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The map takes place in Belgium during the German Invasion in May 1940, which was spearheaded by Wehrmacht mechanised units, with the intent of tying down Allied forces in the prelude to its surprise attack through the Ardennes. The map's depiction of the first major tank engagement on the western front in World War II, the largest in history up to that point, reflects the Battle of Hannut fought between the 12th and 14 May 1940.
Panzerstorm takes place on misty morning across an unremarkable agricultural municipality outside of the town of Hannut, Belgium. The focus of the map's capture points consists of small, isolated settlements and buildings connected by a rudimentary network of dirt roads, and a shallow stream along the west and south extremities. These points are set amongst a rough grid of vast, open fields bordered by dry stone walls, which are almost completely barren aside from the occasional furrow and tank wreck, and light vegetation around the periphery. The fields further lack variety in elevation, with only gently sloping hills and depressions precluding any notable areas of strategic high ground. The very sparse cover between capture points allows both infantry and vehicles to engage each other across very long distances.
The map places a heavy emphasis on armored combat in rugged rural terrain, and has been stated to be "the biggest ever Battlefield tank map" with up to 17 tanks able to roam the map at once, in addition to three per side called in from Reinforcements. Conquest, Airborne and Breakthrough are the only available gamemodes on this map.
Conquest is fought between seven flags, four of which lie around the edges of the map, in groups of two either side of a central line of three, more proximal objectives. Of these, Forest Cabin and Central Battery are particularly closely packed and have unbroken cover between the two, forming a decisive focal point of the map. Each other objective is separated from each other by large stretches of roadway or open field. As such, teams must utilize the high numbers of tanks and transport vehicles to more efficiently cover ground on this highly expansive map.
Each team starts the battle with 500 tickets and, as with Devastation, a single capture point already under their control, with Farmers Row held initially by the Germans and the British holding onto Southern Warehouses. These forward points each provide an additional tank spawn, bringing each team's starting armored strength to seven vehicles. Furthermore, vehicle repair and resupply stations can be found at every objective location.
Aside from their forward spawns at Farmers Row and Southern Warehouses, each team has two possible deployment locations - a primary spawn location at extreme ends of the map, and secondary points closer towards the map center near the map's horizontal boundaries.
Two airhooks for aircraft resupply are found on the map, located behind each team's primary spawn at the east and west ends of play.
Germany's main deployment is on the far east side of the map, on the reverse slope of a small hill obscuring view to Farmers Row. This is the spawn used to deploy the team's tanks and aircraft, with accompanying ammo, health, and vehicle repair stations, and defensive Flak 38 emplacement. A dirt road out of the area takes players around the base of the hill, connecting to southeast. Another tarmac road drives westwards along the northern border of the map, eventually connecting to the British's primary spawn. In terms of transport, two Kubelwagens and two Sd. Kfz 251 Halftracks spawn here, the latter of which are each towing a Flak 38 and PaK 40.
The team's secondary deployment is halfway along the northern tarmac road, at the base of a radiomast. Directly across the road to the southwest is Dairy Farm, allowing infantry rapid access to the central line of objectives. This deployment has similar access to healing, resupply and repairs, as well as a single anti-aircraft gun. The flag spawns two Sd. Kfz 251s, one of which may tow a Flak 38.
The primary spawn of the British is found on the west end of the map, situated on a flat mudplain abreast the main road. It is located directly west of Southern Warehouses with clear sightlines across the open field between the points, and thus is considerably more open than Germany's start position. Players can follow a dirt road in, or follow the tarmac road north and then east along the periphery towards Dairy Farm. Alternatively, transports can cut directly across the fields towards the map center, but care must be taken as many of the fields north of the warehouses are waterlogged. Ammo, health and vehicle resupply stations are nearby, as well as an emplaced Flak 38. Two each of Universal Carriers and M3s spawn here, with one each of the latter towing a Flak 38 and 6 Pounder.
The secondary deployment is a short distance southwest of Forest Cabin. The base is on the edge of a scarred field connecting to the southern dirt road, and contains all three types of resupply caches in addition to a single stationary Flak 38, two M3 half-tracks, and a towable Flak gun.
A: Farmers RowEdit
Farmers Row is located in the eastern sector of the map's primary boundaries. It is situated on a gentle slope overlooking the low ground to the west and at the foot of the hills to the east. The objective area consists of a small hamlet, comprised of five houses sitting alongside a dirt road. All but one are on the west side, and the four parallel homesteads are all detached from one another. Around the back, each house has a fenced off garden which due to the terrain appear at different, split levels. The completely exposed approaches can make the flag easy to defend, with the houses making up the majority of cover inside the capture zone. Fortifications around the objective largely consist of boarding up their windows, as well as tank trap emplacements on the main road. Outside the capture radius, a climbable water tower overlooks the position to the northwest.
The flag provides one additional tank spawn when captured. This can be spawned in immediately by the Germans at the start of a match, but can be used by the British should the flag fall into their hands. Emplaced behind the houses on the southwest side of the settlement is a Flak 38, positioned to watch over the surrounding hill slope. Additionally, the flag spawns a single three-seater light vehicle and two halftracks, one of which is towing a Flak 38. Ammo and Health stations can be built at the east and west ends of the hamlet, respectively.
An extension of the Germans' deployment defenses can be found by following the road northwest, where at the next junction a small resupply base is set up amongst an old shed, known as the Northeastern Depot. While not a capture objective, the point contains ammo, health and repair stations, a defensive Flak 38, and spawn locations for two Kettenkrads. The area can be additionally fortified through building.
B: Riverside ChurchEdit
The Riverside Church found on the map's southeastern border, and as the name suggests consists largely of an isolated church building stood alongside the southern creek. The church is identical in layout to the one on Arras with front and rear entrances, raised balconies at either end of the interior and with ladder access to the belltower, which can provide excellent sightlines over the open fields sitting adjacent, through which infantry must traverse to reach the flag from Farmers Row or Forest Cabin. The large capture zone encompasses the surrounding graveyard, which is similarly exposed aside from the rows of gravestones and tombs, although the perimeter and certain sections of the interior are divided up by stone walls. The flag itself is just outside the main entrance.
Trenches can be dug around the edges of the graveyard on the east and north sides, while the church interior can be reinforced by building cover. Firesteps around the outside of the building can also be constructed to allow players to fire into the church through the stained glass windows. An Health station is found inside the building near the western end, while an Ammo station and Repair bay are located outside on the north and south sides, respectively. Either a Universal Carrier or a Kubelwagen spawns here when controlled by their respective teams, along with a single Kettenkrad.
C: Forest CabinEdit
The Forest Cabin objective, one of the smallest in terms of capture area, is located in the map's south center. Set amongst the only substantially vegetated sections of the map, a thicket of trees surrounds a clearing where a lone house stands. Terrain around this area is much more rugged than elsewhere on the map, and around the edges of the clearing the craggy ground gives and dense shrubbery gives the position an enclosed, well covered character. As such engagements around this objective are typically at closer ranges than the rest of the map. Enterprising vehicle commanders can limit infantry cover by knocking over trees and demolishing the cabin, opening up the objective somewhat.
A vehicle repair station is located on the dirt road to the west of the objective, while health and ammo stations can be constructed around the exterior of the cabin itself. The cabin can be heavily fortified by sandbag walls, and sandbag fighting positions and dugouts can be constructed throughout the forest. On the periphery, Engineers can set up a Vickers gun facing north towards Central Battery.
A single half-track and towable anti-tank gun are spawned by this flag, while two anti-aircraft guns are positioned on the edges of the forest between the flag and Central Battery, to the northeast and northwest of the flag itself.
D: Central BatteryEdit
The Central Battery is located, fittingly, in the direct center of the map. The position features a large livestock pen, bordered to the south by a row of houses and to the west by a short but steep incline. However, the location has been fortified extensively on the east side, with trenches and gun emplacements facing the main line of German advance. The guns here are already destroyed, but can be repaired by Support players. Inside the livestock enclosure is a heavy artillery piece, emplaced to fire through the roof of the structure - ladders can be constructed on the inside, giving players access to the barn roof. Between the pen, the trenches and the houses is a farmer's yard that lacks much cover, making the structures and defensive earthworks the most substantial cover inside the expansive capture zone.
A Kettenkrad and half-track towing a Flak 38 spawns here. Two anti-aircraft guns are pre-built at the battery on opposite sides of the capture zone. The Medical cache is found inside the central enclosure, the Ammo cache nearer to the earthworks on the east side, and the repair station outside the capture radius downhill to the west. A total of five emplaced anti-tank guns that can be built around this flag; three are within the trench line on the east side of the position, while two more are outside the northwest corner of the enclosure.
E: Dairy FarmEdit
Across an open field to the north of Central Battery is the Dairy Farm. This area consists of two livestock enclosures and a smaller auxiliary structure housing farming equipment, in addition to two silos standing aside the northernmost building. Across a road to the west is a lone farmhouse, and like most other capture zones the position is bordered by cleared meadows. Despite the relatively expansive surroundings this flag's capture radius is quite small, orientated around the southernmost barn. The structure can opened up with explosives, but is otherwise a closed off combat area.
The flag spawns one half-track and an accompanying towable AT gun. A vehicle repair station can be found outside the eastern entrance to the main barn, while ammo and medical caches can be built inside. The barn and adjacent structures can be reinforced with sandbag barricades if their walls are destroyed, while on the exterior Vickers HMG positions can be erected to cover the open terrain between the point and Central Battery.
F: Swine FarmEdit
The Swine Farm is found in the northwest corner of the map, directly west of Dairy Farm.
The flag consists of an isolated agricultural complex, situated on flattened hilltop relative to the low ground to the west and south, with a large flat field covering the eastern approach from Dairy Farm. To the southeast leading into the objective is a roadway covered heavily at each side by a thicket of trees, aptly named the "oak lane". Inside the complex itself, two large buildings are separated by an open yard. The two buildings are long, wide stable-type structures with a straight corridor running through from end to end - the westernmost of the pair is roughly twice the size of the eastern one. The interiors of each has wooden gated animal pens along the structures' outer walls, interspersed with wooden pillars. While solid cover is sparse, the low light level and visual obfuscation inside the heavily fenced-off space can make it difficult to see hiding enemies, although the building materials of corrugated iron and wood means the structure can be gutted with explosives. As with other agricultural buildings, destroyed walls can be barricaded again using sandbags. The flag itself is between the two barns, and the fairly expansive capture zone extends around the yard, and includes two small farmhouses situated on the southwestern edge of the zone. A small circular pond sits to the north.
A Flak 38 is emplaced between the stable buildings near the northern pond. Ammo and Health caches can be built inside each farm building, with its vehicle repair station against the southern wall of the western structure. A single light transport vehicle and a Kettenkrad are spawned by the flag when captured.
G: Southern WarehousesEdit
The Southern Warehouses flag is located in the southwest corner of the play area, to the north of the creek. The capture zone encompasses two similar sized agricultural warehouses that are positioned quite close together, between which is a muddy lane with a number of parked trucks. A short distance outside the capture zone on the west side is a water tower, granting an elevated overwatch position over the surrounding area. Otherwise, the flag area is much smaller than the corresponding objective of Farmers Row. Should they be collapsed, the warehouse walls can be reinforced with sandbags, and the roads leading in from the British deployment can be blocked with tank traps.
This objective provides an additional tank spawn to whichever team holds it. An Ammo cache is located in the western warehouse and a Medical cache under the overhang of the eastern building. The flag's vehicle repair station is around the back, between the eastern structure and the water tower, while the Flak 38 is by a fork in the road on the eastern edge of the position. Vehicles provided by the flag include a single light transport vehicle, two halftracks and a towable Flak.
Mirroring the German's fortifications around Farmers Row, the Southwestern Depot found southeast of the flag allows British tanks and infantry to resupply ahead of their two deployments. The small encampment consists of Ammo and Health caches under camouflage netting, a vehicle resupply bay, and an emplaced Flak gun a short distance west. Two Kettenkrads spawn alongside the gun.
Panzerstorm is the first map in the Battle of Hannut, released as part of Tides of War: Chapter Two Lightning Strikes. The capture of Fort Eben-Emael by German paratroopers has opened the way for their panzer forces to carve a path through Belgium. Allied defenders mass around the city of Hannut, awaiting the German onslaught.
On Day 1, the German attackers hope to repeat their success at Eben-Emael by performing another night drop on British-held positions, seeking to destroy artillery guns emplaced behind their central defensive belt.
The German transport aircraft fly into the map from the northeast, plotting a course between the two radiomasts outside the northern boundaries. Their protected spawn area covers the fields north and east of the Central Battery, and includes Dairy Farm. The team's two bomb spawn locations are quite close to the general play area and on relatively open ground.
The British defenders' main deployment is to the direct west of Forest Cabin, near the riverbed, with their protected zone extending to the treeline around the point.
The four objectives on this map are placed in pairs, with each ground located on either side of the stream dividing the northern Central Battery from the southern Forest Cabin.
The first objective is located inside the large barn on Central Battery. Its positions inside a defensible structure can present a challenge, although the corrugated iron walls can be demolished with explosives, creating new entry points, while it is possible to paradrop directly onto the structure's roof.
Objective B is found a short distance to the south, in the back yard of a row of houses on the edge of the Central Battery position. The nearby buildings provide cover positions for defenders while also breaking up long range line of sight to the objective from the north and west, creating conditions for close-quarters fighting around the emplacement.
The third cannon is to the northeast of Forest Cabin on the edge of the forest, and just inside the line of main defensive earthworks that marks the eastern edge of the play area. Aside from the trees, the gun is placed in a much more open area than the rest, with the adjacent trench line and craggy terrain providing the best available concealment.
The final objective is outside the northern wall of the Forest Cabin itself, situated in a small clearing. As with objective B, the nearby structure grants adequate cover as long as it still stands. Gun D is the closest to the British deployment, and is in terms of geography the most convenient for defenders to react to if a bomb is armed there.
For the attackers to score a major victory, all four guns must be disabled. This awards the team with additional respawn points on the following day.
Day 2 sees the arrival of the main German force, spearheaded by powerful mechanized units. They are met in the field by a smaller contingent of British tanks, who reinforce a strong prepared defense line of anti-tank guns and obstacles, built to resist the Germans' three phase assault. On this day, each team can access their usual complement Squad Reinforcement vehicles, with one heavy tank and two AT halftracks allowed in play concurrently.
The first phase of the battle takes place on the eastern edge of the map, around the hillside settlement of Farmers Row. Control of the hamlet is the singular objective for this stage.
The Germans spawn behind hill crest on the northeast side of the town, and have the option of attacking directly along the eastern road approach, circling along the crest to the northwest, or taking a longer flanking route through the valley to the southwest. The British spawn is on the low ground, further along the road into the opposite side of the village, near the Northeastern Depot landmark. The capture zone itself covers all of the town area and much of its surroundings, including the tiered gardens and allotments along the southern side. The attackers must make their approach over open ground, although the same is true of the British if they are forced to use their main deployment to respawn. Once in town, fighting is at close range as the settlement's houses, the primary source of cover in the objective area, must be systematically cleared.
The attackers field a formidable armored force of eight tanks for the task of escorting their infantry onto the objective site, along with an assortment of light vehicles including three Kubelwagens, two Sd. Kfz. 251 Halftracks and two towable PaK 40s. The defenders are equipped in kind with six tanks, two Universal Carriers, one M3 Half-track and one towable 6-Pounder, the latter of which can be used to augment preexisting anti-tank emplacements in town, which consist of two static AT guns, orientated down the eastern road and northern hillside, respectively. Each team has access to a Vehicle Supply Station in their deployments, while a neutral station is located within the objective area on the west side of town, potentially aiding armored forces fighting inside the capture radius.
In the next phase of battle, the British forces are swept back to their original defensive line constructed about the map center. The two objectives at this stage are the Forest Cabin and Central Battery.
Forest Cabin has a very small capture area, conforming to the clearing surrounding the central titular structure in the middle of the forest. The eastern approach on the objective is defended by a dual anti-tank / anti-aircraft gun emplacement, situated at the edge of the forest. Central Battery is far more expansive, with the capture area covering the main barn and its surroundings, the houses on the west side, and the trench and anti-tank earthworks on the eastern edge - each individual gunpit is made part of the zone. Support players can build additional 6-Pounders at these locations to deter a direct assault, although flanking attackers can still strike from north via Diary Farm, potentially even attacking from the rear due to the boundary placement.
Two aircraft per side join the battle at this stage.
In the last sector, the German forces come to face the British vanguard dug in around the sister agricultural complexes of Southern Warehouses and Swine Farm, along the map's western edge. Of the two objectives, Southern Warehouses has a smaller capture zone and limited possible approaches. Factoring in its proximity to the British main spawn, it can present a challenge to attackers. Swine Farm has a much larger zone of control, encompassing the two barns and additional houses. Each objective is protected from air power by static AA guns.
The British receive significant reinforcement at this stage, surpassing the Germans in terms of armored strength with a maximum of seven tanks, in addition to their existing swath of light vehicles and towable field guns.
If the Germans succeed in their assault, the British are routed from Belgium, regrouping the face the continued armored assault around the French stronghold at Arras.
Now, tank husks litter the landscape of the once beautiful surroundings as the second wave begins. Scarred and singed, the landscape tells a horrific story of a battle that is far from over. Wind your way through muddy trenches and shallow rivers to fortify key positions. Utilize the Supply Stations built around the forested cabin and gain an advantage by taking the high ground farms.
Stand your ground and brace yourself from the relentless incoming armor attacks." — Battlefield V Tides of War Chapter 1: Overture Update Notes
- Panzerstorm received some layout changes during the first week of Lightning Strikes to improve the map's infantry experience. The main changes included the reworking of Swine Farm from one building to a larger complex, introduction of the "oak lane" along the central-west roadway, and a general increase in soft cover on the routes between flags.