101 – Taking Cover

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(The party has left the cargo barge (Map Area #41) and moved towards the mysterious installation at the north end of the second dome (Map Area #47). Approaching the open square just south of the facility (Map Area #46), the area comes alive with sudden light from bulbs on an unbroken chain link fence that surrounds the compound!)

(The bright lights reveals a scene of horror. Various skeletal remains lie littered everywhere around the connecting streets and square. The gates to the compound beyond are guarded by two concrete pillboxes. Beyond the bunkers a roadblock of concrete ‘dragon’s teeth’ has been erected.)

(Suddenly, a large robot rolls into view between the bunkers. Its weapons fix on your location, and it advances forward on its enormous treads! You have taken only a few steps into the broad avenue. The ruins of the domestic apartments are a few paces to your right and can offer reasonable cover.)

Sentry Robot

Deeper Caves Map

Wow! Even Thrakazog can see fairly clearly with the sudden influx of light. But what he sees doesn’t comfort him at all. He quickly takes in the fence, the lights, the concrete pill boxes, and of course the trundling war machine making its inexorable way toward the party.

“Uh, some cover would be good about now, eh guys?” Thrak says. “Let’s hope it’s just automatic or something, and as soon as threats leave the vicinity it goes back to sleep or something.” With that, Thrak leads the way (if he’s first) to backing into the ruins of the domestic apartments nearby. He wants at least two or three thick walls between himself and big gun driving toward them right now.

“Perhaps we ought to test the perimeter in other areas first, if we wanna get in there, hey?” he adds. “I just hope the lights go out once we disappear. Else we’re in bigger trouble than we can probably handle.”

(The bright light provides Thrakazog sufficient light to see his surroundings with clarity. Looking for nearby cover, he jumps behind a low barrier of concrete just a few feet away, then crouching low he moves back into the apartment ruins. There is a hole in a nearby pile of rubble – barely large enough for Thrakazog – that provides access to a possible hiding spot.)

Security Robot

Security Robot

Realizing the enormity of the threat facing the party, Kronic shouts out: “Move back and into cover! Lets see if we can get around this thing!” The miniature man runs behind Thrakazog (not needing to duck for cover). His mind races with options: “Maybe head west – Towards Map Areas #37 & #45 – and see if we can get around the check stop battleground?” With all those corpses around here that robot is obviously a menace! Before crawling into the rubble behind Thrak, Kronic scans the battleground for any Mongo remains.

(Indeed, there are some charred mongoliant bodies littering the grounds. Kronic also sees the scorched bones of crawlers and some other unidentified mutants atop the dusty skeletons of the Ancients.)

Soggul does not hear Thrak or Kronic’s comments, or notice their hasty retreat yet. “Perhaps we should back out until we figure a way around this machine?” The three-armed mutant creeps back slowly, unsure of what to do.

With no response forthcoming, Soggul checks over his shoulder for Thrak’s glowing form. The mutant is gone! He then looks for Kronic. The small brawler is also missing! Although his remaining allies stand firm (or are perhaps simply in a state of shock), Soggul starts backing away quicker and quicker. As he stumbles behind the barrier he begins to sweat and a slight tremor in his hands is visible…

Cobb comes to an abrupt halt when the lights come on and instinctively falls into a crouch. He scans the scene quickly and moves off to the ruined apartments. He pauses for a moment as Thrak and Kronic pass by, scanning the scene with a scav’s eye. “There must be something important in there, and I’m willing to bet the Mongos haven’t been able to get past that thing.” Looking to Sikich he asks, “What is a cryogenic, and do we want one?”

(Okay; so Thrak and Kronic have already crawled into the ruins of the domestic block nearby. Cobb is now crouched behind the barrier, and Soggul has backed behind cover as well. Sikich, Vash, and Jumrak remain in the open – at least for now.)

Sikich does not answer Cobb. The lanky mutant doesn’t want to get into a fight with this machine if it can be avoided but recalls all the different types of ID the group has recovered recently, perhaps one of these would work. Sikich calls out to the machine, “Greeat aancient waar maachinee. My masster Vassh wisshes too enteer. Whaat ID isss requuired?” Sikich points out Vash as his ‘master’ while he speaks.

(The GM tosses some dice. Uh-oh.)

Jumrak shouts to Sikich: “What are you doing!?!?”. He pulls himself towards cover, next to Cobb and Soggul, ready to defend his allies with his trusty axe in hand. “The creature is probably hungry.” he thinks. “Judging by the bones between us and this machine, it has quite an appetite. They will surely be killed and eaten!”

Plasma Death

Plasma Death!

The war machine springs to life and opens up one eager eye, focusing it upon Sikich and Vash. Following some deep impulse, it follows orders to identify; to clarify and classify. The robot transmits a measurement – back at base, bugs in the software flash the message: Something’s out there! This is what we’ve waited for!

Vash is still in a state of shock as Sikich steps forward with his introduction. One of the warbot’s weapon turrets swivels towards Vash as Sikich points to his ‘master’, and two pulses of orange flame surge forth! (Two plasma attacks; 4 +10 = 14 and 9 +10 = 19. Vash is caught flat-footed and hit twice, for 18 and 21 points of damage – or 39 total!)

Twin lances of plasma engulf Vash, incinerating him in orange flame! (Vash’s hp are reduced to -20! Your tech savant has been turned to a charred skeleton!) His death is mercifully quick.

Luckily the flames do not touch Sikich, who is left gesturing at a smoking corpse as the warbot continues to advance…

Everybody except for Sikich is now behind cover. What are your actions?

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~ by K-Slacker on 30-Nov-08.

7 Responses to “101 – Taking Cover”

  1. Able to see the carnage all to clearly – terrifyingly clearly from his vantage (he tried to maintain a sight line with the beast) – Thrakazog yells out in horror at seeing Vash brought low with such apparent ease by the mindless war-bot. Even so, he is frozen in place with terror at the ability the machine has to deal out death so quickly and without apparent effort.

    “Get to cover!” he shouts to those remaining companions still exposed to the threat of imminent death. Against a foe of flesh and blood, no matter how threatening, Thrakazog feels little fear, but in the face of a mindless and merciless killing machine he feels an unfamiliar sense of terror at his complete incapacity to do anything. He hunkers behind cover himself and does no more than shout for the others to try and find the same.

  2. “By the gods!” Kronic will move up and snap some shots at the monster with his laser rifle and get behind cover again… move and shoot. Move and shoot.

    Kronic will try and stay in cover as much as possible heading towards area 42 (west of us?) and snap shots at the creature to “distract it” so that everyone can get into cover.

    Once at the end of the street (if he makes it) he will hunker down and fire away as much as possible at the thing to see if it even gets “hurt”.

  3. Mixed with rage and fear, Soggul unleashes his sonic blast at the war-bot. “VAAAAAAAAAAASSSSSSSSSSSSHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!” Soggul’s strength doesn’t last any longer though, as he begins to flee, not able to keep his fear in check any longer.

  4. As the heat blasts the flesh from Vash’s body Cobb clicks on his harness and leaps into a run, heading straight for the confines of the building. Reasoning that the bot can’t see through walls, Conn cries out, “Run! We can find a back way out of the building!”

  5. Feeling the heat from the blast and witnessing the immense power of the demon, I realize that there is no way my axe is going to help us – at least in the current circumstance. Hearing Cobb’s call, I break into a run to follow. We should be able to come up with a plan once we’ve established some semblance of safety.

  6. “Vassh! I thouught machiness liiked Vassh,” wails Sikich in his surprise and despair. Suddenly realising how exposed he is (under the turrets of the war machine), Sikich makes a break for the nearest cover.

  7. (Note that a mini-update that was just posted, though not all of the PCs may have heard Vash’s moan.)

    https://scorchedearthrpg.wordpress.com/2008/12/04/im-not-dead/

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