The Average Gamer

Tanki Online Preview

Tanki Online - Junction
I am Tank Incarnate. I rumble my engine disquietingly. A cloud of smoke escapes my tail pipe as flex my turbines, waiting for the battle to begin. I hear puny engineers scurrying about the garage, whispering about Firebird this and Wasp that. I care not. I am Tank and it’s time to blow shit up.

Tanki Online is a 3D browser game that sees two teams of four tanks battling it out in a series of arenas. Featuring tanks with freeze turrents, flamethrowers, rail guns and more, it’s far from a realistic simulation of tank warfare. In fact, one of the biggest draws for fans is tank parkour, in which players drive across ridiculous routes in an attempt to reach seemingly-inaccessible places.

For the most part though, you’ll be playing familiar PvP game modes: deathmatch, team deathmatch, capture the flag and control points. Don’t be fooled by the sluggish movement of your vehicles – the rail gun turret can shoot clear across the map and you’ll need some nifty manoeuvring to reach capture points at speed.

Currently built in Flash, Tanki Online’s visuals aren’t exactly comparable to your typical modern game but the team are rebuilding the whole thing in Unity. The new version will retain the simplistic style but be more polished – as seen in this work-in-progress picture.

The upcoming Unity version of Tanki Online

The upcoming Unity version of Tanki Online

The maps are filled with ramps for satisfyingly heroic leaps, as well as nooks and crannies to hide in and ambush unsuspecting drivers. There are 17 maps in total, each with a summer and winter theme. The theme doesn’t actually affect gameplay at all, though the Tanki devs tell me that their players do like to match the maps to the weather outside.

Tanki Online is a free-to-play game so you can either buy upgrades with cash or earn in-game currency for new gear. This comes in the form of different hull options, turrets and paint jobs. Hulls equate to durability and speed. The Wasp hull is fast but its lightweight design leaves you vulnerable. The Dictator is also speedy but is large and easier to hit.

Each turret will require a very different playing style. As said, the rail gun has a huge range and high damage but you’ll need to be very precise. The short range freeze gun will stop a tank in its tracks, while the Firebird flamethrower will thaw out a friendly tank or burn a nearby enemy. Mixing and matching the components is essential.

I had a go with a few journalists and some of the dev team. It’s good fun once you get the hang of driving one way while aiming the other. I am Tank Incarnate.

Tanki Online - The  Average Gamer

Tanki Online is playable now.