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Five Parsecs From Home

Five Parsecs From Home

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Project Blog by darkdanegan Cult of Games Member

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About the Project

This project will be a slow burn - one to savour - I suspect that choosing miniatures will be the bulk of the work (and fun!). I intend to source miniatures and terrain as the campaign progresses, hopefully a good way to build my collection as the narrative unfolds. 5 Parsecs from Home is a solo adventure war game, with procedurally generated missions and significant RPG elements. Lots of rolling on tables - yay!

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Campaign Turn 7 - Ambush!

Tutoring 2
Skill 3
Idea 3
1 Comment

Aryn accompanied the crew back to the Enlightenment. On the way, a cagey exchange of information turned into a much more open conversation when Aryn revealed that she could introduce Jaryk to a local Sector Government official, who occasionally hired trusted mercenaries to carry out specific ‘off the record’ tasks, and she would do so if Jaryk explained who they were and what they were doing on Nacia’s Landing. So he did, and she did, and the following day Jaryk took Aryn and Leela to meet the official in question, Mela Rosson, who did indeed have work for the crew. The pay was ‘negotiable’ but Mela was a far more skilled negotiator than Jaryk, and he came away feeling at though he would have preferred a fixed price.

Campaign Turn 7 - Ambush!

The job was urgent, requiring completion before sundown, so the crew quickly assembled at the Enlightenment and set about preparing their gear for the job. Sadly for Jaryk, those preparations were interrupted by the presence of a number of gangers who were clearly assembling in a circle around the crew’s landing pad. Jeff and Jim’s scanners alerted to the threat early, and they recognised the gang as the very same that they ran into in the markets when they first arrived. It seemed a minor fracas at the time, but it could be no coincidence. Brat Gangs often sought out the opportunity to induce trouble, in order to get into a decent scrap under the guise of ‘revenge’. That way, if it went wrong, their rich parents could work the system to prevent and formal action against them.

The bots alerted Jaryk to the threat, and he signed to each of his crew (with the exception of Aryn who was exploring the ship’s hold and out of Jaryk’s eyeline). As one, the crew drew their weapons and made a move into cover. [Successful seize the initiative roll]. The Brats were almost as quick to react and were the first to open fire. They landed some hits on the crew, but failed to do any significant harm. The worst being K’Vani who was pushed out of cover and into the open. Jase’s trusty shotgun put one of the Brats down. The Brat Leader’s Gene Dog charged into the stunned K’Vani and gnashed with its teeth and scraped with its claws, but K’Vani was just about able to gather herself, draw her blade, and put an end to the beast before it shredded her.

Aryn emerged from the ship’s hold, wielding the enormous rattle gun that was stored within.

” You know how to use that thing?”, enquired Jaryk
” Sure, child’s play”, Aryn responded, and she proceeded to spray bullets in the direction of two Brats taking cover behind the landing pad wall. [The Rattle Gun has been in the hold for a little while now, and with 3 shots I’ve been waiting for a suitable model with a heavy weapon to use it!]. None of the shots found a target, but the hail of fire did serve to reduce the incoming fire and provide some cover.

Weathering the initial storm allowed the ensuing gunfight to become more tactical, which played into the crew’s hands. The balance was tipped when K’Vani charged into the Brat leader and carved him up with her Glare Sword [the weapon’s “Elegant” trait allowing the re-roll that won the fight – it would have gone very differently otherwise!] and Aryn, continuing her hail of bullets, managed to dig a brat out of cover and put him down. Once the crew had the advantage of numbers, they systematically destroyed the rest of the gang with minimal risk to themselves.

The crew re-assembled and took a breath. Jaryk sent Jeff and Jim out on patrol in case any more of the local scum decided to have a go. This return to the Patrol Bots’ factory programmed duties raised the hackles of Aryn, but Jaryk assured her that they did this willingly, and the bots had ‘agreed’. But had they been programmed to agree? It was enough to satisfy Aryn for now anyway and she seemed happy enough to service the rattle gun which was still smoking from the punishment it had just dealt.

Sadly, whilst the fight wasn’t a long one, it meant that there was no time to complete the job for Mela Rosson. Aryn reluctantly offered to go to Mela to explain, but said not to hold out much hope of any more job offers in the near future.

Jaryk returned to his ruminations about crates, military weapons, and personal trinkets….

Campaign Turn 7 - Ambush!

[I had deliberately set up this encounter to be more of a challenge i.e. having the Brats encircle the unsuspecting crew rather than start at the opposite end of the battlefield. In hindsight, I shouldn’t have allowed the crew to seize the initiative and therefore get immediate cover. I think that undid a lot of the risk in the setup. Oh well, we move onto Campaign Turn 8 next, and I can now use the Escalation Rules and the Elite Enemies from the “Trailblazer Toolkit” PDF expansion for the game. This is all designed to make the game harder for an established crew. And the enemies do look at lot tougher, so watch out crew, things are escalating!] 

Preparing for Campaign Turn 7

Tutoring 3
Skill 3
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For the next turn, my enemies are going to be a “brat gang”. Their description is similar to the punks I faced last turn, only more competent, so I will use the same modelsFor the next turn, my enemies are going to be a “brat gang”. Their description is similar to the punks I faced last turn, only more competent, so I will use the same models
They are, however, accompanied by a “gene dog”!They are, however, accompanied by a “gene dog”!

So, I am going to need a model for Aryn Mire and a model for the gene dog. Once again I’ll turn to Fallout Wasteland Warfare for the models as they’ll fit the bill perfectly (and I’ve got a large backlog to get through and every little helps!)

For Aryn, the model will be Desdemona from the Railroad faction (see what I did there?!).

For the gene dog, I’ll go with the armoured version of Dogmeat. I do have the unarmoured version already painted, but the armoured version will be more appropriate for the description I reckon!

The style will be grimier than might be normal in a space opera, but I want these for Fallout too, so I will paint them in my Fallout style. I am also currently mostly on backwater desert worlds so I think it works fine.

The steps are:

1. Spray Prime (usually brown but I’ve run out so it’s Chaotic Red instead!)

2. Drybrush Mournfang Brown

3. Drybrush Ushabti Bone

4. Drybrush white

(These drybrush steps create the under painting for the ‘slap chop’ style that I’m partially employing here)

5. Contrast paints to block in the main colours, using the under painting to create the shadows and highlights. I don’t have many colours at the moment, so I mix them with no specific recipe, but most are shown in the picture.

6. Enamel wash (brown)

7. Light drybrush of Ushabti Bone

8. Weathering pigments

9. Done!

Preparing for Campaign Turn 7

Meet Aryn Mire: An unexpected addition

Tutoring 2
Skill 3
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Meet Aryn Mire: An unexpected addition

For what seemed like an eternity, but must have only been moments, Jaryk stared at the bound woman, with his jaw dropped wide open. The woman stared blankly back, seemingly impassive but more likely well aware she was unable to move or speak, and didn’t see the point in trying either.

“Boss?” Jase interrupted the silence at last.
“Er, yes, er, wow, er..” mumbled Jaryk
“Shall we untie her then?”

Jaryk nodded and Jase squeezed past him into the container and used his knife to free the woman from her binds and removed the gag from her mouth. The latter action making very little difference to the situation because there followed a prolonged period of silence from her as Jaryk asked a variety of questions in an attempt to find out who she was, who was responsible for capturing her, and why.

Eventually Jaryk threatened to re-bind her and leave her here, which actually prised a chuckle out of the woman. Wondering what was so funny, Jaryk followed her gaze to Jase who was still holding what remained of the rope that he sliced apart to free her. Re-bind indeed!

“Jim, get in here”, ordered Jaryk as he and Jase moved for the door. “We might not be able to tie you, but you won’t be getting past Jim here. Let’s leave you to have a think about your future shall we? It won’t be long before whoever is responsible for this discovers his thugs have been shredded, and sends in a more capable force to retake the facility. Stay or come with us. Your choice. ”

PB23-GIM appeared in the doorway and the woman let out an audible gasp. “Oh my..”

Jaryk and Jase spun back to face the woman, and it appeared she was finally ready to speak…

 

[At the end of the previous Campaign Turn, I rolled the Campaign Event “Chance Meeting” which allowed the rolling up of a new character to join the crew. So for the first time since the start of the campaign I got to roll on the character generation tables to see who we had just met.

The character is human, and I named her Aryn Mire. Her Background is ‘religious cult’ and she comes with one Patron and one Military Weapon (boarding saber). Her Motivation is ‘Glory’ and gains +1 Combat. Her Class is ‘Starship Crew’ and gains +1 Savvy.

The narrative I created for her, to join those features together, is that she is part of a religious cult called ‘The Galactic Highway’ who believe that all animate objects have souls, and those souls can only reach heaven if they are free souls. In the early days of the cult that belief was focussed mostly on fighting human and alien slavery (and in the main, the human slavery of aliens!), but more latterly their attention turned to bots. They believe that bots have souls, and to enslave them after their creation is abhorrent. So she was part of a starship crew of her cult fellows, who travelled from world to world ‘freeing’ every bot they could find, so that they could find their place in heaven when their time came.

This explains why the appearance of PB23-GIM, affectionately named “Jim”, and seemingly working with Jaryk through ‘choice’, caused her to open up to Jaryk and subsequently agreed to leave with them.

I have a model in mind (in fact the model helped inspire the background story), and we’ll get her painted before the next turn.

Meet Aryn Mire: An unexpected addition

Campaign Turn 6 - Are you looking at me, punk?

Tutoring 3
Skill 3
Idea 3
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Campaign Turn 6 - Are you looking at me, punk?

The crew debriefed and rested back at the Enlightenment, and considered their next steps. The mission, whilst successful, hadn’t given them any solid leads about what to do next. They were clearly on a trail of some kind, but for now it seemed to have gone cold. The down time was put to good use however. The crew made themselves useful around the spaceport and were able to earn enough credits to pay off the debt for the ship. This was a key part of Jaryk’s overall plan. One less tie back to anyone who could pin him down. One less thread for his father to pull at. He felt free at last. Little did he know that his father was very well aware of where he was. Leela had seen to that. High Admiral Jervis Tarff continued to allow his errant son to pursue his foolhardy endeavours…for now.

The bots had managed to repair the Glare Sword. It was an elegant weapon, for a more civilised time, and K’Vani was allowed to replace her basic blade with it. It wasn’t quite as good as the sacred weapons of her homeworld, from which she was banished, but it would pierce armour and draw the blood she so craved to spill. Despite their best efforts, the Blast Pistol seemed beyond repair.

One day, K’Vani returned from the markets with some news. An overheard conversation, a cornering of an informant in a dark alley, and the sharp end of a newly refurbished Glare Sword later and it was revealed that a local punk gang had been hired to guard an old supply dump on the southern fringe of the port. The job had clearly been instigated quickly, a bunch of punks would be no long term solution, but it was the sign the crew were looking for.

They made their preparations…

The crew got the jump on the punks. They were sitting around, smoking and drinking, and doing a really poor job of doing anything that remotely resembled guarding. It wasn’t clear which of the containers was supposed to be being looked after. They quickly jumped to attention though as the crew moved in, and drew an assortment of decrepit-looking weapons.

[The mission objective was “Search”, which involves placing an objective marker on each piece of terrain, and the crew being able to trade a combat action for a search action. On a 5 or 6 they find the loot. If they fail then that terrain piece is empty. It is therefore possible for them all to be empty and the mission to fail. There was also a marker for “Shiny Bits” worth 1 credit, placed 2D6+2″ in a random direction from the centre which can be picked up for an action. Punks won’t move into combat with an enemy with a higher Combat Skill than them, and only hit shooting on a natural 6, so i decided to modify their AI a little and have their strategy to be to move in but shoot from cover]

The battle started as a cagey affair, with each side taking pot shots from behind cover as they slowly met in the centre of the compound. The crew were clearly the more competent soldiers, and better armed, but the punks had the advantage of numbers and therefore not to be taken lightly. The superior shooting skill gradually took its toll, and the punks started to go down.

Remarkably, at some point during the battle, K’Vani disappeared. Jaryk feared she had been downed by a lucky shot from one of the punks, but they were to find her later outside of the compound having gotten ‘lost’ with no memory of how it happened. Very strange indeed…

Campaign Turn 6 - Are you looking at me, punk?
Campaign Turn 6 - Are you looking at me, punk?

The other main drama was when patrol bot Jeff charged into a punk who, in a surprising display of skill, feigned a swing of a tire iron before slamming a hidden knife into the bot’s torso three times, severing internal circuitry. [Punk rolled a 6, Jeff rolled a 1, that’s three hits!] Jeff hit the floor in a shower of sparks. That damage was going to take some repairing..

Jase’s shotgun took his revenge on the punk that downed Jeff, and quickly only the enemy leader was left. Jaryk shouted an offer to spare him if he fled, but the leader yelled back a string of abuse by way of a refusal, and came in for an unwinnable fight. One blast from Jaryk’s hand cannon and the lead punk was reduced to a pile of bone and viscera that even the Sand Runners may turn their noses up at when they came scavenging later.

Campaign Turn 6 - Are you looking at me, punk?

The crew searched the battle field, and found what they thought was the prize the punks were employed to guard. But the crate was full of scrap that, whilst it might fetch a few credits in the markets, was not what they were looking for at all. Thankfully, Jaryk made the crew search every last container, and in the last one they made a very interesting find indeed. There was a person inside, bound and gagged, and looking very much the worse for wear!

[And, my friends, we will introduce you to her before the next round!]

Campaign Turn 6 Incoming!

Tutoring 3
Skill 4
Idea 4
2 Comments

After a silly amount of time being distracted by other things, I am coming back to this project for more action, and the next part of the story. Almost finished with the 9 (count them, NINE!!) enemies for the next game!

Sneak Peek: I rolled up 9 “Punks” for the next battle. Fallout Wasteland Warfare Raiders are the models of choice!Sneak Peek: I rolled up 9 “Punks” for the next battle. Fallout Wasteland Warfare Raiders are the models of choice!
Campaign Turn 6 Incoming!

Campaign Turn 5 - Tooth and Claw

Tutoring 7
Skill 7
Idea 7
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Jaryk was almost expecting it now. On their return to camp, once again, Petev was there waiting for them. Larger entourage this time. In addition to the bodyguards, there were a couple of normal looking people carrying tool cases.

“Jaryk, welcome back, let my engineers repair that droid for you.”

Clearly Petev’s field agent had already called in the result of the mission as there was no debrief, and the engineers were brought along specifically to repair Jim. While they worked on the stricken patrol bot, and the crew settled in to eat around the fire, Jaryk and Petev took a walk to discuss business.

Petev was delighted at the result of the mission and, as promised, handed over the credits. He also went on to explain that as far as his sources could tell him, the invasion threat had subsided for now. The elimination of the enemy cell setting back the Converted’s plans by several months. That would buy enough time for the authorities to prepare proper defences. Jaryk nodded in approval, but had more pressing concerns. “You promised me information”, Jaryk reminded Petev.

“Ah yes, of course. I am a man of my word, and you have earned it. That crate you found, out in the wastes. I ran a check on the government inventories and the results were most interesting indeed. The crate is one of a number of consignments, headed for different destinations, but originating from one source. I am not sure exactly where, and I do not yet know who, but I do know that they were all destined for various prominent but retired senior Unity military personnel. The contents of that crate were pretty high tech stuff, yes? So the rest remains a mystery, why is advanced experimental tech being sent to retired officers? I do not know, but I do also know the last known location of another crate, also lost from its convoy.”

Jaryk’s eyes widened. “Where?”

“Ah, well. This is where we need to make another deal, yes? I have given you information as promised. There is a little more, so just a little price aha.”

“And what, pray, is this LITTLE price?”

“I need you to return, and work for me again. I know you must leave for now. Outrun the authorities and hide from your father, yes? I am mindful of this. But I will contact you and I will need you to come. I promise it won’t be for at least six months, but you must come and come immediately.”

At this point, Jaryk was clear that he would not underestimate Petev. He was far too well informed, and too well connected to take lightly. Jaryk was relatively green in the world of the mercenary. He hoped that getting in with Petev was not a grave mistake. But he had no choice. He also drooled at the thought of acquiring another crate like the last one. If this kept up he could build an advanced armoury and to hell with Petev. He chose to play along, for now, until he had a more advantageous position.

The conversation continued for a while. Petev disclosed that the location of the other crate was on a planet called Nacia’s Landing which was not a very long distance away. So the destination was set, and they would leave in the morning.

[I paid the 5 credits in fuel costs to travel to a new world and rolled up the world traits. The trait rolled was “Expensive Education” which means +3 credits to enrol in advanced training. I hadn’t yet felt the need to enrol the crew in any advanced training, and it doesn’t look like it will be happening here!]

The Enlightenment set down after an uneventful two days travel. It was a desert planet with only a few settlements. Nacia’s Landing was originally just the name for the planet’s spaceport, but over time it became the moniker for the entire world. It’s original designation being far too complex a string of alphanumericals for the average person to remember. It was never intended to be a core populated world, but by all accounts it was doing fairly well for itself, particularly around the spaceport. It had a space flight academy, which was very expensive to enrol in, and therefore there was some wealth in the area and a decent trade. On the approach, however, it was clear that the desert regions were an unrelenting hellscape. Petev’s coordinates showed the potential location of the missing consignment to be a few miles outside of the spaceport, but it was not possible to land anywhere other the port itself. To attempt otherwise would have been too risky.

[The new world routines were performed as per the rulebook. The “Starship Travel Event” was uneventful and resulted in +1XP for Jaryk. No rivals followed the crew from the previous world, but the patrol bots, while exploring, did immediately aggravate a local Brat Gang, creating a new rival. Jase and Leela went out to look for a Patron to see if they could find work, but no luck. Noone was hiring – so we will immediately continue with the quest and look for that crate. The pre-battle routines resulted in an “Acquire” mission, with the enemies being Sand Runners (see previous post).]

The crew travelled overnight as usual, ready to make their approach to the target site at first light. Once again, the main threat appeared to be the local wildlife. In this case the residents of choice appeared to be starving, emaciated wolf like creatures who, in the absence of any meaningful prey, were whiling away the hours fighting and taking lumps out of each other. They looked well past their physical peaks, but highly dangerous.

[The location of the objective crate was the centre of the board as usual. There was also a “notable interest” of “shiny bits” worth 1 extra credit, placed 2D6+2″ randomly from the centre. Right in the Sand Runners deployment area! There was no way I would outrun these foe to the objective so the plan was a more cautious approach this time to try to get as many shots off before the inevitable melee. With only Toughness 3, and only 4 enemy, this has the potential to be a bit too easy, so I painted up an extra 2 enemy to balance things up if needed – two more Sand Runners in reserve! Their fang attacks look deadly though, so if the shooting isn’t accurate this could still end badly. Seize the Initiative failed, so no getting the jump on the enemy]

Campaign Turn 5 - Tooth and Claw

The crew crept into range and then opened fire. It couldn’t have gotten off to a better start – Jeff aimed and fired his heavy arc rifle, killing a Sand Runner before it had the chance to react. Bloodlust got the better of K’Vani this time, and she immediately charged in the direction of the enemy Alpha, which was equally keen to make a beeline for her. It would take a few moments for them to come together, but in the meantime her path was blocking any chance the others had of loosing a shot in the Alpha’s direction. K’Vani would have to take her chances. Jase waited for the nearest Runner to come towards him before moving into shotgun range and downing the beast with a well-aimed blast. Jaryk and Leela, in cover, waited for the battle to develop. Going for the objective at this stage would have been suicide.

K’Vani closed in on her prey, firing a wild shot from her handgun, but without any real conviction. It was melee she wanted. The beast pounced and they collided in a fierce exchange of blade and claws. K’Vani saw her change and plunged her blade at the chest of the Alpha. But disaster! The blade broke at the hilt! Without missing a beat, the Alpha pounced and knocked K’Vani to the floor.

[This was incredibly unfortunate for K’Vani! She had the advantage in this attack. The blade gives +2 to the combat roll and K’Erin can roll two dice and choose the highest. However, K’Vani rolled snake eyes! Two ones! The Alpha rolled a 6! This meant three hits on K’Vani – one for winning the roll off, one for the Alpha’s natural 6, and one for K’Vani’s natural 1. It couldn’t have been any worse! Only one of the three hits wounded, but that was enough to put K’Vani down. In the post battle sequence, K’Vani would escape lasting injury but would suffer one random broken item. Of course it was the blade! Hence the broken blade narrative as part of this encounter. This game really writes itself!]

The crew were stunned as they watched K’Vani fall. Her blade broken, and bleeding, she tried to roll away from her assailant. Jase was the first to react, and levelled his shotgun at the Alpha before it could rip K’Vani in two. His aim was true and he destroyed the beast. K’Vani would live but she would take no further part in this battle. Jeff aimed and fired the heavy arc rifle and once again downed a beast. The last one…or was it?

Jaryk and Leela hopped over the wall they were hiding behind and made for the crate, thinking the danger had passed. Not so. With the Alpha’s dying cry, two more Sand Runners appeared from inside the buildings. [Those two extra models came in handy! Despite K’Vani’s at this point unknown fate, the battle overall had been quite easy, so a final challenge for the crew!]. Jaryk hadn’t noticed the beast that had appeared behind him. Thankfully Leela was alert to the danger, wheeled around Jaryk’s position and fired at the beast. It went down. The other beast lurched into a full run, leapt over a wall and barrelled into Jase. He was caught off guard, but again Leela to the rescue – she brought her blade round in an arc and plunged it into the monster. Together they brought it down.

With more caution this time, the crew made their way to the crate and the secondary objective and carefully removed them from the area.

…..

Back at camp, Jaryk prised open the crate, eager to see what high tech gadgetry lay in wait this time. Much to his dismay, all he could see was two broken weapons. A blast pistol and a glare sword. The sword looked as though it was a decent weapon in its time, but the blast pistol was junk. There was however something else in the crate, under the broken weapon parts, a personal trinket of some kind. It looked remarkably similar to an item they picked up on New Pallas and was currently stored in the ship’s hold. That was two. Two was a pattern. And so the plot thickened…

[The personal trinket was all the work of the random dice rolls. Two on two planets. That has to be part of the story now!]

Tutoring 5
Skill 6
Idea 6
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Preparing for Campaign Turn 5

Tutoring 8
Skill 8
Idea 8
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The pre-battle sequence for Campaign Turn 5 has determined that the enemies will be “Sand Runners” which are described as:

Preparing for Campaign Turn 5

Firstly, this will help me choose the setting for the new world which the crew are travelling to. Sand. Sounds like a desert planet to me! Secondly, we’ll need some models as I don’t already have anything that fits the description.
I thought about scorpions but they don’t have fangs really, more stingers and claws. So in the end I decided on wolves. They have fangs, can run on sand, and can leap into a fight. These seemed to fit the bill:

Preparing for Campaign Turn 5

Time for a super quick paint job. Making use of Stynylrez light flesh primer which will do a lot of the heavy lifting for the scheme then some simple shading and washes. It took 3-4 hours to paint the 6 models. The steps were:

1. Very solid prime of Stynylrez light flesh primer

2. Airbrush Army Painter Werewolf Fur on the, er, fur..

3. Airbrush some magenta ink into the wounded areas

4. Burnt Umber oil wash all over the wolves, removed from surfaces with a makeup sponge

5. Diluted flesh wash on the bases

6. Drybrush Rakarth Flesh

7. Final details such as yellow eyes, Carrisbourg Crimson to redden the wounds, black snouts etc and black base rims

Done!

Preparing for Campaign Turn 5
Preparing for Campaign Turn 5

Early Reflections on the Game

Tutoring 9
Skill 10
Idea 10
4 Comments

While I am waiting for a box of models to arrive to make my enemies for the next campaign turn, I’ve been reflecting on the game so far. I’ll play some more turns before writing a formal review but as I was lucky enough to get featured on Community Spotlight this week I thought it might help anyone who was interested and deciding whether to jump in to the game.

Five Parecs is the brainchild of Ivan Sorensen of Nordic Weasel Games and he’s also done a fantasy version and a post apocalyptic version, but Parsecs is the first to receive a proper print copy published by Modiphius.

[I am actually really interested in the post apocalyptic version (Five Clicks from the Zone) because I am a huge Fallout fan and when I picked up Five Parsecs I immediately thought a Fallout reskin would be amazing. Much as I love Fallout Wasteland Warfare, what it is really missing is a procedurally generated solo campaign system. It already has a detailed AI system and all the factions and models you would need, and I really enjoy the mechanics. I am trying not to be distracted by it just yet though!]

This first published version is actually the game’s third edition, so it has been played and polished for some time and that is evident in the quality of the book and the rules. It has also been quickly followed by a PDF expansion which adds some optional variety to the games. For example, seasoned players tend to find the encounters can get a bit easier as their crew levels up, so the expansion adds ways to mix up the enemy behaviours and add more challenge to the battles. As I understand it when a couple more such expansions have been added, they may be treated to another glossy volume by Modiphius.

For me the real fun in the game are the RPG elements and the storytelling. As a solo game you can really immerse yourself in these aspects. The tabletop gameplay is really simple – nothing overly complex to learn – and the games play out pretty quickly. I have also really enjoyed putting thought into the miniatures for my crew, and sourcing models for the enemies. The book gives a brief description of the enemies which is just enough inspiration to go model shopping, without being so prescriptive as to make that job impossible without a dedicated model range. Travelling to new planets affords the opportunity to build thematic tables and create distinctive battlescapes. In this way it is a solo gamers dream. You could play it cooperatively of course but you would probably have to enjoy storytelling with your accomplices and be of a similar mind in that regard.

The missions are probably not going to offer a deep intellectual puzzle for gamers who are that way inclined, the objectives are relatively simple as is the AI, but the enemies are dangerous. One shot kills are a real threat. There are no multiple wound profiles. When you’re out you’re out. There are a couple of ways to avoid casualties – luck points and stimm packs – but if the dice go against you, you can get routed, and that will set you back as you pay medical costs or have to do without crew members for a number of missions. I’ve found that with a story-first approach the table top battles are fun, engaging and can be really tense right up to the end. Equally, in the pre- and post-battle sequences there are myriad dangers awaiting your crew. Also myriad rewards. These processes are, for me, as fun as the tabletop battles themselves.

The other thing I have really enjoyed is writing up the campaign story-style. Like most of us who dream of writing a novel one day, the moment we try to put pen to paper we get stuck after a clever opening paragraph, never to complete even one chapter. However, with the procedural generation of the campaign giving you the “what”, you can to decide the “why” and the stories then write themselves.

I’m guessing people who don’t like reading won’t have reached this paragraph so I won’t apologise for the wordy nature of the project!! I’m keen to keep on writing even if it’s only me that reads it!

All in all I am loving Five Parsecs so far, and I am still heavily motivated to continue. And for me that’s the highest praise I can give the game – anything that can hold my attention past the 4 game mark is doing something very right!

Early Reflections on the Game

Thank you OTT crew for the golden button!

Tutoring 8
Skill 8
Idea 9
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Thank you OTT crew for the golden button!

Campaign Turn 4 - The Truth Revealed

Tutoring 9
Skill 9
Idea 9
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The crew returned to camp at the Enlightenment, weary from the mission and ready to sleep. The fight was intense, but it was the journey that caused the fatigue. The consequences of keeping a low profile meant travelling overnight, mostly on foot. So it was to their complete dismay that they arrived at camp to find the fire lit and three figures casting long flickering shadows across the grass.

“Shit”, sighed Jaryk, “Petev’s here.”

As they approached, Petev turned and spread his arms wide. “Jaryk, my friend, welcome back! Your mission was successful – well done!”

“Yes. The upload was made as directed. Wait, I was planning to visit you in the morning, how do you know already? And to what to I owe the ‘pleasure’ of another personal visit?”

Petev motioned to his entourage to wait by the fire while he approached Jaryk.

“Friend”, started Petev, “things have escalated quicker than I had hoped. I need you to start the final part of the job immediately. As a token of goodwill, here is your pay for the first job, and there is more where that came from on completion of the second.”

Petev handed Jaryk a stack of credit chips and eyed each of the crew members in turn to look for any signs of hostility. All he saw was tiredness. Jaryk pocketed the credits. “Look,” whispered Jaryk in a low voice, “I don’t need to know why we just walked the soles of our shoes off and spent nearly all of our ammunition shooting our way through a nest of giant insects just to insert an obsolete disk into a relic of a computer. Heck, I don’t want to know. But asking my crew to turn on their heels and hike again without any rest? Why?”

Petev looked to the night sky for a good few moments, before sighing and nodding twice. “Ok. You are leaving this world after this job, and by my reckoning you have no desire to return any time soon. So there is little risk to me in sharing the nature of our predicament. I know I promised you information about the government shipment, and I will keep my word, but that will come AFTER the next mission. The two things are unrelated…mostly..”

Petev then proceeded to explain that he knew the previous mission had been successful because he had received an immediate encoded response from the recipient of the data. Before Jaryk could open his mouth to ask the obvious question, Petev continued to explain that he personally could not send such a data-heavy transmission off-world. The traffic would be noticed even if the content of the data was secure, and discretion in this matter was absolutely critical. Literal life and death. In every outward appearance, Petev was a legitimate and successful businessman, one of New Pallas’ social elite, but he also played another role, a vital but unofficial one, outside of the constraints and the bureaucracy of government. You see Petev, and a cabal of the world’s other wealthy elite, took it upon themselves to ensure the continued prosperity of New Pallas. Governments come and go, and they only serve themselves. There are myriad risks to the fragile ecosystem of commerce, and government simply was not agile enough to manage them, let alone the fact they rarely looked beyond their own pockets.

Petev and his associates had become aware of the biggest threat to their livelihood that they had ever encountered. The planet was being targeted for invasion, and the invaders were the Converted, a cyborg race that replenishes their ranks through captives and corpses, adding circuitry and machine parts to assimilate the conquered into their legions. Jaryk had heard of the Converted of course, they were one of the galaxy’s biggest threats, but to hear that they were so close was deeply disturbing. The data packet that Jaryk’s crew had uploaded was a full dossier of evidence of this fact, sent to Petev’s off-world contacts to perform analysis and ensure the government and military were informed through ‘official’ Unity channels. In the meantime, there was an immediate on-world threat that needed to be dealt with.

The source of the evidence came via one of Petev’s spies staking out an old freight hub. She had observed that an organised group of thugs had moved in and were displaying odd patterns of behaviour. At first glance they just seemed to be vagrants or nomads, looking to make the compound their home. However, their movements and actions were far too regimented and procedural for that to be the case. Further observation led to the only viable conclusion. Converted Infiltrators. Members of a world’s own population, taken and partially assimilated without altering their external features. Just enough cyberware to take control of the host to use them to make preparations for the invading forces, without alerting the locals. As far as Petev knew, these were currently the only Converted operatives in the area, and they now must be destroyed. The Converted must be delayed for long enough for the official channels to get their act together, otherwise New Pallas would be overrun before the bureaucrats had even assembled a planning committee.

This is why the next mission is important, and this is why there could be no delay. Petev suggested two hours rest and then head out, fully armed and ready for a proper fight. No wildlife this time!

As Petev and his goons headed off into the distance, Jaryk’s crew formed around him, and he filled them in on the details.

“But why us?” Asked Jase. “Ok we can handle ourselves, but there must be much better fighting forces around here who could obliterate that compound in no time at all? It doesn’t make sense.”

“It makes perfect sense”, chimed Leela, realisation dawning as she spoke. “This isn’t about making sure the job goes right. It’s protecting the downside if it all goes wrong. We are mercs, unaffiliated with any official body. That gives Petev two advantages. One, if we get beat, the Converted will likely just assume we are chancers looking to take the compound for ourselves, no reason for them to suspect they have been discovered. Two, well, we are expendable. If we die, no-one cares…”

The models for the enemies in this turn were from Fallout Wasteland WarfareThe models for the enemies in this turn were from Fallout Wasteland Warfare

The crew stalked up to the compound early the next morning. Two hours sleep and a 4 hour hike after last night’s uplifting conversation. A little observation revealed two details. Firstly, there were 4 men working in the compound. They were armed and were indeed moving in an oddly procedural manner. Second, there was a woman watching the group from a nearby building, keeping out of sight of the Infiltrators, but clearly visible from their approach. A spy. Likely Petev’s operative, still hunkered down and making reports. Leela suggested that she make for the spy in an effort to speak to her and see if she could glean any helpful information. Jaryk agreed and asked Leela to see if she could persuade the spy to lend her gun to the fight. A long shot, but you never know.

As Leela made for the spy’s location, the rest of the crew moved in, silently until their weapons were in range whereupon they opened fire. It seemed their shooting skills were impacted by their lack of rest and most shots fired wide. Jaryk managed to hit and stun one of the Infiltrators, but failed to do material damage. The enemy, alerted to their presence, drew their weapons and made for the nearest cover. Their shots on the move were also wild but they had adopted strong firing positions from within cover. [The enemies have the “aggressive” AI traits. One of the features is that they will not willingly enter a brawl against characters with a higher combat skill. As their skill is +0, versus the crew all having +1, they would not seek a brawl, so I chose to move them to optimise weapon range and cover, but not advance just for the sake of it].

Jase, consistently the best shooter of the crew [nothing to do with his stats – his dice have been by far the best] stunned another Infiltrator. Again, no lasting damage but it limited their ability to fire back. But fire back they did, and with a crack of a rifle, followed by the bang of bullet on metal, Patrol Bot Jim fell in slow motion to the ground. The crew were shocked. This fight was real.

Leela reached the spy, who by this time was very well aware of the crew’s presence, allowed Leela to approach, and they had a short conversation. Yes she knew Petev, yes she knew who they were and why they were here, and no, she would absolutely not be leaving her position, raising her weapon, or in any other way alerting the Infiltrators to her presence, If the crew were defeated, her work needed to continue. [The “Notable Interest” rolled for this battle was “Person of Interest”, placed 2D6+2 in a random direction from the centre of the battlefield. Forgoing a combat action whilst in contact earns you 1 Story Point. So this is why this encounter was worked in. Story Point obtained.]

[At the end of Turn 2 I chose to roll on the optional Battle Event table. The result was “Renewed Effort”. Not good for me. At the end of each enemy turn, a random enemy gets to go again!]

Beyond the wall of the spy’s building was open ground, so Leela bided her time before stepping out. The rest of the crew, fuelled by adrenaline following Jim’s departure, allowed their full military training to kick in. They worked the available cover, firing from as secure positions as possible. But the cyber-enhanced thugs were equally cunning. One of them stepped up, and fired both barrels of his shotgun into Jaryk. His aim was true, and a shell pierced Jaryk’s armour. His vision went grainy, and the colour started to drain from the world. As he fell, he fumbled for the stimm pack on his belt, and just managed to inject it as he hit the ground. The drug worked immediately [wow, I was really lucky to acquire stimms last campaign turn!!], and Jaryk rolled to his feet, groggy but the pain feeling somewhat distant as he raised his hand cannon and returned fire on his assailant. Bullseye! Right between the eyes before the Infiltrator could duck back into cover. Jaryk sank back to his knees as the world swam around him. He would live.

The infiltrators seemed momentarily confused, perhaps the cyborg implants not entirely able to override the human emotion at the loss of a comrade. The opening was all the crew needed. Jeff immediately drilled the enemy lieutenant in the chest and he sank to the ground, and Jase levelled a third enemy with his trusty shotgun. The fourth managed to snap an ineffectual shot back before Jase blasted him out of cover, the shotgun once again doing the work [Jase’s rolls continued to be devastating!]. None of the enemies showed any signs of life. Job done.

Campaign Turn 4 - The Truth Revealed

[As the crew held the field they completed the mission and were able to explore the battlefield. They acquired some starship parts. A roll on the invasion table resulted in the planet not being invaded at this time. Perfect for the narrative! The crew also picked up a Rattle Gun from the Loot Table (decent!). A roll for Patrol Bot Jim’s injury resulted in “no lasting damage” which helpfully means no missed turns in repairs. I will narrative in that Petev had him fixed at his own expense as a reward. We rolled 6 credits as the reward, and spent two giving blades to Jaryk and Jase. For one credit, a basic melee weapon is fantastic value. The Campaign Event resulted in damaged Life Support on the ship (again!! On a D100 table that’s amazing. Clearly the Enlightenment has a weakness there. Luckily only one credit to fix this time. And the character event went to Jaryk (again!! The randomised D4 has rolled him every time!). This time his event gave him 2 extra XP which makes up for last round when he couldn’t earn any. He used all the XP earned this round to add a point of toughness.]

Campaign Turn 3 - A Bug’s Life

Tutoring 10
Skill 11
Idea 11
No Comments

“Leaving so soon?”

Jaryk turned slowly and placed the crate he was carrying carefully on the floor. He cursed under his breath. Another half an hour and New Pallas would have been a shrinking sphere in the rear viewports of the Enlightenment. This was bad timing.

“Petev! I was just coming to see you!” Jaryk lied.
“Sure, sure you were. Well I saved you the walk then don’t you think?” Petev grinned with a pearly white smile that only money could buy.

Petev Liamson was a patron that Jaryk had met upon his arrival at New Pallas, and he had been systematically deprioritising his jobs ever since. Call him paranoid but whenever someone can work the word “dangerous” three times into one sentence you tend not to get overly excited about the “opportunity” being sold to you.

“Look,” Petev continued, “ I know how it is. I know more than you think I know. You want to be on that old ship of yours, away from New Pallas, and as far as you can get from your responsibilities. Am I right? I think I am close, yes? I understand and I can help you. I am a busy man. I have two small jobs that need doing. Do them for me and I will pay you well AND give you some information. That crate you were holding? The one that, shall we say, ‘fell off’ of a government convoy? Something doesn’t sit right with you does it? I have some detail on that particular cargo. After the job, before you leave, I will tell you what I know. Come talk to me tomorrow.”

Jaryk met Petev’s eye with a cool gaze of his own, desperately trying not to appear as surprised as he felt inside. He simply nodded and returned to loading the crates.

After a disturbed nights sleep, Jaryk met with Petev to get the job detail. Get into an old communications outpost, insert a disk into the mainframe, and initiate the file upload. The system would then beam the data off-world. Jaryk knew better than to ask what was on the disk, or where the upload was going, better not to know. They key detail of concern was that the outpost was infested with giant bugs. Of course it was…

[This is the last of the initial patron jobs that we picked up at the beginning of the campaign, and this was the last campaign turn in which we could complete it. Additionally, this patron is “busy” meaning we can do another job for them in the following campaign turn. So two jobs for Petev! This one is a “Deliver” mission]

The crew set about their work. Jase and Leela hit the training rooms whilst Jeff and Jim were sent to explore the markets, using their scanners to record anything of note. Jim heard word of another patron looking for a mercenary crew to undertake work for them, but Jaryk wasn’t looking for any more reasons to extend their stay. Jeff reported seeing the same stranger that gave them the tip-off about the raid on the corp compound, but couldn’t determine what he was up to. Jaryk and K’Vani went out to see what they could trade. They picked up a shotgun (useful against the bugs they would soon be facing) and also some high class food and drink which could be used to impress a guest should they need to.

Geared up, the crew made for the communications outpost ready for a fight. Upon arrival, the mainframe and transmitter were clearly visible atop a building in the centre of the compound. Jaryk set in motion a plan similar to the one that worked well against the Krorg. He would dash for the transmitter, with K’Vani watching his back. The others spreading out to separate the enemy. The next few minutes were a cacophony of gunfire. As the bugs charged in, they were met with a hail of bullets. Large and easy to target, the crew were able to force them back repeatedly but putting them down proved difficult. They were tough! Patrol Bot Jeff was the first to kill one of the giant bugs and that hardened the crew’s resolve. These things were killable!

Campaign Turn 3 - A Bug’s Life

Jaryk climbed up to the communications mainframe and inserted the disk. The transmitter clicked into life and the antenna turned to face a specific point in the sky. It took only seconds. As the nearest target, the bugs had closed on Jaryk’s position. As he retreated, a blast from his hand cannon put another one of the bugs down. K’Vani, in a rare display of firearm prowess, aimed and fired her pistol, killing another bug. It was going well. Jaryk gave the order to remain and clear out all of the bugs. No running away this time.

Campaign Turn 3 - A Bug’s Life

K’Vani felt the rush of blood she had been waiting for. She set her sights on the nearest bug, drew her blade, and prepared her charge. No crude guns for this fight – it was time for hand to hand. Then, to her complete dismay, her target exploded in front of her eyes. She turned to see Jase, still staring down the barrel of his shotgun, smoke pouring from its barrels. K’Vani glared furiously at him. But Jase simply shrugged and moved on.

The fight ended quite quickly after that. The bugs, tough as they were, not able to withstand the barrage of fire, and not intelligent enough to seek cover. The crew were free to loot the area unhindered before reporting back to Petev.

[The crew found 3 credits worth of scrap, some stimm packs and a couple of guns. The stimm packs could certainly come in useful as they can stave off death if a character would otherwise be downed as a casualty. 5 credits in total from Petev as well. He was true to his word after all!]

Campaign Turn 3 - A Bug’s Life
Campaign Turn 3 - A Bug’s Life

Campaign Turn 2 - Bear Necessities

Tutoring 7
Skill 10
Idea 10
2 Comments

After the dust had settled on the first mission, Jaryk remained keen to leave the world and put distance between himself and the army. However, while the crew were in town to pick up supplies they overheard an interesting conversation. A government supply convoy had run into trouble in the wastes just outside town. Apparently they had been set upon by a pack of Krorg – vicious bear-like creatures – and in the panic to escape they had lost one of the supply crates. The last they saw of it, it was being pawed around by the giant creatures, presumably trying to determine if it contained food.

By the sounds of it, the couriers were very keen to retrieve the lost container, but it would take a while to requisition the gear and military personnel who could do the job. If it was worth enlisting the military then the gear was definitely worth having – Jaryk saw an opportunity! Get straight out there and grab the container for himself before the New Pallas bureaucracy could even find the right forms and sharpen their pencils.

Before setting out the crew decided it would be worthwhile finding out a bit more about these Krorg beasts.  After asking around the local market area, it turns out that the beasts used to belong to a nomad warlord who kept them as a personal indulgence and status symbol. When he died, the new leader had no interest in the food bill and the daily damage they caused, and released them into the wild. There they now roam, scavenging for food and worrying any travellers who came within half a mile of them. They were not to be underestimated!

Campaign Turn 2 - Bear Necessities

The crew prepared quickly but thoroughly. Bots Jeff and Jim made their repair protocols useful and managed to successfully fix both the damaged shotgun they had acquired and also Leela’s damaged cyber hand. Jase grabbed the shotgun as he immediately saw it’s value against large animals. Jase also managed to trade a single frakk grenade for a “boosted arm” implant in the markets. Leela picked up some ship repair parts, which would come in useful in the future whilst Jaryk and K’Vani spent some time in training.

The crew travelled on foot, overnight, to avoid any notice from the authorities and also to scope the area and try not to alert the Krorg before they really needed to. Jase spotted the crate using a long scope and Jaryk led the crew in as daylight broke on the wasteland. The Krorg could be seen in the distance, just waking up by the looks of it. With any luck they could get a bit closer to the crate before the animals’ noses clicked into gear.

The plan worked [successful seize the initiative roll] and the crew fanned out and got themselves closer to the crate than were the Krorg.

Sensing K’Vani’s anxiousness to blood her weapons, Jaryk assigned her as his personal bodyguard. He persuaded her that there could be no glory in dying in battle at the claws of these feral beasts. She wanted a noble death, and there was no such thing to be had here. He also knew that whilst her enthusiasm was great, and her skills true, her weapons would likely break upon the armour of these savages. Reluctantly she agreed to stay on plan and not charge in.

Then, without warning, the Krorg stirred. As one their heads turned in the crew’s direction. The race was on! Jaryk, comfortably the fleetest of foot (as slippery devils often are!) made a run for the crate, covering the ground quickly. K’Vani kept pace as best she could. The others kept a wide fan to present multiple targets to confuse the Krorg and unloaded their weapons, albeit to little effect. The Krorg were big, tough, and heavily armoured.

Jaryk managed to grab the crate before the Krorg could reach it and turned tail, firing wildly behind him. His shots never endangering their target, all military training out of the window as he ran for his life. The rest of the crew kept the wide gun line, retreat, fire, retreat, fire. Jase was the only successful shooter. His military discipline (and his new shotgun!) kept a steady hand, managing to down two of the Krorg during the retreat. [I forgot that Krorg are +1 to hit because of their size, so I might have missed a few hits for the crew, but with mostly 5 or 6 to wound a Krorg and their 5+ save I don’t think it mattered much!] During the retreat it became clear that there would be no chance of destroying the remaining Krorg before they reached brawling range (and allowing that to happen would have been suicide) and therefore there was no chance of holding the field and searching the area for any other salvage – no time for heroics – the crew had their prize and they ran for safety.

Campaign Turn 2 - Bear Necessities
Campaign Turn 2 - Bear Necessities
Campaign Turn 2 - Bear Necessities
Campaign Turn 2 - Bear Necessities
Campaign Turn 2 - Bear Necessities

Back at Enlightenment, Jaryk expectantly prised open the crate. It was indeed worth the effort. A prototype gadget called an Insta-wall (an emergency force field) and some neural optimisation implants [wearer is immune to stun] would be incredibly useful!

Jaryk hoped there would be some clues in the crate as to the location of the source of the gear, or where it was ultimately headed, but sadly not. A dead end. [This was a “quest” mission but no quest rumours were found, so no progress in the quest]

Unfortunately on their return to the ship, the crew discovered that the life support system was failing and needed repair. That would have to be paid for immediately in case they had to make a swift exit. [The 3 credits earned from the mission didn’t last long!]

Also, a strange melancholy had come over Jaryk [His character event was “melancholy”  – meaning no xp for him next turn]. Something wasn’t right but he just couldn’t put his finger on it….

 

Preparing for Campaign Turn 2

Tutoring 9
Skill 12
Idea 13
No Comments

For the second campaign turn, I don’t need to worry about any more crew models as everyone survived and I didn’t want to pay in game for the upkeep of extra crew.

I did roll up a new enemy for the next encounter though. 6 of them (eek!). The enemy are called Krorg which are described as “These beasts resemble a bear from Old Earth, but with huge claws and a surly demeanour”. Their stats are pretty scary!

A bit of Googling later and Firestorm Games seemed to have the ideal models.

Preparing for Campaign Turn 2

It turns out that the models were the ideal size, and looked the part. I can narrative in the armour etc. The only trouble was that the models were a bit of a pain. One piece, yes, but each model had about 20 resin injection points which was a nightmare to clean up. So I did a half assed job under the guise of “battle damage” and got on with it!

Preparing for Campaign Turn 2
Preparing for Campaign Turn 2

Campaign Turn 1 - A Suspiciously Easy Job..

Tutoring 14
Skill 15
Idea 17
No Comments

Following their successful escape from the Pallas 3 military outpost, the crew jumped into the battered Enlightenment and made the short hop to the main planet in the sector, New Pallas. Between them the crew had three potential contacts [in game: patrons] who could offer them work. The plan was to make a few quick credits and then head further into fringe space and away from the clutches of the Unity army.

All three patrons offered work of some form or another, two that needed to be completed quickly [this campaign turn] and one not quite so urgent [within 2 campaign turns].

Jaryk chose a corporate job, working for Orbital Operations. A corp should be good for the money at least. And the job sounded simple. Break into Dynamic Aggregates (a bitter rival of Orbital’s) compound, make a mess and then leave. Don’t steal anything – just send them a message – then leave through the back door. When exploring the town before the mission, the crew was stopped by a hooded stranger who claimed to work for Orbital Operations, and said that there would be an extra 2 credits added to the job if “making a mess” would include killing a particular target. The stranger also informed the crew that the security at the compound were Black Ops [elite hired muscle] and highly dangerous, but if they performed the job at a particular time the stranger could arrange for only the special target to be on the Dynamic Aggregates site, alone. This all sounded too good to be true, but it seemed within the realms of shady corporates using mercs to do their dirty work, so Jaryk decided to believe the stranger and proceed with caution. If they got there and were confronted by a full squad of Black Ops they could always turn tail! [After an initial panic at rolling for black ops as my first opponents, relief quickly followed when the roll for the number of enemies was snake eyes, meaning only 1 enemy (you take the highest result on 2 D6 rolls).  I wasn’t about to look a gift horse in the mouth whilst learning the rules etc, so decided to narrative the situation in, and let it be (hopefully) easy!]

Campaign Turn 1 - A Suspiciously Easy Job..

The crew arrived at Dynamic Aggregates’ compound at the time indicated by the stranger and, and after scoping the area for a few minutes  were delighted to find just one Black Ops security guard as promised.

Campaign Turn 1 - A Suspiciously Easy Job..

Taking no risks with his own safety (as was Jaryk’s nature) he sent the patrol bots in first, with the rest of the squad following behind. K’Vani protested at being prevented from charging in, but was persuaded that her chance would come. [Due to the extreme fortune leading to me having a huge outnumber advantage, I created a choke point to enter the compound to prevent a one-turn barrage of fire. The enemy would have a chance to do some damage and perhaps make a kill.]

Campaign Turn 1 - A Suspiciously Easy Job..

As the bots entered the compound, there was a sudden explosion in a nearby building. Luckily none of the crew were close, so aside from a brief panic, no harm done.
The black ops guard, alerted by the alarm, became aware that something was afoot and moved cautiously towards the compound entrance, staying in cover. He was surprised to suddenly be confronted by an 8 foot tall patrol bot, guns pointed right at him. The bot shot twice, hitting both times, but failing to penetrate the black ops armour. The trooper moved back into cover and shot back, also hitting but failing to damage. Then another patrol bot appeared from behind a stack of crates and the world went black…

Campaign Turn 1 - A Suspiciously Easy Job..

Easy. Suspiciously easy. Mission complete, credits received and the crew also salvaged 3 krakk grenades from the compound and found a personal trinket lying on the floor. This could be valuable to its owner if they could find them in the future. Also, in the main office in the compound, Jaryk found a military ID which would allow for easier obtaining of trading licences on new planets. Leela managed to damage her cyber hand, in a non combat incident, so will need to attempt repairs before the next job. [The crew also received their XP, and K’Vani was able to add a point of Toughness. That should placate her following the lack of fighting in the last mission!]

A short time later…

”High Admiral Tarff, this is Leela, do you read?”

”Affirmative Leela. Proceed.”

”The mission went as planned, High Admiral. Your operative posing as an Orbital Ops corpo cleared the compound as promised, and it was a straightforward job. One enemy casualty. None from our side. Neither Orbital Operations, nor Jaryk, suspected a thing.”

”Excellent. Well done. Keep me appraised of what my ungrateful son does next. I can’t keep him out of trouble forever. If he doesn’t come to his senses soon, he’s on his own. For good.”

 

Meet the Crew

Tutoring 10
Skill 13
Idea 15
No Comments

Meet the crew of repurposed science vessel, The Enlightenment. The group is led by Jaryk Tarff, son of High Admiral Jervis Tarff, who is now a wanted deserter from the Unity army. Turning his back on the family path, seeking fame and fortune as a mercenary, he persuaded another soldier, Jase Rookson to join him and collaborate on their desertion. Next to join was ‘Leela’ (real name unknown), an engineer who for non-disclosed reasons underwent cosmetic surgery to look like a pre-expansion pop culture icon. What Jaryk doesn’t know is that ‘Leela’ is a secret agent, inserted into the military outpost by Jervis to keep an eye on his son and report back should he show any signs of leaving the family path. Angry but curious, Jervis instructed Leela not to interfere with Jaryk’s plans but to continue to follow and report on his activities. Leela was given the job of taking Tarff’s credits into the wastes to buy a ship. The Enlightenment was the best she could do. Old and battered but serviceable. Leela also reprogrammed two Patrol Bots, PB23-GEF and PB23-GIM (Jeff and Jim as they would be known) to obey Jaryk’s commands. It was on their patrol shift that the bots sub-routines would be overridden and facilitate the group’s collective escape. For good measure they also broke a K’Erin alien called K’Vani out of the outpost’s prison. A fearsome warrior, with a berserker-like grudge, she could be useful in a pinch. Outcast from her tribe who forbade female warriors, all she wants is to die a noble death in battle, and for word of her deeds to be returned to her tribe elders. Jaryk happily agreed to these terms. After all, it was free muscle…

Meet the Crew
Jaryk Tarff. Based on the “Chief” model from Punkapocalyptic with a weapon swap.Jaryk Tarff. Based on the “Chief” model from Punkapocalyptic with a weapon swap.
Jase Rookson. Model also from the Punkapocalyptic rangeJase Rookson. Model also from the Punkapocalyptic range
‘Leela’. From Punkapocalyptic’s Mutards faction with a weapon swap.‘Leela’. From Punkapocalyptic’s Mutards faction with a weapon swap.
Patrol Bots Jeff and Jim. Humanoid in form but larger and highly dangerous.  Wild West Exodus lawbots for the models.Patrol Bots Jeff and Jim. Humanoid in form but larger and highly dangerous. Wild West Exodus lawbots for the models.
K’Vani from the K’Erin alien race. The model is a female marrow legionary from Westfalia with a weapon swap. Thanks Gerry for the suggestion - the model matches the artwork really well.K’Vani from the K’Erin alien race. The model is a female marrow legionary from Westfalia with a weapon swap. Thanks Gerry for the suggestion - the model matches the artwork really well.
The Enlightenment. Model was bought on Etsy as a 3D print “grasshopper” model.The Enlightenment. Model was bought on Etsy as a 3D print “grasshopper” model.
Meet the Crew

Getting Started

Tutoring 8
Skill 10
Idea 14
No Comments
Getting Started

So I got quite excited when I heard about this game (ok yes, it took till 3rd ed for me to discover it) and preordered the book immediately. It is now in hand and planning can commence.

First job – crew generation. I’m going to use the random system, and let the D100 rolls kick the story off.

The crewThe crew
The gear they rolledThe gear they rolled

Pretty cool crew – some story synergies there to work with to write their background. I’ll do that in conjunction with trawling for cool miniatures to use and get the crew ready to start their adventures!

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