World of Tanks

Spotlight

The big interview: Microsoft Studio's Phil Spencer discusses Xbox One

On self-publishing, controversial connectivity and a long-term commitment to gamers.

World of Tanks Review

Tanks for nothing.

Key events

Video game developers donate portion of sales to War Child

Video game developers donate portion of sales to War Child

World of Tanks, Verdun 1914, Democracy 3 and 1979 Revolution all involved.

A raft of video games are donating a portion of their sales to War Child's Armistice fundraising campaign this month.

The developers of World of Tanks, Verdun 1914, Democracy 3 and 1979 Revolution: Black Friday are all donating a portion of their sales.

War Child's Armistice is a fundraising campaign that encourages peaceful gameplay to support children affected by conflict.

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World of Tanks PS4 open beta dated for December

World of Tanks PS4 open beta dated for December

Get an exclusive PlayStation 4 premium tank just for playing.

World of Tanks' PS4 open beta will last from 4th-6th December, developer Wargaming.net has announced.

Players will be able to embark on 15 vs 15 tank battles. As with the game's PC version, you'll be able to upgrade and customise your tanks with new equipment, supplies, camos, inscriptions and emblems.

World of Tanks on PS4 will be free-to-play, just as it is on PC, and all microtransactions will be for cosmetic gear rather than practical upgrades.

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Face-Off: World of Tanks

Digital FoundryFace-Off: World of Tanks

UPDATE: Performance analysis updated with Xbox One stress tests.

UPDATE 4/8/15 11.10am: We've played some more World of Tanks on Xbox One since completing this article, and have found a number of maps and scenarios that stress the engine more intensely than our original performance analysis - so we took the time to compile some of these troublesome areas and put them into a new video embedded below. The article has also been updated.

Original story: Among the most ambitious 'free to play' titles available today, World of Tanks gets a visual overhaul on Xbox One that few expected. It's unique for being the only game on Microsoft's box to have cross-platform play with its older Xbox 360 release - where owners of both consoles can play in the same 15v15 online battles. But Xbox One gets plenty of upgrades over and above this, from remade map assets, a new lighting model with high dynamic range (HDR) and improved physics and effects. It's a makeover that puts PC behind in some regards, but can Xbox One claim to offer the true, definitive version?

First up, the basics: Xbox One keeps several features from the existing, bespoke Xbox 360 release that are not available on PC. Developed on the Bigworld engine by Wargaming's Chicago and Baltimore studios, the two console versions offer weather effects such as rain, plus unique time of day settings for each map - features that are not officially available on the PC release without mods. The game design and mode selection are identical between the two consoles too, right down to the camera's field of view setting, and a new Proving Grounds option where players can practice against AI opponents. Microsoft's two machines essentially have parity in their core gameplay features, while PC takes an independent path.

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A recent survey of 10 million mobile gamers claimed only 2.2 per cent of the free-to-play audience spent any money at all. That's worrying - does it mean developers are deliberately designing games to cater for the minuscule minority rather than the vast majority?

World of Tanks: Xbox 360 Edition review

The last time Microsoft took on publishing duties for the Xbox version of a constantly evolving PC hit, it ended up swimming in Minecraft millions like Scrooge McDuck. Will the same happen with World of Tanks, which has around 78 million registered players on PC? That depends on how eager you are for a slightly scruffy and incredibly niche game where one shot can kill you stone dead.

Don't take that as being too dismissive. World of Tanks is something of a rough diamond of a game, taking subject matter best suited to the hardcore simulation genre and turning it into a paradoxically fast-paced slow-moving multiplayer action game.

As the Pixar-esque title suggests, it takes place in a curious alternate dimension where the Second World War was fought solely by tanks, and never ended. When you first load it up, and after completing a basic tutorial, you're given a trio of basic light tanks - one American, one British, one German - and left to your own devices, battling across seven maps in 15-v-15 online battles.

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World of Tanks: Xbox 360 Edition release date confirmed

World of Tanks: Xbox 360 Edition release date confirmed

F2P with an Xbox Live Gold account. 7 day trial without.

World of Tanks: Xbox 360 Edition launches on 12th February, Wargaming has announced.

This version was developed by Wargaming West, formerly Day 1 Studios, creator of MechAssault, and is published by Microsoft.

It's free to play if you have an Xbox Live Gold account. If you don't, there's a seven day trial. Expect microtransactions, such as premium tanks, consumables and premium accounts which "boost experience and currency accrual rates", Wargaming said.

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World of Tanks Review

World of Tanks Review

Tanks for nothing.

For developers Wargaming.net, 150 different tanks, tank destroyers and self-propelled guns just aren't enough. They plan to eventually expand their game's roster to include around 500 engines of war from around the world. Some are infamous, some are esoteric and more than a few never got off the drawing board.

It seems that, whatever kind of person you might be, Wargaming.net believe there's a tank out there just for you. Just as there is also an armour-piercing shell with your name on it or, in my case, a constant and unremitting rain of them.

World of Tanks has been rumbling along in open beta for a while now, but we're reviewing it as a boxed copy is making its way onto the UK high street this week - despite the fact that it's free to play online (more on this later). It's a team-based shooter which draws heavily from its first-person cousins, giving you the opportunity to take control of tanks from the classic era of armoured combat while also shedding any pretence of being a serious vehicle sim. You still point and shoot, but you do it at a rather slower and more considered pace. If you can imagine Day of Defeat as a lithe and limber ninja, then World of Tanks is a stoic sumo with a particular and very patient style.

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Out This Week - 15/04/2011

Michael Jackson! Clash of Heroes HD!

Three million sales later, and Michael Jackson: The Experience finally lands on the exciting platforms: Xbox 360 (Kinect) and PlayStation 3 (Move).

World of Tanks European release date

World of Tanks European release date

Tank MMO finally launches in the West.

World of Tanks launches in Europe and North America on 12th April, Wargaming.net has announced.

The free-to-play vehicle MMO has been in various stages of closed and open beta testing for nine months.

World of Tanks sees players tear about the battlefield in World War II-era machines. There are destructible environments and upgrades.

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World of Tanks

Heavy going?

World of Tanks: now that's a good and vague title. Roll it around your gamer's brain for a second and see what images float up. Maybe an MMO, with gangs of player tanks raiding factories and defeating massive tank bosses for spare parts. Or it could be some horrible sim that features more than 800 different rivet types and models your crew's gradual descent into insanity if you forget to let them out for toilet breaks. I even had a vision of a Sims-style life sim that was like Dinosaurs but with tanks; the dad tank coming home from work with a tie hanging off his gun barrel, the kid tanks playfully ramming his treads.