The Klingons dispatched an F5S scout-frigate to the ringed gas giant Wyskoon to see if the Hydrans had set up a base there. The frigate launched probe drones toward the planet, but departed (to avoid contact with a Hydran patrol) before it received their transmissions. The probe drones collected the information and ejected their memory canisters at various pre-selected locations for later pickup….

As luck would have it, a Hydran freighter, visiting the the system to scoop gas from the giant’s atmosphere, detected the approach of the Orion ship and summoned the local police patrol.

Patch and I have been playing this unusual SFB scenario from S1 on line for the last few weeks. An Orion Light Raider is trying to pick up three probe memory canisters while dodging a Hydran Gendarme (police ship/coast guard cutter) around a ringed gas giant. If he fires on the Hydran, he’ll get a second police ship to fight in a couple turns. The Hydran has no such compunctions.

The LR is definitely a superior ship, but not by much, as they’re effectively the same size. Also, the first Gendarme has two fighters on-board to help even things out.

The LR went straight in, grabbed the first canister, and zipped through the ring, to grab the second one (floating in the atmosphere of the gas giant) and ducked around the giant one way, while the Gendarme went the other to try to head it off. This lead to a confrontation at the end of turn 3 just outside the rings (with the Orion headed for the third canister). The Hydrans lost both fighters before they could fire (bad habit of mine), but no internals (though my #1 was gone from ring damage, the Orion had been a bit luckier). The Gendarme managed to knock down two shields and do a couple of meaningless internals.

Turn 4 was pretty quick. He dashed off after defeating my tractor attempt, grabbed the last canister, and left. I shot at him as soon as the phasers cycled, but he was already out of effective range. Everything I could throw at him generated one point. Absorbed by reinforcement.

So, the Orions win with a full set, giving him the highest level of victory. This is actually somewhat better than historically, where the LR blew apart the GEN and left before the second one arrived.

With this out of the way, the year is now Y145 and we’re all set for a big battle this weekend!