Friday, February 12, 2010

Covert Infiltration

There are times that a cheddar monk may have to infiltrate enemy strongholds, or leave a location with out being detected. In most cases a simple wave of the hand and a suggestion that there is nothing to see will suffice. However there are species that are immune to forced suggestion, and some high tech planets will have electronic and optical surveillance. In these cases the wise cheddar monk will have a disguise handy, Lets look at some of the disguise options that are open to us.

1) Try and look like the `locals' - While blending in with the natives may seem like a good Idea on the surface, there are often subtle cultural mannerisms that will distinguish you as an outsider. This option should only be attempted with the approval and assistance of the locals to disguise from other outsiders that would not notice any social gaff that you may let slip.

2) Blend in with those you are trying to evade. - Again, when there are 300 enemy troops running around, you could attempt to blend in, While this is great in bed time stories, there are several difficulties. First is finding a trooper who's uniform will fit you, then you need to isolate that individual from their squad or platoon. Finally, even if you manage these two, you need to be well versed in their operating procedures, and the lay out of establishment you are entering or leaving.

What is needed is a disguise that will not raise questions, can blend in with the environment and evade electronic surveillance. The answer is now obvious. Robots are embedded throughout our culture fulfilling all manners of tasks. No one questions a droid going about their business. So now we have a starting point.

Some robots are more suitable for the cheddar monk than others. Let have a look at some and discuss their merits.

Industrial Robot: while very prominent on factory planets, the limitations of such a disguise should be obvious to even the youngest padawan. The lack of mobility would limit your movement towards what ever objective you have in your mission.
This type of robot is not recommended for the covert operations.

Mobile security Droid: while this will allow the cheddar monk to move around unobserved in an environment it's usefulness is limited to species that are very small in stature. Also like guard troops, security droids may have check in routines and self destruct mechanisms to defeat any tampering. (also they do not navigate stairs well)

Humanoid Droids are of course the best option however it must be stressed that picking a model that attracts attention is counter-productive. this goes double if there is a "destroy on sight" order for the particular model. Find a model that is easily accepted and generally ignored by all including other robots.

The Domestic robo-butler (protocol) Droid

With this disguise you can infiltrate anything from a hotel kitchen to a space going cruiser with little difficulties. Personnel will go out of their way to avoid you, and other robots will focus on their tasks when they see you approaching. There is enough variance in the design of protocol droids, that you can make do with what ever you have at hand to simulate a mechanical look. The real key is to make sure that your movements are short jerky so as to preclude an organic being and talk insistently to yourself about the weather, local sports, and how big your brain is. These, along with your disguise will be your `B' plan any time you need to move through a hostile environment.

Sample Improvised Disguise

Monday, February 1, 2010

A Hothstyle Environment (2 for 1 challenge)

Some times the life of a padawan is not an easy one. While I respect the Masters, some times I wonder if all that knowledge crowds out more vital information. Case in point; Last week I get a Galactic Text Message from Master Morgan-Mar "Hieraco - Need you to go to Hoth. Left academy keys in Field Generator Control room - MMM"
Well a Padawan is helpful, and Hoth isn't that far out on the rim, so after navigating the asteroid field (someone should clean up that navigation hazard) I managed to find a place to land - Smack in the middle of the ice fields.
With nothing but my laser sword, and faithful droid B1Na for company I hiked across the ice plains to the foot hills of the frozen forests, through blizzard like weather. It took several days, and I was fortunate to have brought my Taun-Taun sleeping bag. (Remind me to air it out, they really smell bad on the inside after a few days).
Once I found the entrance to the field generator the door was locked (Yup, MMM left the keys inside on the console) and I tried to cut my way in using my laser sword, Unfortunately Hoth is so cold, and the metal doors so thick, the heat dissipated as fast as the sword cut. I ended up looking for an air vent and climbing through the duct work to get in, while B1Na waited out side.
I'm on my way back to the academy now, and looking over the Droid's archive footage, I see that the cold has corrupted the recordings. I've recovered what I could and uploaded it to the Academy Archives.
If anyone knows of a more versatile Droid than the B1Na, I'd be interested in hearing about it, as I have no Idea where the Cheddar Masters will send me next.
-Below: Short exert of Hoth video
-Full length recovered video stored in the ACADEMY ARCHIVES