Star Trek: Tirpitz

The Doomsday Device

Starfleet Intelligence has finally decoded all of the information we collected from the two hidden bases the Klingons had set up in Federation territory.  In the information that was uncovered was the location of a third base.  The Klingons had set up a large base on a planet in the Imaga system, near to where we found their hidden facility in the Briar Patch, which is involved in the testing of new weapons.  Admiral Quinn has begun to pull some of our ships from the front lines to assist in an assault on this newly discovered base.  The Tirpitz drew the assignment of being the first ship into the system.   

Clearing the Klingon turrets

When we arrived in the system, Mr. Toran picked up multiple sources of tachyon emissions.  There was probably a sizeable force of cloaked ships in orbit of the planet.  We also detected a series of weapons turrets in place around the planet.  It looked like the Klingons had been expecting the Federation to find out about this facility sooner or later.  We started by trying to block communications, so that the ships in orbit wouldn’t be able to communicate with the each other or their base on the surface.  We then set about to open a hole in the planet’s defenses.  If the base defenses included a series of transport inhibitors, landing parties would need to take shuttles to reach the Klingon facility, which would need some safe space to fly through.  Our jamming of their communications seemed to be working.  Each group of Klingon ships we encountered didn’t receive any reinforcements from the rest of their defense fleet.  Unfortunately, we weren’t also jamming their transporter systems.  Our sensors picked up a transporter signature just before the last ship we engaged exploded.   

Assaulting the Klingon base

I decided to send Mr. Scharf with an away team to the surface.  With communications disrupted, their ships in orbit wouldn’t be able to find the Tirpitz in the planet’s ring.  However, it wouldn’t prevent them from evacuating the base and any experimental weapons systems using any ships they might have on the planet’s surface.  When our away team arrived on the surface, their scans picked up several large metal objects with high concentrations of Klingon life signs around each one.  The away team’s orders were to attempt to secure as many of the weapon prototypes as possible.  It was unlikely that the away team would be able to acquire all of the Klingon weapons, but if we could get our hands on even one, we would have something for the Starfleet Corps of Engineers to study.  Mr. Scharf’s away team slowly worked its way through the facility, encountering heavy resistance.  At one point, when the away team encountered two Klingon patrols, Ensign Grossman got caught out in the open and took a disruptor blast to the chest.  As the away team started to encounter heavier resistance, we sent a few more away teams to reinforce the first.  In the end, Mr Scharf was able to secure prototypes from three different locations on the surface.  

Attacking the retreating Klingons

It was at that point when the Klingons found a way to break through our communications black out.  Several ships in orbit decloaked and started beaming up weapons and troops from the surface.  We took the time to retrieve our away teams before we set a course for the nearest Klingon ship.  Since the fleet was still a few minutes away, I decided to attempt to try to prevent as many Klingon ships from escaping as possible.  But it seemed escape wasn’t their plan.  As we followed one escaping ship, our sensors picked up the rest of the Klingon fleet massing near a destroyed planet near the edge of the system.  Our scans also picked up something which should not have been.  

Flying through the planet core

Orbiting the destroyed planet was a “Planet Killer”.  It was the same shape and configuration as a doomsday machine Captain Kirk’s Enterprise had encountered in 2267.  Kirk had been able to destroy the one he had encountered  by flying the badly damaged USS Constellation into the machine’s primary weapon and then detonating the ship’s engines.  Unfortunately, we were fresh out of expendable starships.  We attempted to contact the fleet to update them on the situation, but they entered the system before we had a chance to warn them.  The Klingon ships engaged our reinforcements as soon as they got within range.  I had the Tirpitz hang back from the battle at first.  We attempted to go through all of the information we had on the Klingon’s research.  If they had built the doomsday machine, we needed to know if they had documented any weaknesses we could exploit.  We didn’t find any info on the doomsday machine, but we did find a way to stop it.  Amy believed that the prototype weapons we had collected from the Klingon base had an explosive yield large enough to damage the machine.  But there were two conditions to getting the weapon to work.  The first was that we needed to collect some materials from the core of the destroyed planet in order to arm the weapons.  The second was that we would need to wait for the moments after the doomsday machine had fired its primary weapon, when its power levels were at their lowest, for the Klingon prototypes to have any effect on the machine.  We communicated our plan to the Federation fleet, and they said they would keep the Klingon forces occupied while we carried out our plan.  

The doomsday machine prepares to fire

Collecting the materials from the planet’s core was the easy part.  Whatever force had destroyed the planet had scattered the material we needed into space.  The difficult part was going to be attacking the doomsday machine.  We had only managed to collect five torpedoes from the Klingon base, so T’Lol was going to need to make every shot count.  When we engaged the doomsday machine, we found it was slow to maneuver.  We were able to stay well out of the path of its main weapon as it fired.  Unfortunately, staying out of the weapon’s firing arc ment our first few attacks impacted on the machine’s hull.  It looked as if machine had been damaged in our attacks, but we couldn’t tell how badly.  By that time the Klingons had retreated, so our reinforcements joined in assaulting the doomsday machine, focusing their attacks on the areas exposed by the prototype weapons.  Even with the hull cracked, the fleet’s weapons didn’t appear to have any effect on the machine.  As risky as it was, we needed to try to get one of the prototypes to hit the machine’s primary weapon.  We began an attack run when we detected the main weapon powering up.  We burned out the Tirpitz’s shields by getting caught in the edge of the blast, but T’Lol was still able to fire off a shot which started a chain reaction to destroy the doomsday machine.  

After the battle, we joined the rest of the fleet.  With some help from the other ships, we were able to restore our shields to some semblance of working order.  Once repairs were completed, we set a course to deliver the remaining prototypes to Starfleet Command.  

Out of Character

Cryptic tried to connect a large number of the previous story missions together with this one.  They mention the hidden bases the player had found previously, the weapons the Klingons had been working on designing, and the mining efforts that were the back drop for the Breaking the Planet fleet action.  But of all the things they tied into this mission, the doomsday machine came out of no where for me.  

Now I know where the doomsday machine is from.  It’s part of a classic episode of Star Trek.  It’s been a while since I’ve seen that episode, so I’m a little fuzzy on the details.  But the one thing I’m fairly certain of is that the one Kirk faced wasn’t a Klingon weapon.  They don’t know if they ever figured out who had built it.  And now there’s one that the Klingons have working for them.  Actually, I can’t really say that the doomsday machine was a Klingon weapon.  The evidence is all circumstantial in that case.  It actually looks more likely that the Klingons were researching ways to destroy the doomsday machine themselves, and the Federation kept showing up and screwing up their plans.  So the addition of the doomsday machine feels a little tacked on.  Like it should have been in the next story mission, where the Klingons tell you that they need the Federation to help destroy the machine before it reaches the Klingon home world, because the Federation stole all of their defensive weapons.  

Not that I’m complaining about fighting the doomsday machine.  That was awesome.  The part about shooting the machine’s weapon to destroy it is false.  All you have to do is shoot it three times with the prototype weapon after it’s fired its primary weapon.  There’s no weak spot you have to target.  It was just my inner Skywalker telling me to “hit the exhaust port”.  

The one problem I had with this mission was a bug on the planet’s surface.  Actually, I don’t know if it was a bug or if it was just really bad lag.  At one point, Ruz just started dancing.  His head and body were bobbing back and forth and he started to sway as I moved him around the map.  And while this was happening, I couldn’t get him to attack or use abilities or anything.  The rest of the away team and the Klingons they were fighting seemed to be acting normally, except that neither side of the conflict seemed to be taking any damage from the fight.  It seemed to go on for a few minutes, and then everything went back to normal.  It’s the first time I’ve seen anything like that happen in the game.

2 Comments so far
Leave a comment

Really weird about the bug. That was a fun mission though and I liked how it tied several other missions together. Love this rundowns man, keep it up 🙂

Comment by amuntoth

Well, I’m not even 100% sure it was a bug. Talking with someone in my fleet, it almost sounded like some 5 minute lag issue they had encountered once.

And thanks for the compliment.

Comment by captainruz

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