Questions about the new 2S38's changes and possible balance


Currently, something that greatly stirs the forums and the game is the 2S38, a very controversial vehicle. Today we had an interesting Sneak Peek at the new modules added to the vehicle. I believe I can point out some, giving an idea of the situation the vehicle will find itself in after the future update:


Batteries: There are two batteries that I see, from a layman’s perspective, powering the entire automated system of the vehicle, such as the transfer of images from the optics of the commander and the gunner from the turret to the monitors inside the crew compartment. If this is just another module, its destruction or severe damage could compromise the overall performance of the vehicle, reducing the turret rotation speed or cannon feed.

Combat Area:

Elevator: A significant change is noticeable primarily in the battle compartment: the presence of the ammunition elevator and a completely new layout for the ammunition positioning. Previously, there was just a carousel with 20 ready-to-fire shots, which now seems to be absent. All shots now possibly being fired are only hindered by the high temperature of the cannon after a series of salvos. From what I could understand, this justifies the high rate of fire, with rounds coming alternately from the left and right, each one being elevated after the other when fired.

Ammunition Layout: As mentioned earlier, we also see a completely new and somewhat alarming layout for the vehicle. The positioning likely covers half of the vehicle, with the other half for rounds on their way to the elevator.

Object/Laser Alert: I find this module addition rather useless, a specific module for the alert device for laser beams or anything else. I’m not complaining, but I have never seen this being an issue.

In the combat area, there are modules whose functions I could not entirely understand or even identify, such as those standing out at the rear of the turret.

Crew Compartment:

Computers/Monitors: The addition of these modules will bring a frustrating experience for new buyers and current players who own the vehicle. These are for the commander and gunner, and really relying on the functionality of the computers/monitors, combined with external transmitters, will significantly decrease the combat efficiency of the 2S38, but being a problem in many specific cases.

Movement Control: This is an exclusive module for the driver. Not only with its loss, but the player will also need to repair the control module, making the experience even more difficult for those playing. Truly frustrating.

I see that many are complaining, and many rightly so, about the vehicle. I see that with so many modules, some requiring repair to make the vehicle operational again, keeping it moving or shooting is a major hit to the experience.

As a suggestion, I propose adding these and other modules to vehicles other than the 2S38 that rely on automatic mechanisms.

Also, to avoid penalizing new buyers or those who already own it: update the vehicle’s classification from a light tank to self-propelled anti-aircraft artillery, which is its real classification.

Paying 9,270 Golden Eagles, which converts to almost $80, the price of a premium pack vehicle, only to spend more time repairing than actually experiencing what the 2S38 can offer now is really a high price, in my opinion.

I also propose lowering the vehicle’s BR if there is no rank decompression, and if there is a significant decompression, keeping it at 10.0 or an earlier BR, 9.7.

I understand that I proposed absurd suggestions from the perspective of those who commonly play against this vehicle. Recognizing their absurdity, I ask them to see from my point of view and those who play with it in a delicate situation.

Returning to the BR adjustment suggestions, it is something that should be evaluated after this update with reports from players on whether the 2S38 is balanced or just another “Skill issue” case, where they complain instead of learning how to combat the vehicle.

I’ve seen many cases where the 2S38 was not well utilized or didn’t have very high Kill/Death ratio statistics. Despite being powerful at first encounter, the player might be experiencing a rare moment where they can combat a well-armored vehicle and come out on top, which is why many complain that the vehicle is broken.

In conclusion:

The 2S38 player will spend more time being destroyed or repairing the vehicle than actually experiencing what it can offer.

Thank you for reading. I hope this message can reach higher positions here on the forum.

**: Attachment

**: Counter argument



The 2S38 has been a scourge upon 10.0. You aren’t safe in the air, you aren’t safe on the ground, it is both one of the most effective SPAAs and light tanks in a single package.

Shooting it was always a coinflip between ‘it dies in one shot’ or ‘the fuel tank ate all the spall and your dart made the driver yellow’, the latter soon followed with your death as this device also gets darts - an unlimited amount of them, unlike the OTOMATIC which is quite similar in function.

If anything the 2S38 deserves to go up, maybe when the HSTV-L comes down in BR i’ll reconsider my opinion.


I understand, but,

Flying in a single direction is completely irresponsible unless at a safe distance. This isn’t what makes the 2S38 broken as anti-aircraft; it’s the player choosing to play this way.

On the ground, it’s indeed a topic for discussion. I don’t have arguments to strengthen the 2S38’s case, I admit, but moving it up in BR with future BR decompression because 10.0 is a nightmare for both vehicles of its own BR and neighboring lower BRs doesn’t really favor the situation. And that’s my point:

With the addition of new modules that literally need repairs, considering that all except the radio, ocular optics, and laser warning system need to be in good condition to continue functioning—as I mentioned about the driver’s control, which not only relies on the crew member but also needs the module’s integrity to move the vehicle, along with the batteries that I think will affect its performance if damaged or destroyed.

The argument that facing the 2S38 is a coin toss is valid, I understand, but here’s the thing: the fuel tank is literally positioned and built in such a size that it provides greater protection for the vehicle, besides functioning as a spall liner.

In the case of the OTOMATIC and the 2S38, it’s completely different and should be treated as such; they are opposites:

The 2S38 is a self-propelled anti-aircraft battery actually designed to provide support against aerial and ground targets; **

This new mobile air defense system was designed to engage low-flying aircraft, helicopters, UAVs, cruise missiles, air-to-ground missiles. It can even engage single large-caliber artillery rockets. The 2S38 combat vehicle was designed to operate as a part of a larger system, that includes various support vehicles.

It is also effective against ground targets, vehicles, and infantry holed-up in buildings and field fortifications.

This 57 mm cannon will easily defeat most modern armored personnel carriers, infantry fighting vehicles, self-propelled artillery systems and other armored vehicles.

OTOMATIC stands for OTO Main Anti-aircraft Tank for Intercept and Combat, it’s not intended to engage ground targets, at least from what I know, and in War Thunder, it’s no different. The fact that it can fire APFSDS darts is a positive point, but I doubt the naval cannon was actually made to fire these types of projectiles when it was mounted on an OF-40 chassis. **

The Otomatic self-propelled anti aircraft gun was developed as a private venture by OTO Melara in the mid 80s.

It uses fragmentation rounds against air targets and armor-piercing against ground targets.

The Baikal is an exclusive firing system for the BMP-3 chassis, whereas the OTOMATIC doesn’t show much adaptation. Moreover, being a prototype, it uses an entire firing system initially from a coast guard ship, mounted on a modified Leopard A1A1 chassis for the Italian army’s interests.

I’m loving this discussion, thanks for the response,


**: See also

1 Like

HSTVL is the best autocannon light in the game, 2nd to none. It’s fine where it is.

As for this topic: 2S38 if its first stage is finally fixed should go to 10.3 where I’ve been wanting it to go.

1 Like

Hopefully similar changes come to other vehicles and for other nations.

bro,To my knowledge, this is not the case. The two lines provide different ammunition, such as APFSDS on one side and HEVT on the other. However, I support your idea of changing 20 to 148. Since we want to pursue authenticity, we should not selectively restore it

Not only the best automatic cannon even with the wrong ammunition but also a small and agile vehicle,

Given its current situation, I envy those who can play with the HSTV-L.

Along with this change to the 2S38, I hope that in the near future the same will be done with the HSTV-L, receiving ammunition that was actually used, making it truly rewarding for completing the entire line of light tanks in the American tree.

In the same way, the major drawback of the 2S38 is its limit of 20 shots, which makes the vehicle complicated to use in intense close-combat situations, which in some cases is not very good even with its quick response capability.

Also me, I was planning to do a list of vehicles that could receive additional modules, but I don’t think this is the right time, too early, when even 2S38 hasn’t got its new modules.

I also agree with this, the thing of changing from a different type of ammo is kinda hard to understand, and probably some even curious mechanic in real life, I mean, how they can change between 3UBM22 to BR-281U with 3UO8 between both rounds.

Something that I really wanted to know.


It has the best ammo of all the auto-lights.
Why do you envy those that play the easiest light tank in the game?
HSTVL could be made 12.0 with better ammo, sure, but it’s already the best 11.3 light tank in the game and I like using it at 11.3 for now.

2S38 is WAY slower, larger, worse ammo, and so forth.
Don’t claim the ammo difference doesn’t matter or Strf 9040C is as good as HSTVL by your own argument.

Descriptions of the 2S38:

  • “Self-Propelled Anti-Aircraft Gun”
  • “This new mobile air defense system…”
  • “It is also effective against ground targets, vehicles, and infantry holed-up in buildings and field fortifications.”
  • “This 57 mm cannon will easily defeat most modern armored personnel carriers, infantry fighting vehicles, self-propelled artillery systems and other armored vehicles.”

Descriptions of the OTOMATIC:

Tanks Encyclopedia -

  • “It was developed as a heavy self-propelled anti-aircraft gun for use in Armored Divisions.”
  • “The OTOMATIC could also be used in other roles in addition to its anti-aircraft main purpose.”
  • “Its cannon, being designed for naval use, could be used for coastal defense against lighter targets.
  • “The wide range of ammunition that could be fired from the cannon also allowed it to be used for infantry support and even to engage enemy AFVs (Armored Fighting Vehicle). In fact, the availability of armor-piercing rounds made it possible to destroy armored vehicles and Armored Personnel Carriers (APC), and even deal with IFVs and MBTs in certain situations.
  • “the 76 mm OTO-Breda gun can fire many types of ammunition, from… to APFSDS (Armor-Piercing Fin-Stabilized Discarding-Sabot) and MPAT (Multi-Purpose Anti-Tank) for the anti-tank role.”

Journal of Italian Army 1990 N.4 “Rivista Militare” - JOURNAL OF ITALIAN ARMY 1990 N.4 "RIVISTA MILITARE" by Biblioteca Militare - Issuu

  • “Powerful APFSDS ammunition enables the OTOMATIC 76/62 AA tank to engage armoured fighting vehicles in attack or self-defence actions.”
  • “The OTOMATIC is intended for: defence of armoured vehicles and troops against air attacks on the battle field; defence of forces and vital objectives in rear areas; armour engagement in support of own forces and self-defence.

The Navy’s Antitank System - (PDF) OTO Melara 76mm OTOmatic - DOKUMEN.TIPS

  • “Unlike small calibers (30-, 35-, 40-mm), this system would provide the Army with stand-off capability against armored vehicles on the ground, or aircraft and helicopters coming in for a strike.”
  • “The OTOmatic (OTO Main Automatic Tank for Interception and Combat) is a mobile armored weapon system designed for: defense of troops in the main battle area against air attack; defense of targets in rear areas against aircraft and air-launched missiles; engagement of light armored vehicles.
  • “For optimum ammunition allocation, 26 antiaircraft and three antitank rounds are ready to fire in the automatic feeding system, with 26 more accessible, stowed in the turret, backed up by a reserve of 26 rounds in the hull and nine rounds in the turret.”

Now with all that being said, please explain to me how the OTOMATIC and 2S38 are opposites of each other.


Amazing, I think I should retract my statement,

I wasn’t aware of these documents, and honestly, it never crossed my mind to search for them.

Tell me, is there any topic/post confirming that the OTOMATIC was loaded with more rounds for better-armored vehicles? More than the 12 that the game limits?

It’s something that comes to mind whether it’s a fact or just another nerf by Gaijin.

1 Like

Because I don’t own it lol,

I won’t, but it’s something I’ve seen in most topics about most auto cannons at this BR (10.0 - 11.3).

Gaijin based their 12 round limit on a secondary feed that contains a rapid rotary loading system and a dedicated magazine for said rotary feed, but AFAIK nobody’s presented any evidence that feed system can’t be replenished by the crew from the vehicle’s own storage racks.

1 Like

There’s nothing to suggest there were limits on the APFSDS rounds. Gaijin just guessed since the APFSDS rounds are a few millimeters longer (visual inspection) than the AA rounds, they must not fit anywhere in the tank besides the three in the steploader and the nine in the AT turret rack. In the Italian Army Journal above, there’s a diagram that shows the AT and AA turret storage are separate, but it never specifies what the hull storage is (it’s just labeled “ammunition storage,” not “AA ammunition” or “AT ammunition”).


It’s ridiculous to give so many new models and not add autoloader models to certain tanks.

1 Like

I was wondering how the currently auto loader model worked in 2S38 lol.

Nice to see something more accurate in this next change.

If you struggle fragging Leclercs and Type 10s… lol
Adding autoloader models will do nothing to the survivability of tanks.

Your entire post is incorrect.
The reason OTOMATIC is limited to 12 is because the ammo pool is one giant pool of ammo, and dual-feed isn’t modeled in War Thunder.
It’s that simple.

And the dual-feed needs to be modeled why? And why the arbitrary limit to 12 APFSDS if it’s just a feed issue? The 2S38 can shoot more than one ammo type, yet it isn’t limited to 12 APFSDS, so why is only the OTOMATIC limited?


Because thats how this and other vehicles handle loading ammo.

CV9040 is technically 3 8-round strips and not 24-rounds as shown in game. So thats another vehicle that has a different feeding mechanism that should be modeled, even if its just that ammunition should be loaded 8 rounds at a time.

That is the 3 round drum + 9 round “ready rack” For the drum. Its both a buff and nerf in anti-tank performance (IRL it would be 3 shots before having to reload the drum)

So its an arbitrary decision, but its also not a terrible one to choose imo. One could argue they should have chosen differently but im not gonna go down that rabbithole.

When there is a seperate feed for anti-tank munitions for SPAA in game they get the ammo limit imposed by that feed mechanism. You see the same limit on the 35mm on the Gepard and vehicles using the same mechanism.

Even if the 2S38 was SPAA in game, idk of a seperate feed mechanism that would warrant this restriction

It gets 57mm proxy fuse ammo which no 10.0 SPAA gets. Closest you get is 40mm on the M247 at 9.3.

It does favor the situation. BR changes aren’t set in stone, the situation can be improved NOW for literally everyone else, and when BR decompression comes along it’ll have no problems coming back down due to the traditionally below average premium players.

Irrelevant, in that case its survivability should put it at a higher BR, not a measly 0.7 above the Begleit which is worse in every way including survivability.
Which by the way is lacking darts and IRST.

In-game they can do both roles and the 2S38’s main role IRL is as an SPAA.

Gepard also isn’t “intended” to engage ground targets, however it still carried a small supply of APDS for that very purpose. The same happens with the SIDAM 25.
On that very site you quoted they also provide range against ground targets, up to 2km.

Range against aircraft is 4 km and over 2 km against light armored vehicles and other ground targets. This artillery system could also be used in coastal defense role.

So the OTOMATIC was also intended to be able to engage ground targets if needed.

Another example if this double standard is the Gepard 1A2 - one of the biggest changes was the introduction of FAPDS-T , frangible ammo. The penetrator core was surrounded in a layer of plastic, which would fragment heavily when hitting aircraft while retaining all the AT capability of the earlier backup APDS. The introduction of this ammo implies that attacking ground targets became more relevant for the Gepard.
This ammo is not present in game, despite numerous bug reports/suggestions made.

post-pen effect illustration

Clearly a very different turret and mount. The feed system is also different, on warships it has an 80rd ready rack while on the OTOMATIC it is just 29.
Not to mention the addition of search and tracking radars, optronic tracking, and being redesigned from completely remote controlled to having 3 crew in the turret directly. This likely necessitated an entirely new fire control system as well.

1 Like

So that you cannot incorrectly load more APFSDS than it’s modeled for.
2S38 has no limitation IRL, stop citing that. Cite the Gepard instead.