World of Tanks: Modern Armor – Cold War Consumables and Customizations!
New Consumables are coming to the battlefield in Cold War mode. Learn how they work in this developer interview!
Do you like customizing your tanks to match your gameplay techniques and personal style? Then get ready, Commander!
The Cold War-era vehicles debuting in World of Tanks: Modern Armor will be able to use two exciting new Consumables exclusive to Cold War game mode: Smokescreen and Hull Patch Kits.
Both Smokescreen and Hull Patch Kits will have Standard and Enhanced versions. They’ll be available along with existing Consumables as well all the other customization options you enjoy (Emblems, Inscriptions, Flags, Camo, and Skins) to make your Cold War tanks as unique as you are.
Here to tell us all about these new Consumables and the customization options for Cold War vehicles (arriving when Modern Armor launches on April 27th!) is Lead Game Designer Jeff Gregg!
How did the design process begin with Smokescreen and Hull Patch Kits, the two new Consumables for Cold War mode?
Let’s talk about Smokescreen first.
Cold War mode uses the Cold War Vision System, and we always wanted to make sure, not only for the Cold War Vision System but just in general, that you had a way to break line of sight and flank, or protect your friends, or just cross an open field.
The Cold War maps are significantly bigger and have much larger sightlines, and the Cold War era tanks, especially when you climb up to the end game of Cold War, the Détente Era—they’re made to engage at much longer distances. So, it became very important to give players the option to do something about that.
And so Smokescreens were born. What Smokescreens will do is that it will instantly break lock of any foe that’s locked onto you. Essentially, treat it visually like it’s a building. It blocks that entire line of sight.
More details! Can you talk more specifically about how Smokescreen works?
To that end, if you’re being flanked, or you have a scout and there’s smoke between the scout and you and you block line of sight from whoever’s shooting you, they’ll still have you detected, but they won’t be able to see your outlines and information, and they won’t be able to lock onto you. It’ll be much harder to hit you, but it’s not like your impervious.
Another thing that we went back and forth on is that Smokescreen doesn’t care what team you’re on. Smoke is smoke! So if you pop smoke, or you’re not sure if that’s your friend’s smoke or your foe’s smoke, it doesn’t matter.
One of the things we found is that if you’re pursuing someone and they use Smokescreen, you can actually use it to your advantage as well. You can go into the smoke and turn the tables on them by surprising them. I tend to use it more from a distance, but at close range, it becomes like you’re fighting blindfolded and it actually becomes really interesting.
Another thing we discovered is that smoke tends to be a visual magnet, ironically. One of the tactics we’ve seen is that, if you and I are allies, and you pop Smokescreen to protect yourself, I’ll make it a point to not be in that smoke and conceal myself instead to see who’s trying to rush that smoke or shoot into it. Smoke draws attention in a very cool way.
Can any Cold War vehicle use Smokescreen?
You can use it on any Cold War vehicle you want, and it’ll take up one-third of your Consumables if you use it.
There’s a Standard and Enhanced version. The Standard is single use. Enhanced is unlimited use with recharge, just like every other Premium Consumable, and it has a passive bonus: it decreases your detectability. [Added note: Enhanced Smokescreen also creates a larger smokescreen than the Standard version.]
Was there ever a point in playtesting when all tanks on both teams used Smokescreen to see how it would affect performance?
Oh, yeah. All thirty players would play nice in a custom game where nobody shoots at each other and you all go into what is one of the densest areas of a map. You all aim at the same spot, pop thirty Smokescreens into that same spot, and then start shooting at each other to see if you can crush the GPU. Those were fun times.
What else do you want everyone to know about Smokescreen?
Smokescreen is something I’d really like feedback on!
We thought about making it so that you can see through friendly smoke, but then we had to think about, well, how would you know it’s friendly smoke? Would you see green smoke clouds, or… it just gets weird. We’ll just see how the basic system works!
One final point to mention is that bots respect smoke as well. Smokescreen will make it harder for AI to hit you.
Let’s talk about Hull Patch Kits. Hull Patch Kits were considered in the past but then put on the back burner. Why come back to them for Modern Armor?
Honestly, it’s so ubiquitous in games in general that a way to heal yourself just makes sense.
You can play in World War II, and you’ll never see them. In Cold War mode, though, especially with Smokescreen and the Cold War Vision System, with a player who’s spotted you but you don’t have in your line of sight yet, being able to break engagement and heal yourself is a super-interesting mechanic.
How did you balance the Hull Patch Kits?
We’ve tuned it so it’s not just a win stick. It’s not like a Rechargeable Shield on a lot of first-person shooters. It has a recharge and a cooldown, and it only heals a percentage of your hit points to keep you fighting.
We’ve found a whole bunch of different ways that people use it. Some people go in and brawl, and the second they take a shot, they hit the Hull Patch Kit to try to get those few extra shots in while their hit points go up.
It’s very clear to anyone who has you detected and to your whole ally team that you’re using it, though, because [other players will] see positive numbers floating off of your tank. Your foes will know that you’re healing… and they probably won’t like that you’re healing.
One interesting thing is that it ends up being more hit points for players to do damage to and earn more XP and Silver from, because that earning is based on hit points and damage. So, keep shooting at the player that’s healing and say, “Thank you!” if you think you’ve got them!
And keep in mind, Hull Patch Kits are only going to be healing your hit points, not your modules. I think it adds a lot of interesting dynamics.
What about customizations like Inscriptions and Camouflage? Do they work differently in the Cold War universe?
No. And there will still be Premium Skins as well, just like there are for the World War II tanks.
You can still apply Camo, and it has the same systemic benefit of concealment. Emblems, Inscriptions, and Flags are still there.
One thing that is different is that Cold War vehicles don’t have any Emblems on them until you purchase them. It was because when we had the default stars and all that on the tanks, it looked weird, because that’s just not how those tanks were.
But if you want to throw them on, have at it! Everything’s just as customizable as it was in World War II. If you want to throw a Belarusian flag on your Abrams, then go for it!
What’s special about Modern Armor’s Premium Skins?
Those are very specific aesthetic changes; usually you’ll get extra mesh. I know there are some that add a bunch of different attachments. They’re all aesthetic, but if you really want to look cool and stand out on the battlefield, those are really neat.
M46A1 Patton with Premium Skin
They also have the same systemic benefit as Camo right now. We’re working to see if there are other things we can do systemically to buff Skins, but for right now, if you choose to have a Skin versus a Camo, you’re not sacrificing the concealment buff that Camo gives you.
T-44A with Premium Skin
Got more questions about the new Consumables or about the customization options? Let us know in the forums!
And don’t forget about the other developer articles leading up to the release of World of Tanks: Modern Armor! Check out the full article list here:
Take the fight forward. Roll out!