Alpha 1 is the designation of the fighter pilot who flies as the leader of Alpha wing. The player is given this designation in all canon campaigns, and is almost exclusively referred to as such in-game.
As the player's character, Alpha 1 never speaks a single line in any canon FreeSpace mission.
Logic dictates that Alpha 1 almost certainly cannot be the same person for each game. The Alpha 1 of FreeSpace 1 ended up in Sol, cut off. Alpha 1 of Silent Threat would be too old to be in active fighter command by the time of FreeSpace 2, and in any case FS2's Alpha 1 is welcomed as a new recruit by Lieutenant Loukakis.
Regardless, some major events that individual pilots with the designation Alpha 1 have experienced are listed here along with any relevant information.
The Great War
- Main article: Great War
- Captured Alexander McCarthy.
- Acquisition of Shivan shield technology.
- Witnessed the destruction of the GTD Galatea.
- Participated in the attack on the SD Lucifer.
- Main article: Hades Rebellion
There is some speculation that Silent Threat's Alpha 1 may be Aken Bosch. In the cutscene Monologue 4, Bosch states:
- "As a young pilot I battled against the rebels of the Great War, the Galactic Terran Intelligence whose research of Shivan technology and biology would form the cornerstone of my project."
The Second Shivan Invasion
- Main article: Second Shivan Incursion
- Weakened the first SJ Sathanas enabling the GTVA Colossus to defeat it.
- Witnessed the Colossus's first and last battles.
- Helped evacuate Capella.
- Took part in several extremely dangerous Special Operations Command operations.
In many user-made campaigns, the player's character retains the designation of Alpha 1. Whether a campaign's pilot is the same Alpha 1 as the one that the player flies in the official games is determined by the user-made campaign's plot line. Newer versions of FreeSpace Open allow the FREDder to place the pilot into wings other than Alpha, Beta, and Gamma. This change inspired campaign makers to get rid of the "Player is Alpha 1" tradition.
Some campaigns have also foregone the "speechless Alpha 1" convention, giving the player character a fully-fleshed out character. These campaigns are sometimes known as 'character-driven campaigns'. Notable character-driven campaigns include Blue Planet and Transcend.
- Alpha 1 only speaks once: in the ending cutscene of FreeSpace 1.
- FRED doesn't allow the player ship to send any in-mission messages. This can be circumvented by preceding the player ship's name with #, as in #Alpha 1. New SCP builds will take this into account if the player ship is given a callsign and replace the in-game sender name with the defined callsign accordingly.
- Lines such as "Pilot down!" or "Squad lost a pilot!" are only spoken when Alpha 1 is killed. If an AI-controlled friendly craft is destroyed, its own pilot may send an automatic message (usually an agonized scream), but none of the remaining pilots will take note unless they are specifically scripted to do so.