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Scorpiany

★ WZ-111 Review: Stalin's Chinese Tank ★

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I is of friendly comrade, is all big mis of understandings. Come, we talk over borscht. Chinese tank? No no, is Stalin's glorious IS-3. You are mistaken comrade.

 

In this guide, I shall cover all of the various Pros and Cons of the WZ-111, explain the gun choices and/or performance, equipment choices, give you a general overview of its gameplay style and compare it to other Tier 8 Heavy Tanks. Let's get started, shall we?

 

Table of Contents:

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

 

General Overview:

 

Pros:

  • Preferential MM spread; only sees up to Tier 9 battles.
  • Extremely effective frontal turret armor; practically impenetrable from the front by even the strongest of Tier 9 guns.
  • Very effective frontal hull armor, with great sloping which allows for quite a few bounces
  • Stalin-grade spaced side armor on the sides; allowing you to absorb shells with the void which is your side even with minimal angling if the enemy doesn't aim well.
  • Well well-angled side armor above the spaced armor, allowing for 165mm of effective armor flat on; increasing as you angle it more.
  • Great top speed limit of 50 km/h
  • Great gun elevation of 23 degrees; allowing you to make up for your lack of gun depression by backing up ridges and using your elevation to get shots instead.
  • Good HP pool of 1,550 HP; one of the highest of Tier 8 heavies.
  • Surprisingly good View Range of 380m. This is a great value for a Tier 8 heavy tank; especially for one which so closely resembles the IS-3.
  • Very profitable vehicle with a crew layout compatible with all other Chinese heavy tanks (including the 112!). This allows for not only great crew training when going down the Chinese line, but also good Credit earning as well. An "all-purpose" Premium so to speak.
  • Spectacular HEAT round with 250mm of penetration - that's more than enough to contest any vehicle you come across so long as you aim reasonably well.

 

Neutrals:

  • Reasonable DPM of 1,952.53
  • Alright HP/ton ratio of 11.76. While it certainly isn't great, it still allows you to get up to a decent speed in a relatively short period of time.
  • Good terrain resistances which allow you to get the speeds which are advertised in terms of HP/ton and top speed.

 

Cons:

  • Horrendous gun handling values; shooting on the move is extremely difficult even at close ranges.
  • Terrible accuracy of .44; sniping will have extremely limited success even at moderate ranges. Perhaps your gunner is Doug, and he keeps getting distracted by squirrels.
  • Very long aiming time of 3.23 seconds. May as well go make a cup of tea whilst letting your gun aim in.
  • Very poor AP penetration of only 175mm. Combine that with the terrible gun handling stats, and you'll have quite the hard time actually penetrating weakpoints.
  • Poor gun depression of only 5 degrees. 5 degrees isn't necessarily terrible, and it's consistent around the entire vehicle aside from having 3 degrees to the rear, but it's still rather limiting at times.
  • Extremely fragile ammo rack and engine. If you get hit in the side, expect your ammo rack to die. If you get hit in the rear, expect your engine to die. It's like clockwork. Artillery splashes can often times take both out of the battle as well.
  • Standard Chinese fuel tanks in the lower plate. They actually don't give you too much trouble though, if you play the vehicle properly.

 

 

Equipment:

 

Personally, I mount Gun Rammer, Enhanced Gun Laying Drive and Vertical Stabilizer on the WZ-111. The alternates are to reorder those 3 pieces of equipment. There is not other viable option for the WZ-111 when it comes to equipment.

 

Recommended:

 

Gun Rammer: If you can mount a Gun Rammer on a tank, you should. Your decent DPM will become rather reasonable indeed.

 

Enhanced Gun Laying Drive: The WZ-111 already takes 3.23 eternities to aim, combine that with .23 gun handling values and you end up with a gun which really needs something to boost its aiming speed. Even with a Gun Laying Drive it takes a very long time to aim, but it's certainly better than not having one.

 

Vertical Stabilizer: Regardless of whether or not you have a Vertical Stabilizer on the WZ-111, your gun handling will be atrocious. However, with an aiming time as long as the one on the WZ's, there's no reason not to mount a Stabilizer to help reduce the time spent aiming.

 

Optional:

 

Nothing: In theory, there could be an argument made for Coated Optics or Improved Ventilation. However, in practice, there's absolutely no reason to turn down the Enhanced Gun Laying Drive for other equipment. The benefit of being able to aim in 10% faster is very significant in comparison to any benefit you'd get from other equipment. It would also be a lot more practical and would constantly work towards addressing one of the major downsides of the vehicle.

 

 

Ammo:

 

My ammo layout on Stalin's WZ-111 is 27 AP, 15 HEAT and 3 HE.

 

The WZ-111 has an overrated potato launcher which uses chocolate flavoring powder instead of gun powder. However, the one thing which saves it from needing pure HEAT spam is the fact that it gets Preferential MM. Thus, you technically only need a few more Premium shells as you would in the IS-2. Regardless, I carry around 15 HEAT shells and actively use them.

 

Thanks to the penetration power, they still can be profitable. With the Premium vehicle bonus, even a healthy amount of HEAT can make you Credits.

 

Do be warned that HEAT can be a very unreliable shell. That being said, it's still great against IS-3's and tanks of the sort.

 

As for the HE rounds, anywhere from 3-5 rounds will suffice. It being a 122mm cannon, shooting an HE round at a side-scraping tank can have some effect. However, the real reason to carry HE is for the 530 damage with 61mm of penetration. That's almost enough to two-shot a Borsig, which can come in very handy in many circumstances if you're facing against a tank which the HE can actually penetrate.

 

Otherwise, AP is the primary shell you'll be using. Don't get too frustrated if half of your shells potato into absolutely nowhere, as that's simply what the WZ-111's gun will do. When the shells do hit however, the damage will accumulate very quickly.

 

 

Consumables:

 

For Consumables on the WZ-111, I (would) use a Small Repair Kit, Large Repair Kit, and Automatic Fire Extinguisher.  (I say would because I don't like spending Credits on Premium consumables aside from Auto Extinguishers, thus I only carry one repair kit. If I had them stockpiled up however, I would switch without any question or doubt.)

 

Small Repair Kit: The WZ-111's ammo rack and engine are extremely fragile. It's very possible to lose both of them twice in a battle. A repair kit is an absolute must.

 

Large Repair Kit: The WZ-111's ammo rack and engine is so vulnerable to damage, that I carry two repair kits in the WZ. The amount of module damage you can take to those two modules is simply devastating if you're not able to put them back into action. Even artillery splashes can take out your engine; which is no surprise when you see that the engine only has 190 HP and the ammo rack only has 200 HP.

 

Automatic Fire ExtinguisherFrontal Fuel tanks means that despite the 12% chance of engine fire, you can still be set on fire if you're caught ouf of position. However, when played properly, the WZ-111's fuel tanks aren't too much of an issue; at least not as much as they are on some other Chinese tanks. If you're really feeling brave, you could replace the Automatic Fire Extinguisher for another Repair Kit, or perhaps food. However, this being a Premium vehicle which is to be used to make Credits, especially seeing as how you'll already be shooting a decent number of HEAT rounds, means that it would probably be a good idea to save on some Credits and avoid putting on Premium food.

 

Alternate:

 

Improved Combat Rations: If you're really feeling brave with your second repair kit or Auto Extinguisher, food is a possibility. However, this is a Premium vehicle to make money in - it already has too many "necessary" costs associated with it to really make Combat Rations a viable choice for anyone looking to make Credits.

 

Small First Aid Kit: It seems as though I have a habit of replacing my First Aid Kits in Chinese tanks. The crew in the WZ-111 very rarely dies in my experience, thus so long as you have Jack of All Trades, I don't see any real necessity to carry a First Aid Kit over a second repair kit.  The repairs may very well be more necessary.

 


Guns:

 

The WZ-111's gun is a very outdated, Beta version model of a Potato Launcher which comes with some Stalium HEAT rounds. In fact, the gun is a slightly worse version of the IS-2's gun; which is a tank 1 Tier lower.

 

Below, I've compared the WZ-111's Vegetable Cannon to the 112's Vegetable Cannon. On the left is the WZ-111, on the right is the 112. A blue value is superior, whilst a green value is relatively tied (Within 5% of the other value). (Please note that all values are "stock", prior to any equipment mounting)

 

Guns:

Rate of Fire:         5.01                          (4.74)   
Aiming time:        3.26                          (3.26)
Accuracy:             .44                            (.44)
DPM:                   1,952.23                   (1,848.70)
Penetration:         175/250/61             (175/250/61)
Damage:             390/390/530           (390/390/530)  

Shell Velocity:      800/640/800           (800/640/800)

Soft Stats:           .23/.23/.14              (.25/.25/.14)    

Gun Angles:         -5 / +23                   (-6 / +17)
Ammo capacity:   45                             (45)

 

The verdict? Both are terrible guns. 112 has an extra degree of gun depression, WZ-111 has a bit better gun handling stats and slightly better DPM. In general however, don't expect the WZ-111's gun to provide much of a noticeable difference over the 112.

 

The DPM's of the guns are decent. The HEAT rounds are pretty good. The alpha damage is very high and will rack up the damage fairly decently. This should allow you to make some very nice Credit values, even when shooting HEAT rounds.

 

122 mm D-25TA:

 

So much for easy to say gun names. Let's just call it the "potato launcher". The penetration is terrible. The gun handling is terrible. The accuracy is terrible. The aiming time is terrible. The shell velocity is, you guessed it, terrible! The only good things about the gun are the alpha damage, HEAT penetration and decent DPM.

 

Thus, how do you play the tank? You put it right in the enemy's face, you let the gun aim if you have a good shot and hope RNG is kind. Prioritize targets you can easily hit and easily penetrate. The damage racks up quickly, so put the tank close to the enemy and the accuracy shouldn't be too much of an issue.

 

In Tier 9 battles, you can still hull-down very well and side-scrape, but don't expect your gun to have much effectiveness with AP. Be ready to shoot some HEAT in Tier 9 battles, or look for cheeky shots on reloading enemies. Bait them into shooting you, then try to aim as good of a shot as you can. The damage will come your way when you use the tank's armor properly. It's kind of like an IS-6; let the armor work and the damage will come. There will always be a heavy RNG element to the gun; simply do everything you can to work around that.

 

 

How to play it:

 

The WZ-111 is actually a very competitive vehicle for a Tier 8 Premium, simply because of its incredible armor values. The turret is practically impenetrable from the front, the upper plate is rather well angled and your spaced side armor is something which would impress Stalin himself. Even the non-spaced parts of the sides are very well angles, giving you some rather nice effective armor values.

 

This means that for the most part, you can rely on your armor. Do be warned however, being penetrated in the sides or rear will often result in ammo rack on engine damage; respectively. In addition, your hull roof and turret roof are both only 25mm; resulting you in being extremely vulnerable to artillery shells or competent players face-hugging you and overmatching your roofs.

 

Whilst in general, there's good news for the armor, the same can't be said for the gun. Use your armor to bully around opponents and to bait shots, then put the gun to whatever usage you can find for it. It's certainly not the greatest weapon you could find, but it's somewhat standard for a Tier 8 Premium heavy tank with Preferential MM. Never try to snipe, let your gun aim in and try to get through the enemy's armor either using the raw caliber of your weapon or perhaps a few HEAT rounds. Do what you can to minimize RNG's effects on your shells (sticking close and aiming in), which is best done when your armor is used properly.

 

Whilst the WZ-111 can be a fairly independent vehicle when top Tier, in lower Tier battles it definitely needs backup, as the gun simply will not suffice. Play a supporting vehicle role in Tier 9 battles, play a more aggressive role in top Tier matches. Hull-down whenever possible, wiggle between reloads, side-scrape and reverse side-scrape to maximize your armor. Your armor is most effective against bad players or overly confident players who underestimate your armor's potential. If you engage the right opponents, you should be able to do wonders.


Comparison to same-Tier Heavy Tanks:

 

HP: Good. 1,550 HP is on the higher end of HP for Tier 8 heavy tanks. Whilst it may not come quite as close as the higher-end tanks (KV-4, KV-5 and O-Ho), it still has a good deal of hitpoints to allow it to take a few hits. The armor will make that HP last a good period of time as well.

Armor: Good. The WZ-111's armor is pretty good for a Tier 8 heavy tank. The one area where it does better than all other Tier 8 heavies however, is the magical spaced side armor. The spaced armor is so good, that it's better than the IS-3's black hole in terms of effective armor values. This results in some very effective side-scraping and side-hugging potential, or perhaps simply a good deal of forgiveness, especially when you're fighting against less experienced players.

Mobility: Very good. The WZ-111 may not necessarily be "agile", but it certainly is mobile. With a 50km/h top speed, good terrain resistances and a decent enough HP/ton ratio to allow you to get up to speed, you'll be able to flex around the battlefield as necessary for the most part.

DPM: Good. The WZ-111's DPM as a raw value is nothing impressive. Compared to other Tier 8 heavies however, it's on the better side of the scale; ranking 8th out of 19 Tier 8 heavy tanks.

Penetration: Very Bad. The only thing saving the WZ-111 from being ranked as "Worst in Class" for penetration values is the fact that the KV-5 is a thing. Otherwise, the AP penetration is one of the worst values you can find at Tier 8 (although the HEAT penetration is pretty nice).

Alpha damage: Average. 390 is standard for a 122mm; not much else to say here.

Aiming SpeedWorst in Class. A 3.23 second aiming speed is the worst value which can be found on a Tier 8 heavy tank.

Gun Handling: Bad. Despite the atrocious dispersion coefficients of .23/.23/.14, there are tanks which manage to be even worse off in gun handling, such as the 112, IS-5, IS-3A and T34. Regardless, you still have a horrendous gun handling value, and you should never really try to shoot on the move if it's avoidable.

Accuracy: Very Bad. .44 accuracy is one of the worst values for Tier 8 heavy tanks, which will make sniping at vehicles extremely difficult.

Shell Velocity: Very Bad. A 800m/s shell velocity is one of the slower values for Tier 8 heavy tanks, and having only 640 m/s shell velocity for the Premium HEAT rounds only worsens the problem. Combine the poor shell velocity with the terrible accuracy, aim time and gun handling, and you end up with a gun which has a major hissy fit any time you try to shoot something at distance.

View Range: Good. Even though most Tier 8 heavy tanks have 360m-400m of View Range, with many vehicles having 380m of View Range as well, all of the Soviet heavies have such terrible View Ranges that there's simply no doubt that 380m of View Range is a good value, especially for a Soviet counter-part vehicle.

Camo Value: Average. The WZ-111 may be a low profile vehicle, but don't expect to get any real camouflage values out of it. If you can see an enemy within your View Range, unless it's a Soviet tank, expect it to be able to see you as well.

Battle effectiveness: Very Good. Despite all of the crap I give the WZ-111 for its gun and module survivability, there's simply no contesting that kind of armor on a vehicle with Preferential MM. Whilst the WZ-111 may not be as "newbie-friendly" as something such as the IS-6, it's certainly a more competitive vehicle with a higher carry potential. The armor has an incredible amount of viability on the hull, and having a practically impenetrable turret (unlike the IS-6's fairly soft turret) is only an added bonus. Spaced side armor better than Soviet-grade voids is also quite the incredible feature to be able to boast. Using this armor, combined with your HP and mobility, you should be able to easily bully your opponents out of key positions. Whilst the gun may struggle to deal any kind of consistent damage, the alpha makes the results add up. Plus, if you ever need them, you have some fair and balanced 250mm HEAT pen rounds to make Soviet tank's armor seem like tissue paper. Of course, you still have to deal with the horrendously bad gun handling, accuracy and aiming time, as well as poor gun depression, but it certainly feels to be on a better platform for top level performance than something such as the IS-6 or even 112 (although 112 has its own sets of advantages).

 

Overall Rating:

 

7.5/10 (Very Good)

 

The WZ-111 is actually a very competitive Premium vehicle for one with Preferential MM and a fairly bad gun. The armor's potential is truly an incredible thing, and the forgiveness which the tank features is rather nice indeed. Despite having a few weakpoints in the armor (cupola, lower plate, shot-trapping shells on bottom side of gun mantlet), the tank remains extremely resilient.

 

All of this armor results in the gun, despite being quite a sub-par gun, still having ample opportunities to be able to do damage. Having some 250mm HEAT pen rounds is also a nice aspect of the gun which at least partially contributes to making the gun still usable in Tier 9 battles. Whilst I wouldn't "rely" on the armor to allow you to sit still and aim the gun in (it's much better to wiggle the armor to make it harder for the enemy to hit a weakpoint), it will still provide more than enough protection to allow the gun to get its job done.

 

The mobility of the vehicle along with the View Range means you're not a restricted bunker such as the IS-6 is. You won't be out-spotted by other heavy tanks for the most part, and in most normal engagements will be able to see who's shooting at you. When compared to the iS-6, I would honestly have to say that the WZ-111 simply has more carry potential due to more workable armor, better mobility and a usable Premium round.

 

Comparing the WZ-111 to the 112 is a much harder task, as the 112 has some similar strengths to the WZ-111 such as a very strong turret, good view range and mobility, and an extremely well protected upper plate (even better so than the WZ-111's). However, the 112 completely falls behind when it comes to side armor. The WZ-111 gets 120mm of sloped side armor for the upper portion of the vehicle, with a 30mm void of magical Stalin-grade spaced armor covering half of it. Below that for the most part is only 80mm, but covered with 20mm of track armor. This means that the WZ-111's side armor is a lot more forgiving than the 112's, and gives the WZ-111 another form of dynamic to the armor which the 112 lacks.

 

All in all, the WZ-111 can certainly be quite the competitive vehicle. As a "Credit grinder", it's not the greatest. You will occasionally get set on fire, you will need a few HEAT rounds and you may need a Large Repair Kit. Regardless, played well, the WZ-111 can still make some very decent income despite these drawbacks to its profitability. The seemingly mediocre gun really isn't too disappointing for the purposes of a money-making Tier 8 Premium heavy with Preferential Match-Making.

 

I'd give the WZ-111 a 7.5 / 10 rating, which barely puts it into the "Very Good" category. And whether you're going to use your WZ-111 as a "for fun" tank or as a Credit grinder, the WZ-111 certainly can be a very good vehicle indeed.

 

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.

 

This Tank Review was made as requested by Triple_Crown [WGA_A]. If you have any vehicles which you'd like me to review, let me know and I will put them into the queue! I will get to your tank as soon as possible!

 

(The Premium Chinese beast in all of its glory! It's happy to see you reading a review about it!)

 

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Guide has been written as requested by @Triple_Crown [WGA_A]. If you would like to see a tank reviewed, whether it's your favorite vehicle, one you're currently or soon-to-be grinding or perhaps one you're just interested in, please let me know in the comments below! I will always take care of requested vehicles before others! (If I have not played the vehicle before, there may be a delay in the creation of the review, as I will first need to get experience playing the tank prior to being able to post a fully accurate review.)


  


Also, I've fixed the "Shell Velocity" section - apparently the text from the Mutz's review managed to slip by without detection in that part!


 


I will proofread the guide more fully right now. If you see any errors, please let me know and I'll try to fix them as soon as possible!


 


I wish to everyone the very best of luck and fun, both in real life and on the battlefield! Smile_Default.gif


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I can certainly attest to it's fragile ammo rack, lost count how many times I've been 1 shot at full health /grumble

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