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No one expects the Barracuda.
—A Barracuda pilot before dropping missiles

The Barracuda is an advanced bomber used by the Allies armed with a pair of missiles to take down structures with ease.

Official description

When an enemy installation is too well defended to be assaulted directly, the Barracuda steps in. Though not as quick as a regular jet, this bomber is a powerful tool for the precise removal of hardened targets and structures. Equipped with advanced stealth technology, the Barracuda is completely invisible on radar, swooping in and annihilating enemy buildings before the opponent can react. However, the paper thin armor and high cost of this unit make it something you don't want to be careless with.[1]

Overview

The Barracuda is the Allies' main Tier 3 heavy anti-structure aircraft. Equipped with dual "Venus" heavy missiles, the Barracuda is the ultimate structure killer in the Allied air force. Two Barracudas are powerful enough to flatten anti-air defenses, whereas in a group of 4, they can easily destroy most structures in one fell swoop (especially technology expanders like the Pandora Hub). Besides its strength, the Barracuda also boasts high speed and invisibility to enemy radar, making them an unexpected game changer in favor of the Allies when commanded properly.

Ideally, the Barracuda should be used for surgical strikes on the enemy base, targeting their most important structures (for instance, their War Factories) where conventional Allied forces could not reach.

Such power and accuracy comes at a price. At $2000, the Barracuda is the most expensive jet in the game (par with two other stolen tech planes), and requires a Tech Center to be produced. As a feared airborne predator, the Barracuda still needs protection due to its paper thin armor. Fortunately, an Allied commander may call in a Black Widow support aircraft to suppress hostile AA firepower while the bomber wings approach.

AI behavior

Barracudas controlled by the AI has the following attack patterns:

All difficulties

  • 2x targeting the closest defense; this strike force will only be built if a Runway is present.

Medium/Hard

  • 4x targeting Tier 3 access structures; this strike force will only be built if a Runway is present.
  • 4x targeting special defenses (Gap Generator, Iron Guard, Signal Inhibitor and Plasmerizer); this strike force will only be built if a Runway is present.

Hard

  • 4x targeting offensive superweapons (including Fake Psychic Dominator)

Appearances

You've witnessed the might of Barracuda on Tenerife, now it's time for you to include this powerful aircraft in active production. Use it to sweep enemy bases with ease.
—Allied intel during Operation: Stormbringer

Act Two

  • The blueprints of the Barracuda are the targets in Stone Cold Crazy. They have been stolen by PsiCorps and are being carried away in ten Kamaz trucks, all of which must be intercepted and destroyed.
  • At the end of Hysteria, once the Paradox Engine activates the Time Freeze, a wing of Barracudas make their debut on the battlefield, utterly destroying all Epsilon forces in the area.
  • The Barracuda becomes a buildable unit in Stormbringer.

Strategy

Note: plugins (Drop Control, Cyberkernel Expansion etc.) provides no bonus to hit points, but are capable of fully repair the damaged parent building upon placement. Note: check page Armor Modifiers for a complete list of applicable armor buffs and debuffs.

Structures Number of bombers required for destruction
deployed Construction Yard 7
Power providers
Barracks 3
Infantry support 3
Ore Refinery 3
War Factory 4
Naval Shipyard 4
Airfields
T2 tech providers 4
T3 tech providers 4
Economy boosters 3
Support superweapons 4
Offensive superweapons 4
Miscellaneous buildings
T1 defenses 2
T2 defenses 2
T3 defenses 3
multiple (Barracudas are ineffective against vehicle armor)

Assessment

+
  • Very effective against structures.
  • A squadron of 4 Barracudas can destroy most buildings in a single bombing run.
  • Invisible on radar.
-
  • Very expensive ($2000).
  • Not the fastest planes in the game.
  • Lightly armored and vulnerable to anti-aircraft fire.
  • Extremely hard to promote due to poor survival rate, expensive price and the fact it’s hard to focus the experience on a single barracuda when ordering multiple to bombard.
  • Mediocre against infantry and armored vehicles.
  • Only available late in the game, after building a Tech Center.

Behind the scenes

  • The Barracuda traces its origin to an unused model in Red Alert 2 named "FORTRESS", which is still kept as the internal name of the unit. The said model was used without any modifications in pre-3.0 versions.

Trivia

  • The Barracuda bears resemblances to the B-2 Spirit stealth bomber used by the U.S. Air Force.

References

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