The Shilka.

The Shilka is the Russian Federation's sole Anti-Air unit in the game.


  • Unit Type: Anti-Air
  • Availability: Russia
  • Cost: $56,000
  • Anti-Infantry Attack: 12
  • Anti-Vehicle Attack: 13
  • Anti-Aircraft Attack: 16
  • Defense Rating: 10
  • Hit Points: 15
  • Collateral Damage: 8
  • Sight Range: 4
  • Target Range: 4
  • Movement Range per turn: 6
  • Fuel Supply: 45


The Shilka is one of the deadliest anti-aircraft units in the game. Its armor is relatively thin, meaning it needs to be deployed as a second line unit and not at the front of any attacking or defending Russian force. Designed to shoot down aircraft and helicopters, the Shilka's statistics show it to be more than capable of firing at targets on the ground, both infantry and vehicles. Against Light Armored units or infantry it is especially deadly, but it can do significant damage to even Heavy Armor units, particularly under sustained fire.

The target range of the Shilka enables it to strike at enemy targets just as far away as most artillery units in the game can do. It is best deployed in pairs, where the two Shilka's cannons will together be the ruin of any helicopter, fighter or bomber that comes into range. As long as two Shilkas or more are present to cover a Russian force, air units and helicopters will be in grave danger if they come near, and all enemy units on the ground will find themselves facing one of the most all-around dangerous anti-air vehicles in the game.

A player deploying Shilkas should use them aggressively but sensibly, especially if firing from fixed positions on the defensive. Its armor is too thin to enable it to survive much fire up close, so the key is to keep the enemy from ever getting close to the Shilka. The Shilka's good movement rate means it can pack up and move to a new location on short notice, and it will have no trouble keeping up with a column of T-90 tanks. If engaging the Shilka, on the other hand, the key is to press in as close as possible, as quickly as possible, especially with Heavy or Medium Armor units, and destroy it.

Behind the ScenesEdit

  • The Shilka's formal name is ZSU-23-4. ZSU is short for Zenitnaya Samokhodnaya Ustanovka, meaning "Anti-Aircraft Self-Propelled System. The 23 refers to the bore of its cannons in millimeters, and the 4 refers to the number of cannons. "Shilka" refers to the Shilka River in Russia.
  • Afghan soldiers in the 1980s named it the "Sewing Machine" after the sound of its firing guns.