Research (Interceptor)

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Research entries of Interceptor's UFOPedia.


Cold Fusion

"For centuries, scientists have searched for a way to initiate a fusion reaction at room-temperature. A breakthrough in the Galactic Science Corps labs has led to a method whereby this result can easily be achieved. In addition to being a huge step forward in the field of power generation, this technology allows the development of some extremely powerful weapons."

Synthetic Elerium

"Although the Elerium cache recovered from the Cydonia base on Mars has provided Earth with all the Elerium it needs for power-generation purposes, scientists have warned that this supply won't last forever. For most non-propulsion purposes, Elerium remains banned from military use. Luckily, detailed study of this elusive mineral has finally lead to a ground-breaking discovery: for the first time ever, Galactic Science Corps scientists have synthesized Elerium in the lab. The ability to synthesize weapons-grade Elerium allows GSC scientists to freely construct Elerium-based weaponry on Frontier Outposts without tapping Earth's precious reserves."


The Galactic Science Corps

"The Galactic Science Corps is a multi-national organization that was formed shortly after the first off-world colonies were established. The goal of the GSC is pure research and discovery. Equipped with the most sophisticated exploration and analytical equipment available, which is cross-linked with state-of-the-art CyberWeb computer arrays in their labs back on Earth, GSC exploration ships and research stations continue to expand the boundaries of explored space. All off-planet X-COM operations depend on GSC's Earth-based labs for their research and analysis work."


"Mars Security, or Marsec, is the leading manufacturer of high-tech weapons and equipment in human space. They also operate a private security force that is employed on Earth's lunar and Martian colonies. Marsec is currently the primary provider of military hardware and technical development for X-COM, and it is branching out to provide weapons and equipment to many of the most powerful military groups on Earth and in the colonies."

The Kabron Pirates

"The mass colonization of space has, over the past decade or so, led to the resurgence of a very old profession: piracy. Although dozens of small groups have plagued the supply and shipping lines between Earth and the off-world colonies since about 2058, none is as infamous as the Kabron clan. These pirates have cost Earth corporations billions of dollars, yet not a single Kabron has been captured. All attempts to eradicate the Kabron have failed. Even X-COM has been unable to bring them to justice. Space battles usually end up in a stalemate, since the Kabron employ stolen X-COM fighters as a defense force. ~The Kabron are a threat to both the economy and the safety of human space, and they must be dealt with as soon as an opportunity arises."

The First Alien War (1999-2002)

AW-I was a war fought between X-COM forces and a number of invading alien races. Starting with
animal mutilations and intermittent human abductions, alien activity steadily escalated, eventually
threatening the continued existence of humanity. Striking from hidden bases throughout the world,
X-COM soldiers managed to maintain some semblance of order, keeping the alien menace in check
until the invaders' base of operations could be located. In a final, cataclysmic battle, a squadron
of X-COM soldiers invaded the aliens' base at Cydonia on Mars, killing all the inhabitants and
neutralizing the central Brain that controlled the alien invasion force.

The Second Alien War (2041-2046)

AW-II was a war fought between X-COM forces and a number of aquatic alien races beneath the surface
of Earth's oceans. These aliens, apparently in cryo-stasis for thousands of years, were awakened
by an automated signal sent from the alien base at Cydonia at the end of the First Alien War in
2002. The signal activated the alien city of T'leth, hidden in the Sigsbee Deep in the Gulf of
Mexico, unleashing the horde of aquatic aliens therein. Fighting a long and arduous battle, X-COM
finally located and destroyed T'leth. The eradication of the alien city ended the invasion, but
with grave results. The resulting cataclysmic explosion heavily contaminated Earth's atmosphere,
wreaking ecological havoc that continues to plague Earth to this day.


A social and ecological restoration project conceived and backed by the major corporations of
Earth. Mega-Primus is the prototype for the ultimate human habitat -- self-sustaining, pollution-
free, and safe. The construction of this virtual utopia is years behind schedule due to the lack of
sufficient raw materials on Earth and at her near-space colonies. If all goes according to plan,
the corporate mining Outposts in the Frontier should supply the raw materials needed to complete
the Mega-Primus project.

Black holes

"Black holes are the remnants of collapsed giant stars. The immense mass of the star is compressed into such a small volume that anything -- even light -- that passes within a certain distance (the "Event Horizon") is pulled in by the incredible gravity. Depending on the star's original mass and the amount of mass it has collected since collapsing, the event horizon can be smaller than a millimeter in diameter or larger than a star. Black holes are dangerous navigational hazards and should be avoided if at all possible. The enormous gravitational forces near a black hole make space flight extremely hazardous. Even ship with advanced drives cannot escape if they wander beyond the event horizon." 

Asteroid fields

"Asteroid fields are an extremely important find for a corporation. Usually mineral-rich, asteroid fields are much easier to mine than planets since the mineral deposits are, for the most part, already exposed. Because the minerals are so easily accessible, corporations establish four OPPs in an asteroid field instead of the usual one. Asteroid fields present a very real navigational hazard, and caution should be exercised when traveling in these regions to avoid collisions." 


  • X-1A Lightning II Interceptor

"The X-1A Lightning II was designed specifically for patrol duty in the Frontier. Built by the Transtellar corporation, the Lightning II is equipped with modular weapon hard points and equipment bays to allow for the easy upgrade of armament and other systems. Although somewhat vulnerable defensively, this interceptor is by far the fastest available to X-COM pilots."

  • Superdynamics S-2 Firestar Interceptor

"The S-2 Firestar interceptor was developed in response to the need for a more versatile craft. While still agile enough to be a good match for most alien saucers in a dogfight, the S-2 has tri-titanium hull plating and added weapons capacity also make it an effective attacker - even against larger, well defended targets such as alien mining outposts and ore processing facilities. Although capable of using the older gravity wave engines, the Firestar performs best when equipped with the newer Gravity Induction Drive."

  • Marsec M-3 Super Avenger Interceptor

"The M-3 Super Avenger is the ultimate fighting craft available in the Frontier. Using Alien Hull Alloys, Marsec was able to create a tough, powerful bomber capable of going head-to-head with heavily-armed alien targets for extended periods of time. The added weapons hard points -- including one that is capable of mounting a special munitions rack for oversized payloads -- make it a formidable adversary for larger targets. The M-3 also has surprising agility in a dogfight when equipped with the new Graviton Pulse Drive system."

  • Cybermove Systems Star Ranger

"Terran Freighter ~The Cybermove Systems Star Ranger has been in service for a number of years. A space-going upgrade to the venerable Sky Ranger transport, the Star Ranger was originally designed to move equipment from Earth to her in-system colonies. Upgraded for hyper-light travel, these vessels now serve effectively in deep space as well."

  • Patton-Class Research Cruiser

"The research vessels used by the Galactic Science Corps are retired military vessels left over from the years following the Second Alien War. Now, with their weapons replaced by advanced sensor and detection equipment and their primitive sub-light engines replaced with hyper-light drive units, Patton-class vessels should continue to serve the GSC well into the next decade. Many ships of this class have also been drafted into private service by some of Earth's wealthier corporations."

  • Earth Outpost

"The corporate Outposts in the Frontier coordinate the activity of Ore Processing Plants (OPPs) in a star system and act as a repository for the minerals they collect. The raw materials gathered here are either shipped to Earth or used in the construction of supplies for X-COM bases in the Frontier. Outposts also serve as recruiting points for potential X-COM personnel. A pool of potential pilots can always be found stationed at Frontier Outposts, awaiting their chance to serve. Although Outposts are equipped with minimal shields and armament, their chance of surviving a full-scale alien assault is minimal at best. X-COM's funding and livelihood depend heavily on these facilities, so their protection is X-COM's primary goal."

  • Corporate Ore Processing Plant

"Ore Processing Plants (OPPs) are orbital stations manned by a small crew of civilian technicians. These facilities collect raw materials and ship them to the local corporate Outpost. Each OPP in an Outpost system makes a vital contribution to the wealth and efficiency of the corporate operation. When an OPP is lost to an alien attack, X-COM funding and supply availability from an Outpost system can decrease dramatically. Though they possess limited armament, OPPs are incapable of effectively defending themselves from a prolonged alien attack. They must be protected at all costs."

  • GSC Science Station

"The Galactic Science Corps operates a number of research outposts in Earth colony areas, conducting research on a wide variety of subjects -- from astronomical studies to xenobiology. The GSC is strictly a civilian operation; there is no military presence on a science station, nor is the base equipped with any offensive weaponry. There are several GSC Science stations in the Frontier region."

  • Kabron Pirate Base

"The Kabron pirates build their bases from pilfered equipment and materials acquired from raids on whatever trade routes they plague. Thus, it is a rarity to find two pirate bases that look alike. Although no pirate activity has yet been recorded in the Frontier region, the possibility of a hidden base in the area is not entirely unlikely."

  • Corporate Interceptors

"Corporate Outposts and OPPs are not particularly well equipped to handle an enemy attack. Normally, the corporations operating in the Frontier depend on X-COM fighter support for protection - however, some corporations take precautions of their own. Corporate interceptors use the same hull types as those operated by X-COM. These craft, which are almost exclusively stationed near Outposts and Ore Processing Plants, are flown by mercenary pilots with adequate but unspectacular combat skills. In a particularly fierce attack, corporate interceptors can be helpful allies to a defending X-COM fleet."


  • Laser Cannon
  • Heavy Laser
  • Gatling Laser
  • Tracer Cannon
  • Tracking Tracer Cannon
  • Phase Cannon
  • Plasma Pulse Cannon
  • Psi Blaster
  • Tachyon Pulser
  • X-winder Missile
  • X-winder Missile Launcher
  • Fusion Base Buster Missile
  • Fusion Missile Launcher
  • Permeator Missile
  • Permeator Missile Launcher
  • Doppelganger Missile
  • Doppelganger Missile Launcher
  • Nova Bomb
  • Nova Bomb Launcher
  • Elerium Torpedo
  • Elerium Torpedo Launcher
  • Enveloping Fusion Torpedo
  • Enveloping Fusion Torpedo Launcher
  • Sidestep Missile
  • Sidestep Missile Launcher
  • Passive Cloaking Torpedo
  • Passive Cloaking Torpedo Launcher
  • Parallax Torpedo
  • Parallax Torpedo Launcher


  • Advanced Lasers
  • Alien Hull Alloys
  • Cold Fusion
  • Hyper-Dimensional Data Transfer
  • Microbit Compression
  • Psionic Amplification
  • Psionic Holography
  • Psionic Projection
  • Solar Fusion
  • Synthetic Elerium
  • Trans-Dimensional Fields
  • Tri-Titanium Construction
  • The Galactic Science Corps
  • Marsec
  • The Kabron Pirates
  • The First Alien War (1999-2002)
  • The Second Alien War (2041-2046)
  • Mega-Primus
  • Black Holes
  • Asteroid Fields


  • Standard Armor
  • Tri-Titanium Armor
  • Trans-Dermal Armor
  • Deflector Shield
  • Electroplasmic Shield
  • Trans-Dimensional Shield
  • Accumulator Shields
  • Ship Damage Control Computer
  • Conversion Drive
  • Gravity/Induction Drive
  • Graviton Pulse Drive
  • Vector Control Thrusters
  • Dimension Jump Drive
  • Standard Targeting System
  • Emissions Targeting System
  • Advanced Autonomous Targeting System
  • Cloaking Device
  • ECM Pod
  • Advanced ECM Pod
  • Tractor Beam


  • Main Base Structure

"The Main Base Structure is the core of any X-COM base. It contains the hardware housings and power systems required for the attachment of up to 33 ancillary modules. The Main Base Structure is delivered to the site of a new base fully-assembled and ready to receive additional modules."

  • Hangar Module

"A Hangar Module provides mooring facilities for up to three X-COM interceptors of any type. In addition to housing the ships themselves, Hangar Modules house the equipment and crews necessary to rearm, refit, repair, and maintain the ships. Each X-COM base can have up to three Hangar Modules."

  • Personnel Module

"A Personnel Module provides living quarters, food preparation facilities, entertainment complexes, and all of the other amenities necessary to house five pilots."

  • Cargo Module

"Cargo Modules provide storage space for all base equipment, including weapons, ammunition and other supplies. Each Cargo Module can store up to 1000 Cargo Space Units (CSUs) of equipment."

  • Probe Launch Module

"Because ships and bases are extremely expensive, the best way to explore distant regions of the Frontier is through scientific probes. There are also a number of probe types used for other purposes. The Probe Launch module provides the means for launching any type of probe."

  • Standard Downlink

"Downlink Modules provide the means by which scientific research information transmitted from the Galactic Science Corps research labs on Earth is received by X-COM bases in the Frontier. Every base can have up to three Downlink Modules. Each Standard Downlink is able to download 30 teraquads of information per hour."

  • Hyper-Com Downlink

"The Hyper-Com Downlink uses alien hyper-communications technology to boost the rate of data transfer from the research labs on Earth. Each Hyper-Com Downlink is capable of downloading 35 teraquads of information per hour."

  • Hyper-Dimensional Downlink

"The Hyper-Dimensional Downlink is the most efficient data transfer device available for the download of research data. Using a combination of alien Hyper-Dimensional Data Transfer and Microbit Compression technologies, the Hyper-Dimensional Downlink achieves download speeds of 40 teraquads per hour."

  • Deflector Shield Generator

"Base Shield Generators use the same shielding technology as the standard interceptor Deflector Shield, but on a much larger scale. The Deflector Shield Generator provides shielding with a rating of 2000 FSP (on the Fitzgerald scale). Due to power consumption, each base is capable of housing only one shield generator at a time."

  • Electroplasmic Shield Generator

"The result of research into alien shield technology, the Electroplasmic Shield Generator uses the same techniques as ship-mounted Electroplasmic Shields. This module has a shield rating of 3000 FSP. This module is designed to replace the base's existing shield module (if any); the existing module is dismantled and removed automatically as soon as the new module comes on line."

  • Trans-Dimensional Shield Generator

"The best shielding available for an X-COM base, this shield generator uses Trans-Dimensional shield technology to boost shielding capacity to 4000 FSP. Like the Electroplasmic Shield Generator, this module is designed to replace the base's existing shield module (if any) -- the existing module is dismantled and removed automatically as soon as the new module comes on line."

  • Standard Sensor Module

"The base's Sensor Module performs the same functions as a ship's Targeting System, but on a much larger scale. Both detection and targeting ranges are dramatically extended by the greater power available at a base installation. The Standard Sensor Module uses the same technology as the interceptor Standard Targeting System. Each base can have only one sensor module of any type at a given time."

  • Emissions Tracking Sensors

"The second evolution in base sensor technology, Emissions Tracking Sensors use the same technology as the alien-based Emissions Targeting System. This system provides detection and targeting ranges significantly greater than those of the Standard Sensor Module, and allows the use of several new weapons systems. When this module is added to the base, it automatically replaces any existing sensor module."

  • AATS Sensors

"The most sophisticated base sensor system available, the AATS Sensors use the same technology as the ship-mounted Advanced Autonomous Targeting System. Detection and targeting ranges are greater than those of Emissions Tracking Sensors, and the system is capable of controlling all available weapon types. When this module is added to the base, it automatically replaces any existing sensor module."

  • ECM Module

"A higher-powered version of the ECM generators carried by ships, the ECM Module generates a missile-jamming signal that extends to a one kilometer radius from the base. Like their ship-mounted counterparts, ECM Modules have a friend-or-foe system that allows them to selectively jam only enemy-controlled missiles. The jamming effects (but not the ranges) of ECM Modules are cumulative."

  • Advanced ECM Module

"Using the same advanced technology as the ship-mounted Advanced ECM Pod, this module boasts an increase in both range and effectiveness over the standard ECM system. Effective jamming range for the Advanced ECM Module is two kilometers."

  • Training Module

"Training Modules act as all-purpose educational facilities, providing advanced training for pilots in the areas of space flight and psionics. Each Training Module can train up to five pilots simultaneously."

  • Advanced Damage Control Module

"The ADC Module is a base mounted version of the Ship Damage Control Computer. This module augments the efforts of the base's damage control teams and the self-repairing systems, effectively doubling the rate at which systems are repaired. Although multiple ADC modules can be installed, the effects of this module are not cumulative."

  • Missile Defense Modules

"Missile Defense Modules are versatile defensive systems capable of delivering a wide variety of ordnance. The cost and ammunition capacity of each Missile Defense Module varies according to the type of missile it fires. The type of ordnance available for use in Missile Defense Modules is dependent on both technological knowledge and the type of sensors currently in use at the base. Certain missile types cannot be used in Missile Defense Modules under any circumstances."

  • Beam Defense Modules

"Beam Defense Modules are universal weapons platforms capable of mounting almost any beam weapon available. The cost of a Beam Defense Module varies according to the type of beam weapon it uses, and the weapons available for use in Beam Defense Modules are dependent on both technological knowledge and the type of sensors installed on the base. Certain beam weapons cannot be mounted on Beam Defense Modules under any circumstances."

  • Communications Module

"Communications Modules are vital to the operation of interceptors from a base. If a base is not equipped with a Communications Module, in-flight orders cannot be issued to intercept craft assigned to the base."

  • Medical Module

"Although minimal patient care facilities are built into every Personnel Module, these facilities cannot equal those of a fully-equipped hospital. Each Medical Module can house up to five injured pilots simultaneously. When room is available, injured pilots can be placed into a Medical Module to receive treatment. Pilots convalescing in a Medical Module heal at twice the normal rate."

  • Tractor Module

"Base-mounted Tractor Modules are nearly identical to their ship-mounted counterparts with some notable exceptions. First, because of the base's tremendous power reserves, the use of a Tractor Module does not eliminate the base's ability to fire beam weapons. Second, since bases are stationary, tractored targets are simply held in place, not towed. Finally, because of a base's tremendous mass, the base does not suffer damage in the event of a tractor beam tug-of-war. If any damage is sustained, it is localized to the Tractor Module itself."


  • Alien Freighter Convoy

"This mysterious message fragment shows what is apparently a fleet of alien freighters flying directly into a black hole. It is unclear what the freighters are carrying, and even more nebulous why the freighters would willingly enter a black hole. ~Although it is possible that this is some sort of waste disposal operation, Galactic Science Corps scientists think this is unlikely. The best way to find out what is happening is to intercept any alien freighter convoys that exhibit unusual or aberrant behavior. If we can succeed in destroying or capturing one of these convoys, GSC scientists might be able to shed some light on the aliens' mysterious activity."

  • Alien Military Build-Up

"Whatever operation the aliens are undertaking is evidently of great military importance. This message shows a major military build-up in a black hole system -- apparently the same one seen in the first transmission we intercepted. ~It is imperative that we attempt to learn more about this situation. Interception of alien freighters, especially those that exhibit any unusual characteristics, should be one of your top priorities at this point. In the meantime, GSC's alien language experts are attempting to decode the audio portions of the alien messages."

  • Alien Supply List

"Thanks to the Galactic Science Corps, we now have a partial translation algorithm for decoding the alien voice transmissions. ~The latest message appears to be a request for supplies, most of which are weapons and weapon-related equipment. Apparently, the aliens are in the process of constructing some sort of offensive weapon, presumably to use against X-COM. Most disturbing are the inclusion of the word "Doomsday" toward the end of the message. ~The GSC will continue to examine this and the previous messages for clues as to what the aliens are planning."

  • Doomsday is Nigh

"The Galactic Science Corps is now capable of translating most of the aliens' language -- and not a moment too soon. ~Apparently, the aliens are in the late stages of the construction of some sort of weapon. Your interception of alien freighters and tugs has evidently disrupted the aliens' schedule, and you must continue to disrupt their lines of supply until GSC scientist can determine where the aliens are building their device. Hopefully, in the process, you can uncover further components and information that will allow X-COM to take a more proactive approach to this situation."

  • The Doomsday Attack Plan

"The most recent alien message has confirmed our worst fears. The aliens have constructed a massive Doomsday Weapon that they intend to use against Earth. Time is short, and it is important that you act as soon as possible to prevent this device from being completed and launched! ~The map fragment embedded in the message reveals the general location of the black hole that acts as an entrance to the aliens' dimension. Once you locate this region of space, you must act quickly to build up an attack force for the final attack on the Doomsday Weapon. ~No weaponry, alien or human, can damage an object so large. Therefore, the GSC has recommended the use of the Nova Bomb as possible means of destroying the Doomsday Weapon and sealing the alien universe forever. Therefore, your final assault force must include at least one Super Avenger interceptor equipped with a Nova Bomb. ~The 'MacArthur' - a 'Patton'-class vessel equipped with the new Dimension Jump Drive - will carry up to five ships through the black hole and into the alien universe. When you are ready to launch your assault, signal for the 'MacArthur' through the normal mission launch sequence. Good luck."

  • Alien Structural Component

"The object retrieved from the freighter convoy is likely related to the alien message we recently received. It appears to be a structural component for an immense space station or similar complex. Speculation as to this component's use -- and why the aliens would be towing these components through deep space -- is pointless without additional information. Be on the lookout for any alien freighter convoys that display unusual characteristics, and make sure that all alien transmissions you receive are examined as soon as possible."

  • Alien Drive Component

"This is another piece of alien cargo that seems connected with the aliens' secret project, now referred to as "Doomsday" by GSC scientists. This new component appears to be part of a massive star drive system -- similar to the hyperdrive propulsion systems used by alien fighters, but on a much larger scale. Scientists now suspect that the object the aliens are constructing is not for use here in the Frontier -- rather, it is meant to be deployed in a distant location."

  • Alien Weapon Component

"It seems that numerous alien convoys have started transporting this massive component. Even after detailed examination, the its full function cannot be fathomed; however, many of the parts that make up this component are devices and materials that have come to be associated with alien weaponry. Galactic Science Corps scientists can only speculate what type of weapon could be built using components of this magnitude."

  • Aereons

"Aereons are a breed of alien never before encountered by X-COM. They appear to be a race of genetically engineered cyborgs. Hundreds of cybernetic implants suffuse the organic portion of their bodies and terminate in external connectors that link directly to built-in interface ports in the cockpits of alien fighters. The result of this marriage of biology and computer technology is that the Aereon's piloting abilities and response times are far superior to those of even the best non-Aereon pilot. ~Although their cybernetic implants are obviously their main strength, the Aereons mental and physical capabilities are also better than those of most other alien pilots. They are, by far, the most formidable and dangerous opponents X-COM pilots face in a dogfight situation. The one redeeming feature of these dangerous aliens is that they do not appear to possess inordinately high psionic abilities."

  • Ethereal

"Ever since they were encountered in the First Alien War, the mere sight of an Ethereal has struck fear into the hearts -- and minds -- of X-COM agents. Now, after nearly a century, we have once again come face to face with this formidable nemesis. ~When X-COM scientists first studied this species, it was clear that this creature was not engineered for planet-bound warfare. Now it is obvious what job the Ethereals were designed for; as pilots they are extremely adept, and their weapon and targeting skills are better than average. They are also fairly aggressive in their attacks in most situations. The biggest danger, however, is that the Ethereals' psionic capabilities are extremely high, and they are often able to use this ability to panic or gain control of X-COM pilots. This makes Ethereals very dangerous, especially to pilots with low psionic capabilities."

  • Muton

"The Muton race is familiar to X-COM as one of the most feared aliens from the First Alien War. As foot soldiers, Mutons were relentless and nearly impervious to most forms of weaponry. ~Muton pilots operating in the Frontier, although slightly different than the original specimens encountered, are essentially identical to those who plagued Earth nearly a century ago. The primary difference in this strain is heightened mental capacity, probably a necessary adaptation to allow Mutons to operate high-tech spacecraft. Despite this, Mutons are not nearly as formidable in the skies as they were on the ground. As pilots, they are average at best. They also lack all but the most basic psionic defensive abilities, and are unable to use psionic weaponry."

  • Psilord

"The Psilord is an abomination that has obviously been developed primarily for its mental capacity. This genetically engineered creature has psionic abilities that far exceed those of any alien species encountered to date. ~Unlike other alien species, Psilords tend to remain out of the main battle if they possibly can. They use their psionic abilities to bolster the fighting skills of all the other alien pilots in the battle. Whenever a Psilord is present at a battle, all alien pilots exhibit heightened prowess in both flying and weapon skills. In addition, Psilords seem to increase the alien pilots' ability to fight as a unified group. ~Although they seldom enter the fray of their own accord, Psilords are nevertheless formidable dogfight opponents, and downright deadly when their ships are equipped with psionic weaponry. "

  • Sectoid

"Of all the alien species encountered, the Sectoids are perhaps the most familiar. Reports of Sectoid sightings pre-date the first alien war, with documented encounters as early as 1948. ~Sectoid pilots in the Frontier are identical to Sectoids captured and studied during the First Alien War. As pilots, they use both their highly developed mental capacity and their superior psionic skills to good advantage, though their flying and marksmanship are strictly average. "


  • Wraith Type 1 Saucer

"Detailed examination of the hull and internal systems of the Wraith saucer has provided a great deal of information on the composition and operational capabilities of the latest generation of alien craft. The Wraith's weapons payload capacity is only slightly better than that of the X-1A Lightning II interceptor, but the "Wraith" is lighter, more agile, and capable of withstanding significantly more damage than its X-COM counterpart."

  • Spectre Type 2 Saucer

"The Spectre saucer represents a much greater threat than the smaller Wraith. Designed as a multi-purpose craft, the Spectre is equally good at dogfighting and attacking medium to heavy slow or stationary targets. This vessel's weapons and defensive capacity is superior to that of the Wraith, and comparable to that of the X-COM S-2 Firestar. Examination of this ship has opened a number of new avenues of research."

  • Phantasm Type 3 Saucer

"The Phantasm significantly out-guns any X-COM vessel, especially when it comes to beam weapons, thus making it a very serious threat. The role of this ship is primarily offensive -- most notably, it is frequently the vanguard of attacks against X-COM bases and Outposts. Although much of the technology used in this vessel can also be found in other alien vessel classes, there are several features unique to the Phantasm that could lead to advances in shielding, drive, and targeting systems."

  • Shade Fighter

"The Shade is a deadly departure from the standard saucer-based alien ship design. It is a fast and highly maneuverable ship that is armed to the teeth with all the latest alien weaponry. The Shade also employs new shielding technology unlike that found on any other type of alien vessel. Exclusively operated by Aereon pilots, Shades pose a significant threat in dogfight situations."

  • Spirit Alien Freighter

"The aliens' fleet of interstellar freighters is the lifeline of their economy. It seems that the aliens depend on their freighters just as X-COM does. This means that successful strikes against these ships can have a significant effect on the alien infrastructure. Aside from their outward appearance, the Spirit freighters are very similar to their X-COM counterparts. The major differences are a larger cargo capacity and slightly better hull integrity."

  • Alien Drone

"Alien Drones are tiny unmanned fighter craft that are often deployed by alien freighters as a defensive measure. Each Drone has its own guidance, propulsion, and weapons system. Once launched, Drones engage the nearest threatening target. In addition to their own internal control systems, each Drone is equipped with a small psionic receiver that allows the pilot that launched the Drones to control them. Once the launching vessel is destroyed, all Drones controlled by that ship's pilot switch over to independent operation. Once operating on their own, Drones are much less of a threat."

  • Alien Outpost

"Alien outposts are the backbone of all alien operations in the Frontier, accumulating raw materials and processing them into equipment and weapons for the alien war effort. These facilities are well-shielded. They possess no offensive weaponry, but are usually guarded by fighter squadrons. If we understand the alien's infrastructure correctly, the destruction of alien outposts could potentially place a major strain on the aliens' ability to effectively carry out their day-to-day activities."

  • Alien Mining Platform

"Alien mining platforms fulfill the same function as X-COM Ore Processing Plants. They possess minimal defensive capability, but are usually guarded by one or more fighter craft. While the loss of a mining platform is not as economically devastating as the loss of an outpost, mining platforms remain a viable target when attempting to slow alien production capabilities."


  • Central Pod

"Like X-COM bases, alien bases seem to use a modular construction design. All of the modules, or "pods", on an alien base are attached either to the huge central hub or to one of the dangling "tendrils" attached to it. Destruction of the hub ensures the destruction of the entire base."

  • Hangar Pods

"Analogous to the Hangar Modules on X-COM bases, each alien Hangar Pod houses up to three ships and the equipment needed to maintain them. Destruction of a Hangar Pod means the destruction of any ships inside the pod, and it leaves those ships currently in flight which are normally housed in that facility with no place to land and refuel. "

  • Hibernation Pods

"Whereas X-COM pilots are housed in relative luxury on their home bases, scans show that the aliens keep their pilots in suspended animation until needed. Each alien Hibernation Pod houses up to five pilots. Destruction of a Hibernation Pod kills all the alien beings housed therein."

  • Cargo Pod

"Like X-COM bases, alien bases have modular cargo storage areas that house all the equipment and supplies needed for base and ship operations. Destruction of a Cargo Pod destroys all weapons and equipment inside the pod and reduces the cargo capacity of the alien base."

  • Probe Launcher

"Like X-COM, the aliens appear to rely heavily on the information obtained from sensor probes. They also launch probes for a wide variety of other purposes. The destruction of an alien base's Probe Launchers inhibits the aliens' exploration abilities and prevents them from launching probes that might interfere with X-COM operations."

  • Data Receptor

"Aliens share their tactical and engineering data through a link to some sort of information web. This is not unlike the Downlink data system used by X-COM. This appears to be the most basic alien download device. Destruction of Data Receptors should slow the aliens' development of technology."

  • High-Speed Data Receptor

"This is an upgraded version of the basic Data Receptor used by the aliens to increase their technology base. Scans show that this version is capable of much faster data transfer than its predecessor."

  • Advanced Data Receptor

"This is the ultimate version of the aliens' Data Receptor technology we have yet discovered. GSC scientists confirm that it is capable of significantly faster uploads and downloads than the High-Speed Data Receptor."

  • Electroplasmic Shield Pod

"This alien shield generator is capable of producing a defensive field of the type generated by some of the less-powerful alien spacecraft. This is the most basic form of shield technology used by the aliens. Destruction of the Shield Pod leaves the base vulnerable to attack."

  • Trans-Dimensional Shield Pod

"Using a technology far superior to that of the Electroplasmic Shield Pod, the Trans-Dimensional version produces a much more powerful defensive field."

  • Sensor Pod

"The Sensor Pod is the most basic type of sensor/tracking system installed on alien bases. Based on the technology used in alien spacecraft sensors, this system is a great deal more powerful and accurate than basic X-COM base sensor systems. Destruction of an alien base's sensor pod should greatly reduce its targeting capability and weapons accuracy."

  • Advanced Sensor Pod

"The ultimate in alien detection technology, the Advanced Sensor Pod is capable of targeting and controlling every type of weapon they are known to possess. This system uses the same technology as the most advanced sensor/tracking systems installed in alien spacecraft."

  • ECM Projector

"This alien electromagnetic countermeasures (ECM) system has the potential to jam all X-COM missiles within a one kilometer range of an alien base. Destruction of a base's ECM projectors makes combat near the base much easier, and makes attacks on the base itself more effective."

  • Advanced ECM Projector

"Essentially a higher-powered version of the basic alien ECM Projector, the advanced version has twice the range and is generally more effective than its predecessor."

  • Programming Pod

"Alien pilots undergo a very detailed, very thorough learning ritual - but one that uses far different methods than X-COM training. Instead of mental and physical schooling, the aliens are genetically programmed with their skills. Each Programming Pod can "train" five pilots simultaneously. Destruction of a Programming Pod kills any aliens currently inside."

  • Repair Pod

"All alien base systems appear to be self-repairing. Nevertheless, some bases seem to enhance their self-repair capabilities through the use of Repair Pods. Scans show that these modules contain a number of computer sub-systems that dramatically increase the speed at which base systems repair themselves. Destruction of a base's Repair Pod should make attacks against the base much more effective."

  • Missile Pod

"Alien bases use defensive systems very similar to those used on X-COM bases. Missile Pods are capable of firing nearly any type of missile the aliens are known to possess. In a base attack scenario, it is recommended that you destroy as many offensive turrets as possible before attempting to attack other base targets."

  • Beam Pod

"Beam Pods provide alien bases with a powerful and reliable means of defense. Capable of using a wide variety of beam weapons, Beam Pods, in sufficient numbers, can make attacking an alien base very difficult indeed. In a base attack scenario, it is recommended that you destroy as many offensive turrets as possible before attempting to attack other base targets."

  • Communicator Pod

"Communicator Pods are used by the aliens to send orders to fighter squadrons assigned to each base. The destruction of a base's Communicator Pod has the potential to greatly reduce the effectiveness of alien fighter operations."

  • Tractor Pod

"Alien Tractor Pods are capable of projecting tractor beams with greater range and power than ship-mounted tractor beam generators."


  • Sensor Probe

"Sensor Probes are designed to be a low-cost alternative to sending ships out to explore unknown areas of space. Each probe is equipped with the best type of sensor equipment currently available. The modular design of the unit allows it to be upgraded with the advent of new technology. The detection range and total cost of each probe is dependent on the type of sensors carried. The travel range of the probe is limited to approximately .75 light years from its point of origin, and its operational life is limited to 4-6 weeks."

  • Hunter Probe

"Understanding of the compact Vector Control Thrusters used by alien craft has allowed GSC scientists to design an updated version of the Sensor Probes currently in use by X-COM. Like Sensor Probes, Hunter Probes are equipped with the most up-to-date sensor equipment available. They differ from Sensor Probes in that they use their thrusters to move through space on a preset course centered on their destination coordinates. This allows them to cover a much wider range of territory than standard Sensor Probes. These roving probes should aid greatly in the tracking of alien movements, as well as the discovery of alien outposts and bases. The one drawback is that their functional life span is slightly shorter than that of a Sensor Probe. Like other probes, the maximum travel range for the Hunter Probe is .75 light years from its point of origin."

  • Data Jammer Probe (Alien)

"Evidently, the aliens have determined the methods by which we accumulate our research data. This alien probe is designed to set up a electrostatic dampening field that prevents data reception over normal and hyper-dimensional channels. Luckily, the field generated by the probe is very localized, and is capable of affecting only one Downlink at a time. Although Marsec engineers can find no method of constructing a duplicate probe for X-COM use or developing countermeasures to prevent the probe's effects, the energy signature of the device is now known, and all sensor systems have been modified to immediately detect its presence."

  • Sensor Probe (Alien)

"Rather than risk their expensive fighters for exploration purposes, the aliens make use of long-range sensor probes to map star systems and pinpoint the locations of X-COM bases and other human installations. Thanks to the close-range reconnaissance of one of these probes in a combat situation, all X-COM sensor systems are now tuned to identify alien Sensor Probes that enter scanning range. It is in X-COM's interests to eliminate these probes as soon as they are detected. "

  • Alien Explosive Mine

"Alien Explosive Mines are similar in function to the naval mines used on 20th century Earth. Once an enemy ship enters the mine's detection range, the mine detonates with a powerful Elerium/Cobalt nuclear explosion. Detailed analysis of this object has allowed The GSC to modify the sensors of X-COM craft to identify Alien Explosive Mines in battle."

  • Alien Beam Mine

"Arguably the most versatile and effective mine in the alien arsenal, an Alien Beam Mine is capable of utilizing a wide variety of beam weapons. The weapons are targeted by a miniature version of the targeting systems used by fighter craft, and the mine's self contained power source can power its weapons almost indefinitely. Although sensors cannot detect the type of weapon carried by the mines, ship detection systems have now been modified to identify Alien Beam Mines when encountered."

  • Alien Missile Mine

"Alien Missile Mines use miniature versions of the targeting sensors found in fighter craft to actively scan for enemy targets. Once a target is acquired, the mine fires a missile from its payload and begins scanning for another target. Versatile and deadly, Alien Missile Mines are capable of firing virtually any type of missile the aliens possess. Another deadly twist is that, once their missile payload is depleted, Alien Missile Mines turn into explosive mines which explode when an enemy ship wanders too close. X-COM ship sensors have now been tuned to identify Alien Missile Mines in combat."

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