After finishing up Alan Wake 2, I jumped back into Starfield. I wanted to pick up where I left off with the Starfield Crimson Fleet deep cover missions. There’s nothing like stealing a little bit, get caught and then go undercover as a pirate. I loved the new places the missions took me and the great characters I met.
Going Deep Cover in the Crimson Fleet
Way back when I worked with Barrett to steal an artifact from the collector, Petrov, I didn’t realize where that would lead me. My theft earned me a bounty and UC Security arrested me in the next system I jumped to. That’s the bad news. The good news is that UC SysDef made me an offer I couldn’t refuse.
Their Commander, Kibwe, offered me the chance to go undercover as Crimson Fleet pirate in exchange for forgiving my crimes. Sure an arrest is not great, but the thought of where this quest chain could take me was exciting. Much like I did with the Ryujin quests, I went on a long tangent from the Constellation missions to complete these.
Crimson Fleet Deep Cover Initiation
What followed was meeting some contacts around Mars to offer my services in hopes of gaining the attention of the fleet. My dabbling into contraband worked and led to my Crimson Fleet handler, Naeva Mora. She is a great character that did not enjoy my “witty banter”. In fact, I think she threatened to hurt me a couple of times.
Her initiation tasked me with eliminating a Crimson Fleet deserter, Austin Rake. Knowing I was in Crimson Fleet deep cover, my goal was to avoid any actual killing. My persuasion skills allowed me to convince Austin and the crew of the Ragana ship he hid on to follow my plan. They’d drop him off to Sysdef and report him as dead.
I do wonder how different the reactions would be if I killed him, the crew or both. Maybe I’ll try those out on a future “bad guy” playthrough. My ruse worked, keeping me in the good graces of the UC and the Crimson Fleet. It was a nice touch to visit and chat with Austin on the UC Vigilance (in the brig at that point) after my debrief.
My First Trip to the Key, Pirate Space Station
That’s where the real fun began. I traveled to the Kyrx system to meet the Crimson Fleet leader, Delgado, at their Pirate space station, the Key. It was a nice change from the sterilized UC ships and stations to see the reds and blacks. The character of the station matched that of Delgado. He almost reminded me of Antonio Banderas in the Assassins.
Naturally, he had his own task for me, the new “Rook”. He wanted me to join him and another Rook, to investigate “The Lock” prison on the planet surface. The word play between the Lock prison and the Key space station was not lost on me. That whole prison reminded me of the prison in Chronicles of Riddick.
The cold feel to it and all the alien life that popped up to kill us was Sci Fi gold. Delgado’s goal was to test us Rooks out and hopefully find evidence of mythical pirate treasure, Kryx’s Legacy. The treasure is named after the Crimson Fleet’s founder, Jasper Kryx. It’s not a pirate quest without a treasure hunt.
Hunting Pirate Treasure with Backstabbers
While we worked on completing our missions, there was a bit where Mathis, the other rook, wanted to be rid of Delgado. I could have killed him or ratted him out, but I convinced him to stay the course and stay loyal. It helped me along the way, but made me regret it by the end of my Crimson Fleet deep cover.
We did find the evidence Delgado wanted, then promptly fought off a giant alien creature before we could escape via prison shuttle. As part of my deep cover mission, I even found evidence of how prison guards help Jasper Kryx escape the Lock all those years ago.
Delgado was pleased with our find Mathis was glad I did not get him killed. We found out that Kryx’s Legacy is actually a Gal Bank spaceship filled with credits, but he info was just the first lead. It drove me to my next exciting new place, a Luxury space liner.
Cruising the Stars in Crimson Fleet Deep Cover Style
The Crimson Fleets contact, Rokov, was the current Captain of the luxury star liner, Siren of the Stars. He turned out to be a former Crimson Fleet Captain hoping to earn his way back into the fold. He was instrumental in helping me expose a scheme by Galbank executives. My sneaking and investigation was all the more enjoyable with the backdrop of this star cruise ship.
My original goal was to steal credential from Galbank executive, Larry Dumbrosky to find out more info about the Kyrx’s legacy ship. The way things ended, I found evidence against him and turned his co-conspirators, Klaudia Swist and Gabriel Vega, against him. They gave me all I needed to coerce that prick Larry without resorting to violence.
The option for violence was always there, but the threat detection on the ship would result in a bloodbath. I opted for the path of least resistance to save time, plus avoid dealing with anger from both my UC handlers and the Crimson Fleet. I did still have a bit of fun sabotaging the primary life support system to segregate everyone into separate compartments to get what I wanted easier.
With all that squared away, I escaped to New Atlantis to put my new Galbank credentials to work in their archives. There was a surprise waiting for me there that I dealt with using plenty of bullets. In the end, I grabbed info on the target ships location and returned to the Crimson Fleet. There I put in a good word for Rokov to have him rejoin the fleet which I’d regret later.
Hunting Kryx’s Legacy
Knowing the location of the Kryx’s legacy ship was a great milestone, but came with 2 big problems. The planet of the ship’s last position was surrounded by dangerous electromagnetic fields. Those fields prevent exactly pinpointed the ships location and the worst part is those fields would quickly destroy any ship.
The solution to the sensor problem led me to a classified space station, SY-920, with the help of another contact, Huan Daiya. The station relied on “traders” like her to bring them supplies, no questions asked. Our goal was to acquire experimental sensor tech from the UC, the ComSpike. My cover was part of her crew, but then I quickly acquired a military uniform to blend in.
Various computers provided me the code access required to get deeper into the facility. Those same computers often provided me info on the various secret projects the facility worked on. Those bits helped me decide to swap my uniform for a test pilot suit. I was able to con my way to the cargo section for experiments.
There was a chance for me to betray Huan Daiya, but I chose not to (another choice I’d regret later) since she helped me so much along the way. I did end up stealing the experimental ship with the ComSpike and flew it back to a happy (ok not as miserable) Delgado. Now the Crimson Fleet research team could work on a ComSpike retrofit for my ship.
Retrofitting Old Tech for Crimson Fleet Deep Cover
Before we could get too excited, it was off to Neon to solve our electromagnetic shield problem. Another Crimson Fleet Captain, Estelle Vincent, was there to help and I helped her in turn. Again, I’d later regret that (see the pattern?).
In Neon, there’s constantly a lightning storm, but the Generdyne Corp. shield over the city absorbs all that energy. Clean cheap energy? Nope, because Generdyne is a typical greedy corporation charging high prices for that power. So zero regret using the CEO’s assistant to point me to some good blackmail material. The juicy bits I quickly used to convince the Generdyne CEO, Ayumi Komiko, to help.
She helped give me an edge on sneaking through Generdyne research labs, but I still ended up detected. This was all before Bethesda tweaked stealth with the latest patch. I was luckily far enough in I could just run and jump down to where I had to be. After some actual successful sneaking past that point, I was face to face with the Breyson Bayu, brother of corrupt head of Neon, Benjamin Bayu.
Lucky for me, Breyson hated his brother and offered to help me stick it to him by handing over the plans for the EM shield. After stumbling most of my way to him, I was happy to be able to walk out with the plans calmly. Leaving the city, was not so easy.
Benjamin Bayu was not happy about me helping Estelle upload a virus to the Generdyne systems. He threatened to frame me for murder and put a bounty on my head, but I have so much money saved it was a hollow threat. I took the blame, paid off security and headed back to the Key.
Finding the Kryx’s Legacy Pirate Treasure
All the pieces were in place for me to upgrade my ship with the ComSpike and EM shield. I headed to Bannoc IV to search for Kryx’s legacy and died the first time. The ComSpike pinged the location ok, but I traveled too slow and the shield only delayed the inevitable. Next time, I put all my power into engines and shields to successfully reach the ship.
After boarding the ship, it was clear someone beat me there. Lights flickered and destroyed security robots littered my path. There were plenty of security cameras and turrets to go with some security bots that were still functional. Lucky for me, my background is Cyberneticist, so I could manipulate them and use security to override them.
Those skills helped me cruise through, but not before retrieving audio logs and finding remains of the ill fated crew. Their logs were a day by day account of how they all eventually starved to death with no help able to reach them. Those definitely added a lot of atmosphere as I found each of the bodies of the crew, especially chilling to find those who took the easy way out.
Claiming the Crimson Fleet Treasure
Before I claimed my prize of all those sweet Galbank creds, I was surprised to find who beat me there, but did not survive. I’ll let everyone else guess who, but I will reveal the weapon I pulled off of them was a keeper for sure. It produced a hornet’s nest of bullets. The name was great too, the Revenant.
The exclamation point of the entire mission was downloading the credits into a transfer device and triggering the destruction of the ship. It was a mad dash to my ship dodging fires, poison gases and falling debris.
From there I had a choice, either I delivery the creds from Kryx’s legacy to UC Sysdef or to the Crimson Fleet OR take it for myself. That latter option would have me on the run from both groups and I had too many credits for that to be an enticing option.
Taking Down the Crimson Fleet
I already decided early on I’d side with the UC, but I’ll definitely try the other path on a future playthrough. Once I handed over Kryx’s legacy, the secret was out and there was no more deep cover for me. At the end of each mission, I debriefed with UC Sysdef aboard their flagship, the UC Vigilance. This mission was no different.
Any evidence I found about the Crimson Fleet, I turned in and talked with the prisoners my evidence put there one last time. It was off to the final battle. Story wise, the loss of Kryx’s legacy weakened the fleet, but my helping the contacts and Captains added to their fleet. That’s why I mentioned regretting helping the people I did.
Tore Apart by the Crimson Fleet
Their extra ships tore me apart so many times trying to assault the Key. It wasn’t until I kept to the far reaches of the area and picked off ships 1 or 2 at a time, did I survive long enough. I realized that I should have turned in evidence against the Captain or chose not to help them. Not only to increase my odds of victory, but also to save them since my mission was now to kill them. Increasing my ship skills would have also helped.
I felt a bit bad taking out all these Captains I was buddy buddy with just hours ago. The sentiment eventually applied to inside of the Key as it was a room to room fire fight. The only pirates that survived my onslaught were Delgado and his human crypto key, Shinya Voss. I found ways to save them both. Not because they were good people, but because they’d be great symbols of their defeat.
In the end, I took down the Crimson Fleet without killing a bunch of innocent people. I do have a desire to play it again in another universe to side with the bad guys. It will also be interesting to see how the loose thread of Captain Naeva escaping may be tied up in future missions or DLC.
Now that I’ve served the UC to clear my record via my Crimson Fleet deep cover, I think it’s a good time to finally tackle the UC Vanguard questline. Since my stint with Sysdef earned my freedom, now it’s time to earn my citizenship. Sort of the like Starship Troopers.