Wednesday, January 25, 2017

Aeon C-Team S303: Guess who got Their Kestrel VTOL Shot Down?

We'll update the logo... eventually
The Team:

Marsh Langston (Maverick): A blond, smiling hacker that will rip the most secure files out of your mainframe while convincing you that he's just downloading more RAM. Marsh is a technical wunderkind and social engineer with a shadowy background in intelligence. PROHIBITION MOBSTER

Mikhail Kovalenko (Alex): Measuring 6'4" and weighing about 230lbs, Ukrainian-born Mikhail Kovalenko was a former special agent in Eastern Europe and is extremely competent at drinking vodka, making friends with random people, piloting, field action, reminding others that he's from Ukraine (not Russia), field operations, and handling firearms. TOTALLY NIKO BELLIC

Agent Veracity (Me): The Subway's resident spook and dumpster diver, Agent Veracity is a highly skilled investigator, tradecraft expert and conspiracy nut. HE'S IN YOUR TRASH!

Miguel Drasil (Andre): The ultimate personal assistant. A sarcastic wiseass.

Andre wasn't present for tonight's session.


We discuss who will be driving our Kestrel, Minnie, while we're parachuting into the AO. We state that we want an AEGIS pilot named Zeus to take the 'wheel' after we leave the perfectly good aircraft via gravity and parachute.
"Hey, Zeus. Take the wheel."
Mikhail projects his Astral Form out and explores the fortified position.

The setup as we're planning. All the tents have goons inside.

 There's a collection of dudes outside the power plant. Inside their perimeter they've set up some tents, a trailer that looks like it has communications equipment inside based off the radar dishes on top of it, a laser fence surrounding it all, and another trailer that could probably be a "barracks" of sorts.

There's about a dozen Blue Skies Agents, as well as numerous (five) hired thugs. There's a few drones flying around- reconnaissance. There's also a dude dressed as if he's from the Wild West.

The white trailer is empty, kitted with kitchens, some bunks, and a makeshift toilet. The other trailer is luxurious, and features a wall panel that's full of communications equipment.

The guards look alert, but not alarmed or otherwise expecting issues. Some are wearing night vision, and there's a lot of Type 3 armor present DR (~19). Most are wielding Blue Skies prototype weapons- TL 9 rifles. Mr. Wild West has a Winchester 1979 on his back and two Colt Peacemakers on his hips.

Mikhail tries to get info off of the laser fence for Marsh to handle.

The tents are filled with more troops. One of the tents has two guys overlooking the security systems.

We're looking at 18 vs 3 odds.

We spin wheels talking about our approach for a bit, debating tactics and the use of grenades. I crit on mastermind to case the scene.

Eventually someone on the ground crits a perception roll and we're spotted midair. The guys on the ground open fire with an anti-air missile of some sort and Minnie (our VTOL) takes 57 points of damage on 18d6.

Mikhail tries to direct the crash landing so it will plow into the trailers and control tent on the ground.

We bail out and parachute in. I burn a point of Karma to make up for a shitty infiltrator roll. We make stealth rolls- I succeed mine by 24, Mikhail crits, and Marsh succeeds by 3.

Minnie crashes through the powerplant. The blue RV is largely intact (besides Minnie's nose poking through its side). Minnie brings down a portion of the laser fence, which turns out to have had an attached laser canopy as well.

Tax write-off?

Marsh opens up festivities by using Illusion to make Jon Wayne believe that the Blue Skies men have suddenly turned on him. Marsh succeeds by 9, and Wayne rolls a 15, failing to resist.

Mikhail tries to grab Wayne as he parachutes in. He fails his first attempt during the surprise round and tries again, succeeding. He crits while trying to grapple off the grab, only to be defeated by Wayne's bigger crit with a natural 3.

Veracity tosses a Stingball grenade into the clump of guys directly below him, landing it right in the middle of them. "Michael Easton" fails his HT check bad enough that he's effectively stunned for the rest of the fight.

I make my stealth roll at -10 to disappear (I really need to buy up that technique).

Stun Grenade FTW

Wayne breaks out of Mikhail's grapple, quick-draws the two pistols at his sides and fires two shots at his own people. Both wind up with chunky salsa inside their helmets where their heads used to be.

Marsh stunts his illusion to make it persistent on Wayne for the next ten turns.

Mikhail steps towards Wayne, feints with his extra attack and then attack Wayne with a deceptive attack kick for -6 to the chest. Even after hitting Wayne with a huge defense, Mikhail flubs his follow-up attack and misses Wayne.

A goon shoots at Mikhail. Mikhail successfully dodges the shot with the aid of some timely acrobatics. Mikhail continues to have fire sprayed ineffectually in his general direction. Zeus, our pilot takes a bunch of shots and goes down, still clinging to life.

Mikhail continues to take more fire, which he manages to dodge.

Veracity uses Mr. Gunn (his grapple gun) to get onto top of the Blue RV.

Mikhail (just below the blue RV) has taken out two baddies next to himself 

Wayne shoots at Mikhail with both Peacemakers, aiming for Mikhail's vitals with six shots. (Christopher: It's high noon.) Mikhail tries to make a bunch of dodge checks and gets hit in the vitals for 19 points of injury overall. Mikhail burns Karma to keep his HP topped up.

Marsh radios in Gunther. He then stunts his Illusion power with Cybernetics, spending 5 fatigue and a Karma point to take out all of their comms with terrible feedback, causing some panic among the guys.

Mikhail shoots an underslung grenade at Wayne with his H&K AG36. The grenade lands right at Wayne's feet and doesn't explode- a dud.

A nice looking guy among all of the thugs spots Marsh and suggests that Marsh should come on down and be all friendly like. Marsh fails a will check and complies.

Mikhail takes more gunfire, crit-failing his dodge, taking a shot to the arm for 27 base points of damage, 14 injury. He continues to go through karma like water to turn it into a fleshwound.

Gunther takes a bunch of gunfire and doesn't care.

Veracity tosses another stun grenade into the cluster of guys next to Gunther, trying to get all five with the blast. 3 are stunned by it going off.

Seriously, Stun Grenades Save Lives

Wayne makes his way onto the top of the RV.

Marsh, while leisurely moving towards the friendly guy takes the opportunity to whammy Wayne with an illusion of getting shot, actually managing to cause damage.

Mikhail uses Move! to jump up onto the RV, getting a crit. Mikhail blindly shoots another grenade where he believes Wayne to be.

The friendly guy tries to convince Gunther to help people off the top of the bus.

Gunfire and grenades bounce off of Gunther without any effect.

Veracity uses Mastermind! to try and snap Marsh and Gunther out of the effects they're experiencing from the friendly guy. He manages to succeed in this. Veracity has taken official notice that guns and explosives don't seem to work on Wayne.

Mikhail takes two shots to the eye, each a crit. I spend 3 Karma to allow Mikhail a dodge against one. The other shot does ludicrous damage but gets reduced to a flesh wound when Mikhail spends Karma.

Mikhail's eye is crippled, and he still has to make a knockdown/stunning check at -10. He's knocked down, but isn't stunned.

Marsh tries to work up the willpower to shoot the friendly guy. Realizing that he's encountered a user of Swagellan that he hates, Marsh fast-draws his gun and shoots the guy in the junk, sending him to the ground.

Mikhail rolls towards Wayne over the roof of the RV, fast-drawing his knife and attacking Wayne's feet with his knife. Wayne avoids one, but the other gets his achilles tendon for 16 damage. Wayne falls off the RV. It sounds like he fell wrong.

Mikhail gets shot at again, and he rolls off the side of the RV as a dodge and drop, landing on his feet with a successful Move! check.. Marsh succeeds a Will Roll. Veracity moves closer to the Blue Skies goon on top of the RV.

Marsh makes an image of Yukio (the Wonderdog) appear in the place of Mr. Friendly. The two guards freak out, thinking that the Commander and the Cavalry have arrived.

Don't tell the Commander, it'll go to his head.

The hired thugs break and run away.

Mikhail drops the LMG and draws his two hand cannons. He does a crazy dual-weapon attack with a bunch of different options tacked on to try and eliminate Mr. Friendly and the three goons next to him. (By "eliminate" Mr. Friendly we decide that shooting his jaw off will prevent him from using his Power for Evul ever again.)

All four are hit. Mr. Friendly no longer has a jaw and needs MAJOR reconstructive surgery. The other three goons die horribly.

Gunther grabs the remaining Blue Skies goon and tosses him bodily across the battlefield towards the Blue RV.


Veracity drops off the RV and knifes the remaining goon in the neck for 5 damage. The goon starts to bleed out and the combat wraps up.

We start cleaning up the massive mess we've made. Marsh triggers the fire suppression system on Minnie, Veracity starts tending to Zeus (leaving Mikhail to be healed by Katori, why waste an opportunity to earn some brownie points with her?), leaving him at -2 HP.

Christopher has us roll verses perception -10, and I crit, noticing a blurry hand appear from a portal and drag Wayne through. We nab Easton and Mr. Friendly before the portal can try and grab them.

We ask Gunther to move Minnie to a more accessible location and for the first time ever we see him put actual effort into moving something. He and Marsh sit down to eat sandwhiches Gunther brought along with him.

Mikhail's eye is toast, requiring some kind of cybernetic replacement.

It turns out we captured Blue Skies' #2 guy and CFO- Easton, all because Marshall Sr. managed to leave Jon Wayne's name on the foreheads of his sons.

Easton's RV has an encrypted harddrive that Marsh cracks like an egg after spending Karma because he's not happy succeeding by 15 on his Computers! check. It turns out the Harddrive has a ton of Blue Skies' actual financial records on it going back years.

Marsh crit-fails on the check to see about picking apart the info. We spend karma to turn it into a crit-success.

We learn that Mr. Smiley is a Blue Skies operative whose power revolves around making people like him a lot, preventing them from attacking him and allowing him to make very hard to resist suggestions.

Debriefing is as painful as we expect, including a huge dressing down about getting the Kestrel shot down, endangering Zeus, and so on.

We find the location of Duchess, Blue Skies' Chief HR Officer. The C-Team takes some time to lay down ground work for the Cavalry.

Veracity is voted MVP by Alex and Mavrick.


This fight was a doozy, and the most challenging one we've faced yet. A lot contributed to this:
  • 20 vs 3 (+Gunther waiting in the wings) means we were majorly outgunned
  • Open engagement area meant segmenting enemies and taking them on piecemeal wasn't possible
  • Our preparations weren't particularly useful for the scenario we faced- we prepared for breaching a fortified structure, not a fortified position.
  • Meta-human involvement made Mikhail's attempts to take out the most dangerous threat on the battlefield a losing proposition.
Otherwise, we handled the fight pretty well. Mikhail was forced to use a crapton of resources to survive, but as the combat monster I feel little guilt allowing him to make every single active defense roll the team had to make.

Marsh and Veracity both never took any gunfire the entire fight. In fact, there's a high probability Veracity's presence is at best an assumption or guess that can be made based on the stun grenades getting thrown. 

I do think we could've improved on some points:
  • We should've called Gunther in far sooner.
  • We should've had Mikhail switch to Melee combat on Wayne sooner
  • Parachuting in over a target building where people are inside is great for stealth purposes. Parachuting over people in the open field... not so much. Totally ruined the rule of cool of bothering with parachuting in the first place.
  • Veracity needs a better firearm for armored targets.
  • Next time around in similar situations I'm advocating for more shock and awe- open with a huge distraction, get Gunther, Mikhail and the other combaty types going, and have Veracity infiltrate from the back

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