Tanks are armored fighting vehicles encountered in many missions over the course of Valkyria Chronicles. While they are formidable against ill-prepared infantry, properly equipped Lancers can make short work of them.
"Tanks" are a special unit type in Valkyria Chronicles, defined by specific properties:
- Controlling a tank unit uses one to three Command Point(s) depending on the type of the tank.
- Tanks use AP when turning, not just when moving.
- Tanks cannot capture bases but can retreat and/or be called from reserves, except in the first and fourth Valkyria Chronicles. They also cannot perform special scenery actions like climbing ladders or hiding in tall grass.
- Tanks have multiple hit locations and, in the first game only, multiple health bars; the main body (with different armor values for each facing from the second and third game), the treads (first game only, massively reduces AP if destroyed), and a glowing radiator which is vulnerable to all forms of attack and functions like a normal infantryman's head for purposes of critical damage.
- Tanks do not regenerate HP every turn like infantry unless they are inside a base area. Their HP can only be restored using the Engineer Tool. Tanks cannot be healed with Ragnaid.
- Most of a tank's hit locations are completely immune to standard gunfire.
- Tanks are the only unit that can trigger anti-tank mines in the first Valkyria Chronicles. Tanks take no damage from anti-personnel mines.
At the turn of the 20th Century, a time when trench combat was the primary form of warfare, these armored vehicles were created to break across defensive lines.
Their design employs a ragnoline fuel combustion engine in which energy is harnessed from the explosive ignition of liquid ragnite. Byproducts include a distinctive blue light and extreme heat, requiring the addition of a radiator at the tank's rear to prevent overheating. Originally used to cross trenches and as foot soldier support, economic and technological advances have seen tanks grow to fill a number of combat roles.
As part of a defensive force, Gallian tank designs favor small, highly mobile units suited to Gallia's topography over heavy tanks focused on firepower. In EW1, the Gallian force used light tanks and foot soldiers to stop the Empire's invasion rather than squaring off against the attack-heavy Imperial tanks. After witnessing the Empire's fearsome armored corps, a group of Gallian engineers led by Professor Theimer came together to develop a new kind of tank that could be mass produced to check the Imperial force. Theimer proposed the necessity of a line of tanks specialized in offensive power, but Gallian Army leaders dismissed his ideas. Consequently, most of Gallia's tanks remain primarily defensive units.
After the Gallian-Imperial war, the Edelweiss had made an impact on tank development. A modular tank called the Type 36 (presumably developed in 1936-7 EC) was produced, including Medium and Heavy variants which had sloped frontal armor akin to the Edelweiss.
Mass produced tanks
Notable Gallian tanks
Gallian Revolutionary Army Tanks
By 1937, the Gallian army had commissioned new medium and heavy tanks in addition to updated versions of its pre-existing light tank units. Some of these tanks were appropriated by the GRA and put to use during the civil war. The tanks fielded by the GRA Armoured Division, under the command of Audrey Gassenarl, feature a much smaller radiator and a more modern design, including reduced armor around the treads and slightly more sloped armor around the turret. The length of the barrel was also increased for the heavier designs.
All GRA tanks belong to the Type 36 series of modular tanks.
Notable GRA tanks
Born in the late 19th Century as a means to break the stalemate of trench combat, Europa's first tanks were Imperial in design and manufacture. The Empire's armored corps took to the field shortly after EW1 began as a force of extremely powerful, highly mobile tanks, easily tearing apart the Federation's defenses. In the medieval military philosophy of the Empire, the tank represented the new knight, and stood at the army's core as it marched across the continent.
Unable to stand up to the Empire's tank force directly, neighboring countries were left to develop small ambush tanks, which in turn led to Imperial designers to build bigger and tougher juggernauts. In the tank technology race, the Empire has long remained one step ahead.
During EWII, the Empire fielded six types of mass produced tanks in addition to numerous prototypes:
Mass produced tanks
- Light Imperial Tank
- Medium Imperial Tank
- Heavy Imperial Tank
- Imperial Tank Destroyer
- Imperial Assault Tank
- Ultimate Tank
Partially due to barrel arsenals and a lack of infrastructure in the Federation prior to EW1, the war saw the Empire secure a broad head start in the field of tank technology. To Federation forces centered around foot soldier tactics, the Imperial armored corps represented a new and terrifying form of warfare. By the end of EW1, the Federation military knew well the necessity for heavy tanks with large cannons, and the development of armored vehicles began in earnest.
Unable to rival the Empire in technology or military prowess, they instead chose to exercise their economic superiority, building a force of tanks with middling capabilities large enough to combat the Imperial force by sheer numbers.
Mass Produced Tanks
- Federation Tank (aka "Minute")
- The single "normal" Gallian Light Tank seen in-game in Valkyria Chronicles is in Chapter 13: The Clash at Naggiar (Pt.1) and is shown to have 100 HP. This tank only appears on the map on Selvaria's turn, probably to stop it being seen as a real unit. This is obviously a gameplay conceit to make it impossible for Selvaria Bles to not destroy it, but it is rather amusing that a twelve year old girl is at least twice and potentially almost four times tougher than a tank. However, the Selvaria's Mission: Behind Her Blue Flame DLC campaign features Gallian Light Tanks with more normal health levels as part of the opposing Gallian forces.
- Gallia's ideas for tanks heavily resemble those of early-WWII Germany; mobility over armor, albeit for different reasons. Whereas Germany used their mobile tanks in a combined-arms strategy in order to rapidly penetrate enemy lines and encircle strongpoints, Gallia intended theirs to quickly reposition (as shown by the Shamrock's high agility) in rough terrain after ambushing enemy forces with quick radiator shots, which are usually enough to destroy most tanks in-game.
- The emphasis on ambush and mobility in Gallian tank doctrine bears some resemblance to the intended doctrine for US mobile Tank Destroyer battalions, which were meant to ambush and outmaneuver enemy tanks that managed to break through the front lines rather than face them head-on. The call for offensive tanks being rejected for defensive units may also be a reference to the belief that the Tank Destroyer doctrine hamstrung US Army attempts to deploy tanks with greater anti-tank capability.
- The Empire is a mix of early and late war German doctrines. They attempt a Blitzkrieg like Germany did to Poland and France during WWII; like Germany, at the start of the war much of their armour is on the verge of being obsolete. When the Gallian war shifts into a defensive one, heavier machines appear, similar to how Nazi Germany shifted gears from lightweight, mobile tanks like the Panzer III and IV to heavier, slower tanks like the Tiger and King Tiger, if on a smaller scale and for a different reason. In Germany's case, they had encountered superior foreign tanks, the British Matildas being all but immune to anything short of divisional 88mm guns in France and the Soviet T-34 and KV-1 causing massive problems for their tanks in the USSR.
- Europan tanks are typically armed with machine guns, their main cannon and a "mortar". Whilst gun-mortars exist in real life, they could only fire mortar rounds, and the only modern tank mounting a mortar in addition to its main gun is the Israeli Merkava; however, the "mortar" in game is actually a specialized low-velocity high explosive round fired from the main cannon rather than a separate weapon. Realistically, such a round would induce spalling on a target vehicle and easily smash open vehicles with riveted armor, but presumably for balance reasons, no damage is done by Mortar rounds against enemy vehicles; on the other hand, "mortars" are quite efficient at destroying non-tank armored targets, such as Machine Gun Bunkers or Gatling Turrets, keeping some degree of realism.
- Very few of the tanks in the first game have particularly long barrels for their main guns (with a few exceptions, chiefly the Edelweiss and Lupus). This is fairly typical of early WW2 tanks, which were primary designed to support infantry and did not have to focus on penetration as few tanks at the time had heavy armor and most used relatively weak riveted armor. The tanks in the second game mirror real-life development, mounting long-barrel, high-velocity guns to match developments in armor technology.
- Strangely, most Europan long-barreled high-velocity guns lack the muzzle brakes commonly used on their real-life counterparts to counteract the increased recoil, even those used by the post-war Type 36.
- Tank guns, like field artillery pieces, are measured in calibres. For example, the Krimm N-324 24/76.2mm; 76.2mm indicates the bore diameter, also known as the calibre, while 24 indicates its barrel length, measured in the number of times the diameter fits side by side along the entire length. The gun barrel is therefore 1.83 metres long.
- Valkyria Chronicles 2 and Valkyria Chronicles 3 added directional armor as a game mechanic (ie, a tank's side and rear armor value is different to the front), though it also removed the ability to damage a tank's treads. This mechanic was removed in Valkyria Chronicles 4
|Valkyria Chronicles Vehicles|
|Gallian Vehicles||Alicia Bakery | Edelweiss | Gallian Light Tank | Gallian Tank Destroyer | Guard Tank | ISARA | Jagdpanzer 38(t) Hetzer (cut) | Shamrock|
|Imperial Vehicles||Heavy Imperial Tank | Imperial Tank Destroyer | Light Imperial Tank | Medium Imperial Tank | Panzerkampfwagen IV Ausf.G (cut)|
|Boss Vehicles||Batomys | Dromedarius | Equus | Gallian APC | Lupus / Lupus Regnum | Marmota|
|Valkyria Chronicles 2 Vehicles|
|Gallian Vehicles||APC | Gallian Warship | Type 36|
|GRA Vehicles||APC | Dandarius | Geirolul | Perkunas | Supply Vehicle | Type 36|
|Other Vehicles||Ghost Tank|
|Valkyria Chronicles 3 Vehicles|
|Gallian Vehicles||APC | Edelweiss | Nameless Tank | Narcissus|
|Imperial Vehicles||APC | Light Imperial Tank | Medium Imperial Tank | Heavy Imperial Tank|
|Boss Vehicles||Echidna | Lupus | Schakal|
Valkyria Chronicles 4 Vehicles
|Federation Vehicles||Cactus | Glory | Federation Tank | Hafen | Snow Cruiser|
|Imperial Vehicles||Assault Tank | Heavy Imperial Tank | Light Imperial Tank | Medium Imperial Tank | Ultimate Tank|
|Boss Vehicles||Lophius | Orcinus Magnus | Vulcan / Vulcan Procus|