In the last episode of Jarenth Plays XCOM, I disarmed a bomb. That’s… that’s pretty much it. It wasn’t a particularly difficult, dangerous or interesting mission: just a whole mess of Thin Men to kill. But after a string of highly difficult and sometimes flat-out disastrous missions, I’m not about to complain about the game throwing me a freebie. Plus, since that mission took place in Brazil, that country’s Panic levels have dropped to manageable levels. Looks like one half of South America is going to stay an XCOM Project supporter after all!
In the last episode of Jarenth Plays XCOM, I discovered that one of my soldiers — Conor Devlin, One True Scotsman — had his latent psychic potential awakened by his stint in the Psionics Lab. A subsequent raid on the largest landed alien craft I’d seen so far proved that psychic powers are kickass, that Cyberdiscs are eminently beatable, and that it’s entirely possible to survive a mission casualty-free without even a single Support soldier among the ranks. Just stack up on the medkits.
In the last episode of Jarenth Plays XCOM, the aliens scored their first real victory over me. Six soldiers went out to a ‘routine’ alien abduction mission in Brazil; none returned. A combination of Cyberdiscs, a new type of Muton called a Berserker, terrible spawn locations and a relatively low-level squad caused the deaths of three rookies, support specialist Vecre, grenade master Loween and alien-catcher extraordinare DeHaan. At this point, I exited the game, turned the PC off and just sat in the corner for a little while.
(Future Jarenth’s Note: Yeah, this episode title isn’t ominous at all.)
In the last episode of Jarenth Plays XCOM, I successfully completed my second Terror Mission. Well, ‘successfully’… let’s just say I finally found out just why Terror Missions have such a bad reputation. Twenty-four aliens, a full twenty of which were Chryssalids. I only brought three civilians back, and an equal amount of soldiers. Grag Smash, Ranneko Jones and Desgardes Malfeasant have… left the XCOM project, permanently. For pastures greener.
In the last episode of Jarenth Plays XCOM, I was confronted with the first real proof that my overthrow of the alien base has had any influence on the alien command hierarchy: the UFO I shot down was commanded not by the crystalline Outsider alien I expected to find, but by a pair of Sectoid Commanders. I managed to salvage the craft without too much difficulty, however, even taking the opportunity to capture one of these Sectoid Commanders for interrogation. Combat experience was gained, alien materials were harvested, and all in all, the mission was a complete success above and beyond reasonable expectations.
And if the aliens keep up their current tactics and troop composition, everything will probably remain fine forever.
In the last episode of Jarenth Plays XCOM, I witnessed the meteoric rise and fall of THUNDER-2, the Super Heavy Infantry Vehicle with nothing to lose. It broke, though, and I can’t fix it. Right now it’s displayed in a corner of my office: an eternal reminder of the cost of vigilance. And a neat coat-rack.
Oh, and a UFO showed up. That might be important too, come to think of it.
In the last episode of Jarenth Plays XCOM, I successfully conquered the Alien Base. Yayifications! Panic across the entire world dropped steeply as a result, my six best soldiers gained valuable combat experience, and I brought home a ton of alien artifacts. Some worthless save for their monetary value, others useful for their applications, and two seemingly plot-critical: the alien communication device known as the Hyperwave Beacon and the corpse of the powerful psionic alien who was using it, the Sectoid Commander.
Raiding and (I assume) destroying their terrestrial base has thrown the aliens in disarray, but I’m not naive enough to believe this is the end of our war. The invaders came from the stars, after all. If we are to beat back their invasion fully, we’ll need to find a way to put a stop to their assaults completely.
In the last episode of Jarenth Plays XCOM, the specter of Obi-Josh Kenobi appeared before me with words of wisdom and aid, gently guiding me away from that rocky cliff of ignominious failure and into the possible limelight of alien base assaulting. I guess he was my only hope? Now, through careful application of Engineering prowess, stolen weapons and crafted armor, and our quite excellent medbay, Team Alpha Squad is ready to assault the aliens’ sub-oceanic stronghold.
It could, very well, be now or never.
In the last episode of Jarenth Plays XCOM, I had a much more successful second encounter with the hulking green aliens known as Mutons. I killed two, kidnapped a third, and only let one additional country slide into full-blown panic. I still don’t really have any idea what to do about that, and I did lose another soldier to the alien menance, but the overall situation is looking much less grim than it was a few days ago.
In the last episode of Jarenth Plays XCOM, I met a new alien species and was promptly beaten into a bloody pulp like the scrawniest kid at boxing class. I had to abort the mission and flee, tail-between-the-legs, losing three relatively new squad members and Captain Dima in the process. France and Russia are throwing a hissy fit, I didn’t get the resources I wanted nor the resources I settled for, and I still don’t have nearly enough Engineers to create the advanced weapons and armor I’d need to properly face this new threat.
Yeah. I… I don’t rightly now how I’m going to salvage this situation, here.