The Djanbazan itself has a respectable BS of 12, and most importantly MSV2. MSV2 is a piece of equipment that allows the Djanbazan to shoot through zero visibility zones (smoke grenades!), and to ignore the negative modifiers normally incurred from shooting at camouflage units, or those with ODD. Due to this combination of equipment the Djanbazan is reasonably happy taking on most targets, from light infantry, to heavy infantry, and skirmishers.
Djanbazan have two stand-out profiles for offensive action, one equipped with an HMG, and the one equipped with a shock marksman rifle.
The HMG is the weapon that everyone knows and loves. Good from 16" to 32", with a huge burst of 4, and a high damage value of 15. It's pretty good against most targets, but does fall off slightly against TAGs with higher armour values. The shock marksman rifle is the other common profile for aggressive Djanbazans. It excels from 8" to 24", so it has a range band that's equivalent to the HMG in terms of width but deals with targets that are a little closer. It has a burst of 3, and damage 13, like a normal rifle, but it also boasts shock ammunition which cancels Dogged or NWI on opposing troops, and causes troops with one wound to die instantly instead of going unconscious. The shock marksman rifle is more useful against light to medium targets. The reason why this weapon is particularly interesting is because the 8-16" range band gives you +3 BS but opposing HMGs have a 0 modifier. Against opposing rifles the 16-24" range band gives you +3 BS but opposing rifles have a -3 modifier. Therefore it can take advantage of the poor rangebands that two very common weapons have.
In terms of movement the Djanbazan is a little slow at 4-2, so it's not the best piece for being mobile and hunting out difficult to reach troops.
The Djanbazan has a respectable ARM value of 3 which gives it ARM 6 in cover, and therefore only needs 10 or greater to save against an HMG. Against rifles you would only need an 8 on your ARM roll, meaning you have a decent 2 in 3 chance of passing, roughly. These aren't very durable troops with ARM5 and multiple wounds, but they cope better than basic troops with 0-2ARM. Djanbazans also have regeneration which makes them immune to shock ammunition (after taking a wound from shock ammo they go unconscious instead of dead), and you can spend an order on an unconscious Djanbazan to attempt a PH roll which, if you pass, causes them to come back to life. Their PH isn't high at all on 11, so it's not the most useful piece of equipment, but every now and again it can have amazing results. Also bear in mind that due to the low PH value the Djanbazan is not the best at dodging incoming fire.
MSV2 is as useful as defensive tech as it is as offensive tech, because it means a Djanbazan on ARO duty is more prepared to deal with attacking targets that have camouflage or ODD, and it can shoot through smoke. This essentially means it's a solid choice because it can successfully take on a wide set of targets, some of which other ARO pieces may be unprepared for.
The sniper loadout is a good defensive choice because it has an exceedingly wide range band of 16-48", and each single shot is damage 15, so it's reasonably lethal. A Djanbazan sniper at the back of your deployment zone and in cover can take advantage of a longer range than almost all other weapons.
- The Djanbazan is the only unit in Haqqislam you can do the smoke + MSV2 trick with. Have a Ghazi throw smoke and then use your Djanbazan to shoot through it, forcing any opponent without sixth sense or MSV2 to choose between dodging or shooting back with a -6 modifier to their BS, before you factor in range and cover. This is a good way of dealing with opposing troops with very high BS values.
The Djanbazan doesn't have a huge number of inherent weaknesses due to the fact that it has MSV, it has decent ARM, it's not hackable, and its BS of 12 is at least respectable.
However it does have a few weaknesses. Firstly it has a BTS value of 0, so any viral or breaker rounds will treat the Djanbazan as if it's basically a line infantry. Secondly it is reasonably slow so it's not a terrible option to just try to avoid it. A Djanbazan isn't a very good unit at hunting targets down due to the lower movement value. The final option is to use a white noise zone. White noise zones are typically produced by hacking programs or very specialised pieces of tech. They are useful because troops with MSV cannot see through them, so it's essentially like the effect that a smoke grenade has on a normal troop. If you shoot a Djanbazan through a white noise zone it will take a -6 penalty if it wishes to shoot back, before factoring in range, and cover.
Aside from these specific weaknesses the old fallback is just to outshoot it in your own turn by picking a range it's not favoured at and putting a bunch of shots into it. It does only have one wound after-all, so only a single successful hit is required to put it down. Do beware of regeneration though, since they don't always stay down!
The Djanbazan is an incredibly useful troop given that it's comfortable at pulling both defensive and/or offensive duty depending on the weapon you choose and is able to take on a wide variety of targets. It's very common to see at least one Djanbazan or Govad (a troop with MSV1) in most Haqqislam lists.
With a defensive Djanbazan sniper it's worth remembering that it can just be outgunned by high burst weapons so it might be worth pairing it up with another option as well. A double team of a Djanbazan sniper and Lasiq sniper is an extremely vicious combination that can really play off each others strengths and weaknesses. By putting multiple ARO pieces together you force the opponent to either take unopposed shots, or split their burst. Once you take the burst advantage away from most attacking troops they crumple.
In terms of offensive Djanbazans, such as those with HMGs or marksman rifles, they can be paired nicely with smoke throwers for combo purposes, or they can just be played on their own as competent aggressors. However, if you do choose an offensive Djanbazan it may be worth also considering a troop with infiltration or something that moves a bit quicker to run alongside them. The Djanbazan can pick off the exposed targets whilst the quicker troop digs out hidden targets that would perhaps take a Djanbazan too many orders to reach.
Defensive Djanbazans need a lot of thought when deploying because they're tough but they're not unbeatable. With the sniper try to find a position where it can cover an important firelane but it's not too exposed. You don't want to attract the attention of the entire opposing force. Make use of the fact that your range goes up to 48" by deploying as far back as is reasonably possible. You may want to position a doctor nearby because ARO pieces do tend to go down often.
An offensive Djanbazan should usually be placed in a more central location where it would take just a short move to get good views of lots of different areas of the board. The goal is to start hidden but quickly reach an area where you can take favourable shots. A good example might be behind a building with a long firelane on the left side, and a different firelane on the right side. This kind of position keeps you safe but gives you lots of choice about where you could target opposing troops. The HMG and marksman rifle Djanbazans have shorter ranges than snipers so you'll likely want to be close to the front of your deployment zone.
Active Turn Role
A Djanbazan wants to move-shoot whenever possible because its move-move action is slightly inefficient compared to troops that have a 4-4 movement value. The dream is to be able to spend a single order and either standup from prone or move around a corner slightly in order to instantly be able to see an opposing enemy.
Generally your goal is to be aggressive. The Djanbazan is a bit of a problem solver for the rest of your force - whatever you're facing it'll probably be able to give a solid attempt at putting it down, but remember that it's best to target mission critical troops. If the mission revolves around specialists then it's probably more valuable to kill doctors and forward observers than heavy infantry, as weird as this might seem.
Also remember that if a Djanbazan is your only source of MSV it's very much worth considering taking out camouflage and ODD troops as early as possible with it. Other Haqqislam troops often have shotguns which can just about cope with negative modifiers due to its +6 to hit at 0-8", but the Djanbazan HMG is usually a less risky choice. If camouflage and ODD is a weakness your force has then it can become a bit of an active turn priority for your Djanbazan.
The sniper Djanbazan, as a dedicated ARO piece, will be choosing to shoot against most targets almost all the time.
The HMG and shock marksman rifle loadouts may want to consider entering suppressive fire at the end of the active turn so that they can play a more potent role as ARO pieces. In suppressive fire they get increased burst, a negative modifier to be hit, but reduced range. It's a slightly risky option due to the Djanbazan's single wound and the reduced range, but in the right spot it can be incredibly useful. However, if the opponent has a lot of camouflaged units and the Djanbazan is your only counter to that strategy you may want to prioritise its safety over a bit more punch in the opponent's turn.
All Djanbazans will mostly find themselves shooting in ARO instead of dodging due to their BS of 12 compared to their PH of 11.