June 24, 2009: Russia-based luxury yachts are offering cruises along the Somalian coast. The yachts are deliberately cruising close to the coast in hopes of getting attacked by pirates. At this point, the passengers open up on them with grenade launchers, machine guns and rocket launchers. The passengers are also protected by a squad of ex-special forces members.
The whole procedure seems to be similar to the Q Ship principle - except operated by a private contractor rather than a national navy. Probably just as well since the national navies seem to be pretty feckless about the whole business, even when directly attacked by the most stupid of the pirates.
Game and Story Use
- If true, it would be a good example of the free market working to everyone's benefit - the tour company make money, the tourists get their fun and the civilised world benefits from fewer pirates meddling in international commerce.
- Whether or not this exists in the real world, this could easily appear in a Cyberpunk, Dystopia, or other Crapsack World setting. The PCs could either be bodyguards to a bunch of drunken passengers with too many ammo and weapons, or they could be hired to assassinate or kidnap someone on board.
- Combine this with the possibility of remote/robotic platforms suggested in this article for even nastier possibilities - now everyone could shoot "real pirates" over the Internet!
- Consider the possibility of running out of pirates. What do the tour companies do when their top draw isn't feasible?