Brainstorming Tanks: Soviet Multi-Turret Tree Part 1

The appearance of the T-35 in World of Tanks is nothing new. Screenshots were published ages ago, but everyone knew that the tank will not arrive until Wargaming has figured out what to do with (and actually implemented) multiple turret mechanisms. Sadly, there are few tanks in the game that could take advantage of this technology. So why just one tank? Why not a whole tech tree?

The T-35 would, of course, be the first in the series. This 5-turreted monster was designed in 1930 along with two other multi-turreted tanks: T-28 (medium infantry support tank) and T-26 (light infantry support tank). Since the T-35 project takes its roots from the rather hilariously impractical Grotte and Ansaldo tanks, the only logical predecessors would be the T-26 and T-28. Since this tank is hardly qualified to even be a tier 4 heavy (even a tier 4 light could tear it apart), let’s place it in tier 3, especially since it matches the T-46 in armament.

The T-35 was in design and production (counting prototypes) for 9 years, giving it plenty of researchable modules. The first prototype, T-35-1, was equipped with a short 76 mm KT gun and two 37 mm PS-2 guns. There were, of course, machineguns, but those are not very interesting to us. The engine was a 300 hp M-6, fuelled with gasoline. The second prototype (T-35-2) used a turret from the T-28, and was upgraded with a 500 hp M-17 engine, but was largely the same in other respects. The mass production (using “mass” loosely, as only 61 tanks with several different batches were built) T-35A model used 45 mm guns (first mod. 1932, then mod. 1934) in its small turrets. The main gun was upgraded to a KT-28 (not that it matters much for in-game purposes). In 1936, the engine was charged to 580 hp (and a 600 hp diesel was experimentally mounted). Armour, previously 30 mm in the front, was increased to 50 mm. In 1937, a project with a better L-10 gun was proposed, as well as a flamethrower in the rear, designed for city fighting. In 1938, the front armour grew to 70 mm (although this configuration may be a little OP for tier 3), and turrets and turret platform became sloped. A 1934 project (T-35B) even proposed a 1000 hp engine, but would require a redesign of the hull.

T-35-1 and T-35-2 on parade.

T-35-1 (right) and T-35-2 (left) on parade.



T-35A with improved armour protection.

T-35A with improved armour protection.

So what do we have from all this? At least two guns per turret (KT-28 and L-10 for the big one, 37 mm and 45 mm (two models) for the small ones), four engines, three hulls, three turret configurations. More than enough to make a tank!

Sadly, the T-35 had no direct successor, so one of the heavies built to replace it is going to have to take the next tier. The T-100 seems like it would work. Instead of the 5 turrets of the T-35, this tank only has two. The upper turret was armed with an L-10 gun (replaced with an L-11 gun upon delivery to Karelia). The tank was equipped with a 850 hp gasoline engine (with a project to replace it with a 1000 hp diesel). Sadly, the tank did not stick around long enough to receive a turret upgrade, and an upgrade to the T-100-Z would be quite overpowered for tier 4, so it would have to deal with just one turret. The armour of the tank was up to 60 mm, hardly overwhelming for a tier 4 heavy tank. Sadly, not a lot of upgrade options here (two engines, two guns), but it can work.

Tier 5 is a difficult one to populate, as it is currently occupied by the KV-1, with its fancy 57, 85, and 122 mm guns. Late 1930s multi-turret tanks were either armed with 76 and 45 mm guns, unsuitable for use after tier 4, or are ridiculous 130+ mm cannon dreadnoughts. However, let’s see what we can dig out of the endless pool of KV-4 prototypes! Shashmurin’s KV-4 looks like what we want. A 107 mm gun in the hull (with limited traverse) and a KV-1 turret on top. Kind of like the old SU-85, but with some extra firepower. Oops, the armour is 188 mm, which is quite beefy for this tier. Hm. Maybe it’s time for a combination, like with the current KV-4. Combining the Tarapatin design (125 mm armour, 107 mm gun in hull, 45 mm turret on top) with a KV-1 top turret from Shashmurin’s proposal would result in a reasonable tank, and gives us a gun and turret upgrade option.

KV-4 (Tarapatin design)

KV-4 (Tarapatin design)

KV-4 (Shashmurin design)

KV-4 (Shashmurin design)

That’s it for part 1. Stay tuned for part 2, where I explore candidates for tier 6 and up.

21 thoughts on “Brainstorming Tanks: Soviet Multi-Turret Tree Part 1

      • Done some image searching for it…. Boy.. it looks ugly. Its like Churchill 1 and M3 Lees lovechild….

        But then… it doesnt look like a medium to me.

        • Don’t forget the MGs pointing in every direction that suggest one party had an affair with a Whippet on the side…
          Grotte could *also* come up with designs that weren’t blatantly batshit insane? Unmöglich!

  1. As ugly as these multiple turret tanks are, I am really looking forwards to having multiple turret/gun mechanisms in game. Lumbering around in a Churchill 1 may actually be fun when I can finally use that howitzer. The poor M3 drivers will be happy as well.

    And as luck would have it I bought a new Anker gaming mouse the other day less than half price at £26(not that I needed to spend that much, I was drunk…) to replace my old Microsoft basic 3 button mouse, that I have been struggling with due to its dodgy wheel. I am guessing having more than 3 buttons will help a little with using multiple turret tanks at least.

    • While an 85mm gun would be in the realm of Too Much, I say extrapolation could happen.

      The 45mm guns on the T-35 seem to be mounted in turrets that are similar to the T-26 and BT-7. Thus, I would presume that you could fit other guns in – say hello to 20mm autocannons that shred light tanks, or the longer 37mm guns with higher pen.

      The main turret was compatible with the T-28 (its upgraded turret is in fact ripped off of a T-35), and with that we can assume any guns that are compatible with the T-28 would fit in a T-35. Granted, that included 85mm and 95mm guns – absolutely insane for the tier – but also more reasonable 57mm and 76mm guns. The F-32 or F-34 would work, as would the ZiS-8 and ZiS-4.

  2. I’d say Tarapatin for tier 5 (the small turret is a large weakspot from any direction that makes it not frontally ridiculous) and Shashmurin for tier 6 (stock KV-1 turret at tier 6 is a legitimate weakspot so that 188mm front armor isn’t too stupid. Imagine sticking a M6 Heavy turret on top of a T95, that would be the approximate equivalent in terms of how much of a weakspot it gives.)

    • I agree with you. We already have AT2 with 203mm sloped frontal amour at tier5 . So 188mm amour it ok for kv4 taraparin at tier5 if this tank use stock turret from kv1 (75mm frontal turret)

  3. Russian bias much?

    I know some heavies which have to get along with 50mm unsloped frontal armor at tier 5. So why the fuck should the russians not?

    These multi turreted monsters should be immobile (not slow, but bad mobility (turning etc). They should have huge alpha guns or dpm for their tier. And they should have a massive amount of HP to compensate for meh armor @ t4 & t5.
    So i propose following setup:

    Tier 4: T-35 – top armor configuration (70mm front), stock turret is unsloped, top is sloped
    Tier 5: T100-Z top guns like KV-1?
    Tier 6: Tarapatins KV-4 – KV-5 gun -> stock = top gun, like on the t9 foch
    Tier 7: Shashmurin’s KV-4 – top gun should be Zis24

  4. Hi SS :]

    What there is is much more than that, but I hope You will get all of those fascinating multi turret designs out in further posts.

    We have tanks like:
    T-12 / T-24 – Pretty much the same tank with some differences in suspension ETC – IMO, a great low tier.

    TG – A pretty “sexy” design if It was for me to judge it – can’t remember if You did cover it or not ;)

    T-28 – We all know that one

    T-35 – Pretty much covered above

    T-39 – Only thing that comes to my ming is something like FCM F1 when it comes to size and weapons (I think You did an article about this one as well :P)
    “Smaller” version:
    “Bigger” version:
    As You compare two design sheets that show You the side diagram You can see that the hull itself was pretty different, so there even is a alternative hull potential if this would get added to the tech tree.

    SMK – Something that is between t-35 and T-100 in the “timeline” of tank designs

    T-100 and T-100-Z variant – An evolution of SMK, pretty much covered here as well

    And last, but not least there are many other KV-4 and KV-5 variants as well that could be used in the tree ;)

  5. “Since this tank is hardly qualified to even be a tier 4 heavy (even a tier 4 light could tear it apart), let’s place it in tier 3, especially since it matches the T-46 in armament.”

    Historically-speaking it wouldn’t, but WG could adjust that. I could see it as being researchable from both the T-46 and T-28 (the latter making the grind a little less painful due to more shared components, namely guns). Armor’s not good, but it could be perhaps given some decent gun options. It would NOT be hard to make this thing competitive with the B1 and DW2 (since they suck so much), if anything this thing has the potential to be far better. Having it as a tier 4 will also better-prepare players for the KV-1 than the T-28 does, since the T-35 is a heavy tank rather than a medium tank with the SIZE of a heavy tank. Here’s my idea for the tech tree progression:

    Tier 4: T-35: 70 mm frontal armor configuration, top guns would be the 76 mm F-34 and the 57 mm ZiS-2.

    Tier 5: Two different tanks at this tier: the T-100 and the SMK. The T-100 would be able to research either the next tier vehicle on the line or the T-150, which was derived from it, while the SMK would be able to cross-research into the single-turreted line and unlock the KV-1 (with which it would share some unlocks) or go on to the next tier.

    Tier 6: KV-4 Proposal, either Pereverzev’s or “11″ from your article on them. Armed with the ZiS-6 as the top gun, but might have the (unhistorical) 100 mm D10S or 122 mm D-2-5T as options.

    Tier 7: This is where we start to run into roadblocks, but I’m pretty sure that WG can find some other KV or Objekt prototype stored away at Kubinka that they could use. Would probably cross-research with the KV-4 we have in-game.

    Tier 8: Again, not sure what to do here, but if all else fails, WG can pull a “Reverse T34 and T30″ and turn the KV-5 into a regular tier 8 with the ZiS-6 as a stock gun (since as it is now it’s only sold in the gift shop on special occasions, so it’s not like a whole lot of people will be affected). I know, technically not ‘multiturret’ since the “R2D2″ is an MG turret, but it’s all I can think of for tier 8 that isn’t another KV-4 proposal and is still multi-turreted.

    After tier 8, WG has two options: have it merge into one of the conventional heavy lines (probably the IS-4 line), or add some made-up tanks to fill the gaps. The IS-5 (two guns in the same turret) could be an option for one of the tanks as well.


    Alternatively, we could go with your idea of a more ‘historical’ T-35 at tier 3, which opens up some more options:

    Tier 3: T-35 – possibly with the ZiS-2 as an unlockable top gun. Can research the T-28 from here.

    Tier 4: T-39 – don’t know a whole lot about this one.

    Tier 5: SMK – predecessor to the KV-1 (and thus cross-researches into it), and mostly identical save for having the additional 45 mm gun (which could make it more hazardous for facehuggers or for mediums to flank by driving around the front) and the higher-mounted main gun.

    Tier 6: T-100 – Would have the 107 mm ZiS-6 as a top gun and could cross-research into the T-150 (which it was developed into eventually).

    Tier 7: T-100Z – This would likely need some buffs in order to remain competitive, perhaps not having any new guns from the T-100 before it, but has better mobility, buffed armor, hp, and perhaps some soft stats like gun depression and aiming time to make up for it, turning it into an aggressive brawler and flanker of a heavy tank. The 45 mm gun in the miniturret might need to be upgraded into a 57 or 76 mm gun though.

    Tier 8: KV-4, either Pereverzev’s or “11″ from your article on them – Buffed armor and unhistorical guns akin to those seen on the KV-4 we already have.

    Tier 9: Another KV-4, but like the one in-game would be somewhat fictional. Imagine Mikailov’s or Tseits’ proposals, then stick two miniturrets on the vehicle, either one ahead of the main turret and one on top of it, or both in front of it. Caliber of guns is also buffed above historical level at this point up to 85 mm.

    Tier 10: Ah yes, THIS is where it gets interesting, and will probably require WG pulling a “WT E-100″ to create something people are gonna look forward to. Here’s what I imagine could be an option:

    Something with an armor profile closer to the KV series than the IS series, but very thick (around 200 mm, which is close to the armor layout on a German heavy in many ways). A single large turret with a 130 mm gun in it (probably the gun from the IS-7), and two miniturrets either with buffed 85 mm guns (possibly with autoloaders) or 100 mm guns that would make this tank incredibly dangerous to flank, but is compensated for with some poor soft stats, flat armor in several locations, and most likely and inability of the miniturrets to cover the rear of the vehicle. Any thoughts on this?

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  7. Just wait for 2, 3 inch guns and an 2 pounder pointing out of a TOG. One 3 inch gun in the hull and 1 3 inch gun in the turret with a 2 pounder right next to the 3 inch gun…

    There are many multi-turreted and multi-gun tanks around… There is even crazy stuff floating around with the M4 Sherman if you know where to look.

    The scary thing is that the ideas and plans are 100% real… Such as extremely early design M4 with the duel 37mm M6 cannons in an M4 turret… Thankfully nobody put Long Johns on them from the M22 Locust side project (1944/45) that actually had an 37mm M6 with a Long John on it(4000 fps btw with tungsten).

    Like I said… Scary…

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