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How to Control your Win Rate


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LittleWhiteMouse #1 Posted Sep 01 2013 - 10:34

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"In order to win often, you need to play overpowered tanks."

"I always get bad teams."

"Winrate is completly random."

"Matchmaker is broken."

"You need to platoon to increase your winrate."

"I did my part, it's my team that failed."

"There was nothing I could do."

It's an unfortunate misconception that individual players have no control over their win rate. Attribute this how you will -- much of this originate from people's own experiences and there's no discounting the truth of that. That said, I have spent the last couple of months seeing if a soft-skilled player like me could take control of how often I won. You can imagine my surprise when I discovered that with a few changes to my gameplay style, I was able to enact not only a significant improvement to my individual performance but have a lot of fun doing it too.
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Here's the basic premise:
  • Don't count on help from anyone on your team. This is a solo effort.
  • Accept that you can (and must) improve.
  • Take ownership when you make a mistake -- this includes improperly relying on your team.
  • Celebrate when you do something really well. You earned it.
  • Use every advantage you can.
  • Take breaks often.
Each subheading in this thread is a discussion waiting to happen in of itself. There are undoubtedly several articles and threads touching base on these and I fully encourage people to link, talk and debate these subjects. I cannot do them the proper service in this thread and I speak of them only in the broadest of terms.
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The Importance of Vehicle Choice
I'm a firm believer in practice making perfect (or at least better). Focusing on a single vehicle provides several advantages when you're trying to improve your performance.
  • You become very accustomed to ins and outs of your chosen tank.
  • You become very used to the enemy tanks you regularly face.
  • The crew of this vehicle will improve, reinvesting time spent into improved stats.
  • You get very familiar on the best deployment positions on various missions and maps.
  • While you're distracted with this project, you'll bank a lot of free experience!
The downside, of course, is that you may got a little stir crazy playing the same vehicle over and over. Taking breaks is well and fine but the longer you can stick with it, the better. To this end, choose a tank that you enjoy a lot. It does not have to be a powerhouse vehicle but don't feel ashamed of selecting one that has advantages. This is about personal empowerment. For my own experiment, I selected the Tier 5, Premium British Medium Tank, the Matilda Black Prince. http://wiki.worldoft...da_Black_Prince
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From July 2013 to September 2013. My stats for this tank have reached a plateau around 62.5% to 63.5%.
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Climbing the Steep Learning Curve
Now that you've selected your tank, it's time to get better with it. I cannot stress enough on how important it is to have a good understanding of the mechanics of World of Tanks when you're trying to improve yourself. Lert, a fantastic community contributor and resident grumpy-cat, has put together a wonderful series of comprehensive guides (found here: http://forum.worldof...tion-of-guides/ ) to assist players looking for homework. I must emphasize the following key skills that are essential for bettering your performance in World of Tanks:
  • Gunnery. Few other skills will improve your performance more than being able to make your gun inflicts damage every time you shoot it. Included in this are: Armour penetration mechanics, ammunition types, weak point targeting and knowing the different play styles required of high-alpha guns vs high DPM guns.
  • Spotting. If you can't see the enemy, you'll have a hard time shooting them. If they can't see you, you'll live longer. Putting this into practice can go a long way to nudging up your win rate.
  • Armour Angling. If you've done your homework with shooting, you'll have learned that angled armour is more difficult to penetrate, Knowing how to take appropriate defensive positions in your tank will help keep you alive when you are (invariably) spotted. Though the broad theories apply to all tanks, the specifics on how to position your selected vehicle will differ greatly from one tank to the next and even one map to the next. If your tank thrives in hull-down positions, where are the best spots on the map?
  • Map Awareness. Knowing the best defensive positions on the map is one thing. It's another to understand what sections of the map provide you cover from what angles and from what form of attacks. Artillery can ruin your day in a hurry, particularly in the hands of a skilled player. Learn the quickest routes on the maps. Learn how different tank types typically deploy and interact on a given playing field. Become proficient at predicting where and which tanks on the enemy team you will encounter.
The goal here is to make yourself comfortable with being able to beat (or at least be a major nuisance to) any single tank you might face, regardless of tier. If you've selected a tier 5, M4 Sherman and you find yourself facing a heavy Russian tier 6 KV-1S, how must you use your tank to take them out? What should you do if that's not an option? Have a plan. Have a backup plan. Practice these until you find something that works consistently for you and your vehicle. Every tank you face will have a weakness and it can be exploited. Don't feel bad if you have to play for every advantage. Understand that if you do choose to limit yourself, you may be affecting your performance. Take ownership.
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A lot of enemy tanks lose their scare potential when you know not only where to hit them so it hurts, but how to make it difficult for them to hurt you back. I used to be afraid of facing KV-1 tanks in my Matilda Black Prince.
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Keep your Gun in the Game
There's a direct correlation between winrate and damage (and kills) made. The longer you can keep your gun shooting, the more damage you are likely doing to the enemy team, the more of their tanks you are crippling and destroying and the less likely they are to kill your team. Seems elementary enough, right?
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Putting it into practice is more difficult. The truly excellent players in the community (not me) excel at getting their tanks where they need to be to put the hurt on the enemy team while simultaneously keeping themselves alive. I faced two major hurdles in trying to catch on to this: the urge to camp and the urge to be aggressive. Neither of these are bad in of themselves and they do have their place in the grand strategy of World of Tanks pub gameplay. However, finding the proper balance between the two is key.
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Camping does you the disservice of forcing you to wait on the enemy's initiative before you can do damage. This said, setting up a proper ambush or baiting your enemy into the guns of your allies (here's hoping they shoot properly) are certainly viable tactics. But keep in mind the longer you're not inflicting damage on the enemy, the longer the enemy could be potentially dishing out damage to your team.
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Equally as dangerous is being too aggressive. Charging first into the enemy is a great way to get yourself killed. Once you're destroyed, short of the possibility of your wreck providing a fortunate bit of improvised cover for your team mates or a roadblock for the enemy, you're not doing much good to affect the outcome of the game. However, knowing when to move up is very important. Keeping momentum going can make the difference between a brutal fight and a landslide win. Look for opportunities to flank enemy positions, but make sure it's a calculated and not reckless risk if it will expose you to enemy fire.
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Dodged!  Never make a kill easy on your opponent.  Do whatever you can to make them earn every scrap of damage they claim from you.  Even a slow pig like a Matilda can upset a shot by moving at an opportune moment.
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Flag Defense
Did you know there's a reliable way to force the enemy to abandon all cover and stand in the open, often with their flanks or rear exposed to your guns? It's true. Watch what tanks do when they begin capping a flag...
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Defending a flag has been, in my experience, far more conducive to winning a game than pushing a flank. The moment you recognize that your base is potentially under threat, it's time to stop what you're doing, disengage and fall back. Even landslide wins can be lost if you're improperly positioned and don't get back in time to reset a flag. Remember what I said about being self reliant: Don't count on your team mates to reset the flag for you. Handle it yourself. If they do reset it and destroy the capper before you get there, great. But don't count on it. You'll lose if you count on it.
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Imagine if you could remove from your records every game that you lost because the enemy snuck a base capture out from under your potential win. How many games is that? One? A dozen? A hundred? It adds up.
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When I play I am always watching the minimap. I do so for several reasons, but one of the most important ones is to protect our base. With playing the single tank that you are, you'll be very familiar with the response time of your vehicle. You'll know how long it will take you to get back into a position where you can affect the outcome of a friendly base capture. For my Matilda Black Prince, with it's terrible, slow speed, this limited me to being very careful on any push and often forced me to redeploy at the first sign of a breakthrough of the enemy, even at the cost of abandoning a sure kill.
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Things look bleak. Surrounded and outnumbered. We still won this game. Never, ever give up and never doubt your ability to affect the outcome.
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Increasing your Carry Potential
By now you should be confident of the following:
  • That short of you being pinned or dead, the enemy will not capture the flag.
  • That you can confidently best almost any lone tank you might have to face.
  • That no matter what mission and what map you end up on, you know where you have to go and what you need to do to get the best result.
Now it's time to look one step further: Handling multiple enemies at once. Invariably, you will find yourself in a position where the odds are stacked against you. This happens often -- and is the source of many player complaints about the unfairness of Matchmaker. Understand: Landslide matches will still happen and they will happen regularly. And sometimes you will be on the receiving end. However, even landslide matches can be turned around. We have all seen examples where certain victory turned into an embarrassing defeat. You're going to be that player that upsets the enemy's early celebration. It won't happen every time. It won't even happen often. But do it even once and you'll feel like a super hero. Do it even once and you are affecting your own winrate.
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And here's how it's done:
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Now that you can best any single tank you might face one on one, figure out how to do it while taking as little damage as possible -- preferably none. If you know you can beat any one tank on it's own, if you can set yourself up to be in peak fighting condition at each engagement, you're going to go a long way towards increasing your potential to carry a win against steep odds.
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All too often in landslide matches, the victors spread out trying to hunt down the last survivors. Very often, they drip feed themselves in ones and twos against these tanks. If they come all at once, you're dead. But if they make this mistake (which pubs so often do), you may be able to greatly increase the affect you have on the outcome of the game.
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Just a flesh wound.  Don't despair deaths and losses -- learn from them and figure out what you could have done differently.
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Conclusions
So how can you know if any of this is working?  Short of seeing an improvement in the winrate for the vehicle of your choice, ask yourself this:  Do you recognize or see opportunities where you could have done better in a particular game?  The first step will invariably be this recognition -- this illumination of the light bulb signaling the comprehension that if you can manage X then Y will occur.  From there it's a matter of figuring out how to enact X within the guidelines of the game.
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There is little as liberating as freeing yourself from the menace of a being a victim of RNG.  Sure, there will be some games you did everything right and you still lost.  It happens.  But always ask yourself:  Did you make the best of a losing situation?  Was there ever a chance for you and you alone to have carried the day?  If the answer is 'yes', then it's a step in the right direction towards taking ownership and control of your own win ratio.
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And that's a win in of itself.
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[[ Edited for spelling and horrible grammar mistakes. ]]

Edited by LittleWhiteMouse, Sep 02 2013 - 07:07.


TlGERACE #2 Posted Sep 01 2013 - 10:40

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Nice read and +1 for you

007Infinitemortal #3 Posted Sep 01 2013 - 10:50

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Good

alasfoor #4 Posted Sep 01 2013 - 10:57

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nice keep going dude

GhostDriver1271 #5 Posted Sep 01 2013 - 11:04

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I have often found myself at around 50% W/L ratio, and it got really frustrating for me when, I finally got the KV-1. not all it was cracked up to be...kinda of a let down, at how pathetic, the tank is stock. but, have started this account new, so as to inact all I have learned from my past failures through trial an error. thank you for these articles...

Heldentod #6 Posted Sep 01 2013 - 11:15

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Nice analysis +1. I'm just starting to apply the "stick to 1 vehicle" rule as I have a horrible win rate but I thought some of my other stats weren't that bad. I have a bad case of tank ADHD, meaning I always jumped around from tank to tank and now have a bunch of t7s and t8s without having truly mastered any tank in the trees. Now I'm going back to playing t4 and t5 while sticking to 2 or 3 tanks in the hope I will become a better player before I hit up the higher tiers again. Glad to see that works for you!

Lert #7 Posted Sep 01 2013 - 11:35

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This is really great stuff.
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One of the things that so many pubs and deniers seem to forget is that if you manage to swing only one close match to victory for every 100 you play, you've already increased your winrate by 1%.
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Mind if I put a link to this in my own collection of guides?

AlteredCarbon #8 Posted Sep 01 2013 - 12:04

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View PostLittleWhiteMouse, on Sep 01 2013 - 10:34, said:

good tips for pubbing

Nice work putting this together, good concise guide to refer folks that are having trouble to. +1



Odins_Eye #9 Posted Sep 01 2013 - 12:10

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Excellent post and very useful information. There are several things I have in my favourites menu that concern WoT and being a better player. These include Lert's excellent set of guides (thank you Lert...I see you up there ^ ) and Tazilon's 'ProScout' website. And now this.
+1 OP. Insightful and bound to help me improve.

loneweaver #10 Posted Sep 01 2013 - 12:28

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+1 For you I wish I had your patience .You have 6862 battles and 6828 kills ,the highest tiers you play often is the e-50 tier nine and the lowe. So everything you wrote is practiced and I consider you to be one of the best players that I've seen in this game hats off to you.

   I started too fast played a shoot it up game before I realized it was more than this I was up to close 10,000 games and at 45% wins. Now the uphill climb to get better is one step at a time and  hard because of the way I played for too long.

  Thanks for one of the best posts that I read.

ilmor #11 Posted Sep 01 2013 - 12:29

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Good write-up!

The key point to this guide, to me, is stick with one tank.  If I did that with certain tanks, based on my to-date win rates on those tanks, my win rate would be much better.  Problem is, I like to play various tanks...usually those, however, that I do better with, however more
recently for example I've been playing my VK 3601 H more often.  My win rate with it is not very good, however I want to do better with it and I have been improving.

DeathWidow #12 Posted Sep 01 2013 - 12:30

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This post reads true 99%. I ironically figured out the stick to 1 tank thing by pure luck and dedication. I got stuck in a tank that by all accounts is a turd at tier 8, the VK45.02(P) Ausf. A. I hated every bit of this tank to it's core, some mutant hybrid of heavy and medium. But I was committed to getting through the thing and focused on it, some platooning, but a ton of solo pubs, even to this day I don't particularly like the tank, but by focusing on it specifically, I learned where it was best suited and ended up with a 61% win rate it. It actually holds a better win rate than a lot of other tanks I really enjoy playing.

+1 and a good read.

joka111 #13 Posted Sep 01 2013 - 12:55

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Nice man,12/10,will read again.

Poultryphile #14 Posted Sep 01 2013 - 12:56

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Good read. I could never do the sticking to one tank thing though.

Zypher_Wildfire #15 Posted Sep 01 2013 - 13:07

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Plus one. I found this an excellent read, and unfortunately had already discovered this on my own just before my own computer broke. One thing you might like/want to add is that there is no hurry to get to the next tank as you complete your research. Becomming comfortable in a lower tier tank, not only improves your win rate, but it'll help you learn how to battle certain tanks, and you'd perform much better as you would in playing a tank you enjoy playing.Side note: I was once able to help bring down a Maus in my ELC and a pubbie Tier 7 Lor15551 for the win. I kept the Maus tracked in the open, and side hugged the beast, until arty told me he had a shot. Then I'd drive in the oposite direction of his facing turret, and wait for the arty shell to hit, then repeat. Mortal: Knowing what you can do to help, instead of complaining what you can't do helps you win in the long run.

Kyonn #16 Posted Sep 01 2013 - 13:07

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This post made me tear alittle. ;___;

It's sort of reminds me of a short tale.

+1 OP. You deserve it. :D

Vector03 #17 Posted Sep 01 2013 - 13:29

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I'm surprised a small mouse wrote this.

Commando_Nightmare #18 Posted Sep 01 2013 - 13:33

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+1 and following this topic!

One_EyedWill #19 Posted Sep 01 2013 - 13:38

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Probably one of the best and definately well thought out posts i have seen made.

PunCzarBlintz #20 Posted Sep 01 2013 - 13:51

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Good write up.... especially the "play one tank" concept.
However, most of us are working through several research lines and have a lot of fun tanks in the garage.
I think there is a balance of knowing your tanks and playing them well, and playing one or all.

One sure way to lower your rate is to play every tank in your garage until you get your daily double.
If it takes you 2 battles to get your double and you move on to the next tank you get a 50% win rate.
If it takes you 3 battles to get your double and you move on to the next tank you get a 33% win rate.
I wont tell you about how many times it took me 5+ times to get a win on some of my tanks (even my better ones).

Compromise - pick about 5 tanks you are going to play that day, stick to the list.




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