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Clear for engagement!
- Spectre

The Spectre Gunship was a support aircraft that could be periodically deployed by particularly high-ranking US generals. It is a fictionalized version of the real-life Lockheed AC-130 Spectre.

Background[]

An enormous rocket-powered swing-wing gunship, the Spectre tears across the skies towards its designated target area before unleashing a barrage of fire from a battery of Gatling guns and artillery cannons. The Gunship moved so fast towards its target that it could not be hit by enemy fire. Upon reaching the target area, the Spectre would slow down considerably and fly in a tight circle. The gunship could be selected to direct its gunfire anywhere within the circle of its orbit, although the gunship itself could not be redirected or reoriented.

After running out of ammunition, the Spectre would return to the air field it originated from, with its wings swept back once again to maximize speed. Most American 5-star generals could call in a Spectre Gunship attack for a fifteen second bombardment. However, for General Alexander and General Granger gained access to Specter Gunship attack as 3-star generals for a ten second bombardment. In addition, two additional ranks were available, allowing Spectre was able to remain on-station longer. The maximum amount of time a Spectre could be on-site was an impressive twenty seconds, although no unit was likely survive sustained counter-fire for that long.

The Spectre could destroy any ground unit caught in its engagement area, and could bring down the majority of buildings. Although it could be shot down with concentrated anti-air weapons, the Spectre was extremely tough, particularly if equipped with countermeasures.

Game Unit[]

Redirecting course.
- Spectre

Strategy[]

The Spectre Gunship has incredible speed and resilience while en route to a target zone. Lasers and bullet-based AA weapons (such as the Chinese Gatling Tank and the GLA Quad Cannon) deal minor damage against them, but the gunship seldom remains within their sights for long. Missiles were less effective against the Spectre once the it was equipped with the Countermeasures upgrade. The Gunship is also immune to EMPs.

The Spectre was quite flexible in its employment. A typical use of the Spectre was to use it in conjunction with an air strike or another General's Power to destroy a large building such as a command center or superweapon; these buildings were so large that player would not need to linger to direct the Spectre's fire. This ability to select targets was quite useful, however, to suppress anti-air units within the target radius and to destroy any construction units that came along to repair buildings that were under bombardment. They could also attack a section of the defense perimeter, or a cluster of vehicles such as those that tend to gather outside of War Factories. Another common target was the small supply-gathering operations that AI players tend to establish near remote supply docks; these small, closely packed outlying bases could often be destroyed in one run.

Counters[]

The Spectre Gunship is rather difficult to destroy while it is en route to its target location, but after it reaches the area it slows down significantly and is more vulnerable to attack. As they orbit the area they are capable of aiming at anything within the circular target zone, but it cannot fire outside of this circle, nor can it reposition or reorient itself, and cannot target hostile airborne units. While missiles tend to be less of a concern with countermeasures, especially when combined with Malcolm Granger's point defense lasers, non-missile anti-aircraft weapons are unaffected by either and can eventually bring down the Spectre.

Selected Quotes[]

Spectre Gunship, approaching the target.
- When entering the field
Spectre, en route.
- When entering the field
Spectre Gunship, entering combat zone.
- When entering the field
Acquiring new target.
- When ordered to attack
Objective confirmed.
- When ordered to attack
Cleared for engagement.
- When ordered to attack
Clear the area.
- When ordered to attack
We have them.
- When ordered to attack
Our job is done here.
- When leaving the field
Spectre Gunship, signing out.
- When leaving the field
Spectre, mission completed.
- When leaving the field
Redirecting course.
- When moving
Confirmed.
- When moving
New coordinates received.
- When moving
Patrolling the area.
- When moving
Closing in, on position.
- When moving
Spectre Gunship, standing by.
- When selected
Spectre Gunship, standing by.
- When selected
Spectre here.
- When selected
Keeping 'em in line down there.
- When selected
What's the status?
- When selected
Is there a new target?
- When selected
How are we doing, sir?
- When selected

Gallery[]

Trivia[]

  • The design of the Harbinger Gunship from Command & Conquer: Red Alert 3 - Uprising is likely inspired by this unit.
  • Despite being called the "Spectre Gunship", this unit does not resemble the real-life Lockheed AC-130 Spectre.
  • Like the Aircraft Carrier, the Spectre Gunship has movement sounds if it is issued a move order (while en-route or exiting the airspace), but will not take any action.
    • An announcement sound also exists within the game files, but it has gone unused.
  • If no targets remain within the Spectre Gunship's line of sight, it will continue to fly in circles until it is destroyed or its lifetime expires and it leaves.
  • With 1000 hit points (the same as other support aircraft) it has almost as much health as an Overlord tank, making it one of the toughest direct combat units in the game, though it cannot maneuver and its armor is inferior.

See also[]

Gen USA Logo United States of America War against the GLA Arsenal Gen USA Logo
China General Leang Arsenal China
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