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Wargaming announced that the M4 Improved would be for sale in a little bit, and as I've owned it for a while, I thought I'd give my thoughts on it, as well as some tips and tricks to keep prospective "M4-Imp" owners alive longer, and making the most of this machine from the beginning.

The history of the M4-Imrproved is unfortunately very brief. It was developed by <!--more--> the Detroit Arsenal as a means to build an "ultimate" version of the M4 Sherman, but it never got farther than a blueprint. A blueprint Wargaming has realized in virtual form, hooray!

The M4 Improved is, technically and statistically superior to the M4 Sherman at tier 5. It is faster, sports much better frontal armor, and well-angled side armor. But, what does that translate to in actual battles?

In my experience, the M4-Imp is very fast for it's size, leaving even many light tanks in it's dust. This means the M4-Imp can find very good positions very quickly, giving you and your team a serious spotting and firepower advantage.

The M4-Imp's biggest failing is in it's gun. While most love the M4 Sherman for it's 105-millimeter howitzer, the M4-Imp is stuck with the tier 4 75-millimeter M3 cannon, which isn't terribly accurate nor particularly powerful against heavy tanks and more heavily armored foes. The accuracy issues involved on the gun, in my experience, is that the shell usually flies somewhat down and to the right of the center of the reticule. It's a regular enough issue that you can usually use it to aim a little better.

The tank also features a remarkable feature, though hopefully you don't ever have to use it. Behind the turret, at the back half, is a glitch of sorts. I have on many occasions had shells pass through the back third of my turret. I'm not sure if it's the model, I'm not sure if it's the gun, but before the global chat was turned off, I was accused of cheating several times, as I'd dart between cover, and the shell would pass laterally through the back of the turret, before flying on to whatever was beyond. It wasn't every time, and I suspect it has something to do with speed and angle of the turret armor, but it's happened enough that I know it is there.

My best advice to new players is to treat this M4 like a scout until you've mastered it's combat quirks, and when possible, engage your enemies close to make up for the cannon's lack of penetration and accuracy. I carry 20 APCR shells for those bad bottom-tier games, which you will regularly see. For equipment, I advise a gun rammer and either coated optics or binoculars. I prefer coated optics, as I tend to be more mobile in the M4-Imp. Unlike other light tanks, this tank is considerably harder to hide.

Hopefully this helps some players who might be looking at the M4-Imp when its in the shop again. Good luck out there!

No, they aren't gifted with the power to speak with the dead... no, these are tanks that claim to be Heavy Tanks, but are really just Medium tanks with delusions of grandeur. These are my picks for tanks that should be able to charge in and clean house, but are better left a little behind the firing line...

To begin this journey of mediocrity, we start with the opener for the German Heavy tank line, the Durchbruchswagen 2 (pictured above). The DW2, as it's known ... more
When I first started playing World of Tanks, I really liked the fast, nimble tanks that I could dart around in. It wasn't until sometime later that I learned the real value of tough armor over speed in the lower-tier matches, though I still wanted smaller vehicles (like the French Fortress trio) over larger targets. It just made sense to me. Then I saw this thing.

This thing is the Vickers Medium III, and holy smokes, it is... more