World War I brought much technological advancement to the battlefield, such as pillboxes, flamethrowers, and mustard gas. But all this new technology brought the need for new tactics and there really were no new ideas on how to use them. Soldiers fought a traditional styled war, and suffered many casualties due to the new technology. Generals slowly figured out the strengths and weaknesses of each new piece of equipment and were able to use most of them effectively nearer the end of the war.
Flamethrowers were invented in the early 1900’s by the German army, and were used on the battlefield in World War I to some extent. Flamethrowers used pressurized gas to shoot oil through a nozzle with a flame attached near the end of it creating a jet stream of fire. The first flamethrowers were used by two-men to clear enemy trenches from a range of 25 meters. Later, flamethrowers were upgraded and had a range of up to 40 but still only had about 40 seconds of fuel. This caused many problems rendering the flame thrower nearly useless. Also anyone using the flamethrower quickly became the target of gunfire and was killed in a giant ball of fire.
Another way to eradicate enemies in trenches was by tossing poison gas into their trenches and wait for them to either run out into open gunfire or die in the trench. Two types of poisonous gas were used, Chlorine Gas and Mustard Gas. Mustard gas left a yellow-green cloud in its path. The victims of mustard gas died an extremely slow painful death. Armies had to be extremely cautious when using gas warfare, if gas was deployed and the wind was blowing the wrong way it could end up killing friendly troops.
The machine-gun had been used for years, but new technology provided better guns, and many fell victim to machine gun fire. Machine guns usually required a crew of 4-6 men to operate and must be placed on level ground making it very hard to effectively use them, so pillboxes were created....