Tobold's Blog
Saturday, February 23, 2019
What is winning? Part 2

In the previous post I discussed that it isn’t all that obvious in World of Tanks whether you “won” or “lost” a battle. Today I would like to discuss “winning” further in the context of the out-of-battle rest of the game.

Now in a game that has levels (tiers in WoT), gaining experience points that make you gain levels sure looks like a win. However by that measure you can only ever win in World of Tanks. Every battle gains you some xp, regardless how bad you played. You can lose credits in a battle, but you can never lose xp. So of course gaining just a handful of xp soon pretty much feels like a loss. Especially when you were on “2x XP for the first battle won”, your team won, but you got very little xp because you contributed little. Doesn’t even have to be your fault, I once got into a game which my team won so quickly, with the slow tank I had I never got to fire a shot.

Things get even weirder when you “level up”. I just recently finished researching a higher tier heavy tank, but the experience was somewhat painful: You need to buy the tank, which costs quite a lot of your credits. Then you either need to spend free xp as well, or play the tank with stock equipment, which means it performs very badly. And even if you have the tank fully upgraded, you now play against higher tier opponents; it is completely possible that your old tank was relatively good for its tier, and the new one isn’t, making leveling up feel more like a drag than a reward.

Because I frequently still like my old tank, and I have enough garage slots, I tend to keep both the old and the new tank. The disadvantage of that method is that then your new tank needs a new crew, which will be less good than the old tank crew. In fact I have far too many tank crews in the game. But then, you can’t easily shuffle tank crews around, except to premium tanks.

I do have tier X tanks, the highest level in the game. They have the obvious advantage of always being top tier. However in tier X games the average player skill is much higher than my skill. And there is no “next tank” to work towards when you play tier X, so I rarely do. It appears to me that winning is a bit weird in World of Tanks, and different people end up with their own win conditions in their head.


I generally considered winning in WOT to be based on exp gain compared to rest of the team in the result dialog. In general exp I felt measured a players skill better than win8. Unfortunately even though the result dialog gives base exp, the exp per game that can be pulled from the database is total exp after modifiers. As a result it is useless for a skill/winning measure.
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