The laser rifles are ready.
I sold the majority of the corpses we recovered from the last mission to finance their construction. I don't have enough money to make more than four of the little beauties, but it should do the trick for now.
Council mission promises to get me $200 and some sorely-needed engineers. Pretty happy about that.
Friends in Low Places is actually one of three missions from the hastily-released, half-assed DLC pack Firaxis put out a few months after EU released. It contains the very beginning and the very end of a storyline they never really had the time to develop, resulting in an odd sort of low-key start that jumps immediately into you taking down an alien battleship that is hovering over Hong Kong.
Still, I included it in this campaign because it gives a lot of good rewards. Once I finish this one, for example, I'll get to keep the character they introduce, who becomes a high-ranking heavy. Mighty useful.
I bring the A Team, because I might as well rank them up a bit before the looming Terror mission.
It would help quite a bit to get Brentai or Niku to their third tier abilities when we face off against the chryssalids, and at the very least, getting Smiler Squad Sight or Snap Shot would be huge.♬ Mission soundtrack ♪
Team is Grath, Patito, Brentai, Niku, Mongrel, and Smiler.
Mission is a straightforward civilian escort deal. Every turn, one or two Thin Men drop from the sky and go into overwatch. I then have to pick them off before moving, or else I'll get hit.
An annoying XCom Escort Mission Quirk (or XEMQ [pronounced "zemqua"]) is that the Thin Men appear one by one, meaning that the first one always triggers everyone you've got on overwatch.
All at once.
So the first guy will get fucking destroyed, while the second and third land right next to you without so much as a dirty look.
Wasting a turn, Patito has to stay where he is to splatter him over some swarmy git's gravesite.
I love these new guns.
Smiler has to do the same for the third.
After moving up a bit, we trigger a small group, who scatter.
Mongrel, having already moved, takes a few pot shots with his pistol. It's technically possible to get a kill like this, but it's really rare that you'd do more than 3 damage.
He hits for 2.
I want to move our male escort to safer ground, but think better of it. If I can kill these guys, I can move him forward instead of back.
I decide I'm close enough with Niku to try for a capture, and switch Brentai to pistol to soften up the gangly bastard.
Brent hits for an underwhelming 1.
Switching Niku to his tazer, I see that the success probability is 85%, which is almost a sure thing.
I go for the capture.
It dawns on me that I probably should have had a guy ready to kill this thing in the remote chance Niku failed.
Niku goes down HARD.
I make Grath take the shot, but forget he's still switched to pistol.
I'm fucking this up.
Brentai saves the day.
Behind us, another Thin Man drops from the sky.
Smiler has the flank, but he's on overwatch with his pistol, as I had to move him up and can't overwatch with his sniper if he moves.
He does that goofy graphic-switched pistol-as-sniper-rifle attack for 2.
But! It's now our turn again, so I have him do another 2 with his pistol, which finishes the creepy wanker off.
Meanwhile, Brentai kills the second new arrival.
Turn ends, and we get what amounts to a midboss: a muton! Usually you don't run into these jagoffs until well after the Terror mission.
Were Niku alive, he probably would have died trying to capture this thing.
Smiler clears the way for us to move ahead. We stick to the far left, as it gives us the high ground.
Grath takes the only cover available and fires off a round at the muton.
Brentai moves up, taking full cover and trying his hand as well.
Mongrel moves up and take a shot.
Hell yeah! A whopping 5 damage! One more like that, and we're home free.
Muton lumbers against the wall and nails Mongrel in one shot.
Mongrel is down, bleeding out, but can be revived by Grath.
Panictito panics, and cowering behind a grave.
I forgot to screen cap it, but two more Thin Men drop out of the ground, landing in theeee worst imaginable spot: Just behind Grath, just above Patito, and just across from Smiler.
Smiler tries to take out the one of the left.
I believe in you, Wario.
Grath can either flee, shoot, or revive Mongrel, and have MONGREL shoot.
I rule out running, because both Thin Men are on overwatch, and would certainly hit at this range.
Shooting would guarentee a kill for me, but the other would hit Grath and I'd be down to just Smiler and Patito.
Grath might be doomed.
I decide my only chance is to have him revive Mongrel, who will then shoot the Thin Man on the left and possibly take the other's fire, at which point he can be revived a second time.
Muton takes a long shot at Grath.
It is dead on.
Grath is dead.
Grath is fucking dead.
Mongrel panics, and flees behind a grave. This is actually the smartest thing he could have done, because it gives him a shadow of a chance at surviving for another turn (as opposed to just standing out in the open).
The Thin Man on the right takes a shot, and thanks to Mongrel's new cover, he misses.
We're not so lucky with the one on the left.
Brentai braves overwatch fire to deliver some payback point blank.
The muton cooks.
Niku would have loved that smell.
Patito, his senses at last returned, tries for one of the two remaining Thin Men.
Moment of truth...
I hate every motherfucking one of you.
The second Thin Man moves up, and takes the shot.
Only Smiler and Brentai remain.
Smiler tries for the exposed ET that just gunned down Patito.
Close, but no cigar.
I put the escort's head down to give him more defense. It's not much, but it's something.
The Thin Man on the left hits us both with poison, which drops us by 1 hp every turn.
Considering the civilian has 3 hp, that means he has to get to the Skyranger in three turns, or it's over.
Thin Man on the right takes a shot, and whiffs.
Brentai flanks him.
Smiler is now out of ammo.
I could reload, or hit the Thin Man with a pistol, and hope I can hit next turn as well to finish him off.
Considering how I haven't landed my last five shots, I go with the pistol.
Iiiiiiit's a miss.
Thin Man turns around and melts Brentai's face.