War Thunder Best Premium Tank 2020

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No one can dispute that War Thunder provides a lot of choice. From nippy armoured cars, to hulking heavy tanks, to cloud-gazing anti-aircraft vehicles, the sheer volume of vehicular offerings can appear a little daunting. Whether stepping into armour for the first time or picking a new tank after having mastered advanced techniques to become a regular peril of the battlefield, it can be difficult to know which tanks are right for you.

Well, quiver in fear no longer. We’re here to provide a quick rundown of the best tanks available in War Thunder. No more wasting research points on obsolete unlocks or poorly performing tanks that pale in comparison to your existing armoury, you’ll know which tanks to beeline on the tech tree and what flavour of combat they offer. Some of our picks opt for supreme firepower, others prioritise speed and agility, while more place endurance and hardened armour above all else.

8 January 2020 Video At most ranks medium tanks are the backbone of a team. War Thunder: play without a subscription! 22 April 2021 Share the news with your friends! I'm kind of surprised that the Panther II wasn't mentioned, it's one of the best examples of a all-round tank. Perhaps because it was removed from the regular tree. Getting a premium tank with no regards to BR, tier, or country you’re playing at all isn’t a good idea, but if you really want to, here’s some good ones: Germany: Ru 251 (one of the fastest tracked vehicles in the game and has powerful 90mm) Tiger II Sla. 16 (you can’t really go wrong with a Tiger II). I have been focusing on the British tank line. I currently have two or three of the 4.7 BR researched but I do not have the silver lions to buy and crew the tanks. I was thinking of buying a premium British tank but I wanted some advice before I spend the golden eagles. I was looking at the premium Sherman Firefly and the A.C. So far I have not enjoy the normal Firefly and am thinking I. Tanks with guns that have good depression, on the other hand, perform really well, both on the top of a hill or in the bottom of a valley. Today we’re going to speak about vehicles boasting the best depression angles in the game — or, in other words, the vehicles that can easily use complex terrain to.

War thunder best premium tank 2020 2021

It’s important to know the strengths and weaknesses of the tank you drive into battle. The best tanking is approached slowly, with caution, and an overriding plan of attack. Plunge headfirst into the fray with no regard for your tank’s capabilities, and you’ll soon be left a burning heap of metal. With that in mind, choose a tank that sounds appealing and suitable to your playstyle.

So, adjust the rangefinder and open the breech, as dive into…

The best War Thunder tanks

  • Tiger H1
  • Challenger 2
  • Leopard 2A6
  • M50 Ontos
  • T-80U
  • ZTZ96A
  • T-50
  • Panther A

TIGER H1

Infamous from the battlefields of history and infamous in-game, the German Tiger H1 is a jack-of-all-trades and competently suited to nearly any firefight. Its 88mm cannon, compatible with a range of shells, makes quick work of all enemy vehicles that are likely to cross its path, and its side armour will glance incoming shells if angled appropriately. A 650-horsepower engine makes it one of the faster heavy tanks, and a reasonable gun depression angle keeps it fighting in undulating terrain.

Jack-of-all-trades suited to nearly any firefight

The Tiger H1’s weak side armour is also its Achilles heel. If not angled properly, weaker tanks will penetrate its skirting, and more powerful opponents will one-shot it with ease. Position the tank carefully and make sure your sides are covered. If a defensive position is untenable, rely on its high firepower to get a shot in, before whatever is hustling up to you.

War Thunder Best Premium Tank 2020 Honda

Slow acceleration provides little opportunity for daring escapes or heroic pushes, but in a straight-up gunfight, in which enemies are located and targetable – you’ll be the star of the show.

Challenger 2

Hang behind your front lines, sit snuggly in a covering bush, wait for an enemy prevaricator to try their hand at flanking, before launching a shell with pinpoint accuracy into their side. The British Challenger 2’s extremely high accuracy, fast reload time, and competent optics lend it perfectly to a sniping playstyle. Sit comfortably away from the central melee and engage the enemy from afar.

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A low top speed and sub-par acceleration limit the Challenger 2’s capabilities to lead frontal assaults, better suiting it to staying behind the central offensive column, picking off enemies before they can flank the main batch. Unremarkable armour makes it easy pickings for anything meting out high damage, but a decent reverse speed enables the Challenger 2 to duck out of the fray when caught in a tight spot, while keeping its cannon targeted on incoming threats.

Leopard 2A6

Introduced in November 2020’s New Power update, many have called the West-German Leopard 2A6 the best tank in War Thunder. And with good reason. Impenetrable turret cheeks and upper front plate armour, swift gun rotation speed, improved gun optics from its predecessor the Leopard 2A4, and access to the highest-penetration shell in the game – the DM53 – make this tank a guaranteed killing machine. The effectiveness of its gun cannot be overstated.

Unremarkable mobility means solo flanking is an impossibility, so keep to hull-down positions and make optimum use of that unmatched main cannon. The Leopard 2A6 need only be wary of Soviet HE shells. A shot to your tracks might leave you immobilized and desperately hoping to fight another day, but a bludgeoning hit to your turret will likely send fragmentary shards through your fuel tank and crew, and that’s a dead tank.

Some have called the Leopard 2A6 overpowered, and many have begged for a nerf. But make no mistake, a quality tank will amount to nothing in the hands of an amateur tanker that doesn’t know how to leverage its strengths. Learn the tank, and learn it well.

M50 Ontos

Hard-hitting, stealthy, and capable of unexpectedly decimating enemy flanks, the US M50 Ontos brings a totally novel playstyle to War Thunder. Kitted out with six recoilless rifles that can be fired within less than a second of each other to launch high-explosive anti-tank and squash head shells. Its recoilless rifles eliminate the need to reposition between shots, allowing you to fully exploit a weak enemy position after finding the perfect angle.

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Its primary drawback is its paper-thin armour. This is not a tank that wants to be taken into the main fray, but one to stealthily push around the enemy’s side and ambush with an unexpected barrage.

Its unforgiving playstyle can also be off-putting. Miss your shot and you’ll be waiting over a long reload time, and an even longer manual targeting time, before getting back in the fray. With an 18-shell ammo capacity, it can be tempting to unload salvos quickly in a blanket offensive, but temper a high rate of fire with accuracy for the most effective offensive load.

T-80U

Few sights strike such tangible fear in the hearts of enemies as the Soviet T-80U bounding over the hills, surrounded by a sturdy regiment of supporting allies. An exceptionally well-armoured front that can generously glance incoming shells, a durable rear-end that can soak up shrapnel, and a low profile complete its defences, making it a difficult target to spot and near-impossible to destroy in sufficiently flat bushland.

Difficult to spot and near-impossible to destroy

The auto-loaded 125mm cannon on its top also makes a particularly painful thorn in the enemy’s side, capable of launching regular volleys of shells to wear down enemy combatants.

Although the T-80U shines in a momentous forward attack, it’s left wanting when retreat is preferable. A slow reverse speed means you’ll have to remain keenly aware of your surrounding points of exit and implement a quick getaway plan if things go sour. And keep the enemies at length. Poor side armour and a large ammunition carousel means its chances of survival following shell penetration are all but nil.

ZTZ96A

There are few better options for straightforward tank-busting than the Chinese ZTZ96A. Sporting a 125mm main cannon with fantastic angling, and firing the most powerful HE shell available to any main battle tank, it can reliably destroy most armoured targets in one shot, both angled and flat. Wrapped in strong armour, its roof-mounted heavy machine gun can also be usefully deployed against light aircraft.

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With a poorer reload speed than some of the equivalent tanks at its tier, you’ll be relying on your own instincts to draw the most out of the ZTZ96A, especially given is poor mobility, which throws any ideas of tasteful flanking operations out the window.

T-50

Even the lowest-tier tanks can carve out a masterful space on the battlefield. Agile and well armoured, the Soviet T-50 scout tank is excellently suited to nipping around enemy armour, relying on its high speed to perform flanking manoeuvres, before quickly returning to safety amongst allied forces. Thick, sloping armour sets it apart from other beginner tanks, and forgives the faux-pas of new players when they’re frantically racing to slide past enemy lines.

The T-50’s handling will take some getting used to, and its slow turning speed makes it unsuitable for extreme adrenaline manoeuvres. Be careful not to damage its tracks when driving at top speed across rough terrain, but, ground allowing, leveraging its high speed to evade enemies or shift them from your weak side armour will keep the T-50 in the game.

A fantastic beginner choice that demonstrates there’s more to look for in a tank than big shells and monstrous firepower.

PANTHER A

High mobility, respectable gun rotation, ammunition options suitable for crippling most any opponent tank – these make the Panther A one of the best medium tanks in the game. Like most German offerings, it comes kitted with heavy, sloping front armour, offset by poor sides, but its agility allows quick getaways and subtle defensive anglings. Its range and firepower outdo tanks of a similar battle rating, punching through armour from moderate distances.

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The Panther A’s ubiquity is its downfall: everybody knows its weak spots. Enemies will be firing directly at your soft gun mantlet to cripple you, so avoid head-on confrontations and make quick work of those you encounter. Best move with a pack of others, utilise speed to take the enemy off-guard, and make sure every shot counts. With a high profile, subtlety isn’t the Panther A’s speciality, so quickly get stuck into the thick of battle and make the most of its punishing main cannon.

War Thunder Best Premium Tank 2020

Part of The Complete Beginner’s Guide

As in many free-to-play games the economy of War Thunder can be slightly confusing, with several types of currencies, rewards, items and so forth.

Money, Money, Money

The two currencies are Silver Lions, mostly earned from playing missions and battles, and Gold Eagles, mostly bought with real money. Silver Lions are used to purchase regular aircraft and modifications, to repair and resupply aircraft after battles, and to buy up to two extra crew slots. Gold Eagles have many uses, as outlined later in this post.

You certainly don’t need to buy any Gold Eagles if you don’t want to; player skill and teamwork will get you a lot further than just spending money. Like many games of the genre, as you move up the ranks the cost of new aircraft, repairs and the like gets steeper so progress gets a lot slower, but if you’re not too hung up on advancing and enjoying the battles I wouldn’t worry too much about it. If you feel the game is worth it, though, and want to progress a bit faster, by all means buy some Eagles. It’s worth keeping an eye out for sales in the War Thunder store or on Steam to get the most for your money.

Trophies

In Update 1.47, War Thunder introduced Trophies, boxes containing random rewards, similar to lockboxes or crates in many other F2P games. Trophies can contain many different rewards, including Silver Lions, Gold Eagles, boosters and premium vehicles. There are four main ways to get trophies: as a daily reward, as a random after-battle reward, from special events, or from the shop.

Daily Rewards

Each day when you log in to War Thunder you should receive a daily reward trophy. Most of these are small or medium trophies containing one minor Booster (see next section), but after 7 and 14 days you get a larger reward, potentially including larger boosters and wagers.

Battle Trophies

If you’re lucky, you may get a trophy after a battle (the spinning wheel of rewards pops up on the battle results screen). This is a random event, unconnected with your performance. Prior to 1.70 rewards were always Silver Lions, now post-battle trophies can contain all sorts of exciting things including silver lions, modifications, backup vehicles and discounts on premium vehicles.

Special Events

Every now and again, trophies are available in special events. The rewards vary; events often have several stages, each of which requires e.g. 25 air kills, or 15 match victories, with a trophy reward for each stage. The final trophy may contain a guaranteed premium vehicle, with trophies along the way having a very small chance of containing the vehicle. Keep an eye out on the game launcher or War Thunder homepage for news of events.

Item Shop Trophies

War Thunder Best Tank Line

Trophies can also be bought for Gold Eagles in the item shop. The current set of trophies cost 299 Eagles, and might contain high tier premium vehicles worth much more than that. The key word, of course, is *might*; the trophies are a lottery, and the chance of actually getting the vehicle is remote. If you have Eagles to burn then by all means buy a couple for fun, but if you really want the premium vehicle then buying it directly from the shop is a more sensible alternative.

Boosters

As the name suggests, Boosters boost either Silver Lion (represented by a lion head icon) or Research Point (represented by a blue light bulb) rewards from battles. Boosters can be found in trophies, especially the daily reward trophies, or they can be directly bought from the item shop with Gold Eagles. Boosters are placed in your inventory, accessed via the crate icon in the top right of the screen. Mousing over a booster will show the details of the bonus (from 10% up to 500%), and the number of matches for which it applies (from 10 matches for the smallest boosters down to a single match for a boost of 100% or more).

Boosters from daily rewards last for three days in your inventory, so you haven’t got very much time to save them up. For the multi-match boosters, you have up to 24 hours after the booster is activated to use them. The amount of time left on a booster is shown in the top left corner; if there’s no value, then there’s no time limit. To apply a booster, click on “Items” on the menu, then click the appropriate booster, and “Activate”.

Wagers

Wagers are another type of item that can be found in trophies. Most of them are challenges to secure certain achievements such as “Mission Maker” or “The Best Squad” a number of times. You make an initial stake with your own Silver Lions, and the rewards scale up the more times you succeed in the challenge. You should make your money back if you succeed once, and a profit after that.

Mousing over the wager will show the requirements (e.g. “You must have at least one vehicle of Tier III – V”), what constitutes success (e.g. securing “The Best Squad” achievement, or winning a battle with at least one kill), and the maximum number of stages you can succeed or fail.

Guided reading workbook

Once a wager has been activated, after each battle where you meet the requirements you’ll get a success/fail icon in the top right corner of the results screen. You can keep track of your progress by mousing over the wager in your inventory, or a summary is displayed just over the vehicles in your hangar/garage.

The usefulness of wagers depends on your play style and skill. Have a look at the requirements, and think about whether you might be able to meet them. Getting 10 kills in a round is pretty challenging; the “Mission Maker” achievement, for getting both the first and last kill in a match, is particularly tricky. “The Best Squad” isn’t entirely impossible for a solo player, as long as you don’t opt out of the automatic grouping system; it’s not based on overall score, but the number of teamwork achievements for scoring kills/assists while close to another member of the team, if you stick close to your randomly assigned squadmate you’ve got a chance. If you get a wager that seems achievable you might as well activate it; if not, just leave it in your inventory.

Golden Wagers

Golden Battle wagers, most commonly seen in the 7 or 14 day daily reward trophies, are slightly different to other wagers. Most obviously the reward is Gold Eagles rather than Silver Lions, a very useful way of getting a bit more premium currency. You also do not make an initial stake, so “wager” is a slight misnomer, there’s no chance of losing Eagles.

The objective in Golden Battle wagers is just to win matches, nice and simple. If you have two or three skilled friends and can form an effective squad you can heavily skew the odds in your favour, otherwise you’re mostly at the mercy of the randomness of the matchmaker. You need to have Rank III vehicles, so you can’t go and “seal club” brand new players, the best thing to do is to pick the game mode and country you’re most comfortable with, and pray for half-decent team-mates.

Things to buy with Gold Eagles

Premium Account time

You can spend gold eagles to upgrade to a Premium Account via the “Shop” button, boosting the amount of experience and lions you earn from battles (the results screen at the end of a match has a “Here’s what you could have won…” section, showing how much you would have earned with a premium account). Every now and again (such as for the game’s anniversary in November) Gaijin offer a full year of Premium time at 50% off, quite reasonable value if you’re confident you’ll be playing that long.

Crew Slots

Each nation has three crew slots to start with, a fourth and fifth can be bought with silver lions, then further crews cost gold eagles. Extra crew slots are most useful in Arcade battles, where each one is effectively a “life”. For Realistic and Simulator battles, with no respawns, then one option is to use a single crew for every aircraft, which means every battle boosts the skills of that crew; one drawback with this method is that you can’t leave planes automatically repairing in the hanger while flying others, so crew slots aren’t completely pointless.

Crew Skills and Qualification

Crew XP can be purchased with gold eagles in the “Accelerated Training” option, as per the Crew Skills guide, most useful for the high cost skills like Experienced Gunners and Repair Rank. Expert Qualification, giving a boost to certain skills for specific aircraft, can be purchased with Silver Lions, then Ace Qualification after that with Gold Eagles. The extra nudge from Ace Qualification does not make a huge difference, but if you have spare Eagles and a particular favourite plane then every little helps.

Modifications and Converting Research Points

As you gain regular Research Points towards upgrades and new aircraft, indicated with a blue light bulb, you also gain “Convertible RP”, indicated with a yellow light bulb. Your accumulated total is shown at the top of the screen with the yellow light bulb icon; by clicking on this you can spend Gold Eagles to convert it into regular RP, boosting research into the plane/tank you’re currently working on.

This is very tempting when you’re really keen to get your next vehicle unlocked but it gets very expensive as you go up the ranks, so should be used sparingly unless you really don’t mind spending a lot of money.

You can also buy upgrade modules with Eagles rather than researching them. Again, this can get rather expensive, but if you have a lot more money than time it’s always an option. Two particular upgrades can only be purchased with Eagles: “Backup vehicle”, to be able to use a vehicle more than once in a battle, and “Talisman”, doubling research point gain with that vehicle. Talismans are well worth considering in Tier IV to boost research of Tier IV and V vehicles; if you can find an aircraft or tank that really suits your play style, popping a Talisman on it is a good alternative to buying a premium vehicle.

Premium Vehicles

Premium Vehicles are usually shown on the right hand side of a nation’s tech tree with a brown background, and a price in Eagles underneath. They tend to be more unusual or prototype variants of regular vehicles, or captured or lend-lease foreign vehicles. They’re not more powerful than non-premium vehicles, but have a couple of advantages: they start off with all modifications unlocked and available, and usually give better rewards. Premium aircraft can be flown at any time, regardless of your national rank (e.g. if you’re Rank 1 with the USSR and buy the Rank 3 P-63A-5, you can still put it into service and fly it); be very careful in Arcade mode, though, as you’re put into matches based on the highest rank aircraft in your vehicle, so equipping a high level premium aircraft alongside your starting biplanes will result in some painful matches.

Occasionally you may find a discount for a premium vehicle in a post-battle trophy. Some premium vehicles are only available in bundles in the store (shown with “Bundle” underneath, rather than a Gold Eagle price). Premium vehicles can also sometimes be earned in events or competitions.

The Store

As well as buying packs of Gold Eagles, there are several other items in the online store. Bundles often represent good value, especially if on sale, usually containing premium vehicles plus decals, Gold Eagles and/or premium account time. There are also a couple of single player campaigns, covering the Pacific theatre from the Japanese and American perspective; there are probably better alternatives if you’re after a mainly single player flight game, but they offer another option if you get a bit tired of PvP.