Date: Sat, 24 Feb 2001 10:24:20 -0800 (PST)
From: Gerry Harris
Subject: Adventure 8
I have dug out my copy of Adventure 8 to work up the basis for a TNE-based military campaign set in the Spinward Marches in CT times. When I first played it as a teenager, I thought this was the coolest adventure going. Now that I'm 35, I can see this adventure had a lot of holes in it that need fixing.
Thoughts on Adventure 8: Broadsword
I am reworking the adventure for use with the TNE rules and I've come up with a few fixes.
Date: Sun, 25 Feb 2001 10:39:09 +1300
From: "Frank G. Pitt"
Subject: RE: Adventure 8
> I have dug out my copy of Adventure 8 to work up the basis for a
> TNE-based military campaign set in the Spinward Marches in CT times.
> 2) The wheeled ATV is as useless as a military vehicle as mammary
> glands on a porcine of the male gender.
I suggest you read up on what the LRDG did in the Western desert before dismissing wheeled ATVs.
Like any vehicle,if used in the wrong way , against the wrong weapons, and in the wrong place, they may be useless. But used correctly, in the right place and way, any form of transport can be militarily effective. Even donkeys.
> 3) Scenario II: The Ambush, is rather forced. The first time we
> gamed this (sometime in the 80s), the players simply loaded their
> prisoners and themselves in one of the cutters and flew back to base.
Er, I thought there was an explicit reason why they couldn't do this in the scenario? I'd have to dig it out and check.
> I am reworking the adventure for use with the TNE rules and I've come
> up with a few fixes.
> 1) The mercenary unit needs to be bumped up to at least a battalion in
> size, but would be better using a regiment.
> 2) Ditch the ATVs. They are completely useless.
Ok, I think the problem with all this is that I got the impression the mercenaries aren't supposed to win.
I got from this mission is that the Mercenaries were supposed to take to the hills and out of pure survival act as an Imperial guerilla group harassing the Zhodani and Sword Worlds presence on the planet, probably not getting out until after the war, or until they get a chance to get the hell out of there.
In this environment the ATV's are useful for mobility.
> 6) Because a lot of the locals are TFL sympathizers, the locations of
> the deep meson gun sensor sites should be known to the TFL.
Problem with this is that unless the deep mesons are inoperative the strike cruiser is dead meat if it tries this. The point of deep mesons is that it requies a sustained, long term, bombardment for orbital weaponry to take them out, unless the attackers have knowledge of their exact depth as well as position and can use mesons against them. Any single Strike Cruiser would have to be extremely lucky to survive sitting in range of several deep meson sites for the length of time required to reduce their cover.
And while most locals are TFL sympathizers, it's still possible to hide a deep meson on a planet. Consider if you were building one on earth, there are several parts of the planet where you could easily build one withut any locals finding out, because there are no locals, or the few that are there could be eliminated or imprisoned with little trouble.
Not to mention that if the mesons are in a populated area the locals would be bit upset at the damage done to their planet in taking them out, so if the Zhodani want to retain local support, they'd have to use troops to storm the site or teleporting commandos (which would require either fanatic comandos willing to risk appearing in rock, or something in the site to act as a psionic location device.....
This, BTW, is my justification for the Zhodani Strike Cruiser not attacking the Broadsword on planet, it doesn't know for sure where the deep mesons are, and the captain is too worried about losing his ship to them to risk it just to take out a Broadsword. Being there is enough to deny the enemy the use of their ortillery. Why risk more?
And to begin with they aren't at war, and it would technically be an act of war to attack the mercenaries.
Other than that, I like the ideas.
Date: Sun, 25 Feb 2001 11:50:16 +1300
From: "Rupert Boleyn"
Subject: RE: Adventure 8
On 25 Feb 2001, at 10:39, Frank G. Pitt wrote:
>> 2) The wheeled ATV is as useless as a military vehicle as mammary
>> glands on a porcine of the male gender.
> ...But used correctly, in the right
> place and way, _any_ form of transport can be militarily effective. Even
OTOH we're talking about a TL10 world, so while they'd have some uses, a wheeled ATV would be very low down on my shopping list.
A pessimist is an optimist with a sense of history.
Date: Sat, 24 Feb 2001 23:23:41 -0000
From: "Larsen E. Whipsnade"
Subject: RE: Adventure 8
From: "Rupert Boleyn":
>>>"2) The wheeled ATV is as useless as a military vehicle as mammary glands on a porcine of the male gender."
>>"I suggest you read up on what the LRDG did in the Western desert before dismissing wheeled ATVs."
>"OTOH we're talking about a TL10 world, so while they'd have some uses a wheeled ATV would be very low down on my shopping list."
Gee, it sure has been a long time since I played "Broadsword", and then only as a PC a not as a GM.
(scratches grey haired pate)
I sort of thought the point of it was to survive the war's first stages and wait for the IN to arrive. We ran a few of the scenarios (I have vague memories of them) but the biggest part of it was helping the loyalist Garda-Vilist troops and the Vilis garrison hold off against the TFL, Gram battalion, and Zho ship. Again, that might of been our GMs "tweak" of the material.
The "mexican standoff" between the Zho strike cruiser and deep meson sites/merc ship mentioned earlier keeps either side from using any space assets in any real way. The TFL wears down the garrison while the Gram armor is used for the "big push". Our GM used us like a "fire brigade", popping here and there to stiffen local defenses, disrupt staging areas, leading small counter attacks, and the like. The mercs are too small to do any of the real work, but they can be used as a "fulcrum" for the local loyalist "lever".
Think of something along the lines of the Peking Legations Seige during the Boxer Rebellion. The mercs help the locals hold the fort until the "cavalry" arrives.
All of this is moot anyway. In the TNE timeline, a faction of the TFL "wins", Garda-Vilis gains it's independence, and becomes the leading Regency world in the Vilis subsector. Maybe the radical TFL faction is spent after this adventure and a more peaceable, and palatable, faction gains prominence.
Date: Sat, 24 Feb 2001 20:15:56 -0500
From: "Terry Carlino"
Subject: RE: Adventure 8
>I am reworking the adventure for use with the TNE rules and I've come
>up with a few fixes.
>1) The mercenary unit needs to be bumped up to at least a battalion in
>size, but would be better using a regiment.
I agree. Make the PC's either an elite strike squad of a bigger Mercenary force or the senior officers of a regimental size unit. Play out some actions as unit actions with the PC's running the merc side and you running the other. Play out the rest with the PC's using your regular combat RPG rules. This gives a nice variance to the campaign, and in the unit actions your PC's don't have to worry about dying unless their whole unit is wiped out.
>2) Ditch the ATVs. They are completely useless. Give the unit at
>least a company of armor and a company or two of G-carriers. They'll
>still be susceptible to the Gram mechanized battalion and the TFL's
>anti-armor teams, but at least they'll have a fighting chance.
I agree again. Wheeled vehicles have no place on any world with that high a TL. Use a speeder or engineering sled. Give the command staff enclosed air/rafts. I'd leave out the armor entirely. It gives the mercs too much of an advantage. Besides it makes more sense for the government to call in an infantry regiment to do this kind of anti-terrorist ticket. Their vehicles should all be support vehicles. At this TL that should mean air/rafts for light transport, sleds for heavy transport and a few armed speeders for fire support. They don't expect to meet an armored battalion.
>3) Why the Zhodani strike cruiser simply doesn't drop a missile on the
>Broadsword as it sits on the ground at the starport is beyond me. The
>best plan I see for the Broadsword is to high-tail it off planet or
>park in some convenient body of water to hide it from the strike
I've always been confused by the grounding of the Broadsword. According to the ship design section the Broadsword can only land on vacuum worlds (It's unstreamlined.) Yet when the cruiser shows up it lands (as a matter of desperation I suppose.) I think it would be better to have it run. The merc's lose it as an asset, but the PC's or GM can bring it back for desperate fire support, for a nick of time rescue, or use the fighters in that way (if you have them.)
>4) There should be enough gravitic traffic on planet to mask the
>movements of the ship's cutters. Use them for fire support and troop
>6) Because a lot of the locals are TFL sympathizers, the locations of
>the deep meson gun sensor sites should be known to the TFL.
If the TFL knows where the deep meson sights are then the Zho's can use transport commandoes to take them out. I don't see missiles as effective, the sites will take out the cruiser before it can bomb them. The flow of action should be:
All that is Gold does not glitter
Not all who travel are lost