|“|| Hellion checking in!|
The Ka-68 was first sighted by a joint contingent of British and American forces in northern Germany in January 2049. Labled the 'Hellion' by the Western soldiers in a brief revival of the old NATO reporting name system, the new gunship appeared to be a successor to the Ka-50 'Hokum'. Chieftly fielded by the helicopter detachments of the Russian Air-Landing Forces, its function and combat performance appeared largely similar however unlike its predecessor, the Hellion can also be equipped with a new type of unguided 80mm rocket which contains a thermobaric charge. This allows the new helicopter to lay down a devastating barrage of incendiary rockets alongside its standard armament of Vikhr anti-tank missiles and two semi-rigid 30mm cannons.
Fire Thermobaric Rocket Barrage
|Fire a barrage of four thermobaric rockets at the target area. Each rocket causes 60 to 20 FLAME damage over a radius of 25 to 50. 30 seconds cooldown.|
Requires Thermobaric Ordnance.
Activate Goliath Defense System
|Employ electro-optical disruption techniques that prevents the helicopter from being targeted by enemy attacks and abilities for 4 seconds. 30 seconds cooldown.|
Requires Goliath System.
The Hellion is mainly used as an anti-tank helicopter, not so useful against defense structures. A way around this is to keep the helicopter moving about, as it can fire while moving. Having three Hellions do this can take on most tank columns in this fashion, yet it is still recommended that the AA vehicles are taken care of before anything else. Another thing the Hellion has to worry about are fighters, which it is completely at the mercy of. So unless the enemy has no fleet of fighters, you shouldn't try to raid deep into their territory with Hellions.
A blessing of the Hellion is that its missiles are guided, so they will hit the target, unless either jammed or shot down by a point-defense laser. A downside to it being equipped with guided missiles is that they are largely ineffective against infantry. Fortunately its heavy cannon is able to take out infantry fairly quickly (especially when powered up thanks to veterancy) and also deals quite a bit of damage against armored enemies.
However the Hellion benefits from some vital global upgrades. The high cost of the helicopter can be somewhat mitigated by building a Industrial Plant which decreases its cost by 15%, allowing the commander to effectively field sufficient Hellions to take on enemy tank columns. Purchasing the Thermobaric Ordnance allows it to barrage an area with incendiary missiles, making it effective against groups of infantry and light vehicles. It can also be upgraded with the Goliath System giving Hellions more hit points and the Active Goliath Defense System ability to avoid enemy AA fire.
The Hellion, despite its lack of versatility, is a helicopter that is needrd for a Russian commander to be highly successful. You need to understand its limitations and its strengths to make it competitive with other attack helicopters.
First is to know its only effective role is to kill tank columns. But unlike the Comanche or Han which need upgrades to do this task extremely well, the Hellion only needs to have the Goliath System to improve its ability to avoid being shot down by AA systems. To kill tank columns, it is best to eliminate either the AA systems to keep your Hellions alive, or to target the larger tanks to deny your enemy the punch they were going to have with them. Then target the column until all targets are gone.
Using Hellions in groups of 3 effectively gives you 12 ATGMs to destroy tank columns. It also means the AA systems have to focus on three targets, so you can use the Goliath System's flares for each Hellion individually at a time to distract the AA system from targeting any Hellion at all.
Second, if you can ensure you are going to do more damage to the enemy in cost or time loss, don't send in your Hellions. Its not worth killing a single Overlord tank for the cost of 3 of yours. Never send your Hellions against heavy AA systems or fighters, and never send them against garrisoned anti-air infantry.
Finally, if the enemy isn't using tanks, you can use your Hellions to kill their artillery. This is the only time you should sacrifice your Hellions. Artillery is too dangerous to your forces, and leaving them alive will only mean they will acquire veterancy and do untold amounts of damage to your base. Hellions have the advantage of simply going over them and hitting them, then getting out of there in a hurry, thereby sparing some of your Hellions from destruction.
Its Thermobaric Rocket barrage is believed to be effective against groups of infantry and light vehicles.
Since Hellions are a threat to any commander, taking them out will be important. Using light AA tanks, such as the Quad Cannon, the Avenger, the Tunguska, or the Gattling tank, with your tank columns will improve your column getting to their destination unscathed.
Another tactic is to create a no fly zone with a mix of light and heavy AA. This means using light AA tanks with either Twin Fangs, Ural Trucks, Grumbles, or the Chaparral. Fighters also work, but note the moment they return to re-arm, this can create a zone where Hellions can reign havoc. So using heavy AA works better most of the time than fighters.
Behind the scenes
- The Hellion replaces the Hokum in 1.85.