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Vulture

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"Those goofy mercs are still using Vultures, can ya believe it? Damn things are death traps even when you ain't got people shooting at ya."
"Careful now, Swann. My old Vulture saved my skin more times than I care to remember. I ain't gonna listen to you trash talk a classic piece of engineering like that."
"Classic?! I suppose you could call 'em that. 'Course most folks like a bike that don't explode on them when the repeller seals freeze up, or when the fuel cells start leaking radioactive waste - but hey, who cares if it's a 'classic', right?"

- Rory Swann and Jim Raynor discussing the vulture(src)

Vulture
Vulture SC-G Art1
Historical
Earliest sighting

2478

Physical
Race

Terran

Type

Hoverbike

Propulsion
Max. speed

230mph (370kph)

Armaments
Political
Role
  • Skirmishing
  • Salvaging
  • Recon
  • Patrol
Personnel
Crew

1 (pilot), 1 passanger (optional)

The vulture-class hover bike (a.k.a. vulture hover cycle)[1] is a terran hoverbike used mainly for scouting.

OverviewEdit

"Vulture Hover Bikes...they were fast, light and highly maneuverable and gave their riders about as much protection as a paper hat."

(src)

Vulture Heaven'sDevils Art1

A vulture during the Guild Wars

In use by 2478,[2] the vulture is a lightly-armored one-man hoverbike primarily used for scouting and patrol,[1] designed with speed and reliability in mind.[3] Its limited gravity hover technology allows the bike to travel over rough terrain with little loss of traction or speed, and reach speeds up to 230 miles per hour.[1] Three men could overload a bike.[4] Their magnetic frequency can also be adjusted to make it easier to cross some obstacles (e.g. the tracks used by mag-lev trains).[5] An onboard computer and sensors mounted in the "nose" of the craft keeps it at a steady pace for most of the time[6] and a navigation system is present.[5] These features make the vulture suitable for patrolling the vast wildernesses typically found around terran colonies.[3] They produce a humming whine as they move.[7]

Vulture SC1 Art1

A vulture during the Great War

Vultures are ill suited for heavy combat, given their light frame.[3][8] However, they make excellent skirmishers, especially against lightly armored targets.[3] Vultures are also tasked with scavenging ("scavenger hover bike" is a term occasionally used).[7] In some occasions, vultures may be formed into small squadrons, usually attached to mechanized infantry. Given the speed at which the bikes move however, it is difficult to maintain cohesion. The vulture's driver seat can be enclosed depending on model, customization, or operating environment[8] and can be configured for someone to ride shotgun.[6][9] The bike can catastrophically fail if the repulsors freeze up, or the fuel cells begin leaking radioactive material.[10][11]

In the Confederate Armored Vehicle Corps, aspiring vulture pilots had to pass a minimal physical fitness exam before becoming a pilot.[12] Originally, the standard vulture armament was an anti-personnel[1] grenade launcher.[13] Since the Brood War however, vultures may instead be equipped with a mounted laser cannon.[14] Other optional equipment includes spider[3] and cerberus[15] mines, ion thrusters[3] and a microfabricator.[15]

The vulture remained in use by the Dominion Armed Forces until at least 2502[16] and Dominion Ghost Program trainees begin training in the use of vultures in their second year.[17] Vultures continue to be used by rebel and mercenary groups.[18]

Technology similar to that found in the vulture is available in civilian hoverbikes, such as the 428 hoverbike.[17]

Game UnitEdit

StarCraftEdit

Vulture
Vulture SC1 Game1
Unit
Race

Terran

Role

Light Recon Vehicle

Armament

AGP-2 "Thumper" grenade launcher[13]

Properties
Size

Medium

Sight range

8

Production
Minerals

75 Minerals Terran SC1

Supply

2 Supply Terran SC1

Build time

30 Time SC2 Game1

Produced from

Factory

Hotkey

V

Protection
Hit points

80

Armor

0

Combat
Ground attack

20Snipe SC2 Icon1

Cooldown

30

Attack range

5

Vulture Profile

StarCraft I profile

Vultures are ideal for scouting and dealing with small-sized ground units such as zerglings, zealots, marines and firebats. Given that vultures are not very durable, they are most effective when using hit-and-run attacks to harass the enemy and are not recommended for large scale attacks. Vultures are also effective hunters against units such as high templars, defilers and other ground-based spellcaster units and can get rid of an expansion base's workers in little time.

In terran vs protoss matches, vultures are vital with their mines which can severely injure high-hit point protoss units and for delaying an attack. Spider mines also fill a harassment role very well against both zerg and protoss.

AbilitiesEdit

InterSpiMine Terran SC1 Spider Mine
Acquisition
Minerals

100 Minerals Terran SC1

Gas

100 Gas Terran SC1

Research time

80 Time SC2 Game1

Researched at

Machine shop

Hotkey

M

Usage
Range

3

Hotkey

I

Notes

Gives each vulture three spider mines. Vultures cannot replenish their supply of mines once expended. New mines may only be created with new vultures.

Mines burrow where deployed and are not player-controllable. Each mine causes 125 damage and has 20 hit points. Mines do not benefit from any upgrades. Air and hovering ground units do not activate mines. Mines can sense and attack nearby cloaked ground units such as ghosts or dark templar even without the aid of a detector. They will not, however, reveal cloaked enemy units. It is possible for ranged units to pick out the mines before being hit.

UpgradesEdit

InterVehicleWep Terran SC1 Vehicle Weapons
Researched at

Armory

Hotkey

W

Properties
Level

Level 1

Level 2

Level 3

Minerals

100 Minerals Terran SC1

175 Minerals Terran SC1

250 Minerals Terran SC1

Gas

100 Gas Terran SC1

175 Gas Terran SC1

250 Gas Terran SC1

Research time

266 Time SC2 Game1

298 Time SC2 Game1

330 Time SC2 Game1

Required

Science facility

Notes
  • +1 bonus to goliath ground attack per level
  • +4 to goliath air attack per level (+2 per missile)
  • +2 to vulture attack per level
  • +3 to siege tank tank mode attack per level
  • +5 for siege tank siege mode attack per level
InterVehicleArm Terran SC1 Vehicle Plating
Researched at

Armory

Hotkey

P

Properties
Level

Level 1

Level 2

Level 3

Minerals

100 Minerals Terran SC1

175 Minerals Terran SC1

250 Minerals Terran SC1

Gas

100 Gas Terran SC1

175 Gas Terran SC1

250 Gas Terran SC1

Research time

266 Time SC2 Game1

298 Time SC2 Game1

330 Time SC2 Game1

Required

Science facility

Notes
Ion Ion Thrusters
Researched at

Machine shop

Hotkey

I

Properties
Minerals

100 Minerals Terran SC1

Gas

100 Gas Terran SC1

Research time

80 Time SC2 Game1

Notes
  • Increase vulture movement speed.

QuotationsEdit

See: StarCraft Vulture Quotations

DevelopmentEdit

MercBiker SC1 DevHead1

Merc biker profile

StarEdit files reveal a number of "merc biker" units— the concept seems to be similar to that of the vulture.[19]

StarCraft: GhostEdit

Vulture SC-G Art2

Nova riding a vulture

StarCraft Ghost Logo2

This article or section contains information about StarCraft: Ghost, which has been declared non-canon. Elements may be taken as 'flavor lore' however.
The content may be significantly out of date. Please do not add speculation to this article, and remember to cite a published source for details.

The vulture unit in StarCraft: Ghost is still a lightly-armored fast-moving vehicle. It is armed with either an AGP-2 "Thumper" Grenade Launcher[13] or a laser cannon.[14] Capable of being used by ghosts and light infantry, it is nonetheless vulnerable to enemy attacks, including having the vehicle stolen from underneath the driver.

StarCraft IIEdit

Vulture
Vulture SC2 Rend1
Unit
Race

Terran

Campaign

Wings of Liberty

Role

Fast skirmish unit

Armament

Fragmentation grenade launcher

Properties
Transport
size

1

Sight range

8

Production
Minerals

75 Minerals Terran SC1

Supply

2 TerranSupply SC2 Icon1

Build time

25 Time SC2 Game1

Produced from

Factory

Hotkey

V

Movement
Speed

4.25

Deceleration

0

Protection
Hit points

75

Armor

1 SC2TerrVehArm

Type

Mechanical

Armor type

Light

Fragmentation grenade launcher
Damage

10 (+15 vs light)

Targets
  • Ground
Cooldown

1.69

Range

6

Upgrade/level

+1 SC2TerrVehWeap

Function
Abilities

Spider mines

Vultures are campaign-only units in StarCraft II: Wings of Liberty, and become available by playing the mission "Cutthroat".[18]

The vulture is less expensive than the hellion and its main attack is less effective against large groups of light targets. Spider mines compensate for this, especially with the Replenishable Magazine upgrade which allows large minefields.

Not taking spider mines into account, vultures are strong against marines, reapers, hellions, zerglings, hydralisks, zealots, sentries, and high templar. They are weak against marauders, siege tanks, stalkers, colossi, roaches, and any air units.

AbilitiesEdit

DeploySpiderMines SC2 Icon1 Deploy Spider Mines
Usage
Hotkey

E

Notes

Spider Mines pursue enemy units that come in range, and detonate for heavy area damage. Buried Spider Mines can only be seen by enemy Detectors.

Edit

UpgradesEdit

SC2 TerrVehWeap Terran Vehicle Weapons
Researched at

Armory

Hotkey

E

Properties
Minerals

100 Minerals Terran SC1

175 Minerals Terran SC1

250 Minerals Terran SC1

Gas

100 Gas Terran SC1

175 Gas Terran SC1

250 Gas Terran SC1

Research time

160 Time SC2 Game1

190 Time SC2 Game1

220 Time SC2 Game1

Notes

Increases the attack damage of terran vehicles.

Edit
SC2 Lab Ultra Capacitors Icon Ultra Capacitors
Campaign

Wings of Liberty

Cost

5 protoss research points

Researched at

Hyperion laboratory

Notes

Attack upgrades at the armory and engineering bay improved cooldown by 5% per level. Self-replicating ultra capacitors reduce the reload time of weapons and systems.[20]

Edit
SC2 TerrVehArm Terran Vehicle Plating
Researched at

Armory

Hotkey

V

Properties
Minerals

100 Minerals Terran SC1

175 Minerals Terran SC1

250 Minerals Terran SC1

Gas

100 Gas Terran SC1

175 Gas Terran SC1

250 Gas Terran SC1

Research time

160 Time SC2 Game1

190 Time SC2 Game1

220 Time SC2 Game1

Notes

Increases the armor of terran vehicles

Edit
SC2 Lab VanPlating Icon Vanadium Plating
Campaign

Wings of Liberty

Cost

5 protoss research points

Researched at

Hyperion laboratory

Notes

Armor upgrades at the armory and engineering bay increase health by 5% per level. Vanadium better disperses weapon impacts than standard armor.[20]

Edit
Cerberusmines SC2 Icon1 Cerberus Mines
Campaign

Wings of Liberty

Cost

$40,000

Researched at

Hyperion armory

Notes

Enhances spider mine trigger and blast radius by 33%.

This mine was developed by the Kel-Morian Combine during its siege of New Austin. The increased trigger, pursuit, and blast radiuses were critical to terrorizing the civilian population and protecting supply depots from looters.[15]

Edit
ReplenishSpidermines SC2 Icon1 Replenishable Magazine
Campaign

Wings of Liberty

Cost

$60,000

Acquisition
Researched at

Hyperion armory

Usage
Minerals

15 Minerals Terran SC1

Activation/
Build Time

12 Time SC2 Game1

Hotkey

R

Notes

Vultures can replenish spider mines, once per use of this ability. Mines cost 15 minerals each and vultures can carry a maximum of three spider mines. The ability can be set to autocast.

Edit
SC2 Lab BioSteel Icon Regenerative Bio-Steel
Campaign

Wings of Liberty

Cost

20 zerg research points

Acquisition
Researched at

Hyperion laboratory

Notes

Damaged ships and vehicles recover hit points over time.[21]

Edit

QuotationsEdit

See: StarCraft II Vulture Quotations

Known Vulture PilotsEdit

Vulture SC2 Head2

A vulture pilot


417th Confederate Marine Platoon


War Pigs

TriviaEdit

Vulture SC2 Art1

Jim Raynor's vulture on sale

The vulture's unit portrait in StarCraft II is based on Jason Huck.[22] A large Horde logo can be seen on his left arm.

ReferencesEdit

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 SC1 Vulture. StarCraft Compendium. Accessed on 2008-01-24
  2. McNeill, Graham (December 30, 2008). StarCraft: I, Mengsk. Simon & Schuster (Pocket Star). ISBN 1416-55083-6.
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 3.4 3.5 Underwood, Peter, Bill Roper, Chris Metzen and Jeffrey Vaughn. StarCraft (Manual). Irvine, Calif.: Blizzard Entertainment, 1998.
  4. Dietz, William C. (April 6, 2010). StarCraft II: Heaven's Devils. Simon & Schuster (Gallery Books). ISBN 978-1416-55084-6.
  5. 5.0 5.1 Golden, Christie (April 12, 2011). StarCraft II: Devils' Due. Simon & Schuster (Gallery Books). ISBN 978-1416-55085-3.
  6. 6.0 6.1 Grubb, Jeff (February 27, 2001). StarCraft: Liberty's Crusade. Simon & Schuster (Pocket Star). ISBN 978-0671-04148-9.
  7. 7.0 7.1 Mesta, Gabriel (July 1, 2001). StarCraft: Shadow of the Xel'Naga. Simon & Schuster (Pocket Star). ISBN 978-0671-04149-6.
  8. 8.0 8.1 Hickman, Tracy (May 21, 2002). StarCraft: Speed of Darkness. Simon & Schuster (Pocket Star). ISBN 978-0671-04150-2.
  9. Golden, Christie (May 22, 2007). StarCraft: The Dark Templar Saga #1: Firstborn. Simon & Schuster (Pocket Star). ISBN 978-0-7434-7125-1.
  10. Blizzard Entertainment. StarCraft II: Wings of Liberty. (Activision Blizzard). PC. Rory Swann (in English). 2010.
  11. Blizzard Entertainment. StarCraft II: Wings of Liberty. (Activision Blizzard). PC. Conversations after Cutthroat (in English). 2010
  12. Armored Vehicle Corps. Accessed on 2008-01-28
  13. 13.0 13.1 13.2 Source: BlizzCon 2005 StarCraft: Ghost information. Terran Vehicles. Artist: Blizzard Entertainment. Accessed 2007-09-08.
  14. 14.0 14.1 2006-02-09. Vulture. Blizzard Entertainment. Accessed 2007-09-06.
  15. 15.0 15.1 15.2 Blizzard Entertainment. StarCraft II: Wings of Liberty. (Activision Blizzard). PC. Armory upgrades (in English). 2010.
  16. Elder, Josh (w), Ramanda Kamarga (p). "Why We Fight." In StarCraft: Frontline: Volume 1 (paperback binding), pp. 6–47. Tokyopop, August 1, 2008. ISBN 978-1427-80721-2.
  17. 17.0 17.1 DeCandido, Keith R. A. (November 28, 2006). StarCraft: Ghost: Nova. Simon & Schuster (Pocket Star). ISBN 978-0743-47134-3.
  18. 18.0 18.1 Blizzard Entertainment. StarCraft II: Wings of Liberty. (Activision Blizzard). PC. Mission: Wings of Liberty, Cutthroat (in English). 2010-07-27.
  19. Blizzard Entertainment. StarCraft Map Editor. (Blizzard Entertainment) (in English). March 31, 1998
  20. 20.0 20.1 Blizzard Entertainment. StarCraft II: Wings of Liberty. (Activision Blizzard). PC. Protoss research (in English). 2010.
  21. Blizzard Entertainment. StarCraft II: Wings of Liberty. (Activision Blizzard). PC. Zerg research (in English). 2010.
  22. 2010-05-02, Blizzard's Dustin Browder talks StarCraft 2. JoyStiq, accessed on 2010-05-03

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