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17 Pounder AT Gun

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Veterancy 17 Pounder AT Gun 0
17-Pounder AT Gun
17pound
A powerful Anti-Tank emplacement
Role Anti-vehicular Defensive Structure
Unit Cost 280Icon Manpower Small.png 280
25Icon Fuel Small.png 25
3Icon PopCap Small.png 3
Upkeep per Minute -3.43Icon Manpower Small.png -3.43
Prereq. None
Produced By Sappers
Production XP 25+25 xp
Primary armament 1x 17-Pounder Cannon
Health 450Icon Health Small.png 450
Armor None

The 17 Pounder Anti-Tank gun is a static emplacement, used by British Commonwealth forces in Company of Heroes: Opposing Fronts. It provides the British with a low-cost defensive capability. It uses the same weapon as the Sherman Firefly's main cannon, making it one of the most fearsome anti-tank weapons in the game.

OverviewEdit

The 17 Pounder is built as a static fortification by the British Sappers. What it lacks in mobility, it makes up for in range and power. This means that 17 Pounders can eliminate enemy vehicles quickly from a comfortable distance.

The 17-Pounder cannon installed in this emplacement is one of the best Anti-Tank weapons in the game. It is capable of destroying nearly any light vehicle with one or (at most) two shots, and its shells will normally penetrate the armor on any light or medium tank. Against heavy tanks, it will cause significant damage when striking the target from the rear, but with the use of its special ability can even damage such tanks from the front.

When constructed the gun has a specific facing, with a 50° forward firing angle. It can be manually swiveled around that point, though slowly, to engage targets at different directions. Like most AT guns it has difficulty attacking infantry, and fast vehicles may be able to move out of range before the gun can zero in on them or finish them off with additional rounds.

Although it is a static emplacement, the 17 Pounder takes up Population Cap points, and is listed among your units in the unit menu. Like most emplacements, it can be dismantled when no longer required.

WeaponsEdit

The 17 Pounder only has a single, primary weapon: An OQF 17-Pounder Anti-Tank cannon, one of the most powerful anti-tank cannons in the game.

OQF 17 Pounder Anti-Tank Cannon Edit

The OQF 17 Pounder AT Cannon is a fearsome heavy gun designed to destroy enemy armored units at a significant range. Although originally a mobile gun, in the game it is confined to the 17 Pounder AT Gun emplacement.

Each shot fired by this cannon delivers 150 points of damage to the target, with very good Penetration values. Rear penetration is extremely high, allowing the shells to reliably penetrate the rear armor of heavy vehicles such as the Panther and King Tiger. Penetration can be further increased with the use of the Armor Piercing Rounds ability, to ensure 100% penetration against any vehicle.

Since the gun fires shells designed to damage armor, the area-of-effect of these shells is minimal. However, it is extremely accurate at almost any range, meaning that it can often kill-off infantry one-by-one. Due to the relatively-high firing rate (about one shell every ~4 seconds), the cannon can destroy an entire infantry squad in short order. Nonetheless, it is recommended to support this weapon with additional anti-infantry measures to prevent it being damaged. Later patches reduced the accuracy of this gun against infantry, increasing the need for extra protection.

The 17 Pounder also has a range of 64 meters - far beyond the firing range of most units in the game. In fact, it is second only to the Axis 88mm Flak 36 AT/AA gun in terms of range. With the proper use of spotters, the gun can easily destroy armored vehicles before they even have a chance to fire back at it.

Note that the gun can only swivel 50° off its set facing. However, it can be rotated to a new facing using the Face Weapon ability. You can even rotate to attack targets that have completely outflanked its position, though rotation does take a significant amount of time.

AbilitiesEdit

The 17 Pounder has 2 abilities: Armor Piercing Rounds and Face Weapon.

Ability Face Weapon Face WeaponEdit

  • Costs: Nothing
  • Activation: Select Ground
  • No Cooldown

When activating this ability, select a point on the ground in the direction where you wish the gun to face. The gun's crew will rotate the cannon around its center axis towards the desired direction, and then set the gun down. The gun's arc-of-fire will now be facing the new direction permanently (or until you use this ability again).

Note that the 17 Pounder AT Gun does not automatically swivel to attack enemies outside its arc-of-fire; you must use the Face Weapon ability to change its heading to attack such targets. However, the gun can fire up to 50° off its set facing without having to be rotated.

Ability Armor Piercing Rounds Armor Piercing RoundsEdit

  • Costs: 50Icon Munitions Small.png 50
  • Activation: Immediate
  • Duration: 45 seconds
  • Cooldown: 45 seconds

When this ability is activated, it will increase the potency of the 17 Pounder's attack for a period of 45 seconds.

The ability increases the gun's armor penetration by a factor of 5, making it possible to do significant damage to any target. Additionally, the gun inflicts 50% more damage and is 50% more accurate, for the entire duration of this effect.

Remember that the ability is paid-for in advance and lasts no more than 45 seconds - even if the gun does not fire a single shot for the entire duration of the effect.

TacticsEdit

The British often rely (at least initially) on defensive tactics: being able to hold secured sectors against powerful enemy onslaughts for prolonged periods of time. Since both Axis factions have access to very powerful armored vehicles, this would not be possible without a cheap-but-powerful Anti-Tank weapon. Where the Americans have mobile AT guns to allow for a dynamic defense or support on offense, the British rely on fixed emplacements in the form of the 17 Pounder. The advantage, however, is that the 17 Pounder is significantly more powerful, to the point where it can effectively engage even the most heavily-armored Axis tanks.

PlacementEdit

The placement of a 17 Pounder is of crucial importance. Due to its inability to automatically rotate to attack targets at different angles, it should be placed at one end of a long corridor of approach - preferably one which the enemy is likely to use often. This way, it will be able to engage any vehicle that travels down the corridor, and is likely to destroy most targets coming directly at it except infantry.

Facing is less important than it may seem. You can place the gun at any angle that will fit your preferred positioning, and then use the Face Weapon ability to rotate it to the desired direction.

Note that the range of the 17 Pounder's main cannon is quite significant - it can strike targets well beyond its own sight-range. Use this knowledge to keep the cannon safe, though you can also put it further forward and use mobile units to spot targets further afield for it to fire at.

It is also possible to place the 17 Pounder in the open, to defend an entire area of open ground. However, to do this properly you will need to manually micro-manage the gun's facing, as it will only fire at targets up to 50 degrees off whatever direction it is currently facing, and will not automatically turn to engage targets outside its firing cone.

SupportEdit

The 17 Pounder has only its primary weapon, which is not very effective against neither Infantry nor light Vehicles. Therefore, it is often best to make sure that the weapon is supported by a nearby, lighter emplacement, or by your own infantry / anti-infantry vehicle.

For emplacements to protect the 17 Pounder, a good choice is usually a Vickers Machine Gun Emplacement placed off to the side, covering either the front approach to the cannon or a side approach that the enemy can use to flank the weapon (or both). The Bofors 40mm is another good choice, as it can swivel freely to protect the 17 Pounder's flanks and front as required, but is not as effective against infantry as the Vickers.

For mobile protection, infantry will usually do fine. You can also use a Bren Carrier or other light vehicle for faster response, though this leaves you vulnerable to Anti-Tank infantry.

Finally, consider adding a 3" Mortar Pit close-by to provide counter-battery fire against enemy mortars.

WeaknessesEdit

The 17 Pounder's main disadvantage is that it is immobile, making it a fine target for enemy mortars and artillery. These must be dispatched quickly with counter-battery fire or mobile units before they can destroy the emplacement. Being immobile also means that the 17 Pounder cannot be moved closer to the firefight. However, you may dismantle an existing 17 Pounder to release the Population Cap points required to build a new one closer to the front. Remember to dismantle any cannon that is no longer required to maintain a defensive perimeter.

As with all fixed emplacements the 17 Pounder is extremely vulnerable to flame grenades and flamethrowers as they quickly kill the manning crew. Once the crew is killed, the enemy can capture and use the gun against its original owner. The crew will also automatically die if the emplacement is damaged almost to 0 health, but not destroyed. Prevent this at all costs!

Another weakness of the 17 Pounder is the fairly large amount of space required to build one, unlike the American M1 57mm Anti Tank Gun or the Wehrmacht Pak 38 50mm Anti-tank Gun, both of which can easily be placed in corners or other tight places. This limits the 17 Pounder's use in urban areas where narrow streets and debris will likely limit its placement.

Yet another issue, likely in place for balancing purposes, is that the 17 Pounder is painfully inaccurate against light vehicles such as armoured cars; even if the vehicle is standing still, the mighty 17 Pounder will miss with alarming frequency. Use Bofors emplacements, Sappers with PIATs, or armour of your own to compensate for this weakness.

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