Wednesday 8 June 2016

Alyeskan Gazetteer: Forlorn Thule

Off the eastern coast of Alyeska is an archipelago of rocky islands stretching out as a long chain into the great ocean known as The Needles. Amongst these outcrops of rocks lies Alyeska's Theda Air Station, better known as 'Forlorn Thule' by those stationed there.

Brief History

The Needles have always been of great strategic value to the Commonwealth, they are the closest part of Alyeska to the Home Isles and often the first sight of land to many ships crossing the Mhór Farraige (Great Ocean). Historically the Commonwealth Navy has always maintained an outpost and later a wireless station in the islands, though these days the Navy's presence is limited to a single guard ship. Theda Air Station was established just prior to the Great Darmonican War to provide protection of the Alyeskan shipping lanes in response to the decline of the Navy's presence. During the War the air station was active in safeguarding the Alyeskan coast from Tylander raiders, but was and remains an unpopular posting.

The name 'Forlorn Thule' and the base's reputation in the Aerial Corps is due to the harsh climate, rough weather is common for the vast majority of the year and is not helped by the current storm wracked nature of the Mhór Farraige.

Present State

Today Theda Air Station is home to No.86 Squadron of the Commonwealth Air Force, a composite force of fighters and long range patrol aircraft. A Flight is the fighter component of the squadron and usually has at least two aircraft mounted on steam catapults ready to be rapidly launched at a moment's notice. The patrol aircraft of B Flight typically range out over the ocean on wide ranging patrols, mainly to deter smugglers and provide a Commonwealth presence in the otherwise remote and sparsely populated islands. Both Flights do have to contend with sky pirates that are known to operate in the area and prey upon shipping (both air and sea).

The Air Station is located on the barren and windswept Theda Island, the largest isles amongst The Needles. All of its buildings are prefabricated steel structure huts of varying sizes and made from a half-cylindrical skin of corrugated steel. All of the huts are frequently seen as cold and draughty, combined with the weather it is a pretty miserable place and hence its status as an unpopular posting. Yet it is considered vitally important to protect the foresaid shipping lanes and for trans-oceanaic flights of aircraft to and from Alyeska.

Campaign Ideas

One way to incorporate Forlorn Thule into your games of Frozen Skies is either as a destination for a delivery job/supply run or as a stopover for flights to and from the rest of Darmonica. Play up the basic facilities of the place and the frequent bad weather, it is cold and wet for at least three quarters of the year.

The other route is run a military campaign where the players are members of No.86 Squadron, battling the weather and primitive conditions as much as sky pirates.

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