Siskoid's Rolodex............Deep Space 9 (11)


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To see the cards themselves, check out this Card list for the Deep Space 9 expansion set.

#1910-Reclamation, Interrupt, DS9
"Cardassians sabotaged much of Terok Nor during their evacuation. The new Federation and Bajoran occupants salvaged and repaired what they could."
-Plays to take into hand from your discard pile up to two Equipment or Site cards OR one previously earned "use as Equipment card" artifact (for re-use).

PICTURE: The mess from "Emissary" is detailed even if the pic is necessarily a little dark. The junk here has the virtue of looking at least recyclable. Efficient if non-descript at an even 3.

LORE: Again, something efficient and adequate, but again, no sparks. Another 3.

TREK SENSE: Taking a cue from the pic and lore, the card allows you to "reclaim" a Site card, since the Cardassians HAD destroyed specific Sites on the station. The mechanics are good, with the card going into hand, not back into play. The extensive damage must be repaired before doing that. You can instead salvage and repair Equipment cards, which makes sense. An Artifact that acts as Equipment is a more iffy proposition, sometimes possible (Alien Gambling Device, Antique Machine Gun, Interphase Generator... even "The City of B'hala" can be refurbished), sometimes not (you'd be hard pressed to "fix" any of the Orbs, for example). In most cases, it seems possible though. One last hiccup: I think Reclamation is more of an Event than an Interrupt. After all, it represents a massive effort (potentially overhauling TWO Sites). That said, it's a fair enough Palor Toff-like card. Can lay a claim to a straight 4.

STOCKABILITY: Palor Toff is still the king as far as flexibility in your rescue cards goes, but Reclamation has some specific uses to contribute. First, it can rescue from the discard pile as many as 2 Equipment cards, rather than Palor's one. That comes in handy when you want to get back those hand weapons you discarded for points at Kressari Rendezvous, for example (Weapons Locker sends them back to your ship soon enough). You might also need to offset a loss incurred at the hands of Disruptor Overload or Common Thief. As for Sites, are they that likely to be destroyed? You could use Reclamation to protect your Bajoran Shrine (and its recycling effects) from permanent destruction. Similarly, if you tried to Process too much Ore at the OPU and got caught by Reactor Overload, you don't need to suffer the penalty for too long. If you had an important seventh site you didn't want to seed, it always runs the risk of being discarded before it can be played. Reclamation insures its survival. Of course, your Nor could be destroyed, taking all its sites with it. Do you have another Nor that could benefit from a couple extra sites (when else will you need to draw 2 sites simultaneously)? Somehow, I doubt this would be likely to happen. The big effect, however, has to be the rescue of a "use-as-Equipment" Artifact. No need to reseed and re-earn it either. These Artifacts are as vulnerable as Equipment cards to The Gatherers, et al., and it would be a shame to lose something you had to expend effort just to get. Unlike Palor Toff, it doesn't get hosed by other cards (such as Countermanda). To protect certain strategies/cards, it's good. Hate playing defensively though. The few proactive uses do keep the card at 3.5.

TOTAL: 13.5 (67.5%) Can claim to be a good card.

#1922-Recruit Mercenaries, Event, -10 points, DS9
"Quark hired mercenaries in 2369 to help Rao Vantika steal a deuridium shipment. Individuals of questionable character are easily found for this kind of illegal operation."
-Downloads [NA] and/or [Fer] Treachery personnel with up to 7 total [skill dot] icons to where you have Treachery present. "Pay" them (lose points).

PICTURE: Quark does the Recruiting, and there's a motley crew of Mercenaries on hand. Too bad there's a Bajoran in there, because it otherwise could have been purely Non-Aligneds (and Ferengi) as per the game text. The pic comes off as a dark conversation between aliens, so not very dramatic. A kind of dull 2.7.

LORE: Starts with a specific example (pulled from the pic), and then gives us the general skinny to show that the card may apply in other situations. It's an appropriate 3.1.

TREK SENSE: You recruit and hire some mercenaries to help you with whatever activities (missions, battle, whatever) you're engaged in. Who are the mercs? Well, the NAs are known for working with anyone, but Ferengi also get a shot, since they can be bought (by other Ferengi, of course, or by anyone who can work with them somehow). Remember "The Magnificent Ferengi"? Mercenary action is described here as illegal activity. This is translated as a requirement for them to have Treachery. I might have gone with Greed instead, since these personnel can more obviously be "bought", which might have opened up the group to non-criminals. In fact, some Treachery personnel wouldn't really hire their services out, like Khan. Illegality is further hammered into the concept by requiring the personnel to download to another Treachery personnel. The "criminal" that hires them in the first place. The limit on skill dots is simply to remind us that it costs more to hire personnel who are more skilled than those who aren't. Makes sense. Finally, we get to pay them, and we do that with points. Does that mode of payment work? I think so. Points represent accomplishments, but if you have to concede that you need to hire from outside the group, you've already admitted defeat. In other words, you pay off the "accomplishments" of the mercenaries. They aren't your own. Aside from the Greed/Treachery element, some very good stuff. A 4.

STOCKABILITY: What you download better be better than what you need to play the card. To recap - taking a loss of 10 points, a Treachery personnel already in play, and of course, a card play. Recouping those points is a priority, but you don't just want to break even. A bunch of Treacherous CIVILIANs could be downloaded to fill a Colony, that's one way to go about it. Indeed, this could be the principle behind a Ferengi Colony, since they'd have more personnel to choose from. Make them as cheap as possible too, so you have as many as possible. The 10-point fee may also be worth it to get really strong personnel (even just 1 or 2), but they've got to be deeply tied into your mission solving scheme. There are so many ways to download personnel by now however, usually more cheaply and in line with your affiliation, that I can't really endorse this one, even if it could conceivably save you after a disastrous personnel loss. It can also be used to nullify Dangerous Liaisons, whose requirements can be a little high. But are you gonna keep an event in hand for that very specific task? Thought not. No more than 2.5.

TOTAL: 12.3 (61.5%) Not a big seller.

#1934-Refuse Immigration, Mission, space, Bajoran, DS9
Bajor Region*Near Bajor: Prevent Skrreean refugee vessel from landing on Bajor.
-Vedek + Leadership + Diplomacy + CUNNING>28 OR Leadership x2 + INTEGRITY<30 + WEAPONS>10
-Span: 4, 35 points

PICTURE: All the Skrreean ships make for a fun sight, with a sober, but nice, color scheme (the silver of the ships matches the template design). An interesting perspective shot at 3.6.

LORE: Maybe it should say "vessels" plural. Even the pic shows more than one. The small mistake takes the score down to 2.5.

TREK SENSE: It's obvious this would be a Bajoran intiative, and one in the Bajor system. "Near Bajor" doesn't exactly scream "Span 4!" however, and I think it could have been a little closer (the mission would have occured between the Wormhole and Bajor itself). Points are fine, of course. There are two ways to go about this mission, the first being a Diplomatic solution, and the second, a military one. In the first instance, Bajoran representatives go and meet with the Skrreeans using Diplomacy. The government, or perhaps militia, may be represented by a Leader, while the Vedek Assembly is represented by a Vedek. Indeed, the Vedek may be the Leader (only Winn fits that bill), because as we've seen, they are quite able to negotiate alone (see "Life Support"). The Skrreeans are hard to understand and convince, so Cunning is your best friend here. The military solution makes use of Leaders because they can initiate battles, and ship Weapons. To open that door, however, you need to have low Integrity. You've in fact refused to try a diplomatic solution. Well done, with only a small detail getting in the way of a high 4.3.

SEEDABILITY: Always good to find missions in the Bajor Region, since Bajoran ships can get to them faster, helping unify their spaceline. In this case, the first set of requirements is the one to go for, since WEAPONS of 11 or more aren't to be found easily on a Bajoran vessel, not without Captain's Log or some other enhancements anyway. The few Vedeks in the game are all playable for free at the Chamber of Ministers, so shouldn't be to hard to get. Bareil and Sunad both have Diplomacy as well, but Winn's the real winner here with all required skills, and high CUNNING to boot. A relatively easy 35 points for some VIPs (please include other classifications for dilemma purposes). The other set of requirements isn't so much for the generally weak Bajoran ships, so you'll have to think a little more creatively. Rinnak Pire Logging an AU Warship would do the trick, as would the use of NA ships like the Fesarius, or weaker ships with their matching commander aboard it. If you're already using the option, go for it. If not, try the Vedek, it'll make you smile. Indeed, the second requirement is more for someone who would like to Espionage/steal the mission from you, since Vedeks are Bajoran-only. A 3.5.

TOTAL: 13.9 (69.5%) Plus or minus a couple of skin flakes.

#1946-Reignite Dead Star, Mission, space, Federation/Dominion, DS9
Epsilon 119: Use protomatter to re-initiate fusion process of this dead stellar core.
-SCIENCE x2 + ENGINEER + Astrophysics + Stellar Cartography OR Gideon Seyetik
-Span: 3, 35 points

PICTURE: A star that looks like a planet should have a certain cachet, but it really might just as well be a lifeless moon. A dull though distinctive space mission at the standard average of 3.

LORE: Simple, but effective, and protomatter makes an appearance, reminding us that it made a successful comeback after Star Trek II and III's disastrous results. Dramatic title too. It gets 3.2.

TREK SENSE: Gideon Seyetik is the visionary who normally found the star, came up with the reignition technique, and carried it out. In a perfect world, he wouldn't have died here, so I'm not asking for him to be discarded when he completes the mission. The point is, he rightly deserves to complete this one alone. If that particular genius isn't there, you'll have to face the scientific and technical hurdles with your crew instead. The classifications take care of that, with Astrophysics a must since you're dealing with stellar mechanics here. I might even have cranked that skill up a notch to at least x2. And Stellar Cartography allows you to find a suitable star in the first place. Span and points are ok, but I have a question about the attempting affiliations. Feds are a given, but the Dominion? What do they have to gain? Their lust for order might make them impose their will even on lifeless stars, but in the Alpha Quadrant? A test for what they would try to do at the end of "By Inferno's Light"?  I'm sorry, I don't quite see it. Overall good, but could stand some tweaking: another 3.

SEEDABILITY: This one can be an easy 35 points, depending on your affiliation. The Feds should have little trouble coming up with the skills even with Seyetik, but obviously, he solves it all by his lonesome anyway. For an extra 5 points if the 1E version is used, for card cycling if the 2E version is. Mission specialists can potentionally bring the points up to 50 if you want to go that way. The Dominion isn't very well equipped for the mission, which is too bad. Affiliations big on space missions, like the Romulans (with Telek R'Mor) or even the Cardassians, could find this a nice place to play Espionage (and they have the Plans to make it happen). Also, it's one of those space missions that looks enough like a planet for distracted players to misseed dilemmas under. Hey, could work to your advantage. Nothing overwhelming at 3.3.

TOTAL: 12.5 (62.5%) Nothing ordinary about the task, but the card comes off as average.

#1958-Rekelen, Personnel, Cardassian, universal, DS9
"Young dissident. Forced to flee Cardassia with Natima Lang and Hogue because of her political views. Member of Cardassian underground."
-CIVILIAN, Youth, Computer Skill, Geology
-INTEGRITY: 7, CUNNING: 7, STRENGTH: 3

PICTURE: What's with the femme fatale look? She may be a dissident, but I didn't really think of her as dangerous. Still, it's a striking pose with the right splashes of color coming off her lips and costume. The rest of the card is a little dark though. How about a reasonable 3.3?

LORE: Being a dissident offers some minor advantages, and that's mentioned early enough. The rest is pretty basic, but not badly written. No real acknowledgement of universality though. A 3.

TREK SENSE: A student of political ethics, Rekelen is meant to represent all the young Cardassian girls being recruited by the dissident movement. She's a Youthful Civilian without any staffing icons, I'm game with all that. Computer Skill would allow her to write up some essays and do research. Geology... is that a joke about being in the underground? If it is, well, it's a bit cheeky. If not, the skill may be due to Cardassian females' propensity to be in the sciences. Not much about political ethics themselves (not that there's really a skill to specifically represent it). She's got the high Integrity associated with the dissidents of oppressive regimes, good Cunning because she was a good student, and the low Strength of a young woman trained in things far removed from combat. Passes my tests, though sometimes only barely. A 3.8.

STOCKABILITY: Being a Cardassian dissident offers some bonus features, like boosting Natima Lang's attributes, and boosting her own attributes if Leeta/Rebel Supporter is present (through Treaty), but that's it for now. Not much, really. Ok attributes, though very low STRENGTH, and three skills. That's not very much, and at the same time, too much (no Assign cards apply). The skills include the low-rated Youth (fairly rare among Cardassians, so if you want to play with Ooby Dooby, for example, you might use a few copies of her), and the equally low-rated CIVILIAN classification (a cheap Colonist?). Computer Skill is quite common, but Geology is less so, and readily available on a number of missions the Cardassians may attempt. Nothing impressive here, so just a 2.6.

TOTAL: 12.7 (63.5%) Slightly higher than her male counterpart, Hogue.

#1971-Relocate Settlers, Mission, planet, Bajoran, DS9
Bajor Region*Jeraddo: Relocate settlers before moon becomes uninhabitable due to core tapping project.
-V.I.P. + Diplomacy + SECURITY x2 OR SECURITY x2 + Treachery OR Kira Nerys
-Span: 1, 30 points

PICTURE: Jeraddo seemed like a nicer place to live when we saw the surface (odd that the Bajorans were so keen on destroying a habitable moon for the amount of energy production mentioned). But it's perhaps appropriate that a farmworld would look like a mudball. Still small and non-descript, it ranks a 3.

LORE: Yep, that's what the mission objectives are. Nothing to see here. Move along. Scores a straight 3.

TREK SENSE: Jeraddo is rightly placed in the Bajor Region, and if the center of the region is Bajor itself, it makes sense that the Span would be so short. Of course, if you're coming from the other direction, even from outside the region, the moon is just as close, but that's the kind of anomaly that can't be helped in 1E. It's an internal Bajoran matter, so just for Bajorans. The points are appropriate for the size of the project, though of course, some extra "energy tapping" reward would have been nice too. Three ways to complete this mission: The nice way, the mean way, and the way it wound up being done. The nice way involves being Diplomatic and even sending a VIP to show the importance of what's being done, though you still need a couple of Security guards to make sure the Diplomacy is, shall we say, "understood". Mollibok was pretty stubborn, so I'm not sure he would have been convinced entirely. The mean way uses trickery (Treachery) to get the settlers off the world, and again, some strong-arming. On the show, however, Kira Nerys completed the task without the need for all that, through empathy (not Empathy) and character. It took a little more time, not represented by the card, but she managed it without the skill requirements listed. Can't argue with that. Pretty close to events, I'm gonna go with a 4.1.

SEEDABILITY: With their slow ships, the Bajorans have an incentive to use their own Region to minimize travel times. Relocate Settlers has the shortest Span of all and represents only a fraction of even their slowest craft's RANGE. But is it easy to complete? Sure is, as Kira Nerys is a strong personnel that can solve it alone. In the absence of Kira, you've got a number of SECURITY/Treachery personnel (though none with SECURITY x2), same for VIP/Diplomacy. That first skill set would actually make sense in a spaceline that also used Security Briefing (for redundancy's sake). With the second skill set, the Cardassians have an easy mission to Espionage at in the Bajor Region. 30 points isn't great for any of them, but it's ok, especially with those requirements. A 3.4.

TOTAL: 13.5 (67.5%) I'm sure our own moon wouldn't do much better...

#1984-Renewal Scroll, Event, DS9
"During the Bajoran Gratitude Festival, participants inscribe their troubles on small scrolls. Burning the renewal scrolls in a special brazier symbolically turns their problems into ash."
-Plays if you have three or more Bajorans in play. "Burn" (discard from hand) any number of cards and "renew" (draw) an equal amount, plus two more. Discard event.

PICTURE: A bustling out-of-focus image, it suffers from its color palette, which allows the foreground elements to merge with the similarly-colored background. On the upside, the blue fire is fun, and the Bajorans make an actual appearance. It's just that the aesthetic elements don't quite deliver. A 2.6.

LORE: The custom is well explained, almost artfully so, and will tie in nicely with the game text. A 3.4.

TREK SENSE: It's a Bajoran custom, so you need enough Bajorans to justify your having the ceremony (or for the ceremony to count for something). It prefigures 2E wording in that sense, creating an affiliation-themed card (but not excluding Bajorans from other affiliations). The effect, however, slips into the conceptual realm. The cards you don't want in your hand are considered "troubles", and you may "burn" them (symbolically), and renew your hand with the same amount plus 2 more cards. Moving forward without looking back is very advantageous here, with providence rewarding the Bajorans with more than they had before. Conceptual and mechanical, there is nevertheless some truth to this practice (if your hand represents resources on standby, and you accept that some resources are giving you a headache because they are not needed and taking up place in the warehouse or whatever). That it fits thematically is a plus as well, and I'm gonna go with a pretty high (considering) 3.1.

STOCKABILITY: Clearly for Bajoran decks, the Feds can nevertheless use the card with their small pool of Bajorans. The Cardassians and Ferengi almost can (unfortunately, Marika is a tough Non-Aligned to keep in play), but not really without a Micro-Wormhole or Treaty. Basically, Renewal Scroll offers a card manipulation effect that's pretty cool. You get rid of any cards you don't want in your hand (the discard pile can be recycled at the Bajoran Shrine anyway), and then you not only draw the same number of cards from your deck, but two extras. This is a good card to use when your hand's in a depleted state, for example. Combining it with foreknowledge of the draw deck (either with the Orb of Prophecy and Change, Orb Experience or Bynars Data Transfer) gives you a better idea of when to most advantageously use it. 2E addendum: A lot of 2E Bajorans have abilities keyed to what's in the discard pile, so sending specific cards there may be a good idea in and of itself! That's a 4.

TOTAL: 13.1 (65.5%) Calgon, burn me away!

#1998-Rescue Personnel, Objective, 5 points, DS9
-Plays on your ship docked at a facility in the Alpha Quadrant. Target your Away Team on a planet which is either in a different quadrant or at a time location. If ship travels there, beams up Away Team and returns to facility, draw one card per personnel "rescued" (up to 5) and score points (discard objective). Limit one such "rescue" per location. (Unique.)

PICTURE: A great shot of the Attack Ship going down into the sea, and our heroes stranded on a deserted beach. We're used to the sandy yellows by now, but that gunmetal turquoise is kind of nice. A well-balanced pic, even if the elements are all pretty small in the frame. For my money, a 4.

LORE: N/A (score will be adjusted accordingly)

TREK SENSE: A mini-mission (therefore worth points). Basically, a ship is tasked with getting to an Away Team stranded on a planet. Stranded? Nothing actually stops you from having another ship right there in orbit. The locations are also suspect. First, the tasked ship must be at a facility in the Alpha Quadrant. Why? Don't people in other quadrants care about their personnel? And can't you receive the mission over subspace at another location? We've seen it many times. The personnel to be rescued have, for their part, to be in another quadrant or at a time location. This is suspect if you consider the pic, taken in the Alpha Quadrant. I understand that rescuing personnel so far away (or lost in time) is a much more difficult endeavor, so more of a mission (which getting to the various Love Interests wouldn't necessarily be), but still. The fact that you have to beam up the Away Team is also odd, excluding shuttle rescues. The card draws are highly mechanical/conceptual, but might represent what each personnel rescued took from his or her experience. The limit of a single rescue per location is sensible in game terms, but in the "real" world, not so much. There's no real reason for it. Same for the Objective being unique. What if you have more than one stranded Away Team in play? Sorry people, one rescue at a time. Many, many problems, leading to a low 1.5.

STOCKABILITY: As consolation for having your personnel stranded by Wormholes, Hippocratic Oath, the loss of a ship in the wrong part of space or time, etc, it's not bad. I mean, 5 points plus as many as 5 card draws depending on how many personnel were stranded. On the other hand, I much prefer to use cards proactively. That way, you know you're stocking it to use it, not "just in case". In this case, you can make sure you have Away Teams in quadrants other than the Alpha or at time locations. You also know you have the means to get to that other place, whether we're talking about a Temporal Vortex or a Barzan or Bajoran Wormhole. You can send one ship, beam down, attempt and solve the mission, and go get the personnel with a second ship, or, more efficiently, you can send personnel somewhere without a ship. There are various ways to do this, from Iconian Gateway to simply reporting personnel to their native quadrants or time locations, personnel you'd have to retrieve anyway. Having a facility at a planet that includes a time location may be the easiest way to go. To get the full 5 card draws, you do have to strand 5 personnel, which may be time-consuming or otherwise a hassle, and a single stranded personnel just isn't worth the effort. All the requirements as to locations, facilities, uniqueness, even the beaming (the Objective could be hurt or delayed by a Distortion Field), keep this from becoming an A-list card. At only 5 points, it isn't much of a round-the-corner strategy, and is a bit involved even for so many card draws. Only giving it a 2.7.

TOTAL: 10.93 (54.67%) A new bottom-feeder.

#2012-Rescue Prisoners, Mission, planet, Federation/Bajoran, DS9
Cardassia Region*Cardassia IV: Free Bajoran prisoners held secretly at Hutet labor camp.
-STRENGTH>40 + (Transporter Skill OR landed ship)
-Span: 3; 25 points; May seed [universal] [Baj] personnel under here.

PICTURE: A simple mudball, not very big, perhaps that's why the Bajoran prisoners were so easily hidden. Ah, those discreet Cardassians. Still, the level of interest is low, so a merely appropriate 3.

LORE: Again, very sparse and functional. Another 3.

TREK SENSE: Cardassia IV is indeed in the Cardassia Region/system (well, duh!), and the requirements are pretty much what you'd expect. It's a frontal assault, so Strength is important, and then you either use transporters or a landed ship to get the heck out of Dodge. The Bajorans have a vested interest, that's certain, but the Feds would be willing to help (like Miles) or even pull off this mission without Bajoran assistance (Federation sympathy lying with the Bajorans, as per "Ensign Ro"). It's great that you can actually find Bajoran prisoners here, in the form of universals. After all, if universals represent "types", then such and such a type of personnel might have been made prisoner at some point. The Mirror personnel would be a bit of a mystery, but the rest usually work out well. Li Nalas is unique, of course, but he seeds here as per his own game text. Only poor 2E Borum should be able to do the same and can't. I understand that to balance the seeded personnel bonus, the points had to be kept at a conservative level, but 25 points just isn't representative of the importance Bajorans would place on this mission. Sorry. Aside from that little hitch, this is a good card, reaping a strong 4.4 here.

SEEDABILITY: To put the Federation option out of the way, let me say that it isn't really viable. 25 points only, no use for seeded Bajorans, and a STRENGTH requirement that isn't their forte. So unless you're running a Treaty deck, forget about it. For the Bajorans, however, this is one of their better missions. It's in a Region, advantaging their Interceptors (say if you also use Orb Negotiations). Their small ships can be made to land pretty easily (Hidden Fighter anyone?), and STRENGTH isn't a problem, what with all the personnel-boosting available. And while the points aren't great, the seeded personnel fill out your ranks nicely. Universal Bajorans mostly include support personnel, but you do have Keeve Falor in there, and Li Nalas CAN seed there too. He's got a few more skills than a support personnel, but the real reason to have him enter play this way is to enable The Earring of Li Nalas - the mission becomes a 50-pointer! (And the boost to Resistance personnel can only help your personnel complete the mission). The Cardassians also have a vested interest in this mission. For one thing, it's in their Region, and for another, they can play Forced-Labor Camp on it, solving it by other means: easy SECURITY + Geology + STRENGTH>50 (good thing the points were only at 25). The mission can then be used to turn holding captives into a card draw engine. Versatile enough, it gets 4.5.

TOTAL: 14.9 (74.5%) Looks aren't everything.

#2026-Retaya, Personnel, Non-Aligned, DS9
"Flaxian. Posed as a perfume salesman. In reality an assassin who mixed his 'fragrances' to create deadly toxins. Hired to kill Garak in 2371."
-CIVILIAN, SCIENCE, Biology, Treachery, Physics; Staff icon
-INTEGRITY: 2, CUNNING: 8, STRENGTH: 4

PICTURE: Flaxian Assassin, on which he stars, is a fun image, and while this close-up doesn't have all his perfumes, it's still a quality pic. Retaya's expression is smarmy and arrogant, and the background creates an interesting, contrasty, web. If I had to mention a flaw, it would be the blurry, distracting foreground elements. A nice 3.5.

LORE: Fairly telegraphic, the lore gives us species, "job", modus operandi, and his role in his episode, ending with a dreaded date. Of note is the keyword "assassin", which 2E has made useful. All pleasant enough, I'll go with 3.2.

TREK SENSE: Retaya is a Non-Aligned assassin-for-hire, so Civilian suits him, though the covert nature of his work might have dictated Security instead (or at least among his skills). In fact, I would have liked to see an actual link to the Flaxian Assassin dilemma, such as a way to overcome it. Not possible without Security. Science may substitute for chemistry, and his method of assassination uses chemicals that, once mixed, become lethal poisons. Since they've got to attack living systems, Biology is also indicated. Perhaps Exobiology would have been a bit more appropriate given the variety of his victims. Assassination... Treachery... yes, of course. Finally, we have Physics, which I have yet to really find justification for. If Science subs for chemistry, then there's no need for Physics to do so. A personnel with Physics might have noticed the bomb aboard his ship. Given his ship, Navigation might have been a better idea (the Staff icon helps fly it). Or how about completing his disguise with Acquisition or Greed? Or again, Security. On to the attributes: Integrity is low as a killer's should; Cunning is high because he came up with a pretty complex way of killing; and since that killing isn't physical, he gets an unassuming 4 in Strength. The muddled skill list and lack of relationship with his dilemma keep the card at 2.

STOCKABILITY: Retaya has an ok skill list to help most any affiliation, but also a couple of tricks up his sleeve. CIVILIAN's never been too hot, but being Non-Aligned, he can make use of War Council. SCIENCE is better, and with Treachery, he's protected from Unscientific Method. Overall, he's got a good scientific skill package for many missions, with attributes that go from good to bad. Aside from that, he's the matching commander of the Flaxian Scout Vessel, and small ship that, Plaqued and Logged, goes up to a fast 10-6-8. Nothing great, but it CAN be downloaded by the Scout Encounter dilemma, from where Ready Room Door can get at Retaya. Barring that, Hidden Fighter and Launch Portal can do the same (and more). As an assassin, Retaya can use the 2E card Assassination Plot to simultaneously return to hand and kill an opposing personnel present. Good way to pave the way for personnel battle and get out of it himself at the same time. Sending him alone to an opposing Away Team can make for a nasty hit and run. Being Non-Aligned, he might find himself with the Dominion or some other affiliation good at boarding ships (like those from the DQ), giving him many more potential targets. Not a bad personnel by himself, but the tricks you can play with other cards make him better. A cool 3.8.

TOTAL: 12.5 (62.5%) Did better as a dilemma (6% more).

#2040-Rhetorical Question, Q-Dilemma, DS9
"Still chasing your own tail?"
-If crew or Away Team completes mission on this attempt, discard dilemma. Otherwise, Opponent may place dilemma on any one of your non-Borg ships in play (at this location if possible). While dilemma in play, you may not re-attempt this mission and ship must do nothing but return to one of your facilities; then discard dilemma. (Immune to Q2.)

PICTURE: The image directly depicts the quote used in the lore, and that's just about the only way you can represent something called "Rhetorical Question". Just Q whispering in someone's ear again, nothing amazing, though it's a balanced composition. A 3.

LORE: The Rhetorical Question is asked here, and indeed, is more important to the game effect than the title is. It could have been the actual title... it's not too long for that is it? The title as is, wouldn't have suffered from being spelled "Q-uestion" either. Not particularly witty, I'm again going for the average, which is 3.

TREK SENSE: Q gives you the old runaround with this one, or seems to, but is it true? He's just asking a question, and if you really are chasing your own tail, then that's your problem. See, if you aren't, then you complete the mission, no problem. Q hasn't interfered. If you are, and you don't complete it (Q still not interfering unless what stops you is another Q-card), then that's not his fault. Seems your natural instinct (or your ship's really - possibly a ship at another location that gets your distress call) is to go back to a facility to get some advice, equipment, personnel, whatever. You're following the wrong leads (your own tail) and losing precious time, while other crews would usually persevere and try again. My objection then, is that this perhaps should not have been a Q-card. After all, the scenario could be true whether he's pointing it out or not. Or are we to believe he instills this instinct in your personnel? Not his style, frankly. While we might explain it as his having so much fun with a befuddled crew that he makes the mission unattenptable because of his trick (would explain why he wouldn't bother the boring Borg), I don't see how going back to a facility would help matters. The immunity to Q2 also joshes with the notion that this is not Q's fault. Would have made a fair non-Q dilemma representing a crew being "stumped", but as a Q-card, misses the mark. A 2.5.

STOCKABILITY: A classic way to stall a mission attempt, it will do better as part of a Beware of Q strategy where you can put it right at the top of your best dilemma combos. Following it up with rare or expensive requirements will work, and walls are obviously made for this. I might also suggest Quantum Fissure, since your ship present can stop the attempt. Twisted also seems nasty to me. Successfully asking the Rhetorical Question locks your opponent out of attempting this mission, and, Cytherians-like, the ship that's there must return to a facility. Hmm. Well there you have it folks, at a space mission, a Cytherians/Rhetorical Question combo will tie up a ship for turns and turns, as it first goes to the end of the spaceline, then to a facility, and a second ship cannot attempt the mission meanwhile. Other nasty tricks to pull include Wormholing a ship as it starts to move to get it far from its facilities (a time location might be hard to recover from), destroying the ship in orbit in order to acquire another target, and destroying all facilities to make the mission unattemptable. The card is immune to Q2, so no cop-outs, but the Borg are immune (ah well, it's not the first time). As part of a Q-Continuum side-deck, this dilemma is obviously less efficient, and might not turn up at the right moment at all, though a healthy mix of Rhetorical Question and Aldeberan Serpent might be able to stall an opponent some of the time. Either way, it'll certainly get at redshirt strategies, won't it? The lack of control is the thing though. But since Beware of Q does exist, I'm gonna call this one a 4.1.

TOTAL: 12.6 (63%) Certainly useful, but other design elements are somewhat forgettable.

#2054-Rigelian Freighter, Ship, Non-Aligned, universal, DS9
"Large-volume ship typically used by various planetary consortiums. Primary energy supply optimized for defensive shielding."
-Merchant Freighter[1 Command] Tractor Beam
-RANGE: 6, WEAPONS: 6, SHIELDS: 9

PICTURE: This long cigar isn't very appealing, though it at least has the look of a rusty oil tanker or something like that. A fair effort then, but an undistinctive ship design. 2.9 from me.

LORE: Not entirely certain how a Merchant Freighter distinguishes itself from a simple Freighter, although it's possible they trade goods directly as opposed to only ferrying them. The lore itself is interesting enough, especially in its Ferengi bent. How does your "consortium" make so much money? The answer is volume, of course. The second phrase explains the attributes as best it can, though it tends to be techno-babbly. A 3.1 here.

TREK SENSE: Ok, so we've got a large merchant freighter, larger, in fact, than most freighters, and optimized, we're told, for higher Shields. Proves to be true, and since this particular ship was used by Odo to cover the tracks of his runabout from the Miradorn, it's a good candidate for this kind of enhancement in the first place. It's large enough for a Tractor Beam, that's obvious, and indeed, is actually lumbering under all that weight (low Range). The Weapons are a bit high, especially when you compare the various staffing needs of available freighters. Necessary, perhaps, to protect the cargo, but still higher than any military freighter's. We might shift the blame to the staffing, which may be too low for these attributes, and the ship's sheer size. A Command icon tells us the cargo carried is important enough for all the defenses, but is so much of the volume used for cargo that you don't need more crew than this? These kinds of questions make the score spiral down to 2.5.

STOCKABILITY: Freighters have their functions in STCCG, including allowing the use of the 1st Rule of Acquisition, modifying its own attributes (SHIELDS 8 but WEAPONS 10, in this case) with System 5 Disruptors, reporting for free to a Nor's Docking Ports, Delivering Supplies, Establishing Trade Routes, and making cargo runs from a Cargo Bay. But which freighter will you use? Many affiliations have their own, like the Bajorans, Cardassians and Ferengi, but a Non-Aligned model can be used by anyone, including the three species I just mentioned. And the Rigelian Freighter isn't too bad a candidate, especially against a trigger-happy opponent. See, it's kind of slow for cargo runs, but it has a better chance of surviving a space battle. WEAPONS are also as high as they go (unmodified, at least) for this type of ship. Boosting them to 10 with Sys5 Disruptors makes it a power house, but it would lose cargo run capability. Another plus is that it's fairly easy to staff, more than the Calondon and Xeopolite, who have similar WEAPONS/SHIELDS, although some perks too. They are perhaps more suited to cargo runs, being faster, and in the case of the Calondon, can run with hand weapons, but I'm really unmoved by the Long-Range Scan Shielding. And I'm not even mentioning the competition it has from Transports and [Fer] ships (though it compares favorably to the D'Kora Transport). So for non-cargo run uses, and against toothy decks, this is a quick and dirty universal. Not great by any means, but not terrible either. A 2.7 that needs to zoom more.

TOTAL: 11.2 (56%) Move it!

#2067-Rinnak Pire, Personnel, Bajoran, universal, DS9
"Captain of a Bajoran transport that docked at Deep Space 9 in 2369. Commanded all manner of Bajoran vessels during his long and successful career."
-OFFICER, Computer Skill, Navigation; May be matching commander of any [universal] [Baj] ship; Command icon
-INTEGRITY: 6, CUNNING: 5, STRENGTH: 6

PICTURE: Don't you think he kind of looks like David Duchovny, this guy? Ok, never mind. Note that Odo was digitally removed from this shot, making Pire look like he's perhaps walking the halls of his ship or something. Lighting's moody, and the pinkish uniform meshes well with the Bajoran template color. A reasonable 3.1.

LORE: Well, there's no acknowledgement of universality, for starters, and that last sentence acts more to distinguish him than to make him "typical". I'm also a bit distressed by his "long" career. While he might have flown ships under Cardassian rule, I don't think we should make much of a fuss of that kind of career. The first sentence, for its part, is dull as nails, and again very specific. All this does is explain his special skill, so I'm gonna pretty much pan it with a 1.7.

TREK SENSE: Ok, so you've got the typical Bajoran ship captain in Rinnak Pire. He must have Officer and the Command icon, but Leadership seems to be unimportant for some reason. I think it would have made more sense than Computer Skill, personally, even if that skill could find its way on most 24th-century personnel without a problem. Navigation is more sensical for a shipboard-type guy. While I'm ok with the Strength (no reason to believe this is wrong, and it at least matches his build), Integrity seems a touch low for no apparent reason. Cunning's much worse, being pretty stupid in 1E, which doesn't really go with his special skill or successful career. As for the special skill, I'm not much against it, in that matching commander status represents command familarity with a certain ship, its kinks and abilities, enabling certain bonuses thanks to other cards. Because the Bajoran fleet tends toward older buckets-of-bolts, many of which are built on the same "Antares-class" configuration, familiarity with one Bajoran ship breeds familarity with most others. Pire might have started out with Raiders and Interceptors, and now commands Scouts, Freighters and Assault Vessels, all pretty simple and using the same basic design. I would have a problem with him commanding the AU Bajoran Warship, which is far more advanced and from another reality. His familiarity with all designs would seem to make him able to aptly command unique ships too, even if they have slight differences (there should also be a difference between 2 "identical" universals too, and certainly between Alpha and Mirror Quadrant models, and that doesn't bother him). Storytelling-wise, it encourages the real commander to be aboard the unique ship, so that doesn't bother much. It does seem hard to believe, however, that your typical Bajoran ship commander has this level of aptitude. I suppose we should take it as each Rinnak Pire aboard a ship is the matching commander of that ship alone. Yeah, that would make sense, but the card isn't written that way (Pires can jump from ship to ship), and the lore tries to do something else with it. It can be made to work, but you have to ignore wording. Overall, not great at 2.1.

STOCKABILITY: A universal matching commander will always be interesting, and since the Bajorans have very few unique ships, and indeed, not many ships with high attributes, the ability to Captain's Log them all is enticing. He's all that's needed to Staff anything smaller than an Assault Vessel, which means you can build a little fleet of Interceptors all Plaqued and Logged at 7+X-10-9, which is very good. Even a Freighter on a cargo run can have SHIELDS and RANGE of 9, and if you bring in the Bajoran Warship, pow! that's a 12-12-11 universal ship. On the downside, Rinnak Pire has fairly lame skills (all very common though not useless) and attributes. Thankfully, and it may be worth doing so if using a lot of Rinnak Pires, the Bajorans can use other cards to boost their universals. He's covered by Lower Decks, obviously, but also HQ: War Room, Shakaar Edon and The Emissary (if you're actually sending him on missions). For reporting him/them into play, he can be downloaded by Bajoran Civil War and Ready Room Door, or be seeded at Rescue Prisoners and Search and Rescue. Give him an Engineering Kit, and he's ENGINEER enough to download ships to your Docking sites with Construct Starship. Who says the Bajorans are only good at personnel battles? The score would be higher if armada decks weren't hosed as much, but for ship strategies, this is one of the better universals to ever come out. A 4.

TOTAL: 10.9 (54.5%) Eeeech, almost a funeral pyre... ;-).

#2080-Rionoj, Personnel, Non-Aligned, universal, DS9
"Female Boslic freighter captain. Delivered the earring of Li Nalas to Quark in 2370. Suspected of trafficking in stolen Falangian diamonds."
-CIVILIAN, ENGINEER, Greed, Navigation; Command icon
-INTEGRITY: 4, CUNNING: 6, STRENGTH: 6

PICTURE: Quark's favorite femme fatale appears in his bar here, and in fatale enough a pose. Is that some kind of cigar or cigarette in her hand? The colors are striking and distinctive as well. A bit above your usual bust shot at 3.2.

LORE: Universality doesn't make a showing at all, everything being pretty specific. The "Boslic freighter captain" as she was always called (her name is suggested in her last appearance's script) appeared in 3 episodes, and two of them get a mention: "The Homecoming" wherein she sold the Earring, and "Broken Link" for that last sentence. She also brought a baby Jem'Hadar to DS9 in "The Abandonned", but there wasn't room for it, I suppose (though it would have better explained one skill). I like that they at least tried for a complete picture of her appearances, so a 3.2.

TREK SENSE: Well, what's here isn't bad, but it isn't really a complete picture, especially in light of newer skills. She's no doubt meant to represent any number of female Boslic captains (it's probably not a matriarchy since we saw some male Boslics in charge in "The Sons of Mogh"), all rather shady. Such freighter captains would have, by necessity, the Command icon, but still be Civilians (merchants). Leadership would not be necessary because of looser structures aboard non-military ships. Navigation seems like a natural skill, and Engineer makes sense too (her salvaging operations in "The Abandonned" would prove the skill). Greed is fine for a merchant. Acquisition and Smuggling would also have worked, it seems, though she was only suspected of the latter. There's a stronger case for Acquisition because of the way she tricked Quark into buying things from her (there's no Sex Appeal skill). Integrity makes her care more about the bottom line than other people, though there's loyalty for her own crew in there. Cunning's a bit low for someone so conniving, but at the same time, she managed to miss the Jem'Hadar Birthing Chamber among the scrap she sold Quark (or did she?). And if she WAS smuggling diamonds in "Broken Link", Odo never managed to catch her. Methinks her Cunning is underestimated here. Strength is fine given her general health, age and profession. Fine at first glance, but just under par for me: 2.9.

STOCKABILITY: Basically designed as Non-Aligned skill support for players getting on the wagon with the DS9 expansion, a larger collection would relegate her to the binder. Oh, she might very well fit in a Ferengi deck with that Greed of hers to key off some Rules, and ENGINEER is always good (though she reports to Promenade Shops, which may or may not be a disadvantage, you know). Navigation is a dime a dozen, though generally useful. Attributes are rather lukewarm. A fair universal (with the top staffing icon), but at 3 skills plus a lame classification, she doesn't quite come into her own. A keyword or two might have helped, but no. Only 2.5.

TOTAL: 11.8 (59%) Hey, I'm no Quark.

#2093-Risky Business, Q-Dilemma, -5 points, DS9
"Remember that bug bite? ... The galaxy can be a dangerous place when you're on your own."
-If only one personnel in crew or Away Team, that personnel dies (erased if [holo]); seed dilemma beneath mission to be encountered again. Otherwise, if you have any one-person crews or Away Teams anywhere in play, choose one of them to die OR lose points. (Dilemma does not affect Borg.)

PICTURE: Y'know, I was never a big fan of Vash, and this pic of her all diseased isn't doing it for me any more than a healthy Vash would. I suppose there's some good in the tilted, queasy angle, but the background has oddly colored elements, and her bag seems part of a horrendous costume. Just 2.3.

LORE: Q gives a good lesson here, speaking directly, it would seem, to redshirts. Ok title, though it might have been slightly better as "RisQy Business", but I'm not really complaining. A 3.2.

TREK SENSE: Much like Rhetorical Question, this didn't have to be a Q-card, because most of its effects are Q-less. See, it's true that something bad could happen to you when on a mission alone. If you're affected by an illness or crazy anomaly, then you don't have anyone around to save you, call for the cure, etc. The true nature of this dilemma isn't known to us (it can be a bug bite at a planet mission if you like), but it kills. Or in the case of holograms, erases that program. And then, it rightfully doesn't go away. Whatever it is, it could have been overcome if only you'd brought a friend. It's probably something debilitating that happens to a single personnel, but that is easily fixed by a second personnel. Getting a shock for example would be deadly if a friend couldn't push you to the ground, away from the live wire. No Q yet, unless you believe that he put the danger there just so he could then save Vash and get her gratitude, but he's powerful enough to do this even there are two or more personnel present, so that doesn't quite explain it. Ok, say there are enough personnel to pass Risky Business, well, the dilemma doesn't stop working there. If there's a one-man crew or Away Team anywhere in play, that's where it hits. Hey, the principle holds, doesn't it? Q sort of enters here since he can save that personnel from death by being paid 5 "cheat" points - a deus ex machina fee. Maybe at this point, he appears to the lone personnel and imports the danger just passed at the mission location (though they may not match at all depending on the location) to that personnel, forcing it to either die or ask for help and admit defeat. I suppose that's why the Borg are unaffected, because Q just doesn't interact with them if he can avoid it (too boring), but it seems like the first part of the card SHOULD affect the Borg (especially now that scouting is handled differently). The basics of this make a lot of sense, though Q's part in all of it is sometimes nebulous. Manages 3.7.

STOCKABILITY: In the current environment, redshirting is pretty much dead. There are just too many ways to hose it, and Risky Business is part of the meta-game when it comes to that. So while it won't normally hit where seeded (with Beware of Q if not using a Q-Continuum side-deck), it does have that other effect. Any one-man crew or Away Team out there becomes at risk, and your opponent either loses the personnel or 5 points. Sometimes, your opponent will have placed herself in that position, leaving lone personnel at a Nor's Site to work some piece of game text, or at some other facility simply working its special skill from afar. Sometimes, the personnel would be waiting for a pick-up, or heading toward the rest aboard a shuttle. But being proactive is much better, and you have tools at your disposal to create these lone personnel. Combining Risky Business with dilemmas that strand personnel somewhere else on the spaceline are obvious, such as Hippocratic Oath or the two Love Interests. A good place to seed Risky Business would be planet/space missions, in case either the Away Team or the ship are understaffed. Seeding it at the end of a combo may well wittle down the personnel to a single one that then gets offed (and the dilemma remains seeded). So there's plenty to be done with this, and it doesn't skimp on the holograms (erases rather than deactivated). No Borg, but that's pretty usual. Giving it a useful 3.6.

 

TOTAL: 12.8 (64%) This is one where Q is your "friend".

 

#2106-Ruwon, Personnel, Romulan, DS9

"Led Romulan delegation to DS9 to receive Starfleet's intelligence dossier on the Dominion. Had secret orders to destroy the station and nearby wormhole."

-VIP, Diplomacy, Anthropology, Treachery, SECURITY; Command icon

-INTEGRITY: 4, CUNNING: 7, STRENGTH: 7

PICTURE: One thing I liked about the DS9 expansion is that a lot of pics had the windows in them, giving the set a certain cohesiveness, and like in this case, a background flourish. But everything's the same color here, it's all dark, and even Ruwon's tan face matches the bronze windowsill. Solid composition and everything, but really unassuming otherwise. A 3.

LORE: It doesn't really disturb me, but the lore seems to throw itself into events without so much as a simple presentation like "Romulan operative" or something. Even "Romulan that led..." would have been acceptable. Probably the only way to fit the entire plot of "Visionary" from the Romulan side. A 3, but no more.

TREK SENSE: As part of a delegation, Ruwon is a VIP (the military uniform hints at Officer, but I can't claim to understand the Romulan hierarchy) who has, naturally, Diplomacy (even if basically used to deceive others). Anthropology also fits here, because it helps him understand humans and Bajorans in his negotiations. He's the leader of the delegation, but probably more than that if he's got the Command icon. I mean, that's a function of staffing ships, which isn't really diplomatic function (another element that points to Officer). His trying to blow up DS9 and the wormhole rates him in Security - and he was very Security-conscious with that whole Klingon bit - and for Treachery. Note however, that he was doing this foul deed to protect the Romulan people from the Dominion. This shows up in the 4 Integrity. The other attributes are fine too, with Cunning showing him to be a little transparent (though he would have succeeded if O'Brien hadn't been time-jumping), and Strength at a good level for his age and species. Good, good, but sometimes unconvincing. A 3.5.

STOCKABILITY: Though Ruwon was originally designed to fill the SECURITY gap in the Romulans' skill pool, he wouldn't be the last of his kind, and the affiliation is now fine in that respect. Heck, Praetor Neral can add the skill to all the Tal Shiar in play! It's still a good skill. Anthropology was also another weakness back then, and remains so today. With the addition of more Anthropology dilemmas, the skill has risen in value. Romulans may well wind up using Ruwon to fortify their Anthro needs, and/or send him through The Guardian of Forever. Diplomacy and Treachery, for their parts, are very, very common, but in high demand on Romulan missions too. So Ruwon fills some holes, while simultaneously playing into the redundancy you need for missions. Ok attributes, the best staffing icon, and VIP isn't as lame for the Romulans as it perhaps is for other affiliations. Still not the top of the heap, but a fair 3.6.

TOTAL: 13.1 (65.5%) An average vision ;-).

#2119-Sakonna, Personnel, Non-Aligned, DS9

"Female Vulcan. Gunrunner. Bought weapons from Quark in 2370. Helped the Maquis abduct Gul Dukat, but failed to establish a forced mindmeld with him."

-ENGINEER, Treachery, Mindmeld, Physics, Acquisition; Maquis icon; Staff icon

-INTEGRITY: 5, CUNNING: 8, STRENGTH: 7

 

PICTURE: A simple headshot, but Sakonna is pretty enough to pull it off, and I've always liked how the lines of the cell behind her mirror those of her costume. Gray is such a Vulcan color, don't you think? A 3.4.

LORE: Pretty standard stuff, though the last part about the forced mindmeld is something I tend to forget about, so it's welcome. I would have liked more Quark-Sakonna stuff, but I'm not really disappointed. For those who would have liked "arms dealer" instead of "gunrunner", yes, that would have been more useful, but less true. She never sold any weapons, only purchased them. A fair 3.2.

 

TREK SENSE: A Maquis of intermediate importance (Staff icon), Sakonna is a Vulcan (so Mindmeld) who tried to purchase large amounts of weapons (Acquisition) to use in terrorist activities (Treachery, and if that doesn't convince you, consider the forced Mindmeld). Her actual trade is Engineer, of which Physics is part and parcel. I suppose she knew enough about weapon systems and explosives to be the one to go shopping for them. Her Integrity is low, especially for a Vulcan, but still shows that she thinks she's doing the right thing. Strength's ok for species and line of work (rebel fighter). Cunning could have been lower in my opinion, because her logic was uncertain (Quark could pick at it!) and her actions not well thought out (speaking loudly about arms sales, failed mindmeld, etc.). Devoid of surprises, I can't go higher than 3.7 anyway.

 

STOCKABILITY: Sakonna could fit in a couple of decks, sure, possibly as a Non-Aligned Acquisition personnel to back-up the Ferengi or substitute for them when using Rules of Acquisition, or possibly as one of the few NA Vulcans that can report to the Vulcan Lander and work with any affiliation (allowing to use Mindmeld, for example). And she's a Maquis, of course, with everything that entails, mostly attribute boosts and the ability to report to - and staff - the Liberty. She has 3 ways of overcoming Arms Deal, was that really necessary? ENGINEER is excellent, of course, while Physics is merely ok. Treachery certainly fits in with more than half the affiliations. The other two are much rarer, and their exotic nature may be of interest to counter affiliation weaknesses, but Mindmeld isn't strong without a dedicated strategy. Her attributes aren't a liability, and most are even on the high side. Getting her due: a 3.5.

 

TOTAL: 13.8 (69%) Her oddball skills makes her both useful and not so useful, depending on your needs.

 

#2132-Saltah'na Clock, Artifact, DS9

"Benjamin Sisko constructed a clock while being affected by the energy matrix of Saltah'na telepathic spheres. The spheres were storing the energy of an ancient power struggle."

-Place on ship or facility here (opponent's choice). Personnel aboard must initiate battle whenever possible (no leader is required and affiliation attack restrictions do not apply).

PICTURE: A really beautiful artifact, even with only some of the details showing up. As a static prop shot, the best I can give it is 3.3.

LORE: Almost seems like it's more about the telepathic spheres, isn't it? Well, that's not too far off, as we'll see under Trek Sense. An ok attempt given that conceit, so a 3.

TREK SENSE: So here's the thing... The actual Artifact found is the Saltah'na telepathic spheres, but since there was no image available for those, we get the Clock Sisko constructed... or that anyone under the influence of the spheres would wind up building (one personnel among the discoverers, in fact). So while the Clock is not the actual Artifact, it would soon appear with the acquiring personnel. The almost viral nature of the effect isn't quite captured, but does make a showing in the way the Artifact may be played on any ship or facility (DS9, for example) at the acquisition location. Indeed, it may quickly be spread to the opponent's cards (in a strange twist, by that player's choice). Unfortunately, the buck stops there. The Klingons actually found the spheres in the Gamma Quadrant, and only communicated the effect later. There's no way to pass the effect around with the card. Furthermore, the effect itself is only thematically accurate. See, the obligatory fight shouldn't be taken to one's opponent, but should occur between the compatible personnel all on the same side, until they destroy each other. The theme of battle is carried out interestingly, but that's it. This isn't the Saltah'na power struggle at all. Lots of problems and consequently 1.6.

SEEDABILITY: An Artifact that can be used as a kind of dilemma too, the Clock puts a ship into a battle frenzy it won't be able to get out of unless it is destroyed. That ship needs no leader, and respects no attack restrictions. This is nice in particular for the Federation - with their nice ships and hefty restrictions - and the Borg - with their HUGE ships and Objective-based attacks. No more! This isn't much of an armada builder, of course, since you'd need a Clock on each ship (not that the Borg need it), so try it as a dilemma instead! Allow your opponent to acquire it, allow that ship to attack yours, and play Wartime Conditions to give your Feds full battling capability against that affiliation (all ships, all personnel). Hopefully, you won't seed this thing at a facility, since your opponent can reduce battling conditions by playing it there. Only Nors have (slight) WEAPONS and Sites for personnel battle. Affiliations other than the two mentioned will find fewer reasons to play this (unless really expecting to fight the same affiliation as theirs), but could still use it as a dilemma to monopolize the activities of an opposing ship, la Conundrum. A two-edged blade, it goes for 3.5.

TOTAL: 11.4 (57%) Out of time...

 

#2145-Science Kit, Equipment, DS9

"Representative of specialized scientific analytical apparatus. Such equipment has been developed by many races."

-Gives all of your OFFICER-classification personnel the extra skill of SCIENCE where present.

 

PICTURE: Just a prop shot, but one where we see a fair amount of detail - each cup has a Starfleet insignia and a differently colored label, for example. I'd like to see more, but what's here's fine. A 3.1.

 

LORE: Same old, same old. "Apparatus" instead of "equipment" is kind of fun, but I'm not wearing a party hat or anything. A dull 2.1.

 

TREK SENSE: Where PADDs and Tricorders help Medicals, Engineers and Sciences, Kits belong to Officers. This is a totally artificial conceit, and doesn't address the one classification that would most use a Science Kit - Science personnel! This does absolutely nothing for them. Not that Officers aren't trained in all sorts of stuff and might be able to work a Kit properly (really depends on the character, I'm sure), but looking at the pic here, it seems geared toward the life sciences. And indeed, what would a Science Kit geared toward the space sciences look like? A telescope perhaps? I just don't think you'd use a Kit for that kind of stuff at all. At least, a Kit can be parceled out in pieces, which means we can safely skip the question of "how many Kits there are per card". No surprise here, it's another equipment malfunction at a single 2.

 

STOCKABILITY: OFFICERs are many in most affiliations, and it's not always easy to find good SCIENCE personnel. Result? A pretty good Equipment card, and one, mind you, that wasn't reprinted for the Voyager environment. It's also one of the rare such Equipment cards that cannot be specifically downloaded by a personnel! (There's not even an "any Kit" download.) It IS covered by "SCIENCE-related cards", so can be downloaded via Samantha Wildman and the Science Lab. SCIENCE doesn't quite have the cachet of MEDICAL or ENGINEER, or even of SECURITY at this point, but it's still found on many dilemmas and missions. It could be used in conjunction with Metaphasic Shields to boost SHIELDS to an ungodly number (perhaps even combined with Nutationals), but other tricks are few and far between. Hey, a fair 3.4.

 

TOTAL: 10.6 (53%) Nothing unusual for Equipment.

 

#2158-Science Lab, Site, DS9

-Compatible SCIENCE-classification personnel, SCIENCE-related Equipment cards, I.P. Scanner and PADDs may report here. Once each turn, if station at a [space] mission and player who controls station has a SCIENCE personnel unopposed here, that player may scan bottom seed card under the mission. Matching SCIENCE personnel may file mission reports here.

-Any Nor [Docking Ring]

PICTURE: Since this room is circular and fairly symetric, it was a good choice to go for a central composition. That big thing on the ceiling hurts that a little, but it's more or less camouflaged by its color. Lots of reflective surfaces make it pretty, and we also have the protouniverse at the very back (that blue ball), and in the table globe, some yellow smoosh that reminds us of Odo's cousin. But while I like the details, the contast between light and dark sort of muffles the image. Still manages a 3.3.

LORE: N/A (score will be adjusted accordingly)

TREK SENSE: We know the Science Lab was on the Docking Ring, because when the protouniverse blew the hull, that's where the damage appeared. And since it IS a Science Lab, it's perfectly natural to find Science-classification personnel here, along with their equipment. Science-related cards are nicely supplemented by other things a scientists might use, like the oft-forgotten I.P. Scanner. PADDs of all kinds are also included, seeing as they are full of information, information a scientist might want to cross-reference. And those PADDs may well be used to file mission reports here, a natural bureaucratic byproduct of conducting experiments here. The special ability has less onscreen evidence going for it however. Scans are usually conducted from Ops, not the Lab. The facilities might be used for this anyway, but why not to scan a planet? I agree that space dilemmas are more suited to being scanned by Science personnel, with planet dilemmas more often dipping into the unscannables like Civil Unrest or Kidnappers. But couldn't you scan a planet for a Duonetic Field Generator, Firestorm or Seismic Quake? Alternately, how is a scan at a space mission bringing up Drumhead or Shaka When the Walls Fell? Anomalies abound, but the odds are stacked in Trek Sense's favor. An overall success, Science Lab gets a 3.5.

SEEDABILITY: In a complete, well-rounded Nor, a Science Lab will be used to report or download SCIENCE-classification personnel and related equipment. That Equipment includes a bunch of Tricorders, Kits and PADDs that either give SCIENCE personnel more skills, or give other classifications that of SCIENCE. On top of that, there's the forgettable I.P. Scanner, and all possible PADDs, the latter necessary for File Mission Report. With the Science Lab being in the Docking Ring, it'll always be close by when you need to File, so using this, you might do well to seed Deep Space 9/Terok Nor at Characterize Neutrino Emissions, a solid SCIENCE mission that can net you Orbs, the 5-point mission report, and a free scan of the first dilemma to be encountered there (or more than one if you ever allow yourself to be stopped). The special ability is rather limited, since Nors aren't expected to move much during a game, so it'll be something of a one-shot deal, usually at your starting point. Nothing stopping you from moving the station and partnering Emissions with Acquire Illicit Explosives, for example, another Physics mission. Empok Nor and the universal Nor can also be seeded at a space mission, no problem. There's a rather dangerous perk to using this site as well. If you get hit by "Subspace Seaweed", you can beam the dilemma to your Lab to save your ship, but if your opponent plays Protouniverse on it, it could destroy or at least damage your Nor. But when choosing which sites to seed, a look at what classifications you need to report there is what's truly indicated, and there we find that the Bajorans and Cardassians each have only 3 SCIENCE-classification personnel (the Cardies have two more, but these have native quadrant issues). That's not a whole lot (unless you supplement with non-downloadable Non-Aligneds), and Science Lab may fall by the wayside because of that and its rather limited special ability. Could be a better choice for the more fexible Empok Nor. Just like on the show, you won't see this one often, but still a 3.

TOTAL: 13.07 (65.35%) Sorry, lab rats.

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