I'll start by saying I left the PC version of this game (I mainly played heavy tanks) a few years ago due to being tired of arty and prammo, and I play Blitz now. Looking back on WoT PC's current state, it looks like things have only worsened considerably.
Stuff like the HE changes have made super-thick armor even more powerful, if not outright impossible to counter in some instances (hulldown tanks come to mind), and lack of weakspots further exacerbates this problem. Due to this, a lot of players in the game (from me looking at replays on YT and looking at discussion forums for the game) have started to primarily shoot premium ammo, ranging from having it as the majority of their ammo loadout to binding it to their 1 key or not taking AP at all, simply because AP is so outclassed. After all, why bother shooting a round that only has a minor chance to pen when you can take one that, in virtually every scenario, is blatantly superior and has a higher pen chance with the same damage?
As we've seen, this has caused a backlash against both an incredibly stale meta primarily revolving around hulldown monsters without weak spots like the Kranvagn and Chieftain, especially since one of the last ways to counter them (high-calibre HE) was nerfed to the ground. Due to WG's bad map design, countering them by moving is incredibly difficult (as I understand it; I do remember the maps being very corridor-like, and from what I've seen others say about this issue it's still a problem when facing these tanks since there's very few ways to get around them). A lot of players have suggested nerfs to premium ammo, by lowering the damage it does, or to armor, by reintroducing weakspots.
The problem is that you can't have one without introducing the other. If you implement only one, you just get a new problem.
Let's say that the prammo nerf happens, thank fuck. I'll be assuming it's like WoT Blitz's prammo, where you now do significantly less damage if you penetrate a tank with the 2 key round. Now spamming prammo isn't as powerful; in fact, doing so is effectively a crutch since you're lowering your DPM by a noticeable margin; in turn, you're hampering your team's ability to win and your own ability to kill targets. Using premium exclusively is now a bad strategy, and it'd be forcibly reserved to trying to pen those hard-to-hurt tanks.
Now, this all sounds well and good (and frankly is), but this brings with it another issue pointed out by players and maybe even noticed by WG itself on a test server. It's effectively a massive buff to those same "hard to pen" tanks, since those tend to have damn high HP. Now it's even harder to kill them, and I think we can all agree that that's not a good thing in any capacity. It would make these tanks even more dominant, to the point you'd be pretty stupid to not play them.
Alright, what if we just introduce/reintroduce weakspots and nerf armor values to make tanks easier to pen? Well, cool! People will probably aim better and hulldown monsters will have to actually be careful to not get sliced through. You can't just roll your head on a keyboard and expect everything to go in your favor. This is, again, a good thing, since it brings back a level of tactical play. However, it brings out another problem, and that is that premium ammo is now far, far better than standard ammo, even more so than it is now. Yeah tanks are easier to pen, but why risk bouncing at all with standard ammo when you can get the same damage with much higher odds of penetration by hitting the 2 key or binding prammo to 1? It'd be foolish to still not use it a lot, especially if you've got credits to burn. It may reduce gold spam a little, but in the end you've given very little incentive to not just dab the 2 key and spew gold the entire time, and with it still being the better strategy than just relying on AP, we're left with this still being an ongoing pain in the ass.
If you reintroduce weak spots, lessen armor, and lower prammo damage, suddenly this all changes. You've killed all the problems at once.
When confronted with strong armor, you have to make a choice. Do you go for the higher chance of penetrating your target but with less damage, or do you aim in more, risking being shot, but with the chance of doing more damage and potentially (if the target is a one shot) killing them outright? You'll have to go over this process within seconds, and it could make or break your game, forcing players towards more tactical thought- "Do I aim in and possibly take damage to hit this guy's weakpoint with standard AP but do more damage to him, or do I hit the 2 key and fire to most likely get a penetrating shot, but do less damage?" With RNG being a factor as well as inevitable player error, general armor values (that will still be strong, just not like before) and player competence, armor will remain relevant without needing to be absurd, since you can still obtain bounces with good enough play. In the process spamming premium ammo has been made a clear-cut crutch instead of remaining the dominant strategy; if you rely on it for the majority of the game, not only will you be bleeding credits, but you won't be as effective as you would be if you actually tried to aim with standard rounds due to far lower DPM. Prammo still has its place as a hole-puncher against those tough tanks, but it's a specialized utility now instead of just being the best option every time.
Now, I know some hulldown tanks will still be fucking stupid even with this change. I admit, I don't know how to tackle it directly. Back when I played this you had the power of big derpy guns to punch their lights out and force them to back up, but at the same time I understand and even agree that taking a strong position your tank is meant to play in only to get nuked out is incredibly irritating. However, I still consider that far better than there being virtually no counter-play, and the best option I can think of is HE being un-nerfed.
No, arty, I don't mean you. Go fuck yourselves.
So, what do you guys think?