Promises-promises… The Su-101

The new Russian tank destroyer line in patch 8.0 was a great promise. The initial two new vehicles in Tier VII and VIII were not only fast and relatively well armored but they  had  great guns as well. The Su-100M and Su-101 had their inherent flaws, but the top weaponry still made them viable and interesting enough, candidates for keeping. Then Wargaming happened. All hail the next poor junk with the future 45 percent global win rate in World of Tanks!

Final update: E-50M armor scheme in the gallery

8.0 glacis armor wireframes arrived for the T110E5 and IS-7!

Hey, this is a good, perfectly grind-able new line!

That was my first impression, famous last words. Our joy was premature,  WG took away the heavy tank guns in the second version, so we have to make them work with the equivalent medium tank weapons from Tier IX. The Su-100M has to do with the TD-version of the 100 mm LB-1 gun from the T-44, the Su-101 has access to the top gun of the T-54 medium tank. The new TDs start from the Su-100, to unlock the Su-100M you will need 48 200 xp.

The Su-101 or Uralmash-1 had been finished after the war. The chassis was from the T-44. It wasn’t produced because the T-54 was available with the same gun in a fully rotating turret. The Su-102 was armed with the 122 mm D-25 gun.

The company probably did not realize why this was a major blow for a tank destroyer with rear-mounted superstructure and with such limited gun-movement. The new Tier VII and VIII tank destroyers are gutted, because at short, 20-30 meters range they cannot aim at the weaker lower front plates of heavy tanks anymore, and most heavies can bounce a gun with only 175 and 219 avg in their respective Tiers. That’s right, the Russian Tier VIII TD has less penetration and alpha damage than the IS-3, and it hasn’t got a turret and/or notable gun depression as saving grace.

A well-armored Tier VIII heavy can just drive into our face and finish us off, because we can only shoot at the upper hull or the turret.

And if this does not make the initial two TDs broken, the flaw-list of theirs surely will, because in the case of the Su-101 it’s as long as a Christmas wish-list of a nine-year old child.

Brace yourself

IS-7 8.0 armor update

We are dumbfounded. I admit, I was a bit worried about the IS-7 in 8.0. A nearly unstoppable sloped armor monster roamed in my vision. When we faced it on the test server, the results were shocking but in a different way. Now, either we are that dumb and  we had screwed up the previous tests that much, or Wargaming messed with the armor parameters without any transparency, again. No problem, that’s why we have tests for.

One tiny step forward, one big step back

What did we expect? An impregnable glacis armor and a tougher than ever lower front plate, wider angling options. But unlike American heavies we had tested, this tank seemed to not get the memo about the sloped armor compensation nerf, because we found the upper hull armor of the IS-7 not much different from the previous incarnations. It’s tough all right. The head-on optimised pike nose can be still penetrated casually by Tier X tank destroyer guns. Yeah, but this hasn’t got any news value. We have spotted a difference though. Russian tank hulls lose effective armor for the facing side of the pike nose when angled. This is still true.

However, this loss was reduced a bit in 8.0, sub-240 average penetration guns have very little if any chance to pierce this armor at any range and angle.

So far so good. We had expected a bit more than that, but that’s an improvement nevertheless. However, the disappointments did not end here. For the sake of order, I started to do some re-checking shots at the lower front plate of the IS-7, and this was the point where my jaws dropped. About 10 percent of the former armor was gone. One should expect somehow improved efficiency for a nicely sloped armor plate from the compensation nerf but nothing like that.

In fact, the LFP performed even poorer than in 7.2, when we had made the original IS-7 tests of ours. No improvement, not the same level, it was downgraded.

Randomgoddess is a heartless bitch or…?

The results were so bad that we repeated the LFP tests three times, then we switched back to live servers to find out if we had been mistaken that much before.  And it doesn’t seem like the case, the 7.5 version still behaved as it was supposed to be.

8.0 armor facing tactics

Biomechanical nightmare – The Object 268

We have seen plain ugly tanks like the KV-4, sleek, futuristic beasts  like the french “hammerhead” TDs. Some tanks have character and menace in their ugliness like the T110E4 has. The Object 268 in World of tanks is none of above, it’s bewildering for me. The new Russian Tier X tank destroyer looks like it had been grown in a lab instead of assembling in a factory. A strange fuse of biological and mechanical components, the rangefinder is almost Gigerian. Now I know what a terrific weapon lies behind the weird looks, I feel just more insecure if a predator like this is lurking on the same map.

The first results for Jagdpanther II

This TD lives close to its prey

The way I see it, the Object 268 is great tank destroyer for “pubs”. The turreted T110E4 took the second-line assault/supporter role on CW. The 268 doesn’t play  like the previous Object 704. The most similar Russian TD is probably the Su-100 with the 122 mm D-2-5S gun. Like the Tier VI TD, the Object 268 is fast and it has good maneuverability, a definite improvement over the 704. The turn speed is inferior to the Su-100, but both forward and reverse acceleration are superior. The closest TD in the terms of mobility is probably the Jagdpanther. The 268 can keep up with fast heavies and most mediums, and its gun packs a tremendous punch like the Su-100-122 does in its own tier, except the Tier X is much more accurate.

Is it just me or the ingame version looks flatter?

The Object 268 lives a “more active” life than the 704. It’s not a bush-sniper equipped with the usual camouflage net and binoculars, or at least less so. If you want to do the same “gallery-shooting”, that’s waste of its potential. It can rush for forward overwatch positions and greet the advancing heavies with unexpectedly early and heavy firepower. It has the speed and agility not only to get into trouble fast, it can reposition in time. 268s in the right hands can have a higher win rate in random games, because they can be so adaptive to the events of the actual map.

Like the Su-100-122, the favorite tactics of the 268 are lurking around map chokepoints, waiting for the opportunity to finish off or flank a damaged/occupied tank. Overall,  it is not only a great support vehicle but a deadly hunter of hurt prey, regardless to the Tier and size. I know from painful experience, that a well-coordinated platoon of 268s watching the back of each other can be a quick end to any tank.

Gun and recommended equipment