The Let's Play Archive

Wing Commander

by ivantod

Part 13: Mission #13: 13 May 2654, Kurasawa system

Mission #13: 13 May 2654, Kurasawa system

Previously on Wing Commander: Blowing stuff up is fun. Especially when it's not ours!

How nice, it's Sprit and Knight.

We just got a report from the siege force over Kurasawa IV. The CSS Suffolk just torched a Kilrathi communications station. That should keep those Kilrathi jerks in the dark for a while. I'll let you know if I hear anything else. See you, Maverick.

Is it really as quick as everyone says? I've got to see it in action. I just got back from a patrol out near Kurasawa IV.That was a nightmare. Me and Lightning were jumped by a couple of wings of Gratha.

If we'd had those Rapiers, I bet that we'd never have taken a hit. They're good ships. You're lucky to get to fly one out.

Poor Knight really can't seem to catch a break here...

I am inspired by the reports of our sucesses. We are doing well. Still, I am sure that there are many battles left to be fought. The Kilrathi will not be vanquished until they are beaten on their own territory. Beware a desperate enemy, Maverick. They will stop at nothing to defeat you.

Mission Time!
Again, no information was divulged about the upcoming mission... but for those in the know: yes, this is THAT ONE MISSION!

It seems our boys captured a Ralari-class destroyer in the Port Hedland System. Sector Command wants to use this ship in our siege here at Kurasawa.

Did you now? How nice.

I'm sending a wing to rendezvous with the Ralari and escort it to the Claw. Bossman and Maverick, This one's yours. Maverick will fly lead.

Here's the scenario... Computer, display Omicron.

There's an asteroid belt along the way. Keep your eyes peeled for trouble. Once you've arrived at the rendezvous point, you'll escort the destroyer back here.

Please make a note of this comment, it will prove to be very important!

They must have been sent to prevent us from getting the Ralari. Expect a tough fight. That's all, gentlemen.

So as I've already mentioned, this is the infamous "impossible" mission, a.k.a. "Save the Ralari". We need to go and defend captured Kilrathi Ralari-class destroyer on it's way to Tiger's Claw. The enemy has got wind of what we are doing and several fighters (in this case four Grathas) are approaching at high speed (hint, hint!). Oh and also there's an asteroid field between us and the destroyer (as it will turn out the asteroid field has some interesting properties, which you will have the chance to see in the video).

I don't mind a hard mission, but this is more of cheap shot than even a real mission.
And there you have it. As far as I can gather, the only way to make any kind of progress in this mission is to completely forget about the asteroid field (there are enemies in it, four Salthis) and to use your afterburners to go around it very quickly. You need to make sure you go at a sufficient distance so that those enemies don't register on the radar, otherwise you'll have problems getting Bossman to attack the Grathas later on. Doing things in this manner, as far as as I can tell, gives you a few extra seconds when you get to the Ralari as the enemies only seem to be just setting up in a position to attack (unlike when you fly this mission normally where they are already pounding at it when you arrive). These extra seconds in general make a big difference as you can get rid of one Gratha in that time.

The rest is more or less dependent on luck, not skill. If you are lucky with how the enemies move you'll be able to kill a couple more quickly and then when there's only one left you can breathe a bit more easily (although it happened a few times to me during the test runs that one last enemy still managed to kill the Ralari before being destroyed, so it's still pretty tough as Ralari is in bad shape by that point). As you saw, there is actually one more friendly Rapier there, so than can sometimes help you out. Also ramming one of the Grathas can be an easy way of destroying it, provided you are sure you can survive it.

On the way back, as you may have noticed, the asteroid field has disappeared and we don't have to take the Ralari via any kind of roundabout route or anything like that.

It is not actually possible to win the Kurasawa series unless you save the Ralari, but there's no great punishment if you do lose as the only thing you need to do is fly 3 extra missions in Rostov system--you fly these with Iceman in a Raptor, so hardly a big deal except for the fact that Rostov is full of asteroids. Once you win there, you rejoin the normal winning path at Venice. With this a question: is there any interest to see these Rostov missions? In a typical playthrough this is the route you would normally take as there is really very little point in fretting over Kurasawa.

And finally, yes there is possibility to get a medal in this mission, but it's more of a joke than a real thing. It's a Silver star and you get it if you save the Ralari plus destroy most of the enemies--not sure exactly, but you have to get at least a couple from within the asteroid field too; this last requirement makes the medal only a theoretical possibility in my opinion.

Oh yeah and as a final "screw you", the friend-or-foe missiles you are carrying will consider Ralari an enemy target!

No, I'm not a fan of this mission, why do you ask?

Little change on the killboard this time...

Next time on Wing Commander
Maverick's old stomping ground revisited... kind of.