The Rebel Gallofree transport's landing gear dug into the dirt as the vessel's repulsorlifts shut down, the gear then taking the full weight of the ship. To the rear an airlock hissed and as the pressure levels equalised the doors slid open, a boarding ramp lowered itself to the floor just as the first of the Rebel troops double timing it out of the ship reached the end. His boots crunched as they hit the dirt of the dusty streets, he stood off to one side as the steady stream of troops behind him continued to march off the transport. Scanning the area of the outskirts of the town he could see a billowing black column of smoke, the site where their sister ship had gone down. Heading there to search for any survivors was their first priority. He then looked up at the foreboding hill that overlooked the city, topped with an Imperial garrison bristling with heavy turbolaser batteries. That would be their next objective, and a crucial one at that. If they couldn't get up that hill and take out that Imperial installation? They'd be going nowhere.
In a bid to rescue a crashed Rebel transport shot down by Imperial Turbolasers, a Rebel strike team took on the challenging task of assaulting the Imperial capital on Tatooine, the city of Bestine. The Rebel forces quickly secured the crash site of that transport and moved further into the city, overrunning the Imperial forces at the foot of the hill with relative ease. The hill itself however was a different story. With the advantage of the high ground Imperial forces dug in and rained down death from above upon the invaders. The fighting was fierce with the Rebel forces relentlessly inching their way up the hill despite the vicious onslaught of the Imperial artillery, but in the end they could not overcome the conditions of the battlefield and were wiped out despite fighting valiantly down to the last man.
On the hunt for valuable resources to aid in the war effort, Rebel forces attacked the Imperial held refinery on the remote world of Bandomeer. With heavy air support in the form of X-Wing Fighters and stolen Imperial Lambda shuttles, the Rebels raided the installation, rapidly deploying troops via their stolen shuttles, and gaining armoured support from Freerunner APCs and T1-B tanks. The Imperials however were quick to mobilize in defence of the valuable installation, deploying TIE Interceptors and Bombers, and a number of tanks from the nearby Imperial garrison. The Rebels managed to gain a beach head at the refinery, but were never able to consolidate their position enough to move forward, and finally the Imperial defences proved too strong, with the Rebel forces having to cut their losses and withdraw.
The Imperial Navy has sent another battle group to the Taloraan system with the aim of destroying the Rebel space forces that have taken hold of the system and return the valuable resources of the planet into Imperial hands. The Rebel fleet was ready for them and sent in wave after wave of starfighters to soften up the capital ships as they approached the defending fleet. The Imperials charged forward with the aim of scattering the Rebel fleet, but the Rebels held fast, and in a tight formation were able to bring to bear their whole fleet's combined firepower on the approaching fleet, taking out the Imperial forces heaviest cruiser first and then mopping up the rest. The Rebel fleet only lost their support ship in this engagement, and once again the Imperial space forces were vanquished.
The Empire is victorious once more, with the Rebel Alliance troops unable to break the impressive Imperial defences. The Imperial Navy however are still having problems dealing with the Alliance's tough starfighters, and space superiority is something that the Empire can ill afford to lose. The battles will continue until one faction finally has dominion over the entire Galaxy, but for whom shall you fight? Join the fun and sign up at:
Registration for the campaign remains open with more players joining every week, so it is still not too late to take part. Whether it's helping the Alliance to Restore the Republic, or maintaining the order of the First Galactic Empire, choose your side and stand shoulder to shoulder with First Strike veterans and newcomers alike.
Next week is the final round of battles in this campaign. To make things a little more interesting the points gained in the grand final will be multiplied meaning that it is still all to play for. In addition there will be a voting poll to decide on the space map that people would most like to play for this final. An extended 16 player round of Bestine with higher tickets for a longer game will be the infantry map, while Jundland Wastes 64 will be the land map, but the space map is still to be decided on, So check the NIC forums for details on how to vote for your favourite map to be played in next week's grand finale.
Until then, may the Force be with you!