Star Trek: Tirpitz


Minefield
April 19, 2010, 9:21 am
Filed under: Uncategorized | Tags: , , ,

We have been given a special assignment for the Federation by Admiral T’nae.  In light of the ongoing conflict with the Klingons, and rising tensions with the Romulans, Starfleet Command is concerned about the safety of the Federation’s transwarp network.  Most Federation ships are equiped with a transwarp access system, allowing our ships to travel via the network for brief periods of time from anywhere in known space.  If a ship’s transwarp system becomes non-functional (something I know can occur from personal experience), there are several access points where a ship can enter the network on their own.  And it’s these access points that have Starfleet Command worried.  If an enemy fleet were to use an access point, they could use the network to reach just about any Federation world in a matter of minutes.  As a safeguard against enemy incursions, Starfleet has decided to set up mine fields around network access points that are close to hostile borders.  The Tirpitz was to assist with deploying one of the minefields.   

Defending the Outpost

We received orders to travel to Sierra Outpost II, where we would pick up a supply of the specially designed mines to deploy as well as one of the scientists that worked on the mines to help us set them up.  However when we arrived in the system, we picked up part of a distress call from the USS Illinois.  A task force of Romulan ships was attacking the outpost and any ships that approached within range.  I ordered red alert, and told the helm to get us into the fight now.  We weren’t fast enough to assist the Illinois, but we were able to prevent the Romulans from renewing their assault on the station.   From our scans, it appeared as if the attacking forces had picked off several Federation ships.  Fortunately we weren’t facing the Romulan ships at their best.  It would seem they had sustained some damage from their previous attacks that they hadn’t had time to repair between battles, which made things easier for us.  With the attacking ships destroyed, we hailed the station.   

Fighting the Romulan commandos

We made contact with a Vulcan named S’larin, who was in charge of the mine project.  He informed us that while we were busy “wasting time” with the Romulan ships, a few squads of Romulan commandos had been beamed down to the station.  I had Mr. Scharf take an away team over to the station to assist the outpost’s personnel.  They located S’larin and he gave them an update on the situation.  The Romulans had split up into two groups.  One group was attempting to locate the mines that had been readied for deployment, while a second group had started setting up explosives at key points on the station.  He also informed the away team that he had lost contact with several of the scientists that had been working on the project.  We evacuated S’larin to the Tirpitz while our away team started a search and rescue mission on the station.  Once Dr. Franklin finished checking out our guest, S’larin took the opportunity to stop by the bridge and inform me that acquiring the mines was the most important thing we needed to do.  I told Mr. S’larin that had every confidence that the away team would be able to find the mines, but I had no intention of leaving the other scientists behind for the Romulans to capture.  S’larin attempted to point out that the needs of the many outweighed the needs of the few.  I calmly reminded him that the few he was willing to sacrifice could very well be tortured for information that could completely undo his efforts to protect the many.  Fortunately, Mr. Scharf’s away team came through before our “discussion” progressed any further.  They were able to disarm the charges the Romulans had planted, rescued the five missing and injured members of the science team,  and tagged several of the mines for transport to the Tirpitz.  

Clearing the rubindium asteroids

We contacted Starfleet Command to update them on our situation.  Because of the Romulan attack on the station, we were ordered to carry out our assignment.  We were sent to the Teneebia system to deploy the mines we recovered around the transwarp access incase the attack on the outpost was a prelude to using the network for an attack in another system.  We set a course at high warp to the access, while Mr. Toran assisted S’larin in finishing up work on the mines.  When we arrived in the system, we preformed a detailed scan to see if we could pick up any hidden Romulan ships.  We didn’t detect any cloaked vessels, but we did pick up several asteroids in the local asteroid field with high concentrations of rubindium.  S’larin informed us that we would need to destroy the asteroids, because they would throw off the sensors the mines use to determine friendly ships from enemy ships.  It took us several minutes to locate and eliminate each of the problem asteroids.   

The first mine deployed

With the area clear, we started to set up the minefield.  It should have been a simple matter.  The mines were a variation on those used during the Dominion War to mine the Bajoran wormhole.  All we needed to do was beam a few of the mines into key positions around the transwarp access, and the mines would self replicate and create the field for us.  As we beamed the first mine into position, our sensors picked up a Romulan scout force entering the system.  We ended up having to fight off several waves of scout ships to get the mines into position, and then a small task force to buy the mines time to replicate the rest of the field.  When the first Romulan ship got close enough to be destroyed by the mines, the remaining enemy ships retreated.  

We are currently returning to the outpost where S’larin and his team will continue their work.  We’ve received orders to help guard the station until another ship is sent to relieve us.  

Out of Character

So, for some reason, the developers decided to write S’larin as a complete and total jerk.  From the moment the player makes contact with him, almost everything he says falls into one of two categories.  It’s either a comment on how important his work is and how he needs to finish it, or it’s an insult of the player and the player’s crew.  I don’t remember ever encountering a Vulcan like this before.  I’m used to Spock and Tuvok, and I don’t remember either of them being obsessed with themselves or what they’re doing to the point of me wanting to toss them out an airlock.  So I had to write in a little argument between Ruz and S’larin.   

This mission gives the player a chance to fight a large number of Romulans in ground combat.  So far, the fight’s haven’t been so much difficult as long.  It would seem the Romulan military has a better first aid course than the one offered by Starfleet.  In the middle of a fight, some Romulans will go over to their fallen allies and wake them back up.  The best I’ve seen out of my away team so far was to wake me back up after they had finished dealing with the rest of the forces we were facing.  Right now, I would guess the best strategy would be to be on the look out for Romulan medics, and have your away team focus fire on them first.  

The only thing that really bothered me about this mission was the asteroid destruction section.  Rubindium must be some really durable material.  Each of the five, unshielded asteroids I needed to destroy took an amount of concentrated fire that would have blown up a Bird of Prey at full shields and hull.  Fortunately, the player only needs to destroy the five big ones, and not the five smaller asteroids that spawn when a big one explodes.  It’s rather annoying to blow every captain and bridge officer power I have access to that increases my damage and or fire rates, and still not manage to blow up one rock before some of those used powers come off of cooldown.

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