Søren 'Bloodbeard' Bay from Bloodbeard's Garage is back on the blog with his second battle report for Reality's Edge: Cyberpunk Skirmish Rules. Be sure to check out his blog for more great content!
"The Direction have managed to take over a local broadcasting station and secured the use of a gov.mil. signal jammer. So for the past 47 minutes H.8-Corp have blocked the competitions signal and overridden it with our own broadcasting. Everything is setup and the engineers have already left the area to avoid unwanted heat.
Get in there, secure that station and keep the broadcast alive for as long as possible! We need a total of 93 minutes online for this JOBOP to break even. And the Direction do hate taking a loss.
Gov.mil and local security teams are already pinpointing the signal, so make sure you get out before they enter in force. All asset affiliation will be denied.
There's word of enemy activity nearby, there's some shady glitches cyberspace - so the signal jam might be interfering with an unknown force. Deal with them.
Recap: Stay online t-46 minutes to get paid.
Setup and scenario
This time we're playing Infastructure Safekeeping in Reality's Edge. The story is that my Big Media shadow backers have taken control of a broadcasting station and set up a jammer. While jamming other media signals in the sector, they override everything with their own shows and targeted advertisements.
As an unknown result of this media feud, the jamming and overriding broadcast is interfering with an Unshackled AI operating in cyberspace. Enter the attacking team, moving in to stop the jamming and broadcasting so that their shadow backer can get back to their own business.
Whoever has the most CC worth of models on the objective score victory points, so the defence will start out getting some for free. But the attacker can earn extra VPs by smashing equipment on the objective when they get there.
The Hitch: In this scenario there's a bunch of nasty sprawl rats running around. The rats have clearly been driven to agression from the strong jamming frequency messing with their brain.
At the center of the board is the broadcasting station a 4Ground satelite control center and a Sarissa radar model as jammer. Around the center we've built a city block, with lots of neon adverts and lots of traffic.
Remember there's step-by-step and build blogs for most of the terrain on the blog.
As the defender my crew was allowed to split up and deploy on the objective and in the streets. My showrunner enforcer, sprawl ronin and ganger with a gun started on the roof - able to look around and have the height advantage over the enemy.
My console cowboy and a ganger bodyguard started hidden behind a car - dangerously close the to enemy. But I wanted to get a chance at hacking some CATs, while staying close enough to defend the objective.
The attackers set up on the top left side, behind a red truck. This would give them the most direct route to the main doors of the broadcast center. I got the chance of deploying the frenzied sprawl rats and set them up behind the red brick building - right next to the enemy.
Circuit and Hogger hiding behind a car, the enemy is setup to the left of them - they must get to another position quickly.
The enemy showrunner is a Masque and wasted no time sprinting across the street and hide in a crowd. A good way to get some cover, avoid getting shot and get really close to the objective. He's already met his personal motivation, so there's XP for him at the end of the game.
The console cowgirl moves up the street, towards the metro line. There's some CATs to hack at that end of the board and my gang is tied to the objective, but right from the start the sprawl rats start running towards her. She'll need backup from her team.
Circuit moves down the street, away from the enemy's position and getting nearer to the CAT close to the objective. In our first game the CATs were all guarded by White ICE and there was a Griefer Avatar on my neck - so I didn't get any Info pulled. Time to remedy that.
The prize, a CAT nice and close to the objective. I'm hoping Circuit can hack it quickly and then move in to support the rest of the team in the defense of the broadcast station.
The broadcast center and the gov.mil. jammer. My most expensive and hardened troops are on the roof, ready to defend the building. The plan is to shower the enemy in gunfire when they approach and then leap from the roof into melee.
An innocent sprawl bystander going about her business wondering why her HRO is filled with adverts and her regular show got cut - soon gunfire will break out across the streets.
Moving Sgt. Cliff my show runner and Ina Haze into cover at the edge of roof. The shadow avatar will provide virtual support.
A drone jockey from the enemy is hiding near their starting position. In cover from my guys on the roof he activates his drone. The hover gun drone chose to fire shots at my ganger Hogger, who not yet in proper cover.
The first sprawl blocking the console cowgirl is shot down by a friendly ganger. Stopping for a short time before moving towards the CAT, the hacker loads up an app and summons an Iduro. Soon sprawl bystanders will start to show up to catch a look at the legendary Saint Lemmy - extra meat shield covers when moving towards the broadcast station.
After getting wounded by automatic rifle fire from the hover drone, Hogger managed to hide behind a car, returning fire against the drone jockey but without doing good damage to him.
I've equipped the console cowboy Circuit with augmented legs, that extra speed means a lot and he gets to the CAT. Hopefully he's not a target going about his own business as he tries to hack the console. The firewall however proves to hard to break.
Ganger Animal is covering the rear of the gang, more sprawl rats are coming. He'll be protecting the team's console cowgirl and the others attacking the objective. The Iduro reminds him of an old friend.
As soon as the show runner Masque got to the objective my own sprawl ronin, Glitch, jumped from the roof. Unfortunately the jump took a lot of energy and she couldn't slice him in half. To protect her boss, the ganger Sharkie charged the sprawl ronin.
And that was what I hoped for! My show runner Enforcer Sgt. Cliff has the highest CC value on the board, so he can't meet his personal motivation taking out enemies. But now he could use his bodyguard skill and switch places with Glitch. That's some nice XP in the bank.
8-Ball a crazy sprawl ronin armed with a chainsaw and hand cannon is moving towards the objective, covered by all the people in the street. His friend Sharkie, a ganger, is already at the front door to the broadcast center. It was 8-ball who cleared off the first sprawl rats.
Glitch is not happy getting thrown out of the way by the enforcer, she's itching to get into combat. And knowing how dangerous she is in combat the enemy shadow avatar starts spamming her system with overheat apps, slowly wounding her - 'cause Glitch is mostly made off chrome.
A top down view from a passing corp.sec. drone. This will become bloody and the next turns initiative roll will be super important. If the defenders take the initiative they'll swarm the Masque. If the attacker gets the initiative they'll get a lot of bodies on the site and can start smashing it to pieces.
The attackers take the initiative and the Masque promptly moves into cover of the building and starts breaking the jammer with his augmented arm and steel fist. He's now so far away that Glitch will again not be able to get into melee combat with him.
The console cowgirl has gotten far away from the fighting and sprawl rat. Safely hidden underneath the monorail she starts hacking the CAT. She's having better luck than circuit, breaking the firewall and extracting valuable Info from the network - and adding crucial extra action points to the shadow avatar.
More crazy rats pouring out from the red stone brick building, charging past the Saint Lemmy Iduro and towards the ganger Animal.
From the roof Ina Haze moves to the edge and start emptying SMG shots down towards the masque. Besides dinking the pavement and jammer she does no damage - hitting no flesh.
Glitch jumps from the roof again to join the enforcer fighting Sharkie. 8-Ball has crossed the street and is now also at the objective - it's time to tally up who has most CC on it. There's no guarantee my defenders have the better numbers anymore.
The sprawl rats are aggressive and nasty beasts - they jump Animal and he's taken out. After this the rats starts attacking and killing random bystanders nearby.
The drone commander from the attacking team has managed to shoot down the ganger Hogger, and his drone is then free to fly across the battle field. It moves in to support the masque near the jammer.
In what can only be described as reckless behavior, the drone then starts flying full speed into the jammer. It suddenly becomes a super expensive, remote controlled wrecking ball - but it's effective. The enemy starts taking in some serious victory points. The masque doesn't want to fight my sprawl ronin - no way. He breaks away from her and hammers the jammer instead.
In all the mayhem and fighting I lose count of the combined value of troops - and the attacker take home some VP for having most CC value on target. They find themselves in the lead.
Having the hacking time of her life, the attacking console cowgirl runs to another CAT, breaks down the firewall and steals more info - again bolstering the shadow avatar.
Despite my own defending avatar taking it's opponent offline, it gets running again. And with 5 actions points per turn, all the nasty attack apps starts breaking down the defenders.
In the streets, what can only be described as a feeding frenzy turned into a massacre is occurring. The activated Iduro app, visible and glowing in the civilians HRO keeps pulling in new bystanders. After all the jammed signals they've been experiencing for the past hour, anything shiny pulls them in. They see the giant mutated rats too late, all too real and non-virtual. It's very bloody.
The last couple turns
The rest of the game is brutal hand-to-hand combat around the central compound. My battle hardened enforcer managed to take out the enemy ganger Sharkie and Ronin 8-Ball. 8-Ball was at at huge disadvantage when my shadow avatar managed to shut down his chainsaw for multiple turns with a hack.
Glitch does what she can to take out the Masque beating up the jammer, but in the end the constant attacks from malicious apps bring her down. And despite Ina Haze emptying clip after clip, she is unable to take out the enemies right below her on the ground.
In an effort to regain the upper hand, my hacker Circuit leaves without breaking into a CAT (for the second game in a row!) and runs to the roof instead. This turns out to be crucial, as it brings my guys to the highest CC value again and brings in some victory points.
Time continues to tick away, and corp.sec. and gov.mil. units will start swarming in very soon and both gangs have to leave. After the smoke has cleared and the wounded have been pulled we see that the defenders were successful. The defenders win with highest VP score, thanks to the console cowboy getting to that roof in time.
"The Direction is pleased with your results Sergeant. The operation is considered a success, you made a break even minute count plus 7 minutes.
The Direction is especially pleased with the unexpected show of violence. CCTV in the area captured every detail and thanks to our setup, we'll be using it all in an upcoming broadcast. A crypto currency bonus will be transferred to your account based on show ratings.
Be advised those attackers were not corporate, c-sec or gov.mil. affiliates. Huge cyberspace energy spikes were monitored. That's all we currently know. Lay low - expect aggressive retaliation.
Oh, and Sergeant: The Direction request you contact them if such an event occurs, it'll be good show material.
Hogger Haze - was gunned down with automatic fire from a drone and its jockey. He was looking at a long recovery and some hard earned CC was spent to bring him back.
Glitch - the sprawl ronin. Overheated chrome through virus attacks. Glitch suffered a permanent injury and -1 to her Aim stat. Nevermind that, she'll never be shooting at anything.
The sprawl ronin was then offered a good amount of cash and decided to join the media corporation as a permahire. She got a nice +1 on activation tests as here trick of the trade.
Having won this scenario my crew now has enough REP to be offered some high end items and spend some INFO on getting something better. They got themselves a lightened combat hatchet, might go to the sprawl ronin.
Sgt. Cliff got himself 3XP - not enough for a good upgrade, that'll have to wait.
After paying for injuries and a permahire there was still a nice 50CC chunk for the bank. I think it's now time to search the watering holes for a good drone jockey or infiltrator.
The attackers suffered three casualties after the attack on the station. Animal, the Ganger, badly wounded by all those rats, was captured when c-sec swarmed the area. And the crew had to pay 30CC to bail him out of jail.
Sharkie (Ganger) and 8-ball (Sprawl Ronin) were both lucky, it was a only close calls.
The Show Runner Masque really wanted to bring in 8-ball as a permahire and decided to sell off 3 INFO to get the cash. Offering a major 70CC as a signing bonus, 8-ball joined the crew.
Because they won our first skirmish, the attackers also went searching for some high end items. The got offered a heavy melee weapon with armor penetrating power - 8-ball just got an upgrade for that chainsaw.
So after two games of Reality's Edge, both teams still seem equal in strength. And both have some slow and small increases in permahires and skills.