Status Report: Maxim Chuvalovym’s Sandbox Interview/Q&A
WG’s product manager, Maxim Chuvalovym*gave overclockers.ua an interview, translated it for you:
Can you tell us a little about yourself, how you got into the World of Tanks project and what are your responsibilities?
I’m a 30 years old who started playing PC games at the age of 6. My first computer game was a ZX Spectrum with a tape recorder and cassettes. I joined Wargaming about 6 years ago before World of Tanks was even released. I work on the global product marketing,besides growing and developing market strategy I also access new ones.
Are you an active player if so on which patch you started?
I try to play all the time even though sometimes time is lacking. Have 58% WR. We are actively involved in the development of our WG clan and try to stay active in the Global Map. I started playing in 2010 like everyone else.
What is the current amount of online active players and what were the *numbers from last year?
Globally, it’s about one and a half million users but is varies depending on the season.
The dynamics on active players is positive despite the game’s age and there has been a strong growth in Asia.
What’s your target audience and the average age of your players?
Our target audience is mostly men (about 97%) aged 25 to 45 years. Our audience compared to other MMOs is very mature and involved. For many, the project has become much more than just a game, “Tanks” became a hobby which competes with watching football or fishing and its something people don’t feel ashamed to talk to friends and colleagues about.
There was a rumour a couple months ago that World of Tanks was changing into a paid subscription?
Paid subscription is not being considered. Accessibility is one of the basic principles of WoT.
Are there any plans for a cooperation in the near future with well-known computer brands, and not only?
Of course, we are constantly negotiating with a large number of potential partners. We are interested in the development of this area: both in terms of expanding the range of available products as well to simplify its purchasing and delivery.
Do you plan to maintain the exchange rate of the national currency in the Premium shop?
This all depends on the economic situation.*We understand our player’s position and try to consolidate.
Can you tell us any detail on the Sandbox server?*
This is a great experiment.*The main thing players must realise,*this test is being called “Sandbox” for a reason, it’s like a sand castle which can be completely destroyed and rebuilt. We want to teach our players how to give constructive criticism, they should have an understanding that we can do it together, hand in hand. All the feedback that we collect from our players, bloggers, clans and their leaders are sent to the balancing department where it’s then strained and translated into new prototype ideas.
When did Sandbox start and when will it close?
The Sandbox launch was held on June 16, 2016, and it will keep on existing as long players enjoy this format.
*We fully understand the importance and complexity of*the work we are performing. Only a few in the gaming industry would dare to make such changes. We will be taking into account all factors (from server statistics to player reviews and our personal information and feelings. I can’t tell you what will be the final word but it will be a combination of factors. If data is contradictory we will ask players again, it’s their game and the decisions are for them.
Will the Sandbox changes be applied into live server collectively?
*Some functionalities may enter individually and as soon as possible. but of course, for example, if we are satisfied enough with SPGs then there is a possibility to add it before the rest of rebalancing. We still need to test the roles and rebalance one by one otherwise things will not work.
The tank Roles are necessary because the current classes don’t always reflect the essence of the vehicles. Not all HTs are meant for “tanking”. The new Roles are made in order to help players understand how to play on a particular vehicle.
Do you plan to change the current classes?
The Classes will remain but will be added to the Roles so players can clearly understand what kind of vehicles they are driving and not feel deceived.
-Roles will not affect the player’s skill.
-The team is now intensively working on finalising the interface (In-game and hangar).
-Dev team has fixed the bug where battle sounds keep on playing even after hitting hangar.
-Dev team is aware of the bug where battle stats are unavailable.
*-Dev team is testing the possibility of make 3 arty per team the maximum allowed.
-Balancing the amount of each class per team besides arty isn’t very rational because the number vary between regions, the team doesn’t want players to stand in long queues to play.
-The team is thinking about the possibility to hide players stats on request.
We are working on VR prototypes. I personally have played VR in various VR devices.
Of course to make the game work on all these devices it requires a lot of resources (both time and financial consuming).
Currently, VR doesn’t have a market and this is something necessary for MMOs but we are working on it so when the market is there we will be fully prepared but its not in our list of priorities.
In terms of audience, this will be a new format of content which been taken with great enthusiasm.
For now, the most important part of this battle’s reconstruction is the 360° interaction.
Will Football/soccer mode come back on a regular basis or will it shut off completely?
We will shut it off but we are always working in new fun modes. We have a few more in store for this year.
-The Dev team will test the possibility of removing team killing in Sandbox but only after the rebalance.
-“Still too early to announce 9.16. Maybe 9.16 will even have something from Sandbox”. RG: 9.16 is expected to come in autumn.