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Old November 26th, 2010, 09:02 AM

ExplorerBob ExplorerBob is offline
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Default My Odd Adventure (Non-RP)

This after-action report was made to help promote my mod, Odd Adventures in Infinite Space. If you don't have it already, I encourage you to try it out, along with some of the other great mods the Weird Worlds community has produced over the years.

All images below are available thanks to ImageShack, my preferred image hosting provider.

This topic is not a role-playing topic, so if you want well-developed characters or top-notch writing, I'm afraid you'll have to find it somewhere else. This is the game, from the player's perspective.

I've played plenty of small games before as part of the Odd Adventures testing, and I think having a larger one might liven things up, so I choose the Large map. Nebulae annoy me, so we have Less nebula mass...and finally, the focus of the Odd Adventures 002 update is primarily on combat, so it would be a shame to have any less than More enemy strength.

I type in "Williams" in the captain's name slot, after a friend of mine, name the ship "Dragon", and we're good to start.

Same as usual. My request for a starship assignment has been approved, yadda yadda yadda. Continue.

All right. I start out on Glory, same as usual, but those of you who have played before will immediately notice some major differences in the game.

First of all, the bright nebulae background has been replaced with a much darker, starry background, just like the background in SAIS was (in fact, it's exactly the same; I copied the original background from the game into my mod).

Secondly, although this is a military mission, my ship is a Corvette. In fact, the Corvette is the only ship you start out with in my mod. It comes with a chaingun, impaler rack, structural gluon shield, pulse thruster, and hydrogen fusion drive.

My lightspeed capabilities are drastically different too. I can hit only the speed of light in nebulae, which is nothing new, but this hydrogen drive can only hit six times the speed of light...making it about half as fast as the drive in the normal game. That difference is going to add up big-time unless I can get a new drive, within the next system or three.

Finally, Hope looks about the same, but the weapon fitters have no unique or cool gadgets to give me; they possess only two laser beam guns, an impaler rack, and a neptunium railgun.

I switch out my Impaler rack with my chaingun, so that the chaingun is now on the right (where I like it), and then close the Hope window so we can look at the map.

As you can see, we have a few systems nearby, but Ceres is the closest. The Klakar like to hang out at nearby systems, so the odds of them being there are as good as anywhere else, so I engage drive to Ceres.

The first thing that you might notice is that the trip takes 387 days...ouch. I need the Klakar so I can get a decent drive, and soon.

Anyway, Ceres is home to Necros, the driest dead rock there ever was. There's a plasma blaster there, which is far more powerful than the chaingun I already have, so I equip the plasma blaster and throw the chaingun in my hold.

We can go to either Jewel, Revelle, or Ruby. Ruby is farther out, but the way I play, it isn't very likely we'll get the chance to swing by there again anytime soon, so we might as well go there now. (416 day trip.)

At Ruby, we discover Hyperborea, an ice planet, and acquire a new hyperfoam injector. Since Terran ships don't repair in this mod, that will definitely come in handy when we start getting into the combat side of the game.

On to Jewel. (360 day trip.)

Jewel is home to a beautiful Earth-like world, Oasis, but unfortunately the only thing I can find on it is the Underdelve. While it does help my score, I would have rather met the Klakar, or picked up a new ship system. Still, it's probably just as well that I don't get too many items this early; my ship's cargo hold is small and eventually I'll have to start dropping items on planets.

Now to Revelle. (225 day trip.)

The frozen world Rime has nothing to offer except the Melodium Conograph. In the standard game, this device can put you and your crew to sleep for a year; I figured that's gotten a bit old, so I removed that ability. I think I increased its value a bit as well.

Anyway, now that we've knocked out the closest stars, it's time to move a bit farther away from Hope, by visiting Zahn.

I'm going to Zahn because it's the closest star, and it doesn't cut off any of my paths to other stars. Going to, say, Anderson would be an awful decision because it doesn't improve my chance to go to any other star. Likewise, going to Wan just means I'll have to make a return trip at some point.

Off to Zahn (330 day trip; we have 9532 days left. That hydrogen drive is really eating up time.)

Zahn is completely useless and only has a Brass Time Capsule to offer up. Since my mod doesn't do anything cool with the capsules, it's more or less a waste of cargo space, but I'll take it anyway. Now to Wan.

Wan has only a plasmaworm to give me. In the science mission, that would be nice, but here it's just more Klakar trade fodder...assuming I can find the Klakar.

By the way: it's 4595, and there's been no abnormal activity, so that tells me that the Kawangi aren't on the move this time. There could still be another main quest, like the Ravians or Primordious, though.

You can see from this map that I have a few choices as where to go. I'm going to visit Ajax, since it gives me a chance to visit some more stars near Glory. I need to find the Klakar as soon as possible and I think this maximizes my chances.

Unfortunately, Ajax is a whopping 759-day trip...if this was a small map, my game would be almost over. On a large, though, I can afford it.

Netherworld, the dead planet in the Ajax system, houses a proton matrix shield. While it isn't top of the line, it's still far more powerful than my existing gluon shield...the proton matrix can be the difference between winning or losing to the Garthans. Since I have a plasma blaster, this should firmly raise me up a notch in the food chain, above the Garthans, and probably above the Muktians as well. I may or may not be able to trash an Urluquai or Tchorak fleet yet, though.

Ochre is the closest star, so that's where we're going next. (235 day trip.)

Ochre houses Cairn, another dead world, but it happens to have one of the more useful things I could pick up, the reactionless thruster. This will give my ship unmatched speed and allow me to retreat from any enemies I encounter. I rip out my pulse thruster, throw it in the hold, and install the Reactionless.

Now to Caldera. (465 day trip.)

Caldera is occupied, but not by the Klakar. The radar signature tells me it's the Muktians. Since they're always neutral, I might as well Engage and make first contact, so I'll be able to recognize them if we meet again.

The Muktians want me to leave, as usual. This time I'll obey, since their fleet looks like it might have a frigate or two in it, and my situation isn't bad enough to justify killing my potential allies yet.

After we waste 465 days on the return trip to Ochre (I wish you could *always* pick where you're retreating to, so you don't have to waste any time), we're going to go to the dual-star system, Dyad.

Dyad is home to yet another dead world, Moribund, and something a little bit interesting, the Golden Canister. I pick it up and open it, giving me the empty canister and the golden disc. If I encounter the Klakar trader soon, those'll make great trade bait.

Now to Bootis. (440 day trip.)

At Fane, the latest in a series of dead planets, I acquire something I always like to have, the legendary Particle Vortex Cannon. This raises my ship even higher in the power tier; the only people I wouldn't feel comfortable tackling now are the Zorg, Tan Ru, and some Tchorak fleets. I install it over the plasma blaster and put the blaster in where my impaler rack used to be. Now we're going to Antilae. (200 day trip.)

The only thing we get here is the Ancient Mummy. I'm starting to get a bit concerned at my lack of ability to find the Klakar. The cargo hold is getting mighty full, but I can't trade the junk I have for anything useful yet. Maybe we'll luck out at Eridani.

Well, I didn't find the Klakar, but the Moon Marauder is hanging out at Tumulus, another dead world. Since there are a lot of enemies in this map, I figure I could use an escort, so we'll trade her the pulse thruster, which neither me nor her can use, and get her to come along with me.

This Moon Marauder is outfitted pretty similarly to the one in the normal game, except that it isn't armed as well; it only has a laser beam, instead of a micrometeorite gun. Normally I think I would replace its beam with a chaingun, but this time I think we'll keep the laser on to see how it works....if it's a lot worse, I might need to reconsider my beam balance.

Now that we have a sister ship, we're off to Zappa.

...and while we're going there, Brass totally spoils the mood by pointing out that we're half-way through the trip already. Half-way through and nothing's really happened yet, plus we haven't found the Klakar.

Hopefully at least one of those two things'll be fixed soon.

Zappa is occupied, and the radar signature indicates four capital ships. They aren't spread out in an echelon formation, so it's not Garthans. Since they're lined up, I suspect it's the Zorg. Let's find out.

And yes, it is indeed the Zorg; I'm right. As usual, they want me to leave, which really wastes my time. Once back at Eridani, I set out to Vesta...only a 399 day trip.

Vesta has Muktians, so I retreat again. If this keeps up, though, we're going to have to fight it out. Normally I would risk having a low-score game, but the whole point of this post is to entertain y'all, so this could call for more desperate measures.

Unexpectedly, the game makes me retreat to *Wan*, not to Eridani. I don't have the time to go back, so I set course to Oberon. It's a 672 day trip.

At Oberon, Esmerelda finds the best way to annoy me by stealing the Golden Disk. I can't stand not having a matching Disk/Canister set.

Well, nothing I can do, so it's on to Zelazny.

Zelazny is occupied...the radar signature indicates only one ship, so this means either a Tchorak lava pod/crust buster, or the Klakar trader we've been waiting for. I'd bet on it being the latter.

Bingo. It is, and now we can see what goodies we can get. Let's hope they have a star drive -- if they don't, I'm in trouble.

It happens that Zelazny houses Kreee'Ark, so I can get some extra goodies, not just the stuff that's in the trader's hold. As it turns out, they have some really great items this time.

Kreee'Ark has a temporal flux shield, a multi-missile launcher, and a proton phasor. I pick up the first two for Dragon, and switch the plasma blaster and proton shield over to the Moon Marauder. The phasor's more valuable than my chaingun, so I trade that too.

The ship has even more valuable stuff, though, including:

• A Multi-bot Repair Drone system
• The Timeless Bauble (this could save our game)
• An Ion Flux Warp Drive, which is almost three times faster than the garbage we've had!
• The Golden Gnat
• And, best of all, a functioning Hyperdrive!

The hyperdrive and ion flux drives, of course, both get in; one on Dragon, one on the Marauder. I trade the impaler rack I have in my hold for the multi-bot and put it on my ship; the hyperfoam injector will go to the Moon Marauder.

Now that Esmerelda's stolen from us, we might as well get the Timeless Bauble. I trade the Brass Time Capsule for it.

Now it's time to start system-hopping. The map doesn't matter as much now that we have a hyperdrive, but I'll show it to you anyway.

Still a lot of ground to cover, and not much time. Let's start things out by visiting Anderson, the place I didn't want to go earlier because it was too far off the beaten path.

(2 day trip! )

Anderson has just a worthless Snailopus. Good thing I didn't go here earlier, eh?

Now to Jem.

Jem is home to a water world that has the Toy Robot on it...bit late for that; it won't help me now, but I still like having the little guy around, so we'll keep it for now.

Now to Lorelei.

Radar reading! Lorelei is (very) occupied, and the echelon formation makes me think this is a massive Garthan fleet. It might even be their homeworld, it's so well-defended.

If I stay, I'm committing to a battle. Moon Marauder likely isn't fast enough to break away from a fight. However, although the hyperdrive will help speed up the game, I don't have a lot of time to dally around, so we'll just have to take the risk and have it out with them. I've picked up some pretty good guns and shields, and my mighty PVC should cancel out the effects of their carriers.

Engaging...code red. All personnel, report to their stations. Prepare for battle!

It is the Garthans, and as usual, they're not inclined to give any quarter. This is going to be a close fight. I can call on the Klakar to help out if it gets a bit dicey, but even so, this one could still get interesting.

Looking over the map, the situation actually isn't as bleak as I had feared. The fleet consists mostly of Corvettes, which will fall like flies in December before my particle vortex cannon. If those 5 ships on the right wing were carriers, I'd be in trouble, but as it is my fleet should have the edge here...I shouldn't even need to call on the Klakar.

One thing you didn't get to see in the picture above is that the "Retreat All" and "Retreat" buttons aren't in the game anymore. That means that if you want to run, you have to fly to the edge of the map to do it; it makes combat a little bit more interesting. In this case, either the fighters or the corvettes would be able to run down my Scout, so I'm forced to stay here and have it out with the enemy fleet. That shouldn't be too much of a problem, though.

(A minute or two later...)

We won the battle, but with a painful reminder of why exactly you should never close in against Garthans.

Instead of going directly left and smashing the fleet there, I overestimated my flagship's powers and flew in-between the two Garthan formations. Thus, their four Corvettes were able to close in and start doing serious damage to my Corvette.

Realizing that the battle had gotten out of hand, and that I now faced a crisis on my right wing, I called in the Klakar frigate to try to save the day. With a little more caution, I still might have gotten out of it without any problems, but I didn't take care of my Corvette quite well enough. I had it retreat behind the Marauder for protection; unfortunately it didn't stay there for long, and a Garthan corvette was able to ram it to death.

The Marauder and the Frigate were still powerful enough to clean up the remaining Garthans, but losing my flagship is a huge blow to my exploration campaign.

Not to mention that the planet below wasn't even the Garthan homeworld; it's just some trashy toxic world. The Klakar want payment, so I give them the plasmaworm.

Now aboard my new flagship, the Moon Marauder, it's time to take inventory. My ship is still pretty good, with a plasma blaster and an ion flux drive, although it isn't as fast as the Dragon was. The loss of the hyperdrive is the most serious loss, though; I expect I will soon have to rely on the Timeless Bauble to salvage this game. (You'll see why when it happens.)

Nothing more I can do, so it's on to Yeth -- a 172 day trip on the Moon Marauder.

Yeth is occupied, by either a derelict or a Tchorak Vent Mother. I decide to risk seeing what it is.

It's the Derelict, and this is where I'm forced to play as a coward. If I had a better thruster, I would risk going up to the derelict in a heartbeat, but without it, Moon Marauder can't retreat from it if it turns out to be hostile...thus costing me the game. My scout's pretty well-armed, but it can't match a derelict ship yet.

Thus I cheat a little by hitting the "R" key. Retreating from an immobile object seems fine to me. It'd be different if it was actively hostile, of course.

Our retreat path takes us back to Kreee'Ark. After this picture, I'll take us over to Brand.

Brand is occupied by the Zorg, who happen to have some fighters with them. I can't match that, and I don't have anything to cheer them up either, so I retreat back to Zelazny.

Now to Danvers, which happens to be unoccupied...unless you count the Zorg pilot who's hanging out there!

It might not seem like it, but this is a huge stroke of luck. The Zorg fighter is about as useful in combat as my ship is, maybe even more so, and this instantly improves my relations with all Zorgdom. We'll be able to drop by Brand right after this. I give the Zorg merc a gluon shield; he seems happy with it.

I call up the Klakar to see if they have an electron shield I can put on the Zorg fighter. Unfortunately, they don't, but they do have a nebula calculator. I trade my proton phasor for one and put it on the Marauder.

Now to Yeth. My new ally will tell me whether or not this is a dangerous situation, without my having to risk my Scout over it.

The derelict turns out to be hostile. I can't take it on yet, so our fleet runs away. If I had gone in with my Scout, this game report would have ended about eight paragraphs ago.

On to Brand. The Zorg love me for hiring their kinsman and tell me all about where their homeworld is; the planet below happens to have a Meson Lattice Shield, which should improve my flagship's survivability.

At Vernes I get the crystal fish, which should be a big help if there's any Tchorak in this map.

At Szilard there's a massive fleet that threatens to entrap me -- Urluquai. I would never survive an encounter with them, so I retreat as soon as their force shows up on the radar.

On my way to Kringle, Brass tells me there's only two years left for this trip. It's about time to crack open the Timeless Bauble to save the game, but we can do that in a bit.

Kringle has just a micrometeorite gun. I don't need it, so I dump it in the hold and blast off to Medusa.

At Medusa there's just Smetlov's Brain. Picking it up would fill my cargo hold...I leave it in peace and cruise to Indigo.

At Indigo there's a noble Muktian skipper who's fallen on hard times. His Corvette is a great addition to my fleet; it will help fill in the gap left by my original corvette.

Going to Altair or Trianguli will take up the remaining time in the trip, so the time has come to open up the Timeless Bauble and salvage this game.

After activating the Bauble, Fomax pops out and offers to grant me my hearts' desire in exchange for freeing him. The answer to that question is really simple: the Time Trapper.

The Time Trapper is an item I added to the game. It has only one purpose, to save games like this.

I activate it and it goes to work, disappearing from the cargo hold, and adding 10 years to the game!

Now we have some breathing room to visit Altair with!

Altair is occupied by Garthans, and the radar signature makes me think they're all carriers. If I had Dragon, I would probably risk it; without it and the PVC, I think it'd be a lost cause.

Trianguli is also occupied by Garthans. Vizier is home to Tchoraks; their fleet is way too powerful for me to confront them, but the Crystal Fish is enough to calm them down, and they allow me to visit the planet and retrieve the Signature Projector, which I mount on the Marauder.

I don't think I have enough time to visit every system left, so it's time to start thinking of how I can work my way home. After I hit the space bar and waste about a year or two of time while trying to get you a picture, I set course for Shard, so I can begin the voyage back to Glory.

Unfortunately, the Stygian Wheel happens to be right between us at Vizier and Shard, so I go up to Sanguine. Maybe we can work our way to Shard that way.

Sanguine is the place where an Urluquai captain has set up shop, in his corvette, the Shining Kelp. Although he probably can't be trusted, he's willing to serve as a mercenary, and I could use some extra firepower, so I sign him up. We can always kill him and take his ship after we get back to Glory. I give him a structural gluon shield, which he can't use, and he joins up.

On the way to Shard, Brass calls me up (again) and tells me that there's only two years left in our voyage. (That's a quirk of the Time Trapper; Brass & company forget that they already called you up.)

Shard is, unfortunately, occupied by Urluquai. The radar signature indicates there's a carrier and four other ships. With time running out, I have no choice but to fight them, if I want to get a good score for you.

This fight is going to be a bit worse than I would like. You can't see them, but there are two Deep Hunters behind my fleet. While I've gotten pretty good at blowing them away, I had better weapons when I've done so in the past. This fight could get a bit touch and go. I'll need the Klakar to help me here.

(A few minutes later...)

...and it didn't quite work out. The Carrier tore through most of our ships even more thoroughly than I would have expected it to. The corvettes and deep hunters went out okay, but we couldn't overcome their fighter support.

That about ends this game, with an adventure score of 2516. It's a pity we weren't able to make it home, but that's how it goes sometimes. Maybe the next game will be more exciting, eh?

Thanks for your time reading this; I hope you enjoyed it as much as I enjoyed making it, and the mod.