War Thunder has been popular for years now, and in this review we’ll look at its main features and decide whether it’s worth playing in 2023.
Let’s say right away that this project is being loudly promoted, including by top bloggers on the Russian-language Internet. But not many people know how War Thunder actually plays, and this review is intended to solve this problem.
Getting started in War Thunder, as in any other game, consists of registering on the official website and creating an account. You will be asked to choose the type of battles (tank, air or water), after which you will be given the first equipment tied to a specific nation. There are quite a lot of nations in the game, each of them contains tanks, planes, ships, helicopters, anti-aircraft guns and other equipment, but it is impossible to single out any absolute top among them. The equipment of the USSR, Germany and the USA is especially popular among players, but nothing prevents you from following your own path of development.
At the time of writing this review, there are several hundred unique types of combat vehicles in War Thunder. Each of them can be upgraded by unlocking additional modules and types of projectiles. There are a special variety of the latter here, each projectile has its own characteristics and purpose (for example, to destroy armored targets or crush the crew inside a vehicle).
After completing a little training, you will be thrown into battle against bots, which will not be difficult to deal with. Well, then your true path as a combat commander begins, which takes you through thousands of battles. Over time, you will choose the most comfortable format of battles and equipment, which you can then even use to participate in tournaments.
The main gameplay in the game is that you will participate in session battles using vehicles from different historical eras. Battles take place on dozens of maps with destructible environmental elements. Victory will go to the team that destroys all enemy equipment or completes the task within the allotted time (for example, holding an airfield or several points, protecting them from the enemy).
You need to shoot wisely in War Thunder, especially in tank battles. Each vehicle has its own weak and strong points in the hull, which must be penetrated with specific projectiles. Shots are fired taking into account ballistics and armor penetration, the presence of obstacles and other random elements. In airplanes, you need to competently approach the enemy, knocking out the pilot or the engine on board, throw your opponent off the tail in time and help your allies in their duels.
In short, everything is complex; doing a simple “pew-pew” will definitely not work here.
Upgrading, as mentioned above, in War Thunder is carried out both for the account as a whole and for a specific model of equipment. We will gain experience in matches by destroying enemy equipment or capturing control points. After the battle is over, depending on your contribution, you will be given the opportunity to open certain modules, as well as upgrade your crew.
Yes, the crews here are upgraded in parallel with the equipment, and at the same time, the dummies are universal. They can be placed both in the cockpit of a tank and at the controls of an airplane. At the same time, when the type of equipment changes, the perks of the fighters will also change. One day you can fly and improve the controllability of aircraft or the survivability of pilots, the other – the speed of aiming tank guns or the maneuverability of armor.
As we have already said, vehicles in the game are divided by nation and by category. The game features tanks, planes and ships from China, the USSR, Germany, the USA, Great Britain, Sweden, Japan, Italy, Israel and France. Tanks are divided into heavy, medium and light, which, in turn, have highly specialized subclasses.
War Thunder has several modes designed for fans of different formats. You can simply fly with other pilots in arcade air battles, or you can fight in joint battles where both tanks and planes participate. The ship mode in the game is the most unpopular, but even there you will always find someone to measure the length of your stern with.
In addition, the game contains realistic and simulated battles, in which the specifics of the gameplay change. In the first case, your lead marker disappears, the technique becomes more cumbersome and unruly. Simulation battles, in general, are intended only for fans of hardcore gameplay, since there the view changes to a realistic one (in tanks you will have to constantly switch between commander and gunner, in an airplane you will have to personally observe what is happening from the cockpit), and among the participants there are the most pumped and experienced players.
The most interesting thing is donation. Unlike World of Tanks, where the presence of real funds on the map does not allow the player to gain any significant advantage in battle over competitors, such a moment is present in War Thunder. It consists of the presence of donation bushes – special cosmetics that visually allow you to hide your tank (this does not apply to airplanes) from the eyes of enemies. That is, it will be more difficult for the enemy to detect your car, but you will see him.
There are also premium vehicles in the game, but they do not affect the gameplay in any way. Perhaps it allows you to more actively farm “lions” (the local currency) and experience in battles, which, in turn, speeds up your leveling.
And, of course, War Thunder can boast tons of decals, skins and other fluff that will make your car stand out from the crowd of others.
What can you say about this project in the end? In general, the game is made with high quality, and even in 2023 it does not lose its relevance. The developers really tried to make an interesting simulator of battles using military equipment, at the same time, they implemented hundreds of types of this very equipment and carefully developed their models. The picture in War Thunder, of course, is not next-gen, but quite decent, there are many modes, as well as active players. The project is still being developed and improved, and besides, it is absolutely free.
In other words, there is nothing stopping you from going in and checking out how exciting this game can be. And, believe me, despite the obvious disadvantages, there are many times more advantages in it.