- "Frankly, other than the fact that they want to kill every man, woman and child out there, we know nothing about them. We've tagged them Locusts since this degree of death has only been seen in times of plague. They're subterranean in nature. That's obvious. Aside from that, I'm afraid..."
- — An unidentified human scientist dubbing the name of the Locust Horde
The Locust Horde, often called the Locust Army by humans and the Horde by the Locusts themselves, was a race of reptilian humanoids that, until Emergence Day, have lived in and established their civilization in the subterranean regions of Sera, known as the Hollow. It is unknown for how long the Locust Horde have lived in the Hollow, but it has come to be understood that their creation was after the research project led by Niles Samson that oversaw the research on several Imulsion-infected miners at the New Hope Research Facility, the eventual shutdown of the facility, and Niles Samson's exodus with a group of scientists and subjects to Mount Kadar. The Hollow under Mount Kadar was established as the Locust capital, known as Nexus. Shortly before E-Day, the Locust Horde decided that its secondary goal was the extermination of the human race, down to every man, woman, and child. The Locust Horde's primary goal was to populate the surface of Sera. The Locust waged a tactically beneficial war of genocide against the Humans due to the existence of a civil war between the Locust Horde and the Lambent Locust. This civil war had existed for an undetermined amount of time, but was gradually forcing the Locust out of the Hollow and into a war with humanity for control of the surface. All known attempts of the Humans negotiating with the Locust Horde ended in violence, although Adam Fenix believed he could end the war peacefully.
The Locust Horde consisted of a common race of Drones, and all manner of other creatures, that were indigenous to the Hollow. The majority of the Horde's technology was stolen or salvaged from what the Humans dumped, or reverse engineered from their enemies' technology. However, the Locust Horde was able to develop some of their own technology, including small-arms weapons, heavy weapons, armor for use on their tamed beasts, munitions, architecture, and they had a considerable grasp of computer technology. The Locusts' small-arms weaponry appeared to be at around the same level as that of humans, although the Locusts' arsenal seemed to be more biologically based with the use of Tickers and Nemacyst. Locust troops will use nearly any weapon, whether it is one of their own design, reverse-engineered Human technology, or human-made.
A typical Locust is a hulking brute of a creature, almost seven feet tall, although many are larger. They are bipedal, muscular creatures with tough skin. They are considerably more bulky than a normal human and notably stronger. Their bones are heavier and show signs of extensive thickening. Grenadiers show further toughening and occasionally scarification, which appears to further toughen the Grenadiers' flesh.
Locust blood is a deep reddish-orange in coloration. A Locust has multiple internal organs, as hinted by hearing multiple heartbeats from a given Locust when they run or are at critical health. Locust require oxygen, though they seem somewhat more resistant to environmental hazards, most likely due to their harsh native environment.
Locust have large eyes with good depth perception in spite of the fact that they are a subterranean race. They have a noted vulnerability to flash overcompensation response (flash-blindness), a weakness many offset with polarized goggles or blinders. Some subspecies have particularly strong eyesight; it is strongly hinted that Locust can see perfectly in total darkness, and most seem to possess superior senses of smell.
Berserkers are the only known female Locust. The only known method of Locust reproduction is the mating of a Berserker and a Drone; It is theorized by Colonel Hoffman that locust reproduce by tying the female down (to prevent the blind female from killing her mate) and having the male rape her. Though there is no evidence to support this theory.
After their extinction from the Imulsion-Countermeasure weapon, their dead bodies begin to crystallise into an unbreakable crystal shell.
- "We can't stop them. We don't know where they come from. We don't know what they want. They don't even seem to want territory. All they do is kill. We can't even begin to negotiate with them, or work out their objectives, because we just don't know the first damn thing about them. That's not an enemy, Mr. Chairman. That's a monster."
- — Chief of the COG Defense Staff, General Bardry Salaman describing the Locusts
The Locusts' origins can be traced back to the New Hope Research Facility. In the early years of the Pendulum Wars, many of the Imulsion miners who had taken part in the Gold Rush began developing a sickness after extended Imulsion exposure. The infected members of the population were gathered by the COG and moved to New Hope where it was hoped a cure could be found. Unfortunately, the Imulsion began to mutate and an early form of Lambency took hold, resulting in the Sires. Fearful of the media and political response towards these mutated people, the scientists of New Hope sealed the Sires away and took their children to Mt. Kadar. The children of the Sires had Lambency in their cells and were mutated from birth, and so the first Locust were born.
To the people of Sera, the origins of the Locust are shrouded in mystery. Many theories on their origins have been suggested by the remaining human population. One such example is that the Locust came from a neighboring planet (or one of its moons) and feed on Imulsion. Other speculation exists saying they came from Hell. However rumors such as these are generally regarded as false.
The Lambent, E-Day, and Adam FenixEdit
- "Should I tell Dalyell what's coming? No. I can still stop it happening. I can avoid more bloodshed. I'm the only one who can."
- — Adam Fenix weeks before Emergence Day
Five years before E-Day, Imulsion started evolving in the Hollows. Exposure to this Imulsion caused mutating creatures known as the Lambent that started fighting the Locust Horde deep in the Hollows, forcing them from their homes. Queen Myrrah desperately entered into a pact with Adam Fenix. If Adam Fenix could find a way to stop Imulsion from spreading, thus saving the Locust race, they would not have to invade the surface in order to survive.
Unfortunately, Adam Fenix could not find a way to stop the Lambent in time because the Pendulum Wars was still raging on the surface. Adam used the last five years to finally create the Hammer of Dawn and end the Pendulum Wars between the COG and UIR. Before the peace treaty between the two Seran alliances was signed, Adam reflected on his pact with the Locust Queen hoping she would not invade the surface.
- Main article: Locust War
- ""For a time, the humans of Sera knew the illusion of peace... until Emergence Day. At that moment, our people broke free from our subterranean, erupting into the domain of these ground walkers, and wiping out whole cities. We fought and killed the humans on their fine boulevards, in their homes, on their battlefields."
- — Queen Myrrah explaining Emergence Day
Six weeks after the Pendulum Wars ended, the Locust Horde invaded the surface, attacking all major cities and slaughtering billions in the first day. In the early hours of confusion, the COG viewed it as a massive UIR attack or the Gorasni attacking. Only after Chairman Dalyell's announcement that the attackers were subterranean in nature did the Seran people discover they were not the only intelligent species on the planet.
The Locust Horde easily overwhelmed the COG on E-Day and advanced from their captured cities, moving from one city to another only leaving destruction. The war against the humans allowed the Locust to advance their technology and war effort by using stolen human technology and equipment.
Destruction of Halvo BayEdit
Six weeks after E-Day, the Locust general that led E-Day, General Karn led a massive assault on Halvo Bay. Kilo Squad led by Lieutenant Damon S. Baird attempted to stop him with the Lightmass Missile in hopes that killing him would stop the Locust, but failed though they killed hundreds of Locust with the Missile and in their efforts to fire it. After a fierce fight with Karn and his mount Shibboleth, both were killed and the Locust lost their military leader. However, this was a minor victory as the Locust quickly replaced Karn with General RAAM and continued on their mission to destroy humanity.
By 1 A.E., the Locust Horde was able to defeat the COG, but the humans used the Hammer of Dawn, destroying 90% of the surface and killing everything trapped on the surface within the blast zones. The Locust survived the Hammer, but were not able to accomplish a swift victory like they had hoped.
Victory after VictoryEdit
- "Cut off the head of the snake and the body dies. We will win this war. It's only a matter of time."
- — Queen Myrrah describing their new strategy
With the COG's almost apocalyptic effort in using the Hammer of Dawn to potentially destroy some of the Locust Horde's forces, the Horde returned to continue the war. Having caught humanity off-guard and having slaughtered a vast number of the human population during the first five years of the war, enjoyed the advantage of sheer numbers. With many hundreds of thousands, if not millions, of the most battle-hardened Gears in the COG Army having been killed in the initial attack, the COG was forced to recruit from the infirm, the young, and the imprisoned to try to hold off the advancing Horde. As a result, not only did the Locust also benefit from an advantage in quantity of troops, but in the average quality of soldiers as well. As a result, the war went horribly for humanity, but went exceptionally well for the Locust, who seized Landown in 5 A.E. during the Winter of Sorrow, and the COG capital of Ephyra in 10 A.E. It was during the fall of Ephyra that the Locust supposedly killed the COG's most prominent scientist, Adam Fenix, the father of Marcus Fenix.
The Tipping of the BalanceEdit
In 14 A.E., Col.Victor Hoffman, the highest-ranking COG military leader, directly underneath Chairman Richard Prescott, devised a plan to win the war once and for all. Squads of Gears were deployed in what was known as the Lightmass Offensive across Ephyra city. Though many suffered heavy, if not total, casualty rates, a single squad of hard-bitten veterans of the war was able to break through the Locust forces and deploy a device known as the Resonator, a sonic-mapper that was, ideally, supposed to map out the tunnel networks of the Hollow.
The device was severely limited in its capabilities, barely mapping even a fraction of the network. Not all was lost, as Delta-One , the aforementioned squad, was able to find a new data source, located in East Barricade, that provided a much more sufficient geo-mapping of the Hollow. Upon securing the data, the squad was deployed to Timgad East to retake control of the captured Tyro Pillar, a train which held the Lightmass Bomb . Delta was able to defeat General RAAM , leader of the Locust Army, as well as his forces aboard the train, and deploy the Lightmass Bomb. This act resulted in the destruction of the entire Outer Hollow, causing incredibly high casualties to the Locust Horde and the near-complete annihilation of the entire population of the Kryll.
Re-Emergence: The Return of the HordeEdit
Despite the Human's best efforts, the Locust proved incredibly persistent, even in the face of the most powerful weapons of mass destruction in history being delivered right onto their doorstep. The Locust continued to mobilize and rebuild their forces, determined to break the back of humanity. Bolstered by the awakening of their deity, the Riftworm, the Horde launched a major counter-offensive across Jacinto Plateau, attacking the city of Jilane and butchering the entire population (sans a small group of renegades), depriving the COG of another breeding farm.
They proceeded to use the Riftworm to sink several cities surrounding Jacinto City, and destroy several COG military bases. Across the Plateau the COG suffered heavy casualties, mainly in the Pirnah Badlands and in several failed search-and-rescue missions in Tollen and Montevado. The Horde was also able to force the COG to abandon North Gate Agricultural Depot. However, this was just a precursor to the Siege of Jacinto, which forced the COG's hand into retaliating with a mobilization on the scale that had not been seen since 1.AE. However, most of these Locust attacks were done out of desperation; throughout the entire war with humanity, the Locust had also been fighting the Lambent, and they were losing ground in the Hollow at an alarming rate.
After months of fighting across Jacinto Plateau, the Horde was able to lay direct siege to Jacinto City itself, having cut off a great amount of its water and food supplies. The Horde made its first incursions by attacking Pomeroy Depot, and then later Jacinto Med, though the latter was a total disaster for the Locust, who ended up having to make a hasty retreat. Nevertheless, the attacks on the last stronghold of humanity showed the COG how truly desperate their situation was; their backs were against the wall, and they had no choice but to launch a desperate all-out attack on the Locust Stronghold.
It was a high-risk maneuver; the odds of a payoff were understandably low, and in the likely event it should fail, it would leave Jacinto utterly and totally defenseless in case of a Locust counterattack, but if it succeeded, it could buy humanity time to regain its footing, if not end the war entirely. And thus a massive fleet of Assault Derricks, King Ravens, and Centaurs converged on the Locust-held city of Landown; the perfect spot to launch a massive grindlift assault right into the heart of the Hollow.
The attack did not quite go as planned for either side; the Locust, who themselves had their backs against the wall in regards to their conflict with the Lambent, were preparing a final assault on Jacinto in an attempt to take the city and sink it, to flood their old home with seawater, to kill the Lambent once and for all. For the COG's part, during the initial assault, they found themselves attacking little more than staging areas and outposts rather than the heart of the homeland of the Locust forces, but Delta Squad did manage to kill the Riftworm preventing that method of attack from working again.
However, they were later able to pinpoint Nexus, the center of all Locust civilization, and in their own desperate bid to annihilate their foes, they did exactly what the Locust were trying to do: they sunk their own city in order to wipe out their foe, but before the Locust were prepared for it, resulting in much of the Locust forces being annihilated. Queen Myrrah's fate was left unknown as she escaped Nexus before the sinking, but Skorge, the new leader of the Locust Army, was presumably killed when Delta Squad destroyed his Hydra.
Lambent Pandemic and ExtinctionEdit
- "You humans! Why do you think your lives are worth more than ours? Don't you realize who we are? Don't you recognize all your most admirable qualities in us? Oh yes... we are genocidal monsters! Just like you!"
- — Queen Myrrah of the Locust Horde, arguing with Marcus Fenix during their final confrontation
Only hours after the sinking of Jacinto, Locust stragglers were spotted around Port Farrall, leading to multiple battles throughout the city. The continuous fighting eventually forced the COG to look for a new home. Eighteen months after Operation Hollow Storm, the Horde had reorganized on the surface of Sera, but was a shadow of its former power. In addition, with Queen Myrrah missing for a long period of time, the Locust Horde was leaderless, causing some of the Horde to degenerate into a feral state, becoming the Savage Locust.
Others however acted as the Queen's Guard under Myrrah. The Locust captured the island of Azura, the last remaining COG stronghold where the COGs elite scientists were kept safe in the First Battle of Azura and captured Adam Fenix who was working on a weapon against the Lambent. Adam was capable of destroying the Lambent and Imulsion, but it would also destroy the Horde so Myrrah had Adam work on refining it so it would only affect the Lambent.
The Savage Locust and the Queen's Guard had multiple battles with the COG, attempting to prevent the COG from reaching and retaking Azura, but failed and engaged in the Second Battle of Azura with the COG, the Gorasni and the Lambent. Myrrah and her Tempest directly attacked the human forces, attempting to keep Adam from activating his weapon, but were defeated by the Hammer of Dawn. After the weapon killed Adam, Myrrah emerged and was killed by Marcus Fenix with Dominic Santiago's commando knife and the weapon killed all of the Lambent as it was meant to as well as all of the Locust, making the species extinct. After the Lambent invasion, the COG would dispose of the remains of any Locust they found into mass graves across Sera.
Unbeknownst to the survivors of the COG, the Locust were not rendered extinct. Instead the Imulsion Countermeasure Weapon forced a genetic evolution within them, causing the Locust 'corpses' to become covered in impenetrable crystalline shells. Unable to dispose of the bodies, the survivors of the COG dumped the cocoons into highly classified locations across Sera, most notably the osmium mine beneath Fort Reval and the gorge beneath Tollen Dam. For twenty-five years there was peace, until shortly before the twenty-fifth anniversary of the end of the Locust War, the Locust began to re-emerge as The Swarm. The Swarm crisis began shortly after as the altered Locust, now seemingly imbued with higher intelligence and improved, stronger bodies, took command of the lesser mutations, all rallied under the banner of the Speaker. From here the Swarm began to grow its numbers by abducting vast amounts of Outsiders and several groups of COG citizens, allowing them to grow a large army in a short period of time.
Following the events of the battle of Tollen Dam, The Swarm is still poses a threat to humanity.
Society and CultureEdit
The Locust Horde was a matriarchal society divided into multiple castes. The Locust Hordes' hierarchy, society and social class system is very similar to and can be compared with a bee hive. The Queen was the head of the entire Locust Horde, and led it in advancement, improvement and steadily increasing its size and power. The only known class was the Kantus monks led by Skorge until 15 A.E. The Kantus monks followed a strict religious code. The lower classes of the Horde are willing to die for the Queen, however there were field officers that were of higher intelligence, strength, intellect and power than the standard foot soldiers, and led the Hordes' military into battle. This class was an organization known as the Theron Guard. There was also the Palace Guards, whose members were the defensive counterpart to the members of the Theron Guard. The officers of the Palace Guard were the most powerful, decorated and accomplished Drones in the Hordes' military, and were charged with the defense of the Queen's Palace and of Queen Myrrah herself.
- Main article: Queen Myrrah
Queen Myrrah was the enigmatic leader of the Locust Horde. Though she was never present on the battlefield, she is the undisputed leader of the Locust Army and the top of the Locust hierarchy, leading the Horde with ruthless tactics to exterminate all threats to the Locust Horde, both Human and Lambent. However, following the Sinking of Jacinto, Myrrah went missing, leaving a majority of the Horde leaderless and disorganized. She was killed in the Second Battle of Azura by Marcus Fenix who stabbed her through the chest with Dominic Santiago's commando knife.
High General RAAMEdit
- Main article: RAAM
High General RAAM was the brutal and powerful Locust field commander, and commanded and led the entire Locust military into battle, and was second to the Locust Queen. RAAM had pronounced facial features, with large, bony eyebrow ridges and a seemingly constant snarling expression. During the final battle of the Lightmass Offensive, he was armed with a Troika Heavy Machine Gun, a weapon that is normally mounted on a turret (albeit it appeared to be altered in order to make it lighter as well as easier to hold onto), suggesting his great strength. He had one main advantage over his enemies in battle: a shroud of Kryll which he could summon and control, making him the only known Locust to command the otherwise feral Kryll thus far. He was killed by Marcus Fenix and Dominic Santiago whilst on the train, which carried the Lightmass Bomb, trying to prevent the weapon from being detonated to save the Locust and the Outer Hollow.
- Main article: Karn
General Karn was a Locust field commander known for his intelligent strategies and planning. Originally considered an outcast by his Locust brethren due to his malformed body, Karn became a high-ranking general in the Horde due to his tactical savviness and mastering the creature known as the Shibboleth. He was considered the mastermind of E-Day. Although he destroyed the Republic of Gorasnaya, Karn perished at the hands of Col. Ezra P. Loomis at the Destruction of Halvo Bay after the Gears of Kilo Squad killed Shibboleth at the Plaza for the Tyran Dead.
High Priest SkorgeEdit
- Main article: Skorge
Skorge was the High Priest of the Locust Horde and the leader of the Kantus caste of priests, sharing their tall, sinewy frame. After RAAM's demise, Skorge took the position of the Horde's highest military leader. After the detonation of the Lightmass Bomb, the Rift Worm awoke, and Skorge took control of it, using it to sink entire COG cities on the surface. He wore specialized armor studded with spikes, and also sports several leather dreadlocks attached to his helmet. In addition to standard Kantus priest combat equipment, consisting of a Gorgon Pistol and Ink Grenades, he used a formidable staff with chainsaws at each end. He was nearly defeated by Marcus and Dom in Nexus; however, he escaped on his Hydra and proceeded to pursue Delta Squad. Skorge soon died when he fell to the ground after his Hydra was killed in midair
Ranking System Edit
- Ketor (High Priest)
- Uzil (High General)
- Zamil (General)
- Vold (Lieutenant)
- Krav (Captain)
- Vurl (Sergeant)
The Locust Horde's religion revolved around the worship of worms. The Riftworms and Rockworms were viewed as highly significant creatures in the Locust's religious texts. The Trinity of Worms was the symbol and title of the Locust Horde's religion, symbolizing and revering the Riftworms as Gods. The Kantus monks were the religious priests of the Locust, and were a caste level. The scrolls of the Kantus contained verses and mantras explaining how to communicate with Rockworms, with the Rulers of Nexus Plates tablet being the Locust's main religious tome, which tells the history of the Hollows, explaining how the Riftworms burrowed underground and created the vast underground network, and left behind their waste which fertilized the soil of the surface of Sera. According to High Priests of the Locust Horde, Sires are also revered as holy figures. They are seen as divine "incubators" evolved from the Riftworms. The leader of the Locust Horde's religious caste was High Priest Skorge.
Rulers of Nexus PlatesEdit
- "When man [to] The Worms [said] what is your name? [Covered] The Worms answer, My name is Horde. For we are many with vengeance."
- — Translation of a part of the Rulers of Nexus Plates.
The Rulers of Nexus Plates, also referred to as the Locust Tablets, was the Locust Hordes' main religious book. This tome contained information on the history of the Hollow and of the Riftworms. The story of the Rulers of Nexus Plates told how the Riftworms burrowed under Sera's surface and dug around underneath, creating the Hollows. When the Riftworms left behind their waste, the waste fertilized the soil, creating and sustaining life in the Hollows and on the surface of Sera. Another part of the tome tells how the Lightmass Bomb awoke one of the Riftworms and killed most if not all of the Kryll, and how the Riftworm was used to sink the cities of Tollen, Montevado and Ilima.
Trinity of WormsEdit
- "The Queen makes strong Drones, Drones secure Nexus, Nexus covers the Queen."
- — Translation of the Locust runes on the Trinity of Worms Artifact
The Trinity of Worms was the symbol and title of the Locust Horde's religion, revering the Riftworms as gods. The Trinity of Worms explained how the Queen made strong Drones, how the Drones protected Nexus and how Nexus covered the Queen. The Trinity of Worms also told the tale of how the Riftworms burrowed through Sera's surface and went underground, creating the massive underground caverns which would be known as Hollows. The Riftworms also left behind their wastes, which fertilized the soil of Sera, bringing life to the Hollows and the surface of Sera.
- "When man [to] the Worms [said] what is your name? The worms answer, my name is "Horde," for we are many with...[back] The Trinity of Worms."
- — The translation of the Kantus Scrolls
The Kantus Scrolls were ancient Kantus writings that were the code of the Kantus. The Scrolls contained verses and mantras that explained how to communicate with Riftworms and Rockworms. Some copies of the Kantus Scrolls were used with Human skin fitted in between rollers, with the religious text written on them with ink.
- Main article: Locust Runes
The Locust had their own writing system, which was referred to as Locust Runes. The system consisted of symbols which represented individual letters and ideograms that represented full words.
The writing system's alphabet contained 26 symbols for 26 letters. The numbering system contained 10 numbers that was represented by 10 symbols.
There was also a computerized version of the Locust writing system, which could be seen on Locust computer terminals. These symbols are cleaner and more identifiable than the handwritten symbols. The most notable examples of the computerized Locust alphabet were found on the Locust computer terminals and the Locust Invasion Map.
As for the relationship with Human languages and writing systems, it was unknown if the Locust pronounced their symbols in any way related to Human languages/writing systems. For what was known about the relationship between the Locust's language and writing system and the Humans, there were 21 confirmed ideograms that represented Human words.
The Locust had their own calendar system, which was based on Imulsion flowing through the Hollows. Within the calendar system, there were 12 seasons, each with opposites.
Standards and SymbolsEdit
The Locust Horde had many objects to represent their society, culture and religion, as well as their people. Queen Myrrah had her own symbol, in which all members of her Guard always carried with them. The Savage Locust appear to have rejected this symbol.
The symbol of the Locust Horde's religion was the Trinity of Worms, which told the history of the Riftworms and the creation of the Hollow, as well as how the Lightmass Bomb killed most if not all of the Kryll, and awoke one of the Riftworms, which was then used to sink the three cities surrounding Jacinto City. The Trinity of Worms was represented by physical artifacts, a medium-sized object with a glowing triangle directly in the middle of the artifact, with the three curved prongs designed to represent the worms of the Hollow. The main verse of the Trinity of Worms was written on the artifact, with different parts of the verse spread out on the three prongs.
The Locust also produced jewelry, such as emblems that were referred to just as the "Locust Emblem." Damon S. Baird, in an intelligence report, theorized that the Locust either kept track of their fallen soldiers like the COG did, or they just had a bad taste in jewelry. The Locust also produced human finger necklaces.
Architecture and InfrastructureEdit
The Locust Horde's infrastructure was largely composed of what appeared to be stone and brick. Some of the structures that were built included Reaver Pens, torture sections for captured Humans, aqueduct systems, dams, bridges and roads.
Military Tactics and StrategiesEdit
- "Wow, their leader is dead and they're still relentless assholes."
- — Cadet Sofia Hendrik remarking on the Locust's tenacity
The military tactics and strategies of the Locust Horde originally involved just defending their cities against the Lambent after the Locust discovered them, with some of their forces strategically stationed in and around Nexus. The defense of Nexus was strategically planned, as the Locust Horde was determined to not lose their capital city. One copy of their defensive plans for Nexus showed the palace with Queen Myrrah at the center being protected by Drones who surround the palace. Imulsion was all around Nexus, and the Lambent forces coming from one side of Nexus.
At an unknown time when the Locust hierarchy made the decision to invade the surface of Sera, their tactics and strategies now had to include offensive plans. When the Horde launched their invasion of the surface of Sera on what was to be known as Emergence Day, the Locust poured huge numbers of the forces onto the surface, coordinating their invasion to take place in every single major city on the surface of Sera. During Emergence Day, the Locust Horde's military forces succeeded in a number of ways in dominating the Humans and crushing their military forces. On Emergence Day the Locust managed to kill 1/4 of the total human population, which dealt a severe blow to the Humans. They gathered all available civilian and military hardware from the cities they invaded; supplies and hardware were collected and auto parts were salvaged from wreckage.
After the Lightmass Offensive in 14 A.E., during which the Humans launched a Lightmass Bomb into the Hollows, Queen Myrrah announced to her Horde: "Cut off the head of the snake, and the body dies. We will win this war. It's only a matter of time." A new strategy was in place; the Locust Horde would try to take down the leaders and command system of the remaining Humans. If they succeeded, the rest of the Humans would fall and the Locust Horde would win the war and Sera would be theirs.
Despite the Drone's tendency to blindly charge into battle, the Locust were far from mindless in battle, employing cunning and resourcefulness to win just as much as sheer brutality and mercilessness. The assumption that the Locust were little more than mindless beasts greatly hindered the COG's initial efforts.
While the individual Drone's intelligence was questionable, prominent Locust commanders such as Karn, General RAAM and Skorge have displayed great cunning and strategy. Gears in the field have often attributed unexpected and surprising tactics from Locust to the presence of a smarter commander pushing them. Such as the use of smoke grenades and grappling hooks by RAAM's forces to assault Zeta-Six's position during the Ilima evacuation.
The Locusts most infamous tactic was the use of Emergence Holes, or E-Holes. Deliver their forces directly into battle. E-Holes, in addition to quickly delivering forces, had a heavy psychological affect on enemies since they allowed the Locust to attack nearly anywhere at any time without warning.
- Main article: Drones
Drones appear to be the common race among the Locust Horde. They are larger than humans and have chalky white skin with gray, scale-like patches that most likely are hardened to protect them from minor damage. They were bred in the Hollow to be bloodthirsty fighters, supposedly by the Queen herself. When ordered, Drones will throw their lives away by the hundreds to kill a single entrenched Gear. They were often observed crawling out of "emergence holes", which the Locust use as bridges between the underground and the surface world. Drones regularly carry out basic infantry tactics of flanking, dominating the terrain, and setting up ambushes, as well as more advanced tactics, suggesting that Drones themselves are intelligent, independent creatures rather than dim-witted, single-minded brutes, or some combination thereof. Almost fearless, they know little in the way of self-preservation and almost never retreat, though they have little need to, considering their vast numbers. Drones often refer to humans as "Groundwalkers" or "Hominids". They will usually wield the Hammerburst assault rifle or Hammerburst II battle rifle, the ubiquitous standard infantry weapons of the Locust. Grenadiers are specialized Locust drones that wield the Gnasher Shotgun with deadly accuracy and precision. They prefer the brute force of the Gnasher over that of the Hammerburst variants. Trained to relentlessly stalk and engage humanity, they are the powerhouses of the Locust Horde.
- Grenadier Elite
- Flame Grenadier
- Beast Rider
- Hunter Elite
- Theron in combat.
The elite Therons are easily distinguishable from standard Drones thanks to the long, leather-like cloaks and metallic masks that they wear, in addition to ornate armor, which is apparently superior to the generic Drone armor. Their sibilant voices have been known to scare Gears into fleeing though their speech is also hard to understand or even notice thanks to being so raspy and mistaken for the wind. Therons are stronger, faster, and far more intelligent than an average Drone. They mostly wield deadly Torque Bows or the equally deadly lancer. Because of their increased intelligence, strength, and speed, Therons are usually assigned to officer roles, leading smaller groups of Locust forces into battle.
There are many classes of Therons, each with minor differences:
- Main article: Boomers
Boomers are huge, markedly less intelligent Locusts. While normal Boomers use the Boomshot, Boomer subclasses have been known to use other weapons. Compared to their smaller brethren, Boomers are very durable, capable of taking a shot to the head from a strong weapon and surviving, while their smaller brethren would die instantly from a headshot. When deployed into battle, Boomers will charge into the frontlines and attack nearby enemies, unless directed by a superior commander, in which they will follow their instructions.
Boomers and their subclasses are very predictable in battle, as they yell out phrases that go according to their actions (e.g. a Boomer will say "BOOM!" before firing), allowing Gears to quickly setup tactics against them.
There are several different combat variants of the standard Boomer:
- Main article: Kantus
Kantus are Locust priests and the religious leadership of the Horde, and are led by the Locust High Priest, Skorge. They stand 7 feet, and have leathery white flesh. They are often heard chanting, which is used to communicate with other Locust in order to direct attacks, control hollow creatures, but can also revive downed Locust soldiers in a seemingly mystical fashion.
There is a combat variant of the standard Kantus: the Armored Kantus, which only appeared during the Lambent Pandemic. Compared to the normal Kantus, Armored Kantus dual-wielded Gorgon Pistols and were clad in spiky onyx armor, which gave them increased resistance against bullet attacks.
- Main article: Berserkers
Berserkers are monstrous female Locust. They are blind, and therefore rely on smell and sound to navigate and locate enemies. Possessing enormous physical strength, these Locusts can tear foes limb from limb and can gain enough momentum when running to smash through a solid stone wall, able to kill Gears in a similar fashion to ramming them with a vehicle by running into them at high speed.
Vicious and bloodthirsty even by Locust standards, they have been known to kill other Locust Drones just for getting too close, and in essence anything that irritates them. Any Gear that fights a Berserker will have to be quick with their feet to defeat her, and the only known effective way to kill one is to lure it outside and blast it with the Hammer of Dawn or by setting it on fire. This weakens the Berserker's hide meaning it becomes susceptible to gunfire until the hide cools and rehardens. Though Berserkers have been seen killed through concentrated small arms fire, it's easier to kill a Berserker with flame.
Another type of Locust that is similar to Berserkers are called Ragers. When not enraged, Ragers are similar to a normal Drone. When angered, however, Ragers have been known to transform, giving them temporary strength similar to that of a Berserker.
These are more advanced, tougher Locust soldiers. These Locusts are not your average drone.
The Locust Horde used many creatures as vehicles, machines, and weapons of war. The origins of these indigenous creatures mostly come from the Hollow, or have been genetically engineered by the Locust, such as the Brumak. Interestingly, all Locust creatures, with the exceptions of the Brumak and Wretches, seem to be similar to arthropods in some ways; they seem to have jointed crustacean or spiderlike legs and sometimes insectile claws.
- Main article: Brumak
Brumaks stood about 50 feet tall and weigh around 15,000 kilograms (33,069 lbs). They were apparently bred by the Locust Horde from smaller native apes and are lethal at close range. Their head-gear resembles the Corpser's helmet, but their bodies have more in common with humanoids than arachnids. Brumaks are capable of carrying a rocket launcher and on their back, in addition to two machineguns on their forearms, and have also been rumored to carry energy beam cannons that kill at a range. Their strength can be compared to a Corpser's.
- Main article: Wretch
Small, jittery members of the Locust, Wretches are weak when on their own, but potentially deadly in large packs. They attack by climbing on or over surfaces and lunging at their target in a vicious frenzy. They make up for their lack of strength with speed and unpredictability, and are often used as a distraction or as cannon fodder by the Locust. Alone, they are easily beaten, but in groups, they can literally tear COG soldiers to shreds. They often make their presence known before becoming visible by letting out a horrid, extremely high-pitched scream that can make the Gears cover their ears in pain. They are very dangerous, often causing Gears to forget to look up being overwhelmed by a subsequent attack if the Wretches themselves do not kill them. Wretches also have an annoying habit of jumping on Gears while they are handling bigger, badder, and uglier Locust.
- Main article: Corpsers
Corpsers were spider like creatures which appear to be somewhat arachnid. Corpsers have four eyes and lay eggs, and they wear multi-lensed helmets similar to those worn by Brumaks. Corpsers have eight thick rock-hard legs reinforced with metal plates that guard their vulnerable underbellies, which is the only vulnerable part of their body besides their mouth. The Locust Horde uses Corpsers to dig tunnels through the soil of Sera, allowing the Horde to move about undetected, even deep behind COG lines.
- Main article: Reavers
Reavers were large, flying creatures about twenty times the size of a drone. They are saddled up and ridden by a Beast Rider as well as a passenger Drone or Theron Guard. In addition to its passenger, Reavers had a mounted rocket launcher to attack opponents and were occasionally used as kamikaze bombers due to their explosive nature.
- Main article: Hydra
- Main article: Seeders
Seeders were large, bizarre, insect-like creatures that launch Nemacyst, flying jellyfish-like creatures that act as flying mines and anti-air interceptors into the air from their anus. When Seeders were present in an area, they scramble COG radio frequencies.
- Main article: Torture Barge
- Main article: Bloodmount
- Main article: Tickers
Tickers were small creatures that the Locust Horde used as mobile landmines. The Kantus were able to summon Tickers.
During the Lambent Pandemic, "Wild" Tickers were encountered. Reasonably shy and devoid of explosives, they were known to eat weapons and ammo that were laying on the ground.===Serapede===
- Main article: Serapede
Serapedes were animals native to the planet of Sera, described as being "unlike any other creature on the planet". The Giant Serapedes were notable for their almost steel-like carapaces which rendered them immune to most forms of attack; they could also "shoot lightning" from their pincers, and their only weakness was their unprotected back.
- Main article: Shrieker
Shriekers are small flying creatures, roughly about the same size as a ticker. They are equipped with two machine guns and are dangerous when they fly at close range. They can be killed with a standard assault rifle, but when they die, they may fall or fly towards you and explode, in hopes of killing you.
- Main article: Shibboleth
Shibboleth is a giant spider-like creature that was the personal mount of General Karn. Karn had nursed it back to health after finding it injured and gave it a mechanical leg. When Karn led the destruction of the surface, he rode Shibboleth into battle. Shibboleth was killed in the Destruction of Halvo Bay by Kilo Squad and Colonel Ezra Loomis.
- Main article: Tempest
The Tempest is Queen Myrrah's personal mount.
|Queen Myrrah · High General Sraak · General RAAM · General Karn · High Priest Skorge|