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Growing Horizons: Inner Sphere - Quest

Blade4

Well-known member
I fully expect Comstar to attend regardless of our invitations. Or try to attend, jumping unannounced into a jump point or a pirate point, all to (claiming to) provide all attending parties unmolested access to trustworthy and proven FTL communications.
Or they claim to be here to check up on the Circinus HPG that has been curiously silent for a year or two, and they just want to make sure no-one is ruining their expensive and delicate equipment.
It also wouldn’t surprise me if they jumped into the Circinus Oort Cloud, for some old school espionage for instance. If they do then it’d be fun to have our FTL sensors detect their and then pinpoint their location via repeated HYDAR measurements. A well coordinated operation would be able to check up on / ambush them before the light cone of departing ships announced to the Comstar ship that anything was going on.
Heck, they’ll have the choice of excuses, but they’ll be there. The question is, will they be in the system in a recognised Comstar manner, or will it be via intermediaries and agents.
By now we should have informed them that the hpg was scuttled by it operators so there is that. If they do show up they will be meet with warships and marine boarding parties because we are defeacto at war with them. If they show up in the oort belt a "lucky" patrol can find them. We probable do not want to let slip how good we are with hyperspace tech yet. If someone jumps in that far out well we can still go after them because there is no reason for someone to jump out there unless they are up to something and saying we have sensors and patrols that far out makes sense if you take into account berserker threat.

I see that none of my repeated hints rang a Bell.
@Blade4
These are the hint words:
phreak
whistle
crunch
Thing is i have always sucked at guessing games unless blindingly obvious. Probable because a i am a extreme introvert who does not follow pop culture or much culture at all so yeah...
 

Schreiben

Active member
So, brief overview of John Draper that I think is pertinent to our quest:
He was fascinated with radio. While he was in the airforce, he enabled his fellow service members to make free phone calls by accessing the local telephone switchboard. He headed a pirate (unlicensed) radio station. He later came in contact with (and became a legendary) phone phreak, someone who was heavily involved in tricking the then current phone system into allowing free calls. The tools with which he managed that were toy whistles found in Cap’n Crunch 'cereal'.

The in my opinion most likely interpretation we can draw from this is that it is possibly to piggy-back on existing FTL comm systems via exploit, possibly without the provider (for HPG: Comstar, WCDC, that other one) noticing. This is different from the HPG backscatter we used to listen in on Comstar HPG communications. This interpretation would use the hardware/software for two-way communication. The method with which this is possible is very low-tech compared to running a FTL communication system.
Whoever is able to do this, could practically use any HPG to transmit messages to any other HPG in range (with probable possibility of daisy-chaining way out). This is basically a communication network they wouldn’t need to maintain, but be able to coordinate/communicate adjacent to, but outside of the Comstar channels.
 

Warringer

Goto Wogon for Hard SciFi
Author
So, brief overview of John Draper that I think is pertinent to our quest:
He was fascinated with radio. While he was in the airforce, he enabled his fellow service members to make free phone calls by accessing the local telephone switchboard. He headed a pirate (unlicensed) radio station. He later came in contact with (and became a legendary) phone phreak, someone who was heavily involved in tricking the then current phone system into allowing free calls. The tools with which he managed that were toy whistles found in Cap’n Crunch 'cereal'.

The in my opinion most likely interpretation we can draw from this is that it is possibly to piggy-back on existing FTL comm systems via exploit, possibly without the provider (for HPG: Comstar, WCDC, that other one) noticing. This is different from the HPG backscatter we used to listen in on Comstar HPG communications. This interpretation would use the hardware/software for two-way communication. The method with which this is possible is very low-tech compared to running a FTL communication system.
Whoever is able to do this, could practically use any HPG to transmit messages to any other HPG in range (with probable possibility of daisy-chaining way out). This is basically a communication network they wouldn’t need to maintain, but be able to coordinate/communicate adjacent to, but outside of the Comstar channels.
Very close. :D
 

Durabys

A Cheshire Exile
So, brief overview of John Draper that I think is pertinent to our quest:
He was fascinated with radio. While he was in the airforce, he enabled his fellow service members to make free phone calls by accessing the local telephone switchboard. He headed a pirate (unlicensed) radio station. He later came in contact with (and became a legendary) phone phreak, someone who was heavily involved in tricking the then current phone system into allowing free calls. The tools with which he managed that were toy whistles found in Cap’n Crunch 'cereal'.

The in my opinion most likely interpretation we can draw from this is that it is possibly to piggy-back on existing FTL comm systems via exploit, possibly without the provider (for HPG: Comstar, WCDC, that other one) noticing. This is different from the HPG backscatter we used to listen in on Comstar HPG communications. This interpretation would use the hardware/software for two-way communication. The method with which this is possible is very low-tech compared to running a FTL communication system.
Whoever is able to do this, could practically use any HPG to transmit messages to any other HPG in range (with probable possibility of daisy-chaining way out). This is basically a communication network they wouldn’t need to maintain, but be able to coordinate/communicate adjacent to, but outside of the Comstar channels.
In the Dark Age HPG Apocalypse, someone was able to put the SLDF AI virus from the Battletech game on the carrier wave and kill all Hyperspace communication and cause damage to Hyperspace itself. This caused a massive increase in misjumps of even Jumpships, not just an impossibility to use FTL comms and Black boxes. The Emperor, Adam, and the other Elder Beings in Hyperspace will be aghast when they learn this is possible...to damage Hyperspace via an AI virus on an HPG carrier Hyperwave.

AKA: ComStar is about to open a can of worms and castrate themselves just to stop us. Welp. Never doubt the lengths to which a fanatic will go. This includes self-harm.
 
Last edited:

Schreiben

Active member
In the Dark Age HPG Apocalypse, someone was able to put the SLDF AI virus from the Battletech game on the carrier wave and kill all Hyperspace communication and cause damage to Hyperspace itself. This caused a massive increase in misjumps of even Jumpships, not just an impossibility to use FTL comms and Black boxes. The Emperor, Adam, and the other Elder Beings in Hyperspace will be aghast when they learn this is possible...to damage Hyperspace via an AI virus on an HPG carrier Hyperwave.

AKA: ComStar is about to open a can of worms and castrate themselves just to stop us. Welp. Never doubt the lengths to which a fanatic will go. This includes self-harm.
That sounds so technobabble that it’d make Gene Roddenberry blush in shame.
Yet here I sit, head hung low, because I could parse and understand what you just said.
But man, rarely has a paragraph raised my mental bullshit! flags as much as this one. Seriously, this is such a ludicrous ass-pull that I want to whip the writers who came up with it. And the setting for allowing physics to simply be bent over like this and take it dry without a millions souls crying out in agony.
Hell, unless Warringer explicitly tells me things happened as you described in this GH:IS time line, I’ll ignore the fluff description and just assume hyperspace (whale) had a random localised hiccup and Comstar just claimed the results as their own doing. Seriously, that makes more sense than what apparently is claimed to have happened, and I just came up with that literally in the time it took me to write this paragraph, so… a couple minutes? Seriously, the writers failed so hard they practically face planted into their own arse and are now stuck tickling their lower intestines with their tongue.
Geez, I think I’m gonna take a Trump Treatment and inject myself with ground down UV lightbulbs dissolved in bleach just for the horrifying agony coursing through my veins to distract me and hopefully wipe that paragraph out of my short term memory.
 

Blade4

Well-known member
Yeah dark age canon is a mess of what the fuck crap. Mostly because i think they are trying to force a reboot by trashing it.
 
Growing Horizons Wiki

Warringer

Goto Wogon for Hard SciFi
Author
I just wanted to inform everyone that I have found it nessecary to set up a new homepage and used the time to set up a Wiki for Growing Horizons.

This includes some of the information about Growing Horizons: Inner Sphere.

I plan to use it as a central repository for information about the Growing Horizons multiverse.
 

Warringer

Goto Wogon for Hard SciFi
Author
Yeah that should be very helpful as this just keeps getting bigger and bigger.
Yeah...

Especially with my various documents... >_>
 

Blade4

Well-known member
So... Just to have something to talk about what do yall think should be our next major priorities? Of course it depends on how the conference goes but in broad strokes for me...

For econ actions we need to wrap up the build and weapons tech but at same time we need to get those colonies off the ground hopefully and be ready to throw uplift actions at neighboring worlds to get in good with them or uplift new members. Colonies are bit of a lesser priority to me perhaps but we still need to get them going. Plus we will probable get new actions for setting up trade deals and routes with the houses that should be very lucrative especially with new stuff from tech and weapons.

For Diplo our actions will probable be consumed dealing with the FedCom and Mariks at least a while but as we get them free we really need to look inward a bit. We still have hold outs in our own sphere and we have a rather large number of independent worlds withing 60 light years we need to get on board. They are already established worlds that with relatively little input could give rapid returns. We also do not need them getting tricked into shit deal to be a base for a house to get inside the cluster. The houses will be trying to find ways into our sphere and a diplo deal with a independent world one jump from our core would be very useful for them.

As for military? That's a bit more complicated. Still have research to do of course and that anti pirate probable needs to be done as well. At this point i am assuming there are no pirates nearby but more probable show up eventually so might as well. Hell more likely those patrols will see off probing deniable assets from the houses and then maybe a few probing attacks by real pirates passing through. We might also get a action on firming up and patrolling borders. See what happens. As for path from here research wise we probable should focus more on ground at the moment. Build and weapons should give us some upgrade options for our ground stuff and would like to build more tank and mech designs for options. At very least would like a 75 to 85 ton mech for heavy/assault and a 90+ ton tank for similar roles. And perhaps a light tank design to round out them as well. We also need to build some export quality tanks and mechs. We need stuff we can sell or hand out to worlds that does not hand out samples of our tech and not so divergent they cant maintain them themselves. If nothing else handing out gear only we can fix is very rude and can make people paranoid about your intentions. This also lets use outfit our mercs who by their nature are politically unreliable. I assume the houses or at least their nearby worlds will be happy to snap up excess production as well.

As for navy? Hands down we have the best known period. Its frankly rather absurd how much better ours is. In universe we have no peer. Outside the only ones I know are the clans and they would not want the fight after the initial clashes being unable to really replace the losses they would take. Though we will make a permanent rival of the Snow Ravens who will be overjoyed to final have one and terrified by how far behind they are. Once the houses realize how far behind they are this will start a crash warship projects... That still will not help them all that much because our tech and industry means we should always be able to build faster and greater numbers than them and individual units superior to what they got unless they get very lucky with salvage and reverse engineering. but could still get very dangerous for us. As is i think our biggest need is not new designs but as i have said before refining what we got now. We need to do cap weapons then perhaps do a pass over our current ships including sub caps and upgrade at needed.

We also need to do a defense research as well badly.

As it stands none of our caps ships can take a full volley from their own forward or broadside guns and not melt. Its not a problem right now but eventually we will meet a peer naval enemy or the houses will start building warships that are not also freighters like us and then we will start having problems were engagements come down to who can get the first real hit in winning. We need better armor or armor schemes/warship construction. Better stealth/ecm. Better ability to hit at long ranges. Missiles/drones will probable become our go to weapons to stay out of gun range. As is it appears near as i can tell a war with a peer enemy amounts to who's cap warships can kill the others then their surviving cap ships with sub cap squadrons curbstomping on the enemies surviving sub caps.

We need to stay ahead of the curve.
 
Turn 45 - Autumn 2185/3035 - Results

Warringer

Goto Wogon for Hard SciFi
Author
Turn 45 - Autumn 2185/3035

WCDC Defense Council:

[] Warship Roles: active
Time: 3 turns, Chance of success: 70%
Roll 1 of 3, Roll 1d100: 26+5+5 = 36 - Success (Bonus to all military R&D, Bonus to Space Combat R&D)
Roll 2 of 3, Roll 1d100: 28+5+5 = 38 - Success
Roll 3 of 3, Roll 1d100: 100+5+5 = 110 - Crit Success
Combined: 61 - Success

Once Enthat and Haing had joined up with the war games, the image of the effect of WarShips on space combat shifted rapidly, especially once they worked together with Petan and WCDC Belisarius, supporting each other. In the simulated battles Petan and Enthat remained in a supporting role with their largely missile based armaments, while Belisarius and Haing pretty much tore through any simulated opponent.

The simulations and war games were considered to be quite conclusive as they were able take on several Squadrons of heavy combat craft, with only a limited number of light and medium combat craft as their escorts.

As such, it was expected that WarShips would certainly have a future within the WCDC armed forces.

Reward: +20 to any space engagement with a warship present

[] Project Black Light: active
Time: 4 turns, Chance of success: 45%
Roll 1 of 4, Roll 1d100: 4+5+5 = 14 - Failure (Bonus to all military R&D, Bonus to Space Combat R&D)
Roll 2 of 4, Roll 1d100: 7+5+5 = 17 - Failure

The alien plasma weapon continued to defeat any attempts to get any useful data from it, as the biological part of the weapon did not make any sense to the researchers looking into it.

Attempts to get genetic samples from those deceased biological components were considered impossible, as the cleaning of the artifact was too thorough.

active for 2 more turns

WCDC Survey Office:


[] Deep Cover Intelligence II: active
Time: 10 turns, Chance of Success: 60%
Roll 1 of 10, Roll 1d100: 78+10 = 85 - Success (Permanent Survey Squadrons)
Roll 2 of 10, Roll 1d100: 23+10 = 33 - Failure
Roll 3 of 10, Roll 1d100: 95+10 = 105 - Success
Roll 4 of 10, Roll 1d100: 34+10 = 44 - Success
Roll 5 of 10, Roll 1d100: 73+10 = 83 - Success
Roll 6 of 10, Roll 1d100: 69+10 = 79 - Success
Roll 7 of 10, Roll 1d100: 31+10 = 41 - Success
Roll 8 of 10, Roll 1d100: 46+10 = 56 - Success
Roll 9 of 10, Roll 1d100: 52+10 = 62 - Success
Roll 10 of 10, Roll 1d100: 3+10 = 13 - Failure
Combined: 60 - Success
Intelligence Network, Roll 1d100: 98 - Crit Success

The A Ship With A View continues its journey from Bella to Circinus, but is, at the last possible moment, forced to break its cover.

The Jumpship was accosted at the Jump Point by an Overlord class Dropship, threatening to force its way into the Invader class jump ship, should the crew not choose to 'volunteer' for work for the FWL Military. Rather than take up the 'offer', the commander of the A Ship With A View choose to break cover and immediately jump out again, directly towards Circinus.

Even with this problem in the way and the possibility that A Ship With A View may not again be used in an intelligence role, the information gathered about the FWL is certainly worth it.

Not to mention the good work that was done to establish a small intelligence network on Atreus and Marik.

Result: General Information about the Free Worlds League, Intelligence network established

[] Project Orange Grass: active
Time: 5 turns, Chance of success: 65%
Roll 1 of 5, Roll 1d100: 49 - Success
Roll 2 of 5, Roll 1d100: 46 - Success

With the conversion of the captured Invaders class jump ships to the Invader II, several dock yards were selected to work on these conversions, incidentally giving them the opportunity to get experience working with these spacecraft.

active for 3 more turns

Deep Space Signal Intelligence Network


[] Operation Green Granite: active
Time: 8 turns, Chance of success: 50%
Roll 1 of 8, Roll 1d100: 43+5 = 48 - Failure (All DSSINOO operations)
Roll 2 of 8, Roll 1d100: 86+5 = 91 - Success

While previously only the plans had been made, without actually getting the Walsingham class spacecraft to execute it, this time around the Survey Office and the various militaries of the WCDC are willing to part with their surveillance jump ships.

As such, the plan to spread out and cover the widest possible angle to recover information about jump ship traffic in the Inner Sphere begins in early autumn.

active for 6 more turns

WCDC Diplomatic Corps:


[]Circinus Conference: active
Time: 6 turns, Chance of success: 65%
Roll 1 of 6, Roll 1d100: 98 - Crit Success
Roll 2 of 6, Roll 1d100: 33 - Failure
Roll 3 of 6, Roll 1d100: 99 - Crit Success

Freaking Comstar Roll, 1d20: 5 - Comstar does nothing

Following the massive diplomatic incident about the head of the Circinus Conference, the work of Rynem of the Gerant Vorem to find a compromise candidate is successful, with the involved parties deciding that Rynem should take that role. The 84-year old elder statesman of the Quetzal noted he was not amazed and that he would take that job offering, which would be the last of his long career as a diplomat. However, if he was going to take it, he would select his own diplomatic team.

By mid Autumn, he and a team of 35 more diplomats made their way to Circinus, amoung them Adam Prometheus.

On Circinus, the construction of the new compound, by now called the Dag Hammarskjöld Resort, was vastly ahead of schedule, with the local 'terraforming' fully active and expected to create an extensive cover of greenery within the next month, which would look like it had been growing for years. This effect was achieved by years of experience in the construction of space habitats, where these skills were in heavy demand.

On the whole, the compound did have the impression of a modern resort, with six housing complexes arranged around a central diplomatic complex. Each housing complex was identical in construction and layout, with a central meeting room for the diplomatic mission that would live in it for the duration of the Conference. This meeting room was built as a Farraday cage to prevent most methods of intelligence gathering and with light guides to allow natural light into the room, as well as light from external lamps kept outside the room. However, the Survey Office has installed several purely optical surveillance systems into those light guides to gather intelligence about the diplomatic missions.

The layout had been selected to make sure that the FWL and Andurien missions would be housed opposite to each other, with the Lyrans and Federated Suns on one side and the Combine and the WCDC on the other. The buildings themselves were constructed after the latest architectonic fashion on Jerat, and set into the ground, as to disturb the landscape as little as possible. The external design was park like, inviting those present to stroll around and hopefully encounter each other for talks outside the topic of the conference.

The central building complex was made up of several large meeting halls, all specifically designed to make sure that everyone was on the same level and could not take precedent. The main meeting hall was designed as a hexagon, appearing from the outside to be a hollowed out hill, with enormous windows to the outside and unrestricted views at the housing complex of each party.

Other buildings actually contain the amenities of a resort and spa, from a sports hall, over a vast swimming pool to a complete health spa after Asian fashion.

The partially underground construction had a second more martial reason, as it would allow to conceal the several meters thick construction of reinforced bio-nano-concrete, enabling every building to survive heavy bombing. Additionally, several other artificial features of the entire complex contained invisible defensive installations, like heavy anti-air defenses, apertures for the laser core fusion reactor of the complex, as well as missile silos and kinetic weapons. A haha surrounded the entire complex, doubling as a dry moat in case of an attack.

On top of this, WCDC Belisarius was requested to be present in the system to add to the show of force hopefully would dispel any thoughts about easily invading the WCDC. A Redoubt was requested, but confirmation for its use was pending.

While it was unexpected to be needed, several key people in the diplomatic corps and the Survey Office had suggested being 'better safe than sorry'.

active for 3 more turns

[] Long Range Diplomacy - Marian Hegemony:
Time: 8 turns, Chance of success: 50%
Roll 1 of 8, Roll 1d100: 79 - Success
Roll 2 of 8, Roll 1d100: 45 - Failure
Roll 3 of 8, Roll 1d100: 66 - Success
Roll 4 of 8, Roll 1d100: 41 - Failure
Roll 5 of 8, Roll 1d100: 100 - Crit Success
Roll 6 of 8, Roll 1d100: 71 - Success
Roll 7 of 8, Roll 1d100: 9 - Failure

active for 1 more turns

While the diplomatic progress had looked good for a while, the fickle nature of Ceasar O'Reilly never fully disappeared and any further progress stalled, when he simply did not deign to talk to the diplomatic mission for about two months, stating health issues.

WCDC Trade Organization:

[] Build the Technology: active
Time: 4 turns, Chance of success: 60%
Roll 1 of 4, Roll 1d100: 45+10+10+10+10 = 85 - Success (Stronger Economy, Economic Ties, Military-Industrial Complex, Interstellar Communication Network)
Roll 2 of 4, Roll 1d100: 80+10+10+10+10 = 120 - Artificial Crit

More than one company took the chance to get in on a potentially profitable market and began to set up construction lines for the creation of the various goods needed by the Inner Sphere. Soon, however, these companies showed interest in creating modified versions of these goods, including simplified reverse osmosis water filtration systems, or slightly improved myomer fibers.

active for 2 more turns

[] New Settlement Initiative: - 5 votes active
Time: 6 turns, Chance of success: 65%
Roll 1 of 6, Roll 1d100: 40+10+10+10 = 70 - Success (Stronger Economy, Economic Ties, Interstellar Communication Network)

With two worlds independently settled by several nations over the past year, the WCDCTO felt that it was time to review the progress that was made since the previous attempt to get people to settle on these worlds. So far, it looked much better as this time around it was known why the previous settlements had failed, with four worlds proclaimed to be perfectly safe for settlers. Ares and Neu Berlin had already been settled, but more settlements on these worlds and on the other two, Bleak Rock and York, were not out of the question.

As such, the WCDCTO once again offered monetary incentives as well as free Planetary Settlement Kits to anyone willing to settle on either of the four known habitable worlds.

active for 5 more turns

WCDC Office for Science and Development:


[] HFEG Jump: active
Time: 12 turns, Chance of success: 25%
Roll 1 of 12, Roll 1d100: 40+10+10 = 60 - Failure (Research Center Sol, Interstellar Communication Network)
Roll 2 of 12, Roll 1d100: 14+10+10 = 34 - Failure
Roll 3 of 12, Roll 1d100: 77+10+10 = 97 - Artificial Crit
Roll 4 of 12, Roll 1d100: 84+10+10 = 104 - Artificial Crit
Roll 5 of 12, Roll 1d100: 75+10+10 = 95 - Arfificial Crit
Roll 6 of 12, Roll 1d100: 12+10+10 = 32 - Failure

After more than three months of intense work on the various models presented to it, the Quantum Super Computer tasked with working on the problem returned its results, only for the scientists to realize that these results were complete and utter garbage that did not make any type of sense.

It was back to their studies and team meetings to find out what had gone wrong.

active for 6 more turns

[] Project Heavy Mysterious Mustard: - 4 votes active
Time: 5 turns, Chance of success: 40%
Roll 1 of 5 turns, Roll 1d100: 62+10+10 = 82 - Success (Research Center Sol, Interstellar Communication Network)

While the HFEG Jump Project falters once again after a surprisingly optimistic start, some engineers of various companies are invited by several sientists into a working group that aims to find ways to further improve the already existing Advanced Jump Core. The initial design had already been an improved version of the original Jump Core design and as such, improvements should be in the realm of possibility.

Improvements such as construction material, jump range or even additional jumps were all on the table to be considered.

active for 4 more turns

----------------------------

WCDC Internal Events:

Nothing really news worthy happens.

----------------------------

Deep Space Signal Intelligence Network Report:

Lothian League:


There is little of note to say.

Illyrian Palatinate:

There is little of note to say.

Circinus Federation:

There is little of note to say.

Marian Hegemony:

There is little of note to say.

Inner Sphere:

Lyran Commonwealth:


Nothing out of the ordinary as far as can be decerned.

Federated Suns:

Nothing out of the ordinary as far as can be decerned.

Draconis Combine:

Nothing out of the ordinary as far as can be decerned.

Free Worlds League:
Dutchy of Andurien:


In the war between the FWL and Andurien, the FWL spearhead in Pella and Calpaca suddenly collapses, as the remains of McCarron's Armored Cavalry, a mercenary force that used to work for the Capellan Confederation, but had lost nearly half of their number in the renewed attack of the Federated Suns, declared its contract with the FWL as null and void. It is unknown what caused this fissure in the relations between Archibald McCarron and the FWL. The immedaite result however is the fall of that Pella and Calpaca back to Andurien.

Comstar:

Should Comstar be informed about native WCDC HPG capabilities?
[] Yes - 7 votes
Should Comstar be invited to the Circinus Conference?
[] No - 5 votes

In response to the blatant disregard for diplomatic courtesy, Ambassador Churchill in turn demanded the presence of Precentor Tharkad Ulthan Everson, who surprisingly enough arrived at the WCDC Ambessy. What followed was a nearly two hour long discussion, where Ambassador Churchill revealed the WCDC had access and could build their own HPGs and that they were not inclined to leave their operation to Comstar, indicating that perhaps competition was good for business. He also notified Everson that Comstar was most emphatically not invited to the Circinus Conference, especially in the light of pas actions of the company against the WCDC. Here Churchill showed Everson the proof of the operations against the WCDC, carefully vetted to ensure that they were not showing that the information was gained by HPG Radio Backscatter.

After leaving the meeting, Everson directly contacted the First Circuit, which was again observed via HPG Radio Backscatter, informing them about the situation. This can be considered an intelligence coup as this direct conversation via HPG allowed us to gain valuable information about the inner workings of the Comstar First Circuit, showing that Everson was an outspoken opponent of Primus Myndo Waterly. Not only that, but it appeared that Waterly was apparently planning something big, 'as the WCDC was not in active contact with anyone and would not know what hit them'. Though Preceptor ROM, Anastasius Focht cautioned against any rash decisions.

This only confirmed our views concerning Comstar.

This was not the only intelligence coup however, as a team of analysts presented a Meta Analysis of the past several years of HPG Radio Backscatter. As it was to be expected, the HPG data stream included significant amounts of internal communication, some of which were from operator to operator, containing a lot of rumors, gossip and gripes about their respective postings.

A surprising trend in these low level inter-personal message traffic was that the majority of Acolytes and Adepts believe in the stated mission of Comstar to help the Inner Sphere recover. Additionally, these messages show that there are more than a few of these who have become disillusioned about their work.

This appears to show that there is an internal divide between most of the rank-and-file and the leadership of Comstar, though apparently ROM is a different matter.

There also appears to be some form of mitigating factor to be at play, concerning this divide, as an individual calling themselves 'Capt'n Crunch' has been sending medium priority messages to just about every Comstar member for quite some time, bny t he looks of it, containing calls to reform Comstar and actually do help the Inner Sphere, rather than 'hoard all the good stuff for the First Circuit'. The identity of 'Capt'n Crunch' is of course unknown, but he appears to operate in the upper middle corporate hierarchy, with access to the personal contacts of all Comstar members.

We have found a number of personal messages between Acolytes and Adepts, showing that the message of 'Capt'n Crunch' is certainly heard and received. This of course led to attempts to implement software to delete any message coming from 'Capt'n Crunch', but any attempt so far has failed. It is a given that there is an internal mole hunt underway within Comstar, which is not at all helping the situation.

Expansion and Suggestions:

The DSSI Network slowly continues to expand into the Inner Sphere.

-----------------------

Random Event - A Random Discovery/Hack

Following the installation of the ERS-HPG on Circinus, it was inevitable that some Survey Office and other personnel would try to play around with the device, even though it was meant for backup communication between the WCDC and Circinus, should the Ansible connection fail.

As it went, two operators had worked for a while on a software patch that would allow the ERS-HPG to deactivate its security systems and then operate on the wavelength used by Comstar. They then used this new software to actively place new messages into the HPG data stream, by targeting HPGs that were between 55 and 75 lightyears distant to Circinus.

This activity was discovered by the station chief, who immediately informed his superior. Knowledgeable on the history of 'hacking' and data security, those superiors in turn informed the Survey Office, who was fascinated in this new software.

With this software, messages could be put into a standard Comstar message protocol and used to transmit orders to cells of intelligence personnel within the Inner Sphere and even copy the actions of 'Capt'n Crunch'.

As such, 'HPG Phreaking' was born.
 
Turn 46 - Winter 2185/3035

Warringer

Goto Wogon for Hard SciFi
Author
Turn 46 - Winter 2185/3035

WCDC Defense Council:

[] Project Black Light: active (2 turns)
On one of the former colonies, an apparent plasma weapon has been recovered. It would be a good idea to take a close look at the weapon and potentially develop a usable weapon from it.
Time: 4 turns, Chance of success: 45%, Reward: Plasma Weapon technology, 50% chance of plasma weapon prototype (1d4 for type)

[] Extended Anti-Piracy Patrols:
While the project to improve the defense against piracy in Known Space around the WCDC was a success, many within the Diplomatic Corps and the Military believed that more should be done to prevent piracy in this sector of space, as the destruction of any 'Pirate Heaven' close by would proove to remain a problem not only for the WCDC, but also for any nearby nation the WCDC had contact with. As such, longer duration and longer ranged patrols to discover any potential pirate havens in known space and destroy them before they can be fully established.
Time: 5 turns, Chance of success: 60%, Reward: Long Duration, long range patrols, reduction of pirate activity to almost zero within known space

[] Capital Weapons:
While the majority of weapon systems used on the Belisarius are in a sense prototypes, it might be a good idea to take a closer look at the various weapon systems taken from the WarShip to figure out how to build better weapons for such massive vessels.
Time: 4 turns, Chance of success: 65%, Reward: Multiple new Capital Weapon Systems

[] Ground Warfare Training:
Upon the meeting of better and heavier equipped forces of the Inner Sphere on Tharkad, especially the Kell Hounds, the Defense Council believes that it is time to step up the training of any military force to improve their efficiency against Inner Sphere troops, especially as previously these forces had only engaged much less coordinated Pirate Forces. To this end, new strategies should be divised to increase the efficiency of the WCDCs combined arms forces, as well as programs to increase the number of newly developed weapon systems, such as the Karakal II MBT and the Fusilier medium mech.
Time: 5 turns, Chance of success 70%, Reward: +10 against IS ground forces, +5 against mechs, new tactics, 50% chance of starting new weapon development programs

WCDC Survey Office:

[] Project Orange Grass: active (3 turns)
The complete overhaul of A Ship With A View has been quite successful, so it might be a good idea to request the remaining Invader class Jumpships and Leopard Class dropships to be upgraded to the new Invader MKII and Leopard MKII specifications, to be used for low profile recon missions into the Inner phsere.
Time: 5 turns, Chance of success: 65%, Reward: 7 Invader MKII, 15x Leopard MKII avaiable for Deep Cover missions

[] Further Survey V:
Following the Initial Survey, more information should be gathered further outside of the Walker Cluster and the already known space.
Time: 4 turns, Chance of success: 65%, Reward: (10+2d20) systems from 60 to 90 ly discovered, followup action allows surveying the remaining space

[] Operation Ma Bell:
With the newly developed 'HPG Phreaking', it will be possible to insert messages into the Comstar HPG data stream. This could be used to further the divide already existing within Comstar to possibly force the organization to break down on its own, delaying any moves against the WCDC.
Time: 6 turns, Chance of success: 45%, Reward: More internal strife for Comstar, chance of a breakup increased by 2d20%

[] Deep Cover Intelligence IV:
With a few more Inader II dropships avaiable, it should be possible t o send out a few more of them for long duration deep cover missions to gather intelligence data of all Inner Sphere powers, even those periphery powers that are some distance away.
Time: 1 turn, Chance of success: 60%, Reward: continous intelligence reports over several years, while other operations are available
This option takes one turn to initiate, than continues without using up an option
Dependent on Project Orange Grass


Deep Space Signal Intelligence Network

[] Operation Green Granite: active (6 turns)
There are a number of Walsingham class jumpships avaiable to the DSSINOO, which have recently been upgraded with HFEGs. They should be additionally equipped with Superluminal Wave Detectors and used to analyze jumpship movements inside the borders of both the Lyran Commonwealth and the Free Worlds League, as well as the Marian Hegemony to paint a good picture of any jumpship operations there.
Time: 8 turns, Chance of success: 50%, Reward: Detailed information about jumpship movements deep in the Inner Sphere

[] HumInt:
Find a way to emplace HumInt agents into places of interest.
Time: 3 turns, Chance of success: 40%, Reward: A way to insert agents to planets where they can gather human intelligence

[] Network Extension:
The worlds of New St. Andrews and Niops appear to be good cancidates for the extension of the Network.
Time: 2 turns, Chance of success: 60%, Reward: Network extension into New St. Andrews and Niops

[] DSSIN Survey Squadron: (4 turns)
PErhaps it would be a good idea to put some dedicated survey squadron under the command of the DSSINOO to help them with some survey work in the area surroiunding FOB Pine Gap
Time: 4 turns, Chance of success: 60%, Reward: 1d4 Survey squadrons for the DSSINOO, +1d6 on DSSINOO survey operations

WCDC Diplomatic Corps:

[] Circinus Conference: active (3 turns)
The WCDC was forced into this coference by the First Prince of the Federated Suns and the complicit Archon of the Lyran Commonwealth to host a peace conference on Circinus to broken a peace between the FWL and the Dutchy of Andurien. While not something that we wish to do, we should do our best to get this conference to a good end and hopefully impress our neighbours into not attacking us. Perhaps Belisarius might make a good argument for that.
Time: 6 turns, Chance of success: 65%, Reward: Contact with all IS powers, Diplomatic Bonuses: +10 with FedCom and Andurien, +5 with FWL, 0 with Draconis, ? to Comstar

[] Long Range Diplomacy - Marian Hegemony: active (1 turns)
The Marian Hegemony is now a more known quantity and the current Caesar is interested in trade deals. So it might be a good idea to open official diplomatic contact with the Marians. It might certainly help if one could make them uninterested in any military operation against the WCDC.
Time: 8 turns, Chance of success: 50%, Reward: Contact with the Marian Hegemony

[] Humanitarian Aid IV:
With the formation of the Prometheus Foundation, it would be a shame not to make use of it. As such, it might be advantageous to send out a diplomatic mission to one of the neighboring systems discovered recently, and offer the planet some humanitarian aid. Rumors within the Foundation note they have been able to produce a couple of Planetary Settlement Kits, usually meant to establish new settlements on habitable worlds.
Time: 3 turns, Chance of success: 50%, Reward: +10 on diplomatic action on targeted world, targeted world is slowly brought up to a Walker Cluster tech level
Please select a world from the list of Known Habited Worlds neat the Walker Cluster

[] Charm Offensive IV:
In the wake of the Black Warrior Attack and the fears that are still around in the nearby systems, it would be a good idea to alley their fear.
Time: 4 turns, Chance of success: 60%, Reward: Better diplomatic relations to the ten known worlds, +5 to diplomatic actions with the ten worlds

[] We need new members:
There are 8 nations in the Three Systems that have declined to become members of the WCDC. The Three Systems can't effort to have some nations working on cross purposes and endanger the entire rest of the Walker Cluster. So there is a need to get them aboard and into the WCDC.
Time: 2 turns, Chance of success: 25%, Reward: 1d6 nations of the 8 nations that declined WCDC membership initially, become WCDC members

[] Invite Others III:
The WCDC was working out nicely and maybe it was time to invite one of the other worlds outside the Three Systems into the WCDC?
Time: 4 turns, Chance of success: 35%, Reward: The selected world joins the WCDC as a member
Please select a world from the list of Known Habited Worlds neat the Walker Cluster

[] Calls for Confederation:
The WCDC has muddled along as a defense and trade organization for nearly ten years by now and the nations had come together. But while dealing with smaller powers usually was not a problem, dealing with the big powers of the Inner Sphere leaves the WCDC with several legal problems, which would neatly be avoided if the WCDC would turn into a Confederation of nations with a clear leadership and political structure for the Inner Sphere to deal with, while the members of the Confederations would retain their internal independence.
Time: 4 turns, Chance of success: 42%, Reward: WCDC turns into a Confederation, 1dn to decide on new name
Please suggest a new name for the new Confederation (which does not include 'Walker Cluster').

WCDC Trade Organization:

[] Build the Technology: active (2 turns)
With mechs been taken apart, it might be a possibility that parts for them could be replicated and sold on the open market in the future. Especially Myomer bundles are interesting in thie regard, though WCDC technology allows to make motive materials that are more compact compared to IS Myomer.
Time: 4 turns, Chance of success: 60%, Reward: Ability to build IS mech components, Options to upgrade IS Mech components, Possibility to sell Mech components

[] New Settlement Initiative: active (5 more turns)
There are many virgin, uninhabited planets nearby discovered by the initial survey missions. So it is only natural that the Trade Organization should offer a few incentives to send out a few new settlement missions. Perhaps one or two Planetary Settelment Kits for free would do for settling an additional planet or two.
Time: 6 turns, Chance of success: 65%, Reward: 1d4 newly settled planets

[] Light Warship:
With the Belisarius and the Petan derives Warship hulls avaiable, maybe it is time to design a few Warships that are lighter than the Petan derived hulls to act as larger support vessels.
Time: 4 turns, Chance of success: 60%, Reward: 1d2 designs of a Light Warship (<500ktonnes), 25% chance of a working prototype
Only available after completion of Warship Roles

[] Medium Warship:
With the Belisarius and the Petan derives Warship hulls avaiable, maybe it is time to design a few Warships that are in the same weight area as the Petan derived hulls to act as medium combatants.
Time: 4 turns, Chance of success: 60%, Reward: 1d2 designs of a Medium Warship (<1Mtonnes), 25% chance of a working prototype
Only available after completion of Warship Roles

[] Heavy Warship:
With the Belisarius and the Petan derives Warship hulls avaiable, maybe it is time to design a few Warships that are as heavy as Belisarius to give the WCDC fleets more of a punch in every situation.
Time: 4 turns, Chance of success: 60%, Reward: 1d2 designs of a Heavy Warship (>1Mtonnes), 25% chance of a working prototype
Only available after completion of Warship Roles

[] Industrial Export:
Some surprising things have come up during historical research, including the Terran Hegemony flooding the Periphery with cheap goods and systems that killed off local suppliers and left worlds in the cold, following the Amaris Crisis and the following Successor Wars. Now some companies believe they could make a profit selling power generation, atmospheric processors, water purification and other similar systems to the worlds and polities surrounding the WCDC. Some even propose to set up factories for these things on other planets and polities. This would certainly improve the economic situation of these worlds, diplomatic contact with them, as well as improve the WCDC economy.
Time: 4 turns, Chance of success: 60%, Reward: +10 to external trade with selected world, +10 to diplomacy with selected world
Select a world or polity to export to

[] Build the Weapons:
Since the weapons used by the Inner Sphere were successfully reverese engineered, it is not possible to build carbon copies of them and perhaps even build up on them, though mostly for export. Handing the plans over to several arms cpmpanies will allow that they can be sold easily
Time: 4 turns, Chance of success: 70%, Reward: Ability to build IS weapons, Options to create upgraded IS weapons, Possibility to sell weapons

WCDC Office for Science and Development:

[] HFEG Jump: active (6 turns)
In the wake of the success with the Jump Drive and the HFEG working in parallel, there have been some signs that it might be possible to combine both systems into a single drive system.
Time: 12 turns, Chance of success: 25%, Reward: HF Jump Drive

[] Project Heavy Mysterious Mustard: active (4 more turns)
With the completion of the Jump Drive Project, it might be a good idea whether or not it would be possible to burn some research time to further improve the Jump Drive, Improve the range, materials, allow faster charing from a fusion reactor, this kind of thing.
Time: 5 turns, Chance of success: 40%, Reward: Improved Jump Drive

[] Hyperwave Local Area Mesh Network:
The development of the Hypwerwave Communication system has brought a few interesting possible uses for the technology. For one, some scientists have compared it to WiFi technology. Perhaps it would be possible to take the system and develop it into a FTL equivalent for use in local area (system) mesh networks.
Time: 4 turns, Chance of success: 45%, Reward: Hyperwave Local Area Mesh Network

[] Compact Hyperwave Transceiver:
The scientists are sure that it will be possible to create much more compact hyperwave transcivers than the scurrently microwave sized designs. These transceivers might take a hit in range and network speed however.
Time: 4 turns, Chance of success: 45%, Reward: Compact Hyperwave transceivers (1d6 for final size)

[] General Hyperwave Research:
There are some things that came up during the research into Hyperwave Trenceivers and HYDAR. MAybe it would be some time to take a closer look at the various things that have come to mind.
Time: 4 turns, Chance of success: 40%, Reward: Unknown new Research Option

----------------------------

2 Action for:

1 Action for:
Military
Survey
 

Durabys

A Cheshire Exile
There also appears to be some form of mitigating factor to be at play, concerning this divide, as an individual calling themselves 'Capt'n Crunch' has been sending medium priority messages to just about every Comstar member for quite some time, bny t he looks of it, containing calls to reform Comstar and actually do help the Inner Sphere, rather than 'hoard all the good stuff for the First Circuit'. The identity of 'Capt'n Crunch' is of course unknown, but he appears to operate in the upper middle corporate hierarchy, with access to the personal contacts of all Comstar members.

We have found a number of personal messages between Acolytes and Adepts, showing that the message of 'Capt'n Crunch' is certainly heard and received. This of course led to attempts to implement software to delete any message coming from 'Capt'n Crunch', but any attempt so far has failed. It is a given that there is an internal mole hunt underway within Comstar, which is not at all helping the situation.
MWUHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA 😂
 

Blade4

Well-known member
Warships great. Really great. Plasma weapons makes me want to weep. A Ship With a View might be okish. The league might assume they hot charged their drive in desperation but probable best they not go back but we can also just refit the ship and call it something else officially...

Conference looks very good and we might actually impress the delegates. And might have enough defenses to survive the inevitable Jihad.

Trade looks good.

Loving how HFEG is either a failure or a crit of some sort nothing in between..

So the League hired the atrocity cavalry? Guess was expending them gleefully on hard fighting because fuck those bastards... And then i am guessing comstar offered a far better deal to come die screaming on our defenses. Well they probable assume they are going to come kick ass on some hapless neobarbs then mass murder and rape a few million people for giggles at least. Really need that redoubt in Circunus. In fact we need to go to full alert because the hit is coming. They absolutely know we must die or they will. I am assuming all 3 Dante with what ever other warships they can get flying and all the fighters and mechs they can get. I want to say hit will be at circinus first because wiping out the FedCom leaderships is to juicy a target then try to move on our core but we are dealing with lunatics so hard to say but a fights a coming how much of one dont know. Belisarius can kill the 3 Dante in a single salvo with maybe minor to moderate damage in return. A Redoubt would be a even worse fight for them. Comstar best bet is swarming nuke armed fighters but we got very good point defense. Massed dropships could be a bitch to and want to say should just shoot any mccarran droppers on sight.

Fun thing will be if the delegates get footage of this. They know we have warships but sight of them just slaughtering stuff could scare them into crash warship programs and frankly we want them half assing or wasting time on garbage designs as long as possible.

Capt'n Crunch is doing fine fine work and should be rewarded. Step up operations. Send video and evidence of the first circuits madness and watch the rank and file revolt. If lucky comstar reforms enough that when ate they can transition mostly easily. More likely ROM goes mad with upper ranks and the resulting civil war wrecks comstar just as the axe falls.

oh yeah selections.

[X] Ground Warfare Training:
Upon the meeting of better and heavier equipped forces of the Inner Sphere on Tharkad, especially the Kell Hounds, the Defense Council believes that it is time to step up the training of any military force to improve their efficiency against Inner Sphere troops, especially as previously these forces had only engaged much less coordinated Pirate Forces. To this end, new strategies should be divised to increase the efficiency of the WCDCs combined arms forces, as well as programs to increase the number of newly developed weapon systems, such as the Karakal II MBT and the Fusilier medium mech.
Time: 5 turns, Chance of success 70%, Reward: +10 against IS ground forces, +5 against mechs, new tactics, 50% chance of starting new weapon development programs

[X] Operation Ma Bell:
With the newly developed 'HPG Phreaking', it will be possible to insert messages into the Comstar HPG data stream. This could be used to further the divide already existing within Comstar to possibly force the organization to break down on its own, delaying any moves against the WCDC.
Time: 6 turns, Chance of success: 45%, Reward: More internal strife for Comstar, chance of a breakup increased by 2d20%

Phreak the hell out of them. Captain Cruch forever!

As for military would prefer a high alert action but this work to.
 

Blade4

Well-known member
To be honest whatever they are planning don't see it working outside shear luck. We will probably see them coming thanks to ftl sensors and our naval advantage is to great. A single mixed squadron of sub caps can probably handle a single Dante if with perhaps heavy casualties. And we should have several squadron at least at Circinus and Belisarius. Home systems defenses would be even worse. They could go for colonies but they don't know about them and they need to gut us. Functionally they will probably hurt us at least a little bit we should hands down stomp on them unless the dice really dick us.
 

Durabys

A Cheshire Exile
Double down with Blade4.

[X] Ground Warfare Training:
Upon the meeting of better and heavier equipped forces of the Inner Sphere on Tharkad, especially the Kell Hounds, the Defense Council believes that it is time to step up the training of any military force to improve their efficiency against Inner Sphere troops, especially as previously these forces had only engaged much less coordinated Pirate Forces. To this end, new strategies should be divised to increase the efficiency of the WCDCs combined arms forces, as well as programs to increase the number of newly developed weapon systems, such as the Karakal II MBT and the Fusilier medium mech.
Time: 5 turns, Chance of success 70%, Reward: +10 against IS ground forces, +5 against mechs, new tactics, 50% chance of starting new weapon development programs

[X] Operation Ma Bell:
With the newly developed 'HPG Phreaking', it will be possible to insert messages into the Comstar HPG data stream. This could be used to further the divide already existing within Comstar to possibly force the organization to break down on its own, delaying any moves against the WCDC.
Time: 6 turns, Chance of success: 45%, Reward: More internal strife for Comstar, chance of a breakup increased by 2d20%
 
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