- Published: 26 March 2020
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Battleground: Gravediggers (GM Information)
In the aftermath of any battle there is always debris and wreckage, and the battle over Vahn’s World was no exception. While the Shohan losses were far from what they lost at Zanzibar, Vahn’s already cluttered orbit is currently littered with wreckage from Shohan. Recovery teams from Project Leapfrog are hard at work processing the battle site, but the ring system complicates the issue. For the various factions squabbling on the planet’s surface, the bounty of Shohan tech, is a siren’s call too potent to resist. The government of Vahn’s World has started hearing rumors bubbling up from beneath streets, and it’s worried. Worried enough that it’s asked the Fleet, Project Leap Frog, and the OGI to help investigate.
Strategically, the Semaphore System is on the leading edge of the Terran Sphere’s counter offensive, and the Tangle it provides is a vital resource for the war. The system must be held and the assembled team is aware of the importance of their mission. At the same time, the various factions vying for control of the colony are more likely to see the investigative team as one more piece they can manipulate to secure their own dominance. Most are more focused on their local rivals than the overhanging threat of the War.
Rumors of what is or isn’t happening underneath Conímbriga run rampant, and no one is sure what the true situation is. The only common thread is that recovered Shohan material from the battle plays some central role. It will be up to the investigative team to discover the truth. Here are a few possibilities:
- The Light has discovered that Shohan technology will react to humans, altering them into a Shohan-human hybrid. Stronger than baseline humans with the ability to instinctively use Shohan tech, the Light sees these… Altered as soldiers in its war to take over the Conímbriga tunnels. The Light has been kidnapping people from the Underground, usually those with loved ones that give them some leverage over their new super soldiers. They’ve acquired some Shohan gear from dead Shohan soldiers, but any Altered they can field will be using a hodge podge of Shohan and Terran Sphere tech. While the Light has tried to be careful about who they expose to Shohan technology, there are now rumors of a sickness spreading through the tunnels.
- It has been well known that the Shohan have some interstellar communications system wired into their bodies, far different from the vast stacks of tangle arrays needed by the Terran Sphere and other Fourth Population races to communicate across the light years. Since the Battle, Vahn Comm recovered several Shohan corpses and has been experimenting with them. Its scientists believe they’ve isolated the communication structures in the crests of these dead Shohan. While they have been able to do little more than stimulate the equivalent of morse code through the link, and they are far from replicating the principles, they’ve caught the attention of the Shohan. Unbeknownst to the scientists, the captured Shohan crests have slowly been changing, seeking the slightest opening into the wider network. For the Shohan, the ultimate goal is opening a backdoor into their ansible network, exposing vast swaths of the Terran Sphere communications network, including the Fleet’s. For Vahn Comm, they are determined to be the ones to unlock a whole new era of interstellar communications and secure their dominance in the new order. They will throw their considerable financial, political, and even mercenary assets at anyone attempting to take away that vision.
- The 27th Street Group is rumored to have a new benefactor; one who is reversing the battered Tunnel Corp’s fortunes and restoring their place as the provider of cutting edge tech in the Underground. In truth, the Corp’s recovery efforts weren’t even focused on the Ring, but on some wreckage that had survived to land far outside the ZET. There, amidst the wreck they discovered a Shohan, battered, his distinctive crest half sheared off, among many other injuries, but amazingly alive. When he recovered consciousness, the Shohan surprisingly agreed to help his would-be rescuers. Govannon, as he has asked to be called, is of the engineering caste, and has used his knowledge to help upgrade the 27th Street Group’s designs while he considers his next move. The engineer’s injuries have cut him off from the rest of the Shohan, but if he can find a way to reconnect with them and provide support for their efforts behind the scenes, well... he’s already been hard at work laying the groundwork, and his upgrades might have a few hidden features waiting to be unlocked.
- A group in the government has gotten their hands on a Shohan Deployment Pod. While currently inert, at any moment it could activate, opening a backdoor for the Shohan to invade through.
- It has long been speculated that Shohan ships are sentient in some fashion. While few ships were lost during the battle, independent scavengers might have been able to locate a computer core from one of these that was still intact and could be made functional with the right supply of power and organic nutrients. Anybody hoping to reverse engineer one or hook it up for a boost in computational power may be in for a shock. The ship’s personality may play dumb while hacking its hosts, try to kill them outright, or be damaged and indecisive. Perhaps some tunnel hacker will alter things he doesn’t understand, and cause anything from personality disorders to a rampant seed AI.
- An auxiliary power supply was recovered, The Yellow Book. Their engineers think they’ve got it supplying a steady AC current, and it’s probably stable. Perhaps more importantly, they’ve discovered a surprising side effect for psionics entering into its sphere of effect: they find it easier to slip into the meditative states required to refresh the mind after heavy psionic use and those that do experience a profound euphoric effect while meditating in its presence. Quickly realizing the potential, the Yellow Book has opened up a spa catering to Psionics, hoping to build a web of influence among the Psionic community as repeat customers become ever more enamored of the service they provide for their weary minds. In game, this effect is represented by the [Ease My Troubled Mind 3] tag which may be freely invoked on Meditation rolls to recover or build temporary strain, but may also be freely invoked in persuasion attempts against partaking psionics by the operators of the device. Additionally, Psionics receive a rank of the [Euphoria] tag as per the rules for Psi Amps (Corebook, page 276).
[What Lies Beneath]
[Make Me An Offer]