Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Tank Tuesday - Medium Tanks, What The Hell?

I've decided that Tuesday's blog post every week is for World of Tanks.

I reached elite status on my tier IV light tank Panzer 38 nA very quickly which meant the tier V medium tank Panzer IV was available to me. With the grid up the tank destroyer line proceeding slowly I decided to splurge my credits on the new tank and try out mediums for the first time.

Sniping with Tank Destroyers I get.

Long range bombing with artillery I get.

Running and gunning scouting in a light tank I get.

Medium tanks? I don't get.

I mean, I get the theory: slower and heavier than light tanks, faster and lighter than heavy tanks, they kill smaller stuff and try and be eyes and flank the heavy stuff, blah blah blah. But I was just getting smashed in my first forays in the Panzer IV. Utterly useless.

I did some forum searches and and soul searching (more of the former than the latter) and determined my difficulties stemmed from several areas:

1) Stock Tank Syndrome - the base weapon of Panzer IV and the first upgrade weapon are both tier III, one with poor penetration and the other with poor damage. No wonder the tier IV light tanks were laughing at me. I've upgraded to a mid level gun that is actually powerful enough to give light tanks concern and there are more upgrades available later on that give the tank good bang for its firepower buck.

2) Actually not a brawler - I was treating the tank like a Soviet or American medium which are typically brawlers up on the front lines, but the Pz IV is more of a sniping medium tank meant to hang back a little more and provide distance support. (Again, the upgraded weapons will help). This is good because I like sniping and am fairly competent at it with my StuG tank destroyer.

3) Not used to having turret weapon - I spend so much time in the tank destroyer where I have to find a solid spot to aim my tank and then aim the gun, I quickly forget how to fire and dash in the medium tank: stop, aim, shoot, drive again.

Last night I tried a few matches and started to feel a little more competent, but its going to be a while before I feel comfortable.


  1. its all your fault I started playing WoT

  2. Just unlocked the pz4 myself last night. Tragically slow and fairly wimpy, improving the motor and a trip for the driver to regimental academy to get him to 75% helped a bit, but still has weak penetration.

    Thing is, the fully upgraded pz3 I had before was great as a light, but like all good eve players, by the time I got everything unlocked, I just wanted the next tier!

    Not sure if that will stop before T10.

  3. Nobody likes weak penetration. Tanks, but no tanks.

  4. once you get the 7.5 kwk gun for this tank it is a beast and an awesome sniper.

    Regarding higher tier medium tanks they get almost the same amount of HP as the heavies I particularly can recommend the panther its AWESOME :)

    look for me in game :) (kenfusion)

  5. Ariartus is correct. The PzIV is one of the best Tier 5 tanks available. This is mostly due to the powerful Tier 7 weapon it mounts. That thing will one-shot enemy lights if you hit a sweet spot, and it can penetrate heavy armor without worrying about sweet spots (though you obviously do more damage if you can shoot through a driver port, turret neck, etc.).

    I think Medium Tanks suffer most from not having a prescribed role for their type. Though there are differences between light tanks, all lights generally do the same job, and they can all do it reasonably well. This is not true of mediums. Some mediums are basically light scouts with bigger guns (M7). Others use speed and good turning radius to flank enemy tanks, often in packs (Easy 8). Still others use long-range high accuracy guns and good frontal armor to snipe (PzIV).

    I think the defining feature of Medium Tanks is their speed when compared to Heavies. Mediums all have enough speed to race Heavies to important points on the map, thus getting into position faster than the KVs or the Tigers. Theoretically, good Medium drivers will race to a strategic point on the map, defeat any enemy Mediums nearby, and then spot advancing heavies or fire on them. If you can harass the bad guy heavies before they get to the Important Point, they have to either take cover from your artillery or stop moving to shoot or suffer free damage, all of which then gives your own heavies an advantage when they finally show up and start fighting.