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session report: The Vesuvius Incident

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24 Oct 2021 11:19 - 24 Oct 2021 11:33 #327377 by Shellhead
Mission Report
The Vesuvius Incident
October 22, 2193, 2100 hours GMT

Our squad of U.N. Colonial Marines was dispatched to respond to a distress call from the U.N. science vessel Feynman. There are 15 scientists onboard, and the ringship is in a decaying orbit around the uninhabitable planet Vesuvius. The goal is to extract or account for all 15 scientists before the Feynman breaks up in atmospheric re-entry. Each marine is equipped with G71 assault rifle, Colt M135 pistol, and an armored vac suit, plus one medkit for the medic, and two Instron RPP7 System plasma rifles.

2100:00 Sergeant Hernandez divided the platoon into the following tactical teams to expedite the search. Alpha team: Sgt Hernandez, Pfc DuBois, Pvt Yee, Pvt Eastwood (plasma rifle spec). Bravo team: Cpl Bresinski, Pfc Lichter, Pvt Mendez (plasma rifle spec). Charlie team: Cpl Kyoshi (medic), Pfc Colovisto (mechanic), Pvt Robertson (hacker). Cpl Orlov and Cpl Sarma are the unit pilots, and will remain with the shuttle to coordinate comms.

2100:10 Bravo team deploys to the starboard shuttle lock.
2100:20 Bravo exits airlock to the forward corridor in zero-G. Pfc Lichter is ambushed by a xenomorph, but is unharmed despite its formidable claws.
2100:30 Bravo eliminates the xeno with controlled bursts from their G71s. Xeno bleeds acid. Alpha team enters airlock.
2100:40 Alpha enters port shuttle lock to search and secure Feynman’s transport shuttle. Bravo holds position in forward corridor. Charlie team enters starboard shuttle lock.
2100:50 Alpha encounters xeno, finds two civilian corpses hanging from the ceiling. Bravo holds position. Charlie team moves toward Command Pod.
2101:00 Alpha eliminates xeno. Bravo holds position. Charlie enters Command Pod.
2101:10 Alpha clears transport shuttle cargo bay. Bravo holds position. Pvt Robertson logs into computer in Command Pod.
2101:20 Pvt Robertson downloads Crew Manifest.
2101:30 Alpha cycles through port shuttle lock. Bravo moves towards aft corridor. Charlie returns to forward corridor.
2101:40 All teams proceed to aft corridor. Alpha deploys to lift shaft one. Bravo deploys to lift shaft two. Charlie clears Engineering.
2103:50 Alpha team enters ring, with 1G conditions, encounters a xeno and a civilian with a pistol. Bravo team enters opposite end of ring section. Charlie team holds position in Engineering.
2104:00 Alpha eliminates xeno, verifies identity of civilian scientist Slevin.
2104:10 Alpha team escorts Slevin to next corridor section, encounters 2 xenos. Bravo team clears Lounge B. Pvt Robertson uses computer in Engineering to review Crew Manifest, verifies 3 civilian deaths.
2106:10 Pvt Eastman eliminates 1 xeno. DuBois stuns one alien, but it quickly recovers and strikes him down. Bravo team ambushed by 2 xenos. Charlie team clears suit locker.
2106:20 Sgt Hernandez and Pvt Eastman eliminate second xeno. Bravo eliminates 1 xeno. Charlie team exits suit locker, is ambushed by 1 xeno.
2106:30 Pvt Eastman checks DuBois, who is dead. Bravo eliminates second xeno. Charlie team kills their xeno.
2106:40 Alpha team deploys to Computer Room, finds severed hand, accounting for one more scientist. Bravo clears Stateroom 7. Charlie clears Drive Room.
2108:40 Sgt Hernandez logs into computer, downloads RAM dump. Bravo enters Stateroom 8, finds alien predator quadruped. Charlie team holds position in Engineering.
2108:50 Alpha holds position. Bravo kills predator. Charlie clear Astrophysics Lab.
2109:00 Sgt Hernandez scans RAM dump, verifies three more civilian deaths. Bravo returns to corridor. Charlie team enters Astrolab Storage, encounters 1 xeno.
2111:00 Alpha returns to corridor, kills 1 xeno. Bravo clears Stateroom 9. Charlie team kills xeno.
2111:10 Alpha enters Life Support, finds Ship’s Log and a tool kit. Pvt Eastman’s plasma rifle spontaneously overheats. Pvt Eastman draws Colt M135 pistol. Bravo is ambushed by 2 xenos in Astrophysics Lab. Charlie team is ambushed by 1 xeno in aft corridor.
2111:40 Sgt Hernandez secures log and tool kit. Pfc Colovisto kills 1 xeno, Pvt Robertson kills other. Charlie team kills xeno.
2111:50 Alpha team enters new corridor section. Bravo clears Stateroom 10. Charlie retreats to engineering.
2112:00 Alpha holds position. Bravo moves into next corridor section. Charlie exits Engineering, is ambushed by a xeno that kills Pfc Colovisto.
2112:10 Alpha holds position. Bravo clears Stateroom 11. Private Robertson kills xeno that killed Colovisto.
2112:20 Alpha clears Chem Lab. Bravo moves to corridor. Charlie moves to forward corridor.
2112:30 Alpha enters Chem Lab Storage, encounters alien acid sprayer creature, and also inert tech bot. Bravo finds civilian Koch alive in Stateroom 12; Koch has welding torch. Charlie enters forward corridor, encounters 1 xeno. Cpl Orlov enters starboard shuttle lock.
2112:40 Alpha holds position. Bravo ambushed by 2 xeno; Cpl Bresinski killed, Pfc Lichter down. Charlie team kills xeno.
2112:50 Alpha holds position. Pvt Mendez uses plasma rifle to kill 2 xenos. Cpl Orlov joins Charlie team in forward corridor.
2113:00 Alpha team activates tech bot, moves back to Chem Lab. Pvt Mendez checks Pfc Lichter, who is dead, then moves to Stateroom 12 with civilian Koch. Charlie team moves to aft corridor, encountering 1 xeno and civilian Osorio.
2115:00 Alpha and Bravo move to corridor. Charlie team kills xeno, but Cpl Kyoshi’s rifle jams.
2115:10 Alpha clears Geology Lab. Bravo enters Stateroom 13, finds dead civilian. Charlie team moves to Lift Shaft 2.
2115:20 Alpha enters Geolab Storage, encounters 1 xeno and 2 dead civilians; xeno attacks tech bot. Bravo moves to corridor, Charlie proceeds to ring via Lift Shaft 2.
2115:30 Sgt Hernandez kills xeno, but acid spray destroys tech bot. Mendez and Koch enter Stateroom 14, but the door is booby-trapped, killing Mendez and downing Koch. Charlie team enters the ring.
2115:40 Alpha team returns to Geology Lab. Charlie team heads toward sound of explosion.
2115:50 Alpha team moves to corridor. Civilian Koch is abducted by xenos. Charlie team is ambushed by 2 xenos, who kill Pvt Robertson and down civilian Osorio.
2116:00 Alpha team moves down corridor. Cpl Orlov hits both xenos, killing 1 and downing the other; acid spray kills Osorio.
2116:10 Alpha team enters new corridor section, is ambushed by alien acid sprayer creature, alien herbivore, and an insane civilian McCray with a pistol; herbivore bites Pvt Eastman but his armor protects him. Cpl Orlov kills second xeno.
2116:20 Sgt Hernandez kills McCray; Pvt Eastman shoots herbivore with pistol, herbivore bites Eastman and draws blood; Slevin shoots pistol and kills acid sprayer. Charlie company moves down corridor.
2116:30 Sgt Hernandez and Pvt Eastman kill herbivore; Slevin jams pistol. Charlie company continues down corridor towards Alpha position.
2116:40 Alpha and Charlie meet up at Lift Shaft 1.
2118:40 Corporal Kyoshi performs first aid on three marines, using up 75% of the supplies in the first aid kit.
2120:40 Team moves down corridor towards Machine Shop, in hopes of repairing Eastman’s plasma rifle and unjamming other weapons.
2121:00 Team enters Machine Shop, finds dead civilian Koch and ship access codes, just as the RING STOPS.
2121:10 Team slides spinward into wall, along with Koch’s corpse. Everything begins to float due to return to zero-G conditions.
2121:20 Team returns to Lift Shat 1, is ambushed by 2 xenos.
2121:50 Entire team hits and downs closest xeno. Second xeno springs on Pvt Eastwood and kills him; Cpl Kyoshi panics and first xeno gets up.
2122:00 Cpl Orlov shoots and kills first xeno; Cpl Kyoshi unloads clip and jams rifle; second xeno kills Cpl Kyoshi.
2122:10 Team kills second xeno.
2122:20 Team approach lift shaft hatch, is ambushed by 1 xeno, which is killed by Sgt Hernandez.
2122:50 Team takes lift to aft corridor, which is also in zero-G (as usual).
2123:00 Team exits lift to encounter 1 xeno and civilian Preuitt.
2123:30 Sgt Hernandez kills xeno; Cpl Orlov gives pistol to Preuitt.
2123:40 Team enters forward corridor; ambushing xeno drops on Sgt Hernandez and wounds him.
2123:50 Team stuns xeno; stray shots breach doors between forward and aft corridors and Engineering; xeno kills Hernandez; Preuitt panics.
2124:00 Preuitt empties pistol clip, jams pistol; Orlov kills xeno; stray round hits computer in Engineering, to no effect.
2124:10 Still panicked, Preuitt runs into Command Pod; Cpl Orlov and Slevin chase after him.
2124:20 Preuitt recovers; Team returns to corridor, ready to escape the Feynman; get ambushed by 1 xeno that downs Cpl Orlov.
2124:30 Slevin fires pistol at xeno twice, doing no damage; xeno kills Preuitt; Slevin panics. Cpl Sarma enters starboard shuttle lock.
2124:40 Slevin empties clip at xeno, downing it and also jamming pistol; xeno recovers.
2124:50 Cpl Sarma enters corridor, downs xeno, and kills Cpl Orlov with stray round.
2125:00 Cpl Sarma and Slevin both shoot the xeno, but it is unharmed; xeno downs Slevin.
2125:10 Cpl Sarma kills xeno.
2125:20 Cpl Sarma checks Slevin, finds that he is still alive.
2125:30 Cpl Sarma carries Slevin through airlock into marine shuttle.
2126:00 Cpl Sarma disengages shuttle from the Feynman. Mission successful.
2130:00 The Feynman begins to break up as it enters atmosphere.
Last edit: 24 Oct 2021 11:33 by Shellhead. Reason: a bit of spacing
The following user(s) said Thank You: Turek, Dr. Mabuse, n815e

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24 Oct 2021 11:33 #327378 by Shellhead
In plain language, this was a tense and thrilling solitaire play of The Vesuvius Incident, a classic bughunt game from 1993. I played with the fancy Kickstarter 2nd edition from 2016. The system is laden with chrome rules and detail, but the net effect is a richly thematic game.

Due to past experience with the game, this mission went really well aside from one huge mistake. I played half the game on Friday night while doing laundry, then finished play on Saturday. In between those two sessions, I totally forgot that Sgt Hernandez had acquired the ship's log, which would have accounted for two civilians if he had taken the time to look at it. That would have gotten the civilian headcount to 15 sooner and allowed the marines to give up the search sooner, probably saving several lives.

The only other real disaster was when civvie scientist Preuitt panicked near the end, and forced a couple of additional encounter checks. If Sarma had been killed, they wouldn't have had a pilot anymore and it would have been Game Over, Man.

The Vesuvius Incident is clunky with rules, but in my opinion it is still one of the very best bughunt games. It is a solid solitaire game, but could theoretically be played by up to a dozen people if they don't mind player elimination. For all practical purposes, I find that it's better to cap the player count at three, because there will still be at least three characters in play until near the end of the game.
The following user(s) said Thank You: Turek, Dr. Mabuse

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