On September 18th, 2019, Wargaming, in collaboration with Basik Marketing Pvt. Ltd., ACT Fibrenet, Zotac, ANT Esports and LG, hosted a relaunch event of their naval-battles-focused game, World of Warships.
Wargaming promises to feature India-specific content in the game, which includes –
- National ship camouflages
- India-themed skin initially available only to Indian players
- Partner camouflages and flags
- Hindi (local language) versions of their video series, Naval Legends, which features the most historically significant maritime moments of the 20th century
- Additional content around the Indian Navy, museums and ships
With the aforementioned already going live, Wargaming has also indicated the possibility of additional content such as thematic ports, containers and patches in the near future. There’s also a possibility of ships sailing under the Indian ensign, but, no promises so far.
Not for now. However, the partnership between ACT Fibrenet and Wargaming ensures “optimised routing to the EU server”, i.e., players from India will be matched with those playing in Europe servers. So, why not Asian servers? Publishing Director Victor Bardovsky said –
“This is, first of all, the quality of life for Indian players because of the time differences so it’ll be much more comfortable to play. On top of that we checked the ping aspect and actually, the ping is really good for Europe and all these together has led us to the thought of probably, we should get India closer to the European part. Because it’ll be just more comfortable for the people.”
To which, Executive Producer Artur Płóciennik added –
“From a technical aspect our European server and our European cluster is a bigger cluster in terms of population so even if Indian players are playing outside the normal peak hours of the European cluster there’s going to be enough players on the European server to support normal matchmaking which might not be the case if they were playing on the Asian server.”
What’s the plan for the Indian market?
To capitalise on the growing appetite for gaming in India, Wargaming is partnering up with ACT Fibernet, Zotac, ANT Esports, and LG. Speaking about plans for the India market, Rajeev Girdhar, European Publishing Director for World of Warships and India Operations Lead, said, “We are immensely excited to be relaunching World of Warships for the India market. The country’s knowledgeable and curious gamer base provides an excellent audience for detail-oriented strategy games like World of Warships and we are excited to bring them a customised experience. We only see the exponentially growing appetite for immersive gaming in the country getting bigger, and that’s great news for new genres. Our belief that this is a substantial market set to explode has led us to build and develop a whole new range of immersive content that augments the already exceptional gameplay.”
The World of Warships India model will continue to operate on its free-to-play, pay-to-progress framework where players can enjoy the game for free while making small investments to unlock additional content faster. Cognizant of India’s price sensitivity, Wargaming will customise in-game pricing for the local audience, following our experience of entering new markets and best practices for connecting with the Indian audience.
Indian Naval Ships?
Wargaming is planning to introduce two Indian Naval Ships into World of Warships. First, the INS Mysore, a Fiji-class cruiser and the other, INS Delhi, a Leander-class light cruiser. Here’s what Victor had to say about it –
“Mysore, I’ll say, is almost confirmed, so it’ll be there. On Delhi, the story is a little bit different because we still have to clarify some things before we can clearly say, yes, it’s coming, like within the next X amount of weeks. Just because it’s not really easy. We’ve to make sure that we have all the blueprints, we’ve to make sure that we have all the materials to create a real Delhi. Because our audience is really into history and realism and all our ships are hundred-per cent accurate to their blueprints and even if we don’t have blueprints we use a lot of different photos that we get from a lot of different archives so we would understand how actually the ships looked like back in the day. So, this is the important part.”
Many regions still don’t have regular ships. All they have are premium ships which need to be bought (at least, most of the time). So, will we get regular ships under the Indian ensign or just premium?
Artur said –
“That’s too early for us to say. We don’t make that decision about whether those ships will be premium or not until we’re sure we’re gonna have them in the game. So, right now, for those two we’re doing research. For Mysore, it’s mostly completed and we’re reasonably sure that we’ll be able to make the ship model, so then we’ll be able to introduce it. And for Delhi, we’re not sure yet. We still need to finish that research and see whether we’ll have enough references and blueprints and pictures to recreate that ship model and where it fits into the gameplay of our Tier-structure currently. Whether we have a specific place where we can put that ship in the game. And as part of the second evaluation, we’ll look at whether it should be premium or whether it potentially fits into a future potential ship branch somewhere.”
We even discussed the game’s esports potential, revenue model and how they’re planning to generate revenue in India, if they’re willing to reward dedicated gamers for their loyalty, Wargaming’s alleged bias towards certain regions and the most-awaited submarines update. For all of that, watch the video embedded below.
Partnership with Indian brands
The collaboration with ACT Fibernet will offer Indian players –
- optimised routing to the EU server
- a unique ACT Fibernet Camo skin available to ACT Fibernet customers and
- up to INR 2,000 worth monthly in-game benefits.
Talking about the synergy between ACT and great gaming experiences, Ravi Karthik, Head of Marketing, Atria Convergence Technologies Ltd said, “ACT Fibernet is known to provide the best gaming experience with high speeds, low latency and packet losses. With the gaming industry in India now beginning to grow, we believe our proposition of a gaming pack that puts together in one place what the customer wants – speeds, data, low pings, in-game benefits and offers will meet the needs of gamers and enable a delightful gaming experience. We are extremely excited to partner with World of Warships for their India launch. The rich multi-player experience with strategies and quasi-real battles provide for great gaming experience which can be enjoyed by diverse age groups. Together we will work to build gaming in India and World of Warships to a huge success.”
Indian players on the platform will also have access to exclusive bundles from LG, Zotac, and Ant Esports.
Samar Deep, Product Marketing Manager IT, LG Electronics, India, says, “We’re very excited to partner with World of Warships, the perfect game to highlight the advantages of LG Ultragear Gaming Monitors, especially our popular lineup of Ultrawide monitors.”
Deepak Gupta, Country Head, India, at ZOTAC also announced the launch of India-specific bundles, stating that, “As the market leader in India, we’re glad to be the first to officially offer India specific bundles for our range of ZOTAC Gaming GPU’s starting from GT 1030 series going up to GTX 16 Series.”
The list of partnerships is nicely rounded off by gaming peripherals company Ant Esports. Himanshu Jain, Director at Ant Esports believes that the company’s existing user community will provide great support for new developments such as special edition products and bundles, saying, “We’ve been overwhelmed by the community’s response to our latest lineup of products that have disrupted the market and now we’re moving forward with collaborations with World of Warships for not only bundles but also Special Edition products early next year for our ever-growing community.”
The Final Para
Wargaming has put a lot of effort into marketing the game in India. It remains to see if their efforts pay off. Personally, I developed a keen interest in the game and I’ve just played the game for around 10 hours. World of Warships demand your attention for the first couple hours, but once you’re into it, it’s hard to put down.