30 May 2014 – 02 June 2014
Suspicious Shipments was a series of Alerts in mid-2014 with lucrative rewards and a foreshadowing of what was to come.
On 30 May (Friday), the Tenno received an inbox message from the Lotus.
Over the past several days I have detected several Corpus vessels travelling way outside normal shipping routes. Normally, this would not be cause for concern, but these ships are heavily armoured and flying dark. My long-range scans are coming back scrambled. Someone wants to keep these ships hidden.
I suspect troop movements or worse. I will alert you the next time one of these ships is detected. Make sure it does not reach its destination and salvage anything of value you find along the way.
Over the course of the next three days, 28 Alerts appeared, all with the title “Suspicious Shipment”. A few minutes prior to each Alert, red text would appear in the chat interface indicating the upcoming mission: “Tenno operatives are detecting suspicious Corpus activity near [planet]. Stand by for their signal.”
The missions were all level 15-25 Exterminate missions aboard the Corpus Ship tileset. The enemies – standard Corpus units – exhibited a hidden damage multiplier, increasing the difficulty of the mission. The Tenno received instructions from the Lotus, along with transmissions from Alad V.
(upon mission start) Lotus: “This vessel appears to be part of a larger operation. Its purpose remains unclear, but the threat is obvious. Do not let this ship reach its destination. Eliminate the crew.”
Alad V: “Well, look who finally showed up. I was wondering how long it would take you to find my little… operation.”
(variant) Alad V: “What’s that? You thought I was dead? Ha, that’s cute. Nothing but rumors and exaggeration, I’m afraid. Though to be honest, times have been tough, what with you trying to kill me and all. Hmph.”
(variant) Alad V: “As it turns out, you Tenno aren’t the only ones with nine lives. I know how many I have left. How about you, Tenno?”
In his transmissions, Alad V appeared to be somewhat Infested, with purple growths on one side of his body and mutating the collar around his neck.
Lotus: “I was not expecting such a large force. Pace yourself.”
Lotus: “Where is Alad V getting all these troops? He is up to something.”
Lotus: “It looks like Alad V has a small battalion guarding this ship. Keep fighting. There’s a lot more resistance to come.”
On occasion, one of the doors in the ship would not open until the Lotus hacked it remotely, a process that took up to 60 seconds to complete.
(upon approaching door, variant) Lotus: “My scans show this door will be impassable without outside intervention. Access the portal so that I can hack it remotely.”
(upon approaching door, variant) Lotus: “This door is using an advanced locking mechanism. I will have to open it remotely.”
(upon approaching door, variant) Lotus: “Hold tight while I hack this door.”
(upon approaching door, variant) Lotus: “This will take a moment. Watch your back.”
(after the hack is complete, variant) Lotus: “The door is open. Get moving.
(after the hack is complete, variant) Lotus: “Done. You may proceed.”
During the mission, the Tenno would come across a small room they would have to traverse, containing glass enclosures with Technocyte specimens. Sometimes the glass was broken, with the Infested biomass spilling out. Corpus Crewmen could be seen in various stages of assimilation, including one who was trapped to the waist, flailing around helplessly. In some cases, even a Zanuka proxy was seen embedded in the Infested mass.
(upon discovering the Infested room, variant) Alad V: “Tenno! Tenno! You’re not supposed to be in here! You’re going to ruin the surprise!”
(upon discovering the Infested room, variant) Alad V: “What a mess! YOU! Careful with the new merchandise!”
(upon discovering the Infested room, variant) Alad V: [sigh] “Well, I had hoped to give you a more grand introduction to my new venture. But, this will have to do.”
(upon discovering the Infested room, variant) Alad V: “Recent events have led me to diversify my business. Biotics are such an underappreciated sector. The Corpus Board wants nothing to do with them, but I disagree. I think they’re the future. Your future, Tenno.”
After this point, Infested enemies would begin to spawn alongside the Corpus.
(upon killing all enemies, variant) Lotus: “No further life forms detected.”
(upon killing all enemies, variant) Lotus: “Other than you, I can’t detect a single lifeform. Let’s get out of here.”
(upon killing all enemies, variant) Alad V: [laughs] “Have you guessed my business plan yet? Well, do not fret. You will find out soon enough.”
(upon killing all enemies, variant) Alad V: “I must say, I will miss this ship, but there are more where it came from, and, heh, I can assure you, you won’t find them all.”
There was no event-wide reward besides those given out for completing the Alerts, which were well above the normal reward tier for Alerts. Below are listed all 28 Alert missions and their rewards.
Undine, Sedna: Argon crystal
Cerberus, Pluto: 150.000 cr
Saxis, Eris: Forma
Lua, Earth: 10x rank 5 Fusion Core
Metis, Jupiter: Orokin Catalyst
Epimetheus, Saturn: Forma blueprint
Augustus, Mars: 300 oxium
Valefor, Europa: Orokin Catalyst blueprint
Setebos, Uranus: Orokin Reactor
Thalassa, Neptune: 175.000 cr
Rusalka, Sedna: Cosmic Spectre
Hall, Phobos: Orokin Reactor blueprint
Lares, Mercury: 4 Orokin cell
Histo, Eris: 10x rank 5 Fusion Core
Linea, Venus: Orokin Catalyst
Thon, Ceres: 200.000 cr
Eurasia, Earth: Orokin Catalyst blueprint
Acheron, Pluto: Orokin Reactor blueprint
Adrastea, Jupiter: Forma blueprint
Spear, Mars: Forma
Armaros, Europa: 300 oxium
Mimas, Saturn: Cosmic Spectre
Monolith, Phobos: Orokin Reactor
Cressida, Uranus: 175.000 cr
Phithale, Sedna: 4 Orokin cell
Mariana, Earth: 10x rank 5 Fusion Core
Thon, Ceres: Argon crystal
Psoro, Eris: 150.000 cr
After the Alerts were concluded, the Lotus sent the Tenno another inbox message.
A New Threat Revealed
Unfortunately, my suspicions have proved warranted. We now know that Alad V is up to something and it involves the Infested. Your attacks on his shipments will have set him back, but the Origin System is a vast place and I fear some of his vessels escaped detection.
For now we must wait and prepare. When Alad V makes his next move, you must be ready. The real battle is yet to come.
The Alerts foreshadowed Operation: Breeding Grounds, which occurred later that month. The Infested laboratory room seen in the Alerts was a part of the Infested Ship tileset, which was released along with Operation: Breeding Grounds and can now be encountered on regular missions that incorporate that tileset.