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Scorpiany

★ O-I Experimental Review: Marathon-Ready Frankenstein ★

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102 tons... the size of an E-100... the gun of a T-150... and... the mobility of an M4 Sherman???

 

In this guide, I shall cover all of the various Pros and Cons of the O-I Experimental, explain the gun and equipment choices, give you a general overview of its gameplay style and compare it to other Tier 5 Heavy Tanks. Let's get started, shall we?

 

Table of Contents:

  • General overview (Pros and Cons)
  • Equipment, ammo and consumable layout
  • Gun choices
  • Gameplay style
  • Comparison to other same-class tanks of its Tier
  • Overall Rating

 

General Overview:

 

Pros:

  • Very high alpha damage, at 300 a shot.
  • Good penetration for its Tier, at 130/150/53
  • Tied for one of the highest hit point values of its Tier, with 700 HP
  • 102 ton tank means that anything which rams you is going to take far more damage than they do to you; if they even damage your vehicle
  • Very nice top speed limit of 40km/h, which is exceptionally quick considering the size and weight of the tank
  • Decent HP/ton ratio, with 12 horsepower available per ton of weight. This allows the tank to reach its top speed with relative ease
  • The tank is a great rammer; if you get the opportunity to run something over, go for it. Even a gentle tap can do anywhere from 100-300 damage, depending on what you're ramming. At top speed, you can take out all of the HP of a Tier 5 with ease when ramming
  • Surprisingly good traverse speed (considering the size and weight of the vehicle) at 24 degrees per second. When comparing this tank to the KV-5, which has the same size, weight and top speed, you realize that the O-I Experimental has 6 degrees better track traverse per second than the KV-5; 33% better.
  • Decent DPM of 1,856 (un-equipped). The alpha damage makes that DPM far better than it would be on some other tanks
  • 360m of View Range. Most Tier 5 heavies have anywhere from 310 to 350... this is the highest View Range (I think) of all of the Tier 5 heavies
  • 100 ammo capacity... with 300 alpha, this means you have 30,000 damage worth of shells available. What this means - you'll never even come close to running out of ammo, and you can afford to carry as many different shells as you wish.
  • Great gun depression at 10 degrees
  • Turret traverse of 26 degrees a second. Once again, considering the size and weight of the tank, it's actually pretty decent. It also means that when combined with the track traverse, you can move your gun at 50 degrees/second, meaning you can avoid being circled by most non-scout tanks.
  • Surprisingly profitable tank, even when shooting a few Premium AP rounds a battle, it's relatively easy to make some money in the tank. Repairs aren't overly expensive either.

 

Neutrals:

  • The accuracy is .41... this isn't terrible (same as the T67), but isn't great either. You should be able to connect your shots so long as you let your gun aim in.
  • Aiming time is 2.6 seconds... this is technically bad, but for such a hard-hitting gun, it's actually fairly decent.
  • The armor is 75mm all around on the turret, and 75/70/70 on the hull. For a Tier 5, this is actually very good all around armor, but it's severely limited in purpose due to the tank's massive size. There are so many places the enemy can shoot you, no matter how well you angle, there will always be somewhere an enemy can penetrate. Not only this, the armor loses its effectiveness in higher Tier battles.
  • Gun dispersion is... questionable. You will definitely need to take some time to aim your shells, but it's not bad enough to be considered a "Con".

 

Cons:

  • The ammo rack is very weak and prominent right in the side. It's actually surprisingly easy to get hit in the side & ammo rack, which can be an annoying thing. Don't over-angle during side-scraping, and if you need to take a penetrating hit, do so frontally.
  • The tank is huge. Absolutely huge. There is very little cover which will actually hide the entirety of your tank from the enemy.
  • It's very easy for smaller tanks to hug up right against your side, and there's nothing you can do except move around. If there are multiple enemies near you and you don't have an ally to kill it, you're essentially dead; as the small tank will easily kill you one way or the other
  • The tank loses a lot of effectiveness when fighting one of its own kind, or anything higher Tier. Not only is your armor worthless at those higher Tiers, but your gun simply isn't consistent enough to do damage to the enemy without having to load Premium AP, or shoot multiple times.
  • Unlike higher Tier Japanese heavies, the O-I Experimental relies far more on mobility than armor. If your driver or engine are knocked out and you can't put them back into action, you're a sitting duck with minimal further usage in the battle.
  • Ridiculously expensive top engine... 27,500 XP? Really? That's more than it takes to research the Tier 6 O-I! Sadly, you have to research the engine... even though you could in theory skip it, it's not in your best interest to do so... it's the exact same engine which will be used on every Japanese heavy tank all the way up to Tier 9 (inclusively). Very annoying to have to grind it before getting the O-I. You could do the grind on the O-I, but the O-I's lack of mobility will really make you suffer without the upgraded engine (even though it's not all that much better with the engine).
  • Two radio operators... not only does that mean you'll have to train a new one to begin the line, but you'll also have no usage for them beyond the Tier 8... the Tier 9 and 10 have two loaders instead. Have fun with that extra R/O. Maybe you could strap him/her to the front of your tank as extra armor once (s)he gets knocked out?
  • Annoyingly vulnerable to HE... due to its relatively thin armor for the size, it's actually very easy to wreck with howitzers, arty and even regular HE shells. Considering the tank is already a giant arty and howitzer magnet... good luck with that.
  • No camo value due to the massive size... which is a double whammy, since you're not only too large to have any camo, but you're too large to find any useful cover in many cases.
  • Horrendously low Radio Range at 425m with the upgraded radio... the stock radios are so bad, that the Radio actually is a fairly important module for you to research. Even the upgraded radio isn't any better than a Tier 2's... on larger maps, allies and enemies alike may very well disappear off of your screen & mini-map.
  • Very slow shell travel time, at only 640m/s with both AP shells, and 620m/s with the HE. Sniping at anything will be exceptionally difficult with this gun, let alone at moving targets.

 

Equipment:

 

Personally, I mount Rammer, Gun Laying Drive Super Heavy Spall Liner on the O-I Experimental. Other equipment can be used depending on your playstyle, although I feel as though this particular lineup will give your O-I Experimental the most reliability.

 

Recommended:

 

Rammer: If you can mount a rammer, you should. It's a given for any tank; reloading 10% faster gives you an edge over the enemy at all times. Plus, increasing your DPM from "decent" to "good" is always nice. 
Gun Laying Drive: 2.6 second aiming time is already somewhat derpy as it is, but combining it with mediocre .41 accuracy and mediocre gun handling, you'll really want to do something to improve the aiming time of that gun.

Super Heavy Spall Liner: When your tank is a giant arty, howtizer and HE magnet in general, you may want to invest in a Super Heavy Spall Liner. My O-I Experimental already takes far too much damage from HE shells with the SH Spall Liner... considering it cuts the HE damage in half, I can't imagine how bad it would be without it. Also, having 50% protection to your crew from injuries is always nice. This tank really can't afford to lose any crew other than the radio operators.

 

Optional:


Improved Ventilation Class 3: A 5% boost to your crew is a very nice addition, and actually would be a very nice edge to give to the O-I Experimental. If you feel as though your aiming time is fine as it is without a GLD, or perhaps your O-I Experimental doesn't get hit by much HE, then you could easily replace one of those two pieces of equipment with Improved Ventilation.

 

Toolbox: When getting hit by so many HE shells, you will lose your tracks very often. Your tank actually has the mobility to relocate if necessary however, so getting those tracks back into action quickly is very important. If you're fine with your aiming time, replace the GLD with a Toolbox. I wouldn't replace the Super Heavy Spall Liner, since the reason for the necessity of a Toolbox are the HE shells which are hitting your tank... removing the SH SP would only make you more vulnerable to them, which would only further increase the issue.

 

 

Ammo:

 

My ammo layout on the O-I Experimental is 80 AP, 20 Premium AP.

 

What should you load on the O-I Experimental? Anything, really anything. You could go 33 AP, 33 Prem AP and 33 HE and still have more than enough ammo to not even run out of regular AP in the battle. Load whatever you want, you have so much ammo for such a slowish firing gun, that ammo is not an issue, ever.

 

Now, how many Premium rounds do you need? Actually not that many - having a few loaded for Tier 7's will come in handy however... and against the Tier 6 O-I.

 

Consumables:

 

For Consumables on the O-I Experimental, I (would) use a Small First Aid Kit, a Small Repair Kit and Origini (I actually run an Auto Extinguisher over Origini, since it's far cheaper and I'm trying to save Credits... but if you have the Credits, use the Origini... this tank doesn't get set on fire at all)

 

Small First Aid Kit: Standard with almost (113 being an exception) any tank. Since the crew on this tank is exceptionally important, you will want to put them back into action whenever they die (unless it's a radio operator).

 

Small Repair Kit: Once again, fairly standard. Your ammo rack is the second most common module for your tank to lose (second to the tracks), so it's important to keep a repair kit available for that rack. Your tank will become garbage if you lose the rack.

 

Origini: The 10% boost, combined with Vents, is very useful. It's just the extra edge you need to make up for the mediocre gun stats. Do you absolutely need it? Not at all... however, if you don't use Origini, you're far more likely to need an Enhanced Gun Laying Drive.

 


Gun:

 

The O-I Experimental's primary gun is a 100mm cannon. If you're considering using a different gun, extract the thought from your mind and discard it. The 100mm is really the only gun which allows this tank to be a prominent force on the battlefield. However, this gun is... interesting. This is also the gun you're (likely) going to want to use on the Tier 6 O-I, however, the characteristics on the O-I Experimental's 100mm are actually almost entirely better than the Tier 6 O-I's gun (aside from a significant difference in penetration). Here's a comparison of the 100mm on the O-I Experimental (Left side, Tier 5) and the O-I (Right side, Tier 6). The blue number is superior, a green number is a tied value.

 

Rate of Fire:         6.19                          (5.41)   
Aiming time:        2.6                            (3.2)
Accuracy:             .41                            (.43)
DPM:                   1,857/2228.4           (1623/1947.6)
Penetration:         130/150/53             (175/201/53)
Damage:              300/300/360          (300/300/360)

Shell Velocity:      640/640/620           (720/720/665)
Ammo capacity:   100                           (100)

 

 

The verdict? Enjoy the gun whilst you have it on the Tier 5, because it goes to crap at Tier 6. The penetration and shell velocity significantly increase however, which helps maintain the gun as a viable choice.

 

10 cm Cannon Type 14:

 

The 10cm Cannon Type 14 is the name of the upgraded gun on the O-I Experimental. It has very high penetration and alpha, decent DPM and mediocre gun handling stats. It's definitely a peek-a-boom gun / tanks; poke around a corner against a single enemy, put 300 damage into him and pull back. Don't stick around the corner for too long, and definitely don't take longer ranged shots. Shoot whats in front of you, and help your allies focus down tanks. Trade with low damage guns, don't take multiple hits. Use the gun depression and height to get shots at enemies over ridges which normally tanks couldn't shoot over.

 

 

How to play it:

 

Really, this tank is actually fairly simple to play. Peek-a-boom against low alpha tanks, provide support fire during enemy's reloads against higher Tier targets. Try to avoid taking hits, and take nice meaty chunks out of the enemy without taking any return fire. If the opportunity arises in a one vs. one scenario, you can afford to put a shell into the enemy, ram it at full speed, put another shell in and finish it all off with another ram. At Tier 5, a 102 ton tank going at 40km/h will wreck anything it collides with. Use that to your advantage.

 

If there are lower Tier tanks shooting you, in general you can (and should) ignore them if there are larger threats around. Lower Tiers can't really penetrate you so long as you implement rudimentary angling. Prioritize opponents with high alpha damage if it's a peek-a-boom scenario. However, if there are tanks with high DPM around, you must avoid pushing into them; rather focus them down with more peek-a-booming. A Churchill III for example, is more than capable of tearing apart your tank without even fully aiming. Your tank is so large, and has such marginal armor at the Tier, that high DPM tanks will shred through you if your'e out in the open.

 

Also, try to find as large of a chunk of cover as possible to peek-a-boom from. You are a massive target, and it is exceptionally easy for arty to kill you. If there is a howitzer trying to shoot you, avoid side-scraping against it, it will damage you long before you come close to getting a shot at it. Your tank in general is vulnerable to HE, and to DPM.

 

Ultimately, you want to peek-a-boom against low alpha guns, or shoot enemies during their reloads. Close range engagements only, don't get caught in the open, and especially stick with allies since you simply don't have the armor to do things alone.


Comparison to same-Tier Heavy Tanks:


Mobility: Superior. I will never understand what WG was thinking when they introduced a 102 ton tank which is faster than almost every other Tier 5 heavy (Only KV-1S is faster). 40km/h top speed, 24 degree/second traverse, and even a 12 HP/ton ratio. Yeah... it's surprisingly mobile.
Alpha damage: Best in class. 300 alpha damage is more than any other Tier 5 heavy has, aside from the howitzers, which tend to have low penetration and inconsistent HE. It's a very hard-hitting gun for its Tier, and can two-shot most Tier 5 tanks with ease.
Armor: Good. The armor is 75mm all around on the turret, and 75/70/70 on the hull. This is one of the better all-around armors of the Tier 5 heavies. However, the tank is so large with so many strange angles on it, it's actually much easier to penetrate it than you would think. No matter how you angle, there's always a flat portion for the enemies to shoot, and even if you think you're in cover, part of your tank could easily be sticking out. 75mm really isn't anything impressive.

HP: Best in class. 700 HP is tied for the best HP at Tier 5, which means you can definitely take a few hits.
Penetration: Decent. 130/150/53 pen doesn't seem bad at all for a Tier 5, and it reallly isn't. However, in comparison to other Tier 5 heavies, you're lacking pen one way or the other; either in terms of standard ammo (as against the BDR or VK) or in Premium ammo (T1 Heavy). It's still good penetration though, and you should easily be able to get through higher Tier opponents if you aim well, and even T29 hulls aren't too hard to pen with the Prem ammo.
View Range: Best in class. 360mm of View Range is the best value of all of the Tier 5 heavies (I think). You can actually see what is shooting you for the most part, unlike something such as a KV-1. The problem is that you have no camo to speak of, and are a massive target. If you can see the enemy, expect them to be able to see you.

Camo Value: Worst in class. What camo? There is no camo. The camouflage patterns on the tank may be pretty, but they certainly won't do you any good. You have no camo values to speak of on the O-I Experimental.
Accuracy: Bad. .41 accuracy isn't too horrible, but it's definitely worse than everything else at Tier 5.
Aiming SpeedVery bad. 2.6 second aiming time is one of the worst at Tier 5 other than from the howitzers. It's not the end of the world, but it certainly could be better.

Shell Velocity: Worst in class. 620m/s shell velocity is one of the worst values you can find in the game from non-howitzer shells. It's truly underwhelming, and makes sniping even more difficult than it already was with the sub-par gun handling stats.
Battle effectiveness: Good. The tank can definitely do its fair share in a battle, especially when top Tier. 300 alpha on a Tier 5 vehicle is absolutely incredible, and the ramming potential on the tank is also very nice to have. However, with unreliable armor, no camo, a tank which is larger than an E-100 and a reload of over 8 seconds, it actually can be hard to do as much as you may want to. When Top Tier, the tank wrecks everything. Mid Tier, its decent. Bottom Tier, it really begins to struggle. Peek-a-booming at any Tier sometimes makes the tank feel overpowered, until the moment you get hit by an HE shell, or are caught out by a DPM tank, or face anything with similar alpha. When you are alone, if you have to fight multiple targets at once, you will have a hard time. Unless you can get back into cover after each shot, without taking more than 100 damage in return, you will begin to wish you were in a different tank. Very often in battle, it works well for a while, and then just falls apart. It's not a bad tank at all, and could arguable be OP in some situations especially when Top Tier, but anything outside of its comfort zone of peek-a-booming is really a balancing factor for the vehicle.

 

Overall Rating:

 

7.5/10 (Very Good)

 

As tempting as it is for me to give this tank a lower rating, if I want to give it an un-biased review, I'd have to give it a 7.5. Having that kind of gun on a Tier 5 heavy is ridiculous, and more ramming potential than a KV-5 is very convenient. As a Tier 5 tank, it's a pretty good choice. At the end of the battle, you shouldn't have any trouble doing 1k damage or more with minimal effort, which is really good for a Tier 5.

 

The largest issues with this tank arise from its inconsistencies. Outside of peek-a-booming, you begin to struggle a bit. Against a DPM tank, you're dead. Against HE shells, you will be crippled easily. On maps with minimal large solid cover, you will also struggle. The gun really makes it seem OP at times, but the tank lacks carry potential in far too many situations for it to be truly OP. It's really a situational tank. In a peek-a-boom scenario against low alpha guns, the tank wrecks face. Against DPM or HE, it really struggles. City maps are great for it, open maps not so much. Hills are very nice to have to put your gun depression to use, and sometimes the top speed coming down the other side to ram, although flat ground tends to put those features to waste.

 

Good tank? Sure. OP? Not really. Consistent? Relatively, but there are times when it certainly falters.

 

Thanks for reading! I hope this guide was helpful! I genuinely wish all of you the very best of luck and fun, both in real life and on the battlefield.

 

(O-I Experimental says hello!)

 

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