For the longest time, the American heavy tank T110E5 has been my favourite tank in the game. I’ve by far the most battles in it, and I considered it my best tank. And what’s not to love?
The reload is good, the damage is does is great, the armour is decent, the mobility is lovely for a heavy. It’s a true heavium. And recently, the tank got “buffed”. And I do mean those “”, because I completely disagree with the term in this case. Wargaming removed the cupola and upped the armour, making it more of a heavy.
And with that change, they completely ruined the tank.
The thing that I loved so much about this tank was the unique playstyle required to do good in it. As a true heavium, you had to mediate between being a heavy or a med, depending on what the team needed you to be and what map you were on, the game mode you were in. That versatility meant you could basically go anywhere with it and do a good job, assuming you knew how to use the tank to the max of its capabilities.
And the main capability? Troll with the cupola. Everyone would always be aiming at your cupola, and if you wiggled your turret effectively, it meant they couldn’t pen you at all. And if they switched to prammo and try – even better, as that tends to bounce even more. It’s one reason why I did so exceedingly good in this tank and had such amazing battles. Because I snipermode almost constantly, my turret is always moving when I look around, so I basically had a lot of auto-bounces on that lovely cupola whenever I drove it. Between looking around naturally and wiggling it on purpose, it worked really really well.
By removing the cupola, Wargaming effectively turned the E5 into just another heavy, good at holding it’s own hull-down, and soaking up the bounces because of the added armour. They took away the completely unique playstyle required to drive it and to do well in it.
You can still pen the spot where the cupola was, mind you, but people don’t generally aim for it, and when they do, you can’t really troll with it much. As a result, the tank has now gone from completely lovely and fun, to utterly boring to play. If I wanted to drive a hull down monster, I would have driven the E100, and if I wanted to be OP in a heavy, I’d drive the Maus. The E5 was literally the only tank in the game that was so unique it worked best with a unique playstyle that wouldn’t work for any other tank – specifically because of that cupola. Playing it as a regular heavy simply didn’t make you reach its full potential at all, and you were likely to suffer for it.
With the changes that have now been made, the E5 hasn’t just lost that what made it so unique, it’s also set itself up to be changed further. Because now, the combination of armour, mobility and damage it can do makes it more than a little OP. The ace bar has skyrocketed, and the E5 is suddenly used in CW and tournaments again. That’s how big the changes have been. Which means that it’ll get nerfed again soon. And I doubt they’ll be giving it back its cupola.
For some reason, it’s impossible for WG to just balance a tank. They over-do it, like with the Tigers, and then have to fix it again. Same with this. You could tell beforehand already that it would become too strong now. It’ll have to change again to become more balanced. So first they take the fun away, and then they’ll take the OP-ness away. Result: a very boring not good heavy tier X tank to play.
I have been driving it since it got changed, mind you. Don’t think it’d be fair of me to complain enough to write a whole blog about it if I didn’t even try. I make no secret of complaining about the changes beforehand, because it was so obvious the E5 would lose what made it so lovely. And yes, it is an OP beast, and yes, it’s very easy now to get big massive damage games in it because people generally have a hard time penning you. But it’s truly become boring when you compare it to how it was.
So I’ll be off to find a new unique favourite tank that I can get over 1k battles in because I love it so much (and I don’t mean the Kenny, that’s just anger-management). My beloved Fury comes to mind, but that’s tier VI and hardly as exciting or challenging as tier X. But of the tanks that we have in tier X right now, there’s no tank that comes close to how the E5 used to be. This is, of course, the whole problem, and if the E5 hadn’t been so one-of-a-kind I wouldn’t even be writing this blog.
The closest thing to it might just be the IS8, which also has a unique playstyle and is a true heavium as well. But it doesn’t have the cupola, and it doesn’t have the armour that made the E5 so troll before its “buff”.
RIP old E5 with your lovely troll cupola. I’ll miss you.