The Incredible Skill-7


Why I Hate the Bias-7




So the other day was my birthday, but before that, I drove a bit of IS-7. I didn’t think that would ever happen; I have one on the press account for target practice, but I’ve never felt the slightest interest in driving one, and I would like to make it clear I never would have if Xenodium hadn’t goaded me into it.

You all know the IS-7. The Incredible Skill-7, we dubbed it. And you all know I despise it.

I’m not afraid of the IS-7, nor am I afraid that if I drive it, I will want to get one. That’s just not going to happen, because it’s just the completely wrong tank for me.

And now I know why.

It’s simple, really. The reason I don’t like the IS-7 is the exact reason I like the WZ-113 so much, and it is this:

When I drive an IS-7 at some hapless noob, I am expecting to get bounces off my bullshit Russian bias. When I drive my WZ-113 at some hapless noob, I expect to get bounces because I angled my armour correctly and didn’t show my lower plate.

One takes skill, knowledge of your vehicle, and experience driving it. The other one doesn’t. And I think driving the one that doesn’t is super boring. I knew I would.

So having made this fairly predictable observation, it was suddenly my birthday, and I could drive whatever I wanted. I have managed to claw together a 3 million buffer again, so now I just don’t care.

Also I have all the new crate tanks on my press account, but I didn’t have the urge to drive any of those. I drove my two new tier X Chinese, and my Object 140. Then I drove my two tier X Tank Destroyer/turretless Mediums, and my old STB-1, which was the first tank I gold noobed for my birthday a couple of years ago.

I also drove a tank I’m not allowed to talk about, because elitism.

But yeah, I didn’t want to drive the IS-7 on my birthday, or any other day for that matter. I don’t feel like I need to own one. It’s idiot proof. Takes no skill, you just drive straight at people, and if you actually want to win and not trade hitpoints you go hull down a bit first.

Look, I don’t begrudge anyone their self explanatory bullshit Russian bias tier X Heavy tank, I just think it’s boring. It could get away with half as much bias and still be really good. That way people like me who are more interested in gameplay than winning wouldn’t swear so much at it.

As it is, there’s not a lot to be done. Kill the team around them. Hit their tracks. Load the WN8-rounds. Make sure you don’t bet everything on a single shot. Business as usual.

And finally there is a tier X Heavy tank option for me. A bare bones, no nonsense, standard issue Heavy that works the way you think it will and that can produce some amazing results once you learn how to make the most of it.

A Heavy tank for Medium drivers.

I believe Medium tank driving isn’t about what tank you drive, it’s about your mentality. You want to stay active, push around, poke at your enemies weaknesses, and wear them down. You want to be where it happens, go where you are needed, and make the crucial play.

That is why we drive fast Tank Destroyers, and Light tanks, and any Heavy tank that goes faster than 35 km/h. Because they can do all those things as well, only you have to go about it a little differently. And learning how to adapt the Medium playstyle to other vehicle classes teaches us about it’s limitations and possibilities.

When I started tank philosophising, I believed the pinnacle of my career would be Russian Mediums. That was like the strangest, most offbeat think I could imagine myself driving.

Having moved well past those into stuff like French Tank Destroyers, Chinese Heavy tanks and 122 mm Mediums, I feel like there is so much more to learn than I thought would be possible.

After four years the game still presents an intellectual challenge for me. I think that’s high praise.

And it’s why I sigh at people driving the IS-7, because it’s like the antithesis of everything I enjoy about tank driving. It’s not an extension of your playstyle, it’s training wheels and pillows around it. It lets you succeed in spite of your own efforts; not because of them.

I don’t know, that just seems wrong to me. And I don’t see myself ever ending up in a situation where winning would be more important to me than driving a tank I actually enjoyed.


It’s not even a guilty pleasure. It’s just idiot proof.


I stated initially this is all Xenos fault, and it is. For that reason, this paper is of course dedicated to him.

Several times I attempted to write about tier X, the stupid cockroach IS-7, the inane skill star, how tier X is hell, and all that, but it just wouldn’t come together. Everything I wrote was just so depressing. Not only that, I felt like all I was doing was just repeating things everyone already knew, and didn’t have anything new to add, really.

But I’ve said before driving tanks with Xeno always gives me perspective, and I feel I finally came to as constructive a conclusion as is possible about something you don’t like. Saying “I don’t like this tank” and then adding “I like that one instead” is as constructive as I think I can get.

It’s a straightforward conclusion, and although it may not seem very profound, it taught me something about myself as a tank driver.

I am not someone who would drive an IS-7, because it doesn’t interest me. It’s just not philosophical enough. I am however someone who will drive a WZ-113, just for fun, on my birthday. That’s the kind of tank that I will Sunday drive.


Speaking of, today is Sunday. See you out there.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s