From the Depths: Checking up on World of Warships’ community promises

Wargaming’s World of Warships had its share of controversies in 2021, some of which led to the resignation of many of its most prolific community contributors. In response, Wargaming released a dev blog detailing several areas of improvement they intended to pursue. More recently, a follow-up post has appeared touting some of the changes that have since been made. We thought it was time to independently check up on how these improvements were coming along.

Age ratings

In that September 2021 dev blog, Wargaming tackled the sticky question of monetization. Many of the community contributors who had quit the program stated increasingly predatory monetization was a major factor in their decision to leave. Players took issue with a game that included random/gambling mechanics was rated appropriate for children as young as seven years old by the Pan European Game Information (PEGI). Executive Producer Sub_Octavian addressed this concern in the North American forums, stating that the game is not marketed to children, that it abides by legal requirements in all countries, and that Warships intended to go the extra mile and voluntarily request a new rating of PEGI-12 (up from PEGI-7).

In the more recent dev blog, Wargaming notes that it has added an age check for random purchases but offers no news as to the progress of the elevated PEGI rating. A quick check of the PEGI site reveals that the rating remains at PEGI-7.

Random mechanics

Wargaming has also promised to make all new ships available via alternate methods if they are primarily distributed via containers or random bundles. It has done this, although some of the methods chosen have been excessively grindy mission chains or via convoluted processes. It should also be noted that Wargaming only made this vow for any new ships they introduce. Random containers continue to be the only way to acquire many older, discontinued, sought-after ships.

Drop rates

Players demanded increased transparency on drop rates for random containers, and Wargaming partially delivered. In fact, World of Warships has dedicated an entire page on its website to detailing the contents and drop chances of several variants of random containers. While the graphics are a bit busy, they mostly get the point across regarding the drop chances of the most valuable items. These drop chances have also been included on the container purchase page within the premium shop and armory. Additionally, this disclaimer appears at the bottom of the container purchase page:

“You are not guaranteed to receive specific in-game items when opening a container—any of the listed rewards can drop with a certain probability. However, you are guaranteed to obtain contents that are equal in value or worth more than what you spend on purchasing the container. Please be conscious of your expenditures when making purchases in World of Warships”

Wargaming has done a very good job of making drop rate information available to the consumer. Short of removing random bundles completely, Wargaming has done about as much as can be expected to make sure players are informed about the dangerous aspects of this kind of monetization.

Return of Missouri

It might be difficult to remember all the way back to the time when many content creators were stepping away from Warships, but one of the major sparks that ignited the fuse was the event promising the return of the USS Missouri. Wargaming had announced that the ship would be made available for purchase, then subsequently decided that it would only be included in lootboxes. The 2021 dev blog dedicated an entire section to the return of the Missouri, promising to make it available for direct purchase as was originally stated. The devs also indicated that owners of the original Missouri would not be penalized by the ship’s credit-earning potential being nerfed.

Unfortunately, due to the dev blog being published only a few weeks prior to the Missouri event, the entire thing felt very cobbled-together as developers rushed to incorporate these new directions into an event that was most likely already finished. The ship was made available for purchase, but only after players completed an out-of-game website campaign grind. Those wishing to purchase the ship with doubloons (as opposed to with a credit card directly from the web store) were forced to open a ticket with customer support to do so. The promised credit multiplier mission for existing Missouri owners underperformed and had to be adjusted not once but twice after the community confronted Wargaming with evidence of the flawed formula. In all, while Wargaming technically fulfilled all the promises regarding the Missouri, the implementation was extremely clumsy.

More reaction to feedback on ships balance

It’s difficult to assess exactly how much feedback plays into balancing World of Warships as a whole. Most of the direct feedback comes from super testers (players), and some comes from community contributors, but all of it happens under NDA during the testing process. That said, ships do continue to receive buffs and nerfs, many of which seem reasonable and appropriate.

Aircraft carriers

Wargaming has made a few adjustments to aircraft carriers that were considered too influential by many in the playerbase, and the studio has hinted that more will be coming. On the other hand, it’s also recently announced the production testing of two new “supercarriers” (tier 11) that will be more powerful than any other carrier currently in the game.


Wargaming spent about a third of the original dev blog on various communications issues, and rightfully so. Many of the issues the company encountered in 2021 were compounded by miscommunications, delayed communications, or mistranslations.  In one case, an on-stream community manager didn’t know the answer to a chat question and simply made something up that had to be walked back the next day.

Fortunately, these deficiencies were recognized, and attempts have been made to enhance communication between the company and its customers. Most notably, a yearly roadmap was published and discussed in early February opening the curtain on long-term plans that Wargaming had previously only hinted at. More recently, a game issue that caused certain high rate-of-fire ships to underperform was explained in great detail soon after a prominent Warships YouTuber brought attention to it. While some of the miscommunication can be attributed to the number of languages used by the studio to communicate with the player base, the delayed communication or all-out silence was more concerning. It seems like Wargaming is at least trying to improve communication on this front.

In all, it does seem like Wargaming is making efforts to improve community relations after a disastrous summer in 2021. Progress has been made in several areas, while others may simply need a bit more time to take effect. While player sentiment seems to have mellowed over the past several months, many continue to keep a watchful eye on the company and its actions… including us.

Whether you’re the captain of a historical battleship or a feisty pirate queen on the deck of a smuggling vessel, the high seas are the final frontier of many MMOs! Join the MOP team here in From the Depths for occasional voyages into all the ocean-going MMOs of the moment. Just don’t sink our boat!
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