Area Fifty-Two is the final mission in the Zero Hour USA campaign. USA forces had to capture Dr. Thrax's toxin missile launchers before he could manage to launch them against a major US city or military base.
Learning that Dr. Thrax was the de-facto leader of the GLA, the US had proceeded to cut his supplies and production. After blowing up the oil field providing Thrax's toxin production, the Americans received satellite intel of Thrax's current location and that Thrax was preparing the launch of a chemical ICBM against a major city. The US response to this was its signature "shock-and-awe campaign".
Missile Attack at Toxin BunkersEdit
Above the Earth, satellite reconnaisance had sucessfully captured the exact location of the toxin bunkers. Six Tomahawk cruise missiles subsequently were able to strike the bunkers and wiped out all of the defending GLA forces in close proxmity to them.
|“|| We will lend you our aid to rid us of this toxin monger. His obssession will kill us all! And that, we cannot allow.|
- Rebelling GLA commander
Whilst establishing their base of operations and defenses, the Humvees made a small patrol of the surrounding area and found a standard but well-built GLA base just over the hill of the American positions. The Humvees immediately rushed in to prevent any strikes from the GLA but, in a surprise twist, the GLA commander in the base decided to rebel and lend their arsenals to the Americans after realising that Dr. Thrax had descended into insanity, effectively defecting from the terrorist organisation.
Dr. Thrax was not swayed by this act of treason however, and immediately sent his Toxin Rebels, Scorpion Tanks and Toxin Tractors to assault the US base and the GLA defectors. The American General kept his infantry back from the fatal chemicals and let the Fire Bases and Patriot Missile Batteries do the work. The GLA defectors though needed to use their tanks and vehicles to defend their base since the crews of the Stinger Sites were vulnerable to the toxins. As the raids continued, Lieutenant Eva displayed the amount of time left before Dr. Thrax could finish fueling the rockets and launch them.
With only 30 minutes remaining to capture all four launch facilities, the Americans quickly deployed their airforce to weaken Dr. Thrax's defences. The new Bunker Busters upgrade for the Stealth Fighters proved useful to the American forces since it could clear garrisoned buildings from the air without the exposing Rangers on the ground deadly toxin sprayers wielded by Thrax's Rebels. As the US and the GLA defectors built up their respective forces, the American General sent a commando team of Colonel Burton and Jarmen Kell to scout the area for enemy units and tech structures. The tech structures were captured by the US rangers and defecting rebels while the commandos located a Scud Storm each in the two Thrax bases defending the launch facilities. The US countered them with their own Scud Storm and Particle Cannon superweapons both used to destroy Thrax's Scud Storms and weaken the bases even further.
Dr. Thrax's last standEdit
The US decided to hit Thrax's bases simultaneously: the GLA defectors would send their force to the north-east Thrax base while the Americans would strike at Thrax's main stronghold in the north-west area.
The GLA defectors made their way to their destination where they were also assigned to capture or destroy a radar Control Bunker that was vital for the ICBM's destination. However their strike force was met with some casualties when their scouting parties were destroyed by demo traps, designed to contaminate the ground around them for a short time. Not wanting to risk any more unpleasant surprises, they brought in a Radar Van and sentry drones lent by the Americans to detect and destroy more traps. This was about the only major problem the defectors had though as their targeted base had fewer defenses. Nonetheless, the GLA defectors destroyed the base while they captured the control bunker and two of the four launching facilities
The US forces however had a tougher time as Thrax's main stronghold was much more heavily defended. The stingers and small rockets were upgraded with toxin warheads that deal more damage to the vehicles and left behind deadly toxins on impact. Indeed, even US planes outfitted with the Countermeasure upgrade suffered much damage. These upgraded stingers additionaly also shot down every Tomahawk missile launched against them before it even arrived half-way to their designated targets. The stinger crews were still no match to the Pathfinder snipers stationed inside Humvees nonetheless, allowing the Tomahawk launchers and Crusader Tank platoons to finish the job.
Defiant to the end, even with his defences breached, the mad GLA scientist sent everything he had against the American strike team. A massive tank battle ensured between the Crusaders and the Scorpion-Marauder tank force inside the compound. The odds were always the Americans' favour though as the US had the firepower and technology to turn Thrax's tanks into scrap metal. With time ticking away, the Humvees carrying the Rangers rushed ahead to capture the last two launch facilities.
Dr. Thrax's eliminationEdit
As the launch facilities were captured, the Americans destroyed all of Thrax's base structures. Thrax's Command Center was the last to be destroyed. His body was later found by US forces beneath the rubble.
|“|| By land, sea and air, American troops head home, battle weary but proud. And as the smoke clears, perhaps we are a step closer to lasting peace.|
- James Seabury
With the world safe once more from the threat of the GLA, the US military once more demonstrated its power by halting the threat of global terrorism. The GLA was but a shadow of itself; fragmented once again with Dr. Thrax's death, with splinter factions and warlords now fighting each other for control of the organisation. US celebrations were premature however, as they would soon learn that the GLA was far from finished with the rise of Deathstrike.
- The player can essentially train up to two Jarmen Kells by having one of Thrax's workers (trained from a captured Supply Stash) build a Barracks and Palace. Thrax's Jarmen Kell cannot however, ride Combat cycles.
|“|| Your betrayal has not gone unnoticed. You will burn with the infidels you now assist! May your son's camels swell with virulants!|
- Dr. Thrax
- Thrax has three voice lines for this mission that mainly taunt the player and the rebelling GLA commander, but are left unused in the final game.
|“|| Thank you for releasing me. Transport me to my base to the east and I can help you.|
- Captured Rebel commander
- Unused audio and World Builder waypoints suggest that the rebelling GLA forces would only join the player once they managed to successfully rescue their captured commander. The Rebel was held in the base struck by Tomahawk missiles in the intro cutscene. The "prison cage" itself that is used to hold the Rebel commander is still present in the final game.