The Nomad is a versatile craft which combines the functions of a light manufacturing center and observation post. A common sight amongst the colonies of the Fringe Worlds, the Nomad is built to operate in all but the harshest climates. Although the Nomad shares a number of common traits with the SCV (its smaller 'cousin'), the Nomad is a far more specialized and advanced engineering craft.
Nomads are normally employed for first-line colony surveillance and protection duties against dangerous local life forms or climate events. These vehicles boast a wide array of sensors delicate enough to detect even cloaked or burrowed enemies. By deploying its two aft-mounted nano-welders, the Nomad can construct a variety of small, semi-permanent defensive structures to meet various threats in a matter of moments.
Several standard template constructions are available to the Nomad, a popular example being the auto-turret.
The Terran Dominion initially provided Nomads to give low-level protection to its most isolated outposts, typically manning them with local civilians as something akin to a volunteer fire truck or ambulance service. Over time the military support applications of the Nomad have seen it deployed in escalating levels of conflict, gradually replacing the older and vastly costlier science vessel.
The Nomad was originally a terran unit in StarCraft II, but it was felt that it looked too low-tech for its role. It was thus later replaced by the Vulkan, later leading on into the Nighthawk and Raven. However, Nomad wreckages can be found on maps such as Blistering Sands and Desert Oasis, and doodads of Nomad wrecks can be used in the map editor. The Nomad model can be found at the StarCraft II map editor.
Nomad had the ability able to produce mine drones, but these were replaced by spider mines, which have since been replaced by the aforementioned Hunter-Seeker Missile ability.
Nomad also used to have the following abilities:
Research description: "Allows the Nomad to use the Defensive Matrix Field ability. Defensive Matrix Field creates a damage suppression field at target location which reduces all incoming damage by 50%."
Usage cost: Unknown
The defensive matrix reduces incoming damage by 50% to all units within an area of effect, including enemy ones, rather than the version used by the science vessel.
At BlizzCon 2007 the Nomad had a third unknown ability that needed to be researched.
The Seismic Thumper was a Nomad ability which was not available in the BlizzCon 2008 build. It slowed down ground units by 50% and prevented zerg from burrowing.
Targeting drones are flying units which shine a laser on an enemy unit, giving a +50% damage boost to targeted units. Only one drone can target one unit at a time. The drone is cloaked. The targeting laser can be seen even without the use of detectors.
The drone has 120 hit points, and is immobile.
The Raven's spider mines function much like their equivalent in StarCraft I, but they are unlimited in quantity. Each mine does 50 damage plus an additional 50 damage against armored units. They are effective against massed tier 1 units, such as zerglings or zealots.
Blizzard began work on a game called Nomad shortly after they completed StarCraft. It was to be a sci-fi squad-based shooter, some of its developers taking inspiration from Necromunda, others from Final Fantasy. The lack of direction didn't help and the game was scrapped in favor of World of Warcraft.
When viewed in the map editor, texture files for the Nomad's portrait have user interface icons from the original StarCraft on one of its screens. The icons are for the Lift-Off, Load, Lockdown, Cloak, and Maelstrom abilities, and an unknown command in the upper-left.
↑As another update that you guys will get at BlizzCon, the Vulkans are now updated as the 'Nighthawks' in the BlizzCon build. They have updated art to reflect this as well. Those going to BlizzCon, make note of the cool new movement animations added to several Terran air units. Karune. 2008-10-08. New Lurker and Vulcan Art. Battle.net StarCraft II General Discussion Forum. Accessed 2008-10-08.
↑Speaking of the Nomad, it has actually gotten it's new art update, and a name update as well. It is now known as the Vulkan, and will be resigning down chaos at your expansions with its Auto Turrets. Karune. 2008-09-08. Ideas for NOMAD. Battle.net StarCraft II General Discussion Forum. Accessed 2008-09-08.
↑Nomads, also now known as the Vulkan, is still a detector. Actually, it is probably the most powerful mobile detector in the game, considering it can also rapidly deploy a medley of Terran defenses used to both support an attack or raid the enemy. Karune 2008-09-17. Karune: do comsats still require much energy?Battle.net StarCraft II General Discussion Forum. Accessed 2008-09-17.
↑Blizzard Entertainment. StarCraft II beta. (Activision Blizzard) (in English). March 25, 2010
↑Browder, Dustin. (Cavez) 2007-12-19. Nomad question. Battle.net StarCraft II General Discussion Forum. Accessed 2007-12-19.
↑ 18.018.1The Seismic Thumper is no longer in the multiplayer game, but was originally dropped on the battlefield, which slows all units within it's radius by 50% (including friendlies). The only way to stop it was to destroy the Seismic Thumper itself. Karune. 2008-10-20. Karune: Molecular Displ. & Seismic Thumper?Battle.net StarCraft II General Discussion Forum. Accessed 2008-10-20.
↑"Folks also got to experiment with a few of the latest units and special powers, including the protoss mothership’s new enemy-incapacitating vortex ability and the terran nighthawk’s seismic thumper, which slows down foes and prevents zerg units from burrowing underground. StarCraft enthusiasts also received a special surprise in their goody bags -- a beta key that will grant access to the upcoming StarCraft II beta when it begins." BlizzCon 2008: Day One Wrap-Up. Blizzard Entertainment. Accessed 2008-10-17.
↑ 20.020.120.220.320.4The Targeting Drone is similar to the Auto Turret in the fact that it does not have a timed life. It currently costs 50 energy to deploy and has 120 hitpoints (all subject to balance of course). The Targeting Drone can target one unit at a time, and increases the damage that unit takes by 50%. You cannot have two drones targeting the same target. These drones are also flying, stealthed, and immobile. They may excellent perimeter defenses and can be coupled with Auto Turret raids to maximize the damage. Karune. 2008-10-16. Karune : Targeting Drone. Battle.net StarCraft General Discussion Forum. Accessed 2008-10-17.
↑Even though the drone is stealthed, visually, there will be a red laser coming from the drone aimmed at the target, so you will know when there is one around. Karune. 2008-10-16. Karune : Targeting Drone. Battle.net StarCraft General Discussion Forum. Accessed 2008-10-17.