Star Trek: Tirpitz

Acting Captain’s Log, Hide and Seek

The scientists of Memory Alpha were able to retrieve some data from the bioship computer core we collected.  According to what they’ve found, a few minutes before the ship was destroyed, it managed to transmit a coded subspace message.  The content of the message still remains a mystery, but broadcast appeared to be targeted at the Paulson Nebula in the Lackey system.  Admiral Quinn ordered the Tirpitz to investigate the nebula and report back with our findings.

Defending the USS Valor

 En route to the Paulson Nebula, T’Lol picked up a distress call from the USS Valor.  Mr. Scharf informed me that the Valor had been sent on a scientific mission to chart the Paulson Nebula, and theorized that if they were in trouble it may have been due to an encounter with the Undine.  We altered course to aid the Valor.  When we arrived, we discovered that the Valor was not under attack from Species 8472, but from the Gorn.  We successfully fought off the attacking Gorn ships and were able to establish contact with the Valor.  They had not encountered any Undine ships in the nebula, or detected any signs of their presence.  The Valor had simple been ill prepared for the strange energy draining properties of the nebula.  They had barely managed to escape the nebula with power to maintain life support systems when they came under attack by the Gorn.  It seems the Gorn ships were defending an illegal dilithium mining operation they had established in the asteroid field.  In order for the Valor to have enough power to return to spacedock for repairs, they would need a supply of dilithium.  I didn’t see any problem in collecting some of the crystals the Gorn had illegally mined to aid the Valor.  After acquiring a supply sufficient for the Valor, we contacted Starfleet command to appraise them of the situation.  They informed me that they would be sending ships to deal with the illegal mining operation, and that the Tirpitz was to continue on with its mission to the Paulson Nebula.

Lackey III

Chief engineer Amy raised some concerns regarding our mission.  She pointed out that without modifications, there was a high percentage chance that the Tirpitz would fall victim to the same energy drain that crippled the Valor.  She recommended that we visit the Federation mining facility near Lackey III to increase our dilithium reserves before entering the nebula.  I agreed with her plan, and we set course for the facility.  When we arrived, our hails went unanswered.  Shortly after, we were attacked by a Gorn battle cruiser.  It appeared as if the Gorn had taken over the facility before setting up their own operations in the system.  Our attempts to beam up the supplies we needed from the facility were prevented by a nearby jamming facility.  I had Mr. Scharf lead an away team to disable the jamming system.  With the system disabled, we were able to acquire the supplies we needed for our mission.  We appraised Starfleet of the situation with our mining facility, and then set course for the nebula.

A disabled vessel in the Paulson Nebula

Once inside the Paulson Nebula, our sensors picked up high density metallic readings.  The readings were much higher than what we would expect in a nebula of this nature.  We slowly continued through the nebula, checking out the highest concentrations of metallic readings.  The nebula for the most part was a junkyard.  We came across several satellites and sensor relays that were no longer functioning.  We also came across a Talarian vessel, which according to our sensor logs, had probably entered the nebula on its own scientific survey and had been trapped here for decades by the same energy drain that had almost claimed the Valor.  When we found it, we detected no life signs aboard.  Eventually our search brought us to a space station that had been built into an asteroid.  Scans indicated the presence of Klingon life signs onboard the station.  It appeared as if the Klingon empire had built a secret listening post in Federation space.  I organized an away team to investigate the station.

On board the Klingon listening post

The Klingons were less than thrilled by our arrival on the station.  The away team had to fight every step of the way to reach the command center of the station.  As if the guards weren’t bad enough on their own, the Klingons also had several targs on board that they had trained to be guard animals.  By the time we reached the command center, the entire station had been alerted to our presence.  While T’Lol hacked into the Klingon systems and downloaded their logs and sensor records, the rest of the away team took up defensive positions around the room to fend off the remaining Klingons.  When the station’s computer logs had been downloaded, we waited for a break in the Klingon assault and transported back to the Tirpitz. 

During our entire mission, we saw no evidence of Species 8472 and encountered none of their ships.  We still have no idea who the bioship encountered at P’Jem attempted to contact in the Paulson Nebula, or why they sent a coded message there.  Hopefully, with the information we gathered from the Klingon station, Starfleet Intelligence will be able to answer some of the questions we still have regarding the Undine’s presence in the Alpha quadrant.

Out of Character

This mission feels all over the place from a writing stand point.  It’s a follow-up to the mission that establishes the presence of Species 8472 in the Alpha quadrant, that doesn’t feature Species 8472 at all.  Admiral Quinn sends the players to check for the Undine, and the player ends up fighting Gorn and Klingons instead.  I’m guessing there’s a chance something in the Klingon station data will point the player in the right direction to find the Undine again, but right now it feels like we got sidetracked from what we were supposed to be doing.

The Gorn make their first appearance in this mission.  They had been conquered by the Klingons by the time the game starts, so they’re working for the Klingon empire.  The player battles several Gorn ships, which fight for the most part like their Klingon and Orion equals.  The main difference I noticed was the use of explosive mines.  In all honesty, I wasn’t that impressed with the mines.  It felt like the torpedo hits I took from other enemy ships were much more potent.

This mission introduces a number of enemy ground soldier types.  The first noticeable addition was the Klingon targs.  They’re not much of a threat themselves.  Their main threat is that they can respawn.  Any Klingon group with Targs has a soldier in it called a Targ Handler.  If the Targ Handler is still alive when the player kills off all the targs they’re currently fighting, the Handler will spawn more.  We also see the introduction of the Klingon Swordmasters.  Because they focus on melee damage, they bypass the shields everyone uses for defense.  So their attacks go straight to your character’s health.  The best strategy when facing a Klingon Swordmaster seems to be to kill it first and kill it fast.

2 Comments so far
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It was only when I was playing the mission through a second time did I realize the plot flaw you did – that, well, there aren’t any Undine in this mission! It was a strange happenstance – almost as if this mission, and the next Klingon outpost mission were accidently switched.

Comment by Adventurer Historian

One could argue that it works either way. I agree with AH that the next story episode would be a better follow up to the first 8472 mission. It would allow the player to wrap up the 8472 lose end much sooner and before getting into more of the Klingon/ Gorn vs. Federation story.

The way it could have been intended is that because of all the time the player spends dealing with the Gorn mining situation, the Undine have had enough time to clear the nebula of any evidence that they were there, and if it wasn’t for the Klingon listening post the player would never be able to pick up the trail. But there are a few reasons why it feels more like a plot hole.

1) 8472 have, in the past, been written as wanting to kill all life in non-fluidic space. So if they were in the nebula for any length of time, it’s surprising they left the Klingons alone. Maybe the Klingons established the base after 8472 arrived, but then you wouldn’t have any evidence or contact that would eventually lead the player along.
2) The first mission establishes that the Klingons know about the existance of 8472 in the Alpha Quadrant. They’re willing to send six ships and several squads of troops to capture one at P’Jem. If the Klingons had evidence that 8472 had activites in the nebula, I would have expected more than just one lone Gorn ship to be guarding the station.
3) The first mission also establishes that 8472 can shape change, and have the ability to hide their ships. Because the transmission was sent to the nebula, and the Klingons are the only things you find in the nebula, you half expect one of the Klingon soldiers you were fighting on the station to reveal that it’s one of the 8472.

Comment by captainruz

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