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The Attack Carrier's role in the games.

Appearance

The Attack Carrier is a large, polygonal warship armed with three launch bay hangars, and very powerful laser cannons but only uses them when the three open spots are downed. It launches Granga Fighters and missiles that are not worth Hit Points is shot down, but may leave Supply rings behind.

Enemy Recon

Having followed Route 2 to the end, you now encounter the Attack Carrier, a huge ship filled with enemy fighters. If you blast it out of the sky, you'll earn ten hit points.
—Official Nintendo Power Player's Guide, pg 33

Launch Bay

Attack the open launch bays to destroy the offensive threat. When the carrier turns around, blast it and dodge the fire to finish it off.
—Official Nintendo Power Player's Guide, pg 33

Missiles

The missiles shoot out of the launch bays four at a time. Lock on and blast them, but concentrate most of your fire at the bays themselves.
—Official Nintendo Power Player's Guide, pg 33

Intelligence

After the checkpoint, three enemy ships will chase Falco. Destroy these three ships, and then fly through all of the arches ahead. Falco will lead you to an alternate path through the mission which will take you to a different lieutenant, and to Sector Y.
—Star Fox 64.com

In the games

Star Fox

In the original Star Fox, the Attack Carrier is fought by Fox McCloud in the first two routes. It is even featured prominently in the introduction. In the third route, Falco will mention battling it, and its parts will be seen getting taken away by robots shortly before Fox battles the Destructor instead.

Star Fox 64/3D

In Star Fox 64/3D, it is again one of two bosses of Corneria, although it earns the player a "Mission Accomplished" rather than a "Mission Complete" and opens two possible paths if the player defeats it. It is not possible to battle the Attack Carrier if Falco had been forced to retreat, and if the stone arches were not flown through, forcing the route to go only to the Meteo Asteroid field.

The Attack Carrier is heavily armored and impervious to Laser fire and Smart Bombs. However, when it opens its right twin hatches to release missiles or a company of starfighters from the left hatch, Fox can shoot at the openings to break off the two large missile pods from the left of the ship and the large launch bay to the right of the ship, rendering it vulnerable to weapon fire. When its missile pods and launch bays are destroyed, it dodges while firing yellow-orange lasers.

Star Fox Zero

The Attack Carrier reappears in Star Fox Zero, where it comes out of warp in Sector Ω to face Fox as the Attack Carrier Captain informs him that the way he came doesn't lead to Venom but his own annihilation. This time the Attack Carrier is fought in All-Range Mode instead of Corridor Mode. While the missile pods and launch bay do not remain open as long as they used to, the metal beams connecting them to the ship are vulnerable at all times and can be attacked regardless of the hatches' status.

After the pods and launch bay are destroyed, the bottom half of the Attack Carrier opens up to reveal a set of four laser cannons, which emit dangerous beams in a plus shape centered on the ship. The Carrier then spins around as it activates the lasers in an attempt to shoot Fox down, then closes up as it repositions for another attack. These laser cannons also serve as the Attack Carrier's weak points while it opens up, but they are only vulnerable before and after they fire. As the Carrier loses cannons, it spins faster and does so during the charging sequence to interfere with Fox's aim. Only when all four of the cannons are destroyed is the Attack Carrier truly defeated. When defeated, the Attack Carrier captain and Fox's exchange was similar to that of the Meteo Crusher pilot in Star Fox 64.

References

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