|The following information refers to the Solaris universe and is therefore not canon for the FreeSpace continuity.|
|Campaign Walkthrough||Next Mission
Description: Ross wipes the slate clean and goes ghost hunting.
Created: November 10th, 2019
Released: October 9th, 2021
It has been two weeks since Mira and Ross has been laid out on half pay for the remainder of his Federation tour. Isolated and with no Fleet commitments he prepares to spend the rest of his leave in a border system killing time.
A comms from an old friend at Erskine Orbital reaches him. Dodo Meiks is retiring from the Navy soon, but has built up several weeks of terminal leave that needs spending. He plans to travel to the Fringe to work as a contract pilot and wants Ross along. Ross, having nothing better to do, answers the call.
Katherine Lau is an Atlantean entrepeneur based in Sulsia who sent out the hire notice. The growing instability of the Fringe due to the withdrawal of the local Commonwealth navy presence has created a demand for private security forces. Lau needs two attending pilots for her ship, a corvette that she is retrofitting from an old transport.
As part of Ross's performance assessment, she signs him up for a job at the local scrapyard. Salvage drones have gone missing, and strange signals have a been detected in the nearby scrap field. She wants Ross to investigate the signals and find out what happened to the station's drones.
Loadout is locked to the Comet missile gunship with Huaqing cannons. Secondary banks are empty.
Ross exits the hangar of Overton Orbital, the base station for salvage operations in the area. Lau's corvette Hoshikuzu is nearby being attended to by utility drones. Further ahead is the scrap field, and the source of the unknown signals. There are five in total that need to be investigated.
Ross follows the radar blips into the field. Once close enough, the first signal is revealed - a cargo box with unknown contents. Moving to scan the box, it suddenly detonates, dealing damage to Ross's gunship. The field has been seeded with mines. Ross is asked to find the rest of the mines and dispose of them.
The cargo containers are easily dispatched by cannon fire but there is very little margin of error between being close enough to identify the container, and being in damage range of the explosion.
Ross complains about the gunship's handling, and an offended Lau tells him the weight of the added missile racks is as optimised as they can get. Ross wonders whether the pods should just be removed, but Lau insists the benefit in firepower outweighs the cost to agility.
All five mines are detonated and the area seems clear, but a cluster of new signals nearby comes up on radar. The signals turn out to be a salvage freighter with one of Overton's drones under it's control. Both ships have their transponders off, and the freighter already has salvaged hulls loaded up. The freighter abandons the drone and moves to spool it's impeller. Ross is told to disable the ship's astrogation system before it jumps. Once done, Ross has to disable the freighter's engines so that it can be apprehended.
The mystery of the missing drones and the signal ghosts in the field is solved, and Ross joins up with Lau's security group.
Notable ships present
- Hoshikuzu - Rasputin-class corvette
- Samoyed - Stargazer-class freighter
- Successful completion of contract.
- Ross joins the crew of the Hoshikuzu.
- Space craft have to manage mass when trying to optimise performance and agility. Military vessels are supremely optimised for heat management, agility and armour and choose to forego missiles as an unnecessary weight burden. The situation in the Fringe is different, with mass requirements being more forgiving and missiles being a lot more common.
- The Huaqing is the standard Combine anti-fighter cannon used on the Defender fighter. It is mass produced and cheap, and therefore the first available cannon. It does more damage per second than the Maxim, but round velocity and fire rate is lower.