War Thunder Preview

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At this year’s EuroGamer Expo I got the chance to play a game that I did not know all too much about, but it did certainly catch my eye. This was the free-to-play MMO game – War Thunder – for the PlayStation 4 console. You may have heard of War Thunder before, from the online PC version of the game that is currently in beta over at www.warthunder.com. If you’re in to seat-of-your-pants flying, against a vast number of online fly boys and girls, then you best sign-up for the beta now and take yourself to the skies!

War Thunder is a PC MMO war combat game produced by Gaijin Entertainment, and it will soon be flying its way onto consoles for the first time when it lands on Sony’s PlayStation 4 console at launch. The simulation game is focussed towards the World War II era, and the game allows you to be able to take control of military aircraft, armoured vehicles and navy fleets. War Thunder pits you in some major historic combat battles, fighting with real players all over the world. Using the technology of the PlayStation 4 console the game looks beautiful and plays fantastically well with the DualShock 4 controller.

I never thought a game of this scale, coming from the PC to console, would play so smoothly whilst also looking superb. This is thanks to the developer’s own game engine that has been tweaked and fine-tuned over the many years of its development, making it a scalable and adaptable engine to bring the game from the PC over to the console with ease, according to the developer.

During my hands-on with the demo I got the chance to fly the Spitfire in some air-to-air combat and later I was able to jump into the hot seat of a Lancaster bomber, weaving between the valley mountains on a bombing run against an enemy naval fleet. Controlling both light and heavy aircraft I was able to sample each of their individual characteristics, from the fast and nimble Spitfire to the slow and sluggish Lancaster bomber.

I was shown two flight control methods in the demo. The first behaved how the mouse control does on the PC version, where moving the circle on screen would direct where the aircraft would point and also shoot. This control felt ok whilst in third-person view, however jumping into the cockpit had a more disconnected feeling to it, so I opted for the more reactive second option. This option gave me a much better feeling of control with the aircraft, with the left and right sticks behaving as you’d expect in a flying game – controlling the pitch, yaw and roll of the aircraft.

Sadly, I was only able to sample the aircraft in my hands-on demo of the game, however War Thunder will also give gamers the ability to battle on the ground with an arsenal of tanks at launch, whilst later next year gamers will be able to take to the sea in naval fleet battles too. Each available map will play out an historic WWII scenario and it will also combine the three vehicle types together, so expect epic battles taking place on the English Channel seas whilst air-based combat is taking place overhead. The concept of it all sounds very exciting, and I cannot wait to see how all three vehicle types will play when they all come together next year.

With the amount of XP skilling up needed, and the array of aircraft and tanks available to earn, this is a game that I am sure I will sink my time into when the PlayStation 4 version is available at launch. Your account online will be compatible with both PC and PS4 platforms of the game, so if you’d like a head start in earning XP before the game comes out on PlayStation 4, the you best fire up the PC and get yourself downloading!

War Thunder will be available worldwide on the PlayStation 4 this November.

Steven Bourke

Steven Bourke

No longer writes for Console Monster... had a good journey with the team but a new horizon awaits.

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