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Building Better Tech Trees Part 1: The Case for Tier Zero

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This... has been a long time coming. But I feel the time is now right so share with you, a vision. 

Seriously, this has been stewing in my mind for the better part of a year now and I think I'm in a good spot where I can share my grandest, most diabolical (yes, even more than putting four Lion's in the tech tree!) theorycraft idea to date! Tier 11* ships! And by 11 I really mean, stretching the lines down to tier I and making the current tier I a sort of, 0 tier. I'll be including my thoughts on the mechanics, ships, and rationale behind all of this. So strap in, this is going to be a mulipart series. 

Lets Do It GIFs | Tenor

Now then,  people trying to suggest tacking on another tier to any World of [x] title is nothing new. And it's not even like the tiers above X don't exist either as they do but are simply not populated in order to smooth out top tier matchmaking. And when it comes to WoWs specifically, people want to see an extra tier do one of two things: either add in more Cold War ships (wrong), or backfill in more pre-dreadnought era ships (correct). My vision is for the latter and to do so, we need to rethink what tier I actually is.

First and foremost, it is a protected tier with extremely limited matchmaking and no real significant progression to speak of anymore. Brand new players can still cut their teeth there learning the basics sure, but eventually you just move on without much effort and if you have been here a while many will simply skip it altogether as a very low cost FXP sink. IMO, this isn't fair. It's not fair to the devs who actually have to put time and money into creating these pixel botes but it's also unfair to the new playerbase who, lets be honest won't learn much from playing them. While at the same time, are still a part of the overall techtree, which means they do occasionally see the odd tier II and yes, can be intentionally fail-div'd which... makes no-one happy. So what if, instead we create a sandbox lets call it, outside of the normal progression of the tiers and just let all of the little starter ships run around in there? Not only that, it create an opportunity to offer (and I'm really getting into speculative pipe dreams here)this as a tutorial tier to help new players with navigation, ammo selection, consumables, map awareness and yes, dare I say it aircraft attack! (They do have AA modeled on them afterall). I know, it's insane to think that WeeGee would ever put that kind of work into helping new players but such is the potential of our "Tier 0" Sandbox. Not to mention, if you want to be really pedantic none of those ships are what you call Cruisers anyway so why be made into the beginning of that line? (I know the answer, it's a rhetorical question). Speaking of which...

This leads us to the 64.000 dollar question; how do you progress to the new, freed up tier I? Whelp, the way I see it the starter ships would essentially be played (or FXP'd) to 'unlock' tier I in it's entirety. Say... oh I don't know, 3000 XP or so is all you need. You grind the ship's modules and then you grind out the unlock so we don't get the scenario like you see below:


Instead all tier I ships (still of the given nation of course) would be unlocked and available for purchase. At which point, this still becomes something of a mild FXP sink, which WeeGee is always looking to do but now you get the added bonus of not needing to grind/FXP one ship in order to unlock another line as above. Just choose and go. And what kind of ships would we see at tier I? Well, as I mentioned before we would see ships that go backwards in time rather than shuffling down our existing lines to make room at the top. I, like many others out there have longed to see more pre-dread era ships come into the game, and since naval combat post WWII got away from the gun era veeeerrry quickly, it doesn't make sense to move past that, especially when it comes to the BB and CA/L classes. This would mean that the game would cover more or less the first 50 years of 20th Century naval combat (~1900-1950+) versus the roughly 40 years they stick with now. This not only allows us to better justify the post-war ships somewhat, it also gives more breadth to low tier ships and gameplay as well, which is something that is sorely missed in this game. That the low tiers are in such a lowly state, both in gameplay terms and in perception is downright sad. I believe expanding both the tiering and the ship options will flesh things out to aid in more interesting gameplay. Not to mention, plenty of new content to keep players engaged.

In the coming parts, I will be sharing my thoughts on potential ships to fill these lower tiers as well as some ideas concerning CVs and even Submarines, so stay tuned!

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On 6/21/2021 at 10:38 PM, Trophy_Wench said:


It makes sense and imo is a more "elegant" solution to keeping tiers nicely rounded to 10. Otoh it means shuffling all the tiers, as grumpy as this player base is I can imagine a lot of crying about their T10 ships being devaluated to T9... might be easier to just slap T11 and reduce the perceived changes to a minimum.

I would love to have a reason to play the T1, I have the fool's hope they eventually create a Op/Scenario with Subs allowing us to play T1 ships in their ASW/escort role

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