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War Thunder is a next generation MMO combat game dedicated to World War II military aviation, armored vehicles, and fleets. You will take part in all of the major combat battles, fighting with real players all over the world.
Release Date: Aug 15, 2013
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War Thunder Steam Pack includes premium airplanes, two single-player campaigns, one month of Premium account upgrades, and 1700 Golden Eagles!

$24.99

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July Ace of the Month - Lt Cdr Richard Halsey Best

July 11th, 2014

The Battle of Midway was far from the end of the war in the Pacific, but some historians have cited it as the turning point. The names of the strategists on both sides of the battle are well known, but far less well known is the name of Richard Best. Best’s exploits on June 4th 1942 mark him out as perhaps the single aviator most responsible for changing the fortunes of war in the entire theatre. Tragically for Best, June 4th would also be his last flight.

Richard Halsey Best was born in Bayonne, New Jersey on March 24th 1910. He grew up fascinated by the stories of First World War American aviators, brought home from the violent skies over war torn Europe. Deciding at an early age that he wanted to fly in an era when all US military aviation belonged to the army or navy, Best passed the exams for the United States Naval Academy, Annapolis, and joined the naval service in June 1928 at the age of eighteen. He was commissioned as an officer upon graduation in 1932, and appointed to the ship’s company of the Omaha class light cruiser USS Richmond. After two years of service, Best’s application to transfer to naval aviation was accepted and he began flying training at Pensacola, Florida.

Upon completion of training and being awarded his pilot’s wings in 1935, Best’s first tour was with VF-2B, flying the Grumman F2F fighter from the carrier USS Lexington. In 1938 he returned to Pensacola as an instructor, specialising in Instrument Flying and also the development of torpedo bomber tactics. With the war raging in Europe, Africa and Asia threatening to engulf the United States, Best requested to return to front line operations in June 1940, specifically asking for a tour with a dive bomber squadron as he believed this to be the best way to make a contribution.

Initially appointed as the squadron Operations Officer of Northrop BT-1 equipped VB-6, his success in the role led to his advancement to Executive Officer of the squadron. He first saw action in February 1942, leading strikes against Japanese shipping and land based targets at Taroa and Wake Island. By the summer of 1942, with the US Navy now fully committed to large scale operations in the Pacific theatre, Lieutenant Best was now Commanding Officer of VB-6, now re-equipped with the newer Douglas SBD Dauntless and operating from the carrier USS Enterprise as part of Lt Cdr Wade McClusky’s Enterprise Air Group.

With a Japanese assault force on the way to the strategically vital Midway Island at the beginning of June 1942, Enterprise would soon find herself in the thick of the action. Japanese codes had been broken by US Naval Intelligence, so American forces were well aware of the powerful escort provided by no fewer than four enemy aircraft carriers as they steamed towards the confrontation.

On the fateful morning of June 4th, Enterprise’s Air Group launched to strike the Japanese warships which had been spotted by a Catalina patrol aircraft. With over sixty aircraft launched for the raid, squadrons became separated en route and arrived at different times. Best’s VB-6 were amongst the first to arrive, and he positioned to attack the closest Japanese carrier: the Kaga. Meanwhile the TBD Devestator torpedo bombers from Enterprise and USS Yorktown were attacking at low level. Waves of Japanese fighters smashed into the ranks of the low level torpedo bombers, their attack augmented concentrated AA fire from the carriers and their escorting warships. The Devestators were massacred with 35 of 41 aircraft being shot down, without being able to cause any damage to the Japanese warships. However, this gave the Dauntlesses the time and space they needed to attack with far less opposition.

Due to the confusion of over one hundred aircraft swarming around the flak torn skies, the entire concentration of dive bombers had positioned to attack the Kaga. Best was the only aviator with the situational awareness to realise this and do something about it: he immediately ordered his own section of three Dauntlesses to break off their attack and reposition to dive at the Akagi. With fierce AA tearing up the skies around them, the trio of dive bombers rushed down towards the 37,000 tonne aircraft carrier. Of the three bombs one missed; another was a near miss which damaged Akagi’s rudder. Releasing from 2500 feet, Best’s bomb was directly on target.

Best’s 1000 pound bomb smashed through the carrier’s deck abeam the island and exploded in the hangar, amidst a squadron of fuelled and armed B5N torpedo bombers. The hit doomed Akagi, who blazed furiously from stem to stern and despite the best efforts of her crew to control the damage throughout the night, was scuttled on the morning of June 5th. The carriers Kaga and Soryu had also been critically hit. The fifteen aircraft of VB-6 returned to the Enterprise but most were bearing the scars of significant battle damage.

The day was far from over for VB-6. In the afternoon Best led his squadron up again to strike at that last remaining Japanese carrier: the Hiryu. This time the dive bombers were met in force by defending Zeros. With the Dauntlesses struggling to shake off their attackers and taking accurate fire from AA, they again braved enemy fire to deliver their bombs. Despite a number of the US Navy dive bombers being shot down during the attack, The Hiryu was struck by four 1000 pound bombs. Although there is a significant degree of uncertainty over which pilots are credited with these hits, Best is largely acknowledged as being one of the pilots who delivered his bomb accurately. The Hiryu was the fourth Japanese carrier to be lost at Midway.

Despite returning safely to the Enterprise, tragedy would strike Best. On the morning of June 4th Best had breathed in oxygen from a faulty canister which had created gases which turned to caustic soda. After surviving the two famous strikes on June 4th, Best began to cough up blood. He was transferred to hospital at Pearl Harbor where x-rays showed spots on his lungs. He had developed latent tuberculosis.

Best would never fly again. After 32 months of treatment, Best was retired from the US Navy in 1944. For the next decade he estimated he spent some four years in hospital. After recovering enough to return to work Best found employment with the Douglas Aircraft Company, and then worked in security for the Rand Corporation until he retired in 1975. He passed away on October 28th 2001. His career and his health tragically affected by one aberration, he is still remembered as one of the US Navy’s most successful early war aviators and leaders despite such a short combat career. The US Navy recognised his achievements with a Navy Cross and Distinguished Flying Cross.

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[Event] When Steel crushed Steel: The Battle of Prokhorovka

July 11th, 2014

Join the “Prokhorovka battle” event in this weekend!

Take part in the Realistic tanks-only battles on four Eastern front maps. Only the vehicles that were actually used in the Prokhorovka battle are allowed. The mission is available in the “Events” mode until 10:00 GMT July 14th (“Events” button at the top right of the main screen).


Participating vehicles:

T-70, Т-34 1941, Т-34 1942, Su-76M, Su-122, Su-152, KV-1 Zis-5, KV-1E

Pz.Kpfw. III Ausf.L, Pz.Kpfw. III Ausf.M, Pz.Kpfw. III Ausf.N, Pz.Kpfw. IV Ausf.F2, Pz.Kpfw. IV Ausf.G, Pz.Kpfw. IV Ausf.H, Sturmgeschütz III Ausf. F, Pz.Kpfw. VI Ausf.H1 Tiger

The Prokhorovka battle was part of the German ‘Unternehmen Zitadelle’ (Operation Citadel), the last major German offensive on the Eastern Front against the defensive positions of the Soviet troops near the city of Kursk. Many consider the battles of the Citadel operation decisive for the outcome of the war on the Eastern front, with the battle of Prokhorovka being its key episode and the largest tank engagement ever. A mere overgrown village with a few thousand inhabitants was found in the middle of a clash of two colossal forces.
The Germans accumulated the most well-equipped and notorious 1st, 2nd and 3rd SS tank divisions and 3rd Panzer Corps with nearly 600 tanks and tank destroyers at their disposal, including 38 heavy Pz.Kpfw. VI Tigers. The Soviet troops were ready to confront them with a several kilometers deep echeloned defense; the anti-tank guns, ditches and pillboxes were backed up by a massive tank reserve - over 800 tanks and SPGs.

In the early morning of June 12th the Soviet tank divisions launched an attack on German positions, but were stopped by heavy artillery fire and a swift German counterattack. Neither of the sides expected the enemy to have a major tank force in the area. The meeting engagement of hundreds of tanks soon became chaotic, battle formations were crushed in a matter of minutes. German tanks were technically superior, but the Soviet troops had the advantage of air superiority. By 2pm the Germans had to start falling back; by evening the Soviet tanks were 10 to 12 kilometers ahead of their initial positions. The battle was won, but at a terrible cost.

No less than 7000 Soviet soldiers were killed that day, over 300 tanks were destroyed. The German losses were much lower (approximately 800 people killed and 70 fighting vehicles destroyed), but their advancement was stopped. The Wehrmacht troops lost their initiative on this part of the front and eventually in the entire Kursk operation

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FavJaVxN1bc

The War Thunder Team

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Reviews

"War Thunder extremely easy to slip into"
Rock, Paper, Shotgun

"Most Historically Educational Way to Destroy Planes"
GameSpot

"With fun, exciting combat combined with plenty of customization and room for personal skill, this game is sure to be a fan favorite."
http://www.mmorpg.com/gamelist.cfm/game/623/view/reviews/loadReview/266/Gaijin-Strikes-Gold.html

About the Game

War Thunder is a next generation MMO combat game dedicated to World War II military aviation, armored vehicles, and fleets. You will take part in all of the major combat battles, fighting with real players all over the world.

War Thunder offers a highly detailed and personalized aviation experience, giving players access to hundreds models of planes with detailed cockpits, dozens of upgradeable weapons, and flying skills that can be honed and improved with each mission. Thanks to the game’s painstaking attention to detail, you’ll truly feel like a World War II fighter pilot as you plunge into battle.

The genuine World War II experience isn’t limited to the skies. The massive historical battles featured in War Thunder cannot be fought by aviation alone, so the game will also expose players to combat on land and at sea. Currently the game is in open beta stage and full functionality is yet to come.

Features Include


  • Varied PvP-experiences set in full-scale combat missions
  • Multiple settings options allow advanced virtual pilots and beginners to enjoy playing the game together
  • Rich PvE content: dynamic campaigns, solo missions, mission editor, and much more for single-player and cooperative gameplay
  • Impressive diversity includes detailed models of planes and their cockpits, as well as tanks and ships
  • Astonishing graphics, authentic sound effects, and beautiful music

PC System Requirements

    Minimum:
    • OS: Windows XP SP2, Windows Vista SP1, Windows 7, Windows 8
    • Processor: 2,2 GHz
    • Memory: 1 GB RAM
    • Graphics: Nvidia GeForce 7XXX series or higher; AMD Radeon 1XXX series or higher
    • DirectX: Version 9.0c
    • Network: Broadband Internet connection
    • Hard Drive: 8 GB available space
    Recommended:
    • OS: Windows 7,
    • Processor: dual-core 2,4 GHz
    • Memory: 4 GB RAM
    • Graphics: Nvidia GeForce 460 or higher
    • DirectX: Version 9.0c
    • Network: Broadband Internet connection
    • Hard Drive: 8 GB available space

Mac System Requirements

    Minimum:
    • OS: 10.9 Mavericks
    • Processor: Intel Core i7
    • Memory: 4 GB RAM
    • Graphics: AMD/Nvidia/Intel HD 4000
    • Network: Broadband Internet connection
    • Hard Drive: 8 GB available space
    Recommended:
    • OS: 10.9.2 Mavericks
    • Processor: Intel Core i7
    • Memory: 8 GB RAM
    • Graphics: AMD/Nvidia
    • Network: Broadband Internet connection
    • Hard Drive: 8 GB available space
Helpful customer reviews
2,428 of 3,350 people (72%) found this review helpful
48 products in account
3 reviews
307.9 hrs on record
Pre Patch 1.37 Rating - 8/10 Great
Post Patch 1.37 Rating - 1/10 Absolutely Horrible (Bad business ethics delevoper Gaijin)

I have to give this game two ratings.
One for pre-patch 1.37 and one for post-patch 1.37 which was introduced mid-Dec'13.

My opinion of this game (and the Russian developer Gaijin) basically went from a full positive thumbs up to an absolute full thumbs down rating since the release of the latest patch 1.37 mainly due to the way the developer has handled it by misleading, lying and cheating their existing customer base.

I have basically stopped playing what was one of my favorite games since they have released the last patch.

Part of this decision is based on the in-game changes they made to the game in the patch but even more reason was the horrible way that Gaijin handled this and treated their customers and player base.

To summarize, the most significant changes in latest patch 1.37 introduced some new aircraft, changed the tiering system, progression system and matchmaking for battles.

While there were some positives in 1.37 like new aircraft and flight models, the negatives far outweigh the positives.

They have condensed the previous aircraft tiering system from 20 levels into 5 tiers which is far less transparent in terms of leveling and has caused terrible matchmaking where you are now often flying against aircraft which are either far inferior or superior to you.

The worst and most underhanded change however has been the progression system whereby you advance to unlock new aircraft.

The developer Gaijin falsely advertised prior to releasing 1.37 that this new progression system would be quicker but it has been proven by many players thru posting of clear calculations and spreadsheets that it is in fact the exact opposite and much slower.

Previously you leveled each country from 1 to 20 and unlocked multiple aircraft per country each level.
Under the new 5 tier system, you are forced to unlock one aircraft at a time and funneled into having to use the previous aircraft in the research tree to unlock the next. As a result the new progression system has proven to be 4-5 x slower than it was previously to unlock the same amount of aircraft in the higher levels.

The result of all of this is that the developer has essentially covertly thru this patch increased the price and devalued their in-game currency (GE-Golden Eagles) by 4-5 times what it was pre-patch!!!
Since it is a F2P game, it essentially means that if you decide to buy a monthly subscription it will now take you probably 4-5 months longer you need to subscribe than previously to unlock the same amount of aircraft.
And I am not talking about a just a few hours here....it will now take you literaly hundreds of hours more to unlock the higher level aircraft.

For newcomers who are joining after patch 1.37 you will of course not notice any of this as you have nothing to compare the current pricing and progression but just be warned that this could happen again. I would not trust this developer again!

As a customer who bought a steam pack with a subscription and a lot of GE in-game currency before the new patch I feel totally ripped off!

Gaijin of course has the right to change their prices post-patch. It is their own risk or reward decision. When it comes however to devaluing the in-game GE currency for people who purchased prior to the patch at an advertised rate it is downright unethical what they have done.

I have stopped playing this game as a result and I guess will never use my GE left on my account unless Gaijin makes a total turnaround and admits thier very questionable business ethics and turning their backs on previous customer base.

I have lost total respect for this developer Gaijin for this and also after many people complained on their website forums about these changes and posting proof of that the new progression system was falsely advertised and the currency de-valued, they simply deleted and ignored posts.

The WT moderators here on Steam also delete any posts which are in any way critical of these very questionable business ethics of Gaijin. I've never seen such kind of crazy censorship towards their own customers as I've seen on both the Gaijin and Steam War Thunder forums in my life.

I really feel this developer should be blacklisted from selling any further products on Steam unless they offer some compensation to their customers who were caught up in this scam of suddenly overnight de-valuing their in-game currency that was bought previous to the patch.

UPDATE: May 14th ->

I AM CLOSING THIS REVIEW FOR ANY FURTHER COMMENTS AS I UNDERSTAND THAT THERE IS A NEW PATCH 1.39.

MY REVIEW WAS BASED ON 1.37 AND DISPLEASURE WITH THE WAY GAIJIN HANDLED THAT IN TERMS OF THE CUSTOMER RELATIONS AND BASICALLY DE-VALUING CUSTOMERS PURCHASED GE's AND IN-GAME CURRENCY WITHOUT NOTICE OR COMPENSATION.

I PERSONALLY HAVE DELETED THE GAME FROM MY PC in JANUARY AFTER 1.37 AND HAVE NO INTENTION TO RETURN AND SUPPORT THIS COMPANY EVEN IF THEY MAY HAVE FINALLY MADE IMPROVEMENTS.

WISH YOU ALL GOOD GAMING!
Posted: January 31st, 2014
Was this review helpful? Yes No
1,241 of 1,747 people (71%) found this review helpful
20 products in account
1 review
1,277.6 hrs on record
Hello my name is KingTyrone (look me up :)) and I have been playing this game for 1.5 years (was ranked #1 in kills all-time in RB) while this game was a hidden gem the changes recently cannot overshadow how much the developers have ruined the game and it is not helped by awful community managers who don't get paid and are usually 15 year old children who barely speak english and deal permanent bans left and right for minor offenses.

DO NOT PAY THEM ANY MONEY premiums are far more expensive then they were before (4-5x times more)
GRIND GOT HARDER (without premium you will need 2-3 years to get all airplanes)
NO COMPETETIVE GAMEPLAY (all your time will be spent in the grind)
SIMULATOR BATTLES ARE BROKEN (And usually locked into russia vs germany for months at a time)
HIT BOXES (completely broken at times otherwise known as SPARKS)
BROKEN PROMISES (events,world war mode)



Only play this game if you are bored as it is certanly better than it's competition but the question remains:"At what price?Litterally"
Posted: March 15th, 2014
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149 of 198 people (75%) found this review helpful
279 products in account
2 reviews
114.8 hrs on record
Banned me for my screen name. Not a happy person, especially after they claimed my birthyear (1988) was a hidden "heil hitler"... WTH? My "offensive" screen name was D88isaac. Evidently, my Jewish name Isaac right after the "heil hitler" didn't spare me. 88 was a year, 88mm cannons are used in the game... Are they going to ban those too? The people who moderate this game need to explain things. I was simply told I "displayed pro-Nazi symols" and without warning banned. I would not trust spending another dime with this company. They might label you something terrible, then ban you for absolutely no reason. What a let-down, as the game itself is a lot of fun.

If you play the game, I would not recommend spending any more than you are willing to lose. As I, someone with an Israeli name directly in my nickname was banned for a nickname "espousing Nazi identification". I'm politically aligned at the opposite spectrum of National Socialism and absolutely believe 88 can represent things outside of crazy Nazi hidden symbols (ironically found also as premium unlocks for the planes you freaking fly).

Also, Gaijin charges people (200 Gold Lions) to buy Nazi symbols those are not hidden symbols, but outright Nazi symbology. Yet they claim I knowingly, sported a "hidden symbol" in my nickname. Haha, this is beyond laughable and will be brought up with Steam Customer service as I will be expecting a full refund on my purchases so far unless my crazy ban is removed promptly.

Update: They simply say I chose my nickname and the "symbolism it supports"... WHAT? Wait, now they are pointing to their ToS acting as if their contract is above slander and fraud laws, while accusing me of horrible intentions, with an innocent screen name!

How juvenile, politicized and incendiary is it to assume someone's intentions, then blindly defend that position!? The grammar from the company correspondence is absolutely terrible. Here are some of my favorite excerpts from one of the supervisors:
"Did we choose you a nick which was against our rules mate which did u sign to agree?"
"Does it is enough for you? Basically u will not get any compensation cause it was you who violate our rules. So u dont have any rights to have it."
Posted: April 4th, 2014
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305 of 453 people (67%) found this review helpful
27 products in account
5 reviews
93.1 hrs on record
There were times when I was just lyrical about this game. Somehow, I fitted right in, getting a lot of kills, unlocking plane after plane. The game was extremely friendly to it's players, I never had the feeling that I was underpowered or anything. It was just awesome, especially cooping with friends. The game breathed the love for military aviation, it was a dream come true for me. The gameplay was just heartpounding fun as you twisted and turned to get behind your opponents. The historical battles were fun too. Moreover, you had an easy custom single player mode to brush up on your flying skills offline, which was very useful, since I wanted to make the jump to Simulator difficulty. You just had so much content in this game. Had.

Then along came patch 1.37. The sky is now filled with nearly invincible ME-109's and La-7's, stuffed with cannons. Arcade dogfights have lost all appeal to me. Now it is just 'fly at each other with all guns blazing'. No tactics, no teamplay, no interesting dogfights. Any one-on-one dogfights are a thing of the past, the battlefield is just a frantic swirl of flying cannonballs without logic. It has nothing to do with flying or dogfighting anymore. In fact, the more I learned about fighter-tactics, the worse I became on this game. Unlocking planes is a thing of the past as well. Researching ANY plane takes ridicilously much time. The only way to speed up the process is -of course- by paying lots of money. Oh, and should you eventually manage to research and buy a game, it will have reduced speed, agility, armor, everything, just to make sure you have to pay again to unf*** your brand new plane. Moreover, this upgrade-system makes all historical accuracy obsolete, since a plane that historically is lower in turn-rate for example, can now outturn a not upgraded airplane that should have superior turning abilities.
The easy customizable missions from the single player have dissappeared altogether. Now you get to chose between flying missions with a scenario fully controlled by the game, and not the player, or flying practice missions against biplanes and real life players. The latter are usually beginners, or dudes who want to test their brand new jet on easy prey. Not much practice there. And you need it to overcome the immensely steep learning curve to Simulator battles. Because of this, almost no-one plays this mode anymore. Gaijin scared away their first fans: the flight-sim boys.
Luckily, the historial battles remain, together with the events-mode. This is an oasis of relief in an ever deteriorating game. Matchmaking is seemingly more fair here, teamplay is more important, and historical accuracy is restored a little. However, there are not much players on this mode, the learning curve is very steep, the waiting time for a match is quite high, and the absence of room for mistakes makes this game mode very difficult for new players.

In sum, a charm of a game has turned into a mean money-making machine, discarding it's fans of the first hour in favor of the arcade-shooter public with big wallets. The player-friendly environment has turned into a frustrating grind and totally uninteresting gameplay (in arcade mode), focused only on making money. My sad conclusion: if you like planes and dogfighting, look somewhere else. It may seem cool if this is your first time on this game, but believe me, it is nothing compared to what it once was.
Posted: January 18th, 2014
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86 of 127 people (68%) found this review helpful
444 products in account
1 review
192.6 hrs on record
The game itself is pretty good, addictive even, but do not under any circumstances make the mistake of actually making any in-game purchases. Gaijin may at any point remove any content or progress, be it paid for or achieved through playing, from your account without offering any explanation or compensation. Their only customer service guideline is "the customer is always wrong".
Posted: January 30th, 2014
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