- 1 Location
- 2 History
- 3 Current Status
- 4 Occupation Adjustment
- 5 Characters
- 6 Introduction
- 7 Game Recap: 2009-05-28
- 8 Plot Infliction I
- 9 Game Recap: 2009-06-03
- 10 Plot Infliction II
- 11 Game Recap: 2009-06-09
- 12 Plot Infliction II
- 13 Game Recap: 2009-06-16
- 14 Plot Infliction III
- 15 Game Recap: 2009.06.23
- 16 Epilogue
3rd Galaxy - Remote region, not on any major shipping lanes or near any other kingdoms
During Confederation time, Alexandria was a Utopian world with a large number of scientists. It was originally colonized to provide a scientific base to study a nearby nebula. A number of years after Fragmentation, the system was attacked by slave harvesters who made off with large swaths of the population. The remaining population became more combatant in response and was able to fight off the slavers on one of their subsequent visits. However, since the population was becoming more combat oriented, this caused the proportion of scientists to be reduced. The leaders of the world wanted to keep the world's scientific expertise so it made every effort to promote non-combat oriented occupations. This caused some friction between the combatants and the non-combatants. The non-combatants wanted to keep the planet's heritage and scientific expertise, while the combatants wanted to be prepared for other worldly attacks.
Eventually, a sort of compromise was developed. A type of pseuddian armour was developed which would link two people together telepathically. It allows the two to share skill between them. Skill that is earned can be transferred to the other person. For example, one of them earns 2 skill for a battle and he transfers it to his companion who is working on a stage of scientist. It must be decided who gets the skill when it is earned, it can't be transferred after the fact.
This allows the earning of stages in scientist at a much faster rate than normal. Alexandria experienced a resurgence of scientific ability when the technique was perfected. Obviously, the skill doesn't have to be in scientist. Any occupations can be chosen. The only restriction is that one couldn't make their companion higher skilled than they are.
Since the defeat of the slavers Alexandria's remoteness has left them unknown and unbothered by the various kingdoms of the Third Galaxy. The government strictly controls passage off the planet and no ships are allowed out of the system. At present, the population of Alexandria is quite ok with the reclusive nature of their leaders.
The physicists of Alexandria have successfully constructed a 1-variable fold space, about 10 meters in diameter. Through it, they sell small well made fighters and walkers to the forces fighting the Xoids in the 2nd Galaxy. The large number of high-stage technicians and physicists building the ships have given Alexandrian ships a reputation for high quality. The goverment controls the fold space, but the ship construction is carried out by numerous companies on the planet: Ford, GM, Honda, Toyota, Volkswagen, Audi, etc. The companies compete against one another for government contracts.
The companies themselves are sub-divided into numerous family clans. Each clan typically controls one to five construction facilities. Any larger and the clan is encouraged to subdivide by both the parent company and the government. This promotes competition and conflict amongst the clans, which in turn produces more skilled labour.
Typically fighting between clans in the same company is kept low key with actual homicides kept to a minimum, though clan wars do occasionally happen. Conflict between clans of different companies it often much more violent. All companies and clans have agreed to keep battles personel scale to prevent too much escalation in the conflicts. Any violations often incur penalties from the goverment in the form of lost contracts.
For the clans, it is a high honour for a pairing to produce a high stage scientist or technician. Also, in any battle, the non-combatant is not to attack or be attacked at all. They can perform any non-violent action they want (like patching), but they can't participate in the battle any other way.
There is one unfortunate side effect of the psudian armour pairing. If one of the pair dies, the other will go completely insane within an hour while their brain tries to cope with the loss of input. Typically, the non-combatant carries an ornimental blade with them and commits seppuku shortly after their partner dies. The ornimental blade is usually a clear indication which of a pair is the non-combatant especially with an absense of other weaponry.
On Alexandria, Technician and Medic give 1D+2 instead of 1D of bonuses and automatically give 1 stamina.
You are going to control 2 characters, one combatant and one non-combatant. The combatant will start off 2nd stage and the non-combatant will be 1st. You belong to the MacDonnell clan, a prestegious member of the Toyota company. You clan controls six construction facilities and so far has resisted the pressure to sub-divide. The criteria for running a Toyota construction facility is to have either a 5th stage technician or a 5th stage physicist running it, so your clan has some significant technical expertise.
As your clan if fairly stable, there hasn't been a need for specific personel in a while. Thus, you have not been instructed to work on any specific occupations for your clan and have been left largely on your own.
There are four other Toyota clans in your area: MacDonald, MacBride, MacDuff, MacMillian. Your largest competitor is the MacDonald clan who control 4 facilities. The MacBrides and the MacDuffs each control 2 and the MacMillians control 1. There's a fair bit of hostility between your clan and the MacDonalds. You largely earned your second combatant stage beating up (and being beat up by) members of their clan. The MacBrides and the MacDuffs are fairly friendly to both sides and the MacMillians keep to themselves. The MacMillians are nicknamed as 'trolls' as their non-combatants forgo much of their stats to get less skill required per stage. They tend to be somewhat ugly and 'uncool'.
You were created by third stage biologists, so your character's have 33 points to put towards character generation.
Drum roll please...
Species: Equidon (Moose)
Species: Takolee (Flying Squirrel)
Clan life has been fairly stable and calm as of late. The only thing of interest going on is the yearly MacDonnell Clan celebration taking place at one of your facilities. You are friends with another pair, a Felinid and Takolee named Tom and Jerry. Tom is a professional shock shooter and Jerry is a professional technician. Jerry is also a mentalist which is sort of how you all became friends (comparing notes, abilities, etc).
You four are not at the celebration, but at a bar because Jerry used prescience to answer the all important question: "Will we get laid at the party?". He got a vision of the bar you are at, so here you are.
Bullwinkle recently reached second stage and unfortunately got a bit too eager to try out his new skills the previous night. The MacDonald clan Yiptak claimed all of his gear after winning the fight. You were able to get a new med kit and small supply of patches from your clan supply depot. You owe 65 credits to the clan account. Typically every clan member has a line of credit available - max 100 credits.
The bar you are at is called "Satan's Liver". It's a large bar that is frequented by all the clans.
Game Recap: 2009-05-28
Rocky, Bullwinkle, Tom and Jerry were hanging out at Satan's Liver, wondering if they really should have gone to the celebration and musing about Jerry's competance at prescience. Soon a couple of MacDonald goons decided that Tom had too much equipment and needed to be liberated of it. Tom ended up losing his shield after Tom and Bullwinkle were brought down. Feeling grumpy, they decided to pick on a couple of lesser skilled MacDonald goons and were able to claim some of their weaponry once they were beat. Bullwinkle was able to sell the booty and purchase a flail.
After healing, a Human woman approached the group and attacked, specifically Tom. She appeared dead pan about the whole affair and her companion was somewhat confused. They were able to defeat her only after Bullwinkle started throwing Tom out of her reach. After she was tampered to remain unconscious, one of the goons they had fought before started attacking, again focusing on Tom. The goon was defeated and the quartet left the bar.
During the combat, the four lost contact with a large number of their clan which were attending the celebration. All of their signals on their private MacDonnell Clan network suddenly went offline.
Plot Infliction I
Rocky and Jerry are busy querying various net sources to try and figure out why they have lost contact. A large number of messages from remaining MacDonnell clan people are showing up on the network asking what's going on.
The first incling of something wrong was a news site reporting a small seismic event in your area.
'Seismic event'? How about a radiation pulse? Rocky continues healing Bullwinkle while trying to sift specifics from the various public information sources. And if you think that was the first inkling, then god underestimates my basic paranoia.
"We go look." Bullwinkle is worried.
"No, moose. If this was some sort of MacDonnell-specific purge, then there may well be elements waiting in ambush for morons like you to blunder back to investigate directly." Speaking of which, Rocky corresponds with what other MacDonnell's might be foolish enough to go look directly - trying to talk them out of it, but also wanting their telemetry in case they do go.
"Zark yeah. I'm not sure if you realize this, moose, but we're not that tough." Rocky gives Bullwinkle a beady stare, tinged with 'cool'.
"Why they want cat?" Bullwinkle eyes Tom uncertainly.
"Maybe because he's more powerful than we are, and the anti-MacDonnell agents are just working their way down the list.""Hey, cat, what you think?"
Tom is feeling somewhat shook up.
"That bitch was going to actually kill me wasn't she? What the fuck did I do to her?"
"She wasn't in control Tommy" Jerry says soothingly. "She was being controlled. There a mentalist out to get us, though I think it's me they are after. I checked our net, none of the mentalists of my calibre are online and I know that at least a couple of them weren't at the party. What I don't get is why they didn't go after you two. Maybe like you said, they were working their way down the list."
An image comes on the net from someone near the facility. All he can see is a smoke plume from where he is. He was going to go closer but stopped after you warned him away. Eventually you find a news feed from someone closer. Your facility blowd up real good.
From what you can tell, there is one 2nd stage mathematician online and she's being swamped with people asking how this could happen and who was responsible. She hasn't come up with anything yet.
Rocky pings the 2nd stage mathematician and strongly suggest that she gets to a secure location before reconnecting with the rest of the MacDonnell survivors. She'll be invaluable for collating information and coordinating any possible response, and that makes her a prime target for our conjectured anti-MacDonnell agents.
Tightbeam from Rocky to Bullwinkle. "Moose: cat."
Bullwinkle reads Rocky's intent and turns to Tom. After doing an exaggerated locate for possible threats, Bullwinkle addresses Tom in his slow, deliberate manner. "OK, cat, might still be trouble. Need to stay on toes. You on toes?"
Rocky tighbeams Jerry. "Do you need to meditate to be able to pulse that prescience of yours? Because I think we're going to be needing it."
What are the remifications of concealing our tartans? Would that make us stand out even more? And what would be the effect of wearing fake MacWhocares tartans?
"We move.""Good point, moose. Let's not stay in one place too long, to reduce triangulation. For now, we should stick to secondary pathways and away from crowds."
Tom: "I haven't been off my toes since we left the bar."
Jerry: "Nah, I'm at full. It's been a bunch of hours since I tried to figure out if I'd be getting laid right now."
In the area you are in you'd stand out not wearing any tartans. Wearing someone else's tartan would be effective against people who don't know you. And the clan you were wearing the tartan of may easily figure out you are not one of their own.
The four of you start moving (any particular direction?)
No particular direction, but a particular mode. We don't want to surface anywhere too hard to hide or too populated, but we also don't want to dither around in dead ends where we can get cornered. If the mathematician comes back online, or a leader-type surfaces to start gathering for some sort of joint purpose, we might consider making our way to that. But, for now, I think our safest bet is to lay low and to gather information.
Information like who or what is the source of these attacks. The MacDonalds are pretty obvious rivals, but it seems a bit odd that they'd invoke some sort of mental control on unwilling clansfolk. If Jerry has any meaningful prescience to offer, this might be the question to probe.
Rocky directs his beady gaze on the others. "If the game is indeed changing, and killing combatants is now a possibility, we might be in some pretty big trouble. Because, if that's the case, I wonder how long it will be before one of them realizes that shooting a 2-6 stamina partner effectively kills off the combatant."
"I kill them back.""Yeah, I know moose. I know. But I do hate the idea that my punyness could be your undoing. We should be more careful about that shit from here on out. Until we know more about what's going on."
Tom and Jerry seem horrified at the thought of outright killing of a non-combatant. "There is the fact that a whole bunch of non-combatants were outright killed in the explosion though." Jerry comments. He pauses in thought for a moment. "I just tried getting a hint of who is responsible, but all I got was an image of a pie chart I saw once showing the reletive strength of all five of the Toyota clans in this area."
There is a company wide network where all the clans have discussions similar to your MacDonnell clan network. They all seem horrified at what happened and are also trying to figure things out, though they seem to be postulating that another company was responsible - GM being the most likely candidate right now. All of the clans have issued statements condeming the attack and indirectly claiming that they had nothing to do with it.
The mathematician was never offline, but she wasn't really saying much. When she finally does, she says: "During the last few months, the clan elders were becoming suspicious that the MacDonalds were going to try something. They never told me the details, but I was able to glean that it involved a direct attack of some sort. The elders were not all that worried because we outnumber them and out skill them and the general feeling was 'bring it on'. We did tighten up security at our facilities... though obviously not enough. I'll keep analysing the data and if I figure anything out I'll let you all know. I recommend laying low for a while."
And then she does go off line. The net becomes quite congested with expressions of rage and a lot of 'Let's go kill them!' messages.
Jerry says: "It would take some significant skill to get past our security. A seasoned mathematician and a seasoned technician especially. And they would have had to sneak in too, so a good scout would be needed. That is, unless there was someone on the inside helping them out."
Looks like the clan is planning to head to a MacDonald frequented bar. The words "Angry Mob" come to mind.
This looks to Rocky like too easily a case of manipulation. The primary beneficiaries of having the Alpha and Beta at each other's throats are the Gammas. Or the Omegas, which would be even worse.
If the Beta-position MacDonald's really did try to topple the Alpha-position MacDonnell's, the nominal idea would be to claim the Alpha position. But is the Alpha position really all that appealing once the game has changed to where that's the position that you get targeted to have your facilities blown up? And assuming that the Toyota company isn't painfully incompetent, destruction of key production facilities and personnel isn't something they're going to tolerate. In fact, immediate reprisals from the MacDonnell's will probably lessen our ability to extract punitive reparations once Toyota gets to the bottom of it.
Alternatively, if a Gamma-position clan did the deed, then even though it still probably doesn't stand much chance of becoming the new Alpha necessarily, they're pretty much guaranteed to improve their contracts because of the trickle-down requirements that the Alpha can no longer meet. If the Alpha and the Beta start hashing into conflict, so much the better.
However, if it's an Omega-position clan, one that hates the whole structure fundamentally, then they're interest is in breaking down everything. Getting the big dogs to fight is just the first step; next they'll be trying to get everyone to question and mistrust everyone else until all cooperation and production grinds to a halt.
First things first, though - what is the status of MacDonnell clan? Do we even have sufficient personnel and facilities to be viable, or are we just a bunch of angry nobodies now? Somebody should consider contacting Toyota to discuss our status. If we can't be productive to the company, that's a blow to them - but perhaps our remnants can help hunt down exactly what happened so that Toyota can ensure it doesn't happen again. And maybe that's something Toyota would be willing to subsidize.
A quick query to the MacDonnell clan checks to see how many people have been online since the explosion at the facility. It appears you still outnumber the MacDonalds, though just barely. The problem however is that all of your most skilled personnel were at the party. The MacDonnell's still have five remaining facilities under their control, but the Toyota criteria for running a facility is a 5th stage physicist or technician and all of yours were killed. From reading about other clan wars on the planet, the parent company usually investigates any incidents which cause a loss in production, but unless the incident involves an attack from a different company they won't intervene.
So you can be sure Toyota will be investigating to determine how this happened. They just may not do anything about it depending on what they find out. It's likely your clan will be given some time to train up new facility personell before the facilities are reposessed and potentially given to a different clan. A lot will depend on what Toyota's investigation results in, but they are notoriously slow in releasing any information.
Jerry is a contender for a new leader of a facility as he's already a 3rd stage technician. Most of the 4th stage technicians and physicists were at the party.
Angry nobodies. Great.
I discuss with the other brains about our sudden and desperate need for 5th stage technicians and physicists. All techies are now considered gold.
Indeed, if our clan has a sudden, desperate need for skill-earning, we should probably prepare appropriately. The biggest handicap to skill-earning combat is the rate of healing, so we need to maximize patch availability. Whatever clan finances are liquid should probably be spent on patches and disbursed as needed. If that's insufficient, we should have as many medics as possible dedicated to med patch production.
What's our demographic of technicians and medics?
(Clearly, I've been doing too much crisis-mode project management lately. I think I might have just talked my characters out of participating in active combat.)
There's actually a quite high proportion of medics. For quite a while there wasn't a need for many more physicists and technicians in your clan. It became very common for the non-combatant to start off as medic. None of you are quite sure how to access clan finances, except the small line of credit you have access to.
Among the remaining clan there's around 30 or so professional technicians and 10 professional physicists.
All right then, I suggest that the clan finances are a big part of what the mathematician should be working on in addition to coordinating between Toyota's investigation and MacDonnell's clan strategy.
As for Moose and Squirrel, they're going to pull their max-allowable credit to finance some patches, and plan to start some intensive skill-earning. We still need to keep watch for mentalist-controlled aggressors, though, so should definitely stick together with Tom and Jerry. Plus whomever else we might be able to join up with for safety. Probably not actually pick fights as a group - but have the group handy as backup in case the usual skill-earning fight turns potentially lethal.
Hopefully we can convince many second-stage medics to focus on pure patch production, and successfully encourage skill-earning teams going for seasoned technician/physicist to have a medic handy to apply the patches more efficiently.So, is the 100 credits per pair, or per individual? Depending on the answer, Rocky and Bullwinkle either get 7 or 27 patches.
Game Recap: 2009-06-03
Sold the booty we had collected, armed Bullwinkle with a thug beam, and stocked up on patches.
Our first impulse, upon hearing that there was a leader-type in charge of the quasi-assemblage of surviving MacDonnell's moving to attack a MacDonald bar, was to try to appeal to it directly. Foolishly, we chose to try to move quickly. This revealed us, and we immediately were found by trouble.
First Tom was sniped (and subsequently scooped up by Bullwinkle). Then we were engaged with a series of mind-controlled combatants. Fortunately, the sniper was subsequently occupied by another long range combatant that we never had a chance to talk with - this gave us the reprieve needed to bludgeon our way through the aggressors.
From there, we were stealthier with our movement. We made it all the way to the slow-moving mass of MacDonnells, and learned a few things.
- Most MacDonnells, especially the surviving professional dudes, are douche bags.
- Those actively part of the central mass of dimwitted mob MacDonnell clan action have not been attacked by mind-controlled assholes.
- A mentalist influence touched our small group, bending our emotional state to more-align with the dimwitted douche bag mob. Though we resisted, this is most likely a contributing factor for the general idiocy.
Rocky tried to spread the idea that, in our weakened clan state, we should not gather in easily-destroy clumps. And that we should work in support cells instead. Bullwinkle thinks Rocky was wasting his time.
After leaving the mob, I think we got into another fight. But I'm not sure. Maybe we were just spoiling for one...
Plot Infliction II
"Hey squirrel, let's go get a drink."
"That's retarded, moose; we'd get our asses kicked by mentalist-controlled assholes.""But I'm thirsty."
After a half hour or so, you receive word that the attack on the bar was successful. Seems shortly before the mob arrived, a van full of assault weapons showed up and distributed the weapons to the mob. The MacDonalds at the bar put up a good fight, but they were outnumbered and outgunned. It was a bloodbath. Most of it can be viewed on your MacDonnell net.
On the Toyota company net the MacDonalds complain bitterly, again state that they were not responsible for the facility explosion, and declare war on the MacDonnell's for the slaughter at the bar.
Toyota posts a message on the company net as well:
"We have concluded that recent events are largely local to the clans, so we will not be intervening at this time. We are however disturbed at the loss of production this conflict has and will continue to cause. We hope that you all will resolve this issue quickly. In addition, to make up for lost production, we request that the head of each facility now be upgraded to a sixth stage technician or physicist. Such personel will help ensure that the Toyota company remains one of the leaders of ship production on Alexandria. We hope that it will not become necessary to import new clans to this area. Thank you and have a nice day."
The remaining three clans are now also complaining bitterly.
"Moose, I have some bad news."
"What now, squirrel?"
"I have a new conspiracy theory."
"Yep, shiny and new. Freshly-minted even. What to have me elucidate its finer points for you?"
"Will make me mad?"
"I certainly hope so. It's got me so annoyed that I'm grinding my itty bitty molars loud enough cause interference on seismic equipment."
"You're mad, huh?"
"DO NOT QUESTION MY SANITY, PEON!"
"Just kidding. Yeah, buddy, I might be a bit mad. Peeved even. Potentially." Rocky spends a few long, crazy-eyed moments staring at Bullwinkle and taking panting breaths of borderline insanity.
"OK. Fine. Lucy-date."
"OK! So, not only are the MacDonnell's goaded into participation by some wide-effect mentalist action, they also get frickin' assault weapons shipped to them to help them force the MacDonald clan into declaring war. At which point, Toyota announces that the new requirement for qualification is a sixth-stage techie or physicist. Who does that benefit?"
"Yeah, OK, patch sellers. But it also lets Toyota shift its production to be even more high-end, and drives all of its contributing clans to be more active and aggressive. The real cherry on top is how they arbitrarily announced that the mass-murder was merely an inter-clan local issue, despite how freaking suspicious the whole situation is. They're fucking playing us, buddy. Like fucking marionettes."
"That like muppets?"
"Yeah buddy - like muppets. Muppets with strings. No - wait - muppets is BETTER, because they have their hand up our ass while they make us do what they want."
Bullwinkle just stares at Rocky, while wondering what childhood trauma made him this way. He guesses it's probably something to do with potty-training.
"So, you know what we're going to do?"
Bullwinkle just winces.
Bullwinkle opens on eye, questioningly, hoping that this isn't just another case of Rocky fucking with him.
"That's right, moose, nothing. We'll just keep on keeping on. Screw earning any physicist or technician - we'll just earn what works best to keep us alive. Fuck everybody else. Fuck the clan. Fuck the company. Fuck the patch sellers."
Bullwinkle tries to think of a patch seller that he has found attractive - in that way.
Tom and Jerry were listening to your conspiracy theory as well.
Tom: "Those bastards! I vote we kill them." He clutches his laser rifle tightly. "Let's forget about killing the other clans, lets attack Toyota itself."
Jerry: "I have my doubts... if anyone were able to prove that Toyota blew up one of their own facilities and information like that got out, it would be a disaster for them. We're not just talking our five clans here, we're talking all of their clans all over the planet. Everyone would be pissed. On the other hand, if they thought they could get away with it, I guess they might try. It would be really risky though."
Tom: "Still think we should kill them, just in case."
Jerry: "Since when have you become so bloodthirsty?"
Tom thinks for a few moments. "Always have been... just able to let it out and play now." He grins evilly.
Jerry: "If they wanted to increase the skill requirement for a facility head, they could have just arbitrarially done it. They wouldn't have needed this whole fiasco. Though they have always bitched about our clan not subdividing."
Jerry pauses and thinks for a moment. "Well, personally, I'm going to keep trying for technician. The idea of running a facility has a certain appeal. I have a feeling that there's going to be ample oppertunities to earn skill here. Also, I'm going to keep trying to use prescience to figure out what's going on, probably send what I get to our mathematician and see if we can figure anything out. So, for the moment, we're going to participate in the clan war." Tom nods. "Are you guys going to tag along or go off on your own. We could use the backup, especially if we run into that mentalist again."
Tom: "Kill them all. Kill... kill... kill..." You find it suddenly odd that Tom has green eyes. No reason. ;)
Your mathematician has been offline for a while now.
Rocky casts his beady eyes about in a dramatically suspicious manner. "The thing we need to be wary of is how we were specifically targeted for elimination. That is unlikely to have changed, and may even be more poignant now that we've demonstrated a lack of controllability."
"Good for skill?"
"You know, moose, you might have a point there. Hmmm...
Anyway, I'm certainly interested about the fate of the mathematician. Jerry, how about if the moose and I continue to be backup for you and Tom, but we use your prescience to try to locate the mathematician?"
Jerry: "Mathematician... Say you're right, she's been offline for a while now. Let's hide for a bit so I can meditate."
You guys hide and at the moment, no mentally controlled idiots come after you. Over the next hour you hear reports of what is going on. The mob is making it's way back to MacDonnell territory, followed by MacDonald attackers who are trying hit and fade attacks. The MacDonnell's still have all those assault weapons, so the MacDonalds aren't getting too close. From what you hear on your clan net, the loose plan is for small groups of combatants to break from the group, sneak sideways and back into MacDonald territory while the mob is being followed.
Jerry finally says: "Ok, I'm ready." He concentrates for a moment, glances at something unseen to you, looks confused for a moment and then looks angry.
"I tried to get a hint as to what happened to the mathematician. I got an image of a number. 20,000."
You're largely not listening because you notice a large quadruped with a small rider coming towards you. They are wearing MacBride colours.
Just for the hell of it, Rocky does a check through what bounties he can find, looking for ones posted for the MacDonnell mathematician, and looking for ones around 20-kilocredits.
Or, rather, he intends to, after finding out what the MacBride folks want. A tightbeam hail is in order, as is an appraisal of what they're armed with.
You don't know of any lists of bounties on the public net.
The quadruped is armed with bulging muscles, claws and big knashy teeth. It's about a half-tonne. The rider has the typical ornamental sword associated with non-combatants.
The quadruped sends you a text message: "Ah, MacDonnell's. Seems everyone is in a bit of a pickle. Are you interested in any kind of alliance?"
"The guys with skill have to worry about the clan pickle. We're nobodys, and can't speak for anyone other than ourselves. What, precisely are you proposing?"
Bullwinkle watches carefully to see what sort of distance the quadruped closes to. If it comes within 20 meters, he'll address his stance to be ready - not aggressive, but eliminating all initiative penalty aspects. Should the quadruped cross the 10 meter mark, the flail is flexed to a pre-strike hold.
Rocky will be doing regular locates.
"We're nobodies too, at the moment. We'd like to participate in the war without aligning our clan with anyone. We'd be able to do that if we were 'just helping out old friend'. Want to be friends?"
They are just crossing the 20 meter mark and loping towards you at about 3 meters per trun.
Rocky tightbeams Tom and Jerry text, "We're going to try to beat them up - back us up if necessary." Then he squeaks out in a commanding tone, "Initiate friend test!"
Bullwinkle immediately bellows, "FRIIIEEEEEEND TEEEEEEEEEEEST!" with a ferocious stare and much dramatic flaring of the nostrils.
The beast raises an eyebrow (Spock style) and you get a brief glimpse of an expression you can't quite place... anticipation? nope. fear? nope. hunger? Yes, that's it. He's definitely hungry. You also notice Tom tense up a bit. He sends text to you: "Saw another one through the buildings. Running hard. About 150 meters away. Don't have line of site on him now, but I think he was headed this way."
Rocky estimates this dude has hypernormal strength and probably has a strength bonus of 25 damage in hand to hand.
Game Recap: 2009-06-09
Yadda yadda yadda...
A fortunate case of double sixes allowed Rocky to see the MacBride mentalist and susequently sniper that was tailing them.
Plot Infliction II
Jamming begins. You lose contact with the net. The mark you put on the MacBride troll is still there.
We execute the 'dogs'.
Which direction is the MacBride? Relative to us fleeing back to MacDonnell territory, I mean.
Game Recap: 2009-06-16
Plot Infliction III
After successfully dispatching the four MacBrides, you get contacted telepathically again.
"Nicely done. I should point out that the MacBrides you've been facing so far were the ones that happen to be in the area and were ordered to come kill you. It's likely that some scarier combatants are enroute, as well as larger numbers of professionals."
"Thanks for that. By the way, who the zark are you?"
My name's Faroe. My sniper buddy is Orkney. I'm assuming you are telling any MacDonnell clan members you find what's going on? That's what the MacBride's are trying to prevent. Also, you might want to move from your current location. I can see a few MacDonald clan combatants heading your way, likely going to the weapon/equipment shop.
Jerry says (and you find it odd that you can hear his thoughts... whoever is communicating with you has you all tied in): "Thanks for the advice... I think what my friend was wanting to know is what clan are you and why are you helping us."
There's a pause.
"We're helping you because we were against what our clan did. We were forbidden to reveal anything, but they didn't say we couldn't try to help someone who might have figured it out. Even so, I have a feeling we won't be welcomed back with open arms... not that I have arms..."
Rocky does a quick locate for a path with the most plentiful cover, and ushers the group to head thataway.
"Well, Faroe, you are likely to be more capable of judging when we're outmatched than we are - we don't usually have an idea until some fighting has been conducted, and by then it's much harder to avoid. Feel free to warn us if we run afoul of somebody seasoned.""So, how long have you been tailing us?"
"Originally I was tailing the sniper they sent after you. I started tailing you after the last fight with him."
It's possible that we've run across this particular sniper/troll duo before, and in that instance another mystery sniper team helped us out. It suggests to me that either you've been shadowing us since then, or there's quite a number of sniper/mentalists operating. Can you tell us which it is?"
"Also, where jamming come from?"
"Not a bad point - any idea how extensive this jamming is?"
"And where a good place for beer."
"I'm not sure we have time for beer just now, Moose. We're sneaking for our lives, evading grim hordes of MacBrides and MacDonalds."
"Squirrel is coward.""Let's at least try to find the distinction between bravery and stupidity, OK, Moose?"
"We were the mystery sniper team that helped you. The jamming is likely coming from one of my clan."
Tom: "Can you tell us where he is so we can go kill him?"
"Doubt it. If it's who I think it is, he's a seasoned scout. I wouldn't be able to find him even if I wanted to. Look, on one hand you guys should lay low, but on the other, you should be finding more of your clan and spreading information. You also may want to go buy some more patches, the MacDonalds have left the quipment store."
Rocky get's tightbeamed 340 credits (if he accepts the signal). You get brief vector of where these guys are. They're on a building about 200 meters away.
Aye, we'll accept his credits.
"I can see helping us out, but handing us credits is a bit above and beyond. Is there some additional back story you might care to tell us about your exceptionally principalled nature?"We venture forth (or fifth) and seek out other MacDonnells to spread word of the manipulative MacBride mentalists. By way of picking up a bunch of patches of course.
"Well, it's a long story... Ah crap." And you see/hear weapons fire from the direction of the building he's on. Looks like multiple blast rifles.
Note to self: never explain myself with anything more than a quick blurb or god will send goons after me to shut me the hell up.
Game Recap: 2009.06.23
Rocky ran back to the equipment store to purchase patches while the rest of the troupe started towards the mentalist/sniper pair to try and help. They were attempting to sneak when a trio of large MacBride Crocaloids emerged from a side road and started towards the equipment store. They spotted Bullwinkle and drew their weapons to attack.
All three were armed with two 2D+4 blast rifles and all seemed to have bulky tactical scanner goggles on. Thinking cover was the best option at this point, especially since they were 80 meters away, the group made for cover.
Unfortunatly, Tom didn't win initiative and in a spectacular moment of unfortunate timing, flubbed his duck roll. All three Crocaloids hit. The first one blasted off his left arm, the second blasted off his right arm, and the third blasted off his head. It became quite obvious that these three had significant bonus damage in addition to the powerful weaponry.
Bullwinkle, Rocky and Jerry met behind cover. Jerry decided to wander off and get drunk and Bullwinkle stayed behind cover and healed up before the three Crocaloids ran up to the cover he was behind. The battle resumed.
At close range the Crocaloids had difficulty hitting Bullwinkle, so they decided to engage their targeting. Even with targeting, they only landed the occasional hit, while Bullwinkle was able to hit them with inpunity. One of the Crocaloids was brought down and killed and the other two were almost brought down as well. Unfortunately, one of the Crocaloids landed a hit to Bullwinkle's face. 4D+15 x2 damage later and the moose toppled over and wasn't able to regain consciousness before the Crocaloids finished him off.
Rocky ran to catch up with Jerry to join him for a drink.
Out-gunned, plain and simple. Should have tried running.
Being non-combatants, Jerry and Rocky made it to Satan's Liver without being attacked. The MacBride's never quite clued into the fact that even if they killed the combatants, there would be a short time that the non-combatants could easily rat them out because they couldn't be attacked. While the leaders of the original plot might have killed them outright, the professional goons they sent to do the job weren't willing to break the cultural taboo.
Jerry and Rocky met up with a bunch of MacDonnell clan and filled them in as to what was going on. Word started to spread quickly as the MacDonnells left the bar to find as many of their clan as they could.
Jerry and Rocky turned off their biological safeguards and then had a contest to see who could drink the most Volcanic's before dying. Jerry got to #23 before his insides caved in on themselves. Rocky won shortly after when Volcanic #27 caused him to spontaneously combust.
The MacDonnell's and MacDonald's eventually stopped their war and attacked the MacBride's. Most of the MacBride's were wiped out, with they leaders fleeing the area. In the aftermath it was decided that the MacDonald clan would split into two clans the MacMurry's and the MacCauley's and the remaining MacDonnell's would split and join the new clans as well.
The MacDonnell mathematician took her 20,000 credits she was paid and opened a bed and breakfast on a beautiful beach resort on the other side of the planet.