Friday, January 6, 2017

Mynock Squadron Recap # 17 [RPG]


After a night spent planning for an assault on a prisoner camp, the members of Mynock Squadron wake in the morning with time to take care of a few last details before presenting their plan to Lt. Tuvolo. 

Citing the loss of Stavros and Torga, Kero manages to convince Tuvolo to loan Gamma Flight another trooper, who turns out to be Trill Dunerunner. Trill later claims she got in trouble for making a joke about Aqualishes within Tuvolo's hearing, which is probably why she got assigned to Gamma. The group decides that Trill's role in the mission will be to serve as a sniper and provide cover for Max's infiltration.

Warik finishes a requisition list for Kero to examine. The list includes the usual array of blaster rifles, but also a special sniper rifle for Trill, explosive charges to be dropped from the air, stealth suits for Max to take for the rescued prisoners, and even concussion missile launchers. Kero gives the list a cursory glance, and says that, other than the need for more medpacs, it looks fine.

As Warik, Kero, and Max are going over the plan one last time, a loud alarm klaxon suddenly sounds. A voice over the loudspeaker announces that intruders have reported in Maintenance Bay # 2, and that the area is in lock-down pending security's arrival. Realizing that they're just down the corridor from Maintenance Bay # 2, the trio decide to investigate.

As they approach, they see a figure covered in blood laying on the floor just outside the door to the bay. The technician is clearly on death's door, but somehow Kero manages to keep him alive through a magnificent display of battlefield surgery. Once the man is stabilized, she starts to drag him to safety while Warik and Max proceed into the bay. Inside, they see that one of Gamma's Y-Wings has been undergoing a full retrofit for the upcoming mission. Another technician is on the floor, clearly dead, grasping a small container in his hand. As Warik and Max watch, a silvery sheen advances along the corpse's skin and, in seconds, the body gets to its feet in the form of one of the Nanoformed constructs the group thought destroyed forever!

Warik leaps into the turret of the Y-Wing and starts blasting the construct with the vessel's ion cannons. The ionic energy seems to be effective in deactivating the electrical signals carried by the nanobots that make up the construct. After Max cleverly uses a fire extinguisher to freeze the construct and slow it down, Warik lines up both barrels of the turret and fires a blast into the head of the Nanoformed, destroying it utterly!

The trio of heroes are forced to follow a lengthy quarantine process before they're allowed free range of the ship again. Warik theorizes that perhaps the Imperials planted the creature on the Y-Wing. Tazo-Rhi praises Warik and Max's quick thinking in the maintenance bay, stating that she didn't think they had the cumulative intelligence to come up with such an effective strategy.

A few hours later, the members of Gamma Flight present their plan to Lt. Tuvolo. Warik and Kero will land some distance from the southern perimeter of the base and use concussion missile launchers to blow holes in the electrified, durasteel fence. Keth and Tazo-Rhi will fly together in a Y-Wing and try to destroy as many of the base's TIE-Fighters on the ground as possible, and then focus on neutralizing the camp's E-Web towers. Max will move in steathily through the breached fence to find the high-value political prisoners and, with Marress' aid, get them to safety while Trill provides sniper support.

Tuvolo says he thinks it's risky to have the entire plan depend on an untested member of the Squadron like Max, and he also expresses skepticism over the wisdom of using heavy artillery like concussion missiles and Y-Wing proton torpedoes so near the prisoners. In the end, however, he approves the plan.
Director's Commentary (January 6, 2017)

This was a bit of a filler session while the players figured out their tactics and equipment for the major assault on  the prison camp.  Keth's player was away, and I wanted to bring back the loose end of Warik having hidden a sample of the Nanoformed virus aboard his starfighter.  The idea of a retrofit of the Y-Wing resulting in a Nanoformed taking over a mechanic and causing a crisis aboard the cruiser was a pretty good one, I think.

The players did a great job acting quickly and coming up with some clever plans.  Kero made a nigh-impossible check to save the one mechanic's life, while Max and Warik teamed up effectively to combine the Y-Wing's ion turret and the fire extinguisher to good effect.  I really appreciate it when characters do more than fire their blasters at the bad guys, and having villains like the Nanoformed can really push the players to be cinematic and creative.

This session showed the virtues of having a virtual tabletop.  For all the annoyances that can sometimes occur while playing online (time zones, connection issues, sound issues, etc.), it was incredibly easy to find and reshape hangar bays as terrain and to add in necessary touches like the Y-Wing, etc.  On a real tabletop I would have drawn some ugly stuff with a black marker on a play-mat, and it would not have looked anywhere near as cool.

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