It has been a while since I last played. It was back in February in fact! Part of that delay was very much on my end though. UnwiseOwl who last played a round in our Succession Game posted his round at the beginning of May.

Part of my delay has of course been the change in life situation, but part of it was also the growing concern over rustiness with the game vs. how far in we are. And of course, the longer I left it — the more this concern grew. But this was never something that was going to get better, so at last… I made the plunge and played.

You know what? It actually went pretty well! Zero deaths! Even removed some of the Project Avatar progress pips! I’ll take that.

Operation Broken King

Our immediate primary goal is clear — reduce the Avatar Project progress. We’re running short on Intel to make new contacts, and selling items into the black market (in this case, unfortunately) only provides supplies rather than intel.

So after a brief review of our inventory and map situation, I finish the already underway contact for Western Europe. I’ve already decided that if a Guerilla mission pops up while making contact, I’ll have to ignore it in favour of hitting the facility hidden here. We’re only 3-pips of progress away from disaster. Not exactly a lot of breathing room.

Fortunately, that wasn’t a concern. The four days of scanning pass by uneventfully, avoiding the need to stack any further dark events. Phewph.

So with little else to report for my turn at the Geoscape, and no way to avoid doing the major mission… I pick out our team.

The Broken King Team

The team I take along to investigate the Codex Brain Coordinates
  • Maj. Naithin Nahilin – Ranger — Can’t send my team where I’m not willing to go.
  • Maj. Easha ‘Silentdeath’ Dustfeather – Ranger — Stealthy. Deadly. Potential scout of the group.
  • Col. Sofia ‘Black Widow’ Vasilyeva – Specialist — Callsign not withstanding, Sofia’s here to heal.
  • Maj. Tessa ‘Endalia’ Hastjarjanto – Sniper — Fast firing pistol hotshot.
  • Col. Bookah Nerk – Specialist — Hacking and Robot Combat, but with a side of healing support.
  • Col. Liz ‘Magi’ Winterfield – Sniper — Here to make sure things die.

I am most distressed to see that Rakuno is still injured heading into this run and, that we have no other Grenadier of note with Volcano’s passing. I consider passing more time on the Geoscape to get Rakuno back for the run. I’m reasonably sure I could pass another 2-3 days without incident but ultimately decide not to risk it.

I think I can make this work.

If not… There’s always a mulligan to fall back on. ;)

The Mission

Nope! Nopenopenope.

This mission was mostly filled with Nopes aka Chryssalids. These things are evil incarnate, able to spawn more of themselves out of the bodies of your soldiers.

Oh. Also? They can burrow underground and lie in wait for you to wander just a couple of steps too close.

Fortunately, we had Magi on the field of battle. A real MVP of this campaign to date, and this mission was just another example of why. In particular, this right here.

If you’d rather read about it, then watch it — let me see if I can set the scene.

Two Chryssalids visible on the field, an Elite MEC Trooper and two other ADVENT troopers. The XCOM team is still in concealment. Magi activates her ‘Serial’ ability which means that for each kill achieved with her Sniper rifle the action that would’ve been spent by that attack is refunded. This can chain for as long as you’re able to achieve killing blows in their turn.

Magi takes her first shot, obliterating the (slightly) harder-to-reach Chryssalid. The second one, understandably upset by this and now alerted to the presence of most of the XCOM team, attempts to charge in.

The first overwatch shot from the team misses, but Endalia then executes it with her overwatch.

Magi isn’t done though. Taking aim at one of the troopers; she fires killing it dead. One round left in the clip, she fire again at the other standard trooper. It too will never see another day.

The rifle’s clip is now empty, but still Magi isn’t done. Her rifle – Dagon – has a free reload upgrade.

After said reload, Magi fires once more into the final remaining enemy on screen — the Elite MEC Trooper. This shot doesn’t manage to kill it, but does knock it around so hard that it can no longer overwatch, allowing Naithin to run in safely and take it out, all within a single turn.

There are a few other hot spots during the mission — particularly after I am reminded that the XCOM 2 Chryssalids can Nope right up out of the ground at you. They do manage to infect one of our soldiers but to no lasting harm.

Then… We approach the mission object and find… well… this.

I didn’t exactly give it a lot of time to see what it could do, but it seemed to have two modes. The ‘closed’ mode pictured above where it had heavier armor but was slightly easier to hit and an open mode which was the opposite. In open mode, it presents some tentacley, arm, appendage-type things.

It manages to inflict some AoE damage, hitting Naithin and Bookanerk for 6-damage a piece with a Psionic blast but I focused on continuing to put damage into it rather than healing and this seemed to be the right call.

After this thing exploded, the mission was successfully over with the Psi Gate now belonging to us. Go team!

After Action Report

Unfortunately — no Intel was awarded for completion of this mission. However, it DID drop the Avatar Project Progress by 2, giving us 5 pips of breathing room.

Bringing home the Psionic Gate also brought with it the need to upgrade our Shadow Chamber, in order to have any chance at garnering the secrets of the device. Where is it keyed to travel back to? Is it even on Earth? Can we use it against the ADVENT somehow?

All questions for another day, however, as I now hand over to Kluwes! The link to the save file is here.


Gamer, reader, writer, husband and father of two boys. Former WoW and Gaming blogger, making a return to the fold to share my love of all things looty.