Posted 24 September 2004 - 06:14 AM
the truth about scientology
Some people say that dreams are a portal to the subconscious. If that is so, I am a very disturbed person.
Guest_alex the greater_*
Posted 24 September 2004 - 06:56 AM
Posted 30 September 2004 - 01:57 PM
"I only think this stuff up ..
then I have to write it down so it doesn't corrupt the rest of my brain.. "
"There is a theory which states that if ever anyone discovers exactly what the universe is for and why it is here, it will instantly disappear and be replaced by something even more bizarre and inexplicable.
There is another which states that this has already happened.
-Douglas Adams (The Hitchhicker's Guide to the Galaxy)"
Posted 01 October 2004 - 09:22 AM
Posted 01 October 2004 - 03:34 PM
Guest_alex the greater_*
Posted 01 October 2004 - 05:48 PM
But maybe not call them Mibs, they are supposed to be based in the US, am I right?, we should call them something else I think, but I like the idea of getting countries back, through assasination if necessary.
aculay mibs have been spoted all over the world so
A. thay work for the aliens or
B. thay belong to an internatiol secret organasition dedacated to keeping the aliens a secrete
Posted 01 October 2004 - 07:21 PM
But maybe not call them Mibs, they are supposed to be based in the US, am I right?, we should call them something else I think...
Yeah, I agree, they should be called something else. For now I'm just going to go with "MIBs" as their name for discussions sake. A working title if you will. As for where they'd come from, I'd imagine since just like your troops and how they come to you from all sorts of places, not just the US, same could be true of the MIBs. Rather than tie them to a specific government, they answer to and work for all the funding nations. I kind of think of them as the "go to" guys residing in that layer between the governments and X-COM. So basically they could have their base of operatons anywhere, but for simplicity's sake, you could simply have a small detachement assigned to your bases.
So it seems we'd like these kind of units for the counter intel work. I know that I'd like some method to regain a country's loyalties (*cough* if not through outright conquest *cough* ), and think these kinds of units would fit that mold nicely as that delivery method.
What I'd like to flesh out more are the ways we can use them (talk about their objectives on the battlescape etc.) as we've already started to, so let's break down what those things are up to now and see if we can't liven up the unit class some more...
Everything below basically just falls under the overall heading of counter intelligence. I'll try and list below each role what type of battlescape scenario could be introduced. For now I'll just cover:
-Changing Attitudes (mostly just extending from the requirements of Infiltration)
1. Government Courier - Technology and Information Sharing fall within this category and deals with items or issues you don't want more public. The success of these missions uninterrupted by aliens or anyone else go to serve some minor benefits for improving relations with country governments. The most readily noticable change one could track is the funding level increases on the monthly reports. The other could open up more commodities opportunities on the market or even research boons. When either of these missions hits a snag like being shot down, all is not lost, but it does introduce the chance to mend things with guns:
...1A - Battlescape Scenario 1: Cargo retrieval - Use your X-COM squad to quickly find the courier and their cargo and neutralize anyone in your way. Final points for the mission are negligible if you lose any "MIBs", but you will get hammered if the cargo is lost, especially taking a hit to the country you were trying to improve relations with. A sideline penalty could hit your pocketbook further by choosing whether you'll be bartering for their release if captured (aliens won't need money naturally, so everyone but them heh).
...1B - Battlescape Scenario 2: Information retrieval - (Not much different from the first one) If the objective is information, I believe at least one "MIB" should survive. Points for lost MIBs in these instances can be higher here. Same as above with risk to hurting relations with the country (or friendly base?) the information was targetted for. Perhaps a combo mission can be introduced as well that involves both cargo and information as the objectives, in which case you must get the cargo, + have at least 1 MIB survive.
Edit: You only need do these if the initial delivery fails and have to visit crash site. Otherwise, things go through as they should automatically. So I recommend escorts.
2. Infiltration - Aliens can infiltrate, naturally this seems like a natural progression for the player's side. Infiltrators throughout history have had an assortment of tools at their disposal to make this easier such as disguise kits and so forth (I really should take a trip to the International Spy Museum here in D.C. to look for some further inspiration here on tools). A sucessful agent deployment could involve leaving the agent at that location for about a month's time, plus the city where he's at could require you must keep it guarded from Terror Attacks. If he makes it the full month, he could come back with information to help X-COM (might be several ways such as narrowing down the org's ability to act more preemptively to counter a friendly nation's vulnerablility i.e maybe you'd know where the next terror strike or alien infiltration mission will go to down to the month, day and hour. Another could be the extraction of a friendly leader under the opposition's noses (see extraction thoughts below in 2C) which can allow you to replace that leader later after a successful assasination mission - see Mission 3 further down).
...2A - Battlescape Scenario 1: A mission briefing screen might be a nice introduction with an overview of the destination area you'd be deployed in showing you where you'd need to go to 'plant' your agent and dust off. This kind of mission would be more fun if there were special stats tied to the infiltrating MIB(s), since he'll be mingling among civies and aliens alike (stats like good psi defense notwithstanding here, but he/she might need good persuasive abilities, some modifier for lowering folks' suspiscion level to them etc.). Otherwise combat could happen more readily after deployment putting the mission at risk (this risk being, maybe there are already aliens there that look more human who've already had their eye on the place, or simply another faction within the country trying to muscle in).
...2B - Battlescape Scenario 2: Agent Retrieval - Basically the opposite of the above only for extracting the agent. Not sure if I'd like this one just on its own merits, maybe it needs a little work or reincorporation elsewhere...
...2C - Battlescape Scenario 3: Terror Site Piggyback Operation - Essentially made up just now on the spot, but could be a funner way to incorporate the above two missions into one. i.e. Both deployment and extraction of a MIB agent to do infiltration missions must be done on Terror Missions only and even then the Terror Sites must occur in at least 2 cities within one single nation's borders; 1 to deploy him, 1 to extract. If the agent has good psi defense, a decent diguise kit (or three?), he could basically just blend in among the civies or the aliens to locate his target. If he finds his target (maybe they are just mayors of the city for example), you'd have to control them to the border of the map so they can flee (like apoc). The rest of it, handling the aliens at the Terror site with your X-COM squad remains the same only you may have to protect the agent and target long enough for them to slither away (hence extra disguise kits...maybe they're for him and his target and you may need the right kinds if there are a few variants - not to mention whether ou want civ or alien wrath on them ). Your X-COM squad still has the task of safe guarding the civies as well. If your squad loses the "Terror Part" of the engagement but your spy makes it, its not a total loss since the agent was still successfully implanted into the country as a whole so its no loss losing one city...He only need last the month in another city.
Thinking further on 2C a bit, perhaps the missions need not specifically be "Terror Sites" and require deployment at one city being different from extraction at another in same country, but at least they should be "Terror-like" i.e. aliens who are there look more human than alien. The sight of your X-COM squad walking around policing the streets could frighten some to act in a kind of domino effect---as in the place more or less evolving, or deevolving I should say, into a Terror site if the spook level is sufficient for them to come out of cover. Before the start of the mission you could simply have a cursor on the briefing screen for your MIB operations where you just click on a city on the map and it says "Infiltrate? Yes, No" after you selected their transport. As long as any ship has at least one agent onboard with the rest of your troopers, that choice could pop up, otherwise not. As for agent pickup (the successful nabbing of a leader you'll use as a puppet later) it can work the same way but in reverse...the city icon where he's at can flash letting you know he's ready, and you can pickup at your own leisure (well, it shouldn't exceed weeks or anything heh).
...2D - Battlescape Scenario 4 - Leader (Future Gov Puppet) Extraction - Essentially the same as 2C, only you'd be picking up two people so be sure you have room in your transport. This is where you have the blinky city icon tell you he's ready for extraction.
3. Assasinations. Ok, I think lastly the thing for MIBs people wanted them to do was engage in assasinations. Not too unreasonable, especially if the stakes are regaining a country's funding by implanting another leader you rescued off another mission (see 2C/2D)
...3A - Battlescape Scenario 1 - Assasination - Find Opposition Leader and Exterminate (with extreme prejudice...yeah, that's the ticket) - Basically I don't think there need be too many more assasination mission variants, although if anything changes, I imagine it would be the setting...where it happens (maybe its not always for some political or monetary gain via funding in the case of countries, but simply an extermination of a rival cell leader to shock that org, and maybe with regard to setting, its not always on Earth, but mostly it is, such as bases in addition to cities etc.).
Anyway, survival of again, at least one MIB I think should matter here plus of course taking out the target. Most often you'll be in local hostile environments where the people love who's in place in the case of cities, so tools to make that go smoothly, quickly, quietly, and without witnesses is key. Among those "pro-I-like-my-evil-leader" civs, they'll be ones who don't but won't act. If you engage the hostiles openly, better finish the job so that you can have one more opportunity open to you that will hopefully go without another hitch (or could there? OoooweeeEeeeOooo. I'll leave that open to modification and debate)...
4. Changing Attitudes or Infiltration (not quite but still...) Part 2.
...4A - Battlescape Scenario 1 - City Leader Puppets Are Your Friends - As stated, this is just an extention to the results of Infiltration with regard to recovering local government city Puppets for use later as people who are favorable to X-COM's efforts. The end result if you will for all the work you went through to regain your funding foothold. Naturally along the way, you had other beneifts that helped get you there, information, preemptive abilities now and again, commodity availability or even research bonuses back at your base. In any case, lets get down to the meat of this mission.
I think it basically could go like that of Assasination, or even 2C or 2D where your dealing with a few more civ resistors to your case, more alien "terror type" last ditch obstacles, or a little of both. With friendly civs mixed in liberally among that, you keep that atmosphere of feeling like it better go your way or all could be lost, so get that puppet to his destination (maybe its a hardened bunker or armored mansion or something heh). Once he's there, finish cleaning out the city of resistance then dust off.
Ok that's it, but before I wrap up this long post and wait to hear more thoughts from folks, I'd like to explain a little why I think there should be a delay on doing some MIB missions. Mostly its so that your troops still take center stage for all the day to day blasting of aliens, you know, the fun stuff.
Meanwhile when your attempting infiltration, the only missions available for any to do at any time would be Part 1 of infiltration (the battle to 'plant' your agent). By having results of infiltration take a while, your not forced right away into the other scenario types, assasination or leader pickup. And later on when you do the leader pickup, by lending a time limit of a week or two, it gives you time to do that when your ready between soldier ops (you could say that they are ready for pickup, but still in hiding til you do come). Essentially tweaking the frequency a little in some instances mainly. Plus, the courier recoveries don't trigger unless a ship gets downed. Escorts can keep those at bay.
Anyway, just wanted to know what people thought about this class, and whether things could be streamlined, added to or folded into other things mentioned in other ways in the case of missions in general by MIBs.
Edited by Snakeman, 01 October 2004 - 07:37 PM.
Posted 15 March 2005 - 12:28 PM
Say you want country X to increase your funding/allow you access to ???/etc, replace their president/prime minister/parliament/etc with your clones. You'll even get access to their military radar network, and their espionage networks in other countries, giving you a better picture of what's going on. Extreme, perhaps, but realistic. After all, which country wouldn't want an advantage over the others once this has blown over? They might even make limited dealings with the aliens and etc . . .
Or, if there is a particular figure that seems to be directing unnecessary attention towards X-COM, replacing him with a clone would allow you to direct public interests in a manner more beneficial to you.
Fight fire with fire, fight evil with evil.
Posted 15 March 2005 - 11:13 PM
A very interesting idea. I have something along the same lines, too. Say, once X-COM researches Alien Cloning, the option to replace certain politicians/leaders/etc with X-COM clones will be made available . . .
Thanks for the reply Red Stone. Interesting thought here. Particularly with regard to a possible boon because you've used a MIB unit. One of the things I and others have covered was information gathering as one of many objectives of a MIB.
Perhaps this idea, in conjunction with X-COM's normal affairs with regard to analyzing live aliens, and their dead ilk could shed light on Earth's ability to create clones. But it would be the MIBs who'd have to uncover that information before you could proceed with the research. Meanwhile, you've still got the interrogations and bodies to deal with in the meantime as before that get you through the nitty gritty of how to fight them.
I like it very much, its like one extra tier of research along those lines for the late game.
Another one that comes to mind, since it deals with the future in one respect at least (Apoc in particular, and how you were able to recruit Sectoid/Human hybrid personnel). I think this might be one bridge to those two generations and make for some good storytelling, but also get to see some early cooperation between humans and perhaps a good faction of the Sectoid regime.
I've always thought them to be the best candidates when it comes to exploring alien allies for the simple fact that they're not really mentioned specifically as being controlled by the Brain. I think rather, that the majority of them simply had a corresponding agenda, so naturally they linked up.
Anyway, if the infiltration sfuff ever got to a point where the aliens weren't relying on a turncoat Human leader (the natural progression of this would be that they'd supplant him too), they actually implanted one of these hybrids of their own, it might be a good opportunity to indroduce the good Sectoids as a means to further that cloning research even more (as presumably, I think you meant human cloning capability initially).
Don't know about anyone else, but as far as puppets go, if you needed an alien that looked human for the most part and capable of communicating with aliens and humans alike, you've probably got yourself an uber government puppet.
Not too bad when I think about it. Besides, if people got suspicious of him, there's still assasination missions by either side:)
Edited by Snakeman, 15 March 2005 - 11:17 PM.