Twin plasma cannons
Kane began to make use of technology plundered from the alien artifact known as the Tacitus in order to create powerful new weapons for the Brotherhood. One of the developments from the data storage device was a technology in which he used to create a next generation heavy attack fighter/bomber aircraft.
Nod established a cloaked base at Sector Seven (somewhere in the Balkans) which served as the primary production facility for the advanced Banshee fighters. After the existence of the Banshee was discovered, General James Solomon dispatched Commander Michael McNeil to destroy the base, where he was assisted by the Forgotten. The Forgotten were able to determine the location of the hidden Nod base, so GDI destroyed the Banshee factories in the hopes of eliminating all the prototypes.
While the prototypes were destroyed, it did not stop Nod from utilizing Banshees on the battlefield during the final stages of the war.
|The following is based on the Nod campaign for Tiberian Sun and some details might contradict canon.|
As the Second Tiberium War raged on, GDI began its testing of its new prototype Mammoth Mk. II heavy walkers. Kane sought to destroy it as it was a threat to continued Nod operations and thus gave Anton Slavik a squadron of Banshee attack fighters from his elite guard which were used to destroy the Mammoth prototype.
During the Firestorm Crisis, the Nod machine intelligence known as CABAL rebelled against the Brotherhood in an attempt to dominate the Earth. During this time, it managed to make use of Nod Banshees in a bizarre method for attacking enemy structures before its defeat.
For reasons unknown, the Banshee was retired from service following the Firestorm Crisis. By the time of the Third Tiberium War, the Brotherhood had developed a stealth bomber craft known as the Vertigo which fulfilled many of the duties of the Banshee. Once the Scrin arrived on Earth, a striking resemblance could be seen between their Stormriders and the old Banshees. It was then confirmed that the Banshees' design was derived from the Tacitus, explaining the similarities between the two.
The Banshee is thin, compact and very heavily armoured. It is outfitted with powerful rapid fire plasma cannons, also developed using Tacitus information. The plasma cannons have to be recharged at a helipad, however, so the Banshee is not capable of long-term independent operation.
Its weapons are optimized for use against vehicles, especially lighter vehicles, although there is evidence to suggest that a small group of them can destroy even the Mammoth Mk. II. Although very effective against armoured units, these weapons are slightly less effective against structures. Despite this, the rogue artificial intelligence known as CABAL made use of Banshees as weapons to target structures during the Firestorm Crisis.
Banshees are seen as lethal air-superiority fighters in cutscene, but serve as equivalent of Orca Bomber in game. Compared with Orca Bomber, Banshee's plasma cannons are much more accurate. However small-sized, fast moving targets still have some chances to dodge the plasma charges. Although it has no anti-air capabilities (the only airborne unit with air-to-air ability in Tiberian Sun and Firestorm is the GDI jump jet infantry), the Banshee is suitable for dealing with ground vehicles and structures.
After three phases of attack, Banshee must return to a helipad for reloading.
- Heavily armoured
- Faster and more accurate than Orca Bomber
- Effective against vehicles and buildings
- Radar-invisible when elite
- Unimaginable power in large numbers.
- Weak against infantry
- Must return to a helipad for reloading
- Expensive ($1500)
- No air-to-air armaments
- The Banshee was named after a female spirit from the Irish mythology, usually seen as an omen of death and a messenger from the Otherworld - a fitting name indeed, given its weapons can send screaming plasmatic death towards its target(s).
- The Banshee's voiceovers in the German versions of Tiberian Sun and Firestorm sound feminine and quite dire - both characteristics make this voice better fitting to the unit's name.
- Humorously, when the Banshee is shot down in-game, the pilot merely says "whoops" calmly before crashing into the ground, unlike other aircraft pilots in the entire series, who scream or call for help before they crash.