End of the Road

Good luck for you, CMDR.

Just a question: You did not wrote anything about Jumponium Level 3? Do you have at least 3 Niobium and 1 Polonium left? If so, you have Arsenic and Yttrium on the planet....
The annoying thing is I have a lot of Yttrium but no Polonium and again that is another material missing from this single landable planet. The gods are mocking me indeed!
 
Inflight Journal - Recording

November 14, 3302

Deep in the Abyss


After the failure of the Trans-Polar Beagle Point 2 Expedition, I have been loath to update this ship’s log. The darkness and unending emptiness out here has been both alluring and overwhelming. I suppose that in the end the failure and the bleakness of that planet’s surface emptied me out also.

Hence this slow-boat journey home. I had planned to retrace my route back to the Roncevaux Crossing and then drift back along the Sagittarius-Carina Arm to the Bubble. I wanted solitude and slow-time now. Nothing more. I suppose it felt as if I were somehow drifting home down that spiral arm, at peace with the galaxy and allowing its own drift to send me home. All an illusion, I know, but one I needed after the polar failure.

I had been reviewing the old logs and wondering on what in all the gods I had been thinking in attempting to map a pole to pole route. And the more I reviewed those audio logs the more I came to realise it was all nothing more than a heart-felt need to need to mark that planet after the long, long, haul in this Lakon Type 6E to get there.

I simply couldn’t leave after all that effort but I also needed a reason to stay - and so had been born that infernal desire to drive an SRV from pole to pole. Madness had crept in - causing me to even doubt my own ship’s AI. Madness and stubbornness, I suppose.
But that was in the past - months ago.

https://forums.frontier.co.uk/showthread.php/255626-The-Trans-Polar-Beagle-Point-2-Expedition

I had long since abandoned Beagle Point 2 and begun to drift home. The Abyss out here is stark and unforgiving. Each jump has to be plotted manually as I lack the big ranges that the Asps and Anacondas have. I run with only one jump’s worth of fuel which increases my standard range of about 27 LY up to a ‘massive’ 29 LY. So it has been slow and I have spent the time settling down on the odd planet to make long-overdue repairs my ship, the ‘Apostata III’. I upgraded the ship’s AI and Nav capabilities using new software. I scoured surfaces for materials. I sat in awe at the solitude and beauty all about me. I suppose I simply put time between me and Beagle Point 2.

Until now.

It should have been a simple transition across a gulf here in The Abyss. Nothing too complicated. Nothing I hadn’t done before. A simple 50% boost to reach the next system. The one after that was 29 LY and the one beyond that one was 49 LY from where I was then. 49 LY. So I thought it would be another easy route plot. After all, 29 LY from 49 leaves a measly 20, right? Once I boost across to the first system, a 29 LY jump gets me to the next and then a mere 20 LY to the remaining one. After that, I would be spoilt for choice as the systems were clustering about each other more often. No problem.

Right?

The first mistake had been in upgrading the AI. I installed the new 2.2 Nexus software from Haelstrom Systems. I had held off upgrading out of laziness but after leaving Beagle Point 2 I had plenty of time on my hands. One of the benefits of the new AI was that it now marked in blue all previous systems you had visited. So there I was looking back along my old route in through The Abyss and backtracking along it. That was a clumsy mistake. It gave me the cosy illusion that if I stuck to my original route nothing could go wrong.

I was enamoured and took my eye off the bigger picture.

The second mistake was in calculating the jump ranges across this minor gulf here. Boost across the void using a 50% temporary increase to reach the next system. The one after that was a mere 29 LY with the one after that a total of 49 LY from where I was now. So my target was 49 LY away from where I was after the boost jump.

What would possibly go wrong?

So imagine my horror after reaching the first system after the boost, confirming the next was 29 LY, jumping using the last of the fuel as usual, and then aligning up for the next jump to see the nav-hologram indicating it was 30.3 LY away.

Too far. It might as well have been Sol itself.

How had I mucked up the maths so badly? Again and again, I have pulled up the galaxy map and confirmed the numbers. From the first system after the boost, it reads 49 LY. But when I jump to the one in-between it reads 30.3 LY. Rooky mistake, I guess. I was looking at the lovely blue systems marking my route in and got lazy. Complacent.

And that brings me to the third mistake. And the most fatal.

That 50% boost used up all my Germanium. All of it. I had wiped out my boost ability. And that means I am now stuck. Stuck between two systems with no way out. And to cap it all, between the two of them, there is only one landable planet - and that, of course, does not have Germanium.

I am lost in The Abyss. I have fuel, supplies, two systems I can jump endlessly between but deep dark gulfs on either side. This Lakon Type 6E is like a small fish in a double fish-bowl with a single corridor between both, moving from one to the other. Forever.

After the polar SRV expedition, this fate seemed doubly mocking - caught in the expanse of The Abyss.

All explorers know about despair. That cold horror of looking out of the canopy and seeing only your own reflection staring back. It is a black cloak which we all wear at one point or other. I remember Commander Tallinn calling out for assistance so close to Beagle Point - of how he was lost and low on fuel, coming to the end of his tether - and how his galnet wide callout drew both inspiration and actual assistance - of how the legendary Fuel Rats moved to come to his aid, using every resource at their finger tips. And weeks later, Commander Tallinn brought his old Lakon Type 6E to land alongside mine deep on that Polar trip and we drank to celebrate his arrival. He had known that despair and outgrown it. So on a whim I had keyed up the galnet comms and broadcast my stupidity. If nothing else, others could learn from my mistakes. If in nothing else, I could stand now as a memorial to hubris and stupidity out here. For while Tallinn had been refuelled after a mighty effort, I could not be so lucky. It was not fuel I needed but materials - Germanium. I broadcast and then intended to sign-off -

But miracles do happen, it seems.

And this one comes by the name of Commander Chiggy Vonrictofen. Within minutes of keying the distress call and preparing to sign off, word came back on the galnet that a stubborn and intrepid commander would refit at Jacques Station and jump out to my location and the plan was audacious:

He would mine the main ring system above the one landable body for Germanium. I would follow in his wake and scoop it up.

I can’t even begin to imagine the effort this would entail. I am numb inside trying to comprehend the dedication of such a commander. My first instinct was to self-destruct - not to put another commander in harm’s way - avoid all the effort. But then I remembered Tallinn. His had been a lone voice in the darkness and his had been a voice which had been lifted out of the darkness by the effort and selflessness of others. And I realised something then. Yes, we all wear that dark cloak; that cloak we know of as despair. But if we give in to it, we don’t just let ourselves down. We also let those down who hold up a light into that darkness.

The Abyss has just become a little brighter now. Now that Chiggy is hauling his ship across half a galaxy to drill deep down into a gas giant’s ring system in the mad belief that he can mine Germanium as I follow him in.

Sometimes the smallest light glows the most.

Commander Felix Macedonica out - for now . . .
 
Last edited:
I'm not a bucky baller or fuel rat, so good luck Chiggy getting there quickly.

Macedonica, can you get the system details onto eddb (all ring types and so on)?
Also are there really only rings and no belts available? I can spot 3 there, is that correct?
Each one of those has a chance to contain 3 of the 8 common materials just like planets. Fingers crossed ...
 
I'm not a bucky baller or fuel rat, so good luck Chiggy getting there quickly.

Macedonica, can you get the system details onto eddb (all ring types and so on)?
Also are there really only rings and no belts available? I can spot 3 there, is that correct?
Each one of those has a chance to contain 3 of the 8 common materials just like planets. Fingers crossed ...
YinYin, there are 3 planets with rings and a separate belt by the first star. I am going to do a deep system scan once the servers are back up and running soon. Fingers crossed that the odds are in Chiggy's favour in finding the Germanium once he arrives! I'll add the details onto eddb once I am finished.
 
Macedonia, Would another ship mining be useful?
If so I will head back to Colonia to get a mining laser and follow Chiggy out to you. I can't promise I'll get there as quickly as he will, but have a decent 57 ly jump range.
I'll ditch my SRV and fighter bay.
I'm currently in the same sector Chiggy was in near the core.
I'm at work now, but can start heading back to Colonia in around 6 hours time
 
Macedonia, Would another ship mining be useful?
If so I will head back to Colonia to get a mining laser and follow Chiggy out to you. I can't promise I'll get there as quickly as he will, but have a decent 57 ly jump range.
I'll ditch my SRV and fighter bay.
I'm currently in the same sector Chiggy was in near the core.
I'm at work now, but can start heading back to Colonia in around 6 hours time
I appreciate the offer, Col Frost. I am not familiar with ring mining and the grind involved, to be honest. It's a gameplay mechanic I have never sunk time into. I need Germanium but really only a minimum of 1 unit (frustrating doesn't cover it) but more would be good, of course. I feel bad about Chiggy coming all the way out here because of my stupid mistake and would hate to think someone else was coming out here also on my behalf if they didn't need to.

Perhaps it is worth checking in with Chiggy to get his thoughts as he might have more experience on the mining side of things? Thanks again, though!

Timewise, I am off work today and tomorrow and then can log on in the following evenings.

For an updated videolog which gives a bit more detail on my predicament, see here:

[video=youtube;kADuhB-GqMY]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kADuhB-GqMY[/video]
 
Do prospector limpets help? I know they allow you to get more fragments out of an asteroid, so maybe they do the same for materials as well? They do tell you the material content of an asteroid but this alone wouldn't be worth using them.
 
Awesome stuff. Its going to be a few days presumably minimum until your rescuer will arrive though.

You might need a bigger pot of tea ;)
 

Sir.Tj

The Moderator who shall not be Blamed....
Volunteer Moderator
Just how bloody brilliant is this community?

I've got my fingers crossed for you.

:D
 
Top Bottom