Command & Conquer 3 Tiberium Wars Designer Diary #5 - Introducing the Scrin

For the first time ever, EA reveals the name and background of the new alien faction in Command & Conquer 3.

The real-time strategy genre as we know it today--gathering resources, building bases, and massing huge armies to sweep your opponent from the map--owes a lot to Command & Conquer. The original Command & Conquer was one of the first true real-time strategy games, as well as one of the best games ever made. So it's little wonder why strategy fans are looking forward to Command & Conquer 3 Tiberium Wars, which is due out in March. Set in a war-torn future, Tiberium Wars will once again pit the forces of the noble Global Defense Initiative against the evil Brotherhood of Nod. However, developer EA Los Angeles is introducing a new alien faction to really shake things up. The existence of this faction was only recently revealed, but even then, details such as the faction's name and background were kept a secret. That is, until now. In this edition of our designer diaries, executive producer Mike Verdu gives us an introduction. So let's meet the aliens.

Meet the Scrin


By Mike Verdu
Executive Producer, EALA

In the dark future contemplated by Command & Conquer 3 Tiberium Wars, the world has been torn by conflict for almost 50 years as two factions battle for control of the planet. An alliance of advanced nations known as the Global Defense Initiative (GDI) has been locked in a long twilight struggle with the Brotherhood of Nod (Nod), a stateless superpower that is a strange mix of terrorist organization, religion, popular movement, and corporation. Meanwhile, the Earth is being consumed by Tiberium, a green crystal of extraterrestrial origin that is both a gift and a curse. Tiberium is a source of unlimited energy, but it is also the worst environmental disaster in history. Left unchecked, Tiberium would eventually wipe out all life on Earth.

EA has revealed for the first time that the name of the powerful alien faction is the Scrin.

The simmering conflict between GDI and Nod has flared into a global firestorm three times, and it is in 2047, during the third and most violent of these Tiberium Wars, that the world will change forever. Humanity will discover that it's not alone in the universe, and that it's not the only race fighting for Tiberium. With Command & Conquer 3 Tiberium Wars, we are introducing a new faction: an alien race called the Scrin. This is the first time we've officially confirmed the identity of our aliens in print--we've kept the name of the new faction under wraps for months.

The Scrin have actually been in our solar system for many centuries, concealed behind an asteroid beyond the orbit of Neptune, their ships dormant and their crews in suspended animation. They waited quietly as the human race fought its way out of the dark ages and climbed the ladder of civilization. They waited as the first radio waves were broadcast into space, the first nuclear weapon was used in anger, and the first primitive human spacecraft were launched into low Earth orbit. They waited for a signal, a blast of radiation that finally arrives just as the intensity of the Third Tiberium War on Earth reaches its peak. When the signal is confirmed, the onboard artificial intelligence systems begin bringing the huge alien vessels to life, waking up the crews, and setting a course for Earth.

When the Scrin arrive on Earth, they land in the Tiberium-infested wastelands designated as Red Zones by GDI. Vast Scrin armies pour out of the Red Zones and engage GDI and Nod indiscriminately with seemingly overwhelming force. At first, there doesn't seem to be a pattern to the alien assault. Later, GDI realizes that the Scrin aren't really interested in the human race. They're here because of the Tiberium on Earth. The game story will unravel some of the mystery surrounding the arrival of these aliens and their relationship with the green crystal. Many questions will be answered, and others will almost certainly be raised--we've made sure that the mythology surrounding Tiberium and the Scrin runs very deep.

While GDI and Nod have a mix of new and classic units, the Scrin faction is all new. We created them from the ground up to give Command & Conquer players cool new units, structures, and strategies. This new faction is where we've been able to bring some innovations in unit design and gameplay to life.

The reason why the aliens have arrived will be revealed throughout the game.

Basic Scrin units include swarms of flying razor blades called buzzers, which serve as the frontline infantry; hordes of disintegrator drones, which use short-range laser-cutting torches to disassemble enemy units; insect-like shock troopers; and vehicles such as the seeker tank, which fires plasma bursts at vehicles and aircraft. Midgame units like the liquid-Tiberium-spewing corrupter and the Tiberium-guzzling devourer tank make life interesting for GDI and Nod players, as the Scrin player techs up to gain access to his or her powerful late-game units.

The late game is where the Scrin really come to life, fielding advanced units that can dominate the battlefield and are--not coincidentally--totally fun to play with. There's the annihilator tripod, a huge combat walker with three independently targeted beam weapons on flexible Medusa-like stalks. Or, the devastator warship, an enormous flying artillery unit that can blast a base to pieces with its long-range plasma weapons. Or, the planetary assault carrier, a vast flying battle platform with swarms of smaller fighters that can independently engage many targets on the ground.

On the very high end is the mothership. This city-sized ship flies very, very slowly, but if a Scrin player can move it into position over an enemy base, it is game over. Specialized infantry include the assimilator--basically an engineer--and the mastermind, a nasty high-end unit capable of teleporting allied units from place to place and taking over and directing enemy units and structures.

Scrin technology is very advanced. Their base production structures work by bending space and time to allow reinforcements to warp in from other locations, including Scrin ships in orbit and other bases on Earth. This technology finds its highest expression in the rift generator, a superweapon that creates a rift in space-time over a target zone that sucks in enemy units and structures and warps them into orbit. The Scrin also have a very special relationship with Tiberium, and many of their units, weapons, and special abilities rely on the use of the green crystal.

Get ready for a some war of the worlds action when Tiberium Wars ships in March.

Scrin powers include the ability to project force fields around their units, phase them partly into another dimension to reduce their vulnerability to enemy fire, and summon powerful ion storms. Some of the larger Scrin units like the planetary assault carrier can also summon ion storms, giving buffs to nearby flying units.

We really feel that the third faction in Command & Conquer 3 Tiberium Wars adds tremendous depth to both the fiction and gameplay. The arrival of the Scrin is not just a classic third-act reversal in the game's story, but it's also an event that dramatically expands the Command & Conquer universe. On the battlefield, the Scrin have their own unique style of play that complements that of GDI and Nod. They also have a collection of units and structures that are a blast to play with.

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Discussion

241 comments
Delasemiz
Delasemiz

wow, this is game so cool! They say when u finish the nod and the gdı campaıgn scrin campaign opens!!

crackshot10
crackshot10

I can't wait to get my hands on it!!!

Andrew_Wulgaru
Andrew_Wulgaru

I don't know anyone has seen the scrin writing yet, but I have, and I've been having one hell of a time trying to decypher it. Anyone got any hints, or a key, for that matter? Scrin looks cool. No doubt about it. If I only were able to understand them.

LegionofClouds
LegionofClouds

The mutants would be an awesome faction to play with But i don't think they will be available any time soon They prob worked pretty hard on making a new faction - the scrin those are the first guys im gonna test out when i get it o yes... hm mutants is a good idea for a mod...

armundus
armundus

I wonder if the "Mutants" make a return in C&C3 :D

Adhikar
Adhikar

in C&C renegade (first person shooter one there was a alien space craft) and in tiberium sun there was a blue space ship in one level also, but they didn't have much influence on the game, those this installation explain them?

Adhikar
Adhikar

in C&C renegade (first person shooter one there was a alien space craft) and in tiberium sun there was a blue space ship in one level also, but they didn't have much influence on the game, those this installation explain them?

AC730
AC730

Whenever your on a roll of a rampage nothing feels better than crushing those weaker! Can't wait for the multi-player network to get up!

AC730
AC730

Whenever your on a roll of a rampage nothing feels better than crushing those weaker! Can't wait for the multi-player network to get up!

snipercomplete
snipercomplete

the reason we dont like unbalanced is because that is GAY!!!!! you want a chalenge? go play a pro pnly match in starcraft. those units are balanced, and there is nothing more chalenging than fighting some pros. if it is unbalanced, a neoblet can come in as the scrin, and naybe pose a threat to a pro. so units need to be balanced, they can make them super powerfull, but maybe give the scrin a smaller amount of people allowed. or make them cost 5 times as much as other units for other factions. and make them build really slowly. that would mean a future nod player(me) could still own up some future scrin player(you).

kevin_a380
kevin_a380

Even though C&C 3 might be unbalanced wouldnt that be the fun part in some way? I mean if you look at this in a realistic way wouldnt an alien race have an unfair advantage in real life over us? They would be more advanced, more overwhelming, have better strategies, use their resources better, build stuff faster, have shields and warping technology? Why do yall see that if this game were to be inbalanced it means its bad? Wouldnt it feel more realistic and challenging? Dont you want a more challenging experience?

Echo_One
Echo_One

The game looks good. I hope the unit balance is just as good.

natedogr
natedogr

The Scrin look cool, and Command and Conquer should have a third faction. I hope this game will be at least half as good as Starcraft.

rugripper40
rugripper40

everytime i read about this game,i get more and more excited about it...this game just looks so awesome,great color palette.i cant wait for this title.the end of march cant come quick enough for me

Goliathvv
Goliathvv

I also think the carrier idea is good, but it could be made in a different way: maybe a walking alien vehicle that would send out drones, or even a carrier that would send walking devourers or something like that, but the carrier itself the way it is in the game is nice, and I know that I'll use it a lot, the only thing that I don't like is seeing a good, but old formula being used too many times, they can spend some more time trying to find new, original ideas, that were never used before, as in Gears of War: who would think of such an intelligent and intuitive reloading system? That was an innovation! I'm just a little tired of getting a new game, and the first time I play it, there's that unit that I know I've seen before, just can't remember where... I want more of that feeling of when you are playing a game without reading the manual, and then see that strange vehicle, build one, and has got no idea of what it does, just to find out later that it is strategicaly amazing! Well, that is it, don't misunderstand me, I didn't mean to take ou the pride of C&C3, I'm a fan of the series, and every game of the franchise that I played was awesome, so I expect C&C 3 to be!

152389
152389

Honestly the carrier idea can't be considered a ripoff because it is just such a good idea that it would be a waste not to use it more.

Goliathvv
Goliathvv

Aff... More of the Terran/Zerg/Protoss concept... Why is it that there is always a superpowerful faction? Aeon Illuminate... Protoss... Scrin(wich resembles scream by the way)... They even took that Carrier idea from Star Craft(wich, by the way, is a really great game): a Flying ship that sents ou other small ships to attack multiple oponents, the protoss had those... Well, it's hard to make something reasonably good and that wasn't made before, but, even with those details, the game is looking great and i'm looking foward to getting this one and spreading chaos with the Scrin!

Chasgn1
Chasgn1

This game will redefine my life. (I hope)

wargod53
wargod53

Simbryo, Sup Comm is disapointing to say the least, all it is about is flooding the enemy with as many units as poss. It is a 10 yr old RTS, with a ncie graphics engine. That is all This looks excellent!

Simbryo
Simbryo

"FrameWalker I doubt there will be a better RTS game than CoH for a long while." HA HA HA HA HA HA... You made me laugh! Ever played WarCraft or StarCraft??? NO???? Well don't die before you do! Anyways, there is already demo of the game that will bury CoH deep. Download Supreme Commander and see for yourself.

Thewtfpwner
Thewtfpwner

Mrglorp, They weren't waiting for humanity to be a threat. They were waiting for the Tiberium to appear.

Amorn
Amorn

So the way to prevent tiberium spread is to use it. Hell why dont the GDI tells everyone to leave their lights, stereos, tvs, computers, on all day and use the fuel as much as possible?

Mrglorp
Mrglorp

ok Im confused,why would the scrin wait so long to come to earth. I mean why did they give humanity time to become a threat?

FrameWalker
FrameWalker

I doubt there will be a better RTS game than CoH for a long while.

cell_dweller
cell_dweller moderator moderator

O, this just makes me even more ready to get this game!

Johansbro
Johansbro

This will Prove Comand and Conquers True Sight and Ambition For The RTS games rule above all opposition! Except for possibly supreme comander

DrekNaZuhl
DrekNaZuhl

Well it could be anything...I mean the creators have really a lot of options here....NOD and GDI working together..then NOD Stabs GDI in the back and trys to take over the world while GDI is busy fighting the scrin..or NOD being so ..well let's say ...religious....will think that the scrin are some sort of sign of God (or smth like that) and will battle the GDI wtih the scrin...OR we will just see how each side kicks each others butt during the campaign without any aliances and etc. there are plenty of ways for the creators to make an interesting story ...we'll see if they managed to do so :)

fli_guy84
fli_guy84

Hmm maybe like Warcraft III, in the end the GDI and NOD will put aside their hatred for each other and try to thwart the evil Scrin?

AL13NK1LL3R
AL13NK1LL3R

sweettt.. now i need a new graphic card

152389
152389

He is talking about the tabletop game of warhammer which is about 20 years older then starcraft. The zerg are a tyranid ripoff. Who cares anyway? They are really cool!

Alcotamaysees
Alcotamaysees

So we've got Supreme Commander coming this month and c&c coming next. Sounds like it's going to be a pretty exciting spring.

keyhunter
keyhunter

Excellent. Back to the original story. And FMV's. Generals and Red alert were cool and all...But Tiberian sun and the firestorm expansion was one of those games that I'd play all day, and then play all night, and then skip school to play all day again before I know it a week's gone by, and I'm failing everything, but I dont care cause I'm having so much fun playing tiberian sun. If any game in the world is going to do this to me, I've got my money on C&C 3

ColdSteel55
ColdSteel55

FungusGolem Seriously, the Scrin have been in every C&C game, it was just a matter of time until they became a playable race. Did you read the article? You already can play as the Scrin. CRLCRL What makes me laugh is SC peeps sayign the Zerg were plagerised, dude the Zerg are the Tyrannids from Wh 40K! Starcraft came BEFORE WH40k. So if anyone plagerized it was WH40K.

grayf0x0
grayf0x0

haha this game is going to be bad the original developers (westwood) were disolved by EA and are now petroglyph games... the creativity has taken a back seat to making it more like the original game and ignoring a lot of things in Tiberian Sun and what Westwood had set before hand. It's turned into a run of the mill clickfest game... which sux for RTS

deathlord98
deathlord98

yes a better game as soon as i get no sleep for 2 DAYS, and to those who dont like these games dont post at all we do not want your opinion so SHUT UP

rikjuh
rikjuh

why do i get the feeling the scrin are overpowered? :S

MarMar415
MarMar415

Scrins units look more like from war of the worlds...

scratch151
scratch151

Is it just me, or have the designers taken ideas from war of the worlds and starcraft?

BeyondItAll
BeyondItAll

And proof? What more proof do you need then EA's crap record or more specifically EALA's crap record! It speaks for itself, if anything the burden of proof is on you as history suggests this game will more likely then not blow, it will more likely then not be a rehashed skin job.

FreeCastle
FreeCastle

Hmm.. I'm worried about if this game is just another updated version with some better graphic and another race. The next RTS I'll buy would probably be the next chapter of BLIZZARD's StarCraft series.. Now that was something really cool.. I don't grow tired of that as I do to the C&C series... Waiting for BLIZZ to release the next chapter of StarCraft might just take forever unfortunately :/

BeyondItAll
BeyondItAll

It's dumb for hating a company that ruins once great franchises and melt them down to squeeze out every last penny before they put it down for good? Of course companies are all about making money, but no company done more crap, set more awful precedents and milked stupid people more then EA. Sure most of the people who buy their games like the people who buy a new Madden every year are complete idiots, nevertheless that isn't going to stop me and others from whining about it. Just beware of EALA guys as I think they just aquired the CnC franchise to milk it, it's a shame new RTS games like CoH don't sell well only to see rehashes sell millions, if you want the genre to move forward then put more of you money into the innovation instead of the beaten to death games. I'm not anti CnC I'm anti EA, funny how everyone always bashes the crap out of EA, but the second they see an upcoming game from them that looks like it might be ok they go goo goo gaa gaa. How many times must a fish get hooked before it learns? These are the reasons you wouldn't want to get it GIF The main reasons people hate EALA is as follows Their RTS games are very imbalanced The net coding of the SAGE engine and unit response time is crap They always use GAMESPY ARCADE They have a very poor record of support for their games following release and their games are always left with glaring issues that will never be fixed The games they make are always released in a unfinished buggy unpolished state (this games only been in the works for just over 12 months)

Mrglorp
Mrglorp

I hate to say this but, this is about what you think about the game from the article, not how much you hate EA. I just think it's dumb to not like a company for MAKING MONEY! I mean isn't that what almost every company in the world douse is make money?

kleash
kleash

im gonna make this post again because of stupid noobs. yeah..im not a EA fan, but I'm seriously tired of hearing people say that this is a rip-off from protoss. So you can say that Protoss is a rip-off from Eldar in warhammer40k which leads to DOW, Terran is a rip-off from Space Marine, Zerg is a rip-off from Tyranid.etc. Seriously..you noobs..just because there is a race that warps stuffs to get forces it isn't exactly a protoss rip-off.

DrekNaZuhl
DrekNaZuhl

Man BeyondltAll are you some sort anti-EA person or smth?Your every single post is about how bad EA is and the company it works with...and you keep reposting stuff...as if anybody cares man..I don't get it man...are you angry at EA because they can make milions in the way you anounced and you not? "1 year re-skin job of popular franchise= millions for EA, honestly I dare say the would be stupid to spend a decent amount of time on this game seeing most CnC fans will be like OMG Kane, BUYS! ." Man...such stuff is basic economics man....read a book or smth about it...such stuff might be as old as the bible itsleft...buy a **** thing not worth 2 cents....put in a golden box worth 2 cents and find a sucker that would buy it for milions... Anyway....your announcing a judgement without showing any proof that your theory is true...maybe man your right..and EA will pull off a neat trick and earn milions .... but I can only say..heck why didn't I think of smth like that :D ...many people will buy this game and many will say it rocks....others will say it s**ks... I and many others will buy this game...just to see if EA kept its promises....or sold smth **** in a golden box :D P.S. I just couldnt help it....I jsut had to respomnd to your posts....because they were starting to p*** me off....no offense man but I'll ignore your future psots like all the other normal people...man there are some serious C & Cgeeks and die hard fans among us :D ...so don't shater their dreams with your "EA will **** up everything" ...thank you...

BeyondItAll
BeyondItAll

1 year re-skin job of popular franchise= millions for EA, honestly I dare say the would be stupid to spend a decent amount of time on this game seeing most CnC fans will be like OMG Kane, BUYS! . . . I bet EA has put more money into the marketing and actors in this game then it has the actual game!

CRLCRL
CRLCRL

What makes me laugh is SC peeps sayign the Zerg were plagerised, dude the Zerg are the Tyrannids from Wh 40K! Blizz even had an aborted contract with Gamesworkshop ffs! So shut up about that, besides C&C games pwn as do the new generation such as CoH and DoW. C&C is liked for the massive destruction more than the strategy.

BeyondItAll
BeyondItAll

Right because every developer doesn't work hard? Face it the games only been in development a year, you can't make good games that fast and a studio with a crap record like EALA makes matters even worse. Hell their using the same engine (a crappy engine at that) they have been using for the last 8 YEARS!) .

FungusGolem
FungusGolem

Seriously, the Scrin have been in every C&C game, it was just a matter of time until they became a playable race