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Join Date: Dec 2007
08-21-2011, 02:54 PM
Missions Name: The Vornan Rebellion ST-HCUC4UJML
Time to Complete: Approx 30 minutes
Difficulty: Medium - Very Hard
Combat: Medium - heavy
Dialog: Light - Medium
Overall: A solid mission, both technically and story wise, though the over-arching theme is a bit over used.
: A people once under the control of Klingon Empire stages a rebellion and asks the Federation for help.
Initially it seem generic, world wants freedom from Klingons, asks federation for help. My first thought was would the Federation step into political matters not relevent to them. Not interfering could be seen as a positive step towards better Klingon/Federation relations. But alas, the mission intro goes on to explain more political influences in the decision to help. While i applaud peoples attempts to have the Federation help out of the goodness of there heart, Stylsy's use of other, more realistic political and logistical reasons makes it easier to understand why you are odered to do this mission. As the mission progresses though, the story picks up as characters, even if minor, are added, and there is more a bit more dialog. In the end, the story was good, well written and informative enough to make you want to help these people. And there is a nice touch at the end.
The pacing in the first part is fast. There is little flying around, looking for badguys or mission objectives. The use of nav beacons is a plus. Lets fact it, it three dimensional space, yet the typical gray objective circle on your map is only showing you where the objective could be in a 2d space. Flying into that circle, only to realize the objective is still 20 km above you is annoying. Your first away mission takes a different turn however. What you think is just a "go kill x amount of guys" has more dialog then typically seen, as well as interact objectives that make sense. Very little of what you do makes you groan, aside from the ground encounters. By far my biggest complaint is the difficulty of the ground encounters. I understand many think ground encounters to be too easy, but that is on the hands of Cryptic. But having almost every ground encounter a large Commander group with a swordmaster at every turn was brutal. Have the Swordmaster run up, almost aoe one shot your whole party, or just straigh one shot you in the face is one thing for some fights, but when every fight see's my character dying and needing to call for assistance several times really slowed things down and hurt the mood for me. As a side effect, this also hurt the climax, when every fight feels like a mini-boss fight, you are tired of being beat to death by time you get to the real boss and you just want it all to end quickly. My opion would be to tune down the combat at the beginning and slowely ramp it up, rather then the first fight to the last being the same Commander/Officer/hardguy group.
Typical Trek fare here. Stylsy used the ongoing war between the Federation and the Empire, which seems to be typical for Community Created content. Not a bad thing, as you have to have a reason for the mission, and using the war is a solid and believable backdrop. However, as i mentioned before the little tidbit at the end nods perfectly towards episodes you see in the various series, and takes a huge step forward from the typical endings seen in the basic Cryptic created mass missions.
My favorite part. While none of the characters have deep development, which is reasonable given that to much narrative can hurt a mission for some people, there was enough that made you understand you were helping real people, and not some mysterious beings who after asking for your help never make an appearance. I loved the random dialog you could have with non-essential characters, even if it was short and to the point. All in all it added more life to the enviroments.
Speaking of the enviroment, this was also a favorite. The Author used good placement of props and effects to make the ship feel like it was really in danger. Ive seen too many empty rooms that this was a welcome refreshment. There is some variety as well, having several different maps to progress through that the author put his time into creating each one.
I am new to actually designing missions in the foundry, and while I thought i had a grasp on things, the author pulled some stunts off that I have been trying to figure out for several days now. His knowledge of the trigger and advanced dialog systems is impressive for only being his second or third mission. There was a spelling error, the only one drawing my attention being in the opening brief, but for the most part I did not notice them like I do in most GTC fare. I am not an editor, and my brain works like most people, where we can see a misspelled word, but still read right past it like it was spelled correctly. It takes a lot to make me realize all the spelling and grammar mistakes, and that I only remember seeing one, is a good thing for me.