Wednesday, June 18, 2003

Just got about a ton of reviews for the latest chapter of Seekers in Shadow. Thanks for all the support!

Work on the next chapter has been pretty slow, not least because of the Battle of New Samarkand in the local merecenary campaign. This was well and truly a battle of epic proportions, with about 20 players participating. I needed to both play and act as referee to ensure that the newbies for some of the games don't mess up the rules. So I've been doing that for the past 4 days. And I'm just about dead on my feet!

Because of several mismatches with veteran players on the DNS side going up against relative green players on the ANS, I was forced to build a one-off Word of Blake unit so that another veteran could go in and help the attacking force. So I went ahead and built two Level IIs with mostly stock C3i mechs, which I named "Household Appliances"!

So here's the battle report so far, courtesy of Phelan, the CO of the Warriors of Woe. For the record, I was the player for the Word of Blake militia. Poor Marcus, unable to field his full force for the next phase without taking some very serious risks!


Even now, battles rage across the surface of New Samarkand. It has been more than a week since our forces landed, only to meet resistance in the form of mercenary units, some of which have affiliations to Steiner, Liao and the Word of Blake. There have been frequent attacks against our supply lines, though so far no side seems to have an edge.

Here is the summarized report you have requested of me. As information filters in, I’ll do my best to keep you updated.

For our Prince, and for the Federated Commonwealth.

Warriors of Woe vs Darsis Death Dealers
Our first battle was raged in the heavy forests, at the start of dawn, with our own Warriors having to battle those of House Liao. It was a hard fought battle, as both Methos’ and D’Alia’s Devastators were lost to engine hits. Yvonne’s Annihilator was cored, and two more of our Mechs lost their arms. We managed to drive off the attack, however, and the Death Dealers have lost their overall commander to a well placed headshot.

Note: Both sides don't seem to be able to field a strong force for the next phase of the mission. Missing arms and legs galore!

Double H vs Kodiak Guards
The next battle took place between two elite forces, those of the Kuritan-affiliated Double H and the mercenary Kodiak Guards. It was a severe blow to the attacking force to learn that the Kodiak Guards wiped out most of Double H’s forces, but the damage inflicted by our side was devastating on the Guards. Luckily, Double H’s CO, Shimure Hanis, was not at the scene of the massacre.

Note: The 1/2 pilot Shimure Hanis pilots a Turkina with a clan large pulse laser and targeting computer loadout. Say cheese!

Solar Blade vs Pryde’s Marauders
This battle again took place in the forested region, with Pryde’s Marauders coming hard at the green Solar Blade. Our side suffered the loss of a Rakshasa, Sirocco and No-Daichi, but the commanding officer of Solar Blade wisely retreated against the much better armed Pryde’s Marauders. The defender’s victory cost us what ground we had initially won.

Note: Solar Blade is not green, actually newborn pink, while Pryde's Marauders are a veteran unit in defensive positions during the battle. An utter mismatch.

Lion Azure vs Hegemonia
Treachery. The ComStar affiliated Hegemonia had defected to the other side. There are rumours about Hegemonia actually being a ROM unit from WoB, but so far, we’ve had no confirmation. However, when they attacked the Kuritan mercs of the Lion Azure, they were treated to a nasty surprise. Apparently the Kuritans deployed Arrow IV to their advantage, taking out several Mechs within a few minutes. Hegemonia withdrew from the field a while after. Another victory for the attackers, and with minimal casualties to our side.

Note: Four mechs from Hegemonia got vaporised in one turn when they got around a pre designated artillery point. Spectacular!

Die Blaukavalieren vs Command Assault Recon
The Blue Cavaliers were surprised from the rear by the Lyran-affiliated Command Assault Recon in the fifth battle on New Samarkand. Though the Cavaliers retreated off the field with the loss of an Awesome and a Grasshopper, battleroms show that they inflicted sufficient damage on Command Assault Recon before withdrawing. Hinata lance, especially, caused lots of problem for the Lyrans. I believe we can count three Lyran pilots dead.

Note: The commander of the Command Assault Recon is a slow learner. Advice goes into one ear, and goes out the other ear. But he's young.

Argent Phalanx vs Word of Blake Militia
This was unexpected. A Word of Blake militia unit caught Argent Phalanx on maneuvers, and attacked with ferocity equal to that of any fanatic. Argent Phalanx lost a Black Knight and a Hauptmann to headshots, but they eventually forced the Blakists off the battlefield. Several other Mechs were badly damaged in the skirmish, though I have had reports that Argent Phalanx captured one of the Blakist pilots. There have been conflicting stories as to who (or what,) was piloting that Mech.

Note: Argent Phalanx also had a Devastator with two engine hits and a torso with very little internal structure left, as well as a near crippled Penetrator. All in all, a pyrrhic victory.

James’ First Calvary vs Carlos’ Champions
Another attack into the forested region, this time by Carlos’ Champions. Our supply lines were guarded by another Davion unit, James’ First Calvary. Things did not go too well for us, with an early ejection by the pilot of a Nightstar. The Calvary held on as long as possible, but when they realized it would be impossible to win, they wisely accepted a withdrawal agreement from Carlos’ Champions. At least one other Mech, an assault-class Emperor, was lost.

Note: Both units are veteran level, and it was hotly contested until the Nightstar went down. From then on, it was all one sided.

Twilight Templars vs Plastic Miniatures
This evenly matched battle rages even as I am writing this. So far, neither unit has the advantage, though intel reports that the Templars have taken heavy damage to a single Marauder. Reinforcements are unavailable at this time, but the highest ranking officer on the attacking side believes that the Twilight Templars can hold the line.

Note: Play was halted due to player commitments. To be continued soon.

--end of report---

We still have confirmed reports about other merc units that are preparing to engage our forces. ComStar’s 666th Division is still nowhere to be found, but I’ve been told that Army X has been sent in to reinforce us. And some other Davion unit called the Panser Corps. They are still a few days away from planetfall, so this is all the information I have.

PS: Get well soon, that last battle really rattled you up.

One caveat I would add is that for all of the advantages the invading force(ANS) had in defence(we had to roll to decide defender/attacker before every match), the DNS players have been able to hold their own, and even grab a slight edge. Of course, if we had started out in defence, the win ratio would be even more in our favor.

Interested? Then hop on over here and get our campaign rules!


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