Seriously? The whole platoon is pinned down… by a horse?
A tachanka is a horse-drawn cart or carriage that serves primarily as a platform to carry a Heavy Machine Gun. The tachanka allows for the rapid repositioning of the very heavy (often water-cooled) machine guns that were a common part of the arsenal of many countries prior to World War Two. In addition, since the gun faced the rear of the cart and could fire during your retreat, a tachanka could be used to discourage pursuit of cavalry by enemy units.
The tachanka was first used by the Russian Army during World War One and the Russian Civil War, although similar, unofficial vehicles were deployed during the Russo-Japanese War.
Later, the Polish Army used them during the Polish-Bolshevik War and the Polish Defensive War of 1939.
During WWII, tachanka's were also used by both the Red Army and the Nazi Wehrmacht.
In reality the tachanka was a way of increasing the mobility of support weapons so that they could keep pace with cavalry without being motorised - the same concept was applied to mortars (although these were not usually fired on the move) and some of the light anti-tank guns and heavy anti-tank rifles of early WW2, although where the line between this and horse artillery lies is uncertain.
Game and Story Use
- One more tactical option for the battlefields of the early 20th Century. Delightfully anachronistic. Those who manage to dodge the rain of lead may be scratchin' their heads in wonderment.