9:50, Wednesday, 3rd of Feburary, 1999. A day like any other in the world...at least for now...
Our first terror mission popped up. We're going to Shanghai, everybody, pack your
bags (I swear when I wrote that I had no idea how bad this was going to be; I write this as I go, more or less) and remember your Chinese phrasebooks. Due to a shortage of tank cannon rounds, Spoon and the tank will have to stay behind; new rounds didn't arrive at base until the Skyranger was in the air.
The sciencey types say they should have plans for a laser-armed tank in the near future, which will solve that problem hopefully.
Darius sets the Skyranger down in between some buildings, proving he has balls of steel and has never heard of power lines. There is already a welcoming committee present. Unfortunately they don't speak Chinese. They also don't appear to have legs, are purple, and wear red capes.
Goober opens fire in the totally reasonable expectation that anyone with such terrible fashion sense must
be an alien. Redsniper pumps out six rounds rapid fire from his laser rifle (after last mission he's not issued a heavy weapon) at the other one, but two hits isn't enough to kill it. He does manage to blast open the door to the convenience store and wreck several displays of merchandise, though. Goober steps down onto the ramp and unleashes another single round, striking the wall next to the alien and killing it with shrapnel and blast effect. One might think he's trying to make up for last mission's pyromania and incompetence.
Goober is shot at twice by another alien who then ducks into a warehouse. Both shots miss him, but one strikes Redsniper for slight damage. Goober steps off the ramp to blow the warehouse open and confront the alien, but instead meets what can only be described as the demented fuzzy cousin of a Shivan.
Redsniper pumps three laser beams into the creature without visible effect. Swantz steps off the ramp with his missile launcher and reports a second Demented Fuzzy Shivan in the opposite direction, and one the aliens that's apparently flying.
Swantz fires, killing the Demented Fuzzy Shivan, but the flying alien shoots back. Fortunately the missile launcher takes most of the shot and Swantz is only lightly injured. (What the **** is up with people not going straight to plasma hell in this game? EDIT FROM THE FUTURE: ohgodwhydidIsaythis) Goober fires at the wall behind his Demented Fuzzy Shivan, hoping to be outside the blast radius of his own weapon. It works for the first shot, but not the second, which strikes the Demented Fuzzy Shivan in the face. Shrapnel blasts out, killing the creature...and Goober5000.
Jeff Vader moves to join Swantz and takes four shots at the flying alien. He manages to miss to both sides, beneath, and above it. The flying alien responds by throwing a curious device at his feet, and then taking a pistol shot which misses completely, in fact going over the top of the Skyranger. The grenade then blows the **** out of Swantz, Jeff Vader, and Redsniper. Redsniper doesn't even leave a body behind, despite having been further from the blast than the other two. Polpolion miraculously escapes damage but freaks out and drops his weapon. We're not even three turns into the first terror mission and half the active troopers are dead: WELCOME TO ****ING X-COM.
Mjn.Maxel kills the alien that threw the grenade with rapid fire. The E, proving as always to be level-headed and capable, kills a second alien revealed by the damage the grenade did to a nearby building, and turns around and pumps another three rounds into yet another Demented Fuzzy Shivan. Axem, too, debarks and gets his first kill by finishing the Demented Fuzzy Shivan off, following killing yet another alien inside the warehouse.
Another flying alien and a Demented Fuzzy Shivan is reported to the north. Polpolion recovers his weapon and his wits to kill the flyer, while Mjn.maxel brings the Demented Fuzzy Shivan under fire and strikes home twice. It keeps coming next turn, but not fast enough. Polpolion fires at it and kills it with an AP round.
But more movement is reported, the endless hordes of alien-wait that's not alien. That's a chick in a suit.
Yes, terror missions have civilians, which you are supposed to save. Much of this saving is purely theoretical, the result of random chance placement of aliens, particularly this early in the game.
Polpolion gets shot from the side by something around the far end of the warehouse as he moves to support Axem, and goes down dead. The E and Mjn.maxel combine fire to kill the alien.
With the team down to under 50% strength and very little of the area secured, The E, as senior remaining operative, pulls the plug. Troopers are directed to recover equipment and bodies in the immediate area of the Skyranger. Axem grabs the body and weapon of one the new flying enemies in an effort to salvage something of value from this disaster. Check out the grid-based inventory.
More movement is reported out by the street. It's another Demented Fuzzy Shivan, and Mjn.maxel takes it under fire. Another alien grenade is also thrown in that area, but not in our direction. The Demented Fuzzy Shivan charges forward, and Mjn.maxel pumps out nine rounds on full auto while screaming "I seen this cutscene! HALLFIGHT, HALLFIGHT, GAME OVER MAN!"...but he kills it before it gets within twenty feet.
Axem and the E, grabbing the last of the gear, abruptly confront YET ANOTHER Demented Fuzzy Shivan, which is sitting on the ramp of the goddamn Skyranger
. I have no ****ing clue how this happened, I think the ****er must have just teleported in.
Fortunately Axem kills it with a burst of rapid laser fire. Another flyer alien is spotted across the street, and Mjn.Maxel takes it under fire, but Axem has to finish it with a long-range aimed shot. Everyone is climbing into the Skyranger for evac when the area is suddenly covered in Chinese army and police, who report that our intrepid band has killed or incapacitated all the aliens.
Due to their performance in this mission, and their excessive weight for relatively little gain in comparison to autocannon or missile launchers, the decision has been made to phase out the X-Com Heavy Cannon from service. Replacement with additional rifles or the procurement of other heavy weapons is as yet undecided, so if you've got a preference, speak up.