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A betrayal within the Epsilon puts Yuri in a position to deliver the ultimate punishment and bury those who once sided with him within the ruins of an African palace. When the plan to activate the Psychic Amplifier nearby fails, he must resort to brute force. The Creation is deployed again.
- Mission description

Operation: Obsidian Sands is the ninth Epsilon Act Two campaign mission. It shows an internal conflict within the Epsilon as Rashidi and his Scorpion Cell betrayed Yuri after he lost his belief in the Epsilon cause, forcing Yuri to send his second-in-command and the "creation" to personally deal with this treachery.

This mission is the first appearance of the Dybbuk-Evolver (though Rashidi himself claims that the proselyte won't be able to use it) and the Psychic Tower. It is also the first time the Psychic Dominator is put to use on the battlefield.

Briefing

Yuri's Message: "Despite its incompletion, the series of operations in Kashmir proved more insightful than I expected, Proselyte. Just before Libra's suppressor reactivated, she subconsciously used her uncontrolled psychic powers to peek into the minds of everyone around, including Yunru's. While she was of strong, resistant mind, her companions were not so much. Behind the scenes, the deceptive Chinese scientist had made a pact of sorts with Rashidi, and in exchange for his protection and new tech, he was the one who offered them the last MIDAS warhead, as a fail-safe against me. I'm not sure why he did this, but it would explain why we couldn't find traces of the warhead when we thought it was destroyed, nor why there was no explosion in the aftermath of the tunnel's collapse; Rashidi's men likely dismantled it and transported it away with Drillers, just like they did with the original Chronosphere. Such treachery cannot go unpunished.

Dealing with the traitorous Scorpion Cell won't be easy, and deployment of a Psychic Amplifier anywhere in Africa will be met with the underground Cell's resistance. No, to deal with Rashidi, we will need to be more direct. He is crafty, and the only way to punish him is total annihilation of him and his followers. We've managed to retrieve and recover Libra after her encounter with Yunru back in Kashmir, and she will be the forefront of your landing party, which is now en route to Bissau, where the Cell's main base is. You will deploy an outpost in the city, and from there, eradicate the entire Scorpion Cell presence, then crush Rashidi. Be careful with Libra. She's already suffered two malfunctions so far, any further might put a hindrance on my plans."

Objective 1: Destroy the Scorpion Cell forces.

Events

Landfall

Rashidi had expected the Proselyte and his forces to arrive; upon seeing Libra in his tow, Rashidi talks with the Proselyte about his decision:

You know, when I saw that flying fortress the Europeans built, I doubted our cause. It felt like I would never be able to match the genius of whoever built it and fight against it. But then, you... your master brought that... thing, that's now at my doorstep. I no longer understand what your master fights for. I'm not a psychic. But I can feel her intent. She'll kill everything in her way, and Yuri holds the switch.

Meanwhile, the Scorpion Cell forces destroyed a Psychic Amplifier stationed near Rashidi's stronghold before it could be activated.

The Proselyte's forces, which consists of Duneriders, Marauders and Magnetrons, assisted Libra, who single-handedly destroy the Scorpion Cell outpost on the nearby shore. While Libra is on her killing spree, Rashidi warns the Proselyte:

I thought we could fight tech with tech so I made some EMP mines for you to enjoy! Oh, and by some I meant lots. Lots of EMP Mines. Maybe those will stop her.

True enough, Libra spots EMP Mines around the shore base's perimeter and the city. Nonetheless she made short work of them.

Once the shore is clear, the Proselyte brought in the MCV to be deployed in the area as their starting ground.

"Death to the traitors!"

Knowing the Proselyte had built his base, Rashidi began to fire missiles from a Topol-M, and deployed a new weapon, which is called Dybbuk-Evolver:

I have also deployed a new toy for you. Too bad you won't get to use it.

In order to defend his base from the mininuke warhead, the Proselyte decided to build lots of Gatling Cannons. Then, he found that there was a lack of resources, and he aimed at Rashidi's Tech Oil Derricks. At the same time,

I've gathered enough troops and weapons to prevent you from getting here. Dare to try.

Rashidi discovered his thoughts in time and began dispatching Tyrant to Proselyte's base. He also built a Tactical Nuke Silo on the site of his Psychic Amplifier. Obviously, this silo must have been given by his cooperator, Yunru. Rashidi used Tyrants, Bloaticks and Dybbuk-Evolvers to attack the Prosolete's troops without interruption, but he could not be defeated. Instead, he treacherously used this advantage: As long as Tyrants appeared at his base, he used Masterminds to mind-control them. After he raised a certain number of Tyrants, he even sent them all to destroy Rashidi's nuke silo! Proselyte also tried to use this tactic on Infiltrators.

At this time, the Proselyte's advisor also sent good news: A team of Basilisks had already came to support his actions, but Rashidi's Basilisk was still unarmed; he was authorized to build Psychic Dominator that is already fully operational on the battlefield. He also built many new Psychic Towers as part of his defense against the strength of the Proselyte's forces; at this time, he was ready to attack the northeastern city, and Rahn was also deployed at that time.

Through the attacks of Masterminds and Basilisks, the fighting in the city eventually ended in the Proselyte's victory. After capturing a large number of oil derricks, he turned his sights towards Rashidi's Palace. But Rashidi did not stop. He simply commanded a large group of Bloaticks to rush to the new forward outpost of Proselyte, causing him a not-small loss. His advisor also pointed out that the two statues next to Rashidi's palace can create more distant ranges with topographical advantages and can also be used for air-defense. Therefore, he decided to activate Domination, which hit Rashidi's hordes of Bio Reactors, and neutralized the defenses in his base. Then he came up with another trick: Allow Engineers to enter a Driller and go straight to Rashidi's Construction Yard. With the Drillers sent out, he used Shadow Ring for them, then quickly released the Engineers to capture Rashidi's Construction Yard. After his troops pushed west, Proselyte insisted on sticking to a Tech Artillery Bunker to destroy the remaining Bio Reactor underneath it, and from time to time let Engineers repair it. When Rashidi’s base was shut down, The Proselyte promptly let Basilisks destroy the two statues and the palace. After destroying the palace, both the Proselyte and his advisor thought that Rashidi had been buried in the ruins together with his rebellious thoughts. However, Rashidi had already escaped quietly on an unknown vehicle.

The scorpion's last stand

The Proselyte continued to advance southwards, clearing the enemy forces there and establishing another outpost. While launching a general attack to the west, he discovered several strange buildings resembling Bio Reactors. However, his advisor immediately responded: These buildings are not used to generate electricity, but they contain toxins. And he pointed out that this should be another masterpiece of the Scorpion Cell chemist and reminded the Proselyte to be careful.

Eventually, the Proselyte's troops assembled to the site with many Chinese armament enemy forces and destroyed all the buildings including the Neurotoxin Vats. The remaining units of the Scorpion Cell fled after seeing their failure.

Aftermath

With their main base of operations destroyed, the disoriented and scattered Scorpion Cell forces will be switched to our side once we rebuild the Psychic Amplifier where Rashidi's palace stood. After their defeat, the Paradox Engine remains the only threat to us.
- Yuri's message

Although the battle against the Scorpion Cell was a hard-fought one, the Epsilon loyalists nonetheless managed to destroy the rebel forces and killed Rashidi (or so the Proselyte believes) as the sands silently witnesses the fight. While many of the Scorpion Cell forces had survived, their resistance won't remain for long as a new Psychic Amplifier will be constructed in where Rashidi's palace once stood, thus hopefully ensuring the Scorpion Cell's obedience to Yuri's cause. However, this plan is foiled by the Allies due to their Paradox Engine, forcing the Epsilon loyalists to reactivate another Psychic Amplifier in Zaire.

Several weeks later, the Allies was ready to attack Epsilon's Headquarters in Antarctica, with their epic creation, the Paradox Engine. No sooner was the Proselyte told to protect his master Yuri chronoshifted to Moscow safely than they received this information.

Difficulty changes

Easy

  • Starting credits: 95000

Normal

  • Starting credits: 85000
  • A Tactical Nuke Silo will be deployed where the Psychic Amplifier once stood. The countdown of said superweapon will begin as soon as Rashidi says that he gathered enough troops and weapons to prevent the proselyte from getting to the palace. Countdown before Tactical Nuke is ready to launch: 25:00

Mental

  • Starting credits: 75000
  • A Tactical Nuke Silo will be deployed where the Psychic Amplifier once stood. The countdown of said superweapon will begin as soon as Rashidi says that he gathered enough troops and weapons to prevent the proselyte from getting to the palace. Countdown before Tactical Nuke is ready to launch: 20:00

Starting music

This music track always plays when beginning the mission. It can be changed in the Sounds menu.

  • "Beyond the Obsidian Sands" - 4:48 (Listen)

Trivia

  • Shortly after Rashidi's Palace is destroyed, a vehicle that resembles the Jackal Racer can be seen leaving the flooded tunnel located to the south of the palace, but it cannot be destroyed except by Libra's gravity field.
  • Malver may be discovered with stealth detectors during the mission, but he almost cannot be killed.
  • Back to 2011, this mission was originally an Allied mission created for Mental Omega 3.0.