The World of Warships Tier 9 and 10 Premium Ship Balance Issue

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Tier 9 and 10 is looking at a glut of incoming premium ships. While in many ways this is a good thing, it is also having consequences for World of Warships in that balance is being thrown off for tier 9 and 100 tech tree ships. While there are still plenty of strong ships at Tier 10, the inclusion of Stalingrad starts to throw in to questions whether or not the grind is worth it anymore, and gives less of a reason to play in-tier counterparts.


  1. Good work Zoup, do you think they will ever shift to a -1+ match making? We have plenty of ships in game now for it to work. Also, what do you think about a 5v5 option in random to speed up the game?

    • I think they should go +-1 as well. it gets worse the higher the tier. I have also regularely been pushing that they bring in the test server match making – meaning if there are not enough in your tier for 12v12 then drop 9v9, 7v7 or even 4v4 … this is super fun on the test server! WG gan easily add a credit and XP multiplier with the smaller matches so we don’t lose compared to a full 12v12 match, and this would keep qeues fast, and the variety would be very welcome to me … Just my 2 cents 🙂

      Good hunting!

    • The PirateMongoose

      -2+ MM would be a LOT less frustrating if you weren’t bottom tier for 5-6 games, then mid-tier, then bottom tier for another 3 games, before finally getting to be top tier. It’s especially notable in t6 and t7 DDs, when you don’t have access to the concealment module but you’re going up against enemies that do in almost every match.

      I would suggest they shift it to 1-1-1 cycle for most tiers; t9 and t10 will have to have special adjustments. Maybe t9 MM could be a 4-match cycle with 8-10, 9-10, 7-9, 9-10. T10 could be all 10, 8-10, all 10, 9-10. If there aren’t enough people playing at t9 and 10 to make that work, tinker with the economy again to make it feasible or allow for smaller matches; I only saw one match (out of at least half a dozen) with 12 per side when I was playing my Tachibanas last night, and teams in the other games were as small as 3 per side.

    • +-2 MM isn’t a huge issue, especially in WoWs. Lower tier ships can handle themselves pretty well against higher tier for the most part. What I do think they should do is change back the old MM for tier 4, 5, and 6 ships.

    • Shut up and touch my Spaghet

      Agreed. +/-1 MM would be too boring over time.

    • when im the only T8 in a T10 game…and STILL regularly get top xp…LOL
      yea +2 MM isnt that bad if u r that good, but i still would prefer a +-1 matchmaking when enough players play. then no one would say its unfair, ever.
      it should be optimal this way, but NOT less than 12v12 or a significantly longer queue for that. only when possible.
      i recently had a 1v1 game with my ryujo vs an independance!!! AND HE WAS AFK!!!

  2. Thoughtful commentary Zoup, thank you. I recently purchased my 1st premium HMCS Haida. It fits my play-style perfectly with massive HP pool, excellent concealment and devastating guns. I love playing with her but I also believe the advantages she holds over the ships in tier 7 validates the points you made in this video .

  3. TheForgottonLegend

    Well said Zoup, me being a free to play player I agree with everything

  4. WG is here to make money , it’s a buisness. Free to play yes… but how are they going to turn a profit without selling ships and other goodies to players. You can’t have your cake and eat it too , you want balance in order to promote fair play , and you want the game to be free to play. I would not buy a premium ship if it’s going to be a carbon copy of the free to play ships.

    • It doesn’t need to be a carbon copy. Consider Kii / Amagi or Tirpitz /Bismark or Scharnhorst/ Gnesenau – they are sisters, but there are definite trade offs. I own all 6 . These are well balanced alternatives. The game has no shortage of money generation schemes. We can buy Premium time, Premium ships, consumables, dabloons, credits etc etc etc

    • The PirateMongoose

      You completely missed the point. None of the premium ships are carbon copies of the tech tree ships. The point is that they should accommodate different playstyles rather than being just plain better in every respect. They got it right with Scharnhorst vs. Gneissenau; the guns have very different characteristics, so the ships play differently. Monaghan vs. Farragut is another example of how it should be done.

      They used to have it right with the Bismarck and Tirpitz, but then they buffed the Tirp’s secondaries. They added the Massachusetts, and now why would you play the Alabama or North Carolina when the Mass has the same primary guns but fucking ridiculous secondaries on top of that so it’s just plain better?

      Forcing players to buy premiums just to compete is going to drive a lot of players away from the game.

    • Shut up and touch my Spaghet

      On average, you make more money with a “FreeToPlay (+Premium stuff)” concept, that with traditional “pay 20 bucks for a game once”.

      There are enough people that spend serval hundreds on this game. Thats more than enough to compensate the plain free players.

    • You shouldn’t expect to have your cake and eat it, this is true. However, should we not apply the same principle to wargaming themselves also?

      Personally I don’t care if a premium ship is almost a carbon copy of the line ship, at least that makes balancing easier and I can then sail the line ships and have the chance to think “hey I really like this” and so buy the premium so I can keep playing a ship I like.

      The problem is everyone wants to eat the cake. Everyone wants variety that’s balanced and power that’s crafted so that’s it’s statistically equal even though people generally do a lot better in one than another. We have to accept a certain amount of margin of error when it comes to balance. This margin should never be enough to prop up a poor captain to the level of a good one however…something the Conqueror is still vilified for (somewhat unjustly in my experience). The problem is they’re putting out ships which tickle the danglies of all the aggressive competitive types who only play a game to win and find little fun in playing well… ergo they have to make it so that it has extra tools to win cause winning. It’s those players who unfortunately provide a lot of the revenue, buy lots of buffs for the winning and (predictably) spend half their time in chat telling everyone else they’re idiots.

  5. Zoupy: How often will you see the KV-2 of Ships, the Stalingrad? It is a reward ship for clans right? As for the Alsace you are 100% right. WG f*cked up by nerfing it in favor of a premium ship.

    Still I can’t wait for the first premium DD T9. With smoke and radar and hydro and chaff to counter the enemies radar. This combined with 72knots, 20km Torpedos and Harugomo type guns with a 12% fire chance. BRING IT ON 😉

    • Right? I do think the stalingrad is a bad example, because you cannot spend money to buy this ship, it has to be earned in clan and ranked battles. That’s fine. Kronshtadt is the best example of this, it’s basically superior to the donskoi in every way. What will Alaska be like when she comes? Missouri is also better than Iowa in every way. If they added radar to the Iowa that would be one thing. And then we have Jean Bart and alsace which is also a cluster fuck.

    • At what point does it stop. We have an arms race happening right now.

  6. I have wondered about the arsenal. How are they making money with it? There are alot of free ships that you cant depend money on.
    I never undstood not selling t9 and t10 ships but your right that the power of the new ships are plane stupid. The community says OP along but Stalingrad is. There is to much hp to much armor. I have seen 2 of them and it took 4 bb and 3 crusier fire for a ling time to put it down.
    T9 is hard enough as it is. Seattle and buffalo are terrible now it has to fight the t9 russian crusier the Jon Bart bb and what ever else comes out.
    They will have to start calking this world of prems only because the free side sucks!

    • General rule of thumb never trust a developer who adds more currency to their base game, it is a clear money grab. It has to do with the devs planned, they did not expect some players to reach T10 so fast. Once they have the ships there is no need for them to do anything else. The devs were either lazy or were told to just focus on getting things done on time and under budget. There are players who have all the ships from every tech tree, there are players who own every premium, there are players who have near unlimited stock piles of flags, and camo. So to give them something to work for, they added oil, steel, coal. It gives the people something to keep them busy and ignore that there is really nothing new or innovative going on.

  7. I feel like the power creep in WOWS is not as bad as WOT in WOT if I am in a stock tier 8 I can’t do shit against a tier 10 in a tier 10 game in WOWS if I am in stock tier 8 in a tier 10 game I just load HE and its not so bad I can still have a good game

  8. The stalingrad is equally strong as the moskva it hits harder but less often

    Its not OP but what is OP are the harugumo and the kitakaze and no one cares about them either

    • Just a random Horse.

      +TheSp3ctr3 what? xD you realize harugumo will melt any other DD?

    • +Just a random Horse. when not getting torped first because i alreasy mentioned that they behave like cruisers, the Harugumo has a turning radius from over 800m, and the rudder shift time is more than 5 seconds i think

    • Just a random Horse.

      +TheSp3ctr3 and that’s a price it *has* to pay. I would say give it even worse torps, because of the cancer it will be in battles :p it’s not a torp boat, it’s not a DD, it’s a light cruiser with no cit basically.

    • +Just a random Horse. they won’t give it worse torps because they are typical japanese torps, even cruisers have these strong torps which makes them more of a destroyer than a cruiser. These two ships are also in the testing for a few months now and they got balanced to not be too strong. And if you look at the Khabarovsk, this ship also melts all other ships and is pretty hard to kill because of its very high speed. So whats better, 10x100mm all 2.4 seconds or 8x130mm all 3.2 seconds?

    • Just a random Horse.

      +TheSp3ctr3 I dunno. A entire game rehaul I’d say.

  9. The thing with paying to unlock your Free XP ships is that at least you have to earn the elite XP first. As for the Salem, the ship costs so much to acquire for money (via bought containers converted to coal) that the price constitutes its own punishment/balance. And with the Go Navy event being finished, I think that path is closed now. Correct me if I am wrong.

    • Nah, we can still get a minimum of 1200 coal per day from the More Resources daily containers (3 * 400) so the coal grind for Salem is still feasible. The Go Navy event just made it a little faster with the extra coal from those containers.

    • Oh yeah, I know. I was merely addressing the issue of those who chose to buy their way to the Salem rather than grind. It was an exorbitant price. Go Navy was wonderful if you were good enough or had time enough to grind and get all the containers on offer each day, and the guarantee of coal in the regular resource containers is great too.

  10. Nicely said Zoup. Jean bart-Alsace balancing really made me think ‘Is WG trying to make tech tree ships weaker to sell those prem ships?’ I really wish they give back one of the nerfs they took to Alsace.

  11. WG seems to be shifting toward a Premium only model. Play for free to be an HP pinata. It’s too frustrating not to have a Premium account (they never have Premium time on sale anymore either).

  12. I get that the Salem is balanced, but personally, I think there shouldn’t be a tier 10 premium no matter what. Tier 8 can be purchased directly and tier 9s purchased via free exp.

  13. As a player who has spent more money in this game than all others combined in the past 5 years, I could not agree more. The power creep seen in the past 12 months is disturbing. with every new premium release, the trade offs of the past like Scharnhorst/Gnesenau or Tirpitz/Bismark seem to be gone out the window. The new Premiums are just better and that is wrong. Like Zoup states, they should be different with the only benefit being that Premiums make a little more money and XP as trainers. I own Missouri, and her economics should have never entered the game. Such blatant bonuses break the game and are alienating any new player base growth. Just think how overwhelming and expensive this game must seem to a new player to warships! and their double nerf of Alsace is unforgivable. Even before Jean Bart is thrown in our faces.
    I love this game, and it tears at me that WG seems to be doing its best to wreck it. This can’t be allowed to get worse. All of us need to take the time with every survey and voice our concerns over this severe power creep every survey, in forum threads – even thumbs up to the topics to add our names to the concern before this game begins losing players. Once that begins it is over, and I fear it is nearing a breaking point.

    Good hunting all!

    • I agree with almost everything you say here, and I have literally spent over a thousand dollars on this game, but the problem I fear is the players themselves. I constantly hear conflicting arguments about the prem ships. People complain that they have a gimmick, then they complain that they are too plain – stating why should I buy a prem ship that is almost the same as a tech tree ship. They complain that a prem ship is OP, yet complain again that another one is too normal. We all want to feel that we are spending money on something worthwhile and not something we could just grind to and get in the game by playing it. That is the problem WG faces, how do you make a ship feel like it is worth spending money on without completely throwing the game out of balance or upsetting the players by releasing “copy ships” – ie: old Eugen. They need to make money as a company and the players are always asking for new content but also complaining about it when it comes out. Some people think they should be a little worse or the same as tier ships and that they are only for training captains and others want some “bang for their buck” I really don’t know what the answer is. I do know that I’m not buying much, if anything anymore and part of that is because sometimes it feels as if there is too much coming out all at once…..

    • And this is what he and the other big three CCs asked to be implemented into the game.

    • MidnightPhoenix07

      Definitely agree – I don’t necessarily want a premium that’s an exact copy of a tech tree ship (unless it’s a ship I really enjoy) unless I get it for its economics as a trainer or to make credits. Non-game breaking differences (not necessarily to the point of being gimmicks depending on how you want to define that) are great, but they need to be balanced by something – kind of like Tirpitz being a Bismarck with torpedoes but no hydro. Any premium that’s based on a tech tree ship that is just inherently better than the tech tree counterpart without sacrificing something borders on being game breaking (and definitely negates the usefulness of the tech tree ship). Ships that are copy-pastes of higher A hulls (like Mutsu from Nagato) down a tier aren’t the way to go either, but I feel they’re better premiums than something like Jean Bart or Stalingrad.
      Yes, customers want something worthwhile for their money, but it’s already at the point powercreeping both the tech trees and older premiums.

    • Johannes G. F. Bruhn

      I do agree. I fear, that only raising those concerns in in the surveys won’t change a thing, however. We’d have to actually stop buying those ships. That’s the only way it’ll hurt them, and thus the only way to convince them. But that won’t happen. Everyone will buy them and/or grind the free xp. Because almost no one will be wanting to miss those powerful ships. That would be a disadvantage to anyone. I did it myself to get the Missouri. But really, what I’ve seen from Kronshtadt and Stalingrad so far, it seriously concerns me.

  14. Powercreep is nothing new for WG i just thought they might have learned there lesson from World of Tanks but nope all CCs called Stalingrad OP and they still released it as is.

  15. I totally agree with you, Zoup. I’m not a F2P player, quite the contrary, but I don’t like tier 10 premiums. I just got the Salem today, it is a fine ship, balanced vs the DM, but it completely nulifies the need to grind for the DM. You get coal, get the Salem, and you have a ship for top tier randoms, CW and ranked. No need to grind the whole line. No need to buy camos, to get freexp. And things like the Stalingrad are a big no no. I always said this game was not P2W, even if some ships were a bit better than any other ship in the tier (like Belfast), they were still lower tier. Only way to get the best ship is to play and get to tier 10, where you are guaranteed no better ships are there. Now this goes off the window. Stalingrad Will be better than any tier 10 cruiser.

  16. Yep the game started out fantastic, then WG decided to slowly murder it to make more money. Pretty soon all they’ll have playing is cash whales, cc’s and people who rely on the game for stream revenue.
    The shame of it all is that World of Tanks went down the same street, with Pro gaming backing to boot.
    WG has so much money they are blowing it on fringe music videos for crying out loud.
    They don’t NEED to do this, but they are, just because they can.

    • Justin Whittington

      Making money isn’t good enough. Maintaining profits isn’t good enough. It’s all about increasing profits, even if you fuck things up in the process. Welcome to capitalism.

  17. Love the HONESTY. And gutsy forthrightness. # more community, less wg contributor. Thanks for saying it plain. Pay2win, powercreep and op premiums… erode even further a growing expanding. Playerbase. Guys without newbies wheres any Sustainable development or business model?? (Also all these new premiums, yet NO CV REWORK…? No new maps? Check how they ruined WoT and especially Wowp 2.0. (Wows cc’s have nearly all ignored!? hence the emigration to warthunder etc. Cc’s should b putting shots over wg bow now, for us all, and 4 the game. #savewows

  18. I am a potato player. I have been playing for 2+ years and i am still potato. I agree with what you are saying Zoup. I got the Belfast and Kutuzov in Christmas containers last year and i played some games in them and felt so dirty playing them because they were just so OP that they now just sit in my port collecting dust. I wish they would make the premium ships just give better exp for captains and maybe a little more money earning than a normal ship. They really do not need a gimmick to go with the premiums. I am ex Navy myself and love this game but i really do not like them adding ships like the Belfast into the game.

  19. 1:20 That actually comes from WoT. I cannot tell you if it has ever been said, but it doesn’t need to be really. You might want to take interest into the background and history of World of Tanks, and I think that like me it would strike you how close the games still are. The first Premiums in Warships, for say Murmansk are pretty much like good old KV-5 or Superpershing. Balanced to worse than their same tier counterpart (although they have preferential MM, but that’s different). Or the AMX CDC for example, or the Panther 8.8cm, which are some of the very old T8 Premiums which used to be recommended. Nowadays, NOBODY would ever tell you pick up any of those tanks, because they are just terrible compared to the newer ones. A few weeks / 2months ago, can’t remember, World of Tanks released the Centurion Mk 5/1, which as better turret armor, better penetration and DPM and better power-to-weight ratio (it accelerates faster) than the Centurion 1. The trade-off was losing 5 km/h in top speed limit, which the Centurion 1 can’t reach anyway since it’s got a worse power-to-weight ratio. And that worries me. because the more forward we go, the closer we get to this kind of stuff. And if eventually this tendency confirms itself, then I’ll just have to reconsider why I play Warships or simply quit it, but I’d far rather avoid that…

    • Justin Whittington

      That’s the way it always goes. They can only play around with gimmicks and different styles for so long before it becomes easier to simply make the newer items more powerful. A few people will leave, some will refuse to pay, but anyone that wants to continue competing has to pay to do so.

  20. it is looking like it’s becoming pay to win.

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