"My centre is giving way, my right is retreating, situation excellent, I am attacking."
- – Ferdinand Foch
Now here's a confusing unit.
You've got enough stationary ROF to make a Soviet infantry general shit his pants, yet your own men are liable to do so first. The FAMAS combines volume of fire with range and 5+ FP, so a full strength platoon can turn PACT companies into bloody sieves before they can get close enough to even fire back. Despite this, French doctrine dictates a kind of hit & run method of engagement and your men will run away under any extended pressure. What anti-tank output you have is either negligible or increases unit costs, so besides a Milan or two that may or may not be there, these platoons are not terribly viable for AT duty. Your LRACs will still punch through tanks from the side if you get the chance, while an APILAS can go through the front of most NATO tanks. Whether your troops can actually get into a position to do so is another question.
Transport-wise, you can take either the AMX-10P or the VAB depending on whether your formation is a Section de chasseurs or a Section d'infantrie respectively. Chasseurs can take one more Milan than the infanterie.
The infantrie sections trade IFVs for more infantry: a 6 point platoon comes with 5 FAMAS teams and 2 LRACs with 3 VABs, while an 8 point platoon comes with 7 FAMAS teams, 2 LRACs and 4 VABs. The mathematically brilliant among you would immediately realize that you do not get more anti-armour with the larger platoon: consider getting three smaller platoons rather than two large platoons if you feel the need for more close range anti-armour.
You may replace one LRAC with an APILAS for an additional point, or purchase a Milan team for one point: note that they do not get their own VAB.
As a formation, the infanterie gain access to one of the three platoons: AMX-30s, AMX-10 RCs or dedicated Milan section. Yes, almost exactly the same thing that made the British overpowered in the Stripes meta. Your choice would depend on what exactly you wanted your infantry to do. AMX-30s and AMX-10 RCs fill the same role in slightly different manners: read their pages for an in-depth comparison. If you want staying power, the Milans will anchor your trenchline with the power of 8 Milan shots per turn.
A strong unit of infantry that will hold the line and fight infantry in urban settings very well, but lacks the morale to sustain losses.
In addition to representing motorized infantry very accurately, this unit can also represent French Foreign Legion troops or Régiment d'Infanterie de Marine (RIMa) in terms of armament. While these expeditionary units are considered elite infantry with superior morale than the line infantry portrayed here, this unit is a homebrewer's wet dream with minimal changes needed to represent other French Army units.
Section de chasseurs
The chaussuer sections are smaller but come with AMX-10P IFVs: a 5 point platoon comes with 3 FAMAS teams, 2 LRACs and 3 AMX-10Ps, while a 7 point platoon gets you 5 FAMAS teams, 2 LRACs and 4 AMX-10Ps: not enough to repulse a company of PACT infantry, unless supported by their transports.
You may replace one LRAC with an APILAS for an additional point, or purchase two Milan teams and an AMX-10P for two points. Note that bringing IFVs changes the role of these units drastically: your infantry lose much of their staying power while your APCs actually become threats to light vehicles and helicopters. This only makes them marginally better suited on the offensive, chassuers have never done well in the open since the days of Ypres.
For a rather average price, you get a unit of cheap but mediocre IFVs and a platoon with passable rocket launchers but has the firepower to hurt infantry in firefights. 5+ morale may become a problem though: deploy them in bulletproof cover at all times, you do not have the ability to sustain casualties from assaults or moving in the open.
As a formation, you can take a third chasseur platoon, and either an AMX-30 platoon or a fourth platoon of chasseurs.
Here's a brain twister: the French Army uses Chasseur as a regimental title rather than a mission designation. The term (literally: someone who gives chase, or a hunter) was used to refer to light infantry units from the Napoleonic Era that specialized in rapid (re)deployment, combat in difficult terrain like swamps, scouting, and sharpshooting. Chasseurs could therefore mean a unit of mountain infantry (Chasseurs Alpins), or parachute infantry (Régiments de chasseurs parachutistes), for example. Chasseur is also a title for ACTUAL light infantry (Bataillons de chasseurs) who performed roughly the same role as their forefathers. The models represented in-game are Régiments de chasseurs, the French designation for armored infantry operating at the battalion level (800~ men): the Régiment title is ALSO honorary, and meant to distinguish between light infantry Chasseurs and armored 'cavalry' Chasseurs.
Naming aside, the models are rather accurate in representing their real-life counterparts: mobile and versatile units capable of attacking and defending in equal measure.
The Morale Thing
Almost universally in Team Yankee, the French have shit morale, and this is a little weird at first glance. After all, the "ha ha, France = surrender monkeys" meme is about as nuanced and accurate as a company of Soviet motor rifles - especially by 1985. The French army has more actual recent combat experience than nearly any other playable nation, and previous morale crises have only improved the Armée de Terre's ability to deal with such issues. So, what gives?
Turns out, much like a few other terms for various Battlefront franchises, "Morale" is a slight misnomer. To be precise, the poor roll value that the French have isn't to represent that they are somehow more cowardly (the parallel 3+ courage roll indicates as much), but rather to integrate French doctrine into the game since most nation-specific special rules have been removed in order to streamline the rules. You see, in older FoW versions there used to be a dozen different special rules indicating unique attributes that would modify the two base values for specific traits. Courage, rally, assault and counterattack are all new, and were created so as to whittle down the truly obscene rules clutter that was starting to really drag down games.
But that still doesn't answer the question, Why are my goddamn frogs running away so much? The answer is simple: they're being ordered to. If the French learned anything from the various wars of the 20th century, it's that they have to be able to give ground for time, and that they absolutely do not have the ability to trade casualties for the same. Consequently, French army doctrine evolved into a very mobile and elastic thing, focusing on being able to outmaneuver the enemy while staying away from engaging in attritional slogs. This is also why the Czechoslovaks, despite being far less motivated than the French in every respect, have a better Morale roll despite literally having worse morale. Such a broad and encompassing term as Morale isn't restricted to the one stat that shares its name, and is technically the collective sum of all the stats on the left half of the base section since it was broken into those three in the first place.
|French Forces in Team Yankee|
|Troops:||Section d'infanterie/Chasseurs - Milan Section Antichar|
|Anti-Aircraft:||AMX-13 DCA - AMX Roland|
|Tank Hunters:||VAB Mephisto|
|Recon:||AMX-10 RC - AMX-10P VOA|
|Aircraft:||Gazelle HOT - Gazelle 20mm - Mirage 5|