OOC X-COM Think Tank (part 4)


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(Part 4 of the XCOM Think Tanks) For general out-of-character discussion, suggesting ideas, commenting on the story, etc. for XCOM2: Liberation of Earth.
Or Terra. Haven't decided which name I like better quite yet.



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First off, here are the Rules as they stand right now. Note that this is a good idea of what they'll be like, but they are subject to change if necessary.

XCOM2: Liberation of Terra

Organizational Structure:

The story is led by a leader known as a Game Master, or GM for short. They determine the primary course of the story: the actions and goals of the enemy (ADVENT and the Ethereal Empire) as a whole, the actions and course of XCOM’s Commander (CENSORED). This is to give the story a definite structure. The head GM is DarkGemini24601. They are assisted by two Secondary GMs ([Maybe] ZombieSplitter53 and MarineAvenger). The rest of the story’s participants are Members.

Base Life:

The majority of roleplaying will take place in XCOM’s mobile headquarters, a modified transport ship known as the Avenger. Unlike the Siberian Base of “Story of Defiance” or the massive Einherjar and Neutron Star battleships of “Vanguard of Forseti”, the Avenger does not have a lot of interior area. Therefore, most of its facilities and living quarters make use of limited space to the fullest. Since the ship’s cramped, everyone will be sharing living space, though if you prefer it to be apart from player characters other than your own then you are free to specify that.

However, it is expected that any character on the Avenger will interact with a few other player characters due to close proximity and shared occupations (such as science, engineering, soldier training, etc.); no man is an island. If you don’t have the time for frequent roleplaying, then consult with the GMs about other options for your character. That leads into a later topic.

Base Access:

The Avenger’s facilities are as follows:

(Levels and Floors are listed from the bottom up; Specific Rooms are listed from Left to Right)

Front Block

Level 0 thru Level 2, All: Main Laboratory/Avenger Power Core and Engine Room
Level 3, Floor 1: Intelligence Staff Bunks, The Bridge/Computer Room
Level 3, Floor 2: Maintenance Staff Bunks

Central Block

Level 0, Floor 1: Access Hallway to Exit Ramp, Post Office, The Private Room
Level 1, Floor 1: Unused Room x3
Level 2, Floor 2: Unused Room x3
Level 3, Floor 1: Unused Room, The Proving Grounds, Guerilla Tactics School
Level 3, Floor 2: Hydroponics
Level 3, Double Floor: Command Center
Level 4, Floor 1: Situation Room/Command Staff Quarters

Rear Block

Level 1, Double Floor: Main Engineering
Level 2, Floor 1: The Bar
Level 3, Floor 2: The Armory
Level 3, Double-Floor: Skyranger Hanger

Port Wing

Floor 0, Single Floor: Unused Space
Level 1, Double Floor: Food and Water Storage
Level 2, Floor 1: Combat Staff Bunks
Level 2, Floor 2: Combat Staff Bunks
Level 3, Double Floor: Gym, Shooting Range
Level 4, Single Floor: The Brig

Starboard Wing

Floor 0, Single Floor: Unused Space
Level 1, Double Floor: Material Supplies Storage
Level 2, Floor 1: Engineer Staff Bunks
Level 2, Floor 2: Science Staff Bunks
Level 3, Double Floor: Medical Staff Bunks, Medical Ward
Level 4, Single Floor: Medical Storage

All Rooms are general access unless listed otherwise. The following rooms are prohibited to anyone but Department Chiefs, Officers, and Authorized Staff without explicit permission:

Main Laboratory – Scientific and Engineering Staff Only
The Bridge – Engineering and Intelligence Staff Only
Command Center – Intelligence Staff Only
Situation Room – Intelligence Staff Only
Shooting Range – Combat Staff Only
The Brig – Combat Staff Only
Medical Ward – Medical Staff Only
Medical Storage – Medical and Scientific Staff Only

Maintenance Staff have access to any facility, the special authorization ones listed above should only be entered on-duty.

Mission Structure:

1. *Missions involve working off of an overview, a mission briefing, to fully write out how a combat scenario plays out. They are not written in synoptic format unless specifically requested to be.
2. *Missions will occur usually no more than once or twice a week. Frequency will vary depending on the availability of members with combat staff.
3. Mission sites will be fairly detailed to set a strong structure for the story, but players are free to write it out as they wish.
4. Squad Sizes vary from 6 to 8 soldiers on normal missions, while especially covert missions will sometimes only entail a squad of 4; major assaults will sometimes contain 10-12 soldiers.
5. Due to a smaller amount of soldiers than previous seasons, expect anywhere from 2-4 player characters on a given mission. 1 character missions will be rare, while player-character ONLY missions will be unusual but not impossible.
6. Other soldiers besides the player characters will be sent on the missions are Non-Player Characters, to act, perform, and be used as you see fit.
7. All soldiers carry a primary weapon and sidearm, regardless of class. Most classes have a secondary weapon as well, though Troopers have two primary weapons instead.
8. Soldier loadouts are to be preset for both player characters and NPCs in the XCOM Soldier Profiles document. What consumable items are taken can vary from mission to mission, however. (If you want to change your preset loadout, notify a GM. Just don’t swap out often, as XCOM has limited supplies.)
9. What enemies you'll meet and how they'll be grouped will sometimes, but not always, be given, depending on intel. You can describe which of them you fight, how many are taken down by you and how many are killed by others, and what order you encounter them.
10. Mission objectives will be given in the overview, as well as the status and concentration of any civilians in the area.


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And Character Creation is a second part.

XCOM Character Creation:

General Notes –

Characters can have practically any reason for joining the XSDF as long as they weren't forced to join by being threatened or blackmailed. You can play as a soldier, scientist, engineer, doctor, or other role approved by the GM (example: part of the intelligence division). It is worth noting that most soldiers assist the other divisions when they aren’t training or on break, so your soldier could be a scientific, engineering, medical, maintenance, or intelligence assistant. Playing a pure maintenance character is not an option (the role would get dull quickly).

Nobody is perfect, and if your character has certain psychological problems, that's okay. XCOM can’t exactly be picky about its recruits at a time like this. Just keep it in reason. Having problems getting along with others and being a bit coo-coo on the field is fine, but if they do anything that would normally get them discharged, then they're probably going to be discharged. The Commander will only tolerate someone as long as they don’t become a threat to the well-being of other staff members.

If you want to give your character any features or abilities that delve into the realm of psionics or the supernatural, please message the main GM to see if your character’s special power(s) are acceptable or not. Everyone is free to make their characters unique, and the GMs are open for ideas. That said, avoid introducing any idea beyond the norm without running it by me first. We don’t like telling people to delete something after it goes up, but we will if need be.

You're free to kill off your character at your own discretion, provided you have a good reason to do so, and they are a soldier character. The only time the death of staff members would be acceptable is during a base defense in which they end up in the line of fire due to reasonable circumstances. If you wish to start right away with a new character, it is preferred that you introduce them at least one or two posts beforehand first if possible, mimicking a Week -1 post.

Character Count –

Due to the nature of XCOM as a guerrilla resistance, the number of members of the organization should naturally start out small. This applies to the amount of characters each roleplayer can have. To begin with, the total character limit will be at three. This fits with the theme and ensures that our writers can focus on a starting set of characters before expanding out. You can see the complete staff layout on the Avenger Main Database.

The initial number of soldier characters allowed per person is one to two. Ideally, not everyone is going to want to start out with 2 soldier characters but if that becomes the case the GM(s) will decide how to divvy up slots. The total soldier count should be at thirty or below, and around half of that number should be NPC soldiers.

The initial number of civilian staff characters allowed per person is one. This means that if you want a civilian staff character you may only play a scientist, engineer, OR doctor. However, it is worth noting that the majority of soldiers will likely be helping out one of these 3 departments in their downtime, or even the skeleton crew with ship operations/maintenance.

Now, this might come as an odd limiting factor, but ideally you should have a 50/50 ratio between male and female characters. Obviously if you have 3 to start, then you’ll have one more guy or girl, but that just means if you get a fourth character later on they should be the opposite sex to even things out. The reason this is a specification is because there has been an inordinate amount of female characters in previous seasons, and it leads to complications, especially in regards to romance arcs. (Not everyone can be a lesbian: in fact, alternate-sexuality characters should only make up about 10-20% of the overall player character count. Anything more is unrealistic.)

Character Count Exceptions

Exception One: It is worth mentioning that playing a department leader does not count towards your character limits in relation to number and sex. The GM(s) will only choose someone they feel is up to the task for these positions.

- Commander [Censored] will be played by DarkGemini24601.
- Central Officer Bradford will be played by MarineAvenger.
- Dr. [Censored] (Medical Chief) will be played by MarineAvenger.
- Dr. Richard Tygan (Scientific Chief) will be played by DarkGemini24601.
- Dr. Lily Shen (Engineering Chief) will be played by DarkGemini24601.
- The position for Skeleton Crew Chief is currently vacant. [Likely to be filled by BMPixy]
- [Censored](Intelligence Chief) will be played by ZombieSplitter53.

Big Sky (Skyranger Pilot) will be given a basic description and will be playable by whoever is taken to a mission site by him. Just don't have the poor guy do anything crazy or die without GM approval. The position for Avenger Pilot is currently vacant, though anyone that wants the position should consult DarkGemini24601 about the role and for approval over a PM.

Exception Two: We are aware that sometimes you just have a set of characters you can’t pull apart. Therefore, if you have a familial set (such as a pair of siblings, a parent and offspring, or so on), they will count as one. If they’re both male, then they count as one male in your gender ratio, and the same for the opposite sex. If one is a guy and one is a girl, then they just aren’t counted by the ration, but still count as one character towards the limit of 3. Oh, and small children (All ages up to about 12 or so) don’t count on the character limit because they shouldn’t be wandering around alone anyway.

Exception Three: If you weren’t in Season 2 or 3 of ChristopherOdd’s roleplays, this won’t be relevant to you. If you were, then the third exception Gemini likes to call “Legacy Characters”. They are exempt from gender ratios and the total character count. They cannot, however, exceed your soldier limit of 2 by their presence, at least at the start of the RP. What makes a legacy character? A character that was seen in some fashion in one of those two seasons of ChristopherOdd’s roleplays, and in XCOM: A Story of Defiance. Known legacy characters include:

-[Very Much Censored]

ADVENT Character Creation:

///Error! Traitor Detected!///

If you do choose to have a character that has sided with the aliens, there are a couple of things you should know. First of all, you should have at least one XCOM character. If you just play ADVENT characters you’re going to have a bad time. Secondly, there is no clearly defined character limit for ADVENT characters because you should focus on your XCOM character(s) foremost. It will be up to the GMs as to who gets to play antagonists, and how many. Thirdly, an true ADVENT character is not a throwaway enemy that will die upon their debut. There should be buildup to meeting them, whether they are enforcing the alien government’s edicts in other parts of the world, or leading somewhere near to our operations.

Importantly, they should operate within parameters of how ADVENT should act. Such edicts will be defined in as separate information section. In addition, do not choose to play an ADVENT member thinking that ADVENT is meant to win. While it is a possibility, remember how the majority of stories end. Be prepared for your last post with an ADVENT character to involve death, imprisonment, or exile, because those are all distinct possibilities.

ADVENT has some human scientists, engineers, doctors, and other workers. Be aware that they will not have access to all of the alien tech, as the Elders keep the most powerful tools of their people to themselves to prevent an uprising. Some of the lower aliens answer to human ADVENT officers, but no human stands on a higher rank than an Elder, and few stand on a higher rank than a Sectoid Commander.

The other options are ADVENT soldiers (as politicians are just puppets, really). As one, you may encounter and fight XCOM, though this will not always be the case. And depending on where your character is stationed, they may see action swiftly or not for awhile.

While human ADVENT members are to be played with permission from a GM, playing one of the central antagonists (an important Elder – an Ethereal) is likely not an option. If you really want to, you are free to PM the main GM about it, but the majority of the higher-ups in the Ethereal hierarchy are already taken. If you are interested in playing an alien in general, that will still require greater consultation, as some aren’t playable (being completely subservient – read: boring) or require knowledge of how they work and trust from the GM to play them fairly in battle.


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Formulating my ideas for research into a coherent explanation at the moment. Needless to say, it will hopefully make research more player-driven while still maintaining a focus and keeping things moving.


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Research in XCOM2 won't be so divisive like it was in Vanguard of Forseti. We had so many departments that a lot were just run by me, but I couldn't really handle all that, and without actual exposition behind what was going on it usually felt hollow. What's my solution?

Well, as listed above, I do command Science and Engineering. But we don't have a lot of staff on hand, so each individual counts. While there will be central research projects, individuals or groups could be working on side projects. Say the Science Team is working on inventing a suit of power armor. Meanwhile, one scientist could be working on how to implement magnetic weapons technology on a sniper rifle. The Medical Team as a whole is mapping the genome of a Viper, while two doctors are preparing a specific genetic enhancement for use.


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Have the class list, which includes their weapon options. Class-specific weapons are in italics.

Notes - Carbines are light rifles and Battle Rifles heavy. PDWs combine the best elements of SMGs and Carbines. Anti-materiel rifles destroy equipment, Anti-Tank Rifles (at least XCOM's) are powerful enough to penetrate heavy armor. SS-GL is a single shot grenade launcher.

Primary - Carbine, Assault Rifle, Battle Rifle, Shotgun, Marksman Rifle
Secondary - Another Primary Weapon
Sidearm - Pistol, Machine Pistol, Truncated Shotgun, SMG, SS-GL

Special Notes - Have +2 Primary and Sidearm options to highlight their specialty in weapon-proficiency. This comes at the cost of no special secondary weapon. However, they can take two primary weapons, thus filling the secondary slot.

Primary - Assault Rifle, Marksman Rifle, Sniper Rifle
Secondary - Anti-materiel Rifle
Sidearm - Pistol, Machine Pistol, SMG

Primary - Shotgun, PDW
Secondary - ECCW (A Sword)
Sidearm - Pistol, Machine Pistol, Truncated Shotgun

Primary - Carbine, Assault Rifle, Battle Rifle
Secondary - Gremlin Disruptor Cannon
Sidearm - Pistol, SMG, SS-GL

Primary - Assault Rifle, MP Minigun, Anti-Tank Rifle
Secondary - Grenade Launcher
Sidearm - Pistol, SS-GL, Truncated Shotgun

XCOM2 Mystery Class

Special Notes - Has not been revealed to us yet by Firaxis. If I like the class, they'll stay. If they're something silly like a specific class for psions, then this class will become a stealthy assassin sort of class that our field informants will be made up of. Basically a merger of EW's covert operatives and Vanguard of Forseti's Shadow Operatives.


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Be sure to remember the clause in the Rules. You get a primary, secondary, and sidearm that belong to a specific character. You can change them out if it's necessary, but it shouldn't happen often.


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51 Megacities so far:

North America -

Lakeside City
Yellowstone City
Mexico City

South America -

Caño Cristales
Machu Picchu
Laguna Verde
Iguazu City
Perito Moreno

Antarctica -

*Pole City

Europe -


Asia -

Ake Kule City
Hong Kong
Nepal City
*Tibet City
New Delhi

Africa -

*Congo City
Atlas City


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Earth C Timeline

Pre-Terra Liberation War

1945 - Germany surrenders after Russia takes losses in taking Berlin. However, Japan still remains, and Truman elects not to use the atom bomb on the Japanese, delaying the completion of the Manhattan project. World War II continues and many Japanese and European men alike die.

1948 - World War II finally ends with the nuclear bombing of Tokyo - the Manhattan project being reluctantly completed - but at such a hefty price. A lack of men results in a much-diminished baby boom. The world’s population rose from 2.5 billion to 3.0 billion. The Soviet Union put controls on how many children a family could have, limited it to one in the face of food shortages.

1949 - Two bloody conflicts began. In Eastern Asia, Mao Zedong led a Communist Revolution against the Chinese Nationalists. In Southern Asia, tensions between the recently partitioned India and Pakistan led to a bloody war that cost many lives, both soldier and civilian. China suffered similar losses.

1954 - Mao finally asserts control over China, but at a terrible cost. India and Pakistan never resolve their conflict, but the fighting dies down.

1965 - A large Ethereal Empire scouting craft crashes into the Gobi desert. While its equipment self-destructs, including the weapons on the Sectoid pilots - killing them - the wreck remains. It is useless to the United States operatives that discover it, but the threat of an extraterrestrial enemy is enough to make some factions within the US work on creating an initiatve to fight back against such a threat. They create the “X-COM Project”.

1968 - The US and Soviet Union’s proxy war in Vietnam escalates into something on a grander scale. Nixon loses the election to one Roger Beecher, who insists that Russia cannot be allowed to expand any further. Nuclear missiles are launched on both sides. They hit agrarian areas, but they also hit cities such as Los Angeles, New York City, and Moscow. Vietnam and China take fire as well from the US, and so do Britain, France, and Spain from the USSR. Some nukes specifically target the bunkers of opposing leaders, meaning that nuclear apocalypse is averted when the leaders of both sides can no longer issue orders by result of being killed.

1970 - Efforts to rebuild begin. The bombed cities and countryside are lost, but other places take their place in regards to prominence. The world’s population is stunted, however, from the mass deaths measuring anywhere between 25 and 50 percent of the affected countries’ populations. It does not climb back from being lowered to 2 billion, though the world nations do recover gradually.

1980 - Major western and eastern countries endure hard times with diminished populations, and turn towards advancing technology to make up for a lack of personnel. In this respect, history stays on track even with fewer people to see it.

1990 - It takes two decades, but tensions between the west and the east are mended when the Soviet Union falls on its own weight. The US’s hard times come to an end, and Russia is helped to rebuild.

2000 - At the dawn of a new millenium, officials from around the world make a pact to dismantle any remaining nuclear weapons forever. This isn’t perfect, but it does allow them to at least feel a sense of unity. This is reflected publically by an era of relative peace, and privately by the inclusion of other governments into the X-COM project. A baby boom begins, raising the world’s population.

2010 - The Ebola pandemic sweeps the world. While medical technology was advanced to provide medicine to treat radiation poisoning - a reminder of the Nuclear War of 1968 - infectious diseases were not as well addressed, adding to the stagnancy of the world’s population. The effects of the baby boom are partially negated.

2015 - The world’s populations stands at about 3 billion.


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2000 - At the dawn of a new millenium, officials from around the world make a pact to dismantle any remaining nuclear weapons forever. This isn’t perfect, but it does allow them to at least feel a sense of unity. This is reflected publically by an era of relative peace, and privately by the inclusion of other governments into the X-COM project. A baby boom begins, raising the world’s population
If only that is what really happened :(


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RIP LA you were taken too soon. I shall avenge thee- wait, dammit, it was other humans that did that. I shall avenge thee after Earth has been liberated!


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Good, would've had to put Cross Tech in D.C. or something.

Speaking of which, what English cities were bombed?
London would have been the likely target I think (Washington DC got hit instead of NYC). However, we're talking maybe 5-10 years of being uninhabited, so it's just a matter of rebuilding what was destroyed.

I'm gonna say that London had some sort of prototype aerial defense so that the bomb detonated high, making the city uninhabitable for awhile due to radiation but not destroying too much architecture. Meanwhile California was pretty heavily saturated, and there's still radioactive areas there in 2038.


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London would have been the likely target I think (Washington DC got hit instead of NYC). However, we're talking maybe 5-10 years of being uninhabited, so it's just a matter of rebuilding what was destroyed.

I'm gonna say that London had some sort of prototype aerial defense so that the bomb detonated high, making the city uninhabitable for awhile due to radiation but not destroying too much architecture. Meanwhile California was pretty heavily saturated, and there's still radioactive areas there in 2038.
What about Seattle?


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Wow, I forget a city every time. Forgot to specify the South Pole one. Also, each continent will have a capital - another thing the final versions will note.


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Just in case you were in need of a "holy shit" in regards to ADVENT today, the dialogue from the recent demo missions flat out stated all Megacities were connected by a railway. Jeez, they've been busy.