In Team Yankee
A truly unique beast in WW3, the BMP-3 is probably the single most versatile IFV in the game with a couple features that help it truly stand out from its IFV peers. Mobility-wise, the BMP-3 is pretty average, with a 10" move and a 3+ cross that always lets you down when you need it. Armor is decent, capable of tanking mid-range autocannons (AT8 and below) and making you completely invulnerable to heavy MGs. This conveniently forces those pesky American Bradleys to use their ATGMs on you, limiting the damage they can do unless they get on your flanks.
While the mobility is okay and the armor is nice, the BMP-3 really shines in its armory, bringing a platoons worth of firepower and a tool for every job, all of which can fire on the move! The most interesting weapon it brings is its 100mm low velocity cannon. This cannon fires a Brutal 2+ firepower HE-FRAG shell to help dig out infantry teams, though on average it will take 6 shots to kill a dug in NATO infantry team, even with brutal. This means that chances are, rather than digging out infantry, you're better off using your BMP-3s to hunt enemy tanks, something they're particularly suited for with AT 21 and a moving RoF. This moving RoF gives your BMP-3s a lot of mobility and flexibility in dealing with tanks, but it comes with a drawback: 16" minimum range. This means that once an enemy tank gets too close, you have nothing to effectively deal with them, so be careful in your deployment! Alongside this, the BMP comes with the same 30mm cannon on the BMP-2 (AT10 FP 5+) which is enough to deal with the uparmored IFVs other armies have, and an extra MG shot to add flavor.
Overall the BMP-3 is an exceptionally flexible vehicle that, when used right, can absolutely dissect the enemy force. When used wrong they will die fast and not do anything. Use cover and smoke, shoot first, and you'll shoot last nine times outta ten.
In Real Life
The BMP-3 is, as the name implies, the third main iteration of the BMP family of Infantry Fighting Vehicles. First produced in the mid 1980's, the BMP-3 was an evolutionary step forward and a solidified standard as to how the Soviets viewed Infantry Fighting Vehicles and their role in warfare. Unlike it's predecessors, the BMP-3 was based off an entierly new, decidedly less pointy chassis, but still featured the staples of Soviet IFV design, albeit refined for the 1980s battlefield.
Like all Soviet IFVs before it, the BMP-3 was designed first and foremost to be with the tanks smashing their way through NATO defensive lines to reach the
Rhine la Manche as quickly and as effectively as possible. This means speed, relative low profile compared to NATO counterparts, a natural capacity for amphibious movement across rivers, and firepower. This coming at the expense of crew ergonomics, passenger space and capacity, and armour thick enough to protect against shell fragments, rifle rounds, and HMG. Any dedicated anti-tank weapon can cut right through it. Though naturally it's sealed to prevent your favoured Nuclear, Chemical, or Biological nasties from getting in.
In essence, it is a speedy, glass cannon. And it packs quite the punch for it's trade offs.
When looking at the previous two iterations of the BMP line, as well as the American Bradley, it can only be assumed two camps developed as to how the BMP-3 should be armed. One side, traditionalists to the original BMP would point out that the ability for infantry, when not paired with tanks, to still have access to a pretty decent 76mm high explosive or HEAT shell from their friendly neighborhood IFV when needed would give troops exceptional support against hard targets. What's more, high-caliber gun demolishes buildings more quickly than the 30-mm cannon of BMP-2, and it was obvious the city fights would have played a major role in WW3. The other side of the coin would point out that larger caliber weapons necessarily mean less ammo can be stored, and that an autocannon like in the BMP-2 is much more flexible and capable in performing suppressive fire and with a much greater number of rounds that can be thrown down range. Additionally, a bigger ATGMs (both in length and caliber) could be installed on a vehicle in that case. Though truth be told, it was a point that twisted generals' nipples to no end: remember how BMP-1 was made specifically to operate in irradiated zones? Well, the process of reloading BMP-2's AT-5, in contrast to shorter AT-4, required for a crewmember to actually leave the vehicle, which could lead to a healthy doze of gamma-rays for the crew, not to say radioactive dust finding its' way in the crew compartment.
Then, likely on some regularly scheduled meeting between design bureau and army representatives, one man, probably a young engineer, would simply ask: "Why not both? We have those barrel launched ATGMs on our tanks, after all." Before he could be strangled by his elder colleagues, who knew exactly how hard it would be to make a lower-caliber ATGM posing a threat to modern and future NATO MBTs, the Ministry of Defense representatives approved of the idea, and no amount of explanation as to why a high-caliber gun would need to be rifled to fit its' general role and how hellish of a task it is to make a guided munition actually guided when fired from rifled barrel could change that.
After several days of heavy drinking, engineers ensured that the fateful meeting was not a nightmare they couldn't wake up from, and not only they had to make a monstrosity with 2 rifled cannons in a turret and ensure both of them could hit something while moving and floating, the resulting vehicle also had to be better than its' predecessor in every way. First sketches had to be drown during that horrible hangover, as only it could explain the... peculiar placement of its' hull mounted machine guns, which are operated by two passengers sitting on the sides of driver-mechanic. On the bright side, it increased the amount of passengers to 9. Eventually, however, the design bureau succeeded, and the result is far and away the most heavily armed IFV on the planet at the time, with the vehicle's armament alone straddling the line between that of an IFV and a dedicated light tank, and a price tag to boot.
Though compared to the hellspiral that was the Bradley's development, the BMP-3 sounds like a relative bargain.
Though not a heavyweight in terms of punishment it can receive, the BMP-3 has a weapon for nearly every occasion, and can slug a ridiculous amount of firepower for it's size and role.
The original version of BMP-3 has a turret fitted with a low-velocity 100mm gun with an autoloader (which can fire conventional shells or 9M117 Bastion / AT-10 Stabber ATGMs), a 30mm autocannon and a 7.62mm machine gun. Two additional 7.62mm machine guns are mounted in the hull facing forward.
IRL, the BMP-3 tends to be seen fitted with explosive reactive armor tiles on the front of its turret and hull.
|Soviet Forces in Team Yankee|
|Tanks:||T55AM2 - T-62M - T-64 - T-72 - T-80|
|Transports:||BTR-60 - BMP-1 - BMP-2 - BMP-3|
|Troops:||Motor Rifle Company - Hind Assault Landing Company - Afghansty Air Assault Company|
|Artillery:||2S1 Carnation - 2S3 Acacia - BM-21 Hail - TOS-1 Buratino - BM-27 Uragan|
|Anti-Aircraft:||ZSU 23-4 Shilka - SA-13 Gopher - SA-9 Gaskin - SA-8 Gecko - 2S6 Tunguska|
|Tank Hunters:||Spandrel - Storm|
|Recon:||BMP-1 OP - BRDM-2|
|Aircraft:||SU-25 Frogfoot - MI-24 Hind|