PSX 2015: World of Tanks PS4 Preview – Complex Simplicity
Teams of World War II (ish) era tanks battling against one another for online supremacy. It’s an amazingly simple concept, but sometimes the simplest of ideas are the ones that resonate the most. This is World of Tanks, and it’s finally coming to PlayStation 4.
World of Tanks has been around for over five years. During the course of its life, World of Tanks has evolved massively. Developer Wargaming has learned a lot over the history of its free-to-play game, and the latest PlayStation 4 version is the result of all of that history mixed with some new development talent to help perfect tank combat for consoles.
I’ll be honest, I wasn’t very interested in World of Tanks when I’d heard of it years ago. I was (and am) a console gamer, PlayStation specifically. A simple concept like “a bunch of tanks in online combat” didn’t particularly pique my interest. especially because it wasn’t part of my typical platform. I had no reason to cross treads with this particular title. Fortunately PlayStation Experience changed that, being the first time that the public could get their hands on World of Tanks for PS4.
Tools of Destruction
The final game will have over 350 tanks spread across 7 nations to choose from, but the demo I played at PSX 2015 was actually the live PS4 beta, so there were a limited number of tanks to select. The various tanks have a range of different uses in the five classes, from the faster but weaker scout tanks, to the lumbering yet powerful bringers of destruction. Up to 30 tanks gather on the field of war to do battle. One life is all you get. Once your tank is destroyed, you can either move on to the next battle or spectate the rest of the match to learn some strategies for yourself.
World of Tanks is a game that’s easy to learn (roll around in a tank and shoot other tanks before they can shoot you), but hard to master (using the topography for strategic maneuvers, team tactics, and choosing the right tank for victory). This isn’t a game that’s all about getting kills, and it aptly rewards players for doing things like spotting enemy tanks or disabling their treads. These rewards and experience are granted win or lose, so even if you do great at spotting for your team and die without getting a single kill, you are rewarded for the help that you provide to your team.
The first time the DualShock 4 was put into my hands, I felt like I played fairly well and earned tons of ribbons and experience. I never survived until the end, but I played a crucial role in my team’s victories, even being a rolling distraction in one so that my team could remove a dangerous artillery that was threatening our ability to win. It’s a deep tactical shooter, and having a single life for your team makes you rethink how you play at your very core. You can hit retry, but it will be a new match, new teammates, and new enemies. It’s games like this that can make us all better gamers.
The best part of all? It’s free-to-play. Anybody with a PS4 will be able to get their hands on World of Tanks when it releases. Everyone will at least be able to try it out to see if it’s something that they can get into, and I assure you, come its 2016 PS4 release, you may just find that the complex simplicity of a 30-player tank war is right up your ally.