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Prism tank (Red Alert 2)

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RA2 Gameicon.png YR Gameicon.png
RA2 Prism Tank Icons.png RA2 Prism Tank Veteran Icons.png

Prism Tank

CNCRA2 Prism Tank.png
Internal name



RA2Alliedlogo.png Allied Forces


Artillery vehicle


Prism weapon



Tech level


Hit points


Armour type




Build time


Produced by

Allied war factory


Allied battle lab

Ground attack

150 (when elite) (CometWH)





Attack range


Sight range


Elite upgrade

Increased strength, firepower, rate of fire, self-healing

The prism tank is an Allied artillery vehicle in Command & Conquer: Red Alert 2 and Yuri's Revenge.

Background[edit | edit source]

It's Einstein's Prism tech on wheels. The boys at the lab call it a Prism Tank. Careful not to burn yourself!
- Eva

A virtual Prism Tower on wheels, this experimental Allied tank fires white-hot beams of light to fry enemy units. The beam bounces to other target, giving the Prism Tank the ability to take out multiple units at once. Particularly good against massed units, Prism Tanks are best off when supported by basic offensive units like Grizzly Tanks, as they're relatively slow-moving, and take a few moments to recharge their beams.[1]

Deployment history[edit | edit source]

The Prism tank was developed by Professor Albert Einstein, who based the artillery unit off the designs of the Prism Tower base defense structure. It was first deployed by the Allies in 'Operation: Free Gateway' after Special Agent Tanya destroyed the Psychic Beacon in St. Louis. In that operation, the Prism Tank made short work of the Soviet base and the Allies quickly recaptured the city. The Prism Tank was available for use by the Allies for the rest of the Third World War. A squad of Prism Tanks were Chronoshifted by the Chronosphere into Moscow to support the Allied assault on the Kremlin.

RA2Sovietlogo.png The following is based on the Soviet campaign for Red Alert 2 and might contradict canon.

In the Soviet campaign, Prism Tanks are Chronoshifted into the Ural Mountains to destroy a Soviet battle lab that was researching the Apocalypse tank. Prism Tanks were last seen in Point Hope, Alaska to ward off the Soviet offensive of the last Allied base in the world.

Prism tanks were also utilized during the Psychic Dominator Disaster.

Game unit[edit | edit source]

Prism Tanks destroying a Soviet Nuclear Silo.
Prism Tanks prepare to ignite St. Basil's Cathedral
Panels charged.
- Prism tank ready to attack

This powerful Allied tank uses a weapon similar to the Allied Prism Tower. The powerful and deadly beam of light launched from the Prism Tank’s cannon radiates from the target to hit other nearby enemies, allowing this vehicle to single-handedly destroy entire groups of enemy units. Their splash damage, combined with their long range, make them deadly weapons against large groups of weaker enemies such as an entire army of basic infantry units. The range of dispersal depends on how close the Prism Tank is to its initial target.

Prism tanks' major disadvantages are its light armor, low rate of fire and low damage against heavy armor.

Prism tanks cannot target air units.

Prism Tanks are highly effective against both infantry and structures, and better yet, had sufficient range and power to act as a siege unit, even against heavily fortified enemy bases. A single elite prism tank can decimate a Soviet infantry division. In a group, Prism tanks can be extremely powerful. A small group of prism tanks could easily lay waste to an undefended base. Three or four could destroy an Apocalypse Tank. A group of twelve or more prism tanks can overcome almost any land opposition.

Unfortunately, the prism beams cannot be combined into a more powerful blast like their tower-mounted "cousins". In addition, although the beams are devastating, they have a slow rate of fire. It also suffers from light armor and a lack of anti-air defenses. A single volley from an Apocalypse tank is enough to completely destroy a prism tank. Armored tanks (in sufficient quantity), air units and often V3 Rocket Launchers are therefore good counters against these vehicles. Even War Miners, with their heavy armor, can be a threat to it. It is wise to escort Prism Tanks with Grizzly Tanks and IFVs. The Prism trajectories is straight, so the tank is more effective in flat terrain. If the prism tank encounters enemy in higher terrain it will manoeuvre to gain a line of sight with the enemy. This can be dangerous as the tank may have to move closer to its target; negating its long range and putting it at risk due to its light armor.

Due to the Prism tank's very weak armor, some people find it useful to use Grizzly or Mirage tanks as a distracting unit or "meat shield" in order to draw fire away from them.

Prism tank rushes are extremely difficult to deal with in RA2 except by a counter-rush; but if Prism Tanks are sufficiently massed and well-protected by other units, it may be impossible to get close enough to even fire the one shot needed to take out their weak armor. Unlike V3 rocket attacks, Prism "artillery" blasts cannot be shot down by flak.

When attacking units, be careful to ensure that they won't get into a clump as they come into range of the Prism tank, because Prism tanks will destroy the group very quickly.

However, in Yuri's Revenge new Soviet technologies provide an easy counter to what was once the backbone of Allied land warfare: Siege Choppers organized into hunter-packs of 4-5 can quickly intercept and destroy Prism tanks. Undeployed and in the air, the Siege Chopper's machine gun is normally not useful against more than infantry, but the Prism Tank's eggshell-thin armor is so weak that a handful of Siege Choppers can easily take them out. This, in turn, will provoke Allied commanders to protect their Prism Tanks with IFV's for anti-air cover, but this will make what was once a conventional attack now very expensive. Yuri's Floating Discs were also deadly against them, and had sufficient armor to survive several anti-air attacks should there be any.

Aftermath[edit | edit source]

After the events of the Psychic Dominator Disaster, the Prism Tanks continued to serve the Allied forces. After the conflict, a new model of the Prism tank was developed and put into production.

This model was given better armour and stronger firepower, followed by a new look that made it more similar to the Mirage tank (which was not produced at the time) rather than the old Prism tank. It could outrange Tesla coils and also deal considerable damage to Soviet tanks. It was the most powerful Allied ground unit.

However, the occurances of the Post-war Crisis, along with the preceding wars involving the Allies and the Soviets, have been reversed. During the War of the Three Powers, the Prism tank was replaced by the new Mirage tank that was armed with a Spectrum turret, similarly used as the Prism technology in the Third World War. Its role of a siege unit was taken by the Athena cannon.

Quotes[edit | edit source]

Note: in Red Alert 2, the Prism tank shares its quotes with the Grizzly battle tank.

When selected[edit | edit source]

  • Prism tank in order, sir.
  • Dioptic manifolds clear.
  • Lens shifters in working condition.
  • Prism sensors stable.
  • Panels charged.

When moving[edit | edit source]

  • Compensating for terrain flux.
  • Estimating distortion error.
  • Positional data received.
  • New coordinates processed.
  • Readjusting stabilizers.

When ordered to attack[edit | edit source]

  • Magnifiers activated.
  • Calculating reflection arcs.
  • Resolving target coordinates.
  • Intensifying light trajectory.
  • Focusing light energy.

Trivia[edit | edit source]

  • The ZSU-23-4 model was used for the alpha cameo.

Gallery[edit | edit source]

Cameos[edit | edit source]

Alpha cameo:

CNCRA2 Prism Tank Alpha Cameo.png

In order: English, French, German, Korean, Chinese. Top row is standard, bottom row is veteran.

RA2 Prism Tank Icons.png CNCRA2 Prism Tank French Cameo.png CNCRA2 Prism Tank German Cameo.png CNCRA2 Prism Tank Korean Cameo.png CNCRA2 Prism Tank Chinese Cameo.png
RA2 Prism Tank Veteran Icons.png CNCRA2 Prism Tank French Veteran Cameo.png CNCRA2 Prism Tank German Veteran Cameo.png CNCRA2 Prism Tank Korean Veteran Cameo.png CNCRA2 Prism Tank Chinese Veteran Cameo.png

See also[edit | edit source]

References[edit | edit source]

Join the winning side! Allied Third World War Arsenal We have hot food, women and guns for everyone!
Sheppard.png Tanks CNCTW Scorpion Tank Cameo.png