KW gameicon.png
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For its successor, see Hammerhead (Tiberian Twilight).

Heavy gunship airborne!
- Hammerhead
CNCKW Hammerhead Cameo.png

The Hammerhead is a GDI combat transport helicopter gunship that appears in Command & Conquer 3: Kane's Wrath.

History

Conception

In the wake of the Firestorm Crisis and CABAL's demise, the top commanders started making noise regarding GDI's total lack of a combat-capable aerial transport. The V-35 Ox could carry all but the largest units to any point on the battlefield, but that ability came at the cost of speed, armor and any means of self-defense.

But with the Brotherhood of Nod fractured by squabbling factions and internal struggles in Kane's absence, these complaints were ignored. But the complaints didn't go away; instead, they became more numerous and insistent. Eventually, after three years, top brass finally relented and approved the resources needed for development, which was begun immediate.

Development

Conceptual designs were submitted to the top military leadership of GDI's Steel Talons Technology Research and Development Division. At first, it was believed to be some sort of joke or hoax: They seemed extremely antiquated, with rotary blades on top of a primary fuselage and at the end of a long tail boom, harking back to the helicopters of the previous century. This enabled it to hover much like GDI's other vectored-thrust aircraft, but that wasn't the end of the requirements.

The parameters of the project were that the vehicle would be an armed transport: It would marry the transport ability of the Ox and the offensive capability of the short-lived Orca fighter variant. In 2033, a design was submitted that would ultimately be selected for continuation. It was a take on the dual-rotor design, sporting two contra-rotating primary rotors on top of the main fuselage.

Deployment

Legacy

In-Game Appearance

The Hammerhead is a conventional attack helicopter: Based on transport designs dating back to the 20th century, and much like the Predator, is a prime example of GDI's trend of returning to old but extremely reliable technology. Its speed matches that of the Orca Mk. III, allowing for fast deployment.

The Hammerhead is a large ground support aircraft that serves a dual role as both a long range infantry transport, and an anti-infantry gunship. Its central compartment is capable of housing an entire infantry squad, with sufficient internal space to allow the squad to fire out of the Hammerhead. Promotional materials claim the gunship was capable of housing an entire regiment, but this is not observed as a functional feature in-game. For both loading and unloading infantry: The Hammerhead must carefully land, leaving it vulnerable and susceptible to anti-surface weaponry.

The Hammerhead is equipped with two inter-meshing rotors - giving it immense lift and high stability, as well as twin Vulcan cannons that can plow through entire infantry formations in mere seconds. The firepower of these fearsome weapons can be dramatically increased with Armor-Piercing Ammunition, allowing it shred through even light vehicles. The amount of ammunition and fuel carried by the Hammerhead is sufficient to allow the aircraft to operate independently for days without refueling or rearming.

However, the Hammerhead's twin Vulcan cannons cannot target other air units, so to counter enemy air power, the Hammerhead would need to be loaded with Missile Squads or Zone Raiders.

A special version of the Hammerhead was seen guarding the GDI treasury: they possessed wing-mounted sensor searchlights capable of detecting cloaked units. However, with long-ranged operations in mind instead of perimeter defense, Hammerheads issued to battlefield commanders do not possess these searchlights. Therefore, GDI field commanders must rely on other means of stealth detection, such as OrcasPitbullsZone Troopers or Raiders upgraded with Scanner Packs, or more accessibly, the Command Post's Radar Scan.

ZOCOM Hammerheads can be additionally upgraded with Ceramic Armor for a significant boost in durability.

Abilities

CNCTW Evacuate Cameo.png
Evacuate Offload onboard infantry. (Ctrl+A)

Upgrades

CNCKW AP Ammo Cameo.png
AP ammo Increases bullet damage by %50. (Ctrl+A) Purchasable at any Command Post for $2000 and takes 1:00 to research.
CNCKW Ceramic Armor Cameo.png Ceramic Armor

Increases armor strength by 50%. (Ctrl+S)

Purchasable at ZOCOM Airfield for $1000 and takes 0:30 to research.

Assessment

Pros

  • Lethal against infantries and light vehicles, especially with the AP Ammo upgrade
  • Decent resilience, becomes remarkable with the Ceramic Armor upgrade (ZOCOM only)
  • Available to all GDI subfactions
  • Excellent mobility
  • Doesn't need to rearm and doesn't occupy an Airfield slot, only returns for repairs
  • Garrison capability grants extreme versatility
  • ZOCOM Hammerheads loaded with Zone Raiders are effective against all targets

Cons

  • Vulnerable when loading or unloading infantry
  • Expensive ($1500)
  • Ineffective against heavy vehicles without AP Ammo or garrisoned anti-armor infantry
  • Powerless against enemy aircraft unless loaded with AA-capable infantry
  • Cost ineffective for air-to-air battles
  • Garrisoned infantries are destroyed along with the vehicle

Quotes

Created

  • Hammerhead online!
  • Heavy gunship airborne!
  • Systems engaged!

Select

  • Ground support!
  • Acknowledged!
  • Hammerhead here!
  • Got the guns!
  • Where do you need me?

Moving

  • Acknowledged!
  • Copy!
  • Getting there.
  • Ground support on the way!
  • Gunship deploy!
  • Watch for flak!
  • Moving out.
  • Rudders engaged.

Attacking

  • Death from above!
  • Free fire!
  • Hose them down!
  • Target acquired!

Move to Attack

  • Watching your six!
  • Attack vector engaged!
  • Safety off.
  • Eyes on the ground!

In combat

  • Hammerhead engaged!
  • All systems on red!
  • Weapons on full!
  • Zone is hot!

Retreating

  • Back to base!
  • Pulling out!
  • RTB!

Shot Down

  • They got me!
  • She can't take it!
  • System malfunction! No!..

Behind the scenes

  • The Hammerhead is functionally similar to Twinblades.
  • The Russian Mi-24 Hind performs an identical role of a troop transport and an attack helicopter.
  • The Hammerhead was added to Kane's Wrath to give GDI factions a non-rearming, non-slot consuming aircraft, similar to Nod Venoms and Scrin Devastators or Carriers.
  • While the concept artwork for the Hammerhead displays the aircraft capable of carrying missiles, they are never used in-game.

Gallery

References


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