Another set of Q&A answers from Carnotzet on the EU forums. Nothing really groundbreaking in here, and no revelations about future features or anything, but some explanations as to why some things are as they are. Just general stuff.
Q. In a recent “create a map” contest, you set out rules as to have water on no less than 70 or 80% of the map. When creating their own maps, do developers follow the same rule, if so, why? Why don’t you create a map with 50% of land mass? I understand it would be a problem for players who stay in the back and snipe but that’s their problem. I would gladly fight in places like Halong Bay, for instance.
A. They [devs] try to stick to this rule, since, after all, a greater percentage of land-mass would not as much impede navigation as it would affect performance. “Their problem” is not a logical point. We try to think of all the players and here we’re speaking of the majority.
Q. Why do we have to research 203mm guns on Mogami if we already did so on Myoko?
A. They are different devices, even if they share the same name. I understand it isn’t really obvious.
Q. Why is Gearing’s turning circle radius so large? It doesn’t have the best speed, its main guns get destroyed when a shell explodes at the other end of the map, it’s a DD and maneuver like a pregnant cow. Its turning radius is worse than some cruisers, isn’t it strange?
A. As with other ships, it’s based on linear dimensions and proportions. In real life, DD’s had a decent turning radius, it’s even tighter in game.
Q. Why will Team battles be spread out across 3 tiers (6-7-8)? I cannot imagine a team willing to play with seven tier 6 ships against seven tier 8 ships. Another thing, will it be possible to change team leaders without having to start a new team (for instance, if the leader cannot find the time to play anymore)?
A. The spread is there to make it easier for people to enter this game mode. For instance if a team is missing one ore two players, they can start playing by bringing a lower tier player with them more easily.
It will be possible to change the team leader without any change to the team or its rating.
Q. How does defending points work? I shot at (and damaged)a Nagato which was capping a point but the progression bar wasn’t reduced.
A. You have to deal damage to the capping enemy. However, doing so only reduces “capping points” of the ship you damage. In your case, it’s possible that the Nagato hadn’t any points accumulated and a destroyer entirely capped the point.
Q. What brings players to play WoWs?
A. Currently, players’ main motivation is progression and entertainment, as well as, to a lesser extent, the desire to express themselves and learn something new.
Q. How important is making the interface simple and informative at the same time?
A. During the game development, the goal was to give one player the command of what was in reality the work of thousand of crew members. We needed to make sailing around as simple as possible. To make one person feel like he’s on a large ship and he’s handling it. After having come to this conclusion, we needed to make it simple and user-friendly. But we can only go so far – if game mechanics are complex, then the interface will be complex as well.
Q. What do you grant more importance to : simplicity or user-friendliness?
A. We want players to see clearly what is happening. And sometimes, it directly affects game mechanics.
Q. In port, turret rotation is shown in seconds, upgrades show it in percents, and related captain skill shows it in degrees/seconds. As a result, one parameter is shown in three different units.
A. You’d better ask this question to game designers. However, regarding upgrades for instance, I can tell you why we use percents. Firstly, upgrades are universal to all ships. When figuring out your adversary capabilities, you can tell more easily what he can do if you know the value by which his ship characteristics may change due to upgrades. Secondly, this way of showing upgrades is kind of a convention, in other words, if we showed specific numbers for every ship upgrades, nobody would understand what is the real value.
Q. Will we be able to customize the interface? [what to display, where, etc.]
A. In some extent, yes.
Q. Why can’t I close the game with Alt + F4?
A. We took this decision when we introduced fast commands. So when you press and hold Alt and want, for instance, to say “thanks” to a player (by pressing F4), it won’t close your game. We were already informed of this problem and we may find a solution to it in the future.
Q. Why can we enter battle without our team-mate, if he accidentally unchecked “ready”?
A. We’re fixing it, presumably in the next large update.
Q. Do you plan on implementing a location indicator inside smoke, and if possible with a timer?
A. We don’t plan to implement a timer, but we may introduce smoke borders. [Smoke borders can already be shown with a mod. The dev that made that mod also told that smoke timer will never be implemented as it would also work on enemy smokes]
Q. Will players be able to change the interface dynamically, without having to install mods?
A. Regarding choice of sights, markers and other similar things, yes, when we implement the new system settings.
As for changing the position of the map, ship indicator [with guns, health, etc], we also intend to allow it, but not in the near future.
Q. Why isn’t there a module depot in the game?
A. We don’t deem it necessary. By answering the needs for a module depot of a few players, we would at the same time create problems for a large number of players. We favor clearer and more simple solutions. However, we won’t forget about the module depot and when we find a visually pleasing and user-friendly solution to introduce it, we may come back to it.
Q. Who came up with the standard sights currently in the game? Why is it so small [horizontally]?
A. It was me. The sights are small since not all players have powerful computers with high resolution.
Q. Why are ship names written in capital letters?
A. We’ve done this so players can easily distinguish ship names from player names.
Q. Why are big changes in the interface much less important than new premium ships for instance?
A. The question is not entirely correct. You need to understand that several aspects of the game are developed simultaneously and you cannot make developers working on one thing work on another. The process is complex, a lot of things are developed in parallel. Resources allocated on interface development are not the same as those allocated on ship development, they are independent of each other. Ships belong to content, interface to functionalities.
Q. Will the steering indicator be improved?
A. Yes, we’ll make it bigger and add more contrast to it. We’ll also increase the size of Engine orders [speed indicator] a bit.
Q. Can you make damage logs more informative? Split total number of hits between successful and unsuccessful penetrations?
A. Yes, we can. But we have to take into consideration new players and how easy it will be for them to understand it. We’re working on a solution to this problem.
Q. Regarding chat filter. Wouldn’t it be more efficient to fight players toxic behavior in chat by banning them instead of implementing a chat filter?
A. Yes, it’d be more efficient. The chat filter isn’t very efficient since it’s easy to bypass it.
Q. Will information on torpedo defense systems [torpedo belts] be shown in the client? After all, such system is implemented in the game but no information is given about it.
A. There isn’t any information in the client yet, but there will be. The interaction of torpedoes with torpedo belts is rather complex. It’s quite difficult to standardise this information.
Q. We can detach and drag CV’s icon but can’t do that with aircraft squadrons. Why? [I’m not really sure what they’re talking about as I don’t play CV much]
A. Because the system is not yet finished. If you could do that, you would suffer big FPS drops. It will be implemented with the interface rework.
Q. When will catapult planes have their distance displayed?
A. We plan to do that but I cannot give any date. The current priority is to introduce clan functionalities and improvements to teams.
Q. Will you give us the possibility to alert our team-mates when our consumables are ready?
A. For now, we have no plans to. A battleship or carrier at the other end of the map wouldn’t be much interested in knowing that your AA barrage is ready. For that, you can use chat.
A few of these things, like increasing the text size for some UI elements, are probably going to be in patch 5.3, based on what I found during the public test.
Also, I thought the answer for ‘why people play WoWs’ was funny. Personally, I play it because I like big boats, and I cannot lie.