Part 1: http://ftr.wot-news.com/2014/12/15/a...aforce-part-1/ Part 2: http://ftr.wot-news.com/2014/12/20/a...aforce-part-2/ Welcome to the third part of the artillery guide. Today the big topic will be aiming, which might make some of you reconsider the way you click those damn tanks. Before we start, big thanks to those 50+ people who started sending me encouraging messages when the FTR comments got locked. Some even sent gold, which took me totally by surprise and made my Christmas a lot merrier. Sadly, some disturbed players couldn’t handle the guide again. No point mentioning the usual cancer wishes but one guy deserves a special mention. The “special” player award goes to Xensation, commander of IDEAL for 2 days of truly “original” trolling at our own TS. COMMUNICATION Arti drivers should be the most “talkative” players on the team but few really are. Talking to your team sure influences your win rate and many players are happy to work with arty when they realize you are ready to cooperate. Having an ally pull and track an enemy in the middle of your aiming circle is one of the most satisfying moments of playing arty. Due to your long reload and minimal movement you can use the chat and shortcuts more often than others. You also have the best tactical overview thanks to arty view and can see the HP situation anywhere on the map. That said, while you cannot expect your team to always listen or work with you, it is still worth doing no matter how many times you get frustrated. Here is what you can do: 1) Always mark your target (“T” by default) about 5sec before you fire. An experienced player will see the marker and stay away from the target. A great player will track the target as he will likely get more xp than if he shot it himself. Sometimes, players can’t penetrate the tank they are facing but they can still track it. If they see your marker they often will. Once again, do NOT expect your teammates not to kill the marked tank and “save” it for you. 2) If you can kill or seriously damage a tank which is trading with a friendly tank, mark the target and follow with the “reloading” button to show how soon you can hit the target. Experienced players will stay in cover and let you hit it conserving their HP. They attack when the shell lands and often shoot a disabled and disoriented opponent (if there is anything left to shoot). 3) In case 2 tanks are dueling in close proximity, mark the target about 10s before you are ready to fire to give your ally time to get safe and then mark it again after another 5sec. If they don’t get safe you’ll have to make a tough decision based on your experience, accuracy and shell travel time. In general, I’d advice taking a risky shot ONLY if your ally is going to die anyway OR he is much less valuable than your target AND in both cases only when you have a decent chance of killing the enemy tank. Under and only under these conditions, I consider killing an ally fully acceptable. Make sure you evaluate the chances of your allies correctly. A good 1HP medium player can dance around a tomato for 10 minutes without being hit or rammed once so be sure you take their skill into account (XVM ftw again). 4) Click the map and press “Help” or “reloading – loaded” to mark what tanks you need spotted but only do so if there is somebody who can actually do it and there is nothing else you can shoot. 5) Later in the game when a new target gets spotted use “negative” to say you don’t have a shot or “reloading” when you need some time. Also, press reloading when you miss a shot. The last tanks are usually the best players who will listen and adjust their play based on the info you provide. 6) Click your ally location and press “affirmative” to let the player know you are ready to cover him. The player will usually try to spot and will let you do your job knowing he doesn’t have to take risks while aiming his shots. This is very useful when you have 2 tanks on opposite sides of an obstacle. An experienced player will push the enemy out of the cover and allow you to take a shot when he knows you are loaded and aimed. 7) Based on your general experience, you can also provide other info for your team. Most players don’t have the time or skill to count enemy tanks. Messages like “5 enemies left, 10 right. Push left.” Can decide the battle but don’t expect the team to always listen and be sure you have the necessary experience first. RMB, X and M To my huge surprise few arty players use these three keys effectively and some pretty good players don’t use them at all. In arty mode RMB is used to look around the map while still aiming at the original spot. This is very useful when reloading to check whether you can hit certain tanks and to search the map for artillery tracers, fallen trees or just to assess the situation. Another thing you should know about is that you can actually press SHIFT while holding RMB. This will keep you aimed at the same location while you can check what’s going on around you, your current barrel elevation (which also tells you the angle of impact), and whether or not you can be spotted from certain locations. Before you release the RMB, you need to move the cursor back where you were aiming if you want to remain fully aimed. The X key will prevent your hull from moving when you mouse outside your gun arc. Given the long aim time of most arties it is mostly not the best idea to follow tanks that leave your firing sector if there are other targets in it. I personally only use the A and D keys to move my hull and press X right after I do so to make sure I don’t have to aim twice. If you use a big mini-map, disabling it with the “M” key for a few seconds in arty mode is quite helpful when looking at big areas of engagement like Mount Malinovka. BLIND SHOTS A high blind shot hit rate is what makes an arty driver a great arty driver. In public games many players will initially go to a bush of their choice and camp it hard till somebody comes in range. The Continue reading →

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