Codename: Panzers, Phase One - Tanks and Planes Profile

Take a look at some of the heavy-duty hardware you'll command in this soon-to-be-released strategy game.

While real-time strategy games previously focused on collecting resources, building structures, and recruiting a massive army of soldiers (or orcs, or robots, or whatever), the genre has grown and changed over time. One type of game that has become increasingly popular, especially in Europe, is the variety of tactical real-time strategy game that eliminates all resource gathering and building, gives you a set number of troops, and drops you right onto the battlefield. Codename: Panzers, Phase One will let you play as the German, American, or Russian forces during World War II. Take a look at some of the vehicles in this soon-to-be-released strategy game below.

T34-85 Medium Tank

T34-85 Medium Tank

The T34-85 medium tank was an upgraded version of the original T34, whose 76.2mm cannon proved ineffective against German tanks at medium to long ranges. The "85" designation refers to its larger-caliber main gun, an 85mm cannon. The larger turret also added an additional crew slot for a gunner, though the rest of the tank's design remained largely the same. The T34-85 saw regular production throughout the war and has been used in military engagements as recently as the 1990s.

Codename: Panzers will attempt to accurately model all its vehicles, like the T34-85 tank.

Codename: Panzers models the T34-85 as a medium tank equipped with a powerful cannon, as well as the medium armor that was not upgraded along with the cannon. In practice, the tank will serve as good support for infantry in battle and a good early assault vehicle, thanks to its powerful cannon. However, it must concede the field to larger pieces of armor in the later game, especially those with better protection and comparable firepower.

Cromwell MKIV Medium Tank

Cromwell MKIV Medium Tank

The British Cromwell MKIV cruiser tank was equipped with an onboard 75mm cannon that could fire both explosive and armor-piercing rounds. The vehicle was actually equipped with an engine from manufacturer Rolls-Royce, and it enjoyed exceptional speed and maneuverability, even though it was both extremely cramped and rather poorly armored, with a typical maximum plating thickness of 76mm on the turret front.

The Cromwell MKIV is a maneuverable, but not especially hardy, British tank.

In Codename: Panzers, the Cromwell is just as fragile on the battlefield as its real-life counterpart, though its real-world speed was curbed slightly for gameplay-balance reasons. The vehicle is still highly versatile in the game, and it's extremely effective against enemy infantry.

Jagdpanther Self-Propelled Anti-Tank Gun

Jagdpanther Self-Propelled Anti-Tank Gun

The Jagdpanther V was originally intended to be both a tank buster and an assault gun, bearing a sizable 88mm Pak43 tank gun. The vehicle's main cannon was actually bolted on top of its chassis, rather than mounted as a turret, which limited its aiming radius and therefore the vehicle's usefulness in the middle of an actual battle. Since the vehicle was both lighter and cheaper than the massive King Tiger tank (but packed the same punch), it was expected to see great production throughout the war, though that production was hindered significantly by Allied bombing runs.

The Jagdpanther packs the same gigantic cannon as the fearsome King Tiger tank.

Codename: Panzers' Jagdpanther may not have a rotating turret, but its powerful cannon makes it a fearsome unit on the battlefield. It should prove especially devastating when brought to bear on closely formed ranks of enemy vehicles, especially those that have already sustained damage.

Ju87 Stuka Dive Bomber

Ju87 Stuka Dive Bomber

The Ju87 Stuka low-flying two-man dive-bomber wasn't much in a dogfight, but it was designed for precision bomb drops and fast landings. Because the Stuka was built with landing gear that let it touch down on most any landing strip, it was often used to fly multiple bombing missions in the same day. Eventually, many different varieties of Stuka were manufactured to carry varying payloads and mounted air weapons.

The Junker 87 Stuka was a reliable dive-bomber employed by German forces during the war.

Codename Panzers' Ju87 planes will serve much the same purpose as they did in the war: surgical bombing strikes against stationary targets. For the sake of creating fast-paced gameplay, they can be deployed much faster than they could be in real life. However, since they're relatively small bombers, they're much more effective for precision bombing against military bases and artillery stations, rather than moving targets (for which carpet bombing is far superior).

Codename: Panzers, Phase One will be the first of a new series of World War II real-time strategy games from developer Stormregion and publisher CDV. The game is scheduled for release later this month.

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