Wing Commander Secret Ops Replay Week 1

Dundradal

Frog Blast the Vent Core!
Hope you all enjoyed your long holiday break! Now it's time to get back to business.

For SO, I'm just going to stick to the episodic release and do a system a week. We begin with 4 missions in the Courage System.

Good luck and good hunting.

I'm slowly catching up, but I've been a bit busy with the holidays but I'll be sure to post a few more weeks soon.
 

Dundradal

Frog Blast the Vent Core!
Doh! I had it written down on my calender as the 14th that Kilrah started. My apologies. I wanted to get this in early since I've got an early day myself tomorrow.

Sheesh.

Don't post for a week guys :p
 

ChrisReid

Super Soaker Collector / Administrator
Kilrah did start on the 14th, but it was also combined with the end of Hrissith. The second half of Kilrah was the 21st to 27th (but then you posted that one a day early on the 20th too, so if you were looking for just this week's posts, it wouldn't be there).
 

Dundradal

Frog Blast the Vent Core!
Yeah looks like trying to stay a step ahead caused some confusion on my end. I originally had not wanted to split the end of WCP, but then decided against it. Looks like I never updated my calender to coincide with the change.
 

DaveO

Rear Admiral

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Lorien

Rear Admiral
Hmmm, much shorter journals this time around but the missions are much more intense. I'm going to have a lot more kills before this is over.

Courage 1:

The Midway is just pulling into the Sol system for some well deserved celebrations when the word comes down from on high, Stilletto, Spyder and myself have been assigned to the Confederation's newest ship, the Cerberus. Zero and Maestro will be joining us there once they've completed their escort mission. I barely have enough time to email my mother and tell her to freeze the remains of my welcome back celebration before I'm boarding a shuttle for my new home.

As we meet up after their landing I have to agree with what Zero reports to be Maestro's first reaction to the Cerberus. She does indeed look fast and that big plasma gun slung under the bow makes her look pretty dangerous as well. The captain, a blunt man covered with scars, gives us a bit more information when we land. The Cerberus has been assigned to the Courage system where we'll be putting her and some new Black Ops fighters through their paces. These new ships obviously comes with new toys. I hope I get used to them quickly.

Our first mission seems like the perfect opportunity to give the Black Panther a whirl, it's a simple patrol route to help the Cerberus calibrate her sensors. The extra speed with the Panther is good, though I'm not sure how convinced I am with the new guns. I really liked the normal Panther's layout. I certainly get a chance to try them out at the first nav point when we're jumped by some Morays. I order my wing to break and attack, we outnumber the bugs for once. I'm swiftly converted to the new guns as I open up on the first Moray from close behind, the guns tear it to bits very quickly. As the dogfight goes on, though, I discover that you really need to let them charge up enough to unleash both at the same time, otherwise the blasts just tend to bounce off. We quickly clear out these Morays and the small force to reinforce them as Zero informs the Cerberus of our situation.

We're ordered to continue on our patrol and encounter some slightly smarter Morays at Nav 2, who take off straight to the jump point while their Manta escorts move to engage. I order my wing to hold back the Mantas as I finish off the runners. Some gun blasts and a few ELRIR missiles later and the engagement is over. We head back to the Cerberus to the congratulations of the captain.

Courage 2:

There's no time for celebrations after we land as the aliens launch an attack straight on the Cerberus. I pretty my jump straight out of my Panther and into a Wasp. The alien attack doesn't seem like too much to begin with, none of their bombers, just some fighters around two corvettes. I set my computer to target any fighters attacking the Cerberus and move to engage. The first two targets are Lampreys, which make a nice test for the new dust cannon. I'm quite impressed with this gun, it has a nice sound and rapid refire rate and it teams up with the Cloudburst's punch really well. The aliens must have been impressed as well, as they quickly call in re-inforcements, including some Skate bombers. These prime targets for Swarmers get what they deserve while the dust cannon makes short work of the Skates that break away from the clusters. It's an intense fight but none of the alien fighters even get close to the Cerberus, so we're quickly back on the flight deck.

Courage 3:

With an unknown number of alien ships in the system, the Cerberus is jumping in to the Ella system to regroup. Pulling back definitely doesn't sit right with Maestro as he grips about how the aliens managed to penetrate all the way to the Sol sector. Spyder and Zero's replies do nothing to make us feel better as we begin to wonder about how far the aliens manage to penetrate into our space before we took out the wormhole in Kilrah. At least we can make a straight line for the jump point. The first alien attack wave on our journey is no problem, just a few fighters that can't hurt the Cerberus. The next nav point is a battle, however, as we're jumped by two waves of fighters and bombers. The aliens have gotten a lot more aggressive about hunting down ships threatening their bombers as well, and I'm constantly dropping decoys or outmanuevering missiles as I take the red mantas down. One of them still manages to score a hit on one of the Cerberus' engines but I take out the second torpedo launched with some Chain Ion cannon fire. Past that it's the pleasurable duty of cleaning up those bastards shooting my tail as I protect my ship. Zero counted a total of 42 fighters and bombers that we dispatched on the way to the jump point, I hate to think how man would have attacked us if we were taking a longer route.

Courage 4:

There's little time for contemplation after landing, however, as we're instantly back up in the air. This time testing out the new Black Vampires. The increased missile load is nice but I get the feeling that the Pulse Particle cannons on it are nothing more than pop guns. That may have something to do with the number of Devil Rays attacking the Cerberus, though. Back during the initial fight these super fighters were rare and always piloted by aces and yet these bug remnants can through 8 of them at the Cerberus along with Morays and bombers? This doesn't bode well for the rest of the mission, especially as another torpedo breaks through and takes out the Cerberus' bridge. The repair boys at Ella are going to be busy, that's for sure. We manage to take out the alien forces before they can cause any more damage to the Cerberus and we make our escape. I hope the Ella starbase is secure.
 

Lt.Overload

Rear Admiral
Hey...that picture of the Cerberus shooting the heavy plasma cannon...isn't the lower right image showing the Wormhole gate?
 

DaveO

Rear Admiral
I'm a bit puzzled about which picture is being referred to. I'm assuming it's one of the ones in the Photobucket location.


Courage 1
There is a celebration ceremony over our defeat of the bugs in Kilrah. Six of the best pilots from Midway, including myself have been transferred to a new Confed cruiser called the Cerberus. Governor Cavazos thinks that this new addition to the fleet will mean that there will be soon no more threats for Confed to deal with. I know that it will take a significant fleet to keep the peace in case the bugs show up again. On approach to the Cerberus, I agree with Maestro’s comment that the Cerberus looks to be built for speed. It’s a compact cruiser design, but it has a plasma cannon on the bottom to give it more than the standard turret defense. I check out the surroundings of the Cerberus first a bit, and also look at the killboard. The entire complement has a total of thirteen kills, although I should have a chance to be in the lead position quickly. I check my briefing for this mission, and we’ll escort the Cerberus along a designated navigation route. The Cerberus will use our nav system data for calibration of its jump detection software.

Our group of Panthers launches on this patrol, and I notice a difference on its guns. The ‘Black’ Panther comes with Cloudburst and Chain Ion guns along with a slightly increased speed, and I wonder how effective these changes will be. When we reach our first nav point, we get a surprise with alien Morays attacking. I send two into the void of space, and a third shakes off a missile with a decoy. I finish off that fighter with the firepower of my Panther, and the rest of the alien resistance is handled with no difficulties. Zero wonders how the bugs got out this far since there would have likely been an alert if an alien carrier group was spotted. At the second nav point, two Morays are attempting to make a run from our wing. All of the other fighters split off to attack targets besides the Morays. I have to pursue and shoot them down with missiles and gun blasts. A Manta took advantage of my pursuit, and did significant damage to my Panther’s core and afterburners. I handle two of the Mantas with a combination of missiles and guns, and there are no other aliens to deal with. We head back to the Cerberus, and I’m hoping that the damage I took is just a symptom of carelessness that I can correct.


Courage 2
We launch immediately in Wasps to deal with aliens that are trying to make the maiden voyage of the Cerberus very short. I hit the booster of the Wasp, and use only the Dust Cannons for its guns. The ‘Black’ Wasp has twice as many Swarmer missiles as its predecessor, so I have a larger amount of targets I can trash with them. Four Mantas feel the power of the Swarmer missiles, but the bugs have brought in some Skate bomber clusters. The Dust Cannon and a Swarmer launch quickly smashes a cluster apart. I do the same thing to a second Skate bomber cluster, and now there are only the smaller Skate segments to deal with. A missile and the rapid fire of the Dust Cannon handle two separate Skates. Four more of the Skates are dusted, and a Lamprey follows suit after a foolish frontal attack. A Moray and another Lamprey fall to those fast guns, and another Moray along with two more Skates are shredded. There is a Barracuda corvette still left, but our group takes down this ship without my assistance.


Courage 3
We have confirmed a significant alien presence in this system. To make sure the Cerberus lives to see another day, we’re heading straight for the jump point to the Ella system. Due to our quick action and defense in the previous mission, we should be able to take a direct path to the jump point.

I make a mental note that failure is not an option for this mission, and Maestro wonders how the bugs managed to make it to the Sol sector. Spyder says that Confed Intel believes that the aliens moved their forces from Kilrah into Epsilon. If the bugs reached Valgard, they would only be six jumps away from Vega. We head for the first nav point with the Cerberus along, and there are Morays and Skates here. I assist the Cerberus with its missile turret kill of a Moray, and then Zero and I make a combined kill on another Skate. I get the final fighter in this area, and we move on to the next nav point. The reception here consists of Mantas and Morays. I use a missile along with guns to make very short work of a Manta. Another Manta and Moray fall to the guns of the Panther. The Cerberus alerts us to a second wing of inbound aliens that consists of more Mantas and Morays. I see the Cerberus take a torpedo hit to the rear, and use another missile and gun combination to take down a Manta when I see another alien attempting to take me down from behind. I switch to that target and make that Manta pay for trying to put holes in my Panther. I have to use a missile along with some gun blasts to quickly take down a Moray after a Manta gets on my tail. The Manta is then dealt deadly blows from blasts, and two more Mantas follow its friend into the void. There is just a single Moray left, and I make an assist with my wing in eliminating it. We head along to the third nav point, with more Mantas and Morays to handle. I again assist the Cerberus with a missile turret kill of a Manta, and use a missile of my own along with my guns to trash another Manta. Five of the Moray fighters fall to the powerful guns of the Panther, and my ship is in perfect condition with no decoys deployed. I land on the Cerberus to see that I did not get all of the performance bonus objectives, but I still feel I made a significant contribution for this mission.


Courage 4
There is no time to relax with another group of aliens attacking us. I launch in the ‘Black’ Vampire for this mission, and notice multiple alien Devil Rays right away. The Vampire has Plasma Particle guns along with its Tachyon guns to help handle the situation. I destroy four of the Devil Rays with guns and Artemis enhanced long-range image recognition missiles. I scuttle two Skate clusters with my Vampire and then notice more of the Devil Rays. I get two of the Devil Rays in the same fashion that I did with the other four, and make a mess of two Morays. I notice some Stingrays around, and head after them to prevent any clustering. I finish one off with my guns, and do an assist with a second. Our wing combines together for the final Moray fighter kill. Zero jokes with Maestro that ‘We’re gonna miss you bug’, and the captain of the Cerberus congratulates us on our performance. The Cerberus makes its jump into the Ella system, and we wonder about the future missions we will undertake.
 

ChrisReid

Super Soaker Collector / Administrator
Yeah, the screenshot was released prior to the game before all the art was complete.
 
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