Previously, our heroes tried to obtain a few mining lasers during their shift of forced labor, hoping the weapons would aid their escape. They were ratted out by one of the other prisoners, rounded up by the guards, and taken away...
Read the first part of this campaign log here.
The guards lead Oberth, Byzi, and Liam down the sterile corridors of BIG-16 and into a small office in a branching hallway. There is a prison official waiting for them. He orders our heroes to sit down and proceeds to interrogate them. Liam and Byzi try to spin what happened; they tell the official lies and try to implicate Tarquin, the nomad who ratted them out. The official is having none of it. Seeing as Liam and Byzi are of no use to him, he directs his questions at Oberth instead. Oberth tries to take one for the team: he says that he alone was trying to escape and that the others had no part in it. The official obviously does not believe a single word of what Oberth is saying. He gives them one last chance to tell the truth. When it isn’t forthcoming, he sighs and has them taken away.
The guards bring our heroes to a teletrain and shove them aboard a carriage. Oberth, Byzi, and Liam don’t know where this teletrain is taking them, but it’s a long ride, much longer than any of them has been on before (except for Byzi when he was taken away from their cell last night). After a while, they begin to feel lightheaded. A quick search of the carriage reveals a small opening, and Oberth assesses that the opening releases a mild sedative into the carriage. He takes off his jumpsuit and uses it to plug the opening. The feeling of lightheadedness abates. Our heroes quickly discuss what to do next. It is obvious they’re going to where Byzi was taken last night and that whoever is waiting for them there expects them to be unconscious. They decide to ‘play dead’ and wait to see what happens next.
When the teletrain pulls to a stop, Liam, Byzi, and Oberth (after quickly putting his jumpsuit back on), lie down on the floor as if unconscious. A guard comes in (they can tell by the footsteps it’s just one man), lifts Oberth, and straps him to a stretcher waiting on the platform. When he comes back, Byzi and Liam give him the jump.
This was quite a simple battle, and Byzi and Liam won it easily. An interesting point was that Liam (who has 2 skill levels in Close Combat) wanted to take the guard’s baton from his belt. He would have had to disarm the guard with a Brawl skill, and chances were (because of the defender’s advantage on disarm checks, see the Core Rulebook, page 27) that Liam would lose; he was simply not skilled enough to pull it off.
However, one player pointed out that they had an Ambush advantage (see Core Rulebook, page 27) and queried if the guard got to respond to the attack at all.
It was a valid point, since the Core Rulebook says (on page 27): “When a character has an Ambush advantage, his melee attacks, ranged or thrown attacks (within the first range increment of his weapon), and his spells cannot be countered, parried, or dodged with any skill.” The Core Rulebook (on page 27) defines a disarm attempt as a special attack against which “[t]he defender may defend (...) as normal”.
In the end, I ruled that if you cannot counter, parry, or dodge an attack made by a character with an Ambush advantage, you can also not counter, parry, or dodge a special attack made by a character with an Ambush advantage.
Liam took the guard’s baton easily. With Byzi’s help, who ran interference more than anything else (melee combat is not really his thing), Liam made short work of the guy and bashed his brains in.
The guard lies dead, and our heroes are quick to confiscate his light blaster. They drag the guard’s corpse out of the teletrain and onto the platform and then release Oberth. They spend some time to get their magic-annulling bracelets off (Byzi shoots his off, while Oberth uses the field computer they took from the dead guard to unlock his and Liam’s). As they discuss what to do next, the teletrain pulls out of the station, leaving them with only one option: through the door that opens onto the platform.
Oberth hacks the door’s interface to get it to open and succeeds. It opens into a small chamber with a desk and a hallway leading deeper into the compound. A man in an EVA suit stands with his back to them, and instructs them to “take the prisoners down the hallway and to the laboratory.” They realize he thinks they are the guard...
They hesitate what to do, but Byzi takes his blaster and shoots the man clean in the head as he turns, to the dismay of his companions.
This was one of those moments in which the players began to elaborately debate what to do--imprison the guy and question him? shoot him? Etcetera--while in real time they had to respond in a split second.
I’m never against a bit of out-game discussion, even when it isn’t entirely realistic or when the discussion lasts longer than the PCs actually have time for, but this was too much. I interrupted their discussion with a countdown, saying the guy was turning around in 3-2-1, and Byzi shot him.
The man is dead before he hits the floor, and Byzi gets some flak from his companions. He shrugs it off, and our heroes quickly enter the compound and close the door behind them...