Author Topic: Wasteland Legion (Dark Age Periphery campaign)  (Read 1044 times)

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Wasteland Legion (Dark Age Periphery campaign)
« on: 24 October 2017, 08:25:05 »
Yep, I'm starting another AToW game with a different group and a very different theme. Just had the first session tonight, so it's definitely time to start posting all the material I've been working on for the past umpty-um months.
Author of BattleCorps stories Grand Theft Agro and Zero Signal



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Re: Wasteland Legion (Dark Age Periphery campaign)
« Reply #1 on: 24 October 2017, 08:26:36 »
Extracted from Interstellar Expeditions Spinwards Operational Area updates, 3130

History

(Editor’s note: Much of this is taken from the few ‘official’ sources that the Legion has to offer, including Ulysses Coffin’s own biography. While there are no better records, we still should take whatever’s said here with a grain of salt)

Like many of the worlds of the Outworlds Wastes, Santa-Ana fell far after the collapse of the Star League. Its people were abandoned by the nations and corporations that had underwritten their colonisation efforts, who had pulled out and left them behind. Subsequent raids by the Draconis Combine stripped the planet of anything of value, leaving behind an impoverished and devastated population to survive as best they could. Centuries of raids by pirates had left the world largely stuck at pre-industrial levels, with most of the population either reduced to sustenance farming or picking through the abandoned cities for anything of value.

During the late 31st century, the Grave Robbers, a pirate band, set up shop on the world and claimed it as their own. Using their BattleMechs and combat vehicles, they were able to bully the population into submission, allowing them to take whatever they needed for themselves. While they ruled with a heavy hand, the Grave Robbers were fully confident that there was nobody to challenge them. Those few who tried to stand up to them were quickly dealt with, seeing entire towns flattened in retribution for the defiance.

Such an encounter occurred in 3117 during an extended drought. The Grave Robbers descended on the community of Northlake, demanding they turn over their entire food supply. When they refused, the bandits slaughtered the local militia and half the town to prove the point, and then took their food stocks anyway. One of the few survivors was Uylesses Coffin, who was badly wounded and left for dead during the battle. After seeing what had happened, he vowed to destroy the Grave Robbers and end their reign of terror over the world.

Coffin fled to the remote Navarro region, biding his time while he slowly built up his support among the communities and tribal groups of the region. There were plenty who hated the Grave Robbers and wanted to see an end to their reign, but lacked the means to do such, providing his movement with the bodies it needed to grow. Fate smiled upon him when he discovered a weapons cache dating back to the Periphery Uprising, which had likely been used by Amaris loyalists. The store included a number of combat vehicles and several functional, if unsophisticated, BattleMechs, which Coffin was able to recover and use to equip his growing army.

In the meantime, having faced no serious opposition for years, the Grave Robbers had become increasingly lazy and complacent. Coffin took advantage of this situation, using agents to sow discord among their ranks and promote distrust and infighting while also distracting them from his own plans. Starting in early 3119, he launched a campaign aimed at wiping them out and ending their reign.

The appearance of an unknown BattleMech-armed force took the Grave Robbers completely by surprise, with early battles turning into decisive victories for Coffin’s army. Plummeting morale, as well as his own efforts at undermining and subverting key members, saw a number of Grave Robbers surrender or even defect rather than fight. Within three months, Coffin had driven the pirates out of their central stronghold, the former planetary capitol of Amarillo, claiming it for himself. The surviving Grave Robbers lost coherence, breaking up into smaller isolated groups who would be slowly picked off in the months and years to come.

Having effectively secured control of the world and unified it under his control, Coffin turned his efforts around towards rebuilding the planet. The world’s other communities were bought into line under the one flag, using diplomacy where possible and coercion where that failed. Those with any technological, scientific, organisational or planning skills were highly prized, and tasked with building an actual functional state out of generations of neglect, ruin and banditry. Reconstruction became a priority, even if it was often somewhat skewed; Amarillo saw the most work, aimed at restoring much of its long-neglected infrastructure. Conversely, outer lying communities rarely saw any real change.

At the same time, Coffin knew that his new order ran the risk of attracting unwanted attention from pirates or other powers in the Wastes. Rather than wait for this to happen, he began an ambitious plan aimed at transforming his single world into a viable state, while also eliminating potential threats before they struck. To this end, he began to expand his army, recruiting not only from the Santa-Ana population, but from other nearby planets in the wastes. Drawing from failed mercenaries, former pirates, farmers, treasure hunters and others from all manner of different walks of life, the rechristened Wasteland Legion began to grow.

This growth also attracted other, less desirable interest. Several pirate bands were drawn to the world, hearing stories of a growing society that seemed to be ripe for the picking. Instead, they found themselves facing a large, well-organised defence force. Rather than wipe these attackers out, Coffin did his best to capture them, incorporating their equipment, and sometimes their members, into his burgeoning army.

After nearly a decade or rebuilding, the first test of the new order came in 3129 when a detachment were deployed to the neighbouring world of Achnoly. Regressed to a pre-industrial agrarian state with little central authority, the world had no military to speak of beyond simple peasant militias, and had become a target for opportunistic pirates. The Legion in essence sized control of the world, making it a protectorate of his new order, abstinently for the safety of its people.

It was not too long afterwards that a band of pirates from the Grim Grinner Gang dropped onto the planet, looking to pillage its people for supplies and whatever else they could find. Expecting to meet no resistance, the pirates were instead shocked to find a well-organised BattleMech force waiting for them. After suffering considerable losses, the pirates fled the world in disarray, gaining nothing while leaving behind valuable salvage.

Current status
With two worlds secured, Ulysses Coffin appears to be planning to further expand his empire. His intelligence assets have been putting out feelers to other worlds in order to learn more about them and the forces they possess, while also tracking groups like the Grim Grinner Gang back to their strongholds. He has shown considerable interest in IE and our operations, but it is likely that interest is fuelled by a desire to use us as an intelligence source and to identify targets. Several nearby worlds represent likely potential targets, due to both the presence of hostile forces and exploitable resources.

The current biggest priority for the Legion is the acquisition of more transport assets. At the moment, they are dependent on a hodgepodge nightmare of dropships (Many of which are civilian models) to move their forces, which would be very vulnerable to aerospace interception. Their small fleet of jumpships (all of which have ongoing maintenance concerns) also represent a bottleneck for any future expansion.

Life on Santa-Ana is still a mixed bag, but definitely improving. While still little more than a military dictatorship, the current regime is a massive step up from the heavy-handed kelptocracy of the Grave Robbers. And while a number of communities had to be coerced into joining, the Legion did not engage in the same policy of massacring those that defied them that the Grave Robbers preferred. Reconstruction continues across the world, with programs focused on infrastructure, education and housing taking priority. However, literacy rates remain poor, and outside of the capitol city, farming and resource extraction constitute almost all industry.

Author of BattleCorps stories Grand Theft Agro and Zero Signal



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Re: Wasteland Legion (Dark Age Periphery campaign)
« Reply #2 on: 24 October 2017, 08:28:05 »
Wasteland Legion military forces

Built from the core of Coffin’s uprising, as well as a few defectors from the Grave Robbers, the Legion has grown to a multi-regimental combat force. Much of its strength has been drawn from a collection of pirates, failed mercenaries and other opportunists, resulting in a rather disparate collection of soldiers and equipment. While the units have undergone a degree of training, there are still cohesion issues in large-scale operations. This is not helped by the hodge-podge state of its equipment, which are as diverse as their soldiers.

Technical and support issues abound, with shortages of parts and equipment common throughout the entire military. This is especially true with more sophisticated technology, especially advanced munitions, where technicians will sometimes substitute less advanced but more readily available alternatives. Further exacerbating the situation is a lack of qualified and trained technicians. Those members of the Legion who have any technical skills often pull double duty on repairs and maintenance.

Likewise, the Legion lacks formalised training facilities and instruction programs. Most training is very hands on, with experienced soldiers doing their best to impart skills to newer recruits. Shortages of equipment mean that there is little provision for dedicated training BattleMechs, with a handful of converted IndustrialMechs instead used for the purpose. Armour and infantry training is somewhat better off, but Anti-Mech training is almost non-existent. As such, those who come into Legion with prior experience are highly prised.

1st Wasteland Legion
CO:
Colonel Ramon Sanz
BattleMech Regiment/Regular/Reliable

The spearhead of the Wasteland Legion, the First Legion consists of a full regiment of BattleMechs, in addition to a command company. The regiment is used as the primary offensive force, and takes the lead in most operations. However, it is rare that the entire regiment will be deployed at once, instead being broken up into independent battalions to run specific campaigns.

Most of the unit’s strength is made up of light and medium ‘Mechs, with very few heavies and almost no assaults. The unit is primarily equipped with a mixture of late Succession Wars and invasion-era designs, but some more modern ones can be found within their ranks. In an effort to bolster their numbers, RetroTech, MilitaMech and even modified IndustrialMech designs also see some use.

2nd Wasteland Legion
CO:
Colonel Luisa del Rey
Armour Regiment/Regular/Reliable

The Second Legion is primarily used as a supplemental force to the First, with each of its battalions assigned to support one of the BattleMech battalions. In addition to conventional combat vehicles, its strength also includes troop transports, VTOLs and Artillery, which are roughly evenly distributed between the three battalions. Like the BattleMech regiment, most of its strength is made up of light and medium tanks.

While again theoretically a full regiment, the Second is, if anything, even more disparate then its BattleMech counterpart. The unit is made up primarily of Succession Wars era designs, with the majority of the remainder being more recent Periphery-made models and even salvaged Star League-era designs. Many of the unit’s vehicles have been stripped of their more high-tech equipment and refitted with internal combustion engines and Rocket launchers in order to keep the more “valuable” units running. However, unlike the first, the second has not needed to supplement itself with RetroTech or industrial conversions.

Legion Auxiliaries
CO:
Colonel Matthew Wallis
Three Infantry Regiments/Regular/Questionable

The bulk of the Legion’s strength, their three infantry regiments are made up of a mixture of trained soldiers, conscript militia, former bandits and those so desperate for a better option that they would take anything. The result is that the troop quality varies wildly, as well as there being very little in the way of equipment standardisation. Locally made Automatic Rifles are slowly being phased in across the command, but for the time being, “standard issue” is more of an abstract concept then a reality. Similarly, the few transport assets the formation possesses are more ad-hoc, running the gamut from purpose-built transports to converted buggies and even animals. The unit possesses no Battle Armour, a situation that is unlikely to change.

Author of BattleCorps stories Grand Theft Agro and Zero Signal



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Re: Wasteland Legion (Dark Age Periphery campaign)
« Reply #3 on: 24 October 2017, 08:29:41 »
(Boss, I managed to get my hands on a bunch of Interstellar Expeditions reports about a few nearby worlds. Best if you don’t know how. Sure, they’re fourty-something years out of date, but they at least give us something to start with. I’ve appended them to bring them a bit up to date)

Santa-Ana

Star Type (Recharge time): G0V (181 hours)
Position in system: 2 (of 7)
Time to jump point: 10.3 days
Number of satellites: 2 (Rio Grande, Yp)
Surface gravity: 0.97 g
Atmospheric Pressure: Standard (Breathable)
Equatorial temperature: 37 degrees (arid)
Surface Water: 61 percent
Recharging station: None
HPG class: None
Highest native life: Reptile
Population: 15,000,000 (3090, est)
Socio-Industrial levels: D-F-C-F-C
Landmasses (Capitol city): Mojave, Sierra, Sonora, Tule, Yuna (none)

When first charted in 2612, Santa-Ana was seen as being of only marginal value. A hot, dry, dusty world, much of its landmass was made up of parched, rocky deserts and rugged mountain chains. Later surveys would revise this estimation, including rich mineral resources, especially radioactives, rare earths and other exotic elements, scattered across the world’s continents. This drew the attention of companies form the Terran Hegemony, Draconis Combine and Federated Suns, who all underwrote colonisation efforts in order to gain access to those resources.

While the early population was drawn from all three realms, it was citizens from Terra’s North American region who made up the largest groups of the early settlers. While the mining corporations set up large resource extraction operations and built cities to support them, a number of smaller communities came to dot the landscape as well. Many of these small communities would support the mines through itinerant workers, who moved from job to job depending on where the employment was to be found. Others chose to go in a different direction, deliberately choosing to revert to more primitive lifestyles in the desert wilderness.

The periphery uprising hit Santa-Ana hard. While Outworlds loyalists tried their best to harry the SLDF garrisons and those loyal to the mining companies and their great house masters, the world was also hit by pirates of unknown origin. These riders struck the mines, meeting only disorganised resistance hwile carrying off what they could. Emboldened by their initial successes, they struck the city of El Paso, looting it of everything they could before putting it to the torch. With their forces already stretched thin and plagued with long-standing supply issues, the SLDF’s 157th Royal Jump Infantry Division were hard-pressed to stop the attacks, and had only managed to slow the raiders before they were reassigned to the Rim Worlds Republic.

Unfortunately, the people of Santa-Ana would not have much chance to rebuild. While it had achieved its independence, the Outworlds Alliance was already too stretched thin to try and protect all of its worlds. As war erupted in the Inner Sphere, trade to the world dried up; with very little agricultural industry of its own, the world was unable to feed its own people. Mass starvation resulted, with the population plummeting quickly. When ComStar surveyed the world in 2820, they found only empty cities and abandoned mines, and simply stuck the world off as depopulated.

The truth was somewhat different, however. While the bulk of the population had perished, there were survivors who were doing their best to live off the land and make do through hunting and primitive agriculture. These remote communities had escaped ComStar’s attention (Although it has to be said that ComStar were far from thorough in their investigation), which in a strange way served to help them. Now that it was seen as a dead world, Santa-Ana would be largely overlooked in the centuries to come. While it was occasionally targeted by pirates or scavengers who focused largely on pillaging the abandoned cities, it also managed to miss many of the horrors that befell other nearby worlds.

Initially, its communities were semi-nomadic, moving as the food supply took them. In time, as conditions improved, some of them began to settle down and establish more permanent settlements across the planet. A groups opted to recolonise some of the abandoned towns, while others built up from scratch. By the dawn of the 31st century, several local governments had formed, but the combination of low populations and a lack of infrastructure prevented them from expanding too far.

While remaining entirely off the map, Santa-Ana has shown signs of growth and reconstruction. Several groups have shown an interest in expanding beyond simple substance survival, eyeing the world’s long-abandoned mines and factories as paths to potential growth. However, they are still limited by their low populations, lack of education and lack of infrastructure. At the same time, there are signs of a growing divide between the permanent settlements and the more fringe tribal groups, the later of which have shown no real interest in organised government or technological expansion.

(The real kick in the pants is that it was the Grave Robbers what made our current situation possible. They bought technology back to the world, and kick-started some local industry and technical education in order to support their ‘Mechs and crap. They also unified the planet after a fashion, by simply giving everyone somebody that they all hated. Finally, it was them who repopulated Amarillo, giving you a capital city to rule from. And now they’re all dead, so everyone wins)
Author of BattleCorps stories Grand Theft Agro and Zero Signal



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Re: Wasteland Legion (Dark Age Periphery campaign)
« Reply #4 on: 24 October 2017, 08:32:38 »
Wasteland Legion personalities

Ulysses Coffin
Age:
47 (born 3082)
Position/Rank: Wasteland Legion commander

According to what little information is available, most notably his official biography, Ulysses Coffin is a native of Santa-Ana who’s rise to power largely comes from a desire to end the misrule of his homeworld. Born in the small community of Northlake, he joined the local volunteer militia. Fortunate enough to have survived a massacre at the hands of the Grave Robbers pirate band, he fled to the hinterlands and built his own army aimed at ending their reign of terror.

After a successful campaign to destroy the pirates, Coffin installed himself as the world’s new ruler. Driven by an apparently genuine de site for change, he has spent the last decade budding up his world and its people. At the same time, he has apparently set his sights on other worlds, building an army to obstinate stabilize them so they may be uplifted as he did with Santa-Ana while eliminating the pirates that plague the region.

Despite his apparently noble goals, there is little that is humanitarian about Coffin. He belives in peace and stability, but has little concern for individual rights or freedoms. While he did build a functional government, it is still a heavy handed dictatorship, where authority comes from imposing his will on others. None the less, he is still popular among the people for how much he has improved their lives.

Stern and humourless, Coffin is demanding and has little tolerance for incompetence or sycophants. His few personal relationships, including his own daughter, are cold and more professional than anything else. Formerly a skilled MechWarrior, he now is focused more on his role as a leader and builder then the battlefield.

(Editor’s note: there’s a few gaps in his story, most notably the issue of where he got his BattleMech training from. It is also rather convenient that he was the sole survivor of a massacre, which leaves nobody to verify or refute his story)

Ramon Sanz
Age:
50? (born 3080?)
Position/Rank: Colonel, Commander 1st Legion

Hailing from a tribe in the hinterlands of Santa-Ana, Ramon Sanz rose to prominence as Ulysses Coffin’s second during his war against the Grave Robbers. Already the leader of his tribe and having some renown as a skilled hunter and warrior, Sanz adapted his skills to the BattleMech cockpit with surprising ease. His time fighting alongside Coffin also taught him a considerable amount about modern warfare, and the capabilities of the machines he commanded. While a far cry from the simple weapons he was used to, Sanz proved to be a capable tactician and leader.

As their revolution transitioned to a viable, legitimate state, Coffin began to take over the day to day running of the new nation. In his place, Sanz was given more and more authority over the military and its management. Now the effective second of the new nation, he took direct command of their premier formation, the (’Mech regiment). While in theory, the other regimental commanders were equal in rank to him, in practice, he had authority over them.

While a capable commander, even if somewhat unsophisticated, Sanz tends to be more results driven. While he understands the need to conserve their rare BattleMech resources, he is not above using infantry as expendable assists to hold ground or force an outcome. He has an intense dislike of pirates, and does nothing to disguise it. This also includes the former pirates under his command, who he only barely tolerates.

Ramon Sanz is married with six children; at least three of them have positions in the Legion.

(As with Ulysses Coffin, there are a number of unanswered questions here, not the least is how he learned to operate a BattleMech and know so much about modern mechanised warfare. While we can assume that Coffin trained him, that comes back to the question of how he possessed these skills in the first place)

Shelly Mabott
Age:
39 (born 3091)
Position/Rank: Major, 1st Legion

One of the ranking officers in the 1st Legion, Shelly Mabott owes his rank and position as much to necessity as he does to any skill or experience on his part. One of the few surviving Grave Robbers, Mabott defected to Ulysses Coffin’s side during his uprising. This move does not seem to have been born of any loyalty or ideology, however, but rather opportunism. Mabott chose to join what he saw as the winning team, rather than risk being on the losing end of the revolution.

After the war, Mabott’s experience as an officer and a MechWarrior were seen as being essential to Coffin’s long-term plans. Installed as a captain (and then promoted to major as the new army grew), he helped shape the new army as it transitioned from a thrown-together revolution to something resembling a legitimate fighting force. Mabott was also key to the training of new MechWarriors, having been semi-formally educated by the Grave Robbers himself. While this background was dubious, it still was a more extensive degree of training then many of Coffin’s revolution possessed.

Mabott is not well liked, being seen as a greedy opportunist that few under his command actually trust. Many look at his past history of betrayal, and consider that he would not be above doing it again if the need arose. During his time with the Grave Robbers, he earned the nickname ‘Vulture’, a moniker that he personally despises but has been unable to shift. Added to this, he has been keeping a wary eye on Captain Ash Coffin. While nominally his subordinate, he is concerned that her parentage could be used as grounds to promote her to take his place.

Ash Coffin
Age:
25? (born 3105?)
Position/Rank: Captain, 1st Legion

The only known child of Ulysses Coffin, Ash was born to a tribal woman whom he had an affair with over a decade before his exile. However, it was not until he took shelter with that tribe that she entered his life. While she didn’t fight in the revolution (Even though there were child soldiers younger than her on both sides of the conflict), Ash was inducted into the army in its aftermath as it grew from a revolutionary army into a more organised, military force.

Trained as a MechWarrior by veterans of that conflict, she showed considerable skill at the controls of a BattleMech despite her upbringing. Upon ‘graduation’, she was given the rank of lieutenant and command of a rare heavy lance, likely the result of her father’s influence as much as it was her own skill. Two years later, she was promoted again to captain, again likely as a result of her parentage as much as any skill on her part.

Despite this, Ash is a skilled MechWarrior and commander in her own right, and has already proven herself in several skirmishes. And while her father’s position has been advantageous to her, she seems to be determined to prove herself and what she is capable of on her own, rather than having to live in his shadow. However, she has not been entirely above abusing that advantage when it can help her.

Currently, Ash is the commander of the Red Sands company, named for the region that her mother’s tribe hailed from and where her father built his revolution. Something of a prestigious unit, the Red Sands are seen as the spiritual (if not actual) descendants of the original revolutionary force.

(Strangely, we have not been able to find anything on Ash’s mother beyond her point of origin; not even her name. It is possible that she is dead, or the two are estranged)


Burney Nexx
Age:
31? (born 3099?)
Position/Rank: Captain, 1st Legion

Burney Nexx has been one of our best sources of information about the Legion, its past and its current strengths. This has not come through using him as any form of informant or the like, but rather through letting him talk. While a decent MechWarrior and officer, Nexx is also something of a loudmouthed braggart who loves to let the whole world know about his exploits.

Going with what we can verify, Nexx was a member of a small farming community who choose to join Coffin’s uprising, even if it was more for the adventure of it then any loyalty or ideals. However, he seems to have been genuinely swayed to his cause, becoming something of a believer during the course of Coffin’s rebellion. This loyalty was rewarded with promotion as the insurgents transitioned to a standing army.

For all his bragging, Nexx is a capable MechWarrior, although only a middling officer and tactician at the best of times. He is not afraid to get his hands dirty and do what needs to be done in order to achieve his objectives, but is also not beyond spinning the outcome to paint him in the best possible light. Having grown up under the rule of the Grave Robbers, he has little respect for the former pirates under his command and treats them with barely concealed disdain. Conversely, those who were born on Santa-Ana are treated far better.


Maggie Vossler
Age:
28 (Born 3103)
Position/Rank: Lieutenant, 1st Battalion, 1st Wasteland Legion

Almost universally known as “Magpie” to those that work with her, Vossler is a rare outsider to the Wastes region. Vossler was previously a part of the now-defunct Wilde’s Pack mercenary command. Left bankrupt and marooned in the Periphery after a series of disastrous contracts, Major Wilds chose to sell what was left of his command, both men and machines, to us in exchange for passage to somewhere closer to the Inner Sphere. Besides a small supply of BattleMechs and vehicles, we gained the services of several capable individuals from the deal.

Lieutenant Vossler is one such example. While only a mediocre gunner, she is a very skilled pilot, adept at manoeuvring in difficult terrain and avoiding enemy fire. She also has considerable experience as a recon lance commander, and understands the priorities of gathering information over getting bogged down in a fight. On top of that, Vossler has had experiences in the Inner Sphere and so-called ‘near’ Periphery that could prove useful to us; certainly she knows more about life beyond a handful of nearby systems then most of our people.

Vossler pilots the same Cadaver that she operated during her time in the Pack. One of the newer BattleMechs in the legion, it is in decent condition. As one of the few even moderately advanced scout ‘Mechs we have at our disposal, it is potentially a valuable asset.
« Last Edit: 16 November 2017, 08:15:23 by Deadborder »
Author of BattleCorps stories Grand Theft Agro and Zero Signal



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Re: Wasteland Legion (Dark Age Periphery campaign)
« Reply #5 on: 24 October 2017, 09:45:24 »
(Put down a few thoughts on the newest batch of recruits. Hell, you’ll probably never read this, but it can’t hurt. Some of them could be valuable to us)

Jack Tudor
Age:
30 (Born 3100)
Position/Rank: Lieutenant, 1st Battalion, 1st Wasteland Legion

One of the surviving members of your original revolutionary army, Jack Tudor’s one of those odd cases of strange skills and knowledge that can make all the difference. Despite growing up in the middle of nowhere and having a rather minimal education, Tudor has a surprising amount of technological knowledge. Where he really excels is his fascination with both ancient technology and Lostech; while he may not be able to make it work, he at least can recognise it and might be able to decipher the function of some Star League doodad that nobody else would would know spit about. Hell, he was one of the first in the door when you pried open that cache and did a great job what we’d found.
 
Besides his brains, Tudor’s a good MechWarrior who got most of his learning from fighting alongside you against the Grave Robbers. He rose to lieutenant on merit, and has the skills to back up his position, which is an advantage over your average pirate boss. He’s also a close friend of Captain Nexx, which will be useful in a company made out of pirates, mercs and whatever other scum we could scrape up.
 
As a reward for his skills (and loyalty), he was given a Koschei we bought from Wilde’s Pack. It’s one of the newest and most sophisticated ‘Mechs we have, and as such is in good condition without any of the chronic problems that affect so many of our other machines.


Lilly Lancaster
Age:
28? (Born 3102?)
Position/Rank: MechWarrior, 1st Battalion, 1st Wasteland Legion

Lancaster is pretty typical of life in the wastes. Born on a Wastes world, she was captured and enslaved by the Bonechewer pirate band at a young age. She showed some degree of raw talent, which was enough for her to work her way into an apprenticeship as a MechWarrior. While her training was anything but formal, it was enough to make her competent behind the controls of a BattleMech and win her a place in their ranks.

Where she came to our attention was when the Bonechewers attacked Santa-Ana. Finding themselves in over their heads, they tried to flee the Legion. Lancaster sold them out in exchange for a place in the Legion, allowing us to capture a number of BattleMechs and their pilots intact. While it’s the sort of thing we like, you can imagine it didn’t make her fantastically popular with the other members of her crew. Apparently they call her ‘backstabber’ now.

While she’s not the most skilled MechWarrior ever, Lancaster’s got a lot of raw talent. Given time, she could actually become quite a capable pilot. Well, if she doesn’t have an accident first, as she’s got a bit of a reputation and no doubt the story of what she did is going to spread fast.

She’s been assigned a Cronus that was originally one of the Grave Robbers’ ‘Mechs. The ‘Mech itself is in fairly good condition, made easier by its design. However, it (like many of our other ‘Mechs) has a shortage of Streak SRM ammo.


Vince Baden
Age:
25 (Born 3105)
Position/Rank: MechWarrior, 1st Battalion, 1st Wasteland Legion

Baden is a career pirate, born into the life and never really having too many other options. Coming from Zumbo, he had enough skill, talent, determination and luck to work his way to being a MechWarrior within their ranks. That he’s somewhat smarter and faster on the uptake then the average pirate didn’t hurt any either. Before his run-in with us that got him to his current position, he’d managed to become what passed for an officer in the Bonechewer band.

That’s how he ended up ‘joining’ the Legion. Baden was one of the MechWarriors who was captured when Lancaster sold them out. Given the choice between working for us and swinging form the nearest tree, he took the smart option. As a former pirate, he’s not the most popular of people within the Legion, so he’s going to be fighting uphill all the way.

He’s actually a good MechWarrior with a flair for high-speed manoeuvring and squeezing every last drop of performance out of a ‘Mech. He also seems to have the devil’s own luck, as he’s allready managed to come through a number of scrapes unscathed. How long that keeps him alive is another matter.

Baden has been assigned a Jenner that was basically reconditioned junk. Aside from him basically being the last man standing when it comes to armour, the ‘Mech has a crack in its reactor shielding. While it’s been fixed with jury-rigged parts, there’s no telling if it’s going to be effective in the long term.
 

“Bolts” Guthrie
Age:
23 (Born 3107)
Position/Rank: MechWarrior, 1st Battalion, 1st Wasteland Legion

A Santa-Ana native, “Bolts” showed an aptitude for all things technical from a young age. This skill did not go unnoticed, and he wound up being apprenticed to a Grave Robber technician as soon as he was old enough to lift a wrench. A quick learner, he began to pick up a wide variety of technical skills while working on their BattleMechs under the careful eyes of their crews.

Clearly they weren’t careful enough, as Bolts basically bolted as soon as he had a chance, singing up with your revolution. While still an apprentice (and a kid) he did a lot to help keep our forces running. At the end of the day, he was not only continuing his training as a technician, but was now picking up actual MechWarrior skills as well. He even showed enough competency to win a spot in the 1st Legion, performing better than some of our ‘real’ MechWarriors.

I ain’t gonna lie. I don’t like the idea of one of our techs, especially not one this good, as a frontline MechWarrior. On the other hand, he’s still good, and having a MechWarrior who can also help support the unit can’t hurt. Our pool of skilled Techs and MechWarriors is pretty low right now.

Bolts’ Warhammer is a former Grave Robber machine that he helped maintain and then support after it was captured by our forces. It’s on pretty good shape, something that he helps with. Even then, it’s still afflicted by the same chronic lack of streak SRM ammo that we have with so many other ‘Mechs.

 
Cameron McKinnon
Age:
35 (Born 3095)
Position/Rank: MechWarrior, 1st Battalion, 1st Wasteland Legion

Cameron McKinnon’s a real rare find, one that could be very useful to us if this little plan of yours works out. McKinnon was born in the Inner Sphere, a part of a long-lasted mercenary family legacy. Only, that legacy didn’t entirely work out, with the unit being destroyed due to some long-standing vendetta. So he ended up wandering across the Inner Sphere, bouncing form unit to unit and job to job. Eventually he ended up here, basically marooned in the arse-end of the Periphery and out of options.

We offered him a job and he took it. I know that with his level of experience he probably could be an officer, but hell, you look at him. He’s not leadership material by any degree. He’s a drunken rouge with a love of gambling and getting into fights. He’s definitely a good MechWarrior, don’t get me wrong, but he has a whole world of bad habits that make him more akin to a pirate then anything else.

So what is it that I like about him? It’s simple. He knows a lot about the Inner Sphere, its people and the way they live their lives. That’s knowledge that we don’t have; the sort of day-to-day junk of normal society that you don’t get living on the fringes of human space. That gives us insights that we could very well use if things start going the way we hope they do.

McKinnon pilots a Cronus that has been with him for a number of years during his mercenary career. The BattleMech has been modified, removing the Streak SRM in favour of extra armour and heat sinks. The ‘Mech is in fair condition, with its modifications helping to reduce the strain on the Legion’s supplies.
 

Jan Gus
Age: 27? (Born 3103?)
Position/Rank: MechWarrior, 1st Battalion, 1st Wasteland Legion

I ain’t gonna lie here, boss. Even by our low standards of recruitment, Jan Gus is scum. Guy is an opportunistic bastard, with no morals or scruples, and a vengeful streak a mile wide. But it’s not like he’s some sort of cold-blooded killer or pirate overlord or the like. Naw, he ain’t got the smarts or organisational skills for nothing like that. Instead, Gus is just bottom-feeding slime that’s mostly out for himself. It also happens that he’s got some useful skills and assets.

Gus comes from the Tortuga Dominions, where he grew between up with rotating door governments and ‘pirate’ as a valid career option. Somehow he ended up in a ‘Mech fighting circuit. Blowed if I know how, given how much of a maggot he is otherwise. After some incident that I suspect involves either throwing a match or not throwing it the right way, he absconded and made his way off-world complete with a pretty decent BattleMech. He managed to find his way here, and was happy to join up for reasons that I can’t begin to fathom, but I suspect that protection was one of them.

What we got out of the deal was an Axman that’s in pretty good shape, all things being equal. While technically Gus ‘owns’ the ‘Mech and is effectively leasing it to us, there’d be nothing to stop us from just reassigning it should he have some sort of accident, like a drag overdose or the like. Just saying it could happen.
« Last Edit: 14 December 2017, 07:42:23 by Deadborder »
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Re: Wasteland Legion (Dark Age Periphery campaign)
« Reply #6 on: 24 October 2017, 12:02:02 »
Cool write ups

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Re: Wasteland Legion (Dark Age Periphery campaign)
« Reply #7 on: 26 October 2017, 07:29:58 »
Ype-Jhu

Star Type (Recharge time): K6V (197 hours)
Position in system: 2 (of 8)
Time to jump point: 3.95 days
Number of satellites: 3 (Asuncion, Encarnacion, Cerro Cora)
Surface gravity: 1.09 g
Atmospheric Pressure: Standard (Breathable)
Equatorial temperature: 20 degrees (cool)
Surface Water: 43 percent
Recharging station: None
HPG class: None
Highest native life: Reptile
Population: None
Socio-Industrial levels: None
Landmasses (Capitol city): Paraguay (none)

When initially charted in 2619, Ype-Jhu presented something of an oddity. Most of its surface was covered with a single supercontinent, broken up by a pair of otherwise landlocked seas. A cool world, much of its surface was made up of tundra or cool deserts. Conversely, the equatorial band sported thick, tropical forests and abundant native life. Surveys suggested that the world possessed abundant oil reserves, possibly a remnant of an earlier age of larger oceans and warmer climates.

Colonisation initially focused on resource extraction, building up cities and towns around the largest oil and mineral reserves. The equatorial areas was left relatively lightly touched, the jungles and their abundant life seen as more of a scientific curiosity then being of commercial value. Like many worlds of the region, Ype-Jhu’s economy was left purposefully skewed and dependant on interstellar trade to survive.

The biggest obstacle to colonisation came in the form of the Ype-Jhu Toxic Shock (YTS) Virus, a virulent disease that likely originated in one of the native species and somehow jumped to humans. The disease violently attacked the victim, infecting and shutting down their organs. The first outbreak in 2679 wiped out several equatorial communities before Star League medical corps were able to intervene, containing the disease from the rest of the population. While unable to eradicate the source of the virus, the Star League were able to develop a cure for it. Subsequent outbreaks in 2697 and 2732 were easily contained, with only a relatively low fatality rate among the victims.

With the fall of the Star League, the planetary population fell on hard times. Previously existing trade agreements with nearby worlds collapsed overnight due to a lack of transport, cutting them off from key resources needed to survive. Food shortages become common, as local agriculture was underdeveloped and had been left deliberately dependant on imports. Desperate to head of crisis, the planetary government approved crash agriculture programs, intending to quickly convert as much of the equatorial forest to cropland as possible.

While few records exist to chronicle the world’s demise, we have been able to uncover a few key facts. A new YTS outbreak in 2803 spread rapidly through Ype-Jhu’s equatorial communities, proving to be more virulent and resistant to treatment than before. The planetary government’s efforts at containment failed, with the virus quickly spreading to major population centres. With the Star League medical corps long gone, local doctors and scientists were unable to keep up with the pace of the spread. Appeals to the Outworlds Alliance proved futile, as the dearth of transport meant that any attempts at rescuing the healthy population was logistically impossible.

Unable to fight the disease and with half the population dead or infected, the planetary government collapsed under the strain. The surviving population factionalised, each trying to do what they could to survive and keep themselves ‘clean’, regardless of the cost. These efforts seem to have been in vain, as the disease continued to spread across the planet.

A ComStar survey in 2810 found an entirely depopulated world, with the only signs of human life coming from pre-recorded warnings, left behind by the last survivors. Spaceborne surveys found the planet’s cities either abandoned or burnt out, but with no apparent activity. The Order quarantined the world as being hazardous, and struck it off the maps. A subsequent survey in 2850 found no signs of the YTS virus, the disease like having burned itself out due to a lack of hosts. At the same time, with no remaining population and the Outworlds Alliance slowly crumbling, the world remained lost.

Sometime in the early 30th century, the planet’s atmosphere began to cool, with the world entering into the early stages of an ice age. Advancing glaciers and thick snowfalls have become a regular part of the planet’s climate, while the equatorial regions have become increasingly arid. Given time, nature will probably erase the last remnants of human civilisation from the planet.

(The report tailed off into some suggestions about archaeological missions to collect what they could before the ice got it, but there’s not much of interest there. IE’s own scientists declared Ype-Jhu safe; whatever YTS was or where it came from, it does seem to be completely gone. What they seem to have missed is that the planet is populated, after a fashion. It’s been home to a couple of different pirate bands, who use the ruined cities and thick clouds to hide. Hell, IE could have flown right over a bunch of ‘em and not even noticed. Course, we’re gonna have to be a bit more thorough)

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Re: Wasteland Legion (Dark Age Periphery campaign)
« Reply #8 on: 26 October 2017, 07:33:19 »
From the personal journal of Burney Nexx

Two weeks of travel to Ype-Jhu and several days in the field have given me a chance to get to know the men under my command a bit better. It’s enough to tell me that they’re a real mixed bag, ranging from the loyal to pirate scum.

Bolts is one of the good ones; a native of Santa-Ana who joined the revolution when he was just a kid. He’s a MechWarrior and a technician, which gives him a whole range of useful skills. He’s assigned to my command lance, so I’ll be able to ensure he’s well looked after; that he’s also got the company’s heaviest ‘Mech is useful.

McKinnon is an interesting case, being someone from the Inner Sphere. He’s a gambler and boozer, but there’s definitely an air of sophistication to him that is otherwise lacking in this outfit. During the voyage, he had everyone hanging off his every word as he described his various past exploits and some of the worlds he’s seen. It’s amazing the things that they take for granted that would seem like impossible dreams to us.

Baden’s one of the ones I could have done without. A former pirate, he joined us only after the alternative was hanging. I don’t trust the man at all, and I’d sooner be without him, even if he is a good pilot. Fortunately, he’s assigned to the recon lance, so he’s Vossler’s concern.

While Lancaster’s another pirate, she had the intelligence to turn on her fellows and sell them out to us. She’s definitely made the right decision, and I do respect her for that. She’s a lot smarter than the average pirate and I think that she could go places if she plays her cards right.

Back to the subject. After several days of fruitless searching for the Grim Grinner Gang, we finally had contact after a fashion. Vossler’s recon lance was returning from a sweep when they were intercepted by a pirate lance. This setback turned out to be a blessing in disguise; while they did take more damage than hoped for (especially Vossler), in return they were not only able to escape with useful intel but they were able to do a fair amount of damage in return. One of the pirate ‘Mechs, a Cicada, was disabled, and another two were heavily damaged. Not a bad exchange.

And with the intel they’ve gathered, I have enough to make a move on the Grim Grinners and end their threat here and now.
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Re: Wasteland Legion (Dark Age Periphery campaign)
« Reply #9 on: 26 October 2017, 07:42:04 »
1st Wasteland Legion, 1st Battalion, 3rd Company roster

Command Lance
Captain Burney Nexx, OSR-2D Ostroc
Bolts Guthrie, WHM-8D Warhammer*
Jan Gus, AXM-3S Axman*
APL-1R Apollo

Attack Lance
Lieutenant Jack Tudor, KSC-5MC Koschei*
CN9-AL Centurion
HBK-4G Hunchback
Cameron McKinnon, CNS-5M Cronus*

Recon Lance
Lieutenant Maggie Vossler, CVR-A1 Cadaver
Lily Lancaster, CNS-5M Cronus*
Vince Baden, JR7-F Jenner*
FLE-19 Flea


*Player character
« Last Edit: 16 November 2017, 08:18:55 by Deadborder »
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Re: Wasteland Legion (Dark Age Periphery campaign)
« Reply #10 on: 31 October 2017, 00:25:54 »
And as soon as you've written something up, one of the players goes and changes their character concept (And with me having material still to publish...). Expect changes to come.
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Re: Wasteland Legion (Dark Age Periphery campaign)
« Reply #11 on: 03 November 2017, 01:35:36 »
Grim Grinner Gang

The Grim Grinner Gang are rather far roaming as pirate bands go. For a while they were reportedly to be hiding out on Onverwacht, lurking in one of the ruined cities there and taking paid work from one of the states. That arrangement seemed to have fallen through, and they’ve been on the move for the last couple of years. The intel we pulled off one of their crews we captured on Ancholy said that they were hiding out on Ype-Jhu, but obviously that leaves us with a whole planet to search. I’d advocate going after them before we start getting too entangled with planetary politics, however. End the threat in our own backyard and all that.

The Grim Grinner Gang have a culture of violence and brutality, plain and simple. They take what they can and destroy what they can’t. They particularly revel in what they do, and like to leave behind grisly piles of butchered bodies and other such charming calling cards as a warning to those that would try to resist them. Internally, they take much the same approach; only the strongest rule. If you want to be the boss, then you need to have the guts to publically challenge the current boss.

Their current leader is Mad Mabel, the self-proclaimed Cannibal Queen. Weather she actually is a cannibal is unproven, but I wouldn’t put it past them. She killed the previous leader, Black Angus in a fight and had his corpse nailed to the front of her Battlemech as a trophy. So yeah, lovely person.

At best estimates, the Grim Grinners have maybe two companies of ‘Mechs. However, this does include some Retrotechs and Industrial MODs. Even accounting for that, most of their designs are lower tech then ours, and they do seem to have shortages of supplies and parts. They also have about a battalion of tanks, mostly light hovercraft, that are used as much for support as they are carrying off loot. Finally, all this is supported by a mass of rabble infantry. They’re poorly equipped and trained, but many of them are desperate and hopped up on the ideas of clawing their way up the food chain through some act of insane ultra-violence. This makes ‘em dangerous, if nothing else.

Solid intel says that they have a single Mule class dropship as their only transport asset, which is in turn hauled around by a Merchant-class jumper. Both of those could be with acquiring if possible to add to our own assets.

The Grim Grinners don’t use any fixed colour scheme, but generally aim for lurid or gory patterns based on what supplies they have. They paint toothy grins on the fronts of their ‘Mechs to make them stand out.
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Re: Wasteland Legion (Dark Age Periphery campaign)
« Reply #12 on: 07 November 2017, 21:33:51 »
From the personal journal of Ash Coffin

I heard about Captain Nexx’s assault on the Grim Grinner’s supposed hideout. I can say now that it was definitely a success – for the pirates. While Nexx’s forces were victorious, true, what actually happened to him was rather humiliating.

Acting on the intel they’d gathered, Nexx had his company descend in force on their supposed hideout. He rushed into the operation, moving without adequate support. I suspect that his motives were not just to eliminate Mad Mabel, but to ensure that he beat me to it. The supposed target was a long-abandoned colony, dating back to the Star League era that the Grim Grinners were using as a barracks.

Rather then the company or more of ‘Mechs and other supporting elements he expected, Nexx’s forces instead met two lances of battered tanks, supported by infantry and a single ‘Mech (A Storm Raider that had been badly damaged in their last clash). Despite being outnumbered, outgunned and outmanoeuvred, the Grim Grinner forces fought with suicidal ferocity, running at Nexx’s heavier force with no regards for their own safety.

The result was basically a foregone conclusion. Most of the Grinner tanks were destroyed on the field, their crews killed. The Storm Raider was disabled, and its MechWarrior died of his injuries. A single Plainsman got away, using infernos to cover its escape. None of Nexx’s ‘Mechs were disabled, although several of them suffered appreciable damage. Nexx himself suffered a humiliating fall when his Ostroc tripped over rubble. What the Grim Grinners did do was waste our time, as well as causing us to burn supplies, parts and ammo (especially LRMs) for no benefit.

Nexx’s company found that they had stripped down the base, taking nearly everything of any worth. Aside from the husks of the tanks, the only other noteworthy salvage was the husk of the Cicada they disabled earlier. It’s MechWarrior was hanging from the rafters, the words “NOT LIKE THIS” scrawled on his chest.

Medical examination said that many of the Grinners had existing injures, and had probably fought in the failed raid on Ancholy. A number of them had then been further beaten, and a few were hopped up on combat drugs. They were more likely afraid of Mad Mabel then they were of us.

And, of course, they left no leads as to where they had gone. So a lot of wasted time, effort and ammo for nothing. Mabel played Nexx fantastically. In any other circumstance, it’d be amusing.
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Re: Wasteland Legion (Dark Age Periphery campaign)
« Reply #13 on: 12 November 2017, 02:15:53 »
The good news is that I got a new player (Who's new to BattleTech as a whole to boot!). They're really keen and have joined the game. We're wroking on character generation now.

The bad news is that he immediately picked the most sophisticated 'Mech on the availability list.

More roster changes to come
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Re: Wasteland Legion (Dark Age Periphery campaign)
« Reply #14 on: 16 November 2017, 08:19:30 »
Posted updates to character bios and the roster. I think they're somethign resembling final.
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Re: Wasteland Legion (Dark Age Periphery campaign)
« Reply #15 on: 16 November 2017, 08:24:35 »
Lucky breaks and other weapons of war

Taken from The Wastelands War, Galatea Free Press, 3145

While the Wasteland Legion had taken one of the Grim Grinner Gang’s operational bases and destroyed or disabled two lances of armour, they actually had very little to show for it. The few prisoners they had managed to take alive refused to reveal where the main body of their force was (likely being more afraid of what Mad Mabel would do to them if they talked then anything that might happen if they didn’t), which left the Legion with no leads.

At this point, their options were few; the Pirates could have been anywhere on the planet and the Legion lacked the capability to effectively search for them. Eager to regain the initiative, Captain Nexx had his men scour the base for anything that could lead them to their enemies. Time was a key factor here, as there was every chance that the Grim Grinners could lift off from the world and leave them with a completely cold trail.

Instead, a series of unrelated events gave them the information that they needed.

It began with the discovery of a piece of equipment in the discarded junk that the pirates had left behind. Lieutenant Tudor, one of the Legion MechWariors, identified it as coming from an industrial-scale fusion reactor rather than being a BattleMech component. The ruins of one such facility, a relic of the planet’s long-dead colonies, lay about a hundred kilometres away, which seemed to be a logical source for the part.

Captain Nexx dispatched his recon lance to investigate. Arriving at the facility without incident, they found that it was presently occupied. A small band of civilian explorers had come to the facility, looking to salvage parts from it. Instead, they had run afoul of hostile local wildlife that had claimed one of their number.  While they were not overly forthcoming as to their origins, they explained that they were eager to avoid contact with the Grim Grinner Gang, and knew where they were headquartered.

McKinnon and Baden, two of the Legion MechWarriors, struck a deal with the explorers. If they cleared the facility of the animals, then they would be provided with the location of the Grim Grinner Gang. Being both better trained and equipped, the pair of them were able to clean out the pack of creatures, which had apparently retreated into the ruins in order to nest. The explorers proved to be good to their word, revealing that the pirates had retreated to a ruined city several thousand kilometres north of their present location.

The Wasteland Legion had scored the location of their target and made a major breakthrough in their campaign, simply because the right people were there at the right time.
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Re: Wasteland Legion (Dark Age Periphery campaign)
« Reply #16 on: 16 November 2017, 08:27:29 »
Audio Log #68112-Rho

Voice 1 (98% match Clay ‘Skinner’ McCaskil, Grim Grinner Gang): So tell me what the hell just happened. And be precise about it. Don’t leave anything out.

Voice 2 (83% match Freddie Vinh, Grim Grinner Gang): My lance were on patrol in the south hills. We detected a group of unidentifides and went to investigate. I figured it was the same people who busted up Gormel’s men, so we went to check them out.

McCaskil: And what did you find?

Vinh: It was them all right. Four ‘Mechs, a Koshi (EDITOR’S NOTE: Likely referring to Lt. Tudor’s Koschei), Hunch (EDITOR’S NOTE: Hunchback), Cent (EDITOR’S NOTE: Centurion) and Cronus. They knew we was there and came right for us. Their leader, in the Koshi told us to stand down.

McCaskil: And you told him where to stick his offer, of course.

Vinh: Yeah. So we opened up on ‘em, but they hit back hard. A couple of ‘em nearly cored Bucks’ Jack straight out, so he tried to pull back while the rest of us pushed forwards. It looked good for a moment, but then, well, slag it. It all went to hell.

McCaskil: Tell me.

Vinh: Chen’s Hatchetman got its head shredded by the Huch. He was there one second, and gone the next. A moment later, Bucks was torn apart as he was trying to pull back.

McCaskil: And what were you doing?

Vinh: I mean, I was trying to take a few down. I got some good shots in on the Hunch, and took one arm off the Cent, but I was outnumbered. Especially after Butta’s Phoenix went down without a leg.

McCaskil: Keep going.

Vinh: I mean, I’m no coward, right? I ain’t gonna leave no-one behind, right? But I knew that I wasn’t going to do jack on my own, outnumbered four to one and all that. So I tried to pull back to, you know, warn you of what was happening. Only barely got out too. Bastards shot my Griff in the face with a fracking PPC.

McCaskil: Well, guess they know where we are now.

Vinh: I’m dead. When Mabel finds out, she’s going to kill me.

McCaskil: I’ll deal with her.

Vinh: What about me?

McCaskil: You better get over yourself, son, and soon. They’re coming for us, and if you ain’t ready to fight when they do, I am going to gut you myself.
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Re: Wasteland Legion (Dark Age Periphery campaign)
« Reply #17 on: 21 November 2017, 17:54:57 »
Ongoing, multi-week battle in progress, but I've had a hilight so far

Vince's Jenner accidentally discovered a hidden Hetzer and was subject to a point-blank shot. The player burned a good chunk of edge to not be hit. I think that's a fair plan
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Re: Wasteland Legion (Dark Age Periphery campaign)
« Reply #18 on: 22 November 2017, 06:21:18 »
As with Magyari's Irregulars, I'm really enjoying this. Cool to see this playing out after looking over those preliminary planetary write-ups you sent me a while back.
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Re: Wasteland Legion (Dark Age Periphery campaign)
« Reply #19 on: 22 November 2017, 07:51:27 »
As with Magyari's Irregulars, I'm really enjoying this. Cool to see this playing out after looking over those preliminary planetary write-ups you sent me a while back.

Thank you! It's been slow but fun so far. One of the best things is that one of the players is entirely new to Battletech but is very enthusiastic.
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Re: Wasteland Legion (Dark Age Periphery campaign)
« Reply #20 on: 22 November 2017, 08:17:26 »
Threat Profile: Mad Mabel

Extracted from Interstellar Expeditions Spinwards Operational Area updates, 3130

Age: 37 (Born 3093)
Position/Rank: Leader of the Grim Grinner Gang pirate band

Despite her colourful moniker, Mad Mabel represents a definite threat to our continued operations. Violent and unpredictable, the self-proclaimed cannibal queen has become a plague to the worlds of the “south-east” Outworlds Wastes. Her operations are particularly bloody and violent, often deliberately inflicting collateral damage in order to discourage further resistance or simply for the sake of it. Most worrying for us, she seems to be deliberately targeting our own operations for reasons we cannot begin to fathom.

Investigating her background tells us something about how she came to be where she is, but offers little clue as to her motivations. As far as we have been able to determine, Mad Mabel was born Mabel Goodwin to a lower-class family in Waterburg, Onverwacht. She fell into gang violence early, and became an enforcer with a reputation for brutality and sadism. In 3108, she was implicated in the death of her step-father, although nothing was ever proven. By 3113, she had moved up in the world, committing a series of high-profile armed robberies that were characterised by needless violence.

Escaping off-world ahead of the authorities (after apparently killing the rest of her gang), Mabel used her ill-gotten wealth to buy her way into the Terror Tigers pirate band. Training to be a MechWarrior, she rose though the ranks of the band through getting results and bringing in ample spoils through a combination of her skill and propensity towards violence. However, she found herself effectively locked out of further advancement due to Gruppenfurher Nakamura’s policy of baring women from command positions.

In 3122 the Tigers clashed with the Grim Grinner Gang over a series of caches discovered on the dead world of Mandaville.  Mabel used the opportunity to further her own career by betraying the Tigers, leaving them outmatched and outmanoeuvred by the Grim Grinners. The bulk of the unit were captured and forcefully incorporated into their ranks, with Mabel among them (Nakamura was executed to serve as an example). Her propensity towards violence suited the Grim Grinners well, leading them to a string of successes in raids across a number of worlds.

Quietly building her own powerbase, in 3127 she moved against Matthaias Grande, their then leader and challenged him to a duel for command of the band. After a bloody battle she was triumphant, taking Grande’s severed head as a trophy and proof of her authority to lead. Thus far she has faced at least three challenges to her command, all of which have ended in the brutal deaths of the claimants.

Mad Mabel is violent and unpredictable, and shows sadistic tendencies as well as a complete disregard for human life. Whether or not she is a cannibal remains unproven, but regardless she does actively play up on the claim. Her men remain loyal to her, largely due the success and rewards that she has bought to the band under her command; however, fear of crossing her also plays no small part in this. Those that fail her are usually killed or assigned suicidal duties as a way of ‘atoning’ for their mistakes. She is not, however, a mindless berserker, and shows clear tactical sense on the battlefield. She knows when to fight and when to run, and is not given to wasting resources on lost causes.
Author of BattleCorps stories Grand Theft Agro and Zero Signal



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Re: Wasteland Legion (Dark Age Periphery campaign)
« Reply #21 on: 26 November 2017, 02:03:08 »
Ongoing, multi-week battle in progress, but I've had a hilight so far

Vince's Jenner accidentally discovered a hidden Hetzer and was subject to a point-blank shot. The player burned a good chunk of edge to not be hit. I think that's a fair plan
::)  I saw that happen on the table but it was a pirate Locust that was ambushed from the rear by a Demolisher (ie the only unit the planet had they were worried about) twin AC20 hit Rear LT and Rear RT.  All that was left was 2 legs #P
"For the Angel of Death spread his wings on the blast, And breathed in the face of the foe as he passed:And the eyes of the sleepers waxed deadly and chill, And their hearts but once heaved, and for ever grew still!"

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Re: Wasteland Legion (Dark Age Periphery campaign)
« Reply #22 on: 29 November 2017, 18:44:13 »
Big battle is still in progress.

The players have discovered that the only thing worse then Surprise Hetzer is Surprise Hunchback. And the only thing worse then that is a Surprise Hunchback with Rocket Launchers
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Re: Wasteland Legion (Dark Age Periphery campaign)
« Reply #23 on: 05 December 2017, 08:35:43 »
Battle is still ongoing!

It has to end next week, one way or another.
Author of BattleCorps stories Grand Theft Agro and Zero Signal



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Re: Wasteland Legion (Dark Age Periphery campaign)
« Reply #24 on: 13 December 2017, 19:29:39 »
And the battle is done!

Write-up still to come.
Author of BattleCorps stories Grand Theft Agro and Zero Signal



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Re: Wasteland Legion (Dark Age Periphery campaign)
« Reply #25 on: 14 December 2017, 07:40:21 »
From the personal journal of Maggie Vossler

Well that was a complete mess.

Where to begin? Okay, so thanks to the efforts of McKinnon and Baden we knew where Mad Mabel was hiding out. It was the ruins of Santiago, a dead city that’s been half buried in ice and snow, giving her some shelter and infrastructure while allowing her to blend in. And thanks to Tudor, we knew that they were at home. Now we needed to go in there and root them out.

After his initial screw up on the landing, Captain Nexx wanted to be the one to end the Grim Grinners. He was smarting over Mabel making him look like a fool, and saw this as his chance to make up for it. So with as little turnaround as possible – and without calling in support, I might add – the whole company charged on Santiago. We approached form the south, crossing a frozen river into the city proper. The intel was spot on about the terrain; the place was buried, with the tops of buildings sticking out of the ice and snow.

It was also spot on about the Grim Grinners, as we immediately picked up hostiles as we approached. The weather had closed in, making long-range shots difficult, but there was no question as to their intent as they opened up on us. Nexx ordered recon lance to head into the city to try and pin down the enemy, which is where it got really hairy.

Vince found that the Grinners had hidden more ‘Mechs and tanks inside the buildings. He found this out when a Hetzer nearly took his Jenner’s legs off. Seriously, it looks like the shots passed between the legs as he ran. That guy has the devil’s own luck. There were a few others, including a rocket-armed Hunchback and a Whitworth, as well as some infantry. All of a sudden, we were outnumbered. It got even worse when we lost two of our own in quick succession, a Hunchback that had its cockpit shot out and a Centurion who’s ammo went up.

Nexx wasn’t going to give up. It wasn’t just his ego speaking, though. He knew that if he withdrew then Mabel would just escape. Naw, we needed to end the Grinners; even if Mabel was killed, somebody else would just take their place. He had the heavies form up on a ridge, with Tudor and Guthrie raining down PPC and laser fire on the pirates. The rest of us were advancing, using jets where possible to try to break up the Grinners’ formation.

They had ideas of their own; a Firestarter, Chameleon and the same Griffin that Tudor’s lance had nearly decapitated before tried to flank us. Several more lights peppered Guthrie’s Wammer with rockets; he was taking a pounding, but he refused to fall. My own Cadaver was disabled when its reactor shielding failed. All I can say is thank the lord for CASE II, otherwise I might not be here to write this. That and I can’t imagine who’d get Recon Lance without me.

Their efforts to flank us didn’t work out so well; the Firestarter went down hard, while the Griffin was left with a burning hole in its chest. That gave us an opening, which saw Lancaster and McKinnon jump their Cronuses into the middle of the enemy rear and try to disrupt their heavies. It worked to a degree; they managed to badly damage a JagerMech and Marauder, but Lancaster got the shock of her life when a Crusader nearly took her arm off with a hatchet. I guess we found Mad Mabel.

We were wearing them down, but they were doing a number on us. The Griffin went down when Jan crushed its chest, while the Hunchback lost a leg and its entire left side. An ammo explosion took out the Marauder, which was both good and bad; we lose the salvage, but we also were facing one less heavy. But there were still several more of them then there were of us. Guthrie’s Warhammer had lost an arm and was basically naked from the waist up, and Lancaster’s Cronus had lost its PPC and much of its armour, and that was just the start of it.

And that’s the moment that it all turned around.

Captain Ash Coffin wheeled her command lance into the battle on Mabel’s flank. Quite literally in her case, as Coffin opened up in Mabel’s rear armour. At the same time, the Chameleon went down, followed by a Commando that had been spraying rockets at the heavies, then the JagerMech who lost its head to one of Coffin’s men. Mabel found herself surrounded and without an escape route, so she instead made a kamikazie charge on Nexx’s Ostroc. It didn’t work, and Coffin cut her down from behind. She didn’t even try to eject.

With their leader dead, the commander of an immobilised Manticore tank popped his hatch and offered to surrender. It turned out that he was the highest-ranking member of the Grim Grinners left alive (save for the unconscious Chameleon jockey). By accident we’d managed to gut their leadership, and it was largely fear of Mabel herself that was keeping them in the battle. The rest of them also gave up, save for one Locust that tried to make a run for it. Baden cut him off, suggesting that a crippled Locust against a nearly fully functional Jenner was a bad idea.

It should have been a big win for us; after all, we’d killed Mad Mabel and got the rest of the Grim Grinners to surrender rather then fighting to the death. Nexx, however, was fuming. Coffin basically throw him a backhanded insult, saying that he’d done a great job of distracting the Grim Grinners and getting them into place, and thus allowing her to get the kill (and the glory). Personally, I didn’t care either way. I just was glad to be alive.

Either way, we still had a fair amount of salvage to sift through. We’d lost three ‘Mechs, but could make them up. My Cadaver was reapirable, and we could Frankenstein a full Hunchback out of the two disabled ones on the field. Nexx laid claim to the mostly intact Chameleon, which meant that we’d be back at a full company once we did a lot of repair work, and pulled a couple of new MechWarriors from the pool.

Speaking of, it looks like the surviving Grim Grinners are going to be vetted to see if any of them are wanted for anything specific, rather then just general pirate-ness. Those that are ‘clean’ will then be given the choice of joining us or swing form the nearest tree. You have to love Periphery Justice.

We descended on the Grim Grinners’ base like a plauge of locusts, seeing what we could take. They’d repurposed an old factory, and redecorated it to their tastes. So you know, skulls, flayed bodies, knives, drugs and whatever else. The sorts of things that pirates like. We rounded up Mabel’s remaining support staff, including her chief tech and something that could be very generously called a doctor. Besides the techs going to work on salvaging what they could from the Grinners’ stockpiles, there was a lot of souvineering going on.

Baden really shone here, though. He managed to find a hit list of worlds and sites Mabel was targeting, including a list of possible allies.

So that’s it for the Grim Grinner Gang and Mad Mabel, the Cannibal Queen. Can’t wait to see what hellhole we get thrown into next.
Author of BattleCorps stories Grand Theft Agro and Zero Signal



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Re: Wasteland Legion (Dark Age Periphery campaign)
« Reply #26 on: 14 December 2017, 07:44:49 »
CRD-3R Crusader Mabel

Field Testing Summation: Custom CRD-3R Refit
Producer/Site: Grim Grinner Gang, unknown facility (Ype-Jhu?)
Supervising Technician: “Oil Can” Handy
Project Start Date: Unknown (3128?)
Non-Production Equipment Analysis:
   Hatchet
   Double-Strength Heat Sinks

Despite the century of technological renaissance stemming from the recovery of the Helm Memory Core, there are still regions of human space where scavenging and jury-rigging of technology is the norm. Nowhere does this become more evident then in the region known as the Outworlds Wastes. Largely ignored and forgotten for the last three hundred years, the worlds of the Wastes fell even further then others during the depths of the Succession Wars. Furthermore, due to their isolated nature and lack of infrastructure, the crawl back for these worlds has been slow and painful, with few managing to even reach Terran Alliance levels of technology.

In many cases, the highpoints of technological progress on these worlds comes from pirate bands who form their own, isolated high-tech enclaves. Needing functional BattleMechs and dropships to simply make their operations viable, these bands will by necessity require access to the technology to keep such machines running. In the Outworlds Wastes, this often leads to innovation through improvisation, as the few skilled technicians available use whatever methods they can to keep valuable machines running.

The man known only as “Oil Can” Handy is one such example. The cheif technician of the Grim Grinner Gang, he has become a master of keeping the pirate band running on the back of whatever salvage they have been able to find or steal. In many cases, this has included rebuilding BattleMechs out of improvised parts and performing modifications to suit whatever components are available to the pirate band. What makes this even more impressive is that much of this work is done without the benefit of advanced technology or infrastructure by a crew whose training is largely done on the job.

Possibly Handy’s greatest work was the job he did on rebuilding the Crusader piloted by the pirate band’s leader, Mad Mabel. A battle with a rogue mercenary band had left her BattleMech half-wrecked but in possession of an Axman’s lower right arm. Seemingly inspired by her trophy (or maybe in a fit of madness), Mabel ordered Handy to rebuild her BattleMech to incorporate the Axman’s hatchet, while also redesigning it to be better suited to close combat.

With high expectations placed on him (and potentially severe consequences for failure), Handy went to work. The right arm LRM launcher had been irreparably crushed in the battle, so removing it to make way for the hatchet seemed like a logical move. The left arm launcher was similarly removed, and replaced with a pair of modified SRM-6 launchers in order to support the ‘Mech’s close-range capabilities. The missile bays for the LRMs were rebuilt to accommodate the new missiles; since they were already cross-linked,  it proved easier to keep one bay in the right side to feed missiles on the left arm. Judicious use of spare armour (and some scrap metal) created the illusion that the original LRM launchers were still in place in order to deceive opponents. Mabel would later add cosmetic spikes to both sides in order to further confuse opponents while also supporting her aesthetic sensibilities.

To further bolster the Crusader’s firepower, Handy replaced the machine guns with a second pair of Medium Lasers, taken from salvaged components. While both lasers were different models (One Lushann, the other Diverse Optics), some careful modifications ensured that they would be compatible with the existing units. Mabel approved of the change, stating that “killing peasants was no fun” and leaving anti-infantry duties to others.

Finally, the salvaged hatchet was installed in the right arm, completing the original point of the rebuild. Rather then going to the lengths of grafting a new lower arm on, Handy instead transferred the hatchet, making modifications to the structure of the Crusader’s hand and lower arm to ensure that it would function properly.

This did leave one problem, however. The Crusader had allways been notorious for overheating, and the additional weapons (and Mabel’s aggressive approach to close combat) would likely burden the cooling system even further. Not wanting to risk as catastrophic shutdown (or her ire), Handy engaged in the most ambitious (and resource intensive) part of the project, which was to upgrade the ‘Mech to use double-strength heat sinks. Despite a shortage of parts (he drained all the spare double strength models out of their reserve and even stole some from other BattleMechs), Handy was able to complete the overhaul.

Despite her oft fickle and violent nature, Mabel was suitably pleased with the result. Her initial field trials of the ‘Mech went well, much to her pleasure (and no doubt, Handy’s relief). During a raid on Onverwacht, she displayed the effectiveness of these modifications in combat against the Syndicate’s forces. Having mistaken it for a regular Crusader, a Syndicate underboss piloting an Ostsol attempted to rush it to engage in close combat. Instead, the unsuspecting MechWarrior found themselves staggered by a barrage of SRMs, before having their cockpit crushed by the hatchet. Buoyed by her victory, the pirates went on a three day looting and pillaging rampage, carrying off millions in parts, supplies and other booty before burning whatever was left behind.
Author of BattleCorps stories Grand Theft Agro and Zero Signal



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Re: Wasteland Legion (Dark Age Periphery campaign)
« Reply #27 on: 14 December 2017, 07:45:55 »
Updated with the write-ups of the epic battle, and added another PC profile while I was there
Author of BattleCorps stories Grand Theft Agro and Zero Signal



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Re: Wasteland Legion (Dark Age Periphery campaign)
« Reply #28 on: 14 December 2017, 17:52:43 »
Due to venue closure, the game is on hold until the end of January. However, I'm going to be posting more fluff along the way. I love fluff.
Author of BattleCorps stories Grand Theft Agro and Zero Signal



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