Old School wrote: ↑
Wed Oct 03, 2018 4:25 pm
Nice! How’d they capture the ship and the entire crew?
I'll try to keep it short as possible so it doesn't become a TLDR post but I'm not sure how successful I'll be.
On Arunisiir, several of the players managed to get on board as contractors to repair the Martin II's
damaged jump drive. One of the players is an ex-marine war hero so they used his reputation to get Commander Jagad's trust. The players brought their engineering and mechanically savvy crew members aboard as manual labor, leaving their captain on the Harrier
. The players had elaborate plans to stealthily smuggle explosives and other goodies on board using a robot that one of the players built. Unfortunately for them, one of the marine guards (correctly) assumed it was a weaponized threat and destroyed it with his PGMP-12. The attack prompted the fast departure of the Martin II
, giving the players no chance to gather more gear. So they essentially departed with little more than the clothes on their backs...except for their ace in the hole: one of the players managed to sneak aboard using stealthed battledress. He hid in the lower cargo hold where the security cams were damaged according to the adventure.
The Martin II
went into jump and the players' first priority was suborning the marines. It would be virtually impossible to take the ship if they had to contend with battledress-wearing soldiers. The players came up with the rather ingenious idea of setting up early-morning PT with the marines. While it would be highly unorthodox to have all
the marines off guard duty at any one time, they convinced them with the rather heavy influence of the war hero PC (whom the marines fairly fawned over) and a little psionic nudging from the players' psion. The psion (the player who snuck aboard in battledress) had trouble using his abilities. In my version of the story, the vault exudes heavy anti-psionic energy to prevent teleporters from entering it. It also inhibited the abilities of the psion whenever he tried to use an ability "through" the vault or anywhere near it actually.
Unbeknownst to the characters on the Martin II
, the Harrier
ran into some difficulty. Patrol corvette Sincerity
, which in the adventure is said to be on a pirate hunting mission, identified the Harrier
as a possible pirate. They demanded the captain let them board and inspect the ship and he opted to run, hustling at 5 Gs toward jump point, keeping a G in reserve for evasion. The two ships exchanged shots and damaged each other quite a bit. Sincerity
lost track of the Harrier
for several rounds after it moved from short to medium range, the ship's stealth hiding it from detection. It looked like the Harrier
might just escape when Sincerity
reacquired the the ship as a target, won an electronic warfare opposed roll, and Komino
temporarily entered the fray, doing heavy damage to the Harrier
. The captain surrendered and finally let Sincerity
board her. Employing his Advocate skill, he admonished Sincerity's
commander and let her know there would be consequences for the Imperium's extra-judicial assault on his "innocent" ship. Luckily for the players, the Harrier
was "clean" of any piratical evidence and Sincerity
, rather abashed at having fired upon and heavily damaged an innocent ship, left her to her own devices. The captain notified Commander Jagad aboard the Martin II
of the event and she offered to pay for the damages for the misunderstanding. So the Harrier
got roughed up but managed to get out in one piece.
On the fifth day in jump, the players aboard the treasure ship ran a particularly difficult PT session with all of the marines, exhausting them and lowering their END checks. One of the players, serving as the war hero's NCO, gave the marines drugged water (with sedatives obtained from sick bay), knocking them all out. The PT session was held early in the ship's nominal day, during the "third watch" when the players had observed the least competent crew were on duty. With the marines unconscious, bound and gagged, they rushed up from deck to deck, taking out the gunners who were serving as guards in lieu of the marines, blocked off the armory, and finally breaking into the bridge and taking the ship two days out from Acrid. Long story short: they divided up the crew, confined them to quarters, and interrogated select crew members. Under threat of murdering his crew, they got Captain Torsa to give them the codes to send a change of plans to the close escorts when they would come out of jump. Tactical officer Grimsbold would be the comms officer to convey the change of plans. Instead of landing on Acrid, as the adventure indicates, they intended to have the close escorts refuel the Martin II
by giving up the fuel in their drop tanks, after which they would fake a coordinated jump to Exe and instead jump to Blue (the Martin II's
damaged jump drives are only capable of Jump-2 at the moment, so they would make one to deep space and a second to Blue where the Harrier
would meet them). Great plan. Unfortunately, it didn't work out quite the way they had hoped.
After coming out at Acrid, they sent the encrypted message to Komino
to change the jump plans, but Grimsbold managed to send out an encoded distress signal to the Gazelles
. All hell broke loose with Komino
coming in close to purportedly attach its fuel line to the Martin II
when in actuality they prepared a boarding party who breached the Martin II's
rear air lock and boarded the lower cargo hold. Meanwhile Arshad
positioned itself behind the Martin II
, requested that the pirates stand down, and after being rebuffed, began to take some called shots (see p. 17 of "Pirates of Drinax" Book 1) at the jump drive and power plant. They disabled the jump drive and did some damage to the power plant before the war hero manned one of Martin II's
turrets and damaged one of Arshad's two laser turrets. Knowing full well that Imperial naval personnel were on the ship, Arshad
refused to use its particle accelerators in the conflict lest they inadvertently kill them with radiation.
The players were neck deep in trouble obviously, and the situation was exacerbated by the fact that only one of the players (the ex-scout engineer) could pilot, astrogate, and/or fix the drives. They needed him to be three places at once. Therefore they couldn't try to run or evade Arshad's
shots, plot a course out of the conflict, and fix the jump drives at the same time. Time being of essence, the engineer employed the "Going Faster or Slower" rule (Core Rulebook, p. 60) to very quickly chart a course for the fourth gas giant of Tanith system and then hustled down to engineering to get the jump drives online. So with boarders in the ship, Arshad
pecking away at them like it was a shooting gallery, and an ignominious end to the campaign in sight, the players managed to eke their way out of this tight spot. The engineer, again using the fast task check rule, jury rigged the jump drive, fired them up, and they escaped into jump space. Three of the players rushed down to the lower cargo hold and defeated the boarding party and they're now on their merry way to Tanith with a barely functional jump drive, a sputtering power plant, a dearth of spare parts, and a heavy conscience: The psion murdered Grimsbold for her perfidy.