The Let's Play Archive

X-COM: Apocalypse

by GuavaMoment

Part 41

Tynam's descent into madness continues. We've been holo-recording images and videos out of his mind to understand what he's going through. We have to keep him locked in the medbay as these hallucinations are getting out of control and are completely non-sensical. His journal entries lately do not have any sort of logical flow, and are more like a stream of broken consciousness instead of a coherent document. Some of the images we take from him are incomplete, missing text or whole sections of the image. This is a result of Tynam's brain damage impeding the holo-recording process, not due to our image recording program crapping out.

I'll continue to add in my commentary as necessary, using italics.

-Otto Zander

Okay so we established Evening Star out in the Frontier when we were attacked!


I couldn't prevent the ship from crashing into the base, but luckily it didn't do much damage.

We decided to add some extra modules to the base. Standard stuff like more hanger bays and living quarters.

There's no room on the base to research new technology, so the Galactic Science Corp (GSC) back on Earth research things for us and transmit the data when their done. They have to transmit HUGE amount of data, so we need lots of comlinks.

Even at 0.5 Teraquads per minute, it will take almost two weeks to download the data for the tractor beam. With the tractor, we'll be able to drag enemy ships back to base and transmit the specs to GSC for research.

Here's my ship.

It's got standard armor, targeting system, drive and shields. We know the aliens are using better stuff that we are, so we'll need to capture their UFOs.

The business end contains two laser cannons and two X-winder missiles.

On the first day, scanners detected an enemy squadron. We were sent out to intercept.

Me and two of my buddies versus four UFOs.




Sometimes the UFOs don't blow up completely, and we can recover some of their technology. The plasma pulse cannon is a far superior weapon to our current laser cannons.

The we detected ANOTHER squadron so we-

Tynam's next dozen or so entries all are variations of the above combat. He's repeating the same type of battle over and over in his mind, each one barely differing from the last. It's got to be driving him mad. I'll edit out all future routine missions from his journal, but try to keep in mind that in between every major new insight, there's about a dozen similar boring dogfights.

Okay, so then the aliens attacked a mining outpost nearby. This is where they mine the elerium that we need on Earth, so we have to defend these guys at all costs.

Fighting in the asteroid belt is hard.

Tynam's been mostly correct in everything he's said above, and this statement of his couldn't be more true. When piloting in an asteroid belt you will get hit by asteroids. They're large and the fields are usually dense. I remember playing piloting simulator games in my youth such as X-Wing or Freespace, but neither of them came even close to simulating the chaotic, hectic nature of dogfighting in a real asteroid field.

So we win that mission and get news from Earth. Earth cities are being reclaimed to build some kind of super city called Mega-Primus which is supposed to be the hope of humanity.

Poughkeepsie! HA HA HA that's so funny! It's a small stupid town that doesn't deserve to be mentioned! THIS IS QUALITY HUMOR RIGHT HERE!

As you can see, Tynam is beginning to lose his handle on reality. First to go is usually the sense of humor.

This Mega-Primus is an interesting idea, but it has one flaw. Why put the hope of all humanity into one city? Wouldn't the aliens then only have to attack that one city do defeat humanity?


Then our new download tower finished building, so we were able to get the plans for the tractor beam three times as fast.

Aliens attacking a mining outpost! Scramble the ships!

The outpost commander was saying something about him having the situation under control, and not really needing our help. The outpost has strong defenses.

See? I didn't do that.

We know the aliens are here in the Frontier to mine elerium as well, so we should try to destroy their outposts when we find them.

Tractor beam!

Next on the download list is better weapons.

Our base doesn't have any manufacturing capability, so we have to make the nearby mining outposts do it for us. We place the order, and they send the finished goods to us.

I got my tractor beam! Then I gave my ship a name - "More Gravitas" since the tractor beam uses gravitas particles to operate, or something like that. I'm no scientist. But I do know I need lots of them to tractor things!

Graviton particles technically.

New month means more money.

And more outposts to defend.

But now it's time to use my tractor beam for the first time!

It has fully 360 degree spherical coverage and a range of nearly a kilometer. Once the enemy gets in range... lock on, fire your afterburner and end up completely messing up his engine. More Gravitas can win a tractor tug-of-war battle with many enemies before getting damaged itself.

After you've finished disabl your targets, you lock on...

...and enter hyperspace.

Drag that UFO home!

What the hell is that? Why does he think a tractor beam can be used as an offensive weapon against active craft? Why does he think it has a 360 firing arc? Look at that one picture above, the beam is clipping right through his craft, it's nearly firing backwards, and it isn't coming from anywhere near the real tractor emitter. Poor Tynam.

Then we downloaded the new plasma weapon specifications! We had captured a lot of these, and could equip them on our craft right away.

Next to research was the alien craft they're using against us.

News from Earth says that there have been Hybrids found on earth, near Roswell, New Mexico. That's funny because people used to think a UFO crashed there in the mid-twentieth century, and now we find real hybrids there!

I don't know where he's getting this from. The history of Hybrids on Earth is well documented and has nothing to do with Roswell or the nearby X-COM base 'Area 51'.

Oh no! Aliens attacking an ore processing plant!

Looks like they need a hot gravitas injection!

Another one captured!

Alien freighter convoy!

The freighter is too big for the tractor beam to be effective. So I had to fire missiles at it.


My wingman, Terminator, says he's intercepted a transmission coming from the freighter.

We'll have to get our science guys to take a look at that transmission later.

The freighter launched small drones to defend itself, but the tractor beam outright destroyed them.

Sometimes, the aliens launch probes that jam our downlink signal. We can't research things with the jammer operational, so I had to destroy it.

Luckily it wasn't far from the base.

It looked like a nice day outside, so I lowered the sun roof on More Gravitas.

It feels so nice to not be confined in a small, cramped ship. So nice to have the wind blowing through your hair, breathing the fresh air! Too bad I couldn't find the probe. My readouts showed it at negative zero kilometers and that never changed no matter where I moved. I had to enable battlecheats and use alt-tilde to destroy it.

I have absolutely no earthly idea what Tynam's talking about. Nothing in the above statement made one lick of sense. We'll have to order another round of head scans to be sure there isn't more damage to his brain.

The research guys said our ships were currently better than the alien wraith class, so we don't have anything to worry about now when we're fighting them.

The alien message turns out to be HUGE! At thirty-thousand teraquads!

Wrong, the alien message is under seven megabytes. Thirty-thousand teraquads is a significant fraction of humanity's entire knowledge.

OH MY GOD I knew the hybrids came from Roswell in 1947! Totally called it! HA HA HA!!!

We have more mining outposts to defend, so we started building a new base.

The alien message was finally decoded, and it shows aliens flying into a black hole for some reason. They tell us we should capture any freighters we find, but how? Tractor beams don't work on freighters.

Anyway, here's the entire alien message in its entirety.

WARNING - 30 kTQ file. (56kQ not safe for download)


Again, it's seven measly megabytes and easily downloadable.

The first alien message was actually received exactly as Tynam remembers. This was the beginning of the mystery as to what the aliens were actually doing in the Frontier seventeen years ago. I'm very curious to see what Tynam thinks actually happened in his future updates.