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Steel Panthers: Main Battle Tank

by Various

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Original Thread: I've Never Done Anything Like This Before! Let's Play Steel Panthers: MBT



I've Never Done Anything Like This Before! Let's Play Steel Panthers: Main Battle Tank

What is this game?

The Steel Panthers series of games was originally a series of DOS-based ultra-realistic turn-based strategy games created by SSI in the mid-ninety's.

Had they remained that way, they would be even more obscure now, but the rights to the series was later acquired by Matrix Games/Shrapnel Games about a decade later. They proceeded to release two new free games based on the Steel Panthers III Engine, Steel Panthers: World at War, and Steel Panthers: Main Battle Tank.

The former game, World at War, is set in World War II, whereas Main Battle Tank - the game this LP will be covering - is set in the postwar years, from 1946 to 2020.

Steel Panthers: MBT is one of the most realistic turn-based strategy games ever created. For instance, here is a statistics block for an M26 Pershing Tank.

This is just one of the countless thousands of units in this game. I will be explaining what these statistics mean in my next post, although most of them should be at least somewhat self-explanatory.

Aside from the immense realism of the game, Steel Panthers: MBT's most defining feature is the fact that almost any country you can possibly think of is a playable faction. This includes incredibly obvious countries like the United States and Russia, and less obvious countries such as Paraguay and Cameroon (I apologise if anybody viewing this is from either Paraguay or Cameroon).

What isn't in this game?

- Naval units are not in this game (although most factions have offshore naval barrages).
- Weaponry beyond the scope of the game, such as cruise missiles.
- Nations without a military large enough to be represented in this game (ie Palau and Monaco).

How exactly will this LP work?

Well, there isn't exactly a single way to play this game. There are three main modes of gameplay in Steel Panthers, and I will let you vote on which one this LP will focus on.

Option#1: Mission Mode

This is the closest thing the game has to a dedicated single-player mode. There are a list of single-shot missions that start off in the Korean War (Year 1950) and end up in various theoretical World War III scenarios that take place after the present day.

Option#2: Campaign Mode

This is similar to mission mode, with the difference that each campaign is composed of directly linked missions instead of separate single-shot missions. How successfully a mission is won (or how crushingly it is lost) and how many of your units survive will have a direct bearing on the next mission.

Option#3: Battle Mode

This is the game's equivalent of a 'skirmish mode' or 'random map'. The player decides the parameters of a mission which can be either singleplayer or multiplayer, and then a map is generated by the computer.

I am officially endorsing this choice because it will result in a large amount of viewer interaction, and will make this a much more interesting thread than the other two options, but if you really want to vote otherwise, I will comply.

(Note that we aren't restricted to just one type of gameplay mode, if say for sake of argument, you decide that you want to see one of the missions after completing a few player-generated battles, that would be perfectly fine.)

Option#3b: Custom Campaign Mode

One of the Battle Mode options is to have the computer generate a campaign based on some variables that are given to it. I would argue against voting for this mode because it would result in playing the same faction for a long time.

When Voting:

-Either declare that you want to vote for Mission Mode
-Or declare that you are voting for campaign mode and name the campaign you would like to see played
-Or declare that you are voting for battle mode; and list the country you want to play as, the country you want to play against, how large you would like the battle to be, and what year you would like the battle to be set in.
-Or declare that you are voting for custom campaign mode; and list the country you want to play as, the countries you want to play against, how large you would like the battles to be, and what years you would like the battles to be set in (A campaign can be played over a long period of time).
-Or state some variation of one or more of the above three options indicating how you would like to see this LP played out.

Okay- Wait, you said something about this game being free?

Indeed I did, they are available at the following locations.

Download link for Steel Panthers: MBT:

Download link for World at War:

I will now be posting a sample battle to give you the idea of how the actual gameplay works. Please refrain from posting until the next post is up (which shouldn't take long at all).

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