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Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 302
07-26-2010, 07:03 PM
Decided to play a round of "Pick that Nit!" with the new Excelsior (partly because it's a favourite of mine!) - spotted one glaring error, a couple of moderately-bothersome omissions, plus one thing that might need a bit of tweaking for logic's sake.

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First up, here's the biggie: WINDOWS on the nacelle ends! Those really shouldn't be there...

Here's a reference pic (from Suricata's site): Excelsior-class Refit, starboard view

And here's a quick pair of screenshots from Tribble: See what I mean?

And on the insides, too!

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Next up - the visible torpedo launchers in the neck are present and correct, but the small round ones in the secondary hull (the little round ones above the deflector assembly) are missing.

Great shot of the shooting model: From Doug Drexler's awesom site - look at the little oval cut-outs, above the deflector and just right of the Starfleet pennant

Now, the obligatory screenshot: Where'd they go? And while we're at it, can we have some pennants, too?

[UPDATE] - Just saw the new version of the model, and the torpedo tubes have been added - yay! My only quibble now is the bits of technological 'kibble' added inside the launchers - it looks a bit prominent, and messy, too. How about putting a red weapon hardpoint 'nubbin' in each instead, to match those on the neck launchers?

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On to the refit modifications - namely the new bussard collectors and additional impulse engines. The bussards on the STO mode are 'glowy' recessed bits, where they should actually protrude out from the nacelle caps. Also, the texture should be 'flatter', rather than having 'striations' (i.e. lines!) - it just looks like someone re-used the texture from a Galaxy-class warp nacelle grille (the long blue bit).

The shooting model again: From DrexFiles - bear in mind that the 'glow' gets added in post-production

And a great SFX shot of the Enterprise-B leaving spacedock! Now with glowing bussard collectors!

Screenshot time again: It's not right, is it?

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Similarly, the additional impulse engines either side of the primary ones - in most model shots and diagrams, the 'nozzle' part has a vertical slant - i.e., the bottom of the 'nozzle' sticks out slightly more than the top, giving it an angled appearance when viewed from the side.

Suricatas' pic again: Side view - observe the angle of the impulse engines!

Screenshot: Not the best camera angle, but it does look like the 'nozzles' have a vertical aspect, rather than the slight slope seen on the model

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A minor quibble regarding the phasers: It looks like the new model is using TNG-style phaser strips instead of the original phaser banks, which works, considering this is set well after the TNG-era - makes sense that the ship's been brought up to modern standards.

The strips are more-or-less arranged in the same pattern as the original banks, in an 'arc' of five - however, the front strip is actually two side-by-side, which doesn't look quite as good.

From Gustavo's blog: Note the ring of 5 phaser banks around the bridge module

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On the shooting model, there are some curious bits of technological jiggery-pokery on the secondary hull - a series of torpedo/probe launchers/emitters under the rear shuttlebay, and a complex device (apparently part of the ship's cargo processing systems) in the recess just behind the deflector assembly. These appear to be missing on the game model.

Drexfiles shot 1: Cargo processing ...thing

Drexfiles shot 2: Launcher/emitter assembly

Rear screenshot: Something's missing from this picture...


[Update] - again, just checking the latest version on Tribble, and there's been some work done on this. I'm guessing that these bits are being worked on - here's hoping, anyway! ]

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In addition, there are a few other small inaccuracies that are noticeable in the screenshots above, when compared to the studio model and most diagrams. These include:

- the Shuttlebay doors have a horizontal pattern - this is incorrect. The doors should be segmented vertically, just like on the TOS Constitution and the Sovereign. Also, the actual bay area behind the doors is far less detailed than on the actual studio model.

- the little circles behind the bridge module (the 'impulse deflection crystals') should be light blue, not grey, as currently seen in the screenshots. Also, there are small details in the area around the crystals that are missing from the STO model.

- there aren't any RCS thrusters to be seen, particularly on the saucer section! This is something also true of the TMP Constitution and Miranda, and it's a rather noticeable omission.

- from a game mechanics point-of-view, the primary hull (saucer section) weapon 'nubbins' (the little red dots where the weapons fire in-game) are on the rim of the saucer - there aren't any weapon hardpoints on that part of the ship, so it'd look wrong for the ship to fire phasers/torpedoes from there!

- Some of the panelling textures look out of place on the Excelsior - one particularly noticeable case is the tops of the nacelle caps.

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That's all I've found so far - hopefully it doesn't come across as being too nagging or anal! As I said, I'm something of an Excelsior fanboi, so I'm just doing my bit to ensure it's as accurate as possible before it goes live next month.