Tonight’s adventure was fairly quick, partly because the player that runs a marine character didn’t show up — meaning a large portion of the action happened offscreen. In this, the players assault the mutineer-controlled Astral Queen. The last post talked about the deal that the PC commander had cut with one of the mutiny leaders, a Colonel Seii, and convinced him to aid in the raid of the prison barge by removing Tom Zarek from play, and how two other PCs — the vice president and a deputy marshal — had been captured.

The evening launched straight into the set-up. A raptor jams Astral Queen‘s DRADIS and comms while vipers set up a cordon. Four raptors approach — to are decoys and land on the hangar bays, trying to gain access, while another two deliver teams that burn through the hull to raid the ship with 20 marines (led by four officers — one of them a PC pilot.) The main conflict is quick — Seii had arranged for the main force of armed mutineers to be responding to the decoys while getting himself in close proximity to Zarek and his close confidants — and the mutineers are badly routed by the raptors using their navigation spotlights. (Anyone whose seen an aviation navlight knows they’ll burn your damned eyes out, practically. The pilot engaged a few bd guys, but quickly got to the bridge, where the vice president witnessed Seii staged a quick, violent takeover that killed Zarek.

The commander managed to portray the incident as infighting between the mutineers and painted Seii as a hero of the piece, hoping to bring the unjustly disgraced man into the Fleet again, and was able to convince the civilian authorities to go along with it.

The night’s action showed yet another sharp turn off from the show. Without Zarek as a constant distraction, the fleet politics are more stable, but it also allows one of the PCs — a member of the quorum, a former gang leader turned local politician, and unwilling ally of the Cylons in the fleet — to move into the main political antagonist for the game. There’s still the tension of the show, but the main characters of the show are steadily being sidelined for player characters and campaign-specific NPCs.

Next week: the Libran galleon mission.