|Game||Ace Combat Zero: The Belkan War|
|Objective||Destroy all targets.|
|Date||April 2, 1995|
|Location||Valais Air Base, Ustio|
- "Nobody wants to bail out into a mountain of ice. We're counting on you, flight leader."
- ―Larry Foulke
Listen up! We have a major situation on our hands. A major squadron of Belkan bombers has crossed our border and is making its way here, to Valais Air Base. Apparently, they intend to attack our base in an initiative to gain hegemony over the entire Republic of Ustio. Valais Air Base is our country's last line of defense. If our base falls, no one will be left to stop Belka from taking over Ustio. Your mission is to destroy the squad of bombers and defend our base. Belka's invasion must end here.
The primary focus of the mission is to destroy all of the bombers labeled as targets (TGT) on the HUD. There are some escort fighters, along with the game's first batch of aces depending on the player's difficulty and ace style. The bombers may also fire machine guns from behind depending on difficulty. Similarly to other games' first mission (such as Gambit or Sitting Duck), this is a simple anti-bomber mission.
In the middle of the mission, one of the remaining bombers will attempt to flee the airspace. This is the game's first canonical appearance of the "yellow targets," which the player can destroy if he or she so desires. Depending on how yellow targets are treated, the player's Ace Style will change, and in turn the game itself will adapt (certain Aces will show instead of others, the cutscenes will be different, and in-game dialogue will match). Destroying all yellow targets and leaving none standing gives the player Mercenary status; destroying some but allowing some to leave gives Soldier status; not firing on any yellow targets gives Knight status.
Some escort fighters will also become yellow targets after being damaged. Instead of saying "DESTROYED," the game will say "NEUTRALIZED." These targets will not fire and will attempt to disengage and flee the airspace. Again, it's up to the player on whether or not they should be destroyed.
- F-5E Tiger (Normal difficulty or harder, Mercenary Ace Style)
- J35J Blitz (Normal difficulty or harder, Soldier Ace Style)
- F-4E Dryade (Normal difficulty or harder, Knight Ace Style)
- F-117A Regen (Expert difficulty or harder, any Ace Style)
- XB-70 Wal (Ace difficulty only, any Ace Style)
- Wal only appears when at least two bombers reach the middle of the map.
Thanks to you, Belka's attack on Valais Air Base has failed. Your efforts will not go unrewarded. Your actions may well decide who wins the Belkan War. I, for one, will be counting on you.
- The dialog that takes place after first taking control of Cipher depends on the player's Ace Style. The comments involve Pixy talking about Cipher's reputation, followed by a friendly pilot talking about drinking alcohol after returning to base (respectively, "hot rum" as a Mercenary, "a little hot whiskey" as a Soldier, and "a little hot wine" as a Knight.)