Back in the Deep with my players for session 2 of our Gradient Descent playthrough. Joining us this time:
Previously, the Diver team had been hired to place two backpacks containing fully spectrum communication sniffers in two locations within the Deep: C127 Android Storage, and C122 the Foil Forest. Last session they picked up Roskam as a guide, and as we started our session tonight they were at the tail end of a detour.
You see before they met her, Roskam had allegedly found an “Artifact,” a piece of valuable tech or art or something created by Monarch or the Androids now living here. In exchange for escorting her safely out of the Deep, Roskam will guide the team to the artifact she found and then to the floor they need to get to.
This session began with the team in the Algae Farm, the location of Roskam’s artifact. Racks of algae creep like dominos across a gargantuan facility, each rack containing row upon row of algae. The place is CLOUDBANK’s lungs. Roskamm leads the group to a lane of tipped over algae racks and dogs beneath the domino rubble to reveal a 150lb. Metal sphere with squat beetle legs protruding from the bottom. It took two people to carry.
After a quick discussion they decided to hide the artifact in a nearby locker room (f29) and then weld the door (and the doors of several other lockers) shut. With the Artifact stowed for later use, they moved on quickly past a few control rooms for power and the giant laser that defends the station (both these rooms were covered in a fine metal webbing that Dr. Whalen advised the players not to touch).
They looked over their map and found that they could maybe create a shortcut for themselves as there was a maintenance corridor that overlapped with a corridor they needed to get to. The corridor was dark, cement lined, and lit by emergency lighting. About halfway down, near the spot they wanted to cut through they found two sleeping rookie Divers. Dr. Whalen diffused the situation and the Divers, Sang and Trantis, waited for them to cut a hole with their laser cutter before moving on. You meet a lot of people in the Deep.
From there, they headed to the Cargo Lift at F07, rode it up into the 0g floor, “3.7 Goods Elevator,” and floated around. They found a stack of floating pallets and on one of them was spray painted a yellow rat. They made a note and kept moving bringing them to the Android Storage area — a gargantuan dark storage facility with hundreds of thousands of androids floating in neat lines waiting to be activated. Pretty terrified of the situation they left Gunner Lilith and Everett-07 there with one of the comms sniffers (which have to be activated at the same time), while the rest of the team split off to find their second location.
The party is off the map now, so Ian made a player map for them to follow along with and possibly link up with a real map later on. They found a giant airlock to 3.6: Dis/Assembly which is where they needed to go. But as soon as the airlock turned on, five faceless androids with scythe blades for arms sprung down from the vents and attacked. The ensuing melee was a near TPK, both the NPCs, Roskamm and Tamm were killed, and the players were only able to escape as Whalen did enough damage to the room with his laser cutter to force the airlock to open, and while Tamm died at the hands of the androids, he pulled a pin on a grenade. We stopped there for the night.
Lots of great feedback and a good time for sure. Always looking forward to my Tuesday games now.
I got a chance to playtest Gradient Descent tonight on the Mothership Discord with three of our playtesters: Slantio playing: Markus Lilith, Level...
Back in the Deep with my players for session 2 of our Gradient Descent playthrough. Joining us this time: Slantio playing: Gunner Markus Lilith,...