Part 1: http://ritastatusreport.blogspot.cz/2015/10/red-white-black-and-blue-part-1-pattons.html
Part 2: http://ritastatusreport.blogspot.com/2015/10/red-white-black-and-blue-part-2-in.html
This will be the final instalment for this series about American Medium tank developments. We will wrap up looking at what are some options for Wargaming to implement several of these vehicles. In the past few years Wargaming has been very short sighted at times, causing a few black spots in the American tech tree.
Consider the M60A1's peers at tier 10 that were mentioned in the previous part. Several nations enjoy their first generation main battle tanks at this level.. Even if not called directly a “MBT”, they embodied the MBT doctrine of the later Cold War. So the M60A1 could be considered contemporary, but the next hurdle is whether or not it’s too advanced. The first M60A1’s had no advanced ballistic computer, no gun stabilizer, no laser range finder, no smoothbore weaponry, and no composite armor, thus it has no fancy gizmos to disqualify it either. We move to the next question, if it could be balanced, where would we put it? Now here lies the clear issue. To be there alongside its “classmates” and join in on the fight Wargaming would have to do some shuffling. There are a few possibilities though, so let’s take a look:
Option 1: The most ambitious option would be to completely rework the current medium line. Down tiering the T20, M26, M46 Patton, and M48 Patton then place the M60A1 at the top. Creating a WWII iteration of the M26 Pershing and it seeing the Panther I and Tiger I at the same tier now, considering some feel these were counterparts as well. The M46 would be the post war modification and early cold war tank it was matching others such as the T-44 and Panther II at 8. The M48 would then see it’s counterpart in the T-54 at tier 9. Then leaving the M60A1 to sit with its classmates at tier 10! There would be concerns however, not only would this be a drastic undertaking to rebalance four tiers in the US medium line and build new models to properly correspond, it could be very upsetting to US medium tank owners who like them as they are and bring another storm of “Wargaming is ruining my stuff.” Though logical to some the feeling is Wargaming would not consider this profitable and would want to avoid the associated headaches.This one has the least amount of chance to go through.
(Option 1, with addition of 2nd branch)
Option 2: Semi rework of the current medium line. Removing the M46 from the tree but placing it as a tier 8 premium in the M46E1 configuration to keep its top turret but downgrade the gun to a rebalanced T119 90mm(90mm M36 currently). Then moving the M48A1 down to tier 9. Leading finally to the M60A1 at tier 10. One of the chief issues it carries over from the previous option is players losing the M46 in the tree would definitely anger some players, but it could still make a great tier 8 premium. This would also offer a way out for the T26E4 Super Pershing that will be removed from the shop at some point due to it’s preferred match making. This may appeal with possibility of a popular tank being sold now that could result in a good profit margin for the work to be done to place the M60A1 in. This depends on the mood of Wargaming about the M46 entirely though.
Option 3: A mini branch for the M60A1 specifically. The idea would be to have it branch off the M41 and lead to some of the tanks mentioned above. The tier 8 coming off the M41 would be the T42. Then this would lead to the XM60 at tier 9 using several of the mentioned guns and turrets used in the concepts along with produced prototypes and mockups. Using the T95E6/7 turret as the link to the M60A1 at tier 10. Now some of you may be saying something like why keep the M46 and M48 at tiers 9 and 10 that the XM60 and M60A1 are far newer and “developed”. Well this would create an effect like what the German tree has in the E-50M and Leopard 1 lines. They are separated by decades almost but one having links to late WWII developments and direct post war programs and the other being more late post war and early cold war tanks. Along with creating the two trees being slightly distinctive this would follow the usual method used by Wargaming lately of using the prototype before it’s corresponding production type. This proposal in the end appeals the most if Wargaming does truly decide that changing any vehicles in the current tree would result in too many headaches and stand firm that they do not want to change a thing and only add on, creating 3 vehicles thus creating a profit opportunity for converting through to them and be more than just an offshoot of a tier ten off an existing tier 9.
|(Option 3, M60A1 as 2nd branch)|
Now with the M60A1 there is also a chance for the T95 Medium tank branch as well. The options here though have become limited due to once again past Wargaming decisions. The use of the T95E2 being the recruit a friend reward tank and the T95E6 as a strangely untouched Clan Wars reward tank have taken two great options out from possible tier 9 and 10’s. The T95E2 could have been used as the tier 9 very easily upgrading to use the 105mm T254/M68 becoming the T95E5 then leading to the T96E6 with its 120mm T123E6 at tier 10. So with both of those options being premiums and hardly any chance of Wargaming going back on their decisions about them we have to look at other options. For a tier 9 they could use the T95E3 with the T54E2 turret this could be viable as it would match with the T54E1 in ways seeing as they had similar arrangements. All this would lead to at the end the T95E9 that was planned as a T95E6 variant with a different power package. Or possibly the T95E7 if there was issues using the T123E6 on a medium to not encroach on the T95E6 and M48A2/T54E2/T123E6 vehicles. If there still is a need for both to be premium rewards that is.
So to recap the American tree seems to be missing an iconic first gen MBT or the simple fact of a second branch that other countries have received in the past years. This has outdated the current M48A1 and rest of the tree in many ways and created a false loadout for the M46 to be competitive at its tier. Using the M60 as a clan reward did hurt the American Medium branch but in a saving grace opened the door to the M60A1 now. The M60A1 is very viable now for a medium tank for the American tree and in fact deserves to be in the game already. With Armored Warfare having several variants of the M60 and War Thunder having the M60 in their tech tree. World of Tanks is missing out on the market and should along with the Chieftain implement them in as soon as possible to compete with the market and update the existing trees to current standards of the game.
Special thanks to Legiondude and Life_In_Black for helping out with this entire project!