Top Priority Subspace Message
TO: Pilot 122, Lieutenant Michael 'Nomad' Ellison
FROM: Admiral Lance Harlow
ATTACHED: Assignment Orders, Sigma Delta map
Pilot, your record as our top gunner in the current rankings has earned you a higher position in the Mining and Drilling Combine and Protectorate (MaDCaP). As of now you have been granted a field promotion to Acting Captain and are ordered to the asteroid field known as Sigma Delta. As the Astro-Mining Corp. is a military funded endeavor, you will have the chance to test some new, experimental weaponry, provided you can keep a log detailing the performance of these armaments.
To date you are one of a select few who have survived the rigors of gunning for MaDCaP. However, you have also never experienced ship-to-ship combat against the Aliens, which goes against you when considering your assignment. Sigma Delta has been rated quite low on the probability of survival charts and is a suspected breeding ground for extraterrestrials. We do not expect this to be a problem. If anything does go wrong, you've been equipped with a Standard Issue MaDCaP Emergency Hyperspace Transmitter, which would probably notify MaDCaP of your situation within two weeks.
Your orders are to make a sweep of the entire field (10^8 x 8^6 km), destroying all debris registering as a Hazard Level 4 and above. Alien fighters, transports, and carriers are to be taken out if at all possible. You will be compensated accordingly for this supplementary work, with each saucer giving you an added bonus of one thousand credits.
Your particular Dagger-class fighter has been rated with about twenty hours of fuel, so you should consider making stops at refueling outposts buried within the cores of several larger asteroids (indicated by 'O' symbols on your starmap of the Sigma Delta Field) before you get too close to exhausting your reserves. Also, note that some weaponry stored in these outposts and drifting amongst the asteroids will cause an enormous drain on your stored energy supply – for example, the MW-232X Armageddon Cannon System – which will disallow any subsequent firings until your banks are recharged.
Estimated time to completion of this mission is approximately two months, four days. Good luck and good hunting, Captain.