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Fascination Tiberium – a scientific view on the sci-fi element of C&C.
Only variant of Tiberium as envisioned by Westwood are covered here and not the redefinition by EA since TW.

Green Tiberium (Riparius)

Tiberium Riparius

Discovered for the first time by Dr. Ignatio Mobius on September 23, 1995 at Tiber river in Italy, it was named after its location while Kane claims its discovery at first and named it after Emperor Tiberius Drusus. The extraterrestrial Tiberium arrived on Earth via meteorite shower sent by the Scrin after they had contact with Nikola Tesla even before the Second World War.

Tiberium is essentially made up of a pod (=cup, husk, hull) with roots in which green crystals are growing while emitting toxic gas. All minerals are leeched reckless by the roots from the soil and stored in crystalline form. The more trace elements are withdrawn from the soil, the bigger and more valuable the crystals are getting but also causing more and more damage to the natural environment. From a certain point on only the concentration of minerals changes inside the crystals providing the soil has still resources available – see blue Tiberium. Apart from the crystal growth the pods become always entrenched and cultivate new pods elsewhere while penetrating deeper and deeper into the ground to find and absorb more minerals. Tiberium was even developing on the seabed with the side effect of algae, which was becoming a plague over time and making sea travel impossible.

Chemical composition of Tiberium as follows:

Chemical composition of gas as follows:

Definition by Dr. Ignatio Mobius

Molecularity, it's a non-carbon-based element that appears to have strong ferrous qualities with non-resonating reversible energy, that has a tendency to disrupt carbon-based molecular structures, with inconsequent and unequal positrons orbiting on the first, second, and ninth quark rings.


The vicinity dies off quickly or mutates within a few days due to the aggressive behavior. One of the first and famous mutations is the Blossom tree which has at least one fleshly bulb at the top that periodically releases Tiberium spores with its pulsating constriction and considerably speeds up the spread of Tiberium compared to the roots only. Mobius guessed that Tiberium adapts to Life on Earth this way and slowly transforms it to its own environment. Not just plants are affected, but also animals and every lifeform respectively.
Another mutation observed from the get-go is the Visceroid. This initially rare Tiberium-oriented organism results of uncontrolled mutation by a lifeform and remains as a fleshy accumulation of loose cells only without any fixed structure spherical in shape. Visceroids grow and merge together over time and their numbers had increased so much over the years, that in 2030 they finally developed to various sizes being loose accumulations of protoplasm and became a regular sight in contaminated areas. While the first specimen emits small clouds of gas, the Visceroids developed pseudopods in the meantime and are able to attack with those.
Similar progression also applies to Veinhole monsters which were hardly ever encountered at first and then had overgrown more and more areas with their veins. A big maw sets up the center, which emits large clouds of gas in case of danger as seen at Tiberium or Visceroid. The veins are sensitive to vibrations, larger objects are attacked by pseudopods as a result, teared apart and transported to the maw as the case may be.
A totally new reemergence are the Tiberian fiends respectively Canus Tiberius. Unlike Visceroids these lifeforms kept their original shape and developed further based on it. It is covered by crystals and can attack by launching these shards at its targets. The Tiberian fiend is added to the most intelligent Tiberium lifeforms. Same applies to the Tiberian floater being a floating jellyfish-like lifeform with tentacles capable of generating electrical charges. The floater continuously expels gas and is no less aggressive than the other organisms.

Blue Tiberium (Vinifera)

Tiberium Vinifera

The blua variant matches the green Tiberium to the greatest possible extent and results by minerals absorbed in much larger quantities. Blue Tiberium did not emerge during the starting years, first sightings have been made at the end of the First Tiberium War. The exceedingly high concentration of resources within the crystals results in the blue color and a volatility, which causes small detonations and chain reactions across whole fields due to fire or vibrations. It is therefore more dangerous than green Tiberium but also tremendously more valuable. Furthermore the leeching process and by that the growth in itself is slower compared to the green variant.
Something like a Blossom tree does not exist for the blue Tiberium, instead a larger blue monolith being pure crystal sets the center of such fields up. These ten meters high crystalline structures apply consistent bursts of growth to its local field at regular intervals, which is perceived as sparkle for the observer. Despite the inorganic fixed structure, the monolith seems to be alive and moves in doing so.

Dark blue Tiberium (Cruentus)

Tiberium Cruentus Tiberium Cruentus

Only very few occurrences are known of this special Tiberiums kind. In contrast to the other kinds this one does not spread or rather spreads extremely slow, but is highly explosive – as the color is already hypothesizing. It might be the result of a Vinifera monolith which leeched even more trace elements from the soil and therefore enriched minerals at exceptionally denseness. If such a crystal explodes, its shards will rain within a radius of 600 meters all over the countryside. This presumably may be a "natural" end to each and every crystal, but also to spread effectively at last.

Red Tiberium (Arboreus)

In comparison to the dark blue Tiberium the Red one is even more uncommon. However further characteristics are not known.

Regarding Arboreus one can addtionally say non-fictionally the following: Westwood planned indeed red Tiberium (see TS for prove / citation) but did not find the time to to implement it reasonably. Instead of that it appears blue and looks identicaly to the blue Tiberium. It is only distinguishable by its values, which is hardly possible during the game. According to rules.ini it is slightly more valuable and volatile than Vinifera and additionally described as Aboreus being a spelling mistake. As a matter of fact, the colors symbolize the Tiberium's life cycle, i.e. if it all starts with green and almost ends with dark blue, then red may be the last phase – however that might looke like.
Due to another error by the color palette the dark blue Cruentus monolith is sometimes displayed in orange-yellowish shades. This caused for more speculation about Arboreus but is only Cruentus in wrong colors – see screenshot for proper presentation.

Latin origin

Tiberium Riparius:
River bank, riverside – reference to the find spot of green Tiberium; Tiber river.
Tiberium Vinifera:
Noble / genuine wine grape, grapevine – reference to precious Tiberium since blue is more valuable than Green. Possibly also to the color; dark blue, violet.
Tiberium Cruentus:
bloody, blood-red, bloodstained – would actually fit quite well for the planned red Tiberium...
Tiberium Arboreus:
arborescent, arboreal – recalls rather Blossom trees, less a Vinifera variant...