A Review of Jim Johnson’s Convoy SE-119

How did the Star Trek Adventures Convoy SE-119 module rate?

Tribbles 4-5
For more on the Tribble-Rating system, click here.

My brave-hearted crew just completed Convoy SE-119, one of the creative modules released by Modiphius writer,  Jim Johnson, for play in the Star Trek Living Campaign. Anyone can take part in the free Living Campaign by signing up here.

Convoy SE-119 proved to be a rip-roaring, action-packed thrill ride for my player group. Whether wanting to just skim the surface of interstellar piracy or eager to dive into the deep criminal workings of the Shackleton Expanse, this gaming module makes its mark in the Living Campaign.


SYNOPSIS

The Players have been assigned to escort a convoy of merchant vessels carrying supplies from Narendra Station to a small research outpost deep within the Shackleton Expanse. Because the exploration of the Expanse is a joint concern between the Federation and the Klingon Empire, the Players’ vessel is supported by a Klingon cruiser, the K’Vort-class bird-of-prey I.K.S. MupwI’ (Hammer), under the command of Captain Akul.

klingonDuring the mission, both the Players’ vessel and the MupwI’ experience unexpected issues with their newly-upgraded sensor and defensive systems, apparently caused by strange electromagnetic disturbances prevalent throughout the Expanse. When the Mupwl’ suffers an explosion, they are knocked out of warp speed and the convoy soon follows. Engineering and sciences teams work to correct the issues before the convoy’s safety is threatened. However, the crew of the MupwI’ is particularly slow to correct their technical problems, and the crew of the Players’ vessel runs into challenges of their own.

As the convoy traverses a region of space with dense pockets of electromagnetic disturbances, a mixed group of pirate vessels attacks the convoy. Two heavily-armed freighters attempt to occupy the two escorts so that attack fighters can isolate the slower and weaker transports, board them, and then escape.



THE REVIEW

I thought Jim Johnson created a suspenseful game with wide enough berth to allow my Intrepid-class crew to come up with creative solutions for the challenges put forth in the module. (To see our entire play report, see Star Trek Pioneer, Season 1, Episode 2: Convoy SE-119.) I was able to add in characters spawned by Continuing Missions blogger Mephit James. I chose two Ferengi scoundrels, Leck and Soloc, to be the pirates’ leaders.

I found that the gaming module kept with the canonicity of Modiphius’ Living Campaign. I am eager to see how this fits into the overall campaign. There seemed to be hints of some advanced alien race’s technology being part of the epic. That part could have been flushed out more. I was forced to create my own piece of awesome tech, the galaxium device, to play into the story arch, since the module lacked a jaw-dropping tech device. (Unlike the first gaming module Decision Point 2.0, which had the world engine.)

The suggested opener on Narendra Station and mixing with the Klingon crew launched this campaign in the right direction. Honestly, Klingons are scary to hang around and my players had a ball trying to fit into their ship’s culture. For a fun twist, I made one of the Klingons a co-conspirator with the pirates.

I have to admit, the really fun part was the space battles. We engaged in three major space battles that forced my team to memorize space battle rules. If you really want to figure out space battle game mechanics, this is the module for you. With the help of Dr. Tony Pi’s bridge role reference sheet, we survived…barely.

The story was easily understood by my players. They said, “Like a good Star Trek episode, I felt like I knew where the story was going and then we kept encountering twists that made me anxious for the end of the next ‘commercial break’.” Another added, “There were times when I wasn’t sure if our crew was going to be able to pull through, and every time I went to roll the dice I held my breath!”

In the end, this module is a must-play for Star Trek Adventure gamers, either as a stand-alone or part of the Living Campaign.

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