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War Thunder gets a brand new engine and prettier graphics in its big 'New Power' update

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War Thunder (opens in new tab) got its long-awaited 'New Power' update today, updating the game's engine and vastly improving its graphics in the process. According to the update notes (opens in new tab), the skies will look prettier and more realistic, as will bullet contact, explosions and fire. Aircraft destruction has been revamped, as well. 

Most of the graphical buffs focus on realism: ground vehicles will now have more realistic shell hits, destroyed ground vehicles now look even more on fire (both inside and out), and the "shape of the penetration now depends on the angle of impact" when missiles hit ground vehicles. Meanwhile, armour-piercing shells will now protrude from tanks.

There are new war machines involved as well, in the form of 15 new aircraft, 14 new tank models, as well as battleships and aircraft carriers. New airports and locations have been added too.

Basically, there's a tonne of new stuff, and if you're into War Thunder you'll probably enjoy scrolling through this substantial list of changes and fixes (opens in new tab). If you're yet to give the free-to-play sim a go, maybe now's the time: it's among the best flight sims on PC (opens in new tab).

Shaun Prescott is the Australian editor of PC Gamer. With over ten years experience covering the games industry, his work has appeared on GamesRadar+, TechRadar, The Guardian, PLAY Magazine, the Sydney Morning Herald, and more. Specific interests include indie games, obscure Metroidvanias, speedrunning, experimental games and FPSs. He thinks Lulu by Metallica and Lou Reed is an all-time classic that will receive its due critical reappraisal one day.