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"Stick with Trigger and you'll make it."
Tabloid[1]

Trigger is a male Osean Air Defense Force pilot, a member of the Long Range Strategic Strike Group and former member of Mage Squadron. Following his alleged murder of former Osean President Vincent Harling, he was reassigned to an Osean Air Force penal unit, Spare Squadron. He later became the leader of Strider Squadron in the LRSSG.

A renowned and feared pilot, his actions throughout the Lighthouse War earned him the nickname "Three Strikes" by those on both sides of the conflict. His accomplishments include playing a key role in defending Stonehenge, destroying Arsenal Bird Justice, shooting down two ADF-11F Ravens, defeating Mimic Squadron, sinking the Alicorn, and besting Mihaly A. Shilage in a dogfight, while the aforementioned Erusean ace was piloting an X-02S Strike Wyvern.

He is the player character in Ace Combat 7: Skies Unknown. His personal emblem is an orange-haired wolf clutching a revolver in its jaws.[2]

Biography

Early life

By May 2019, Trigger was reassigned to Mage Squadron under the request of its squadron leader, Clown, who needed a replacement wingman.[3]

Lighthouse War

Serving the IUN

On May 15, Trigger was deployed alongside the rest of the Fort Grays Island Air Base Squadron, to defend Fort Grays Air Base from incoming Erusean bomber formations. During the engagement, he managed to shoot down Captain Huang Xuan Tai of the Erusean Air Force.[3]

Two days later, the IUN deployed Mage and Golem squadrons to recapture an airfield in Scofields Plateau as part of Operation Eastern Wind. During the operation, Trigger managed to shoot down Joe Barker[4] and developed a form of rivalry with his ally, Brownie.[5]

F-16C Arsenal Bird Flyby

Trigger engaging Arsenal Bird Liberty over the Chopinburg Rainforest

On May 30, Mage Squadron partook in a two-front offensive, coinciding with a second attack on Farbanti. As the operation progressed, Erusea deployed Arsenal Bird Liberty to regain the control of the airspace over Chopinburg. Following the loss of Skeleton Squadron, Mage and Golem were tasked with taking up the rear guard and covering the retreat of Gargoyle Squadron. Ultimately, Trigger managed to shoot down the majority of the MQ-101s, but was unable to prevent Brownie's death at the hands of a orange-winged Su-30SM. Following the battle, Trigger returned to Fort Grays Island.[6]

On June 6, after infiltrating the Erusean radar network surrounding the International Space Elevator, Trigger destroyed the anti-air emplacements, allowing Sea Goblin to land and conduct a rescue operation for former Osean President Vincent Harling. As Mother Goose One was in flight, the aircraft was shot down in the confusion, leading many to believe Trigger was responsible for killing Harling.[7]

Transfer to the 444th

After returning to base following Operation Lighthouse Keeper, Trigger was court martialed and found guilty by the International Union Peacekeeping Force. He was subsequently transferred to the 444th Air Base.[8]

F-15C MiG-29A Destruction Flyby

Trigger defending the 444th Air Base

Now as a member of Spare Squadron, Trigger was deployed in Zapland on July 1, as part of an effort to make the Erusean Forces believe that the decoy 444th Air Base was an active military installation. During the mission, Trigger shot down most of the Erusean bombers and Sebastian Koch. Prior to the operation, multiple members of Spare, and AWACS Bandog, placed bets on whether Trigger would die during the mission. After Trigger returned to base, Bandog mentioned that Trigger cost him "a lot of money".[8]

On July 4, he participated in Operation One Pair, which aimed to weaken a large Erusean base situated in Roca Roja prior to an assault to be carried out by the main Osean force. During the battle, Trigger shot down a number of MQ-99s and ended up destroying large portions of the base.[9] Eight days later, he participated in Operation Two Pairs, assisting both Cyclops and Strider squadrons retreat from Yinshi Valley. Following the arrival of Sol Squadron, Trigger was engaged by Mihaly A. Shilage, who he engaged in a dogfight before Sol retreated due to poor weather conditions.[10]

Spare Squadron Formation

Spare Squadron forming up around Trigger

Trigger was deployed on two more operations in late July, including Operation Three of a Kind, where he aided in crippling Erusean drone fuel supplies at Artiglio Port,[1] and Operation Flush, where he assisted in crippling an Erusean radar network situated on the Waiapolo Mountains. During the latter operation, the squadron was engaged by F/A-18F Super Hornet drones which were faking Osean IFF signals. Spare Squadron then formed up on Trigger, allowing them to distinguish between friend and foe, before shooting down all the drones.[11]

Following displays of Trigger's loyalty, the Osean General Staff Office began to suspect that he did not actually kill former President Harling.[12] On August 5, Trigger and Count were selected by Colonel D. McKinsey for an escort mission to Bulgurdarest. After arriving at over the country, they were engaged by an ADFX-10, which Trigger promptly shot down as Cyclops Squadron entered the airspace.[12]

Transfer to the LRSSG

After landing at Bulgurdarest, Trigger and Count's accomplishments were acknowledged by the Long Range Strategic Strike Group's unit commander, Wiseman, who then arranged for the both of them to be transferred to the LRSSG.[12]

Trigger was later reassigned to Strider Squadron and led the squadron on August 10, during Operation Siren's Song. During the operation, the members of Strider came to respect their new leader as he greatly assisted in sinking the Njord Fleet and crippling the Erusean Royal Navy platforms at Snider's Top.[13]

Nine days later, Trigger participated in the defense of Stonehenge, as it prepared to shoot down Arsenal Bird Liberty. As the railgun was unable to fire due to its targeting system being compromised by Erusean agents, Trigger and Wisemen attacked the Arsenal Bird's main propellers, reducing its speed enough to allow for Stonehenge to successfully land a shot and destroy it.[13]

On September 2, Trigger was deployed to Sierraplata, alongside the LRSSG and Osean bombers. During Operation Magic Spear, he helped to destroy Erusean IRBM silos and shot down ace pilot Owen Corwin.[14]

Hunting the Alicorn

In September, Brigadier General Howard Clemens arranged Operation Sighthound, enlisting the LRSSG to help capture an Erusean super-submarine docked at Artiglio, the Alicorn.[15]

Trigger Facing Off Against Scream

Trigger facing off againt Elke van Dalsen

On September 4, the LRSSG was deployed alongside Drake and Enchanter squadrons, to escort a fleet led by the landing ship Puffin. During the operation, Trigger was engaged by Mimic Squadron, who showed an unusual interest in shooting him down. The duo soon fled the airspace and Trigger continued the operation. After defecting, the Alicorn deployed 4 Rafale Ms piloted by 4 SACS pilots, with one plane armed with a WMD cruise missile to serve as a diversion. Trigger pursued and shot down all participating SACS aircraft, much to Captain Matias Torres' frustration.[15]

Six days later, Trigger led Strider Squadron during an air raid on the Erusean reserve fleet at Anchorhead. During the operation, it was determined by multiple high-ranking Osean officers, including Lieutenant General Shepherd, that Trigger was an extremely valuable asset to Osea, and that the nation had much need of him. After successfully crippling the fleet, Trigger and Count were once again engaged by Mimic. This time however, Trigger managed to kill both pilots, Otto and Elke van Dalsen. After returning to base, OIA analyst David North revealed that General Clemens had been receiving false information from an agent of the Alicorn, Edgar Saxon. It was also revealed over the radio during the mission that Clemens had hired Mimic to assassinate Trigger, leading Vice Chairman Edwards of the Joint Chiefs of Staff to have Clemens arrested by military police.[16]

AC7 Green Sphere Close Flyby

Trigger over the Spring Sea during the final confrontation with the Alicorn

On September 14, Trigger participated in Operation Fisherman over the Spring Sea, in order to prevent the Alicorn from launching a tactical nuclear shell at the Osea's capital, Oured. As the Alicorn passed through area PX80443, Trigger and other members of the Osean Defense Forces present hunted down the Alicorn, marking its coordinates for Osean vessels to launch an attack with vertically launched ASROCS. The damage inflicted by this attack forced the Alicorn to surface. It was subsequently engaged, and Trigger managed to destroy all four of its ballast tanks. This led Captain Torres to fake a surrender, giving him time to arm the submarine's massive rail cannon and aim it at Oured. Trigger damaged the cannon and forced it off-trajectory, causing the first shell to miss. Torres attempted to load the second shell, but the base of the rail cannon was destroyed by Trigger, resulting in a cataclysmic chain reaction that ripped the Alicorn in half amidships, ending its threat once and for all.[17]

Push into Erusea

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Trigger would also lead Strider Squadron in assisting the capture of an Erusean air base at Cape Rainy.

Trigger and Strider Squadron's presence at the battle for Farbanti would play a crucial role in securing Osean victory, with his presence demoralizing Erusean troops and Trigger themselves doing extreme damage to the city's defense. This would, however, change with the arrival of Sol Squadron, who in the resulting dogfight shot down Cyclops' commanding officer Wiseman before the fight would end without a victor after Sol Squadron withdrew following the destruction of the satellite network.

Clandestine operations

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AC7 - Seymour evades Trigger

Trigger pursues Sol 3 during Operation Beehive

Strider Squadron would then assist in the efforts of Operation Gorgon, which was to escort an Erusean general  - Édouard Labarthe - to Osean territory, although it ended in disaster by an apparent friendly fire incident. However, before the death of the Erusean general, he revealed Trigger was not wholly responsible for the death of ex-President Vincent Harling, but rather by an Erusean drone faking an Osean IFF using Belkan technology.[18]

Running low on supplies and having no orders, the LRSSG would attempt to join with Spare Squadron at Tyler Island only to discover that the Osean invasion of the island had been a disaster. Despite the chaos, Trigger was able to assist in providing cover for the evacuations, personally defending the position marked by Princess Rosa Cossette D'Elise before shooting down two resupply ships that were to be used to resupply and upgrade the final Arsenal Bird. While these actions themselves were successful, it did not solve the problems of the LRSSG.

In desperation, the LRSSG sent Strider Squadron to assault Shilage Castle in hopes of stealing needed supplies. This confrontation would result in one final battle with Sol Squadron. During the dogfight, Mihaly arrived at the airspace and revealed that he was quite impressed with Trigger's skill and decided to 'test' the pilot in a one-on-one engagement. After Trigger successfully shot down Mihaly, Mihaly requested that Trigger put a stop to the drone production before his plane exploded.

Ending the war

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All right, gentlemen, it's time to clean house!
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During the final stages of the war, Trigger played a crucial role in taking down Arsenal Bird Justice and destroying the pair of ADF-11F Ravens attempting to upload the new data obtained through Mihaly fighting Trigger and perpetuate the war. One drone Escaped into an undersea tunnel system, forcing Trigger to give chase. After Trigger managed to shoot it down at the base of the space elevator, Trigger escaped the elevator by flying vertically through its windbreak and rejoined the rest of Strider Squadron and the remaining Osean and Erusean aircraft.

Gallery

Trivia

  • Trigger's emblem is an homage to Air Combat 22, where the Aces squadron emblem features an animal holding a revolver in its mouth.
  • A reflection of Trigger can be seen during the briefing for Transfer Orders. In the briefing, McKinsey dismisses the pilots, then calls Trigger back. A figure can then be seen in the reflection of the briefing panel turning around and facing the screen as everyone else leaves, though a message appearing on the screen obscures his features.
  • Trigger is often described as "hot-blooded" by other characters; during Operation Deer Horn, he is chastised for breaking formation with Mage 1 to engage a squadron of enemy bombers, regardless of the player's actions,[3] and Avril Mead notes that his aircraft's engine is nearly burned out from overuse, implying that he flies recklessly and aggressively with little regard to his plane's condition.[19] In addition, while dueling Trigger during Operation Two Pairs, Mihaly will note that Trigger positions his plane to deflect missiles away from critical components if hit.[10] This makes him one of the few Strangereal protagonists to be given characterization outside of the player's activities.

References

  1. 1.0 1.1 Pipeline Destruction, Ace Combat 7: Skies Unknown.
  2. https://ace7.acecombat.jp/clm/column03.php
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 Mission 01: "Charge Assault", Ace Combat 7: Skies Unknown.
  4. Mission 02: "Charge the Enemy", Ace Combat 7: Skies Unknown.
  5. https://ace7.acecombat.jp/clm/column03.php
  6. Mission 03: "Two-pronged Strategy", Ace Combat 7: Skies Unknown.
  7. Mission 04: "Rescue", Ace Combat 7: Skies Unknown.
  8. 8.0 8.1 Mission 05: "444", Ace Combat 7: Skies Unknown.
  9. Mission 06: "Long Day", Ace Combat 7: Skies Unknown.
  10. 10.0 10.1 Mission 07: "First Contact", Ace Combat 7: Skies Unknown.
  11. Mission 09: "Faceless Soldier", Ace Combat 7: Skies Unknown.
  12. 12.0 12.1 12.2 Mission 10: "Transfer Orders", Ace Combat 7: Skies Unknown.
  13. 13.0 13.1 Mission 11: "Fleet Destruction", Ace Combat 7: Skies Unknown.
  14. Mission 12: "Stonehenge Defensive", Ace Combat 7: Skies Unknown.
  15. 15.0 15.1 SP Mission 01: "Unexpected Visitor", Ace Combat 7: Skies Unknown.
  16. SP Mission 02: "Anchorhead Raid", Ace Combat 7: Skies Unknown.
  17. SP Mission 03: "Ten Million Relief Plan", Ace Combat 7: Skies Unknown.
  18. Last Hope, Ace Combat 7: Skies Unknown.
  19. Cutscene 07: "Dumbass", Ace Combat 7: Skies Unknown.
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