Sunday, 31 December 2017


Because the clock hasn't struck midnight in my part of the world (at the time of this posting), I want to wish all of you a Happy and Safe New Year!

Saturday, 30 December 2017

Das zufällige Treffen

I opened a few more Skies of Albion Loot Boxes and went on a incidental plane spotting trip while taking out my recently acquired tier II premium Ar.67 German Fighter. However, I got more than this blurry picture from that adventure....

Friday, 29 December 2017

Showing the French Flag

It may be blue and bulbous, but it's the only French aircraft I have right now and it's fun!

Thursday, 28 December 2017

Heavy Horse

In World of Warplanes, I have a "bane plane."

The relationship between myself and the tier VII premium American Heavy Fighter, Fisher XP-75, could be described as "rocky" at best. It's not that I don't want to love this aircraft, but it feels like a one way street romance. I want more flexibility, it wants to stay rigid. I want "grace in the air," it wants to be that "brick in the wind."

Not to say there aren't a few pleasant surprises....

Wednesday, 27 December 2017

Ein Zerstörer einer Belohnung

In this video, I collect on 10 Santa Gift Bags and take a tier IV Messerschmitt Bf 110 C-6 out for a demonstration flight, since it's one of the planes to be won in this little Contested Skies event I am hosting.

Tuesday, 26 December 2017

Boxing Day Blenheim

Opening all nine Loot Crates I have collected, thus far, from the Skies of Albion event and take the skies (again) in the tier IV Bristol Blenheim Mk.IV (early mod.).

Monday, 25 December 2017

The Grinched Game

Sadly for some and to the glee for others, World of Warplanes is having a technical issue on Christmas.

Today, players were greeted with frustration as they attempted to complete the 12th Day of Planesmas. No tier II F-11C has been awarded to any account, pilots aren't earning experience and credit collection from battles are absent (however, the game is deducting those for repairs and rearming aircraft).

I had planed on having a bit of a Christmas Special, flying a plane, collecting whatever I was going to get (had the reward plane for a very long time, so was curious to the compensation alternative) and open my small stash of loot boxes from the Skies of Albion event.

Instead, a video record of today's gaming errors....

Season's Greetings

To those experiencing their first, to others celebrating their fourth (like me) or more in World of Warplanes, Merry Christmas!

Saturday, 23 December 2017

Allies Over Albion

Impromptu gameplay video captured during tonight's Skies of Albion event, with my good friend, hawkeyededic.

Mosquito Sting

Another plane I have been fond of for a long time was the de Havilland DH.98 Mosquito.

Although the Hawker Hurricane sits at the top of my list of favorites from this era, the Mosquito does make the cut into my top five. However, it wasn't so much what it did in real life that sparked my interest in this aircraft, it was how it was portrayed on the silver screen.

In 1964, the movie based on the same named novel, 633 Squadron with Cliff Robertson and George Chakiris, was released and showcased the plane on fictional sorties based real operations that took place. In fact, the "deep fjord" sequence from that film would inspire George Lucas' "trench run" in a latter movie called Star Wars.

1969 brought Mosquito Sqaudron, starring David McCallum, Suzanne Neve and Charles Gray. This squadron is tasked with taking out a underground V-1 assembly area with "bouncing bombs." Sadly, most of the footage wasn't new, being recycled from the earlier 633 Squadron.

Despite seeing this through adult eyes, watching those movies as a kid, those planes were quite the wonder machines. If only they flew like that in World of Warplanes....

Bolingbroke and Other Babbling

Thanks to a fantastic skin created by hawkeyededic, my recently acquired tier III Blenheim Mk.IV bomber has become a Bolingbroke.

Although not quite the one I saw with my own eyes (I wonder if I could talk him into doing that for me?), but it does have that historically correct look. If you are looking to get this for yourself, click here for the write up and instructions.

Speaking of flying bombers, I have a long ways to go in terms of matching the skill and results levels I have seen in other players (a few wield this aircraft like some new found aerial sorcery, I am in awe), if that ever comes to pass. This victory is more credited to the team I was on, rather than the actions I didn't partake in.

While I am on the subject of low tiered premiums, I see a few folks out there complaining about receiving the tier II Boeing YP-29 from a bonus code that is currently in circulation (and I am a bit disappointed the Christmas plane this year is the tier III Curtiss F-11C). My advice on selling either or both is don't and here's a few reasons why.

If it's for collecting the credits and hangar slots, I would recommend having a higher tiered premium in the hangar before dismissing the unwanted lower tiered plane to the scrapyard. Playing the game and collecting tokens will allow players to purchase hangar slots and with all the codes that come out during the year, there is always something to save those players real world money. In the meantime, fly those Gifts/Rewards and build up the credit reserves as you climb up through the tiers.

Premium aircraft, tier IV and below, have a slightly higher credit earning potential (on average) than the same tiered tech tree planes (some exceptions do apply). However, premium aircraft tier V and above, that credit modifier increases (I don't have those exact figures in front of me). Once again, there are many ways to put these higher tiered Gold planes into your possession, like the contest I am hosting and promotional codes (like the recent round of IL-2 (mod) - SE 100 - XFL 1 giveaways) and other means.

However, if you are determined to sell off these aircraft, then go for it. I offer the above as advice, not a command/directive on how to manage your game, so take it as you will.

Friday, 22 December 2017

Now, it's Later....

Watch the video for the conditions to enter and leave a reply (link to your submission) below.

Good luck!

Contest Teaser

Say, interested in the chance to win a trio of premium planes for World of Warplanes?

Well, check back later for more details!

Thursday, 21 December 2017

Bomber Bust

A few years ago, I had the distinct pleasure of scratching a real "bucket list" plane of my list.

Located on Vancouver Island, just off the coast of British Columbia, there is fantastic facility called the British Columbia Aviation Museum. Placed right in the middle of this place was this license built Bristol Blenheim, but in Canada, it was known as the Bolingbroke. Produced by Fairchild Aircraft Ltd. Canada, over 620 of these aircraft would take part in World War Two performing two key roles, maritime patrols and crew training. Few of these planes survive to today.

Pictured above is me and my son, as I talked him through an impromptu tour and shared everything I knew about the craft at the time (My wife and I took a pile of pictures, inside and out).

Long ago, I pitched the idea of introducing this aircraft as a premium offering in World of Warplanes but that idea didn't carry on for long.

Despite that, the plane exists (more or less) in World of Warplanes as the original Bristol Blenheim at tier IV in the British Heavy Fighter tree and now as a tier III Premium Bomber. Before you watch the video that ties into all of this, take a moment and give this bronze plague image a good look over....

Wednesday, 20 December 2017

That Awkward Stormfront

Without replaying my broken record of disappointment in the Hawker Hurricane IID again (I cover that in the video), I will say this plane is special to me.

Of all the real life aircraft that have existed (second only to the Avro Arrow), it was those forgotten Hurricanes, over shadowed by the Supermarine Spitfire during the Battle of Britain, has drawn me to them and at an early age. In fact, it was the first time I watched the Battle of Britain movie that set things in motion.

From books (I could spend hours just re-reading the chapters on them, enough to produce nausea) to TV shows and even the rare chance to talk with real pilots who flew them , the Hurricane became a quiet obsession for me. Over the years, I built a few models (none have survived to this day) and played them in every video game that I could lay my hands on, including World of Warplanes.

Some day, I will fulfill another dream with these aircraft, I will lay my eyes on a real one and complete a journey many years in the making. Perhaps, I will even be able to touch it and quantify, once and for all, a physical connection to my quiet obsession.

Until then and the next update, slated to come in less than a day, I have the IID. The funny thing, I think the ingame plane heard my thoughts on this matter....

Tuesday, 19 December 2017

Zero Effect

So, there are calling Update 2.0.2 the Skies of Albion!

An introduction to German Bombers (three being added to the game, non-premiums) and finally, more Hawker Hurricanes (two of those and a prototype Typhoon too!). I will quash any excitement and reserve judgment until after I have flown those, but you can read more of those details here.

Today's video uses an aircraft that was choosen, based on a conversation on the NA Forums with a player named S4pp3REffecT. Although I have had more-miss-then-hit success with the premium, tier V A6M3 (experimental), I did the best I could during the battle that ended with a surprise....

Monday, 18 December 2017

A Face and a Voice

An experiment of commenting and showing my real face during an "as it happens" battle, while flying the tier VII British premium Meteor, from start to finish.

Please leave remarks, suggestions, whatever below.

Testing Out A Curiosity

Could a Heavy Fighter be a decent stand-in for a Bomber?

With the advanced, confirmed insight to the upcoming 2.0.2 Update, I went ahead to test that very theory out. Reading through the list of new German Bombers, one caught my eye, the tier IV Dornier Do 17 Z. Wait a minute here....there is a tier III Dornier Do 17 Z-7 Kauz Heavy Fighter already in the game! I suppose reusing the same game model, with some slight changes, could be a developmental time saver.

Nevertheless, I loaded up a Training Room and went about testing my theory, without costing my team a possible victory in a regular battle, should things go terribly wrong. Just a warning, the video is pretty boring, since the all my opponents were defensive aircraft and one bot as an enemy....

 The gist of this experiment was to see the maximum altitude I could drop the bombs from and still have a reticle of some kind (2399 meters seems to be the cap), how long it took for the bombs to come back (a very, very long time) and get in rear gunner practice (which didn't amount to much).

Dejected and Disappointed

In my part of the world, it's well after four in the morning.

For whatever reason, I just couldn't sleep (although I am getting tired as I am typing this out) and decided to have a look at Facebook on my phone. More specifically, I wanted to see if there was any information on the World of Warplanes page about the upcoming events and update. Much to my surprise, I came across a Live stream from MilitiaMeathead. As you can see above, I wasted no time asking the top questions on my mind at the time.

I should have known I wasn't going to get an answer, but it was a chance worth taking. Despite that, I watched as he flew his XFL-1 around, shooting down both bots and dueling players. I was rather impressed that a guy better known in the Tanking circles could perform aerial combat very proficiently. I typed out a few more things, such as what he was using to stream and helping to identify a player requested aircraft for him to fly.

This feeling of being ignored, which started with my first unanswered question, continued to get stronger. I watched and listened to him respond to people before and after my comments/inquires and I became disinterested in remaining to watch any more action out of him. Perhaps the other folks were regulars and he was more familiar with them, then bothering to engage with some stranger who just appeared for the first time on his stream?

At any rate, I left dejected after that brief experience and make no plans to repeat that episode, anytime soon.

Sunday, 17 December 2017

Ç'est Magnifique!

No, your eyes are playing tricks on you, that isn't a Japanese plane.

With strong indicators and a total lack of any official word of Update 2.0.2 coming within the week, I have halted my progress up the Japanese Army Air Force line. My last act on that matter was placing a brand new, tier VI Ki-61 Hien in my hangar, ready to go when I come back to that subject.

I have also abstained from taking part in the discussions concerning the new bombers that will be coming in the next update, since my experience with those type of aircraft equates to zero (although I have seen videos submitted by other players and my previous adventures with them in another game, they don't create too much excitement for me as they do in others). The only thing I will comment on this: Handley Page HP.52 Hampden.

As for the Hawkers, I chose to remain quiet too, since the only Hurricane I have, the IID, has been a sore spot of disappointment for the longest time. Instead, I will keep in check any positive anticipation and self-silence any hopeful comments until after they are Live on the server and I have the chance to fly them. Best to experience them with a blank, open mind then be let down by unmet expectations.

Until the update drops, I have returned to how this whole thread got started, by testing certain aircraft and attempting to complete particular goals. A series of goals was exceeded in the following battle.

Tokens, bombers and Hall of Fame standings seem to be the top goals I have read on the forums that players want to achieve. For me, I guess I have set the bar a little lower with wining, surviving the battle and/or be the top earner on my team.

In this sortie with my tier V SNCASE SE 100 French Heavy Fighter, I get all three...

Saturday, 16 December 2017

What I Want and What I Got

Of all the French aircraft in World of Warplanes, the top of my list of favorites is missing....

The SNCAM/SNCASE Dewoitine D.520 was a fast, modern monoplane fighter designed to be a contemporary to the British Hawker Hurricanes and Supermarine Spitfires and be able to confront the Messerschmitt Bf 109, should war break over French skies.

Designed to meet a 1936, later revised in 1937 French Air Ministry specification, the first prototype took to the air in late 1938 and after further design refinements and production changes, the first aircraft finally reached operational units by early 1940. When the Battle of France started in May 1940, 246 D.520's had been built, but only 79 (some sources claim as high as 101) were in service with the Armée de l'Air.

The Dewoitine D.520 proved itself to be a very capable dogfighter and powered by a Hispano-Suzia 12-Y V-12, it was much more maneuverable than the Messerschmitt Bf 109E's it faced, despite being slower in speed. Armed with a central hub Hispano-Suzia 20mm cannon and four 7.5mm MAC 1934 machine guns, it was a formidable defender. However, they came too late to turn the tide and when France fell in June 1940, 437 D.520s had been built, 403 in five operational units saw combat and 106 had been lost, 26 in air-to-air combat.

Under Vichy France, D.520 production was restarted and another 349 were built between August 1941 and December 1942. By wars ends and a final total of 740 built (other various sources claim an even higher total of over 900), this aircraft had served with Bulgaria, Germany, France (Free and Vichy), Italy and Romania.

After the war, most D.520's were either scrapped or lived on as trainers, only to finally retire from active service in 1953. Three known survivors exist today.

If the Dewoitine D.520 were to finally come to World of Warplanes, I think it would be well suited for tier V, matched up with other Allied and Axis aircraft of it's time. Until then, I will continue to wait, see and take to the skies in the only French aircraft I currently have....

Friday, 15 December 2017


With the Christmas Season well under way, it's time to collect all of the goodies that one can.

I might be a day late on this one, but there is currently an event underway where by just playing a single battle everyday til just after Christmas could put credits, consumables and possibly a premium plane (I wonder what the plane will be, I am expecting a tier II, III perhaps a IV) in your hangar. 

More details are here on that one.

The premium shop has a huge selection of aircraft, not normally available up for sale. I have given up on any Secret Santa surprising me with a winged wonder in my stocking, so I have an eye on one, even two mid tier planes I might gift to myself this year (one I have been waiting a very long time for, but with the changes in 2.0, I doubt I would do well with it now).

Now that I am done sounding like an underpaid salesman, on to my first reward/gift/whatever of the Season!

Thursday, 14 December 2017

Return of the Tsar

It was May 18th, 2014 and I put my first tier X aircraft into my hangar, the IL-40P.

Back then, I was focused and determined to reach to the very top of the tiers and used the Soviet Attack Aircraft line to make that possible. During those times, players who flew these perceived-to-be-invincible aircraft would irritate the enemy teams with quick ground hitting, run and hide tactics, stealing away a victory for their team through a Supremacy count-out. Other players would break out of the class limitations and take their GA's into air-to-air combat, shocking red team players and cause a few uproars on the forums. Those were the good times.

This was the era of 1.3 and it was a very different game from what 2.0 is now. Sadly, I chose not to experience much of that in my new prize and after two battles, one defeat and one victory, I parked the 40P and went on to other projects.

Now, over three years later and somewhat inspired by comments of a certain player, I decided to take out this forgotten hangar queen and see if I could create some inspiration of my own.

Perhaps, I should have mapped out the rocket and bomb buttons first....

A bit of a correction here, it turns out that I did have the rocket and bomb keys mapped out.

After I watched the video and relaunched the game to review the weapons load-out, I discovered a glitch. Although the hangar showed rockets and bombs were indeed mounted, I had to remove and reinstall them to be registered as active. Tested this out in a Training room to confirm the keys were truly mapped and the ordinance was available. 

Wednesday, 13 December 2017

Restart the Battle Clock

Although I have a pretty good idea of how the whole capture system works in 2.0, I have also been able to put an observation into words.

From my perspective, time almost stands still as I engage the neutral defensive aircraft and dodge both incoming ground fire and enemy planes in my attempt to assist turning a certain area to our side. I experience the very same phenomenon when I am supporting the defense of a captured area from being turned to the "bad guys." So, I am often surprised when I exit this temporal anomaly and realize what has been happening in the normal time reality outside.

I am not as gifted as some other players out there, since I usually have a pinpoint focus on the moment and area I am operating in. In the past, I have flighted with very talented individuals who posses an almost omnipotent ability to see the whole battle and anticipate the movements of enemies and fellow teammates alike. I doubt they are "time trapped" like I have been, on many occasions....

Tuesday, 12 December 2017

Free is the Best Price!

Say, want two free premium planes?

From now until the beginning of March 2018 (or when the codes run out, whichever comes first), you can collect the tier V "Dunkirk" Spitfire Mk.Ia and the tier II Fw 56 "Stosser" (if you already have these aircraft, I am not sure what will be added to your account in their place).

Click this link and follow the onscreen instructions!

Monday, 11 December 2017

Returning Wind

Although I haven't been keeping an active, conscious count, I do believe this sandbox comes up for me, almost too much.

Despite the fact that World of Warplanes 2.0 has a limited amount of maps to battle it out over (currently eight on total), the only thing that keeps it from getting too stale in the action department is the changing objectives when the environments load and the human elements, on either team.

Sunday, 10 December 2017

Four to the D, One to the W

Sometimes, I just don't know when to hold them, fold them, or when to walk away.

World of Warplanes is a lot like a like Poker, you could be dealt a game winning Royal Flush, other times it's nothing more than a questionable Pair. However, a player who knows how to read and interpret the Mini-Map can easily call obvious Bluffs.

This session was a frustrating one, with the first four battles ending in defeats.

From the onset, both teams seemed to be reasonably balanced, but I felt confident that my team held the better cards. As certain battles unfolded, the good guys were quick to capture some areas, slower on others and even a few times, cashing in to collect the pot appeared to be a certainty.

Slowly, as the sorties progressed, I realized my teammates were throwing away their good cards and building much weaker hands from the ones they were picking up. My cards were just being taken right out of my hand, despite the ever increasing grip I had on them.

At Battle Three, I came close to Folding and just walking away, but had this feeling the next round would be mine. Turned out the timing was a little off and I would finally collect a decent Straight Flush on Battle Five....

Saturday, 9 December 2017

Not Quite a Hero in a Zero

Another recent freebie I picked up for my World of Warplanes hangar was the tier V premium Japanese Mitsubishi A6M3 (experimental), I just haven't had too much good luck trying to fly it.

This plane shares a lot in common with the other Zeros, such as decent speed and maneuverability, along the high susceptibility of catching fire very easily. However, one might be lured into thinking it brings a bigger punch to the party, since it is armed with 30 mm Type 2 autocannons.

Yes and no. Yes, when the cannons hit, they can tear away a good chunk of health from any opponent caught the cross-hairs. No, because these slow firing, close range weapons are hard to aim well in maneuvering combat.

Well, at least for me they are....

Friday, 8 December 2017

Golden Snow

I don't know if it's just that time of year or a sense of nostalgia, but I am finding myself missing those winter themed maps from previous versions of World of Warplanes.

Although official word on the future status of Winter War, Hidden Airbase, Eastern Front and Arctic Region hasn't been announced as of yet, I do hope to see a few, if not all, reworked and brought back to the game.

In the meantime, I suppose I will spend my Holidays in the desert....

Wednesday, 6 December 2017

Destructeur français, partie II

The last time I took to the skies in the tier V SNCASE SE 100 Heavy Fighter, I walked away with a win, but was very disappointed in my own performance.

For this outing, I was determined to contribute on the same or higher level from before, but I also wanted to either reduce my death count or be at least alive when the battle concluded.

Here is how that all went down....

Tuesday, 5 December 2017

Destructeur Français

Although I have decided to focus the Japanese Army Air Force in World of Warplanes, for some odd reason I gave into the urge to fly the only French aircraft in my hangar, the tier V SNCASE SE 100 Heavy Fighter.

That turned out to be a mistake on my part.

To be perfectly honest, Heavy Fighters were never really my strong suit, since most of them require a certain patience and skill that I don't have a grasp on. Although I did experiment and got "not bad" with the Boom and Zoom playstyle, I admit I was far from a proficient student in that art form. Plus, after flying more maneuverable Fighters pretty much since 2.0 launched, yeah....

Time To Lay Off The Sake

Well, in all my time playing World of Warplanes, I have never experienced anything like this! Good thing the cameras were rolling, because I doubt many would believe me if I told them about it....

Sunday, 3 December 2017

Defiance Before Defeat

I am not sure where it all began, but a lot of people in this day in age have this belief that if they invest time, money and effort into something, it will only return positive dividends.

There have been a great many "encouraging statements" passed on over the years to reinforce this mindset, such as "practice makes perfect" along with "keep you eyes on the prize" and my personal favorite, "no pain, no gain." However, reality isn't always a positively rewarding experience and something, or someone can come along and crush the dreams for those who are making their attempts. A bitter but wise Warrant Officer shared this nugget of perspective with me during my Army days, "The power of positive thinking won't shrink a mountain to make it easier to climb."

Make of that what you will.

Now, take this following battle and tell me if I was playing it for the fun of it, or was I trying to put in a Herculean effort to salvage a win?

Despite my usual, mostly positive attitude on the forums, I do get frustrated to mad during a battle when things don't going according to plan. I can accept, after the fact, when I am outplayed by a better player, or the enemy team is luckier or more coordinated than the one I am on. No words have yet to be invented for that experience when all that "hard work" put into playing just evaporates into a defeat, but after the battle is lost and I recompose myself, I try to remember to tip my hat to the victors.

But still....grrr....

Saturday, 2 December 2017

II Comes After I

Now, I have taken my first step up the Japanese Army Air Force line, to the Ki-43-II.

In all honesty, I don't expect this plane to perform too differently from it's tier IV version, since it's just more of the same as before. However, I do anticipate encountering tougher opponents and aircraft that come with tier V threshold and more complicated environments.

It's those complicated environments where the learning curve will lie, I believe.

The map on the left is what I was typically given to fly my sorties on with the tier IV Ki-43-I. For those who are really curious, it's Archipelago: Decisive Blow. After the initial novelty wears off, the environment is pretty straightforward with low islands, good viability and only three capture points.

The map on the right, Plateau: Advance Game, starts to shed away the simplicity seen from the lower tiers and moves a player into the realm of moderately more complicated gameplay. Deep canyons and towering rock formations that can wreak havoc, if one isn't paying attention to what is going on around them. Combine that with deadly aerial actions of combat, capturing and defending, can lead to a head spinning experience.

And, just to add to that, I bring in a brand new aircraft, an untrained pilot and just a vague idea what to do here....

Friday, 1 December 2017

Island Instigator

If there is one thing I am looking forward to in a future update, it's the return of replays.

With the current limitations on free camera angles and a lack of a center zoom, my action shots that headline my little editorials are rather lackluster, in comparison with past projects. Although it doesn't take away from the content of my commentary, it's just more of an aesthetic thing, much like a dust cover on a hard cover book. 

Anyways, another action filled battle in the tier IV Nakajima Ki-43-I Hayabusa, in it's natural environment....

Saturday, 25 November 2017

Desert Deaths

Ah yes, when Japanese aircraft ruled the skies of Egypt....oh wait....

When the first announcements of bombers were to be finally included with World of Warplanes Update 2.0, my original thoughts turned towards the big and iconic four engine aircraft, mostly flown by the Allies. Sadly, not only did that not come to pass (as of yet), but the current offerings are not widely available to all players either (except through Tokens, earned or purchased with real money and for a limited time I am told).

Still, seeing a few Avro Lancasters parked as part of the scenery on the revamped Egyptian map does give me hope they might be included in a future version. However, I am not going to hold my breath, for risk of passing out prematurely.

In the meantime, I am continuing through the tier IV Army Zero towards my first goal, rolling progress over to tier V. This sortie was good for the results, but poor in the battle performance department....

Thursday, 23 November 2017

Clearing the Homeskies

Until such time where I get bored, a worthy distraction comes along or some other reason not to do so, I will continue on and upward with the tier IV Nakajima Ki-43-I Hayabusa.

The conclusion I have come to, concerning World of Warplanes 2.0, is the gameplay has been refocused to favor more low to mid altitude, maneuvering aerial combat of Turn and Burn. Not to say the high diving strike tactics of the Boom and Zoom playstyle has been completely nullified, it just doesn't appear to be nearly as dominating as it was in previous versions, based on my observations.

Having said that and putting into motion my prior to 2.0 plans to try out the offerings from the Japanese Army Air Force line, it would seem that my timing and patience has paid off.

My goal going forward is pretty simple, to progress up the line with a near singular focus.

However, there are a few other things I need to work on along the way.

Wednesday, 22 November 2017

Hiya Hayabusa

As time in 1.9 was setting like the sun, I was preparing to start up a new line. However, real life stole more of my time away from World of Warplanes and just a flight or two, that plan was put on hold.

Along comes 2.0 and I jump back into the thick of things by revisiting select older premium and tech tree aircraft and experimenting with a few new ones. After getting a good feel of what might and might not work for me, I dusted off and opened the cover for the next adventure, planned from the last era.

Although I might have come late to the Japanese Army Air Force party (over a year since they were introduced), I was familiar with the first aircraft I wanted to skip ahead and start off with. I have put in a fare amount of airtime in the Chinese captured, premium Ki-43-Ic and based on that experience, made the decision to leap ahead to the same tiered, Japanese Hayabusa.

However, with a mostly untrained pilot and a modest upgrade to the weapons, how would I fare in battle?

Monday, 20 November 2017


Back in August of 2017, I wrote this about the tier VIII J7W1 Shinden, sharing my thoughts and comments for a particular battle....

It has been quite some time since I last flew the Kyushu J7W1 Shinden and was somewhat surprised to see a rather large amount of banked experience when I took to the skies in it today. I had two choices, go for the mid-grade engine or the next set of weapons, over stock. After a few minutes of seriously considering the options, such as a slightly better damage output potential, at the expense of a greatly reduced firerate, I opted for the engine and hopped it was the better decision.

Up until a certain part of the following battle, things were looking pretty good and I felt assured the new engine had worked out just fine. Then, I touched wings with a teammate and what happened after that was more of a pleasant surprise than I expected....


Fast foreword to November and take note of how things are so very different....

Wow, huh?

Granted, I didn't fly the Shinden in the same manner as before, but I can't be the only one who saw a few things....wrong with the second video. Before, the J7W1 could nearly pivot in a pinpoint, now, it takes the whole acre to complete a turn? Never advertised as a solid climber, the reduced engine power to do so from before is noticeable immediately. Also, it seems the vulnerability factor with the aircraft and pilot has had the threshold adjusted and not for the better either.

Despite the weapons still suffering from rapid overheating, the damage they dealt was nearly on par with 1.9 days, since I was able to land a few seriously critical shots on some targeted aircraft. Having said that, it appears from my perspective, those IL-20's and NC 1070's are a whole lot harder to take down.

I am rather disappointed with the J7W1, expecting it to perform close to the same levels as I flew it in the previous version. However, the game has changed and sadly, the Shinden did too.

Friday, 17 November 2017

A Devil of a Defeat

With all the time I have been spending in the lower to mid tiers, in an attempt to get used to the changes to World of Warplanes, the upper tiers have been neglected. Perhaps I should address that now....

As much as I love jet powered aircraft, I have this feeling their ability to perform in maneuvering combat at lower altitudes, especially in my hands, might not be the best choice to make. Instead, I decided to break out my top British Fighter, which just happens to be a propeller legend, the Supermarine Spitfire.

In the mid tiers, I was rewarded with satisfying action and results from the Dunkirk Spitfire Ia (no videos or screenshots of that, not every battle I win or lose gets a write-up), but a while ago and slightly higher up on the tiers, I was struggling with the Gloster Meteor (the first battle I fought in this new era was in that old favorite) and came to the conclusion to avoid other jets from my hangar, for the time being.

Needless to say, I wanted to experiment with the Mark XIV variant and confirm/deny my suspicions on my decision....

Not the result I was expecting, not by a long shot. 

Seriously, not every battle fought turns into a victory, no matter how sound the strategy and expertly executed, despite how others might try to convince differently. A choice made will generate three outcomes, the one you want, the one you don't want or something completely unexpected. Just like real life.

I played this battle for the team win and watching the above video proved I put in a lot of effort trying to achieve that goal. Could I have made better/different choices? Perhaps, in hindsight, but at the time, everything I was doing (mostly) seemed to be the correct course of action towards the desired end result. Instead I was rewarded with personal accolades, mission completions and a defeat.

Sigh, patch the holes and rearm, I suppose.

Wednesday, 15 November 2017

She Goes La La La La

Time to take a break from premium aircraft and revisit some from the tech tree.

Before 2.0, I didn't advance too far up the Lavochkin line, stopping at the tier VII La-7 for reasons I have long since forgot. I do remember it was a very good climbing, maneuverable aircraft with decent weaponry that overheated almost too quickly, with a fuselage was prone to catching fire a lot (that hasn't changed in post-2.0).

The old rule of thumb, when it came to Soviet fighters, was they were good at low to mid level altitudes and could be equipped with some fearsome and devastating firepower, especially in the mid tiers. At the higher tiers, some of them could climb up to where Mustangs and Messerschmitts prowled and wreaked havoc on them, in the right hands and/or in flights.

But times have changed and I decided to dust off and take the La-7 into new skies, where the battles are fought a little closer to the ground....

I got a little button happy and while holding Left-Alt to bring up additional information, I tapped F4 to mark a target and closed the game down mid-battle. Although the inserted video interruption lasts only a few seconds (for that dramatic effect), in reality it was nearly two full minutes I was absent from the sortie before reconnecting.

Good thing I had a fantastic team that was able to secure the day during my short recess.

Tuesday, 14 November 2017

Victory to the Viper

Since World of Warplanes Update 2.0 hit the North America servers, I have been waiting for a certain moment.

I think it has finally arrived!

Like many others, I have gone through my hangar, testing previously acquired aircraft out in battles, taking note of any changes and examining those results. However, to sweeten the pot, there are quite a few giveaways going on to collect new planes and take to the skies in those, even ones I never laid my virtual hands on before.

One such example is the Bell P-39N-1 Airacobra, available from Alienware. In the pre-2.0 days, I wouldn't have considered getting this, the XFL-1 nor the Soviet P-39Q-15. The game didn't favor low altitude aircraft best suited for maneuvering combat, since they would be nothing more then circling targets for the high flying, dive, shoot and climb predators.

I should know, I spent a great deal of time in the closing days of 1.9 in planes like the Mustang, the Ki-88 and a few others. Now, things are very different.

Not only has the "Turn and Burn" playstyle finally come into it's own, it has done so with a vengeful awakening.

I first noticed it with the tier V Bell XFL-1. Although I tested this plane out before in previous Common Test servers, I never put one in my hangar. As a giveaway, I couldn't resist the temptation and I have been rewarded very nicely. Then, I took the chance on redeeming the code for the tier VI Bell P-39N-1 Airacobra....

A newspaper clipping from a scrapbook I started as a kid, showing Bell Fighters at the airport of my hometown (long before I was born), part of the Northwest Staging Route, ferrying Lend/Lease aircraft from the Continental United States, through Canada to the Soviet Union.

Needless to say, I have liked the look and lore of this aircraft for a very, very long time, but stayed mostly quiet about it, since they didn't really much of an impact or place in the game before and no real appeal or incentive to get any of them.

Now, I have two with one more to go.

Monday, 13 November 2017

Schwacher Verteidiger

When the Heinkel He 100 D-1 came to World of Warplanes, it broke the rules on German mid to high tier aircraft being mostly suited for the Boom and Zoom playstyle. Now, there was a Deutschland plane that was more than capable of turn fighting with same tiered British and Japanese counterparts.

However, the trade off was pretty poor damage output from it's machine guns and weak armor.

Although I couldn't perform it consistently in the pre-2.0 days, the trick with using the He 100 was to get in very, very close and open up the guns, trying to match the targeted aircraft's evasive maneuvers from behind. Versus other fighters, this tactic worked out well, slightly less against Heavy Fighters with rear gunners and Ground Attack aircraft took forever to bring down, if at all.

That was then, this is now....

Much to my surprise, I get this feeling the He 100 has made the transition to this new era relatively unchanged. While the weapons still put out dismal damage, the maneuverability might have been tweaked ever so slightly, unless wishful thinking is overriding my experience from this battle.

The He 100 wasn't designed to be a frontline fighter, by any means, given the tiers of enemy aircraft it potentially faces. However, as a base defender and/or harassment aircraft, I think it fits that role rather well.

What are your thoughts?

Sunday, 12 November 2017

A Squirrely Little Bird

By now, I believe that a quite a few players in World of Warplanes have completed all the tasks and put the new Soviet tier IV I-207 multirole fighter in their hangars. If you happen to be one of those who haven't yet, I would recommend seriously considering it, before time runs out.

For me, collecting the plane took around ten battles (hard to get a few meaningful wins to count towards the mission), but decided to wait a day before taking out on it's first flight. That turned out to be a disaster.

Without going into great detail, let's sum it up to poor ping and packet loss.

After that band of internet bad weather passed, I took to the skies again and....well....yeah....had my "worst" fought victory as of yet....

I freely admit I did a lot of things wrong, from not paying attention to what was going on around me, pushing a brand new plane beyond it's limits and becoming target fixated on one of the top players in the game, while they were in a flight (in fact, the only flight in the whole match was on the enemy team).

The Borovkov-Florov I-207/4 is, from my experience and appearance, a biplane variant of the Polikarpov I-16. If you happen to be a fan of those aircraft, then you would be right at home in this one, since decent armament and fantastic maneuverability, but poor damage absorption are their shared traits.

I am not sure if it was me or my computer (with focus on my graphics card), but either I couldn't keep up with how the plane was over-maneuvering in the environment or the rendering of what was going on wasn't happening fast enough.

Despite the multiple deaths that broke the system on my end, the aircraft is a lot of fun, much like trying to pet a really rambunctious, but caged bird.

Just be careful not to get pecked.