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Your first AirLand Battle PACT-Deck.
A guide to making a well rounded deck for beginners, that is easy to handle yet competitive.
The aim of this guide is to provide new players with a deck that is easy to control and at the same time can compete in any game-mode.
It will not be „TH3 B3S7 1337 D3CK!!1!“ and will probably not include all your favourite units if you are an experienced player, but I want to provide new players with a foundation on which to built with their own experiences.
I will give a short explanation of the role of every unit, so that you know how to use and what to do with them, but for more in depth mechanic tutorials have a look at Russo´s videos, which are also available in the guide section.
At this point I want to thank everybody from 7Sam including Russo, Hazed, Protoman, Castor, Theory, Super and all the others, because learning is always easiest when done as a group.
When building this deck use the URSS Bonus, this gives you more points to spend, but removes all, but USSR units from your setup. You then add unitcards to an empty deck. Some units can be bought at a higher skill level (veterancy), but you will get fewer of them in your deck per unitcard. Feel free to experiment with how many units you need versus at what skill level you need them. However you can recognize what skill level I recommend when looking at the number of units that are available per card that I put into every units description.
I will introduce the units in the following manner:
Number of cards recommendedx number of units that are available per cardname of the unit
2x 12 Ural-4320
Take this unit into your deck twice. Each card will enable you to deploy it 12 times. The Ural is a good choice as a transport vehicle since it is very cheap for the amount of supplies it carries. Use it as much as you can to resupply, refuel and repair your troops in the field. Once empty send them back to your FOB for resupply.
Logistic covers resupply and command units.
Take one from the nation of your choice. It really does not matter which. As soon as you got one in your deck It will be placed automatically at the start of every game. It is the one unit that can only be bought at round start, so keep the one that you have.
Take this unit into your deck twice. Each card will enable you to deploy it 12 times. The Ural is a good choice as a transport vehicle since it is very cheap for the amount of supplies it carries. Use it as much as you can to resupply, refuel and repair your troops in the field. Once empty send them back to your FOB for resupply. 3.
This is your primary Command vehicle (CV). Placing a CV in a control zone will generate points that will enable you to buy more units. These units are expensive and should be protected heavily at all times. The BRDM-2U is a good choice for your primary CV since its lightly armoured, but still cheap. Making it affordable, but enabling you to move it out of the way in case of direct mortar fire that would otherwise kill a lighter CV. For one card in your deck you can deploy 4, which should be enough for almost any game.
Infantry is even more important now than it was in WEE. On a lot of maps they can now easily play a bigger role than tanks and there is an Infantry unit to fullfill almost any role. Buildings and woods are their natural territory.
8 Morskaya Pehota
Very strong infantry. Get one card of 12 Morskaya Pehota in BTR. It moves very fast on roads, which is very important at round start and adds a little protection. They are a bit like the US Marines for NATO. Strong survivability since they are 15 men per Squad, good against other Infantry, but only mediocre AT weapons. 2.
Very cheap infantry. Get them in the Ural to keep the cost as low as possible and use them to cover your flanks and CVs. Dont expect too much of them, but they will buy you time when you need it. 3.
6 Ptur Konkurs
ATGM Infantry in buildings or woods is very effective at killing all kinds of vehicles. Get the Konkurs in the BTR to make sure they get to the middle of the map as soon as possible together with some Morskaya Pehota once the round starts. 4.
2x 8 Ptur Faktoriya
Some more ATGM Infantry. The extra 16 ATGM units mean that you can put 4 ATGM Squads into almost every building and woodline at the front. Get them in the Ural to make them as cheap as possible. 5.
Better than the Motostrelki, but also only 10 men per Squad, but with good short range AT weapons. Use them instead of Morskaya Pehota if you got the money and expect more vehicles in close range than infantry.
Under Support you find AAA and Artillery. AAA is even more important than in WEE since Aircraft now play a huge role. If you deploy enough Infrared guided AAA you can completely stop enemy air operations and Radar guided AAA is very nice for taking out enemy air units. Infrared AAA has a better range against helicopters and Radar guided has better range against Fixed wing aircraft, howerver they are still both able to shoot down any air unit and an Infrared AAA net is just easier to maintain since they cant be shot by AntiRadar Aircraft. Artillery on the other hand is not as important anymore. It can still destroy light vehicles, but Infantry is now a lot more resistant to artillery strikes unless you use very heavy artillery. However all Artillery is still invaluable to stun and panic the enemy.
4 2K22M Tunguska
A very nice AAA with Radar guns and IR Missles. To prevent it beeing destroyed from Anti Radar aircraft click on the autocannon symbol to turn them off. It deactivates the guns + the Radar making it invisible for Anti Radar aircraft. The IR Missles still fire and are fully functional. 2.
4 9K37 BUK-M1
This is Radar AAA amazing at shooting down jets, but not so good for taking down choppers. If you tell it to hold fire it will turn off its radar making it invisible for Antiradar Aircraft. Solution: Have it on quick-select and turn its missle off. As soon as you see enemy Aircraft or Helicopters incoming turn it back on.
4 Brdm-2 Strela-1M
An IR misslelauncher that drives very fast on roads. If you dont want to leave your Infantry defensless against airunits at roundstart I recommend you bring some of these to cover them.
6 9K37 BUK
A cheaper version of the BUK-M1. The sama just not as good. Place them in front of your more expensive BUKs. The enemy will target them first that way and leave your more valuable AA intact.
2 2S7M Malka
This is artillery. The really big guns. Half way through the round you can think about placing two of them next to your FOB. From their they can kill lightvehicles and infantry in the open as long as they get corrected shot. Dont use them to much since they eat your supplies like its nothing. Concentrate on enemy AA, CVs, making smoke for your assaults, firesupport and ATGM Infantry.
Tanks are the kings of the open field. With their armor and heavy guns very little can stand up to them on open ground and live. Remember though that the enemy knows this as well and will field various units dedicated to destroying your tanks. Especially anything hidden somewhere with ATGMs can cause real trouble.
The most advanced tank in the game, it features a cannon and ATGM missles . When you deploy them protect them very well. When attacking let T-72As eat the fire instead. When defending retreat them with the "Reverse" button in case they take too much fire.
A cheap unit with excellent front armor. Have them drive in front of your other tanks and tankhunters. They can take a lot of fire before they die and if they do you dont loose that many points. 3.
A very good firesupport tank. It is not very well protected, but got a nice gun for its price. While your ATGMs and T-80U take out the enemies tanks the BMP-685 can shoot lighter vehicles with pinpoint accuracy.
Recon is one of the most important aspects of Wargame. If you dont see your enemy, but he can see you, you have already lost the game.
Exceptional optics and a little bit of armor to protect it against mortarfire. 2.
Cheapest Recon infantry available to you. Try to put them everywhere along your frontline to keep eyes on the enemy.
4 Speznaz VMF
They are more expensive and you only get 4, but they are a lot harder to find for your enemy. Bring them in if you need Recon somwhere where nobody else is able to go.
In Vehicles you can find Tankhunters, IFVs and Flame thrower vehicles.
This is the unit that should spearhead every assault. Very good front armor and 3 guns that stun heavy vehicles and kill light vehicles. Looks like something out of a terminator movie doesnt it?! 2.
2x 4 MT-LB Shturm-S
Your best tankhunter. Keep it protected at the back of your army and target his most expensive units first. 3.
Close range Napalm artillery. It covers a nice area with fire. Perfect to kill infantry or block at road at roundstart. Russo did a nice 3 minute video just on the TOS-1 Buratino. Check it out:
Helicopters can be very usefull, but are almost helpless against AAA. They can fullfill a variety of roles, but all of them require a lot of multitasking. In this deck they will only be used to delay the enemy at roundstart. Nothing else. Their job is to delay the enemy until your infantry is in position. If they survive that long retreat them and be very careful if you decide to use them again.
2 KA-50 Akula
The anti everything helicopter. The Autocannon stuns and kills vehicles and Infantry. The huge Antitankmissle was made to be carried by planes not helicopters and most importantly the IR AA rockets deal with enemy jets and helicopters. Only Airsuperiority fighters and the OH-58 are able to touch this unit.
Its a cheap old flyingmachine that carries unguided rockets. Bring one or two at the start of the round and use it to stun the enemy convoy in support of the Akula.
Here we go the big new category of AirLand Battle. Since its an all new category very different to all the other categories ill go over the most important stats first:
Countermeasures It enables your plane to evade enemy fire, but even the best countermeasures dont protect you 100% of the time eventually you will get hit.
Every Aircraft even the F117 can be seen, but depending on how tight the enemies AAA defence is an aircraft with good stealth might be spotted to late for the AAA to be able to get a missle off, while an aircraft with bad stealth will be shot at 7 or 8 times in the same situation.
Spend as little time in enemy airspace as possible, but there is another reason why Speed is important and thats formations.
Always try to use your aircraft in formation: Have them fly close together so the enemy AAA can not concentrate their full fire on every aircraft. Have an AntiRadar aircraft fly first. They usually have good ECM and Stealth and can therefore tank a lot of fire plus they identify and kill Radar AAA. Just behind have some Groundattack Aircraft that take out know AAA positions and your intendet target. You can further protect them against enemy fighters by sending out a fighter escort with them.
Before we come to my recommendations for your first deck I want to introduce the different roles fighters can fullfill in this game:
Basically any fighter that carries AA missles. Good examples on NATO are the Tomcat and F15 Eagle. If you choose to use Air superiority fighters go with expensive ones with high veterancy.
These planes usually have a good survivability and carry Anti Radar missles. You can send them out even without spotting enemy AAA. They will identify and kill RadarAAA on their own. Just be sure to Evac them if you notice to much IR AAA or enemy fighters.
Some Aircraft carry Napalm bombs. Napalm is extremely efficient when it comes to blocking roads or getting infantry out of buildings.
Cluster bombs with AP power kill light vehicles like AAA and do some damage to heavier vehicles. Infantry however will not even get a scratch.
AGM Ground Attack
A lot of planes carry Air-Ground Missles. They are extremely good for killing vehicles even heavy tanks.
HE Ground Attack
They either carry rocket pots or bombs that deal HE damage. They do a lot of damage against infantry and light vehicles and stun the surviving troops similar to an artillery strike.
And now for your first deck:
2x 2 Mig 21S
They are cheap clusterbombers. Buy at least one at roundstart to bomb the enemy convoy and use them as suicide units later on to destroy units that are more expensive then them, but be carefull heavily armored targets will require several bombs. 2.
This interceptor can shoot down and stun enemy planes without ever beeing shot at. It has a single weapon: 6 missles with a range of 12km. He can circle behind your AA over friendly territory and engage his targets as they approach your airspace.