APAGear II Archives Volume 3, Number 3 April, 2001


Port Arthur Campaign Timeline

Phil Lemieux

[Author's note: This is the explanatory text which explains you why the Port Arthur Campaign started. It should be read or handed over to players with the previous piece of fiction which appeared on APAgear. A detailed review of each decisive action will follow in the form of Scenarios for use in the Tactical Mode. Enjoy!]

To exactly know what started the Port Arthur Campaign takes a lot of hindsight. Pretty much everything started when Helen Del Puciano was retrieved from her gate coffin in 1939. At this time war raged over Terra Nova and the Badlands was caught in the middle. The planet turned inside again focusing on the war that was at hand. The old nightmares of the War of the Alliance were swiftly forgotten and everything was geared towards planet politics. The thing that triggered the big Earth paranoia was the complete destruction of Peace River. Struck by a devastating weapon of mass destruction the Badlands' capital was atomized. The tragedy stopped the war dead in its stride as if a crowbar was thrown into the gear of a transmission. The two sides accused each others but some neutral parties, mainly journalists, uncovered the truth. The device that annihilated Peace River was an anti-matter bomb, the use or production of which was prohibited by the Nakada Treaty. Even if some league would have wanted to break the treaty such devices were extremely difficult to design and the emergence of that kind of weapon occurred during the War of the Alliance when Earth used them in the Baja Campaign. Nobody on the planet was believed to be able to produce such bombs. The evidence quickly pointed towards the homeworld and the New Earth Commonwealth. The general populace was quick to point at Port Arthur but polar intelligence service pointed to other sources. Overall the mood of the planet switched quickly from hatred between brothers to fear of an imminent invasion by a ruthless nemesis. Earth tried once to invade Terra Nova and the results were quite frightening, nobody in the 40s cannot forget that grim part of Terranovan history. With a common enemy that threatened all of the planet not just one hemisphere things rapidly settled and in a matter of year the war was over and the reconstruction of Peace River was beginning. It's about that time that the arrival of Helen Del Puciano was made official and that the reigning governments found the horrible truth. From Del Puciano's words the Earth invasion was nothing more than a kind of scouting party. The full force of the NEC fleet wasn't brought to bear during the War of the Alliance, and that same fleet was stationed at the gate world Caprice. That sent a tremors through the high ranking decider of the planet. Soon enough a response was made and the Westphalia Cabinet came on-line. This cabinet would oversee all of the outer planet relations and operations and create an elite unit of covert agents called the Black Talons. These would first cleanse Terra Nova out of the NEC agents and operating base and then establish contact and wage guerrilla warfare on Caprice.

During all this time the geopolitical face of Terra Nova changed a lot and not necessarily for the better of the planet. First the Eastern Sun Emirates collapsed and the Emirs soon started an assassination war and other grimmer schemes. Civil war pockets erupted about everywhere and the AST's MILICIA entered the fray with its shattered remains grinding even more its already smaller self. Regiments raised from the ESE went AWOL and turned there arms against other loyal MILICIA units. Seeing that De Rouen, then prime minister of the Southern Republic, directed the AST into rallying the MILICIA towards the Mekong Dominion and the Southern Republic.

This gap sealed, more unofficial things were in the making. Unknown to De Rouen his own daughter planned to murder his father and take his place at the head of the Curia. She was heavily relying onto his SRID contact Guy Hyénes to make public some of her father's less enlightening feats and pass his death as an heart attack of some sort. Hyénes director of SRID for 5 years now had amassed terabytes of personal info and other more official stuff on pretty much everyone influential on the planet, including De Rouen and her daughter what she didn't knew. Carefully planning his moves and earning from his 10 years in the SR Army and particularly the LÈgion Noire he created a complicated network of powerful contacts and friends inside the Southern Republic Intelligence Directorate and Army. Such was his power that if he decided to overthrow the government for Louise De Rouen he will have the support of the whole army and the most influential regiments and officers inside the MILICIA. His charisma and power was so big amongst the military branch of the Southern Republic that if he wanted to he could turn the weapons of the Republic against its own peoples or head of government. He was the army and the army was him. This fact wasn't forgotten by Guy Hyénes and he carefully maneuvered Louise De Rouen into making her final act. Louise poisoned his father and Hyénes himself arrested her in De Rouen's room. He then acted as witness and prosecutor before a Curia Special Tribunal. It's him who was responsible for De Rouen sentence and transfer. He then organized, with some SRID operative, a brilliant coup to kill Louise during her transfer to the death potence. The thing was schemed as a bloody strike against the convoy killing tens of passing civilian in the process. The De Rouen ruling family was now out of the way and Hyénes carefully arranged for invented stories to surface into the Southern Republic's media. The murderous plan was supposed to have been devised by NEC agents some of whom were member of the Curia, obviously some of the preferred replacement for De Rouen father. The NEC gambit had contacted Louise and helped her find evidence or invent some to overthrow his father. At least that was what surfaced into the media and was what the people believed. Hyénes was quick to put his sensitive info to good use and rose to interim Prime Minister of the Southern Republic. People who were left from the De Rouen cleansing were blackmailed into submission or were just not bright or influential enough to counter Hyénes. With the backing of the army to protect any attempt to him he was free to do what he cared was the good of the Republic. He promised election but found a way to bring the eyes of the populace towards other matters.

It's actually this last move that started all of the Port Arthur Campaign. Wanting to drift the general opinion towards a distant problem and maneuvering the media, Hyénes pushed his election deadline further. Somehow Hyénes was able to get access to classified data from the Westphalia Cabinet and he got his hands on many briefings from the Black Talon operation on Caprice. He analyzed those and injected bad outcomes into the Southern media. Most of these were geared towards the fact that the Black Talon and Westphalia in general was not efficient at driving NEC agents out of the planet. He carefully put his SRID years and propaganda talent at creating the idea that the planet was full of enemy operative and that most of them were operating from Port Arthur. He participated in debates and wrote some editorials for newspaper and other media. In his opinion the only way to be sure that no more agents passed through to Terra Nova was to destroy the only starport that wasn't in polar hands. This way the Southern Republic and its allies would be able to make sure that nobody would use Port Arthur facilities for dangerous means. The idea floated through the nation and most people took it for granted. The general opinion soon called for action against Port Arthur.

That was three years ago. During these years, Hyénes was able to withstand his elections and reinforces his position in the military and according industries by bolstering the MILICIA and the Republic's own army. Massive amount of cash were injected in the military and in 1942 a Terranovan record was broken when the percentage of the GNP devoted to military expenditures exceeded 40%. The Southern Republic Army was the mightiest army on the planet equipped with top notch gears and massive landships it easily dwarfed the Northern Alliance's or that of the UMF. The MILICIA was only a shadow of its former negative self. Discipline was imposed ruthlessly and outdated equipment from the SRA overhaul was injected in its remains. The MILICIA now accounted for 20 Infantry Legions, 12 Cavalry Legions and some 16 Border Legions. The SRA was more than double that size with 56 Infantry Legions, 30 Cavalry Legions and 30 Border Legions. During these three years Hyénes contended the general opinion by silencing the Saragossan Front and driving supposed NEC bases out of the Republic land. However, Hyénes knew that if he didn't acted quick his position as head of government will begin to itch the people. It was now 4 years since he was appointed interim PM but he wasn't elected by the people. As of yet the majority saw him fit for the job and didn't discussed his authority or just his place as PM, but Hyénes had to do something to keep the intellectuals and other peoples from wanting an election.

Carefully scouting his future enemy Hyénes wrote a massive plan of operation for capturing Port Arthur and rendering it inoperative. Adding to the fact that it would calm the populace for awhile, Port Arthur was rich in wealthful resources and had one of the best starport available to Terra Nova. Capturing this will render the Southern Republic the sole solution for any invasion of Caprice or space based defense scheme. What was less obvious however, was how his army will fare against the Port Arthur Korps which was composed of hovertanks. He had some hovertanks at his disposition himself, but the plague that took the Humanist Alliance also took his knowledge base for such weapons. He only had green troops in the sense that the vast majority of his fighting body was composed of soldiers who had never encountered the hovertanks or GREL for that matter. He feared that the moral of his troops will falter under the ominous war machines and relentless superhuman. Thus wanting to preserve the SRA capabilities he decided to commit the MILICIA instead. That took him a quite long political campaign of blackmail and payments to manipulate the right foreign officials. In the end all was working and the Port Arthur Campaign took off on Autumn 1944.

[After reading this to your players you can now begin the campaign. Next issues will display all of the important battles that you will have to fight. ]

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APAGear II Archives Volume 3, Number 3 April, 2001