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The FV201(A45) in WoT and our opinions on it

Buffs British Heavy FV201(A45) FV201

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Poll: Fv201(A45) (62 members have cast votes)

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Should the FV201(A45) be buffed/changed?

  1. Yes, the tank is under performing/uncomfortable to play. (53 votes [85.48%])

    Percentage of vote: 85.48%

  2. No, you are a whiny snowflake, stop asking for OP tanks. (9 votes [14.52%])

    Percentage of vote: 14.52%

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MrEdweird #1 Posted 02 August 2017 - 01:41 PM

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The FV201(A45) tier VII premium British heavy tank

(Up-to-date as of July 1st.)

 


 


Hello, everyone.

 

I'm going to be talking about the tier 7 premium British heavy here - the FV201(A45). I apologize for the wall of text.

It is the only relatively high-tier British premium heavy (not counting unreleased ones such as T95/Chieftain, the tier X).

 

As such, it is in a strange spot. It is a prototype chassis, intended to be mounted with a Centurion Mk.II turret and a 17-pounder gun, later changed to a 20-pounder. Looking at it, it looks like a mix of a Centurion and a Conqueror, but unfortunately, only has the negatives of both and the strenghts of neither. I have played several hundred battles in it and have 3-marked it like my Caernarvon and Conqueror so I think I should be able to give it a good outline from that standpoint. I play my FV201 with a 6-skill crew and use rammer, vertical stabilzer and optics.

 


So let's comment on what's bad about the FV201:

 

  • Speed - Very low top speed of 31kph, lower than even the other high-tier British heavies' 34kph.

 

  • Hull armor - Absolutely abysmal hull armor. Tier 5 tanks will seldom have issues penetrating it if they know where to shoot. 76mm upper and lower plates but thankfully, nice spaced armor on the sides to eat HEAT and HE. There is a small additional machinegun turret on the hull front, which serves no other purpose but to eat shells, which would normally bounce off the turret front behind it. Also, I have found no historical material that would suggest this prototype vehicle has 76mm of armor.

 

  • Turret armor - Mediocre turret armor. It's worth mentioning that frontally, the turret is actually slightly better than the previous version of the tier 8 Centurion, which is pretty bad, BUT the turret front roof is at a worse angle, so most people just shoot there and autopen. You must turn your turret slightly after shooting in order to force bounces off the turret roof.

 

  • Damage - Low alpha damage of 150 feels very underwhelming at tier 7. Low module damage as well, so spamming someone's ammo rack doesn't seem to work as well as it should.

 

  • Penetration - Terrible penetration for a heavy tank of only 171mm, some of the worst at tier. Exorbitant APCR shell prices negate the vehicle's premium credit gain but are otherwise quite nice.

 

  • Gun depression - The stats sheet lists the tank having -10 gun depression but this is only true over the sides, it's only -8 at the frontal arc.

 

  • Matchmaking - Sees tier 9s, which it cannot defend itself against or even do damage to with premium shells because of mediocre accuracy and aiming time.

 

  • Size - The tank is massive and this isn't reflected in armor amounts - arty will eat you alive and inaccurate guns will not miss you, defintiely don't brawl russian heavies with this. The tank takes module and crew damage left and right, definitely don't expose the lower plate. Wet ammo rack and safe stowage are an illusion - the problem isn't that the ammo rack has small amounts of HP but rather that it is easy to hit and close behind the armor - a high-caliber shot will still damage it, which makes WAR and SS useless. The large size also makes using the good gun handling difficult as you can't poke corners and hills as effectively to bring your gun to bear.

 

  • Crew - The tank has one extra crew member compared to the higher tier heavies.

 

  • Rarity - It's rare ... and people will focus you for no reason but to kill a badly armored rare tank.

 


Next, let's look at what's good about the vehicle:

 

  • It's rare! (This is a joke.)

 

  • It looks pretty good! (This is also a joke.)

 

  • DPM - It has excellent DPM. If you catch the side of even a tier 9 heavy, they will pay dearly. It is often possible to permatrack vehicles behind corners and punsh them for underestimating you. This DPM is probably the tank's saving grace. Fires once every 3.5 or thereabouts, provided you have a good crew and the appropriate equipment.

 

  • View range - Very good view range of 380m, as is usual for support vehicles.

 

  • Mobility - Good power/weight ratio and a powerful 800hp engine give it good mobility for a heavy tank, but this is very limited by the inexcusable 31kph speed limit. The tank has pre-buff Centurion syndrome - the engine roars and the tank wants to go faster but sadly, can't.

 

  • Turret armor - The turret CAN get lucky bounces from even tier 8s, but cannot be relied upon.

 

  • Gun depression - While 8 degrees is not particularly special due to the tank's size and the turret placement that it has, it can reasonably hull-down and is quite good at staying with its sides to a hill so it can use the good -10 gun dep over the sides of the hull.

 

  • Survivability - Very good chunk of HP, it has as much HP as tier 8 heavies, you will be surprised how much punishment it can take.

 

  • Gun handling - The tank is slow and can mount a Vertical Stabilizer. This allows for quick snapshots and firing on the move, since the gun doesn't bloom too much for a tier 7 vehicle.

 

  • Tracks - The chunky tracks can eat a lot of shots.

 

  • Ammo count - Lots of ammo - 74 shells in total. Allows for a well varied assortment of ammo, even though the HE isn't very useful, even against things like Skorpions, since the damage isn't much more and the penetration is low. Good for permatracking, though.

 

  • Being a rare tank, people often underestimate it, though this has nothing to do with the tank itself.

 

  • Earnings - While it costs a lot to fight tier 8s and 9s, as the AP ammo is inadequate against anything above tier 7, the premium credit quoeficient is still quite decent and it is possible to turn a profit even when firing mostly APCR.

 

My final opinion, and that of every other FV201 owner I have spoken to, is that the vehicle requires changes in order to be competitive OR requires changes that would make it more comfortable to play, thus, by extension, achieving the same goal.

 


So what can be done /IN MY OPINION/ to get this thing rolling good:

 

  • The accuracy is worse than a Black Prince. Why? This is a 17pdr in a Centurion turret, this should be the ultimate iteration of the weapon. The accuracy should be better as this tank cannot stay in the open for long, unlike the Black Prince. The weapon as a whole is unsuited for this type of vehicle, it should perform better to compensate if changing it for a different gun is not possible - which it should be, because the FV201 was later equipped with a 20pdr. In lieu of better accuracy, better penetration is acceptible. It's a pain in the cunning linguals to spam at people and not get a single penetration because of low pen and bad accuracy. Moreover, the Caernarvon now has a 32-pdr to alleviate the same issue at that tier, so it's not at all unreasonable to do the same for FV201 by giving it the 84mm 20pdr.

 

  • It has a Centurion Mk.II turret. The tier 8 and 9 Centurions + Strv 81 are getting turret buffs. This should have those buffs too. The tank has nothing over Black Prince and this way it should be able to match it. It's supposed to be a better turret anyways. Literally just slap the Cent Mk.1 or Mk.7/1 turret on there and call it a day. If uparmoring it isn't possible, then at least improve the turret front roof.

 

  • There is obviously no way to remove the little mini-turret if it was meant to be there. However, as it stands, the tier 8 Centurion has same or better hull armor because of the tracks on the upper plate, which is also smaller in width. Some sources state that Centurions would have 101mm frontal armor. It would not be ridiculous to have the FV201 have that. The Caernarvon/Conqueror had 130mm upper plates (150+14 spaced intended for wartime Conquerors) on a very similar chassis and were based on the FV201 design, slapping on another plate of armor on there or some spare tracks shouldn't be a problem and the tank needs to at least have a CHANCE of bouncing tier 6 guns off the hull. Would be nice if the miniturret was spaced armor instead of standard hull armor, too. This issue is even more glaring now that British top tier heavies are getting more armor buffs, Caernarvon included. And they also get 76mm sides, not 50.8...

 

  • Make the top speed be at least the same as the other heavies - 34. Tiers 8-10 should be able to do 40kph imo, but that's a different talk. As it stands, the tank cannot get any extra damage at the end of a game if it has had to facetank heavies. It's dreadfully slow and is not in any way comfortable to play.

 

  • It is understandable that the gun depression over the miniturret should be -8, it gets in the way. However, the Centurion turret is massive and has more than enough space to do -10 all around the tank. It should be at least -10 everywhere except over the miniturret. It's a smaller gun and probably has a smaller breech. The Centurions get -10 in the same turrets with 105mm guns. If you look at schematics of a Centurion turret with a 17-pdr, you will see that it can depress to -12, not just -10. More prevalent now that Conquerors get -10, whereas historically they were only supposed to be able to fire at -5.5, not even -7.

 

  • The tank, while reasonably good looking, is very boring aesthetics-wise. There are no headlights on the hull like the Caern/Conq, the turret is as plain as can be, the sides and rear are dull...it should look more interesting, imo. Looking at some of the newer tanks in the game, there is a lot that can be done to fill in the empty space. A rear turret bustle like on CentAX or Cent 7/1 would be good.

 


There are obviously more things that can be done but these are the most glaring issues, in my opinion. It cannot /reliably/ snipe, hulldown, brawl, scout or really anything else. It cannot relocate quickly enough to make a difference on a flank and it cannot hold ground.

 

Let me know what you guys think and let's see if Wargaming pays attention. Ideally, it can get all of these, but at least some of them are absolutely mandatory, I think. I'd like to hear Conway or Ph3lan's opinion on what can be done. I hope that people will show some support for this since I know that there are many of you who like the British tanks and want them to be as good as they can be.

 

Perhaps WG can make this a regular tech tree premium with these changes and get the corresponding income from it. I don't need it to necessarily be times better than it is - but it is very hard to believe that people want to play a tank that does not feel good to play, and WG has been saying they have been changing tanks specifically for this reason.


Thanks for your time.

 

Here's a quick kitbash with Cent I, Cent 7/1, FV201(A45) of what I want it to be...maybe add a dust cover like Strv 81, which would have the same turret in reality.

 


Edited by MrEdweird, 01 July 2018 - 04:37 PM.


thestaggy #2 Posted 02 August 2017 - 02:31 PM

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Still don't know why WG never made this a regular tech-tree tier 7 with access to a 20-pdr while removing the Churchill VII and demoting the Whack Prince.

Balc0ra #3 Posted 02 August 2017 - 02:36 PM

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Mobility and speed is my only beef with it. Sure the alpha is bad, but as you said. The DPM is great. Turret works fine or good when top tier. But when I'm not top tier, I don't expect it to work at all tbh.

MrEdweird #4 Posted 02 August 2017 - 02:37 PM

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View Postthestaggy, on 02 August 2017 - 01:31 PM, said:

Still don't know why WG never made this a regular tech-tree tier 7 with access to a 20-pdr while removing the Churchill VII and demoting the Whack Prince.

 

That would be reasonable. They would still need to have something to take its place as a premium tank of tier 7 for us that already own it. :) It makes sense, but tbh I quite liked the Black Prince. If they nerfed BP and put it at tier 6, that would be great, but I think it's a bit too late for that. I'm hoping for a CM response.


Edited by MrEdweird, 02 August 2017 - 02:44 PM.


Sams_Baneblade #5 Posted 02 August 2017 - 03:43 PM

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Turret armor and gun depression would make the tank interresting to my eyes (and why not better top speed if needed, to make it different from the T29- although not OP).

 

But indeed, in its current state, the FV201 looks like one of the worst "bang for your bucks" of the game, although not as bas as the PzIIIK (ultimate expensive turd). I would never buy such things, not even with a -75% discount.


Edited by Sams_Baneblade, 02 August 2017 - 03:48 PM.


MrEdweird #6 Posted 02 August 2017 - 03:47 PM

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View PostSams_Baneblade, on 02 August 2017 - 02:43 PM, said:

Turret armor and gun depression would make the tank interresting to my eyes (and why not better ground resistance and rotation speed if needed, to make it different from the T29, although not OP).

 

But indeed, in its current state, the FV201 looks like one of the worst "bang for your bucks" of the game, although not as bas as the PzIIIK (ultimate expensive turd). I would never buy such things, not even with a -75% discount.

 

I must admit I bought it only on it's novelty and the fact that I enjoy all high tier British heavies.

I play it now as a challenge, and 3-marking it is actually harder than on Conqueror 2 tiers up.

 

As it stands, it feels like a tier 6 compared to a T29. I have a tendency to play mediocre vehicles, which I guess is reflected in my winrate.

 

EDIT: I have found several youtube reviewers even on console suggesting 100mm hull armor and better speed and ideally, a slow-firing 20pdr.


Edited by MrEdweird, 02 August 2017 - 04:49 PM.


Lentomies1 #7 Posted 02 August 2017 - 09:17 PM

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I love my FV201! (2 MoE's on it)

FV is more like a medium than a heavy, which is why it has that bad armor.

I would say that all it needs is a accuracy buff to 0.34 and a top speed buff from (31) to (45+).

 



Enderman21 #8 Posted 02 August 2017 - 09:57 PM

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Try Black Prince, maybe you'll like it better.

Strappster #9 Posted 02 August 2017 - 10:19 PM

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British tank needs a buff. We'll have more on this story later but first we're going to hear from our ursine defecation axiom correspondent who I believe is speaking to us from the depths of the woods. :great:

thestaggy #10 Posted 04 August 2017 - 07:05 AM

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View PostMrEdweird, on 02 August 2017 - 02:37 PM, said:

 

That would be reasonable. They would still need to have something to take its place as a premium tank of tier 7 for us that already own it. :) It makes sense, but tbh I quite liked the Black Prince. If they nerfed BP and put it at tier 6, that would be great, but I think it's a bit too late for that. I'm hoping for a CM response.

 

I've had a few ideas on how both could be kept while addressing the woeful mid-tier Brit heavies.

 

Regular tree 'Universal Tank' (Black Prince replacement):

650 HP engine upgradable to a 750 HP engine (Caern's 2nd engine).

Black Prince turret as the stock turret with a 17-pdr gun.

Upgraded Centurion-derived turret with a 20-pdr.

370 m view range

35 km/h top speed

 

(Tweaked) Premium FV201:

Maintains the 800 HP engine, speed buffed to 40 km/h.

380 view range

Terrain resistance advantage over its sibling

 

Nothing major, but both can co-exist with slight variations in playstyle. Premium one can emerge as a pseudo-medium with a significant mobility advantage as well as having a slight edge in view range. The tech-tree version, while nothing special, at least becomes a competent tier 7 heavy and not the tedious experience the Whack Prince is. The latter just has no business facing tier 9s.

 

I'd also realign the trees so that the tier 7 'Universal Tank' not only leads to the Caernarvon, but includes a side path that leads to the Centurion I. In reality the Universal Tank MBT concept, while being a foundation for the Conqueror, was ultimately supllanted by the Centurion in the MBT roll. It could also be the launching point for a possible third line if we ever get the Chieftain. Perfect spot for a ''gateway'' tank.

 

A new British premium heavy could be introduced at tier 8 in the shape of the Vickers MBT.



MrEdweird #11 Posted 04 August 2017 - 12:29 PM

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View Postthestaggy, on 04 August 2017 - 06:05 AM, said:

 

I've had a few ideas on how both could be kept while addressing the woeful mid-tier Brit heavies.

 

Regular tree 'Universal Tank' (Black Prince replacement):

650 HP engine upgradable to a 750 HP engine (Caern's 2nd engine).

Black Prince turret as the stock turret with a 17-pdr gun.

Upgraded Centurion-derived turret with a 20-pdr.

370 m view range

35 km/h top speed

 

(Tweaked) Premium FV201:

Maintains the 800 HP engine, speed buffed to 40 km/h.

380 view range

Terrain resistance advantage over its sibling

 

Nothing major, but both can co-exist with slight variations in playstyle. Premium one can emerge as a pseudo-medium with a significant mobility advantage as well as having a slight edge in view range. The tech-tree version, while nothing special, at least becomes a competent tier 7 heavy and not the tedious experience the Whack Prince is. The latter just has no business facing tier 9s.

 

I'd also realign the trees so that the tier 7 'Universal Tank' not only leads to the Caernarvon, but includes a side path that leads to the Centurion I. In reality the Universal Tank MBT concept, while being a foundation for the Conqueror, was ultimately supllanted by the Centurion in the MBT roll. It could also be the launching point for a possible third line if we ever get the Chieftain. Perfect spot for a ''gateway'' tank.

 

A new British premium heavy could be introduced at tier 8 in the shape of the Vickers MBT.

 

FV201 already has 380m view range. There was actually a plan to replace Black Prince's turret with a Centurion turret but it was scrapped.

 

Vickers MBT had far too modern features for WoT, imo, even for tier X. Various gun stabilisation systems and L7 gun make it no-no for lower tiers. The only tier 8 tank they could do is the initial 20pdr light tank variant of the Vickers MBT, which is definitely no heavy tank. At best you'd have 60-80mm of armor, basically no more portection than a standard tier 8 Cent, and the turret would be worse too.

 

They could make a separate branch that has the Vickers MBT at tier 9 as a faster, less armored, faster firing but less accurate version of the Cent 7/1. That could lead to Chieftain Mk.6 with Conq leading to Super Conq, as has been suggested in like a billion threads and on Status Report and The Armored Patrol.

 

In any case, the general consensus is that FV201 has terrible armor and unnecessaily low top speed and that the gun should be a low-level 20pdr or the accuracy and/or pen should be buffed if its left with a 17pdr.


Edited by MrEdweird, 04 August 2017 - 12:50 PM.


DangerMouse #12 Posted 04 August 2017 - 12:50 PM

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Is it that bad that they don't want to sell it, it's not like the British tree is awash with premium options and yet this one isn't available in game still.

 

DM



MrEdweird #13 Posted 04 August 2017 - 12:55 PM

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View PostDangerMouse, on 04 August 2017 - 11:50 AM, said:

Is it that bad that they don't want to sell it, it's not like the British tree is awash with premium options and yet this one isn't available in game still.

 

DM

 

They don't seem to care too much for the British tree. It's been pretty mediocre since its inception and they haven't done TOO much to bring it line with other nations. I don't know what the holdup is. I feel that if they wanted to sell more premiums they would have done the buffs and changes they are currently working on years ago. They don't sell it because they know it's bad imo...they just have it on sale with things like last Christmas so they can get players who want an unique tank to shell out. Thankfully, it was pretty cheap, so I bought it. I think it cost me less than a SU-122-44.

 

FV201 is fairly rare. It's rarer than the Mutant, it's at around 400/500 if 1 is most frequently seen tank.


Edited by MrEdweird, 04 August 2017 - 12:56 PM.


Ubervold #14 Posted 04 August 2017 - 07:13 PM

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Good post, yes please make the FV201 more competative. It does not have to be op like most of the recent tier VIII heavys just add some speed, alpha and armour and it would be more playable.

thestaggy #15 Posted 05 August 2017 - 08:39 AM

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View PostUbervold, on 04 August 2017 - 07:13 PM, said:

Good post, yes please make the FV201 more competative. It does not have to be op like most of the recent tier VIII heavys just add some speed, alpha and armour and it would be more playable.

 

Just something to consider;

 

If you fiddle with the alpha of the 17-pdr it affects the gun on the Whack Prince, Firefly and TDs. I suppose if you pushed it to 170 or something it would be alright though. Anything more and the Firefly becomes quite nasty.



MrEdweird #16 Posted 05 August 2017 - 09:55 AM

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View Postthestaggy, on 05 August 2017 - 07:39 AM, said:

 

Just something to consider;

 

If you fiddle with the alpha of the 17-pdr it affects the gun on the Whack Prince, Firefly and TDs. I suppose if you pushed it to 170 or something it would be alright though. Anything more and the Firefly becomes quite nasty.

 

That's why the better solution would be giving it a 20-pounder of some type.

Though 220+ is a lot of pen for tier 7...so it's definitely not ideal.

 

In reality, the new changes to TDs they are proposing suggests they are changing the alpha damage of the 32-pdr, which to me means they will change it on all 32-pdrs, unless they differentiate them by Marks or something.

So they could theoretically change the alpha on the 17-pdr as well.

 

Bottom line in that regard is that 17-pdr requires you to sit in the open and the FV201 simply does not have the staying power for that.



Ubervold #17 Posted 05 August 2017 - 11:21 PM

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The gun is good, if you have armour so you can risk to take a few hits or speed so you can relocate and use your mobility as protection. Unfortunately FV201 has neither. Strange that they did not see this themselves... Or maybe they knew some of us like a real challange or are too stupid to realise that the tank is severly underpowered.

Velvet_Underground #18 Posted 05 August 2017 - 11:34 PM

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View Postthestaggy, on 05 August 2017 - 08:39 AM, said:

 

Just something to consider;

 

If you fiddle with the alpha of the 17-pdr it affects the gun on the Whack Prince, Firefly and TDs. I suppose if you pushed it to 170 or something it would be alright though. Anything more and the Firefly becomes quite nasty.

 

Nope, they can easily fiddle with the gun statistics without changing other vehicles.

Aikl #19 Posted 05 August 2017 - 11:56 PM

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Even if they really, really had to, it would be a small matter of making it more of an 'alternate' gun on the Firefly. More damage=more aim time. Simple stuff.

 

As for balancing a T7 heavy, check the VK4503. That thing works incredibly well just by virtue of good soft stats and a good gun. If a developer asked you what you would like done with the FV, you'd be better off asking for good gun handling and a proper mantlet. That would push it well into OP territory even with the small gun.



MR_FIAT #20 Posted 06 August 2017 - 12:02 AM

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View PostMrEdweird, on 05 August 2017 - 09:55 AM, said:

 

That's why the better solution would be giving it a 20-pounder of some type.

Though 220+ is a lot of pen for tier 7...so it's definitely not ideal.

 

In reality, the new changes to TDs they are proposing suggests they are changing the alpha damage of the 32-pdr, which to me means they will change it on all 32-pdrs, unless they differentiate them by Marks or something.

So they could theoretically change the alpha on the 17-pdr as well.

 

Bottom line in that regard is that 17-pdr requires you to sit in the open and the FV201 simply does not have the staying power for that.

 

The 32-pdrs do differentiate by marks the proposed 32-pdr on the challenger is labeled a Mk2 which the current ingame one does not have.




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