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!
All was calm about the UAS Maverick. After their grueling battle with the rogue android and their narrow escape from the Helios facility, the ship’s crew needed time to rest and recuperate. The Maverick was currently docked on the planet Kulia in the Zarek system, where the Sector 31 warp gate was located. Kulia was a small, mountainous desert world home to a few small spaceport settlements that had cropped up due to its close proximity to the warp gate. The Maverick had landed in one such spaceport to refuel after its long trip to and from the distant corner of the sector.
“So Captain, where are we headed next?”
“That’s a good question. We don’t have any jobs on our horizon at the moment.”
Taraka entered the ship’s living quarters to find Axel and Cyrus sitting at the table in the mess area, discussing their future plans. The Maverick’s captain looked up as the monk entered and waved him over to join the conversation.
“Where do you think we should go next, Taraka?” Cyrus asked as Taraka walked over to the table.
“I would like to go to Mechorah, if you don’t mind,” Taraka said. “I’ve got a scroll to deliver.”
“So your scroll is finished, then?” the captain asked.
Taraka nodded. “Indeed.”
“Does this mean you’ll be leaving us?”
“I’ve been thinking a lot about that recently,” Taraka told the captain. “I’ve decided to stay. I never felt like I truly fit in with my fellow monks, but after traveling with you all for so long, I know that this is where I belong. I will see my pilgrimage through to its end, but after that I would like to continue my journey on this ship if you’ll have me.”
“Of course you’re welcome to stay,” Cyrus said. “You’re an invaluable member of this crew and a good friend.”
Taraka smiled. “I am happy to be of service and honored to be considered a friend.”
“Typical Taraka,” Axel said with a chuckle. “You’re too modest. You’ve done more than enough to earn your keep around here, buddy.”
“More than you have, Axel,” Cyrus teased the mercenary.
“Hey!” Axel shouted, folding his arms.
“Anyway, I’ll tell Anya to set a course for Mechorah,” Cyrus said.
“Thank you, Captain,” Taraka said.
“Sure thing, pal,” Cyrus said with a nod. “Now, we’ve still got several hours before we take off, so feel free to go out and explore. Same goes for all of you.”
“I think I might do that,” Taraka said. “I’d like to see what kind of Pokemon are on this planet. Would anyone care to join me?”
“I would, but I’ve got a call with Persephone in a few minutes,” Axel said.
“I’ll go,” Gaster said, poking his head out from behind the couch. Taraka hadn’t even seen him there.
“Excellent,” Taraka said. “Let’s get going.”
“So what did you see anyway?” Gaster asked Taraka as the two made their way through the spaceport town.
“I saw where Ace came from,” Taraka said. “I wanted to tell him when we got back, but I thought it best to let Erik finish his repairs first.”
“That makes sense,” Gaster said. “That’s pretty interesting though. So you know what he is then?”
“Not exactly,” the monk said. “I’m still studying the scroll. It recorded so much more than the visions I experienced. I do not think I will fully understand it, even after the Council studies it.”
“The Council?” Gaster asked. He’d never heard Taraka mention a council before.
‘The Archival Council,” Taraka explained. “The wisest scholars of the Congregate who study all holoscrolls monks return from their pilgrimages with. They determine how each scroll fits into the history of the Universe.”
“I see,” Gaster said. “Sounds like a tough job.”
“I can only imagine,” Taraka said with a laugh.
Eventually the pair came to an open square. A small fountain stood at its center and quite a few people were milling about.
“This is a nice little area,” Taraka said.
Gaster shrugged. “I guess,” the former smuggler said.
“Hey you,” a voice suddenly said. Gaster looked in the direction it had come from and saw a scruffy-looking, shaggy haired young man who looked to be in his early twenties.
“Can I help you?” Gaster asked the young man.
“I couldn’t help but notice the Pokeballs on your belts,” he said. “You must be Pokemon trainers.”
“I guess you could say that,” Gaster said. “You looking to battle?”
“You bet I am!’” the young man said, flashing a cocky grin. “The name’s Vin. My friend Starr here and I wanna battle every trainer we meet.” He motioned to a pretty dark-haired young woman about the same age as him standing nearby. She waved when she saw them looking in her direction.
“We accept your challenge,” Taraka said, nodding at the young man.
“Alright,” Vin said. “Two on two, one Pokemon each. That sound good to you?”
“Works for us,” Gaster replied.
“Cool. How about we make things interesting? We’ll each put up two-thousand credits, winner take all.”
“You’re on,” Gaster said. He had a feeling this would be an easy victory.
Gaster and Taraka followed their challengers over to the fountain in the center of the square where there was some clear space for them to battle. They all sent out their Pokemon and the battle was on. Gaster sent out his Tyranitar while Taraka went with his Togekiss. Vin and Starr sent out a Swampert and a Linoone, respectively.
“Linny, use Charge Beam on that Togekiss!” Starr commanded her Linoone to start things off. The Pokemon moved up a little bit, then shot a beam of electricity at Taraka’s Togekiss. Despite being weak to electric attacks, Sirius wasn’t particularly bothered by the attack. Linoones were typically more proficient with physical attacks, after all.
“Sirius, use Dazzling Gleam!” Taraka responded. The monk’s Togekiss flew up to the Linoone, then blasted it with blinding light. Sirius punched back just as much as she had taken.
“Axi, use Surf!” Vin commanded his Swampert. “Get that Tyranitar!” The young man’s Pokemon sprayed out an absolute torrent, sending it across the battlefield at Gaster’s Pokemon in a wave. The wave crashed into the Tyranitar, but he could take a hit, even a super-effective one.
“Hrodulf, hit back with Thrash!” Gaster commanded in response. The former smuggler’s Tyranitar stomped right up to Vin’s Swampert and slammed right into it, letting out an angry roar as he did so.
“Linny, use Charge Beam again!” Starr then ordered her Linoone. The Pokemon moved back from Sirius, then fired another beam of electricity at her. Moving gracefully through the air, the Togekiss maneuvered around the attack, then flew in to attack.
“Sirius, use Fairy Wind!” Taraka commanded his Togekiss as she closed the distance. Once in range, Sirius rapidly flapped her wings, pelting Starr’s Linoone with a powerful blast of air.
“Axi, use Toxic!” Vin instructed his Swampert, staying focused on Gaster’s Pokemon. The aquatic Pokemon spit a blob of toxic goo at Hrodulf, but the Tyranitar managed to dodge past it.
“Hrodulf, use Payback!” Gaster responded. This time it was the Swampert’s turn to dodge; as the enraged Tyranitar lashed out at it, it managed to jump back just in time. Hrodulf’s fist slammed down on the ground, cracking the bricks.
“Linny, keep using Charge Beam!” Starr commanded her Linoone, sticking with the same tactic. The young woman’s Pokemon fired yet another electrical beam at Sirius, this time hitting its mark. The attack seemed to do more damage to the Togekiss this time and power the Linoone up, but it ended up not mattering.
“Sirius, use Dazzling Gleam!” Taraka commanded. With another blast of dazzling light, the monk’s Togekiss knocked Starr’s Linoone out of the fight.
“Darn,” Starr said as she recalled her fainted Pokemon.
Meanwhile, the fight raged on between Gaster’s Tyranitar and Vin’s Swampert.
“Axi, use Surf!”
“Hrodulf, us Rock Slide!”
The two Pokemon fired their attacks at each other, but each managed to dodge what the other threw at it.
“Axi, use Toxic!” Vin then commanded. His Swampert spit another blob of toxic goo at Gaster’s Tyranitar, this time hitting dead on. The poisonous goop sunk into Hrodulf’s hide, but it only made him angrier … and stronger.
“Hrodulf, use Chip Away!” Gaster commanded his Pokemon. With a roar of pure rage, the former smuggler’s Tyranitar charged into Vin’s Swampert and slammed it to the ground, putting an end to the battle.
“Wow you two are really tough!” Starr said.
“Yeah,” Vin agreed. “You’re stronger than I thought you’d be. I guess we need to train harder. And I guess we owe you some money now too, huh?”
“Looks like it,” Gaster said.
The former smuggler and his crewmate left the square each two-thousand credits richer than when they entered.
“You really took a beating, huh?” Erik said as he examined the damage to Ace’s chestplate. “It’s going to take more than a couple of welds to fix this up.”
Ace silently looked on as Erik lowered the visor on his welding helmet and got to working welding a patch onto his chestplate. Even though he was safe back aboard the Maverick, the android felt quite exposed with the protective armor plate that protected his insides removed. That’s not what was bothering him, though.
With the help of his crewmates, Ace had managed to get so close to discovering the truth of his origin — at least as close as he was ever going to get — but before he had been able learn anything, the entire lab had been destroyed. The assassin Sikari had buried all the clues to his past under a mountain of rubble at the bottom of the ocean. After all that, he couldn’t help but feel disheartened.
“What’s wrong?” Erik asked, setting down his welding torch. The engineer always seemed to be able to read Ace’s emotional state despite his lack of articulating facial features.
“I just … I wish I had gotten a chance to look around that lab some more,” Ace said.
Erik turned around and placed a comforting hand on Ace’s shoulder. “I understand,” he said. “But don’t lose hope. We’ll find your answers one way or another.”
Ace nodded. “Thank you.”
A warm smile appeared on Erik’s face. “Of course. Now then, let’s get this finished up. I just need to buff out these welds and you’ll be good as new.”
Kulia’s sun bore down on Taraka and Gaster as they walked across the desert. The pair was a good ways from town now and they were hoping to find some Pokemon soon. As it turned out, they wouldn’t have to wait much longer. Not much further, they came across a Gliscor and a Sandslash.
“Do you want that Sandslash?” Taraka asked his crewmate. “I already have one.”
“Not particularly,” Gaster said. “I’ll take that Gliscor though.”
“Alright,” Taraka replied. “I will help you catch it.”
Suddenly, a shadow passed over the pair. Taraka looked up to see a Flygon passing overhead. It appeared to be coming in for a landing.
“I want that,” the monk said, pointing at the Pokemon as it descended.
“Okay then,” Gaster said as he pulled out a Pokeball. “Let’s do this.”
The former smuggler sent out his Vileplume and Taraka followed suit, releasing his Togekiss, who he had healed up after the battle with Vin and Starr.
As the pair moved closer to the wild Pokemon, Gaster pulled out his rifle and fired at the Sandslash, hitting it dead on. The Pokemon reacted as one would expect, burrowing down into the ground.
Meanwhile, the Flygon responded to the danger by flapping its wings rapidly, kicking up a sandstorm. It was not a particularly pleasant experience for Taraka, but Gaster seemed unfazed. Taraka figured that the former smuggler was more than used to sandstorms after spending so much time on Venbaxxen.
Fighting through the sand blasting his face, Taraka continued to move toward the Flygon. Once he was close enough, the monk sent a pulse of psionic energy its way, dazing it. “Sirius, use Dazzling Gleam!” he then commanded his Togekiss. Sirius flew in and blasted the desert dragon Pokemon with brilliant light, doing a real number on it.
Suddenly, the Gliscor flew at the Togekiss, claws and tail ready to strike. Fortunately, Sirius saw it coming and managed to avoid it.
“Ficus, use Stun Spore on that Flygon!” Gaster ordered his Vileplume. The former smuggler’s poisonous plant Pokemon moved up to the Flygon and shot a cloud of immobilizing spores at it. Unfortunately, they all blew away in the sandstorm.
Snapping out of its daze, the flygon kicked up some rocks, then hurled them at Sirius. A few hit the mark, doing some real damage to the Togekiss.
The Sandslash then erupted up out of the ground between Ficus, Gaster, and Taraka. As it slammed back down onto the ground, it triggered a powerful quake, knocking both Gaster and Taraka to the ground, and doing a real number on the Vileplume. Scrambling back to his feet, Gaster raised his rifle and fired, knocking the Sandslash out.
With the Sandslash dealt with, Taraka set his sights on the Flygon. The monk pulled out an empty Pokeball, then chucked it at the Pokemon. The ball hit, then pulled the Flygon inside. It fell to the ground, completely still.
“Nice one,” Gaster told the monk. “Now let’s get that Gliscor.”
“Right,” Taraka said. “Sirius, use Ancient Power!” The monk’s Togekiss blasted the Gliscor with a ball of powerful energy, drawing its ire again. The Gliscor flew at Sirius and swiped at her with its claws, leaving a cut and snagging the Lax Incense Taraka had given her.
“Ficus, use Mega Drain!” Gaster then commanded his Vileplume. Ficus moved in and drained away some of the Gliscor’s vitality to replenish her own.
Next, Taraka dazed the Gliscor with psionic energy, then issued a command to his Pokemon, “Sirius, use Yawn.” As the Togekiss started to make the Gliscor drowsy with her attack, it let loose an attack of its own. The Gliscor fired a powerful beam of energy at Sirius, but it was not enough to take her out. The Pokemon then fell to the ground, asleep.
“Ficus, use Stun Spore!” Gaster then commanded his Pokemon. The former smuggler’s Vileplume fired off another cloud of immobilizing spores at the sleeping Gliscor, this time succeeding now that the sandstorm had begun to die down.
With the Gliscor asleep and immobilized, Gaster knew this was his best chance to capture it. He pulled out a Pokeball and lobbed it at the sleeping Pokemon. The ball struck true, pulling the Gliscor inside. It fell to the ground, then shook once … twice … then it broke open!
“Damn,” Gaster cursed.
“Let’s try this,” Taraka said as he conjured a psionic wisp of flame. He sent it at the Gliscor, but even this small attack was enough to knock it out.
“Rats,” Gaster said.
“I am sorry, my friend,” Taraka said.
“Don’t worry about it,” Gaster told the monk. “I’m not too broken up about it. I didn’t want it that bad anyway.”
“Perhaps next time you will have more luck,” Taraka said.
“Let’s hope,” Gaster replied. “Now come on, let’s get back to the ship. They’re probably waiting on us by now.”
Notes: This was another session of not a lot happening. After the mega mission of the last session it seemed a bit of a respite was in order. I just sort of let my two players do whatever they wanted. This chapter covers most of session 44, which was a shorter then usual one by about an hour. There was some planning on what to do next, but mostly it was just doing random stuff on a randomly generated planet. For the writing, I added a lot of expansion to make things interesting.
The opening scene is more or less newly written and didn’t happen in game. Now that Taraka has finished his scroll, he needs to turn it in, but of course he’s going to stick around because Novi was still planning on running him as his character. For this scene I just wanted to touch on his future plans again just so his choice isn’t just out of the blue.
Then it was onto the actual content of the session. Gaster and Taraka fought some random trainers first. To make things more interesting for the writing I gave a little bit of characterization to them. Next, they went looking for wild Pokemon. They got a decent roll so I threw some good stuff at them. Novi rolled super well on his capture roll, capturing the Flygon with a nat 1.
Between those two scenes, I inserted some new material just for the chapter that didn’t happen in game. Ace’s mindset was briefly touched upon during the session, but we didn’t go into much detail because he was no longer a player character. A nice little interaction between him and Erik was a good way to convey it to readers, plus it helped break up the action.
At the end of the session, I threw a little teaser cliffhanger of what was to come in the next one, but for the writing it made sense to put it at the beginning of the next chapter. It’s gonna be a good one.
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!