Quest Deep Periphery Quest (Battletech Sandbox Empire Builder)

SuperHeavy

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Right now the Amaris Loyalists don't have anything to fear from us nor do they know that they need to fear us. eventually that will change but for now we are still safe in anonymity with the Amaris Remnants.
They hopefully will stay busy with their own internal problems, but if they turn their eyes in our direction I would feel more comfortable with a pile of Alamos and ASF. Whatever limited warship production we can pull off as a one system power is simply not enough. That's why I want more Jumpship production over starting our warship program.
 

Knowledgeispower

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Honestly we have the forces to beat back even a pair of McKennas as is although the losses would be ugly
 
Turn 54 - It Was A Night Like This

LordSunhawk

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Turn 54 - It Was A Night Like This

In early January two issues remaining from the Drac invasion became, well, relevant. Of far lesser importance, the attack occurred during the build-up to the Pan Griffon Games and, unfortunately, many of the athletes had been in shelters on Castor during the attack, several of which came under attack by the Dracs.

You’ve lost many of your top talents in athletics and civilian marksmanship, along with the whole Griffin’s Roost Fencing Team. Recruitment had brought both teams up in numbers, but sports commentators are pretty certain that the NRI is going to skunk you during the upcoming Olympics.

The twins, of course, are bending over backwards to ensure that all motor racing events are scrupulously clean and fair, free of even the faintest suspicion of shenanigans. Luckily most of the top drivers in the various racing series had been at an event on Nowy Gdansk when the attack came, and the twins have assembled a veritable ‘Dream Team’ of motorsports aces.

The other lingering issue is more problematic than simple embarrassment on the sports field.

The original colonists had managed to bring several cultivars of banana trees to Griffin’s Roost, which had taken to the climate and soil quite well indeed. In fact, the only continent which didn’t have extensive banana groves was, ironically, Castor, if you exclude the completely desolate Phoenix, of course.

One of the biggest threats to the banana crop, however, is blight. As all banana trees are clones of each other, a blight risks completely wiping out an entire species. This had happened several times on Earth prior to the invention of the Kearny-Fuchida Drive and was always rather devastating to the banana industry when it happened.

As such, they spent a great deal of R&D into preventing and curing blights. The primary research center was privately operated on Castor, where the various potential blights were studied and cures developed for them in order to safeguard the industry. Since the soil on Castor didn’t support banana trees well, it made sense to do the research in an area where any accidental releases would wither and die on the vine, as it were, rather than infecting healthy plants.

You look over the security measures that the facility took for safety and are quite seriously impressed by just how serious they take it. Indeed, looking at some of the processes and procedures they use has you making notes to ensure that your own biological research facilities have at least this level of protection.

But all the measures in the world don’t stand up well to an entire company of Drac assault mechs stomping straight through the facility, blowing up anything intact that they saw, and using containment tanks filled with blight samples as kickballs. As a consequence, all of said mechs had been massively contaminated by the blight.

The blight wasn’t dangerous to humans, and didn’t trip any CBW sensors, so when the wreckage was salvaged and sent for reclamation and study nobody noticed the presence of blight spores.

And now your favorite Blue Java bananas were under threat, as blight had been detected on Pollux, traced to the salvage yards where those specific mechs had been broken down for scrap metal.

Your favorite ‘ice cream’ bananas could go away! Leaving you without their deliciousness, and risking a rather robust industry on the planet.

Luckily the research lab had been in the final phases of testing a cure for this particular blight. Indeed, the relevant authorities have already cleared that cure for use, but the lab hadn’t yet labeled research as complete on the grounds that their own internal standards had not yet been fully satisfied.

You check, and it indeed looks like the lab's internal standards are higher than the general standards for human medications and medical procedures. Much higher. The lab is adamant, however, that even with a blight raging it would be irresponsible to release the cure until it had completed all internal checks. Dealing with monoclonal species like bananas, any mistake, no matter how trivial, could be disastrous, any unanticipated reaction could be catastrophic.
[]Release it anyways
  • The cure for the blight meets or exceeds every single government standard for the purpose and has cleared bars higher than even human-oriented drugs.
  • Ends event
    • Small chance of issues with the cure triggering a new event
[]Defer to the lab
  • The experts have spoken, like it or not
  • Risk of -1% GDP on Griffin’s Roost

In other business, you decide that the Nowy Gdansk shipyard will currently focus on expanding to support a second Jumpship slip, while the Griffin’s Roost one will focus on preparing for Warship production. You do get word that Griffon IV is now capable of supporting an orbital yard of their own.

On the issue of orbital yards, several engineers have come up with a proposal to build a yard complex in orbit of Griffon VI. It would require the construction of an O’Neill Cylinder there, but they have designed a DoME based yard setup that would, in effect, produce an entire Warship slip at once. It would be far more expensive than simply building up the modular shipyards like you have been, and would lack the ability to mass produce Dropships, but the proposal would have yard space for Jumpships and Warships available much more quickly. You get a note from The Perky One that she’s generally in support of such a project, but that it would require more research to ensure that it will work, rather than wasting money on a possible boondoggle.

You send a memo over to Mary about it, and she informs you that the teams that have been working on validating proposed DoME projects fall under the general category of ‘terraforming’, which has been expanded to mean more things than simply making places habitable. You’d have to fund that area in order for this concept to be proofed.

Just before you head out to Nowy Gdansk for the Opening Ceremonies of the Olympiad a diplomatic delegation from the New Rasalhague Republic arrives, bringing with them credentials stating that they’ve been ordered to meet with your government in order to reciprocate your efforts at establishing full diplomatic relations. They also have a message of thanks for the shipment of Shilones.

You invite the delegation to accompany you to the Opening Ceremony, both because you don’t want to miss it, but also so as to impress them with more than the Griffon Empire’s martial prowess.

The ceremony itself is quite impressive, lasting three hours from beginning to end with plenty of spectacular entertainment. The highlight, as far as you and probably 99.9999% of the viewing audience was concerned, was the lighting of the cauldron. You’d wondered how they’d pull off lighting it, when it was suspended by four cables high above the stadium. While you were certain that at least one of said cables had a gas supply for it, there were no connections by which the thing could be lit.

Until, that is, the Eldest padded into the stadium carrying the final torch of the relay in a holder fixed to his tail, which he simply lifted up and used to light the cauldron while looking insufferably smug about the entire thing.

You sometimes forgot just how big the Eldest was, until he did something to draw attention to it.
 

SuperHeavy

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But all the measures in the world don’t stand up well to an entire company of Drac assault mechs stomping straight through the facility, blowing up anything intact that they saw, and using containment tanks filled with blight samples as kickballs.
An all out invasion is one thing but this is just mean spirited tomfoolery.
 

Vilegrave

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huh, guess thats one way for the NRR to find out that the Grifftigers are Sentient.

[X] Defer to the lab

It's unfortunate but better listen to the experts, hopefully we can store some seed samples of the trees on dropships/space stations just in case it does spread to the rest of the planet.
 
Orbital Shipyard Segments

LordSunhawk

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Incidentally, due to constant questions and misunderstandings about the Orbital Shipyards and how they work, I broke out DoGA l3 and mocked up a standard orbital shipyard module.

Shipyard Segment (Showing Large Dropship Bay) Front.JPG
This is the 'front' of the module, showing a Large Dropship construction bay, the regular dropship bay is about a third this size, but there are two of them.

Shipyard Segment - Rear.JPG

And this is the 'back' of the module. 5 of these to a side make up a single Jumpship slip. And yes, Jumpships (and later Warships) are built in unpressurized yards, while dropships are in a pressurized building hall. One of the reasons it's so much faster to build Dropships.

I did not model the core of the Shipyard complex, nor did I model the segments between Yard modules (visually, think the slab you see on the rear of the yard module but with additional scaffolding.) Those segments are 'free' as part of the upgrade process.

Finally...
Shipyard Warship Segment.JPG

These are the segments that turn a Jumpship yard into one capable of building Warships.
 

Bear Ribs

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It's unfortunate but better listen to the experts, hopefully we can store some seed samples of the trees on dropships/space stations just in case it does spread to the rest of the planet.
There are no seeds, there hasn't been a viable banana seed in thousands of years. That's the issue with bananas today, they've been so heavily modified that they can't bear seeds anymore so all existing banana plants (of a specific type, the ones you buy in stores are Cavendish) are clones of each other produced by grafting. That's why when you peel a banana you never find seeds inside it like you do other fruits.

[X] Defer to the lab
 

ShadowArxxy

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Just to slightly clarify: wild bananas *do* have seeds. The problem is that wild bananas don't exist on Griffin's Roost; our ancestors only brought commercial banana cultivars, which means all of them are monoclonal type strains.
 
Turn 54 - 20 Million Years Ago

LordSunhawk

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Turn 54 - 20 Million Years Ago

Jeremy is laughing when he comes into the ‘office’ of your hotel suite. “OK, Mom, if I didn’t know that the person behind this is a confirmed practical jokester I’d be asking for referral information to the Department of Periphery Studies, which I might still do to prank the bastard back, but look at this.” he tosses a datapad on the desk as he collapses, still laughing, into the chair on the other side.

You take a look, and at first it looks like a Completely Serious Military Procurement Proposal… until you realize that the reason you are thinking in caps like that is because it is titled ‘Completely Serious Military Procurement Proposal’ and you start snickering. Reading further, whoever this ‘Captain Jenkins’ is has managed to put together what, on the surface, looks serious, until you think about it.

An entire regiment of ‘special purpose artillery mechs’ with no armor, no secondary weapons, a top speed under 20 kilometers an hour… sure that would be a lot of Arrow IV, but there’s an asterisk noting that simply firing its own weapons would result in the mech’s destruction. This is actually spun as a benefit in terms of ‘reducing long term maintenance requirements and thus eliminating cost-of-ownership expenses over the platforms lifespan’. Then you see the other asterisk noting that simply moving the thing would result in it collapsing under its own mass, which is likewise billed as ‘reducing required training time’ by ‘eliminating redundant operator skill requirements’.

The last page is where you completely lose it yourself, as it gives a ‘desired operator profile’ for these ‘wonder mechs’ being ‘anybody who thinks this is a good idea, and all members of Parliament who aren’t the Eldest, unless the Empress likes them.’.

You manage a straight face for a second, intending to jokingly order Jeremy to approve this proposal, but can’t get it out before you start howling with laughter again.

“Look at the last page.” Jeremy manages from where he’s still fighting a futile rear-guard action against laughter.

You advance to the indicated page, then come dangerously close to falling off your chair. ‘This proposal authored by Totally Not Coordinator Kurita’s Magic Bushido Hands’ with an animated image of ‘jazz hands’.

This Jenkins fellow has a future in comedy, that’s for certain.

“I do have some serious business though, now that that’s out of the way.” Jeremy says as he finally gets under control, allowing you to refocus and nod. “We have a number of light and medium mech designs which are, well, functionally obsolete with our new organizational setup for light and medium mechs. We would like to halt procurement of spare parts and look into recycling existing spares stockpiles of the unused designs.”

[]Scrap ‘em
  • Next procurement that requires Endosteel requires 9 less resources (next procurement only)
  • Next procurement that requires Double Heat Sinks require 9 less resources (next procurement only)
  • The following designs will be removed
    • Ambush
    • Pathfinder
    • Skirmisher
    • Trooper
    • Shortbow
    • Crossbow
[]We might someday need them
  • No changes

The Griffon teams aren’t doing very well at the moment, although you’d kind of expected that. They’d been almost uniformly crushed in athletics competitions, squeaking out bronze medals at best but generally looking utterly and totally outclassed by the NRI competitors. You expected that as you have High School and lower end Collegiate athletes on your team, versus the best that the NRI has to offer.

The Men’s Gymnastics competition is even more lopsided, as the entire men’s gymnastics team had been trapped in one of the shelters destroyed by the Dracs, along with their coaches and training staff, leaving a group of high school kids to compete who’d never before competed above the club level. The kids were game enough, but you had no truly qualified coaches for them, and none of them had anywhere close to the level of training that would make them competitive. The NRI team showed some incredible sportsmanship, however, as they realized this and took the time to help the youngsters out, even asking the judges at a few points for delays while they gave some valuable coaching to the kids. In the end, while the NRI team handily won every single medal available in men’s gymnastics, even the Griffon fans were cheering them for their exemplary conduct.

Then comes the first shock of the games. Most of the women’s team had also been lost in the attack, but the star of the 2980 Olympics had been recovering from an injury on Nowy Gdansk when the attack happened. She and her personal coach had managed to put together a decent squad, but up until the morning of the competition it was unclear if she’d be medically cleared to compete.

But she did… and she showed just why she’d been so dangerous four years ago. It was obvious that every step she took was painful, but she powered through it to put on a jaw-dropping display, and in the process she took home the Gold. She had to be carried to the medal stand by her coach, but she managed to lead the Griffon women’s team to victory. After the competition she announces that she’s retiring from competition, but that the very young team had agreed to stay together, with her and her coach training them, for the next Olympics.

The Team event? Well, the less said about that the better, you’re not even able to field a complete team, and the NRI utterly crushes you.

The New Rasalhaguian ambassador requests a meeting with you, which you grant. When he is ushered into your presence he wastes no time. He is asking your opinion on whether or not the New Rasalhague Republic would be welcome to compete in the next Olympiad, although he does say that it is unlikely that they’d be able to safely host one of their own and might need to hire one of your jumpships to carry their team to Nova Roma for the competition.
[]Better to compete on the sporting field than the battlefield
  • Next Olympiad will feature three competitors
  • Improves NRR opinion
[]They may no longer be serving the Dragon, but they aren’t your friends and you still don’t trust them
  • No changes in next Olympiad
  • Harms NRR opinion

Even while you are on the planet of Nowy Gdansk for the Olympics, you still need to deal with Parliament.

There’s an election coming up this year for the Chamber of Delegates, and those politicians who had been backed by the media conglomerates in year’s past are desperate. They also are not the sharpest tools in the shed, but still quite talented in the field of political combat.

They push forward a bill that they must know you’ll oppose, simply to give themselves soundbites that will sound good to low information voters and congenital idiots and, hopefully, land them gigs on broadcast news shows as ‘principled activists’ for years to come.

On the surface the bill looks OK, at least if you go by the flowery summary and description and the speeches that they give. Improved animal welfare and food safety, and linking things to preventing the abuse of ‘the helpless’ at the hands of ‘moneyed interests’.

It’s when you read the actual bill that you want to bang your head on the desk. It not only defines slaughtering herd animals for their meat as capital murder, the language is so loose that technically a farmer harvesting grain is ‘murdering’ the plants. The section banning ‘inhumane forced reproduction’ would not only effectively ban nearly every form of animal husbandry, it would also, technically, ban the use of any sort of mechanized seed planters. It would effectively ban weed control methods of any kind whatsoever, including simply picking the weeds by hand (felony murder!). But they word it in such convoluted and absurd ways that it is impossible for anybody who isn’t a lawyer AND isn’t familiar with highly technical terms to realize what it is saying without it being explained to them.

There’s no way this is going to pass, and there’s no way you’d support it even if it did. It’ll not even make it out of committee. But those backing it don’t care about that, all they want is to have soundbites and the ability to posture about their opponents ‘supporting rape and murder of the innocent!’. You get word from some of their staffers that they even intend to use any attempt by the Crown to set the record straight as ‘Crown tyranny against free expression’.

You are feeling rather vindictive here, this truly is pissing you off, to use the vernacular, and simply ignoring their idiocy might not be the best move.
[]Ignore them anyways
  • -5 Politics
  • +1 Support - Chamber of Delegates
[]Use the IBC to broadcast the details of their plan, using mockery to illustrate just how absurd it is
  • +5 Politics
  • +2 Support - Chamber of Delegates
  • -1 Influence - Chamber of Delegates
[]These knuckleheads are obviously prime candidates for tenured lifetime appointments to the Department of Periphery Studies
  • -10 Politics
  • +5 Approval Change
  • -2 Support - Chamber of Delegates
  • -2 Influence - Chamber of Delegates
  • Unlocks (amusing) Department of Periphery Studies events

The Imperial Senate, on the other hand, under the leadership of the Eldest has proposed some very useful legislation.

Specifically in recognition of the recent fighting, and as a means of increasing the strength of the Griffon Empire’s production capabilities, they are proposing an Empire-wide bond campaign to specifically bankroll a Megafactory on Griffon IV as well as a new orbital shipyard above the same planet. As part of the scheme, every holder of a certain value in said bonds would be able to trade their bonds for a plaque on either the Megafactory or the shipyard honoring themselves or the organization or person of their choice.

They are even quite ingenious in how they propose to repay the bonds, specifically assigning a portion of the Senate’s own discretionary budget to the task to repay them over thirty years. The Senate has hired private industrial teams to spearhead the project, much to the mild disgruntlement of DoME, but it does mean that it won’t impact your flexibility in terms of getting things done yourself.

Of course, if the Senate is paying for the whole project, they’d have extra control over the project, so there’s that. Of course, if you supplement the funding, you’d have more control of things, and it wouldn’t actually irritate the Senate as they are just wanting to support the Empire, not gather power or prestige to themselves.
[]Support the Plan
  • On Turn 59 receive a Mech-focused Megafactory on Griffon IV
  • Each turn until Turn 64 receive a free Orbital Shipyard module orbiting Griffon IV
    • Will focus on Large Dropships
    • After Turn 64 must be turned into a Warship yard
[]Subsidize the Plan
  • Costs 2,000,000 a turn until Turn 59, then 100,000 a turn until Turn 64
  • Allows players to choose ASF or Mech for the Megafactory, and likewise Large or Normal Dropships for the Orbital Shipyard and whether or not to continue expanding for more Jumpship production
 
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