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Desolator (Red Alert 2)

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Desolator
DesolatorRA2
Unit
Affiliation

Soviets (Iraq only)

Role

Heavy Infantry

Armament

Rad-cannon

Protection

Nuclear battle suit

Tier

2

Tech level

8

Properties
Hit points

150

Armour type

Plate

Amphibious

No

Production
Cost

$600

Build time

0:24

Produced by

Soviet Barracks

Requires

Radar Tower

Combat
Ground attack
  • 125 (200 when elite) (RadBeamWarhead)
  • 1 (deployed) (RadEruptionWarhead)
  • 175 (IFV) (RadBeamWarhead)
Cooldown
  • 50
  • 60 (deployed)
  • 30 (IFV)
Speed

4

Attack range
  • 6 (8 when elite)
  • 4 (deployed)
  • 7 (IFV)
Sight range

6

Function
Abilities

Creates radiation field when deployed

Elite upgrade

Increased strength, firepower, rate of fire, self-healing
Long Range Shot

There goes the neighborhood!
- Desolator
RA2 Desolator Icons
RA2 Desolator Veteran Icons

The Desolator is an infamous Iraqi infantry unit used during Third World War and the Psychic Dominator Disaster.

Background

It will be a silent spring.
- Desolator
Red alert 2 desolator quotes00:36

Red alert 2 desolator quotes

Created by Soviet-aligned Iraq these voluntary warriors go through tests that would kill them if it wasn't for their radiation suits. Each soldier is equipped with a nuclear battle suit[1] and a rad-cannon. He is quite fast and speaks in a raspy, tired voice.


RA2Sovietlogo The following is based on the Soviet campaign for Yuri's Revenge and some details might contradict canon.

Desolators were also the only infantry unit apart from the Cosmonauts to be sent to the Moon.

Game unit

Let's make an oasis of death!
- Desolator ordered to deploy.

While they are a potent anti-infantry unit with their rad cannon's primary mode of fire (a concentrated radiation beam melting down enemy soldiers), their true power lies in the way they can deny an area to the enemy by irradiating the surface, making passing through it lethal to infantry and damaging to light vehicles. Their radiation field can penetrate water, making them capable of damaging submarines and revealing them. They are most effective at cutting off important choke points, such as passes, valleys, and even bridges. They were nearly matchless against any type of infantry, save for ones armed with long-ranged anti-infantry weaponry and flying infantry (like Rocketeers and Cosmonauts). Their suit design clearly do not have incorporated comfortability values, so they cannot open any of their outfit for themselves. This feature helps them greatly to survive in extreme conditions. As a result, the Desolator is only one of two types of infantry units authorized for the Moon assigment.

However, they have to remain immobile while deploying their cannon and could be easily taken out by enemy Snipers, heavier vehicles or airborne units, such as Rocketeers, Harriers or Nighthawks. Their weapons were also completely useless against robotic units such as Terror drones and Robot tanks.

Usage

The Iraqi Desolator can poison land with toxic radiation or annihilate enemy troops with his powerful Rad-Cannon.
- Red Alert 2 Iraq multiplayer loading screen

It is useful to keep a few Desolators around a Soviet base, as an effective counter against a Nighthawk rush carrying Engineers or Navy Seals into the heart of a base. If timed just right, one can irradiate the landing zone before the Seals arrive, causing them to instantly die the moment they leave the transport. However, ff done too late, the Seals will kill the Desolator; the Nighthawk itself might also pick off the Desolator if there is absolutely no flak defense. Nonetheless, the Desolator is the Soviets' only equivalent to a "ranged sniper" unit, capable of picking off stray Engineers that try to breach the base. Desolator is also a favorable unit to counter paradrop, provided they can be transported fast enough to the drop zone (and, if used, the transportation unit can get out quickly). Desolator cannot harm infantry that are garrisoned in a building. British Snipers are not an effective counter against a large number of Desolators, such as 5 or more, because the Desolators' long range meant death for them. In large numbers, desolators can create a contamination zone more deadly than a nuclear missiles, and destroy nearly anything that comes through in a matter of moments. Strangely, a veteran Desolator can withstand a nuke attack.

Desolators can be combined with captured Allied IFV's to make "poor man's Demolition Trucks"; essentially a smaller version of the Libyan Demolition Truck's blast damage and radius, but which will result in radioactive fallout, damaging infantry that passes within (only in Yuri's Revenge - in RA2 he has an upgraded rad-cannon). The combination may still have other values as desolator can still shoot on their primary mode only, even affecting IFV promotion tally from the kills. However destruction of IFV will still instantly kill any infantry inside, desolator included. Allied commanders are normally wary to have their air support pick off slow moving Desolators before they can reach the heart of massed Allied infantry formations, but incredibly fast IFVs can quickly deliver a radioactive blast to their center.

They can also be used to cripple Yuri's economy as Slaves are very vulnerable to radiation, but it takes time to have the irradiated ground returning to normal even if the Desolator is killed.

A single deployed Desolator's radiation field can easily kill all infantry units (except for the Desolators) as well as any light vehicles (non-Robotic) within its radius. However, deploying more Desolators are still useful, as multiple deployed Desolators destroy them faster and leaves more time to finish the attack.

Development changes

Originally, the unit was called Gamma Legion and used a shoulder-mounted Gamma cannon.

Legacy

After the Psychic Dominator Disaster, a secret plan was implemented to bring them back to life. Seen during the Uprising, the new Desolators were more machine than man. Now with the ability to corrode armor, a small group could take on any threat on the battlefield. They are a far cry from the War of the Three Powers juggernauts.

Assessment

Pros

  • Nearly unmatched against any type of infantry except Snipers.
  • Cannot harm friendly units garrisoned in a building.
  • Powerful in numbers.
  • Can be combined with a captured Allied IFV to make a "poor man's Demolition Truck". (Yuri's Revenge v1.0 only. In v1.001 and RA2, Desolator IFV fires his rad cannon instead).
  • When deployed, Desolators can irradiate the surface, making passing through ground lethal to infantry and light vehicles such as IFVs, Prism Tanks and Mirage Tanks.
  • Radiation field is also quite effective against heavy vehicles.
  • Their radiation field can also penetrate water, damaging enemy submarines and revealing them.
  • Desolator's weapon is quite effective against vehicles with Elite status and firepower upgrade. And even more powerful when inside a Battle Fortress with such enhancements.
  • Quite cheap ($600) for the damage it does to enemy infantry and vehicles when deployed.
  • Healing ability and combined with heavy armor, Desolators are deadly meat shields against most attacks other than long-ranged foes.

Cons

  • Long-ranged anti-infantry weaponry and flying infantry (like Rocketeers and Cosmonauts) can kill Desolators easily.
  • Can't attack aircraft.
  • Completely useless against robotic units (like Terror Drones and Robot Tanks), Miners, structures and other Desolators (enemy or allied).
  • Immobile while deployed.
  • Deployed Desolator's radiation can harm friendly units.
  • Desolator's damage is relatively weak while and while not deployed against heavily armoured vehicles such as Apocalypse Tanks, Battle Fortresses and Masterminds.
  • Only available to Iraq.

Selected Quotes

Desolator ready
- When selected
(heavy breathing)
- When selected
Ready for melt-down
- When selected
Reactor ready
- When selected
Mercury rising
- When selected
Find a hot spot
- When moving
Scorched Earth
- When moving
Spread the Doom
- When moving
There goes the neighborhood!
- When moving
It'll be a silent spring
- When moving
Tagged for extinction
- When ordered to attack
Make it glow
- When ordered to attack
Let's heat `em up
- When ordered to attack
Here comes the sun
- When ordered to attack
The end is near
- When ordered to attack
Let's make an oasis of death!
- When ordered to deploy

Gallery

References

  1. Westwood Studios, Command & Conquer: Red Alert 2. Allied mission 5: "Operation Free Gateway".


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