So our second session was a bit of a stumbling block. Let me say this – combat in A time of War is not as straight forward as it is in other systems. There are a lot of moving parts and things to remember, so there was a lot of looking things up. But that’s okay because the end result is far more realistic than combat in most systems. I figure that once we’ve done it a few more times, things will smooth themselves out.
The other thing I will note is that combat is BRUTAL. Seriously, every time a character takes damage, they’re making a roll to stay conscience and they are stunned which takes one of their actions to shake off. In the scheme of things it is also fairly quick. Our one combat lasted exactly one round with our protagonists being victorious, and only one of them injured. I live for quick combats, especially after playing in the last two editions of D&D, both of them having long, drawn out combats. Something I hope that D&D Next remedies, but that’s neither here nor there.
Anyway this week saw our intrepid mercenaries finding out that as a Kurita township, most of the people were at home under a strict curfew, so getting to the outpost was not an issue since all they had to do was evade a few police patrols.
They were able to make it to the back of the outpost building, and Akane (a former Combine citizen and current Yakuza member) managed to bypass their electronic security, and then pick the lock to a nearby room. Here the group saw that something had been tripped when the back door opened. Celee (a Davion ex-patriot and doctor) managed to hack into the computer in the office and use it to hack into the network and get some of the information they needed while finding where the rest was located at.
That’s when a couple of DCMS (Draconis Combine Mustered Soldiery) kicked in the door and started shooting at the group! They managed to return fire, nearly killing the first soldier (he ended up dying at the end of the round when he took bleed damage), and wounding the second. He then returned fire and managed to injure Akane. Conrad (a covert Davion infiltrator) managed to sneak around the soldier and run him through with his katana. The soldier perished at the end of the round, also because of bleed damage, as Gunther (born Steiner turned Comstar operative) dug through his pack looking for a medipatch so Celee could patch Akane’s leg wound up.
Akane then decided that armor would be a good thing to have and scavenged what was left of the armor on the Combine soldiers. Takashi (a former Combine officer and noble) also took a helmet. They both heard the crackle of the radio that was built into the helmet as someone asked for unit 1 to check in. Takashi tried to convince them that he was one of their own, but they saw through the ruse (the player rolled double 1’s), and devastatingly so as the entire complex went into high alert.
The group made their way through the complex to come out into a central ‘office’ area. And as they made their way up to the commander’s office, they heard him tell them that they should surrender. that he had his personal guard with him in the room, and that the police and other soldiers were surrounding the building. They continued up the stairs after the commander (or Sho-sa, equivalent of a captain) and stopped once Conrad spotted guards at the top of the stairs. Now they must come up with an assault plan and fast. But that will be next week. Later this week I hope to get character bios up.
To the players – Start thinking of a way out of your predicament ahead of time. The more time you think about it, the better your chances of getting out without dying or getting captured. Keep in mind, there are at least 8 soldiers, and numerous cops outside. An all out shoot out once you execute the commander will not likely get you out alive. Think this through and try a little out of the box thinking. There are several ways out of this, so don’t worry., and remember cops are considered civvies by the Ares Conventions. Collateral damage in the form of dead cops is likely to be looked upon poorly (of course if you manage to get away without harming them, you could turn that against Kurita, since using cops as soldiers is also frowned upon). Looking forward to next week. I apologize for the lack of forward story momentum. Hopefully we can progress the story further than we did this week.