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/tg/ - Traditional Games

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Previous threads: http://suptg.thisisnotatrueending.com/archive.html?tags=Clockwork%20of%20the%20Void%20Quest
Twitter: https://twitter.com/FreQuenphase

CALLISTO AND EUROPA HAVE GONE DARK. Only static and garbled data have squeaked through.

You are Ceres mission commander Blake Hitches, and it was up to you to get their operations going again. Callisto has stayed down, and Europa's teleoperated surveyors have grinded to a halt. Together with your former commander and now specialist Shae Quenbek, you brought in a crew to rescue survivors, and to kick down the door of anything unexpected. When you arrived to fix the problem at the Europa base, you and your ground crew have discovered the aftermath signs of a murder spree. There were clues that the killer was still loose inside the darkened Europa base.

In addition to the murder spree, a strange, gigantic metal structure has jammed itself into the communications array, knocking out any useful service.

The good news was that a longtime well-known cosmonaut managed to hide out and survive the slaughter. His name was Mikhail Lebedev. It did not last long, as he vanished, with one of your crew somehow killed.

If he is still safe, nobody knows.

>>Roll a 3d10 to beat a specified DC. 2 passes out of 3 to win.

>>During write-ins, if your idea or course of action is unusual and clever, you can earn a Lightbulb --- similar to a Fate point for a reroll, or you can spend a Lightbulb for a hint/insight.
>>I can even award lightbulbs for ideas that come up during discussion between updates. Lightbulbs will carry over to future campaigns from this one, I guess?
>>But for now, there isn't really going to be farming lightbulbs by catching name references/puns, so take it easy with the names.

>>Something awaits you at the end of this quest.

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You stand among the wreckage of the communications array. You are at the foot of a massive, mysterious metal structure. Behind you was a crumpled corridor and a sealed door. There in front of you was a remedied communications console, barely escaping the impact point of the gigantic structure.

"He wouldn't hide under the rubble, would he?" you ask.

Further out from here is the icy surface of Callisto. One could round the perimeter of the base from here and end up at another airlock, such as the labs are, or where the vehicle pad is.

With all these considered, the last possibility was Mikhail hiding somewhere, but going toward the way you came into the Callisto base. There are too much to consider and so many problems piling up at once.

Your plans settled on two things out of this whole mess...


>[ ] Try to fix comms/establish a link with the shuttle...thing.
>[ ] This gigantic metal structure is really fascinating, I want a closer look.

>>Since we're starting the thread with the tiebreaker, I want to throw you guys a bone. I'll call for votes on this for now.
I already voted, so.....

Also kinda busy, might not be back for the next update
>>>[X] This gigantic metal structure is really fascinating, I want a closer look.
Let me try to break it.
>[x] This gigantic metal structure is really fascinating, I want a closer look.

Thank you for this.

>[X]One of several BIG RED BUTTONS.

>[X ] This gigantic metal structure is really fascinating, I want a closer look.

You look up as far as you can at the metallic monstrosity that's trashed the comms array. It's certainly a one-of-a-kind moment, but the fear of the unknown is always around the corner.

"We need to figure out this gigantic thing here," you say. "That way, maybe we can prevent this from happening again somehow, or even salvage the current situation. Callisto might need a whole new set of base staff, but crossing the great black to this far-out frozen place ought to mean anyone has accepted the dangers of not making it back."

Shae and Mackey are momentarily stunned, but Shae gets over the lump in her throat. "If it were easy as a blown fuse in the breaker, but we're dealing with a slaughter and people going crazy. It's something that's straight out of a movie!"

"Sometimes I wonder if life is secretly more like that, but we always try to deny it," you say. "Well, that's what Mikhail said before, but I've gotten the feeling over the years that it's true in some way."

With your head buzzing again, you walk up to the metal surface of the structure, and examine it with a flashlight. There's no doubt that the dust has clumped up with the exposure to the icy conditions. You brush off whatever was caked onto the metal surface, causing the frozen dirt to flake away.

It's here when something utterly off turns up. You see what are obviously a row of rivets, looking very much man-made. Following the row, you start to see patches of worn-away paint, revealing bare metal that's started to corrode.

In that instance, the inside of your head pops and sparks unlike anything before.[1/?]
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You begin to feel like you're detached from your body in some way. Every moment slips away in a haze. In those split seconds where you try to pull yourself together, you feel like you're blocked off by huge gaps in your mind. Your mind tries to round the edges of those "gaps" but more gaps pop in and out of nowhere.

Soon, everything becomes a jumbled mess, and you can begin to hear an old, jazz tune crackling over the radio.

Wait, you don't have a radio like this, but that jazz music takes you back. Wait, you don't even know this song.

Who were you supposed to be? It's like you're forgetting something very important.

Your name isn't Blake Hitches. You're ______________. What year was it?

The smell of the open sea calls out again, this is what you signed up for, right?

Shouldn't you be somewhere back home right now? You've taken a long, long detour.

The world rocks back and forth, and you're given a rude jolt.

You wake up, supported by Shae and the others.

"Hey Blake, hey Blake, are you okay? How many fingers is this?" you hear.


"Good. What the hell just happened?"

It's Mackey talking.

[ ] My head's not been in the game, sorry. I'm just more tired than I think.
[ ] I was hearing someone else's thoughts just now.
[ ] I don't think I'm this "Blake Hitches".
[ ] Do/suggest some other thing (write-in)

>Just to clarify, you can ask about using lightbulbs even if the update does not offer or prompt you to do so.

>[x] My head's not been in the game, sorry. I'm just more tired than I think.
>>[x] My head's not been in the game, sorry. I'm just more tired than I think.

Telling everyone you've lost your sense of self and gone mad won't help anyone, not especially here, all the way on Jupiter's moons.

You try to bury deep down that terrible feeling that just happened, and try to shrug it off. In a tense situation like right now, your crew has to rely on some kind of stability to keep going.

Maybe that feeling will go away by itself, you hope.

You get up, and make your best impression of flexing your muscles, ready to tackle the next big thing.

"See? Just tired for a moment. Been through crunch week and all that with the surveys and timetables on Ceres. I'm still on the way to bouncing back," you say.

You herd the whole crew back through the sealed door. Another sealed door awaits, still somewhat regulating the remaining atmosphere.

"Back there at that metal tower, you didn't hear a buzzing noise or something in your head, did you?" Shae asks.

"Of course not, and if I would, I'd be saying something," you explain. "If there's anything we've learned, it's that we ought to backtrack. I think we've looked around enough to know that the labs and mess hall are where we should check next."

A few minutes from here later, an investigation of the lab shows traces of a couple of assaults, and most importantly, several missing pieces of equipment such as a sample fridge, various tools, and several chunks of testing equipment --- where now there are holes in the walls, wires dangling out.


"A killing spree couldn't take the time to rip equipment out," you wonder aloud.

"Either this really is a ritual murder of some kind, or Mikhail salvaged some things while trying to not be found," Shae says.

"But how do you think those bloody marks were left on these edges, here?" Mackey says, pointing to stains where holes in walls were, formerly for lab equipment. "Coincidence, clumsyness while hurrying?" he wonders.

From the corner of your eye, you see what seems to be the tattered, bloody remains of one of the base's astronauts. There's a mangled hand snagged onto a lab console.

>What do you do?
[ ] "On all this? I'd rather not assume the worst of things"
[ ] "Maybe hurrying means you don't care about stains."
[ ] "Mikhail might have fought one of the killers"
[ ] Let's look for clues on that corpse.
[ ] Do/suggest some other thing (write-in)
>>[x] Let's look for clues on that corpse.
>[x] Let's look for clues on that corpse.

You approach the corpse and poke at it with the barrel of your rifle. The body has been utterly mangled, like a knife's gone through it and tried to crudely strip away meat, but what's left resembles soggy bloated strings glued to the body.

Suddenly, the "strings" whip about and stick to the ceiling. The whole body is strung along as the meaty threads shamble. It starts to jitter and swing wildly, and it's bloodied hands claw at your helmet. What was left of the body couldn't be called a person anymore, but a meat puppet.

>What do you do? (3d10 dice roll when you vote, dice+3d10 in the options bar)
[ ] Hammer away with your rifle at the puppet to get it off
[ ] Pull out your sidearm to blow off the limbs
[ ] Roll over to shake it off
[ ] Scream to get them to pull the corpse away
[ ] (Write-in maneuver)
Rolled 6, 7, 7 = 20 (3d10)

>[x] Hammer away with your rifle at the puppet to get it off

With your rifle putting distance between you and the meat puppet, the corpse continues to push to get at you. You take the butt of your rifle, and come down hard on the arms trying to swipe at you.

The rifle pounds away, making a hard cracking noise, battering what's left of the mangled arms into uselessness.

You advance and make for a wild swing with the rifle. It connects with the corpse's head, knocking it out of shape clean.

However, the meaty strings glued to the ceiling shamble again. Some unravel and try to whip at you.

>What do you do? (3d10 dice roll when you vote, dice+3d10 in the options bar)
[ ] Bear the brunt of the blows to distract the corpse
[ ] Frantically back away and make a firing line
[ ] Take a swing at the tentacles
[ ] (Write-in maneuver)
Rolled 10, 10, 3 = 23 (3d10)

>>[X] Frantically back away and make a firing line
As the tentacles try to reach out, you manage to jump back.

"Fire, fire!" you give the order.

A hail of bullets all at once from your crew demolish what's left of the corpse. Body parts and gibs fly apart, making wet, slapping noises as the chunks tumble and fall. Now that there's nothing left for the strings to dance with, you point everyone to the ceiling, and the rest of your shots eventually shred these meaty strings.

Though the gunfire took care of things, the bullets blew holes through the ceiling. Immediately the lab starts decompressing through all the perforations made, and the automatic safeties kick in as the doors lock down.

However, since you and everyone are in EVA suits, it wasn't an issue. You walk over to the emergency release and manage to force the door open. After everyone hurries past the doorway, you seal the lab doors behind you again. Air in the corridors managed to empty into the lab by a fair bit, but it was somewhat manageable for anyone not inside a suit. If the ceiling were blown apart, then any decompression would almost make the rest of the corridors a write-off.

You wonder where Mikhail is, as you shake yourself off. That deal with the corpse was a bit out of this world, you think.

All of you arrive in front of the Mess Hall doors. This place was a place of priority before Mikhail went missing, but you couldn't be too sure. The small window in the door is stained from the inside with a bloody smear, which Shae points out.

>What do you do? (3d10 dice roll when you vote, dice+3d10 in the options bar)
[ ] Kick down the door and rush in.
[ ] Slowly open the door and peek, call out to anyone.
[ ] Roll a grenade past the door and wait for it to go off.
[ ] Shine a light through the window.
[ ] (Write-in maneuver)
Rolled 2, 1, 6 = 9 (3d10)

>>[X] Shine a light through the window.

Right now, you can't make out what's behind the window, much less see any shadow of activity. The smears on the window are pretty bad. This could be bad.

>What do you do? (3d10 dice roll when you vote, dice+3d10 in the options bar)
[ ] Slowly open the door and peek, call out to anyone.
[ ] Roll a grenade past the door and wait for it to go off.
[ ] (Write-in maneuver)
Rolled 4, 1, 4 = 9 (3d10)

>>[X] Slowly open the door and peek, call out to anyone.
You pull at the heavy door as it groans and creaks. With that gap into the mess hall, you get Mackey to make the first move. He gets one of the other ground crew to make the call.

"Hello? Government's here to help. We've finally arrived. Anyone?"

A pair of hands snatches the guy head first.

>Roll 3d10 to fight back.
Rolled 6, 6, 5 = 17 (3d10)

>6, 6

With everyone pulling back, the guy manages to break free of the grasp of whoever was behind the door. Now, his helmet sports bloody streaks on the sides.

"Well, that settles what's at the other side," you say. "Everyone with me on this? We're gonna break through."

"We could decompress the whole mess hall like with the lab earlier," Mackey says, "And clean up the rest".

>What do you do? (For everyone, give me a 9d10 dice roll when you vote, dice+9d10 in the options bar. I will divide all 9 dice between the characters into three sets.

>What do WE do?
[ ] Throw the door wide open as the rest sweep side to side with gunfire
[ ] Roll a grenade past the door and wait for it to go off.
[ ] (Write-in maneuver)
Rolled 8, 2, 9, 9, 2, 7, 3, 7, 9 = 56 (9d10)

>>[x] Throw the door wide open as the rest sweep side to side with gunfire
>>We'll be back tomorrow night with the result of the sweep. Thanks for attending tonight's thread!

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