War Thunder: Newsflash from IgroMir 2016! New ships and first look at Japanese Ground Forces!

Welcome, Pilots and Tankers!
As you know, the Closed Beta of the War Thunder Naval Forces is planned to start very soon. But even besides the major development of the Knights of the Sea, the recent feature-rich content Update 1.63 ‘Desert Hunters’ and the approaching War Thunder birthday, there is still room for more innovation in War Thunder. We were already able to give a good surprise to the first visitors of Russia’s biggest gaming exhibition, IgroMir 2016, which is held these days in Moscow, and we are sure we’ll be able to amaze you as well.
You can not participate? Not a big issue, we will tell you more here!

Dark MGB — A fast patrol boat design originating in 1954.

Why a “design”? That’s because the ships of the Dark-class essentially were a modular platform to accommodate different types of weapons. Our version will be the artillery version, called MGB for Motor Gun Boat. However, it only takes a small refurbishment to transform it into a MTB, a Motor Torpedo Boat.
By now, we are sure you’ve already noticed the small size. Don’t let that deceive you! One of its cannons is a powerful 40mm Bofors L/60 autocannon - and if that’s not enough, there’s a QF 4.5-inch naval cannon just waiting to pack a nasty punch against any enemy! Still want more? The Dark-class MGB has a couple of Mark VII depth charges, as well. If, after all these amazing features, you are still not impressed, then how about the fact that this awkward-looking fat man can reach up to 40 knots (~74 km/h) thanks to his aluminium body. Furthermore, he comes with black protective paint and runs on diesel. Go ahead, try to set him on fire!
One more line about that cannon, though. With a barrel featuring a  staggering 113mm in diameter, it fires high-explosive shells at a rate out of this world - impressive 10 shots per minute. Imagine what will already happen to the enemy just after the first hit!

Armoured Gunboat Project 186 — the bane of enemy boats.

As a first note, that "armour" prefix in the boat’s classification is fully justified. The armour of the citadel allows it to resist not only fire from machine guns of all calibers, but is still effective even against hits of shells up to 20 mm. For a boat, that’s pretty impressive!
Of course, it’s important not only to stay afloat after a hit, but also to deal some damage yourself. Everyone knows the turret of the T-34-85, which looks great on any vehicle. Luckily, on the Project 186, we get two of them! And although they were mounted as a temporary solution on the Project 186, before more specialized tools were to be installed, they were still capable of perfectly coping with any possible tasks. It’s a legit tank turret, no special changes - true to form in everything, even it’s 85mm caliber. To protect the vessel against air strikes, it was equipped with another 37mm cannon and four heavy DShK machine guns on rotating mounts.
It’s strong, armoured - but sadly, it’s not very agile. Any commander of this mighty Soviet vessel is advised to train evasive maneuvers against enemy torpedos. If you master that, you’ll be able to destroy any enemy!

The Closed Beta for the Naval Forces starts really soon. Did you already pre-order

Now, to the surprise part we mentioned earlier.
Finally, it is confirmed - Japanese ground vehicles will appear in War Thunder! And they are not just plans.
Today, we can already present to you the very first tanks of the Japanese Ground Forces tree.
Check them out!

Mitsubishi Type 95

九五式 “Ha-Go”. This vehicle by the full name of Mitsubishi Type 95 "Ha-Go" is a light Japanese tank originating from the mid 1930s. Initially, like all tanks from the 30’s, it was intended to support infantry assaults and cavalry charges and thus, in general, not designed to  fight against other tanks. In war, however, reality dictates the conditions.
Notable for this tank are his excellent maneuverability and speed, a rapid-firing cannon and light armour. This makes it a classic light tank and a perfect match for the early ranks of War Thunder. Let's see how it will perform in combat!

Mitsubishi Type 97

九七式中戦車 "Shinhoto Chi-Ha". This vehicle is a little more serious of an enemy than the Ha-Go. According to the Japanese classification, this vehicle already is a medium tank,  but going by the average weight of similar tanks of other countries, it’s still a light one.
The Mitsubishi Type 97 was designed after the Japanese fought the Soviet Army near Khalkin-Gol, where the low efficiency of the Japanese tankettes to date became increasingly apparent. To approach this, engineers at Mitsubishi developed a new tank project with improved armor protection and a more spacious turret, allowing for the installation of a dedicated anti-tank cannon.
The first modification presented was called “Shinhoto”, which literally means “new turret.” It was designed to fit a 47mm cannon, which was superior in all aspects to its predecessor. The strength of the gun mantled now reached a respectable 40mm.
For the tankers of War Thunder, the Shinhoto will still be mostly a light tank, thus the use of corresponding tactics is advised. Always be on the move, don’t hesitate to take cover and avoid taking hits whenever possible.

We have only outlined these new vehicles to you in this format, which the visitors of the IgroMir 2016 were lucky to see, as well. Naturally, you will be able to learn more about these and upcoming vehicles in future Developer Blogs, where we will show them with more screenshots and videos. So, as always, follow the news, stay connected on Social Media and - above all - stay tuned!

So, Japanese gets its army soon.
Tankers, did you already familiarize yourself with the bomb loads of Japanese aircraft? About time!