An often over looked area of the r/c
hobby is the scale realism of battles and war. R/C boating has
taken this aspect of the hobby to new levels with very realistic
simulated battle ships, often hand built.
Tanks is another
segment that is growing in popularity in large part due to the scale
realism in ready to run models. What once took hours of
painting and detail work can now be purchased off the shelf.
VSTank has a large
range of tanks in their lineup that allows nearly any budget to get
involved in the fun. In this review we're going to look at the
M1A2 Abrams NTC and Leopard2 A5 Winter tank set along with the M1A2
Abrams Desert and Russian T80 NATO tank set.
arrive neatly packed with almost everything you need to get
started immediately. Included in this
package are instructions and tips, two tanks and
controllers, a dual sided battle field and CD clips.
Batteries are not included.
back of the controller is a small screw to secure the
cover for the 4 AA batteries required to operate the
tanks. There are several ways the cover could be
secured and they chose to screw it tight. I would
rather see clips or magnets as they don't require tools,
tend to last longer and are much quicker.
controller itself is quite user friendly and will feel
familiar to any video game user.
receptacle is nicely hidden behind a hinged smoked plastic
cover. Flip the cover down and slide the tank onto
the charge jacks. Sliding the tank onto the charger
does require you to be gentle as you push the tank into
its locked position. Although it appears durable, it
is not something younger kids will be able to do without a
little guidance and practice.
instructions recommend you charge the tank twice out of
the box before use. Thereafter you can charge as
needed. I found it took about 5 minutes to charge
and had no problem lasting until your battles were
are pretty well constructed and I really enjoy the
scale detail whether they're sitting on my desk or in
battle. The scale appearance definitely helps me
enjoy these tanks more. Also include are antenna's to enhance the
look of the tanks even further. Providing traction
are actual rubber treads.
bottom of each tank is the ID number. The
controllers are interchangeable so by looking underneath
the tank you'll find which number it has been assigned
1-4. Match the tank number to the number on the
controller and you're ready to battle. This is also
where you'll find the on/off switch to the tank.
On to the battles. VS Tank
offers some suggestions for multiple games that can be played with
the tanks, they include: Sumo, Linked Towers, Cowboy, City War,
Climbing Race and Tug of War.
SUMO Two players only. Move your opponents tank outside of
the battle circle as quickly as possible. The one who falls
outside of the ring is declared the loser.
LINKED TOWERS Two to Four players recommended, requires CD jewel cases and
connectors. Each tank will start at its own tower. Each tank must not fall from the elevated battlefield, or else
they will be considered defeated. When the tank is shot 5
times, it is also considered defeated and must be taken away from
COWBOY Two players only. Each tank starts by facing backwards
to one another in the center of the battle ring. Both tanks
will move forward until the edge of the ring, turn around and
shoot at each other. The one who is hit first is declared
CITY WAR Two to Four players recommended. A free for all battle
with large obstacles acting as real walls, the one who is left
standing will become the winner.
CLIMBING RACE Two players only. Each tank starts at the bottom of its
own slope, and both start climbing towards the top of the highest
tower. Both players are allowed to shoot at each other to
slow down their progress. If one side falls off, then the
tank will have to start off from the tower that they just passed
through. The one who reaches the finish line first will be
TUG OF WAR
Two players only. Tie a string to each tank and the first
tank to pull the other outside the battle circle wins.
These games will occupy quite a
bit of time and I was amazed at how many different people enjoyed
the battles. It seemed to me the adults enjoyed battling
each other more than the kids. And with the quick charge
times, it's a perfect opportunity to change the games, setup a new
course with the CD's or whatever you decide and can think of to
The controllers are familiar to
any gamer. They're comfortable and easy to use without much
thought. The controls are in the places you expect them and
instinct takes over pretty quick. Since the
controllers are interchangeable, I couldn't help but
wonder if that could be a strategy used during war
time. This as it turns out is a viable option during
battle. If you're at risk of being shot, switch to
the opponents channel and it will cause his tank to run sporadically.
This will then hopefully confuse your opponent long enough
to get the heck out of there and line him up for a
shot. It may not be intended to be used as such, but
it's yet another way to make things interesting.
I'm not sure if it's the charm of
the tanks and something that is to be overcome during battle or
not, but control when you turn is not all that precise. Tap
the direction pad hard left or right and the tank does about a 45
degree turn at a time. This means lining up the opponent can
be a challenge. You have to figure out how to turn the tank
and the barrel to get the shot you're after. It makes games
like Cowboy much more difficult that it sounds in the description,
and really lends to some tension as you're anticipating getting
shot while you get into position.
There is the option to turn while
driving, but that is a vary slight left or right movement.
It takes practice to get the hang of how you want the tank to
perform best. Driving the tank is half the difficulty when
it comes to most of the games. The barrel is the easy thing
to use as it's pretty smooth and stops when you lift your finger
from the trigger.
We had fun with the tanks.
They look great, charge quickly and are pretty advanced for the
size. With the way these are built and the technology used
it may not be possible right now, but I sure would like to see
them charge about $10-$15 less than the current list price.
Regardless, VS Tank has built some pretty cool desktop (and
The comments, observations and conclusions made in this review are solely with respect to the particular item the editor reviewed and may not apply generally to similar products by the manufacturer. We cannot be responsible for any manufacturer defects in workmanship or other deficiencies in products like the one featured in the review.