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    1.79 MB Void Quest 3 Vedibere !!O+eQDn0BBx8 07/11/11(Mon)17:15 No.15547424  

    A heavy mechanical thunk, gigantic bolts larger than a man drawing back. The hiss of decompression. A good sign.

    “Access granted. Stand clear. Stand clear. Stand clear. Stand clear....”

    Loud cracks, splintering wood and the tearing of fleshy vines as the gigantic subsumed blast door swings open once again. A gaping maw leading into a dark hole within the smooth verialloy access bunker. A final booming jolt as it ceases its motion and all is still once more, the midnight entryway now open to you.

    You flick the optics of the two drones to LADAR mode, slowly advancing inward. Storage canisters and crates lie in piles, tumbled from their positions. To either side stand two elevators, a long spiral ramp meant for vehicles plunging down into darkness in the center. No power, no elevators. You float the two drones down the spiral ramp, descending at speed for nearly fifteen minutes; access doors and sealed passages flash by until your probes eventually reach the smooth metal floor at the bottom of the ramp, deep within the earth. An enormous arched storage facility looms overhead; steel crates piled high in irregular pyramids, betrayed in their disorganization by the dozens of metal containers laying strewn about the base. Playthings of the giant called Time. Dozens of rovers to the side, their entrails gutted and hanging freely by his faithful hound Ruin. Weaving between the strewn obstacles, you make for the facility access door and enter your authority code once more. All green, access granted.
    >> Vedibere !!O+eQDn0BBx8 07/11/11(Mon)17:16 No.15547431
    Age lies heavily upon the facility as you move through it, atmospheric degeneration orders of magnitude greater than that of your own void-preserved body. Creaks and groans of metal shifting against metal, giving dead breath to the facility. Empty corridors coated in dust, dozens of vacant barracks echoing with the ghosts of the past. Odds and ends strewn about within them, occasional misplaced personal trinkets left to rot. Armories still stocked with ancient weaponry, gone to rust through the millennia. Consoles deactivated yet never to be returned to. Laboratories and machine shops silent and still, rows of beakers and mechanical presses bearing silent witness to the darkened passage of years. Weight rooms and cafeterias vacant of life, haunting presences without their occupants.

    Everywhere the same scene, simply different elements to compose it. The story of organized withdrawal, systems mothballed and shut down. Life support green but deactivated, overpressured to keep infiltrates out. Every door shut and locked. Base mainframe access terminals depowered. Officer’s quarters barren and stripped, mattresses and linens rotted away.

    Simultaneously your drones reach the reactor core and command bridge, deep within the bowels of the base. The results for both are the same: “Access Denied: Entry restricted by order of Ophidian Armed Forces: Ground.”

    >> Vedibere !!O+eQDn0BBx8 07/11/11(Mon)17:17 No.15547443
    Aboard the Harbinger the last of the probes has been returned to one of your rearward bays and analysis begun. Results are mixed; three proves of one design in, two of another, and the final three all of disparate origin -- or so you surmise from their construction. Chief Dai has assigned one of the lower engineers to review them, commenting that he has no time for ‘children’s tinkertoys’ when the reactor was still in such a state and the Gate station’s workings are in need of review.

    Brief analysis shows that of the three similar probes, the two smaller ones transmit streams of information to the third larger satellite. Only the larger probe has a reactor, mater/antimatter annihilation from the readings, and it seems to be responsible for both transmitting power to the other two and -- from the engineer’s assessment of the largest dish -- beaming back small FTL reports to its operators on a regular schedule.

    Three of the others share the basic attributes of reactor and transmission with the main satellite, though the final two seem to operate off of atomic reactions -- fusion or fission at a guess. Their transmissions are likely far more infrequent according to the engineer, owing to the on-board capacitance coils required to store enough power for a FTL squirt.
    >> Vedibere !!O+eQDn0BBx8 07/11/11(Mon)17:19 No.15547468
    ==Map Legend==
    Green Dotted Arrow: Previous Jump

    Green dot: Current position. (Currently Orrin)
    Yellow Square: Your awakening position
    Teal dotted zone: Hundred Systems Territory (Hundred World’s Rebellion)

    ==Command Staff==
    Lieutenant Kateryna Ivanova - Second-in-Command
    Lieutenant Dray Parson - Intelligence Officer
    Lieutenant Robert Tynes - Steward
    Chun-Fan Dai - Chief Engineer
    Dr. Christof Burr - Physician
    >> Anonymous 07/11/11(Mon)17:24 No.15547512
    archive of the last one? I missed the ending bit.
    >> Vedibere !!O+eQDn0BBx8 07/11/11(Mon)17:26 No.15547526
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    Previous Threads:

    1: http://suptg.thisisnotatrueending.com/archive/15474877/
    2: http://suptg.thisisnotatrueending.com/archive/15527576/
    >> Anonymous 07/11/11(Mon)17:26 No.15547533

    >> Anonymous 07/11/11(Mon)17:32 No.15547592
    So the defense sats from last thread are not operable defenses?

    And the mothballed stuff in the base has been destroyed by time?

    If we could locate an intact computer core, could we replace a defense satellite's core with it and have it under our control or do we lack specialists for that?

    And do we have drones scouting the ring of hulked ships around the planet to search for intact reactors, computer cores, other spare parts?
    >> Anonymous 07/11/11(Mon)17:33 No.15547610
    Is there any way to check logs of what the probes have sent so far? It might tell us what's happened in this system, or in the years we've been missing.
    >> Anonymous 07/11/11(Mon)17:44 No.15547700
    Oh wow, you're early, Vedibere.

    Anyway, do we have any Army authorization codes, or does anyone in our crew have them?
    If possible, I'd rather not try to break into the sealed areas of the military base.

    Also, are the engines repaired enough that we can bring the Harbinger inside of the protective picket of the defense satellites?
    I'm sure that our examination of the probes has not gone unnoticed, and an alien recon force is probably being readied as we speak.
    >> Vedibere !!O+eQDn0BBx8 07/11/11(Mon)17:45 No.15547712
    >So the defense sats from last thread are not operable defenses?
    What gave you that idea?

    >And the mothballed stuff in the base has been destroyed by time?
    Well, I mean, some of it....

    >If we could locate an intact computer core, could we replace a defense satellite's core with it and have it under our control or do we lack specialists for that?
    ...probably. I'm not sure why you would want to, but sure why not. You would have to bring it onboard and dedicate several engineers to the task though.

    >And do we have drones scouting the ring of hulked ships around the planet to search for intact reactors, computer cores, other spare parts?
    So, uh. You want to meticulously sift through a sphere of debris encompassing an entire solar system?

    If others think it's a productive use of time too then go for it.

    >Is there any way to check logs of what the probes have sent so far? It might tell us what's happened in this system, or in the years we've been missing.
    You'd have to pull them apart to find out, but it's doubtful they have long term storage on-board if they are transmitting the data to somewhere else.
    >> Anonymous 07/11/11(Mon)17:48 No.15547737
    First, a thought I had yesterday. There's a very good chance that we're the Death Star. A unique prototype superweapon, unmatched in all the galaxy.

    From what Ivanova said about there already being people unhappy with the Harbinger design as too great a concentration of power, what happened to us *proved them right*. All the effort and materials invested into us was destroyed without a trace in one go. At least, as far as anyone else could tell. So it wouldn't be unexpected that the Harbinger program was scrapped in favor of smaller warships in greater quantity.

    Right now we're still making guesses on limited information. But IF the Ophidian empire collapsed in a relatively short period after our time, and IF no one else has risen to match or exceed them since, then we are the single most dangerous weapon in the galaxy.

    Well, at full strength we would be, at least. Right now we are damaged, weakened, and vulnerable. But it's a possibility to keep in mind.
    >> Vedibere !!O+eQDn0BBx8 07/11/11(Mon)17:51 No.15547766
    >Oh wow, you're early, Vedibere.
    Yeah, words are flowing well today.

    >Anyway, do we have any Army authorization codes, or does anyone in our crew have them?
    You don't have any high level ones. As for crew, you can't read their minds but you could ask and/or review the profiles previously given for possibilities.

    >Also, are the engines repaired enough that we can bring the Harbinger inside of the protective picket of the defense satellites?
    >> Anonymous 07/11/11(Mon)17:55 No.15547783
    Still, even a small amount of information would be helpful. Not like it would be particularly hard to inspect them, would it?
    >> Anonymous 07/11/11(Mon)17:56 No.15547789
    Then I vote that we ask Ivanova and the other awake crew if they know of any Army authorization codes.
    Check through the profiles of the surviving crew in cryo for any Army backgrounds, or that would have worked closely with the Army.

    Also, have the Harbinger move to within the defensive ring of the defense platforms.
    I think it's safer than staying outside of them, when we are still heavily damaged, reactor is slightly unstable, weapons offline, and unknown aliens are likely on the way to investigate the odd sensor readings their probes sent back.
    >> Anonymous 07/11/11(Mon)17:56 No.15547792

    Asking seems like a good plan.
    >> Anonymous 07/11/11(Mon)17:56 No.15547794
    Now, to business.

    Multiple surveillance probes means multiple civilizations with at least rudimentary interstellar travel. Cooperative enough they're not destroying the other probes, competitive enough they have their own.

    At first glace they seem to be reporting on a fixed schedule, so our presence may remain unknown until they start missing reports. I'd like the engineer to investigate the possibility of using them to open communication with whoever is on the other end. Or at least plot a location to where the reports were going.

    Command and Reactor are sealed, with command codes we lack I take it. What's our ewar suite like? Something was said about our abilities as an EI being fairly good, could we (to be crude about it) hack these suckers and get them to turn on?
    >> Anonymous 07/11/11(Mon)17:59 No.15547808
    We may need to thaw out an EWAR specialist, if we still have one.
    The computer core on the Gate station was a trap, and I wouldn't put it past the OIA to have been just as paranoid.
    >> Anonymous 07/11/11(Mon)18:07 No.15547887
    Turning it on straight away would probably be a bad idea, but more likely than not it's scuttled and gutted like the rest of the station.
    >> Vedibere !!O+eQDn0BBx8 07/11/11(Mon)18:07 No.15547889
    >What's our ewar suite like?
    Previous thread. Your intrusion defenses are bleeding edge next generation stuff, best available. Your intrusion packages are extremely good, top of the line. Only the most advanced automated counter-intrusion suites or other AIs/EIs would generally be able to stop you. Note: There are EIs in intelligence that are specially designed and picked from base personas to be intrusion specialists. These are highly dangerous even to you.

    That said, these are military-grade defenses you would be up against. There is always some level of risk, even if it's tiny and failure wouldn't mean anything significant happens.
    >> Anonymous 07/11/11(Mon)18:10 No.15547914
    Was the drone getting whacked by the anti-intrusion protocol in the last session due to the trap's software being better, or because it caught us by surprise?
    Or is that something we need to thaw out a specialist for?
    >> Anonymous 07/11/11(Mon)18:12 No.15547935
    We could always try routing it through the console again, and then perhaps going straight in if it seems clear. The last one was a trap though, so I dunno. Thawing out an EWAR specialist seems pointless at this point; most of the computer technology is below our tech level.

    Would this kind of station have a hydroponics or food facility we could raid for supplies or the supplies to make more food? Honestly I can't think of anything we would need in the engineering/reactor section, but I supposed there must be SOMETHING behind it for it to be sealed with high level security codes.
    >> Vedibere !!O+eQDn0BBx8 07/11/11(Mon)18:14 No.15547956
    Your EWAR specialists are thawed. You and Parson. And it was because whatever was in the computer was better than the protocols the drone had. Your protocols weren't shielding it since you had withdrawn, so it only had the normal protections of a drone system.
    >> Anonymous 07/11/11(Mon)18:14 No.15547960
    This also. Do we have any logs of the attack method that was used last time? Could we defend against it?
    >> Anonymous 07/11/11(Mon)18:15 No.15547972
    >most of the computer technology is below our tech level.
    We're talking specifically about the computers in the military base on the planet. Those computers are military-grade and from approximately when we were damaged.
    So the EW specialist will be essential in going over the logs of what happened, and in preventing intrusion countermeasures from frying us.
    >> Anonymous 07/11/11(Mon)18:17 No.15547996
    Task Parson with running an analysis of the logs from the drone, to analyze the avenue of attack and coming up with a defense.
    Once completed, try to access the Gate station's computer core again in order to get a copy of the intrusion countermeasure program for analysis.
    >> Anonymous 07/11/11(Mon)18:20 No.15548026
    instead of trying to run intrusion, wasn't lt Ivonova in the Intel community? and did some swoopy shit for NAVSPECWAR? She might have something relevant. might as well ask, anyway.
    >> Anonymous 07/11/11(Mon)18:24 No.15548058
    Yes, that can be included when we ask Ivanova if she knows of any Army authorization codes to use on the locks on the reactor and control room of the base.
    >> Anonymous 07/11/11(Mon)18:26 No.15548079
    I suggest we consult with Parson, poll the command staff to make sure none of them have first hand experience with Ground Forces codes or procedures, and if not we hack the sucker. So far we've been extra cautious, but these defenses and traps don't seem aimed at anyone of our caliber. Getting the base online and having access to its systems is a high priority.

    Also, any objections to the plan about trying to backtrack where those surveillance probes were reporting to?
    >> Anonymous 07/11/11(Mon)18:26 No.15548080
    Can we restore power to some of the base systems without use of the Command bridge/Reactor?

    Also, do we know of an emergency armed forces override? I mean, it seems pretty silly to have it so the army can tell the Navy "You don't get to land here," and not set up something for emergencies.
    >> Anonymous 07/11/11(Mon)18:28 No.15548106
    Military grade are not always best tech around, just so you know.
    >> Anonymous 07/11/11(Mon)18:29 No.15548115
    We should backtrack, but any kind of analysis should be done when we are safe inside the protective picket of the defense platforms.
    >> Anonymous 07/11/11(Mon)18:30 No.15548132

    Specifically, can we inquire as to the rank of the override?

    As a naval captain, we're equivalent to a colonel.

    Arguably, as the sole presiding entity of the only known remaining ship, giving us a fleet of 1, we're an Admiral.
    >> Anonymous 07/11/11(Mon)18:48 No.15548270
    Rank isn't much use if we don't have the authorization code to go along with it.
    >> Anonymous 07/11/11(Mon)19:01 No.15548369
    So it's agreed then, check the probes, inquire into ways to bypass the door and defend against the counterintrusion measures. If all else fails, hack it, with extreme caution.
    >> Vedibere !!O+eQDn0BBx8 07/11/11(Mon)19:36 No.15548629
    The bridge is empty as you casually shift your attention back to it, or at least mostly so. Lt. Ivanova sits in the first officer’s chair, reviewing data on the base, station, and sats. A prudent measure you suppose, considering you have moved within their defensive sphere. “Good evening, Lieutenant.”

    “Sir.” She gently pushes the console away and makes to stand, but you cut her off, “No, no, at ease Lieutenant. I simply had some questions and wished to consult you.”

    “Very well, sir. What do you wish to know?” she inquires, sitting back down and pulling the console back into position.

    “First, I would like to know if you know or have access to any high-level army access codes, perhaps from your time with ASFOR. If not, do you know of anyone on the crew who would?”

    “Hmm. I believe Third Lieutenant Rinn would be best to consult on the matter. I seem to remember that at one point he served attached to an army division for his land weaponry training. Regardless, Weapons Officers’ duties are to have a broad knowledge base on all kinds of warfare. He could well have picked something up off the record considering how long he’s been in the service. If all else fails I believe you could hack it, Army security is generally sloppy anyway.” As she replies she resumes her analysis, but you note she left something out.
    >> Vedibere !!O+eQDn0BBx8 07/11/11(Mon)19:36 No.15548632
    “And what about you, Lieutenant? I believe I asked for what you know too.”

    Ivanova’s eyes stray from the screen to the surrounding bridge, and though she keeps tapping at the console you note that very little is getting done. “Well, sir, I... dont’t know about that. I’m sure you know that the Army likes having its own turf, and if you don’t have access to those codes I wouldn’t either, nor any experience dealing with them. I would advise asking Lieutenant Rinn or perhaps Lieutenant Parson since the people in Intel often work with all branches.”

    You pause, but your second takes preempts your next question with one of her own, “Sir, have you managed to trace the destinations of the collected probes yet? I don’t look forward to encountering alien craft in such a state as this.”

    Hmm. “I have. Two of them were likely transmitting to unexplored systems within a 400 LY radius, the largest to a subject system called Moreva 1300 LY away, one to deep space, and the others to could be linked to multiple systems along the line of transmission, though it is likely that at least two of them were conveying the information to systems marked uninhabited in our databanks, both within 1000 LY.”

    “I see, thank you for the update sir.” She nods and reaches back to her calculations before stopping herself, “Anything else, sir?”

    You chuckle inside, why not? “Yes, would you like to assist Parson in trying to assess the computer core on the station? He says he’ll need to board it and get a closer look.”

    Ivanova’s eyes narrow, “I would... prefer not to, sir. Lots of work to do here. Making sure the ship is safe.”

    “Ah, I see. Carry on for now then, Lieutenant.”
    >> Vedibere !!O+eQDn0BBx8 07/11/11(Mon)19:38 No.15548651
    You switch to the docking bay where the probes are being disassembled and take in the sight. Three engineers are in front of V-Screens, directing a swarm of drones across the alien probes. Pieces lie scattered in a sort of symmetric chaos around them, each tagged and labeled, and you see that they have begun pulling out parts of the internals. Good.

    You swoop a drone over to the lead engineer in charge of the project, Min Wright. A tall, lanky man with light brown skin and black hair, he graduated sixth in his class from the Armada Engineering Academy. A disciple of Chief Dai, he was selected for the engineering staff due to his excellent command of drones and intimate familiarity with the advanced systems used. Currently he’s yelling loudly into the ear of one of his subordinates over the scream of electrosaws and hiss of welders to one of the others, something about the order of deconstruction. Despite his proximity and volume, however, the other engineer often yells “What?!” back, causing him to repeat himself... after the fourth time, you honestly begin to wonder if he really missed it or he likes seeing Wright yell himself horse.

    “Mister Wright, a word if you would?” you speak through his earpiece, and he reaches up and presses a finger over it to seal the connection better, waving the other engineer off. “YES CAPTAIN?”

    “How is the probe disassembly progressing?”


    “Weird how?”


    “Is that bad?”


    “See that you do, dismissed.”
    >> Anonymous 07/11/11(Mon)19:42 No.15548688
    Probably means that whoever built these probes did so by reverse-engineering remnants of our own technology.
    That may mean that they have some notion of the Ophidian Empire. This may not be good.
    >> Anonymous 07/11/11(Mon)19:52 No.15548788
    >void quest
    Awww yeah, been waiting for this.

    Continue exploring the army facility to see if we can salvage resources? We should probably *close the door* the we opened to get in, lest some nasty critters get inside, or we vent too much delicious delicious air.
    >> Anonymous 07/11/11(Mon)19:56 No.15548820
    Okay, let's contact Parson, see if he has any Army codes.
    If not, then we thaw out Lt. Rinn to see if he knows of any codes.

    Also, I'd like the doctor to begin testing samples of the planet's air and water, to see if they're safe to bring aboard. We might as well begin replenishing the water and air while we wait for replenishing food.
    >> Vedibere !!O+eQDn0BBx8 07/11/11(Mon)19:57 No.15548824
    Wow, I just noticed I fucked up on the map. Position is 48 degrees, not 58.
    >> Vedibere !!O+eQDn0BBx8 07/11/11(Mon)20:11 No.15548943
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    Uh, wat do? Where did everybody go?
    >> Anonymous 07/11/11(Mon)20:14 No.15548964
    I'm still waiting on you to act on >>15548820
    I think people just assumed you were writing up another long response, and will probably be back shortly to check.
    >> Anonymous 07/11/11(Mon)20:17 No.15548994
    Ivanova wants to keep her secrets, she can for now. Seems a little pointless now, but no reason to make an issue of it. Yet.

    Let's contact Rinn and Parson about breaching the base computer systems. We can brute force it, but better to use codes if we have them.

    If we can spare the processing power, a wider scan of the planet would be good. The base will hopefully have material supplies to help effect repairs but it's unlikely to have much in the way of still fresh food and water. We're going to have to look elsewhere for that. And there might be surprises.
    >> Anonymous 07/11/11(Mon)20:20 No.15549023
    we are all f5ing in anticipation as we hear more news of exploration.

    Air, water, hydroponics, metal plates to be used in repair. We'll take anything at this point. It might be worthwhile to dedicate a cargo bay to growing food.

    Once we have more resources, we can thaw out more crew. Worst comes to worst, we might need to go hunting on the planet or something. I don't think we had an inventory of boomsticks yet, Vedibere. We also should take stock of how many crew we can sustain for how long. Wasn't Lieutenant Dray Parson working on that?

    Keep the reactor from exploding, too. That's kind of important.
    >> Anonymous 07/11/11(Mon)20:22 No.15549042
    >We also should take stock of how many crew we can sustain for how long. Wasn't Lieutenant Dray Parson working on that?
    No, that was Tynes and Dr. Barr.
    >> Vedibere !!O+eQDn0BBx8 07/11/11(Mon)20:26 No.15549066
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    Well, I can't work with "go salvage stuff" really. This is a huge base. An enormous cargo bay stacked with mystery crates. All kinds of computer systems. A few dozen rovers. Tons of the place you haven't explored.

    I guess I could just have your probes start loading random boxes onto the shuttles and bring them back, or rip up steel floorplates because "hey, it's salvage right?"

    Maybe some priorities would help you with that, though. And maybe some orders on what not to bother with? Your ship is big, but space is finite. You aren't going to be able to salvage the entire base, and you for damn sure aren't going to be able to salvage the entire planet.
    >> Anonymous 07/11/11(Mon)20:33 No.15549115
    First priority is to question Parson and thaw out Rinn for those codes.

    If we get the codes, then reactivate the Reactor and gain control of the Control room.

    Have some of the drones go on automated search sweeps of the base to check it for damage.
    See if the crates are labelled in any way, or if they have RFID tags of some kind that identify them.
    Tynes is to oversee this part, and his priorities are Reactor and Ship Engine Components, Food Rations, and Computer Components.
    Everything else can stay ground-side; there's no need to bring everything up to the ship, and it's not like we're in a rush to grab everything and run.

    As for Dr. Burr, have him test the air for pathogens and viruses, anything harmful we need to look out for. Also run an orbital survey for sources of fresh water, and have drones bring up samples for the doctor to test.
    >> Anonymous 07/11/11(Mon)20:33 No.15549117
    Look for useable machine parts that we can easily covert for our use. Look for spare Unisteel(or whatever our ship is made of) to plug the holes, especially the massive ones. Look for any remaining army rations for the humans. Look for any spare Drones/weapons. Look for any humans in cryo pods, (more ppl helps rite?) Look for any and or all remaining computer cores to extract info from.
    >> Anonymous 07/11/11(Mon)20:38 No.15549151
    >some priorities

    Air, food, water, systems that can be used to produce either of the three previous items, information on what happened, materials to repair the ship with (hopefully in a more civilized manner than ripping up floor plates), and weapons: first ones that we can mount, second, personal ones. In that order.

    Perhaps there are signs posted around the base that point to facilities containing the above?

    Here's something concrete: take a good look around and note any kind of dates on crates, scraps, signs, etc. How many millennia has this base sat here for? That said, there should be writing around the base. Painted signs, etc. Can we read it? Is it different in dialect from what we speak?
    >> Anonymous 07/11/11(Mon)20:41 No.15549175
    Might also be worth seeing if we can find any parts to repair the damage to our weapons. I believe they were damaged at least. Maybe even taking apart the defense sats on our way out if we can manage unless we rather keep this place as a safe haven if we need it.
    >> Anonymous 07/11/11(Mon)20:41 No.15549177
    >not like we're in a rush to grab everything and run.
    >test the air for pathogens and viruses, anything harmful we need to look out for

    Yes. This.
    >> Anonymous 07/11/11(Mon)20:48 No.15549249
    It's far better to keep this place as a safe port of call.
    Its defenses have lasted for around 64,000 years; nothing in this part of the galactic arm can penetrate its defensive line. And judging by the evidence of some of our technology being reverse-engineered and used by aliens, and the debris around this system, we can't be confident that anyone would welcome us.
    >> Anonymous 07/11/11(Mon)20:54 No.15549294
    Okay, Vedibere, do you need anything more from us, or are you writing it up now?
    >> Vedibere !!O+eQDn0BBx8 07/11/11(Mon)20:54 No.15549297
    Writing, but a quick answer to this
    Here's something concrete: take a good look around and note any kind of dates on crates, scraps, signs, etc. How many millennia has this base sat here for? That said, there should be writing around the base. Painted signs, etc. Can we read it? Is it different in dialect from what we speak?
    Everything seems to be in Standardized Universal Imperial Communication Form, called Universal or Common.

    The rest in next post(s).
    >> Vedibere !!O+eQDn0BBx8 07/11/11(Mon)21:35 No.15549603
    You find Lieutenant Parson sitting in the (still somewhat in disarray) officer’s lounge, a half dozen datapads around him. He holds two, sometimes three, and on occasion switches the wires tying them together around before returning to his evaluation. Compressed and sifted data from the attack on the drone in the station, you see.

    “Lieutenant, a word.” Your voice flows from the comms as always, a method of communication you have begun to grow used to. Not so much for Parson, it seems, the young officer starting in his chair and giving a shocked squeak.

    Flushing a bit, he clears his throat and adjusts the high collar on his formal uniform, “Yes sir, what do you need?”

    “Do you have the report on the station core yet?”

    “Ah, about that sir. I have some guesses but I’d really like to get over there with Dai and check it out firsthand.” he scratches his cheek, looking thoughtful, “Though if I had to say offhand, I’d guess there’s actually something in there and it wasn’t wiped. The volume of the system and the reports we managed to get before the connection was severed don’t match up.”

    He leans forward and picks up a different datapad, waving it in the air toward one of your optics, “Also, I looked through the info on the attack itself. High-grade stuff, but I could get through.” He looks nervous, then continues, “But, well, there’s a problem. In... emergency situations we’re allowed to link systems to the reactor, to detonate it in case of intrusion. My systems could get in, but I’m pretty sure whatever software is on there would, if it has that protocol activated, blow the station. And uh, I’d say that’s likely considering what the rest of the station looks like.”

    “Better and better.” you grumble, “So is there any way to get in?”
    >> Vedibere !!O+eQDn0BBx8 07/11/11(Mon)21:36 No.15549611
    “Yes. Well, I think so.” He shuffles through his slates and finds another, flicking through it briefly before continuing, “Yeah, I think you could get in considering the specs I was given for your systems. There would be a time limit before it reached the critical threshold, and it would probably only work once... maybe twice. But if you could get in and set us friendly to the counter-intrusion wares -- or even just turn deactivate them -- then I think we would have full system access.”

    “Well done, Lieutenant. I’ll take it into consideration. Now, another question for you; do you have any high-level army passcodes that would allow us to access the base below?”

    “Um. Afraid not, captain. They like to keep us nice and compartmentalized. You ask Ivanova?”

    “Yes, she advised me that the best chance was to ask you or Lieutenant Rinn. What do you think of reanimating him?”

    “Oh, well, he might know. I doubt it, but anything is possible, and since we found a base and planet I doubt we’ll be low on supplies.” The Intelligence officer leans back in his chair, arching his back and cracking his arms behind him. “Ahhh, is that all sir?”

    “It is, but I wouldn’t count your chickens on supplies yet Lieutenant. Unless they are made out of bean-paste, that is.”

    “Great.” His face curls in distaste and he picks up the slate again, “Well, is that all captain?”

    “Yes, dismissed.” you reply, cutting the line and searching for Tynes.
    >> Vedibere !!O+eQDn0BBx8 07/11/11(Mon)21:37 No.15549615
    You find him in medbay, laying on his stomach upon a cot, shirt off, with Dr. Burr to the side. The rotund doctor’s head is engulfed by a vision-enhancement helmet with a dizzying array of lenses clicking back and forth, a needle in one hand and screwdriver in another. A few minutes pass as he pokes and prods at the alloyed spine grafted into Lt. Tynes, eventually drawing back and taking off the contraption.

    “Well, everything still looks good. There doesn’t appear to be any damage from the cryofreeze, just be aware and tell me if you begin to feel anything strange.” as he speaks the doctor jots some notes on a datapad and eventually nods, smiling.

    Now dressed again, Lt. Tynes hops down from the bed and returns the grin, “Thank you, doc, good to hear.”

    “Gentlemen, if I may interrupt?”
    >> Anonymous 07/11/11(Mon)21:37 No.15549617
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    We have to remember that we can't just rely on the defensive platforms for protection, because an enemy force could have a weapons range longer than that of the platforms. So if we're orbiting at about half of the platforms' ranges, and the enemy can shoot farther than that, they can hit us without being in danger from the platforms. Pic related.

    How is our combat readiness?
    >> Vedibere !!O+eQDn0BBx8 07/11/11(Mon)21:37 No.15549625
    “Hello, sir.” Tynes says, turning and saluting one of the optics as Dr. Burr nods, “Captain.”

    “I have some questions and, maybe, orders for you both. First, Dr. Burr, have you been over the records of Orrin in the databanks?”

    “I have, but they are severely out of date. Still, it looks habitable and without anything that would compromise standard immunity nanites, according to last report.” he rolls over and grabs another datapad, thumbing through the contents, “Yes, just a few low level allergens that are easily corrected for or purified. But again, sixty-five thousand years.”

    “Understood, I’ll have the drones bring back samples of air, various plants, fauna, and water for you to scan. We need resupply, as I’m sure you are aware.”

    The doctor sighs, “Captain, I’m a doctor not a botanist. But I’ll do the best I can. It will take a day or two.”

    “Good, also please see about waking Lieutenant Rinn, Weapons Officer. We may have need of his expertise.”

    Both Dr. Burr and Tynes freeze, eventually the dark lieutenant breaks the silence, “Hostiles, sir?”

    “No, no, though we need to stay on guard. Access to certain parts of the base planetside.” You shift to Lt. Tynes, “Speaking of which, Lieutenant, if the tests prove safe I’m going to need you to go down and begin classifying supplies, materiel, and consumables to ferry up to us. I’ll have a list prepared for you soon. Any questions?”

    “No, sir.” the man replies, before you thank him and ‘depart’.
    >> Vedibere !!O+eQDn0BBx8 07/11/11(Mon)21:39 No.15549645
    >How is our combat readiness?
    Nobody has really assessed it yet. At a guess: Poor or worse.
    >> Anonymous 07/11/11(Mon)21:40 No.15549651
    If that was the case, they would have cleared the defense platforms already.
    They know that this system is a treasure trove of ancient and advanced technology; the number of dead hulks beyond the weapons range of the defense platforms shows that people thought this place was worth sending lots of crews to their deaths for.
    >> Anonymous 07/11/11(Mon)21:42 No.15549678
    >Captain, I’m a doctor not a botanist.
    Haha! I was waiting for this to come up!

    Anyway, can we check in on Dai and the reactor? I want to know if it's been stabilized yet.
    >> Anonymous 07/11/11(Mon)21:45 No.15549709
    Those could have been sitting in space for thousands of years. Lord knows what sort of ships will be coming up now. I'd say set one of Dai's cronies to survey our defenses and weapons systems.

    We can't run very well right now and we don't know how well we can fight, so if we don't examine the weapons and shit does hit the fan, someone better come up with a third option to fight or flight, cause those two choices aren't even worth considering.
    >> Anonymous 07/11/11(Mon)21:46 No.15549712
    After checking the reactor, and while waiting for Rinn to thaw out, and for the drones to go down to the planet and come back with samples, let's also have our sensors do active scans of the debris field.
    Look for mostly intact ships, and tag them for later retrieval.
    This will give us insight into the level of technology of the surrounding civilizations, and their weapon systems. Maybe even some corpses for dissection and analysis.
    We will, of course, have to take into account how old some of these wrecks are; we don't want to go into a system expecting to fight ships with primitive railguns, then be surprised by blackhole cannons and dimensional rotation guns.
    >> Anonymous 07/11/11(Mon)21:46 No.15549716
    I'm saying that, assuming no enemy ship has a range greater than that of the platforms, which, while possible, I doubt (considering these platforms were said to not be very good), they still might have a range far enough that they could hit something drifting between the platforms themselves and their maximum range, for example, us. So unless we're at the same altitude as the platforms, which we probably aren't given our size, we could be vulnerable.
    Maybe I'm just talking out of my ass, but it wouldn't hurt to try to get our guns up.

    What would it take to assess our weapons?
    >> Anonymous 07/11/11(Mon)21:48 No.15549738
    But if they have those advanced weapons you're afraid of, why haven't they come to clear away the defense platforms?
    The probes were still transmitting data, and there are at least 3 different civilizations monitoring this system. If they could out-range the platforms, why haven't they already gotten rid of them?
    >> Anonymous 07/11/11(Mon)21:51 No.15549771
    >So unless we're at the same altitude as the platforms, which we probably aren't given our size, we could be vulnerable.
    Actually no.
    The debris field is spread throughout the entire star system in a sphere, so it follows that the defense platforms are spread throughout the entire system rather than just orbiting the planet.
    >> Vedibere !!O+eQDn0BBx8 07/11/11(Mon)21:53 No.15549789
    Mind you, these 12 defense platforms are scattered around the SYSTEM, not the planet.

    I forgot to mention, but someone did ask for a system scan. Five planets, one gas giant orbiting midways out, four rocky inner planets. Three superhot and orbiting close, Orrin orbiting in the habitable zone between the GG and star. Two moons around it, none around the inners, twelve around the giant.

    So yes, these twelve defense sats have the system covered in their sphere of fire. Obviously some of it heavier than other places, such as Orrin.
    >> Anonymous 07/11/11(Mon)21:53 No.15549790
    Maybe because the civilizations monitoring the system only care about traffic entering. Maybe these are just early warning systems waiting for a military vessel such as ourselves or someone from this Ophidian Empire to try to salvage the area. Alien ships gate in and suddenly we're on their shit list because we look like this dead Empire's ship.

    I'm just saying. Ten thousand years. Singularities have come and gone. I have no idea what could be out there, and for all intents and purposes, it could be anything. I want a weapon in case whatever it is is hostile. Or if I can't have a weapon, I want to know how many weapons are doing.
    >> Anonymous 07/11/11(Mon)21:54 No.15549804
    "My" not "many."
    >> Anonymous 07/11/11(Mon)21:57 No.15549845
    It's been 64,000 years since we went into stasis.

    We also haven't done any dating tests on the debris field, so saying anything about how old they are is nothing but wild conjecture at this point.
    >> Anonymous 07/11/11(Mon)21:58 No.15549851
    Vedibere, good to see you posting!
    >> Anonymous 07/11/11(Mon)22:03 No.15549877
    That's a fine point. Okay how about this:

    We send a probe out, tell it to look around for bigger shit, if it finds a mostly intact ship, then that might give us an indication about when all this debris starting spawning.

    If it looks relatively new, or less technologically advanced than the platforms, we'll focus on other priorities than weapons. If the debris looks very old, however, or looks extremely advanced beyond us in technology, I want a weapons update.
    >> Anonymous 07/11/11(Mon)22:04 No.15549887
    Vedibere, good to see you posting! You're one of the few quest writers who can honestly be called "eloquent," and you're even doing characterization, you clever writer you, even though anon still has a problem with giving useful orders.

    Salvage: In case it wasn't clear, these should be our salvage priorities:

    1. Consumables (food, water, etc.) (Do we have any technology on-board that can pump out edible... stuff if fed enough random biomass?) We can't do shit if we are dead.

    2. Manufacturing and tools. Anything in the way of autolathes or machine tools for the production of stuff we cannot synthesize on-board is VITAL. We no longer have a shipyard to run home to, nor resupply ships to count on. Tools are vital. Tools.

    3. Raw materiel. Given the difficulty of synthesizing unisteels to feed into any machine tools we might find, we're far better off latching onto any repair stock in the ancient cargo bays of the base.

    4. Expendable munitions. Missiles, bombs, spare drone fighters - resupplying that shit is going to be nigh impossible, so we should focus on finding those goodies before anything else.
    >> Anonymous 07/11/11(Mon)22:09 No.15549932
    >weapons update

    Even before the 'base codes' thing came up, I was going to push for thawing our weapons officer. Given the obvious disparity in tech levels I've no doubt we could hold our own with 10% shields, the few guns we can still warm up without having examined/repaired the systems and the drone fighters, but we can only trust that so far.

    Having our Weps officer awake is also vital for directing fruitful salvage operations of the base to maximize our gains. So yes, let's wake that bastard.


    If I recall correctly, her profile said something about a sint with Intel? She's a spook. Spooks gonna spook.


    The similarity of the tech seems to prove that the locals are "successor states," i.e. smaller governments rising in the wake of a larger empire's collapse. Rome's technology didn't vanish with Rome, for the most part.

    So whoever out there aren't total uncivilized barbarians, which is good.
    >> Anonymous 07/11/11(Mon)22:12 No.15549967
    Alright. That's an acceptable compromise.
    >> Vedibere !!O+eQDn0BBx8 07/11/11(Mon)22:12 No.15549975
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    >So whoever out there aren't total uncivilized barbarians, which is good.
    Unless they hate you for being the brutal oppressive overlords, then it might not be so good. BUT HOW WILL YOU KNOW?
    >> Anonymous 07/11/11(Mon)22:14 No.15549985
    Hmmm a group of evenly-matched countries fighting for supremacy with vastly differing viewpoints? We hold a massive war machine from a forgotten era that could possibly turn the tide of battle? IN SPACE?

    I would be 100% okay if that is where this quest takes us, but I can't shake off the sneaking suspicion that around the bend is a fleet of Protoss, or the Flood, or the things from Dead Space or some shit. This all just screams Space Horror to me.
    >> Anonymous 07/11/11(Mon)22:16 No.15549995
    >If it looks relatively new, or less technologically advanced than the platforms, we'll focus on other priorities than weapons.

    Frankly, once we wake the weapons officer, that's all he'll have to do: fix weapons systems. Just because of our situation (alone with no shipyards assumed operable and friendly) manufacturing ability is more important then extra missiles: especially since, in our weakened state, if the missiles still in the bins/stores aren't enough to save us, we're fucked anyhow.

    And since we're waking our weapons officer anyhow, we can pretty much count on him keeping busy by fixing our blammo cannons. There's not much trade-off needed here; we're overthinking things.

    Still, scouting the debris field with a few drones couldn't hurt - lets do as much as we can in the time we have.
    >> Anonymous 07/11/11(Mon)22:17 No.15550000
    Really? I got Master of Orion, except we're a surviving Antaran cruiser who stumbled onto a world with a Guardian that ID's us as friendly, yet is surrounded by all of the formerly oppressed client races.
    >> Anonymous 07/11/11(Mon)22:18 No.15550009
    I'm okay with that because it means there are blue space elves somewhere out there.
    >> Anonymous 07/11/11(Mon)22:18 No.15550011

    I agree with these two. Salvage needs to focus on consumables, tools, raw materials, then ammunition/expendables. As for defense, thaw our weapons officer to get a better accounting of our defensive options, weaponry, etc.

    I know it was mentioned, but never expounded upon- is there any possibility there's cryofrozen troops here? given the status of the base so far, it seems unlikely, but it's worth asking
    >> Anonymous 07/11/11(Mon)22:19 No.15550017
    I would mostly agree with this.
    1) Food/Water
    2) Material that can be immediately used to repair/augment our ship
    3) Tools
    4) Material that needs to be tooled first
    5) Munitions
    >> Anonymous 07/11/11(Mon)22:19 No.15550018
    Well, fixing the weapons and heat dissipation systems will take raw materials and components away from other repairs. That's the trade-off.
    I mean, remember that the reactor is still kind of unstable, and only outputting about 12% of its normal operating output.
    Then there's all of the repairs to the onboard computer systems and databanks.
    >> Anonymous 07/11/11(Mon)22:19 No.15550021
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    A very simple litmus test. "Are the shooting at us Y/N?"

    (At least some of) the successor states hating our fucking guts for being members of the legendarily brutal regime of the past is a damn sure bet, but it's all worth it, because it means that modern, technological civilization as we know it still exists in some form.

    Yes, that means we could get access to shipyards and ally with races that have the tools to make the tools that make the tools we need (rather then having to rebuild the tech tree with the maintenance kit we keep under the pilot's seat,) but that's all secondary to my main concern.

    Somewhere in the galaxy, they still make cheeseburgers.

    And that is a beautiful thing.
    >> Anonymous 07/11/11(Mon)22:21 No.15550033
    According the message left by the Glorious Destiny, they completely evacuated the base and the colony.
    I doubt there's anyone left.
    >> Anonymous 07/11/11(Mon)22:23 No.15550053
    It has been more than 60000 years. I doubt our empire is more than a fairy tale at best, or a bogeyman at worst.
    >> Anonymous 07/11/11(Mon)22:24 No.15550056
    >Well, fixing the weapons and heat dissipation systems will take raw materials and components away from other repairs. That's the trade-off.

    True, but let's not get ahead of ourselves: we'll let the Weps officer tell us what shape everything is, and what it'll cost us to fix 'em. Missiles generate little heat and if we've a sufficient number serviceable or readily repairable, we can focus on bringing the launchers up to par in the meantime.

    They also give us a standoff advantage, and since we're so fucked up right now, that's helpful.
    >> Anonymous 07/11/11(Mon)22:26 No.15550071
    >It has been more than 60000 years.

    And our chief engineer is 500 years old. Longer living through SCIENCE! A year is a lot shorter to future-men then it is to us, and our years are shorter then they were to our ancestors, who's life expectancy averaged 65.

    Also, sci-fi writers have no sense of scale.
    >> Vedibere !!O+eQDn0BBx8 07/11/11(Mon)22:30 No.15550113
    Okay, for the record:

    Weapons Officer: An advisor (usually old and having seen many campaigns) to the captain whose duties consist of identifying enemy tactics, strategies, weaponry, ect. and giving advice when requested on employing a ships firepower to best effect.

    So yes, he will know all about every gun and shield generator on the ship but he's not an engineer... he doesn't personally go and fix them.
    >> Anonymous 07/11/11(Mon)22:31 No.15550118
    Vedibere, are you writing or do you need more concrete courses of action from us?
    >> Anonymous 07/11/11(Mon)22:31 No.15550121
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    >Writefag smart enough to drop hints as to the nature of the current galaxy
    >Readers smart enough to appreciate them and discuss the clues
    >> Vedibere !!O+eQDn0BBx8 07/11/11(Mon)22:32 No.15550140
    Only if you want to, I'm working with what is currently on the table. Feel free to add though, I'm still taking input as I write.
    >> Anonymous 07/11/11(Mon)22:34 No.15550157
    >So yes, he will know all about every gun and shield generator on the ship but he's not an engineer... he doesn't personally go and fix them.

    That's *EXACTLY* the man we need. We're not going to get a fraction of our firepower online again in a month of Sundays, much less short term. No matter what, we'll be fighting with much less then we're accustomed to.

    So it is of TANTAMOUNT importance that we have a man who can:

    1. -use what little we have to the greatest, most devastating effect, and
    2. -tell us which shield generators, weapons, coverage arcs and equipment are most vital to bring online.

    This is what I said in the last thread, and it still holds true now. Our repair ability in Engineers and Repair Drones is a fixed quantity, this man can tell us how to make the most of it, and use it well.
    >> Anonymous 07/11/11(Mon)22:35 No.15550168
    First thing next post should be us checking in with Dai. Make sure that the reactor has been stabilized. If it has, then ask him to work with Parson on identifying what's hidden on the Gate computer core; air our suspicion that there might be a dormant EI or an AI in there, given the vast amount of storage taken up by 'something'.

    Get drones to collect those samples for the doctor, and another set of drones and active scans to sift through the debris field for intact hulks.

    And once Rinn has been thawed and is ready, ask him about the codes.
    >> Anonymous 07/11/11(Mon)22:40 No.15550236
    You know, it's possible that this system wasn't quarantined at all.
    It could be that as the Empire came apart, they started pulling resources back from the frontier towards the Core Worlds, and mothballing their colonies and military bases.
    When the Empire was strong again, they could just come back, metaphorically turn the water and electricity back on, do a little cleanup, and they'd have a colony world ready for colonization again. The automated defenses would be to make sure that no one else took such valuable planets, and just in case, all of the high-tech equipment would be stripped to make sure that it wouldn't fall into enemy hands.
    >> Anonymous 07/11/11(Mon)22:48 No.15550330

    That's actually what I've been thinking, too. It seems a lot more likely, given the status of the base- it looks like the pullout was orderly, and the station was thoroughly decommissioned, but not beyond the ability of a crew to get up and running again (beyond OUR ability, sure, but not a dedicated crew)

    That makes me more hopeful for the nature of the salvage in the base, too. Seems likely that it'd be the kind of stuff that you'd need in a reclamation colony- food, medical supplies, tools, Alloys, that kind of thing. maybe not so much weapons and ammo, but still, things we could use.
    >> Anonymous 07/11/11(Mon)22:54 No.15550407
    But as Parson mentioned, the one big thing we have to be careful of, is a self-destruct switch.
    Both the Gate station and the military base probably have them.
    Without the codes, we'll need to hack into the systems, and that could end very badly.
    >> Anonymous 07/11/11(Mon)23:02 No.15550509

    Right. maybe it'd be better to start pulling salvage from the ground side base before we start to muck about with the locked stuff. we got into everything except the reactor and Command center, and it's not likely they'll have anything we need anyway, except for computer info- which, to be blunt, we can wait for- or do without, for the time being. whatever else we can salvage, though, may be a little less optional
    >> Anonymous 07/11/11(Mon)23:02 No.15550510
    Didnt think this'd be back until later in the week, guess I'll check the archives more carefully next time.

    All of everybody's requests for investigations seem in order. Let's do this.
    >> Anonymous 07/11/11(Mon)23:04 No.15550531
    Of course. We're not in a rush.
    If we get the codes, we reactivate and everything's fine.
    If we don't get the codes, then we take our time, getting critical supplies first, then sifting through everything else. We get it all out of the base, and THEN we try to hack into it.
    It would be nice to have the base because the workshops are already built; we just need to unpack the tools and turn the power on.
    >> Vedibere !!O+eQDn0BBx8 07/11/11(Mon)23:12 No.15550599
    3d10 Please
    >> Anonymous 07/11/11(Mon)23:13 No.15550624
    rolled 4, 2, 8 = 14

    >> Anonymous 07/11/11(Mon)23:13 No.15550627
    rolled 1, 6, 5 = 12

    here goes nothing
    >> Anonymous 07/11/11(Mon)23:13 No.15550628
    rolled 4, 8, 8 = 20

    >> Anonymous 07/11/11(Mon)23:13 No.15550630
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    rolled 5, 2, 4 = 11

    >> surehopeidontfuckitup 07/11/11(Mon)23:14 No.15550636
    rolled 10, 6, 2 = 18

    >> Anonymous 07/11/11(Mon)23:17 No.15550653
    rolled 7, 6, 3 = 16


    >> Anonymous 07/11/11(Mon)23:17 No.15550654
    To set the base's reactor to self destruct, it must be intact, right? If we can disable the self destruct, is there any chance we could salvage it for parts?
    >> Anonymous 07/11/11(Mon)23:17 No.15550657
    rolled 1, 3, 8 = 12

    >> Anonymous 07/11/11(Mon)23:20 No.15550694
    I don't know if that's wise.
    Do you really want to start taking apart the containment housing for a black hole? Because that's what you're suggesting.

    We call it a 'reactor' but it's actually a contained singularity.
    >> Anonymous 07/11/11(Mon)23:22 No.15550718
    To think if we could harvest the black hole for all the matter inside...
    >> Anonymous 07/11/11(Mon)23:29 No.15550774
    Tell me how we turn off a black hole.

    Besides, trying to get a power plant designed for a base to fit into the superstructure of a cruiser is going to require a lot of restructuring, much of which could compromise the structural integrity of the ship.

    Of course, that even assumes that they decided to stick with a singularity for the power source, instead of using something cheaper, which may not work as well for the Harbinger.
    >> Anonymous 07/11/11(Mon)23:38 No.15550858
    Not like we're not already compromised.
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)00:12 No.15551079
    This shouldn't need a bump
    >> Vedibere !!O+eQDn0BBx8 07/12/11(Tue)00:16 No.15551098
    You finally give permission to Parson and a positively giddy (well, as much as the man can be) Dai to take a shuttle to the station and, observing all proper protocols, find out what they can about the computer core. Your suspicion that there is an AI or EI inside the core is noted and both men assure you they will take all appropriate precautions with it.

    The drones, too, are dispatched... three places, in fact. First, to collect samples from the planet; air, water, flora and if possible fauna. Soil samples, rock samples, ambient samples, sublayer samples, sample samples. Everything that could hold relevance. Dr. Burr seems quite overwhelmed by the flood of work and mumbles about how he always used to have assistants to do this kind of grunt work as they pile up.

    Second, to the debris field. You begin reviewing the larger hulks for possible markers of passed time. Degradation, metal fatigue, whatever signs you can see.

    Third and finally, on request of Lt. Tynes you give him control of several probes inside the base, to speed cataloguing and assessment of materiels to transfer.

    Still, for now there is a more important task at hand: The reanimation of Weapons Officer, Third Lieutenant Mardigan “Guns” Rinn; Responsible for maintaining an accurate evaluation of the ship’s combat readiness, assessing enemy tactics and armament, and offering combat advice to the captain if requested. Male. Muscular, white hair, slightly scarred face. Internal augmentation. Apparent age 58, actual age 437. Illegally enlisted as an apprentice spacer at age 15, saw action the same year. Logged in excess of 140 campaigns aboard 29 different ships of varying classes. Highly decorated. Applied and was accepted to the Armada Officer Academy at age 319. Graduated and was assigned as WO by dint of service length and breadth. Served as WO aboard six vessels before application of transfer to the Harbinger.
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)00:16 No.15551100
    Vedibere you alive bro?
    >> Vedibere !!O+eQDn0BBx8 07/12/11(Tue)00:18 No.15551111
    Pulling Lt. Rinn from his cold coffin, however, proves to be one of the more troublesome reanimations. The man immediately begins choking as his lower-grade enlisted cybernetics seize, causing a tense minute as Dr. Burr brings them back online. Successfully. You personally brief Rinn -- the last of your command staff -- on the situation and he nods, a grim smile on his lips. His only comment: “Aye cap’n. Same ship, same crew, bigger problems, don’t matter. No matter who, the Empire’ll give ‘em what they deserve.” Dr. Burr tells you he will be down for two to three days for a full medical scan, and you approve: no sense in risking the man’s life when you have time.

    The next three days pass in relative peace. The crew’s spirits are, while still obviously shaken, greatly restored by orbiting a blue-green world -- just like the ancient pictures of earth! -- instead of the vast open void. The possibility of fresh, non-rationed food also lifts morale and you can occasionally even see a smile or two. Rarely, of course. Eventually the reports come in, of mixed results:

    The ID tags on many of the crates give, finally, a rough idea of the date when the base was abandoned. OY-19439 -- fifty-eight years after your mishap.

    The ruined mass of orbiting ships, on the other hand, are fare more recent from what you can tell... for a given definition of recent. Exploring thirty hulks gives you a range of 20,000 years old for the largest and most intact to a mere 100.

    Finally, some plausibly good news. While he has not had time to assess the local plants and wildlife Dr. Burr can confirm that the air *should* be breathable, though highly oxygenated. He advises no open flames, citing the still-raging wildfire in the forests around where you used the shuttle’s onboard weapons to burn out the landing zone.
    >> Vedibere !!O+eQDn0BBx8 07/12/11(Tue)00:21 No.15551127
    “Well, captain, I think we’ve gotten as much as we’re going to out of this thing.” Parson turns and slaps the side of the computer core as he speaks, drawing a glare from Chief Dai. “We’ve confirmed that there is a whole load of information, and that it’s linked directly to the singularity reactor,” he continues, oblivious, “and I’ve prepared as much data as I can to make the job easier for you when you go. Here’s the setup and protocols to use, and while you’re in there I thi--”

    *And what about the other options, Parson?* you ‘hear’ across the comm channel between the Harbinger and the station. Lt. Ivanova. *Perhaps you should tell the Kapitan about them as well, rather than just your pet project?*

    “Bitch.” he mutters, *Yes, I was just getting to that. Thank you. So much.*

    But it’s Dai who speaks up, “Don’t need to hack it, at least not if all you want is station control. Would take time. Couple weeks, maybe longer, but could bypass it if we link it to another computer core.”

    “Yes, but we won’t get all the data that’s on there.” interjects Parson, again, “There’s a lot, too. No way to tell what it is, but without going in we’ll never find out.”
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)00:24 No.15551149
    >Third Lieutenant Mardigan
    Odd rank.
    So is this rank more equivilant to use in the former Warsaw pact?
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)00:26 No.15551166
    >>No way to tell what it is, but without going in we’ll never find out.
    Famous last words. But yeah, go for it.
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)00:28 No.15551182
    Information is what we sorely lack. We must get more information concerning what happened, and if there are other mothballed worlds like this that we can find and use.

    I say we hack it; but make sure that the Harbinger is on the other side of the planet when we do so.
    If the self-destruct activates, the planet's mass should provide us with some protection.
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)00:29 No.15551188
    Well then, risk, however small the chances, of blowing up the station for the data, or play pretty and safe with the bypass.

    Fuck it. Evacuate all personel from the station. We'll give it a shot. Worse comes to worst, it's not a tremendous loss as most of the station has been neutered to the point of uselessness. The station is basically only good for info, actually.
    >> Vedibere !!O+eQDn0BBx8 07/12/11(Tue)00:29 No.15551189
    Nah. He's the lowest ranking senior officer on the ship.

    2nd Lt.
    3rd Lt.
    Enlisted crew
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)00:33 No.15551215

    Agree. No guts, no glory. After the matter of our immediate survival, a lack of information is our next most pressing concern.

    Let's take reasonable safety precautions. Clear the station, keep the ship at a safe distance, keep an eye on the defense stations in case they turn on us. Then let's hack that sucker.
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)00:33 No.15551217

    Does the stations computer core have to be connected to the singularity, or could we simply hook it up to some kind of gigantic battery?
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)00:33 No.15551218
    Has anyone considered trying to cut up some of the ships in the debris field and use them as a patches until we can effect more permanent repairs?
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)00:35 No.15551234
    As long as we have FTL capability and sensors with sufficient resolution, we can find out what happened in any system's "past" by observing it at a certain distance. To see what was going on here a year ago, we could jump one light-year out, for instance.

    Obviously, with the ship in its present condition, making multiple jumps is not advised. But this is something to keep in mind for later.

    If we could use the resources in this system (such as we might find in the base or the starship graveyard) to fashion an FTL-capable probe, that would be great, but without a shipyard it's probably impossible. ...Unless one of those blasted hulks just happened to be disabled, but easily repairable.
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)00:36 No.15551237
    If they got ripped to shreds by the turrets that we outgun by orders of mangitude, they're probably not worth it
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)00:36 No.15551243
    A patch is a patch. They don't need to take weapons fire just hold in the atmosphere.
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)00:37 No.15551250
    I like this

    Also, is the base on the same side of the planet as the station (assuming the station is in geosynchronous orbit), and could the station's detonation be large enough to cause damage to the base if it is? It would have to be a ludicrously large explosion, but then again, it's powered by a black hole.
    >> Vedibere !!O+eQDn0BBx8 07/12/11(Tue)00:38 No.15551261
    Uh, what do you think you spent nearly a month doing before you took the first jump?

    All the holes are patched. The minor damage is fully repaired, the major damage is mostly repaired, and the critical damage is sealed. Remember how you had to seal one of those huge gashes to stop the engines from venting into your fuselage?
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)00:40 No.15551268
    Ok, so different from current day usage.

    >But it’s Dai who speaks up, “Don’t need to hack it, at least not if all you want is station control. Would take time. Couple weeks, maybe longer, but could bypass it if we link it to another computer core.”

    >“Yes, but we won’t get all the data that’s on there.” interjects Parson, again, “There’s a lot, too. No way to tell what it is, but without going in we’ll never find out.”
    Never is a very long time. Why cant we hack into it after it's been cut out of the loop as in Dai's option? I know Parsons is younger and less experienced than the others but it seems like he's well acting a bit odd.
    >> Vedibere !!O+eQDn0BBx8 07/12/11(Tue)00:41 No.15551273
    Caveat: Obviously, by repaired I meant field repairs. It won't be good as new unless you get to a fully stocked high-tech (by your standards) shipyard.
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)00:43 No.15551280
    The Gate station is at a LaGrange point, not geosynchronous orbit.
    >> Vedibere !!O+eQDn0BBx8 07/12/11(Tue)00:43 No.15551281
    >Why cant we hack into it after it's been cut out of the loop as in Dai's option?
    No power, it will be turned off.
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)00:48 No.15551308
    Alright, so it appears that majority is that we're going to hack the station's computer core, after we move the ship a safe distance away.
    Let's crack this sucker open!
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)00:53 No.15551338

    Considered it, but given the possibility of the stuff we need being in the base- along with all the tools- it's a lot of effort, especially given our relatively limited manpower. Right now, I'd call it a backup option. plus, I doubt the stuff they're made of is as good as the stuff we're made of.
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)00:54 No.15551343
    Cant we supply it with power while removing its ability to tell the reactors to go fuck themselves?
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)00:55 No.15551350
    It's telling its power source to go fuck itself and you want to hook a power source up to it.

    Do you see the problem here? If we knew its particular avenues of overloading or self destructing its power source that could probably work, but without that we risk it blowing up whatever power source we hook up to it.
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)00:58 No.15551362
    The largest and most intact are also the oldest. Probably because they were the ones that were able to scavenge lost Ophidian technology the best.
    The more recent ones probably had to develop their stuff on their own, and so that's why they were torn to shreds by the defense platforms.

    Since the most recent attempts to breach the defenses of this system were 100 years ago, they will likely try again sometime soon. They will have undoubtedly have attempted to develop better weapons and shielding in order to get past the defenses, but if they've been trying for the past 20,000 years, and STILL can't get past the pickets, I don't think they'll be getting past them anytime soon.
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)01:04 No.15551391
    Vedibere, do you need any more input from us, or are you writing?
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)01:05 No.15551393
    >The largest and most intact are also the oldest. Probably because they were the ones that were able to scavenge lost Ophidian technology the best.
    The more recent ones probably had to develop their stuff on their own, and so that's why they were torn to shreds by the defense platforms.

    It could also be that the earliest, and most intact, examples were warships while the most recent are explorers, surveyors, or other ships not designed to take a rail slug.

    In the last sixty thousand some years it's entirely possible, probable depending on the amount of life in the galaxy, that species have gone from pre-agrarian to multiple system spanning civilizations and have no knowledge of the Ophidian Empire outside of reverse engineered technology.

    The amount of time that has passed means that we cannot, in good faith, make any assumptions about the relative capabilities or levels of technological progression of any ships or civilizations we might encounter unless we take the time to inspect and dissect some of the hulks - both old and new - and glean information such as their metallurgical makeup, computer processing power, and any weapons. And even then at best our information will be a minimum of a century out of date, and a lot of progress can be made in a century.
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)01:08 No.15551420
    >unless we take the time to inspect and dissect some of the hulks

    I'd love playing xenoarcheologist. We should definitely do that at a later point.
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)01:10 No.15551432
    Yes, that's true.
    I'm actually more interested in acquiring intact corpses for dissection and analysis, as well as cultural artifacts.
    If we can understand a civilization's culture, we can understand how they think, and how we can best exploit their cultural weaknesses.
    >> Vedibere !!O+eQDn0BBx8 07/12/11(Tue)01:12 No.15551450
    I'm writing, trying something new. Bear with me.
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)01:13 No.15551458
         File1310447605.jpg-(80 KB, 416x405, Thrawn Advice - Get an Art Deg(...).jpg)
    80 KB
    >play xenoarcheologist
    >collect xeno art
    >use art to develop tailored tactics
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)01:26 No.15551553
    >Your voice flows from the comms as always, a method of communication you have begun to grow used to. Not so much for Parson, it seems, the young officer starting in his chair and giving a shocked squeak.

    Something I just thought of: a Disembodied noise of someone approaching down a hallway preceeding us, the sound of footsteps getting closer. Would be interesting to see if this freaked out Parsons more or less.
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)01:28 No.15551565
    If the objective is to freak him out less we could always "knock" with a chime or the like rather than pretending to be a ghost.
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)01:29 No.15551571
    If that doesn't work, we could just use a chime, like an incoming call ringtone.
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)01:32 No.15551590
    Can we make any sense of the warning labels and stuff on the probes we took in and disassembled? I mean things like "repeated symbols" mostly.

    Also, it might be wise to declare ourselves in an emergency situation. I'm sure there are protocols for dealing with this sort of thing: stranded, away from resupply, sensor damage and lost in space, etc. Mostly to keep the crew from going insane, and to maybe convince Lt. Ivanova and others that secrets will get us nowhere.
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)01:34 No.15551603
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)01:35 No.15551610
    I would also give a thought to thawing an assistant for the doctor. We've given him some work outside our field of expertise, and the crew is getting bigger. No matter how good, he's only one man and he can only do so much at once.
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)01:38 No.15551629
    Why don't we just thaw the rest of the crew?
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)01:38 No.15551636
    Outside his, sorry. And cataloguing all that fauna is simply tedious. Could easily benefit from a pair of helping hands.
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)01:39 No.15551642
    Thaw them out only after we've secured a supply of food.
    Whether it's local flora and fauna, or a huge cache of military-grade freeze-dried bean paste rations.
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)01:39 No.15551649
    We're waiting for an inventory of food/water/air before we can be certain that we can sustain a larger crew. That's why we have such a small crew right now.
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)01:40 No.15551653
    Because our food will only last a few months, and then only if we put everyone on starvation rations.
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)01:44 No.15551680
    And that's excluding the non-substantial amount that will invariably disappear into a still underneath a deck plate in engineering.
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)01:45 No.15551686
    And after we've secured the necessary supplies?
    >> Vedibere !!O+eQDn0BBx8 07/12/11(Tue)01:49 No.15551716
    Parson hands ‘you’ a datapad, just managing to catch it as your drone-fingers fail to grasp it securely then scratches his head, “Ah, sorry, guess I’ll just read you the conclusion anyway.”

    “We -- ‘I’, I guess -- think the key is going to be buried deep inside the system. I’m not sure if it’s an AI, EI, or advanced counter-intrusion program; regardless, standard AI/EI warfare procedures should be viable. Whatever it is will be pulling the terrascape from the datastreams and, uh, ‘memories’ of both sides. The farther in you go the more aggressive the defenses will become. If you can though, don’t fight them, fighting them might make it easier in the short term but overall it will just draw more attack routines. The objective will be an extremely important object of some type, that can’t be changed... but it will probably try to hide it somewhere nondescript.”

    He takes a breath and wipes away a bit of sweat, “Any questions?”

    You try to prevent a sigh, but it escapes your speaker anyway, a soft burst of static. “Lieutenant, I’m an EI.”

    His brows knit, “Sir?”

    “Trust me. I know.”

    You pick up a soft snicker from Dai and Lt. Parson shoots him an annoyed glance, “U-uh, right. Sorry sir. Estimates project nine seconds before ejection and we won’t get another try.”
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)01:50 No.15551720
    Then we'll bring the rest of the crew out of cryo.

    Honestly, we've had this planned out from the first thread already; why are you trying to mess up our planned schedule?
    >> Vedibere !!O+eQDn0BBx8 07/12/11(Tue)01:50 No.15551723
    “Thank you, Lieutenant.” and with that you slowly float over to the access port.

    “Ah, one more thing, sir.” Parson manages, he seems to be sweating even more now. “While you are inside, uh, I would suggest you check the date. I- I don’t think you were in error, but maybe there was some mistake in the system. We can’t be... I mean... well, even if you don’t gain access the system clock shouldn’t be hard to check.”

    “Date’s accurate. Singularity clock.” Dai says in monotone, not looking up from his task rerouting wiring.

    “That could be wrong!” the Intelligence officer shoots back sharply. “There were theories, I know about them. Flux instability, or something like that. It could be off!”

    Dai snorts, “Ivory tower theorists. No practical grounding, no tests, fuzzy math. Fringe science. Even if true, off by picoseconds at most. Besides, just cross-reference with containers in base.”

    Parson ignores him in favor of turning back to you, calm again, “Anyway, I think it would be prudent to check Captain.”

    >Next few updates will be cyber-warfare. Special rules. You will have nine actions total. They can be Look, Attack, and Access as you choose. You can use any number of these actions at any time.

    >You will be presented with a scene with a number of things happening at no cost. You may then use actions. The scene will change when you Access something to enter the next scene. When nine actions have elapsed or you have accessed the system key the intrusion will be over.
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)01:51 No.15551730
    Sorry, I didn't know asking questions messed up your schedule.
    >> Vedibere !!O+eQDn0BBx8 07/12/11(Tue)01:51 No.15551731
    >At this point do any actions you want to in the physical world before plugging in.
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)01:53 No.15551742
    So that means that, say, Looking around our scene means 1 second lost?
    Then using Access to move to the next scene, and Look around, is another 2 seconds?
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)01:53 No.15551743
    Say "If I'm not back in nine seconds, keep waiting."

    Y'know. Levity.
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)01:54 No.15551750

    >> Vedibere !!O+eQDn0BBx8 07/12/11(Tue)01:54 No.15551752
    >You will be presented with a scene with a number of things happening at no cost. You may then use actions.
    Look is only for gaining specific information about objects. The scenes themselves don't cost anything.
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)01:54 No.15551755
    We wanted to move away from the possible blast zone, right?
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)01:54 No.15551756
    Make sure that the Harbinger has been moved to a safe distance from the Gate Station, and that all personnel have been evacuated.
    Also, I think it prudent for everyone to take crash positions just in case something goes wrong.
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)01:55 No.15551758

    It probably means that's how many actions can take take in a second. We're in a Combat Phase, but we have Initiative Passes. That's how many passes we get in the Combat Phase.
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)01:57 No.15551784
    Sounds like this should be entertaining. I trust everyone wont get us or the crew all killed horribly.
    Night anons.
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)01:58 No.15551786
    > You can use any number of these actions at any time.
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)01:58 No.15551788
    No...we have 9 actions total, each action being 1 second to execute.
    So every single one of our actions has to count.

    Vedibere, have we undergone intrusion training before?
    In the past, what forms have the system keys taken?
    >> Vedibere !!O+eQDn0BBx8 07/12/11(Tue)01:59 No.15551796

    9 action pool for the entire intrusion, can be used in any number at any time.

    Scene presented on initiation and after >Access

    Can use Look, Attack, or Access for the cost of 1 action.
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)02:02 No.15551828
    1 second seems kind of slow for a computer
    >> Vedibere !!O+eQDn0BBx8 07/12/11(Tue)02:04 No.15551841
    Good question!

    You didn't undergo intrusion 'training' per-se, so much as you have vast databanks and an intuitive understanding of the process as an EI.

    In the past when you were practicing or executing intrusions the scenes took the form of surreal depictions of powerful, defining moments in the participant AI/EI's lives. These scenes can be pulled from either side, and obviously whoever actually lived through that scene will have an inherent advantage. Previous experiences have included the first time you killed a person, an enemy EI's first date, and when you received your notice of selection for EI captain of the Harbinger.
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)02:07 No.15551867
    And the system key? In each of those situations, what form did it take?
    The first time we killed, was it the weapon we used?
    For the first date, was it a flower?
    For the selection, was it the selection notice?
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)02:15 No.15551915
    I mean, it won't be obvious, will it? Like have a halo around it, dancing flames, or some goddamned sparkles and rainbows, will it?

    Also, will you do something like putting the system key in the very first scene, relying on us assuming that the key MUST be somewhere deeper within the system?
    Because I totally would do something like that.
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)02:16 No.15551925

    We should talk to Parsons. He needs to understand that the year is an academic issue at this point. It's obvious that the Empire has changed while we were away. Our immediate job is to survive and secure the means to continue to survive. The long term goal is to find out what shape the Empire at large is in, and make contact with whatever elements remain.

    He was ready to die when he enlisted wasn't he? That's all this is, right now. A coda, with the possibility for opening up the next movement in a long performance. Or it could be the coda to the finale, but we won't know unless we forge on ahead.
    >> Vedibere !!O+eQDn0BBx8 07/12/11(Tue)02:17 No.15551927
    For the killing, you were put back in your first fight to the death on a battlefield, right after your shuttle was shot down by alien partisans. The "key" was the act killing the man you first killed again in the simulation, only this time he was the leader of the group (he wasn't actually, just a random mook) and all of his men fought to the death to protect him.

    For the first date, you were placed in a scenic city square on valentine's day evening. The key was the diamond wedding ring he presented to her two years later, you found it because it stood out in the window of an antique shop named "Futures".

    For the promotion you were at the formal celebration in dress uniform. The key was indeed the notice you had received, and it took the place of the prepared speech that was sitting on the podium.
    >> Vedibere !!O+eQDn0BBx8 07/12/11(Tue)02:19 No.15551942
    It will be out of place, but not obvious. And no, Parson already said that it will be buried, so you can pretty much assume at least one scene transition before you can get it.
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)02:24 No.15551972
    Alright, I think we're ready, then.
    We'll make the connection after doing the physical stuff from >>15551756
    Move the Harbinger to outside the blast zone, make sure that all of our people are off the Gate station and have taken crash positions.
    >> Vedibere !!O+eQDn0BBx8 07/12/11(Tue)02:31 No.15552012
    For the record, a singularity doesn't have a blast. It's a black hole. It will eat the entire system.

    Details though, you can and have been (already wrote that part in the update I'm doing now) moved to a far enough range that you could escape the gravity well if it goes.
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)02:35 No.15552046
    >It's a black hole. It will eat the entire system.
    >eat the entire system
    requesting WhatCouldPOssiblyGoWrong.jpg
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)02:35 No.15552048
    Perhaps we should loot all the supplies we can before we access it then so nothing of (great) value is lost if something bad happens.
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)02:36 No.15552055
    err access the computer system. herp
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)02:41 No.15552077
    I think we're going to have big problems if we accidentally the entire system with a black hole.
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)02:41 No.15552083
    It should take us only a few weeks then, to search through the military base, identify what's in the crates, and then fill our cargo holds.
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)02:42 No.15552086
    Bigger. Still, couldn't hurt.
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)02:44 No.15552104
    If anything. Everything was rusted through, subject to 64k years of time. I doubt there's anything usable left. Maybe bean paste.
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)02:46 No.15552127
    If the main computer survived...
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)02:48 No.15552142
    Alright, are we going to hack now, or are you going to postpone it for a few weeks while we get the supplies?

    Because I'm saying to just hack into the computer core now.
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)02:48 No.15552151
    Timeskip for supplies and THEN hack.
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)02:53 No.15552187
    Let's get our supplies first, maybe do a bit of xenoarcheology on the side.
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)02:55 No.15552211
    i want to move the action along too, but timeskip for supplies would be the cautious route. we're not in a real HURRY to hack stuff. That core has sat here for a long time.
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)02:58 No.15552237
    Then let's hurry this up.
    I'd like to get more done this session.
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)03:00 No.15552247
    Timeskip for supplies and then hack makes sense but we're kind of fucking up the flow
    what is our crew going to think if we've made all this prep for hacking and all of the sudden OH SHIT WAIT WE SHOULD CHECK FOR SUPPLIES
    not exactly very confidence encouraging as a captain
    >> Vedibere !!O+eQDn0BBx8 07/12/11(Tue)03:01 No.15552254
    The ship is finally in position on the far side of the system from the gate, and you stand before the core once again. All the good luck your staff could wish you lies heavy upon your shoulders, Lt. Rinn having even made the trip up from medbay to stand with the others doing so because, “I should be on the bridge if my commander is in battle, damn it.”

    Still, you feel singular, something you’ve not experienced since the loss of your body. Here, a single drone, away from the ship and aboard a vessel rigged to implode.

    You feel alive.

    The uplink clicks as your lead connects, pain briefly exploding through your mind as your protocols adapt and counter. Vision fades to blackness with a single point of light. It bulges, expands, and explodes into a billion tiny fragments that shimmer outward... and stop. A beautiful field of stars set against the void.
    >> Vedibere !!O+eQDn0BBx8 07/12/11(Tue)03:01 No.15552260
    You look down, and beneath you battle swirls between three forces. The darkened skies of the orange-red planet Xabos Tae swirl with green clouds. The faster-than-light bolts of energy cannons leaving delicate traceries of lance lines in the blackness, or mushroom clouds visible from space where they kiss the surface of the planet below. Your first battle, fresh out of the academy as an ensign. You descend towards the clashing three-way, drone fighters streaking through the skies... thousands of them. Far more than there were. And they burn when they near, icy-hot flashes of pain that only anti-intrusion phages can give.

    You pass through the swarming cloud and into the open, struck with momentary awe once more at the vast array of ships before you. The Armada flag cruiser to which you were assigned, OIS-Hydra, dances laughing between the beams of her foes, lances from his foe’s energy cannons sliding from his roiling shields. The three destroyer escorts try to match his grace, and though two manage, the feeble bolts of the enemy absorbed or deflected from their capital grade shields, it one is already aflame, two great gashes rending it, one forward and one rear near the engines.

    The enemy forces, the dueling houses Laran and Parson, are nonetheless falling back in disarray before the mighty onslaught, their frigates unable to so much as scratch the mighty forces arrayed against them and swarms of drones tearing apart the smaller ships they use for escorts. This day will be a glorious victory for the Empire, a reminder to the Great Houses that they are a part of humanity and in service to it, rather than its dominant rulers.

    Your blood swirls with the heat of combat, the memories welling up within you bringing a smile to your face once more. Though you are here for a battle of a different sort. And time is of the essence.

    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)03:02 No.15552263
    I agree.
    We get everyone readied and then suddenly call it off? Doesn't look good as captain.
    >> Vedibere !!O+eQDn0BBx8 07/12/11(Tue)03:02 No.15552267
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)03:06 No.15552296
    We were on the Hydra during this battle, right?
    So it stands to reason that the Hydra should be the next to the next stage. Try Accessing the Hydra.
    >> Vedibere !!O+eQDn0BBx8 07/12/11(Tue)03:12 No.15552349
    >All the people going "oshit- black hole?!?"
    What did you think a singularity was? Why do you think you can leap four thousand lightyears at twenty percent power? It's because you have a black hole for a reactor, questbros.

    Singularity just sounds better and is a more technical term. I thought you knew this.
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)03:13 No.15552361
    I think the key in this scenario might be the objective we completed at that time, or some enemy ship we struck down.

    The OIS Hydra should be the next place to look.
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)03:16 No.15552378
    I don't know why they're so surprised.

    The objective seemed to be the complete pacification of the opposing task force.

    Vedibere, can we get a little more info about this battle? Like, what special significance did it have for us, besides being our first assignment and being on the Hydra?
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)03:16 No.15552380
    I think we all understood that we had a singularity for a reactor, but it wasn't immediately assumed that if shit went down, it would just form a black hole. I would've thought it dissipated or something.
    >> Vedibere !!O+eQDn0BBx8 07/12/11(Tue)03:20 No.15552408
    It was the defining moment that made you want to become a ship captain, even if it meant becoming an EI rather than entirely human. The invincible forces of the Empire sweeping in to crush their foes, the effortless ease with which not only one, but two -- two! -- of the great houses were forced into submission.

    The glory and terrible majesty set your course to become what you are today.
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)03:23 No.15552427
    Personally I assumed that it was a 'primordial' style blackhole artificially forced below its Schwarzschild radius and would explode once containment failed.
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)03:23 No.15552433
    Does that mean that every single Imperial warship destroyed in combat releases an uncontained black hole onto the battlefield?
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)03:23 No.15552434
    singularity = black hole
    Singularity is just the technical term for a black hole. The last I remember (admittedly this was nearly 15 year ago) a black hole catastrophically explodes when it's mass reaches a specific point after radiating it away as Hawking radiation.
    If the gravitational containment fields of a singularity reactor were to be turned off or fail, there would be nothing to keep the black hole's event horizon from expanding to where it should be given its mass.

    Black holes are not something to be messed around with lightly.
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)03:26 No.15552454
    Hmm, seems like "attack every single fighter to score a decisive victory" would be the goal (maybe look more closely at why there are more of them than we remember), but i hesitate to put that forth as a suggestion. i vote for >Access the Hydra.
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)03:26 No.15552455
    Okay, so it wasn't so much a single thing so much as the battle itself.
    I still think the key to the next level is the Hydra, and vote to try to Access it.
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)03:27 No.15552464
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    >base abandoned 58 years after

    This... is rather distressing news.

    The one good aspect is that there was not hundreds of years of technological advancement after we vanished; our ship is the peak of the Empire's technological ability.

    The bad news is that all that bunk about "successor states" and the "eventual collapse of all empires" just sailed right out the window on a surfboard made of our shattered dreams.

    Y'see, it'd be one thing of the Empire had collapsed thousands of years after we were borked - all known Empires in human history have eventually suffered a decline for whatever reason, and sooner or later the barbarians at the gates bust in whilst the citizens are too absorbed with internal matters. A slow death is expected...

    ... but our Empire went down only 58 years after we vanished. That's a relatively short time on old-earth, and when the average lifespan has been extended well past four or five centuries? That's OVERNIGHT.

    Now lets consider the state of the Empire as we last knew it, because that was very soon before it all went to hell.

    The Empire was capable of building us.
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)03:31 No.15552487
    This is making a lot of assumptions. The base could have been abandoned for a variety of reasons, maybe it was deemed not strategically valued and left with a token force to dissuade casual looters from stealing whatever was left behind. Over the thousands of years a story of a planet defended by advanced weapons with a cache of similarly advanced technology forms and daredevils and idiots jump in to try and claim its supposed riches.

    Or we can focus at the task at hand and stop assuming stuff.
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)03:32 No.15552504
    Okay, does anything about the entire scene jump out at us as slightly wrong, or off?
    This was one our most pivotal and defining memories, surely we should be able to feel what might be slightly wrong about it.
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)03:34 No.15552512
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    "Us." The Harbinger, to be precise.

    Now, our last assignment was the subjugation of the hundred-worlds rebellion. Alone. Yes, our lone warship kicked the holy shit out of the combined resources of one-hundred planets. They apparently didn't have many military shipyards to utilize, but we DID wade through at least seven purpose-built warships with extra upgrades.

    In other words, just before the Empire fell, it was fucking STRONG. It went out with a bang, not a whimper.

    Which means that out there, somewhere, the Empire Killer still lives.
    >> Vedibere !!O+eQDn0BBx8 07/12/11(Tue)03:34 No.15552521
    No. There have been some special cases when direct, extremely powerful reactor hits have caused it, but it's very rare even in such an event.

    Obviously, of course, 65k years without being maintained immediately after a huge power draw (say, like caused by exploding stars impacting shields) and then an immediate second jump (advised at least 24 hours between jumps!) putting an enormous ungodly strain on the reactor systems could do some serious shit to it, like knock it down to critical status. Moral of the story: They're tough, but it's still a good idea not to abuse your singularity reactor.

    But this one has been intentionally rigged to shut of the field and go vortex if it gets fucked with, of course.
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)03:36 No.15552535
    I smell a BBEG........or several.
    But thats for later. For now we should FOCUS on the task at hand.
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)03:38 No.15552541
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    >The base could have been abandoned for a variety of reasons, maybe it was deemed not strategically valued and left with a token force

    Okay, so the Empire was merely in RETREAT 58 years after we vanished, which is still fucking piddling given a time frame of thousands of years. That last pre-recorded message that ended with MAY WE DIE FOR THE REAGENT doesn't exactly scream "the Base Closing Commission has mothballed this facility to save costs," does it?

    Chill the fuck out, with the speed this quest moves it's not like posts-till-autosage are at a premium.
    >> Vedibere !!O+eQDn0BBx8 07/12/11(Tue)03:38 No.15552545
    That's up to your collective reasoning to figure out.

    I'm going to get some tea, will take the action decision(s) when I get back and start writing. So far it looks like >Access Hydra
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)03:41 No.15552561
    >Access Hydra

    I'm not seeing anything else that strikes me as a possible key.
    Anybody else got something?
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)03:45 No.15552575
    Hmm.. remembering our battle training and the mook killing.. let's use a LOOK action - to determine the command ship. Murderfying that should do the trick.
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)03:45 No.15552580
    The only other thing I"m seeing is the bit about there being too many fighters:
    >drone fighters streaking through the skies... thousands of them. Far more than there were. And they burn when they near, icy-hot flashes of pain that only anti-intrusion phages can give.

    Could be something to investigate, but I'm sticking with >access hydra
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)03:46 No.15552583
    I've gone over the scene carefully. Without actually having the characters memories I can't say anything jumps out at me enough to notice.

    I say we access the Hydra... and report to our actual battle station we held at that time. Once we see the battle, again, from the exact same vantage point, the discrepancies should become apparent.
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)03:47 No.15552592
    >You descend towards the clashing three-way, drone fighters streaking through the skies... thousands of them. Far more than there were. And they burn when they near, icy-hot flashes of pain that only anti-intrusion phages can give.

    I'm guessing that's a manifestation of the computer systems counter-intrusion protocol launching counterattacks against us; or more simply it's own anti-intrusion suite resisting OUR intrusion.
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)03:48 No.15552593

    could just be a normal closing- kinda like in 40k or whatever. it's possible (not likley, but possible) that the empire's nature changed in those 58 years. or the base and colony had other problems that required them leaving- again, they didn't leave in a hurry, they had plenty of time to close everything down and mothball everything else. that doesn't exactly say "empire killing weapon/fleet tearassing through ophidian turf"- more a case of economic viability or something.

    And the only thing that stands out to me is the drones- but if that's part of the counterintrusion software, i got nothing. something about that third destroyer of ours?
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)03:49 No.15552600
    > in RETREAT 58
    We've got one mothballed base and an abandoned station to base that hypothesis on. On a galactic scale empire that's making a rather large leap of faith.

    >That last pre-recorded message that ended with MAY WE DIE FOR THE REAGENT

    "No Mission Too Difficult, No Sacrifice Too Great—Duty First!" - United States Army First Infantry Division
    "Balidaan" (Sacrifice) - Indian Paracomanndos
    "Alt for Kongen" (Everything For The King) - Norwegian Royal Guard

    Military mottos aren't necessarily the most cheery of things.

    >the Base Closing Commission has mothballed this facility to save costs
    We don't know if they did or did not (and are actually trying to find that out right now while we argue).

    My point is that several people in this thread are making dire assumptions when we've very little evidence to support it. It is almost undoubtable that the Ophidian empire has fallen or is otherwise unrecognizable, the span of time that has elapsed is simply too great for any other probability, but the way it happened or when it happened is a mystery to us and making bold assumptions one way or another does nothing to help our position and may in fact serve to undermine it if we underestimate the prowess and progress of those we come in contact with.
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)03:50 No.15552608
    >something about that third destroyer of ours?
    The third destroyer on fire seems like an interesting thing to possibly LOOK at.
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)03:52 No.15552619
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)03:56 No.15552634
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    >military motto

    Which happens to reference a head of state that didn't exist when we left on our little field trip of the 100 worlds. Which is kind of odd, since empires tend to be pretty stable. Hell, I remember this one executive office holder who got his shit gang-stabbed because he started wearing red boots, eh?

    Anyways, all I've done is go from saying

    >Empire probably died with a whimper

    to saying

    >Empire probably died with a bang or a very noisy gurgle... bang... thing...

    Which is pretty vague, so please stop busting my balls for drawing conclusions that are only as firm and exact as the scant evidence that precipitated them.
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)04:00 No.15552659
    Remember, we only have 9 actions total before we're kicked out.
    Are you sure you want to use one up now?
    >> Vedibere !!O+eQDn0BBx8 07/12/11(Tue)04:07 No.15552689
    You glide down toward the Hydra, slowly pulling ahead with its two remaining escorts and leaving it’s burning companion behind. The descent takes you through another cloud of phages, but as you approach the cruiser one breaks from combat and locks onto you, light bolts stitching a delicate tracery of pain across your back. You pass through the hull and, of course, the phage does as well, transforming into a member of Armada security. His grip locks tight around your upper arm, a burning agony spreading from the contact.

    You ignore it, instead turning toward the bridge. Onward you drag the listless phage-guard, through corridors that seem unnaturally lengthened and designed only to prolong your misery. Eventually, though, you arrive. The enormous tactical display is projected overhead on the roof of the command center, the command staff in their chairs swiveled back to take it in. A less advanced version of your three-dimensional holo-display on the Harbinger you note, a flush of pride drowning out the torturous grip.

    Your reverie is broken by the clipped speech of Lieutenant Vie, his nasal voice proclaiming battle status: “Enemy forces in full retreat, sir. Hydra, undamaged. Terrant, undamaged. Ophelia, undamaged, Twin Suns, undamaged. A complete rout,” he finishes with a smile, “the fools never stood a chance.”

    “Excellent.” The silken voice of Captain Aurora Shael slides from the bridge speakers, even as her body opens her eyes and smiles, “Send my congratulations to all captains and crew, but also do not give chase. They have learned their lesson and lost over half of their house fleets, our orders are to put a stop to hostilities, not break two of the leading Imperial states.”

    “Of course, sir.” Vie replies, and you look up to see the blue and red dots representing the two house forces limping off in separate directions once more.

    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)04:09 No.15552699
    Access successful, 8 actions remaining, correct?
    >> Vedibere !!O+eQDn0BBx8 07/12/11(Tue)04:09 No.15552705
    Oh, also:
    >8 actions remaining.
    >1 Phage attached

    Phages will take one attack to destroy per Phage. You cannot Access the key if you have phages attached.
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)04:11 No.15552708
    >Hydra, undamaged. Terrant, undamaged. Ophelia, undamaged, Twin Suns, undamaged
    >damaged ship left behind

    something ain't right...

    what's the deal with that damaged escort cruiser?
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)04:11 No.15552709
    Well then its seems we need to kill the fuck outta the one us yes?
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)04:11 No.15552710

    That's it. check the damaged destroyer. either it, or the Good lieutenant's words are what we're after here, since it wasn't undamaged.
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)04:12 No.15552713
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    Hell, you don't even have to go that far, bro. Cut out extrapolation completely and have a gander at what we've seen so far:

    >Warp gate technology
    >New, weaker, cheaper class of warships
    >Evidence of political upheavals
    >Military base deliberately and orderly shut down
    >Main space station completely decommissioned, almost to the point of "scorched earth," and a single boobytrap left that fucks the main computer core for ever and ever

    Hell, the LACK of evidence is precisely what's so ominous at the moment. We can see enough to know that Shit Went Down (i.e. enough to make us paranoid as fuck) but not enough to even begin to quantify more specific consequences or threats beyond "this probably does not bode well."

    Vedibere, man. Fucking with our heads. Beautiful motherfucker.
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)04:15 No.15552724
    seems like the most obvious thing wrong with this. Either
    >Lieutenant is lying
    >Damaged cruiser needs a closer look
    Seeing how we remember this battle to be a unilateral victory for us, a damaged cruiser doesn't fit in.

    In any case, attacking the phage seems like an inevitability at this point, since we can't access the key, even if we do find it, and we can't wait for another phage to show up to save on actions, since it'll just take one more action to kill the other phage.

    I vote >attack phage
    followed by >access burning escort cruiser
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)04:16 No.15552726
    Remember what Parson said; the more attacks we do, the more the system will send phages after us.

    Vedibere, where were we on the bridge when this happened? Do we see ourselves there?
    >> Vedibere !!O+eQDn0BBx8 07/12/11(Tue)04:18 No.15552739
    No, you don't see yourself. That's not particularly unusual, though. The participant is often not in the reconstructed events -- just like the people don't acknowledge you unless you try to >Access them or >Attack them.
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)04:21 No.15552751
    >the more attacks we do, the more the system will send phages after us.
    also, looking back,
    >won't be obvious but will be out of place

    Maybe the damaged cruiser isn't the thing here?
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)04:21 No.15552753
    op, if you want to give me a detailed description of the ship I'll drawfag it for you
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)04:22 No.15552757
    If I read the initial scene right, the Hydra had 3 destroyer escorts. 2 were undamaged, but 1 suffered crippling damage.

    Vedibere, could we get confirmation that the real memory has all 3 escorts coming out of this unharmed?
    Or did one of them really did get damaged?
    >> Vedibere !!O+eQDn0BBx8 07/12/11(Tue)04:25 No.15552779
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    This is the one I did. Gloss black to blend in with optical sensors (not that optics are really a big deal in space combat, but hey every bit helps) Diamond shaped with one point elongated. All other five points are equidistant from the intersection of lines drawn between them.

    Simple, elegant, effective, solid firing lines. At least in my opinion.
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)04:27 No.15552785

    That bit from the bridge, where the lieutenant says none of the battle group was damaged, was Vedibere giving you a big hint. The discrepancy was NOT obvious. A damaged warship in the middle of a battle, holy shit.

    >but we routed them!

    "Kicked the enemies ass in exchange for one damaged ship" is still a rout. In any case, it cost us an action to determine what the out-of-place element was, so I'd say that it was not terribly obvious.
    >> Vedibere !!O+eQDn0BBx8 07/12/11(Tue)04:28 No.15552801
    >Vedibere, could we get confirmation that the real memory has all 3 escorts coming out of this unharmed?
    No. You're in dream-memory state or something, unable to recall exactly what is real and fake.

    >I mean seriously, come on man. It's a puzzle. Figure it out yourselves.
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)04:30 No.15552815
    >good at puzzles
    pick one

    Also to further the quest, access the Lieutenant, we need to determine if hes lying or not.
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)04:35 No.15552850
    Another vote to fight off the phage, then access the lieutenant. We gotta be sure, and if the lieutenant is the key, then we need the phage off of us.
    >> Vedibere !!O+eQDn0BBx8 07/12/11(Tue)04:36 No.15552857
    So what are you doing?

    >Access Lt.
    >Access Damaged Cruiser
    These are mutually exclusive at the same time, though obviously you can do one and then the other.

    Also, do you
    >Attack Phage
    or do any
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)04:39 No.15552879
    Access Lieutenant.
    If he's the key, then we just need to attack the phage then access the lieutenant again.
    If he's not, then we won't have caused the system to become more aggressive in it's defense and we can access the damaged cruiser.
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)04:39 No.15552882
    Ok we DO NOT want to attract any unwanted attention from the system. Attack actions attract attention. Killing the phage we got on us is the last thing we need to do b4 we access key.

    I say LOOK for anything out of place, then access LT. Liar-guy. FIND HIS SECRETS.
    >> Vedibere !!O+eQDn0BBx8 07/12/11(Tue)04:41 No.15552888
    >I say LOOK for anything out of place
    That... isn't a valid use of Look.

    You can Look at something, like the Lt. or the map, or the captain, or the other command staff. Hell the chairs or floor for that matter. You can't say >Look Puzzle Solution. No.
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)04:42 No.15552897
    I think we're going with access Lt first.
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)04:44 No.15552904
    Like i said /tg/ or puzzles.
    Also go for the Lt.
    >> Vedibere !!O+eQDn0BBx8 07/12/11(Tue)04:51 No.15552962
    >Access Lieutenant Vie

    You step forward, approaching the command staff going about their business. Screens hang in front of many of them, relaying vast quantities of data already pre-processed by Captain Shael. Your former captain lies in peaceful repose, her body breathing shallowly and eyes closed as she focuses fully on the battle outside. No room for mortal concerns in a battle of titans.

    You, however, have your own battle to conduct. You step forward, reaching out to the intelligence officer, Lieutenant Vie. As your hand closes on his shoulder her freezes, your command to Access flowing through him. His eyes go dead and he stands, turning toward you. Before you can so much as flinch his hand shoots up, locking around your left wrist, impeding your movement with the same agonizing pain as his counterpart phage on your right. The scene shifts and between the seconds another Lieutenant Vie sits where the phage did previously, once more steadily reviewing the transmissions and sensor readings sent to his terminal by the sensor underofficers.

    >7 Actions Remaining
    >2 Phages attached
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)04:56 No.15552993
    >2 Phages
    >You need to remove all phages before you can access the key

    So we effectively lose 2 actions every time we do something wrong?
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)04:58 No.15553004
    If the LT. is the Key, then we just need to get these phages off.

    Could still be the damaged carrier, though.

    Attack phage, attack phage, access Lt.

    I don't know what to do if the Lt. is not the key. Suggestions?
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)05:01 No.15553014
    >nothing gained, another phage attached

    Good job, geniuses. In case it wasn't obvious, we should do all our attack actions LAST - because attacking draws more phages to us, and we only need them OFF us once we've found the key, so we can access it.

    My vote for orders: >access damaged cruiser
    >> Vedibere !!O+eQDn0BBx8 07/12/11(Tue)05:03 No.15553025
    Not always, there can be multiple paths to the goal, some with phages some without.

    But yes, it can turn out that way.
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)05:04 No.15553030


    We accessed the LT, got burned. Don't try and access him AGAIN.
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)05:06 No.15553040
    I'd say that's an incredibly poor gameplay mechanic but it's your quest.
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)05:07 No.15553043
    >>access damaged cruiser
    sounds less like gambling than betting the Lt. is the key.

    I'll go with this, but if it turns out the Lt. was key all along then ffffff. ... Unless we would know that we just tried to access the key...
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)05:23 No.15553144
    why don't we >Look at the damaged ship first. No point in getting even more bastards stuck to us.
    >> Vedibere !!O+eQDn0BBx8 07/12/11(Tue)05:23 No.15553149

    >Access Burning Destroyer

    You twist and pull at the phages, striding to the center of the command center as their grips turn from burning hot to bitter chill and back again. Above you swirls the tactical map, and on it the four pristine green dots of the Empire ships. You reach up with your right arm, dragging the phage with it, and close your hand over the dot representing the burning Destroyer, OIS Twin Suns. You pull it free from the shimmering tactical stratoscape and bring it to your chest, cupping it in your palms. The fingers surrounding it unentwine, and laying within is the burning ship in miniature.

    The small figure draws your gaze, the inky blackness of its hull seeming infinite... all consuming. You forget the pain of the phages and the world around you, entranced by the midnight sheen studded with twin fires fore and aft.

    And it is gone.

    The deck plates shudder beneath your feet, staggering you briefly. You reach a hand out to the bulkhead, once again weighted down with the phage as you gaze out into space... through a gaping rift in the mighty destroyer’s hull. The stark beauty of debris and oxygen spiralling in elegant lines from the ship strike you as surreal and wonderful, but you pry your gaze away as another shudder rocks the ship. No, time is of the essence. You turn toward a console on the wall, already lit with the status of the dying ship.

    >Forward Holds: 38% Integrity
    >Forward Guns: 22% Integrity
    >Forward Bays: 3% Integrity
    >Shields: 43% Integrity
    >Midline Guns: 11% Integrity
    >Command: 88% Integrity
    >Rearward Holds: 33% Integrity
    >Reactor 100% Integrity
    >Engine 0% Integrity
    >Rearward Guns: 12% Integrity
    >Rearward Bays: 7% Integrity

    >6 Actions Remaining
    >2 Phages attached
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)05:26 No.15553163
    >Reactor 100% Integrity
    That seems odd.
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)05:26 No.15553168

    Reactor's at 100%, even with all that damage? Possible, i guess.

    but with damage forward and aft, why're the midline guns so badly damaged?
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)05:35 No.15553225
    Well, we'll need 3 actions to get at the key once we identify it, so we've got 3 free actions left.

    I say >Look at Twin Suns' reactor.
    If it's not it, we avoid getting a phage stuck to us, and if it is, we can scrap this pair off and go home.

    If it doesn't work, let's go have a look at the undamaged version of the Twin Suns instead of faffing around in this one.
    >> Vedibere !!O+eQDn0BBx8 07/12/11(Tue)05:43 No.15553276
    >Look Statistics

    You gaze at the damage stats and the ship rocks around you, focusing through the discomfort on your arms.

    >Forward Holds: 38% Integrity
    >Forward Guns: 22% Integrity
    >Forward Bays: 3% Integrity
    >Shields: 43% Integrity
    >Midline Guns: 11% Integrity
    >Command: 88% Integrity
    >Rearward Holds: 33% Integrity
    >Reactor 100% Integrity
    >Engine 0% Integrity
    >Rearward Guns: 12% Integrity
    >Rearward Bays: 7% Integrity

    >Forward Holds: 36% Integrity
    >Forward Guns: 20% Integrity
    >Forward Bays: 1% Integrity
    >Shields: 42% Integrity
    >Midline Guns: 10% Integrity
    >Command: 87% Integrity
    >Rearward Holds: 31% Integrity
    >Reactor 100% Integrity
    >Engine 0% Integrity
    >Rearward Guns: 10% Integrity
    >Rearward Bays: 5% Integrity

    >Forward Holds: 34% Integrity
    >Forward Guns: 18% Integrity
    >Forward Bays: 0% Integrity
    >Shields: 41% Integrity
    >Midline Guns: 9% Integrity
    >Command: 86% Integrity
    >Rearward Holds: 29% Integrity
    >Reactor 100% Integrity
    >Engine 0% Integrity
    >Rearward Guns: 8% Integrity
    >Rearward Bays: 3% Integrity

    As the forward launch bays hit zero a thundering boom shakes the ship once more, a sign of hull failure and explosive decompression. The ship is failing, and fast.

    >6 Actions Remaining
    >2 Phages attached
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)05:45 No.15553285
    >>Everything but the reactor failing

    Reactor, ho.
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)05:45 No.15553291
    it's the reactor.
    >> Vedibere !!O+eQDn0BBx8 07/12/11(Tue)05:46 No.15553296
    >6 Actions Remaining
    >2 Phages attached

    should be

    >5 Actions Remaining
    >2 Phages attached
    >> Vedibere !!O+eQDn0BBx8 07/12/11(Tue)05:56 No.15553389
    >Access Reactor

    You brush the reactor’s display with your fingers and kick off, floating easily through unisteel bulkheads and floating debris alike. Ship internals flash by you, burning wires overloaded and arcing with current. Life support systems venting precious oxygen into open flames, stoking them further. Yet onward you glide, the phages tugging at you. Trying to stop you.

    For your prize is at hand, you can all but taste it. At least that is what you hope.

    The reactor room appears abruptly or rather you do, popping from a wall amidst the chaos of engineers scrambling for EVA suits or desperately trying to shore up failing systems. To buy a bit more time for their failing ark, their lifegiver in space. A few seconds more, anything.

    But that interests you not half so much as the reactor core, the object within the singularity field. Instead of a black hole. An obsidian diamond, one point stretched forward as a prow, slowly rotating. The ultimate culmination of this battle, at least for you. The OIS Harbinger in miniature.

    >4 Actions Remaining
    >2 Phages Attached
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)06:00 No.15553419

    Kill phages, acquire Harbinger.
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)06:04 No.15553450

    We don't have enough actions go go anywhere else, and it seems that we're at the goal anyways. We've one spare action, if we need two for destroying phages and a third to access the Harbinger.

    Shall we take a Look action, perhaps? To make damn sure we Access the right thing?
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)06:05 No.15553473

    Well, if we look and it isn't, we're still fucked. Plus, we might have to kill an extra phage since this is going to take two actions.
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)06:06 No.15553478

    Meh, fuck it. Kill phages, access the Harbinger. In our previous experiences, the Key was fairly low-key, but it wasn't exactly out of our way - replacing the prepared speech on our podium, for example. Or the alien captain on the planet's surface. In each case, the Key was... well, it was quite personal, wasn't it?

    And here is the OIS Harbinger, floating in that singularity field. If this ain't it, we're fucked anyhow.
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)06:07 No.15553485
    >Plus, we might have to kill an extra phage since this is going to take two actions.

    Agreed. It's time to J-J-JAM IT IN.

    Also, Vedibere, this entire "e-warfare" segment is fucking trippy and very awesome. I love it.
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)06:08 No.15553494
    No. If it's wrong, we don't have enough actions left to do anything else.

    Vote to Attack the two phages attached to us, then Access the little Harbinger.
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)06:09 No.15553498

    agreed. kill phages, acquire harbringer.
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)06:12 No.15553517
    Sold, grab the shiny.

    >I wasn't entirely sure of this whole segment, and i still think the underlying mechanics could use work, but this is pretty cool still.
    >> Vedibere !!O+eQDn0BBx8 07/12/11(Tue)06:20 No.15553556
    It is time.

    You turn to the glassy-eyed phages gripping your arms and /release/ your own limitations. Reaving phages of your own slip free of your form, their translucent clawed forms ripping into those that would imprison you. The enemy phages wither under the assault, releasing you and issuing moaning wails even as their bodies are rent and bright shards of data stream from the wounds, swirling about the reactor room in a glittering maelstrom.

    But you do not care. You are free. Free to take the key to this system. To take its secrets. Take the truths stored within.

    Onward you move, flanked by your phage-specters, floating up to the reactor core itself, through the containment field. Grasping your prize, your key, your ship, your destiny. Smooth in your hands, dissolving, stored in your databanks. In your mind. In your soul.
    >> Vedibere !!O+eQDn0BBx8 07/12/11(Tue)06:21 No.15553563
    Beneath your feet the OIS Twin Suns shakes, its death throes finally coming upon it. But it makes no matter anymore. With the ripping explosion of the shattered ship, so too do cracks appear in this other world. Splendor seeps through and the edges of objects blur, dissolving into light... coalescing again.

    You stand once more on the station, uplink jack securely remaining within the computer core. You experimentally test the new access key in your systems and are rewarded with a large file database listing.

    If you had a face you would smile.

    “Ladies and gentlemen, this is your Captain speaking.” you intone back on the Harbinger. “It seems the station is open once more.”

    Relief washes over the command deck, palpable in intensity. Lieutenant Rinn claps Dr. Burr on the back, staggering the man, as he lets out a throaty “Ha-ha!”, which the doctor answers with a coughing fit from the impact. Chief Dai and Lieutenant Ivanova are both wearing demure smiles, whereas Lieutenant Tynes gives a hearty “Well done, sir.” and Lieutenant Parson pumps a fist into the air with an exclamation.

    >Alright, I’m done for tonight.
    >Might run another one tomorrow at 18:00 or 19:00. Depends on how much sleep I get.
    >If not, will run it Wednesday at 18:00.
    >Hope you enjoyed it, and tell me how you liked the hacking part.
    >Also, archive please.
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)06:25 No.15553580
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    >underlying mechanics

    I think they're just fine. Presumably your issue is with the very limited number of actions and how easily they can be eaten up, but as we just saw, we still zeroed in on our prize without excessive trouble. The only unnecessary action we took was accessing the lieutenant on the other ships bridge.

    I mean, consider the law of conservation of detail: in this puzzle it goes from a meta-level fact of plot/script writing to an actual MECHANIC, since we're "in" a meta-level realm ourselves. In Vedibere's original post we basically only had three things of note: the excessive drones (already accounted for as counter-intrusion software), the central warship that was our first posting, and the damaged destroyer. In a dreamlike state we can't remember things *exactly,* but unconsciously we'll take note of particular things more then others... things with personal significance and discrepancies, both which we're looking for. In short, the start point of our investigation wasn't impossibly nebulous.

    To balance that, we have fewer actions.

    "Conservation of detail" becoming an in-story reality; a manifestation of our own unconscious memories and instincts, is brilliantly meta. I fucking love this quest.
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)06:28 No.15553595

    Also, it seems like the "attack" option might have been more powerful than we thought, if it was one "attack" that wiped out both phages.
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)06:29 No.15553600
    I'm still kind of unsure as to what to think, overall. I think it was pretty cool though, and lord knows even a small morale boost among the crew will help.
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)06:30 No.15553606
    >how you liked the hacking part

    Fucking brilliant, really. As I elucidated in my above post, we weren't dumped into a situation so ambiguous that we didn't know where to start, but we still had to chase down the cause a bit.

    And yet, when we first entered the Twin Suns and only got a statistics panel readout, I was muddled, confused, and lost for a moment - which is good, because it means the whole hacking bit was not just a cakewalk. The very limited number of actions imparted a real sense of urgency and risk as to the consequences of failure, and that one very uncertain moment when we entered the Twin Suns really brought it out.

    Good fucking job. Now go sleep.
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)06:40 No.15553657

    VERY well done and interesting to both read and participate in.
    >> Anonymous 07/12/11(Tue)06:45 No.15553695
    Thread archived, be sure to vote
    >> Vedibere !!O+eQDn0BBx8 07/12/11(Tue)06:52 No.15553737
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    Thanks guys, glad you're enjoying it as much as I am. Wasn't too sure if the hacking would work or go over like a lead balloon, so I'm thrilled you liked it.

    Now I shall sleep, hopefully to be up in time to get an OP constructed by 18:00 tomorrow.

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