Original article by @precambrian
So, you’ve been playing World of Tanks for a while now as a free to play player. You’ve advanced pretty far up a tank line, gotten hang of all the basics, and generally had a good time. You’re finally ready to spend some dosh to bling out your pixel tank experience… but what do you spend your gold on?
In this Gold Spending Guide, I’ll outline the different commodities you can purchase with real money, and evaluate the value of each. Hopefully, you’ll now be able to avoid the money traps and spend your hard earned cash more wisely!
As you probably already know, the premium currency in World of Tanks is gold. You have the option to spend your gold on various in-game goods and services. Let’s take a closer look:
FULL POTATO TIER
- Purchasing premium ammunition and consumables
- Converting gold to silver
- Changing your crew members’ names and pictures
These are all complete wastes of gold that don’t even deserve their own subheadings. Premium ammunition and consumables are available for credits, so why spend real money for them? Converting gold to silver is a nice idea in theory, but terrible in practice- the conversion rate of 400 to 1 is pathetic! For reference, converting 2500 gold nets you 1 million credits. Instead, you could buy a month’s worth of premium and play a single day’s worth of games in tier 8 premiums and make the same amount.
For a pittance of a sum, you can change a crew member’s name or picture, but who the hell cares? This is World of Tanks, not Sim City.
- Purchasing garage slots
- Expanding your crew barracks
- Purchasing permanent camouflage patterns, emblems, or inscriptions
GARAGE SLOTS AND CREW BARRACKS
Garage slots are fairly self-explanatory- you need them to add more tanks. Not much tos ay here- these go on sale pretty often, and you should pick up a few at a time when they do, if you’re planning on buying more tanks. Expanding your crew barracks lets you store more crews that aren’t on tanks in your garage. This will be very useful as you continue to play the game and train more crews! You never want to dismiss a crew, as any trained crew can come in handy later on when you buy a new tank. However, there’s a trick you can use to minimize the need for barracks space: buy cheap tier 1 or 2 tanks of the same nation as your crewmen and store them in there. Of course, this relies on your having a few open garage slots!
CAMOUFLAGE PATTERNS, INSCRIPTIONS, AND EMBLEMS
Camouflage patterns grant you a 5% boost to the camouflage coefficient of your tank. This can be very useful for lights and mediums, but I pretty much throw them on anything- they’re a straight upgrade with no downsides! You have the option of purchasing these with silver for a limited duration (7 to 30 days) or spending a small sum of gold (equivalent to the credit cost of a 30 day camo paint) to purchase a pattern permanently. I would recommend spending credits on these until the camo paint goes on sale, at which point you can buy a permanent option with gold. If you don’t have the gold to spare, you can pass on these as well- the gameplay boost is not substantial, and it’s obtainable with silver. Emblems and inscriptions can be nice to customize your tank, and thankfully, are very cheap. I personally don’t care much, but feel free to pick up a couple for your favorite tanks.
STAT PADDER TIER
- Training crew to 100% competency in a given tank
- Resetting crew skills while keeping 100% of earned experience
- De-mounting complex equipment
DE-MOUNTING COMPLEX EQUIPMENT
Demounting complex equipment is dirt cheap, at 10 gold per equipment piece, and saves you many credits. Equipment sales are few and far between, so demounting equipment when selling a tank can help you conserve funds; you can also move equipment between tanks in your garage while waiting for a sale to crop up.
CREW SKILL RESETS AND CREW RETRAINING
When moving up a tech tree and retraining your crew to a new tank, you have the option of retraining them at 80% to 90% competency (depending on their original competency and tank qualification) for 20k silver per crew member, or 100% competency for 200 gold per crew member. Also, when hiring a fresh crew, you have the choice of 75% for silver or 100% for gold. This is useful to save some time grinding, but the practical impact isn’t enormous- it takes roughly 40k experience level a crew member from 90% to 100%, which is only 40 or so games (with a premium account). Crew retraining often appears on weekend specials at 50% off, so it’s a good idea to hold off on retraining crew until a sale occurs.
You can also reset your crew skills while retaining 100% of crew experience for 200 gold, or retrain to 90% for credits. At higher crew skill levels, it’s really advantageous to use gold for this- it takes inordinate amounts of experience to gain even one percent of your fourth or fifth crew skill, so setting yourself back by 10% could cost you hundreds of games! For example, it takes almost 1.5 million experience to reach 100% on your fourth skill. At that point, resetting to 90% XP will cost you 150000 experience, which would take 1500 games at an average XP rate of 1000 per game to make up.
If you can only afford to reset one of these, always reset crew skills. You can use the liberated crew experience to retrain your crew to a new tank and have them hit 100% immediately. If worst comes to worst, you can also always just grind out the 30-40 thousand XP from 90% to 100% tank proficiency in regular matches; it’ll set you back a fraction of the games that resetting crew XP with credits will set you back.
SLICED BREAD TIER
- Converting regular experience to free experience
- Purchasing premium account status
- Purchasing premium tanks
CONVERTING REGULAR EXPERIENCE TO FREE EXPERIENCE
Although you accrue free experience at a rate of 5% of the experience you earn in regular matches, you can also convert regular experience that’s built up on your elited tanks to free experience yat a rate of 25 experience for 1 gold. This is an excellent choice to help ease some painful stock grinds, or skip some tanks altogether, but this gets extremely expensive as you go up in tiers. 2500 gold can net you 62,500 converted experience- this is enough to skip from tier 1 to tier 6, but will only just barely cover the expense of the top gun on a tier 9 tank.
Purchasing a premium account comes gives you a 50% increase to experience and credits per battle (the other perk, a different garage skin, is obtainable by modifying the client). This is an enormous and useful boost; 50% greater experience will make tank grinds go much more quickly. Note that the 50% increase in credits applies to your gross earnings, and thus will result in greater than 50% increase in profit, as your costs, i.e. the amount that you pay for repairs and resupplying ammunition and consumables, are the same whether you are a premium or standard user. A premium account costs 2500 gold for a one month subscription, with a six month running you 13,500 gold (2250 gold per month) and a one year subscription costing 24000 gold (2000 gold per month). Don’t bother with the smaller subscription periods, as they are prohibitively expensive. For example, one week of premium costs 1250 gold- paying double that amount and buying the one month subscription will get you over four times the duration of premium account status!
This is one of the best value propositions you can purchase with your in-game gold, as long as you expect to be reasonably active during the timeframe that your premium account is active. The bulk options of six month and one year subscriptions go on sale occasionally at around 15% off, and are a good choice if you have the money to commit all at once. Just be careful- once you get hooked on premium, it’s very hard to go back to a standard account!
Another option is to spend your gold on premium tanks. Premium tanks have a couple of perks- they earn more credits than tech-tree tanks of the same tier, and they can use any crew of the same nation and tank type without penalty, making them excellent crew trainers! Many premium tanks come with preferential matchmaking- their tier spread is limited to +1, so they will never see tanks two tiers higher than them. This comes at a price, though- most (but not all) of these premiums are inferior to same-tier tanks.
Purchasing a premium tank is another excellent way to spend your money. This investment is permanent, unlike a premium account, and therefore is a good choice if you have limited funds to spend- it’s a gift that keeps on giving! Tier 5 and lower premiums are inexpensive, but they don’t make much more credits than their same-tier counterparts: they can be good as crew trainers, but I wouldn’t recommend purchasing one as a serious cash cow. For that, tier 8 premiums (preferably one with preferential matchmaking) are your best bet.
A NOTE ON GIFT SHOP PACKAGES
Of course, other than buying things through the in-game client itself, you can also buy gift shop packages- for others, or for yourself!. WG puts up limited time gift packages every weekend, but there are also some long-term mainstays. Buyer beware- many of these deals are rip-offs, as you can obtain the same goods much more cheaply by simply purchasing gold and using it to purchase the items in-game. An easy way to evaluate whether a gift shop “deal” is actually worth the asking price is to calculate the gold-per-dollar value of the deal: simply convert all the goods to their gold equivalents, sum up the gold values, and divide by the dollar price of the package. You can then compare this to the gold-per-dollar value of purchasing gold instead. The higher the gold-per-dollar the better the deal! In general, if a package has a gold-per-dollar value higher than that of the 25000 gold package (250 gold per dollar), it is considered a “good deal”.
For example, for the D-Day Weekend special on the North American server, one available offer was D-Day Package #1: an FCM 36 Pak40 with garage slot and 50% crew, plus 2500 gold, for $17.69. The gold-per-dollar value of this package is:
(850 gold (Pak40) + 2500 gold + 300 gold (garage slot))/$17.69 = 206.33 gold per dollar
Using our rule of thumb, we can see this is NOT a good deal. You can simply buy the $30 gold package (6500 gold for $29.95, gold-per-dollar value of 217) and use it to buy the in-game goods more cheaply.
So there you have it -
An in-depth look at what to spend your gold on. Hopefully, this helps you spend your cash more wisely, if you’re new to the game or you just don’t know what good options are!