Beast of Britain? The Chieftain Mk. VI

 

Crate of the Month: Chieftain Mk. VI

By:

IrmaBecx

 

For the record: I am still anti-crate. I don’t gamble because it’s too expensive, and I don’t like not getting a guaranteed purchase. For these reasons, I don’t support crates.

If you are going to gamble for crates, make sure you know what you are getting yourself into. Check your drop rates (5% for the Chieftain), set yourself a spending limit, and set yourself up for either disappointment or financial ruin.

I hear life partners are especially unimpressed with the latter.

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If you are going to potentially charge a huge amount of money for your product, you had better make sure it fits the bill. During testing, there was no doubt the tank was going to fit the bill – people were doing really well in it – and they ended up dialling it back a little.

I don’t think that really matters. This is a Heavy tank that has more in common with British Mediums, although that is of course true for a lot of British Heavys. You get a weak hull with good mobility, a strong turret front with 10 degrees of gun depression over a severely angled front plate, and a wonderfully British 120 mm L-series gun with double APCR and cheap HESH.

It’s not exactly rocket science how to drive it. If you have driven a gun depression tank, it will be a breeze. You find a suitable hill with enemies behind it, and then you start poking over it and shooting at them.

You don’t let people see the hull if you can help it, only your turret front and upper plate. The turret isn’t actually as big as it looks, there are a lot of empty boxes. The lower part is stronger, if you look at the armour profile, you’ll see it’s designed to keep the gun pointing downwards, producing some massive effective armour numbers, and autobounce zones everywhere.

There is a classic weak spot on your right hand side, a hatch with a viewport in front of it. The sides of the port are only 50 mm, meaning you can take full HE damage from high caliber guns. Also the lower plate is totally weak, and the sides aren’t much good against 120 mm and over guns except having spaced armour.

42 km/h forwards and 15 backwards aren’t outstanding, but with both hull and turret traverse pushing 40 degrees with upgrades, it’s quite nimble for a Heavy tank. You can pull off fast relocations and get to good spots fairly early, but a lot of the time, all you need to do is manoeuver to get a shot and move back and forth to poke.

The Chieftain looks like a classic Centurion or FV design with those angles on the side skirts front and back, only they flattened the front part a bit and the hull extends out over the sides towards the rear. The turret has that modern British hull down shape, and the gun barrel is wrapped with padding. Since press account gold is free, I sprang for the “Royal” camo too, and although I think it looks like Jamie Hewlett designed it in 1995, I have to admit it’s quite striking with the Union flag graffiti.

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So it’s quite a looker, has good hull down armour, and a powerful 120 mm gun with excellent gun handling, two kinds of APCR, and 110 pen on your HE rounds.

A thing to note is the APCR has exceptional shell speed, almost 1400 m/s, but the HE rounds travel less than half as fast. That’s going to mess you up unless you are ready for it.

But other than that, it may seem like a bit of a one trick pony. Or two maybe, if you count the cheap HESH. And yeah, the playstyle will revolve around hull down tactics. But that doesn’t mean actually driving it is one sided; this is the kind of tank that will put you in all kinds of interesting situations.

The Medium tank heritage is strong with this one, reminiscent of the Chinese WZ-113. If you took a Centurion 7/1 or an FV 4202, welded on a single piece upper front plate, and stuck a 120 mm in the turret, you would pretty much end up with the Chieftain Mk. VI. You are trading a bit of power and mobility for more robustness, better turret armour, better gun handling, and more firepower.

I ran a few games, but there is nothing much to report. The tank works exactly how it’s supposed to, and your job is to find good hull down spots everywhere so you can shoot at people. And they are everywhere, ten degrees of gun depression is a massive advantage for a Heavy tank.

The tank is quick enough to do some Medium plays once in a while, but sticking to Heavy tank approaches, you won’t have to push as hard to keep up. It’s nice to drive; very British, and the turret is great to work with.

Oh yeah, and the thing gets ninety rounds of ammunition. That’s insane. It basically means you can run 50 extra cheap HESH shells in addition to your regular standard/premium/HE loadout.

Me? I run over 200.000 credits worth of premium APCR, all bought with free gold:

 

So should you buy it?

No. Well, you can’t buy it. You shouldn’t gamble for it.

Okay, but if you are going to gamble anyway, what kind of driver might, except for going to hell for it of course, benefit from the Big Chieftain?

If you like British tanks, it’s a no-brainer. You will expect it to have some issues like all the others, but you also know if handled properly, it’s going to work great. You will not be disappointed.

If you like gun depression, or Heavy tanks with a bit of a Medium flavour, then you might also be interested.

If you just think the Chieftain looks really cool, and you are wondering if it’s a tank for you, I have tried to explain what it’s all about and how it works. There really isn’t a lot to it.

Me, I am not getting one because crates. But even if this was a tech tree tank, I don’t think I would go for it. It’s great, it’s likeable, and it’s easy to drive, it’s just not quite the tank for me.

 

IrmaBecx says don’t gamble for tanks.

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