks? I feel like so much was lost when they did that.

Stop asking for buffs to the AI gunners, it’s that simple. AI gunners will never be fair, they’ll either be OP or useless.

You should be learning to use your gunners manually, there are a LOT of changes we could be asking Gaijin for that would actually improve bomber gameplay, like automatic gun convergence (similar to naval) deadzone tracking, faster turret traverse, faster turret reloading, and better turret belts.

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Just as I expected, someone completely missing the point of my post.

AI gunners can absolutely be fair, because they don’t have to be hyper accurate lasers like they were in the past. All they have to do it fire at the enemy and deter them a little. I’m very good at gunning myself, except I can’t always be controlling the gunners and I sometimes need the gunners to warn me that an enemy is approaching me. You know that a lot of strike/attack aircraft also have gunners and that the pilots are often busy flying low to the ground, aiming at ground units and/or evading other aircraft, right?

We can absolutely control the gunners manually, but then WHAT did we spend all those crew points for? By the way, I don’t think we need automatic gun convergence, deadzone tracking, faster turret traverse (maybe some electric turrets? But probably for 90% of aircraft not necessary and pretty realistic already), faster turret reloading (can be upgraded with crew points), and better turret belts (why?). We need AI gunners that work and are balanced. Literally decrease accuracy and increase engagement distance, boom there I fixed it.

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It is not something that can be fixed without a massive overhaul of the ai. Not an issue worth all of that work in their opinion.
If you want them to have long range but do no damage, that would be an easy fix.

We need AI gunners that work and are balanced

I told you exactly why. You just didn’t pay attention.

No one is playing a PvP mode to fight AI, the ability to fly around not actually trying to kill anyone but getting kills because of gunner AI will be seen as cheap. It happened in the past.

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If a fighter is mindlessly sitting behind a bomber because they do not want to put in any effort then that’s on them and they deserve to get killed by AI. Also, people absolutely play PvP to fight AI, just ask the people who like to do the objectives and kill convoys, groups of attackers, etc. A player should not need to control both the pilot and all the gunners if they can’t do so at the moment. Gunners are individual crew member who can think for themselves. Unfortunately the only argument you can think off is “b-but what if I get killed by the AI?? Then it’s not PvP anymore!!!11”, like you haven’t been killed by airfield AA before. If you think I want my gunners to easily kill players by themselves then you did not understand me correctly.

I repeat, I do NOT want to go back to the days of bomber gunships farming fighter kills. I just want more firing range (literally 0.5 km would be enough) with a good compromise in accuracy. If not that then I want my thousands of crew points back. Is that too much to ask?

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If Gaijin can model the trajectory and damage of four individual sabot petals, then they can absolutely adjust how accurate gunners are. No overhaul needed.

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The intrusion of artificial intelligence into competitive player scenarios is fundamentally inappropriate. Reducing the outcome of a combat to a mere algorithm, a pre-scripted probability, runs counter to the essence of true competition. The satisfaction derived from a victory loses its meaning when it is the result of an AI’s prowess, void of any feeling of achievement or challenge for the players. Likewise, the frustration of being defeated by an AI negates the sense of fair play. The rewards for such victories flow to players who weren’t actively engaged in obtaining it!!!

This mechanic should be entirely eradicated; it is, in essence, unnecessary and unethical. Effective gunner defense can be attained through manual control, as demonstrated here. The key lies in enhancing these mechanics for accessibility or a smoother difficult curve. Currently, the need to switch to realistic control mode for maneuvering while shooting is an absurd inconvenience…

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Gaijin already wishes everyone would stop playing bombers so they can stop being forced to consider their existence when balancing the game. Why would they do anything to make them more useable?

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Seeing your posts as a whole, i am not sure if you actually see the overall topic from the right angle / perspective.

First of all your 0.16 and 0.21 km are the the wrong parameters to argue with - with reading the whole part you might see that we talk about 0.66 km.

In addition you might want to test your own parameters whilst attacking a B-25 or A-20 G bot (there are still enough of them) and you might realize that those bots severely damage / kill you up to 0.8 km as they have aced gunners with maxed out crews.

Furthermore - relying on ai gunners for distraction or to use them as “early warning indicator” is simply the wrong approach.

What most guys flying bombers / strike fighters with gunners fail to understand is that playing those vehicles is above BR 2.3 simply much more demanding than fighter game play - simply based on the fact that you can’t extend in almost all bombers whilst being attacked.

So instead of asking to make things more convenient for you i recommend to deal with the cards you have.

I do agree that outside reload time and maybe gunner stamina the gunner XPs are a waste. After flying several thousand matches in planes with ai gunners, i would guess that less than 20 kills were achieved by ai gunners, and those were imho rather “accidents” whilst dogfighting with fighters or i was focused on flying the plane at very low alt.

Your main goal whilst flying a “non-fighter” with gunners is to avoid being shot at - and if this is not possible to keep them as long as possible inside your, but outside their gun range.

And the ability of flying the plane (autopilot off in manual gunner mode) dodging incoming fire whilst using your gunner with your mouse is a key skill like situational awareness and relative / absolute positioning vs potential threats.

The fellow player above is right - everybody who has ever flown a Bv 238 will agree that the convergence settings for multi turrets are a joke. Same with belts - a lot of defensive weapons had highly / more effective belts irl that wt is willing to offer.

Imho you should adress the fact that manual gunner received some hidden nerfs over the years most of the community barely noticed. I stopped playing B-18B due to other reasons, but whilst flying them it was obvious for me that gaijin added artificial spread to gunners and nerfed the damage output. Long range kills >2.5 km are now impossible - and if an XP-50 survives 6 hits and a crit within 2 km without getting slower there is something wrong…

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You guys don’t have to keep telling me to learn how to gun manually, I promise you I am and have been pretty good at it. I used to fly with a joystick and it indeed gave me an edge while controlling the gunners, especially in more manoeuvrable bombers. I don’t know anyone that uses the keyboard to temporarily control the aircraft while gunning and I can’t imagine it’s very viable. Of course probably 95% of RB players use mouse aim because it’s cheaper, easier and more accurate than a stick. My problem with the “AI bad” argument is that in my opinion gunners are fully capable crew members, just like on a ship, that can perform tasks by themselves and it makes no sense to remove them as AI controlled entities altogether.

I have no problem manually controlling the gunners on a large bomber because I don’t need to try and outmanoeuvre the enemy fighter, since it’s futile. All I can hope to do is kill it before it inevitably kills me. I do agree it’s necessary to fix the convergence issues on bombers like the BV 238, I didn’t realize it was that bad. If manual control is all your have it should at least work right.

Flying a frontline bomber or attacker becomes a problem, because it gets harder to avoid the enemy team and you run the risk of getting dived on and ambushed by multiple people. No matter how good your awareness is you can’t always avoid them and you can’t focus on every enemy while also performing other tasks. In this case you essentially become a free kill. Furthermore, one thing you can’t do while manually controlling is target multiple enemies at once. If you’re aiming at something the gunners that are in a deadzone will simply not do anything.

If Gaijin were to change this, I wouldn’t want AI gunners to hit consistently at long range. I fly fighters myself and I like to have the occasional “free kill”. Dumping a ton of round into a bomber is pretty satisfying and realistically, a 1v1 should always favour the fighter. However, there should still be a risk and if AI gunners could at least deliver a glancing blow I would be satisfied. My main gripe right now is that Gaijin simply lowered the engagement distance as a quick fix and then left it like that for years. Honestly if Gaijin decides to remove the AI completely I wouldn’t be upset, IF they fix every other issue and gives us back our crew points.

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Big words, small point, bud. Besides, most fighters powerful enough to reach bombers are so formulaic their entire attack strategy can be summed up in 2 words: BOOM and ZOOM.

I’m still scratching my head over the strong anti-AI opinions and the reluctance towards AI gunnery in this discussion. First off, let’s consider the data Gaijin has on our shooting patterns and accuracy. Why not use this to refine AI gunners? By aligning them with the average player’s skill at full crew level, leveling up gunners becomes a strategic choice, not just a grind. They won’t be overpowered or useless, but right in the sweet spot, similar to a player-controlled gunner.

Now, I definitely believe manual gunnery should stay in the game. It’s a skill-based feature that many players, myself included, prefer using. However, it’s also crucial that AI gunnery is representative of what real-life gunners could achieve. This isn’t about replacing manual gunnery but ensuring AI gunnery is a viable, realistic option.

And let’s not forget why gunners were on bombers in the first place. These aircraft were sitting ducks against nimble fighters. Gunners were there to lighten the load for pilots, providing some form of defense. Expecting bomber pilots to manage bombing, gunning, and flying simultaneously is a bit off the mark. That’s like having one crew member in a plane do everything, which is far from realistic and diminishes the strategic depth of the game.

So, what I’m getting at is that AI gunners, when balanced properly, can add a layer of realism and tactical depth to WarThunder. They’re not just an add-on; they’re an integral part of replicating the historical and tactical roles of gunners in air combat. The goal here is to find that balance where AI gunnery complements manual control, enriching the gameplay without oversimplifying it.

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I have no idea if this is your 1st, 2nd or 3rd account - but this ai gunner topic pops up every few months in the last 5 years.

It is more a fundamental divergence of opinions and influenced by way overpowered ai gunners some years ago.

  • We have fighter mains that see bombers as a free kill - they would like to replace defensive guns with bow and arrow if they could.
  • Then we have rather new pilots using the benefits of the low skill floor of base bombing, seeing manual gunnery as additional task they can’t handle simultaneously.
  • Then we have legends like fmt3 playing >900 days as a bomber or gunner skill masters like hitman300699 doing this:

And a few “normal” guys trying to have a decent time whilst flying a bomber - despite the efforts of fighter mains to weaken bombers or gaijins strategy to make bombers useless regarding win conditions - with success thx to respawning bases.

Your argument:

…is actually misleading. There were 2 major thoughts:

A) The bombers can fight their way through
B) The bombers are fast enough to outrun enemy fighters

So the followers of Group A increased defensive armament and Group B sacrificed defensive armament for speed.

I mean tankers drive, locate targets and shoot at them - at the same time. Applying your logic to tanks, we could introduce ai gunners for tanks too.

And imho wt has some realistic elements, but mainly stuff like ballistics or the size and look of vehicles, but the rest is more or less fantasy and “adjusted”.

I mean if you followed the game & the forum for years you might agree that gaijin has transformed bombers from a plane class able to win a game into a grinding tool for everybody.

The basic question is always:

Do want to play the game? Or do you want that the game plays for you?

There can’t be enrichment of game play if gaijin degraded bomber game play to a farming event - bombers farm bases and fighters farm bombers.

With all the open and hidden nerfs of bomber game play it makes no reason to talk about ai gunners, if you need them it is too late.

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My personal opinion is that they should make AI gunners longer ranged but inaccurate. This provides a good alternative as it makes playing bombers much more enjoyable, since when you are bombing and an enemy is approaching, the gunner will start firing earlier, which gives the Bomber or Attacker player a better chance at switching to manual gunner and defending themselves.

I find the main problem is that the workload of a Bomber player is too high, since it is much harder to focus on both spotting, shooting and bombing at the same time. So, having AI gunners to help with spotting the enemy, especially when you zoom in to use bomber sights, is essential to making Bombers more enjoyable.

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I strongly advocate for the ability to reset crew skills.
Too many things changed for a past 11 years; addition of naval included. Gaijin should allow the reset.

Also, crew qualification should be tied to vehicle, not the crew slot.

That isn’t a great idea as they would make it so that you need to grind all 75 levels again for every vehicle. A better system would be crew qualifications per type of aircraft (fighter, interceptor, strategic bomber, attacker, etc.) or even better yet turn crew qualifications into “branch” qualifications where there is only one group of “branch” skills per type of battle (air versus ground versus naval).

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thats too much… snail would go broke :D

Poor argument you have made by trying to argue leaving it to algorithms and probability.

Not only are they useful, but let’s say I’m in the middle of trying to line up a run, in a dive, or flying close to the ground where I need to control not to hit something, It would be nice to have something to cover my slow lumbering plane without me having to lose forward awareness and fine control.

As for the whole AI bad part, due to it leaving it up to chance and it being scripted. Jesus Christ dude, look at what game you are arguing about. Half of this game is AI shooting at you, and the other half is RNG. Shell shatter for example. That is completely up to chance that your well-placed shot doesn’t do anything. Nothing you could have done to prevent it, and nothing the enemy player did to cause it, just the game deciding to fuck you over because you tried to use the one shell that could pen their armor. Whether or not a shell ricochets, ive had shells hit almost flat surfaces and then bounce, meanwhile, there are some SPAAs with shells that can go through steep plates like its nothing. This game is just one big game of chance with algorithms and numbers.

I do not believe that AI gunners should be like they were way back when, but they are nonexistent at this point, only shooting after the fighter is well in range to shred you. make them somewhat inaccurate but have range, something to at least give some cover for when I’m busy, and when I’m not, it’s fine that they are inaccurate, because then I can use manual. A big part of the issue with it is either way, your fucked, it would at least be nice to have something that is somewhat reliable. If I rely on AI, they will never shoot, if I try to use manual, I lose most control of my plane and have to deal with all the other shitty mechanics they don’t care to fix like convergence, or the fact you only get AP belts for turrets for some reason(?).

Removing Ai gunners from aircraft would do nothing but harm the pilot, while still leaving AI AAA to pilot snipe you from 20,000 feet, therefore not even tackling the issue you present.

It is very possible for them to fix AI gunners being OP or useless, they have shown time and time again the ability to properly model the most minute things, such as sabot petals.

All of this is just a crapshoot of needless issues, however. As you and others have said, the biggest problem with guns right now is everything else. They have piss-poor accuracy, damage, poor convergence, are slow as hell, and have the shittiest dead zones. I’ve been playing the A-26, P-61, and B-17 for a while now, and all have great turret coverage. All of them are absolute shit though when it comes to defending themself though. The P-61 has a great turret that due to its deadlines, constantly returns to forward facing, and by the time it spins back to the rear, your plane is already gone. the A-26 has almost no dead zones, but since it’s only 4 .50s in total, you land practically no hits, because for some reason the bullets of a turret just don’t hit, or when they do, do no damage. The B-17 is the same as the A-26. Great coverage, but no effect. combine that with the fact I have to manually fire them and can’t fly my plane to try and evade like I should be able to in the P-61 and A-26, I’m a sitting duck.

The cherry on top? Fighter mains get mad at you for using manual and not trying to evade or let AI do it. That’s the biggest issue with bombers, you’re damned if you do, and you’re damned if you don’t, gaijin doesnt give a shit, and when you do actually get something done for once, you’re wrong for doing it.