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DEVELOPER Q&A - SESSION 1

Welcome to the newest Questions and Answers Session where the developers are answering the questions posed by players.
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Do modules generally gain more hitpoints per Tier and do they have different hitpoints in general from vehicle to vehicle?
Currently, module hit points do not actually change from Tier to Tier or vehicle to vehicle unless the vehicle has an upgrade or retrofit that increases a module's hit points (i.e. engine upgrades, track upgrades, etc.). Due to the way we scale component damage, this gives vehicles at different Tiers an equal chance to destroy modules. This was done so that a low Tier vehicle could still help destroy tracks and start fires on higher Tier vehicles, even if they had a harder time penetrating their hull.
With the new balance 2.0 changes being made, this old model no longer is necessary, since the disparity between Tiers has decreased drastically. Vehicles at lower Tiers now have a much better fighting chance against higher Tier vehicles, which means we can switch back to a component health system that scales with Tier. On top of this, we can now also use component hit point values to make each of the vehicles feel a little more unique, and make them stronger or weaker in other areas outside of fire start chance. We can also use this value to give them a few more slight advantages or disadvantages based on their historical performance in combat.
We will be introducing these new component health changes soon, after the initial balance 2.0 release.
What will the role of Light Tanks be in Balance 2.0?
The core idea behind this class in Balance 2.0 is for them to be semi-scouts as well as moderately armored flankers. High speed on the move accuracy will be a key feature of Light Tanks. Additionally, LTs and tracked AFVs will have the best off-road performance in the game, but their top speed will be inferior to wheeled vehicles on hard surfaces. To compensate, Light Tanks will also be more agile and accelerate faster in Balance 2.0, allowing them to flank heavier opponents and serve as pseudo scouts on the frontline.
Is the 3 ammo slots limit currently active on Balance 2.0 PTS intentional? If so, why was it included?
Reducing the ammo slots from 5 to 3 was a deliberate choice. In an abstract sense, each slot for ammo indicates a type of scenario the player is planning to be ready for during a match. Setting up 5 ammo slots requires players to figure out five different situations they need to be prepared for on a match to match basis, otherwise the choices in which ammo to put in the slots lacks significant meaning. In reviewing the ammo mechanics and the different circumstances where the different ammo would be useful, we determined that condensing the scenarios to plan for down to 3 from 5 makes it easier to make clear choices about which ammo to take into a match. In addition, the 5 ammo slots pushed the consumable keybinds out to less conveniently located keys on the keyboard.
Is High Explosive damage getting improved in Balance 2.0? Whenever I aim at very thick armor, the damage done is very low.
That's an intentional mechanism – we have no intentions of introducing a round with guarenteed high damage regardless of where you aim at the vehicle. In Balance 2.0, HE shells will perform best against thinly-armored targets and will have their own distinctive bonuses, advantages and drawbacks.
Bonus
  • Up to +25% damage on full penetrations depending on ammo quality
  • Up to a +25 chance to start fires or +50% if a fuel tank is struck depending on ammo quality
  • Doesn't have to penetrate in order to deal damage
Advantages
  • Highest potential damage when striking thin armor
Disadvantages
  • Will fail to fuse at angles of impact of 70 to 80 degrees depending on shell quality
  • Impacting armor of 100mm or thicker will deal little to no damage
  • Impacting armor around 50mm of thickness will deal 50% damage
  • Less accurate than HEAT (but more accurate than HESH)
  • Low shell velocity (but higher than HESH)
  • 50% chance of being triggered early by cage armor
  • Lowest penetration value of all ammunition types
For more information about Balance 2.0 shells, please visit our Hitpoints and Ammunition article.
Beyond Balance 2.0, what are the immediate (within 1-3 months) plans to improve the Armored Warfare playerbase situation? What measures are you going to implement to allow players on the North American server to get into PvP games beyond the player organized sync-drops?
We have several ideas how to improve the queue situation. For one, we are introducing the new Skirmish feature outlined in our recent Update 0.19 preview. As the next step, we will focus on Update 0.20 that will bring additional Balance 2.0 related changes as well as more vehicle content, maps and other yet-undisclosed improvements we are working on.
With the implementation of zoom variations for classes, can we expect retrofits to allow a larger zoom?
That is not planned at the moment. Main Battle Tanks for example intentionally have a lower zoom factor compared to – say – Tank Destroyers because their role in Balance 2.0 will be the one of a brawler. Introducing a retrofit that would improve the MBT zoom factor would negate these rebalances.
What changes to the skin/painting system are planned, and will they allow more customization?
We are working on a new Skin system that will allow us to introduce custom skins to vehicles without having to implement the "special edition" vehicles such as MERC or SHARK. These skins will for example be available in the future as a part of the Loot system. Others will be possible to purchase or to win during various events. Additionally, we've been working on an improved decal system that will allow players to resize and reposition the decals in the game.
Why did you decide to limit Retrofit customization on low Tiers?
We have redesigned all Retrofits in order to reduce the inherent imbalances the previous iteration of the system caused. This also allows us to ensure the bonuses they provide are individually more impactful and easier for players to understand. The current Retrofit system achieves these baseline goals and will allow us to further expand on it in the future as needed with additional utility focused retrofits.
Under what conditions will account mirroring be considered for NA and EU. How low does the NA population need to drop to before the current policy will be re-evaluated?
While we are aware of the NA population issues, at this moment we are unable to share our plans to address this with the community.
Are the bots really reloading to different ammo in Balance 2.0, or is their switch instant?
Yes, they take time to reload and will switch when a new target presents itself which necessitates a change in ammo.
Is the Armor Inspector still planned?
Yes, it is something we will be working to introduce in the future.
The developers mentioned earlier the idea to introduce the "x-ray" shots that would show what exactly happened to a shell upon impact. Is that still in plans?
It's something we would still like to have, but we are currently not planning to introduce that feature in the foreseeable future since there are more important issues that we need to tackle first in Updates 0.19 and 0.20.
What are your plans for the future patches once Balance 2.0 is released (after 0.20)?
More content, more maps and of course, more happy players. On a more specific note, we unfortunately are not ready to disclose our exact long-term plans at this time. As of now, our main focus for the first half of 2017 is to bring the game up to a healthy release state.
Would you consider releasing micropatches in between bigger ones with just some part of the upcoming content (like maps for example)?
While technically possible, our production pipeline for creating and testing content patches is not suited for this. We do release micro-patches in the form of hotfixes to address major issues post-patch, but these types of patches are much easier to develop and test in comparison. That being said, it is possible we may revisit this approach in the future.
How many NEW vehicles lines are being worked on or are somewhat ready for introduction?
Several. The Czechoslovak/Polish line is complete and the French line is nearing completion, we are also preparing to finish the Chinese MBTs of Zhang Feng and have several other lines in various stages of production beyond that. Overall, AW will see a significant increase in the number of progression vehicles released this year.
Will the time between Updates 0.19 and 0.20 be as long as between 0.18 and 0.19?
Highly unlikely. Both updates are very large and critical to the game, with 0.20 introducing the first full set of new vehicles in quite some time, but 0.19 possesses a laundry list of changes which affect nearly every facet of AW's core gameplay. Thus, the time needed to implement and test such changes has gone far beyond what we would consider a "normal" patch cycle. We currently intend to have this be the exception, not the rule for patches going forward.
In the latest Developer Digest, you mention the code of the camouflage has been fixed, what exactly was not working?
Previously, the code which provided the additional bonus to camo when equipped did not actually provide the bonus despite the UI stating so.
What is the general principle (announced with Balance 2.0) that will make high Tier MBTs strong enough (with reliable front armor) yet more vulnerable (less "pixel hunting")? How is that possible without complicating things above and beyond baseline understanding of average participant?
Higher Tier MBTs will generally have one larger weak point on the hull while their turrets are difficult to penetrate. They will have the highest Hit Points out of all the vehicles in each Tier, so even with a more reliable armor vulnerability they have the power to outlast other vehicles when slugging it out. While their on-road mobility remains high, their off-road mobility be reduced compared to 0.18, giving lighter vehicles a better chance to engage and disengage. APS effectiveness will be reduced, making MBTs more vulnerable to ATGMs, but their strongest armor is still thick enough to defend against poorly aimed missiles. Finally, automatic track repair time for broken treads will take long which leaves MBTs more vulnerable to being flanked or destroyed while immobilized from being tracked unless the repair kit consumable is used. MBTs will continue to be a strong class that can project power wherever they deploy, but they will be less able to ignore the threats other classes represent than in the past.
Will more Chinese vehicles such as the ZTZ99, Type 85 IFV and VT2/VT3 be introduced in the future?
Yes, we have plans for more Chinese vehicles, although we can't give any specifics at this time.
Can some of the open-spaced PvP maps, such as Narrows, be expanded and converted for GLOPS?
Yes, we do have plans to convert some of the existing PvP maps into GLOPS maps as well. The first such converted map will be based on the map Frontline.
Is it planned to change the name of the Tank Destroyer class, since the Tank Destroyer designation is no longer used? Many of the Tank Destroyer vehicles are in reality Fire Support Vehicles.
This is something we currently do not plan to do. Similar to how our MBT and AFV classes possess vehicles in them which are better suited for certain types of engagements, we also plan to introduce different variants of Tank Destroyers with other capabilities than the current line.
Aren't you afraid that the Tank Destroyer class will have problems in Balance 2.0?
Not at all. In Balance 2.0, Tank Destroyers will enjoy many advantages, including improved stealth, additional levels of zoom and the best accuracy in the game. Our desire is to establish the existing branch of TDs as the more mobile wheeled variants allows us to add other types of Tank Destroyers in the future. The current TD line will be very fast, particularly on hardened surfaces and will be able to flank and ambush the enemy at medium to long distances. With that vision in mind, we are adjusting the class on PTS to ensure it matches our established goals.
Would it be possible to have a simpler interface in the game?
More streamlined, yes. That is something we are working on, both in Garage and in battle.
Will you introduce Historical Battles to Armored Warfare?
That's not currently planned. We have other ideas for new modes and the entire concept of historical battle re-enactments doesn't fit Armored Warfare's narrative.
Can you replace the PT-76 with T-44 and its variants?
We are not considering introducing the T-44 at the moment. It is essentially a World War Two tank and we do not feel it would be a good addition to Armored Warfare.
Will we see some Ukrainian tanks in the future?
Yes, we do have plans for vehicles such as the BM Oplot.
Many players do feel that the changes introduced in Balance 2.0 are bringing the game closer to World of Tanks. What is your answer to that claim?
The introduction of Balance 2.0 is not the introduction of World of Tanks mechanics – it's the improvement, overhaul or fine-tuning of the existing Armored Warfare mechanics. We are moving towards our own great game and are not afraid to take drastic steps and implement fundamental changes that other developers wouldn't – the removal of indirect fire artillery for instance. The "moving towards World of Tanks" notion is based on misunderstanding the upcoming changes or on intentional attempts to find whatever means necessary to justify this opinion. At the end of the day, players must keep in mind we are attempting to "reset" many of AW's key gameplay systems, in order to establish a better gameplay baseline which can then be expanded on further with brand new mechanics previously not featured in either game.
Will the T-55M1 receive guided missiles?
No, the T-55M1 variant was specifically selected because it lacks the Bastion launching system.
Since the HEAT rounds or ATGMs (HEAT with own propellant) are the true killers in real life, how will this be reflected in the game?
Rebalanced ATGMs will gain a lot of usefulness in the sense that protective measures such as APS will be rebalanced in order not to be exceedingly powerful. ATGMs possess the highest penetration and damage values across all round types, but also face the highest number of potential countermeasures. Similarly, HEAT rounds on certain vehicles offer higher penetration values and have the potential to do more catastrophic internal damage, but are easier to defeat with ERA and composite armor.
For more information about Balance 2.0 shells, please visit our Hitpoints and Ammunition article.
APS is being nerfed because it's been decided that the way it works is unrealistic – why aren't ATGMs being treated in a similar way?
To be clear, APS in Balance 2.0 was not nerfed because the way it worked was "unrealistic". The original APS implementation was too strong and offered no meaningful counter-play outside of just accepting the loss of one ATGM to place the system on cooldown. The new system provides a clear progression in the overall strength of APS as you go up in Tiers, but it no longer retains its "get out of jail free" capabilities. Overall, total realism is not something we strive towards as it makes for very poor gameplay. While we do try to use realistic values and approaches wherever we can in order to sell the feeling that these vehicles and systems perform similar to their real-world counterparts, realism alone never trumps gameplay in Armored Warfare. Instead, it acts as the creative means to support it. Such is the case with the APS and ATGM rebalance.
Are there going to be new Joint Project Vehicle lines or Premiums?
Yes, there's a strong possibility of this although their appearance as premiums is more likely, as few reached operational status.
What is the current developer stance on Shot Delay?
The Shot Delay issue was fixed in 0.17 with the overhaul of how shots are calculated on the server side. As such, the issue is now resolved. Any instances of "shot delay" now are caused primarily by poor connection and packet loss, something we can unfortunately not influence.
Are the developers currently happy with the speed of Armored Warfare's development?
We are never happy, there's always a room for improvement. But with Balance 2.0 coming soon, content creation (specifically vehicles and maps) is picking up steam even as we write these lines.
Is there any specific ETA on South Korean vehicles?
Not one we are ready to share at the moment apart from confirming that they will not be a part of Update 0.19.
Will you release nation-based specialized vehicles like the Australian M1A1 AIM and the South Korean T-80U?
Yes, nationalized variants are something we are considering as there are some unique looking exports of iconic vehicles. That being said, we will primarily be focusing on non-exports first.
Do you have any plans for introducing the game to Steam?
We can only repeat the previous My.com statement at the moment:
Obviously there are many routes to the advertising and gaining of new players, and Steam is one of those that can be considered. You might have seen that one of My.com's other games, Cloud Pirates, was recently passed through Steam Greenlight and should that prove to be successful it's not out of the question that AW could follow suit. However, that doesn't mean there are any concrete plans or anything to announce about it right now.
What tanks will be the British Tier 2 or 3 MBTs?
We currently have plans to introduce 2 main variants of the Centurion, with the possibility of introducing the Conqueror as well.
When Vickers Mk.7/2 replaces the Tier 8 Western European MBT Ariete, will the branch name be changed to "British MBT Line"?
Possibly. Please note that such a change would be purely cosmetic. The Ariete will also most likely stay as an alternative Tier 8 option for the line.
Any news about the fourth Dealer?
Not at this time.
Will Tier 9 M8 get an additional armor upgrade like the Tier 8 has?
The stock Tier 9 Thunderbolt II will come with the armor package for the Tier 8.
Will you release the flag of the Commonwealth of Nations?
We can add it, yes.
Will you release the hydraulic suspension system?
Yes, there are both current and future vehicles we plan to include which use this form of suspension. It is certainly something we want to add this year.
Can you tell us about long term goals for the PvE players? What plans do you have for us?
To start with, there are the upcoming Balance 2.0 changes which increase the difficulty of hard mode and enable the AI to select the appropriate ammo based on its target. We've also given AI the ability to fire ATGMs at players as well. Last but not least, we want to start focusing on the currently undeveloped storyline part of the game.
Are you happy with current progression speed? It seems to me that all those events, insignias and bonuses are making the progress really fast.
The base progression speed, yes – there are no plans to change it. As for the bonuses, however, that's something that needs to be looked into in the future along with My.com.
Are you working currently on better interface? Like the status of personal missions visible in battle for example.
Yes, among other things, we are working to improve the Garage UI first.
Will you rework the loot system? There are too many crates, and platinum ones are dropping multiple platinum boosts per crate, making them not very useful.
Yes, there are plans to enhance the Loot system in the future – both in mechanics and the perceived value of the rewards within.
Will you add more features to proving grounds such as moving targets for example, or the ability to choose opponents?
Not in the immediate future, but it's something we know would increase the utility of the proving grounds.
Will you implement rare and unique retrofit drops from Loot crates?
Our long-term plan is to introduce rare and unique drops to the Loot crates which among other things, may include certain items which offer improved vehicle performance.
Is the Leopard 1A5 MBT going to get the MEXAS upgrade?
In 0.19, the Leopard 1A5 has had its turret and surrounding cannon armor upgraded with an applique armor package as a stock upgrade. Like the upcoming Tier 8 Leopard 2A4 Evo, the MEXAS variant of the Leopard 1A5 may be introduced as a separate vehicle in the future.
Are you planning to keep the Global Operations mode open?
Yes, Global Operations is definitely not going away. We will be enhancing the mode by introducing more maps and mechanics, starting in Update 0.19 with the new Barren Divide map.
Will armor decay be modeled in the future?
After evaluating all balance implications presented with the potential integration of armor degradation, we have decided to shelve this idea for the foreseeable future. We believe the changes made in Balance 2.0 will accomplish the armor and penetration goals we originally set forth.
Will you introduce Object 279 and Black Eagle as Premiums?
We currently have no plans to introduce Object 279. The Black Eagle will be introduced, but not as a Premium vehicle.
Is an endgame like Clan Wars in development or has the idea been scrapped?
We are developing a Clan Wars like mode, yes, but it will not come before the playerbase is stabilized.
When are we going to see leader boards and a complete dossier on the website?
These features are currently in discussion with My.com. We don't have an announcement to share with you yet.
Whatever the Lords of War mode?
The current plan is to release it in Update 0.19, although the exact date Season 1 will go live has yet to be announced.
Is there any development in regards to the Matchmaking mechanism?
In Balance 2.0, Matchmaking will take roles into account as well as class. Players should see improved setups with an approximately equal number of scouts and brawlers, resulting in more balanced teams. Vehicles will have "roles" assigned to them – the Terminator variants, for example, count as brawlers despite their AFV designation due to their increased size, armor and firepower.
That's it for today. We'll see you on the battlefield!

Source : aw.my.com 
DEVELOPER Q&A - SESSION 1 DEVELOPER Q&A - SESSION 1 Reviewed by Jager Gemz on 1/27/2017 Rating: 5

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