WOTBB 9 – Wargaming’s noob mistake

Original blog date: January 11th, 2015

Since the update (version 1.5) in the beginning of December, World of Tanks Blitz has gotten a number of problems it didn’t have before. There is the fact that the general chat has stopped working for some people, the fact that the game crashes a lot more, especially when loading levels, and the fact that after the app has crashed and you restart it, the chat won’t function at all anymore, not in between matches, and not during matches, meaning you can’t converse with your platoon mate, your teammates, or even your enemies, until you have restarted the app -again-. That’s all technical stuff though, and I’m fairly hopeful that it will get fixed once we get version 1.6, which I’ve understood is to be released in just two weeks. Fingers crossed.

However, the real problem since we got version 1.5 isn’t any of the technical difficulties we’ve been experiencing, annoying though they are. The real problem is the noobs. As of version 1.5, the app is open to Android users. That in itself didn’t have to be a bad thing – lots of new people playing the game means lots of new enemies to shoot at, so that’s not a problem in itself.

But along with version 1.5, we got several weeks where the first victories after 7am, 1pm and 7pm earned you 5 times the experience you would normally get (this is usually limited to 2 times). We, being everyone I talk to and platoon with, quite liked that. It helped us earn more tanks and high level tanks more quickly.

We failed to understand the effect this would have on all the newbies in the game on their Android devices. Because of the holidays (meaning everyone has time off of school or work to tank), all those newbies could play a lot more games, and they earned tanks very quickly due to the 5x XP. Result; there are noobs running around everywhere, in all tiers. You meet them everywhere. They’re part of your enemy, which, at the beginning, was funny, but they’re also on your own team, and they’re just too numerous now.

Normally, you would sometimes get one camper in your game that would either be the victim of a game that crashed, internet lagging, or simply a rare noob that didn’t know what to do. But now, it’s kind of like a zombie-infestation, where it started with one oddly behaving tanker with no brain driving around, doing noob-stuff, and then there’s another one, and another one, until you’re surrounded by noobs. And since they also disabled the ability to shoot your team members with version 1.5, you can’t even shoot them to get rid of them, which in some situations would probably actually help your team achieve victory. It’s almost like Wargaming wanted the disease to spread.

I’ve seen teams where, when looking at the results after the battle, three people, out of the seven in that team, have done exactly 0 points of damage. It’s no wonder that team loses. And unfortunately, it’s not a singular event. In the last three days alone, I’ve witnessed at least ten of these games myself, so I’m not even including all the ones the rest of LOCA has witnessed. It makes the game incredibly frustrating, because even if you are a good player and you rock at the game, you’ll lose because of all the noobs in your team that can’t do anything and that just ruin everything.

Especially when you have the team with lots of noobs and the enemy actually works together. This combined with the constant crashing of the app just makes it hard to like the game right now. I know players that are getting so fed up with it that they want to quit playing it, at least for a while, just to not run into the noobs and just to not have to deal with the crashes.

And it wouldn’t be so bad if it was just the crashing. We can all understand that technical difficulties can and will happen, and it’ll get fixed. But Wargaming should never have gone for the 5x XP 3 times a day for such a long period, when so many new players had just started playing the game. I can only imagine how it is for the Android users. They got to the high tiers way too quickly and have no clue what the F is going on, why the F those tanks are so powerful and why the F they’re all red and seem invincible (and why the F they die all the time).

They have no clue yet how to approach the higher level tanks, or the dynamic needed in a team to play higher level tanks and win. They won’t know the differences between the different kinds of ammunition yet, or why equipment and crew training are important. Heck, they don’t even know that when you’re left with five members of your team and there is only one enemy about, capturing the base is a no-no (for the blondes amongst us; you drive around and hunt the bastard down then).

It is stuff that you’re supposed to learn when you’re around your first tier V or VI, but by the time normal people would get to those, these noobs are already at tiers VIII and IX. They’re not only devastating winrates not their own, they’re also sucking the fun right out of the game for us Apple-users, which have been around for longer and know how to play the game.

When I see a team that has ‘noob’ written all over it, I can’t help by state game-wide “I smell android-users”. Most often, this leads to some affirmatives from people sensing the same, and this one time even an outraged reaction of someone saying he was using his iPad Air 2. But considering the fact that the iPad Air 2 has only been in stores from almost the same time as Android users have been able to play this game, he’s as much a noob as they are. I don’t think he realised that when he showed off the fact he has an iPad Air 2.

It’s made me quite bitter, and I don’t like that. Commenting on the fact that the team I’m in is full of noobs is something I used to laugh at, because usually only people with a very low winrate do it when they die, blaming the rest of the team for their own noobism. But nowadays, it’s rarely the noobs that do it. Which is kind of a relief, because I know it’s not just me, but at the same time, it is a very bad thing that experienced players that know how to fight intense fights, face three enemies (or more) on their own and win, feel angry and frustrated enough to call their own team a variation of all sorts of nasty words.

It is painful when you’ve done over 4k worth of damage yourself, and you lose, because no one else managed to squeeze out even 1k worth of damage. And even if you do win, it is still frustrating when you can’t count on your own team. And now that the zombies have taken over the game, it is next to impossible to eradicate the virus and just like in all the zombie movies, the company responsible for the virus can’t do anything about it either. It will have to run its course.

Maybe, if given enough time, these noobs will become half-decent players. Maybe even decent ones. The question is; will that happen before all the good players the game has now have given up on it and moved on to other games?

Battles fought: 3,370
Winrate: 57.57%

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