|A Flak Cannon and a Flak Trooper|
|Building Type||Base Defence|
|Ability||Switch Flak Cannon/Defence Hull|
Anti-Air Attack/Self Repair
|Dev. Status||Original RA3 Building|
|Country of Origin||Russian SFSR|
|Manufactured at||Kazminov Design Bureau|
|Key Features|| » Internal tracking systems (outdated)|
» Twin Flak cannons
» Highly polished glass dome
» Proximity fused airburst shells
» Poster: "Allied Plane Spotting for Dummies"
- Unsafe Skies: The Flak Cannon, an upsized version of the same weapon used on the Bullfrog, can spit out impressive amounts of Flak. Any aircraft that flies within the Flak Cannon's range tends to turn into a mangled heap of burning metal, though more armoured aircraft may last longer against the hail of metal fragments.
- Clearly Horizontal: Like the Bullfrog, the Flak Cannon also suffers from a critical weakness. It is unable to bring its Flak cannons to bear on ground forces, and therefore Soviet commanders must build other defences to protect their base from ground attack.
- Take Cover!: The Flak Cannon has recently been outfitted with a reactive armour coat, which protects the Flak Cannon but leaves it unable to fire. This has resulted in a marked increase in the survivability of Flak Cannons and large cost savings as a result.
- Skyburst: Commanders who have access to a fully upgraded Super Reactor will automatically have all of their Flak Cannons replaced with more powerful SAM batteries.
WWIII Operational HistoryEdit
The Soviet Union, as Allied military strategists well tell you, is very well defended against air attack. A system of long range surface-to-air missile sites and powerful radar installations protect the motherland, forming a formidable gauntlet to any hostile aircraft that penetrates Soviet airspace. The Soviet Union's pride in its much vaunted air defence network is not unfounded; after all, it suceeded in shooting down the SR-8 Thrush of Gary Powers, a plane previously believed invincible, thought to be out of the reach of any interceptor or surface-to-air missile in existence.
However, constructing expensive, high altitude S-76 surface-to-air missile sites and massive ground based radar to protect vital military installations and cities deep inside the heart of the Union is one thing; constructing them for semi-permanent forward bases is another entirely. In WWII, such forward bases had been extremely vulnerable to raids by Allied air cavalry and Allied bombers; while later in the war newly developed S-24 SAM sites were constructed to protect some of the more important field bases, most of the time Soviet bases were reliant on Soviet fighters to protect against any air attacks. The Soviets needed a cheap, effective, anti-aircraft defence that could be quickly constructed, preferably from prefabricated parts. The result of this was the Flak Cannon, nothing more than an anti aircraft turret mounted on a simple brick and mortar base. Not exactly genius material, but no complaints have been registered since its introduction.
In early testing, the Flak Cannon proved to be highly efficient and cost effective way of neutralizing Allied air threats, but it had several major flaws. Firstly, the Conscripts manning the turrets had trouble tracking the faster aircraft in the new era of supersonic flight. Also, the open air turrets exposed the guns to the elements, causing frequent jams and backfiring. Many designs were drawn up, the most spectacular of which was a Flak Fortress with fourteen cannons. However, the Soviets dismissed idea after idea, as they were all impractical, too expensive, or just plain unworkable. In the end, true to the saying Keep it simple, stupid!, the turrets were upgraded with a simple glass dome. Add to this a simple yet effective targeting system, and you have one of the best anti-air defences you could ask for. So effective was this design, in fact, that a variant was developed for the Bullfrog.
Allied pilots all over the world fear these turrets, and are ordered to avoid them at all costs. But there may come a day where the Flak Cannon is no longer effective, as the Allies are developing a system called a Point Defence Spectrum Beam, which vaporises incoming projectiles. Needless to say, Soviet spies and saboteurs are working hard to stop its completion.
Post-War Operational HistoryEdit
Due to new Allied dangers, these structures are being built slightly stronger, and now have cameras installed to prevent their operators slacking off. Also, Flak Cannons have been upgraded with reactive armour coats identical to the ones on the Ore Collector, and issued repair kits. This allows the Flak Cannon operator to take cover and repair the damage done to the Flak Cannon. Soviet Command was initially reluctant to accept this proposed upgrade to base defences as it leaves the Flak Cannon unable to defend the base from attack and would encourage operators to cower behind the armour coat instead of fulfilling their duty. However, after they saw the projected cost savings, they eagerly embraced the new upgrade. The projections have not been inaccurate, as Flak Cannon operators have been able to repair the damage to their Flak Cannons while behind their protective shell, thus saving the Flak Cannons from complete destruction and saving Soviet commanders the expense of building a new one. Following the immense cost savings, Soviet High Command decided to implement this upgrade on the Sentry Gun.