A Faster Than Light Story: Part One
I start playing with headphones on because my roommate is watching a show on Netflix; It doesn’t’ matter, the music is immersive and electronic, in a spacey way. On the ship loading screen, I debate which of the few unlocked vessels I currently have to play as. I decide upon the Kestrel Cruiser, a decommissioned series, retrofitted with an Artemis Missile Launcher and a Burst Laser MK II. I assemble my crew, with myself as the captain, and set sail from the spaceport. My mission: to report data to the remainder of the Federation fleet without being caught by rebels.
My first jump to another system, I run into a pirate who fires a warning shot across my bow. Attempting to bribe me with missiles and scrap, my moral upbringing forces me to protect the vessel he was attacking. After declaring my intentions, the pirate diverts from his original prey to engage me in combat. My weapons were powered down before I jumped, and are now charging, but the wait is excruciating. I send Lauren, a human crew member over to manually control the shields and send Matt to manually control weapon systems, boosting the recharge rate of both. A missile fired at Clara, what I decided to name the ship, damages part of the hull. Luckily, on a counterattack one of our missiles disabled the pirate’s shield system, allowing the lasers to disable their weapons. With the pirates completely defenseless, it didn’t take long to destroy their ship. Unfortunately, the civilians they had been attacking before died of oxygen deprivation due to a hull breach. None survived.
In the next few systems, I encounter a ship sending out a distress call, trapped in an asteroid belt. I attempt to save the ship with Clara’s shields, but the cause is lost and their ship is vaporized by asteroids. Following that, I come across a rebel transport ship. When I demand their goods, they attempt to flee, but I easily destroy their engine and subsequently their ship. However, none of their goods survived the battle.
At the exit beacon, a space station has caught fire due to an accident in their labs. I bring Clara around to try saving the survivors, but the station explodes before any of them can board. Before I can mourn the loss of life, I jump us to another galaxy, barely escaping the advance of rebel forces. The galaxy I jump into is controlled by Mantis, a race known for their hostility. I upgrade the shields and power systems of Clara with scrap before moving on. This could be a long trek to the next exit beacon.
Most of the journey takes place with minor incidence. No encounters with other ships, with only the occasional exploration of an asteroid field for scrap to pass the time. It almost seemed safe in this galaxy until we come across the wreckage of a Mantis ship. Thinking the battle was over, we pay no attention, when their whole crew teleports aboard Clara. After a lengthy battle, the intruders were disposed of with no casualties, but the weapons and shields take a while to repair before our next jump. In the next solar system, a malfunctioning automated rebel supply ship is stuck in vending mode, allowing us to repair the damage to Clara’s hull from past battles and purchase some more fuel – supplies were running low.
I reach the next exit beacon, and see a space station orbiting around it. They are sympathizers to my cause, and outfit the ship with a new weapon system. I take a look at the galactic map to see how much farther I have until I reach the Federation fleet. It’s going to be a long journey.