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11
XCom Campaign / Re: XCOM Campaign: Part 1 - Project Skylight
« Last post by nuclearslurpee on June 09, 2024, 02:27:48 PM »
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I will not be pulling a Garfunkel
Boooo! But I am honoured to have a specific playing style named after me  ;D

The post-Garfunkel era has arrived  ;D

By 2040 we may enter the post-post-Garfunkelism era.  :P

High Density Duranium Armour: Cécile Crèvecoeur, 1 Nov 2028
I have decided I dislike Cecile, anyone French is clearly going to be unbearable.

I have issued a minor correction in the interests of brevity and clarity.

Note that the in-game name is even worse, as the "oe" is the single character 'œ', but even I have limits on what I am willing to memorize the Alt-code for.

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Looking ahead I believe the Law of Conservation of Narrative requires any update that ends on a mood of friendliness and optimism pretty much has to have something bad happen next, so interesting to see what that is. Hopefully something that prompts XCOM to build some proper ships.

At least one of these two predictions may come true in the next update.

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Others have noted the lack of Naval Conferences, which I of course mourn, but I feel it important to also highlight the equally saddening absence of light refreshments.

You may prefer the alternate timeline version of this AAR which features ADVENT Burgers.
12
Humanity First / Re: Humanity First Comments Thread
« Last post by nuclearslurpee on June 09, 2024, 02:21:08 PM »
On the new ships the naming theme is a bit grim. The "Abomination" troop transport seems harsh, though I suppose it could look really hideous. However the "Abductor" survey ship does seem a bit insensitive given the backstory of what happened to Earth. I can see some vicious names as part of a cult of revenge (or pre-venge on any aliens they meet), but not something that is going to bring back bad memories of the worst bits of recent history.

The naming theme as well as the discussion of Imperial Guards and Marines leads me to suspect this Terran Empire is a reboot of the same entity from Kurt's Starfire and VB6 campaigns.
13
XCom Campaign / Re: XCOM Campaign: Part 1 - Project Skylight
« Last post by El Pip on June 09, 2024, 02:18:11 PM »
High Density Duranium Armour: Cécile Crèvecoeur, 1 Nov 2028
I have decided I dislike Cecile, anyone who insist on having accents above the e pointing in both directions is clearly going to be unbearable.

Looking ahead I believe the Law of Conservation of Narrative requires any update that ends on a mood of friendliness and optimism pretty much has to have something bad happen next, so interesting to see what that is. Hopefully something that prompts XCOM to build some proper ships.

Others have noted the lack of Naval Conferences, which I of course mourn, but I feel it important to also highlight the equally saddening absence of light refreshments.
14
Humanity First / Re: Humanity First Comments Thread
« Last post by El Pip on June 09, 2024, 01:56:55 PM »
As others have said it is good to see the ancient tradition of the destruction of China upheld.

On the new ships the naming theme is a bit grim. The "Abomination" troop transport seems harsh, though I suppose it could look really hideous. However the "Abductor" survey ship does seem a bit insensitive given the backstory of what happened to Earth. I can see some vicious names as part of a cult of revenge (or pre-venge on any aliens they meet), but not something that is going to bring back bad memories of the worst bits of recent history.

Anyway, best of luck to Emperor Charles I and his campaign to give any and all xenos a damn good thrashing.
15
XCom Campaign / Re: XCOM Campaign: Part 1 - Project Skylight
« Last post by doodle_sm on June 09, 2024, 11:15:59 AM »
Quote
I will not be pulling a Garfunkel
Boooo! But I am honoured to have a specific playing style named after me  ;D

The post-Garfunkel era has arrived  ;D
16
XCom Campaign / Re: XCOM Campaign: Part 1 - Project Skylight
« Last post by Garfunkel on June 09, 2024, 10:40:40 AM »
Quote
I will not be pulling a Garfunkel
Boooo! But I am honoured to have a specific playing style named after me  ;D

17
Humanity First / Humanity First, System Era Ship Designs
« Last post by Kurt on June 09, 2024, 07:59:23 AM »
Ship designs from the System Expansion era

Code: [Select]
Abductor class Survey Craft      1,712 tons       36 Crew       229.7 BP       TCS 34    TH 64    EM 0
1870 km/s      Armour 1-12       Shields 0-0       HTK 13      Sensors 6/6/0/1      DCR 1-5      PPV 0
Maint Life 4.47 Years     MSP 83    AFR 23%    IFR 0.3%    1YR 7    5YR 101    Max Repair 100 MSP
Commander    Control Rating 1   BRG   
Intended Deployment Time: 24 months    Morale Check Required   

Nuclear Thermal Engine (1)    Power 64    Fuel Use 80.0%    Signature 64    Explosion 10%
Fuel Capacity 500,000 Litres    Range 65.7 billion km (406 days at full power)

Basic Active Search Sensor Mk II (1)     GPS 1200     Range 20.3m km    Resolution 100
Basic EM Sensor Mk II  (1)     Sensitivity 6     Detect Sig Strength 1000:  19.4m km
Basic Thermal Sensor Mk II (1)     Sensitivity 6     Detect Sig Strength 1000:  19.4m km
Geological Survey Sensors (1)   1 Survey Points Per Hour

This design is classed as a Military Vessel for maintenance purposes
This design is classed as a Survey Ship for auto-assignment purposes

This design was in use by the end of the Solar System survey and expansion era. 
Code: [Select]
Abductor Flt III class Survey Craft      1,668 tons       36 Crew       247.5 BP       TCS 33    TH 100    EM 0
2998 km/s      Armour 1-12       Shields 0-0       HTK 13      Sensors 6/6/0/1      DCR 1-5      PPV 0
Maint Life 4.43 Years     MSP 92    AFR 22%    IFR 0.3%    1YR 8    5YR 114    Max Repair 100 MSP
Commander    Control Rating 1   BRG   
Intended Deployment Time: 24 months    Morale Check Required   

NGC Engine   (1)    Power 100    Fuel Use 70.0%    Signature 100    Explosion 10%
Fuel Capacity 500,000 Litres    Range 77.1 billion km (297 days at full power)

Basic Active Search Sensor Mk II (1)     GPS 1200     Range 20.3m km    Resolution 100
Basic EM Sensor Mk II  (1)     Sensitivity 6     Detect Sig Strength 1000:  19.4m km
Basic Thermal Sensor Mk II (1)     Sensitivity 6     Detect Sig Strength 1000:  19.4m km
Geological Survey Sensors (1)   1 Survey Points Per Hour

This design is classed as a Military Vessel for maintenance purposes
This design is classed as a Survey Ship for auto-assignment purposes

The grav-survey design is a direct copy of the geo-survey design, merely replacing the sensors. 
Code: [Select]
Abductor(Gr) Flt III class Gravitational Survey Craft      1,725 tons       37 Crew       260.8 BP       TCS 34    TH 100    EM 0
2900 km/s      Armour 1-12       Shields 0-0       HTK 13      Sensors 8/8/1/0      DCR 1-5      PPV 0
Maint Life 11.73 Years     MSP 594    AFR 24%    IFR 0.3%    1YR 8    5YR 119    Max Repair 100 MSP
Commander    Control Rating 1   BRG   
Intended Deployment Time: 24 months    Morale Check Required   

NGC Engine   (1)    Power 100    Fuel Use 70.0%    Signature 100    Explosion 10%
Fuel Capacity 500,000 Litres    Range 74.6 billion km (297 days at full power)

Basic Active Search Sensor Mk III (1)     GPS 1600     Range 25.7m km    Resolution 100
EM Sensor Mk III (1)     Sensitivity 8     Detect Sig Strength 1000:  22.4m km
Thermal Sensor Mk III (1)     Sensitivity 8     Detect Sig Strength 1000:  22.4m km
Gravitational Survey Sensors (1)   1 Survey Points Per Hour

This design is classed as a Military Vessel for maintenance purposes
This design is classed as a Survey Ship for auto-assignment purposes

The Interceptor design is intended to give the Empire some combat capability in space.  Although no firm data remains, it is suspected to be slower than most of the alien ships observed during the raids, but is considered a transitional design to be used until better engines are developed.  The Interceptor’s engine is an overpowered design, providing a high power output at the cost of efficiency. 
Code: [Select]
Aberration class Interceptor      1,968 tons       55 Crew       298.3 BP       TCS 39    TH 130    EM 0
3304 km/s      Armour 5-13       Shields 0-0       HTK 16      Sensors 18/18/0/0      DCR 0-0      PPV 5
Maint Life 1.79 Years     MSP 47    AFR 62%    IFR 0.9%    1YR 18    5YR 274    Max Repair 65 MSP
Commander    Control Rating 1   BRG   
Intended Deployment Time: 2 months    Morale Check Required   

Naval Power NGC Engine  (1)    Power 130    Fuel Use 134.88%    Signature 130    Explosion 13%
Fuel Capacity 150,000 Litres    Range 10.2 billion km (35 days at full power)

15.0cm NUV Laser (1)    Range 96,000km     TS: 4,000 km/s     Power 6-3     RM 30,000 km    ROF 10       
Laser Fire Control  (1)     Max Range: 96,000 km   TS: 3,000 km/s    ECCM-0     67 59 52 44 36 28 20 12 5 0
Gaseous Fission Reactor 4K (1)     Total Power Output 4    Exp 5%

Active Search Sensor Mdm Ship Mk II (1)     GPS 6400     Range 45.7m km    Resolution 200
Standard Thermal Sensor  (1)     Sensitivity 18     Detect Sig Strength 1000:  33.5m km
Standard EM Sensor  (1)     Sensitivity 18     Detect Sig Strength 1000:  33.5m km

This design is classed as a Military Vessel for maintenance purposes
This design is classed as a Warship for auto-assignment purposes

Code: [Select]
Abomination class Troop Transport      19,574 tons       150 Crew       566.7 BP       TCS 391    TH 360    EM 0
919 km/s      Armour 1-64       Shields 0-0       HTK 53      Sensors 8/8/0/0      DCR 1-0      PPV 0
MSP 18    Max Repair 27 MSP
Troop Capacity 10,000 tons     Cargo Shuttle Multiplier 10   
Lieutenant Commander    Control Rating 1   BRG   
Intended Deployment Time: 36 months   

Commercial NGC Engine  (2)    Power 360    Fuel Use 1.41%    Signature 180    Explosion 3%
Fuel Capacity 50,000 Litres    Range 32.6 billion km (410 days at full power)

EM Sensor Mk III (1)     Sensitivity 8     Detect Sig Strength 1000:  22.4m km
Thermal Sensor Mk III (1)     Sensitivity 8     Detect Sig Strength 1000:  22.4m km

This design is classed as a Commercial Vessel for maintenance purposes
This design is classed as a Troop Transport for auto-assignment purposes
18
Humanity First / Humanity First: Story Posts
« Last post by Kurt on June 09, 2024, 07:52:49 AM »
Trans-Newtonian and System Expansion Era Begins
The Terran Empire encompasses the entire world, and has been responsible for rebuilding civilization.  It is a constitutional monarchy, but one where the monarch has considerable power in narrowly defined areas.  These areas are mostly related to war and the defense of the Empire, while the democratically elected senate passes laws and budgets, which must be approved by the emperor, although an Imperial veto can be overridden by a vote of 60% of the senate. 


Emperor Charles the First

The public is united behind the emperor, who has promised to take humanity to the stars and hunt down those responsible for destroying the old world.  Both the senate and the military are strong supporters of the “shoot first and ask questions later” mindset that is the emperor’s approach to the search for aliens, and alien contact.  This mindset largely characterizes the Imperial Loyalist party, the largest party in the senate.  They have adopted the Alien Review Panel’s theory that the raids were caused by unrest and perhaps by civilizational collapse in the local area, and both fear that further raids are possible, and lust after the resources and territory that such unrest and collapse might have made available. 

Having said that, there are other factions.  The Terra First party is not against a strong defense, but prefers not to go looking for trouble.  They have been actively campaigning to limit expansion to the solar system, preferring to establish strong defenses in the system and let the aliens do whatever they want elsewhere.  The Co-Existence Party has adopted the theory that came out of the Alien Review Panel, but they come at it from a different perspective than the Imperial Loyalists.  They believe that the aliens that conducted the raids were forced into such actions by desperation caused un internal unrest or civilizational collapse, and therefore if we take the time to talk to them, and understand their problems, we can eventually development a mutually beneficial relationship that make humanity much stronger than going it alone.  Notably, they are pro-military and in favor of a strong defense.  There are no parties against the military in the Empire, not after the destruction of the old world and the death and disappearance of so many humans during the raids. 

Imperial Guard and Marine Corps
Both the guard and the marines use the following organization:
10,000 ton battalions
Brigade with HQ capable of commanding 50,000 tons.  Usually this means 4xBattalion with attachments
Division with HQ capable of commanding 250,000 tons, usually with 4xDivision with attachments
Corps with HQ capable of commanding 1,000,000 tons, usually with 3-4xDivision with attachments

Attachments include Log units and artillery of various types, and are usually 1,000 to 5,000 tons. 

STO units are built in sizes of 1,000 to 2,000 tons, and then usually combined up to 5,000 tons. 

July, 2095: The Empire’s first STO unit is deployed.  This is a 1st generation ten-centimeter laser point defense battery. 

July, 2096: Initial conversion of two hundred old factories into new construction facilities and mines is completed.  Construction capacity not devoted to building the Empire’s new orbital shipyards is set to building deep spaced detection stations and maintenance facilities. 

August, 2096: The Empire’s first naval shipyard is completed, and work begins enlarging the yard to 1800 tons to handle construction of a survey ship.  The survey ship is equipped with a nuclear radioisotope engine and is capable of 1460 km/s, has a range of 52.6 billion kilometers, and an endurance of twenty-four months. 

December, 2097: The first geo-survey ship is laid down in the orbital yards. 

August, 2098: The first geo-survey ship is launched and immediately heads for the moon to begin its survey efforts.  This upgraded design includes a nuclear thermal engine which gives it improved speed and endurance.  Work on a second unit is begun as the first heads out of orbit. 

February, 2099: A second slipway has been added to the Empire’s sole shipyard.  A third survey ship is laid down as work begins on enlarging the shipyard so it can handle larger hulls.  Unfortunately, the first survey ship has only found some minor deposits on some asteroids and one comet.  Aside from Venus the inner system has been surveyed and found to be singularly lacking in resources.  The survey of Venus was delayed due to its inconvenient positioning.  The second survey ship is launched, and work begins on a fourth. 

August, 2100: A survey ship suffers a maintenance failure while cruising in the outer solar system, beyond Pluto.  Because of the ship’s smaller maintenance facilities, it cannot repair the geological sensors without assistance.  After receiving the ship’s report, Survey Command decides to recall all five of the survey ships to Earth and end the efforts to survey the outer system. 

The survey of the solar system is complete, and the results are disappointing.  No planets or moons in the inner system contain TN resources.  Only a few scattered moons of the gas giants possess useable resources, although in limited quantities.  These results deal a heavy blow to the isolationists in the senate, who now have to admit that going to the stars is an inevitability. 

November 1, 2101: Work begins on deciphering the alien interstellar drive captured during the final raid. 

May, 2102: Work is completed on deciphering the alien interstellar drive information.  The emperor orders research to begin on the systems necessary to build a jump drive, and to begin preparations to survey the solar system for jump points. 

December, 2102: The Empire’s first warships are launched.  These are small, fast interceptors with a single fifteen-centimeter laser, intended to intercept targets relatively near Earth.  The have a range of ten billion kilometers, but have limited endurance and are intended to be deployed only when there are identified targets. 

January, 2103: The Empire’s first troop transport is laid down. 

October, 2103: The empire’s first cargo ships are launched.  They immediately set out for Io, which is the location of one of the few TN deposits in the solar system, as well as a suitable site for the Empire’s first off-world colony. 

January, 2104: The last of the old-style construction factories are converted to TN tech.

February, 2104: The Empire’s fist troop ship is launched.  It is immediately pressed into service transporting Guardsmen and planetary defense units to Io.

August, 2104: Grav survey ships find their first jump point in the solar system.  It is located 4.1 billion kilometers from the Sun, in between the orbits of Uranus and Neptune. 

May, 2105: The survey of the solar system is complete.  Disappointingly, the system contains only one jump point.  The survey ships are recalled for rest and refit, while the first jump ship is under construction. 

June, 2105: The empire’s first colony ship is built.  The Empire’s first extra-planetary colony is established on Io.  100,000 colonists live there so far. 
19
XCom Campaign / XCOM Campaign: Part 1 - Project Skylight
« Last post by nuclearslurpee on June 08, 2024, 07:50:29 PM »



January 2025

Trans-Newtonian industrial conversion began with great enthusiasm from all involved. XCOM authorities had developed a comprehensive plan to modernize the industry of all 16 Council Nations and a few other key allies. 7,200 existing industrial facilities would be essentially rebuilt to the new standard, with the following types:

    4,320 Trans-Newtonian construction factories
    2,160 mines capable of extracting Trans-Newtonian elements (TNEs) from the Earth
    360 financial centers with TNE-enabled communications and high-performance computing
    120 sorium fuel refineries
    120 small spacecraft factories
    120 ordnance factories

XCOM scientists continued their tireless efforts to discover new applications of Trans-Newtonian science. Of particular interest was a project led by Dr. Lillian Joffrion to develop a ship-based sensor capable of detecting TNE deposits in a celestial body from orbit. This project, if successful, could lead to new mineral discoveries on extraterrestrial bodies, which in turn would fuel interest and development of Earth’s spaceflight industry.


Project Skylight

Dr. Joffrion published the report of her research collaboration on so-called Geological Survey Sensors on 28 May 2026. With this breakthrough, XCOM engineers were able to finalize blueprints for a new type of spacecraft under the code name “Skylight”:

   Project Skylight class Survey Craft     500 tons      12 Crew      120.6 BP      TCS 10   TH 10   EM 0
   1000 km/s     Armour 1-5      Shields 0-0      HTK 2     Sensors 1/1/0/1     DCR 0-0     PPV 0
   Maint Life 2.03 Years    MSP 100   AFR 100%   IFR 1.4%   1YR 32   5YR 484   Max Repair 100 MSP
   Lieutenant Colonel   Control Rating 1   
   Intended Deployment Time: 12 months   Morale Check Required   

   X-10 Gravity Wave Drive (1)   Power 10   Fuel Use 223.61%   Signature 10   Explosion 10%
   Fuel Capacity 19,800 Litres   Range 3.2 billion km (36 days at full power)

   EM Scanner (1)    Sensitivity 1    Detect Sig Strength 1000:  7.9m km
   Thermal Scanner (1)    Sensitivity 1    Detect Sig Strength 1000:  7.9m km
   Geological Survey Sensors (1)   1 Survey Points Per Hour


Project Skylight was a design very loosely based on the Firestorm hull, with the weaponry and one propulsion drive ripped out to make room for the new survey sensor and expanded living space for a crew of twelve XCOM spacers. The reduction of propulsion units by 50% meant the craft would be quite underpowered and slow compared to the Firestorm, but due to the gravity wave technology it would still be much faster than any conventional-engined craft. The design range of 3.2 billion km was far greater than any Earth astronaut’s wildest dreams in the conventional era, and while rather paltry compared to later generations of survey craft it would be sufficient to explore the inner system and the moons of Jupiter and Saturn.

With traditional XCOM industriousness, Project Skylight was rapidly put into production, with the first survey craft launched into orbit on 29 June and a second on 23 July. These were named Discovery and Endeavour, the first named spacecraft in XCOM’s short history as a spacefaring organization, and sent out to survey the innermost planets and moons of the solar system. Project Skylight would thus become known as the Discovery class after its lead vessel.

The results of the inner system survey were largely disappointing, with no TNE deposits found on the moon, Venus, or Mars. The notable exception was Mercury, where Discovery reported significant deposits of five minerals buried within the crust of Mercury, with duranium and boronide at high accessibilities. Even so, compared to the deposits on Earth this was hardly a groundbreaking finding, and the lack of exciting early returns did much to dampen enthusiasm for Project Skylight. While the two survey craft would go on to give excellent service by surveying the asteroid belt and the Jovian and Saturnine subsystems, their popular reputation would remain decidedly mixed.

     Mercury Survey Report: 12 October 2026
     Duranium 267,912   Acc 0.7
     Corbomite 3,348,900   Acc 0.1
     Boronide 3,906,157   Acc 0.9
     Mercassium 2,672,571   Acc 0.4
     Uridium 2,438,595   Acc 0.1

A severe weakness of the Discovery class was revealed on 13 June 2028, when Lieutenant Colonel Mino Lukusa of Endeavour reported irreparable failure of the craft’s geosurvey sensor. While the Discovery class was designed with enough spare parts to fully repair the sensor, there was no further margin in the design, and having used some spare parts to repair a previous breakdown Endeavour lacked sufficient components to effect shipboard repairs. Unfortunately, by the time she reached Earth orbit three days later, the sensor was too badly damaged for shipboard repairs to be possible, and Endeavour would be effectively confined to Earth orbit for the remainder of her career. A third survey craft, Voyager, was launched on 3 August to make up the numbers, and XCOM engineers would take the lessons learned to heart in future ship designs.

Ultimately, no follow-on survey craft in the Discovery class would be built by XCOM, leaving the class total at only three examples. The decision was made in part due to lukewarm attitudes towards the ships themselves, but more so for lack of any great need, as two craft by themselves could complete mineral surveys of all bodies within their fuel range at a reasonable pace. Indeed, even the need for a third survey craft to replace the crippled Endeavour had been a topic of mildly contentious debate. Furthermore, Project Skylight was considered largely a scientific curiosity and engineering accomplishment for its own sake at this time, as XCOM lacked any spaceborne infrastructure to exploit any resources found on other bodies.

Project Skylight came to a close on 25 October 2030, as Voyager returned to Earth after completing her survey of the Saturnine moons. With this, every significant body within Saturn’s orbital distance from the sun had been surveyed, an estimated 64% of all eligible bodies in the solar system. Aside from Earth itself, 48 other bodies in this range were found to possess some quantity of extractible TNEs. Perhaps most surprisingly, both Jupiter and Saturn possessed significant quantities of sorium within their atmospheres, in a gaseous form which some XCOM scientists theorized could be refined into sorium fuel in situ by specialized harvesting modules. Despites its checkered reputation, Project Skylight had been an excellent success for XCOM over the course of its four-and-a-half-year duration, and dedicated engineering teams were contracted to determine how best to build on these results to conduct a survey of the far outer system in the near future.

     Jupiter Survey Report: 11 June 2029
     Sorium 538,466,500   Acc 1

     Saturn Survey Report: 18 April 2030
     Sorium 542,430   Acc 0.8

Spacers who served aboard one of the three Discovery class survey craft, along with researchers who participated in the Geological Survey Sensors collaboration, received the Discovery Ribbon to commemorate these accomplishments.


The Trans-Newtonian Industrial Revolution

XCOM Headquarters issued a public report on 21 October 2031, stating that conversion of Earth’s industrial base to Trans-Newtonian standards was effectively complete. In less than 7 years, Earth’s industrial production capacity had increased sevenfold and resource extraction throughput more than doubled. This sharp improvement would also enable construction and launching of new large orbital shipyard complexes, allowing XCOM to deploy more capable spaceships than the 500-ton limit on groundside-built craft could allow. Two such facilities were officially launched into orbit on 23 December: the XCOM Orbital Projects Facility was intended as an assembly site for classified military projects, while Mitsubishi Heavy Industries was the first corporation to invest in orbital commercial spacecraft construction. Both facilities were launched undersize and immediately set about expanding to suitable capacities for large vessel construction.

New industrial and shipbuilding capabilities brought about significant excitement for extraterrestrial colonization, and the Council of Nations soon impressed upon XCOM leadership their intense desire to see human colonization of the inner system in particular. Plans were developed which would see populations emplaced on the moon, Mercury, and Mars, with proposals for Venus colonization being roundly dismissed as economically worthless. The moon would serve as a testbed for human colonization of low-gravity environments, and was planned to host 10 million people. Mercury would serve as XCOM’s first extraterrestrial human-operated mining operation, and was also expected to host 10 million colonists initially with room for future expansion. Mars was envisioned as humanity’s greatest extraterrestrial colony with an initial population outlay of 25 million, and XCOM planners expected Mars to become the site of the first planetary terraforming experiment in human history.

Author’s note: human gravitational tolerance at this time was estimated to range from 0.3 to 1.7 G, thus colonization of Luna would require specialized low-gravity life support infrastructure. For colonization of Mercury and Mars, both with gravities of 0.38 G, only standard-issue life support infrastructure was necessary.

XCOM leadership therefore issued construction orders for life support infrastructure in anticipation of these missions. For lunar colonization, 5 million tons of specialized log-gravity infrastructure were ordered. For colonization of Mercury, 10 million tons of non-specialized infrastructure were ordered. Finally, the largest production order of 15,625,000 tons was placed to support colonization of Mars. Beyond life support infrastructure, the new Trans-Newtonian industry was put to good use by an order of new hyperwave relay tracking stations, which would be used to expand XCOM’s deep space monitoring network on Earth and to place new stations on each solar colony.

Otherwise, a general expansion of supporting service installations would be necessary to support colonization of Sol. To this end XCOM ordered significant expansions of the international research sector (25 new research facilities), the officer training school at XCOM Headquarters (tripling its current capacity), and establishment of XCOM trooper training facilities in the territory of selected Council Nations (4 new training facilities in the United States, Russia, China, and Germany).

On New Year’s Eve 2031, XCOM celebrated thirty years of service from Major General Grigoriy Sokolov, the longest-tenured member of XCOM leadership. In a series of brief remarks for the occasion, General Sokolov commended the unprecedented level of international cooperation and friendliness which had been built during and since the Long War, and expressed optimism for the future of human spaceflight and extraterrestrial colonization. Such was the mood, both within XCOM and internationally, as the page turned to the new year of 2032.

----

Ship Construction

3x Discovery class Survey Craft: Discovery, Endeavour, Voyager

Research

Pressurised Water Reactor: Jimena Arias Arenas, 29 Jan 2026
Geological Survey Sensors: Lillian Joffrion, 28 May 2026
Nuclear Thermal Engine: Jimena Arias Arenas, 20 Nov 2027
Fire Control Speed Rating 2000 km/s: Lillian Joffrion, 1 Sep 2028
High Density Duranium Armour: Cécile Crèvecoeur, 1 Nov 2028
Construction Rate 12 BP: Cécile Langlois, 22 Aug 2029
Pebble Bed Reactor: Jimena Arias Arenas, 16 Jan 2030
Beam Fire Control Range 32,000 km: Lillian Joffrion, 18 Jul 2030

----

OOC Notes: And now we have begun advancing time! This update is likely on what will become the shorter side, not much goes on in those early years after a conventional start after all. The following updates promise to be rather more complex and hopefully also interesting.

The combination of no starting shipyards and the XCOM lore focus on small interceptors has led me to try something I've not really done much before in using survey fighters for the early mineral surveys. I expect this fighter focus to persist as the AAR goes on, though I will not be pulling a Garfunkel and using fighters exclusively, as we shall see in the following update.

20
Humanity First / Re: Humanity First Comments Thread
« Last post by Kurt on June 08, 2024, 10:33:36 AM »
As always, [...] criticism are welcomed



This is an utterly horrifying near future and I look forward to seeing how humanity comes back from it. It is a bit of an old trope as far as settings go, but usually makes for very good stories.  ;D

The alien retribution was terrible, and China was destroyed as a nation. 

As is tradition. 

The Chinese took one for the team.  Whether they were heroic or just stubborn and/or ignorant is up to the reader.

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It was called many things in different languages, but it meant the same thing in all of them.  The Terran Empire was going to the stars, and it would bring war and death to the aliens that had devastated Earth. 

Wonderful, we've had entirely too much peace and life around here lately.  :P

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Terran Empire, 2095
Population: Four Billion
Tech: Just unlocked TN Tech
Industry: 3200 conventional industry, 2500 financial centers, fifteen ground force construction complexes
R&D Establishment:80

Some interesting settings here. In my XCOM AAR campaign I've been finding that starting with 4b pop means you have a large amount of conventional industry, although you've knocked that number down by about half it looks like, the balance converted to other facilities. Having so much means projects get built pretty quickly, which on one hand can lead to an almost overwhelming growth rate but on the other hand in my case is suitable for an XCOM setting. Curious to see how it works out here.

I always play with limited scientist admin so 80 labs tends to be a lot and means you have to do a lot of tertiary projects in the early game until your scientists grow their admin caps. If you have normal admin then it shouldn't have much impact though.

I reduced the conventional industry to reflect the looting and destruction that went on prior to campaign start.  I increased the R&D facilities and the ground combat construction capability to reflect humanity's response to the raids.  Also, as I was starting at a pre-TN tech level, increased R&D would hopefully mean that humanity could catch up to the other races and the spoilers in a reasonable amount of time. 

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Military:
Two divisions of Imperial Guards.
31,720 Imperial Guardsmen (Light armor, Imp Pers Weapons)
1,340 GEV (light vehicles, light vehicle armor, med autocannon)
800 AT Guardsman (Light armor, Light AT weapon)
800 Hvy Weaps Guardsman (Light armor, Crew Served AP Weapons)
309 HQ and Log

I'm curious how a "division" is organized here. Or are these just monolithic blocks of 100,000+ tons each?

Looking forward to this one. I know you were considering trying to do multiple player races, but the detail of Aurora compared to Starfire put you off - but I'm sure this will turn out to be an interesting story regardless of your approach!  ;D

Currently the Imperial military is based on 10,000 ton battalions, organized into brigades of 50k, divisions of 250k, and corps of 1m.  STO units are usually around 5k, and support units like logistics or artillery are usually 1-5k.    10k battalions might be too small a base unit, I guess I'll figure it out as I go. 
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