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This is a list of commanding officers from the Advance Wars: Days of Ruin video game, an installment of the Advance Wars series of video games. All characters mentioned here appear only in Days of Ruin.
COs in the Advance Wars series often give their forces advantages and disadvantages. In Days of Ruin, the CO has the ability to travel with a single unit, temporarily establishing a CO zone that empowers all units within range (including the unit the CO is in) until the unit is either destroyed or the unit the CO is traveling with returns to their respective HQ. These CO zones increase in range as the COs power bar is filled. With the exception of two COs, all COs have the ability to activate CO powers, which usually last for one turn and provide more significant benefits, in addition to spreading the effects of the CO Zone throughout the entire battlefield.
- Also known as the 12th Independent Legion in other game versions.
Will (Ed in the European and Japanese versions) is the main protagonist of Days of Ruin. He is introduced at the beginning of the game as a young cadet from the Rubinelle Military Academy. During the catastrophic meteor strike that devastates the world in Days of Ruin, Will is trapped in the Academy's mess hall. He survives on meager rations while he digs a way out of the mess hall, and then meets the 12th Battalion of Rubinelle's former military, commanded by Brenner and Lin after they defeat a roving band of raiders led by The Beast. Will joins Brenner in his mission to rescue as many of the survivors as possible, quickly taking up the cause and setting the stage for the campaign plot.
- CO Zone: Has a range of 2 spaces; boosts attack power of direct-attack ground units within CO zone range by 20%.
- CO Power: Rally Cry (New Era in Europe): +2 to movement range of all direct-attack ground units.
The leader of the Rubinelle 12th Battalion, or "Brenner's Wolves". Brenner (O'Brien in the European version, Brown in the Japanese version) was a competent military commander before the meteor strikes. He has dedicated himself to rescuing any survivors and defending them from the bands of scavengers that have sprung up as a result of the impact. He is later killed while trying to cover the escape of the 12th Battalion and Lazurian POWs; Greyfield uses one of Caulder's weapons to destroy the abandoned city Brenner had hidden in. His father fought against Forsythe in the war before the meteor strikes, and Forsythe describes him as a man of honor, letting the Lazurians bury their dead, and not using any cheap tricks. Brenner comments that it seems that only the Lazurians realized what a good man his father was.
- CO Zone: Has a range of 3 spaces; increases the defense of all units within the CO zone range by 20%.
- CO Power: Reinforce (Lifeline in Europe): Heals all of his units by three points.
A First Lieutenant of the 12th Battalion, Lin (Rin in the Japanese version) is Brenner's unflappable second-in-command. She has tremendous respect for Brenner, although they disagree often. After the defeat of the New Rubinelle Army, Lin shoots and kills Greyfield, refusing his pleas for surrender.
- CO Zone: Has a range of 1 space; boosts ground units' firepower and defense by 20%.
- CO Power: Scout (Night Vision in Europe): +2 to all ground unit vision range. Hiding spaces revealed within vision range.
Isabella (Catleia in the European version, Cattleya in the Japanese version) is a mysterious young woman rescued by Will early in the plot and joins the 12th Battalion. She is afflicted with amnesia, but seems to be aware of vital military secrets. Her true name is Lutaria, and she is one of Caulder's daughters. She is but one of many mass-produced clones used as "lab rats" in Caulder's horrific experiments.
- CO Zone: Has a range of 2 spaces; boosts the attack and defense of all units by 10%.
- CO Power: Deep Strike (Overlord in Europe): +2 to both mobility for all units and range for all indirect-attack units.
- Also known as the Zephyrian Army in other game versions.
Forsythe (Carter in the European Version, Carlyle in the Japanese version), Lazuria's commander-in-chief, was called out of retirement to defend his nation after the meteor strikes. As a military veteran, he is very skilled in warfare, but has no CO power. After surrendering to Brenner, he is executed by Waylon under orders from Greyfield.
- CO Zone: Has a range of 5 spaces; boosts all of his units' attack and defense by 10% each.
- CO Power: None
A Lazurian soldier, Gage (Trak in the European and Japanese versions) is a man of few words, but a consummate professional. A specialist in long ranged attacks, he and Tasha join the 12th Battalion after being saved from execution by the New Rubinelle Army.
- CO Zone: Has a range of 2 spaces; boosts the attack of naval and indirect-attack units by 20% and defense of naval and indirect-attack units by 10%.
- CO Power: Longshot (Long Barrel in Europe): +2 to range of all indirect-attack units.
Tasha (Zadia in the European version, Atory in the Japanese version) is a Lazurian commander who seeks to avenge the death of her brother at the hands of Rubinelle soldiers before the meteor strikes and shows a feverous side in doing so. Later on, she and Gage join the 12th Battalion after learning about Brenner's sacrifice in saving them both.
- CO Zone: Has a range of 1 space; boosts the attack of air units by 40% and defense of air units by 20%.
- CO Power: Sonic Boom (Fox One in Europe): +2 to all air-unit mobility.
New Rubinelle Army
- Also known as the New Laurentian Army in other game versions.
Admiral Greyfield (Sigismundo in the European version and Japanese versions) is the ambitious and power hungry leader of the New Rubinelle Army, looking down on Brenner and his group with disdain. He wants to destroy the Lazurian Army and rule the world as King Greyfield the Mighty. He is later shot and killed by Lin after failing to launch a wave of Caulder Missiles that would have destroyed the 12th Battalion. Lin claims that before the meteors, Greyfield was a subpar commander at best, and falsified his own records to take credit for the work that others had done.
- CO Zone: Has a range of 3 spaces; boosts attack of naval units, seaplanes, and copters by 10% and defense of naval units, seaplanes, and copters by 40%
- CO Power: Supply Chain (High Command in Europe): Refills fuel, ammo, and materials for all units.
Waylon (Finn in the European version, Dieter in the Japanese version) is a cowardly and vain commander of Rubinelle's forces who seeks to fulfill his own pleasures and desires. Formerly a captain in Rubinelle's air force, he becomes a mercenary after the meteor strikes and joins the New Rubinelle Army.
- CO Zone: Has a range of 2 spaces; boosts the attack of air units by 20% and defense of air units by 30%.
- CO Power: Wingman (Bad Company in Europe): Boosts the defense of his air units by an additional 280% for a total of 420% defense (due to the changes in the way defense is calculated in DoR, this is approximately equivalent to an 80% damage reduction).
Intelligent Defense Systems
Caulder (Stolos in the European version, Beris in the Japanese version) is the head of the private military contractor Intelligent Defense Systems. He seeks a world where he is free to carry out his terrible experiments, and is the creator of the Creeper virus that plagues the survivors of the meteor strikes. He perishes during the destruction of IDS's central laboratory, The Nest.
- CO Zone: Has a range of 3 spaces; increases attack and defense of all units by 50%. Additionally, all units within the CO Zone recover up to 5HP each day, although he requires funds to do this.
- CO Power: None
Tabitha (Larissa in the European version, Liselotte in the Japanese version) belongs to the private military contractor, Intelligent Defense Systems. One of Caulder's daughters, she is extremely cruel and vindictive. While she is still alive at the end of the story, her whereabouts are unknown.
- CO Zone: Has a range of 0 spaces (Initially, it only affects the unit that the CO is traveling with); boosts attack and defense of all units within zone by 50%
- CO Power: Firestorm (Apocalypse in Europe): 8 Damage to enemy units over a 5x5 diamond.
Penny (Lili in the European version, Roumi in the Japanese version) is Caulder's youngest child. Numerous experiments have left her mind permanently shattered. She is taken in by Isabella after being convinced that she does not have to carry out Caulder's heinous deeds.
- CO Zone: Has a range of 3 spaces; although Penny possesses a CO Zone, all her units are unaffected by weather, including those in and outside the CO Zone.
- CO Power: Stormfront (Enigma in Europe): Randomly changes the weather conditions of the battlefield for 3 days.
Unique to Days of Ruin are non-playable characters which are only seen in the game's campaign. These characters cannot be unlocked for play outside of the campaign, and have no CO zones or CO powers. Days of Ruin is the first game in the Advance Wars series to include non-playable characters.
Always referring to himself as "The Beast" (Drakov in the European version), this rogue CO leads a small group of outlaws seeking to take advantage of the downfall of the two main world superpowers, Rubinelle and Lazuria. He was formerly a sergeant of the Rubinelle Army, but was expelled for his violent behavior. He is encountered as the enemy in several of the early missions of the game. He is later killed by medicine given to him by Caulder.
Mayor of Freehaven
Rescued by Brenner after the meteors struck, he is the mayor of the small village of Freehaven. He is a cowardly man who pretends to care about his people, but looks out only for his own well-being. He also makes several attempts to secure himself a higher position of power among the civilians of the 12th Battalion. Fittingly, he dies by his own selfishness, using the only sample of the vaccine for the Creeper on himself; the vaccine turns out to be poison, and kills him.
Formerly a medical researcher, Dr. Morris (Dr. Moritz in Europe) is the elected representative of the survivors of the city of New Wolfington, and later travels with Brenner's Wolves. He is an optimistic man with a knack for (rather terrible) puns, and often makes jokes even in dire circumstances. He is somewhat of an authority on the deadly Creeper virus, and is able to develop a temporary vaccince against the virus's mutated form later on.
Davis (Cole in the European Version) is a commander of the New Rubinelle Army who is rescued by the 12th Battalion. He is often belittled and ignored by the other New Rubinelle Army COs. Later on, he joins the Fanatic's cult after being infected by the Creeper virus.
The leader of a cult which worships a mysterious entity known as The Worm. He offers a magical cure for the Creeper to all who worship. He believes he is helping the people by giving them hope, albeit false hope, to help them survive. The Worm itself is later revealed to be a mere earthworm.
Cyrus is the son of Caulder and a commander of Intelligent Defense Systems. He has doubts about his father's decisions and work ethics, as he sees it as cruel to kill people meaninglessly. He later betrays Caulder and allows the 12th Battalion to secretly board the massive IDS bomber known as the Great Owl (Pulsatrix in other versions). The battle on board the aircraft inflicts irreparable damage to its vital systems and causes it to crash. Consequently, Cyrus is killed by Caulder for his actions.