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|GDIS Michael McNeil|
GDI heavy battlecruiser and long-range artillery
Heavy Aircraft Plating (Heavy)
GDIS Michael McNeil is the first Kodiak-class airborne warship of GDI, deployed in 2069.
With the original Orca Command aircraft mothballed by GDI Council (save for a few units, like the Huron), the Initiative was left without any large aircraft to guard the skies. It wasn't until the aftermath of the Third Tiberium War that this decision was reconsidered. Scrin Devastator Warships and Planetary Assault Carriers were powerful enough to devastate even the strongest GDI bases with ease, as the smaller aircraft like Firehawks were simply not powerful enough to bring them down fast enough.
When the Relay Node was destroyed and GDI started rebuilding, the need for large scale air superiority aircraft became evident. With the TCN construction underway, the Council was able to reallocate resources needed to set up the initial construction efforts and pool them into the development of new aircraft capable to standing up to their Scrin counterparts.
It took six long years of on-and-off development, but in 2068, GDI unveiled the foundation of their space fleet, the Kodiak-class battle cruiser, named after Michael McNeil's legendary command vehicle. However, the name was about the only thing in common the two ships had - unlike its command-oriented predecessor, the new Kodiak is a warship first and foremost, armed with nine 24" guns grouped into three turrets with a compliment of Vulcan cannons for anti-air defense.
Its first deployment came in 2069, when the GDIS Michael McNeil destroyed fortified Obelisk defenses surrounding a key Separatist base in Africa, allowing GDI groups to secure the area with minimal casualties.