Catapulted forth from the azure vortex of hyperspace, Gold Leader checked his instruments and then looked up to see the distinctive shape of Kessel silhouetted by, and hanging precariously on the edge of the Maw. So he was where he was supposed to be, but where...? As if in response to his unvoiced question a blur of motion beside his vessel revealed the bone grey hull of a massive Nebulon-B escort frigate, deployed on this mission not to get involved in the action, but just to provide support should things get too hairy. To his other side multiple craft warped out of hyperspace. His squadron of Y-Wings, better late than never. Finally a group of smaller arrow shaped fighters entered the system. The Alliance's brand new A-Wing interceptors, basically two rockets with a seat stuck between them and a pair of laser cannons. Only the craziest pilots signed up to take those things out for a spin. He much preferred the security of at least knowing there was heavy shielding and some good solid chunks of armour between him and enemy fire. He initiated the standard sign in protocol and listened as his pilots all sounded off. Only waiting for one more guest to join the party now.
An alarm went off on his console and in the distance a blur of motion ushered in the final guests, a column of Imperial bulk freighters jumping in on their last stop before joining the Imperial fleet stationed out beyond the Outer Rim. Now it was on. Painting the first target, a freighter right in the centre of the flotilla of ships he gave the order to attack, pushing his craft forward to attack speeds. Just before entering effective combat range the alarm went off again, more enemy ships were entering the system, but what? The Empire didn't have hyperspace capable starfighters... There was suddenly a stream of emerald green laser fire and his wing man erupted in a ball of flaming gas. Ordering his men to stay on target Gold Leader pressed on grimly determined to fulfil his mission. Coming into range of his target he released his entire magazine of torpedoes at the freighter before him just as a distinctive tri-winged shape fell into view. The last thought to go through Gold Leader's mind, was how much he hated uninvited guests.
ROUND 1: NULL SENSOR STATION
In an effort to prevent an Imperial sensor station from going on line, a Rebel strike force has been combat dropped into the foothills at the base of the mountain where the installation is situated. Deploying troops they hope to quietly secure the landing pad compound at the foot of the mountain. Success here will give them a staging ground for a final assault upon the mountaintop base itself. Splitting into two units the Rebel troops assault the compound via the front gates, but also over a secluded mountain trail which gave them access to the rear of the compound. Imperial forces reacting to the unexpected invasion, advanced from a nearby gate house complex at the mouth of the mountain pass that leads up to the base, but by the time they mobilized they found the Rebels had already secured the landing pad compound. Effectively locked out of an area of their own complex the Imperial troops deployed snipers in the hills in an attempt to soften the Rebels up before their main force of troops advanced on the entrance to the complex, but despite their best efforts the Rebels were too well dug in, and eventually the Imperial commander ordered his troops to pull back to the more easily defendable mountaintop complex. This round would go to the Rebels.
ROUND 2: NULL SENSOR STATION
After losing control of the foothills to their mountaintop base, Imperial forces pulled back to secure the more easily defendable mountain pass that leads up to the valuable sensor installation. Rebel forces having secured the base of the mountain were now free to deploy vehicles in their efforts to secure the Imperial base, but the going would not be easy, the mountain pass was treacherous, and would prove and easy kill zone for the Imperial defenders to take advantage of. Sure enough at various choke points along the pass Imperial troops set up heavily defended positions, deploying anti-vehicle mines and heavy blasters, these were also backed up by powerful Firehawke tanks and the ever dependable and deadly to infantry AT-ST Walkers. The Imperial installation however was undermanned due to not yet being fully operational, and as a result the Rebel and Imperial forces were on a level footing. After taking devastating losses on initial attack waves the Rebels finally broke through the Imperial lines and managed to get a speedy APC Freerunner up to the mesa atop the mountain. Once there Rebel troops could be deployed as the APC kept moving to prevent it from being easily neutralised by Imperial forces. Once it was finally taken out it was too late. Rebel troops by this point had infiltrated the base, first securing the tank garage, cutting the Imperials off from the valuable asset that was their armour. From that point on the Rebel commandos had to simply sweep the upper levels and secure the command deck. Then the day was won.
ROUND 3: IMPERIAL CONVOY RAID
Employing hit and fade missions the Rebel starfleet was doing it's best to cripple and hamper Imperial operations in the Outer Rim by engaging Imperial supply runs to the sector. Receiving intelligence regarding one such mission that would stop off near Kessel on its way to supplying a fleet stationed out there, Gold Squadron supported by a Nebulon-B frigate, and an escort squadron of the Alliance's brand new A-Wing interceptors was tasked with either crippling or destroying the Imperial convoy before it could jump back into hyperspace. As the fighter bombers engaged however, it was they who were left surprised. A squadron of the Empire's latest heavily armed fighters, the TIE Defenders jumped out of hyperspace before them, and the game was afoot. Under these conditions the best the Rebels could hope for was to destroy the enemy freighters before they could make the jump. The Rebel squad leader didn't allow the volitile situation to faze him and gave orders to focus all fire on one ship at a time. The focused bombing runs made short work of the freighters even with the powerful TIE Defenders running interference. The Rebel pilots stayed on target and the Imperial convoy was lost.
Happy New Year Troopers!
Following the campaign's break over the festive holidays we have had yet another exciting round of battles. This campaign has been an exciting one, with one faction after the other taking the lead with the scores always remaining quite close from week to week, but with this and last week's victories solely going to the Rebels we at last have a very clear leader. With the scores now standing at 41 points to the Empire, and a whopping 88 points to the Rebellion. With two weeks left to go in this campaign it is still all to play for however, especially with the final week's rounds awarding the victor double points, there is still every chance that either faction could come away from this campaign victorious.
If you like what you see here, fear not, you haven't missed this event, it is still ongoing. We hope to see more players in the coming weeks, so if you haven't joined up already get involved and sign up here:
Until next time,
May the Force be with you.