- “This here is 66 tons of straight-up, HE-spewin', dee-vine intervention!”
The M808B Main Battle Tank, commonly known as the Scorpion, is the most common armored fighting vehicle employed by the UNSC during the Human-Covenant war, it is used in operations requiring heavy firepower or an anti-vehicular platform. Combining firepower, resilience and mobility, the Scorpion has proven itself formidable and earned the respect of friend and foe alike.
The Scorpion may not be the most powerful or the fastest of the UNSC's fleet of main battle tanks, but for the most part, it represents the best possible balance between mobility and firepower. Indeed the vehicle's prominence among the UNSC armed forces is due to its low production cost, transportability, and overall firepower. Ceramic-Titanium armoring makes it almost invulnerable to small-arms fire and easily shrugs off normal ballistic and plasma weapons, while anti-mine software and electronics provide additional protection. The tank also features a small crew size, one operator and up to four passengers on the treads.
The Scorpion's main weapon, mounted on a 360° rotating turret, is the M512 Smooth Bore High Velocity Cannon which fires a 90mm tungsten shell, including S1 Canister Shells. Though this weapon can have difficulty penetrating the armor of some heavy vehicles, it is capable of disintegrating most targets in a single shot or gutting a Wraith in two to three, depending on where the shots hit relative to the target's hull. For additional offensive power some Scorpions will instead mount a 105mm cannon. The M247T Medium Machine Gun serves as the tank's secondary weapon, delivering 7.62mm armor-piercing rounds with speed and thoroughness. It is mounted co-axially.
The primary difference with this model is that the M808B can be completely controlled by a single cyborg pilot or a single human equipped with a neural interface. The machine gun is coaxially mounted next to the main cannon, removing the need for a dedicated machine gunner.
As time has progressed, the Scorpion has been modified into more than a half-dozen different versions, however despite these modifications the Scorpion's psychological aspect and versatility remain unchanged.
- M808B2 "Sun Devil": A variant where the M512 is replaced with two twin-linked 40mm autocannons. It was essentially an anti-aircraft platform, but was even used in an anti-personal role during the Insurrection.
- M808B3 "Tarantula": A variant that sports two mounted pods that fire clusters of hypervelocity Scimitar rockets, on either side of the M512 cannon. Due to its ineffectiveness against Covenant threats, most of the M808B3 models were converted back to the straight "B" model.
Known Scorpion Tanks
The M808B Scorpion Tank makes its first appearance in Halo: Combat Evolved, in the campaign level "Assault on the Control Room"; it is also available in the multiplayer levels "Blood Gulch" and "Sidewinder". The tank is a dull gray, it moves at a decent speed, and it has a lightly protected canopy in multiplayer, although this is not so in Campaign. Because of this, it is easy for a sniper to kill the driver of the tank, effectively disabling it. Players also have the option of riding on the tank's tread covers in multiplayer.
Changes from Halo: Combat Evolved to Halo 2
- The color of the tank has now changed from brownish gray to olive green, and the textures have also been updated.
- Players can no longer ride on the tank's tread covers, called 'hotseats.'
- The reticule for the tank has also changed and is a lot smaller, for increased accuracy.
- The tank now moves a lot slower, further limiting its movement and its evasive capabilities.
- The tank's canopy has been replaced with a solid metal cover like in Halo: Combat Evolved's Campaign, preventing the driver from being sniped while it is intact. However, vehicle damage has been added to human vehicles, and so the player is in danger of the tank exploding if too much damage is taken.
- The main cannon reloads twice as fast, requiring only a two second delay. The dots during the reload time are now removed. It is also more accurate.
- The machine gun is now much more accurate. Previously, the machine gun fired in a very wide area.
- Driving and aiming controls are now completely divorced allowing for greater maneuverability when firing. Previously the aiming and steering controls were linked, meaning the player had to aim more or less in the same direction they were steering.
- Main article: M850 Main Battle Tank
The Scorpion is the UNSC's main land vehicle, a highly reliable and strong unit. It is available inside the Vehicle Depot at a cost of 500 resources per unit and at a minimum tech level of 2. When Sergeant Forge is the selected leader, the Scorpion can be upgraded to the Grizzly. It has two upgrades which greatly increase its effectiveness:
- "Canister Shell": Gives a Special attack ability with blast radius, devastating to infantry units. 400 resources and tech level 3 required.
- "Power Turret": doubles the Scorpion's turret speed, making it more reactive in combat. 900 resources and tech level 4 required.
- "Grizzly": Unique to Sergeant Forge when playing multi-player. It is an extremely upgraded Scorpion with two cannons, that both deal the same damage per-shot but more over time due to its double barrel cannon. 1800 resources and tech level 4 required. Note: The machine gun on the Grizzly seems to do the same amount of damage as a Scorpion tank. Also, its Canister Shell does more damage than a Scorpion's but is more spread out, making it a more effective anti-infantry tank than an anti-armor tank.
- When you first acquire the tank on "Assault on the Control Room", and clear out the Wraith tanks, the best way to take out the Banshee is to turn the tank around, look right up to the structure where it takes off from, and backup until you receive the checkpoint. Once the Banshee takes off, start moving forward and do not open fire until the Banshee has fired its Fuel Rod Cannon; after the round hits the ground, take aim and take it down.
- Later on, after you move into the valley with the second set of Hunters, as soon as you get to the bottom of the slope, quickly turn around and head back up the ice ramp to take out the Covenant dropship attempting to flank you from behind. Be sure to watch out for your Marines, as they will also follow you up the slope.
- In Halo 2, it is advisable to ditch the tank for the Warthog on "Delta Halo" when you proceed into the structures, as your mistakes will be limited - especially when you must take on the Ghosts in the later part of the level. If you do choose to take the tank in, be wary of enemy troops around corners, as well as flanking Ghosts, as they can easily kill you on higher difficulties. The firepower available to you, however, will offset that to some degree.
- Whenever possible, give your riders heavy weapons such as Rocket Launchers, and Fuel Rod Guns. This will turn the tank into an unapproachable juggernaut that can deal with infantry (the machine gun turret), vehicles (the main cannon), and aircraft (the rocket launchers).
- A popular tactic in Multiplayer is to use a sniper and/or scout in conjunction with the tank to spot out targets that the tank can't see. Then, the tank bombards the said targets, acting as a sort of "mobile artillery" similar to the Siege Tank from StarCraft II.
- Although you cannot ride on the tread covers like you could in Halo: Combat Evolved, a player who has taken the enemy's flag can still ride the tank by jumping on the tread cover and staying put; they will not fall off the tank like they would in Halo: Combat Evolved and can ride all the way back to the base with extra firepower supporting you. This has its risks though, if the driver is careless (s)he is able to kill the flag carrier if (s)he gets in the way of the cannon.
- Firing a Rocket launcher or a Fuel Rod Gun at the Scorpion generally inflicts damage on or kills the driver and gunner.
- In Halo: Combat Evolved, even small pieces of cover, such as the spires on the top of "Blood Gulch's" bases, can stop players taking damage. Taking cover behind these spires while the cannon fires and firing while it reloads is effective, just watch out for the machine gun, which at close range, is quite lethal.
- In Halo: Combat Evolved where the driver is exposed, it is possible to eliminate the driver with a single shot from the Sniper Rifle. But a player must be very sure that they can do a hit and kill on the driver. Otherwise if a player misses and is in the open, it will result in death. This tactic is suicidal.
- Another tank or anti-tank vehicle is usually the most efficient method of stopping a Scorpion. The Wraith's high accuracy and speed make it ideal for this task. The Gauss Warthog is also quite effective, as long as the driver takes care to avoid the main gun.
- Although risky, it is possible to take out a tank using two Plasma Grenades in Halo: Combat Evolved, as they are significantly stronger than in Halo 2. This tactic is especially useful if you have unlimited grenades.
- The best way to hijack a tank and use it is to grab Active camouflage and wait for the tank to pass by or approach you. If you are clever, you will be able to board it quickly without the enemy having enough time to move out of the way.
- If you need to take out a Scorpion, drive a Gauss Warthog behind it and get into its dead zone. Hit the radiator and in a few shots you can take it out.
- In every Halo game to date, the Scorpion's serial number is the birthdate of Marcus R. Lehto, Bungie's senior art director.
- Underneath the turret of the Scorpion, there is a Jack-O-Lantern drawn in blood. This can be found by destroying the turret, then standing on the upside-down turret.
- The Scorpion tank resembles an actual Scorpion with the front body being the pincers, the rear body being the legs and the cannon being the tail and its stinger. However, this may refer to the FV101 Scorpion Light Tank used by the British Army in 1973. Ironically, the real-life British Scorpion tank is a light tank, compared to the Halo Scorpion. However, later variants of the real-life Scorpion also featured a 90mm main weapon.
- In Halo: Combat Evolved, the Scorpion tank's cannon was a solid object, but in Halo 2, the player will go through if they try to walk on the barrel - and the character's legs will separate from their body.
- In all Halo games, when getting into the driver seat, before the character is actually in the seat you will be able to move the tank and turret.
- The Scorpion's main cannon seems to operate in a similar fashion to the Maxim machine gun where the rounds are fed from one side, loaded by a sliding breech, and ejected through a port below the barrel of the weapon.
- Megabloks has released an ODST variant of the Scorpion Tank in Canada and various parts of the United States. Although the Megabloks Scorpion Tank was released after Halo 3, it uses the M808B, in which there is not a special hatch for the turret gunner; just a turret near the cannon that the driver also has control of.
- On Halo PC, the Double Vehicle Driving Glitch can be done using this vehicle other than the Warthog.
- In the web-series Red vs. Blue, there is a Scorpion Battle Tank with an AI called Shiela inside of it. The AI's purpose is to help any driver pilot the tank. She is first seen in the first Season of Red vs. Blue. When Caboose uses her for the first time, she instructs him on how to work the tank. However, during he accidentally turns on the Auto-Targeting Systems after regarding the Red team as a threat and ends up destroying their Warthog. The Auto- Targeting System proceeds to targets Church, one of Caboose's fellow soldiers on the Blue Team, and blows him up.
- Even if projectiles ping off the Scorpion's angled armor plating, they will still do damage to the tank.
Halo: Combat Evolved
Halo 2: Anniversary
- ↑ 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 1.6 1.7 1.8 Halo: The Essential Visual Guide, page 164
- ↑ 2.00 2.01 2.02 2.03 2.04 2.05 2.06 2.07 2.08 2.09 2.10 Halo Encyclopedia: page 238
- ↑ 2.5 m/s x 3600 (seconds in a minute) = 9km/h
- ↑ Halo: The Flood, page 137
- ↑ Halo Game Manual
- ↑ 6.0 6.1 Halo Wars: Scorpion
- ↑ Halo: Combat Evolved Anniversary Library, Scorpion
- ↑ 8.0 8.1 Halo 2 Game Manual, page 17
- ↑ Halo: The Flood, page 153
- ↑ 10.0 10.1 Halo Waypoint: Scorpion
- M808 Main Battle Tank - Another UNSC tank, also colloquially called the Scorpion.
- Rhino - The UNSC's Self-Propelled Artillery Vehicle.
- Wraith - The Covenant equivalent of the Scorpion MBT.
- Grizzly - A UNSC heavy tank based off of the Scorpion.