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Smilingotter
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PostSubject: Re: Playing with Aliens   Thu Aug 23, 2012 11:42 pm

For Val, possibly Jeremy Renner?
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Wilmer Valderama for Fausto?
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And while Aldis Hodge is a fine choice, I would point out that Chiwetel Ejiofor would be able to pull off the whole Afro-British thing pretty well too... Smile
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PostSubject: Re: Playing with Aliens   Fri Aug 24, 2012 8:12 am

Soooo... Wilmer Valderama, huh? I thought I was the only one who thought that he needs to be "fixed"...

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PostSubject: Re: Playing with Aliens   Tue Aug 28, 2012 10:50 am

I finally got a chance to sit and read this through. I like it more than a little.

Again you have great dialogue. Much enjoyment. I will have a think about casting. Have you given any thought to choosing actors that are old now, but were hot when they started out? You could even make it a bit of a joke like the line in His Girl Friday when Cary Grant says, "He looks like that guy from the movies.. What's his name...*snap* Ralph Bellamy" THe joke was Ralph Bellamy was the actor playing the character refered to and was well known for playing the romantic lead.

I know you like casting as though somone is going to pick up the rights next week and actully turn iit into a movie, but it does open up the pool of consideration. Just a thought.

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PostSubject: LeFou I'm afraid I've been thinking   Tue Aug 28, 2012 12:45 pm

I KNOW what I'm about to say sounds nitpicky. I'm sorry in advance. I've been thinking about the Bev Johnson character.

Many deaf people would see her choosing the Reset at being a traitor to her deafness (I know it sounds crazy to most hearing people but if you look at the passionate controversy over cochlear implants you'd know what I mean). So I personally LIKE the idea of including a deaf person, but I would make sure she has a pretty compelling reason to abandon her culture and lifestyle if you want to use her as a recruiting device to the deaf culture in the US. I have no idea how other deaf cultures see themselves. But I think it would be really good for you to make that part of HER story. Because it is important. Is she the only deaf person in her family or is she a CODA like Jason? Does her family (particularly her parents) know and use ASL? Does she speak English or ASL (and Lonnie and Mary Anne are perfect examples of an ASL speaker living with an English Speaker.)? It makes a difference. Was she born deaf or did she become deaf through illness or accident?Like i said I know how this sounds to people who haven't been exposed much to the deaf culture.

As an aside on that, Making her noisy (clanging things together or humming as she eats or having the Audio levels wonky ie wayyyyyy too high or too low) pre-Reset would be a good way to characterize the differences and difficulties for her as she adjusts to hearing.Also, deaf people always have lots of lights on in order to see the signs or the lips of the person they are talking to.. Post-Reset you way want her to talk too softly or be horrified at how loud things are or really stressed out because she's having a hard time filtering out background noises. Sorry I know I'm picking on your character or about her and probably giving you way too much advice, and It's probably because of my in-laws, but I want you to get it "right". I know you can.

Sorry. My bossy the cow came out....

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PostSubject: Re: Playing with Aliens   Tue Aug 28, 2012 1:21 pm

It's alright. I do have some basic background on each of the named characters, but pretty much Colton is my POV person. I don't know if Bev will continue with their group or be assigned to another team. I don't know beyond Colton, Athena, Erik, and Amadi who all will be staying and who will be going/dying.

I'm kinda liking Kat and Fausto, but y'all haven't really met Fausto yet.

I'll keep your suggestions in mind if I continue on with the Bev character.

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PostSubject: Re: Playing with Aliens   Tue Aug 28, 2012 1:28 pm

I just got to thinking and I know the outcry when it gets published (notice my complete confidence in it's future publication) if there isn't at least a nod to the concept of "its treason".

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PostSubject: Re: Playing with Aliens   Tue Aug 28, 2012 1:56 pm

Cute.

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PostSubject: Re: Playing with Aliens   Tue Aug 28, 2012 5:35 pm

Yes, I know I am, but what did you think of the story?

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PostSubject: Re: Playing with Aliens   Tue Aug 28, 2012 11:05 pm

I really don't get the "deaf culture's" pride in being handicapped, but I have to assume that it's most strident members were born deaf and have no idea what they're missing. If they could hear Handel's Messiah or Queen's "Somebody to Love" the movement would come to a grinding halt.

Now, back to the subject at hand. Good stuff. I take it that this first batch of folks are the first class to publicly go through the Reset process? (Presumably there would have to be previous guinea pigs to make sure the process was safe. Might be interesting to meet some of those.

Also:

Quote :
They hadn’t quite perfected artificial gravity creation, but they’d managed to do a pretty good job of counteracting real gravity and inertia.

Quote :
The aliens had towed in a small asteroid, hollowed it out, shaped it into a cylinder, and set the thing spinning to create artificial gravity. They could have generated an artificial gravity field, but they had explained that the spin was easier to do.

So you might add that gravity on stations was doable, just not on smaller craft. Also, JM Straczynski would approve of this station.

Also, and this is just me, rather than singling Colton out by name about not bringing weapons on the shuttle, perhaps just have Casper give him the hairy eyeball...


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PostSubject: Re: Playing with Aliens   Tue Aug 28, 2012 11:42 pm

I probably should make clearer that the Kraken have limited artificial gravity tech. The Makers, on the other hand, treat gravity like their little bitch. The tech just hasn't trickled down to the Kraken or the Ergrahthah from the Makers yet.

The folks currently heading up to the station are the first to undergo Reset. I haven't entirely revealed it yet in story, but the Makers have been observing and studying humanity for tens of thousands of years on a dozen or more worlds, upon which they replicated Earth's biosystem. Nothing that the Makers are doing to their human subjects is actually experimental.

The Project Achilles soldiers are almost experimental because they're being upgraded, but even those enhancements are well within the bounds of the Makers' general knowledge of bio-engineering.

Well, let me say that the while the tech is not experimental, the ways in which the Achilles soldiers will learn to put it to use is experimental.

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PostSubject: Re: Playing with Aliens   Tue Aug 28, 2012 11:45 pm

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This is kind of what Station Zero One looks like

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PostSubject: Re: Playing with Aliens   Wed Aug 29, 2012 10:31 am

Smilingotter wrote:
I really don't get the "deaf culture's" pride in being handicapped, but I have to assume that it's most strident members were born deaf and have no idea what they're missing.

I think it has more to do with people looking at them like they are stupid or "Broken" or wrong because they are deaf, like they are less of a person because one sense is missing. "God made them this way" and changing it (even with the use of tools like cochlear implants) is "playing God". I didn't say I agreed Just that I knew what would be that reaction. My MIL would hate to be hearing. She had a hearing aid for a while and all the noises she couldn't filter out (ex hum of fridge or background conversation) drove her nuts. SHe gave it up and never regretted it.


As to my "cute" comment - I thought the interaction between Coltan and George was cute.

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PostSubject: Re: Playing with Aliens   Wed Aug 29, 2012 10:37 am

Ronnie Dolan wrote:
As to my "cute" comment - I thought the interaction between Coltan and George was cute.

Yes, I know I'm cute. You've said so before, but how'd you like the story? ;-D I enjoyed writing Dr. George. I'm also thinking of assigning a pack of Kraken to the squad as their "orderlies".

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PostSubject: Re: Playing with Aliens   Wed Aug 29, 2012 11:19 am

makes sense. Attach a doc as a medic (with nurses) and a Noncombat pack as quatermaster and assorted personnel. Voila one fairly self contained shock unit.

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PostSubject: Re: Playing with Aliens   Wed Aug 29, 2012 11:37 am

I hadn't considered attaching a doc squid, but maybe I will now. Doc George is studying to be a people doctor, after all. I was thinking that the orderlies would be there to help the Achilles soldiers into their battle armor whenever that was necessary, and they weren't on a "hearts & minds" type mission.

After virtual Basic and Advanced Individual Training, when they wake up in the real world again, I'm thinking that the Allied High Command (i.e. the Makers, Squids, & Cats in charge of the ragtag fugitive fleet) would have arranged for their newly minted super soldiers to go on more "advanced combat" training with allied Human militaries.

In other words, the squad is in for a year of Hell Week with the SEALs, survival and evasion training with the SAS in the UK, and maybe some time in the desert with the Israeli Defense Force.

The stated purpose is that the Allies want their human special forces trained by the very best (like the SEALS, Green Berets, SAS, the Spetznaz, Israeli Commandos, etc.), and that will be true on the face of it, but it will also be a chance for them to advertise the Reset tech and cybernetic enhancement tech to their allies. "No, we won't sell you the technology, but we will perform the service for you... for a nominal fee, of course. Terraforming Venus and Mars isn't cheap, you know."

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PostSubject: Re: Playing with Aliens   Wed Aug 29, 2012 3:57 pm

I was figuring the end point of training would be to create a unit that could go anywhere with little or no support from the main "army" (although it's more of a space navy) I mean if I had a universe to defend I would want as many semi autonomous units I could create. It gives more flexibility. Objective = Kill Bill I don't much care how, as long as you can keep collateral damage to minimum. that kind of deal. lots of flexibility in how they assault whatever peanut they've been told to assault.

But that's my idea and it's your story.
SO do with it what you will.

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PostSubject: Re: Playing with Aliens   Wed Aug 29, 2012 10:42 pm

And that's how the Achilles Teams would operate. They'd be a combination Marine Corps, Green Berets, and Shadowrunner ops team.

Here's how Colton might break it down: First, they turn you into Captain America. Then, they give Captain America a suit of Iron Man armor.

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PostSubject: Re: Playing with Aliens   Thu Aug 30, 2012 10:39 am

Cool. Question: Who's the heel?

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PostSubject: Re: Playing with Aliens   Thu Aug 30, 2012 1:23 pm

Define what you mean by "heel?"

Or is that a reference to Achilles' heel? What is an Achilles trooper's weakness? The idea is that they won't have one, but I figure it will be the psychological baggage that come from being a former broken toy. I also see a time in their future, as their capabilities become more well known when they will suffer some kind of social stigma. "Thanks for protecting us from the bad guys, but please go live somewhere else where you won't go crazy and murder my children or just steal my job because you're better at it than I am or because you freak me out being a 60-year old who looks like a 20-year old, which also makes me very jealous..."

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PostSubject: Re: Playing with Aliens   Thu Aug 30, 2012 2:54 pm

I was attempting to be a smart ass. I was playing on the Achilles thing and i was trying to be funny. apparently I shouldn't do that....

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PostSubject: Re: Playing with Aliens   Thu Aug 30, 2012 3:41 pm

Maybe not

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PostSubject: Guns, Knives, & Pointed Sticks!   Fri Aug 31, 2012 2:17 pm

First announcement, I've decided that the name of the military organization which my heroes have joined is called the Terran Legion (inspired by both the Legions of Rome and various "foreign" legions like the French Foreign Legion).

Second announcement, I've been thinking about how to arm the Legionaries. So far I've come up with a concept for a handgun and a Modular Assault Weapon System (MAWS).

Now, on to "Guns, Knives, & Pointed Sticks!"

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The Terran Legion "Pugio"

The Terran Legion standard-issue sidearm, code named "Pugio" is the .45 caliber FNX-45 Tactical pistol produced by Fabrique National-Herstal USA, the American branch of the famous Belgian firearms manufacturer. The FNX-45 was designed as a contender for the U.S. military's on again/off again search for a replacement for the M9 Beretta and the SOCOM pistol competition. The Pugio is the basic Tactical model, modified using Maker technology, mainly to enhance accuracy but also for survivability in a variety of environments (including hard vacuum).

  • .45 ACP Caliber

  • 15-round magazine

  • Threaded barrel, picatinny rail lower

  • Upper-mounted scope
    • Head-Up Display readout

    • Holographic targeting reticle (red or green dot)

    • IR & UV filter

  • Lower-mounted multi-sensor unit
    • 3 led white light

    • 3 laser emitters (green, IR, & UV), tied to a lidar rangefinder

    • Q-dar emitter for target acquisition and identification

    • Pinhole camera with IR & UV filters

    • Transmitter tied to upper-mounted scope or neural implants


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Terran Legion "Pilum" Modular Assault Weapon System

In partnership with the FN-Herstal firm of Belgium (the USA branch) and Metal Storm Technologies of Australia, the Terran Legion has created the Pilum Mk. 01, which is their standard-issue battlefield weapon. The basic platform upon which the Pilum is built is the FN2000 assault rifle, which has been rechambered from the 5.56mm NATO round to a 6.5mm round. The 6.5mm round is more powerful and has better ballistic performance at closer ranges than the 5.56mm. Furthermore, the Legion has access to a discarding sabot flechette round, which has even better ballistic performance at greater range as well as deeper penetration capacity. The FN2000 can already mount a single-shot 40mm grenade launcher, but the Pilum mounts either the Metal Storm 3GL 40mm grenade launcher or the MAUL 12 gauge shotgun.

The Metal Storm 3GL is a 3-shot 40mm grenade launcher that is roughly the same size as a traditional one-shot 40mm grenade launcher. Likewise, the MAUL (Multi-shot Underbarrel Launcher) is a 5-shot 12 gausge semi-automatic shotgun. Both weapons systems utilize Metal Storm's patented "stackable" ammunition and electric ignition system. In effect, three grenades (in the 3GL) or a tube of five shells (in the MAUL) are inserted into the barrel of the weapon. Then, each round is sequentially launched from the same barrel. The MAUL unit is the standard module for the Pilum, and the munitions available for it range from less-than-lethal (blunt force or "bean bag" rounds or electric discharge "taser dart" rounds) to lethal options (traditional buckshot to slugs to "flechette"). The MAUL unit can even be used to launch 12 gauge grenades or seeker drones. The 40mm 3GL can use all standard grenade rounds, but the Legion also fields advanced technology platforms such as mini-drones.

The Pilum is equipped with the same multiple sensor unit as is mounted on the Pugio. The top-mounted scope includes all the same display options with the addition of 4X to 200X magnification. In keeping with its modular nature, the Pilum can swap out its standard length barrel for a shorter "carbine" barrel or a longer "sniper" barrel. A ceramic-sheathed, self-cooling barrel combined with a clever enclosed belt-and-bin arrangement allows the Pilum to even be used as a light machine gun. (The bin attaches to the back of the shooter and can be loaded with up to 1000 rounds. An enclosed belt extends from the bin to a magazine-like feed which is inserted into the bullpup magazine well. The ceramic-sheathed barrel quickly and easily sheds the waste heat that would normally warp the barrel from constant firing.)

Future planned modules to mount in the place of the 3GL/MAUL include lasers, masers, plasma projectors, and coil guns.

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Metal Storm MAUL mounted on an M4 carbine.

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Carbine Pilum with suppressor and 40mm 3GL module

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Pilum MAWS in action.

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PostSubject: Re: Playing with Aliens   Fri Aug 31, 2012 2:35 pm

I'm sure somebody is gonna ask the question, "If the Terran Legion guys are working for aliens, why don't they get phasers?"

I know somebody is gonna ask that question because I plan on having one of my characters (probably Amadi) ask that question, too.

The simple answer is this: mechanical firearms is reliable. If the battery dies in any of the high tech add-ons, you can still rack the charging handle, squeeze the trigger, and the gun will shoot. In the end, the Pilum is an assault rifle.

Now, for a more detailed answer consider these points:

    1. The Ergrahthah are our technological equivalents. We don't have phasers, they don't have phasers. Simple as that. In fact, the Ergrahthah are a little behind us in mechanical firearms development. They really want to buy guns from us because our stuff is generally better than theirs.


    2. The Kraken do have "phasers", but their bodies are ergonomically different from our own. We couldn't comfortably use one of their weapons any more than they would feel comfortable using one of ours. Furthermore, their "phaser" weapons are, at best, crew-served.


    3. The Makers don't make weapons. They'll build components that can be assembled into weapons, but they won't knowingly design or build weapons themselves. The closest they'll come to making a weapon is genetically and cybernetically enhancing another creature, but even then those enhancements tend to be viewed as "defensive" rather than "offensive."


    4. The entire mass manufacturing capability of the ragtag fugitive fleet lays with the Makers. The Kraken and the Ergrahthah can assemble parts and pieces into final weapon systems aboard their ships, but they don't have the manufacturing capacity to supply advanced weapons to the Terran Legion (much less the allied militaries of Earth).


Coming soon: The "Gladius" Submachine Gun! (For fun, discuss which firearm should be chosen as the subgun of the Terran Legion. I already know what I want it to be, and if you guess correctly you get a fabulous prize! Not really, you'll just get bragging rights that you think like me... not that you really want to admit that.)

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PostSubject: Re: Playing with Aliens   Fri Aug 31, 2012 2:52 pm

Loving the naming

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PostSubject: Re: Playing with Aliens   Fri Aug 31, 2012 6:43 pm

First of all, where I suspect there should be pictures above, I get "[Only admins are allowed to see this link]."

Now, as to the Gladius:

My primary consideration would be caliber. Which is to say, the fewer, the better, from a logistical point of view. Which suggests two possibilities:

.45ACP - while there are a number of SMG's that use the venerable .45, the Uzi and the H&K UMP would probably be the better choices. While there's nothing wrong with the Uzi, the H&K is probably a bit more versatile.

6.5mm - while no one that I could find makes an SMG in this caliber, FN does makes the P-90, a very nice (if oddly designed) SMG, in 5.7mm. That said, it would take a complete reworking of the weapon to get it to fit the much bigger 6.5 round. Certainly doable, if not practical.


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