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AWACS Tank Guides: AMX 50 120

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EdAWACSdenyY #1 Posted 24 April 2017 - 09:58 PM

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AWACS Tank Guides:

AMX 50 120: Stylish Glass Assassin


Greetings ladies and gentlemen! My name is EdAWACSdenY and today we will be taking a look at the AMX 50 120. This is the Tier 9 French auto-loading heavy tank and a very bursty yet fragile mobile assassin. Let’s get on the low down of this vehicle shall we?



Background History:


With the French acquiring American M47 Patton medium tanks for their arsenal, the AMX 50 tank armed with a 100mm gun was made redundant despite successful performance in tests. However the French were not ready to abandon the AMX 50 project. If the prototype could no longer function as a medium tank, then surely it could certainly fulfill the role of a fast and agile heavy tank.


AMX 50 100 in trials


The emergence of the Soviet IS heavy tanks with superior armor and powerful armament, alarmed the Western powers. These Soviet heavy tanks seemed immune to existing Western guns of the time. In response to the appearance of these new Soviet heavy tanks, the British developed the Conqueror while the Americans produced the M103 heavy tank. Both of these vehicles were armed with 120mm rifled cannons that could engage and destroy Soviet tanks at long range. France decided to modify the AMX 50 project to produce a tank comparable to the Western counterparts.


The idea was to mount the same 120 mm gun onto the existing vehicle. The AMX 50 was favorable for adaptation to the desired 120 mm armament due to its large chassis. The gun the tank was to be fitted with was a French version of the American 120 mm cannon and fire the same ammunition. On paper this would give the modified AMX 50 a powerful cannon fed by an autoloader while being equipped with a powerful engine. In practice however, everything was much more difficult.


AMX 50 120, note the pike nose frontal glacis


In order to accommodate the new larger armament, the oscillating turret of the 3rd AMX 50 prototype had to be redesigned with larger dimensions. The height of the oscillating turret’s lower half had to be increased which negated the oscillating turret’s advantage. This also created a dangerous shot trap. The fourth and final prototype featured a much deeper hull and flatter turret in order to guarantee some degree of immunity in large range fire engagements. Most crucially of all, these modifications all increased the weight of the vehicle which reduced mobility.



Another problem was with the German Maybach engines that the French were tinkering around with. Despite optimistic expectations on the engine achieving the desired 1200hp, test shown the power plant to be less than reliable. The maximum allowed output was only 850hp giving the new AMX 50 a mediocre power to weight ratio. Yet despite all of the tanks faults, the French government came close to ordering the AMX 50 in 1955. They hoped to produce the type for the reconstituted German Army also. A production was planned of a hundred for 1956. This decision had to be delayed however, due to the fact the engine problems had not been solved. This would prove fatal for the project.


The continued delays caused by the engines issues with reliability was the nail in the coffin for the AMX 50 project. By this time, advances in HEAT ammunition allowed medium tanks and even infantry to reliable knock out even the most advanced heavy tank. Mobility was therefore favored over armor and the concept of heavy and medium tanks were dying out anyways. The British Centurion tank armed with the famous 105mm L7 cannon showed the way forward to the concept of the main battle tank.


AMX 50 120 B. the fourth AMX 50 prototype with modified hull and oscillating turret


The AMX 50 was changed again in an attempt to pass it off as an agile main battle tank, however it had become much too large and expensive to manufacture. Oscillating turrets were also falling out of fashion because of the inherent difficulty in protecting them from NBC contamination. The engine’s reliability issues were never solved and the deep hull configuration made fitting a new engine impossible. With the problem of combining excellent mobility with effective armor unsolvable, the AMX 50 project was terminated. The AMX 50 would not be a complete waste of time and effort however, as much technological knowledge had been gained from which the AMX 30  project would profit from.


The AMX 50 was a bold and innovative tank for its period and helped invigorate French tank industry, however it was unable to catch up with the times and was left behind.


Now that we have brushed up a bit on the history of this tank, Let's go over it's stats:


Hitpoints: 1750


Speed Limit: 50km per hour


Hull Traverse Speed: 39.98 degrees per second


Hull armour:


Front:  100mm

Sides: 80mm

Rear:  60mm


Turret (top configuration): Turret AMX 50 120


Turret Traverse Speed: 39.71 degree per second


Turret armor:


Front: 100 mm

Sides: 80mm

Rear:  60mm


Top gun: 120 mm SA46


Standard Shell Penetration:


AP: 250mm

APCR:  340mm

HE:  65mm


Average Damage:


AP: 400

APCR: 400

HE: 515


Shells in Magazine:  3


Shell Reload Time: 2.50 seconds


Magazine Reload Time: 24.30 seconds


Accuracy: 0.337 (at 100 meters)


Aim time: 3.4 seconds


Top Engine: Saurer


Horsepower: 1000hp


Now that we have glanced over the general stats of this tank, Let us review its advantages and disadvantages on the battlefield in great detail:




The Gun: The gun on the AMX 50 120 is probably the most notable change you will find from this tank alongside its appearance. Compared to its predecessor, the AMX 50 120 boosts improved firepower with its 120 mm gun, gaining increased penetration and alpha damage. The most major improvement however is to the autoloader of the AMX 50 120. The French heavy features a 120mm autoloader with 3 shells in the magazine.


Each shell deals an average of 400 damage giving the AMX 50 120 a potential burst damage of 1200 if it penetrates with all 3 of its shells. That’s enough to destroy all tier 8 tank destroyers and cripple all tier 9 vehicles while putting a dent in even some tier 10 tanks! This high burst damage causes some tanks to immediately back away for fear of being clipped down to size. The autoloader makes this tank a lethal predator for any wounded enemies caught in the open.


Quick shell cycle: The AMX 50 120 can inflict its potential clip damage of 1200 in around 5 seconds! That’s the half the time the AMX 50 100 needs to unload its 1120 potential damage with 4 shells! Compared to the 3.33 second delay between shells on the AMX 50 100, the AMX 50 120 only has a 2.5 second delay between shells. This quick shell cycle allows the tank to very quickly unload its magazine and reduce the amount of time it has to stand exposed firing. This equates to more damage in less time!


Very high premium ammunition penetration: The AMX 50 120 receives APCR for its premium ammunition which allows fire at targets without worry of slow velocity or having shots absorbed by spaced armor or tracks like HEAT ammo. The fast shell velocity of the APCR also allows less lead on targets. The APCR penetration is also astounding on the 120mm gun of the 50 120 with an average armor penetration of 340! This is the highest penetration average of all premium APCR shells of any tank and allows you to simply slice through the armor of almost any enemy tank you come across.  


High Speed: The AMX 50 120 is by far the fastest of the tier 9 heavy tanks. With a maximum speed of 50 km/hr, it is faster than some medium tanks of the same tier. This gives the French tank much more flexibility compared to other contemporary heavy tanks. With your high speed, you can race from flank to flank and provide assistance wherever you are needed. Repositioning also is much easier for you as you can take key positions faster than other heavy tanks. The high speed also at times allow you to get out of unfavorable encounters and chase down agile enemies whom would elude other heavy tanks. The mobility also makes the AMX 50 120 one of the few heavy tanks that can circle and flank around slower tanks.


Excellent track and turret traverse: The track traverse of the AMX 50 120 is not as good as that of the AMX 50 100 but still decent at around 39 degrees per second. It can also turn on a dime. This allows it to easily maneuver in combat. Combined with an excellent turret traverse of around 39 degrees, the track and turret traverse allows this heavy tank to flank and circle slow and sluggish tanks and keep its front to most  flanking mediums and light tanks.


Excellent at ramming: The AMX may not look like it, but it is actually quite good at ramming other tanks. With a weight of around 60 tons, a sharp angled front, and going at its top speed of 50 km per hour, it can cause serious damage to any tank it collides with. However only use this tactic against tanks that are lighter than you. Ramming any tanks heavier than yourself will result in you taking much more damage.




Weak Armor: The AMX 50 120 has the worst armor profile out of all the Tier 9 heavy tanks. However it is definitely a step up from the armor of the AMX 50 100. Plus the armor is nicely angled which allows for the rare bounce or 2 but don’t rely on that. To think, the thickest piece of armor on the tank is just 100 mm thick. It will be an understatement to say that armor is not the AMX 50 120’s strongest aspect. The upper glacis despite being formed nicely into a pike nose, the thin armor still renders the configuration useless. The turret face is 100 mm and the upper part of the oscillating turret is well sloped, yet it has a huge flat lower turret half and it lacks a sizable gun mantlet. The sides however, are no longer paper thin being 80mm at the sides and 60mm at the rear. As with the AMX 50 100, assume any shots fired at you to penetrate.



Fragile Glass Modules: With a weak armor profile, the AMX 50 120 also has a propensity for frequent and easy damage to its internal modules when hit by enemy shells. Aside from the usual track damage that all tanks suffer, the AMX 50 120 is a hazardous deathtrap on tracks.


Hits to the turret from any direction will almost always jam the turret rotation mechanism or on unlucky occasions damage the gun. Shots to the front and sides of the hull usually damages the ammo rack; another reason to avoid being hit by high calibre guns, lest you get blown up in one hit. And to complete the lists of module damage let’s add fire to the list! Shots to the rear of the tank will also damage your engine or ignite the fuel tanks, but thankfully fires are rare in this tank. Your crew will also often get killed frequently from hits as well.


Simply this tank cannot afford to get hit.


Low hitpoint pool: The AMX 50 120 has the second lowest hitpoint pool of all the tier 9 heavy tanks right behind the IS-8 and in front of the STI with its meager 1750 hitpoints. Considering the AMX 50 120 can face Tier X tanks with high-caliber guns of up to 183mm you will not last very long under sustained fire. Therefore utilizing ambush tactics are much more important in the 50 120.


Large profile and bad camo: For such a weakly armored tank, the AMX 50 120 is a pretty big heavy tank with an even taller profile than its predecessor due to a larger oscillating turret. This means that it has awful camouflage values and will be easily spotted by the enemy, and very easy to hit due to how huge you are. This makes stealthy gameplay extremely difficult.



Terrible gun depression and elevation angles: While the oscillating turret allows for a much smaller turret size as well as the installation of a novel autoloader, it also severely restricts the gun elevation and depression angles of the gun. The gun depression is a dismal 5 degrees just like the AMX 50 120 from previously. You will struggle to shoot enemies over the crest of a ridge. The gun depression also makes the French autoloader vulnerable to side hugging or face hugging tactics. The tank will struggle in those kind of situations to depress the gun far enough in order to penetrate the side hugging or face hugging enemy. This makes close range brawling something you have to be wary of.


The gun elevation of the gun is equally subpar. Again, due to the oscillating turret or more specifically, the turret bustle, the gun cannot elevate the gun at a high angle. This means the AMX 50 120 will have trouble shooting up at enemies on high ground except at long distance.


Low AP shell penetration: The AMX 50 120 has the second lowest armor penetration on its standard AP shells with the E75 and VK45.02B having the lowest average AP penetration. With only 250mm of penetration you will struggle to penetrate some tanks of your respectable tier as well as tanks above your tier without careful aiming.


Horrific reload time: Being an autoloader, the AMX 50 120 inherents the major flaw of the system; a lengthy reload time after magazine expenditure. Once you have unloaded all 3 shots, you will be stuck in a gruesome reload period of 25 seconds. This leaves you extremely vulnerable to an enemy counterattack as you will not be able to fight back until that magazine is loaded. This makes you unsuitable for holding a position.


Large bloom and aim time: Despite the good accuracy and relatively fair dispersion on the gun of the AMX 50 120, it still suffers from a bad aim-time inherent in all the French tanks. The bloom on the aim circle takes agonizing seconds to shrink, which means you will have to be patient with your shots.


Horrible Stock Grind: The AMX 50 120 is a horror to play stock like almost every other tier 9 tank. Hopefully you have grinded all the modules on the AMX 50 100 as that will dramatically shorten your stock grind. In stock configuration, the AMX 50 120 is severely underwhelming, with only a 3 shot 100 mm gun with 220mm of AP penetration won’t cut it against equal and higher tier opponents. The only good thing to say about the AMX 50 120 is that there isn’t many modules to grind since the turret is already in top configuration. But until you grind that 120 mm cannon, you will have a hard time in this tank.


Now that we know what's good and bad about this tank, Let's move on shall we to performance and how to effectively operate this tank in battle.


Summary: The AMX 50 120 is basically an upgrade over the previous AMX 50 100 and in some way can be played as such. It is a logical evolution of the autoloader playstyle you should have become accustomed to at tier 8. At tier 9 however you have some advantages and some disadvantages.


The advantages you inherit is the powerful 120mm SA46 autoloading cannon, the increased alpha and penetration and of course the fast magazine cycling. The disadvantages is that at tier 9 you will face much bigger guns at tier X that you quickly wipe out your hitpoints. The cost of making a mistake has only gotten higher in the AMX 50 120. However overall, the tank is an enormous improvement over the AMX 50 100. With the 2.5 second delay between shells, the AMX 50 120 allows you to deal the high burst potential with 3 shells in less time than you would have in the AMX 50 100. This means less time for your enemies to react and less time needed for you to expose yourself.  


Despite the AMX 50 120’s designation of being a heavy tank, you must abandon all pretenses of playing it like a traditional heavy tank. This tank cannot lead the charge because its cardboard armor, which will quickly become riddled with holes and with only 3 shots before a lengthy reload. Therefore a frontline duty in this tank is often brief. It cannot hold positions on its own also because of its long reload. Any enemies who has half a brain will count how many shots your tank has fired before moving up on you after you empty your magazine and you will be completely helpless to do anything.


The playstyle you must adopt in the AMX 50 120 as with its predecessor, must be that of a medium tank. Stay observant of both teams and take advantage of opportunities as they come up. In conclusion, the AMX 50 120 is a dramatic improvement over the previous AMX 50 120. Those who enjoyed the autoloader assassin playstyle and flexibility of the AMX 50 100, will definitely enjoy the fully upgraded AMX 50 120 which is a evolution of the formers abilities.


Now without further ado, here are some tactics you can use.


Hanging back: The AMX 50 120 is not a heavy tank, GET OUT OF THE HEAVY TANK MINDSET! You are essentially, a medium tank with decent mobility, no armor and a powerful cannon. However, do not rush to the frontlines as your enemies will be more than happy to contest the 50 120’s terrible armor. Your role is to support your allies from the second line. It's best you accompany your team and let some of your other tanks detect and report enemy tank positions for you. You can than unload your magazine into suitable targets while they are preoccupied with other matters, ripping them apart.


Peek a BOOM (autoloader-style) : If you do find yourself fighting around a corner against an enemy and you have no choice but to hold that corner, don’t just drive and sit out in the open to unload your drum. Instead, lock your autoaim onto the target and wait for the aim circle to shrink. Quickly drive out angled and wait until the aiming reticule is locked onto the target, take the shot then quickly back up and reload before repeating the cycle until all shells are expended. The rapid back and forth movement is meant to disorientate enemies aiming at you and bait out a bad shot. If they miss, than poke out and take your time to unload your magazine.


Trade several shots for one hit: You will not be able to always avoid getting hit. However, you can make your enemies regret trading fire with you by giving them several shells from your autoloader back in reply. This may provide enough stopping power to force them to back down. But insure you are trading several shots for only 1-2 shots. If you get pelted by 2-4 shots, than it will certainly not go in your favor.


Full Reload whenever possible: Whenever, possible you want to have a full clip ready. The times when you should fully reload are when:

  1. There is nothing going on for sometime

  2. While changing positions

  3. When your current number of shells are insufficient for finishing off your target

  4. When your allies are taking fire and covering for you.


Surviving the Reload: Surviving the long magazine reload multiple times is key to success in French autoloaders. Therefore, you must always insure you find a safe place with hard cover to reload. Or at the very least, stay with your teammates who can cover you while you reload. Than once your hear the click of the new magazine, go out and wreak havoc.


Relocate: If you are stuck in a bad position, where you cannot effectively deploy your firepower without taking heavy damage, dealing with enemies who are hull-down or you’re reloading and need to find a safe place, use your excellent mobility to find a more advantageous position. Under no circumstances should you attempt to hold a position. That not your job, leave that to real heavy tanks.


Bluff while Reloading: You don’t want your enemies to be aware that your magazine is dry and your busy waiting for the next drum to be loaded into the breech. One way you can fool your enemies and buy a bit more time for your reload, is to point the gun at them and aim as if you are ready to fire. This way you can psych enemies into not daring to come around the corner to shoot you. You can also psych enemies who are counting your shots by shooting 1-2 shots before fully reloading while you bluff. This why they think you only have a few shots left and they will come at you, only to be met with a fusillade of autoloading firepower from your cannon.


Map Awareness: Pay attention to the minimap every once in awhile. See what your team is doing and note the positions of your enemies. Than plan your moves accordingly. Being map aware allows you to rush to the aid of where you are needed the most, rather than staying in one place not really contributing.


Plan your targets: Consider which targets to unload onto with your autoloader. This may sound simple, but it is challenging. Remember your gun is capable of dealing devastating potential clip damage with 3 120mm shells. So pick your targets wisely. Try to go after tanks which you can destroy with one magazine or several enemy tanks which you can take out with one magazine. Don't go chasing after weak low health targets unless they pose a grave threat to your team and no one else can deal with them, it's a waste of a full magazine and costs you a painful reload time. Let your team finish off those tanks if possible.


You should conserve your shots for enemies with 1200 or LESS health. Also when firing, consider when type of ammunition to use. If it's an E75, T95, or other heavily armored tanks you are facing head on, it will be very difficult to punch through with your AP rounds. Use your APCR shells against them. However, if it's a medium tank or any other tank with weak armour and weak spots you can easily hit, use AP and watch them be clipped down to size.


Early Game: You are the opportunist, the pacifist. Your early game goals is not to rush up and unload a full magazine. Instead, you are the sniper, the support who takes shots of opportunity and lets your team spot and take the hits while you preserve your hit points whenever possible. The more hitpoints you save up, the higher your potential to carry late game. Rush to where you are most needed and assist as best you can. Avoid being forced to hold positions, mobility, hitpoints and burst damage is your most safe guarantee of survival.


Late Game: By this time hopefully, the locations of most enemy tanks are known and most of them have taken substantial amounts of damage and some are even alone. Hopefully you have been holding back and preserving your precious hit points. Late game is when the AMX 50 120 becomes a deadly hit and run assassin tank. You can roam around the map, hunting for weakened tanks caught in the open. Pounce on these tanks and finish them off with your fast clip than retreat for the reload. You very quickly reduce otherwise combat-effective vehicles into smoking hulks in seconds. Continue this process until all enemy tanks are destroyed.




AWACS Provisions:


Hot Coffee: Gives 10% boost to crew mastery which helps cut-down on your magazine reload time and improves your vehicle's other characteristics


Canned Pate: Gives 3% boost to crew mastery, same reason to use as with the hot coffee.


Improved Fuel: Gives a 10% boost to engine power and turret traverse. I personally prefer this provision as I feel that in this tank, speed and mobility is a priority worth augmenting.


Protective Kit: If you are concerned about taking constant module damage, this provision will be a good idea to acquire. It increases by 15% the protection of the crew from injuries, +10%´module repair speed, +20% damage protection in case of damaged engine and +10% ammo rack and fuel tank durability. Will be great if you constantly are getting hit.


AWACS Equipment:


Gun Laying Drive: This will assisting in reducing your awful aim time and reduce the amount of exposure time you have to endure. The gun laying drive also insure less time waiting on that large bloom and more time shooting and falling back.


Vertical Stabilizer: Since you cannot equip a gun rammer, due to the gun being an autoloader, you can however equip, a vertical stabilizer which will improve on the move accuracy, and decrease dispersion while turning the turret. This makes your gun much more accurate and more accuracy translates into more damage.


Improved Ventilation: Very useful for cutting down the reload time of your magazine and improving your crew skills. A must have.


I would recommend that people watch this guide from Wargaming on how to play auto loaders before playing with autoloaders. This guide's tips are very useful and can be applied to Blitz.


I hope you guys found this guide helpful, and hopefully allowed those of you who struggled with this tank to now find it somewhat bearable at the very least. If you feel that there were any parts to this guide which were inadequately explained, or there were some areas I left out. Please let me know and I will try my best to rectify.


Thanks for reading AWACS Tank Guides and I will see you on the battlefield.



Edited by EdAWACSdenyY, 24 April 2017 - 11:08 PM.

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_TitoriaLancerAlter #2 Posted 24 April 2017 - 10:28 PM

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Nice and helpful stuff there. I recomend firing APCR at E 75s targeting their front drive wheels which can hit the engine/transmission too, causing a blaze. And lower hull armor too. 

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Achuuu___ #3 Posted 24 April 2017 - 10:29 PM

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¯\_()_/¯     Stupidity at its finest   ¯\_()_/¯

EdAWACSdenyY #4 Posted 24 April 2017 - 10:42 PM

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View PostVladimir_Kroatchev, on 24 April 2017 - 03:28 PM, said:

Nice and helpful stuff there. I recomend firing APCR at E 75s targeting their front drive wheels which can hit the engine/transmission too, causing a blaze. And lower hull armor too. 


like how I unloaded almost a full magazine into your Lowe that one time on Port Bay.

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Q___________Q #5 Posted 24 April 2017 - 11:34 PM


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Pretty clear guide, but there are some things that I feel could be improved upon 

  • It's too long, and it gets dry pretty quickly as well, more pictures or just a direct a direct video guide would be much more interactive and lead to much better information retention.
  • The history is probably better off in a separate guide or compiled in an anthology with all your other history guides, only tank nuts are really interested in that, most people just wanna learn how to play it, not what it is.
  • Anyone can find the tank stats anytime when they look through the tech tree, it's more or less unnecessary.
  • The autoloader video guide made by wargaming is based upon the PC meta, the blitz meta, tank properties and stats are very different from blitz. The relevant information could probably be squeezed down into less than 2 or 3 minutes of video, and some of it is not applicable to blitz.
  • Your wording makes it feel more like a sales pitch than a guide, there's a lot of fluff that gets in the way of the juicy details.
  • Lux is evil and should not exist. The same goes for Garen.


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_TitoriaLancerAlter #6 Posted 25 April 2017 - 12:14 AM

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View PostEdAWACSdenyY, on 24 April 2017 - 05:42 PM, said:


like how I unloaded almost a full magazine into your Lowe that one time on Port Bay.


Can't remember when that happened lol

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EdAWACSdenyY #7 Posted 25 April 2017 - 12:25 AM

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View PostVladimir_Kroatchev, on 24 April 2017 - 05:14 PM, said:


Can't remember when that happened lol


Oh but I do.




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Paradox_Donut #8 Posted 25 April 2017 - 12:51 AM

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I love it and this helped alot!


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TengenToppaPotatoLagann #9 Posted 25 April 2017 - 01:08 AM

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My favorite 50-120 memory: one time I tried to clip out a half health O-47, three shells into the side... results in no damage, but the tracks did go yellow... 

Very next game see the same O-47, three shots into the side: fire, tracked with damage, and a second fire with the third shell. Dead from full HP in like 7 seconds.


So, yeah. Don't rush into a situation thinking you'll clip someone and be safe. The gun is amazing most of the time, but its really easy to get caught out if you're relying on it.


Also: I ran optics instead of GLD, but I do have soft recoil maxed, not sure how much of a difference that'd make.



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View Postminitel_NA, on 13 January 2018 - 03:06 AM, said:

when I’m tired I think I’m good.

Wboys #10 Posted 25 April 2017 - 02:46 AM

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View PostEdAWACSdenyY, on 24 April 2017 - 06:25 PM, said:


Oh but I do.







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Blartch #11 Posted 25 April 2017 - 12:01 PM

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My favorite 50 120 moment was back to back ammo racks on a rushing T-44 platoon. Over 2500 damage in under 6s. It's macho.

Thanks for the guide Ed

Ghost_HESHer_LLC #12 Posted 25 April 2017 - 04:02 PM

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I loved the guide, thanks for taking the time to put this together - which I'm sure took awhile. Plus one'd

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