Classified military documents leak on War Thunder’s official forums… again cover image

Classified military documents leak on War Thunder’s official forums… again

We’re not just reuploading old news; it has really happened again. A War Thunder forum user has leaked classified military documents.

Sometimes, when you tell a joke once, it’s funny, but after you’ve told it a few times, people stop laughing. But sometimes, if you keep telling the same joke again and again, it gains its own kind of surreal humor. That’s where we think we are with War Thunder forums, who, by Wikipedia’s reckoning, are on their 11th classified military document leak and the sixth this year.

As first noted by Twitter/X user Kurnass ’86 (the plane guy), @BurkeKrohn, a 730-page manual for the DA7, perhaps better known to non-militaria enthusiasts as the Eurofighter Typhoon, was casually posted to the War Thunder forums on August 29.

The now-removed post on the War Thunder forum contained a flight manual for the DA7 Eurofighter Typhoon, hosted on Google Docs, dated 2003. As Kurnass ’86 points out, the DA7 was an Italian variant of the Eurofighter considered for adoption by the Aeronautica Militare (Italian Air Force). 

Eurofighter Manual: Classified documents or public knowledge?

The DA7 variant of the Eurofighter Typhoon had its flight manual leaked (Image via Eurofighter)
The DA7 variant of the Eurofighter Typhoon had its flight manual leaked (Image via Eurofighter)

While the DA7 variant is no longer in use, the export and use of the aircraft is still restricted in non-NATO countries. As a result, Gaijin Entertainment, War Thunder’s developers, a company that operates its game across the globe, removed the post. Gaijin avoids using any documentation with any remaining classified status, regardless of its public availability. 

In the past, Gaijin has removed and taken down documentation available in the public domain because it still retains limited classified status. For example, in the case of the F-16 flight manual posted in January 2023 — the document’s classified status had expired. Still, according to the document itself, it contained export-restricted data and thus was illegal to publish under US law. Gaijin took the same action with the recent DA7 leak.

Why do War Thunder players keep posting classified documents?

The simple answer is: They’re passionate and want buffs and nerfs. These leaked classified documents often seem to follow a pretty standard formula now. A disgruntled player is upset that the in-game representation of a vehicle doesn’t match its real-world capabilities, so they leak a document to prove a point. And, because Gaijin only works on publicly available information, refusing to use classified info, that handicaps some of the most formidable weapons of war ever made. You can see where the frustration may arise.

Couple this with the fact War Thunder’s player base is formidable enough to get a massive change to the game’s economy overturned with review bombing, and it’s a recipe for shenanigans — mainly the leaking of classified documents. 

Moreover, it’s become a kind of in-joke with the community and the wider gaming sphere. There’s this meme, of course, that neatly illustrates the problem: 

(Image via <a href="">Sh*tpostGateway</a>)
(Image via Sh*tpostGateway)

As a result, some people might imagine War Thunder players as rivet-counting armchair generals with folders full of classified PDFs ready to upload at the slightest mistake within their game. But honestly, if it were any other game, no one would bat an eyelid. No one is shocked when a World of Warcraft player info-dumps 27 novels worth of Orc lore on the Blizzard forums to explain why his Shaman shouldn’t be nerfed. Or if a League of Legends player wants to point out lore inaccuracies tied to long-deleted short stories from old Riot Games websites on Reddit.

But because the subject of War Thunder is historical and modern military hardware, when a similar scenario happens in the game, it’s classified military documents about the Eurofighter rather than fantasy novels and wiki pages being posted. And that’s, unfortunately, why War Thunder’s forums will likely continue to make headlines.

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