RO2 Tank Commander
Both Tank Commander and Tank Crewman form the crew of the German Panzerkampfwagen IV G and Russian T-34/76 tanks on combined arms and tank maps. Each tank carries a dedicated AI loader, so have four and three playable roles respectively, one of whom may be a Tank Commander, the others in the driver, hull gunner and gunner positions (with the gunner role combined with Tank Commander in the Russian tank).
By the time of the battle for Stalingrad, Both Wehrmacht and Red Armies were heavily involved in the development of technically advanced mechanised weaponry. Tank design and manufacture was a race for both protagonists with each producing examples which leapfrogged the others most recent design in terms of weaponry, armour and specification
Somewhat typifying their respective cultures, German tanks were technologically advanced and their crews tactically prepared and disciplined. Russian tanks were more basic, which could be a strength rather than a weakness. Although possessing features such as angled armour and wide tracks more commonplace in modern day examples, they were often manned by inexperienced crews. There are reports of T-34’s being driven out of the famous Barrikady tractor factory where they were manufactured in Stalingrad, and straight into battle, firing over open sights as their gun optics were unavailable.
Early in the war, Russian tanks were often devoid of radios (only the squadron leaders tank being equipped), so rudimentary communications were maintained with hand signals or flags, and their advance and coordination was often halted when a lead tank was immobilised. Conversely, German tanks were well equipped, although their reliance on advanced technology was often their downfall. Component failure, with the difficulty of repair and supply so far from home leading to many (sometimes as high as half the available strength) being scuttled or stripped for parts in the advance across the Russian Steppe.
Ultimately, one of the factors resulting in the defeat and retreat of the Wehrmacht on the Eastern front was the difficulty, complexity and cost of manufacturing and maintaining their tank force, and the ability of the Russian war machine to produce simple, rugged and effective tanks in overwhelming numbers.
Information on individual tanks can be found in the authentic tanks section.
- One T-34/76
There is no class or weapons progression mechanic relating to tanking in RO2.