How To Become a Real Space Marine

I was lying there incapacitated in the geoscience lab, wounded by a creepy, clawed alien, when one of the suits from Corporate approached. "Got any ammo?" he said briskly. "No, sir." "Then gimme your gun." He yanked my ST-99 assault rifle from my hands, then set it on a nearby counter. The range light was still on, nearly blinding me as he ruffled through spent ammo clips desperately. He must have found one, because he jammed it into the gun and made a mad dash for the alien cave, yelling, "I need that egg!" This really happened to me yesterday at Origins Game Fair, and it can happen to you, too.

Terrorwerks is a Live Action Role-Playing scenario put together at game conventions by PST Productions and Airsoft. You don't need any experience to enlist - they put you through a ten-minute boot camp before you hop on your jump-ship and head planetside. The whole scenario lasts about an hour and costs $18.

How To Become a Real Space Marine

Your mission is to clear an off-world mining colony of alien critters. Problem is, your ship crash-landed, communications are down and the colony has no power. You need to escort the drones from Corporate and your precious engineers to restore systems and escape, all while fending off alien attacks. You're armed with an Airsoft rifle that shoots soft BB-like pellets, strapped into a tactical vest and helmet, and then it's, "Move ! Move! Move!".

How To Become a Real Space Marine

The Terrorwerks crew let me tag along on a mission as an observer, but someone handed me a rifle and before I knew it I was shouting "Contact!" and firing on full auto along with the rest of the greenhorns. It's difficult to convey the awesomeness with photos, because the scenario takes place in a huge hall cordoned into rooms and corridors, darkened and filled with smoke and lighting effects. Throbbing, evocative sound effects add to the tension. What sets it apart from your basic game of Lasertag are the NPCs, the Terrorwerks Marines, Corporate suits and aliens who never break character. My moment with the guy from Corporate was amazingly cinematic, and running around in the flickering light with people yelling, "Medic!" was flat out the most fun I've had in ages. We may have been the most poorly trained squad of Space Marines ever, but most of us got out alive, and we even retrieved an alien egg. Terrorwerks will be offered at next year's MegaCon in Florida in addition to hourly run-throughs all this weekend at Orgins.