Filed under: Uncategorized | Tags: Star Trek: Online, Star Trek: Online - Klingons, Star Trek: Online - Secret Orders, STO, STO Klingons, STO Secret Orders
We’ve received a communication from Admiral Quinn with new orders. Marta, the Orion we recently rescued from Klingon Ambassador B’vat, has provided Starfleet Intelligence with information about a secret base the Klingons had established in the Hromi Cluster, an area more commonly known as the Briar Patch. The Briar Patch is known for dangerous space matter including the remains of supernovae, false vacuum fluctuations, and unstable gasses. Strategically, it would be an excellent place to construct a hidden base. Even if passive scans of the region detected the facility, the instabilities of the region would make any assault difficult. Due to concerns that the base would be used as a staging area for attacks against the Federation, the Tirpitz had been sent the coordinates Marta provided with orders to investigate the base.
When we entered the Briar patch, Amy alerted me that we would need to travel at a reduced speed while in the Briar Patch. Anything higher than one-third impulse would quickly overheat our impulse manifolds. As we slowed to avoid damaging the ship, Mr. Toran scanned the system. His scans picked up several large pockets of metreon gas. He advised that we should stay at least four kilometers away from any pockets we encountered to avoid igniting the gas with weapons fire should we need to defend ourselves. Toran’s scans also detected a few Klingon ships in the process of deploying weapons turrets. We figured that the turrets were being set up as an outer line of defense for the facility we had come to investigate and set a course in that direction. It was very slow going. The helm needed to adjust course every few minutes to avoid flying into an unstable gas pocket. We encountered several turrets along the route we took, and were able to disable them before they had a chance to do any major damage to the ship. We also caught a few Klingon ships by surprise. A squadron of fighters was destroyed and a Bird of Prey was badly damaged when one of our attacks caused a gas pocket to explode.
As we headed deeper into the Briar Patch, our sensors picked up Klingon battleship. We observed the Klingons for a few minutes, and were able to determine that the ship seemed to be following a patrol route around a large asteroid. Energy emissions we picked up from the surface of the asteroid revealed the location of the hidden base we had been sent to locate. Scans of the facility revealed the presence of materials that would suggest that the facility was being used for military research. I decided that we needed to send an away team to gather more information on what the Klingons were working on at the station. We engaged the patrol ship and destroyed the station’s built-in defense turrets before Mr. Scharf led a team to the facility.
Once the away team reached the facility, they were able to get a better scan of the interior. Along with several dangerous compounds, the away team picked up two non-Klingon life signs. As they explored the complex, the away team came across a human and an Andorian being forced to perform experiments by the Klingons at disruptor point. Mr. Scharf’s away team was able to stage a rescue, and the two scientists were willing to provide us with more information. The Klingons had been hiring independent researchers to help work on a secret project. After they had signed on with the Klingons, they found out that they were not going to be paid for their work. The Klingons made it very clear if the scientists didn’t follow orders, they would be executed. However, after several months of work, scientists started to disappear as they finished up their assignments. The two scientists we rescued seemed to be the last survivors from an initial group of twenty.
As for the work they were doing, the scientists said it was mostly researching improvements to the weapons systems the Klingons already used. There were a few people who had been assigned to create prototypes for much more advanced weapons. Weapons that could punch holes in neutronium or destroy a planet. The scientists informed us that several stations had been completed, and were currently being stored in one of the lower levels of the station. I ordered Mr. Scharf to take his away team and destroy the weapon prototypes and collect any data the Klingon had on the new weapons. The away team encountered very light resistance as it made its way to where the prototypes were stored. Even the amount of guards they had for the prototypes was less than expected. When T’Lol found that the data files on the Klingon computer core were only moderately encrypted, Mr. Scharf reported back to the Tirpitz that something was wrong.
It was at that point that we were contacted by Ambassador B’vat. He had known what information Marta would be able to reveal to the Federation, and had set a trap for us. When the away team accessed the station’s computer core and established a link to the Tirpitz, the station’s self destruct sequence had been activated, along with a transport inhibitor that prevented us from beaming up the away team. The away team had to fight its way through several sets of Klingons that had volunteered to stay behind on the station, as well as cut through a few bulk heads that had been lowered, to reach and disable the transport inhibitor.
With the away team back on board, we moved away from the base before it exploded. As we did so, our sensors picked up a Klingon ship also trying to put some distance between itself and the station. A scan of the ship revealed concentrations of several of the materials found on the station. It was possible the ship was transporting the actual prototype weapons that had been created on the station. At the very least, the Klingon ship was in possession of materials that could be used to create potent weapons. We engaged the ship, and were able to destroy it when it attempted to cut and run through an unstable gas pocket.
Once we reached the edge of the Briar Patch, we contacted Starfleet command to inform them of what we discovered and what had taken place during our investigation of the region.
Out of Character
I have to admit that I didn’t really care for this mission.
So this mission does a call back to the movie Star Trek: Insurrection. This is supposed to be the same section of space that the Enterprise visited in that film. One of your bridge officers even suggests performing “the Riker maneuver” by using the pockets of gas in the system to blow up Klingon targets. Which doesn’t actually work all that well in the game, because the gas pockets that would explode at the drop of a hat in the film, seem to be as heavily armored as a basic ship in the game. It felt to me like I would be much more effective just shooting the Klingon Targets instead of trying to ignite the gas. And since I didn’t want to take the chance that the Klingons would have better luck in blowing up a gas pocket I was in, I ended up frequently parking my ship just withing weapon’s range and would just sit there and blast away until my target exploded. After ten or eleven levels of flying around, trying to get into just the right spot to hit an enemy ship in the quarter where their shields have dropped with my hardest hitting weapons, sitting still at long-range sniping targets is boring as crap.
The other problem I had encountered was on the escape. Once you download the computer data, the player has to return to the room they beamed into. And several doors have been closed behind them that the player has to shoot to get through. Unfortunately, either by bug or by design, the player is the only person that can shoot the doors. I can recall a few occasions in Star Trek’s history where several crew members all targeted one object and shot it at the same time. So I can’t see why my bridge officers won’t try to help me cut through a door we need to get past. Clicking on any of the doors and telling my officers to shoot this target just has them all run up to the door, where they begin trying to jump through or over the still closed-door.
I know in the past there have been a few missions where the player has been sent back to a system they previously visited to do a new mission. At this point, if I was sent back to the Briar Patch for some reason, I’m not sure if I would complete the mission.
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