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The dual-mode siege tank concept was a response to the Guild Wars and the goliath. Prior to the war, work had progressed on a static "final defense" cannon. However, the conflict demonstrated the need for mobility and as a result an effort was made to make the cannon more mobile. The solution was creative. An existing tank design was modified so that it could operate as a conventional tank in addition to being able to deploy the cannon and become a static artillery emplacement at will. Mobile siege tanks were in existence by 2480, several years before the official beginning of the Guild Wars. These tanks were able to be fueled by oil.
Siege tanks function in two modes. First is the "tank" or "assault mode" in which the vehicle may be used in the familiar armored support role using relative light weapons. The second is the more radical "siege mode" in which the vehicle becomes a static emplacement able to deploy a much more powerful and longer ranged weapon.
- Siege tank pilot(src)
The AAV-5 was in service by 2491, renowned throughout the Confederacy for its heavy firepower and stalwart emplacement/advance tactics. It had a crew of three: gunner, driver, and commander/navigator, though could still be crewed by a single operator. In addition, the Arclite version could serve as an APC of sorts, carrying personnel into a hot zone and deploying them via side/rear hatches.
The Arclite made navigation easy via its interior viewscreen, although a top hatch still existed should a crew member wish to survey the area personally and/or signal fellow soldiers. The tank also provided a targeting computer, which not only keyed in on heat sources, but also identified their range, notably whether they were in range or not via visual and audio indications.
Arclite armament consisted of twin 80mm PPG-7 plasma cannons when mobile and the 120mm Shock Cannon when in siege mode. Later on this was upgraded to the 120mm Mjolnir Artillery Cannon, which fired plasma shells in contrast to the standard explosives of the Shock Cannon. Such weaponry was sometimes called upon to instigate scorched earth tactics.
Experience found the AAV-5's protection and "assault mode" armament to be inadequate. This inhibited its ability to advance and establish a "siege mode" fire base. Furthermore, once in "siege mode" it became difficult to repel a close-assault by any enemy forces taking advantage of the "deadzone" formed by its artillery cannon, and even in the AAV-5 transform back into "tank mode", it was relatively undergunned and lightly armored. As such, it has been replaced by the Crucio variant, which has a more powerful "tank mode".
The Crucio was designed to correct the perceived deficiencies of the AAV-5 and entered Dominion service as the AAV-5's replacement following the Brood War. In use by 2502, the new turret layout featured an upgraded assault-mode armament package allowing the Crucio to better fend for itself on an open battlefield. The new tank was significantly more expensive than the older Arclite, but the increased versatility more than compensated for the additional expense. The Crucio featured twin 90mm cannons and a 180mm Shock Cannon. The new 180mm cannon scattered superheated tungsten over an area 50% larger than the old Arclite's 120mm cannon.
The Crucio is equipped with a plasma gun.
- For StarCraft gameplay information see: Siege tank (StarCraft).
- For StarCraft in-game quotations see: StarCraft Siege Tank Quotations.
The siege tank has many stereotypical, military quotes. The driver of the tank is seen as a large man in body armor who speaks in military lingo. Several of his quotes are obviously taken from the classic Vietnam War films Full Metal Jacket and Apocalypse Now.
This article or section contains information about StarCraft: Ghost, which has been declared non-canon. Elements may be taken as 'flavor lore' however.
In StarCraft: Ghost, Nova was able to call down artillery support from siege tanks by identifying targets. Siege tanks were player drivable in multiplayer, and were able to run over and crush other players and vehicles.
- For StarCraft II gameplay information see: Siege tank (StarCraft II).
- For StarCraft II in-game quotations see: StarCraft II Siege Tank Quotations.
Known Siege Tanks
Known Siege Tank Models
Known Siege Tank Commanders and Crewmen
- General Edmund Duke
- General Martin
- Sergeant Forest Keel
- Sergeant Wendell Sovens
- Private Armstrong
- The 120mm Mjolnir cannon is a reference to the hammer of the Norse god of thunder, Thor.
- Crucio is a Latin word which means "I torture."