|Hull Down Position|
|6 Pounder Churchill|
|Besa Hull MG|
|Besa Coaxial Vehicle|
|British||Churchill MkIV Veterancy|
|10% reduction to received penetration.||23||Level 1|
|20% increase to accuracy.||58||Level 2|
|25% reduction to tank shock cool down, 10% increase to damage & 15% reduction to received damage.||145||Level 3|
|Known Unit (Custom Name)||290||Level 4|
|Feared Unit (Custom Skin)||435||Level 5|
|Churchill MkIV Visual Identification|
Initially specified prior to the outbreak of the Second World War the (A20) was to be the replacement for the Matilda II and Valentine. In accord with British Infantry Tank doctrine and based on the expected needs of World War I style trench warfare, the tank was required to be capable of navigating shell cratered ground, demolishing infantry obstacles (such as barbed wire) and attacking fixed enemy defenses; for these purposes, great speed and heavy armament was not required.
The task of design and construction of the A20 was given to Harland and Wolff, who by June 1940 had completed four prototypes. The vehicle was armed with two 2-pounder guns each located in a side sponson and plans existed for an additional third gun in a central turret. The A20 designs were short-lived however, as at roughly the same time the emergency evacuation of the British Expeditionary Force from Dunkirk occurred. With France conquered, the scenario of trench warfare was no longer applicable and the specifications were revised by Dr. H.E. Merritt, director of Tank Design, based on the combat witnessed in Poland and France. These new specifications, the (A22) or Infantry Tank Mark IV, were given to Vauxhall.
With German invasion looking imminent and the United Kingdom having lost most of its military vehicles in the evacuation from France, the War Office specified that the A22 must begin production within the year. By July 1940 the design was complete and by December of that year the first prototypes were completed; it was in June 1941, almost exactly a year as specified, that the first Churchill tanks began rolling off the production line.
The tank itself shipped with a document from the manufacturer which stated that it had great confidence in the fundamental design of the tank but that the model had been put into production without time for proper honing.
This hasty development had not come without cost though, as there had been little in the way of testing and the Churchill was plagued with mechanical faults. Most apparent was the Churchill's underpowered and unreliable engine, a situation made far worse by the engine's lack of accessibility. Another serious shortcoming of the tank was its weak armament, the 2 pounder 40 millimetre gun, which was somewhat fixed by the addition of a 3 inch howitzer in the hull (the Mk IICS had the howitzer in the turret) to deliver an HE shell albeit not on howitzer type trajectories. These flaws contributed to the tank's poor performance in its first combat outing, the disastrous Dieppe Raid in August, 1942.
The poor performance of the Churchill nearly caused production to be ceased in favour of the upcoming Cromwell tank. The Churchill was saved though by the emergence of the much improved Mk III which appeared in March, 1942 and first saw operational use during the Second Battle of El Alamein in October of that year. In this 'second chance' a select group of five Mk III's, known collectively as 'King Force' went into battle. All were heavily shelled by German anti-tank guns, all but one Mk III made it back with little damage, one tank was said to have been struck up to 80 times. In the following Tunisia and Italian campaigns, the Mk III and its immediate successors continued to prove their usefulness. Among numerous mechanical fixes, the Mk III was distinct for removing the previous weapons of the Churchill and utilizing the 6 pounder gun (57 millimetre) in a new turret design. In one encounter the updated Churchill tank even eliminated a heavy German Tiger I tank, the 'kill' was achieved by the 6-pdr shot becoming lodged in between the Tigers turret and turret ring, the crew abandoned the Tiger tank, which was subsequently captured by the British. This particular tank is on display at Bovington Tank Museum in the United Kingdom.
The second major improvement in the Churchill's design, the Mk VII first saw operational use in the Battle of Normandy in 1944. The Mk VII improved on the already heavy armor of the Churchill with a wider chassis and the 75 mm gun which had been introduced on the Mk VI. It was primarily this variant, the A22F, which served through the remainder of war and was redesignated as A42 in 1945.
Tactics & Tips
- The Churchill Tank can only be used with the Royal Engineer Doctrine.
- This weapon is effective against armored rushes against the Panzer Elite, specifically the Panzer IV E due to its ability to do minimal damage to armored units.
- The Churchill can absorb tons of damage before going down.
- The Churchill has the ability to suppress infantry with Tank Shock (and if the mine plow upgrade was purchased, instantly kill them). This is especially helpful against Panzershreck equipped infantry.
- You can use the Churchill to crush hedges and other obstacles to help improve your emplacement's line of fire, such as the 17 Pounder AT Gun. It can also help you place defenses in unexpected places on the map.
- The Churchill's gun is useless against anything heavier than a Puma. Think of this tank as a wall on wheels that just happens to have a decoration that looks strangely like a gun on top.
- The Churchill's forward armor is quite tough, however, the back armor is considerably weaker. This is a general tank rule, but heavily applies for the Churchill: Always keep the front end pointed forwards.