To see the cards themselves, check out this Card list for the 2nd Edition set.
PICTURE: Bareil in his idyllic gardens makes for a vibrant image, and one that fits a holy man particularly well. He's seen from below, elevating him to his place of esteem, and the light, sometimes golden, peers through the branches casting a soft and ethereal luminescence. An excellent 5.
LORE: The vedek's origins as seen through his eyes, with the Prophets making a fateful appearance, of course. Good stuff at 3.5.
TREK SENSE: A Vedek, yes, and one that's highly respected, working closely
with two Kais, and almost becoming Kai himself, which can certainly explain
the high Cost. His understanding of the Prophecies gives him Anthropology,
and as the architect of the Bajoran/Cardassian treaty, the doubled Diplomacy
isn't too much. Add doubled Honor to even initiate such talks, and continue
them even unto death. A Vedek is a church leader, and if that wasn't enough
to warrant the Leadership, then look to his sheer charisma. It's charisma
and communicative honor that allows for his special ability, raising the
Integrity of all Bajorans near him (yes, even someone like Winn was touched
by his strength of character). Bajorans respond particularly well to this
when the chips are down, and when facing hardship (a dilemma), their Integrity
is even higher. As for his other skills, Biology is a form of botany associated
with his gardening abilities. Biology is a Science, but I remain unconvinced
about his hvaing that skill. He's not a full-on Biologist, or even Anthropologist,
and Science is too wide for what he was ever shown doing. The high Integrity
goes with his high level of Honor, the above average Cunning is also appropriate.
Average Strength may seem a bit high for a pacifist, but he was in top
physical shape thanks to springball and Kira ;-). The Science is a sore
point, the rest works very, very well. Hits 4.4.
1E TREK SENSE: Cost isn't a factor in 1E, of course, so the only real change is that the Cunning is off-kilter (i.e. too low). The Orb experience is also missing from this version (as it must). That'll bring him down to a 3.9 (same as the Bareil Antos card, but for other reasons).
STOCKABILITY: Attributes are very important in 2E, mostly for solving
missions, but of course, for passing dilemmas too. This Bareil is great
for missions and dilemmas that require Integrity, because not only is his
own Integrity a high 8, but he also adds 1 to the Integrity of all other
[Baj] personnel present when solving a mission, and 2 when dealing with
dilemmas (Opaka at Integrity 11? Oh my). Bajoran missions where he'll be
a help with Integrity AND some of his skills include Expose Changeling
Influence, Investigate Maquis Activity and especially Pacify Warring Factions
on the planet side, and Amnesty Talks, Host Metaphasic Shielding Test,
Instruct Advanced Drone, Peaceful Contact and a few more on the space side
of things. Dilemmas that require Integrity include, for their part, Bleeding
to Death (he's got the 2 Honor), Gomtuu Shock Wave (he's got the 2 Diplomacy)
and Language Barrier (same). He can beat Vastly Outnumbered without resorting
to Integrity. Watch out for Damaged Reputation though. Now, aside from
that useful boost, he's got a great selection of skills, two of them doubled
(even the few examples given showcase that). Anthropology allows him to
use Days of Atonement, and the Diplomacy to use Lasting Peace, both for
various card manipulation duties. Some of the skills, like Biology and
Science are totally from left field, and not expected on a DipHoLe personnel,
so that's useful too. Lots of skills, useful at a lot of missions, means
Bareil could score 5 extra points at each one if Solbor is there (he's
a Vedek). And as a Vedek, he can be "replaced" by another personnel through
Symbol of Devotion, though at his price, I wouldn't be quick to put him
on the bottom of my draw deck (especially with the "replacement" downloading
to hand). Another Vedek with him, and you gain access to The Prophets'
Guidance's rescue of a personnel. Having a Vedek floating around, even
in the discard pile can also be a boon, such as giving an attribute and
skill boost to Kira Nerys/Reformed Collaborator. But what about the outrageous
Cost? Well, skills and attributes warrant it, especially given the missions
available to the Bajorans. The affiliation has a number of pricey personnel,
so cost-saving measures (like "place into play" effects, or otherwise loading
up on weenies) may help mitigate the damage. Overall, I think a balanced
1E STOCKABILITY: In 1E, whether he costs 1 or 5 is immaterial, and as a Vedek, he can report for free to the Chamber of Ministers anyway. But is he as strong? Well, attributes aren't on the same usefulness level, but INTEGRITY remains the hardest of the three to boost. He does that quite well, possibly making short work of the Dal'Rok and Q. A large and excellent skill list has a lot of merit also, well tuned to Bajoran missions. 2 Honor means he's worth 8 bonus points if killed when he has No Way Out. As a Vedek, he can report to and use the Bajoran Shrine and greatly helps solve Refuse Immigration. He's a version of the Bareil Antos persona, having 1 less CUNNING, no VIP classification, and neither the Staff, nor the Orb icon. In exchange, he gains the special skill, 1 more Honor and Leadership. Dare I say it, but that's a trade that hardly makes the 1E original worth it anymore, unless you truly need the Orb icon for your Orb strategies. And he's still able to play the Cardassian/Bajoran Treaty for free. Have to go higher than the original's 4.5, so 4.6 here.
TOTAL: 17.3 (86.5%) Very esteemed indeed.
1E TOTAL: 17 (85%) Just a bit under the original's high 89%.
PICTURE: Dr. Barron plays the scientist here, with an explanatory finger lifted up and some white clothes (the universal sf labcoat). Dynamic lines behind him, though as usual, the purple chair can leave. A solid 3.5.
LORE: The first sentence is in the style of 2E's non-uniques, with information that's only broadly about the pictured character. The second gets off that track a little by telling us who Barron is specifically. It's all ok, nothing major. A 3.
TREK SENSE: Representing a typical Anthropologist, Barron has skills
that go a little beyond the observation of cultures, with Archaeology looking
back at those cultures' pasts (makes sense, or else you lack the proper
context). Geology helps him choose a good rock formation for the duck blind,
as well as being a digging supplement to Archaeology. My question, however,
is: Where's the Science? He has 3 sciences, but no overall sense of scientific
method or whatever Science relates to? Or is Science more for using equipment,
chemicals, etc., which wouldn't come up often in the life of an anthropologist?
Well, Van Orten, an Archaeologist, has Science, but the premise otherwise
holds up. Still... Earth icon's fine - even if he dealt with TNG personnel,
he was still not in the Enterprise's crew. Attributes are average across
the board, with a dip in Strength for not being trained in any form of
combat. The snafu on Mintaka III means he doesn't deserve any higher in
Cunning, though you'd expect the "typical" anthropologist working in duck
blinds to be a little more careful (then again, look at Insurrection).
As with the usual "typical" anything, they might as well come off an assembly
line, so the Cost of 1 is ok. Having trouble getting over the lack of Science,
I'm gonna go with a 2.7.
1E TREK SENSE: The lack of Science hurts much more in 1E where personnel all MUST have classifications. There are no scientist-types without Science in 1E. That, plus his attributes are too low because of the new scale (all except Strength). Drops him down to 2.2.
STOCKABILITY: Useable in most Federation deck (TNG, DS9, possibly eventually
Voyager, OS, CF and Enterprise, but not Maquis), Barron is a classic weenie
with three good skills and standard attributes. The skills formerly known
as classifications no longer hold that place of honor, but they still occur
more frequently on dilemmas and missions, so the fact he has none is to
his detriment. Still, he offers a different mix of skills than other weenies.
Anthropology is fairly common among Earth icon personnel, and passably
in the TNG affiliation (but less so in DS9), and he's a non-unique source.
TNG and DS9 Feds both have their own Geology non-uniques, so that's his
most common one. Archaeology, however, remains much rarer. And yet, it's
useful at a number of dilemmas, and some, like Test of Wisdom, require
more than one of his skills. The same can be said of missions, and he's
a cheap solver for Excavation and Investigate Rogue Comet. Plus, two of
his skills are mission requirements that must be present for the play of
Artifacts. And weenies are really very cheap. A 3.4.
1E STOCKABILITY: Cheap in 1E isn't a good thing. Barron has no classification, or any classification-like skill. His 3 skills means he can't be Assigned. His attributes are lame. Good skills, sure, but so what? The Feds have so much of everything that you have to stand out, and he just doesn't, even if no one has the exact same skill list. A 2.
TOTAL: 12.6 (63%) Average.
1E TOTAL: 10.7 (53.5%) Duck!
PICTURE: A Maneuver as seen from the inside, I still quite like it. The red sections provide a lot of contrast, and the Cardassians look sinister with that black and red color scheme. Good composition, at once symetric and dynamic. And Dukat's always fun. A good 4.
LORE: Well, it's one way to motivate the troops. Whatever we think of Dukat's style, it certainly paints a picture of Cardassian discipline which helps sell this card as Cardie-only. And a fun dig at the Ferengi too. Again, good, at 3.8.
TREK SENSE: Battle Drills aren't a Maneuver per se, so I take it that
the card is meant to represent maneuvers learned and memorized DURING Battle
Drills. Everyone probably runs Battle Drills - all militarily-minded affiliations
at least - so why can only the Cardassians use this card? I suppose it's
because they're stricter. The ruthless perfectionism illustrated in the
lore makes a good point. So the Gul has drilled the crew well, and so the
ship is more effective in battle (+2 to Weapons). It also goes for the
gusto, trying to create hull breaches or plasma feedback that will kill
some crew. Always odd when that doesn't actually damage the ship however.
Odd as well that Battle Drills don't help you when defending your ship.
The Cardassians apparently don't teach defense as much as offense. And
since this is taxing for the crew and no doubt time-consuming, the relatively
high Cost makes sense. A strong 4.2.
1E TREK SENSE: While you don't need a permission slip to do battle with the Cardassians in 1E, the idea of making your crew more battle-ready still holds water. The Cost element is gone, so no points derived from that. A small bump down to 4.1.
STOCKABILITY: The Cardassians have plenty of Guls, and they're often
ship commanders, so you don't need your arm twisted to use them. Another
trick they can pull is enable an engagement using Battle Drills. The advantages
are clear: You get a +2 bonus to Weapons to help you win that engagement,
and when you do, you get a random kill. This gives Galors Weapons 10, Kedlons
11, and Advanced Keldons and the Keldar as much as 12. Very nice indeed.
It's a better deal that Cry Havok, because of the extra Weapons boost (same
Cost, same effect otherwise), but perhaps not as much as Pierce Their Defenses,
though killing a personnel is better than Shields -2 in my opinion. That
holds true of Point Blank Strike as well, despite its massive Weapons boost
(and again, of Precise Attack). The Cardassians have some nice options
for attack-to-capture cards, but for general decimation, Battle Drills
holds its own. A 4.
1E STOCKABILITY: Plenty of Guls in First Edition as well, and though you don't need a permission slip to start a battle, this one comes with the attribute boost, and a built-in casualty. Nice, even if you have to balance that with the cost of playing an event. The Cardassians are surely going to enjoy the boost, since their fleet has always been a little second-rate. Here amounts to a 3.6.
TOTAL: 16 (80%) It pays to practice.
1E TOTAL: 17.5 (77.5%) Slides into the top 10.
PICTURE: Sisko's cold, dead stare is "defiant", I suppose, but also creepy (perhaps I'm also responding to the cool blue lighting and the glowing cross in the background). On the bridge of the Defiant, he means business, and that dark look fits DS9 well. Aesthetically a little harsh, I'm still giving it a 3.5.
LORE: Excellent link to his special ability, since the surprise he's talking about is his download, and downloads are surprises of sorts. The title is a pun that gets a lot of mileage (see Thomas Riker and Tim Watters), but it's cool nonetheless. A fun 3.5.
TREK SENSE: Our baseline Sisko has the right icons, plus the Leadership/Officer scheme you'd expect from a ship captain, and indeed, he does command the right ship. It's a ship he helped build, so Engineer is equally appropriate, and I might as well mention the special ability here. He gets to download a DS9-icon ship. This is meant to represent not only that he has built such ships in the past (the Defiant and the Baraka), but also that he has brought ships to Deep Space 9 (like the Defiant and countless runabouts). Seems like he can order ships from Starfleet and often get them. Actually, here he more or less SHOWS UP with whatever ship, since it is downloaded when he reports (so within "a few days"). To help him fly these, Navigation makes a showing. Again, fine. Diplomacy is a skill he has used with the Bajorans, the Cardassians and even the Dominion, and he's usually a man of Honor would can be counted on to do the right thing. He can still get pretty dark and ruthless, so his Integrity doesn't go too high here, but is still above average. Cunning and Strength are at that same level, above average. I would have gone with higher stats, personally, especially in the Strength department, since he's taken on Klingons and Jem'Hadar hand-to-hand. As for Cost, a 4 represents his hero status. Not only a Captain, but in charge of both a ship and station that are very important to the Quadrant. He would be hard to get ahold of. Hard to go wrong with the special ability, but the attributes bug me a little. A 4.5 because it's not major.
STOCKABILITY: Not quite as costly as The Emissary, the same as Shipwright, but twice as much as Man of Resolve, Defiant Captain is probably still the way to go if you're using the USS Defiant. It's a very strong ship, especially for getting into engagements, and its Commander obviously adds more options. An option above and beyond the usual is the fact you can download the Defiant to your hand when you report Sisko. Ships are costly and that saves you at least the cost of drawing it, but also makes sure you have it close by, perhaps to play on the very next turn. It's not the only ship you can grab ahold of, of course. In a Starfleet Command deck, there's the Akira as well. In a full-on Deep Space 9 (Mouth of the Wormhole) deck, add the Bajoran Scout Vessel, the Baraka, the Kitara and the Talnot. Some of these have useful effects, and hey, maybe the Defiant's already out, and you'd like to give Kira her own ship. Aside from that help, Sisko has pretty standard attributes and skills, though DS9 Feds aren't as high on Honor and Diplomacy as TNG Feds, so there's that. Being a DS9 Engineer allows him to use Visionary, always nice. Perhaps at such a high cost, a little indulgent, but it all depends on your ship situation. Still a very good 3.8.
TOTAL: 15.3 (76.5%) Still less than Man of Resolve.
PICTURE: What better place for the Emissary than actually WITH the Prophets. And it's not the overpowering white field of the early days, it's at the very end when he's practically become a Prophet himself. A well-chosen (and very distinctive) 4.5.
LORE: A "prophecy" about Sisko, cryptically tying him to Bajor (the world and the affiliation), but making me wonder if it has a link to his special ability. I'm not sure I see it yet. Good quote though. A 3.5.
TREK SENSE: To me, the baseline Ben Sisko is Defiant Captain, so I'll
be comparing The Emissary here to that card. He's Bajoran-affiliation,
for one thing, as that's where he would have a Command icon as The Emissary.
Starfleet was never comfortable with that role, so he wouldn't be Federation
while fulfilling it. Besides, he is of Bajor. Among the Bajorans, he can
do no wrong (2 Diplomacy). Where he leads, they will follow (2 Leadership),
and having those visions really does make him more ethical, as if responsible
for the welfare of an entire people (2 Honor and very high Integrity).
Anthropology allows him to conduct all those Bajoran rituals he's asked
to, and Archaeology helped him find the lost city of B'hala (these he did
as The Emissary). The visions also make him smarter (more Cunning), but
of course, not stronger (same Strength). Totally agree with the Cost as
well, since there can only be one true Emissary, and coming from another
world, he would be hard to get ahold of. Now comes the special ability,
with its very mechanical function, and I can't work it out as well. We've
got The Emissary at his HQ (DS9 or Bajor), and each time a non-Treachery
Bajoran reports there (i.e. not the likes of Winn Adami - all fine up to
here), you may discard to draw. What does that mean exactly? An old idea/resource
is switched for a new one? Perhaps it's the Prophets giving Sisko a sense
of the personnel's destiny (which includes Y instead of X). I CAN work
it out, but am I right? Overtly mechanical concepts are hard to gauge.
Nevertheless, the rest of the card is very strong, and amounts to a 4.5.
1E TREK SENSE: In this case, the easiest comparison can be made with "The Emissary", and to make the two different, we have to see the 2E card as a later version of the character. The 1E Emissary discovered the Wormhole, gave the Bajorans new direction, blablabla. This one has gotten used to the role, and is at least after the discovery of B'hala. He is more purely Bajoran, having truly non-Starfleet priorities. The skills work as above, as does the special skill (though extended to missions other than the HQ), and only the lack of classification is problematic as to the format. The attributes are different, with the Integrity going up from 1E (he's more Honorable), the Cunning going down (oops, doesn't quite fit), and the Strength staying the same (fine). The missing Orb icon is a real flaw. Again, mostly good stuff, dropping only to 4.2.
STOCKABILITY: High attributes, including humongous Integrity, and a
huge load of skills makes The Emissary of the Prophets worth the high Cost
of 5. I mean, 2 Leadership, 2 Diplomacy AND 2 Honor? That's huge! Anthropology
and Archaeology aren't bad either, mind you. He helps pass a large number
of dilemmas, and with the doubled skills, stuff like Tense Negotiations,
Vastly Outnumbered and Inside Collaborators, among many others. Missions
especially suited to him are less numerous (Investigate Maquis Activity
and Pacify Warring Factions do come to mind), but he's also got a reason
to stay at your HQ from time to time, perhaps especially early on when
you're reporting personnel. With his discard-to-draw ability, he can help
you get the cards you want early, and get rid of the cards you don't need
right away. Remember: the Bajorans are adept at using their discard pile,
so nothing thrown away is really wasted. You might even use the discard
to get exactly the right card in the pile, while also getting a free card
draw from it. You just need to keep the Treachery personnel out of his
hair (so to speak), and can't do this more than once per turn (which might
slow down your reporting). In a DS9 deck, it won't work with non-Bajorans
(though he can use Lasting Peace with THAT deck). In any deck, of course,
the skills and attributes are hot, and so another 4.5.
1E STOCKABILITY: In 1E, he's a double-DipHoLe, which isn't as strong, though it's not bad. You know: Good and solid. The Bajorans will certainly be able to use him as a mission solver. He still overcomes a number of dilemmas (Primitive Humanoids, for example), but backwards-compatible cards a more likely to fit him here. Note also that 2 Honor gives him access to No Way Out (for 9 bonus points). The special skill is also less likely to please with 1) no real discard pile incentive, and 2) no cost on card draws in the first place. It's good that it can be used anywhere the Bajorans report to, though you have to take into account that they won't be reporting to The Emissary if this version is in play. Basically, if you're using both, you should only be using this one on turns where you don't need to report a Bajoran remotely, or the INTEGRITY boost. That will leave some mission attempts, but not a whole lot. A 3.4 in this context.
TOTAL: 17 (85%) Beats out all the other Siskos to date.
1E TOTAL: 15.6 (78%) Not quite as much as the Away Team Pack's crown jewel.
PICTURE: You make the call - unusually homely species, or lots of battle scars? Either could be true, but in any case, Berild makes for a very brown card. Not so bad with the marbly NA template, but less interesting than many. Still, the earthiness of it works well, and I surprise myself by giving the pic a 3.1.
LORE: Instead of a quote, his actual story (à la 1E), which can be compared to that of the other Solari, Grenis. Not bad, I suppose, but not written as a non-unique. A 2.9 as a result.
TREK SENSE: Berild is the equivalent of the leader of a superpower country,
so the Cost is certainly right despite being a weenie, as are the Leadership
skill and Command icon. Because the Solari governments have a military
structure (they've been at war for 15 centuries!), he's further an Officer.
Law is also appropriate, especially since he wanted to bring some kind
of new order to his world. Archaeology is perhaps less obvious, though
the meeting site had some historical relevance that he would have been
aware of. (That background is the ol' Archaeology set anyway.) Integrity
is average because he was ready to make peace, but not quite trusting yet.
Cunning is too, enough to be a leader, but not enough to see the betrayal
coming. Strength is on the military side. Non-unique? Sure, since there
must be massive turnover in this type of political environment. I'd say
a good effort, just not very flashy, with one skill that's less obvious.
A 3.5 then.
1E TREK SENSE: Here, the attributes take on a different meaning, but are still justifiable. He's got a little less Integrity, but it's still passable. He's dumb as a post, but it again seems plausible. As for the Strength, well, did you really believe the Solari were as tough as Klingons? Just goes to show we're ready to believe different things about the same characters, and that onscreen evidence can be interpreted in different ways. As usual, there's the matter of not having a pure classification, but the skills are still sound enough. A 3.4.
STOCKABILITY: A higher-price weenie (Cost 2) with 4 skills and an attribute
that's above average, so he'll do fine. I mean, as a source for these skills,
he's good, but far from unique (the exact mix is unique, but the skills
occur fairly frequently on Non-Aligned personnel). Well, in fact, he's
NON-unique, but you know what I mean. Law's rarer, of course, so he's a
good source for that (if not as cheap as Acost Jared), and his skills can
reasonably found together on missions, since they are well related. Good
Strength for getting into scrapes too. I like my weenies even cheaper,
but if you compare him with fellow NA Lawyer Acost Jared, you get an extra
Officer, the top staffing icon, and much better Strength. Archaeology and
Anthropology are about equivalent. So still a good bet for any affiliation
that wants to use Legal Proceedings for extra points, for example. A 3.5
as many weenies seem to get.
1E STOCKABILITY: Weenies in 1E, however, tend not to do as well. Their attributes aren't all that great (or as important), they have no classification, making their skill list a little shorter once you factor that in (Berild is equivalent to a 3-skill personnel), and Cost is no longer an issue. Berild's saving grace, however, is the Law skill. Non-Aligned Law personnel in 1E are few and far between, and tend to come from the Delta Quadrant, the Original Series, the Holodeck (the flesh and blood ones are uniques focused on a Holoprogram), or the rare and pricy All Good Things. Berild is a fair Alpha Quadrant universal with the skill. A good, cheap, way to pass Drumhead, Framed for Murder and Vendetta. His other skills are useful, though certainly not as rare, and the attributes are lackluster. With Cost not being an issue, he is certainly better than Acost Jared. A 3.3.
TOTAL: 13 (65%) And only one other Solari to compare him to.
1E TOTAL: 12.7 (62.5%) Weenies are easy to make backwards-compatible, but not as easy to give a high score to.
PICTURE: A retread of 1st Edition's pic, only a little larger and tighter. While the good elements are still there (striking colors and effects), it also emphasizes the defects, such as the superimposition of Mora Pol and the fuzziness of the whole thing. Still a fair 3.2.
LORE: A good enough quote to explain what's happening. The link to Odo is detrimental to universality, but I think we get the point. A 3.
TREK SENSE: There are two ways to handle a Berzerk Changeling. One is to cure the Changeling using general Science and the more specific Exobiology, and plenty of it - this isn't a frequent occurance. The other is to put the monster down, which is even harder, requiring lots of Security (gotta set up forcefield checkpoints, etc.) and Hand Weapons. If you don't manage it, the Changeling will kill someone in its mindless rage, and the manhunt will delay everyone else (stopping them). Then it's over? Sure, since Odo's condition came and went. Now, my first thought was that it was ridiculous that this could happen without a Changeling present in the first place (especially aboard a ship at a space mission), but I think the idea is that the Changeling in question is hidden at the location, spying/infiltrating. Changelings are immune to the kill because "no changeling has ever hurt another", not because they are the ones doing the berzerking (they can contribute to the requirements). Actually works quite well from that angle. The Danger Factor is sky high at 5, but a Changeling is dangerous in its normal state, and this isn't normal. Nor is it common, and the Cost reflects that as well. A strong showing at 4.7.
STOCKABILITY: This is the kind of dilemma where you need to balance Cost against effect. At 5, it's pricey, so you'd do well, if planning to use it, to also employ either dilemma-cost reducers, or dilemma-point increasers. I say that, although played as the only dilemma on a 5+ member crew, you could kill one personnel and end the mission attempt right there as the rest are stopped. The requirements are appropriately hefty, though a crew geared towards either the Sciences or battle might have them readily enough. The former especially, methinks. The Dominion has a whole species that is immune to this dilemma, so against that affiliation, it's not as powerful. The otherwise-affiliated Odo wouldn't really be bothersome because he would be unique. The kind of card you use when you're sure the target crew can't cover it, but too costly to do so if not well informed. setting it at 3.9.
TOTAL: 14.8 (74%) Same as the original, would you believe.
PICTURE: I don't want to put Gates MacFadden down just because Dr. Crusher is now showing her years, but she's a bit over-made-up here trying to hide it, lending her a pale, creepy look. It's made worse by the fact she's looking straight into the camera. In fact, it bugs me a little when we get these Paramount-provided on-the-set publicity shots that aren't actually pulled from the movie. And there are a lot from Nemesis. Not extremely bad, but creepy. A 2.2.
LORE: The subtitle is deathly obvious, but that's fine. That's her rank. The lore however, eeech... Perhaps it shows her concern for the crew's health, but that's about it. It's severely handicapped by the need to grab dialogue from Nemesis, a film in which she didn't really have that much to say other than technobabble like this. It will also have an impact on her Trek Sense, as we'll see. Maybe I'm more disappointed because she's meant to be the baseline Beverly Crusher. A dull 1.9.
TREK SENSE: Bev is the prototypical 24th-century doctor, with all the
necessary skills. Biology for humans, Exobiology for aliens, 2 Medical
because she's the CMO, and Programming to run virus simulations and the
like. Can't argue with any of it. The lore does intimate some Physics (at
least, at this point in her career), but they didn't go so far. More a
problem with the lore, really. She runs sickbay and can even command the
ship, so the Command icon is definitely appropriate, and as part of the
Enterprise's crew, has the TNG icon. Her special ability is medical in
nature, allowing her to save someone from death, and sending him or her
to recover in sickbay (or a hospital somewhere), which is represented quite
deftly by the top of the draw deck here. It requires effort from her (the
discard), and she can only do it once per turn (she has only so many hands).
As for the attributes, you'd expect a doctor's Integrity to be higher,
but I think it's been modified by her penchant for breaking the rules (in
"Suspicions" for example, or even her ruthlessness in "I, Borg"). Still,
could've given her a break. Cunning's above average, probably smart enough
for a character specialized in a specific field. Strength's at the Starfleet-trained,
non-combattant level. We've seen she can take care of herself in a firefight,
so that's ok. The Cost may seem low for a famous doctor (well, famous enough
to have once been head of Starfleet Medical), but a doctor should make
herself available to her patients. The 3 works. Few missteps and an excellent
special ability puts her at 4.2.
1E TREK SENSE: The usual conversion "errors" are there, including the lack of a true classification, barring her from certain Equipment, etc., and the lowering of both Integrity and Cunning to unacceptable levels. The rest works as is, and so the score only drops to 3.2.
STOCKABILITY: With the compartimentalizing of various Federation "factions"
into separate affiliations, Beverly Crusher will remain a useful Medical
personnel despite the existence of Bashir, and later, of the Doctor, McCoy
and Phlox. She's got the whole Medical package, including 2 of that skill,
plus the also useful Biology and Exobiology. These are often found together
on missions and dilemmas, since they are so closely related. I'm thinking
of Bleeding to Death, Disgraceful Assault and Tsiolkovsky Infection for
the dilemmas (with DNA Analysis and Recurring Injury specifically requiring
a personnel with 2 Medical), and Aid Clone Colony, Medical Relief, etc.
for the missions. Programming is just a bonus, allowing for Eliminate Harvesters,
for example, and help with numerous other cards. The special ability is
a strong one if you care to pay the cost. A discard isn't so bad, but you
do have to repay for drawing the almost-killed personnel and for playing
it. Still, if your last Data was just killed, the drive may be high to
get him back into hand and into play. VIP Welcome might alleviate this
pain. Beverly herself isn't too costly, but she does have competition from
her other, cheaper self, Chief Physician. That Beverly's ability would
allow for Data (in our example) to be saved for one less counter and one
less discard, but isn't as easy to control. Nor does the ability work on
non-TNG personnel, so your NAs and Earthers are gone for good. This Beverly
is probably the better personnel then, but it really depends on the make-up
of your deck. Good skills and a life-saving ability? That gets us to 4.2.
1E STOCKABILITY: 1E Feds have tons of multiple-MEDICAL personnel, including a couple of Beverly Crushers already, but the special skill may make her more interesting than most of them. In 1E, there are no Costs, so time and maybe a forced shuffle are the only things working against you here. It's a kind of delayed, reuseable Res-Q. I'd use this in addition to the Genetronic Replicator, for all those deaths in space (plus, it can't be hosed). The skills are standard for her character, though the added Computer Skill makes her a great way to counter the Harvesters. She's better than the 1E Bevs, even if she has no real classification and generally lower attributes, and in this case, again better than Chief Physician, since she'll have fewer TNG personnel to save in a 1E deck. Doesn't exclude persona-switching, but it shouldn't be necessary. An about equivalent 4.2.
TOTAL: 12.5 (62.5%) Aesthetics sunk good game design here.
1E TOTAL: 11.5 (57.5%) One point makes a lot of difference.
PICTURE: Pink and gray go well together, and she's helped by being in front of the wall of ships rather than the usual beige bulkhead - colors and textures are rich. There's the slight blur we often get from TNG pulls, but it's slight, and the pic is striking even with it. A 3.4.
LORE: Lore for non-uniques should be rather general, and Bhavani, in a sense, represents all Barzan. Her quote tells us about them well, about their place on the galactic stage, if nothing else. A fair 3.4.
TREK SENSE: In another sense, she DOESN'T represent all Barzan, or else
everyone would be a leader in that society. A small snag in an otherwise
ok personnel card. (See, I'd take her as typical of leaders of unimportant
independent worlds, but her species gets in the way.) At least the Cost
pays hommage to her position. The important skill, I suppose, is Leadership,
with Diplomacy being used for the wormhole negotiations themselves. She's
a law maker, so Law is sensible, and because she delt justly and wished
to be treated the same way, Honor makes an appearance. You'll find she
has above average Integrity as well. The package is rounded off with Physics,
which may have lent her some useful knowledge of the wormhole, or wormholes
in general. The average Cunning is fine, though the Strength seems a bit
high for an older official. Small drop there gets her to 3.8.
1E TREK SENSE: The usual differences lower the score, and those would be lower than desired Integrity and Cunning, and no proper classification (would have been VIP). I'd say a straight 3.
STOCKABILITY: Cost at 2, but still a weenie. When they've got as many
as 5 skills, they cost 2 counters. Bhavani makes a good addition to any
deck that uses or wants Leader-types and their standard skills. Law, Honor
and Diplomacy will often show up on missions or dilemmas together with
Leadership. I might mention Archanis Dispute as a good example, and there
are others. Physics is more of a science skill, so acts as an off-type
skill here. If your Science is weeded out of the crew, Bhavani can step
in with the Physics. Attributes hover around average, but at least aren't
a handicap. You can have more than one Bhavani out on the table, so she's
a good, Non-Aligned, source of that rarer Law (Legal Proceedings anyone?),
but of her other skills too. A good 3.6.
1E STOCKABILITY: Here too, a universal Law is excellent, especially with her 4 other skills (VIP was never a biggie and isn't really missed). Sure, she's just a DipHoLe, but has just enough of an edge over others of that type. She's a 5-skill universal, after all. Attributes are lame, but can be raised to reasonable levels by Lower Decks at least. A 3.5 in the 1E environment.
TOTAL: 14.2 (71%) Showing her the proper respect.
1E TOTAL: 13.3 (66.5%) Wormhole wasn't even stable anyway.
PICTURE: Pulled directly from the moment of the lore's utterance, it's not quite as clear as 1E's empty bottles. We know Troi's drunk, but out of context, we really wouldn't looking at the pic. It's a fun scene, don't get me wrong, and the V-shaped composition works, but it's not as clear as it could be (indeed, the image is technically blurry - just not enough to function as part of a drunk theme). Manages a 3.3.
LORE: Again, funny dialiogue from First Contact, though I would have liked to hear the end of that exchange, namely the line "I'm just trying to blend in" and Riker's riposte, which would have led us to the title. Fun enough for a 3.4.
TREK SENSE: A reworded version of 1E's Blended, omitting only the two specific personnel mentioned as requirements. Those actually helped Trek Sense, so we'll see where Blended's at without them. The situation requires drinking some rather heady spirituals just to get the information you need. A Diplomat would obey the custom and draw out the info over the drink, but aside from the Troi connection, Telepathy's not so appropriate here. After all, couldn't a strong enough Telepath grab the information from the subject without the need for the drinks? Maybe you've got to lower the subject's mental defenses with liquor. I'll buy it, though there would seem to be plenty of other requirements available: anyone tough enough to drink you under the table, for example, like most Klingons, or perhaps a personnel with Intelligence. We're stuck with the flimsy requirements, ok, so let's move on. If you do overcome the dilemma, it stops all but one Diplomat or Telepath. I guess they're too drunk to continue, but did they all need to imbibe so heavily (all but the designated driver)? If there's only one such personnel, that personnel isn't stopped at all, which flies in the face of Troi's predicament. As for the Danger Factor of 2, it may seem high to anyone who does partake of the firewater, but on a mission? Yeah, it would be about this dangerous to do so. Planet-only isn't much of a problem, but we HAVE seen this kind of thing in space (oh, Scotty...). Aboard ship, things can always be controled with synthale or something. Doesn't go down easily overall though, so a 2 here.
STOCKABILITY: A very effective filter if then followed up by the right dilemmas, taking out all personnel with either Diplomacy and Telepathy, except one. Any dilemma requiring more than one of either will see its chances to hit rise. And hey, since it's "either/or", a Telepathy might get through, but no Diplomacy whatsoever (or vice-versa). Since Diplomacy is a lot more common than Telepathy, you have a higher chance of letting a Diplomacy pass, with all Telepaths stopped on the other side. Telepathy hasn't yet been required in multiples (Antedean Assassins still requires just one Telepath), but Diplomacy is a different matter, and Diplomacy-related dilemmas can provide you with many nice effects when they hit. And the Cost is right. Blended gets an effective 4.3 from me.
TOTAL: 12.7 (63.5%) I don't think they should be this shy about changing the effects of 1E concepts when turning them into 2E cards.
PICTURE: Dark and creepy, this card is hard to figure out at first because the Hirogen ship's engines look like guns, and the ship, like some big mechanical spider about to grab Voyager. Plus, being pointed as it is at a planet, it just doesn't look like it's moving, and so the idea of following in a ship's wake is out-of-focus. It's still a striking image (though oddly lit and colored), so I am giving it a 2.5.
LORE: 5000 meters (if you're gonna use meters, might as well use I.S. comma-less numbers) to work with, and Voyager still sticks this close? The explanation is a quote, though it doesn't necessarily sound like one. The mention of Hirogen vessels, of course, makes us wonder if all ships have such a Blind Spot to exploit. Still fairly done at a dry 2.8.
TREK SENSE: Blind Spot is a Pursuit card because it's about following
another ship. An odd reversal, in my opinion, is that the Event plays on
the pursuing ship, as if that ship had a special pursuing ability, when
in fact, the Blind Spot is a flaw in the pursued ship's design. In other
words, shouldn't the Event play on the opposing ship, making it pursuable
by any of your ships? Now, how does this pursuit work? Basically, it allows
your ship to follow a ship that's moving away during its turn. You borrow
from your own turn's Range to do this (it's not a double-move). Simple
enough, and no problems. You simply get in the ship's Blind Spot and tailgate
it to its destination. The Cost represents the effort such a maneuver would
require, but since you only pay once, I dunno, may it's the Cost of discovering
the Blind Spot in the first place (but then, does it cover all opposing
ships?) I'm not that concerned, however, with the lack of a Navigation
requirement. Delicate work for a helmsman perhaps, but pretty straightforward
unless the opposing ship in executing evasives or something (which it shouldn't
be). Kept to a 3.5 because of the target reversal.
1E TREK SENSE: I think it all stands up even if Range/Span does not work the same way. The irrelevant Cost removes that pesky question, but no true Hirogen connection, so it scores the same 3.5.
STOCKABILITY: As a Pursuit card, it can be downloaded by Sensor Sweep
as long as you have Astrometrics handy (the Vetar and Haakona also have
a download ability). Unfortunately, the same can be said of Pursuit Course,
a free Interrupt that does just about the same thing WITHOUT using up any
Range at all. So you gotta make a decision. Do you want to do a lot of
this, or just a little? For on-the-spot, opportunistic tailgating, Pursuit
Course may be the way to go, especially for the Romulans who have Galathon
to fish the Interrupt back out of the discard pile. If you'd like to have
this ability all the time, however, then spend the 2 counters and play
Blind Spot on your best ship. But why would you want to tailgate? Well,
if your personnel or ships have special abilities that hinder your opponent's
mission attempts, this keeps those abilities WITH your opponent's cards
for the duration. They may move away, but the ability follows them around.
Random examples include Sela/Mysterious Operative's ability-squasher, the
forced discards of Vreenak, Sirol, the Bralek and the IKS Maht-H'a, and
the IKS Qam-Chee's attribute penalty. Using the ship's Range from next
turn is a good trade, merely making the ship dedicated to its mission.
And the Cost isn't high, especially since you can use the ability again
and again, and with any opposing ship. Really does depend on your affiliation,
and some won't really need ever need the card. Even those that can use
Blind Spot may not want to dedicate a pricey ship to simply dogging their
opponent (not unless it ends with the opposing ship's destruction). A simple
1E STOCKABILITY: No backwards-compatible Pursuit Course in 1E, but also no easy download via Sensor Sweep (the Vetar and Haakona still work though). I can think of a few special skills that would be relevant in this environment. This would work well, for example, on a ship equipped with a Particle Scattering Field. Elim's choice of random selections, Extradition-relevant personnel, Arachnia's SHIELDS drop, Chaotica's hologram return, Khan's stonewalling, and Lokirrim Vessel's holo-nullification are all good examples as well. It's unfortunate, however, that you can't follow a ship to time locations, other quadrants, etc. unless the means to get there is an open doorway. Enough tricks though to qualify for the same 3.2.
TOTAL: 12 (60%) Or am I blind to some other worthwhile strategy?
1E TOTAL: 12 (60%) It had to happen sometime - same score in both environments.
#2112-Bo'rak - Klingon Intelligence Agent, Personnel, Klingon, Cost: 3, unique
-Klingon; Engineer, Intelligence, Physics, Transporters; Staff icon
-When an opponent downloads a card, that opponent must place it on top of his or her deck instead of in his or her hand.
"Operative sent to conduct surveillance on a Romulan delegation visiting Deep Space 9. His hatred of the Romulans proved stronger than his desire to maintain a low profile."
-INTEGRITY: 6, CUNNING: 4, STRENGTH: 7
PICTURE: Seems to be having fun! A good way to show his not keeping a low
profile, if you ask me. Party on, Bo'rak! Hey, maybe he's the James Bond-type
more than the Garak-type. Lighting's interesting, background's slightly
distracting... Overall, a nice change of pace from the usually serious faces
that represent the bulk of the personnel. A 3.5.
LORE: It's the second sentence that does it for me. It manages to tell a story while also giving us his personality traits. A fun look at the Klingon mindset, even in Intel matters. Subtitle's really straightforward, so not much to say there. Hits 3.4.
TREK SENSE: Well, a stronger showing, I think, than 1E's Bo'rak. Intelligence was a foregone conclusion, of course, and now lacks the stigma of the ironically named "Klingon Intelligence" ;-). I also have no problems with his Engineer and Transporters, seeing as he modified a replicator to beam in a surveillance device. Takes both skills, and hey, Physics isn't a bad addition to the list considering the task. 1E had the irrelevant Astrophysics and Cybernetics in there, which, I'm happy to say, are gone. He wasn't in charge of the mission, Morka was, so a Staff icon is just fine, and his overtly unsecretive manner confirms his lack of Security (which you would often associate with Intelligence) and low Cunning. Integrity's a bit high for someone who's let his feelings interfere with his mission like this, even if his loyalty to the Empire isn't in doubt. Strength's fine for a Klingon of his background. The special ability reads as pretty mechanical, and is more thematic than anything else. It may be interpreted as a form of surveillance: it's like seeing the download a bit before it actually hits the current resources (hand), though the actual effect is to delay, or add cost to, the downloaded card. In any case, even if surveillance is remote, there has to be a range to this, and there isn't. Not when you're dealing with decks and hands, and Bo'rak can be anywhere in play. Clever, sure, but still points off on Trek Sense for that (some points back up for linking well with Morka's special ability though). And the Cost? It's reasonable for what should be a rarity (Klingon Intel agents), but not so high as to make him too competent. Same as Morka, and they were part of the same team. Some problems keep the score at 3.4.
STOCKABILITY: The Klingons have few Intelligence personnel, so Bo'rak and Morka are a good couple of personnel to take care of that skill when dealing with Stolen Computer Core, for example (Bo'rak also has Transporters), and there's a fair number of missions the Klingons can attempt that requires the skill (usually in connection with Treachery). Add the already mentioned Transporters, which are rather rare too, the very flexible Engineer and solid Physics, and you've got a pretty good mission solver. Attributes aren't as hot, but they're not bad either. The weak Cunning may be an issue, but with Warrior's Birthright, you can use that 7 in Strength to meet Cunning and Integrity requirements anyway. The special ability is a cool one, affecting your opponent without further cost to you. It basically forces an extra counter Cost to any downloaded card as it goes onto the draw deck rather than in hand. Could cause a delay in playing it too. If you further have Morka in play, it gets worse: With a discard, he can put that card returning to the draw deck UNDER the deck instead of on top of it. Download's completely wasted. An excellent one-two punch, and the Cost of 3 for each personnel isn't too bad. A solid 4.2.
TOTAL: 14.5 (72.5%) Much better in 2E.
#2125-Bralek, Ship, Cardassian, Cost: 6, unique, BC
-Galor Class [1 Command, 2 Staff] While an opponent's Archaeology personnel is at this mission, that opponent must discard a card from hand to use that personnel's skills.
"When the Obsidian Order first heard rumors of a Federation discovery - an algorithm billions of years old, encoded in humanoid DNA - two warships were immediately sent to investigate."
-RANGE: 8, WEAPONS: 8, SHIELDS: 8
PICTURE: The Bralek comes off as one of the better looking Galors in 2E, mostly because it's an action shot (the ship using its special ability). Compositionally, the horizontal pass across the screen is a little weak, but I forgive enough for a 3.4.
LORE: Invented name, so the lore is key in telling us where this ship came from. It's clear it's from "The Chase", but I don't like the confusing mention of two warships. It's like we're getting off-track by that point, even if we get that the Bralek is one of these. On the plus side, the Obsidian Order is attributed something it wasn't on the show, tying the episode to Cardassian backstory from Deep Space 9. A 3 in all, I guess.
TREK SENSE: The Bralek shares all of the Galors' assets, including low staffing (the Cardies are strapped for resources), relatively low Cost (these are older designs) and the same attributes (slightly more fragile than a Galaxy-class, but basically similar). Indeed, a Galor is equivalent, and identical, to a Nebula-class vessel. The difference here is the special ability. It respects the ship's exact mission from "The Chase" by making things more difficult for Archaeologists trying to complete their missions. Since the ship is trying to stop the "dig" (through battle probably), precautions must be taken (represented by a discarded resource). Of course, having Archaeology doesn't mean you USE Archaeology, so the ship may be trying to stop other kinds of missions or personnel from being completed. Attributes can still be used, and other personnel, even if at the same location, are not affected, so the ability is largely thematic. That hurts the card some, leaving it at 2.4.
1E TREK SENSE: Differences with other Galors do occur here, including one more staffing icon (uncalled for in this environment) and high Weapons and Shields. I'll take the attributes, of course, since the ship is even shown in an aggressive pose. The special ability stands as is though. One problem is from Ocett not being matching commander of the ship, though since the Dogged Rival version is backwards-compatible too, that's not a huge problem. Only a slight drop to 2.2.
STOCKABILITY: More of a Romulan ability on there, but since Archaeology may be found on many personnel, not all of which are attempting Archaeology missions, it could cause a stir. Park your ship at the appropriate mission, and your opponent will have to discard a card for every Archaeologist he or she wants to use the skills of here. This is much too focused on the one skill, but Archaeology-requiring dilemmas could make the endeavor more worthwhile (draining hands rather than really stopping crews). Ocett as Commander is also an advantage since her presence aboard (if she didn't download the ship in the first place) opens up a slew of card-triggered strategies. Though Galors are not particularly Costly, you'll only rarely use more than a couple. The Bralek doesn't quite win the popular vote there, with the Aldara and Reklar all proving to be more versatile. Still a 3.3.
1E STOCKABILITY: On the plus side, this is a powerful Galor with high attributes, that can be boosted by its matching commander, Ocett/Dogged Rival, to 10-11-11 levels (Plaqued and Logged, of course). The special ability causes discards that are much harder to recuperate from in 1E. On the minus side, it takes a little more staffing for attribute upgrades not quite worth that. Archaeology dilemmas you might use in combination with this are much fewer and farther between.
And it's much harder to dog a ship to its mission location. I'm afraid the nays have it: 2.7.
TOTAL: 12.1 (60.5%) At least better than the Aldara overall.
1E TOTAL: 11.3 (56.5%) But not here.
#2138-Brilgar, Personnel, Bajoran, Cost: 1, BC
-Bajoran; Anthropology, Law, Security; Staff icon; DS9 icon
"Most improvements to Deep Space 9's security came from knowledge of how Bajorans had defeated it while the station was under Cardassian control."
-INTEGRITY: 5, CUNNING: 5, STRENGTH: 6
PICTURE: Dark and fuzzy, Brilgar doesn't come off very well, but the sneaking around is at least interesting. His problems make him a little dull, but originality brings it up to 2.5.
LORE: I like the text pieces for non-uniques, in that they would rather talk about the position than the personnel. Brilgar's lore is a good example of that, telling us something about DS9 Bajorans, and never mind the guy that got knocked on the head by Furel in Kira's quarters. A nice 3.5.
TREK SENSE: Your typical DS9 Bajoran deputy would have Security, yes, and be trained in Law as well (can make arrests). Anthropology may be a function of understanding Cardassian logic (but no Resistance keyword?) or else of having to arbitrate disputes between so many species aboard the station. All skills are acceptable. The Staff icon is a given, as is the Cost. The average attributes all spell out "non-unique", with a point more in Strength to go with the Security job. A very straightforward design that earns a 3.7.
1E TREK SENSE: The usual problems crop up. No classification per se isn't a huge problem for Security personnel (fewer Equipment cards keyed to it), but it still causes some interaction problems (with Security Office, for example). And the attributes are all too low (well, I'd believe the Cunning). Brilgar is too morally ambiguous for Odo to keep him on, and his Strength is paltry for his position. Those elements really take a bit out of him, bringing him down to 2.6.
STOCKABILITY: Weenies being what they are, Brilgar may make a showing in either Bajoran or DS9 decks. For that single counter, you can get the useful Security and Anthropology, and the pretty rare Law (not so much with the Bajorans, but with DS9). That Law can be combined with either of his other skills at different missions, and you can even add it in using Legal Proceedings. No attribute below 5 and a staffing icon too. And the Anthropology is excellent with Steeled by Loss (Bareil, The Emissary, etc.). The price is right at 3.8.
1E STOCKABILITY: The lack of a true classification isn't major, though it does prevent him from reporting to Security Office if using Deep Space 9, and attributes can be brought up easily using various other cards (the Bajorans are adept at this), but Brilgar isn't any less costly to play that any other personnel. He also doesn't really extend to two affiliations, only the Bajorans. Ok then, you'll be using him as a universal Law since there are only 3 instances of the skill in 1E (plus a couple more as far as backwards compatibility goes). Not that there are that many reasons to include the skill (no dilemma requires more than one instance), but Extradition might be one (he's got the SECURITY as well). Pretty typical otherwise, he gets a 3.2.
TOTAL: 13.5 (67.5%) A little better than that night in Kira's quarters.
1E TOTAL: 11.8 (59%) And *Thunk!* Aww.
#2151-Brull - Encampment Leader, Personnel, Non-Aligned, Cost: 2, unique, BC
-Acamarian; Astrometrics, Diplomacy, Honor, Leadership, Navigation; Command icon
"You don't like me. ... No problem. I have many friends that don't like me."
-INTEGRITY: 6, CUNNING: 5, STRENGTH: 6
PICTURE: Hazy, but then the set was hazy. It does seem to cause a loss of contrast on the more purple parts of the card. Compositionally, the lines are all over the place, mostly crowding one side of the image. In the midst of these messy design elements, there is a point of interest: the yellow bar on the left looks like a distorted part of the Non-Aligned template, and that makes the disruptor shot seem to bleed off the image. The cool effect gives the score a little lift to 2.9.
LORE: Well he told me! ;-) A fun bit of business that fits well the Gatherer mentality. A likeable (natch!) 3.5.
TREK SENSE: Brull is one of the leaders (Leadership/Command icon) of the Gatherers, a nomadic offshoot of the Acamarians. That means Navigation and Astrometrics are useful to them. And though all Gatherers are basically Thieves, Brull did show above average Integrity in 1) wanting a better life for his sons, and 2) willingly escorting the Enterprise to Chorgan. That certainly accounts for both Honor and Diplomacy. I don't disagree with the lack of Officer for Gatherers, since their hierarchy isn't quite military in nature. Average Cunning is fine, as is the higher Strength. It all fits. The Cost does too: Gatherers aren't important in the scheme of things, but he's still a high-up among them. Balances out at 2 counters. No surprises, but an accurate description of the character in game terms - a 4.4.
1E TREK SENSE: The usual caveats apply, including the lack of classification (which interacts badly with certain cards, like Equipment and Sites) and the too-low attributes (he should get more of each). I'd add to that the fact that Astrometrics can become one of two possible skills. If you give him Stellar Cartography, there's no problem. Astrophysics, however, has nothing to do with Brull. A big drop to 2.5.
STOCKABILITY: I don't think the Gatherers have really come into their own yet as a Non-Aligned subset, but Brull and Chorgan, at least, have large skill lists and fair attributes for only 2 counters. Brull's particular mix works well for both planet and space missions, and all Gatherers being Thieves may just make that gang a sensible choice for a pure or almost pure Non-Aligned deck, seeing as they would have a workable round-the-corner battle strategy in The Orion Syndicate. Thief also makes them good partners for Morn, and able to use Pickpocket and Bank Heist to screw with opponent's deck AND boost their mission-solving abilities. And there are incentives to using Gatherers together, such as having Chorgan dig in, and Marouk's Geology addition (though losing Thief may be unwanted). Outside such decks, Brull still makes a fair showing with good skills, attributes, icons and cost. Warrants a 3.7.
1E STOCKABILITY: Bank Heist, Pickpocket and Morn/Barfly are out of the equation, but the rest works even in 1E, including all the Gatherers stuff. Good thing, because there's nothing for those keywords in 1E at all. Otherwise, Brull comes off as a Non-Aligned with 5 good skills (one of them flexible), but no classification, and some pretty weak attributes. With more personnel to choose from here, he'd automatically be worth less, but he still manages a 3.5.
TOTAL: 14.5 (72.5%) Does gather some momentum.
1E TOTAL: 12.4 (62%) At least they made an effort to design personnel we hadn't seen before as cards.
#2164-Brutal Struggle, Event, Cost: 2, BC
-Assault; Plays in your core.
-Order: Destroy this event to begin combat involving your Leadership personnel. If you win, randomly kill an opponent's personnel involved.
"Intruder alert! ... Security detail to deck 29."
PICTURE: I'd heard a cast member was going to die in Nemesis, and though the logical choice was the one that did, this is the scene where I thought Riker might be the one. Something about getting married put a huge target on his back. The pic that represents that scene gives us a strange angle, with the Viceroy looking a little like a wraith. Riker himself is awkwardly placed and a little blurry, and there are no real points of reference to gauge the action. Dynamic, and as we'll see under Stockability, shows a well chosen duo. But confusing in execution, it manages only a 2.9.
LORE: Just the call to arms, if you will, which matches the game text more than the pic does. The title allows for the death of a personnel. A very simple 3.
TREK SENSE: This is quite simply a representation of many First Edition personnel battles. A Leader initiates combat, and at the end, someone winds up dead. Leadership is a good skill to lead others into combat, after all. The Cost of 2 is adequate to model a reactionary personnel combat like this. No need for huge preparation, just solid training. As good as any Assault card (i.e. it's not the complete picture of a battle, but it does the job), it gets a 4.
1E TREK SENSE: Most of the game text is incredibly redundant in 1E, but the fact this is a Brutal Struggle shows up when you get an EXTRA death at the end. In that sense, it works and keeps the 4.
STOCKABILITY: Not all affiliations are as good at combat as the Klingons, Dominion or Bajorans, and some will have far fewer Assault cards to wage combat with. The limit of 3 copies of each card per deck means that Assault cards that are not affiliation-specific will be useful in padding out a combat strategy. Romulans and Feds (and Non-Aligneds) don't have anything OTHER than Brutal Struggle, in fact, locking them otherwise into engagements only. If the Cardassians or Borg just want to match Strength totals and kill personnel, they might turn to this card instead of their usual assimilation/capture cards. Leadership is common enough anyway, and the Cost isn't prohibitive. Another 4.
1E STOCKABILITY: Since your Leadership personnel can already initiate personnel battles, all this really does is get you an extra death at the end of that one battle. This is in an environment where each battle may already yield multiple deaths. And furthermore, it costs you your card play. Just play Phaser Burns on a couple of stunned personnel instead. You'll be happy you did. There's just no real call for using Brutal Struggle in 1E. A 1.
TOTAL: 13.9 (69.5%) It's all about offering something unique.
1E TOTAL: 10.9 (54.5%) Same comment, different implication.
#2178-Bynars' Password, Dilemma, space/planet, Cost: 3
-Unless you have a personnel who has 2 Engineer or a personnel who has 2 Programming, your opponent chooses an Engineer or Programming personnel to be stopped. If your opponent cannot, all your personnel are stopped and this dilemma returns to its owner's dilemma pile.
"That's the file. It'll work now."
PICTURE: Riker gives us a break from the usual screen shot, but he doesn't
add much. The binary code relates it to the Bynars, and there's something mildly
interesting about the subtle chain shapes in the screen's background, that now
smacks of Matrix code. It doesn't seem appropriate to show the dilemma overcome
already though. A straightforward, but not bad, 3.
LORE: Again, pushes the theme of the already-overcome dilemma. This time, there's little interest to prop it up, so just a 2.
TREK SENSE: The Bynars have locked you out of your mission by locking you out of your computers. This is fine for space missions, but I'm afraid not always relevant at planet missions. In any case, you need to stop a Programmer (obviously) or an Engineer (to get the thing to work manually) to find/disable/run around the Password. Unless, of course, you have a personnel with a double dose of either skill, someone who would have absolutely no problem doing this (isn't stopped). Now, there is a mistake here, and it's that your opponent chooses the Programmer or Engineer to be stopped. How? Is the Password really keyed to a specific individual? It's more than a little silly for the Bynars to reveal that the Password is the binary equivalent of Riker's PIN number, for example. Note that as a wall, the dilemma returns to the pile if it is not overcome. Unfortunately, that doesn't make it stick around as it would under 1E rules. Cost? Seems a bit steep for a simple computer password thing, but then again, nothing more frustrating than computer problems. Am I right, or am I right?!? I'm not ignoring all the problems: a 2.2.
STOCKABILITY: Chances are pretty slim that this will act as a wall, Engineer and Programming being among the most common of skills. More likely, it will filter out the Engineer or Programming personnel... wait for it... of your choice! Slides easily into your dilemma combo, I should say. Bynars' Password can be overcome outright by a few personnel, of course, on the Programming side (Odo/Constable, B'Elanna/Creative Engineer, Data/Aspirer&Loyal Brother, Grathon Tolar), and on the Engineer side (Rom/Bajoran, Geordi/Chief Engineer, O'Brien/Repair Chief&Chief of Ops, Sareva). Continuity Drone can help the Borg with that too. There are NAs here, but Cardassians and Romulans look badly served. Enough of a chance of getting the filter (and an outside chance of creating the wall), so worth the Cost, especially as a space/planet dilemma. Scores 3.7.
TOTAL: 10.9 (54.5%) Despite its title, it does not pass.
#2192-Captain's Holiday, Dilemma, planet, Cost: 3, BC
-Unless you have 2 Archaeology or 2 Geology, all your personnel are stopped and this dilemma returns to its owner's dilemma pile.
"If it wasn't for me, you'd still be back there sitting in the sun... relaxing."
PICTURE: An interesting shot of Vash
and Picard on a date. The pastels make for a nice, if dark, color palette, but
there is some blurriness in parts - Picard's shovel seems to disappear at the
end, for example. I do like it though, enough for a 3.1.
LORE: A totally ironic comment, and a lot of fun here, especially given the title. Further chuckles may be had at this reviewer's expense when you realize this is my 6-year anniversary doing these. Holiday? Ha! Of course, that doesn't come into it, and what's here gets 3.5.
TREK SENSE: Dismiss the title as a novelty and make this dilemma about having to dig for a clue, mineral or artifact required to complete the mission. Archaeology and Geology are the two relevant skills, and since it's a big excavation, 2 of either will be necessary. If those skills are not present, you just don't know where to dig. Though the crew is stopped, returning the dilemma to the pile is not equivalent to being a wall, and personnel may find a way around this problem on the next attempt. That's why I don't quite agree with the Cost. It seems too high for something that holds little actual danger and no real staying power. A fine effort otherwise, it gets a 4.
1E TREK SENSE: Everything I said
above holds true, though Cost is no longer an issue, and this time, the dig is
necessary (a wall). So it gets better at 4.4.
STOCKABILITY: Kind of Costly for a dilemma that doesn't have any lasting repercussions (like kills or captures), but if the skills are missing by the time this dilemma arrives, it stops the mission attempt cold. The Dominion seems more at risk than other affiliations on this one, but with careful weeding out, you may succeed with others. Still, you need 3 counters just to cap off the combo, and that's a lot. A good effect, but the requirements are definitely those of a common dilemma. Harsh Conditions and Picking Up the Pieces could help out. Manages an average 3.
1E STOCKABILITY: The original three
affiliations will never be taken in by this dilemma, but others might as far as
Archaeology goes. If they take the Geology option, however, all their odds rise
dramatically. Again, the Dominion may be most at risk, them or the DQ
affiliations, being smaller. They have a better chance of having NAs or other
help though, so they may not be at any real disadvantage. At least Cost isn't an
issue here, and this IS a wall. But with two alternatives, I'm not sure it's
seamless enough. Actually less at 2.5.
TOTAL: 13.6 (68%) Not that great a vacation.
1E TOTAL: 13.5 (67.5%) This one doesn't even have a nice view from the hotel room.
#2206-Cardassia Prime - Hardscrabble World, Mission, HQ, Alpha Quadrant, unique
-You may play [Car] cards, [NA] cards, and equipment at this mission.
-Region: Cardassia System.
*Cardassia Prime: "... Cardassia boasts some of the most ancient and splendid ruins in the entire galaxy... most of these objects are gone. ... A few were preserved in museums, but even those were eventually sold..."
-Cardassian Headquarters; Span: 2
PICTURE: A beautiful new pic (not a reuse from Orb Negotiations) that's evocative of the state of Cardassia. Though its skies would seem to basically be green, the dark gray clouds speak of the pollution of a world that has exploited itself to ruin. A lovely 4.3.
LORE: I was surprised at the subtitle, since that's not a word you hear often, but I like it still. The lore goes in the same direction, doing a lot to capture the feeling of the Cardassian affiliation's spendthrift policies. Great job guys. A 4.5.
TREK SENSE: As with most HQs, a straightforward effort. The card allows you to play not only Cardassian natives and their equipment, but Non-Aligned personnel too. The latter are support for all affiliations, so it's ok, though we don't see a lot of 'em coming out of Cardassia, do we? A necessary cheat. Some equipment may also be less suitable, but there you go. The Region and Quadrant are correct, and the Span is kept short because HQs are meant to be in the center of their affiliation's influence. Keeping all HQs down are the core rules that make it impossible to do anything at these missions (when clearly, there was a lot going on there), and the idea that you can't attack an HQ. A 3.5.
SEEDABILITY: I've long decided not to give 5s to HQ cards even if they are technically necessary for their affiliation to exist. The truth of the matter is, that's not always true. In this case, you can play Cardassians at Terok Nor as well. Cardassia Prime is, of course, the only choice if you want to use Cardassians only, without Dominion, Bajoran, etc. personnel polluting your strategies. Kressari Rendezvous sits in the same Region, even if your ships would hardly have trouble getting there, but it does save on Range. You probably need it, Terok Nor not having access to the best capture-related personnel, so a 4.
TOTAL: 16.3 (81.5%) Though simple designs, I'm glad HQs are well treated when it comes to picture and lore.
#2220-Cardassian Phaser Pistol, Equipment, Cost: 1
-Hand Weapon; While in combat, each of your [Car] personnel present is Strength +1.
"Cardassian energy weapons are powered by an isotollinium ampule, capable of an output significantly higher than most similar weapons."
PICTURE: At least it's an action shot, but Garak cut off at the chin, the busy background, and the swirly sleeve that meshes with the template are all distracting elements keeping the score low. Not sure what I think of the fact that this used to be called a Disruptor and now it's a Phaser. Probably more accurate now. A 2.5.
LORE: Slightly techno-babbly, but while I liked reading how Cardassian weapons are different from other affiliations', there's really no difference in game text so... it's a bit of a waste. A 2.8 then.
TREK SENSE: As was mentioned in the Bajoran Phaser Pistol review, the +1 bonus is more credible than 1E's +2 when trying to create the sense that one Phaser can help all personnel present by providing a strategic advantage. That said, the fact that it only helps Cardassian-affiliation personnel specifically hurts that same idea. So the issues about the number of hand weapons per Equipment card remain. In any case, the lower bonus fits the 2E attribute scale better, and the fact that it only offers the boost is much better than a straight Strength boost useable anywhere. Only helping Cardassians also creates the problem of NAs not knowing how to pull a simple trigger (or any ally of the Cardies, like the Terok Nor Dominion). Cost is fine, of course. Better solutions than 1E, but still not perfect. A 2.5.
STOCKABILITY: A lot of Cardassians hover in the 5-6 Strength range, but few go above that (Odo and Jerax), so this cumulative Equipment card could be useful in upping those attribute totals for combat. The usefulness of such a card would really depend on the number of Assault cards the Cardassians might want to use. Let's see: Apprehended, Brutal Struggle, and Taken Prisoner. The two purely Cardassian ones are for capture, and you might as well add Arrest Order, since it requires a hand weapon. If running a Terok Nor deck, then all the Jem'Hadar-related Assaults can also be taken into consideration, though the weapon only boosts the Cardassian members of the team. Other reasons to stock hand weapons: A number of dilemmas require them. Oh, and the Cardassians have access to Kressari Rendezvous, where hand weapons may be discarded for points. 1 counter for 5 points, that's a good deal. A 3.5 should do.
TOTAL: 11.3 (56.5%) As good as any similar hand weapon, but the aesthetics sink it.
< Previous 20......................................................................................................................Next 20 >
Contact me if you wanna talk about any of these :-)