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PSA - Misplaced blame Pitfall - Analysis of RNG Perception

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I think this common misconception deserve a PSA / exploration on it's own thread.

Disclaimer:
I consider this player to be one of the best VOD makers in WoT, possibly the best one recording in English, and an overall excellent source of information for beginner to intermediate players.
This thread may seem highly critical of one exceptional example poor play of an otherwise great player.
That is not the intent. Criticizing is much easier then making good decisions while playing.

RNG is bad. We all like to blame it when things go wrong. 
This is normal at all levels of play. However, blaming it is sometimes wrong.

The intent is to criticize the common viewer's Perception of the influence of RNG on your game, and the shifting of blame that can occur even to the best players.

First, please watch this video without interruption - I recommend full-screen 720p
- Pay attention to the shots fired, and hits received from enemy artillery.
- Pay attention to the mini-map relative to comments made by the player
http://youtu.be/dp3OB-sPT2E

When you're done, please check and confirm the following analysis (detailed grading of each shot in spoiler):

Shot 1:
Aim Placement: Good - aiming at the ball of the cheek, the only relatively flat area on the KV-1S turret, 100+ meters.
Hit RNG Roll: Good - the hit is right above the /\ slightly to the left&above aim-point. (white mark visible)
Damage Roll: N/A - bounced off turret
http://youtu.be/dp3OB-sPT2E?t=38s

Shot 2:
Aim Placement: Bad - aiming at mantlet while the ball of the cheek was exposed, 100+ meters.
Hit RNG Roll: Excellent - tracer hit right at the /\ - leaving a mark on the targeted mantlet edge.
Damage Roll: N/A - if the aim was correct, the above roll would have lead to penetration through cheek and damage.
http://youtu.be/dp3OB-sPT2E?t=52s

Shot 3:
Aim Placement: Risky - close to mantlet, many auto-bounce areas around small com-hatch at 109m
Hit RNG Roll: Excellent - tracer was right above the /\, barely missing the com-hatch
Damage Roll: N/A - missed target
http://youtu.be/dp3OB-sPT2E?t=1m10s

Shot 4:
Aim Placement: Risky - very close to bouncy mantlet, few areas that won't bounce, 100+ meter range.
Hit RNG Roll: Excellent - shot goes slightly above mark, penetrating roof/com-hatch.
Damage Roll: Average - 356/390 damage
http://youtu.be/dp3OB-sPT2E?t=1m24s

Below are irrelevant shots - KV-1S should have gone back to defend base / relocated.
Would be long dead vs. competent opponents (fully controlled by hull down KV-1S, in easy reach by enemy artillery)

Shot 5:
Aim Placement: Risky - again right at the edge of mantlet due to poor position relative to target.
Hit RNG Roll: Good - the shot is within the the Radius/2 of the aiming circle at that distance.
Damage Roll: N/A - Bounced off the edge of the cheek (hit at an auto-bounce angle)
http://youtu.be/dp3OB-sPT2E?t=1m38s

 Shot 6:

Aim Placement: Risky - aiming at the turret ring, most areas around the mark are auto-bounce.
Hit RNG Roll: Excellent - hits either right on, or very close to target
Damage Roll: N/A - not certain what went wrong - either bounce off mantlet into turret ring, or through front plate into roof plate (w/ no overmatch)
http://youtu.be/dp3OB-sPT2E?t=1m52s
zfLDvtU.png
feMXIxM.png

Shot 7:
Aim Placement: Risky - aiming at com-hatch at 102 meters, look at how big the aim circle relative to the point he has to hit.
Hit RNG Roll: Great - barely off mark it hits the sloped side of the com-hatch
Damage Roll: N/A - Bounced off high angle
http://youtu.be/dp3OB-sPT2E?t=2m4s

Shot 8:
Aim Placement: Good - aiming at corner of KV-1S hull, with multiple easy to pen surfaces within the aim circle. ~70 meters
Hit RNG Roll: Good - Can't see tracer or tank behind bush, but it was a hit.
Damage Roll: Excellent - 488/390 (+98)
http://youtu.be/dp3OB-sPT2E?t=2m18s

Shot 9:
Aim Placement: Good - see above ~ 70 meters
Hit RNG Roll: Good - it hit.
Damage Roll: Terrible - 293/390 (-97) - Average between these two rolls? 783 total / 2 shots = 391.5 Normal.
http://youtu.be/dp3OB-sPT2E?t=2m32s

So, he didn't mange to 2-shot another KV-1S (which requires above-average damage rolls). That was Fair and Normal.

Shot 10:
Aim Placement: Bad - the target was escaping behind a hill slope, with only highly sloped surfaces exposed.
Hit RNG Roll: N/A - most of the target was auto-bounce to APCR
Damage Roll: Should have loaded his 1 HE shell for such a case, to have a chance.
http://youtu.be/dp3OB-sPT2E?t=2m48s

Shot 11:
Aim Placement: Risky - again aiming at fully hull down tank, again aiming at edge of mantlet (auto-bounce area)
Hit RNG Roll: Excellent - freeze frame at 3:01 to 3:02 you see the tracer goes right to the /\ mark where he aimed.
Damage Roll: NA - auto-bounce from sloped mantlet edge.
http://youtu.be/dp3OB-sPT2E?t=3m

Shot 12: last shot before death (!!!)
Aim Placement: Risky - 111m to hit the center of a com-hatch on the AT-7, smallest deviation leads to auto-bounce
Hit RNG Roll: Unknown/Irrelevant - it would have been 'Excellent', exceptionally so, if it landed a penetrating hit.
Damage Roll: N/A
http://youtu.be/dp3OB-sPT2E?t=3m15s

Did that last shot matter?
Normally it's easy to see when enemy-hp is numerical and not % (should have been setup from options).
29% of 1250HP = 362 HP, so he could have survived longer if he landed that last risky shot and rolled above 362.
Would it have mattered strategically? Probably not, as the enemy team was already on cap, and his team was losing 3:7



Totals - 12 shots:
Aim Placements: 75% of the shots were highly risky, from uncomfortable position, or poorly aimed.
Good: 3
Risky: 7
Bad: 2

Hit RNG Rolls: 41% excellent, or 75% excellent+good rolls, 25% unknown, 0% confirmed bad-rolls
Excellent: 5
Good: 4
Bad: 0 (3 if we count the unknown and firing that no-chance shot)

 

In 8.5 there is a 19% chance of any shot to go to the edge, which will be removed in 8.6, leading to better precision.
This was not visible in any of the shots taken.

Damage RNG Rolls: 488, 293, 356
Average-Damage: 379 (normal for 390 damage ammunition and a small sample of 3 damaging shots)

Conclusion: The player was Exceptionally Lucky in terms of RNG in the referenced video.

Note: While watching the video I've seen multiple near-hit attempts by enemy artillery, doing no damage. This was also favorable luck, or enemy incompetence.

He should not have survived beyond the 2nd shot, sitting in the open vs competent opponents.

Allied artillery was focused on trying to contain the north side push that ended up killing it, which was a reasonable decision.

I think the video should remain, but get re-labeled as an example of poor decisions and misguided anger.
Then it will be an important service to the community - showing how even a good player can make mistakes, misread the cause, and place false blame.

Reinforce that watching the details in replays can reverse the in-game perception of a situation.

 

I'm certain keeping this example in mind will help me next time I'm tempted to blame the dice. 

RNG is bad, but it's not always to blame. 

 

P.S.
Inspiration for this PSA evolved from the argument exchange on pages 1 and 2 of this thread:
http://forum.worldof...f-all-time/#top

EDIT / UPDATE:

 

Alternative channel for WoT information - Anfield's Position Labs:

http://www.youtube.com/user/itsabattleship

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Maybe it's just me but over half of his shots were poorly aimed, it looks like several were very nearly at the Mantlet and instead of aiming directly at the Commander's hatch he aimed slightly below it twice.

 

I couldn't believe he lasted three minutes out in the open when he should have been dead in 15 seconds, both of those teams were quite awful.

 

I'm with you there he can't blame RNG for that, that was poor decision making.

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I may be no expert, but from experience that is a poor place to sit. It's just asking for track rape. I would have opted to be on the first up slope where I can be arty safe and in cover between reloads. Alternatively I'd sit against the wall on the down ramp being arty safe again, and having a better down angle on tanks to pen their cupola/top of turret. This baits potential aggro players out into the TD support he had back there.

 

He had alot of high risk shots, which I wouldn't have raged at in the instance they missed, because well...they're high risk. The shot at 1:54 was kinda lol, would have opted for cheeks/cupola instead of the space under the gun.

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Thank you for posting this.  I watched that video very confused.  Typically I can trust QB (my favorite English speaking youtuber) when he says something, because I am experienced enough for his good tips to make sense. This video asked me to either trust him against my instinct, and I came away conclusion-less.  

 

It is nice to see someone confirm my uncertainty.  

 

 

 

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I agree that he was in a bad spot, but his tactical analysis that he was stuck was spot on; he couldn't move left because of the KV-1S he was trying to kill + pokers to his front, he couldn't move back because it would encourage the enemy blob to move up and swarm him, and he couldn't move forward or right because the rising slope of the ground would have made him even more vulnerable to the KV to his left. 

 

However he *should* have foreseen the negative consequences of that position, and not just the advantages. "What would happen IF I went there and DIDN'T kill that one guy? What then?" Optimistic play is generally rewarded in this game, but rashness often prevents a good player from becoming excellent (exhibit a: me :) ). 

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Fixed the shot count, added screenshot for Shot #6 - not exactly sure how that one didn't penetrate.

 

Options:

 

1. Ricochet off the slope of the mantlet, leading into a poor angle coming into the Turret Ring armor.

 

2. Shell hits through the frontal armor plate (that extends slightly above) and hits directly into the roof plate at a high angle (no over-matching). 

 

http://i.imgur.com/oPAQQy2.png

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I think RNG griping is a simple issue of confirmation bias.  Nobody gripes when they pull off a 500 meter clutch shot at a speeding medium moving perpendicular to them, but when a shell goes in the dirt at 150 meters RNG is suddenly out to get them.

 

Hopefully 8.6 will fix a lot of this. Now if only they'd tighten the damage and pen spread.

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I immediately thought, "Why the heck is he choosing the flat ground down there rather than either the rocks for cover or going up and around the hill to his north?"  There's a reason the hill's the default route to go through that area, especially if you have no real advance scouting in front of you, and he demonstrated that reason nicely - you get stuck in the open ready to get the crap artied out of you, with no good shots.

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I think RNG griping is a simple issue of confirmation bias.  Nobody gripes when they pull off a 500 meter clutch shot at a speeding medium moving perpendicular to them, but when a shell goes in the dirt at 150 meters RNG is suddenly out to get them.

 

Hopefully 8.6 will fix a lot of this. Now if only they'd tighten the damage and pen spread.

Nobody gripes, but I hear people laugh at RNG on unaimed 500+ meter shots.  I've seen QB take such a shot unaimed just for the LOLs and he "blamed" RNG for that as well.

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