Timeline suboptimal. Abort/Retry/Fail?
Thought I'd post some of the stuff I've come up with in converting UFO: Enemy Unknown (known in America as XCOM: UFO Defense) to Spycraft and what arose out of the game I ran of it.
First, a little timeline, lifted from the UFOpaedia wiki:
The 509th Bomb Group regiment of the Army Air Corps were the first to officially report the crash of a "flying disk" in the desert near Roswell, deep within New Mexico. The original report explained that of the three occupants of what was termed a "UFO" (Unidentified Flying Object), one had survived the crash. Two had died. Before daybreak, however, government agencies had rapidly acted to retract this version of events, instead claiming that the "UFO" was in fact a weather balloon.
For the last fifty years, men and women (many of them American in nationality) have claimed to have been abducted by alien lifeforms. Many claim to have been abused, or impregnated, or tested upon, or questioned. Most of the world chose to ignore these "crackpots", focusing instead upon the more mundane everyday events that plague us all. However, on the fiftieth anniversary of the Roswell incident, UFO sightings across the world skyrocket. Whilst this is at first believed to be caused by tabloid hype of the anniversary, soon intellectuals, officials and the legitimate press join the ranks of "the believers". One of the most popular headlines at this time is "We Are Not Alone". Whilst this has been claimed and theorised by many, it has never been proved. Until, it seems, now.
Credible reports of human abductions steadily filter into government files and the press. These abductions all follow a similar pattern - the victims inhabited rural areas with a low population density. The governments of the world, worrying at what this might really mean, begin to bring their armed forces to a state of full combat readiness. Contact is attempted, but no results are forthcoming. As the abductions continue, military action is considered to defend the peoples of the world. Japan, taking the lead with its stereotypical blind bravery and courage, forms the 'Kiryu-Kai' - the first anti-alien combat force. They are equipped with the very latest Japanese military equipment, and are manned by the country's finest, but after five months they are forced to disband, without downing a single UFO.
The United Nations was the next to take action. On the 11th of December, 1998, the Security Council gathered in Geneva to decide upon a course of action. It is eventually decided by the representatives of the world's nations that the only way to combat the aliens is to present a united front. Together, they agree to form a covert, multi-national military-based unit to investigate the alien threat and gauge its depth. This organisation is known as X-INV. After just a few months, however, the aliens are finally decreed to be hostile, and are recognised as such by the new Council of Funding Nations. X-INV becomes X-COM - the Extraterrestrial Combat Unit.
X-COM is assembled from the finest soldiers, pilots, engineers, scientists and intelligence operatives from across the world. Together with the very latest military equipment, it is hoped that this will be capable of defeating the alien menace.
January 1st: The First Alien War begins.
Construction on X-COM's first base is completed. The base is well-equipped with several powerful radar units, a complement of well-trained soldiers, engineers and scientists, two rapid-response Interceptor-class aircraft, and one Skyranger -class troop carrier. The scanning equipment detects the first UFO within weeks, and the Interceptors are scrambled...
Over the next few months it becomes clear that X-COM is severely outclassed, but the soldiers and pilots bravely fight on. The Interceptors down the unwieldy supply craft, and the lightly armoured scout craft, with conventional air-to-air guided missile systems. Sometimes the alien craft are shot down or destroyed. Sometimes they turn and attack the Interceptors with some form of powerful energy weapon. More often they simply outrun their pursuers.
On the ground, X-COM meets even stiffer resistance. Soldiers protected only by thin kevlar vests and armed with little more than standard assault rifles are pitted against aliens with superior numbers, weaponry and armour. However, despite horrendous losses, the X-COM soldier's tactics win them through time after time. Dozens of alien craft - each a treasure-trove of advanced technology - are recovered. The research complement of the base immediately goes to work. Work begins on weapons incorporating Laser technology, as well as research into the bizarre alien weaponry, tentatively described as 'plasma'.
0400Z, July 2, 1999, EuroCom
"Turn that damn think off!" thundered Pavel Illyich Kirishatov, his Russian accent showing through due to his fatigue - he had just gotten to sleep two hours earlier, only to be rudely booted out of bed by the klaxon.
The coal-haired, brown-eyed SPETSNAZ veteran uttered fluent maledictions in most of the languages he knew, and reflected that, on the face of it, yes, he preferred to be back in Afghanistan - at least there, the bastards were human.
The klaxon died away to a muttered "bozhemoi" as the report came in.
"What have we got?"
"Looks like a battleship-class UFO, sir."
Kirishatov swore again as the report continued.
"Anythink on hyperwave?"
"No, sir, the hyperwave decoder is still on the blink. What we have, we've got from radar only."
"Well, no need to keep idiot in suspense. Out with it."
"Judging from its track and the pilot seeming to have welded the throttle to the top stop, looks like Maralinga is going to cop a retaliation mission in two, maybe three, hours, sir." Kirishatov's current aide, Sergeant Michael "Chuck" Norris, had been laid out a month earlier by a grazing plasma strike across the right side of his torso. The seconded Royal Marine had earned the nickname on the same op as the wound, in XCOM's first ground based encounter with the terrifying Ethereals, who seemed to be masterminding the Alien invasion. Norris was the only member of his squad to be unaffected by .... whatever ... the damn things used that made hardened combat soldiers literally shit themselves.
"So why get me out of bed, da?"
"Sorry, sir, standing orders. Gotta turf the base commander out of bed whenever a battleship is detected."
"Da, da... would like to strangle genius that put me in this seat, propelled by fart steam."
In the month he had been Kirishatov's aide, Norris had picked up a surprising amount of colloquial Russian.
"So... what can do?"
"About all we can do, sir, is give Maralinga a heads up and tell 'em they'll have company."
"Is nothing else?"
Norris shook his head.
"Goink back to bed. Will eviscerate next moron that wakes me for anything short of apocalypse!"
0405Z, 2 July, 1999, AusCom
Waylon Solomon, VC, could empathise with Kirishatov's feelings, filling the same role in the base officially called AusCom, but more commonly referred to as "Maralinga", in light of it being smack in the middle of the decommissioned Maralinga Nuclear Test Site in South Australia.
He had been awake for the past seven hours, as the sun climbed high above the winter desert, and now it looked like his duty day was not going to end either soon or in the way he had hoped.
Of the uninvited kind.
The kind that the veteran of Long Tan had come to despise with all his soul.
Of the uninvited and bug-eyed kind.
Well, Solomon mused to himself, sitting here steaming about it won't actually get much done.
He keyed the base-wide PA.
"Alright, everyone, this is Colonel Solomon. I've just received word that a battleship is inbound towards us, and most likely does not want to give us flowers. Effective immediately, I'm declaring a base defense situation and ordering all noncombatant personnel to evacuate. Interceptors, deploy northwards to preassigned patrol orbits. Skyranger, load up as much crap as you can and make your hop to Tindal. Combat troops, gear up, and meet me in the main briefing room."
Releasing the button, Solomon stood up, stretched, cracked his shoulder once, and ran a hand over the two days of stubble adorning his chin. He had been kicked out of the ARA for a heroin addiction in the late 1970s, landing after one bounce in XCOM's arms.
Since that day in 1979, his life had been... interesting.
Despite the above fluff, the game I ran concentrated much more on the MIB side of things - players of the game will remember the end-of-month "XCOM Agents have located an Alien Base" screen.
The PCs are among those agents.
That didn't stop them getting into firefights with alien forces, though - like just happening to be near a UFO as it goes down and being ordered to keep the lid on the pot until combat troops arrive.
Am having some trouble finding all of my notes, so a few of these will be off top of head for the members of this forum to bash into shape.
Requisite proficiency: Handgun (well, umm.. duh?)
Type: Service pistol
Damage: 2d8 plasma
Range increment: 25 ft
Qualities: AP 2, RGD
Requisite proficiency: Rifle
Type: Assault rifle
Damage: 5d6+3 plasma
Range increment: 90 ft
Qualities: AP 4, OVH, RGD
Weight: 2.2 lb
Requisite proficiencies: Rifle and/or Tactical
Calibre: 2x V
Damage: 6d8 plasma
Range increment: 150 ft
Qualities: AP 7, RGD, UPG(bipod, vert foregrip)
Weight: 4 lb