Welcome back to our tales of the Lighthouse, the wandering space station operated by the Galactic Concord to keep peace in the delicate frontier of the Verge in the Alternity Star*Drive universe!
Thirteenth Session – It’s Starship Troopers type fun as we board the klick ship we disabled in last session’s space combat and wreak havok! We are very, very happy we brought fifteen Concord Marines along, since Markus and Haggernak are really the only two PCs who can pack a meaningful punch on these critters.
The klick ship was fun, with gooey biotech all over. I had to complain once – the GM has a bad habit of saying “a door opens and a bunch of enemies come in” – he then places them in the room with us and says “roll initiative.” I successfully argued that we’re moving along Rainbow Six style; any kind of coming in the room needs to happen as a combat action because we intend to bottle people like that up in the doorway as much as possible.
We brought a bunch of Concord Marines with us… We split them into one NPC platoon (that of course got wiped out off camera) and one platoon that went with us. Three five man squads – one in power armor, and two of riflemen with one machine gunner, with us as the command section. They were invaluable. We only used the power armor squad in the initial fights, leaving the other squads to secure other approaches. When the jumbo klick captain and “space vampires” and horde of klicks hit us we brought them all into play, and concentrated autofire of a squad’s charge rifles is, as it turns out, just about an automatic win. Plus, I remembered the suppression rules- having the riflemen lay down suppressive fire gave us some much needed defensive bonus (no matter how far away, under cover, behind 5 marines in power armor, etc. we were, the GM never gave us more than one step of defense bonus).
Both Markus and Haggernak took an awesome amount of mortal damage. Luckily, that’s where we’re Vikings – we drugged ourselves up and kept going. I was happy with this chance for Markus to shine – his big background thing is that he was a mutant shock trooper for the Thuldan Empire who did exactly this for a living, so excelling at it was gratifying. Soften ’em up with a frag or two and beat them down with the gravmace. No hesitation, retreat, or surrender. We didn’t even lose any marines! (Well, none in our platoon…) I felt bad that the other PCs didn’t get too much chance to do stuff, but while Markus and Haggernak are mildly better combatants in a “wandering the station” situation, once we’re geared up with military hardware the gap is pretty wide.
Once it was all over, Markus hooked up with that Thuldan engineer chick he had noticed before. Bruce made it sound like he just hunted her down and seduced her in the session summary; actually to celebrate their victory, Markus shut down the Corner and had a private party – the PCs, the Marines, and friends (basically anyone whose name we have bothered to learn). The GM said the Thuldan geek girl showed up. Markus is usually much too gruff to bother with the ladies (and, when it comes down to it, shy – the Thuldan mutant shock troop curriculum didn’t have much on social skills and no opportunities for fraternization), but the aftermath of a space assault had his blood up. She stayed around as the party was breaking up, and the deal was sealed.