War Thunder background
Commander sights for ground vehicles

Take a fresh look at ground battles in War Thunder - through a functional commander sight!

In the upcoming War Thunder major update, we will introduce commander sights for ground vehicles, primarily tanks. The commander's sight is not only an optical observation device, as on tanks of the mid 20th century, but also a complex fire control system, which includes night vision devices, a laser rangefinder, and so on. In order to make ground battles in the game more authentic and atmospheric, we plan to transfer some of the functions that are now implemented in ground vehicle binoculars and in the camera control menu to a specialized device - the commander's sight.

So, the commander's sight is a separate module under the control of the vehicle commander. It has its own rotation axis - for example, the simplest commander's sight in a Soviet T-54 or an observation device on the turret of modern tanks. The commander's sight has its own reticle and magnification, which corresponds to the vehicles in reality. On modern tanks, the commander's sight has its own night vision device or thermal imaging channel, and can also be equipped with a laser rangefinder. In addition, with the view from the commander's sight on some vehicles, a player is able to control an the AA machine gun on the turret.

Using the commander's sight, you can even fire at enemies using ocular refraction, if the vehicle has an eyepiece on the gunner's sight, or is equipped with an independent commander's fire control system. In addition, in Realistic battles we’re adding an automatic input measured distance from the laser rangefinder into the scope, which has already been implemented in Simulator battles - now, with the advent of the commander's scope, this function becomes logical.

Since the commander's sight is a tool at the commander's workstation, if they are wounded, the commander's sight functionality will become unavailable to the rest of the crew. If the gunner or mechanic does not have dual control systems, the vehicle goes blind at night or in bad weather. So for maximum effect, hit the commander in an enemy tank!

What about the binoculars? We plan to leave the binoculars as a purely optical device - with its help it will no longer be possible to use the night vision and thermal imaging channels. In the next updates of the game, we will move the rangefinder functionality from binoculars to the commander sights.

Of course, the commander's sight does not affect third-person view, the view from the gunner's sight or from the binoculars - this is a new type of view to control the vehicle's fire control system. In the control settings menu, there will be new options to assign buttons to turn on/off the commander's sight and related devices and weapons - for example, an IR searchlight, a dual control mode for a cannon and a coaxial or anti-aircraft machine gun, and so on.


We hope that the new feature will please War Thunder tankers. We really like the commander sights and will definitely try to make them more diverse and functional.

The War Thunder Team

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