How to Play: Tank Destroyers

Tank destroyers () are specialized vehicles designed for destroying heavily-armored tanks. They possess the second most powerful guns in the game (just after artillery) and have a surprisingly wide range of uses on the battlefield.

TDs are most effective when they have direct sight on the enemy. They can be used offensively to help an assault, or as concealed defenders where they can snipe away and force the enemy to rethink their attack.

What Makes a Tank Destroyer?

Firepower! As mentioned earlier, tank destroyers are generally the most well-armed direct-fire vehicles in game. If you're able to position your tank destroyer behind bushes, their great concealment abilities allows them to attack unsuspecting opponents from great distances. Use the element of surprise and teamwork to quickly finish your target.

Trundle softly and carry a big gun

Most tank destroyers lack a turret, and instead mount their guns on their hulls. If you need to turn your gun to aim at a moving target, you'll most likely have to turn the whole hull, which will negate some of your perks while being stationary(i.e., camouflage rating, camo net, binocs).

Know Your Role and Shut Your Hatch

Glance at the composition of your team when the battle begins, and plan out what are the best routes of attack (or defense) best suited for your tank destroyer.

It's all about the gun

Play To Your Strengths

Take your tank destroyer into a training room to learn its traits, or visit the Tankopedia. Find a way to play to its strengths and that tank destroyer can earn you plenty of XP and Silver!

You wouldn't think it, but this tank destroyer has caused numerous wrecks

Know your strengths:

  • Firepower
  • Concealment

This class was designed to counter heavily-armored tanks. The guns available to tank destroyers tend to be better than the ones available to heavy tanks, and range from fast-firing/low damage to slow-firing/large damage, and everything in between. Angle your tank destroyer correctly to limit having to turn your hull -- opportunities to attack are often lost when an enemy leaves your aim arc.

Tank destroyers tend to have excellent camouflage values when stationary. This encourages players to find a vantage point and keep an eye out for would-be attackers. By staying hidden, you avoid being outflanked by medium and light tanks and can confuse the enemy into thinking there are more TDs lying in wait.

Powerful Variety

Like other classes, tank destroyers come in all shapes and sizes. Some TDs resemble assault guns with enough frontal armor and firepower to withstand an attack. Other TDs have little to no armor, and like light tanks, rely on their camouflage rating or mobilty to escape taking damage.

Depending on your style of play, you have a variety of tank destroyers to choose from.

Classic Anti-tank Role

These tank destroyers tend to be fairly mobile, decently armored and come with powerful guns with decent rates of fire. Tank destroyers are very good at sniping due to their flat-like size, accurate guns and good camouflage ratings.

Some didn't choose the StuG life...

These "all-rounders" are not limited by mobilty and armor, so they can be used in a variety of roles. TDs excel when they are watching over a long corridor, as any enemy that tries to come through is instantly met with fire!

Armored powerhouses

These tank destroyers could make heavy tanks run for their money. They tend to be less mobile, but possess thick frontal armor which protects them from pretty much anything the enemy team can throw at them (even the kitchen sink).

Some TDs trade their mobility for heavy tank-like armor

Being able to reliably deflect damage and return fire is key for these types of tank destroyers. Be sure to choose a suitable location to attack/defend, because the lack of mobility means it'll be difficult to backtrack across the field, and also leaves you vulnerable to being outflanked.

Turreted Tank Destroyers

These flexible tank destroyers are currently available only in a few tech trees. They tend to mobile, offer great damage output but carry less armor. Nevertheless, the ability to use a potent gun with a rotating turret make these types of TDs a force to be reckoned with! The turret allows enough versatility that some of these TDs can used as snipers, support (similar to medium tanks) and even as flankers.

These TDs have the advantage of not losing their camo rating when rotating their turret

These tank destroyers usually don’t possess the same turret traverse speed as medium or light tanks. Try not to rely on your turret speed, and be sure to move your turret and vehicle simultaneously to increase the rotation speed towards your target.

To sum up, pick your tank destroyer wisely and respect its tactical fundamentals. Tank destroyers offer great variety to the World of Tanks battlefields! Knowing how to implement these tactics takes time. However, once mastered, you’ll be responsible for a lot of tanks smoldering on the battlefield!