World of Tanks is a relentless machine: a game-as-service sweeping through the free-to-play arena as assertively as a Panzer E100 crumbles the idyll of some hapless European village. Now in its eighth year of existence, World of Tanks is deep in the process of getting its biggest update yet - a complete facelift and engine overhaul in the somewhat misleadingly titled ‘Update 1.0’ (the game’s been out of beta form for seven years now, remember).
We visited the Minsk office of Wargaming to see the development process for myself, though, really, ‘office’ is a bit of a misnomer. It is more like a command centre; a 15-storey tower looking out over the flat fields on the southern edge the city, conveniently positioned to spot a platoon of tanks should one come rolling in from the surroundings forests. The player-testing room would not have been out of place in the USSR circa 1975, kitted out with cameras, eye trackers, and sensors for sweat, pulse, and brain activity.