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Gaming Evolution
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Gaming Evolution
Gaming Evolution
Published By: Microsoft Studios
Developed By:
Genre: Persistent Online RPG
Players: 1-999
Rated: T for Teen (Mild Violence)
Release Date: February 12, 2014
Screenshots: Link
Price: Free (Buy Now!)
Written By: Matthew Prunty

February 27, 2014 - As the next generation of video games takes off with the likes of the Xbox One and PlayStation 4, many still hold their current gen consoles near and dear to their hearts. While Microsoft wants you to move on to the next generation of gaming, they are also trying to cater to their large install base of loyal Xbox 360 owners. Looking to branch out beyond your typical RPG, FPS and sports titles, MMOs have been slowly popping up on the mighty Xbox 360 console in hopes of luring in gamers who would most opt to game on PC. The latest MMO to be release for Xbox 360 is the insanely popular World of Tanks, which first saw release back in 2010 for PC.

I, like many, have only heard about World of Tanks (WoT) by name, but haven’t seen it in action. So when I was given the opportunity to review the title, I wanted to see why so many of my friends couldn’t stop talking about this game. However, unlike them I prefer to weird a controller as oppose to the keyboard a mouse. WoT is a massively multiplayer online game created by the talent folks over at over in Belarus. Like I said before, WoT is an insanely popular game; officially debuting as an eSport game in 2012 and is hands-down the fastest growing free-to-play game available for PC. When it came time for the game to branch out to the Xbox 360, Wargaming opted to have a separate time take the challenge of re-creating this intense experience for Microsoft’s home console.

Part of the beauty of WoT is its simplicity. The premise of the game is to complete various objectives placed before you and your allies. For those who forgo the objectives, you can also leave your comrades to victory through demolishing your enemies within the 15-minute time limit. Wargaming West doesn’t try to hide this behind convoluted storylines or melodramatic cutscenes, which is good thing. Alongside the simplistic structure, you are given a deep level of customization, allowing you customize your vehicles to your liking. And if you have experience playing games with similar vehicles – Battlefield 1942, Company of Heroes and Battlefield 4 – you will be right at home with many of the mid-20th century armored vehicles.

Completing objectives and/or decimating your enemies will earn you experience points which you can use to research tech from all of the three countries –Germany, Great Britain and United States represented in the game. When you first star researching new tech for your arsenal, this is when you first discover just how in-depth the game truly is. Besides acquiring new tanks, you also have the ability to acquire new components for new and existing tanks. These components – gun, turret, engine, suspension, radio and type of ammo – all play a part in the individuality that comes with WoT. To help with sorting through what seems like and endless supply of metal, all the tanks are broke down into tiers and classes. Tier 1 is belongs to the standard tanks, while Tier 10 plays home to most awe-inspiring destruction-dealing machines ever made. There are five classes – Light Tanks, Medium Tanks, Heavy Tanks, Tank Destroyers and Self-Propelled Guns – all with their pros and cons on the battlefield. Light tanks are fast and agile, while heavy tanks can absorb damage like sponges. Tank Destroyers are your snipers of the classes, while the Self-Propelled Guns deliver devastating attacks from far away. There is literally a tank and artillery assortment for every kind of player.

While the complete experience made the transition from PC to Xbox 360, some changes had to be made to the total package for it to work for Microsoft’s home console. The biggest difference between the two versions is that the Xbox 360 has fewer vehicles, which in turn means fewer modifications to be acquired. While some may not like this, on the flip side, you can easily sift through the vehicles, equipment and consumables. Like most MMOs, you can’t buy your way through your time in WoT. Each tanks, modification, etc. requires you to spend your hard earned experience points. So spending more and more time with the game is key to getting all the goods in the game.

While the main focus was on the visual fidelity of the vehicles and the gameplay mechanics, the battlefields within World of Tanks are also worthy of being discussed. The maps within WoT are on the massive scale and depict environments from all over the world. These maps are larger than the ones within Battlefield 4; falling more along the lines of the ones included in that 256-player FPS game M.A.G.. Some of the environments included in the game include the rolling dunes of North Africa, the snowy forests and plains from Eastern Europe and other distinct locations. Each and every environment provides both strategic advantages and disadvantages, so learning the lay of the land will be key for a successful victory.

WoT is both a blessing and a curse for those who gaming on the Xbox 360. While the game is in-deed a free-to-play experience, you are required to subscribe to Xbox LIVE Gold in order to have unlimited access. If you are a Silver subscriber, you get a 7-day trial period. While the 7-day trial is more than enough time for you to experience the game and see if you the game is “worth its weight in Gold”, a more welcoming approach would have been to have the game free to all; regardless of being Gold or Silver. The shier scope and ambition put into this game will have you coming back for more. There are literally dozens upon dozens of tanks available within this game, each with its own unique loadouts that can be customized. You could spend days sifting through all of it and still not see everything the game has to offer.

WoT for the Xbox 360 is a unique game that doesn’t conform to anything and allows you to live your fantasies of global tank warfare. From the get go, you will have an uphill battle. Unlocking newer, more powerful tanks will be key to your success on the battlefield. Will the following reach the epic proportions seen with the PC version; in one word… No, however I can see this game developing a strong following that will last for years to come.


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