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Intro to World of Tanks, Game Modes, and Matchmaking
JAN. 27, 2023

In World of Tanks Modern Armor, you make history!

Learn more about your first steps as a new tanker by clicking the links below or scrolling on for all the info you need:

Introduction: New Player Experience

Upon launching World of Tanks Modern Armor for the first time, you’ll load into the first of a series of training missions. Each of these missions will focus on a different aspect of gameplay through guided simulated battles.

Mission #1 – Middle East: Hold the Line

The focus of this mission is to teach you about sniping and is done using a Cold War tank so that you can experience that mode’s spotting and sight system. This mission is also one of the first to bring in more life-like banter between all of the tank crewmen. Stand your ground and take out the enemy!

Intro - Mission 1 - 1
Intro - Mission 1 - 2
Intro - Mission 1 - 3
Intro - Mission 1 - 4
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Mission #2 – Vietnam: Seek and Destroy

This mission will teach you the basics of moving, aiming, zooming, and using auto-lock in a simulated battle.

Intro - Mission 2 - 1
Intro - Mission 2 - 2
Intro - Mission 2 - 3
Intro - Mission 2 - 4
Intro - Mission 2 - 5
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Mission #3 – France: Flank and Overcome

This mission is designed to teach the importance of precision shots and flanking. There is only one enemy tank, the Tiger 131, but its armor is impenetrable on most sides, making it imperative that you flank it.

Intro - Mission 3 - 1
Intro - Mission 3 - 2
Intro - Mission 3 - 3
Intro - Mission 3 - 4
Intro - Mission 3 - 5
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Mission #4 – Middle East: Secure Oilfields

The first three missions have demonstrated the use of basic controls, the effectiveness of aiming for modules and flanking the enemy, and the role of playing the sniper by effectively using the zoom. Now it’s time to combine all of that into one last training mission, and it’s about to get heated: some of the enemy AI tanks (and one of your allies) have missiles.

Intro - Mission 4 - 1
Intro - Mission 4 - 2
Intro - Mission 4 - 3
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Co-Op and Multiplayer Battles

After completing the training missions, you will be able to play Co-Op battles to put your new skills to the test! Upon completion of 10 battles, you will unlock access to play Multiplayer battles for a more challenging and rewarding experience.

Co-Op Battles Multiplayer Battles
  • Player vs. Enemy (PvE) battles where you and 14 allies join forces against a team of 15 AI opponents
  • Earnings are reduced compared to Multiplayer to account for the difficulty of the matches
  • Player vs. Player (PvP) battles where you and 14 allies play against 15 enemy players
  • The highest potential earnings are available

Introduction to the Game Modes

Although you’ll start in the Cold War Co-Op garage by default at the end of training, you can play Co-Op battles in either World War II or Cold War game mode and can switch between the two to unlock Multiplayer.

World War II Mode

Cold War Mode

Each mode gives you the chance to take command of armored vehicles that saw battle as well as those that were based on blueprints or proposed designs from that time period in history.

Whichever mode you choose, you’ll be provided with vehicles to use for your initial Co-Op battles:

World War II Mode Starting Tanks Cold War Mode Starting Tanks
T-127 (Premium Tank)

There are four main differences between World War II and Cold War game modes:

  1. The tanks available
  2. The spotting system
  3. The matchmaking system
  4. Artillery vs ATGM vehicles

Before you head into battle, learn more about each mode to answer the question: Where will you make your mark?

World War II Mode

Vehicles available in World War II mode include some of the most powerful battlefield machines in use in Europe and Asia from the years preceding World War II through the period that immediately followed. You’ll be able to play such iconic vehicles as the Sherman, the Tiger, and the T-34.

Nations and Classes

In World War II mode, the tanks you can play are assigned to 12 nations:













Within each nation, tank levels are shows as tiers. Tier III is the lowest tier, and Tier X is the highest.

Please note that although we will mention Tiers I and II below, tanks from these tiers are no longer available to acquire except through special events and can only play with each other.

As you earn Silver and XP from your introductory Co-Op battles, be sure to check out the “Tanks” tab in your garage. There you’ll find the tanks from each nation sorted into branching paths called Tech Trees. These show you the upgrade paths you can take to unlock and earn higher-tier tanks.

In the Tech Trees, you’ll see that in World War II mode, you can play five different tank classes, each with their own strengths and weaknesses (see our Tank Class Guide for more info):

  • Light Tanks
  • Medium Tanks
  • Heavy Tanks
  • Tank Destroyers
  • Artillery (also known as Self-Propelled Gun, or SPG)

These tank classes are important to consider when it comes to matchmaking!


For multiplayer battles in World War II mode, the game’s matchmaker will create teams by taking into account the tiers and classes of all the players’ tanks, with the goal of making the teams as equal as possible:

  • Matchmaking 101
    • The tanks you’ll face in battle will vary based on the tank and tier you are playing. The garage will display which tier you could possibly see with your selected tank.
  • Artillery Per Team
    • Teams are limited to three artillery players per team (and one per platoon). Additionally, the limit will be adjusted according to the number of players in the queue:
      • Artillery limits for Battle Tiers 3-4:
        • Fewer than 45 players in the queue: One per team
        • 45 or more players in the queue: Three per team
      • Artillery limits for Battle Tiers 5-11:
        • Fewer than 100 players in the queue: Two per team
        • 100 or more players in the queue: Three per team

Co-Op battles in World War II mode are slightly different. They use a two-tier bracketing system:

  • Tier I and II
  • Tier III and IV
  • Tier V and VI
  • Tier VII and VIII
  • Tier IX and X

So, if you select a Tier IV tank, you will face opponents only from Tier III or Tier IV.

Spotting System

Finally, there’s the spotting system that determines how tanks are detected:

  • Enemy vehicles remain completely hidden until spotted by you or your allies.
  • To spot an enemy vehicle so that their tank becomes visible, your tank’s view range is compared against the enemy tank’s camouflage to determine the distance at which your view range overpowers their concealment and they become spotted.
  • Spotted enemies can still be seen only up to a distance of 564 meters away from your vehicle. After that, you will be unable to see an enemy vehicle even if it has been spotted.
  • This is an automatic spotting system that is handled by the game.

The game HUD will display this spotting information to help you know when you can be spotted.

Cold War Mode

Vehicles available in Cold War mode saw action during the period of tension between the late 1940s and the 1990s. You’ll be able to play such iconic vehicles as the Abrams, the Leopard, and the T-72.

Factions, Classes, and Items

In Cold War mode, instead of nations, tanks are classified into three powerful factions:

Western Alliance

Eastern Alliance


However, each faction still contains Tech Trees that show you the paths from introductory tanks to more advanced vehicles. You’ll quickly notice one key difference from World War II mode when looking at the Cold War Tech Trees: artillery is not available in Cold War mode!

Although there is no artillery, there are other items that are exclusive to Cold War:


Unlike the World War II matchmaker, the Cold War matchmaker uses Era-Based Matchmaking. This applies for both Multiplayer and Co-Op matches.

Each tank in Cold War mode belongs to a specific Era in the table below. There are three levels of tanks per Era.

Eras matchmake within each other only! Post-War Era tanks like the M47 Patton will never face the M1A1 Abrams, which is situated in the Détente Era.

This system has been designed to create closer games in terms of power levels of the tanks, for more excitement and balance!

Post-War Era (Era 1)
Late 1940s – mid-1950s

Escalation Era (Era 2)
1960s – 1970s

Détente Era (Era 3)
1980s – 1990s

Spotting System

The Cold War spotting system differs from the World War II spotting system:

  • Enemy vehicles are always visible at all times.
  • You can manually see enemies by using your optics to scan the battlefield without any distance limitations.
  • There is still the automatic spotting system as mentioned in the World War II section if they manage to get close enough without you manually seeing them.
  • This spotting system is a combination of manually spotting vehicles and an automatic spotting system that is handled by the game.

Additional Questions

Will World War II vehicles be placed in the same matchmaking queue as Cold War vehicles?

  • The World War II game mode and the Cold War game mode have separate queues to create fun, balanced matches.

Will I be able to use my Silver, Free XP, and Gold in both World War II mode and Cold War mode?

  • Yes! Use them for whichever mode you want to play.

Will my Premium Time apply to both Cold War mode and World War II mode?

  • Yes! Your Premium Time will provide the same benefits for whichever mode you play.

Is there
artillery in Cold War mode?

  • Cold War mode is artillery-free.