|“|| Panzer at your command.|
- Leopard leaving the Vehicle Assembly Depot
While the official armed forces of most European countries still operate a lot of their own domestically produced weapons and vehicles, the European Continental Army placed its faith in the latest generation of German armor engineering. Despite the shared name, the new Leopard III continues the tradition of its previous iterations from the 1960s and 80s and bears very few similarities with its famous predecessors. One of the core principles of the ECA was its strict decision to limit its offensive deployability to Europe's immediate sphere of influence - which at the same time was conveniently extended to include the strategically important region of North Africa.
As such, the task force's tank divisions were organized and equipped under a classic defensive mindset reminiscent of the Cold War with the new Leopard being the most iconic product of this shift in priorities: Wrapped in several layers of highly advanced armor, the tank mounts a powerful 120mm smoothbore cannon that makes it ideal for duel situations against other tanks, especially thanks to its superior range - a trait that is shared by many ECA vehicles and can be further improved via the installation of a new gun that allows the use of a more efficient gas-based propellant.
This emphasis on anti-tank capabilities does not mean that the Leopard falls short in urban combat where infantry is regarded as a greater threat though: As with many other ECA vehicles, the machine gun mounted next to the top hatch can be manned and the main cannon is compatible with a feared anti-personnel canister round dubbed the 'Shredder' by ECA tank crews. In addition, both the Leopard and the Gepard Flakpanzer are equipped with automatic close area defense systems that unleash a deadly hail of shrapnel towards enemy assailants that get too close for comfort.
|Use standard armor piercing rounds effective against vehicles.|
|Use Shredder canister rounds effective against infantry with 50% reduced firing rate.|
Requires Canister Rounds.
Hydrogen Fuel Cells
|Installs hydrogen fuel cells on the vehicle that increases its speed by 33%.|
Requires Manticore Protocol.
Nano Shock Absorbers
|Equip the vehicle with nano shock absorbers that increases its armor by 25%.|
Requires Manticore Protocol.
Efficient and versatile, the Leopard is one of the better armed and armored tanks available to the various factions. Its primary armament is a powerful 120mm smoothbore cannon, and it performs excellently against tanks and structures. The cannon also possesses a fairly long range, which can be further increased by 25% with the Gas Ignition Guns upgrade, allowing it to always get the first round off.
The Leopard also has a number of secondary weapon systems which give it significant anti-infantry capabilities; it has a machine gun that can be manned by a Felin Rifleman, and a shrapnel defense system that automatically blasts any infantry that get too close to it. Furthermore, once the Shredder Rounds upgrade has been purchased, Leopards can fire special anti-personnel rounds that can badly wound groups of infantry.
If the Manticore Protocol is selected at the Research Facility, each Leopard can mount of two mutually exclusive upgrades - Nano Shock Absorbers that enhances its armor, or Hydrogen Fuel Cells that increase its speed.
However it should be kept in mind that this tank is one of the more expensive MBTs out there, after the Kodiak, and suffers from a rather lengthy deployment time, making it hard to gather large armies of them even when ECA generals are in control of multiple Vehicle Assembly Depots. It is also one of the slowest tanks in the game, making it an easy target for units such as BRDMs and Rocket Buggies.
The Leopard has better capabilities than its Russian counterpart the Kodiak Tank, due to its long-range which can still be boosted further via Gas Ignition Guns, pushing it to obscene distances and allowing an advantage against enemy vehicles and structures.
Additionally, the Leopard has a machine gun which can be manned by a Felin Rifleman to engage ground targets, especally infantry who get too close for comfort. The Leopard also has a shrapnel grenade as defense which can automatically blast at infantry that come within range. These two combine well in defending the Leopard against Terrorists and Hijackers. Assisting in this regard are the Shredder Canister Round which can be obtained from the Solar Reactor. This makes the main gun equally lethal to enemy foot soldiers as its auxillary armaments.
The defensive measures are inadequate against anti-tank troops. Even the machine gun has limited range. Moving forward to engage the AT soldiers may be viable, but this exposes the Leopard to other enemy units. Use Gepards, Pandurs with Panzerfausts or Grenadiers to assist the Leopards against anti-tank infantry.
As much as the Leopard is good against lighter vehicles and infantry, it succumbs rather easily to heavier-armed tanks like the Sentinel or Golem. Guard the Leopards against these threats with Jagdmammuts.
The Leopard is somewhat expensive and slow to produce, therefore to quickly deploy an armoured division, it is advisable to build more Vehicle Assembly Depots.
The Leopard Tank is voiced by The_Hunter, the lead developer of Rise of the Reds.
- Coincidentally, the Crusader Tank in early, prototype versions of Generals were also named "Leopard Tank".