The XCOM:Files – Week 2

**CLASSIFIED**TOP SECRET**AUTHORISED ACCESS ONLY**

The following files are extracts from mission logs of the Ministry of Defence’s XCOM branch and, mainly, the personal memoirs of its commanding officer. The information here pertains to a series of missions that took place following the First Contact events of early 2015, in conjunction with recorded operations for US-XCOM, United States. 

Continuing to read these reports without proper clearance may result in sanctions, as outlined under the Official Secrets Act 2015. This disclaimer acts as a first notification and final warning of this fact.

XCOM Skyranger

**

**OPERATION: STORMY KNIGHT**

LOCATION: Montreal, Canada

SITUATION: High energy readings indicate that the enemy is setting up an explosive device.
RESPONSE: Disarm the device and neutralise alien operatives.

C.O LOG: Events seem to be escalating quickly. We’ve had reports from across the globe of increased alien activity; more UFO sightings, hundreds more abductions. Whatever they’re planning, the enemy is ramping up their efforts. It was only a matter of time before something big like this happened…

All of a sudden, we started getting alerts and calls for assistance from US-XCOM. Apparently, they’d had a huge influx on alien space craft over Canada and the northern USA. While their Interceptors had managed to bring a number down, some had slipped through the net and reached their destinations. With the US teams busy cleaning up crash-sites, we offered to lend a hand.

It was the largest of the unimpeded craft we headed after. Intelligence indicated it had settled over Montreal, and visual reports had large numbers of Sectoids moving heavy machinery underground to the central station of the Métro de Montréal. As it was, we were seeing huge spikes in electricity usage and off-the-chart emissions of an unknown radiation type.

It could only mean one thing. The aliens were planting a bomb.

Sectoid Bomb

The response team was sent in immediately. With Ptes. Jennings and Richards laid up in the infirmary, and Stevens tragically lost in previous engagements, a few replacements were drafted in. The team this time consisted of Corporal L-Stokes, the recently recovered Pte. Baguley, and two fresh recruits, Oren and Kent. It was a big mission to be sending such raw recruits on, but I had confidence in their ability to get the job done.

The Skyranger dropped the team off at a nearby service access hatch, and they made their way down and along the tracks until they reached the station.

The floor was littered with glowing green capsules, wires protruding from their sides and roughly patched into the mains. The power they were drawing had shorted all the lights, and the green glow of these apparent adaptors was the only illumination stretching into the blackness. Somewhere in here was the bomb, and the only way to find it was to follow the trail of wires.

Moving up through the station, severing the connection to each adaptor they passed, the team hunted for their objective. Suddenly, Sectoids began crawling out of the train cars, firing on the troops, forcing them to take cover behind timetable boards. Baguley (a crack-shot) nails the first Grey to show its head, and the rest of the Sectoids retreat back into the dark. Moving with caution, the team proceed…

Xcom Fight

The pitch-blackness of the room suddenly shines with a sickly green glow as all the power adaptors spark into life, tracing a line up the length of the station. At the far end, a tower made of alien metal and unknown plastics shone with the eerie light. That had to be the explosive device. A cursory assessment by our science and engineering departments judged it large enough to level most of Montreal.

And the Sectoids had just activated it.

The team had only a few minutes to find a way of deactivating the device. Having completed whatever arming procedures were necessary, Sectoids began to swarm down the tunnel to delay my troops. A back-and-forth fire-fight ensued, with both the rookies taking minor wounds, and no one getting closer to disarming the bomb.

A lucky break finally came when power levels were reaching critical. Enough Sectoids had been killed for a narrow corridor to open up towards the bomb. Seeing the chance, Pte. Kent sprinted as fast as he could at the device. The rest of the team provided covering fire and, miraculously, managed to put down all the remaining Sectoids. Kent reached the bomb just in time, and a few well placed bashes into the power connectors saw power levels dropping and the lights dimming once again.

Out of one of the train cars came a tall, thin man, dressed in a suit and carrying a briefcase. Nervously he stumbled towards Kent, and the young trooper turned to offer assistance to the civilian. That was when the man unhinged his jaw and sprayed corrosive liquid all over Kent. The poor man died screaming, his face melting.

We thought it was over. We thought we had won. We thought wrong.

Thin Man XCOM

This is when all hell broke loose, and there was nothing I could do to stop it.

The screaming, face-melting death of Kent was too much to handle for the other rookie. Oren panicked and began firing wildly at any shadow. This unfortunately included the one that Corporal L-Stokes was hiding in, and the poor woman took a spray of bullets that left her crippled and bleeding out on the platform. She could only watch hopelessly as a second weird snake-man dropped from the ceiling behind Oren and ended his life with a plasma shot. We were three troops down in a matter of seconds. It wasn’t over yet…

Our remaining man, the unshakable Pte. Baguley, watched as our new foes disappeared back into the dimming shadows. Everything went silent again, save for the ragged breaths of L-Stokes. He made his way slowly up the tracks, heading towards his downed comrade in the hopes of stabilising her. Once that was done, I was ordering everyone out – emergency evacuation. It wasn’t to be though. Once he reached L-Stokes, Baguley heard a clicking noise above him. On top of the train car, another snake man was lurking. That unhinged face was the last thing the poor young man saw…

OUTCOME: MISSION FAILURE
KIA Pte. Baguley.
KIA Pte. Kent.
KIA Pte. Oren.
KIA Corporal L-Stokes.

Dead XCOM

ADDITIONAL NOTES: Reports after the conflict indicate that the aliens must have rearmed the bomb. Certainly, the crater that was once Montreal seems to suggest this was true. Panic is rampant all across Canada, and there was no way to keep this away from the media – how would you explain away a missing city and several thousand vaporised people?

Not only that, I’d lost an entire team of my best troops. I can’t begin to imagine what happened to L-Stokes, left behind, barely but definitely still alive. Our chances of stopping the alien menace just plummeted, and the top brass are breathing down my neck. One more slip up and I’ll need to resign my command. “The world is watching,” they tell me, “and you aren’t showing them what they want to see.” I have to hope the tide will turn soon. Or we will all be at their mercy…

**END OF REPORT**

——————————————————————————

This is the second a series of diaries where I play through Firaxis’ XCOM: Enemy Unknown, and report back to you on all the interesting ways I fail to protect humanity. You can read the first part here!

I will be writing alongside fellow blogger Rodger Oren, a Gentleman of the Highest Repute, and the commander of the USXCOM organisation

Would you like to be immortalised in words on the internet? You too can be a soldier I get killed in an exceedingly humiliating way! Just let Rodger or me know and we can add you to the roster – I’m sure there will be spaces on the team soon enough…

We don’t own any of the stuff here. This is just an account of an excellent game we are recommending, sprinkled with a little poetic license here and there for effect. Your mileage may vary, your aliens may be more forgiving.

Follow me and Rodger for more words and the next instalment of the XCOM:Files!


2 comments

  1. Pingback: The XCOM:Files – Week 1 « Ramshackle Thoughts


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