@Deus__Ex__Machina, @Private_Miros @lavawing
Sorry for hijacking this thread, but seems relevant as below is probably unconventional. Also, couldn't find if it had it's own page?
So, I played 100 games in the 703, so I think it is a large enough sample size. First 40 games were at 41% w/r and 1,800 DPG whilst I figured it out (and before I hotkeyed the double fire button to the middle mouse wheel, i.e. sniping was literally impossible due to shot lag).
Really good gun dispersion - you often end up firing on the move and hitting. Makes peeking it it easy from a firing perspective.
270 HEAT is nice versus bricks, but is shit for aiming at distance. On balance, it is a wash with Defender's APCR premium (which is basically vice versa).
Mobile enough, especially on medium/soft terrain. I did take off the turbo though, as the benefits weren't enough to justify it.
Upper plate can get troll bounces, especially angled. Side armour less so, but still Russian so Stalin protects.
Absolute butter armour, in three respects:
Against same tier and lower, the lower plate is far too easily pennable, as is the side armour. So what, right? Well, if it's direct competition is the Defender, that's a big deal. The Defender has a gimmick - being unpennable a lot of the time, and it does it well. The 703 fails at it's own gimmick (more on that below). The Defender can 3xr same tier games and get away with it. In the right hands, apart from cuppola shots it is immoveable.
Speaking of cuppola shots, they are a nightmare when twinned with the overmatchable roof/low tank combo. So many pens against pixels because of this. The turret is also easily pennable as soon as you don't aim it directly at someone, whereas the Defender turret has to be aiming more like 45 degress to pen it, and even then it is troll.
It is absolute butter to any tier 9 tanks and above. Surely most tier 8 heavies are? Yes, but this tank is supposed to have armour, and again it falls ways short of the Defender here. The upper plate is especially bad for this - you can be completely hull down and angling up and it still gets penned by 705s. It makes anything outside a tier 8 game a dicey proposition, because even with hull down/peeking, you may as well be in a Renegade.
-5 gun dep/low profile makes it a nightmare when face hugged/close quarters generally.
The double shot is pointless, and almost never justifies it. Which is the fatal flaw of this tank - its gimmick is useless. All the best tier 8 tanks have a gimmick that works for them, a leverageable strong point that makes them best in class. SU - boom stick chai sniper. Skorpian - less chai, more vroom vroom boomstick. Renegade - god tier gun handling with great DPM/gun depression. Progetto - everything except armour. Defender - steel wall, with best in tier heavy alpha to fire back. The 703 is supposed to be a mixture between double barrel lol shots and good armour, and in the end it does neither.
The DPM is atrocious, and maybe because people expect the double shot or something, it gets yolo'd much more than it should. Maybe that is small sample size, but definitely doesn't have the fear factor to prevent pushes. People note how good the gun handling is, which is great admittedly, but this isn't a 'firepower' tank like the Renegade or Caenarvon - it can't be with that DPM. Neither is it a "stopper" tank like the Defender. Again, it tries to do both and in the end does neither.
Very susceptible to arty shots and, unfortunately, engine fires. Burned once every 10 games or so, and if arty picks on you even tier 7 arties take off 300-400 dmg per shot, consistently. It really lacks stopping power because of that. Just played another game and seriously, any shot that isn't to the front is an instant fire, i'm seriously considering that new piece of equipment that increases engine/fuel tank HP.
Maybe it is much worse now because people are more aware of it? I remember after the loot boxes they were flavour of the month, but it feels like it is much easier to figure out for pubbies than the Defender is - when it fires, rush in, especially if you here a loud boom.
In summary, I don't know what the hype is about. OK Russian heavy with good gun handling but no DPM to capitalise, and butter armour. I'm sure a platoon negates some of it's weaknesses, but most of the other top tier tier 8 prems are better for carrying in solo pubs. Meh.