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World of Warplanes (pre 2.0)

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World of Warplanes
World of Warplanes cover art.png
A mediocre game abandoned for 4 years only to be resurrected to compete against a newer games.
Genre(s): Action
Massively multiplayer online
Platform(s): Microsoft Windows
Release: CIS: November 12, 2013
NA/EU: November 13, 2013
Engine: Unity (2013 - 2017)
EnCore (2017 - present)
Developer(s): Persha Studia
Publisher(s): Wargaming
Country: Ukraine


World of Warplanes is a free-to-play aerial combat massively multiplayer online game developed by Persha Studia and published by Wargaming. The game was originally released in November 2013 in CIS countries, North America and Europe. It was relaunched as World of Warplanes 2.0 in October 2017 in the same countries, achieving significantly better reception.

Gameplay

World of Warplanes features over 100 aircraft, namely military and experimental aircraft from Germany, the Soviet Union, the United States, Japan, the United Kingdom, France, and China. It allows players to choose from 5 main warplane classes: fighters, multirole fighters, heavy fighters, ground attack planes, and bombers. In addition to this, Premium aircraft are also available. Each national tech tree introduces squadrons of planes ranging from Tier I entry-level 1930s biplanes all the way up to Tier X late 1940s jet-powered aircraft. All warplanes can be unlocked and upgraded through a continued gameplay progression.

Why It Used To Suck

Note: Most of these problems are patched out or improved in 2.0 relaunch.

  1. Instead of using the in-house BigWorld game engine that the other "World of" titles used (pre-2017 version of World of Tanks and World of Warships) used, which is known for its capacabilities to rendering a large amount of objects from further distances, World of Warplanes is using Unity game engine instead. Which severly limiting the graphical capacabilities of the game, especially draw distances.
  2. The game carried the hit points mechanics from other World of titles which is not suited for fast-paced aerial combat gameplay nature of World of Warplanes, due to it making your plane became randomly tanky (as your plane is still able to fly as long as your pilot is not killed or the engine is not disabled and you still have a HP) or extremely fragile (as you can still getting one-shotted by enemy planes with the shots on your pilot or knocked out your engine when you do not have repair consumeables.)
  3. No respawn system. While the "no respawn" traits is similar to its counterparts (World of Tanks and World of Warships), due to how World of Warplanes is a fast-paced game as mentioned above, it hampered the overall gameplay experience due to how often and quick you can die with a well-placed shots at your pilot, this makes the average match only lasted for 2-5 minutes.
  4. Only two game mode (other than training mode) were availble;
    • Standard Battle is a mode where the first team who eliminate all of the enemies' planes wins, this mode only lasts for a few minutes due to the cons stated above.
    • Bombing Raid had an extra objectives where the first team who destroy all of bombing targets wins. However, also due to the "no spawn" system, either teams can easily cheesed the mode by destroying the attacking aircrafts and multi-role fighters (which is the only class of an aircraft that can carry bombs) then flew away until the time is over.
  5. Camouflage mechanics is carried over from World of Tanks despite it actually doesn't match the overall gameplay style, that means sometimes you cannot spot your enemy if it's out of your "spot range" or said enemy had high camouflage ratings, which often resulted in a surprise attack and cheap kills.
  6. While the game featured aircraft from seven factions (U.S.S.R, U.S.A, Germany, United Kingdom, Japan, France, and China), the aircraft rosters is severely lacking, with two factions (France and China) were solely comprised with a premium aircrafts (that can only be purchased with real money). And no bombers were available until 2017 rework.
  7. Very limited paint job and decoraction system.
  8. Due to negative reception after release and how quick the playerbase has dropped, Wargaming abandoned World of Warplanes for 4 years without any updates, and deploying bots to taken the place of the players. Until they finally come back and reworked on the game due to the success of MMO cross-battle battle game War Thunder released by Gaijin Studios, which is praised for its aerial combat mode.

Redeeming Qualities

  1. Wargaming has revised World of Warplanes in 2017 and released as "World of Warplanes 2.0", in which they finally implemented spawn mechanics, fixing several in-game problems, introduced the bombers, and adding more game modes.
  2. With the new engine changes (from Unity to their new engine EnCore), the graphics were significantly improved.

Reception

Before its initial release, World of Warplanes is hyped by several gamers around the world, as it was selected as Europe’s "Most Wanted Online Game" at the European Games Awards in 2012.

The original World of Warplanes releases received mixed reviews and held a Metacritic score of 69 out of 100.

In March 2016, Wargaming CEO Viktor Kislyi acknowledged in an interview that World of Warplanes had failed to meet expectations saying, "...we can't call that a success." It was with this in mind that significant changes were made in the development team and the new 2.0 version made.

The release of World of Warplanes 2.0 received generally positive reviews, and received a score of 8 in a review on Gamereactor from Marco Vrolijk, with the implementation of the respawn mechanic (which had been absent in previous versions of World of Warplanes), the introduction of the 'Conquest' gamemode and the upgraded graphics being praised the most. However, Vrolijk noted that the game was not suited for simulator enthusiasts. James Barber from military.com commented that WoWP 2.0 had “better graphics, bigger explosions" and was "a lot more fun to play". Inside-Indie scored it at 88%.

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