Earlier this year, EA's Los Angeles studio's most recent game marked the return of the long-running and popular real-time strategy series with Command & Conquer 3 Tiberium Wars. The new game was something of a return to the fast-paced gameplay that made the series famous: quickly amassing resources to build up a base of operations, then churning out an army to crush your opponents before they can do the same to you. The new game featured a new story, a new graphics engine, and the return of a familiar face--Kane, the charismatic and fanatical leader of the controversial Brotherhood of Nod, a faction that went to war against the Global Defense Initiative until an alien invasion hit the planet Earth. The developer is now gearing up for round two with Kane's Wrath, which will add new "subfactions" to the existing factions, as well as new units and new gameplay features. This time around, we've got the details on the new units for the GDI and its subfactions: the Steel Talons and the ZOCOM.
The slingshot is the last remaining vehicle from the GDI's previous research into "HoverTech." The vehicle functions completely as an antiair weapon and is perhaps less subject to ion-storm interference than previous versions. However, it's still a very vulnerable unit on the battlefield. Fortunately, though it lacks in armor and heavy artillery weapons, it does have tremendous speed and maneuverability, as well as a powerful antiair quad cannon, which can be upgraded with tungsten shells to become the most powerful antiair unit in the game.
The hammerhead is an evolved chopper that serves double duty as both a troop transport and an aerial assault vehicle. It works well with the GDI orca unit. Even though it carries heavy-duty vulcan cannons that can rip infantry units on the ground to shreds, it's even more dangerous when carrying a team of specialized GDI infantry, such as rocket infantry, which converts the unit into an antiair vehicle. Smart players can just as easily load up with commandos/zone troopers armed with railguns, or ZOCOM zone raiders to make use of their sonic grenade launchers.
GDI Steel Talons Behemoth
The behemoth is the result of one too many failed recon missions that saw the juggernaut mobile artillery walker reduced to rubble by close-range fire from enemy infantry. As a result, the behemoth was designed as essentially a juggernaut with a loading bay for GDI infantry, and it's a more powerful and versatile alternative because it can be loaded with sniper infantry or rocket squads to further customize its use in battle.
GDI Steel Talons Combat Engineer
The combat engineer is the result of a changed GDI policy that formerly trained its engineers to focus entirely on the unit's traditional (and powerful) sabotage skills. Now, a new breed of engineer joins the GDI's Steel Talons faction--a combat engineer armed with a pistol that may not be a tremendously powerful firearm, but will be useful against enemy engineers, saboteurs, and assimilators.
GDI Steel Talons Heavy Harvester
The Steel Talons subfaction believes strongly that all units should be flexible, hence the heavy harvester: a tiberium collector whose turret gun has been replaced with an infantry pod. This lets players garrison their heavy harvesters with specialized infantry squads, much like the hammerhead and behemoth units, which may help especially aggressive players branch out into new tiberium patches and defend them fiercely. It may even encourage some enterprising players to try an early-game "rush" attack with harvesters and infantry... But really, how many people are crazy enough to try something like that?
GDI Steel Talons Repair APC
The armored personnel carrier is a GDI mainstay, but the standard model went big on heavy armor and light on weaponry. The new-and-improved version now lets onboard infantry fire their weapons, and it's also equipped with a sporty and stylish repair arm to work on damaged allied vehicles. Consequently, a fully loaded repair APC can truly be a powerful utility player in your armies by providing repairs in the field and shielding specialized infantry as they unload their weapons.
GDI Steel Talons Titan
The titan assault walker originally appeared in other skirmishes (such as the second tiberium war), and remains in service thanks to its solid design, heavy armor, and even heavier payload. This unit isn't as fast as the GDI predator tank, but it can take more punishment. It can also be upgraded with additional armor and weapon options to keep it competitive even in later stages of battle.
GDI Steel Talons Wolverine
The wolverine is another battle walker held over from previous skirmishes, though this one is a faster mover with lighter armor. This swift unit works well as a scout, as well as an anti-infantry counter to the foot soldiers of Nod. It can be upgraded with antipersonnel ammo to remain a competitive anti-infantry unit throughout an entire match.
GDI ZOCOM Zone Raider
The Zone Raider has evolved from its original role as a lighter antiair unit that functioned well alongside the powerful Zone Trooper unit. It's now an early scouting unit equipped with stealth detection and a sonic grenade launcher, which is useful against tight formations of enemy vehicles and infantry. The unit can still fill out an antiair support role, thanks to its shoulder-mounted missile launcher.
GDI ZOCOM Shatterer
The shatterer turret started off as a sonic tool to try to stop the spread of the toxic yet energy-rich tiberium across the planet, but after the GDI went to war with Nod, it was sent back to the drawing board to be converted into a combat vehicle. This unit's powerful sonic-emitter cannon can strike multiple targets, though the relatively slow speed of the actual ordnance makes the vehicle best suited to take out buildings and other relatively slow targets. However, the shatterer isn't heavily armored because of its bulk, which makes it very vulnerable to attack by faster ground and air units.
GDI ZOCOM Rocket Harvester
The ZOCOM subfaction of the GDI has seen the need for defending harvesters that are venturing deep into zones heavily contaminated by tiberium. These areas tend to be infested with greedy Nod troops, as well as mutants, and losing an entire harvester's load of the precious substance is a great blow to any general's progress. Hence the rocket harvester, which is basically a standard harvester with a rocket launcher turret that acts as a powerful antiair weapon against enemy scouts in the air.