Monday, 29 October 2012

Star Fleet: Reinforcements Painted

I had hoped to be able to present a Batrep of Saturday's game today, but due to circumstances beyond anyone's control, there wasn't enough time to fit in a game of Star Fleet: ACTA. Maybe next time! We had a comic time playing Artemis. With slightly too few people, everyone behaved as though they and everyone else were captain. I failed to realise (remember?) that the Helm position also controls the Shields. So we got a bit shot up in our first fight. I bet this is why Kirk always used to shout it: it slipped Sulu's mind! Mawbs was our Mr Chekov, firing missiles in quick succession into the enemy, always bidding me to follow their tail. I sounded like Scotty: "I'm doing the best I can!" Then Nathan, controlling engineering, would divert power to manoeuvring thrusters so I could get behind them. Most of the piloting involved heading right at the enemy, and then zooming away at warp before turning about and trying to get behind them.

After beating someone, we'd get a new message that Outpost 7 (or something) was under attack, and Berni bid me set course 040. Then I'd behave as Captain, having noticed we'd run low on missiles and power, and head us to another space station to refit and re-arm. The last battle was the funniest. Having engaged several enemy ships, we'd taken a heck of a battering, with damage markers covering half the locations on the ship. We turned away, letting a friendly AI cruiser get destroyed protecting our flight, and that's when things went a bit Sink the Bismarck! The damage control teams had all died in the fires, so Nathan couldn't get them to repair anything. Our manoeuvring thrusters were out, but the main engine was fine. We could go to warp and maintain normal sublight speeds, but we couldn't turn at all! So Mawbs fired off some EMP warheads which were our sole armament, and the enemy squadron turned ponderously toward us. Nath decided we'd self-destruct in hopes of taking them out, but I think their combined firepower destroyed our ravaged hull before that could happen.

It was a great deal of fun. It's a bit reminiscent of Quasar or paintball: you throw yourself into it, wholly aware that it's ridiculous, and you have a great time. That is the key: one can't have a sense of self-importance if one wants to have a good time. A sense of the ridiculous is a key element in my enjoyment of almost everything, and an element in everything else. Remember Monty Python!

Having made the point that all is ridiculous, join me in welcoming the painted additions to the Federation and Romulan fleets: the War Eagle Cruiser and the Manta Ray-class New Fast Cruiser.

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