A few weeks ago, I had the pleasure to do some work related travel. Let me get this out of the way by reaffirming how much air travel sucks nowadays. Oh how I miss the days when airlines allowed you to chain smoke, served filet mignon, and kept the bourbon flowing. Go ahead and give your stewardess a slap on the ass for a job well done without fear of sexual harassment lawsuits or getting throat punched by an air marshal.
The only good thing about air travel today is the entertainment options. Whether you bring your own handheld, tablet, phone, laptop, pay up for Wi-Fi, or watch TV or movies provided by the airlines, you have options to pass the time. Getting drunk is no longer the only option that you have. Having a choice is good.
So on my flight I watched two movies. I got to see The Grand Budapest Hotel, which is hilarious, and Fury, the World War 2 tank action movie starring Brad Pitt. Fury was better than I thought it would be. I compare a lot of WW2 movies to Saving Private Ryan, and even though Fury is no Saving Private, it’s none the less entertaining.
So that got me thinking. Tanks are underappreciated in movies even though the whole concept of a tank is awesome. There are not enough movies about tanks blowing shit up in my humble opinion.
This is less of a problem in video games, however. Tanks are well represented in FPSs to help break up the action and even have their own standalone games, like World of Tanks. So as I asked the flight attendant for yet another little bottle of Johnny Walker, I got to thinking about some of my personal favorite tanks from video games.
6. M1 Abrams – Battlefield 3
The M1 Abrams is the main battle tank for the United States. It’s been around for awhile, but over the years the military has stayed with the times and continually upgraded it. This machine is a well-balanced beast and in Battlefield 3 and under the control of a smart, unified team, it’s hard to beat.
5. OT-34-85 – Call of Duty: World at War
When you think of World War 2 tanks, the first thing that comes to mind for many are the German Tigers and Panzers, as well as the American Sherman tanks.
The German Tigers essentially had field supremacy, outclassing every other tank the allies had. The Russian OT-34-85 was the exception. Yes, the Tigers were still slightly better armor and more firepower, but the Russians were able to crank out these tanks faster than Stalin grows mustaches.
4. Rhino – Grand Theft Auto (Multiple Titles)
The Rhino is pretty much a mainstay in the GTA series appearing first appearing in GTA III. If you manage to get a six star wanted level in the game, the fuzz (rozzers for my UK friends) are going to come after you with one of these beasts. sure, they are slow and easy to avoid, but if this machine has you in it’s sights, you’re done for.
Getting your hands on a Rhino sure is a treat if your main goal is to cause as much destruction and chaos as possible. don’t think for a second though that you’re unstoppable. The cops will come after you in full force and the Rhino’s slow speed and large size makes it an easy target.
3. M35 Mako – Mass Effect
FUTURISTIC SPACE TANK! I like the Mako missions in Mass Effect, even though I know a lot of people who were not fans. Their thinking was that the Mako missions was too big of a departure for the series. They believed that the Mako missions were an attempt to make the game more mainstream like Call of Duty and Halo at the expense of the game’s RPG elements.
Whatever my friends may think, I like the Mako. It’s quick and nimble, has plenty of firepower, and it can hover. These are all good things in my honest opinion.
2. Scorpion – Halo (Multiple Titles)
Speaking of Halo, no tank discussion would be complete with mention of the venerable Scorpion. What I love about this tank is that is futuristic while still being instantly recognizable and current. It’s not a huge departure like the Mako from Mass Effect.
1. Sophia 3rd – Blaster Master
By far, the best tank out of the bunch. Growing up, I was infatuated by the game Blaster Master for the NES, but it was a horrible relationship though, because this game is brutally hard.
Insane difficulty aside, the game was fun and it has an awesome title. I’m immediately reminded of the character Master Blaster from Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome.
Sophia 3rd may not have the firepower of the other tanks on this list, but it makes up for it with pure moxie.
If there is one downside to Sophia 3rd, it’s the name. I’m reminded of the Disney cartoon Sophia the First, which my daughter was infatuated with just a short time ago. Luckily, she has moved on to new cartoons and I’m doing my best to get her to like Star Wars Rebels as my wife thinks that Archer is not appropriate for a 2-year-old.