Theta Wing (McAuliffe System)

The Terran Knowledge Bank
Jump to: navigation, search
Theta Wing
Date 2654.131.1200
Fighter Scimitar
Wingmen James Taggart
Objectives Proceed to Nav Point 1

Destroy the Ralari-class destroyer
Return to Tiger's Claw

Previous Beta Wing (McAuliffe System)
Next Psi Wing (McAuliffe System)

Mission Layout

The Memoirs of Lieutenant Colonel Carl T. LaFong

The Confederation is preparing for a major offensive, and the Killer Bee Squadron must clear the way for supply and transport ships to enter the McAuliffe System. Mission control reports that a large bogie has jumped into the system and is heading toward the Claw. It's an unknown ship at this time, but all indications point to its being a well-guarded warship. Flying Scimitars, Paladin and I have been ordered to thwart the approach of the massive enemy ship and any other bogies we encounter en route.

As we race to the launch pad, Paladin breathlessly exhorts me, "You'll need to keep your wits about you laddie. The first time you stare into the flak from a Kilrathi warship is a moment you won't soon forget. It's almost a vision from heaven, until you realize those puffs of smoke hide power that'll send you to an early grave."

"Don't worry about me, Scotsman," I grimaced. "I've taken enough damage from the small fighters to keep me on my toes. Just make sure you save your missiles for the big ship. Don't waste'em on the escorts."

"What we're facin' is more than just a notion, Lieutenant," he yelled over his shoulder and took the steps two at a time to the cockpit.

We were only 30,000 kilometers from the Tiger's Claw when four Dralthi broke straight up and out of the glare of the Vega Star. If they had been coming straight at us, surprise would have been on their side. They must have been rookies to miss that chance.

I told Paladin to hold formation and corrected our course to take them from the rear. When we closed to 3000 kilometers I shouted the Break and Attack command. The catfight was on, with all the howling and screeching you'd expect. I hadn't faced this many opponents before, but managed to take out two with the mass-driver cannon before they really knew what hit them. Paladin scored on one and then we tamed up to take out the fourth in a fiery blast. It wasn't going to get any easier.

The unknown had moved more quickly than anticipated. We were almost 16,000 kilometers from Nav 1 when Paladin identified our target and escort. It was two Krant, heavily armored and shielded medium fighters, and a Ralari, a slow-moving 344-meter destroyer with six turreted lasers.

Going up against the Krant, I ordered Paladin to attack my target. I wanted to concentrate our fire to break down their shields, and stay in close so that our mass-drivers gave us some small advantage over their long-range laser cannons. The strategy worked for the first Krant.

We made frequent use of our afterburners to stay with him, and once I noticed that his rear shields had been weakened, we held our fire until we had a look at his exhaust pipes. The blue exhaust was soon replaced by the glowing red embers of an exploded ship.

The second Krant was on the other side of the Ralari. I changed our strategy by telling Paladin to break and attack, then waited to see which way he would go. I tried to use the Ralari as a shield and circle behind it to surprise the other escort. The incessant laser fire made me swing wide of my planned route, and by the time I recovered Paladin was taking a lot of incoming rounds. Slapping the afterburner switch repeatedly, I was able to get behind the Krant. I wanted to save my missiles, but I launched a Dart to save my wingman. The Krant made some quick evasive twists and turns that cost him dearly. Paladin and I finished him off with the Gatlings.

Taking on the Ralari was anticlimactic. I knew Paladin had experience with the big ships, so I left him on his own. I approached from the rear and fired all my missiles as quickly as possible, but withheld the use of my guns. Once I was 1200 meters away, I pulled back hard on the stick and hit the afterburners. Then I reversed my turn, came back at the Ralari form the rear, and unleashed the mass drivers. The hardest part was waiting until I was within range. The mass driver was devastating if I started my fire at 2000 meters. Five or six repeated attacks and the destroyer split into a million pieces. It was quite a show, but I couldn't shake the feeling that it was only pretty from the outside.

Preflight Conversations


You met Maniac and Bossman over there yet?
Maniac’s a real lunatic, a good pilot, but way too erratic.
He was just comin’ up when the fleabags put me outta commission.
Just between you and me, I’d rather fly alone than with Maniac on my wing.
Bossman’s another story, though. He’s a real team leader.
A crack pilot, with 17 years behind him.
Flown ever’thin’ in the Terran fleet, and blown up at least one of every class the Kilrathi have.


Chen Kien
Sit down, Maverick. They call me Bossman.
I’ve been watching you. You look good for a rookie.
You handle yourself well in a dogfight, but we’ll be facing some bigger ships soon.
Todd Marshall
All right! Some serious action!
Chen Kien
A lot of young pilots get excited when they see their first destroyer…
Todd Marshall
Just what do you mean by that, Boss?
Chen Kien
…they lose their heads and go straight in for the battleship.
Then a light fighter they forgot about blasts them from behind.
Big ships move slow and turn like pigs.
Thing to do is clean up the fighter cover first, then go in for the battleship.

Talk to MANIAC

Hey, Maverick. I’m Maniac. Glad to meetcha.
Bossman says we’re gonna see some action against some battleships soon.
I can’t wait. Dodging flak and fighter cover to make a missile run at a destroyer…
Man, that’ll be a rush!
Get in there quick, waste the mama cat, then pick the kittens off one by one.
That’s the way to do it!

Mission Briefing

Mission Briefing. McAuliffe System, 12:00 hours, 2654.131.

Peter Halcyon
Well, boys and girls, things are getting ready to heat up.
The Confederation is getting ready to mount a major offensive, so we’re expecting several supply ships within the next 48 hours.
But scanners show increased Kilrathi activity in this system.
We’ve got to clean up the enemy presence here at McAuliffe, before the tankers and ’sports start to arrive tomorrow.
We’ve detected a large bogie about 90,000 klicks out.
It jumped in about 20 minutes ago, and seems to be headed this way.
It might be just a transport, but it’s probably a small warship.

Paladin is Alive Paladin is Dead

Peter Halcyon

Maverick, you and Paladin are going to go out and get a look at it...

Peter Halcyon

Maverick, I want you to go out and get a look at it...

...and destroy it if you can.

Paladin is Alive Paladin is Dead

James Taggart
Faith, lad, but that'll be a challenge...

Peter Halcyon
Here's your flight plan...
If the bogie continues its present course and speed... should meet it here, at Nav 1.
We've detected a fighter escort in the area as well... be on the lookout for additional bogies.

The Colonel quickly goes through the rest of the assignments, dispatching other wings to check out other bogies in the system.

Peter Halcyon
Squadron dismissed.

Mission Debriefing

Mission Debriefing. 16:00 hours, 2654.131.

Ralari Destroyed Ralari Escaped

Peter Halcyon

Nice job, Maverick.

Peter Halcyon

Didn't get her, eh?

Christopher Blair

No, sir. I'm sorry.

Paladin Survives Paladin Dies Ralari Identified Ralari Not Indentified

Peter Halcyon

You too, Paladin. Congratulations to the both of you.

James Taggart

The kid did all the work, sir. I was just along for the ride.

Peter Halcyon

Well, no matter. You got close enough for your computer to make her.

Peter Halcyon

We've already downloaded your recon from your flight recorder.

Christopher Blair

Those Kilrathi destroyers really aren't much to worry about, sir.

Peter Halcyon

I don't know, Maverick. They had you outgunned as well as outnumbered.

Ralari Identified Ralari Not Identified

Peter Halcyon

Too bad you didn't get closer ... we could have used a positive ID on her.

Peter Halcyon

I dispatched a squadron of Raptors to intercept. She won't get past them.

Peter Halcyon
Now, to review the mission...

Your Kills Zero Kills
Peter Halcyon
Recorder shows you killed $K, Maverick...
Peter Halcyon
Recorder shows no kills for you, Maverick...
Paladin's Kills Paladin Struck Out Solo
Peter Halcyon
and $L killed by Paladin.
Peter Halcyon
and none for Paladin.
Paladin Survives Paladin Dies
Peter Halcyon
And Paladin didn't make it back.
Ralari Identified Ralari Not Identified
Peter Halcyon
By the way, we've identified the big bogie as a Ralari-class destroyer.
Ralari Destroyed Ralari Escaped
Peter Halcyon
Good job taking her out.
Awards / Reprimands
Peter Halcyon
And Maverick ... I want to see you in my office in an hour.
Peter Halcyon
That's all. Dismissed.

Next Mission:
Psi Wing (McAuliffe System)