But Stawek told me it’s not pay to win

I wrote how it’s moving to pay-to-win to hold competitive ranked matches in a tier that has overpowered ships that are available by buying with money.

Stawek, ardent defender of Wargaming’s honor, wrote “Missouri is an Iowa with a radar. It’s strong and could be bought for 750k XP. Not in the shop anymore for at least 6 months. … So, of all the ships you listed, WG can’t earn money on any but a few.”

And now this:
missouri

No, it’s not mine. I’m not the guy who bought 5 “Santa crates” (Wargaming holliday-themed lootboxes) and got the ship.

Since all the other posts of the user about World of Warships are “An 8 year old MacBook is still good enough for me to play this beautiful ship WG gifted me! Thank you so much WG and all of the kind people who wished me the best with my recovery” and “Hello, new to the game, help?”, I tend to believe that this is purposeful guerilla marketing, but even if it’s just a honest newbie getting lucky, the effect is the same: players are offered overpowered ships for money that they can use in ranked games.

The truth is that all the overpowered ships are available in the form of paid lootboxes. Even worse, they aren’t available in any other means, “forcing” the pay-to-win kids to spend excessively on these damn things. Yes, they were available once for free XP or missions or whatnot. But if you’ve been playing for less than a year like me, your only option to get them is opening your wallet and buying lots of lootboxes.

Sure, I haven’t bought a single lootbox in my life and intend for it to stay this way. I wouldn’t play the Missouri, even if I’d have one. I’d play the Black though. However I’m confident that I’ll rank out fine with my Yugumo. But that doesn’t change the fact that the top 5 ships of they past and next season will be available to those who pay on top of subscription and gold for flags or camo or whatnot.

Author: Gevlon

My blog: https://greedygoblinblog.wordpress.com/

22 thoughts on “But Stawek told me it’s not pay to win”

  1. Ship rank = ship stats * skillbase of players in this ship.

    As long as you are mourning about both combined, your point is just senseless. Look at your beloved T10. Stalingrad is most OP!!!!!!

    I bet if anybody could have it, they would realize that its really hard to make this work. Same with missouri. The radar is just gimmicky and the ship isnt op. Proof me wrong with stats or you are just making a conspiracy – even more so due to the fact that you never played any other class besides DDs and claim you could evaluate balance.

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  2. @Chewiecide: I proved you wrong with stats. Only 1 out of 15 top ships in the past 3 ranked sprints were tech tree. After season 12 you’ll have the T9 stats too.

    The Missouri radar is game-breaking OP. It means it can sail without cruiser support, because it can handle DDs by itself.

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  3. You don’t get the point. As long as you mix ship stats and player Base skill level, your Argument is meaningless.

    Reapeat this with ship stats (caliber, reload, armor pattern, overmatch, citadel, dispersion etc) only and refine your claim, otherwise your posts are just trolling.

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  4. @Chewiecide: results matter. If Kamikaze R has 55% winrate in ranked, it’s overpowered, period. I repeat once more: the veteran players would choose to not play it if it wasn’t the best tool.

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  5. Best tool does not mean overpowered by default. Else every item/build/etc etc in whichever game would be overpowered.

    It might be optimal and used by most veterans, but that does not by default mean overpowered.

    Is it possible to get the data Chewie is asking for. His request does not seem that unreasonable, and the data would be quite interesting.

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  6. @Caldazar: OK, let’s play. Iowa (tech tree T9 battleships) vs Missouri (T9 P2W ship), only differing stats listed
    HP: 79.0K – 78.3K
    Dispersion (smaller better): 272 m – 293 m
    Short AA: 75.6 – 176.9
    Mid AA: 222.6 – 286.2+31.8
    Rudder time (smaller better): 22.5 – 19.4
    Radar: no – yes

    http://wiki.wargaming.net/en/Ship:Iowa
    http://wiki.wargaming.net/en/Ship:Missouri

    The Iowa ha a bit better accuracy, but Missouri has much better AA (won’t matter much in T9 ranked) and a radar. Otherwise identical. This is as P2W as it can be.

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  7. If anybody buys loot boxes hoping for Missouri then they’re going to spend a helluva lot of money before they get one. Which WG loves, I’m sure, but there are very few people like this.
    Loot boxes may or may not be bad, but that’s a discussion about gambling as a whole, not just in games.
    Again, you can’t say it’s pay to win when the premiums are free in-game rewards available with no payments whatsoever.

    Kamikaze was a premium copy of Minekaze, which has since then had its torpedo reload and speed nerfed.
    It has not been in the shop for 2 years or so before I even started playing. There was an extremely grindy event with Kamikaze R as a prize (which is an exact copy) roughly when I started playing. It was so grindy that I didn’t get it despite playing a lot. Fujin is another copy, again not in the shop (I think it was a reward for beta accounts or something similar). There were roughly 5 times as many free Kamikaze R than the original paid-for Kamikaze.

    WG have a policy of never nerfing premiums. I think it’s wrong and they should do it, giving an option of a refund for doubloons in each case, just like they did with Belfast and Kutuzow when they nerfed smoke.

    Kamikaze is OP. Now let’s see how much OP it is.

    My claim: the experienced players using Kamikaze amplify the ship’s strength. Therefore the 5% difference in win rate over the expected 50% is partially the ship and partially the quality of the players.

    Now let’s look at other ships: ARP Kongo, ARP Kirishima ARP Haruna, ARP Hiei and Kongo. All five are identical. (ARP versions are actually slightly worse because they cannot use camouflage, but the 3% concealment doesn’t matter for BBs.)
    They used to be available for free as part of some manga collaboration. WG cancelled it about a year ago, therefore we can claim that ARP ships enjoy better quality drivers, just like Kamikazes. They are still available for purchase but I doubt anybody ever buys them.

    Winrates:
    Kongo: 49.1
    ARP Kongo: 52
    ARP Kirishima: 51.73
    ARP Hiei: 51.31
    ARP Haruna: 50.56
    Weighted average of ARP ships: 51.56

    That makes roughly 2.5% difference for identical ships, just because the drivers are not younger than 1 year. For any version of Kamikaze, drivers are not younger than 2 years. Therefore I claim that at least 2.5% of Kamikaze’s statistics comes from unusually experienced drivers.

    After making the correction for drivers, Kamikaze has 52.5% winrate. That’s exactly the same as tech tree Nicholas, Furutaka and only 0.5% better than Bogue. Meaning, while Kamikaze is indeed OP, it does not leave F2P players worse off because they can play tech tree Nicholas or Furutaka and have a ship just as strong. If they choose to play Mutsuki instead, it’s not WGs fault. Or they can play Minekaze (which is a Kamikaze with worse torps) and have 88% win rate with it like me if they are good enough.

    Another thing is the divisions. Division play is very beneficial and old-timers are much more likely to be in clans and play with friends. Friends being other old-timers, sometimes. This blurs the stats even more.

    To finalize: yes, Kamikaze is strong. But it’s not outrageously OP and WG are not making a lot of money on the fact.

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  8. You listed stock stats of Iowa, AA and rudder shift are much better with hull upgrades.

    Missouri is better than Iowa. So is Musashi. You can buy it for 750k FXP. Or play Alsace for free (considering Random stats and player experience bias in Missouri, it is arguably a better ship).

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  9. @Stawek: drop rates are obviously shady and lootbox is bad in itself, but it doesn’t change the basic premise: pay money – (have a chance to) get overpowered ship.

    Even if the ships are not much better, having them means the ability to play them if one finds it beneficial. I can’t play a Black because I don’t have a Black. So paying players have more choices to pick the right ship for the job. I learned it first-hand when I got upset by Frazelleth and his dumb lemming train and bought a Grozovoi with a good captain and got 75% winrate with it against carriers. I could do it, because I had 600K FreeXP and 2M Commander XP lying around, due to paying for signals. If I didn’t pay, I couldn’t just grab a Grozo in 5 minutes and couldn’t grind it out before the end of the season.

    Simply available in-game is meaningless if you admit yourself that you couldn’t grind it out. You can theoretically gain the Prince Ethel Frederick in-game, but I don’t think I can complete stage 4, despite playing a lot.

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  10. Gevlon, you are Mixing up pay to progress and pay to win.

    Obviously there are tons of example where you can skip the grind in wows. But that doesnt bring you more wins. You still need to play. It is definitely different to gold ammo or something similar.

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  11. You didn’t “get 75% win rate against CVs in Grozovoi”. You only played 8 games with it so any discussion about win rates is baseless due to lack of data. You could have had Grozovoi without using FXP if you chose to grind it beforehand in anticipation of CVs.

    You don’t have Black because you haven’t had either R1 thrice or enough steel to buy one (awarded for Ranked and Clan performance). Both because you haven’t played long enough and refusing to join a better clan and play CB. It is your choice, not lack of money purchases, that keeps you away from Black.

    Now, WoWs is p2w on an individual level. My Gearing will kill your Benson, but at the same time, your team’s Z-52 will kill my team’s Z-23 on the other side of the map. However, win rate statistics remain unaffected for all 4 ships regardless of tier and premium accounts.

    There are a few OP ships. Some or even most of those are premiums. A lot of them, however, were awarded for participation rather than money, and even those like Belfast could have been bought using doubloons earned in-game on missions and campaigns (that’s why WG created steel and special ships bought for steel, they no longer give away any significant amounts of doubloons).

    None of the OP ships is game-breakingly OP. Exceptions are CVs, but that’s only because all CVs are game-breakingly OP. Considering how highly skill-dependant this game is and the size of the teams, I believe the game is reasonably balanced (CVs excluded). Overall it is a much better game environment than any game I ever played.

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  12. @Chewiecide: except being able to play Grozovoi instantly when I wanted gave me more wins.

    @Stawek: the “available in game” mantra goes down to this: “if you anticipate the meta AND you grind out the proper ships, you will be competitive with those who throw money to the problem”.

    The simple subscribers (not real free players) have to have deeper meta knowledge and better play discipline (grind bad ships in low-tier games instead of playing their main) to be at equal footing.

    “meta knowledge” and “play discipline” are skills. So we arrived to “subscribers need more skill to be competitive with wallet warriors”

    I don’t have Black, because I didn’t buy the steel campaign, which would give me enough steel to buy it.

    Missouri is game-breaking OP by being a RADAR BATTLESHIP. This doesn’t break random battles, because most DDs will die in caps anyway and most battleships will be burned down by HE. But in ranked, in a 7v7 game with DDs alive after 5 minutes, it will completely dominate the game by the sole ability of being able to sail open water without fear. Cruisers can’t do that because BBs will delete them if they are spotted in the wrong angle. Other BBs can’t do that, because torp salvo incoming. DDs can do it to some extent (outside of the exclusion zones of radar cruisers). Missouri alone can do that and nothing can beat it besides overwhelming numbers.

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  13. Bold claim. Have you ever played bbs? Have you ever played t9 rank? Have you ever played arms race in ranked?

    You simply don’t know what will happen in this season’s ranked meta yet. If you can’t outplay a Missouri, you don’t deserve rank1. It’s by far not the strongest ship.

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  14. How do you know? have you ever played a high tier BB or CA?

    Missouri is strong but not overwhelmingly so. The radar on its own is not enough to own DDs, because first, you don’t know when to use it; second, it only lasts long enough for a single salvo; and third, all DDs can torp you from outside the range anyway. Lastly, a rushing BB dies to focus fire so there is little chance to use it.

    Missouri has much better stats mostly because it offers massive amounts of credits. All the F2P players played it a lot to earn credits for other ships, meaning an average Missouri player is much more experienced in playing Missouri after hundreds of games than a FdG player who only plays 100 games in it to farm a GK. And a number of those in a stock hull, too. Add to this noob-prohibitive price in FXP and most of the stats can be explained. It will have the best win rate of all BBs, most likely, but Musashi and Alsace will be close. A lot depends on meta, if there are lots of BBs then Musashi is the best, if lots of cruisers then Alsace, if lots of DDs then Missouri.

    Subscribers need more skill to be competitive with wallet warriors, but not the actual in-game skills. Just like in Eve, you can spend hours farming ISK or you can buy a plex. Once you’re in a fight the source of your isk doesn’t matter in the least.

    Sure, it isn’t a perfect game. WG have to sell some kind of advantage, though, as per your own research on PLEX and injectors prices. What they are selling is not oppressive enough to break the game and that’s good enough. It is a good game with reasonable monetization.

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  15. @Chewiecide: can a Missouri be defeated if it’s piloted by a noob? Yes. At equal skill: not a chance. I do expect to rank out without problems, mostly because I don’t play battleships, so I have the same chance to have a Missouri on my side than on the enemy. BB players are absolutely screwed. It’s not “strongest” it’s “Graf Zeppelin”.

    @Stawek: he doesn’t have to use the radar once to own the DDs. The pure fact that he has it forces DD players to make large circles. Spotting a DD for even a second is enough to ruin his well designed surprise attack. Can torpedoes be fired at him from out of range? Sure. Can they hit? That depends on luck only at that range. Her ability isn’t rushing, it’s sailing sideways for crossfire without caring for DDs. She can sail to places where no sane BB captain would do because it’s sure DD food.

    Does WG must sell something? Sure. But it could simply sell faster advancement and free player-owning ships in RANDOM battles. I was fine with their practices while the competitive game modes were in T10 with normal ships only. I can’t wait for clan battles to happen in a P2W tier and your clan leader telling you to chip in for a competitive ship or sit out the season while the big boys play.

    However we’ll have an ultimate test for your “Kamikaze is good because it’s played by veterans” theory: Jean Bart and Neustrashimy. They are a new P2W ships, so pilots will be wallet warriors of all skill levels. If they still finish at 55%, I’m right.

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  16. Nope, I said Kamikaze is both good as a ship and even better cause it’s piloted by veterans. When both are considered it is roughly as good as the best tech tree ships. Which means it offers no advantage over f2p players.

    Don’t know about JB, I don’t think anybody thinks it’s stronger than Alsace. It is extremely expensive though, so the people buying it are probably dedicated players, too. I don’t think it will have excessive stats. Neustrashiny is not in the game yet, so it’s moot.

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  17. @Stawek: I’ve played a random game against a Neustrashiny. It’s possible that it was piloted by a dev or closed tester. But I’ve seen it in the game, live server. I’ve even talked about it on chat, asking what the hell it is.

    Coal comes from getting lot of XP. I religiously collect coal and to do it, I use premium time, camo and signals. Having THAT coal is P2W

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  18. I keep seeing all of this talk about the CV being OP…

    …so how does WG formulate the offensive/defensive strategy surrounding the CV as it pertains to real world scenarios and modern technology? Is the game centered around a WWII time frame, or something more modern? I ask this because the CV has, up until recent decades, been the heart of the Battlegroup. Along with that comes vulnerabilities and strengths depending on Airwing complement and usage(it’s almost next to impossible to get anywhere near a CV if the Battlegroup and support aircraft are doing their jobs). So if the Battlegroup and support aircraft are doing their jobs, I could easily agree that the CV could appear OP against a team who didn’t play as a…well, team.

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  19. @Noguff: it’s in WW2, but above all, it’s a video game. If one class is OP, the game is broken, regardless what the real world realities were.

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  20. Missouri by itself is almost as vulnerable to DD’s as any other BB.
    The radar has a cooldown and without support a BB can only fire 2 volley’s max at a DD and that is assuming your turrets are already pointing in the right direction.
    WASD skills are more important in dodging torps as that radar threat.

    If we ignore AA I guess Musashi will be much better for ranked as Missouri since the overmatch power on every salvo will be more useful as 2 minutes of Missouri radar.

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  21. Just made a bit of research, the good ships (! Not OP) are heavily DD driven and besides black there is no premium DD in. Top picks will be something like kitakaze, jutland. Probably fletcher if you can play well as well as the Z.

    So you are DD main. Go pick your favorite out of these four.

    The odd thing is that almost no BB will be a good pick besides missouri. Meta wil show if all BB mains will insist on playing BBs and we will see a lot of BBs. Then musashi will shine as a hard counter. Probably lion which is damn good close range.

    Your comment is not valid for BBs or DDs but highly likely for cruisers. Alaska and Krohnstadt willl rule em all. Only possibly close to them will be buffalo or seattle. Cruisers are screwed in this game mode. There aren’t any good cruisers on T9 silver besides SIM mid range fire starters. And these are obsolete in arms race.

    Overall, we do have the situation: top pack are 2+2 silver DDs plus a premium DD. Second line is one gold BB plus two gold cruisers. Third are two silver cruisers, the other DDs and some BBs, gold and silver.

    I do see the situation for cruisers odd. But way more critical to me is that this game mode is making DDs OP. Especially since the removal of CVs as DD counter.

    All in all I do like that they try something fresh and new, it’s just one season and when it didn’t work – so what.

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