|“|| China's tank division.|
- Battlemaster leaving the War Factory
|“|| Where is the battle?|
The refurbished Type 88G tank, better known as the Battlemaster, is the backbone of the PLA tank corps. Being cheap and easy to produce, it usually shows up in vast numbers. It is very well rounded, and have greater firepower when under the influence of the horde. The design may look old, but many new features modernize it, including built in reactive armor and a new generation of upgradable, compact Nuclear Engines that can be stabilized with Isotopic Stabilizers. It's lethality can be increased further with time tested Depleted Uranium Shells and upgradable Autoloader.
|“|| China needs us there.|
- Battlemaster moving
Armed with a simple but effective main gun, the Battlemaster is best used against tanks and other vehicles. While it lacks weapons effective against infantry, it can simply run them over with its treads, a tactic aided by the fact that it is also one of the fastest tanks in the game. However, it lacks any defence against aircraft.
Individually, Battlemasters are weak, and will lose in a one-on-one fight against any other faction's MBT, with the possible exception of the GLA Scorpion. However, the Battlemaster's true strength lies in its low cost of production. It is the cheapest tank to produce (on par with the Scorpion), and as such is intended to overwhelm the enemy through sheer numbers and combined firepower. In groups of 5 or more Chinese vehicles, Battlemasters gain the Horde Bonus, which increases the firepower of individual tanks by 25%.
In order to increase their effectiveness in the later stages of a battle, Battlemasters can also receive a number of upgrades. The Nationalism upgrade is available from the Propaganda Center, and increases the effect of the Horde bonus by a further 25%. Once the Breeder Reactor is built, Battlemasters can be upgraded to fire Depleted Uranium Shells, which deal 25% more damage, and can also benefit from the Nuclear Tanks upgrades, which increases their already high base speed by 25%. However, this upgrade makes them explode violently when destroyed, unless the Isotope Stability upgrade is also purchased.
Apart from being comparatively weak on their own, Battlemasters can have difficulty fighting in rough terrain or confined spaces, as this makes it difficult to maneuver a large number of tanks. Additionally, the Battlemaster's fairly weak armor makes it vulnerable to anti-tank units, and they are especially vulnerable to area of effect weapons.
|“|| I have China's blessing!|
- Battlemaster attacking
Like most other Chinese units, Battlemasters are meant to work in large groups to overwhelm the enemy. They are cheap and expendable, so commanders will be able to field a large amount in a short period of time, especially if they have built several war factories. In groups of 5 or more, Battlemasters gain the Horde Bonus, which grants each individual tank an additional 25% firepower.
Battlemasters are also very fast, especially after the Nuclear tank upgrade which makes them one of the fastest tanks in the game. Commanders should thus use this advantage to maneuver large groups of Battlemasters to attack places where the enemy least expects it.
However, Battlemasters are pretty fragile so commanders shouldn't use them to attack well-prepared defenses, a role which should be relegated to heavier vehicles such as the Overlord.
Battlemasters have no anti-air ability whatsoever and are easy prey to aircraft, especially attack helicopters. If you ever see an enemy commander foolish enough to send in a large group of Battlemasters without any AA escort, then you can make short work of them with a couple of attack helicopters. If ever there is AA escort, then you should send your fixed wing aircraft to destroy these first before sending in your choppers.