Buff My Tank: IS Series

Disclaimer: the contents of these articles merely illustrate the resources available for a historically accurate buff. This article does not imply that these changes should happen or will happen, either in combination or individually. Please pay attention to this disclaimer before being butthurt in the comments, thanks in advance.  

 My previous article on ways that the IS-2 can be buffed was received with great enthusiasm, so I figured I’ll do the rest of the series!

The IS-1 and IS-2 have been covered by the previous article. The IS-3 was barely in use at all and has barely any room for improvements over the production model, which Wargaming has already implemented. Same as the IS-4. The IS-5 isn’t in the game (we were promised the turret for it as a KV-1S module ages ago, get your shit together, WG). The IS-6 is another one-off prototype, so the most I can do here is split hairs about the transmission (which will actually make a difference in 9.0 9.1 KTTC). So let’s do the rest of the series, IS 7 through 10!

The IS-7 was a good tier 10 tank, a long time ago. Then the T110E5 was introduced, and it was basically everything the IS-7 was but better. Oh, and then the gun penetration was nerfed, as if it was super-awesome to begin with. Might as well start with the gun. The rate of fire in game is just over 4 RPM. This rate of fire is completely made up. The automatic loader of the IS-7 was capable of 6-8 RPM. Of course, some individuals will remark that it was only capable of it with a full cassette, but this game models the loading on all tanks from their ready rack, so you might as well do that for the IS-7 too. If not, then use proper autoloader mechanics, which eluded the IS-7 since they have been introduced in the game two years ago.

Then there’s the engine. It’s fine, of course, but the magic tracks prohibit the tank from reaching its top speed from anywhere but freefall. Despite the tank’s tester remarking that the tank reached its top speed and controlled easily, in game it is slow and clumsy. Better tracks would go a long way towards making this tank actually fun to play.

Next onto the IS-8! And 9 and 10. They are the same vehicle, as the index changed throughout its development. The in-game vehicle accurately reflects the T-10M tank, until some point, anyway. To ensure that the tank stayed competitive with the American M60 and British Chieftain, two shells were introduced into the tank’s repertoire: APCR (penetrating 320 mm at 2000 meters) and HEAT (penetrating 450 mm). The HEAT shell on the gun right now penetrates 340 mm, which is weaker than either of those (I’m sure the APCR loses more than 20 mm of penetration over two kilometers). The AP shell penetrates 214 mm at that range, so even if we’re looking at the same penetration fall-off (and APCR loses penetration faster than AP), the penetration at 100 meters would be 385 mm. That’s quite a drop from real life!

The engine can also use an improvement. The T-10 itself only ever had a 750 hp engine, which is reflected in game, but this is WoT, so we can bend reality to our will a little bit. For instance, a 1000 hp A-7 engine fit into the rocket version of the tank (Object 282), so there is no reason that it wouldn’t fit into the regular tank. That ought to make it stand out from the tier 9 crowd a little bit!

71 thoughts on “Buff My Tank: IS Series

    • Well its quite evenly matched with the Tiger, bit lower pen on the 85mm, but also more speed and lower BR.

      The IS2 is another matter, The 122 is nothng like in WoT it punches through 160mm armor at 1000m which means it can easily penetrate a KT with porsche turret at that range but is quite inaccurate, but also still has the option for HE which also is not to underestimate.

      In the end you can be sure there will be balance work done, there was barely any testing in that regard. and this also shows for the premium sherman.

        • IS-4 is able to hold it’s own against the tiger 2s and even the jagdtiger, especially since the konigtiger series of tanks has a damage model bug where the entire side hull is one big instakill ammo rack, but where the USSR really shines is the T-54, which with you swarm the poor jagdtigers and destroy them.

          apart from that, T-50 at rank 1; bugged frontal damage model, default APCR, super fast, why not? :D

          • At least the LFP is not a weak point in ground forces. I mean histrionically why would tank designers put a huge weak point in the front of the tank.

            • Disclaimer: Haven’t played GF

              But I do recall you can still disable the transmission and potentially cause fires in videos of CBT

                • It is still a weakspot in WT GF. I have played WT GF since 1 month or so. It is somewhat easier to pen there but only by a few mm. It is easy to set some big ass tanks as kv-1 or the panzer series on fire through shooting it’s transmission. You can also disable their engine sometimes without lighting them up.

            • Because in RL it would be a huge feature to hit such a spot with another tank as most engagements were from dug-in positions or ranges above the mapsize. The fake environment of 30 tanks fighting close range and people ramming into eachother for fun makes specific spots on a tank more visible, however in RL you would be lucky if you could just aim at the tank in the first place…

              • There are also no aim assistance in realistic battles so you have to use calculations or your gut feeling to hit at the right distance.

            • Actually, the armor thickness of the lower frontal plates in WoT is historical.

              • Problem is WOT use hp so you lose Heath when it gets penned. Warthunder would just ignored the damage as long as there is no transmission.

            • The UFP of the IS-4 is only weak because of WoT armour mechanics (namely, normalisation drastically reduces the LOS thickness of heavily sloped armour, and shells don’t skid/deflect along the plate to further augment its effectiveness) and it regularly faces ~250-300 pen guns (not even mentioning gold ammo) instead of the usual ~120-160 and occasional ~200-240 pen guns the Germans had fielded in late WWII.

              • Most of the tier 10 tanks in WOT are nothing but paper tanks that we have no idea what they were like in real life. Also WOT gold ammo is made OP because according to WTGF for the King Tiger 105mm gun it’s gold ammo the ACPR PzGr40 only has a maximum pen of 263mm at a distance of only 10m. It will drop to 256mm at 100m, at 500m 230mm, 210mm at 1000m, 192mm at 1500m and 184m at 2000m. But of course WOT maps are small so most likely up to only 500m pen should be used so it looks like the 25% RNG is correct.

                I have no idea where 285mm of ACPR pen came from.

                • Like to note down WT ground forces does not have premium shells. All of their special shells like ACPR are research items which you can unlock and then pay the same price as AP shells.

                • and there is the huge difference in WT as the apcr doesnt deal damage exploding inside the tank.
                  AP: if pen deal explosion damage
                  APCR: deal damage only for direct module or crew hit
                  so opposed to WoT where apcr is autowin in WT is has its pros and cons

                  many of us want this to be changed in WoT but they dont give a shit…

    • IS-2.. just spam HE. That will learn stronk German tanks to respect the 122. It can just kill everyone in Tiger 2, killing the tank.

      IS 4M though… dear God… That thing is quitr a bit better then the MADE UP PROTOTYPE TANK Tiger 2 105mm

      • so… it’s made up or prototype? Can’t have two at the same time, you know? ;)

        • Nice try but to be precise nitpicker – is there a reason prototypes cannot be made up ?

        • It is a tank that never existed in a game that prides itself (for some reason) to have only real tanks or vehicles that entered service at least.
          I find it funny.

          It is otherwise a real project, that never really came to be. IS-4M is a real tank though.
          And it still cant match the IS-4M

          Gaijin should have stopped at IS-3

        • The Maus didn’t really exist, it had a single uncomplete prototype. It was uncomplete as in being completely incapable of moving on its own. And it didn’t have a turret, nor did it have any guns

          • Actually, there were two prototypes: One was fitted with a concrete “false turret” to simulate the weight and balance of the actual turret for mobility testing. And it did move. Both did. And they were found unsatisfactory.

            The second and the prototype turret were complete, but never joined together before the Russian army overtook the factory*.

            *Some believe otherwise, and think the Maus may have been used in the defense of the Factory, but most think that is just fantasy.

  1. “but this game models the loading on all tanks from their ready rack”

    Which is why tanks have absurd rates of fire and thus DPM.

  2. i think we shouldn’t think about real life in game. everything difference between real life and ingame is for balancing.
    But, my love, IS-7, is really really weaker than same tier others.

  3. I think this is too far. 385mm pen on the IS-8 is too much, and 6-8 RPM on IS-7 is too much. RPM is usually a balance perimeter, and all high tier guns have their pen significantly nerfed for balancing reasons.

    • Of course it’s too much. But that doesn’t mean they can all be touched up a little or one made completely realistic.

      The IS-7 is the most egregious example of a tank that needs a buff but hasn’t got one in ages. There’s just about nothing that you can do in making it more historical that wouldn’t also buff it – so it’s a win win for both the historical and the balance crowd. And we all know it needs SOME kind of help at this rate – it’s like a Maus with a little better mobility, trash soft stats, and no armor.

        • Problem is IS7 is UP with normal AP as it round sucks and its right at the brink of penning most Uppers meaning Even 112`sm , and hard T8`s have around 240ish Uppers meaninf 60%-70 pen chance. Then T9 mnakes softer tanks but stil lwith angkles those 230-240 upers bounce often. Then you get T10 meds/hevs like E50m+E5 that all bounce it easily at 260, then you get E100 whose Flat turret with Heat is penned but NOT 270 or less AP rounds….So Using the 300mm Pen brings you over that threshold and makes IS7 a new tank.

          With Prem you go from 50% Pens [since its inaccurate even i nbrawls] and you go to 80-90% on most uppers and can miss weakspots. Then all the sudden the 490 alpha is better than E5 and the E5`s 260 Pen has to choose bouncy Heat or it has to pick weakspots and expose it selkf a long time.

          Gold round makes the IS7 a completely new animal sa,e as the Heat spam T54 is OP and 201mm T54 is just great.

          Dont run T10 IS& with any less than 30-70 Cred to Gold and laugh all the way to the bank.

          • I never had any problem with 250 pen, the problem is the horrible aimtime on this gun. Even the WZ-111 has a better gun due to the better aimtime. Give it 2,9 secs aimtime an look how it performs. I mean, sure armor is still trollish, but nothing you can rely in a IS-7 anymore, then you get very low hitpoints and a gun that lets you aim for 3 middleages

            • I think you guys must learn how to play IS-7 again, it has a sloped/bouncy frontal hull, it’s weakspots are only on the corners and another one which I won’t really tell. When played correctly this tank turns into a beast. + It’s a noob magnet, everyone shoots lowerhull, but what if you do hulldown?
              In IS-4 if you do hulldown, you can just easily shoot turret roof.

              • Dude, I said armor is nothing you cant rely on. I never that it is shit, thats a big difference. So, I think you must learn how to read posts again.
                And yet, thanks to WGs new mapdesigns you cant go hulldown in every situation. T10-TDs also can penetrate your turretfront with AP if aimed correctly, nothing is impossible while hulldown

                • Nah you can rely o nit more than anythng there is. Get i na semi hull down and its godly…Period.

                  If its not reliable then no armor is. It easily beats E100`s armor as all you need to do is aim at lol weak flat turret, or huge lower. Maus is same.

                  Basically since tanks are soooo accurate now, it killed almost every Heavy, E5`s tumor used to be troll as 3/4 people missed it makin that better than armor, now its easy to hit. E100 turret you could wiggle and same thing but now its easy to kill as well as Maus.

                  So Anything flat or with Uniform armor is bad now…IS7 is all slopes, thick Armor and has tiny weakspots, even lower plate has angles. Now anything from the pike up is unstopable esp to Heat and Hull down its god.

                  Also IS7 is 300% better vs Arty than E5 and it has no tumor etc.

                  Its gun handling is bad but like I said with 300 mm gold weakspots dont matter, just shoot, infact only other tank it sucks to fight is a IS7…lol or E3

                  If you try to hit the tiny slits of 270mm Armor on my turret and im moving at all you will miss period as itgoes from 270mm to 400mm to autobounce in literally 4 crosshair widths, or a tiny shake of the mouse.

                • “Get i na semi hull down and its godly…Period.”
                  Yeah, you’d think that. Unless you just get one-HESHed through your frontal turret..

  4. IS& with its gold round is one ofthe biggest beasts there is and is one of them ost abused statpadders tansk right now.

    True the E5was great, but with TD`s camo advantage and 850 Alpha guns and Heat Spam the E5 lost a ton of usefulness to the IS7`s super angled and massively trollish spaced armor.

    IS7 is now top 5 in Heavies and top2 for statpadding Wn8. Also when Exp dmg becomes a thing in WNx rating it will be massively OP.

    Garbad did his effective HP rating and the IS7 has more effective HP than the E100 and only falls short of the E3 in armor once the lower is covered. And its 300 Pen Goldround is great, it bypasses 98% of frontal armor and never loses to tracks.

  5. Next onto the IS-8! And 9 and 10. They are the same vehicle, as the index changed throughout its development. The in-game vehicle accurately reflects the T-10M tank, until some point, anyway. To ensure that the tank stayed competitive with the American M60 and British Chieftain, two shells were introduced into the tank’s repertoire: APCR (penetrating 320 mm at 2000 meters) and HEAT (penetrating 450 mm). The HEAT shell on the gun right now penetrates 340 mm, which is weaker than either of those (I’m sure the APCR loses more than 20 mm of penetration over two kilometers). The AP shell penetrates 214 mm at that range, so even if we’re looking at the same penetration fall-off (and APCR loses penetration faster than AP), the penetration at 100 meters would be 385 mm. That’s quite a drop from real life!”

    Can you please link these references please. 320mm at 2k Meters seems awfully high and 450mm a tad high for mid 1950`s. I know they were around 385mm for most rounds then, but I admit the raw perf skyrocketed from all I read in latter 60`s

    • I see here it says…
      1967 – T-10M is supplied with APDS and HEAT ammunition

      On Wiki. I know its not a great aource but is this correct? If so it seems very very late to add ammo of that quality. In that case the US rounds would be crazy amazing as well with 400+ mm Heat for anything 105mm and bigger and 385mm heat for 90mm`s

      Also it was 1957 when the guns were upgraded but what was the actual Pen data for the standard 1957 M62 L46? Please post this juicy stuff if you can.

      BTW im a fan of you ever since we got in fight about German Vs Rus on Forums. I have seen the light about a lot of Weraboo nonsense now. I still think you lean pro USSR heavily sometimes but love your info as a whole man. Thanks for all your time and when you write your real book and become an author il lbuy one.

    • Link? I am far too oldschool for that :)
      “Heavy T-10 tank”, Nauka i Tekhnika, May 2011, page 30
      “Heavy T-10 tank”, Bronekollektsiya, April 2009, page 21

  6. Sorry for so many questions but was the “Autoloader” the same that made the barrel shoot up and they needed to reposition? Because while in princaple they could do 6-8 RPM everything I read says to adjust for rounds took WAY to long and was terrible.

    The Jews wrote that was the reason they murdered the Soviet tanks.

  7. Oh SS… why did you forget the IS-8 armor? Everything on itd way can pen it! Its the same with the old IS-3 pike nose, and they did nothing to the IS-8! WG pls buff the IS-8 armor!

      • Doubt it, they would probably just add more advance Cold War tanks with heat shells to counter it. Also medium tanks and most TDs gets 2 respawn while heavy tanks and certain TDs get only 1.

        • War Thunder and Cold War tanks…
          Werent you people happy with it being only WW2 tanks?

          As for WoT.. it already is. But due to armor and tier to tier balance, Cold War tanks have lower pen in game.

  8. Sorry but this article was just like every random thread in the official forum.
    “-Please buff my KV-1S, it haz so long reload time, hellcat have faster!”
    “-Please buff my Waffenträger, it haz so bad armour, maus have better!”

  9. is-7 needs buffing? Pl0x…the armour is very good as long as you cover the lower glacius, and as so long as the enemy isnt spamming gold at you….also Kv1s should be a t7 and IS should be a t8, dat alpha…just too much for a heavy…

  10. Eventhough this is only for discussion, majority of those proposals are complete shit which wouldn’t really buff the tank, but would rather make it even more imbalanced and broken.

    • How can you make something unbalanced and broken without buffing it? Except with the Waffentragers, of course, you can nerf them and they’d still be unbalanced :)

      • I said none of these proposals would buff the tank w/o making it OP completely. Buffs such as slight buff to RoF, traverse, ground resistance is a buff. Giving IS-7 his historical RoF to 6-8 RpM would make it horribly OP. Same goes for 450mm HEAT. Eventhough it was historical, in game it made tanks completely broken and turned them into point ‘n’ click tanks.

  11. What they could do to make it more competitive the is7 is propably just buff the mobility part
    give it better soft stats on track traverse and stuff and it will be alright

  12. “The IS-3 was barely in use at all”

    You mean historically, right? If you’re talking about in the game…well…then we clearly aren’t playing the same game, now are we?

  13. E5 better than IS7? SS, you clearly have difficulties :) IS7 has engine problems? faster than any “light” heavies and it leaves behind many med tanks too. are you playing wot? you are talking about one of the most OP heavy in this crap unbalanced game…