Welcome to another exciting installment of Spacemon, the tale of a Pokemon TRPG campaign! This is a spinoff of the sci-fi space epic played using the Pokemon Tabletop United (PTU) system, this time GMed by yours truly. You can get caught up the entire Spacemon saga here!
Taraka joined Roland, Axel, and Cyrus near the front of the ship as the UAS Maverick dropped out of warp space in the Ventau system in Sector 32. The monk watched out the viewport as the ship approached the planet Freyeon, a white sphere covered in snow and ice. He got a nice view of the planet’s vast, rugged tundras and dense evergreen forests once the Maverick broke through the atmosphere. Despite the cold, unforgiving conditions of this world, it was still quite a beautiful sight to see.
According to the information Kailash had provided, the ruins were located within one of the icy world’s many forests. The trees were dense, so Anya couldn’t land the ship right next to the ruins. The nearest viable landing site was in a clearing several kilometers out, at least an hour’s walk. Taraka didn’t mind, though. A nice stroll through the snow granted the possibility of finding some Pokemon along the way.
“Stay safe out there,” Cyrus said as Taraka, Axel, and Roland walked down the cargo bay ramp out into the snow. “If you get into a bind, Ace and I will be on standby.”
“Don’t worry, Captain,” Axel said. “I’ll keep ‘em safe.”
“That’s what I like to hear.”
And with that, the three explorers set out in the direction of the ruins. Taraka kept his eyes out for any wild Pokemon as they made their way through the snowy forest, but it was likely the ship flying overhead had spooked a lot of them. They probably wouldn’t see any until they got closer to the ruins.
As they walked along, Taraka noticed Roland pull out a peculiar device. The merchant then began looking around. It looked to Taraka like he was scanning something.
“What is that you’ve got there?” the monk asked, curious.
“Ah,” Roland replied. “This, my friend, is a dowsing machine. I use it to locate shards, fragments of gemstones with mystical properties. Ah ha! There’s one now.” The device in his hand began to beep, and Roland soon pulled a violet-colored gem fragment from the snow.
“Interesting,” Taraka said, looking at the object in his companion’s hand. “What do you do with these shards?”
“It is quite simple, really!” Roland replied. “I use them in the creation of my wares! I can use them to create evolutionary stones and other such items. I have even discovered a way to combine these shards into gems that can power up a Pokemon’s attacks.”
“Fascinating,” the monk replied. “You will need to show me sometime.”
“Indeed, my friend. Indeed.”
“Come on, you two!” Axel called from a ways ahead. “Keep up!”
“We shall catch up momentarily!” Roland shouted back. “Patience, my friend! Patience!”
Taraka simply let out a subtle chuckle as he followed after Axel.
As the three crewmates continued to press on through the forest to the ruins, Taraka noticed the trees begin to thin out a bit. They hadn’t quite walked into a clearing, but the plant life was certainly sparser. Lying beneath a tree nearby, the monk spotted a Pokemon. It was a Vulpix with a coat of white fur.
“Look,” Taraka said, pointing it out to his crewmates.
“I want it!” Axel immediately called out.
The mercenary’s sudden shout seemed to startle some other Pokemon in the area as it was followed by a rustling in the bushes nearby. Out from the snow covered evergreen shrubbery emerged a Glaceon. It looked at the three Humans with cautious curiosity. Meanwhile, a Swirlix emerged from the denser forest a short distance away and a Spritzee drifted down from a tree near the one the Vulpix was resting beneath.
“I want that one too!” Axel shouted, pointing at the Glaceon.
“These Pokemon are anyone’s for the taking, sir!” Roland said.
“These two are mine,” Axel said, trying to lay claim. “Don’t you dare try to catch them.”
“Not if I get to them first,” Taraka teased the mercenary.
“We’ll just see about that,” Axel retorted. He pulled a Pokeball from his belt and released his Charizard. “Ritsu, go get that Glaceon! Use Ember!” he commanded the Pokemon. “And stop anyone who tries to throw a Pokeball at it!”
Ritsu flapped her wings and lifted off the ground, then rushed the Glaceon, spewing fire from her mouth. The sudden torrent of flames engulfed the unsuspecting Pokemon, but it remained standing, if just barely. Ignoring Axel’s warnings, Taraka moved in and threw a Pokeball at the injured Pokemon, instantly capturing it.
“That was mine, Taraka!” Axel shouted as Ritsu turned her gaze to the monk, small licks of flame flaring out from her nostrils. Taraka remained unfazed and just stared the Charizard down. He knew Axel wouldn’t actually have his Pokemon attack him.
The two stood there with eyes locked for several moments before the Charizard’s gaze was drawn away when the nearby Swirlix began spraying out bits of the cottony substance that made up its body as a defense mechanism. As Ritsu turned, one of these blobs hit her in the eyes, momentarily blinding her. The Charizard spewed out flames in response, setting the closest tree on fire.
The tree bursting into flames spooked the Vulpix, which quickly jumped up and began to run away. “Hey, come back here!” Axel shouted before chasing after it.
Roland was close behind, and sent out his newly caught Leafeon. “Lust, stop that Vulpix,” the merchant commanded his Pokemon. “Use Grasswhistle!” The Leafeon let out a high pitched sound that stunned the Vulpix, stopping it in its tracks. “All yours,” Roland then said to Axel before turning his attention to the Swirlix.
Taraka, meanwhile, decided to catch the Spritzee next. He released his Ponyta and directed it after the Pokemon. “Blaze, Flame Wheel!” In response the attack, the Spritzee let out a loud wail that seemed to echo all around the area. The directed burst of sound wasn’t particularly powerful, and Blaze seemed rather unaffected.
“Now, Stomp on it!” Taraka commanded his Pokemon. The Ponyta delivered a swift kick with one of his hooves, doing a real number on the Spritzee. Seizing the opportunity, the monk tossed another Pokeball, capturing his second Pokemon of the day.
Taraka then turned to see the Swirlix trading blows with Ritsu. The Swirlix unleashed a burst of air at Axel’s Charizard only to be met with a devastating inferno of flame breath. The attack left the Swirlix in rough shape, allowing it to be captured by Roland. Once the Pokemon was pulled into the Pokeball, the ball shook several times before falling still.
That just left the Vulpix. Taraka watched Axel fire off his flamethrower, doing a real number on the stunned Pokemon. Disoriented and frightened, the Vulpix let loose a spray of ice all around it, freezing Roland’s Leafeon in place. This last ditch effort on the Vulpix’s part did little to help it. Axel moved in and threw a great ball at it. Vulpix inside, the ball fell into the snow. It shook once … twice … three times … then fell still.
“There, you caught a Pokemon,” Roland said to the mercenary. “Are you satisfied now, sir?”
“I’m glad one of you didn’t steal this Vulpix,” Axel replied as he picked up his new capture. “But I still want that Glaceon,” he continued, turning to Taraka.
“You should have been quicker at capturing it, then,” the monk said, laughing. “And besides, I think you would be better off with a Flareon.”
“Fine, I’ll let you off the hook,” Axel said. “But only because I caught the Vulpix.”
“Well then,” Roland said. “Shall we continue on our way now?”
Taraka nodded. “Indeed.”
Notes: And so ends the final session of 2016. Yup, I’m that behind! This is a shorter chapter but it didn’t make sense to tack it onto the end of the previous chapter with the rest of the session or the beginning of the next chapter before the events of the following session, so this is just another short wild encounter chapter with some extra narrative flavor tossed in. Roland has the Artificer Research Field for his Researcher class, which is based around collecting shards with a dowsing machine. This was his first instance dowsing in game so I decided to go into some detail about it just for some neat narrative stuff.
Then came the fun and amusing wild fight. It was a good roll so I decided to throw some good stuff at them, plus it was an icy world where fairy types are common, so I couldn’t not throw in an Alolan Vulpix. Everyone ended up really wanting the Vulpix and Glaceon and they got quite competitive for them, especially Novi and Axel. If I’ve learned anything about Axel it’s that he really likes Eeveelutions (who doesn’t) and generation 1 fire types, even if Vulpix was an ice type in this case. Axel was even asking about intercepting Pokeballs to which I gave a hard no of answer, and the others basically said don’t be that guy to him. For whatever reason, Roland’s player completely missed that there was a Swirlix present for the first part of the encounter, and ended up really wanting it when he did spot it, so he backed off on either of the two ice types. Although, he was annoyed when he thought the Swirlix got burnt to death; it miraculously survived with 1 HP though. Even though there was some mild salt in this encounter (which I was glad wasn’t directed at me for once), honestly we were all laughing about how competitive it all was and were having a good time.
And then we were off for 2 weeks for Christmas and New Year’s, which was actually kinda good because it gave me extra time to plan some fun encounters for the ruins and make some nice maps for once.
Post-Chapter Challenge: So, shards are a thing in the Spacemon universe now. What do you think they are in the setting? Where do you think they came from? What do you think they do besides just being crafting materials for certain items? Tell me your theories!
That does it for this chapter. As always the Spacemon gang and I will be monitoring the comments to foster discussion and answer any questions. Feel free to give feedback and critiques of the writing so I can improve it for the future, or just leave a comment with what you think about what went down in this chapter or what you think might happen next! You can also revisit past chapters, check out the rest of the Spacemon saga, join the Spacemon Discord server, or like our Facebook page to stay updated on all things Spacemon! Click here for the next exciting installment of Spacemon: Frontier!