Campaign of the Month: June 2014
Battletech : The Farscape Campaign
Former Research Station
Located in the sparsely populated, northern Highlands District of The Oriental Republic of San Isabel, Lake Aurin is the location of a former Star League research center, long since stripped of useful equipment. Today, its past legacy as a temporary military headquarters for the gathered mercenaries of El Gas, has placed it on the spotlight of talks regarding the entry of * “The Iron Dingoes” as the reserve military force for The Commonwealth of Nations.
The region is known to support several bands of brigands, loosely associated with the bandits that once operated freely across all the nearby districts of San Isabel. Most are assumed to have been affiliated with the “Army of New Patagonia”, a large force of bandits on the verge of taking-over the northern districts to create their own country, though over time, that organization has begun to break-up and disintegrate. While they operate across both districts, they are primarily concentrated in the north-western edges of the Highland District, along the Rio Parana.
Other than Adamantina and Campo Grande, numerous small villages can be found scattered along the trade routes south to Montevideo, almost all of which are small farming and ranching communities where its produce is roughly processed and packaged for shipment south. None have a particular strategic value or importance.
Lake Aurin Power Plant
Lake Aurin is 200 kms northwest from New Patagonia, and serves as a catch basin for rivers and streams from the region around it. The lake itself is 125 kms long and one of the largest in the region. The waters of the lake are clouded with silt and fairly shallow, averaging only 21.5m deep in most places, and perhaps 50m at its deepest point near the dam. In happier times, it might serve as a site for recreational boating and fishing. Around the lake, the lands are lightly forested and rolling hilly areas that sport numerous ferns and flowering shrubs.
Lake Aurin Power Plant : Built originally as a means of flood control and supporting the local village and research facility, it has only a small generator capable of generating possibly 50MW at full capacity, but considering its age and general lack of upkeep, it might produce 10MW with any initial repair task of replacing key parts, more if the facility were completely rebuilt, though such a task would be difficult and expensive given the site’s relatively remote location.
The facility itself dates to construction during the late-Star League era, and is both a large and fairly tough structure, considered a hardened building with ferrocrete supports in both the power plant and the dam itself. If the dam were ever destroyed, the flood would engulf the area north-west of the lake for about 32kms, including the research site and attendant village of Aurin.
Aurin VIllage (Pop – 80 : Corn, Pork, Fishing) is a small, isolated village of only 80 farmers, though another 400 or so farmers live in the nearby rugged forested hills. The village was once somewhat larger, having supported the local techs of both the research facility and power facility, but is today a quiet, place whose streets fold up with the sunset. All business is conducted towards Adamantina, located another 200kms north-west of the village, and has no local commercial or industrial efforts. There is some fishing, though only for local consumption. While most of the village’s commercial businesses have been torn down, though one was temporarily renovated to serve local corn alcohol to the mercenaries, and shut down once they were defeated.
Aurin Research Facility is located in the shadow of Lake Aurin, about 12 kms south-east of Aurin Village. Originally a general research facility, it seems the facility was also used for military underwater experiments regarding vehicle environmental seals and as a staging point for military exercises. The place had been abandoned for hundreds of years, until the El Gas mercenary force took the place over for themselves for repair and as a barracks, until early-3023 they were assaulted by * “The Iron Dingoes” in a preemptive strike. During their occupation, the facility was upgraded.
The facility presently has a large four-story weather-beaten reserach site, converted into a simple Mech repair facility, north along the access road. There is a small dock house and concrete docks along the lake to the south. Four large, three-story barracks, lie along the west edge of the compound, each capable of holding about a company of infantry, while a small maintenance facility for vehicles and a pair of smaller barracks for techs and armor crews lies across the compound to the east. The entire facility is surrounded by a cheap series of infantry trenches, coiled wire barricades and concrete bunkers. A substantial airfield lies north of the compound along the road, complete with a primitive support facility and hangars.
The town of Adamantina (Pop – 700) supports the agricultural efforts of the local region, another 1300 farmers, who produce mostly pork and corn. The town of Adamantina is the market for the pastoral hinterland of the central and northern Rivera District, trading corn, rice, sweet potatoes, fruit, groundnuts, cattle and pork with interested parties, traditionally from Campo Grande. Other small cottage industries involve textiles, brooms and mosaics. The region is semi-arid, but has good pastureland noted for grazing lands.
The lands north of Adamantina are wild and mostly uninhabited, sub-tropical woodlands and grassy plains, rising gradually from the river valley of Rio Parana. The Rio Parana is broad and popular among trading boats heading around to the river trade town of Fray Bentos, and thence to Montevideo. Most of the region is also outside of the central telecommunications network, with only a thin microwave tower coverage along the handful of dark, near abandoned tracks through the region.
Northern Border of the Rio Parana
Rivera and Highland Districts
The leading local towns of the Highland and Rivera Districts, are important markets that are interconnected through well-paved highways south into Montevideo, which ensures regular bus services. The rail connections south provide sporadic service in both cargo and passenger traffic. These connections bypass the region around Lake Aurin, and its supporting community of Adamantina, however, leaving the region quite isolated. The two districts are sparsely populated with traditional pork and corn farmers, who barely export enough for local consumption by the local towns, and never for export above the national level.
Further west, lies the Upper San Isabel Highlands, an even more sparsely inhabited region, eventually striving into the San Isabel Desert and more distant southern spur of the Blue Mountains. This region is controlled by a small fortress town, Tucumán, the capital of the Tucumán District. Its isolation and lack of general population has made the region almost a footnote in both economic and political affairs of the nation, with no industry or trade of notice, though sugar cane fields are common.
Rivera District Crest
Plaza Independecia, Campo Grande
Campo Grande (Pop – 4000) is the regional capital of the Rivera District, located roughly 350 kms north-west of Lake Aurin. In addition to governmental facilities, its location in the center of the border with the Corazón Jungle, has made it the headquarters of the 5th (Motorized) Infantry Battalion, as well as the site of a helicopter support airfield, often used by the 5th Squadron (Pegasus VTOL) of the air force. Otherwise, the town supports only one industry, the Food Forward processing plant for citrus fruit, shipping to the nationally important Urud’or processing company.
New Patagonia (Pop – 1800) : A regionally important town, famous only for its support of numerous nearby agricultural villages and the site of the traditional capital for the Highland District. Located a short distance of 150 kms south-east of Lake Aurin, the border between the Rivera and Highland districts lies half-way between the two communities. Other than having a small maintenance facility, now abandoned, for a lance of BattleMechs, the town is very quiet and has only a local National Policia barracks to support its status as a government town.
Juaquin (Pop – 1200) : Is the center for the local agricultural and mining efforts of the northern half of the Highland District. The town supports not only the trade market for beef and corn of the region, but also the mining efforts of Mirasol Resources, who have a small silver mine north of the town, close to the border with the Corazón Jungle about 200 kms west. The town is located about 450 kms north-east of Lake Aurin. The town is the garrison location for the 4th (Motorized) Infantry Battalion (under the command of Commandante Jorge Ernesto Vásquez ), as well as an airfield for support of the air force’s 5th Squadron (Pegasus VTOL), who patrol the northern borders. The town is also the location of a military-grade hospital, that supports all forces across the northern borders, having a specialty in rare animal poisons and plant toxins.