GamePrep: ConsOps, 2.06

Considering where we left off with 2×05, my original plan was for a fairly large tactical combat as the PCs put into motion their plan to A) have local SWAT storm the warehouse which B) the PCs use as cover to enter as well while dressed as SWAT. I really thought this was a great idea since not only does it allow the characters to effectively offload some of the ‘heavy lifting’ to local assets, but just the idea that they’re getting some locals to do their dirty work without said locals actually knowing that they’re doing it is crazy awesome tradecraft. However, knowing that the HOSTILES who nabbed their person of interest are Russian super special forces, specifically Vympel Spetsnaz, and knowing that Russians do not mess around, I realized that the amount of time that would pass before the SWAT personnel stormed the warehouse would be more than enough for the HOSTILES to break BRAGI … and kill him.

So I was torn: it would not properly reward PC initiative for a great plan by having them discover BRAGI was dead, but at the same time, it would be unrealistic for the Russians to inexplicably screw around. Factor in what I wanted to do with REILLY … yeah. I started to re-evaluate what I wanted to do.

This bit of rethinking has given me to my current “plan” (if you want to call it that.) And that “plan” plays out like this:

  • We start “some time” later (probably around 2 hours or so later) with the PCs decked out in appropriate gear – assault vest with trauma plates, frag helmet, tactical goggles, etc. – alongside the Egyptian special forces Unit 777 personnel who have been called into this mess.
  • Brief flashback: PCs did something sneaky to get the government to respond. I’m leaning toward them calling the equivalent of 911, exclaiming in Arabic that they just saw dudes with guns escorting a guy with a hood over his head into a warehouse, and then PC fires several rounds near the phone receiver. Egyptian plainclothes police show up soon after and recon the warehouse, noting very quickly that there are heavily armed dudes present on the grounds. Soon after, a NSA operative arrives to take over and Unit 777 personnel begin appearing soon after.
  • The NSA operative is the older brother of the NSA guy that BAUM straight-up murdered in Port Said.
  • PCs are easily able to mingle with the Unit 777 people due to the soldiers wearing the face-concealing balaclavas; however, VEGA doesn’t speak Arabic and REILLY needs to avoid attracting attention because he may have trained with some of these guys.
  • Just as the warehouse assault is about to begin, a car with two HOSTILES pulls out of the warehouse; the NSA agent-in-charge immediately points to VEGA and REILLY, and orders them to follow that car! This means that those two players will take over standard Unit 777 soldier types during the actual assault. Although … yeah. One of them will have the option to run the NSA operative (250-pt character using the Investigator template from Action 1; stats further below.)
  • This is probably the map I’m going to use:

  • There are a lot of hostiles in place on the grounds of the warehouse and inside it, and they’re pretty heavily armed. With the sheer amount of firepower that is at their disposal, I could probably fairly easily take out the attacking PCs, so I’ll have to make sure to not wholly overwhelm them.
  • This is almost to the point of needing Mass Combat … hmm … that’s actually not a terrible idea, now that I think about it. I could pre-roll everything beforehand, then presume the PCs are doing Significant Actions. So I’ll know how the overall engagement goes and can focus on the smaller scale thing. With that in mind, the defending HOSTILES are 2 units TL8 Riflemen (Good Equipment, Elite Troops), with … let’s call it a TL8 Light Truck. This looks to give me a Total TS of 860 with Fire TS of 800. The attackers are 2 units of TL8 Riflemen (Good Equipment, Good Quality), also with a TL7 APC (Basic Equipment, Average Troop Quality) which proves a total TS of 740. This appears to provide a +1 bonus to the HOSTILES’ strategy check. Total number of elements engaged are 6, which means each “round” is 15 minutes, so that should easily cover the entire encounter here. The HOSTILES also gain a +1 Defense bonus due to the area.
  • Mass combat rounds play out thus: 1. Choose Risk; 2. PC Significant Actions (I maintain this should actually come after the next one; 3. Choose Battle Strategy; 4. Battle Strategy roll; 5. Misfortunes of War. So … Risk. Both sides are bold and confident, so they’re going with Risk of 1. Presuming I shift the Significant Actions to 3, and have Battle Strategy as second, the HOSTILES are going to go with Defense, while the Unit 777 guys are going to use an Indirect Attack. Let’s presume average rolls (10 on 3d6) vs Strategy-12, so both sides succeeded by 2; which means that at the moment, the HOSTILES currently win the first “round” by 3, taking 10% casualties and inflicting 15%. Presuming the four active “PCs” (or rather the two PCs, one Named NPC, and one Elite Soldier Unnamed NPC) accomplish some sort of ‘significant action’ during the firefight, this shifts the results somewhat: now the HOSTILES lose the first “round”, take 15% casualties, inflict 10% on Unit 777. So I just have to figure out what that Significant Action is …
  • Okay … Significant Action. Let’s see. Agent EL-SISI has just ordered REILLY and VEGA to pursue the departing car. He then says “You, you and you, with me. We’ll sweep in and hit them from the side while the rest of the unit goes in the front.” Naturally, two of the “you, you and yous” are BAUM and MAHONEY. Their objective will be to breach the warehouse itself while dealing with any dug-in HOSTILES along the way.
  • Upon breaching the warehouse, PCs will have opportunity to find their person of interest who is hanging suspended from some hooks in the ceiling. He’s been visibly tortured, with hideous burns and cuts, and there’s something wrong with his face…
  • At that, I want to cut away to the pursuit team who will follow the car with the two guys in it into a parking garage some distance away. Presumably, they pursue them into the garage where they’re going to observe these guys get cut down by … BRAGI! (Although I may have him tear off his face-mask ala Mission Impossible. Logically, the two PCs will swarm toward him, weapons raised…
  • And upon seeing them approach, BRAGI will say (in Arabic) “Take a deep breath and clear your mind. What is best is that you comply. Compliance will be rewarded. Are you ready to comply?” to REILLY. Fans of the show, Agents of SHIELD will recognize this and the player who is running him is already pre-warned. The best part here is that VEGA … doesn’t speak Arabic and if retroactively spends some points at the beginning of the session to do so, then BRAGI says this in Russian, which only REILLY knows. And once REILLY responds to him – “Happy to comply, sir.” – BRAGI will tell him to shoot VEGA.
  • Hopefully, this will be the end scene of the session because having REILLY shoot VEGA with his under-barrel shotgun … which hurls VEGA off the parking garage would be a great way of ending for the night…

Agent EL-SISI

ST 10; DX 13; IQ 14; HT 11.
Damage 1d-2/1d; BL 20 lbs; HP 10; Will 14; Per 16; FP 11.
Basic Speed 6.00; Basic Move 6; Dodge 9; Parry 10.
5’11”; 200 lbs

Advantages/Disadvantages: Chummy; Contact Group (NSA) (effective skill 12, 9 or less); Curious (12); Danger Sense (16); Duty (Egyptian NSA, Extremely Hazardous, 15); Honesty (12); Intelligence Rank 2; Intuition (14); Luck; Overconfidence (12); Stubbornness

Languages: Arabic (Native); English (Accented); Farsi (Accented); Hebrew (Accented); Russian (Accented)

Skills: Administration-14; Brawling-12; Climbing-12; Computer Operation-15; Criminology-14; Cryptography-13; Current Affairs (Business)-15; Current Affairs (High Culture)-15; Current Affairs (Politics)-15; Current Affairs (Popular Culture)-15; Current Affairs (Science & Tech)-15; Current Affairs (Sports)-15; Detect Lies-15; Diplomacy-13; Driving (Automobile)-12; Electronics Operation (Surveillance)-14; Forced Entry-13; Forgery-13; Guns (Pistol)-14; Guns (Rifle)-13; Holdout-13; Intelligence Analysis-15; Interrogation-14; Lip Reading (Human)-16; Observation-16; Research-14; Search-16; Shadowing-14; Smuggling-14; Soldier-13; Stealth-13; Wrestling-13

Equipment: Glock 17 9mm pistol; concealable vest

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