North Korean Sub-Tree

Would you like to see North Korea in the game?
  • Yes
  • No

0 voters

Would you like to see it as a sub-tree for China, or another nation?
  • China
  • Other
  • Not as a sub-tree, but as a full tree (e.g. United Korea tree)

0 voters

North Korean Ground Forces (DPRK)

Flag-North-Korea

Last Updated: 14/01/24

Today I want to suggest a sub-tree for China, in the form of North Korea! I want to preface this by saying that NK doesn’t have to go to China, but I believe it makes the most sense. There are 4 possibilities I can see for NK being added to the game.

Number 1, and what I am suggesting, is a sub-tree for China. Not only is their a precedent in the game already (what with NK planes [Shenyang F-5] in the Chinese tree), but North Korean vehicles have a pretty decent overlap with Chinese technology.

Number 2 would be adding it to the USSR – again, due to close relations and technology sharing – but they already have 5 lines (seemingly the maximum for the game at the moment) and do not need the extra vehicles.

Number 3 would be adding it to a future Middle Eastern/Arab League tree (due to NK exporting vehicles to them, as well as rumoured technology sharing between states like Syria and Iran with NK), but that’s little more than an educated guess.

Number 4 would be a full tree, air and ground, with South Korea as a United Korea tree. This is imo the 2nd best option but I still do not believe it would be the best.They would lack proper indigenous air vehicles and would only have 3 lines, maybe 4 at best

But let’s get on into the suggestion.

Sub-tree

As you can see, there are quite a few vehicles, all the way from Rank II to Rank VIII, with vehicles of every category other than heavy tank (of which there are literally no options).

Another preface: Yes, we know very little about North Korean tanks. They are very secretive and what we do know sometimes amounts to little more than guesswork. However, I do think I’ve managed to create a well-rounded tree with as many vehicles as possible that can be modelled fairly accurately in game.
But overall, they are very interesting tanks that I believe absolutely should be seen in game.

Individual Vehicle Breakdown

WORK IN PROGRESS, some vehicles missing information/suggestions

Main Branch

Spoiler

Rank II

323 (76mm) – 2.3
Suggestion Post Here (Pending)

Rank III

323 (122mm) – 3.3
Suggestion Post Here (Pending)

M1981 Tŏkch’ŏn (122mm)– 5.0
Suggestion Post Here (Pending)

M1991 Tŏkch’ŏn (152mm)– 5.3
Suggestion Post Here (Pending)

M1972 Tŏkch’ŏn (100mm)– 5.7
Suggestion Post Here

Rank IV

T-34-85 – 6.0
Suggestion Post Here (Pending)

M1975 Tŏkch’ŏn (130mm) – 6.3
Suggestion Post Here

Sinhŭng (2015) – 6.7
Suggestion Post Here

M1991 Chuch’e-Po (2018) – 6.7
Suggestion Post Here

Rank V

M1992 APC – 7.0
Suggestion Post Here (Pending)

M1972 Tŏkch’ŏn (100mm) (LRF) – 7.3
Suggestion Post Here (Pending)

Chuch’e 107 155mm SPG – 8.0
Suggestion Post Here

Rank VI

Ch’ŏnma – 8.7
Suggestion Post Here

Spoiler


First North Korean MBT. Also erroneously referred to as the Ch’ŏnma-Ho, although this is not the official North Korean name. Essentially a license-produced T-62. Some sources claim weaker armour, but this is both uncertain, and NK produced both their own and imported some directly, thus it could/should be added as a standard T-62, at 8.7

Ch’ŏnma (1992) – 8.7
Suggestion Post Here

Spoiler


hVB2fRf

The second minor upgrade of the Ch’ŏnma. Simply adds an external laser rangefinder on top of the barrel. Should be added at 8.7 and foldered with the Ch’ŏnma. If the LRF proves too powerful and just simply better than the standard T-62/Ch’ŏnma, then the armour could be slightly lowered to match the claims that the ones produced by NK have weaker armour.

Ch’ŏnma-92– 9.0
Suggestion Post Here

Spoiler


W4YRVx4

First major Ch’ŏnma upgrade. Also erroneously referred to as the ‘Ch’ŏnma-Ho III’. Adds a new welded turret with side ERA, a thermal sleeve, smoke grenades, an upgraded engine and a LRF, as well as possible NVDs.
At 9.0, it would effectively be a worse-protected, but better mobility (and firepower, at least for the T-55) T-55AM-1, or T-62M-1.

Ch’ŏnma-98 – 9.3
Suggestion Post Here

Spoiler


Upgrade of the Ch’ŏnma-92 that keeps the new welded turret, smoke, LRF (as well as new sideskirts), but adds (possibly, but also likely) an autoloader, a new FCS and thermals (the latter 2 imported from Iran). This therefore is a step up, and should be at 9.3, foldered with the Ch’ŏnma-92. Also erroneously referred to as the ‘Ch’ŏnma-Ho IV’.

Ch’ŏnma-214 – 9.3
Suggestion Post Here

Spoiler

Serial-production version of the Ch’ŏnma-98. Should be added foldered at 9.3 with the Ch’ŏnma-98 and Ch’ŏnma-92. Adds add-on appliqué armour on the turret front and rubber flaps on the bottom and side hull. If Ch’ŏnma-98 has thermals, this does too.
Also erroneously referred to as the ‘Ch’ŏnma-Ho V.’

Ch’ŏnma-215 – 9.7
Suggestion Post Here

Spoiler


pokpungtop-t

New MBT design, but still an upgrade of the Ch’ŏnma-214. Adds more (and different shaped) add-on armour, a new LRF, an extra road wheel (making the wheels more like the T-72 than the T-55/T-62) and increasing the turret size.
Images from ATGM tests show that the turret armour (of both this and the next vehicle) is very thick, apparently more similar to the T-72M1 than anything else [~600mm] (which makes sense, as NK obtained a T-72 Ural around this time).
Also erroneously referred to as the ‘P’okp’ung-Ho I.’

Ch’ŏnma-216 (2012)– 9.3
Suggestion Post Here

Spoiler


S5IwwYK

Upgrade of the Ch’ŏnma-215. Multiple sub-variants, this one only differs in the engine deck, smoke grenade positions, and slightly different turret appliqué armour.
Add foldered with the Ch’ŏnma-215, at the same BR of 9.3.
Also erroneously referred to as the ‘P’okp’ung-Ho II.’

Ch’ŏnma-216 (2014)– 9.7
Suggestion Post Here

Spoiler


pokpung-hocamoright-t

Upgrade of the Ch’ŏnma-216 (2012). Adds dual Igla MANPADs launchers, and dual Bulsae-2 or 3 ATGMs (SACLOS, 460mm penetration for Bulsae-2, Bulsae-3 probably just adds better guidance systems, or doesn’t exist).
Add at 9.7.
Also erroneously referred to as the ‘P’okp’ung-Ho II’ or ‘III’.

Ch’ŏnma-216 (2018)– 9.7
Suggestion Post Here

Spoiler


Upgrade of the Ch’ŏnma-216 (2012). Adds dual Igla MANPADs launchers, and dual Bulsae-3 ATGMs (SACLOS, 460-500mm penetration), as well as replaces the 14.5mm KPVT with a dual 30mm grenade launcher, adds Laser Warning Receivers, and ERA on the UFP.
Add at 9.7.
Also erroneously referred to as the ‘P’okp’ung-Ho II’ or ‘IV’.

8x8 ATGM APC– 9.7
Suggestion Post Here

Spoiler


88744

Name unknown.
ATGM carrier on the basis of an indigenous variant of the Soviet BTR-80, spotted first in 2018. Carries 5x launchers for Bulsae-5 ATGMs. Roughly 1000-1200mm penetration, with a tandem HEAT warhead.

Rank VII

Sŏn’gun (2010)– 10.0
Suggestion Post Here

Spoiler


5534

Also erroneously referred to as the ‘Seon’gun-915’ or ‘Songun-Ho.’

Sŏn’gun (2017)– 10.0
Suggestion Post Here

Spoiler


5534

Also erroneously referred to as the ‘Seon’gun-915’ or ‘Songun-Ho.’

Sŏn’gun (2018)– 10.0
Suggestion Post Here

Spoiler


5534

Also erroneously referred to as the ‘Seon’gun-915’ or ‘Songun-Ho.’

M2018 – 11.3
Suggestion Post Here

Spoiler

Name unknown.

Obscure ATGM carrier on the chassis of a 6x6 APC developed by North Korea in 2010/12 (hence named M2010/M2012), which in turn is based on the BTR-80.
Carries 8x launchers for the Bulsae-4 NLOS ATGM (and likely more in the hull, possibly another 8). This would be a first in game, and so should probably go at 11.3+. ATGMs have ~800mm penetration.

M2020– 11.3
Suggestion Post Here (Pending)

Spoiler

Name unknown.

The most recent and by far most advanced (supposedly) North Korean tank, ever. Visually very similar to the M1 Abrams, and is a stark design switch from previous North Korean vehicles.

NOTE: I am well aware there is very little about this vehicle, and most of what we know is likely propaganda. This vehicle does NOT have to be added. I am adding it here mostly just so discussion about it can occur. This vehicle is even more secretive and unknown than latest generation MBTs already in game, so it would be likely the most inaccurate tank in game if added.

Mounts a 125mm, 30mm grenade launcher, 2x Bulsae-3 ATGMs, a 1200hp engine, composite armour, and a hard-kill active protection system, likely inspired by the Russian Afghanit (seen on the T-14 Armata). Also possibly has an autoloader (judging by crew positions).

It is possible that the technology is very much real, and was either obtained directly or through collaboration with Iran (Zulfiqar 3, Karrar, etc.), Russia (T-14) or China (ZTZ-99A, VT-4(A1), etc.). As such, the technology such as thermals is likely the same as some of these vehicles.

M2020 (2023) – 11.3
Suggestion Post Here (Pending)

Spoiler

image

Name unknown.

Upgrade of the M2020 spotted at the latest (27th July, 2023) military parade. Seems to have turret ERA, similar to some variants of the Seon’gun, as well as hull side ERA/composites, as well as some other small changes. Should be foldered with the M2020, and placed at the same BR.

SPAA Branch

Spoiler

Rank III

M2010-II 8x8 APC – 3.7
Suggestion Post Here (Pending)

M1978 Tŏkch’ŏn (37mm) – 4.7
Suggestion Post Here (Pending)

Rank IV

M1985 – 6.7
Suggestion Post Here (Pending)

Rank VI

M1989 – 8.3
Suggestion Post Here (Pending)

Spoiler

Name unknown.

SPAA on the basis of the ZSU-23-4 – slightly modified hull with an almost identical turret, but instead of the quad 23mm, it instead mounts dual 30mm AK-230s. These would provide less RPM (2k instead of 3.4-4k) but higher firepower due to larger shells. This gun is already in game on the Soviet PR. 206 boat – 68mm penetration compared to 51mm of the ZSU-23-4.
The SPAA also has a new radar, which looks similar to that of the ZSU, but is likely more similar in characteristics to the MR-104 “Drum Tilt” radar for the naval AK-230.

M1992 (9K38) – 9.0
Suggestion Post Here (Pending)

Rank VII

Pŏn’gae-3 – 9.7
Suggestion Post Here

Spoiler

wzREcai0n5cuSSVOWPHqgFpIA5JhD1XTKRoDZ_LXnKY

Little known modification of the Strela-10, of which NK has a few unmodified. Mounts 8x HT-16PGJ instead of 4x Strela-10 missiles. The HT-16PGJ is a copy of the Soviet Igla-1 and Chinese QW-2 (Diameter of 72mm, launch tube 500mm, launch weight 520kg, 18kg warhead, 11.5g explosive). I propose it goes at 9.3, as sort of a similar vehicle with similar missile dynamics to the Ozelot, Machbet, etc.

Rank VIII

M2020 Short-Range SAM – 11.7-12.0
Suggestion Post Here (Pending)

Premiums/Events

Spoiler

Rank IV

323 Light Tank – 6.3
Suggestion Post Here (Pending)

Sinhŭng (1985) – 7.0
Suggestion Post Here

323 MLRS (BM-11) – 7.0
Suggestion Post Here (Pending)

Rank VI

T-55 (Slat Armour) – 8.3
Suggestion Post Here

Ch’ŏnma (1986) – 8.7
Suggestion Post Here

Spoiler

telo1

The first minor upgrade of the Ch’ŏnma first seen in 1986 that only changes the turret, adding a rear turret bustle. Some of these lack a searchlight on the commander’s cupola, but add new NVDs. The addition of the turret bustle likely allows the tank to have a ready-rack in the turret, providing a quicker reload and a larger ammunition capacity.

However, the upgrade is minor and that’s why I suggest it as a unique premium/event tank at the same BR as the standard T-62/Ch’ŏnma.

T-72 ‘Ural’ – 9.0
Suggestion Post Here (Pending)

Rank VII

Sŏn’gun “915” – 10.3
Suggestion Post Here

Conclusion

I hope you like this suggestion! To summarise, North Korea has a surprisingly large range of unique modifications and indigenous vehicles that would be perfect for a sub-tree. I have included what I believe to be the best options for WT, considering progression (and features such as folders).

If you have any questions (or corrections!), please do let me know! :)

Sources

Spoiler

(not an exhaustive list at all)
The Armed Forces of North Korea: On the Path of Songun – Stijn Mitzer and Joost Oliemans
A Visual Guide To North Korea’s Fighting Vehicles - Oryx
Ch'ŏnma - Tank Encyclopedia
Songun-Ho - Tank Encyclopedia
chonma-ho I, II, III
Chonma-ho IV, V, VI
pokpung-ho
M2020, New North Korean MBT - Tank Encyclopedia
M1977 122 mm Self-Propelled Howitzer | MilitaryToday.com
We Take A Closer Look At North Korea's New Prototype Main Battle Tank
323 APC - Tank Encyclopedia
323 Fire Support Vehicle with 76mm F-22 - Tank Encyclopedia

13 Likes

I would see it as a subtree of South Korea.

9 Likes

Yeah I can see potential on that, it’s a very popular idea after all.

I think Gaijin should implement a standalone South Korean tree first before deciding what to do with North Korea. Better safe than sorry, eh?

1 Like

Yes, we must first see if the South Koreans have enough vehicles to form a tree on their own. Because if this is not the case, the North Koreans will have to be implemented from the start.

+1 for them to be connected to South Korea, BUT if it comes down to them needing to be put into another tech tree, I’d have to pick the Soviets since most of the North’s equipment is mostly based on Soviet imports and license production.

1 Like

Chinese sub tree for sure.
Beautiful.

Edit: Unified is my alternative now.

15 Likes

A good start, but it is missing several vehicles, including the various SPAAGs that NK has produced. There are also a few variants of different APCs, such as the M2010 armed with a 122mm howitzer to create a sort of Stryker MGS knockoff, or the M1992 APC armed with MANPADS or an MLRS. It’s a great start though, and I’m certain North Korea should be added, either as a subtree of China or alongside South Korea in a Unified tree. +1

2 Likes

I like this concept (subtree) more interesting compared to a standalone united TT.

4 Likes

I think it can be like the Israel vehicles in the USA tree.
And don’t forget the lastest M2020.

I am planning on updating it to include some vehicles I missed. Like SA, will probably add the SPAAs in with the Chinese SPAA line, and maybe some TDs (like the Stryker knock-off with 122mm) in with the other Chinese vehicles, as well as some ATGM carriers.

This has the bulk of NK production vehicles though.

3 Likes

RE the M2020 – It’s in there.

1 Like

Great! Can’t wait to see!

image
I means the one with ERA.

Do you have a source for this image/more info? I tried reverse searching and didn’t find anything.

I find that the Russian tree already has enough vehicles, adding them would not be wise. China would be a better idea, but I stay for a sub-tree of South Korea, don’t forget, there was a time, although far away Korea was one and the same nation.

3 Likes

[North Korean military parade 2023.7.27] 朝鲜阅兵2023.7.27_哔哩哔哩_bilibili

2 Likes

1+ see this as an second options instead of the United Korea Tree which in my opinion is an first option.

I agree that an full United Korea Air Tree would be underwhelming with 50-55% of Unique/modified aircrafts while the rest would be Copy n paste due to the lower Tiers you mentioned (not a lot of modified aircraft).
You could however make it an Israeli style Tree which lowers the percentage of Copy n Paste by 5-10%.
Here is the suggestion, thanks to @SaabGripen :

United Korea Aviation Tech Tree

However the United Korea Tree is mainly looked at for their Ground Tree as it brings tons of interesting unique and modified vehicles that only focuses on Korean used and build vehicles.

3 Likes

I mean, I would’ve just added North Korean vehicles as event vehicles just like Gaijin was doing to Israel for awhile. Either way my idea makes more sense, either that or combine them with South Korea which I’d like to see more.

Event vehicles massively limits how many will make it in the game, though.

To be fair North Korea doesn’t have much in terms of main battle tanks.