Tank Guide : STB-1
STB-1. The venerable Tier 10 Japanese medium tank. When it was first introduced to World of Tanks, it quickly became synonymous with the word “sexy”. Yes, it is a very good looking tank with it’s streamline hull and well curved turret. In this article, we would be looking at what makes the STB-1 a fearsome medium tank. First, a little history taken from http://wiki.wargaming.net/
In the early 1960s, Mitsubishi started development of a new tank that complied with government requirements for armament and defense. The first two prototypes of the STB-1 were manufactured in September 1969 for trials. In 1970 the prototypes were shown to journalists and participated in a military parade.
A fast, semiaccurate medium tank with low but well sloped armor, very high DPM and high penetration.
So what makes the STB-1 a must have Tier 10 medium tank?
If there’s one thing that defines the STB-1, is it’s damage per minute. With a fully trained crew and with the right equipments and consumables, its able to dish out a frightening 3619 damage per minute, the highest amongst all the tanks in the game. Able to reload every 6.32 seconds (with 100% crew, BIA Rammer, Vents and Onigiri), and with an alpha damage of 390, it is a force to be feared in the battlefield. Using this to your advantage will fare yourself well especially against heavy tanks with long reload as you are able to put in 2 or even 3 shells out before they even reload, like the E100.
However with this amazing rate of fire, comes the STB-1s biggest weakness. The aim time. At 2.3seconds, it’s seems fine and quite comparable to the other medium tanks. However the soft stats of the gun shows that it has the worse dispersion of the turret and hull traverse at 0.16. Comparing this to a Obj. 140 or M48 Patton, which has 0.06 and 0.08 dispersion, clearly the STB-1 suffers from this weakness considerably. This literally translates to having a much longer wait for the bloom of the reticle to shrink, making snap shots unreliable at distance. It still good at sniping at range, though you must be fully aim in to hit accurately. Closing the distance of engagement negates this problem somewhat.
However, the STB-1s awesome depression of -10 degrees still makes it a joy to play at ridges. Which brings us to the next point.
For a medium tank, the hull armor is average for a medium tank at 110mm for the front. 35mm at the side and 25mm for the rear. Angling your hull may induce a lucky bounce because it is sloped at 56 degrees. But, generally it’s not reliable to bounce. Side scrapping is also not reliable because of only 35mm of side armor.
However, the turret is a different story all together. Thanks to its extreme slope and curved shape of the turret, you can reliable bounce shots especially if its hull down behind a ridge whilst making full use of the -10 degrees of depression. Whilst the bottom part of the turret beside the mantlet is still soft at around 172mm, the other part of the turret is around 300-600mm effective. Just make sure that your copula is not overly exposed or it’s liable to get penetrated with its measly armor of only 38mm - 120mm. Playing the ridgeline will make the cupola a smaller target.
I normally run 30 APCR/15 HEAT/5 HE. The APCR penetration at 258mm is sufficient for most tanks that you will encounter. I normally only use the 330mm HEAT shells for the most armored tanks in game that has their weakspots hidden like a hulldown T110E5 whereby i need to aim for it's copula.
Equipment and Consumables
Rammer, Vertical Stabiliser, Coated Optics/Vents. This is a no brainer. With its standard view range of 410m, using Coated Optics increases it by another 10% so you will be able to spot targets for yourself more easily, instead of having to rely on others. On the other hand, though Vents will give you a slight boost to your reload and general performance of the tank, it’s bonus does not outweigh the benefits of Coated Optics.
Repair Kit, First Aid Kit, Fire Extinguisher/Onigiri. Totally up to you how you want to run this. Pretty much standard here.
Commander : 6th sense, Camouflage, BIA, Repair
Gunner : Snap Shot, Camouflage, BIA, Repair
Driver : Smooth Ride, Camouflage, BIA, Repair
Loader : Camouflage, Repair, BIA, Safe Stowage
Before the start of any game, anaylze the tank composition of the enemy team. Choose the best location on the map where you can use it's top speed of 53km/h to get into the best position to spot the enemy and/or to deliver the 1st shot to enemy targets still moving to their position. Be aware of proper hulldown positions on the map and abuse it's -10 degrees of depression to your advantage. If your team consist of more medium tanks, then it's better to wolf pack together to win a side. Remember, try your best to not expose your hull. Due to its gun's mediocre soft stats, it's always better to shoot at a distracted enemy as you will need time to aim. It also doesn't really have the best camouflage rating amongst the tier 10 tanks, so work the bushes. As the game progresses, try to look for opportunities to flank the enemy.