This mission is not considered part of Strangereal canon, and therefore has no corresponding operation page. For the canon variant of this mission, see Standoff in the Skies II.

Standoff in the Skies I is a mission in Ace Combat X: Skies of Deception.


Eugene Solano: I'll now go over the details of our mission to retake Santa Elva, a city vital to the enemy's transportation network. If we succeed in retaking the city, our capital Griswall will be within reach. It seems that the damage the Gleipnir bore from our attack over Terminus Island is being repaired here in Santa Elva. The previous attack was proof enough of the ability of individual fighters to effectively strike at the Gleipnir, so all ground forces that run the risk of becoming a target will hold their position here.

Enemy ground forces are most likely prepared for any kind of assault, but with the Gleipnir unable to fly, now is the time to strike. Even the Gleipnir wouldn't risk killing their own troops stationed at the base by firing the short range cannon. It looks like there's no escape for them this time, sir.


The player begins at the southern area of the map, with two Mirage 2000D aircraft approaching from the front. The damage sustained by the Gleipnir during the events of The Midnight Sun means that the warship cannot launch Shock Wave Ballistic Missiles, leaving it only with basic onboard weapons to defend itself. Various anti-air vehicles are strewn throughout Santa Elva, along with a small number of enemy interceptors if the Mirages have not been destroyed first.

Mission Update 1

After the Gleipnir's defense weapons are disabled, a short confrontation will ensure between the Gleipnir's captain and her crew, leading it to turn upside down in an attempt to fire the Shock Cannon. The time between the maneuver and the weapon firing is extremely short, and will likely kill the player unless they position themselves beneath the ship.

The Gleipnir will fire the Shock Cannon twice before alternating between normal and inverted flight. The cannon's firing disc will only suffer damage is struck directly in the center, forcing one to time their attacks between the Shock Cannon's activation. The weapon's kill zone is limited to a certain radius around the Gleipnir, and will not cause damage if the player is at a sufficient distance.

S Rank

An S rank in this mission is determined solely by final scoring. Destroying all targets on the map, including the special enemy units amounts to a total of over 12,000 points, enough to award one with an S rank.

Special units

  • Ace unit: MiG-29A Frost - Spawns after the trio of F-2As in the first stage of the mission are shot down.
  • Star unit: Vehicle - Appears in east Santa Elva and attempts to escape the city through a bridge. Spawns after the Gleipnir begins to use the Shock Cannon.


Eugene Solano: The Gleipnir is no more! Shortly after out victory, ground forces successfully retook Santa Elva. The Santa Elva victory is fantastic news, but even more so, the defeat of the Gleipnir is sure to boost morale and give us a strategic advantage in this war. Next we liberate the capitol, Griswall. We’ve already come this far, sir.

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