Mission 6 takes place on August 26, 2160 and is part of the Operation Shield campaign.
I'm sure you are all aware of the loss of Brad Callan, or "Viper," during our last mission. His jump drive malfunctioned, destroying his fighter. Search and rescue have not found an escape pod. As of now, Mark Bannister, callsign "Bandit," will be taking over as squadron leader.
Watch the screen and pay close attention.
At 1600 hours we received a distress call from an inbound convoy en route to Triton Command. Reports are sketchy, but we think the convoy consists of a number of fully laden cargo carriers, and more importantly the ANS Ulysses, a commandeered civilian liner transporting high-ranking military and Senate personnel.
The convoy has been under constant attack. They've lost their fighter cover and sustained heavy damage. Your first objective will be to link up with the Ulysses and the heavy cargo carriers. Once there, escort them to Fort Baxter where you will be relieved and the convoy will undergo repairs and resupply.
I don't have to stress to you the importance of this mission. Stay alert and pay attention to your in-flight comms for updates.
Everyone clear? OK, load out your ships and check your objectives.
- Coyote. The balanced performance coupled with Blind Fire and powerful primary weapons are an essential asset in this mission.
- This is a high priority mission and one under a new wing leader. Bandit will call this one for Viper and order the wing to jump out to Ulysses' coordinates. Head out and you'll find the liner without fighter cover. Make a hard burn for the ship, as soon the Coalition breaks up the monotony with a hunting pack of no less than four Kamov bombers supported by two Basilisks. This is also the first mission where the Kamovs demonstrate their ability to cloak, so you have the work cut out for you.
- Prioritize bombers above all else, using Screamers and primary weapons to eliminate them as soon as possible. Every bomber you take out in the first several seconds is four fewer torpedoes to worry about. Otherwise, you will have to take out a total of sixteen intermittently launched torpedoes. If any impact the convoy, you lose the bonus objective. If two or more hit the Ulysses, the ship will be destroyed and launch lifepods with some of the Alliance top brass inside.
- The Coalition hunting pack then jumps out, as a Nanny ship is called in. However, the Coalition now jumps in with their own S&R ship, the Antonov, escorted by eight Saracens. It will make a beeline for the escape pods and try to capture them. If it makes off with three pods, the mission is a failure. As such, focus on destroying the Antonov. The enemy will also try to take out the Nanny, forcing command to order you to destroy the lifepods from the Ulysses, to prevent the people within from falling into Coalition hands. To protect it, destroy the torpedo bomber when it jumps in and targets the S&R ship.
- If the Ulysses was destroyed, the mission terminates here and you're ordered back to the Reliant. Otherwise, you're sent ahead to aid a weapons transport. However, it's destroyed the moment you enter, leaving cargo pods floating through space. Command orders Rippers to recover the cargo, while you fly protection detail. Four Coalition fighters jump in and attack. Afterwards, you're sent to Fort Baxter and the Reliant as usual.
- Success + Bonus: Ulysses, her convoy, and all Rippers survive.
- Success: Ulysses survives.
- Partial success: Ulysses lost, but Nanny recovered pods and Antonov was destroyed.
- Partial fail: Ulysses and Nanny lost, Antonov destroyed.
- Fail: Ulysses and Nanny lost, Antonov escaped.