|“|| USA armor division.|
- Crusader Tank leaving the War Factory
|“|| How 'bout a show of force?|
The original "Crusader" tank was well known for its sturdy but lightweight construction which allowed it to be rapidly deployed around the world, even via air drop. Its weight was still quite significant and its mobility was limited to terrain suitable for a tracked vehicle. Therefore, various US defense firms competed to develop a "hyper-mobile armored system" capable of carrying a similar level of armor and firepower to the Crusader but being able to travel over any terrain type and at a higher speed. In the end, only one design was able fulfill all requirements - Mondo Armor System's "Turtle Drive" hover-track system. This design took advantage of the fact that most of the time tank tracks are adequate for what is required of the vehicle - so in "traction mode" the vehicle travels on four small lightweight track units.
However, when extra agility is required the vehicles 4 track units, incredibly, all swivel into an outboard position to reveal large ducted-fan thrusters attached to them. These are powerful enough to lift the entire vehicle clear of the ground and in this "hover mode" it can cross any type of terrain and even water. In addition, it can reach speeds of up to 80 km/h, double of what it can attain while riding on conventional tracks. It was also discovered that firing the main gun rapidly while in hover mode could cause catastrophic destabilization of the vehicle, though by circa 2048, this issue was rectified, turning the already outstanding Crusader II into perhaps one of the most versatile war machines ever conceived, capable of traversing any terrain and striking the enemy from the direction they least expected and leave them paranoid, wondering from where the Crusader will strike next. This came at the cost of some of its armor, though.
At 2038, the light-weight Crusader II was officially introduced as the new expeditionary tank of the US military and was met with positive reactions from the Marine Corps for its amphibious features and rapid deploy ability while the original Crusader was sold to Mexico and Canada.
Call in a Starlifter
|Call in a Starlifter on the Crusader Tank.|
Requires Supply Center and Air Mobility.
|Installs a hover drive on the Crusader, making it amphibious, moves 100% faster and take 70% less damage from land mines, but have 40% less overall armor.|
Requires Tank Hover Drives.
|Build a Battle Drone that follows the vehicle, engaging enemies with its machine gun and repairs the vehicle when damaged.|
Costs $200 and takes 5 seconds to complete.
Incompatible with Targeteer Drone.
|Build a Targeteer Drone that follows the vehicle, extending its sight radius and increases the vehicle's rate of fire by 25% (except for Avengers, WASP Hives and Microwave Tanks).|
Costs $150 and takes 5 seconds to complete.
Incompatible with Battle Drone.
Behind the scenes
- Before 1.85 the Crusader could switch between a combat-effective tracked mode and a high-speed hover mode; the latter makes it faster and fully amphibious but the Crusader was unable to fire its main gun in this mode for balancing reasons.