Video Game: X-Wing Alliance

A Star Wars space fighter sim released for the PC in 1999 by LucasArts.

While X-Wing and Tie Fighter had covered epic campaigns, their successor X-Wing vs. TIE Fighter had initially not included a campaign at all, and when was put in place for the expansion, it was deliberately set in an out-of-the-way part of the galaxy to avoid impinging on the main events of the film trilogy. It was not until now that LucasArts decided to once more cover the epic storyline, now from a different angle.

There's No Campaign for the Wicked as you play only as the character Ace Azzameen, halting the AFGNCAAP attitude of the previous games (the X-Wing and TIE Fighter protagonists were named, but only in the manual). Ace is the youngest scion of the Azzameen family of traders, some of whose members are sympathetic to the Rebel Alliance. Their enemies are the Viraxo family, who similarly have ties with the Empire. Your father has decided you're old enough to stop laying in sims and start helping out with the family business, sending you on training and trade missions under the watchful eyes of your siblings (neatly shoehorning in the tutorial), but soon the Galactic Civil War starts impinging. Though your father tries to keep the family neutral, the Azzameens end up getting dragged into the war, their home station is taken by the Empire, and Ace joins the Rebels as a starfighter pilot.

The rest of the campaign consists of battles mostly with ties to the film trilogy or at least the Expanded Universe, with the occasional family mission. It culminates in the Battle of Endor, at which you fly the Millennium Falcon.

X-Wing Alliance allowed a far greater range of craft to be piloted than previous games, especially X-Wing Vs. Tie Fighter, and had an extensive multiplayer mode.


Contains examples of:

  • Achilles' Heel: Shield generators on various larger craft.
  • Artificial Stupidity: The capture of the Suprosa is made exponentially harder by your absolutely stupid wingmates. Despite DIRECT ORDERS to only use their non-damaging ion cannons, they just blast away at the thing with their standard lasers. Most of the difficulty stems from trying to disable it before they destroy it.
  • Big Damn Hero: Your father's old friend Dunari, who arrives just in time to pull you out of the fire when your Uncle betrays you. The player character Ace Azzameen arguably also counts.
  • Breakable Weapons: Turrets can be destroyed by shooting them. This also applies to the turrets on the ships you fly in family missions, as you can find out by fighting said ships in Skirmish mode.
  • Collision Damage: Tends to do more harm to the player than to the opponents you are likely to hit every so often; not only does it damage your shields, but it will send your spacecraft into a dangerous spin, briefly granting your opponents enough time to try to take you out before you regain control.
  • Coming-of-Age Story: At the outset of the story you're the "kid" brother of your family, who has only begun to do your part for the family business as a freighter pilot; after witnessing the murder of your father and brother and the near-destruction of your family's enterprise at the hands of the Empire, you and your surviving family must seek refuge with the Rebels where you take up the reins as a starfighter pilot. All throughout the campaign you must not only brave the dangers of the war but also fight for the survival of your family, facing death and betrayal along the way. By the end, you are a veteran combat ace who has won the admiration of the entire Rebel Alliance, ultimately bearing witness to the final defeat of the Empire at Endor. Even your older sister has come to realize her "little brother" isn't so little anymore.
  • Cool Ship: This is Star Wars, don't be so surprised. The YT-2000 (the Otana) is an introduction to this great tradition.
  • Deadly Training Area: The salvage yard, and it is awesome.
    • Played with in a later "family" mission, when the protagonist emerges from hyperspace in the middle of an Imperial training area.
  • Deadpan Snarker: Emon, Emkay, and Aeron all have flashes of this.
  • Deus ex Machina: Several times; particularly notable is the appearance of a civilian dreadnought that aids the Rebellion in retrieving a Rebel officer carrying the plans for the Death Star II after his vessel is captured by the Empire. We never do learn who their allegiance was to aside from the fact they were on our side.
  • Doomed by Canon: Your command ship, the Liberty; the fact that you serve aboard her through the vast majority of the campaign makes her inevitable demise at the hands of the Death Star as seen in the film hit home all the harder.
    • And naturally, the Executor and the Death Star also count.
  • Escape Pod: The first in this particular series to feature them in-game. They play an important role in the plots of their respective campaigns on at least two occasions.
  • Evil Uncle: Uncle Antan turns out to be working for the Empire.
  • Face-Heel Turn: Again, Uncle Antan.
  • Failure Is the Only Option: In the family mission where the Empire ambushes the Rebels just as your family is delivering the bacta to their secret facility; even if you somehow save all of the fleeing Rebel personnel, thus achieving a 100% success rating, you cannot save your father and brother. Their transport does not count and will inevitably fall to enemy fire. Even if you actually manage to prevent its destruction in-game, they are still declared dead from that point onward for the rest of the game.
  • Gameplay and Story Segregation: In several missions, it's possible to destroy certain ships that the story doesn't intend to have destroyed. The result will be that the ship you blew into tiny bits will show up again in a subsequent mission completely intact.
  • Hair-Trigger Temper: Your brother, Emon.
  • Heel-Face Turn: Zaletta, who offered his services to the Alliance after becoming disillusioned with the Empire he once served.
  • Heroic Mime: A step up from AFGNCAAP, but all you really know of the player character is from the context of his family.
  • It's Personal: The usual nature of the family missions pitting you against the Viraxo, who have launched a vicious vendetta against your family in the hopes of expanding their own business ventures without the threat of competition.
  • Jerkass: Your Uncle Antan at times, given his tendency to constantly butt heads with the rest of your family for supporting the Rebellion, which makes his inevitably betrayal later something less of a shock.
  • Karma Houdini: Uncle Antan after his betrayal.
  • Killed Off for Real: You know things are real bad when the ship your father and older brother are aboard succumbs to the Imperials.
  • Lured Into a Trap: It being Star Wars, this is a common occurrence throughout the campaign. Aside from Endor, other notable instances include your failed assassination attempt on K'Armyn Viraxo and of course, your Uncle's betrayal.
  • Manchurian Agent: Kupalo, your commanding officer on the Liberty after he was captured on Hoth and subsequently rescued by his Rebel comrades, unaware of his mental conditioning until after he betrays the Alliance much later. Sadly, it is remarked upon that he had little chance of making a full recovery from what the Empire had done to him.
  • Mighty Glacier: The Super Star Destroyer has insane shields and health. It takes more than half an hour to kill it even if you destroy its shield generators first.
  • Moral Dissonance: The Azzameens, although at first portrayed as innocent good guys just trying to run a shipping company, prove themselves several times to be just as trigger-happy and blood-thirsty as their rivals the Viraxo. The first example being the protagonist and his brother attacking and destroying several Viraxo starfighters they meet by chance, killing whatever pilots who do not manage to eject from their ships in time, as punishment for two Viraxo ships firing on them in the first mission.
  • No Campaign for the Wicked: No Empire campaign.
  • Off Model: In the cutscenes most of the characters, most especially the Imperial officers are noticeably awkward in their facial expressions; this is due to a combination of poor rendering based on the same reused human models and poor lip-synching.
  • Oh, Crap: Several instances. Two happen during the battle of Endor ("It's a trap!" and "That thing's operational!"), and a host of smaller ones happen before that. A memorable one involves your ship getting out of hyperspace in an Imperial weapons testing range being used by five Star Destroyers due to your robotic co-pilot entering the wrong coordinates.
    "What the—EMKAY?! WHERE THE HELL ARE WE?!"
  • Plot Armor: Aside from your father and older brother earlier in the game, nobody else in your family is scripted to die in-game; if they do, Mission Failed.
    • A more literal example in some missions is that certain ships piloted by important characters (Luke Skywalker, Wedge Antilles) are actually immune to destruction. They will take damage to the point where they have 0% shields and 1% hull strength remaining, but any subsequent damage they take won't register.
  • Recycled Premise: A Rebel corvette is captured by the Empire on its mission to deliver the technical specifications of the new Death Star to the Alliance and the only way to prevent their capture is by escape pod? What are the odds?
    • Also counts as a case of Same Story, Different Names; Said corvette is instead named the Razor, and is captured by the Star Destroyer Avenger.
  • Robot Buddy: Emkay.
  • Sacrificial Lamb: A non-human example; in one family mission, your sister's spacecraft the Selu is disguised as a Viraxo-owned vessel as part of a mission to frame the rival company for illegal smuggling in retaliation for a similar crime committed against the Azzameens. The Viraxo end up disabling the Selu, forcing her to abandon ship as you destroy the craft to prevent the Empire from discovering the truth.
  • Shout-Out: At one point you end up surrounded by an Imperial fleet whose ships' names are all taken from The Thrawn Trilogy, implied to be Thrawn's personal flotilla. There are plenty of smaller ones, including blink-and-you'll-miss-it appearances by Boba Fett's ship and the famous smuggler ship Wild Karrde.
    • Additionally, the Imperial Admiral you see being informed of the Rebels' sabotage of the TIE Experimental project is none other than your old foe, Admiral Zaarin.
    • One of the secondary enemy factions in this game is Black Sun, the powerful crime syndicate ruled by Prince Xizor, from Shadows of the Empire. One of the levels also has you flying alongside Luke and Dash Rendar to capture the freighter Suprosa and steal information regarding the second Death Star.
    • In the ambush of the Rebel Hospital, the two Corellian Corvettes on station are named Coen and Farrelly.
  • Space Pirates: Like TIE Fighter, seemingly everywhere in this game.
  • Subsystem Damage: Ion weaponry used on enemy ships (and your own) gradually picks away at the target's SYS percentage, with the affected systems ranging from minor (such as radar or targeting not working) to critical (I.E. "lol now you can't turn") as more SYS damage is taken.
    • In addition, as long as a given ship's SYS stays above 0%, the affected systems will eventually recover given enough time, with the repair time estimates appearing in the Ship Status HUD menu.
    • Also occurs to your own ship if you don't have some form of invulnerability enabled as you take excessive hull damage, but since such situations are usually followed shortly by death it's less obvious if you aren't monitoring Ship Status.
  • The Paralyzer: Taken a step further from previous games with the new Ion Pulse warheads, which do the work of Ion Cannons in barely half the time.
  • The Siege: A frequent occurrence throughout the game, notably several instances in which an Imperial interdictor pins down you and your allies to prevent you from completing your objectives. Another notable instance is the Imperial ambush on a Rebel hospital base that leads to the deaths of your father and brother, as well as later when your Uncle hands you over to the Empire.
    • Additionally, the game's climax is none other than the Battle of Endor.
  • Trigger Happy: Emon and especially Emkay live by this trope.
  • Trophy Room: Virtually every plot mission rewards you with a memento adorning your quarters on board of Otana.
  • Video Game Cruelty Potential: Sometimes when you smash an enemy ship, someone on it survives. For smaller craft like fighters, you'll find the pilot drifting in space in their sealed flight suit; in the case of pretty much everything from small cargo transports up, it's in the form of an escape pod of one form or another. Neither of these class of craft can in any way hamper your ability to survive or succeed- they can't attack, they don't block weapons fire for their allies, they don't even have shields. Nevertheless, you can pull them up on your targeting system and actively try to destroy them for absolutely no reason at all.
  • What Happened to the Mouse?: What became of Uncle Antan after his failed attempt to betray you to the Empire prior to the Battle of Endor? Although it is clear he now has a price on his head, little to no mention is given on his final fate or how your surviving family intends to bring him to justice.
  • Wide-Eyed Idealist: Your father Tomaas; although by nature a cautious man, he is an enthusiastic sympathizer of the Rebellion, much to the chagrin of your much more cynical and ultimately treacherous uncle, who decried his idealism as a threat to their business. In the family campaign, you and you siblings are charged with ensuring the success of a deal Tomaas and your older brother cut with the black market, purchasing lifesaving bacta for the Rebellion's wounded from Hoth. Even after thwarting an attempt on their lives, Tomaas remains confident that they can brave the dangers posed in ensuring the success of the supplement.
    • In the next mission? He and your brother are killed by the Empire when they ambush the exchange. And you and your surviving family are now on the run.