Culture Entertainment

‘World of Tanks’ gamers set up desk-mounted tank gun

This gaming rig has controls for a driver, loader and tank spotter. Enemy armor beware.
Nicholas Slayton Avatar
(Screenshot via @Shaihuluddedune on X)

For certain gamers, a video game needs a level of immersion or realism. It’s why some people gravitate to simulators or why others sometimes leak classified information (over and over and over) in fights over how accurate to reality a game is. And that commitment to accuracy is what makes this “World of Tanks” gaming system so impressive.

The video, posted to X by user @Shaihuluddedune, shows the three-person gaming setup. The gaming rig is so detailed that it features a functioning tank gun. Well, kind of. There’s a desk-mounted CO2 cannon that one person feeds two-liter soda bottles into as “ammunition” and the cannon spits them back out after each round is fired. It’s as intricate as it is impressive. Someone clearly had an idea and made it a reality. It’s unclear if any of the gamers in the video are actually tankers or just armor enthusiasts. 

The “World of Tanks” gaming rig, apparently operated by a team in China, is more spacious than an actual tank, but it has several components in place to mimic actually crewing a piece of armor. The driver is controlling the in-game tank through a steering wheel connected to the gaming system. The spotter is aiming the turret using an Oculus virtual reality headset and spinning the gun around using a crank. When it’s time to fire he quite literally slams down on a big red button and the flatscreen television they’re staring at shows a direct hit.

But let’s be honest, the centerpiece of the set up in the functioning CO2 cannon. The loader puts in a fresh soda bottle, it “fires” and ejects the “spent” shell. The loader then ditches it and grabs another for a new volley. For the record, most of the bottles used appear to be empty Mountain Dew bottles. 

Subscribe to Task & Purpose Today. Get the latest military news and culture in your inbox daily.

The video doesn’t show the “how” of the setup. The Oculus headset being connected to the in-game gunner camera makes sense. “World of Tanks” is — as far asTask & Purpose is aware — not set up with sensors meant to detect ammunition loaded into a plugged in CO2 cannon. There is a large network of wires hooked up to the cannon. Whatever modification these gamers did to the software to let the rig work in the match clearly was effective.

Not since “Fury” has there been such impressive footage of a tank crew loading and firing its main gun. Sadly, the gunner does not appear to shout some version of “on the way” before each shot.

The latest on Task & Purpose

  • Married Marines graduate from Parris Island boot camp together
  • USS Carney had ‘seconds’ to respond to anti-ship ballistic missiles
  • 18th Airborne Corps orders soldiers on staff duty to get some sleep
  • Bud Anderson, the last World War II ‘triple ace,’ dies at 102
  • Air Force general will jump from one to three stars to lead air commandos