Post by Skystrike/Skylar Stringers on Dec 26, 2007 19:15:01 GMT -5
Skystrike lands on a street somewhere in her team’s assigned territory having no real questions for Spinister to answer. Now there were only vague skeletons of plans to go muse over until the other arrived. She’d always been better at planning defensively than offensively and there had to be a balance between the two seeing as they had to both protect the flag and capture another team’s flag. One hour to prepare seemed almost too little. They had to take into consideration the kinds of people they’re going against, who best to capture or incapacitate to disrupt the enemy team, what tactics they would use and what would work best against them.
Priorities, however. Priorities.
The first priority was to find a place to put the flag. An area that would be easy to defend from both ground and air and doesn’t hide the flag. She already had some idea having flown a bit over the general vicinity, but suggestions from the rest of the group would be nice. Then it would be onto trying to design and build the defense and then it’d hopefully be onto planning the offensive. Or something like that.
The blue jet let air hiss through her vents slowly. One hour really did seem too little.
Post by Thundercracker on Dec 27, 2007 2:07:15 GMT -5
So he's teamed up with Skystrike. Hopefully this turns out better than their last mission together, though at least there's not a chance of him really getting blown to pieces this time. Or at least not a big one.
As for Wreckage... he doesn't know a whole lot about him. But then, that's the point of this exercise, isn't it? To learn more about his comrades. Humans play cheesy "getting-to-know-you" games, Decepticons have battle sims.
"Any sign of Wreckage?" he asks Skystrike. "I vote for starting planning anyhow. We can bring him up to speed when he comes in."
The low, measured whir-clunk of Wreckage's deliberate stride heralds his otherwise quiet approach as he makes his way after his teammates. It seems there will be very little 'bringing him up to speed' for Thundercracker to enjoy. A pity.
Simulated combat exercises… interesting. Something he can actually anticipate, considering the other participants. Wreckage keeps a careful gaze on the terrain around him, the many structures and the cover they provide, the possibilities they present. He is more accustomed to laying siege outright and mowing down the opposing forces face to face, but in his millenia of breaching defenses, he has wiped out many varieties of barrier and trap. Some of them might even prove useful here.
He has not, however, been restricted solely to aerial teammates in the past. He has, in fact, worked almost always within entirely ground-based units, dealing only with the periodic support of Lord Megatron's air drone echelon. This puts him at a troublesome disadvantage; he will have to adapt.
"…Are either of you familiar with conducting ground operations?" he grates out anyway, looking steadily at both Seekers. Even some minimal familiarity will make this easier. "And have you any ideas for our placement? Defenses?" He will take suggestions; thinking defensively is not where his strengths lie.
Post by Skystrike/Skylar Stringers on Dec 28, 2007 2:10:46 GMT -5
“He’s there.” Skystrike says simply as she looks at Thundercracker, then at the approaching Wreckage and decided that that was enough of an answer for the other jet’s question. She wasn’t particularly enthusiastic about having to work with the other blue flier again but at least she knows he makes good cannon fodder.
“I used to work as a bodyguard for a fuel convoy.” She rumbles, deliberating each word before answering Wreckage. With another seeker around, she didn’t particularly feel comfortable going into detail about her life than necessary. “One of my teammates was a tank.” And that’s it. Just because she was used to working with a tank didn’t mean that it was going to be easier to get used to working with Wreckage, however. Oh, he was a more pleasant company than most of the people Skystrike had met here so far but she wasn’t going to take that to mean she’d work well with him.
“As for placement, I found a few buildings positioned in a triangle shape around a monument.” She gestures in the general direction of said buildings; it was the direction furthest away from the other two team’s borders. “The area around the monument is clear of obstructions and the area between the buildings are filled with trees. Around that, there is a relatively dense distribution of more buildings.” She turns back to the group, crossing her arms. “We can set up the flag where the monument is and build traps, blockades and maybe make a few decoys close to the spot and leave one person on defense at all times.” The defense will have to be either her or Thundercracker because while the area was relatively defensible from the ground, they were still open to aerial attacks and that was especially not good when they had someone like Starscream on one of the other teams. “That leaves two people to the midfield, reconnaissance and offense.” Skystrike finishes and waits for the others to make their own suggestions and opinions; they’d have to move quickly to prepare after this and plan along the way.
Then, something occurred to her. “Do we have each other’s personal frequency? If not, mine is [insert frequency].” They had a strong team firepower wise, but that didn’t mean much without at least some communication.
Post by Thundercracker on Dec 28, 2007 12:33:44 GMT -5
"I'm best at aerial combat and air-to-ground fire," Thundercracker tells Wreckage. "Ground operations are not my field of expertise."
In reply to Skystrike he says "I saw the monument you described on my way here, and I agree that it would make a good placement point for the flag. Since you have bodyguard experience, I'd suggest you as defense. Wreckage and I can share recon and offense as necessary -- each of us can see things from our viewpoints that the other might miss."
Wreckage is easy enough to work with, especially when his cohorts can demonstrate higher processor functions than his very angry fellow front-line warriors back home. As unfamiliar as he is with Skystrike's or Thundercracker's capabilities, and as unfamiliar as they are with his – they seem at least moderately familiar with one another – they will have to mesh well and mesh quickly against their opponent teams.
"That seems… viable," he rumbles at Thundercracker and passes off his frequency to both Seekers. "I am not a defender." Tactical understatement. Even taking that into account, he cannot help a nagging sense of unease with leaving something they have to keep from the other teams in any wide-open area, surrounded by traps or no. But if Skystrike can employ an effective defence…. Hn. "And what do you know of the other teams' members?" prompts the warrior. "Their weaknesses? Capabilities?" He has seen Sell Sword plow headlong into a building and wave his swords about helter-skelter; more than that, no. He knows what Frenzy can do. "Frenzy," adds the Stryker quickly, "is one we should be wary of. He is an infiltrator, like Barricade. Be sure to take him into account when setting the defenses." The Starscream of Wreckage's own reality is powerful and a vicious combatant; he has no reason to believe this Starscream is not comparable in skill.
The others… Sky-Byte has an ego, Wreckage recollects from his dealings with the shark-thing in the mines. The prideful, he has learned in his time, are often prone to making needlessly stupid mistakes. He has not, however, seen Sky-Byte's abilities in a fight. Beyond their retreat from the battle at the mesa, he has had little interaction with Dead End. The car seems both reckless in combat and preoccupied with his own untimely demise (still pending). It is a mindset Wreckage finds pointlessly contradictory. Perhaps one of his teammates will be inclined to shed further light on the matter. Scourge is a largely unknown factor to him, but supposedly, the black tanker, unaided, fended off a Prime and returned mostly unscathed. Perhaps, like Starscream, not one to be taken lightly.
"…And what had you in mind for your traps?" he asks of Skystrike. Setup will go much more quickly with knowledgeable assistance.
Last Edit: Dec 28, 2007 16:04:37 GMT -5 by Wreckage
Post by Skystrike/Skylar Stringers on Dec 29, 2007 3:48:52 GMT -5
“Very well.” Skystrike rumbles as she turns and picks the flag up. They needed to get moving and encouraging the rest of the team to talk ad walk was best for now. They had less than an hour.
Assuming that they follow, she says, “We can always put the decoy flag near the monument instead and put the real flag somewhere less noticeable, or vice verso if we wish to confuse any intelligence gathering. Of course the latter option would mean things getting a bit complicated because the placing of the flag will have to be obvious enough to be distracting from the real one.” Skystrike liked it better when the things she was defending were intelligent enough to move and defend themselves, really. Protecting a helpless, useless flag led to unfamiliar complexities that she’d rather avoid.
The seeker turns back to face them at Wreckage’s question and muses quietly for a moment. “Starscream is the greatest problem me and Thundercracker will face. He’s been the Air Commander of the Decepticons before I was even out of the factory and it will be tricky trying to subdue him. Dead End is a Stunticon, part of a gestalt, and despite his often depressive state he’s a fierce opponent in battle. Fast, agile and a decent aim. He also has forcefields to take into account and it can be rather hard to damage him. Sky-Byte can fly and ‘swim’ through the ground and he’s also rather… full of himself at times although he was relatively meek when he was in my company back in the mesa battle. It was most likely the boxes in his mouth keeping him quiet, however.” The berkut pauses after that. “I do not know much of the other opponents that we’re going up against. Frenzy is an infiltrator, Sell Sword likes his swords too much and Scourge… I believe he’s made himself a bit of a reputation here already.”
She glances at Wreckage over her shoulders and answers, “Well there are trees and I have missiles, a few lengths of fuse and some cans of oil.” Improvised explosives is what she means. “We can tear up some roads and buildings for other materials. Set up a wall in front of the trees once we’re done with the explosives. Then we can dig out a small moat a safe distance around the flag and fill it something flammable.” The last part was mostly just to deter Frenzy. That little critter was creepy.
Post by Thundercracker on Dec 29, 2007 18:08:42 GMT -5
"Skystrike's right about Starscream," Thundercracker replies, "but he does have a weakness -- he's arrogant. And arrogant mechs are prone to making mistakes." No, he doesn't care if he catches slag later for that comment. This is a battle, practice or no. And you go right for your enemy's weak spots in any battle.
"The one advantage we have with Dead End is that he's here alone. Gestalts work best in their set teams, and without his other team members here he won't be quite as dangerous a force as he would be with his brothers present.
"As for traps... does anyone have a spare gun?" He pulls his own standard-issue pistol from subspace. "If we could set this up in one of the buildings, with a tripwire attached..."
It is at this point that the communications tower outside is activated. Due to alterations made, it manages to trigger the solid-light holo-projectors of the training room, causing images to form in the sky overhead. See the Dark Tower thread for full details.
Don't open the coffin. Don't let them take Skids. Don't go to Delphi. And do not - I repeat do not - look in the basement.
The flag could always be tied to Skystrike's canards if she would find that easier to defend.
"Hn," is Wreckage's only response to the evaluation of Starscream. So he was right, after all, to assume as he had of his erstwhile new commander. Dead End has a… protective force field. No wonder he seems to have little problem charging headlong into combat. Sky-byte is not only a large, egotistical shark; he is a large flying egotistical shark. Unfortunately, this tells Wreckage nothing of his actual combat abilities. Frenzy is one of whom he is already aware, and it seems each member of this team has as much information on Sell Sword as any other, unless there is something Thundercracker is withholding for whatever reasons.
Scourge… remains a somewhat troubling unknown factor. If he really is capable of taking on a Prime and surviving, it would be unwise for any one of them to attempt a direct attack on him. A combined assault, should it become necessary, would be most feasible, but without a better knowledge of his weaponry and abilities, it is still a very risky proposition.
The Stryker pauses to word his answers – he carries no spare items, so all he has to offer for trap-laying are brute force, cutting power, and perhaps the occasional suggestion; and his only guns are either fixed-mounting or incorporated with his forearm weapon assemblies, meaning they are attached to his swords and therefore not readily parted from him has he any choice in the matter – but they go unspoken as he turns his attention to the false sky and the nightmarish scenario it plays for them. Outwardly, he shows nothing but his characteristic, stone-faced reticence. It masks an inner fascination that provides only a tin-plating veneer for a welling, unfamiliar sense of awe-struck terror.
That is firmly quashed. This illusion is exactly that: an illusion. A facsimile in a simulated world. Although knowing that does not change the fact that it is video of a planet destroying another planet. Consuming it, for that matter.
// I assume this is not an intended part of the simulation, // he murmurs incuriously over broadband.
Post by Skystrike/Skylar Stringers on Dec 30, 2007 6:17:13 GMT -5
But canard flags make her twitchy! And it’ll also probably blocker her vision unless you tie it upside down. Oh, hey, there’s an idea, put the flag upside down to make it less noticeable.
Skystrike begins to answer Thundercracker, “I have a spare—“ And then at this point, the seeker looks up, her normally neutral expression taking on the wide eyed look of shock, “… with… me….” And then she falls silent, nearly dropping the flag as she watches the hologram play out a vision of nightmare that only the most deprived and tortured minds could’ve ever fantasized.
Her first instinct was to call Lighter.
Nothing. The signal didn’t exist here. Undeterred, she called Corebreaker next. Only ominous silence. Growing increasingly frustrated, she went through all of her teammate’s frequencies, even repeating Lighter’s three times before utter and complete desolation and frustration overtook her and she lashed out at the nearest building only to find no satisfaction in the destruction. There was no one to tell her that they were okay, no inane cackle or halfhearted insults or even give a disapproving snort. Where was everyone? Why didn’t they answer? There was something horrible playing in the sky, now was not the time to jest with her.
It took a moment for Skystrike to realize she was holding the flag too tight, the delicate pole bent under her fingers. Ignoring the dull pain shooting up her other arm, she pulled it out of the building and silently turned away, wings held too high and optics far too bright.
Post by Thundercracker on Dec 30, 2007 17:08:48 GMT -5
At Skystrike's sudden silence -- yes, she's generally the quiet type, but this is the first time he's heard her just cut out in the middle of a sentence -- he glances skyward... and witnesses the devastation of Unicron. For that's all this thing can be -- the monster Dead End described to him. And it's far more monstrous than Thundercracker could ever have imagined.
"Unicron," he murmurs after a low, awed whistle. "Ugly son of a trash compactor."
As various parties on the Broadband bicker, spazz out, or offer various dry and/or irritated observations regarding the hologram and its effect on the Decepticon forces, he takes a moment to ponder. If Unicron came through this system once before, he could come again. And yet... didn't they defeat this hideosity in his home universe? Dead End certainly testified of that. If they destroyed this monster once, they could do it again. And even better, if... when Thundercracker returns home, the information he provides could be invaluable to defeating Unicron with a far lower casualty count.
He turns to see Skystrike punch a nearby building. "Are you all right?" he asks quietly.
The sound of impact and crumbling brickwork draws Wreckage's attention from the fading video and the radio banter to his teammates. Thundercracker is appreciably calm in comparison to several others, including Skystrike, who seems… uncharacteristically distraught. A typical reaction if Wreckage is to judge by the behaviour of other Decepticons on the radio. Perhaps unfortunately for her, they cannot afford this.
"She will have to be alright," Wreckage mutters, striding around to capture Skystrike's attention with a cold stare of disapproval. "The exercise remains underway and we have not yet begun our preparations. This is neither the time nor the place for such… foolishness." The white warrior can accept a loss to a superior opponent, however grudgingly, so long as he – or his squad, as the case may be – has performed to the fullest. He will not accept losing because a squadmate becomes a liability. His optics narrow very slightly at the Berkut. "We have work to do."
Post by Skystrike/Skylar Stringers on Jan 2, 2008 7:12:45 GMT -5
Intentionally scraping her hand in building due to a fit of temper wasn’t the brightest of things she’d admit to doing, although it seemed to be happening more and more often, much to her displeasure. Skystrike looks up from the dust and flakes of paint still clinging to her knuckles when Thundercracker asked her if she was alright. The seeker scowled at the other jet and deliberated how to answer that without looking too much like testy academy rookie. Then Wreckage spoke up and she turns to him wearing a neutral but unrepentant look despite his icy stare.
“I will be fine,” she rumbles smoothly after a second or so, despite the viscous glint in her optics, “the moment I put hot plasma through someone’s head.” This team trusted each other too much by Decepticon standards, really. It made it easier to work with each other, but should one of them become a… problem then they would become one of the losing teams quite quickly. Skystrike refused to let herself into such a position, even if this was just a game.
There’s a pause, although whether it was because she just took a moment to silently cycle air through her systems or simply for dramatic effect was unknown, “We need to set up traps. Right. We’ll also need to cut up a few walls to block the front of the trees; five feet in height or more would do. We need to find some fabric, find pipes around the same width of our real flag for the decoys –about twelve would do, more if we have the time. We’ll also need glass, broken or not.” She taps her helm to emphasize her point. “Makes it easier to hear.” As if that made perfect sense. “So who volunteers for what? I can help with cutting up the walls and setting them up and we already agreed that I would make the traps surrounding the site, unless I heard wrong.”
Post by Thundercracker on Jan 2, 2008 9:21:00 GMT -5
Wreckage at least appears to be able to keep a cool processor, Thundercracker notes. Good. He doesn't miss the glint in Skystrike's optics, and he wonders just what he said to annoy her.
"I'll help gather some supplies," he replies. "There's what looks like a commercial district just past this next street, there's bound to be fabric there, and glass should be easy to come by." He's not going to ask what she has in mind -- when your teammates say they'll complete a task, you expect them to do it, regardless of technique. "I can also set up the tripwires, if no one objects."