A couple of weeks before we revealed a new upcoming way to customize your robots — Modules. This is a very new direction for War Robots content, and of course, the reveal left you with many questions open. Let's talk about it!
In this article we address the biggest questions to shed some light on our approach and philosophy regarding modules and effects they provide.
First of all: why modules?
We want new equipment not to be a straight-up upgrade — but more of a sidegrade. Instead of offering you ever-increasing raw power, we want to give you more interesting, equally strong options.
Effects that modules enable open up a lot of possibilities for that. Instead of one dominating playstyle (e.g. “everyone plays shielded robots” or “everyone plays mobile robots”) — a myriad of different ones, each one as viable as others.
In one of the upcoming articles we will dig deeper into these ideas, so be ready.
- Q: Bumblebee — a controllable long-range rocket that allows you to deal a ton of AoE damage WHILE staying in cover — is it supposed to be a camper paradise? What do you do to make it balanced?
While powerful, it is still a very risky module: while you control a Bumblebee rocket, your robot remains completely defenseless until you switch from controlling a rocket back to your robot.
Also, Bumblebee requires you to spend some time in combat before it charges up. In average, you’ll be able to launch 1-2 Bumblebee rockets per battle.
Energized Ammo and randomness
- Q: Energized Ammo module seems scary. Put one of these on a robot with Shocktrain, and make a whole enemy team unable to move…
Hold on, hold on! First of all, when paired with Shocktrain, Energized Ammo will only affect one target. That’s how it works: one shot = one proc.
But when it comes to multi-shot weapons like Thunder and Noricum — this is a completely different story. Every one of their particles has a slight chance of triggering the effect, which greatly makes up for their weaknesses and creates hundreds of new situations where these weapons can become interesting options.
- Q: But how are you going to make “random” effect fair? Making chance decide the winner of a whole combat — isn’t it too much?
Root is a strong boon in a team environment, but it requires strong team coordination to be effective. If you chose to ditch root modules altogether (maybe going for the damage or durability instead), on the even field you’ll just eat your rooty opponent 1 on 1.
Another fear is “stunlocking” — chaining several root effects one after another, so the target is constantly immobilized. That’s how we solve it: getting rooted once will give you a brief effect immunity. This will give you a time window to hide from the next barrage, regroup and strike back.
Squad Leader vs. Shocktrain
- Q: Squad Leader drives teams to pack closely together to get bonuses. Does it mean that Shocktrain becomes a weapon of choice once again?
Squad Leader makes grouping greatly beneficial — and it actually requires a good counteraction to make it fair.
With that said — yes, Shocktrain users will be happy seeing people packed together. But this is the place we actually want to see Shocktrain: a weapon made to disrupt niche situations instead of a one-size-fits-all solution.
- Q: The game already is quite complex even without modules. How do you make modules manageable for non-hardcore players?
First of all, we make every single robot (included ones you already have) equipped with certain modules by default, so you’ll be able to reap their benefits even without thinking about them. Once you’re interested in deeper customization, you can switch them out and start digging into the new possibilities.
We split modules in tiers — not by their power, but more by their complexity. Simpler modules give you passive bonuses (like incoming damage reduction), but they aren’t necessarily weaker than a high-tier Bumblebee. The later might give you a bigger impact on the battlefield, but it is very skill-heavy and requires a very specific situation to be effective.
Modules on Griffins and Boas?
Q: Will classic robots have access to modules?
Yes, ALL robots will be equipped with module slots. And as we move further from “just deal damage and be happy” paradigm towards more interesting sorts of interactions, classic robots will have more chances to prove themselves.
What's coming next?
Modules are very early in development. Until their release later this year we have plenty of time to grill them on the test server to ensure they fit the game well. It is exciting to see what kind of builds you will come up with — most likely, there will be something we didn’t even foresee.
This will be a long, long journey, but an exciting one nevertheless! We are happy to see the conversation going already. Certainly, before modules' arrive we'll have many more opportunities to discuss them.
And now to think of it... why wait? Next time we'll do a deeper dive into our design process. Come back next Friday!