Well, it looks as if it’s just about time to go ahead and wrap this one up…
So, without further ado, it’s time once again for…(big drumroll)Star Control: Grudge Match!
...AND THE STARTLING CONCLUSION!!! Starring Gekko and Nuclear.
The last time we left our combatants, the fighting got really intense, but some clever maneuvering and plasmoid placement by Gekko’s Mycon eventually wore down Nuclear’s Dreadnought to its demise.
Down to only a Guardian and a Jugger, Nuke goes with the Androsynth. That would’ve been my choice too, especially when you consider how although the Utwig is the better choice against the Podship, but then it becomes vulnerable during its next engagement, since Gekko would likely be able to use a couple of counter ships to whittle the Utwig down to nothing.
At first it looks as if Nuclear is going to have a decisive advantage; the Podship comes flying directly at the Guardian, which switched over to Blazer-mode when the Mycon ship drew near, and it rammed the side of the fungoid fighter, but it also had to absorb a mostly depleted plasmoid in the process.
Nuke quickly veers the comet ship away as Gekko’s Mycon unleashes 2 more plasmoids, and then tries to collide with the Podship on the other side, but due to the Mycon’s gained speed from the previous impact, even the speedy Guardian Blazer is unable to catch-up in time -- it can only retreat before it otherwise takes a facefull of plasma! Yowzers!
Unfortunately, during its regrouping the Guardian’s tank runs dry and it takes another weakened plasma attack, so it’s at around 70% crew. Out of a gravity whip to avoid another plasmoid, the Guardian switches back to Blazer form after it regenerated power, but it’s still unable to overtake the Mycon ship, which is continuing the same high speed as long as it doesn’t use the engines.
The Duchess is persistent, but she must’ve been still feeling the ill effects of the night before’s imbibing activities, because she tries three times in a row to ram the Podship by flying from the opposite side only to barely miss each and every time! Believe me, I’ve been there… it’s incredibly difficult to make “minor” adjustments to a blazing Guardian trajectory without making it jump and jerk all over the place!
Finally, an asteroid runs into the Mycon and slows it down, and Nuke’s Comet lands some significant damage by ramming the Podship with full intensity, but not before taking the full impact from a plasmoid fire at point-blank range! Ouchie! The Guardian charges back in to dish out some more, and Gekko fires the main weapon, but its homing mechanism returns the plasmoid right back and the Podship takes heavy damage! Ouch again!
Nuclear tries to capitalize on Gekko’s error, but the Mycon has just enough energy to fire again, and after the Blazer whiffs a few more times by failing to make contact, the plasmoid creeps in and finishes of the Guardian as it runs out of energy and comes to a halt!
While waiting for the last ship to arrive, the Podship (down to 1 crew) reaches full energy and replenishes some mushrooms, and it happens just barely in the knick of time, since it quickly finds itself doing some ramming of its own…headfirst into the planet!! It’s really of no consequence, however, since the Jugger has no problem taking down the troublesome Podship while easily deflecting the plasmoid attacks.
Then… a surprise attack! Gekko’s Pkunk Fury warps in nearby and immediately attacks the Jugger, inflicting a good deal of damage before the Utwig could raise its shields in time, but when it comes back around for a second pass, the Jugger blasts the Fury into oblivion! …well, temporarily anyway.
The resurrection of the Pkunk ship brings new life (literally) to the fight, and Gekko’s piloting skills when using the vessel displays much of the mannerisms and strategy one might expect from an actual Pkunk: It zips back and forth while rapidly rotating the ships followed up by darting in and out when it sees an opening as the Jugger can only do its best to try and keep up.
The widespread fire of the Jugger makes things very dangerous for the low-crewed Pkunk vessel, but Gekko’s bold approach proves worthwhile as it fearlessly rushes in and fires its Molten Pellets while attempting to avoid most of the Utwig’s cannons. The Pkunk steadily hurls insults at the Jugger to gain its energy back, mocking the Utwig crew repeatedly, but then it fails to see the planet and runs into it, killing the final crewmember and the Fury explodes into the side of the planet!
At this point, Nuclear must’ve screamed “Are you F$&%ing kidding me?” as, for a third time, the Pkunk rematerializes back into the battlefield with a shiny new ship! No rage quitting for Nuke though, and her Jugger remains focused and deals with the Pkunk quickly, cutting the birds’ lives short with a few well-placed cannon blasts – and finally… no resurrection.
Gekko opts for an Ariloulaleelay Skiff, and it races in to engage the Jugger, whose shields are low on energy and down to only 2 crew. The Skiff teleports several times until it feels it’s in an ideal location to begin the attack, but it takes a defensive cannon strike from the Utwig which wipes out a third of its crew. The Skiff teleports a few more times until it luckily finds itself positioned behind the Jugger, and then it swoops in and finishes off the Jugger with a few laser shots!
Wow!... an amazing end to an incredible battle! Both contestants deserve bountiful applauds of appreciation for their efforts as wells as for providing the rest of us some great entertainment! Congrats Gekko and Nuclear!