- —Grinder when he is about to fire his Mulcher
The Grinder (aka Bucket Head) was a Boomer variant recently fielded by the Locust Horde. They are equipped with a Mulcher machine gun, which they can use to lay down thunderous suppressive fire on enemy troops. They wear standard armor with the exception that their chest-plate has a high collar to protect their neck from both enemy fire and possibly from being hit and burned by the shells expelled from their own gun. To protect their heads, they sport a high, flat-topped, cylindrical helmet with the Locust symbol shining in the center. Their helmets make them less vulnerable to headshots than other Boomers, except for the Mauler.
Destruction of Halvo Bay
When General Karn attacked Halvo Bay, E-Holes opened up around the city, spawning many Grinders to attack the city. Kilo Squad encountered many Grinders on their way towards the Museum of Military Glory and also inside the Museum itself.
Grinders were part of the Locust force that took over the Halvo Bay Military Academy and then attempted to stop Kilo from recovering the targeting beacon for the Lightmass Missile, ambushing them all around the Academy but the Gears were able to overcome their aggressors and move forward.
They continued to appear throughout Seahorse Hills and most notably at Magadha Villa they took advantage of the Smoke Grenades to take the Gears out but failed yet again. They also laid siege to Kurt Elliot's mansion once the security systems failed and they were finally able to enter the mansion but were again thwarted.
Grinders attempted to stop Kilo from reaching the silo containing the Lightmass Missile at Onyx Point and later were sent to stop Kilo from actually launching the missile at the Museum of Military Glory but were defeated in both attempts.
When Kilo Squad escaped the courthouse, Grinders then came out of E-Holes firing at Kilo Squad. Grinders also appeared, assisting in defending Karn but they were all killed.
Assault on Ilima
When General RAAM attacked the city of Ilima, Grinders were among the Locust aiding the General in following the orders given by Queen Myrrah. They first appeared when a Corpser opened an Emergence Hole near Zeta-Six's evacuation outpost. Another one later attacked Zeta-Six while they searched for Echo-Five.
Around Ilima City Hall, a Grinder guarded the park from any intruders until it fell at the hands of Zeta. More Grinders appeared inside Ilima City Hall but were slain by Zeta's members.
Operation: Hollow Storm
- —A Gear cry when encountering a Grinder
Numerous Grinders were encountered by COG forces during this Campaign when the COG troops breached the Hollow. Two were encountered defending a Torture Barge, but were dealt with by Delta. After taking over the barge, they docked at a drop off point where another attacked them which was overcome. More Grinders appeared at the New Hope Research Facility; the first one pushed through a door and opened fire at Delta but was killed by the incoming Razorhail. A pair then ambushed Delta inside a train car and on their way towards their Centaur Tank.
Inside the Hollow, a Grinder came out of a Gunboat that attacked Marcus Fenix and Dominic Santiago. It was dealt with by a Torque Bow the duo had previously had taken from a Theron Guard which they also used to deal with the gunboat. Another Grinder on a gunboat attacked a hijacked gunboat manned by Delta Squad, along with a group of Grenadiers, but was torn apart by the Troika installed on their boat. Another Grinder attacked the duo while trying to get to Maria, along with several Bloodmounts and Wretches. The entire group was killed just as JACK opened Maria's cell. Another pair of Grinders came out of two doors while the duo was dealing with a massive amount of fire from their front side. They tried to flank them while the Drones attempted to lower their cover, however the Gears killed the Drones and overran the Grinders, emerging victorious again. Another pair of Grinders ambushed the Gears but Augustus Cole and Damon Baird flanked and killed both enemies. After reaching the Locust Palace, the four Gears used a strategy that would make their job easier; two would use a lift with a Troika for cover while the other two would lower the lift. Several Grinders were killed by the Troika on their way down. Two more Grinders ambushed Delta while inspecting Lambent bodies. Another Grinder guarded the Bloodmount Stables inside the Palace along with a Flame Boomer and a Mauler but were killed by Delta as soon as they arrived.
When Delta escaped the Hollow riding Reavers, several Grinders tried to stop them from leaving but were killed by the Gears. More Grinders took part during the Siege of Jacinto. They first attacked the north gates of the COG HQ but were killed by Mortar and Mulcher fire from Delta and other Gears. Another Grinder ambushed Marcus and Dom inside the Archives Building but failed to kill the Gears. When they found an exit to the building, they found another Grinder attacking some Gears before a Reaver slammed on the ground and killed the Gears. The two humans avenged their comrades and killed the Grinder. Another Grinder ambushed them at the end of Cooper Street but was also taken down by the duo. Some Grinders attempted to stop a hijacked Brumak by Marcus and Dom but were no match for the Brumak's firepower.
Grinders first re-appeared in Delta's infiltration of the Locust compound in the Deadlands on their way to Anvil Gate. One was defending a staging area at the first gate to the Compound with a unit of Savage Drones and a Digger Boomer.
Later that night, Grinders took part in the Battle of Anvil Gate. A number of them attacked the main gates of the garrison but were fended off by the Gears defending it. However, a Siegebeast managed to destroy the gates and they moved into the first enfilade point behind the front wall of the fort. They escorted a wave of Maulers inside the fort's walls but were met with fire from One-Shots and Vulcan Cannons that turned them to shreds in a matter of seconds. However, the Maulers were able to break into the main courtyard area and the Locust were able to cause heavy damage before being repelled with a giant fuel tank.
The next day, they were encountered at the Endeavour Naval Shipyard while searching for a rotor so Dizzy Wallin could repair the CNV Adamant. One appeared at a dockyard Delta passed by. Three more Grinders tried to stop the Gears from leaving the shipyard; one at the first set of doors and two more at the last set. They were slain by Delta as they made their way towards the exit.
At Azura, a single Grinder attempted to stop Delta from shutting down the valves of the Maelstrom device but failed. After the facility went into a meltdown, another Grinder tried to stop the Gears from escaping the facility but was killed by a small explosion. A Grinder attacked Delta at the cliffside but was dispatched by KR Zero-Six. Another Grinder guarded a Siegebeast, alongside a Mauler and a detachment of Palace Guards, from Delta. Inside Pinnacle Tower, another Grinder attacked the elevator Anya Stroud and Marcus Fenix were in but was killed. A Grinder, along with several other Locust, waited for the Gears to get outside of the elevator, but was ambushed from behind and the Gears slain him. Another Grinder guarded the entrance to the laboratory but was killed. A last Grinder guarded one of the power sources that trapped Adam Fenix. The Gears dispatched him and deactivated the power source, freeing Adam from his captivity. Presumably all Grinders died out when the Imulsion Countermeasure Weapon was activated.
Grinders appear in both campaign and Horde, but more frequently in the latter. They will usually move in first, with Drones close behind. They mainly provide suppressing fire. Grinders are vulnerable to the Scorcher, as they will lower their Mulcher for a few seconds. This, however, is extremely dangerous, especially if you have nothing to go into cover with nearby. In higher waves they pair up with Maulers, which makes a deadly combination of fire and cover.
Behind the scenes
- Grinders were originally playable in Beast Mode in Gears of War 3, but they were taken out for unknown reasons.
- The Grinders have got a melee attack which seems odd since they require both hands to hold their Mulchers.