What follows in this blog, and many blogs to come, are the actual stories of the missions of Team GIO in XCOM, as they were played by me, foolish mistakes and all. Check the end of the story for past episodes. If you enjoy the series and would like to see yourself as part of the team, let me know. Also, the adventures can be followed in real-time, though heavily watered down on twitter via @brianseavey and #XCOMGIO. What follows is Episode II: Meteor Falling. 

Operation Falling Crown
Remote Woodland Area
Date: Redacted

The Team sat unwinding in the barracks common area, celebrating their victory from Operation Lost Hydra and the word that Scientists were making headway on some new gear based on the artifacts they had recovered. Chris sat alone, trying to hide the beer he had "taken as evidence" from the bar in Buenos Ares the night before, Jack and Saint were discussing the potential hallucinogenic properties of Toad from Mario Brothers. Ace13 relaxed on the couch, laughing occasionally to the off-the-wall comments from Jack and Saint.

The attention of the team was drawn away suddenly by a smiling woman standing next to them with a huge smile, unable to sit still and obviously giddy to be in their presence. "Hi everybody, my name is Jeremina Mojomonkey12, I'm a new recruit!"

The group quietly groaned and Ace rolled her eyes and turned to the group saying "And that is my sign to leave, I have a couple days off, enjoy." With that, Squaddie Ace was out the door before any further words could be said.

Shortly after Ace's departure, sirens kicked on and activity started buzzing around the Situation Room and the Team ran to join the fray and see what was going on. Commander Noobtubin8er stood around the holographic globe, monitoring the aerial combat of an interceptor and what appeared to be a large Frisbee. With luck, the interceptor shot the ship down, though it sustained heavy damage itself. Cheers broke out throughout the room, but the Commander was all business. Turning to Chris, Jack, and Saint, Commander Noobtubin8er ordered "I want the three of you in a Skyranger clearing that crash site for our research teams and I want you there yesterday. You are short one on your team, so take the new recruit, Mojomonkey12 with you. Watch her back; she's new and a little jumpy."

The Team ran to the hanger, gearing up as they ran. The engineering team offered them new ballistic vests for protection, but with them they would not be able to take med kits and grenades, so they passed on them. Moments later, they were in the air and on their way to the remote woods of Germany.

The Skyranger hastily dropped The Team about 100 meters south of the crash site and immediately departed the battlefield, awaiting the all clear call.

The Team wasted no time, forming a line and taking the high ground whenever possible and moving north slowly towards the flames and the crash site, pausing frequently and maintaining overwatch positions. Rookie Mojomonkey 12 and Squaddie Gardner covered the east flank while Squaddies Saint and Mrkvicka covered the west flank.

The Team's dispersement at the opening of Operation Falling Crown

A short distance from the drop zone Gardner shifted west, taking the highest vantage point on the field, hoping to ID any targets with his sniper rifle. Upon reaching the top with heavy cover, Gardner ID's two targets in the distance to the northwest, both sectoids who had also seen him move into position and were now taking cover. As Gardner had not yet adapted to the weight of his sniper rifle, he switched to his pistol while calling out the identified tangos and fired a round at the closest sectoid, wounding it in the shoulder.

Not wanting to miss any action, Squaddie Mrkvicka moved into a low cover position to the north with available shots on the two known targets and fired his assault rifle at one of them, missing by a few inches.

Responding to the aggression, one of the sectoids took mind control over the other, giving it added power and ability to take damage. The second, and now stronger sectoid, moved to flank the team by moving to the east and took aim and fired at Gardner, perched on his high ground. Tucking into cover tightly, the shots from the sectoid hit the rock cover, leaving Gardner unscathed from the barrage.

Identifying the flanking tactic of the sectoid, Chris shifted to the north and opened fire on the sectoid pinning Gardner down, killing it.

With his flank now clear, Squaddie Gardner curled out of cover and lined up a headshot on the commanding sectoid, killing it in a mass of alien brain matter...the green mist.

Knowing the sound of combat would have alerted any other enemy combatants to their presence, The Team regrouped in the center of the battlefield. A short distance to the north, the team spotted a glowing wall, possibly a doorway to the unidentified spacecraft as well as a broken opening to the east of the glowing wall and a clear wall on the craft to the west of the glowing segment. The Team saw no sign of movement inside the craft, but approached cautiously, doubtful the two sectoids had operated the craft on their own.

Squaddie Mrkvicka and Rookie Mojomonkey12 moved up an took cover in front of the glowing wall, covering any movement out of the possible doorway or from the west where they had already taken contact with the two sectoids. At the same time, Squaddies Gardner and Saint shifted east, covering the damaged opening of the craft and the eastern woods.

The Team takes up positions to enter the downed alien craft

While moving to their positions, two sectoids moved from cover and could be seen through the clear wall by Rookie Mojomonkey and a glowing form took the shape of an unknown alien enemy, who immediately took cover near the damaged opening of the craft.

Wasting no time, Rookie Mojomonkey opened fire on the sectoids inside the craft, wounding one. With no room Squaddies Gardner and Saint fired on the unknown alien, but to no avail as the enemy was in heavy cover and the chances of hitting were less than 25%. Squaddie Mrkvicka was torn, the new enemy had unknown capabilities and might be able to kill their entire team and the Rookie was outnumbered. Deciding the Rookie had the situation under control, Mrkvicka shifted to a better shooting position and fired on the unknown enemy, missing.

Saint tries to eliminate the unknown enemy target

The sectoids and Rookie Mojomonkey exchanged fire but the Rookie could only wound the enemy and not attain a kill shot and the other sectoid had taken mind control of the other, offering bonuses to healing. The unknown target held its own, but could not hit its targets. Mrkvicka and Gardner returned fire, missing their target again, the firefight was looking grim.

With thoughts of heroism on his mind, Saint shifted further east, trying to gain a better angle on his target and opened fire. His shots hit the wall of the craft, disintegrating the wall and leaving the unknown target entirely vulnerable to the onslaught from The Team. But Gardner, from his southern position saw from his position what this had done. Before he could call out a warning, the sectoids fired on and wounded the Rookie and the unknown target now had a wide open shot at the Rookie's back as the wall of the craft no longer divided it from the Rookie. It unloaded its alien weapon at the unsuspecting Rookie, who crumpled to the ground.

The destroyed wall, we have KIA

Gardner screamed in fury and raised his sniper rifle, aiming at the unknown enemy's head and fired a killing round, disintegrating the unknown target. Markvicka ran to his teammate's side, hoping to administer aid via first aid kit, but it was already over, Rookie Jeremina Mojomonkey12 was dead. Mrkvicka picked up his radio "This is XCOM GIO, we have a KIA..."

Chris, protecting his fallen commrade

Saint gathered his fury and dashed for the eastern opening in the ship giving him solid line of sight on the enemy sectoids, but he did not have time to open fire as the sectoids fired on Squaddie Mrkvicka, barely missing as he radioed in the death of their teammate.

Noticing his ammo was nearly gone, Saint took a deep breath and aimed at the commanding sectoid who still had control over the other sectoid enemy and fired, blasting the enemy back a couple of feet and killing the connected sectoid at the same time.

The team finished their sweep of the alien craft and radioed the all clear for the Skyranger. The Team carefully placed the Rookie's lifeless body into a body bag while the science team excitedly went over every inch of the spacecraft. Dr Vahlen was giddy at the sight of the technology, nearly stepping on the body bag. Mrkvicka moved to punch the doctor, but was held back by Gardner. "Another time...another time."

Saint calls in the All Clear

The team returned to the base in silence.

In the hanger, Commander Noobtubin8er took The Team aside. "Rookie Mojomonkey12 did what she felt she needed to. You did your jobs, but we cannot control everything on the battlefield. For now, mourn the dead. Also, while it is no consolation, you are all three being promoted to the rank of Corporal. Watch yourselves out there."

In the distance, the sound of bagpipes could be heard.


Episode I: Pilot

Stay tuned for the ongoing adventures of Team GIO in XCOM. And remember, you could be a part of the team too... 

Current Team Status 

GIO Namesake






GIO Saint




Jack Gardner

Jack Gardner




Chris Mrkvicka

Chris Mrkvicka





Jeremina Mojomonkey12





GIO Ace13




Daniel Jones

Daniel Jones


Joyful Penguin


Dean AKA Born4This


Jolt the Cynic


Kyle Wadsworth