War Thunder

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War Thunder,
Developer(s) Gaijin Entertainment
Publisher(s) Gaijin Entertainment
Composer(s) Georgy Zheryakov
Alexander Chorni
Zahar Antonov
Engine Dagor Engine 4.0
Platform(s) Microsoft Windows
PlayStation 4[2]
Shield Android TV[3]
Release date(s)
Genre(s) Action, MMO
Mode(s) multiplayer

War Thunder is a World War II-inspired massively multiplayer online combat game developed by Gaijin Entertainment for Microsoft Windows, OS X, Linux, PlayStation 4 and Shield Android TV.

Localization of game texts into many European and Asian languages was made by All Correct Games.[4]

Game model[edit]

The game is modeled on a micro-transaction system but with the ability to get almost every feature of the game without paying. This may require players to complete certain challenges (such as shooting down a certain number of enemy aircraft or destroying a certain number of ground targets), or submitting user created content such as skins, or camouflage for vehicles. There may also be other celebratory events throughout the year such as commemorating historic figures in aviation or famous battles allowing players to win premium currency and premium vehicles without any expenditure.

There is also a referral service, whereby players can invite people to the game, earning both themselves and the new player an in-game bonus.

Game Currency[edit]

War Thunder uses 4 main currencies: Silver Lions, Golden Eagles, Research Points, and Convertible Research Points.

Silver Lions[edit]

Silver lions are the main currency used in War Thunder, and can be obtained freely. They are used for obtaining modifications, buying vehicles, training crews, repairing, and rearming. They are obtained through performing various tasks, such as defeating another player, completing an objective, or completing single player or co-op campaigns.

Golden Eagles[edit]

Golden Eagles are a premium currency used for buying premium vehicles, premium research boosts, buying modifications, and for buying premium account time. They can only be obtained by paying money in game, inviting a friend to the game, or completing a special event.

Premium vehicles purchased using Golden Eagles are mostly captured vehicles from other nations or prototype vehicles. They typically do not hold a notable advantage over vehicles ranked in the same tier, execpt them giving more Silver Lions and Research Points.

Research Points[edit]

Research points are a free currency, primarily used for researching modifications or vehicles before they are bought. They are obtained by performing various tasks, such as defeating another player, completing an objective, landing, taking off, winning a battle, etc.

Convertible Research Points[edit]

Convertible research points are nearly identical to research points, but cannot be used without paying Golden Eagles, thus making them essentially a premium currency.


The game contains a variety of aircraft, and armoured vehicles such as tanks from the Spanish Civil War to Korean War period with an emphasis on World War II.[5] The full game contains more than 450 aircraft from the Soviet Union, Nazi Germany, the United Kingdom, the Japanese Empire and the United States. The game also features ground based vehicles for the United States, Great Britain, Germany, and Russia. Other, smaller nations are also featured, such as Italy and Romania.

Most maps in-game are either directly or indirectly based on real battles of the era such as in Stalingrad, Russia or Peleliu, an island in the Palau chain, though there are exceptions.[6]

The size of maps in the game ranges from approximately 65 km x 65 km to 200 km x 200 km, although the engine powering the videogame is likely to achieve much larger map sizes in the future. Estimates are said to be about 300 km x 300 km,[7] but the current trend is to introduce much smaller maps and making existing maps smaller.

Arcade battles[edit]

In this mode, the game draws two teams of players (of up to 16 players on each side) with vehicles from different nations of similar level. It is possible to see vehicles of the same type on different teams, and different countries on the player's own team. Damage and physics are greatly simplified (e.g. in very high speed dives planes do not have their wings ripped off and are still controllable, unless they pass Mach 1), but retain some realism (e.g. bombers are not as maneuverable as fighters, aircraft have limited ammunition available but are able to reload midair).

Multiple views are available, from third person view, virtual cockpit view, cockpit view (if the aircraft has an available model else virtual cockpit is used instead), gunner view (if the aircraft has a gunner), as well as bombsights for bombing accuracy.

Arcade Mode games are played in either "Ground Strike," where in order to win players must destroy all enemy ground units, shoot down all enemy aircraft, destroy the enemy airfield and bombing points, "Domination", which consists of seizing enemy airfields by touching down on them for about five seconds, causing the enemy team to lose points, or "Air Domination", which requires players to have total control over an area of airspace for long enough to capture it. Also, to help simplify aiming, a 'leading marker' appears when an enemy plane is in range. This shows a prediction of where the enemy plane will be by the time the bullets of the smaller calibre weapon arrive if the plane continues its current trajectory, greatly improving user accuracy.

Realistic battles[edit]

Previously called "Historical Battles," this mode is designed for more advanced players. More realistic damage models makes long-range "sniping" difficult, and there is no 'leading marker' to assist with aiming. Also, due to realistic G-forces, making tight maneuvers at high speeds can cause pilots to black out or their planes to rip apart, and the views available are the same as in Arcade Battles. Once ammunition is used up, players will have to return to their airfield to reload and repair. For the majority of matches in this mode, players are selected for each team's nation, making it possible to recreate a real scenario, such as the Battle of Stalingrad between the Soviet Union and the Third Reich. This game mode also does not simplify aircraft flight models. For Ground Forces battles, the aim assist mechanism (showing where the shell fired will hit the target and the ability of the selected shell type to penetrate the armour of the enemy ground vehicle) is removed. Players are also unable to see the silhouette of enemy vehicles through bushes.

Simulator battles[edit]

This mode used to be called "Full Real Battles" and is based on more realistic simulation settings; only the first-person view in the cockpit and external turret gunner views are allowed, and "Full Real" controls (there is no 'instructor' to limit the aircraft stalling, however the flight physics are largely the same as in Realistic Battles. No player tags are given for the enemy team and friendly player and AI-controlled entity tags are provided within 0.9 kilometers so the players often need to fly close to identify other aircraft, particularly when dealing with specific aircraft and tank types that are available to multiple nation tech trees and vehicles that can use different roundels other than their own default through personal customization.

Unrealistic battles[edit]

Unrealistic battles is a game mode that was created specifically for April Fools Day. The games will either feature a playable vehicle or an attackable enemy. Past themes have included:

  • 2013 – Flyable "My Little Pony" planes shaped in the design of a character from the children's cartoon, My Little Pony.[8]
  • 2014 – The year that saw the release of the movie Godzilla (2014 film) also saw the release of an "experimental Japanese weapon" called "Gaijilla."[9]
  • 2015 – This year saw the release of two ground vehicles – a "bouncy" tank modeled after the M4 Sherman with rubber armour that could either shoot potatoes or carrots, as well as "health bars" over the vehicles,[10] in a direct poke at the competition World of Tanks. The more sophisticated ST-1 Assault Walker, which was modeled after the Star Wars battle tank AT-ST, was also released. Players were able to select various mechs that depending on the nation, had different color schemes. Players had forced tank/plane selection.[citation needed]
  • 2016 – 2016 saw colonial era warships like the HMS Golden Hind. It allowed players to fight in 16 v 16 person sailing ship battles. It is believed this was to show off the game's ship mechanics to show what is possible if the developers add ship vs ship combat.[by whom?] The background music was pirate themed.


The development of the game as World of Planes began in 2009. Gaijin Entertainment used its experience with its previous flight games such as IL-2 Sturmovik: Birds of Prey, Apache: Air Assault, and Birds of Steel in its development. The name was later changed to War Thunder due to confusion with the similar competitor World of Warplanes, as well as other reasons such as Gaijin wanting the game to not just be focused on aviation anymore.[11]

Future development[edit]

Although naval forces are not available for player control, players can take off from carriers in certain 'Arcade' and 'Realistic' mode battles.[12] Naval Forces are in development, but not much is known about them. What has been confirmed is that the main ship types are going to be battleships, aircraft carriers, cruisers, and destroyers. There is much speculation as to whether submarines are going to be added with naval forces or not.[citation needed]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "War Thunder is now available on Linux!". Gaijin Entertainment. 
  2. ^ Ashcraft, Brian (14 May 2013). "War Thunder Is Headed to the PlayStation 4". Kotaku. Retrieved 1 April 2015. 
  3. ^ "War Thunder – Android Apps on Google Play". Gaijin Mobile. 
  5. ^ "About the Game". warthunder.com. Gaijin Entertainment. Retrieved 28 February 2015. 
  6. ^ "free combat MMO game | ABOUT". War Thunder. Retrieved 2013-08-16. 
  7. ^ "free combat MMO game |". War Thunder. Retrieved 2013-08-16. 
  8. ^ Sethisto (1 April 2013). "War Thunder Adds the Pony Nation". Equestria Daily. Retrieved 2 April 2015. 
  9. ^ "New Japanese war machine in War Thunder!". warthunder.com. Retrieved 15 August 2015. 
  10. ^ "Unrealistic Battles". warthunder.com. Retrieved 15 August 2015. 
  11. ^ Reahard, Jef (2012-01-25). "World of Planes renamed, evolves 'beyond pure aerial combat' | Massively". Massively.joystiq.com. Retrieved 2013-08-16. 
  12. ^ "Naval Aviation" War Thunder. Retrieved:2014-5-12

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