War Thunder's best year: 2023 in review - Part 5 (September)

Part 1 - Introduction-March
Part 2 - April-May
Part 3 - June
Part 4 - July-August
Part 5 - September (current)
Part 6 - October
Part 7 - November-December
Part 8 - Hopes for 2024-Conclusion

Table of contents

  • Introduction
  • Table of contents
  • Pages of History (January)
  • Swedish Armed Forces Day
  • Lunar New Year
  • Battle Pass Season 10 “Royal Guard”
  • Australia Day
  • Pages of History (February)
  • Victory in Stalingrad Day
  • Answers from the developers
  • World War Mode news
  • Update for the War Thunder CDK
  • VR Flights in the PlayStation VR2
  • Japanese National Foundation Day
  • Valentine’s Day
  • Tigor Tshirt/New merch
  • First Flight of the BO 105
  • South African Armed Forces Day
  • Defender Tournament Series
  • Pages of History (March)
  • Finnish Air Force Day
  • Update 2.25 “Sky Guardians”
  • International Women’s Day
  • Fair Play: March 2023
  • Tank Football
  • CV 90105 (XC-8) Wiki Decal
  • St. Patrick’s Day
  • Guest Accounts
  • First Flight of the La-5
  • Lucky Piñata
  • Moments of Valour: The Turkish Armed Forces
  • 100th Anniversary of the Italian Air Force
  • Royal Air Force Day
  • Pages of History (April)
  • Mobile Infantry
  • “Edge of Shell” Pack
  • Bosses of the Gym
  • Atomic Thunder: Soviet Battle Robots Tree
  • Repair Factory
  • Exowarrior Twitch Drops
  • Day of Aviation and Cosmonautics
  • Vasily Matsievich’s birthday
  • Zimbabwean Independence Day
  • Battle Pass Season 11 “Her Majesty’s Hussar”
  • Italian Liberation Day
  • Israeli Independence Day
  • Air Superiority Tournament
  • Ingame May sale
  • Golden Week
  • Pages of History (May)
  • Polish Constitution Day
  • Legend of Victory: BM-31-12 “Andryusha”
  • Victory Day
  • May sale in the Gaijin Store
  • War Thunder Mobile
  • US Armed Forces Day
  • French National Sailor Day
  • The Review Bombing Saga Part I: The Fellowship of the Forums
  • Anniversary of the Israeli Defense Forces
  • Swedish Home Guard Day
  • Answers from the developers
  • The Review Bombing Saga Part II: The Two Responses
  • Pages of History (June)
  • Turkish Air Forces Day
  • Canadian Armed Forces Day
  • D-Day
  • 500th Anniversary of Swedish Independence
  • Rare D-Day vehicles returning for GE
  • Italian Navy Day
  • The Review Bombing Saga Part III: The Return of the Economy
  • Update 2.27 “La Royale”
  • German Navy Day
  • First Flight of the MiG-21
  • Following the Roadmap: Updated Economy
  • Rankings Challenge: 2023 Grand Finals and Twitch Drops
  • British Armed Forces Day
  • Following the Roadmap: maps for aircraft, flares and repair
  • Summer Sale in the Gaijin Store
  • Swedish Air Force Day
  • JSDF Day
  • Canada Day
  • Top teams for Grand Final Season I tournament
  • French Air Force Day
  • US Independence Day
  • 80th Anniversary of Operation Husky
  • Atomic Thunder
  • First Flight of the A-4E
  • Bastille Day
  • Atomic Heart Snail Decals
  • First flight of the Hawker Hunter
  • First flight of the T-2
  • Battle Pass Season 12 “Armour Breaking Ambusher”
  • Following the Roadmap: Compensation of Battle Expenses, Free Backups and More!
  • Following the Roadmap: Battle Pass available in Simulator Battles
  • Russian Navy Day
  • In Detail: Air event markers in Ground Arcade Battles
  • Bots in War Thunder: what they are and how we plan to get rid of them
  • Pages of History (August)
  • PLA Day
  • First flight of the BAC Lightning
  • Summer Extreme
  • Following the Roadmap: refining landscape
  • End of the French Navy CBT
  • Soviet Air Fleet Day
  • Polish Armed Forces Day
  • Following the Roadmap: research helicopters with ground vehicles, marking spawn campers and more
  • US National Airborne Day
  • A Sound of Thunder: the release of War Thunder Mobile
  • MiG-15 enters service
  • 80th Anniversary of the Battle of Kursk
  • Following the Roadmap: grouping vehicles, rank changes, and improvements to premium vehicles
  • Following the Roadmap: Reducing Research/Purchase Cost of Aircraft, map changes & more
  • Pages of History (September)
  • 78th Anniversary of the end of World War II
  • Soviet Tanker’s Day
  • First Flight of the P-38
  • 83rd Anniversary of the Battle of Britain
  • 76th birthday of the U.S. Air Force
  • Update 2.29 “Sons of Attila”
  • Following the Roadmap: Sons of Attila Roadmap implementations and some Postponements
  • First Flight of the Mi-24
  • First Flight of the Yak-38
  • Tokushu Heiki
  • National Day of the People’s Republic of China
  • Pages of History (October)
  • Moments of Valor: China
  • German Unity Day
  • 80th Anniversary of the Battle of the Caucasus
  • 248th birthday of the US Navy
  • First flight of the S.O.4050 Vautour II
  • Following the Roadmap: We’d like to hear your feedback on our proposed Aircraft Destruction Mechanics & Night Battles design
  • Trafalgar Day
  • First flight of the UH-1 Iroquois
  • Twitch drops for War Thunder’s 11th anniversary
  • Battle Pass Season 13 “Tropical Storm”
  • First flight of the J 35 Draken
  • 100th anniversary of the Republic of Türkiye
  • Halloween
  • Update 2.31 “Kings of Battle”
  • Pages of History (November)
  • 11th birthday of War Thunder
  • Dreams Come True: TOG II
  • Following the Roadmap: Skill Bonuses in RP & Selectable Night Battles!
  • Battle of the Atlantic
  • Italian National Unity and Armed Forces Day
  • 11th anniversary sale in the Gaijin Store
  • Polish National Independence Day
  • 74th birthday of the Chinese Air Force
  • 68th birthday of the Bundeswehr
  • Fair Play: November 2023
  • November research changes
  • Black Friday
  • Results of the Anniversary Tournaments dedicated to 11 Years of War Thunder, plus the “Esport II” Trophy!
  • Su-25K Wiki decal
  • St. Andrew’s Day
  • Pages of History (December): The Heroic Nurse
  • Winter Extreme
  • Following the Roadmap: WT Mobile Login Streak & Keeping you updated with our plans
  • Update 2.33 “Air Superiority”
  • Christmas and New Years
  • Ingame winter sale
  • Collecting ideas for the 2024 roadmap
  • Fair Play: December 2023
  • Gaijin says they “don’t believe” the M1 Abrams had upgraded armor
  • Gaijin says they don’t believe that MANPADS missiles can pull as hard as official documents say they can
  • Winter sale in the Gaijin Store
  • First flight of the MiG-15
Other stuff that happened in 2023
  • Secret document leaks


September-December is half of the year’s stuff. Now my suffering actually begins.

Pages of History (September)

For September’s Pages of History event, Gaijin gave out a profile picture of Soviet sniper Rosa Shanina. I actually really like this profile picture. I think it’s really well designed, its composition has substance to it, it’s visually interesting, and it has really nice lighting. Maybe this is just me, but I’ve found that all of the historical profile pictures with women in them consistently seem to be really good. I don’t know why, but they always seem to consistently have really good composition and much better lighting. They’re never just a person standing in front of a flag with nothing else to the profile picture. They always have something going on in the image.

“Roza Shanina” profile picture

78th Anniversary of the end of World War II

The decal given out for this event was the “V-J Day” decal. I assume that’s supposed to stand for Victory over Japan Day or something to that effect, but it’s still a pretty funny name. However, it’s a funny name for a boring decal. I’m not asking for anything crazy, I just think that this decal in particular is quite boring.

“V-J Day” decal

Soviet Tanker’s Day

In honor of the Soviet holiday of Tanker’s Day, Gaijin brought back the KV-2 (ZiS-6) with a new wiki decal for it and gave out the “Tank helmet with NVG” decoration. The decoration I think is really neat. It’s really well designed with a lot of detail in it and an interesting design.

“Wiki Approved: KV-2 (ZiS-6)” decal

Tank helmet with NVG” decoration

As for the KV-2 (ZiS-6), it’s fine. I really like the ZiS-6 guns, there is basically nothing at its tier that won’t die to it, but it suffers from being attached to a KV-2 which is the size of a house and has that huge weak spot right under the mantlet. If you’re a collector or just feel like playing a house with a 107 mm gun attached, I’d say it’s worth it, but otherwise, save your money.

KV-2 (ZiS-6)

Overall, a pretty nice Tanker’s Day event.

First flight of the P-38

In commemoration of the first flight of the P-38 Lightning, Gaijin brought back the YP-38 which was the plane in the American Pacific Campaign pack that was removed from the store earlier in the year. The YP-38 is certainly quite a bit worse than the XP-38G which it replaced, but it’s still pretty good because it’s a P-38 and all the P-38s are some level of good. It’s an energy fighter and should be played as such, and when that is done, it’s quite nice. I’d say it’s worth your money.



83rd Anniversary of the Battle of Britain

For the 83rd anniversary of the Battle of Britain, Gaijin gave out the “Battle for Britain” decal and brought back Prendergast’s Spitfire F.R. Mk. XIVe and Plagis’ Spitfire L.F. Mk. IXc. The decal is decent, it looks like a plaque, but it’s nothing special. As for the two Spitfires, they’re both fantastic. I’ve reviewed them before in this article so I won’t again, but suffice it to say that they’re both amazing vehicles, though I think Prendergast’s Spitfire is more worth it.

“Battle for Britain” decal

Plagis’ Spitfire L.F. Mk. IXc

Prendergast’s Spitfire F.R. Mk. XIVe

76th Birthday of the U.S. Air Force


For the 76th birthday of the USAF, Gaijin brought back Wetmore’s P-51D-10 and Bostwick’s P-47M-1-RE, as well as giving out the second most American decal in the game (that eagle in red, white, and blue is the most American one ingame and always will be). The decal, called the “US Air Forces Day” decal, is of an F-16 loaded with bombs, rockets, and missiles flying over an American flag. It is a nice decal, but I don’t particularly like it purely because it’s not my style.

As for the two vehicles, I’ve reviewed them both already, so I’ll just say here that Wetmore’s P-51D-10 is not worth your money and Bostwick’s P-47M-1-RE absolutely is worth your money because it’s a crazy machine.

“US Air Forces Day” decal

Wetmore’s P-51D-10

Bostwick’s P-47M-1-RE

Update 2.29 “Sons of Attila”

Sky Guardians was good, La Royale was better, but Sons of Attila was legitimately fantastic. I think that the top tier air additions were entirely unnecessary, but aside from that, this was a fantastic update. From the Hungarian subtree for Italy to an actually useful SPAA for Israel, Sons of Attila checks all of the boxes for a great update.

I could go on for quite a while about this update and don’t worry (or do worry), I will, but first, let’s go over the vehicles.


  • USA:

    • F-16CM-50 - Rank VIII - Fighter - Tech tree

      • This vehicle is the of the king of top tier, and its addition at this stage was entirely unnecessary. The F-16CM-50 is an F-16A-10 with extra guided bombs, AGM-65Ds instead of AGM-65Bs, the LITENING II targeting pod, AIM-9Ms, AIM-7Ms, a new engine, and a new radar. This is an all-around crazy vehicle, but in air engagements, the thing that makes this plane especially crazy is the AIM-9M. The AIM-9M is an AIM-9L with a smokeless motor and IRCCM (infrared counter-countermeasures). This vehicle is both absurd and entirely unnecessary, and I really dislike its addition.

      • Also, I’m calling this the F-16CM-50 because despite Gaijin calling it the F-16C-50, they modeled it as the F-16CM-50 which has some slight improvements over the F-16C-50.

  • Germany:

    • He 115 C-1 - Rank I - Bomber - Tech tree

      • Unlike the F-16CM, this is the type of vehicle I like to see. It’s not a high tier shiny machine, no one was clamoring for it, but Gaijin still added it as an interesting low tier machine, and I like that more than any high tier vehicle they can ever introduce. This is what I want more of ingame.
  • USSR:

    • MiG-29SMT - Rank VIII - Fighter - Tech tree

      • Because the F-16CM and F-16D were added, this was necessary to come alongside them, but much like the F-16CM and F-16D, this was entirely unnecessary. It’s a MiG-29 (9-13) with R-73s that turns like a bus. That’s it. Much like the F-16CM and F-16D, I really dislike the addition of this vehicle and I wish it wasn’t added. Gaijin needs to stop pushing the envelope every time. This should have come in the December update at earliest.
  • Great Britain:

    • Sea Harrier F.R.S. Mk. 1 (early) - Rank VII - Strike fighter - Tech tree

      • I really like seeing this vehicle in the tree purely because a vehicle like the Sea Harrier F.R.S. Mk. 1 should not be limited to a squadron vehicle. That being said, it has some issues. The biggest issue with the Sea Harrier F.R.S. Mk. 1 (early), an issue that also plagues the squadron Sea Harrier F.R.S. Mk. 1, is that while it feels quite nice to fly once it’s fully modified, when stock, it is a rough plane to fly. This issue also exists on the earlier Harriers at 9.7, but it’s less of an issue for them because they’re 9.7 vehicles. However, at 10.3 for the F.R.S. Mk. 1 (early) and 10.7 for the F.R.S. Mk. 1, it makes the stock grind really rough.
  • Italy:

    • AV-8B Plus - Rank VIII - Strike fighter - Tech tree

      • The AV-8B Plus is a worse Harrier G.R. Mk. 7. Not bad, but a worse Harrier G.R. Mk. 7. The only meaningful differences are that it has 8 hardpoints instead of 11 and sits at 11.7 instead of 12.3. The only advantage this vehicle has over the Harrier G.R. Mk. 7 is that the AV-8B Plus gets a 2,000 lb guided bomb in the form of the GBU-24 Paveway III, which the Harrier G.R. Mk. 7 does not get.
  • France:

    • Loire 130C - Rank I - Bomber - Ship-launched

      • The Loire 130C is a reconnaissance plane that can be launched from the Dupleix and Colbert. I have not played this vehicle, but I quite enjoy seeing it because I really like the mechanic of ship-launched recon planes. Seeing France get one is really nice and I hope we see more of them.
    • Super Étendard - Rank VII - Strike fighter - Tech tree

      • I quite like seeing this vehicle added. The Super Étendard is the Étendard IV M with countermeasures, a new engine, R550 Magic 1 missiles, and a bunch of new suspended weaponry options for ground strike operations. The Super Étendard is a pretty decent vehicle and the Magic 1s plus the 180 countermeasures are really nice. It’s not an absurd vehicle, it’s not the most dominant vehicle at the tier, but it’s pretty good.
  • Sweden:

    • T 2 - Rank I - Bomber - Tech tree

      • The T 2 is just an He 115 A-2 that was sold to the Swedish Air Force. I am generally not a fan of copy-paste vehicles unless the tree needs it, but in this case, I think it’s fine because it’s an interesting low tier machine and I make an exception to that rule for floatplanes, and the He 115 is a floatplane. Thus, I like seeing it added to Sweden.
    • A 32A (F 17) “Röd Adam” - Rank VI - Strike fighter - GE premium

      • I find it interesting that the only premium plane this update is a copy-paste A 32A with a different skin. That being said, I think this is a pretty nice premium. I don’t have any strong opinions on it, but I think it’s a nice premium, especially since the J 35A-1 was removed from the store (which I very much disagree with).
  • Israel:

    • F-16D-40 - Rank VIII - Fighter - Premium

      • The F-16D-40 is an F-16CM-50 with no napalm, no 2,000 lb guided bomb, no CCIP for rockets, a worse engine, more weight, and 80 extra countermeasures, bringing it to a total of 200 compared to the F-16CM’s 120. This vehicle is worse than the F-16CM, but it’s still very good. This vehicle has worse thrust and more weight meaning it turns and overall performs quite noticably worse, it’s still an F-16 and thus performs well, and it gets the added benefit of not needing to be sparing in the slightest with your countermeasures because when you have 200 of them, you can just dump them all day. I also quite like that Gaijin added the 2 seater F-16D to the Israeli tree rather than the single seater F-16C because it both gives Israel something slightly unique and also because twin seat planes for everything are pretty iconic to the Israeli Air Force, with them even having requested a 2 seater F-35 at one point.


  • USA:

    • M48A2 GMS - Rank VI - SPAA - Tech tree

      • I’m not calling it the Imp.Chaparral, that’s an entirely fake name. Chaparral and Improved Chaparral are the names for variants of the missile, the vehicle itself is the M48A2 GMS. Anyway, it’s a pretty nice addition. It fires the MIM-72 missile which is based on the AIM-9D and it gets 2 versions of it: the MIM-72C and MIM-72E. The MIM-72C is a pretty nice missile, but what makes the MIM-72E way better is that it has a smokeless motor so it’s much harder for the enemy to see if the missile has been launched at it.
  • Germany:

    • Leopard 2 PSO - Rank VII - Medium tank - Tech tree

      • I found it very funny when this vehicle came out watching German mains be in shambles at the realization that the Leopard 2 PSO is, in fact, not a direct upgrade to the Leopard 2 A6, but rather is a sidegrade to it. Y’all got your new Leopard 2, happy? It’s a good tank, a very good tank, but people need to stop expecting some stunning new leap in power just because it comes after the Leopard 2 A6.
  • USSR:

    • 2S1 - Rank IV - Tank destroyer - Tech tree

      • This vehicle is the definition of “kinda there.” It’s not great, it’s not terrible, it’s just… meh. The HEAT-FS round is nice, but it comes with the flaw of being attached to an SPG, the vehicle has nothing in the way of gun depression, and can be machine gunned to death because it also has nothing in the way of armor. It’s a very middling vehicle. It also comes with the issue of the HEAT-FS round being a modification and not stock, so you have to start with HE. It is a rank 1 modification so it’s pretty easy to get, but still, it’s rough before you get it.
    • TO-55 - Rank V - Medium tank - Premium

      • The TO-55 is a T-55A without the APFSDS round, a worse HEAT-FS round, and with a flamethrower in place of 18 rounds of ammunition, bringing this tank’s max ammunition capacity to 25 rounds instead of the 43 rounds of the T-55A. I think this is a perfect choice for a premium. I do want flamethrower tanks in the tree, but the TO-55 is absolutely not needed in the tree and works perfectly as a premium because of that.
  • Great Britain:

    • T-90S Bhishma (TWMP) - India - Rank VII - Medium tank - Squadron vehicle

      • The T-90S is an Indian T-90A that lacks the Shorta-1 active protection system and gets more armor on the turret in place of it, lacks the 3BM60 APFSDS round and only gets 3BM42, and gets a dozer blade. All of these factors put it at 10.3 instead of 10.7 where the T-90A is. I’d argue that this actually makes it better than the T-90A because the 3BM42 round is more than usable at 10.3 and being at 10.3 means it can’t get uptiered to 11.7 where the top ground vehicles are. It’s also just an absolutely gorgeous tank. That huge dozer blade on the front is stunning and the colors of the vehicle look great. I know there is some controversy around if this tank should go to the British tree, but I think it should because I want India to be further represented ingame and Britain needed a squadron vehicle at top tier. This vehicle also gives Great Britain a different style of play from all the other MBTs it has because all of the Challengers play roughly the same.
  • China:

    • M41A3 - Rank III - Light tank - GE premium

      • This was an incredibly odd premium to add. The camouflage netting on it does make it visually incredibly good-looking, but that’s the only good thing about this premium. It’s a worse M41A1 with a much worse round, no NVDs, and a worse engine. The fact that it sits at 5.0 also means it has a garbage lineup. You have the 211, Phòng không T-34, and the PT-76 if you got it before it was hidden from the tree. The lineup actually has some crazy good CAS options in the form of the P-51K and Il-10 (1947), but the 211 is not good, the PT-76 is not good, and the Phòng không T-34 actually does have a really nice HVAP-T belt, but it’s an open top SPAAG and it’s as tall as a house. Stay away from this premium. It is absolutely not worth your money.
    • MBT-2000 - Rank VII - Medium tank - Tech tree

      • The MBT-2000 is a really nice addition. It doesn’t have very good armor, but it has decent speed and the same DTC10-125 round that the 11.7 ZTZ99A gets, but this vehicle gets it at 10.7, making it tied for having the second best round at 10.7 with the ZTZ99 (Phase 1) and ZTZ99 (Phase 2), which also have the same round, and is only beaten by the T-90A’s 3BM60 round. This vehicle also comes with the benefit of now giving China a full 10.7 lineup of the MBT-2000, ZTZ99 (Phase 1), ZTZ99 (Phase 2), the F-5E, and your choice of either the F-5A or Q5L. This is a very nice addition and I am very happy to see it.
  • Japan:

    • TKX (prototype) - Rank VII - Medium tank - Tech tree

      • Calling this a prototype of the TKX is weird because the TKX is already a prototype and this is just the TKX in its transport configuration with the side armor removed. Anyway, it’s decent. It’s a very bog standard 11.0 MBT. The 4 second reload is fantastic, the JM33 shell is pretty good, and the laser warning system is quite nice, but overall, it’s a pretty standard MBT. It’s the game’s third Type 10, but at least the Type 90s now have a full MBT lineup, and it’s a pretty good lineup too.
  • Italy:

    • Csaba - Hungary - Rank I - Light tank - Tech tree

      • I really dislike the Csaba. I tend to really like armored cars, and seeing a Hungarian armored car is super nice, but I really dislike this vehicle. For an armored car, I’ve found that it can eat a surprising amount of rounds. It very often does not die in one hit, and it can motor around the battlefield at a very nice speed. It really does have a lot of factors going for it. The issue is that its most critical factor is absolute garbage: the gun. The gun on this vehicle absolutely cannot do anything. The gun just can’t penetrate anything, so it’s more of an armored car that technically has a weapon, not an armed armored car.
    • Turán I - Hungary - Rank II - Medium tank - Tech tree

      • The Turán I is a nice tank. It has really nice APHE and solid shot rounds and a fantastic reverse gear. It was absolutely needed for the Italian tree and I am very happy to see it. The one issue with it is that it absolutely gets eaten alive in uptiers. Nonetheless, it’s a decent vehicle.
    • Zrínyi II - Hungary - Rank II - Tank destroyer - Tech tree

      • The Zrínyi II functions similarly to a StuH 42 G with less armor. It has a very nice HEAT round that can penetrate 120 mm of armor, but it’s overall functionally very similar to the Semovente 105/41 and StuH 42 G. It is a very nice vehicle to see though, especially because it means there is now also a Zrínyi in the tech tree and not just the Zrínyi I, which was an event vehicle.
    • Turán III - Hungary - Rank III - Medium tank - Tech tree

      • The Turán III was not only the best Italian 3.7 ground vehicle, but one of the best 3.7 tanks in the game. It had an absolutely crazy lineup of the M24, M4A4, 90/53 M41M, Turán III, Pz.Kpfw. IV G, M4 Hybrid, Spitfire Mk. Vb/trop, and the Bf 110 G-4. Yes, that lineup did somewhat rely on premiums for CAS, but it was still an absolutely crazy lineup. If you were doing a standard 3 tank lineup, I would recommend the M4A4, 90/53 M41M, and Turán III. The armor is good, the mobility is excellent, it has an amazing reverse gear, and the gun is fantastic. Then they moved it to 4.0. At 4.0, it has no lineup at all. All it has to run with it in terms of ground vehicles is the StuG III G, though it does get access to the C. 202EC and SM.92 as CAS options. The only other vehicle you can run with it is the Zrínyi I, but that was an event vehicle that wasn’t even given out as a coupon and thus is entirely unobtainable now, outside of the gambling boxes in certain events. This means that the Turán III now has to carry that lineup all on its own, and while it absolutely can do that, it still means its efficacy is severely diminished because it no longer has an effective lineup.
    • 2S1 - Hungary - Rank IV - Tank destroyer - Tech tree

      • It’s the exact same as the Soviet one: incredibly middling. Refer to my review of the Soviet 2S1 for a more detailed covering of this vehicle.
    • ZSU-57-2 - Hungary - Rank V - SPAA - Tech tree

      • It’s a tank destroyer masquerading as an SPAAG. That’s it. It’s just like all the other 7.0 ZSU-57-2s. It has a crazy APCBC belt with 151 mm of penetration and is an overall fantastic vehicle. It is fully identical to the Soviet, Finnish, and Israeli ZSU-57-2s, and is nearly fully identical to the Chinese WZ305, except for it not getting that crazy DKY-1 proximity fuze round. Overall, it’s a great vehicle.
    • BTR-80A - Hungary - Rank V - Light tank - Tech tree

      • It’s good. It’s a BTR-80A, I don’t have much more to say. You can refer back to my review of the BTR-80A in my coverage of La Royale for a better look at this vehicle. The Hungarian BTR-80A is identical to the Soviet one.
    • ZSU-23-4 - Hungary - Rank VI - SPAA - Tech tree

      • It’s a ZSU-23-4. I don’t know what else I’m supposed to say. It’s a fantastic SPAA, but it’s not that interesting of a vehicle to cover. It’s an insanely good SPAA, I just don’t have much to say.
    • T-72M1 - Hungary - Rank VI - Medium tank - Tech tree

      • It’s good. Like all of these copy-paste vehicles in the Hungarian subtree, I don’t have much to say about it because it’s copy-paste. The turret armor is pretty decent, the lower glacis plate is as thin as paper, the driver’s port is the standard weak spot, the gun is good, it’s a generally good vehicle. It’s exactly the same as the German and Finnish T-72M1s though, so there isn’t very much to say about it.
    • Leopard 2 A4 HU - Hungary - Rank VII - Medium tank - Tech tree

      • Once again, like all of the other copy-paste vehicles in this subtree, I don’t have much to say. It’s a Leopard 2 A4. It’s very good. The gun is good, the turret armor is good, the mobility is good, everything about it is good, but it’s not an interesting vehicle to talk about because it’s identical to the German and Finnish Leopard 2 A4s.
    • Lynx KF41 - Hungary - Rank VII - Light tank - Tech tree

      • Oh look, an actually unique vehicle! The Lynx KF41 is the highest tier IFV in the game, sitting at a BR of 10.7. The KF41 features the same gun as the Schützenpanzer Puma, but it also gets the Spike-LR2 fire-and-forget missile. This makes it so Italy now has 2 ground vehicles with fire-and-forget missiles. I like that Italy has gotten these first, I think minor nations getting stuff before major nations is good, but the KF41 isn’t that good. The crew arrangement makes it very easy to take out the vehicle and the vehicle both only gets 2 Spikes and the Spikes are incredibly inconsistent. In fact, the Spike-LR2 is so inconsistent and the amount of times it actually does anything is roughly on par with the QN502C missile on the QN506. The active protection system (APS) is also super inconsistent because it only triggers at very close range and so it often can’t trigger fast enough to stop something from killing the KF41.

      • When Sons of Attila came out, there was a lot of controversy over whether or not Germany should get the KF41 or not since the KF41 was designed by Germany. I am here to say that I think it is entirely fine that Germany doesn’t get it. The big 3 nations — the USA, Germany, and the USSR — get stuff every single update. The opportunity for a minor nation to get something before a major nation I see as a good thing. It gives minor nations more uniqueness to them and thus more of an actual reason to play them. This is the same reason that I support Gaijin’s decision to give China the F-5 in update Ixwa Strike before every other nation with an F-5 got theirs in update Red Skies. Furthermore, in the case of the KF41 specifically, the Hungarian Army is the only military it is actually in service with. For these reasons, though more so the former than the latter, I think it’s not only okay, but good that Italy got the KF41 first.

  • France:

    • AMX 10 M - Tank destroyer - Rank V - Tech tree

      • Surprisingly, better than expected. It still suffers from all of the major issues that these boxes with missile launchers do, but it does perform better than I expected it to, especially since it sits at 7.3 which makes it at least semi-usable, unlike piles of garbage like the M113s with the TOW launchers that sit at 8.3 for some unknown reason. Overall, while I am generally against the addition of boxes with missile launchers on them, this one I’m actually pretty happy to see.
    • Leclerc S2 (AZUR) - Medium tank - Rank VII - Tech tree

      • I mean… it’s another Leclerc, there’s not too much to say about it. It’s nice to see, I think it’s a good addiion, but it’s not a particularly groundbreaking vehicle. The only extra thing it gets is the AZUR ERA package which makes it more effective against HEAT-FS rounds, making stock HEAT-FS even worse than it already was. Nonetheless, it’s still nice to see.
  • Sweden:

    • Pvkv IV - Medium tank - Rank III - Tech tree

      • The Pvkv IV is a very average vehicle. The gun is very good, but the turret traverse is terrible and so is the armor. It’s a very nice vehicle to see, I like seeing unique, indigenously-designed vehicles added to minor nations, but this one in particular is just very… meh. Also, and this is a side note, but the Pvkv IV is a tank destroyer and the Pvkv II and Pvkv III are classified as tank destroyers ingame, so why Gaijin classified the Pvkv IV as a medium tank is beyond me, but I’ll take it because it means it get artillery strikes as an option, which tank destroyers don’t.
    • K9 (VIDAR) - Norway - Tank destroyer - Rank V - Pack premium

      • Most of what you’ve heard about the K9 is true. This is a crazy machine. It’s not only the only truly good SPH in game, but it’s also much more than just good. The K9 has a great gun, a generation 3 thermal sight, and a laser rangefinder. Other SPHs have had some of these features before, but the K9 is the first to have all 3 of those features together in one package, and it is a very potent package. This is a crazy premium and while it has already gone to 8.0 from 7.7, I think it should go further up to 8.3. I think 8.7 like some people have suggested is a bit too high, but 8.3 seems like a pretty good fit.
  • Israel:

    • M48A2 GMS - Rank VII - SPAA - Tech tree

      • The M48A2 GMS was a nice addition to the USA, but Israel is the real reason it was added and it was so desperately needed. The Israeli M48A2 GMS sits at 10.3 instead of 9.3 like the American one because the Israeli one gets the MIM-72G missile. The MIM-72G has infrared counter-countermeasures (IRCCM). IRCCM means that the MIM-72G is incredibly hard to flare because it, for the most part, can just ignore flares. This finally gives Israel an actually usable SPAA for high tier, both because it’s much better than the Machbet, and also because even at its BR of 9.3, the Machbet is terrible. Yes, Israel is still missing SPAAs like the HVSD/ADAMS, but this is a huge step in the right direction.


  • USA:

    • OH-58D - Rank VI - Attack helicopter - Tech tree

      • It’s pretty good. The optics are quite nice and the AGM-114K missiles are pretty good. It’s also a pretty interesting helicopter since it’s not one of the major series of helicopters such as the UH-1, AH-1, or AH-64. I generally don’t have much to say about helicopters since I don’t play them, but I like seeing this vehicle.
  • Germany:

    • Mi-8TBK - Rank V - Attack helicopter - Tech tree

      • It’s pretty good. The vehicle flies like an Mi-4 if it actually performed well. It’s legitimately fast, it has an actually good engine, and it gets a huge amount of rockets, as well as 6 9M14M Malyutka ATGMS which is quite nice, even if it is a pretty terrible ATGM. It’s definitely still very fat and it does take getting used to, but it is actually good, unlike the steaming pile of garbage that is the Mi-4. It also gets bombs but I’m entirely unsure why you’d ever use those.
  • USSR:

    • Mi-8TB - Rank V - Attack helicopter - Tech tree

      • This is exactly the same as the German Mi-8TBK, except for it getting 4 9M17M Falanga ATGMs instead of 6 9M14M Malyutka ATGMs. While it does get only 4 ATGMs instead of 6, the Falanga is a lot better than the Malyutka because it has more explosives in its warhead and is much faster.
  • China:

    • OH-58D - Rank VI - Attack helicopter - Tech tree

      • This vehicle is identical to the American OH-58D except for it not getting access to the 7.62 mm minigun and 30 mm cannon as suspended weaponry options. While this technically makes it worse, it is not a big loss. Personally, I really like seeing China get this helicopter to bolster their tree and give them a little bit more variety in their helicopter options.
  • Italy:

    • Mi-24D - Hungary - Rank V - Attack helicopter - Tech tree

      • It’s good. The Mi-24s generally are very good all-rounder helicopters. They can do most things pretty well, even if they are not a particular master at anything, and this vehicle is no exception. It also comes with the added bonus of being a tech tree Mi-24D, so if you don’t have the Soviet premium Mi-24D and don’t want to shell out the money for it, you have a tech tree one waiting for you in the Italian tree and it is functionally identical. This vehicle also helps heavily bolster the Italian rank 5 helicopters because the only one besides this is total garbage.
    • Mi-24V - Hungary - Rank VI - Attack helicopter - Tech tree

      • Once again, this vehicle is entirely identical to the Soviet Mi-24V, except for getting the R-60MK instead of the R-60M, but the R-60MK is functionally identical to the R-60M. Once again, it’s a good all-rounder helicopter and a very nice vehicle to see added purely because it bolsters Italy’s rank 6 helicopters which are also total garbage.
    • Mi-24P - Hungary - Rank VI - Attack helicopter - Pack premium

      • In a shocking twist, this vehicle is once again identical to its Soviet counterpart. and it’s a pretty good all-rounder helicopter. However, unlike the other 2 Mi-24s, I disagree with this vehicle’s addition. I disagree with it because it has no uniqueness despite unique Italian premiums already existing. I know the researchable tree deserves uniqueness too, but since unique premiums for Italy already exist, I find this vehicle to be unneeded. I think what they should have done is kept the T129 ATAK as Italy’s pack due to it both being unique to Türkiye and it being based off the A129 Mangusta which is a uniquely Italian design, rather than a copy-paste vehicle from another tree.


  • USA:

    • USS Texas - Rank VI - Battleship - Tech tree

      • The USS Texas is effectively a USS Nevada with a worse gun layout, but in exchange it gets the benefit of not getting completely shredded all the time and having a huge amount of close range AAA. It’s nice to see the USS Texas, but I generally don’t care for it, like every other battleship.
    • USS Arkansas - Rank V - Battleship - Pack premium

      • This ship I have a huge problem with. I hate the fact that they added rank 6 to the bluewater fleet because it just means more grind and more top tier premiums, and this vehicle is just a top tier premium. I hate top tier premiums, and this is a 6.7 battleship when the top naval BR is 7.0. I hate top tier premiums, I hate rank 6 bluewater fleet, I hate nearly everything about this ship. As a rank 6 premium, it’s not a bad choice, it’s another USS Wyoming, but I fundamentally disagree with it on principle.
  • Germany:

    • Drache - Rank IV - Sub-chaser - Tech tree

      • I am convinced that no one has ever played this vehicle. The Drache is a bafflingly odd addition. Everything else in the German coastal fleet tree has some reason to be there, but the Drache doesn’t. The Drache’s 88 mm guns are nice against small PT boats, but they can’t do anything against bluewater fleet ships, and at 3.3, this vehicle will relatively readily see those larger vessels like destroyers. On top of that, the Drache is slow, very slow, and is the size of a bus by coastal fleet standards.
    • SMS Nassau - Rank V - Battleship - GE premium

      • It’s another SMS Westfalen. That’s it. It’s an SMS Westfalen with a cooler camouflage, 4 more 88 mm secondary guns, and no AAA guns. Not a terrible choice for a premium, it’s a pretty good choice in fact, but it’s just boring and stuffers from all the same flaws all battleships do and the flaws that top tier premiums do.
  • USSR:

    • Marat - Rank V - Battleship - Pack premium

      • It’s just a better Parizhskaya Kommuna. It’s a Parizhskaya Kommuna with 2 extra 120 mm secondary guns and a bunch more AAA guns. This is a bad choice for a premium because it’s just straight up a better version of the Parizhskaya Kommuna in the tree. Premiums being better than their tree counterparts is bad in nearly every scenario, and this vehicle is no exception.
  • Japan:

    • PT-808 - Rank III - Motor torpedo boat - Tech tree

      • This vehicle may seem innocuous, but it is actually a huge help to the Japanese coastal fleet tree. The Japanese coastal fleet tree is just plain bad. However, American PT boats and PT boats in that style are consistently good, with the American coastal fleet tree being the best in the game. The PT-808 is one of those American-style PT boats and the only one Japan has other than the PT-15. This is a huge boost for a Japanese coastal fleet tree because it is one of the few good things in it, and is effective in a way that nearly everything else in the tree isn’t.
    • IJN Momi - Rank I - Destroyer - Tech tree

      • This vehicle is bad. It’s as simple as that. And yet, for some reason, Gaijin decided to add it and as a reserve ship no less, replacing the IJN Ayanami — an actually decent ship — as the reserve ship for the first branch of the tree. I am very confused as to why this vehicle was added in the position it’s in and I quite dislike it.
  • Italy:

    • Impetuoso (D 558) - Rank II - Destroyer - Tech tree

      • The Impetuoso is fantastic. The guns are great, the AA is fantastic, it can take some hits, and it’s decently fast. The Impetuoso plays like a USS Alan M. Sumner with one less turret at a lower BR, and that’s pretty much what it is, especially since it has the exact same guns as the USS Alan M. Sumner with the same incredible reload. Overall, this is a great vehicle!

All in all, I think this update has a fantastic selection of vehicles. I dislike rank 6 bluewater fleet, the F-16CM, MiG-29SMT, and F-16D, but all of the other vehicle choices are really good. The highlights for me are definitely the Hungarian subtree for Italy and the M48A2 GMS for Israel.

As for the maps, I think they’re both quite good. Test Site 2271 for ground battles, which is the same map from the Atomic Thunder event, is quite a fun map to play even if it is stylistically a bit too reminiscent of Abandoned Factory for my taste. The C point is functionally nearly identical to that of the B point on Abandoned Factory, with small silos and lots of large concrete factories. This is my personal favorite area to play on the map because there is a lot of cover and corner peaking, though I have gotten myself into a Tom and Jerry routine of just circling around one of the silos trying to catch another tank that is also circling it quite a few times. The B point is an open construction site surrounded by midrises. I think it’s pretty well-designed, but my issue with it is that it doesn’t have a lot of cover and there are 6 lines of sight into the B point which makes it a point that generally needs multiple players at a time to capture it in order to cover those sight lines. The A point is the most unique on the map. It’s a mix of the deep water pools from the northwest quadrant of abandoned factory with terrain surrounding it that is reminiscent of the zone between the A and B points on Kuban and the zone around the A point on Seversk-13, but with less trees. I overall think it is quite a good map, even if it does have a few flaws around the B point and certain sight lines around A that are mildly irritating.

Test Site 2271

Rocky Pillars is an absolutely fantastic map. Rocky Pillars is an air map with a central canyon bordered by towering cliffs. In that canyon are the titular rocky pilars that jut up out of the ground. I think the design choices on this map are great. The deep canyon funnels players into a close quarters environment that actually forces dogfights, rather than most maps on which half of the team dies before they make it to the furball. The rocky pillars are also amazing because with all the players funneled into that canyon, the pillars then force everyone to fly around the terrain and it creates really interesting dogfights because the pillars act as both an obstacle to avoid and an obstacle to missiles and guns. They create these really fun engagements and it’s one of the only air maps that high tier that still forces true dogfights. I really hope we see more maps like this that both force you to play around the terrain and create dogfights which have mostly been lost at top tier.

Rocky Pillars

There was also a huge amount of economy and progression changes. The research tree reorganization was brought in, as way dynamic repair costs, destruction of 3D decorations, apologies for teamkills, and other features that both have been discussed in the Following the Roadmap sections before this update and will be discussed in the one directly after this update.

A new customization mechanic was also introduced this update in the form of flags for ships. Now, the flag on every ship can be set to whatever flag you want or left as the default flag. I really like this mechanic and I think it’s a really cool customization feature, but there has been a bug since it was released where once you change the flag, the flag becomes locked to the camera at an angle at which you can barely view what’s on the flag, and it does this for as long as you are in the hangar until you either exit the game or go into and then come back from a battle.

Another change implemented this patch was that the vehicle stat card images no longer have the appearance of an image with graininess and gate weave, with many being in black and white. Instead, they’re now the 3D model of the vehicle sitting in a blank void with nothing around them. I think this was a very bad change.

This is what the old stat card images looked like:


Pvkv m/43 (1946)

USS Helena (CL-50)

And this is what the new stat card images look like:


Pvkv m/43 (1946)

USS Helena (CL-50)

These new stat card images are the ones I have been showing throughout this article.

See the issue? These new stat card images lack identity of any kind. They look like a slightly higher fidelity version of what I expect to see in a mobile game like War Thunder Mobile, with the exception of the many of the top tier jets like the F-16s which, as you can see from the image, look exactly as cartoony as I expect from a mobile game. The old stat card images had identity, they had character, they said something about the vehicle and indicated roughly what time period the vehicle was from. The old stat card images had something interesting to them. But these, what do these say about the vehicle? What character do they have? What identity do they possess? None! These stat card images convey nothing except that something exists and that evidently, the eternal void has claimed it.

There were a few other small mechanics added too. One that I particularly like is that there is now a progress bar showing what percentage of a vehicle’s modifications that you’ve researched. There was also a mechanic called “Favored Killer” added that made it so if there was a small difference in a player’s ping between shooting and recieving damage that would prevent the player from shooting, the game will still consider it as if the player managed to shoot. This is actually quite a big change and one I really like. I have so many times shot pretty much exactly as I have been shot and thus not been able to get the shot off, so I am very happy to see a change like this.

When it comes to graphics, there were quite a few nice improvements this patch. The most notable ones are:

  • Trees now blow in the wind.

    • I really like this effect. It may seem miniscule, but it adds a lot to the battlefield and the overall atmosphere of the game. However, I do think the effect could still use a little bit of work because it still can look quite janky at times.
  • Smoke from the discharge of powder gasses now comes out of the barrel after every shot.

    • This is such a cool effect. It looks really good and is one of those little details that adds so much!
  • Barrels now smoke when they overheat.

    • I really like this effect in theory, but they made it very over the top. The effect looks good and I think it being added is great, but some barrels when they overheat literally billow smoke and it looks a bit cartoony.
  • Smoke grenades now either detonate or leak smoke when hit.

    • This is actually a huge change. The effect looks great, but beyond that, smoke grenades detonating when being hit has very significant implications for gameplay, especially because machine gunning something can now result in that vehicle being somewhat hidden and you no longer visually having the exact place needed to place your shots. I really like this change though. These types of small changes with huge impacts on gameplay are something I really like.

Furthermore, Germany and Great Britain got new crew voicelines, as did the US Navy. This is very nice. I am a huge fan of crew voice lines so these are very nice, especially because the British now finally have their own unique crew voices and not just the American ones!

Finally, there’s the camouflage trophy. It’s fine. There are a few very nice skins in it, with my personal favorites being the “Red Zebra” camouflage for the Tornado F. Mk. 3 and the camouflage of the Armed Forces of Turkmenistan for the 2S1, but other than those 2, I don’t find any of the camouflages to be that impressive or interesting.

In conclusion, I think this was a fantastic update. Yes it has its issues, yes it has parts of it that I dislike, but the positives easily outweigh the negatives and made for a great patch.

Following the Roadmap: Sons of Attila Roadmap implementations and some Postponements

This installation of Following the Roadmap didn’t announce anything further being added, but rather recapped all of the roadmap changes added in Sons of Attila. Most of these have either been covered in the previous section on Sons of Attila or in the 2 Following the Roadmap sections right before it, so there are just a few select changes and other things to note that I’ll talk about here.

  • 3D decorations can now be destroyed.

    • I don’t have much to say about this beyond the fact that I think it’s neat. I always found it weird that you couldn’t destroy a teddy bear with your 380 mm Sturmtiger gun, so this is a welcome change.
  • You can now apologize for a teamkill and if the teamkilled player accepts it, the rest of the players in the match will be notified and the teamkiller will be forgiven.

    • I think this is a super good mechanic. Having this formalized system is very much preferable to just apologizing in chat and hoping the other player is okay with it.

There were a few postponed features. Specifically, they postponed the skill bonuses that give extra RP, optional selection of night battles, keeping your daily login reward streak through logging in with War Thunder Mobile, and the improved target hit alert in air battles were all postponed to later updates. The RP skill bonuses, selection of night battles, and keeping the daily login reward streak were all added later, but the improved hit detection has been delayed to early 2024.

Overall though, I still think the changes were fantastic because there were a lot of huge changes from the roadmap that came in that I covered in my section on Sons of Attila rather than here, and though I am somewhat disappointed with the postponements.

First Flight of the Mi-24

For the first flight of the Mi-24, Gaijin brought back the Mi-24D for GE for a limited time. It’s good. I already covered the Italian version of this vehicle which is exactly the same so you can refer to my review of that vehicle, but it is nice to see back.

First Flight of the Yak-38

In commemoration of the first flight of the Yak-38, Gaijin brought back the Yak-38 for GE, but instead of it being for a limited time, it has now just come back as a GE vehicle indefinitely. The Yak-38 is decent. It performs rather poorly and I do not enjoy its flight model, but ever since it was given 4 R-60s, it’s become a pretty decent vehicle. As for it returning as a GE premium not for a limited time but rather for the foreseeable future, I really like this. Removing GE and pack premiums is generally a practice I disagree with. I know it’s designed to create artificial rarity to increase sales for Gaijin during special promotions, but I dislike the practice and I think it’s bad. It coming back as the GE vehicle I see as a very good thing because it gives more people the opportunity to get the vehicle if they want without a time limit limiting when they can get it.

Tokushu Heiki


This event. Oh God, this event. Tokushu Heiki, which is the English transliterated version of the Japanese “特殊兵器” which translates to “Special Weapons,” was the third major event of the year and the second crafting event of the year. I have a lot of thoughts on this event, mainly that I think it was an abjectly horrible event and one of the least fun experiences I have ever had in this game, but I’ll save that for after I cover the vehicles because those were some of the only good things about this event.

  • Ki-48-II Otsu - Japan - Rank II - Bomber - Event premium - Coupon

    • The Ki-48-II Otsu was the low tier air prize for the event. I think this was a very good choice for a prize. It’s exactly the type of vehicle I like to see, though it is sad that we don’t have a Ki-48 in the tree yet, and it comes with a very unique weapon: an air-to-ground guided missile at 2.3! This is exactly the type of vehicle I like in events. A weird and wacky vehicle, or in this case, a normal but still interesting vehicle with a very unique and interesting weapon option. The Ki-148, also known as the I-Gо̄ Model 1 Otsu, is a guided AGM developed by Japan at the end of WWII and tested on the Ki-48-II Otsu among other planes. It is absolutely a meme weapon and guiding it is an absolute nightmare considering it is one of the slowest things in the game and always wants to return to its original trajectory even after you guide it, but it is exactly the type of thing I love to see in events. This “special weapon” is also what the event derives its name from and what the event is themed about, and I think that’s excellent as a theme, but I’ll save my detailed thoughts on that for later. I also really like that it’s a coupon, especially because low tier vehicles are almost never coupons.
  • F-100F - China - Rank VI - Fighter - Event vehicle - Coupon

    • Damn, 2 event vehicles in the same year? Us players of China are eating well! Anyway, it’s hot take time. My first hot take is that I think this is a good prize. Is it unique? Absolutely not. However, it meets most of my other criteria for a good prize. It’s not something that needed to be in the tree, it doesn’t offer an experience lacking in the tree because the tree already has the F-100A, it’s not better than it’s tech tree counterpart since the F-100A performs better and has 2 extra guns, it does have something that makes it somewhat worth grinding in that it’s a better CAS plane, and it gets bonus points for being for a minor nation. I also somewhat give it a pass for the lack of uniqueness because China has very limited options at this tier for event vehicles (and don’t bring up the Q5D, that deserves to be in the tree so the Q5L can finally get it’s proper ordinance and because of that go to 10.0 or 10.3), and considering that China has very limited options, this is a pretty good choice. My one big complaint is the CAS potential because that does make it China’s best 9.3 CAS option and it also continues this trend of adding in CAS options as event vehicles which I have talked about before. However, that is somewhat mitigated as an issue by the fact that this is also a fighter.

    • Speaking of it being a fighter, time for my second hot take: this is a good plane. Wait, hear me out! Yes, the F-100 is long past its glory days and yes, this F-100 does get 2 less guns, but it is still an actually good fighter. In fact, it’s one of the most fun vehicles I’ve recently spaded. The way you play this vehicle is you stay above the furball and drop in behind the last enemy player. The last 3-5 are always A-10s and you can make incredibly short work of them. After that, you stay above the furball again and play it like a boom-and-zoomer. Drop in, get a kill, get out. The plane has 2 good turns in it around 650-750 km/h, but after that you absolutely need to get out or you die. The AIM-9Es are also a game changer for this plane. They brings it from a vehicle that can consistently get 2 kills per match to one that can consistently get 3-5 kills per match. I also think that giving it AIM-9Es and not AIM-9Ps was the right choice. I disagreed with the choice when it was first announced, but after playing it, I think it was the right call. AIM-9Ps would push it to 9.7 where it would get absolutely eaten alive by 10.7s. However, AIM-9Es allow it to stay at 9.3 where it can really shine. On the whole, while I know many will disagree with me, I think this was an excellent prize.

  • CCVL (LOSAT) - USA - Rank VII - Tank destroyer - Event vehicle - Coupon

    • The CCVL (LOSAT) is an absolutely terrible vehicle. In fact, it is nigh unusable on half of the maps ingame. That being said, I still think it is a very good prize. It meets all of my criteria for being a good event vehicle. The CCVL (LOSAT) is a vehicle weird and bad enough that it has absolutely no place in the tree. The reason it’s so bad, on top of the general flaws that come with being an ATGM-carrier, is that 2/3 of the crew are in the turret, so hitting the turret, even if you don’t blow up the ammo, still kills the vehicle, and the ATGMS have this initial dropoff where they go down before going back up to where you want them to go. This initial dropoff makes the vehicle unusable on close range maps like Alaska because the ATGM will just run right into the ground. This is an experience that absolutely does not need and should not be in the tree, but a vehicle as weird and wacky as the CCVL (LOSAT) makes a perfect event prize
  • IJN Kurama - Japan - Rank V - Battleship - Event vehicle - Coupon

    • I’ve been pretty vocal throughout this entire article about the fact that I dislike battleships on a fundamental level. That being said, I still think this is a fine prize. It’s an absolutely garbage vehicle and I’m never going to spade it because even among battleships I hate playing this one especially, but it’s not a terrible prize. It really just isn’t interesting. It does have an absolutely stunning camouflage though, easily the best of any battleship in the game. I also do like that Japan got 2 event vehicles in this event because I think that minor nations, especially ones like Japan and China which have been starved of event vehicles and really need more.

I think the vehicle selection was fantastic for this event. 3 really good picks and 1 ship that is just kind of there, but isn’t that bad as a prize. As I briefly mentioned earlier, I also think the theming was really cool. Nothing can ever quite beat the theming of the Wargame “Strategist” event, but assembling and testing a missile is pretty cool, especially the special mission where you had to test the missile (to be clear, only the mission part was cool, the entire system surrounding it was terrible). The only other thing I like in this event is that it was now possible to get 2 of the top prizes instead of just 1 without having to use the market and to facilitate that, the amount of boxes you could get was increased and the amount of days to grind the event was increased to 13 from 11. I still think it’s super scummy that you can only get 2/4 prizes, but at least it’s slightly better now because you can get 2 high tier prizes at most instead of 1 low tier and 1 high tier at most.

That’s everything positive I have to say about this event. Anyway, let me now explain to you why this was a God-awful event that was torturous to play, horribly designed, and that I hope is never repeated again.

The first reason this event was terrible was the grind. The grind in crafting events is always terrible, but this was much worse. Previously, if you ground as efficiently as possible and got the max amount of boxes per day, you could grind the whole event in 8 days, but since the event lasted 11 days, you had a little bit of wiggle room. This time, it was a 13 day event and you had to grind for all 13 of those days with no wiggle room to get the maximum you could out of the event.

The second reason this event was terrible was the crafting system. The amount of parts to produce each missile was reduced to 16 from the previous 40, but the system on how you craft was terrible. You needed a functional missile to assemble a test report and 3 test reports to get one of the high tier vehicles. Once you assembled a missile, you needed to play the test mission to see if it was broken and then if it was, you needed to guess what part was broken based on the malfunction it displayed. If you guessed incorrectly, you got 1 extra crate of materials and if you guessed correctly, you got 3 extra crates of materials. The first 2 missiles you made were always defective and the third always worked, and the cycle repeated like that for all 18 missiles you could make. The issue with this system is that if the missile was broken, you couldn’t just fix the broken part(s), you had to make an entirely new missile so while you could make 18 missiles, only 6 would work. This system was unbelievably frustrating because it just drained your time and resources, all the while you know that the missile won’t work until your third attempt.

The third reason this event was horrible was how they changed the market system. Instead of taking 3 materials to assemble into 1 tradable version of it, you now had to combine a material with an empty tradable container. These empty tradable containers dropped in material crates meaning that some of the precious materials you could have gotten were instead replaced with an empty tradable container that is only used for the market and can’t be used to grind the event. To make this even worse, the tradable containers only started dropping once you had made 2 missiles. While this does mean that for your first 2 missiles you only got materials you needed, it also meant that materials couldn’t be traded on the market at all until at least 4 days into the event because due to the daily box limit, only after 4 days was it possible to have constructed 2 missiles. This was just a way of inflating market prices so Gaijin could make more revenue. It’s bad, it’s greedy, and it made the event even worse than it already was.

Yes, this event did have a great selection of vehicles, yes, it was nice that you could get 2 high tier prizes instead of 1 high tier prize and 1 low tier prize, and yes, the event did have a cool theme. However, despite all that, it was still easily the worst crafting event War Thunder has ever had. It was even less fun to play than normal, it was based even more on greed than normal, and I never want to see any event like this ever again in War Thunder.

National Day of the People’s Republic of China (PRC)

This was a super good promotion. For the National Day of the PRC, Gaijin brought back a bunch of removed Chinese premiums at a discounted price and put a bunch of currently available ones on sale too. All of the vehicles were 25% off by default, but if you added 2 or more of them to your cart at the same time, the discount became 50%. This allowed you to effectively create your own bundle, which is an idea that Gaijin has done a few times before and that I am a huge fan of.

The removed premium vehicles that were brought back were:

  • H81A-3 - Rank II - Fighter
  • F5 - Rank VI - Fighter
  • M4A4 (1st PTG) - Rank II - Medium tank
  • ZTZ69-IIA - Rank V - Medium tank
  • T-62 (57 go-po.) - Rank VI - Medium tank
  • T-69 II G - Rank VI - Medium Tank

The premium vehicles on sale were:

  • H81A-2 - Rank II - Fighter

    • It’s good. I know some people don’t like the P-40s, but I am a very big fan of them and this one is no exception. The armament is good, the flight performance is good, and while it’s not exactly a rugged plane, it can certainly eat more rounds than some other planes in the Chinese tree. The H81A-2 is a Tomahawk Mk. IIb which is a P-40C meaning it does get 4 7.62 mm machine guns and only 2 12.7 mm machine guns instead of 6 12.7 mm machine guns, but the 12.7 mm machine guns are nose-mounted so it still works pretty well.
  • F5 - Rank VI - Fighter

    • The F5 is a license-produced MiG-17F which is a MiG-17 with an afterburner. The F5 also gets 2 PL2 missiles, but this doesn’t save it. When the F5 was released, it was pretty good and one of the better premiums in the game. However, those days are long gone and the F5 is in a very sorry state now. It’s too slow to be effective, the missiles aren’t good enough, and while the guns do pack a nice punch, the very limited ammunition count is a huge detriment at this tier where the vehicle already suffers so much. Save your money and if this ever comes around again, don’t buy it.
  • A5C - Rank VI - Strike fighter

    • The A5C, meanwhile, is one of the best rank 6 premiums in the game. There’s a reason that along with the F-5C and Su-25K, the A5C was the other rank 6 premium that wasn’t removed from the store. That reason is that it sells very well and it does so because it is a crazy vehicle. It’s not quite as good as it used to be because of some of the things added around it, but at 10.0 with 2 Magic 1s and flares, it’s a monstrous vehicle. This vehicle cannot research as much as the J7D which is only an extra $10 USD, but it is just as good tier-for-tier as the J7D, if not better.
  • J7D - Rank VII - Fighter

    • Much like the A5C, the J7D is an insanely good vehicle. I’d argue it’s probably not quite as good as the A5C tier-for-tier, but it is still a very good vehicle. It’s very fun to play and it gets 4 Magic 1s at 11.0 which in my view makes it better than the MiG-21bis which is also 11.0, despite that getting 6 R-60Ms. Much like the A5C, this plane is absolutely worth it, especially on sale, and I think it’s easily the second best 11.0, only beat by the J7E in the Chinese tech tree which is the undisputed king of 11.0.
  • Z19E - Rank VI - Attack helicopter

    • The Z19E is the second best premium helicopter, only beaten by the absolute monster that is the Rooivalk Mk. 1. The AKD09 and AKK90 missiles are both fantastic, and you can take 8 of each at the same time. The AKK90 is one of the best helicopter-mounted air-to-air missiles at the tier, though helicopters with AIM-9Ls and AIM-9Ms have since supplanted it in that capacity, but it still has the best among any premium helicopter. The AKD09 is also a fantastic anti-tank missile with great penetration and good explosive mass. That, combined with 48 countermeasures and good optics, make the Z19E the second best premium helicopter in the game and absolutely worth it if you’re looking to grind the Chinese helicopter tree.
  • M4A4 (1st PTG) - Rank II - Medium tank

    • It’s an M4A4. It’s good, I just don’t have much to say. I really like the M4A4, it’s a very good jack of all trades vehicle, but this is exactly the same as the M4A4 in the tree, except for that fact that this one gets a roof-mounted 12.7 mm machine gun. It’s worth it if you have extra money to throw around.
  • ZTZ69-IIA - Rank V - Medium tank

    • The ZTZ69-IIA is a pretty good vehicle. It’s a relatively bog standard MBT with good HEAT-FS and APDS rounds with decent mobility. It’s somewhat comparable in playstyle to the ZTZ59D1, but it does lack the ERA which means it is much more vulnerable to HEAT rounds. It overall is a pretty decent vehicle, though nothing special, but I’d say it’s worth it if you have extra money and either don’t want anything else or already have everything else.
  • T-62 (57 go-po.) - Rank VI - Medium tank

    • The T-62 (57 go-po.) is just a T-62 with the number 545 on it. It’s good because it’s a T-62 meaning it has decent turret armor, good mobility, a 2-plane stabilizer, and good APFSDS rounds, but it’s not a special tank by any means. It is quite useful though because the Chinese tree doesn’t have a T-62 meaning this vehicle offers an experience that can’t be found in the tree. I’d say it’s worth it if you want a tank 6 premium, but the ZTZ96A (prototype) is probably more worth your money.
  • T-69 II G - Rank VI - Medium Tank

    • It’s a pretty decent tank. It’s an upgrade of the ZTZ69 with a pretty nice APFSDS round and good mobility as well as ERA that hails from Bangladesh. It isn’t a meta vehicle per se, and it isn’t crazy good, but it is a decent enough vehicle, though it has suffered since it was put up to BR 9.0. I’d say it’s not worth it purely because the ZTZ96A (prototype) exists.
  • ZTZ96A (prototype) - Rank VII - Medium tank

    • This is the cream of the crop in terms of premiums for the Chinese tree. The ZTZ96A (prototype) is a ZTZ96A with less turret armor and a soft-kill APS that uses infrared dazzlers, much like the Shtora-1 system on the T-90A. It’s a very good premium. The ZTZ96A is a very good tank and this plays exactly the same as the ZTZ96A since at 10.0, the IR dazzlers are entirely useless. Out of all of the rank 5+ premiums in the tree, this is easily the most worth it. The mobility is good, the thermal sight is very useful, the APFSDS round is very good, and while the armor shouldn’t be relied upon, the turret armor is good enough to survive things like HEAT rounds flung at it from stock vehicles that haven’t unlocked APFSDS yet. Overall, I’d say this tank is very much worth it, but only on sale. The reason I say that it’s worth it only on sale is that regardless of how good any premium is, $65 USD is a lot of money.

The sales for this promotion were overall very good and I really liked them.

Beyond the sales, there was also an event decal called the “Vase with Flowers” decal that could be earned for playing 3 battles in Chinese vehicles with as well as another decal called the “Sun Tzu” decal, a profile picture of a Chinese military officer, and the “Deception Master” title that could be obtained for either purchasing 2 or more of the packs on sale during the promotion or winning 3 battles in the vehicles if you already owned 2 or more of the vehicles from the promotion.

“Vase with Flowers” decal

“Sun Tzu” decal

“PLA officer” profile picture

I overall think this was a very good event for the game with nice sales and a cool decal.

Part 1 - Introduction-March
Part 2 - April-May
Part 3 - June
Part 4 - July-August
Part 5 - September (current)
Part 6 - October
Part 7 - November-December
Part 8 - Hopes for 2024-Conclusion

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You say you don’t like fake names but you used one a lot: “C2A1 Mexas”. Its real name is “C2 Mexas”.
C2A1 is a fake name Gaijin gave it.

Thank you. I’ll fix it.

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Also, I know there are other inaccurate names in this article, I was trying to strike a rough balance between what is more accurate and what is still easily understandable for people who don’t use lang mods. The name Imp.Chaparral was just too glaring to ignore though.

I just try to correct people as they got the idea Canada has tanks under the name of M4A5 and C2A1.

Yet there are no such vehicles under those names that served Canada.
However, a Ram II and C2 Mexas did.

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Thank you. The Leopard C2 has been corrected to its proper name and you have been added to the acknowledgements in the post-publication correction acknowledgements section at the begining of part 1, as well as in the section that mentions the C2.

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Let’s not forget, the Sons of Attila update is the one where Gaijin STOLE completed vehicles from the players. I was one of those victims! I only had a little bit left to complete research on the F9F-8 Cougar. With the Sons of Attila update and price changes on research, it was now complete and I could purchase it. But wait! NO!!! They now stacked the F9F-8 Cougar under the F9F-5 Panther (It wasn’t previously!) so research on the F9F-5 Panther had to be completed before the F9F-8 Cougar could be purchased! There was NO TIMER which permitted last minute clean-up before the change was finalized and permanent. It was IMMEDIATELY PERMANENT! I tried reporting the bug but got the reply, “It’s not an error.” Gaijin has chosen to ignore all requests to fix this mistake and I still don’t have my F9F-8 Cougar!

Well, prior to this, I had really been enjoying the game. With the arrival of Covid-19, I was no longer going to watch movies so I was funnelling my movie money into War Thunder, buying Golden Eagles for premium vehicles, buying Gaijin for the Marketplace, buying more Golden Eagles to buy resources for the crafting events, etc. Well, that has all come to a screeching halt! Everyone on this forum talks about how Gaijin is so greedy for money but this is one instance where GAIJIN ACTIVELY CHOSE TO TURN AWAY INCOME!!! It doesn’t bother me that they screwed up this bad but I’m furious over their determined efforts NOT TO FIX THE PROBLEM!!!

Anyway, I had to laugh at the name “War Thunder’s best year.” I have earned my 5th year of continuous logins and this year is clearly the worst. And then, to add insult to injury, Gaijin asks us, the players, to recommend War Thunder for the Steam Awards under the category of “Labor of Love.” Only the most criminally abusive parent could possibly demand their children vote this a Labor of Love, especially after their most hateful response to the players!

112 Days without MY F9F-8 Cougar!!!

I understand where you’re coming from. I did not realize they had messed up the F9F-8 like this. That being said, if your only reason for why 2023 is the worst is that you couldn’t get your F9F-8, you are far too tunnel visioned to have anywhere near a complete picture of the game. I call this year the best primarily because of the roadmap and the sweeping changes it brought. If you have other reasons why 2023 is the worst year, I’d love to hear them, but just not getting the F9F-8 because of a bad research change does not make this the worst year.

Fair enough. Robbing me of my earned F9F-8 is actually NOT the worst issue. It is actually, just a symptom. You laud The Roadmap as a massive improvement (which, credit where it is due, I will grant it is a significant improvement). However, that Roadmap did not happen in a vacuum. It came about as a result of the player base’s open, public and spontaneous rebellion when we finally suffered the last straw! The Roadmap is Gaijin’s very necessary response to the 4-alarm fire they desperately needed to extinguish lest it burn down their entire empire. Then we get to my F9F-8. The Roadmap had already been in play for months making progress on stated goals and providing feedback on the further progress. Okay, the Sons of Attila update comes out and there are a few bugs. No problem, just fix them. But NO! Gaijin digs in their heels and braces for battle because The Roadmap has too long stymied their thirst for player blood and tears! The real problem isn’t the F9F-8 Cougar but the ingrained desire by Gaijin to CAUSE UNNECCESSARY SUFFERING IN THIS GAME!!! Removing the tumor does no good if you don’t fix the cause of the tumor.

114 Days without MY F9F-8 COUGAR!!!

Okay. First of all, cool it. Second, if you think I am unabashedly praising the roadmap without any consideration for why it happened, you didn’t read part 2 which in detail, hour by hour, covers the roadmap situation and why it happened and I expressely state that I think the changes they were going to bring in were terrible and that their initial response to it was also awful.

I actually do apologize for the bold type. I didn’t select it so I don’t know how to fix it or I would edit the previous post. I know, bold type is often used to express emphasis or even rage but, in this case, it was unintentional. I respect your comment to “cool it” because, based on what you can see. it was deserved. However, rest assured, I am cool. My use of ALL CAPS was intentional but is not directed at you but at Gaijin. I understand you have a different opinion of the year and you have a right to that opinion. I specifically wanted to vent my frustrations at Gaijin’s purposeful abuse of players because venting is all I can do. They refuse to fix the problems and won’t listen unless the entire player base rebels again.

115 days without my F9F-8 Cougar!!!

Okay, now I’m even more perplexed! I found the option to undo bold (it was hidden from me until I refreshed the screen, don’t know why) and unfortunately it only permits me an even MORE BOLD. I don’t get it. My little signature line where I post the length of time I have been deprived of my F9F-8 Cougar is not part of this BOLD. I am not selecting or deselecting the Bold option (except for 1 single paragraph in the original post) and I apparently can’t figure out how to undo it. Sorry. Not actually angry (except at Gaijin!).