Surrender, Belisarius!

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ACT 1, MISSION 1

Fighter squadron: 53rd Hammerheads

Description: The 53rd Hammerheads, GTD Aquitaine, must defend a convoy of Vasudan transports escaping Cygnus Prime.


Background

Admiral Petrarch, Commanding Officer of the GTD Aquitaine, welcomes new squadrons from Vega joining the flagship of the GTVA 3rd Fleet. The Admiral also provides a situation update on the ongoing threat of the Neo-Terran Front, with the Alliance's focus of operations currently on the Epsilon Pegasi, Alpha Centauri, and Deneb systems, which are adjacent to the NTF-controlled systems of Polaris, Sirius, and Regulus, and are under risk of being overrun by the rebels.

The Aquitaine has been deployed to reinforce the Vasudan 13th Battle Group, led by the GVD Psamtik, in the Deneb system, where fierce fighting between the Alliance and rebels has resulted in the loss of the GVC Andromeda, GTC Trafalgar, and over 15 fighter wings in just 22 hours. Allied Command believes that the Aquitaine's arrival will break the stalemate and compel the rebels to withdraw their forces from the system.

Vasudans are evacuating their colonies on Cygnus Prime, a planet in Deneb, in transports. One of the refugee convoys leaving the planet sent out a distress signal, which the Vasudans responded to by deploying a wing of fighters. This wing has just requested for reinforcements, so Alpha wing of the 53rd is sent in to reinforce the Vasudans and escort the convoy. However, the transports in question do not have jump drives, so they must be protected by the remnants of its escort and Alpha wing until a recovery ship is deployed to receive them.

Walkthrough

You cannot modify the loadout of your wingman for this mission.

This is an easy mission, quite good as a warm-up to the game. You have to defend a convoy of Vasudan transports, designated Iota wing.

You jump in a short distance in front of and above the convoy, with your sole wingman, Alpha 2, hailing the convoy. The convoy's escort leader, Epsilon 1, reports that three transports have been lost to attacks by the Neo-Terran Front, and the remaining (two) Satis-class freighters are moderately damaged. Both transports will show up on your list as Iotas 1 and 2.

The NTF will launch sporadic attacks on the convoy, almost always in a wing of three Hercules-class fighters. The hull strength of the Satis freighters, as well as the assistance of your wingman and Epsilon wing and the window of time between attacks, makes this mission a good one to practice the dogfighting tactics covered in the Training Simulator Modules. Use it to learn how to fire the Rockeye heat-seeking missile and Tempest dumbfire missile if you have them loaded in your missile banks.

You can afford to lose one Iota transport. However, it is best to keep both ships alive. As compared to later missions such as Battle of the Wilderness or Exodus, this is easy to do—just fire continually and accurately at the rebel fighters attacking the convoy, and both transports will survive.

When the Iota transports reaches their destination waypoints, Command announces that the GVD Psamtik itself has been vectored to the mission area. After a short while, the Psamtik, a Hatshepsut-class destroyer, will emerge from subspace a few clicks away. If there are any rebel fighters still present at this point, they will jump out.

As the Psamtik slows to a gradual stop, Command informs all ships that the NTCv Belisarius, a Deimos-class corvette, has run the Allied blockade at the Sirius-Deneb jump node, and would likely exit subspace in the immediate area. The Psamtik acknowledges the transmission and prepares to intercept the corvette.

Just moments later, the Belisarius warps in and comes to a complete stop with its broadside facing the Psamtik. The Psamtik's bridge orders the beam cannons to be powered up while they order the Belisarius to surrender. The Belisarius refuses, however, so the Psamtik opens fire with one of its main beam cannons, destroying the Terran corvette.

As the Belisarius explodes into a debris field, the Psamtik deploys Zeta and Theta wings, relieving you of your escort. You will then be ordered to return to base.

Notes

  • FreeSpace 2's scoring system automatically excludes the damage done by beams when determining who killed what. If you fly up to the Belisarius, preferably as soon as it jumps in, and hit it at least once before the Psamtik destroys it with its main gun, the credit for that kill will go to you, not the destroyer. This quirk in FreeSpace 2 has been carried over into FS2_Open, and applies for every mission that you play in the game, even mods and custom missions. Be warned, however, that the Belisarius has strong anti-fighter defenses, even though its beams are neutered and will not open fire on you.
  • For this mission, you can linger behind, after Command orders you to return to base, and oversee the transfer of crew from Iotas 1 and 2 to the Psamtik. As Iota 1 moves in to dock with the Psamtik, Command will repeat their order for you to return to base, then be reduced to asking you if your jump drive has a problem. Ignore Command; your subspace drive works so long as your Nav and Engines subsystems are above 30%. Iota 1 will dock with the Psamtik, transfer its crew, then undock and fly away, after which Iota 2 will fly in and do exactly the same. Once both transports have transferred their crew and cleared the Psamtik, Command redeploys the destroyer to Alpha Centauri. The Psamtik will then order its fighter wings, initially deployed to relieve you of escort, to return to the destroyer. Once Zeta and Theta wings have entered the Psamtik through its two fighterbays, the destroyer departs, leaving you with the remnants of the convoy before the Psamtik jumped in. You can then return to base, as nothing else happens from that point onward.

New equipment

Total number of forces

Forces involved
Belligerents
Ships
Strikecraft
  • 12 GTF Hercules
    • Leo (2)
    • Cancer (2)
    • Gemini (2)
    • Aquarius (3)
    • Aries (3)
Casualties



  • 0-12 GTF Hercules
    • Leo (2)
    • Cancer (2)
    • Gemini (2)
    • Aquarius (3)
    • Aries (3)

Technical information

Surrender, Belisarius!
File name: SM1-01.fs2
File size: 66.5 KB
Author: Brad Johnson
Total number of objects: 28 (+4 waypoints)
Total number of wings: 10
Number of mission events: 62
Number of messages: 41
Event music: 1:Genesis
Briefing music: Brief1


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