A Fallschirmjäger Squad in urban combat operations.
|Men per Squad||4|
|Upkeep per Minute||-1.34 (per man)|
|Prereq.||Luftwaffe Tactics: Fallschirmjager Infiltration|
|Produced By||None; Called in from the field.|
|Cost to Reinforce||
|Health per Man||60|
3x Karabiner 98 Kurz Bolt-Action Rifle1x MP44 Sturmgewehr Assault Rifle (*)
|Open Weapon Slots||5|
|Max. Speed||3 m/s|
The Fallschirmjäger Squad is a 4-man elite Infantry unit fielded by the Panzer Elite Luftwaffe Tactics company in Company of Heroes: Opposing Fronts. Although technically a paratrooper unit, Fallschirmjäger Squads are not air-dropped into combat: they have already infiltrated the battlefield and can reveal themselves when called for at virtually any position on the map. Their capabilities allow them to engage almost any type of target, and they can be further upgraded with superior FG42 assault rifles to decimate enemy infantry at various ranges. They are very expensive, but are also some of the best infantry units in the game.
With the Luftwaffe Tactics doctrine, the Panzer Elite receive help from the German air-force, and by extension from the Luftwaffe's Airborne Infantry Division. These German paratroopers, known as Fallschirmjäger (translated literally as parachuted hunters, more commonly in English as parachute light infantry), are some of the toughest and best-trained infantrymen available in the entire game. Not only that, but they possess an impressive variety of abilities that allow them to work almost entirely independently of other units.
Fallschirmjäger Squads can be called to the field as soon as the Luftwaffe Tactics: Fallschirmjager Infiltration Command Upgrade has been purchased. The Command Ability it unlocks, also called "Fallschirmjager Infiltration", costs 420, 4 to activate, and provides one of the most unique ways of introducing a unit to the battlefield.
If this Command Ability is targeted on any neutral or friendly building that has room for at least 4 men, the Fallschirmjäger Squad will appear from within that building. It doesn't matter where the building is - it can even be inside enemy territory - as long as it has enough room to fit a Fallschirmjäger Squad. If any other target is selected (i.e. anything that doesn't match the aforementioned description), the Fallschirmjäger Squad will instead appear at the Panzer Elite map entry point (usually not far from the Panzer Elite Headquarters) and will automatically travel to the selected destination.
Fallschirmjäger Squads are initially equipped with Kar98k Bolt-Action Rifles, which enable them to do combat with enemy infantry at long and mid range quite effectively. One squad member, a unit sergeant, is equipped with an MP44 Assault Rifle, though this rifle actually behaves as an "enhanced" version of the regular Kar98k. Fallschirmjäger Squads may be upgraded with four FG42 Assault Rifles, which are excellent automatic weapons capable of killing enemies at almost any infantry-engagement range.
Additionally, Fallschirmjäger Squads possess several abilities that allow them to engage other types of targets beside infantry. They can fire a Panzerfaust Anti-Tank warhead, which can do some serious damage to enemy vehicles. They can also throw a large Anti Building Incendiary Device which will do significant damage over time to buildings and especially any infantry garrisoned inside. Finally, they can Sprint like Panzer Grenadiers straight into enemy Suppression-fire, once several Global Upgrades have been purchased at the various Panzer Elite base structures.
Another interesting innate ability these infantrymen possess is an automatically-activated camouflage property, which allows the unit to hide from enemy eyes. It is triggered whenever the unit stands still behind any kind of cover, and the Fallschirmjäger Squads can fire several shots at unsuspecting enemies before their position is revealed. This allows them to infiltrate enemy territory, set up ambushes, or even escape unattentive enemies.
Finally, as elite infantry, the Fallschirmjäger Squads receive innate protection from several weapons in the game, making them harder to hit and/or giving them a damage reduction against specific weapons. This makes them one of the toughest infantry units in the game, especially when upgraded with Veterancy bonuses.
The use of a Fallschirmjäger Squad can vary depending on circumstances and strategy, but they are overall best used for surprise attacks and ambushes against enemy units. In a larger combat force, the Fallschirmjäger Squad can perform devastating flank attacks, or even charge straight into an enemy position to eliminate them.
Karabiner 98 KurzEdit
Among other standard long-range rifles in the game, the Kar98k is one of the best. Compared to the American M1 Garand, the Kar98k is both significantly faster and more accurate.
The weapon inflicts 12 points of damage per shot, taking about 5 shots to kill an enemy infantryman. At a medium range (17 meters) every second shot will hit an exposed infantry unit, giving a total kill rate that is quite remarkable for a long-range weapon. This decreases to one hit per every 3 shots at the weapon's maximum range of 35 meters (sight-range). Even shots that fail to hit have some effect, as this weapon is relatively good at suppressing enemy infantry.
Like all other small-arms, this rifle is largely useless against armored vehicles and structures. Additionally, at close range it will easily be outdone by Light Machine Guns and Sub Machine Guns.
The Fallschirmjäger Squad leader is clearly seen holding an MP44 Sturmgewehr assault rifle. However, for all other intents and purposes, this is in fact a Kar98k bolt-action rifle, identical to the one described above except for a longer delay between shots.
FG42 Assault RifleEdit
The FG42 is a magazine-loaded automatic weapon, an evolutionary step between Light Machine Guns (such as the MG42 LMG) and actual Assault Rifles (such as the MP44), designed specifically for use by Fallschirmjäger Squads.
This weapon is one of the best infantry-carried rifles in the game, and can only be directly compared to the American Browning Automatic Rifle. Both are weapons that excel at almost any engagement distance, whether long-range combat or up-close and personal.
The FG42 fires in fast, 3-8 bullet bursts, stopping for 1.5–2 seconds between each burst. At normal infantry engagement distance (about 15-25 tiles) it is not very accurate, but the high rate of fire easily compensates for this. Each bullet inflicts 7 points of damage if it hits - more than most automatic infantry weapons. As a result, it'll take about 2-4 bursts to kill an infantryman during ranged combat - much faster than most infantry weapons.
At close range, this weapon speeds up remarkably, and is much more accurate to boot. A Fallschirmjäger Squad equipped with these weapons can easily wipe out an enemy squad if they can close the distance.
At longer range, the weapon is unlikely to deliver much Suppression, though an entire 4-man squad firing these simultaneously can achieve some results in protracted combat.
Although the range of their special abilities is not as wide as that of Panzer Grenadiers, the Fallschirmjäger Squad's abilities are designed to allow them to tackle virtually any type of target they encounter. This makes them a truly versatile infantry unit, capable of adapting to various combat situations. They can attack enemy vehicles with a Panzerfaust Disposable Anti-Tank warhead, and attack buildings and infantry inside buildings with a long-burning Incendiary Device.
Additionally, like other Panzer Elite Infantry, they can set up Reinforcement Points near the front lines, and can eventually Sprint past Suppression fire once several Global Upgrades have been purchased from the various Panzer Elite base structures.
Fire Panzerfaust Edit
When this ability is activated, the Fallschirmjäger Squad will advance to within 30 meters of the targeted enemy vehicle, and launch a single Panzerfaust Anti-Tank Warhead at that vehicle.
The warhead has 100% accuracy against any vehicle, and has no problem penetrating any kind of armor. While the explosion has a radius of 3 meters, it will deliver the vast majority of the damage at the point of impact.
The basic damage delivered by the weapon is 75 points of damage - enough to kill an infantryman, but not do much damage to a tank. Fortunately, the game multiplies this by 2.25, to a final value of 168 points of damage, whenever an any tank or other heavily-armored vehicle is hit. Even M3 Halftracks and M8 Greyhounds receive extra damage, though not as much.
The Panzerfaust won't destroy a tank (unless it's significantly damaged already), so it's mainly used when the Fallschirmjäger Squad is flanking a target that's already under attack by another unit from another direction. Two Fallschirmjäger Squads firing at the same medium-vehicle (like a Stuart Light Tank) can destroy it outright though.
This ability allows Fallschirmjäger Squads to act as anti-tank infantry when necessary. Although this ability has a high munitions cost, the trade-off is that the team doesn't need to lug around an anti-tank weapon which would diminish its anti-infantry capabilities.
Anti Building Incendiary Device Edit
When this ability is activated, select any ground target. The Fallschirmjäger Squad will move to within 8 meters of the target, and then lob a large incendiary explosive at it. The explosive goes off immediately once it impacts with the target.
The initial explosion looks impressive, but actually does almost no damage. Instead, it sprays a flammable liquid over a 6-meter radius around the impact, and ignites it.
Enemy infantry within the first 4 meters will receive about 6 points of damage per second while they are inside the fire. This diminishes to a little less than 1 point per second at the maximum range (6 meters) from the impact point. Soldiers that leave the fire zone do not receive any further damage unless they move back in for any reason.
The fire will burn for a period of between 90 and 120 seconds, causing damage the entire time to any unit remaining inside. For this reason, the best targets for this weapon are units that cannot easily get away - especially Weapon Teams (Machine Gun teams, Mortars, Anti-Tank guns) and infantry inside buildings. If the enemy does not react quickly enough to pull his men out, he may lose an entire squad within up to about 10–20 seconds of the explosion.
Since the fire continues to burn for such a long time, it can cause massive damage to a building - especially weapon emplacements. Most Defensive Structure will suffer a total of about 500 points of damage from a single such device! Ambient buildings and base structures are slightly less vulnerable, but will suffer damage nonetheless.
Even after the target of the incendiary device has died or escaped, the raging fire will continue to deny the location to the enemy. You can therefore use it to dissuade the enemy from entering a building, block passage through a narrow road, or even throw this at a Strategic Point to make sure the enemy can't capture it for a while.
Upgrade to Reinforce Point Edit
- Requires the Fallschirmjäger Squad to garrison a neutral structure inside captured and connected territory.
- Costs 260 to activate
- Activation: Through the target structure's menu.
- Takes 30 seconds to complete.
- Permanent until structure is "un-converted" or destroyed.
- Cooldown: None.
This ability is available whenever a Fallschirmjäger Squad enters a neutral structure situated inside friendly territory connected to your supply lines. It appears in the structure's own abilities menu. To activate the ability, simply click it.
After 30 seconds, the building will be converted to a Reinforcement Point. Nazi flags will be hung from the sides, and a large Panzer Elite emblem will float above it. This conversion is permanent until the structure is destroyed, though it can be "un-done" by enemy infantry.
The primary benefit of a Reinforcement Point is that any Axis Infantry unit within 25 meters of the building can be reinforced, in the same manner as infantry units near your own base structures. An additional benefit is that enemy infantry cannot garrison this structure, since it now belongs to the Panzer Elite.
An additional bonus can be unlocked by the Defensive Operation Global Upgrade, purchased at the Panzer Elite Headquarters. With this upgrade, the Reinforcement Point will automatically heal any infantry within its reinforcement radius.
Enemy infantry can "un-convert" a Reinforcement Point back to a neutral building. This process takes 30 seconds. Enemy vehicles can attack the structure and potentially destroy it.
This ability allows Fallschirmjäger Squads to create a forward outpost to which they can withdraw to replenish lost men (and heal injuries, if this ability is unlocked). This saves a lot of time sending troops back to home base for reinforcements.
- Requires the following Global Upgrades:
- Costs nothing
- Activation: Immediate
- Duration: 15 seconds
- Cooldown: 60 seconds
The Sprint ability is one of the last abilities to become unlocked for the Fallschirmjäger Squad, if for no other reason than the fact it requires 6 Global Upgrades to be purchased from the various Panzer Elite base structures.
When Sprint is activated, for a period of 15 seconds the unit will receive only 50% Suppression from any source. In addition, it will not react to large explosions (where normally the soldiers would hit the ground or escape the explosive radius), and the soldiers will run at full speed regardless of terrain constraints or group formation.
Use these 15 seconds to either run past or directly into a source of suppressive fire, like an enemy Machine Gun. While the soldiers are not made vulnerable to incoming fire, they'll be able to reach cover or assault the suppressing unit in short order, lessening the casualties they would otherwise sustain. This ability can also be used to withdraw to a safer position without having to hit the "retreat" button.
The Fallschirmjäger Squad can take only one upgrade, but it is a very useful one: FG42 Assault Rifles. With this upgrade they become utterly deadly to enemy infantry at almost all engagement ranges.
FG42 Assault RifleEdit
- Costs 75
- Requires at least 4 Open Weapon Slots
- Takes up 4 Open Weapon Slots
- Takes 30 seconds to install.
When this upgrade is purchased, it will add 4x FG42 Assault Rifles to the squad's inventory. Any squad member still carrying his standard Karabiner 98k (or the "pseudo" MP44) will therefore now use an FG42 instead. If the squad has picked up a 1-slot weapon prior to purchasing this upgrade, it will retain that weapon on one of the soldiers.
The FG42s turn this into one of the best anti-infantry squads in the game. They can kill enemies at almost any range, including long-range combat and short-range engagements. They will only lose out to a larger SMG-equipped squad, and then only some of the time.
Note that it is impossible to drop FG42s, so there is no danger that the enemy will capture these awesome weapons. When a Fallschirmjäger Squad with this upgrade is reinforced, the new squad-members will be carrying an FG42 by default.
The Fallschirmjäger Squad possess an interesting innate ability to camouflage themselves. Unlike other camouflage-capable units, this ability is automatically activated and deactivated based on the Fallschirmjäger Squad's activities, and cannot be manually controlled.
Camouflage kicks in whenever any of the Fallschirmjäger Squad members is in Light Cover or Heavy Cover, and is not moving. That individual soldier will become camouflaged within 5 seconds of stopping at the appropriate cover.
Once camouflaged, the soldier can fire 4 shots (or bursts) before becoming visible. Once the first shot is fired, he gains a +25% accuracy and damage bonus for 5 seconds (including for that first shot). The camouflaged soldier will also become visible if the enemy unit comes close enough to detect him, like any other camouflaged unit.
Note that this camouflage is applied to each soldier in the squad individually. So, for example, if only two members of the squad are in cover when the team stops moving, only those two will become camouflaged; the other two will remain visible.
Note that firing in and of itself does not disable camouflage. If the soldier does not move away from his position, he'll regain camouflage repeatedly every few seconds. To an enemy unit, it may seem as though the Fallschirmjägers are "fading in and out of existence", disappearing and reappearing repeatedly.
While one or more squadmembers are camouflaged, it is possible to toggle the unit's automatic target selection off. This prevents the unit from firing at any enemies - unless the squad comes under attack or is discovered by enemies in close proximity.
Finally, do not rely on this ability to keep the Fallschirmjäger Squad invisible. Even when stationary, soldiers often change direction to look behind them every now and then, and this will break camouflage momentarily. This is possibly an oversight by the developers, and makes it harder to keep the squad hidden.
For tactical applications of this ability, read the Tactics section below.
Like all other Panzer Elite units, the Fallschirmjäger Squad can attain 3 levels of Veterancy, by accumulating experience points from the killing of enemy units. As it gains levels, its performance will increase proportionally.
The Panzer Grenadiers use the Panzer Elite Shared Veterancy system to accumulate Veterancy points. In this system, units share experience from their kills with each other, within a certain radius.
Each kill the Fallschirmjäger Squad makes will grant it 100% of the experience value of the killed unit.
In addition, it will pass 50% of that value to any Panzer Elite units within 35 meters of itself.
Vicariously, the Fallschirmjäger Squad receives 50% of the experience value of kills made by other Panzer Elite units within 35 meters.
Every time the Fallschirmjäger Squad gain a level, you'll be asked to choose which Veterancy Upgrade you wish to apply to them - either a Defensive bonus or an Offensive bonus, but not both. You can choose a different bonus at each Veterancy level, if you want.
The bonuses described below are specific to each level. Due to the way they are applied on top of each other, when computed together (see below) they may or may not add up as you may expect.
When these bonuses are computed together with each other as well as the unit's basic statistics, the results at each level are as follows:
*Click button at top right corner to expand.
The Fallschirmjäger Squad is a basic, though capable, commando unit. The ability to suddenly "appear" behind enemy lines allows it to deliver one sudden surprise-attack, whether on its own or in support of a larger offensive. Using its camouflage, it may even be able to set up an ambush of enemy units.
These tactics tie in well with the fact that Fallschirmjäger Squad can easily engage any other unit type, especially once the FG42 Assault Rifle upgrade has been purchased.
Nonetheless, unlike British Commandos, once the Fallschirmjäger Squad is on the map, it's going to have more trouble infiltrating enemy territory again. It is then usually attached to a Panzer Grenadier platoon, where it can do a lot of good in virtually any role, or it can attempt to use camouflage to re-enter enemy territory - though this is much more risky than it sounds.
Fallschrimjager Infiltration is a unique way of putting a unit behind enemy lines. All you need is to locate a structure that can contain the Fallschirmjäger Squad in its entirety, and select that as your target for infiltration. This can be tricky, given that some structures may look like they might be able to fit a squad, but actually do not. In particular, ruins of buildings may sometimes look like damaged buildings, but while a damaged building is a suitable target for infiltration, a ruined building is not. Remember that selecting an "invalid" target will cause your Fallschirmjäger Squad to appear next to your base, rather than at the target...
You may want to determine what target you want your Fallschirmjäger Squad to hit with its first attack, before activating the infiltration ability. That way, you can select a building closer to that target. Remember that a deep insertion behind enemy lines will leave your Fallschirmjäger Squad isolated until it can make its way back. Still, the automatic camouflage may enable your Fallschirmjäger Squad to remain undetected for long periods of time, unlike other Commando units that need to constantly keep moving to avoid being destroyed.
Once the squad is spawned, you have two options: You can try finding heavy cover, preferably in some out-of-the-way spot, so that your Fallschirmjäger Squad can remain camouflaged and wait until you can select a proper target for them. Otherwise, make sure to move them to their target immediately. In any case do not just spawn the unit and forget about it - the squad won't become camouflaged unless it can find cover.
The most straightfoward use for a Fallschirmjäger Squad is to provide flanking firepower against an enemy position, in support of a larger attack force coming from your own territory.
Firstly, Fallschirmjäger Squads can be used to wipe out enemy infantry, whether out in the open or (with Incendiary Devices) inside buildings. The most lucrative targets are enemy Weapon Teams, such as mobile Anti-Tank guns or Heavy Machine Guns, which might otherwise impede the attack. The Fallschirmjäger Squad can approach these quickly from behind and knock them out - Weapon Teams usually need to reposition to confront enemies coming from behind them, so you have time to kill them first.
Another good use is anti-tank work. While your force is engaging a tank or other heavy vehicle from the front, the Fallschirmjäger Squad appears behind it and unleashes a Panzerfaust into its rear armor. Once it's done, the Fallschirmjäger Squad may wish to retreat quickly, or select another target, as it can only fire a single Panzerfaust every 20 seconds.
You can also use this unit to sneak up on an enemy weapon emplacement, particularly Machine Gun Nests, static artillery or Anti-Tank guns - emplacements that cannot turn around to attack the Fallschirmjäger Squad. Throw an incendiary device at the emplacement and get out of there. The fire should be sufficient to destroy the emplacement in short order. For best results, do this before your main attack force makes contact with the enemy, and delay your attack until the emplacement is destroyed or about to be destroyed. Your Fallschirmjäger Squad can continue to attack the emplacement after they've thrown the device, but are usually better off retreating into the Fog of War and hiding to avoid enemy retaliation.
Using their automatic camouflage, Fallschirmjäger Squads can perform spectacular ambushes on enemy units, especially when two or three of these squads are used in unison.
To do so, put each squad in Light Cover or Heavy Cover near a road or other passageway sometimes used by the enemy. Ambushes along main routes are not recommended - you don't want to run into a column of tanks, just one unit at a time if possible.
Once the Fallschirmjäger Squad is camouflaged behind their cover, make sure to toggle its automatic target selection using the Cease Fire button. This will ensure that the ambush does not occur prematurely.
When a light-enough target passes close by, toggle Cease Fire off. Your Fallschirmjägers will begin firing at the enemy unit from the safety of cover, and may get a few shots off before they even lose their camouflage. If the enemy unit is sufficiently light, it may be destroyed by the Fallschirmjäger Squad before it can even react. This works best against enemy infantry of course, but can also be used against vehicles - especially when you're using more than one Fallschirmjäger Squads, and when applying Panzerfaust attacks as appropriate.
Once the ambush is over, don't leave your Fallschirmjäger Squad where it is: Staying in one spot would lead the enemy right to you, so you want to get out of there quickly. Find a cover position further away, and remain camouflaged until the enemy stops looking for you. At that point, if your Fallschirmjägers are still healthy, you can perform another ambush - sometimes even in the same spot as before.
Remember not to fire on an enemy unit until you're sure it is alone. Trying to ambush a large enemy force is suicidal - only strike when the odds are in your favour.
Unlike British Commandos, the Fallschirmjäger Squads do not have the advantage of knowing where the enemy is at any given time. This makes it harder for them to re-enter enemy territory. However, the Fallschirmjägers' advantage is their camouflage ability, which can sometimes be used to move them slowly and carefully back into infiltration positions. It's risky, but when done properly you can get the unit to perform another deep strike.
To do this, you need a Kettenkrad. The Luftwaffe Tactics Command Tree upgrades these automatically with the ability to camouflage themselves at will - this Kettenkrad will serve as the "eyes and ears" for the Fallschirmjäger Squad, scouting ahead of it to make sure it does not run into enemy units while changing positions.
You may want to perform some reconnaissance with the Kettenkrad along the enemy lines first - to discover the weakest defensive point. If no part of the enemy line is vulnerable (which can sometimes happen with the British, who like to build impregnable lines), you may have a problem. Otherwise, once the undefended spot is located, get the Fallschirmjäger Squad and the Kettenkrad near that point.
Have the Kettenkrad scout ahead, to get some awareness of enemy movement. When the coast is clear, rush your Fallschirmjäger Squad to cover inside enemy territory and wait until they are camouflaged. Use the Kettenkrad to scout the area some more, waiting for the coast to be clear again, and then move the Fallschirmjäger Squad to another cover position deeper in enemy territory. Repeat this process until the Fallschirmjäger Squad is at its destination. You can then retreat the Kettenkrad or keep it around to help you coordinate attacks.
If you are ever in doubt that the coast is clear, don't move. It takes 5 seconds for Fallschirmjägers to become camouflaged once in cover, so any movement between cover points should be done only when there is no risk. Move quickly, and always in short bounds - long runs between cover points will get you killed.
Also always remember that each member of the squad must be in cover when the unit stops. Otherwise, any member that is not in cover will not become camouflaged, compromising the entire team's safety. Also remember to select Cease-Fire whenever the squad is fully camouflaged!
This maneuver is extremely risky. It may take a lot of practice until you learn how to do this properly. At first, try doing this only as a prelude to a flank attack on the enemy's front lines, or for an ambush close to your own territory. As you get better, you may be able to get your Fallschirmjäger Squad deep enough to perform incendiary strikes against the enemy's own base!
Fallschirmjäger Squads may be elite infantry, but they are still infantry. This makes them vulnerable to virtually any weapon in the game.
The biggest threats, as always, are artillery strikes and other high explosives, which can kill a team instantly if accurate enough. Flamethrowers and Heavy Machine Guns are also quite dangerous, as are anti-aircraft guns.
Against enemy infantry, a Fallschirmjäger Squad outfitted with FG42 Assault Rifles will tend to win - unless the enemy outnumbers you significantly. Also watch out for SMG-equipped infantry - keep them away from you, and your FG42s will make short work of them.
On unit selection while hiding :
On unit selection while exposed :
On unit selection when under attack:
On move order :
On attack order :
On attack order when suffering individual casualties:
When encountering an MG nest:
On veterancy 'Veteran' achieved :
On weapon upgrade:
Picking up a PanzershreckEdit
Falls have specialzed lines when they carry a Panzershreck. This may indicate that at some point during balancing they may have been upgradable to a Panzershreck like the Stormtroopers.