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So, taking advantage of the current on-track, I recently purchased the IS-2. My results with it, though, have been less than stellar.

 

[placeholder for recent stats once I screenshot them from home]

 

First up, 2 acknowledgements:

-- The crew is my worst overall crew. It is only at about 70% first skill, training 6th/gunnery (I'm too cheap to retrain)

-- The tank is being ground from stock (I'm too cheap to use any of the 165K free XP I've built up). I only have the first 122mm unlocked, and still lack the top engine and turret.

-- Equipment is GLD/Rammer/Vents

 

HOWEVER, the reasons I'm struggling with this tank are:

 

-- A distinct lack of usable armor. It is rather disconcerting when a KV-1 with AP rounds is punching every shot through your frontal armor.

-- Poor dispersion on the move, coupled with guns with base accuracy ranging from bad (0.42 for the 100 mm) to LOLBAD (0.48 for the first 122), and glacial aim times (2.9-3.4s).

-- Poor accuracy with 2nd-lowest for-tier penetration (ahead of the CBP, tied with Soviet 122s) and slow reloads means there are a lot of misses/bounces, and each miss/bounce costs you a long reload.

 

When you combine the above, you are left with a tank that has to sit, exposing its poor frontal armor, often for 4 seconds to settle in your shot completely. In return, it takes a lot of hits ... most of which pen.

 

The first 122 mm frustrated me no end. In fact, I switched back to the 100 mm stock gun, and have actually improved my results significantly with that gun, with its 2.9 aim time, faster RoF, better accuracy, and acceptable APCR round with 235 pen (comparable to the 122's 250 HEAT pen after normalization). I acknowledge that no-one fears the 250 hit the 100 puts on you, and it is the same gun the T-34-1 gets, in a less mobile, less camo'd chassis with a softer turret, but so far it is the only gun I can make work for me. I actually pulled a 2K+ Ace Tanker on this thing using the 100 mm.

 

Questions:

(1) Is the D-25-T that much better? On paper, it doesn't seem so-- slightly better RoF than the first 122, but still bad accuracy at 0.46 with the 3.4 aim time.

(2) How do I make this package work for me? Should I load up all HEAT and not bother with aiming? A tactic less viable with 250 pen than with 300, admittedly.

(3) On a scale of 0 to Meow, how sexy is Ziddy?

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Run 122, period. As with other terrible gun handling tanks, I play mine next to cover, constantly. If I get caught in the open and try to trade shots, I'm screwed. When you're always next to cover, you get the time to preaim. This helps with the turret dispersion since you can preaim your turret and need minimum turret movement once you poke out. It also lets you "preaim" your hull so that you only have to drive straight forward and back to get out and in of cover to avoid the hull rotation dispersion.

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well, first and foremost, ME-OOOWWW

 

second, i found the only way to make it shine was slinging heat and being right up in someone's face, i found it to be the most unreliable snipe. its kinda quick, sorta. it hits hard, and it can get bounces at brawling range if lag is on your side. in the 300 heat pen days, it was more capable than the t29. but just barely. the pen made up for the awful gun handling. with 250 pen, it really doesn't make up for the terrible gun any more. i sold mine, as you know.

 

could just be me, but it seems to be a turd that you have to suffer through for the supper happy fun of the 110 and the 111. i am over half wway to the 113, i have high hopes of a fun fast pub stamper. 

 

its possible that running the 100mm with apcr is the best option remaining. it didnt sound crazy at all when i read it, i actually thought that if i were grinding it without the 300 pen heat, i would have gone to the 100 for rate of fire and dependability of apcr. heat that inaccurate is going to 0 damage alot. with a huge reload, and no accuracy you can easily be looking at 0 damage games.

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I got through the IS-2 with a 53%, did not get the mastery badge, and overall was just happy to be done with it.

 

The top gun ... well, it's still pretty damn meh. I mean, sure, it's a little better, but yes, the accuracy and aim time are still shit, but you can use it if you've played the KV-1S and play it the same way. (Which I see is kinda what Okeano is suggesting). I wasn't all that fond of the original IS, and this one seems slightly worse, despite the reputedly "better" armor. The lack of even minimal gun depression is a major pain too.

 

The news gets even worse: Unless you have shit-tons of free xp, you have to use that same shitty 122 on the 110 for a long time. Look at that stats for the top gun, the shit accuracy, the long aim time, the shit pen and think about using that on tier 10 tanks ... ouch, right? Even the HEAT doesn't help much. The 110's top gun I'm liking quite a bit and, IMO, really helps that tank shine, but it's painful getting there.

 

 

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On the other hand, the 110 has the frontal armor to take a hit or two while waiting for the 122 to dial in. The IS-2 doesn't!

 

Hrm, looking at KV-1S stats (a tank I do fairly well with, TBH), since they both carry essentially variants of the same gun

 

Identical aim time to the IS-2 (3.4)

Identical accuracy (0.46)

Slower RoF (3.75 vs 4.88)

Identical AP pen (175), but 217 APCR instead of 250 HEAT

Better gun depression (-8 vs -5)

Worse OTM dispersion (0.24 vs 0.23) and identical turret rotation dispersion (0.16)

 

So what gives, why do I have a worse "feel" running the IS-2? Is it that the 390 alpha/175 pen is less potent at 7 than at 6?

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It also snipes just fine, ty 8.6. Not the best sniper obviously, but staying back far enough to not get lit and getting out fully zoomed sniper shots work fine on open maps. Medium range is where you don't want to be with this tank; get in their face (with cover) or don't get see at all.

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Indeed, medium range is a huge issue, especially since you get penned 2x for every one you dish out.

 

I just noticed that the 100 mm also has 1 degree extra gun dep...

 

Seriously, I was pulling off cross-map 400m shots with the 100 mm yesterday... but I *will* give the top 122 a try.

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With 90mm of side armor at tiers 7, you can probably sidescrape a bit against 7's and even some 8's. Granted it's a bit difficult when your frontal armor is "pike-ish", but you should be able to reverse sidescrape by putting your butt to the wall.

 

Never played the tank though, this is just a theory.

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A number of people who played it in the 300 HEAT days didn't like its gun handling, but with 300 mm of HEAT pen you had to just aim at the front of the enemy and fire, thereby mitigating a great proportion of the aim time. With 250 HEAT AND changed HEAT mechanics, pure HEAT-slinging is far less effective than it used to be.

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Have you seen QuickyBaby's IS-2 replays? Those replays almost make me want to buy the tank. Well, almost...

 

They're probably from the 300-HEAT era, but I'll look for them, since I can watch Youtube at work.

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I've been treating the IS-2 as a slightly slower medium.

 

You've got to use every little bit of terrain you can to get into brawling distance, then use that slight agility advantage you have. Don't be afraid to just relocate somewhere else.

 

Two games I've had recently that went well. (Admittedly both don't have tier 8's)

mountain-pass-china-is-2-135470803273408

el-halluf-china-is-2-125659268313276326.

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Honestly anything at tier 6-7 with 390 alpha is OP.  IS, IS-2, KV-3 are all OP because not only they have hp.  They can bounce shells and 2 shot most things below their tier and even TDs at tier 7.

 

"OP" is a meaningless term. This post adds little to the discussion. How do they bounce shells? At what range? What tactics to use?

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I've been doing alright in the tank.  I try and treat is a medium because it's fairly quick so you can get in forward spots.  It doesn't really work well trading shots unless you can reverse angle and get them to shoot your tracks (which it actually does pretty well).  

 

Don't try and spot for your team.  GLD/Vents/Rammer is the same set up i'm using.  Once you have a good idea of where people are, then you can start playing to it's strengths because even with binoculars it wouldn't have a great view range

 

If you're trying to bait shots make sure that you have a good idea where the rest of the team is so you can limit your exposure as the armor is very unreliable in general unless you have a specific person in mind and are angling it for them alone.

 

I would like the tank a lot more if it had more gun depression and better view range as right now it's a medium range brawler that has terrible gun soft stats.  I certainly won't be keeping it.  I just got the upgraded 122 last night, so hopefully i'll see an improvement with that.

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"OP" is a meaningless term. This post adds little to the discussion. How do they bounce shells? At what range? What tactics to use?

Why so rude...  I'm just saying.  

 

Thing about any IS tanks is you have to play aggressive or don't play it at all.  Any good player can make that terrible gun control work.  Get up close to try to stop that accuracy and aiming time from bothering you too much.  Also 175 pen and 250 HEAT is really good for a tier 7 tank.  

 

Also IS-2's armor is great for the mobility and firepower it gets, not sure you're complaining about that.

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What I usually did was bully mediums in the opening phase. Tier 7 mediums aren't that strong and generally have low alpha/okish dpm with subpar penetration combination, meaning they will bounce and miss shots and have to aim at you. Meanwhile, you can put huge alpha dents in them, whereas teammates provide distractions or can use your presence to flank.

 

If you succeed in that, you should have a free zone which allows you to attack the side or back of the heavy blob of the enemy team. So basically I played it like a medium. I never really liked it for the reasons you outlined, but statwise I did ok in it, playing it 90% solo in August (yes, with 300 pen HEAT and a credit bonus to keep me happy).

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Why so rude...  I'm just saying.  

 

Thing about any IS tanks is you have to play aggressive or don't play it at all.  Any good player can make that terrible gun control work.  Get up close to try to stop that accuracy and aiming time from bothering you too much.  Also 175 pen and 250 HEAT is really good for a tier 7 tank.  

 

Also IS-2's armor is great for the mobility and firepower it gets, not sure you're complaining about that.

 

I was pointing out that "OP" is a meaningless term. I detest the casual tossing around of that term, saying "X tank is OP" or "Y tank is OP". It adds nothing to the conversation. What is the skillfloor? What is the ceiling? Is a high skill ceiling tank OP? Or a high floor, low ceiling tank? THAT is what I'm more interested in.

 

The IS-2's armor is junk because it can easily be penned by tier 5s frontally (LFP is 90 degrees almost flat). It has no bully potential. And 175 pen/250 HEAT is garbage when you factor in huge dispersion on top of 0.46 accuracy. It has trouble with snapshots, and does not have enough usable armor to bait a hit before engaging its 3.4 aim time. It is blind as a bat with 350 VR, and the HEAT rounds get no normalization, and are stopped cold by spaced armor. Even post-nerf, the Sup persh gives this tank fits at anywhere further than ~200 m. Load up a HEAT round, and go at the enemy IS-3, only to find his side turned to you... and your shot disperses into his tracks. The HEAT nerfs hit this tank REALLY hard, since with the high pen rounds gone, it has very little to fall back upon.

 

Anyway, I should have it ground out in the next few days. I won't miss it.

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I was pointing out that "OP" is a meaningless term. I detest the casual tossing around of that term, saying "X tank is OP" or "Y tank is OP". It adds nothing to the conversation. What is the skillfloor? What is the ceiling? Is a high skill ceiling tank OP? Or a high floor, low ceiling tank? THAT is what I'm more interested in.

 

The IS-2's armor is junk because it can easily be penned by tier 5s frontally (LFP is 90 degrees almost flat). It has no bully potential. And 175 pen/250 HEAT is garbage when you factor in huge dispersion on top of 0.46 accuracy. It has trouble with snapshots, and does not have enough usable armor to bait a hit before engaging its 3.4 aim time. It is blind as a bat with 350 VR, and the HEAT rounds get no normalization, and are stopped cold by spaced armor. Even post-nerf, the Sup persh gives this tank fits at anywhere further than ~200 m. Load up a HEAT round, and go at the enemy IS-3, only to find his side turned to you... and your shot disperses into his tracks. The HEAT nerfs hit this tank REALLY hard, since with the high pen rounds gone, it has very little to fall back upon.

 

Anyway, I should have it ground out in the next few days. I won't miss it.

Hmmm....  the thing with IS-2's armor is it's really bouncy.  The turret has better curves than the IS's and the upper plate is nicely sloped with shoulder armor.  This means that if you're charging at a scared enemy, they will have a high chance of bouncing on you.  Lower plate is junk and it's hard to hide it, that is true.  So you have to find ways to mitigate this issue, like with the ST-I.

 

Thing about Russian/Chinese heavies with high alpha and shit aim time is you just NEED to play aggressive.  Even in tier 9 games, you have to be in the frontlines.  You should never fully aim in on the D-25-T too.  I almost always go for snapshots unless I'm sniping from far away.  IS-2 was truly OP (yes I used this term again) with 300 HEAT, now it's still a quite OP tier 7 due to 8.6 accuracy changes.  Maybe there is a high level ceiling for shit aim time and high alpha tanks, because if you know how to trade shots properly, you can very well trade 400 damage for 150 to yourself.

 

Think about it this way.  You need 3 shots to kill tier 7 medium tank, while a lot of tier 7 medium tanks need to shoot you up to 6-10 times to kill you depending on the tank.  You can 2 shot a lot of tier 6s.  You can 1 shot some tier 5s.  While tier 7 mediums have to shoot 2-3 times to even kill a tier 5.

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