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TANSTAAFL

Beta Testers
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About TANSTAAFL

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  1. TANSTAAFL

    Hotfix 0.8 and CVs still over powered

    Clearly, the solution is...more threads! I mean, if a bajillion threads about CVs aren't doing it, maybe a bajillion and one? (And yeah, I know, I know, posting here isn't helping that!) My .$.02 is...meh. No, really; it's a mixed bag. I like playing CVs more now, though that type of ship is far and away my least played, because I get to do stuff that's kind of cool, if, um, so far fairly ineffectual (Ranger and Shokaku, mainly, though for some odd reason I bought a Kaga when it came out, so I have that, too). I also kind of like having to manage the sectors for AA fire, and the rather busy battlefield when you have two carriers a side, with all the planes zooming about. Mixes it up sort of, and even in a DD I don't find it much worse than the usual radar meta. On the other hand, from what I've seen and the end of battle standings I've looked through, I'd be more inclined to say that for average and below CV players, the changes have made carriers less effective and less able to really stand out, while good players continue (not surprisingly) to be, well, good. I personally have no issue with getting my butt handed to me by someone who has invested the time in becoming really good with carriers. These people are few and far between, even at Tier X. But I wonder if enough people will endure being relegated to mid to low pack in terms of experience and credits match after match, with few or no kills, to ever get to Tier X with the will to practice to become better. I know it's sort of unrewarding right now to play the mid CV tiers, at least for me, given the uptiering and the AA storms. And I do share some of the feelings of those who question whether CVs really fit the WoWS gameplay model all that well. But they are a fact of life, and I'm ok with that. Adapt, learn, try to do better, etc. tl;dr, nothing in this latest update and hot fix roundabout seems, to me at least, to have really altered my enjoyment of the game that much. If anything, the overall novelty of it all has sort of made things a bit spicier....
  2. TANSTAAFL

    Giulio - why should I EVER buy a premium again, Wargaming?

    Perhaps a more interesting question is, what do we mean by "balance," and what do we want when we talk about balance? One tendency of all multiplayer games seems to be to "balance" everything until everything is pretty much the same as everything else except for the skins. Theoretically, if you have, say, three primary characteristics, each of which are exactly as important as the other two, you can balance pretty simply by emphasizing one of the three over the other two, and still have different things (boats, tanks, swords, whatever), each of which does A, B, or C really well, but the other two things not so well. But, it never works out that way, does it? Games are too complex, and whether it's tanks, ships, or swords, there are never just three things (or even four or five) that you can tweak, and more importantly, there is never a real equivalency between all the potentially tweakable characteristics. Say you have the traditional vehicle trinity of firepower, protection, and mobility. In theory, each should have exactly the same impact on effectiveness, and you can balance by insuring that the total value of all three is the same, while the distribution of value changes between the three characteristics. But it doesn't work that way. Usually, firepower or the ability to damage things however you phrase it, is king; people will always do better with more oomph to their weapons, while protection and mobility either have too high a skill ceiling to be effective counters for most players, or simply don't fit the meta. In WoWS, the attempt to balance stuff seems based on analysis of data from large numbers of matches played by large numbers of players, where the goal is to make sure as much as possible that all ships of a particular tier do roughly about as well as all other ships of that tier. This, even though the ships have radically different roles, and those roles often preclude certain characteristics from even being relevant. The net result seems, to me at least, to be an inevitable slide towards an undifferentiated pile of anodyne, boring ships that don't really do anything particularly well or with any particular flavor, but instead are tweaked to be inoffensive statistically. The devs aren't dumb, they see this, and thus we get what many call gimmicks, where they try to give unique characteristics to ships, without fundamentally changing their worth. This proves...challenging, as the only "gimmicks" worth a damn are those that, um, change the ability of the ship to succeed, that is, kill other ships, because really the only characteristic of a ship that matters here is its ability to do damage effectively. Admittedly, protection, mobility, stealth, and what-not can certainly help a ship do that, but it doesn't change the reality (again, IMO) that the net value of any ship in this game is in its offensive ability. tl;dr, balancing is hard, there are different ways to define it, and none of them are likely to please everyone, or even most people, because the task is effectively impossible outside of a rock/papers/scissors abstraction.
  3. Not a big CV player, though I do have a Ranger, a Shokaku, and a Kaga (no clue, really, why I had purchased it, but there it is, unplayed for a year until this patch). My first big impression from 8.0 is that playing non-CVs is more fun and involved, because of the new AA mechanics but also because there is more "stuff" going on that you have to take into account. Makes it interesting and seems to offer the possibility that ships can actually do some role-specific things that had sort of atrophied over time (cruisers for instance can now actually make a difference more easily in some cases). My second impression is that playing a CV is something I definitely have to get used to. I kind of enjoy the new hands-on approach, though I'm not terribly good at it; while the old way was potentially more lucrative in terms of damage, it was very abstract for me and I never really "got" it. I'm interested in trying to get better with this new system as it's a lot more engaging. As to balance and stuff, eh, it's an online competitive game with a zillion moving pieces. Stuff will change, constantly, gotta roll with it.
  4. TANSTAAFL

    Refund for AA themed ships Atlanta and Texas?

    Oh, no argument there. I don't have a dog in the CV rework fight. I'm just tossing in another thing to think about I guess, and to point out that, to me, there are much stronger arguments to be made on this subject than those based solely on how many planes get shot down.
  5. TANSTAAFL

    Refund for AA themed ships Atlanta and Texas?

    Of course it's a game. People are arguing over the validity of the change to AA mechanics though, and blurring real-world and in-game arguments anyhow, so it's not like the topic is purely one or the other. And even the game models disruption at least as much as actually killing planes. Most of the time, too, you are pretty happy to avoid a torp or bomb regardless of whether you actually kill any planes.
  6. TANSTAAFL

    Refund for AA themed ships Atlanta and Texas?

    Have to disagree with you here. The ratio of downed planes to rounds fired from anti-aircraft artillery, historically, is minute. Yes, an anti-aircraft shell is designed to destroy/damage, but as a system, anti-aircraft artillery fulfills its function if it keeps the target from being successfully attacked. This is true whether or not the attacking planes are destroyed, or even hit, though naturally that's an intended side effect. If flak success was based solely on killing planes, it would be across the board a dismal failure. Even in WoWS you can see how this works. Pop your AA consumable and even if you don't kill a bunch, or any, planes, the disruption to the attacks is often worth the cost of admission.
  7. TANSTAAFL

    Refund for AA themed ships Atlanta and Texas?

    Historically anti-aircraft gunnery success wasn't judged on how many planes got shot down, but on how it affected the ability of the attackers to press home their attacks and effectively engage the target. Flak was primarily meant to disrupt and disperse the enemy, with actual kills being something of a bonus in many cases. As long as your AA forces the enemy to stand off, miss you, or otherwise become ineffective, it's a win, except of course for silly missions and stuff where you actually and somewhat ahistorically have to kill a bunch of planes.
  8. My game went sort of like this one, though only two ships sunk. I found the dispersion, in this limited sample, to be better than I was used to, but everything else was pretty much as you said. Different mountains, same result.
  9. Only played one battle in it, but the guns seem a lot less troll-y than the usual US BB rifles. Plays nice if you like US mid-tier BBs, and didn't hate the Colorado.
  10. Play (and pay) until it isn't fun, all things being equal (as in, probably a bad idea to spend the rent money on an Azur Lane crew). I did time in WoT, like five years or so including a couple years at least of fairly intense Clan War stuff, and I've been in this rodeo since early beta. The money I've spent has been pretty much in lieu of other video game stuff (I've been playing computer games since, um, the late seventies when I'd "acquire" passwords from physical bulletin boards at a local college and use their mainframes for primitive line-printer games), and WoWS is pretty cheap compared to buying hardware and software to play a bunch of other things. At this point, I have every line done up through ten except CVs (which I suck at even more than I suck at regular boats) and all the premiums I actually want enough to buy. I spend some bucks on premium time, as that's IMO sort of essential to avoid total frustration even if you're just racking up commander EXP and free EXP, but anything else is sort of, eh, if I feel like it. tl;dr, as others note, as long as it's part of your recreation budget, and you aren't living in a cardboard box or neglecting obligations to others, get the stuff you like as long as it, um, floats your boat.
  11. TANSTAAFL

    Results from 40 RN Containers

    Seems in line with my much more limited experience (five purchased, five from sovereigns), in which I got exactly one ship mission.
  12. What annoys me more than fire damage, which is arguably a relatively necessary balancing tool, is the sort of gameplay that the current meta demands. Island-humping, lobbing shells over obstacles or from smoke, lots of indirect engagement with long flight time, high-arc weapons is just not fun for me. I can do it (sort of, I mean, I'm just a 50% player), but it sure doesn't match my idea of how cruisers should fight (perhaps my ideas were shaped by too much reading of books like HMS Ulysses and all those other naval novels, though historical accounts are very different than the current game meta too). Then again, I have no idea how you could balance all the different ship types in a game that is not a historical simulation and which has to make it fun for everyone and give everyone a fighting chance on a roughly equal level without something like this.
  13. TANSTAAFL

    Swiss CV leaked

    That drum team is wicked good.
  14. TANSTAAFL

    Summer Sale Day 11: KII

    I got the Kii in a Santa box, so I was predisposed to give it the benefit of the doubt. After all, it was free. And...I actually like it. It is far from ideal, but I have fun playing it for some odd reason.
  15. TANSTAAFL

    The trouble with BBs

    It is frustrating to deal with multiple ships hosing you down with HE, when you're in a lumbering battlewagon between islands and you're kinda stuck taking it in the shorts. But, and here's where I know my own limitations, that's often the player's fault. I know it's usually my fault--tunnel vision, not being aware of where the enemy likely is, and not avoiding obvious (to them at least!) kill zones. I have a ton of games played but I'm, um, not terribly good; I'm still learning how to anticipate where ships, including my own, will be in the future and make sure I don't get caught out facing the entire enemy armada all lined up for a duck hunt and I'm Daffy. BBs, though, are the most forgiving ships in the game I find. Often I can screw up and my heal and health pool will allow me to WASD my [edited]out of danger, at least with some life left, so I can try again. And there is surprisingly deep tactical challenge (for me at least) in figuring out where to position the turrets and how to anticipate the enemy to compensate for the slowness of everything. I like to play aggressively, but as other posters have noted, some BBs are much better suited to that style. I tend to like the US and KM ships for this reason (though I'm loving the Alsace, too), while my Yammy sits in port most of the time as I still am puzzled as to how to get the most out of her. Finding that sweet spot between the A line and charge of the Light Brigade is the trick for me.
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