The Kislyi Maneuver: Wargaming’s CEO on how he wins at his own game


While I was speaking with Wargaming CEO Victor Kislyi about his funding of
what could well turn out to be a historic dig for dozens of Spitfires
buried in Myanmar
, we took a few moments to share his “winning strategy”
for one of his favourite tanks and maps. I’m not entirely sure that
this will work if you try it, but nevertheless, here’s how to win in
Himmelsdorf, according to the man behind World of Tanks. We’re hereby
dubbing his (slightly lunatic) strategy: THE KISLYI MANEUVER.

Himmelsdorf, I like Maus tanks, I rush the centre. The trick is to have
to convince your mates, because what you need is at least one or two
[pieces] of armour behind you,” says Kislyi.

Okay, so we’ll need a Maus. Better get up to tier 10.

those thirty seconds at the start, you immediately say,” (he claps his
hands for emphasis) “‘Hey, guys, it’s unusual, I know, but please
please, armour, behind me.’ And you point out toward the enemy base, in a
straight line. Any heavies in our camp, I try to convince them
personally, please follow me or at least cover the flank, because when
you rush the centre, tanks come from the flanks, so if a couple of your
mates can watch the side streets, you’re safer.”

Wait a second, rush? In a Maus? At 20kph? I should’ve picked him up on this.

you rush Maus, really go fast, sometimes you zig-zag a little bit, but
it’s slow zig-zag,” he concedes. “In many cases, the enemy armour is not
prepared, so you pretty much act as a scout, jump to the fountain in
the middle and boo, you see one or two armour there and they’re like, wow, and our armour has immediately exploded one, or severely damaged one or two.”

On reflection, I think this may be a reckless tactic.

Maus, from that distance, can actually one-shot armour. So, minus one
enemy armour in the first minute. And you keep rushing. Usually no-one
expects a Maus rush in the center, so in many cases I wreak havoc,”
Kislyi continues. He then gives a short pause.

“Sometimes they kill me,” he says, “sometimes they do kill me.”

“Sometimes we win! Like 13-0. Total surprise.”

Hm. Let’s look back over that plan in a little more detail, analysing both the zig-zag and the non zig-zag approach.

Total surprise.