The year is 2189. 11 years after the infamous LV-426 incident, and first contact with the previously unknown extraterrestrial entities now referred to as Xenomorphs. Military engagements with these creatures, an operation now referenced by the armed forces of the United States Colonial Marines as "Bug Hunts", have become a common occurrence. And, to a much lesser known extent, so has Weyland-Yutani's research into these creatures. Ironic that the study they sought so greatly, believing it held their key to ultimate power in both a financial and literal sense, had cost the corporation dearly. Sudden population and colonization of key worlds, the moving and recruiting of public families, the processing of secretly transported prisoners, the construction of hidden facilities, the covering up of countless deaths, and of course the general maintenance and containment of the xenomorphs. Their avarice had always led them blindly down the path of their own destruction, time and again. More resources spent and lost in this mad pursuit.
Would you like to wish on a star?
Mankind's quest for discovery, however, is halted for no one. New stars were discovered, new planetary systems explored, and in the cluster designated The Arcadia System, in the year 2199, a new prospect was founded. The fourth planet from the systems yellow star, BD-389, was discovered to be not only inhabitable, be high in mineral concentrations. Probing led to testing, testing led to colonization, which led to research, which led to founding a city. The botanical value of the planets flora was astounding, holding key chemical principles which could be the base of hundreds of new pharmaceuticals. The water was equally rich in nutrients, which led to the incredible life spans of the native wildlife. All of these resources were harvestable and reusable, a practical gold mine, easily capable of replacing the trillions of dollars lost on xenomorph study. If, that is, Weyland-Yutani could play this safe while maintaining their aggressive corporate dominance.
The rights to all on-world construction and population were bought up before they were even debatable. Plans were laid out, and the building commenced immediately. The planet's atmosphere thankfully required very little to no terraforming, and the lush and beautiful jungles were leveled in preparation for construction sites. Each, of course, was surveyed, and all samples of valuable plant-life were preserved or relocated to protect them. They were why Weyland had taken an interest in this planet, after all. The city was to be built on a stable intersection of several underground rivers, which were another high-value priority. In the later years of the 1880's the craze for "mineral water" and it's supposed purposes for human health sprang forth and quickly became in high demand. Just shy of 300 years later, and the story is no different. Mark something as beneficial, rare, and most importantly, expensive, and the wealthy masses of the human collective will line up at your door. At least, that's how Mr. Weyland put it. The advertising campaign began a year after, offering a world of beauty, youth, and luxury to the proud and select residence of this future Utopia.
Elysium, the city of tomorrow.
A beautiful gem amongst the stars, 8 years in the making, and with no equal. Elysium city was by definition a place meant only for perfection. The creatures native to this planet were surprisingly lacking in most forms of dangerous or predatory life, allowing no hindrance in it's creation. In under a decade, this gleaming utopia was fashioned from nothing. A testament to what Weyland-Yutani could achieve when they had only one focus. The city spans a radius of 140 miles of shining skyscrapers, with the addition of several well founded colonies for further botanical research. A walled-off addition to the city, with only 50 miles of shabby housing, is meant for the poor masses of workers who must pervade the bowels of the Utopia. Their homes stand in startling contrast to the of the formally acknowledged residence of the city. In fact, they are not even considered members of the population, and are generally kept out of sight of the higher class citizens. Still, the wage is high, even though the working conditions and housing are horrid. Someone has to clean the toilets.
In walks a man, dark as night.
No one on the board is exactly sure what corner of the Galaxy Mr. Weyland found this one at, but it was decided that a certain rather remorseless soul (or lack thereof) be put at the head of managing this burgeoning metropolis as to assure that everything went smoothly. Someone that wouldn't buckle under any pressure. Someone who could, if need be, send hundreds of lives to their ends and silence any voices that sprang up. Someone that would cair for this city as if it were their child. In short, an obsessive sociopath, and that is certainly what they received. Mr. Cade, as it were, took the role with a lethal sort of drive that even Weyland could respect. When asked to display his skills at managing and solving a problem, he was presented with evidence that someone on the board of directive was selling information to a rival company. Tactfully, Mr. Cade invited the man to a private meeting, saying that he "knew" and had a price in mind. Half an hour politely discussing arrangements and prices for silence were spent while lavishly sampling exotic spirits. When a price was settled on, and the CEO sat up to leave, Mr. Cade merely smiled as his target collapsed to the floor, numbed by the additive with which his glass was laced. Finishing his brandy, Mr. Cade then regaled the paralyzed man with such interesting facts, like how easy it was to fake an accident. Maybe it was his style, his cool and heartless approach, his defending of his "child", or maybe it was the fact that there wasn't even a need to bribe the coroner. Mr. Cade gave quite the first impression.
Now that is quite the growth spurt.
Ever since Mr. Cade became the eyes that watched over the entire city, it's expanse rate has nearly doubled, adding two whole new districts and increasing its population by 300%. As of the current date, the city's radius is that of 387 miles, slums included, of sheer art. But of course there were issues. There are always issues. That's why they needed someone with a.... certain touch. Crime rates maintain a standard of 1% in comparison to Earth, any violation being met with harsh force. Rumors of conspiracies make way for missing persons reports, which later just involve more people being taken care of. While Mr. Cade does maintain a rather decent law enforcement, he has in place certain safeguards to ensure his control. Namely a small private contingent of illegal Combat Synthetics, supplied unofficially by the Weyland-Yutani Corporation, of course. The central information network kept tabs on every single living being in the city, and at the heart of all this surveillance was Mr. Cade, sitting behind is ebony-black desk with a glass of brandy. This was his city, and it was beautiful. We're catching up to present day, don't worry.
Oh, Irony, what big teeth you have!
Deep within the opposite Southern Hemisphere of the planet, a research station lay abandoned for years. It contained exactly what you're thinking, but this time there was a twist. This one wasn't on Weyland, but a rival R&D corporation who'd stolen research and information about the Xenomorphs from Weyland-Yutani. Sadly, they didn't pay much heed to any of the warnings, and played out the same classic scene just as their predecessor had countless times before. So this time the sins that would soon plague the Son were not originally the sins of the Father. At least, not directly. But this still posed a massive issue to any plans, more so after initial recon teams did a fine job of ending the Hives hibernation. A secret, short war was waged in this section of the planet, wrapped in enough red tape to strangle a pachyderm. Still, in the end containment or collection of viable samples were not on the mission agenda, and orbital bombardment put a quick and decisive end to the outbreak. All the marines which participated in this mission, were, of course, terminated.
At least, that's what Mr. Cade believes. The result was in truth, less than satisfactory. The Queen, battered and broken as she may be, was still very much alive. Like a nest of bees shot by a pellet gun, they have followed their attackers. Making home within self-made chambers within the system of underground rivers, which Elysium was built on. Hey, look! More irony. Swimming downstream, the drones of the hive have spent days burrowing their way into the city's Underbelly, preying on the lone workers which labor tirelessly to keep your lights on. Rumors of ghosts have not ceased since, though no one can say for sure they are anything more than stories. Still, people keep disappearing, and several others claim to hear things down there, in that thick, humid darkness. The Queen lays her next generation of Warriors, and prepares for the move to more comfortable accomodations.
Who the hell are these guys?
Of course, when the old hive was destroyed, a recon team consisting of Mr. Cade's own Combat Synthetics was sent to confirm the kill. In their search, they found something interesting. As it would seem, Mr. Cade was not the only one seeking the head of this Queen. Taking these pieces of advanced alien technology back to Elysium, and without reporting any of this to Weyland-Yutani, Mr. Cade inadvertently set forth a chain reaction he could never perceive. A signal, undetectable by human means, was sent out from the wrist bracer. It's message held the last recorded moments from it's owners mask, and broadcasted it to all of it's kind. Great honor was promised to the one to retrieve these artifacts, and shame to the clan of their original owners. Many ships, cloaked amongst the black blanket of stars, advanced on BD-389. Their intent was unmistakable. And so all the party members have arrived.
So that's where we stand. The skies are filling with USCM aircrafts seeking landing clearance, the stars beyond them hide the ships of the hunters who seek the fresh game, and the dark heart of the city squirms with the xenomorphs who will soon make themselves very, very known.