Siskoid's Rolodex......Holodeck Adventures (4)

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To see the cards themselves, check out this Card list for the Holodeck Adventures expansion set.

#1757-Holoprogram: The Office of Dixon Hill, Incident, HDA
-Seeds or plays on your ship with a Holodeck. In place of a card draw, you may download Felix Leech aboard. Also, your Cyrus Redblock may report aboard and, if he is aboard, once each turn you may request "the item." Place a card from hand face down on table. Opponent must choose: you may play it for free and draw a card OR you must place it out-of-play and score 5 points.

PICTURE: If the world of Dixon Hill is to be accessed through his Office, then the door is the gateway to that world. Simple, even a little dull, but appropriate, with a color scheme very much reminiscent of that world. A 3.

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

TREK SENSE: Get ready for some conceptual business here. In the first place, while the version of this program we saw was on the Enterprise, there's no reason it couldn't be found in a facility's database, even mechanically. The two personnel cards than can either download or report aboard are both holograms from the program, no flesh and blood, so that's good. From there, Cyrus Redblock has a bit of business about requesting "the item", as per the plot of "The Big Goodbye" (the Dixon Hill scenario, not the episode). From there, it's a dovetail into conceptuals. The "item" is apparently a card from hand, played face down on the table (we don't know what the "item" is). If you give Redblock the "item", you are rewarded with something (a card draw). If you destroy the "item" (place the card out-of-play), you win the scenario and score points. At least, that's how I see it. You could go vice-versa, it matters little. It's not a bad thematic idea, but of course, the fact that the "item" could well be a personnel or an abstraction, and that Redblock can do this from any Holodeck without really interacting with anyone, means it doesn't really go beyond that. In reality, a Holoprogram would have very little effect on the "real world". I can see it get a 1.5, but no more.

STOCKABILITY: If you use "murderous" dilemmas, you don't need to be sold on the idea of using Cyrus Redblock to give them a lot more bite. Well, he reports directly here where he can do a little more. You don't necessarily need to wait for him either, since Felix Leech can be downloaded here, and then if you've been attacked by your opponent, you may download Redblock. Leech can be useful too. If you can get him to opposing personnel's location, he'll suspend their classifications. Going back to Redblock, once each turn, you can use him to get a card out of your hand and either into play or completely out-of-play. If you're good at bluffing, this is a card for you. If your opponent thinks the card you want to play for free is a powerful one, he might be willing to let you have the 5 points. If he doesn't, he might deny you the points to allow you to play a weak card. Whether he's calling your bluff or not, you do get a card draw it this call is made, so your opponent's real dilemma is to give you points or not. He can't possibly let you have 5 points each turn in addition to whatever else you're racking up, but at the same time, denying you the points will help you get away with plenty of things and replenish your hand. The risk to you is that you could be permanently losing cards you need, so a large draw deck may be in order, with more multiples than usual. Cards you don't really need are simply recycled into the "item" request (make sure it's always playable, so no unique personnel already in play, etc.). Not altogether the most dependable of strategies, but it can distract your opponent to no end. Throw in some Parallax Arguers to keep your opponent concentrating on your strategy rather than his own. About 3.6.

TOTAL: 10.8 (54%) Now, if it'd been completely written in "Dixonese"...

#1781-Holosuite, Site, universal, HDA
-This site must be placed adjacent to Quark's Bar (or another Holosuite). Has a Holodeck. Holoprogram cards may be played here (limit one; station controller may discard it during their turn). [Holo] Equipment cards and compatible [Holo] personnel may report here, and may be transferred directly to/from owner's ship docked at this station.
-Terok Nor OR DS9 [Promenade]

PICTURE: Colorful, but more than a little sterile. An inactive Holosuite is so sad, isn't it? It's an ok set shot, but the repetitive patterns put me to sleep. Sorry, but just 2.5.

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

TREK SENSE: Quark's has a set of Holosuites, that's why Holosuite cannot be seeded anywhere but in the vicinity of Quark's Bar on DS9 or Terok Nor. There's no evidence that the Mirror Terok Nor had any Holosuites, so they don't seed there. The Mirrors probably had something far more disreputable on the bar's second level. Still, building them on another Nor shouldn't that much of a problem if the Cardassians really wanted one. Function? Has a Holodeck. That one's obvious. It thus follows that holo-equipment and holo-personnel can report here, with the added bonus that these programs can be easily transferred to or from a ship docked with the station. It also follows that Holoprograms can play here, but since Sites represent specific rooms, you can only play one per Suite. These can't be transferred to or from ships though, which has never really be seen anyway, but you gotta wonder if their 56k connection just isn't enough. The station controller can pull the plug on a program during their turn because they control the power fed into the system. I really like this bit, though I wonder why loose holograms aren't as vulnerable. The Holosuite also fixes the problem certain Holoprograms have, namely that they don't all play on facilities. Now they can (if only on Nors). A very strong 4.7.

SEEDABILITY: Using DS9 or Terok Nor and also want to use holograms? Holosuite's the way to go. Those nifty holograms with abilities that affect the entire game without their having to be at any specific location will be quite much safer at the core of a facility. Want the holos to go on missions? They don't even need to walk to a docking site. They can just transfer to the ship. Holographic crews (perhaps with humanoid captains) are thus quick to get to the ship, bypassing any opponents at intervening sites. Not all Holoprograms can play on a facility, but the game text here means they can all play on a Nor (with the limit that only one can be played per Holosuite). Some are basically only concerned with personnel downloads, now dangerous thanks to Shape-Shift Inhibitor. There's Baker Street, which can grab a number of personnel with over-arching abilities. We're talking card manipulation, bonus points on certain missions, and abilities that affect a Baker Street played on table. There's Noah's Mountain Retreat, which goes a little further by also allowing the download and replacement of flesh and blood versions of the DS9 mains. Get their holographic versions in play first, then turn them into more well-rounded personnel. All of Deadwood's special effects won't stay useful on a Nor unless you start moving it from location to location, but its SECURITY measures will certainly be on display. The Office of Dixon Hill in a Holosuite gives you a safe place to request the "item". And the Fortress of Doom? Sorry, its personnel can only report in the Delta Quadrant (though you could theoretically report them to a Holodeck Door and transfer them here, but that's a bit convoluted for an effect better used on a mobile ship). The danger of course is that if your Nor changes hands (if it is commandeered), the new owner can pull the plug on your Holoprogram. You must also seed Quark's Bar, which may not be too useable if you're not playing Ferengi (and the Nor isn't Ferengi until you commandeer it). You could seed a Holosuite on another player's Nor, but would only get one turn out of any Holoprogram before it was shut down. Enough for one download but little else. Still, those NA holograms are compatible with anyone, so you can use the Holosuite to report your holos before tranferring them to your docked ship, whether you control the station or not. Hurt a lot by All Good Things, Holosuite's only really useful to certain decks. A 3.2.

TOTAL: 13.87 (69.33%) If only it had more Holoprograms to choose from.

#1794-Hunting Group, Objective, HDA
-Seeds or plays on your non-[Hir] space mission with a point box. You may attempt it using these requirements:
Alpha-Hirogen + [Hir] ship + (CUNNING + STRENGTH) > mission points x3. When you solve mission, you may commandeer an opposing ship present (capturing opposing personnel aboard) if your total WEAPONS there > twice its SHIELDS. Discard objective.

PICTURE: Sharp, clean, detailed, it looks good, though my gut instinct is to think Voyager is part of the hunting party (from "Flesh and Blood") rather than the prey (from "The Killing Game"). This no doubt lies in the fact the ships aren't moving, more in an Outgunned situation than anything else. It's good, but far from dynamic enough. A 3.4.

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

TREK SENSE: An all-purpose Objective for the Hirogen, it deals with chasing down a ship full of prey. A sensible goal for hunters, and one that really shouldn't be limited by location. Any patch of space could have a ship to run down. Hirogen missions already have something for them to do, so you can't play the card there. The actual mission's goals are more important. Now, they call it a Hunting Group, but in fact, you only need one ship to conduct the chase. Maybe the Group is meant to represent the hunters themselves? Yes, that works, as you need an Alpha-Hirogen to coordinate the effort and lead the hunters. A successful hunt is a matter of outwitting and outfighting your prey, so the combination of Cunning and Strength certainly fits. A mechanical artifact here is that the amount of attributes needed is related to the mission points. In essence, it means that the prey to be captured is as difficult to find as it would be to complete the mission. I like that the score is relative to the difficulty of the hunt, but the link to the mission's points is pretty artificial. Sometimes, the prey is known (and thus may not readily match the points after all). When? When an opposing ship is actually present at the location. Indeed, if you complete the objective and have way more Weapons than it has Shields, you may skip all steps and immediately commandeer the ship and capture its entire crew. Sensible in that a ship might well be overpowered in that situation, but wouldn't the target ship at least get a chance to defend itself normally? Storytelling-wise, we never saw this particular capture on the show, so the mechanic saves face that way. There's a lot to like here, and I easily give up a 4.1.

STOCKABILITY: The Hirogen have exactly three missions that are specifically for them. Three. When you're trying to work against mission theft, that's paltry. No matter, you can turn any space mission into a Hirogen mission with Hunting Group. The mission can have only one attemptability icon or have very specific and difficult requirements. It protects you from theft and doesn't matter a jot. You will always attempt using requirements you have on hand. Alpha-Hirogen are key personnel you are bound to have on your ship. A ship... Ha! How easy is that? You will certainly have one at this SPACE mission. CUNNING and STRENGTH? All personnel have those, and the Hirogen have plenty to spare in both attributes. It's not hard to get more either: the Hirogen Disruptor Rifle adds +6 per personnel to the required total. A couple of Rifles should make even the most highly priced mission a piece of cake. The card can also be used as a trap. Play on a location, fly a few ships there (three Hunting Vessels with matching commanders should give you plenty of WEAPONS, though in fact two may be enough), make an opposing ship stop there, solve, and reap the rewards. Those rewards include an extra ship (perhaps for use in the next Hunting Group WEAPONS check) and as many captives as there were crewmembers. Alpha-Hirogen can escort captives right to the bonus point area once per turn. Paints a pretty picture, doesn't it? Don't forget to solve a planet mission too, but for space, this is an excellent option. Goes for a high 4.8.

TOTAL: 16.4 (82%) Worth hunting for.

#1807-I'm a Doctor, Not a Bartender, Interrupt, HDA
"Though happy to celebrate Kes' second birthday, The Doctor's mood soured when he became trapped in the Chez Sandrine holoprogram during an encounter with a spatial distortion ring."
-Adds Anthropology to one MEDICAL personnel until end of turn. OR Downloads a bartender to replace (discard) your MEDICAL personnel in play (or vice versa).

PICTURE: A nice, warm, antique feel, with the Doctor being dressed for the period, but still letting his blue collar show. Charming, if a little static. How about 3.4?

LORE: Very specific about the happenstance of the picture, and not really generic enough, but the story is entirely told in the three lines supplied. It's a good effort, though with no fireworks. A 3.

TREK SENSE: The thing about these cards (I'm a Doctor, Not... cards) is that the doctor really IS that other thing, or can at least become it for a while. In the case of bartending, McCoy himself on many occasions brought booze to the captain's quarters, as did Captain Pike's doctor in "The Cage". For medicinal purposes, and all that. But what's important about bartending? Well, alcool loosens tongues, and the more familiar, relaxed atmosphere created makes patients share things they otherwise wouldn't (just ask Quark). In essence, it gives a Medical personnel the psychologist's skill of Anthropology. The skill is used in too many ways to be just a bartender's trick, so this justification doesn't always hold up, but there you go. The card can also be used to refuse the job and download a real bartender as the Medical makes an exit, but the Medical exits way too far by discarding. Where's he going? And I don't see why a bartender would be discarded to download a Medical in the vice-versa option. Maybe the Medical brings in a bottle and asks the bartender to step aside, but that goes against the title of the card, if not necessarily its spirit. Some cutesy effects, but not everything checks out. A 2.9 is more than enough.

STOCKABILITY: Giving Anthropology to a MEDICAL personnel for just one turn (possibly 2 if you use End Transmission) isn't much of an effect, and though it could be useful in a pinch, it's only really useful to Dr. McCoy (OS) because he can suspend play to download the card, thereby thwarting an Anthopology dilemma you weren't prepared for. Otherwise, well, you gotta really need that one instance of Anthropology to waste an Interrupt on it. Better, perhaps, is the download of a bartender in exchange for a MEDICAL. There are some excellent bartenders out there like Guinan and Quark - and the Mirror universe has Messrs. Nog and Quark - which can be brought in for the price of a Simon Tarses or Dr. Borts. When going vice-versa, the Kazon, with their few MEDICALs stand to win from discarding the universal Saldin for a unique MEDICAL personnel like Haron or Loran. Bottom line though, the card is useful to some decks (Enterprise decks, the Kazon, possibly Mirror and Ferengi decks), and near useless to others. There just aren't enough bartenders to make it worthwhile. A 2.5.

TOTAL: 11.8 (59%) NOW, I need a drink.

#1819-Iden, Personnel, Bajoran/Hirogen, holographic, Delta Quadrant, HDA
"Charismatic but megalomaniacal hologram. Escaped the Hirogen. Seeks to create a new religion based on his deliverance of holograms from oppression and slavery."
-VIP, Leadership, Anthropology, Diplomacy, Treachery, Astrophysics; SD Children of Light; Command icon

PICTURE: This cocky close-up of Iden shows off his charisma very well, and the shadows remind us of his dark side. The leader here has some followers, though the Breen may be a bit distracting. Still makes a strong showing at 3.6. Best border goes to Hirogen, which shares more of its palette with the picture.

LORE: All the important points are hit, including a description of his personality. Nothing spectacular, but well done at 3.4.

TREK SENSE: The Children of Light's dual-affiliations can be explained in that the Hirogen icon puts them at a time before they were liberated, as well as allows them to work together as a group despite the different species they are meant to represent (they use Hirogen ships and equipment after all). The other icon, here Bajoran, represents how they were programmed to behave. But would they really rejoin that affiliation if they had the chance? While I admit Iden was programmed with Bajoran faith and religious rites, I don't think he would trust any flesh and blood person, not even a Bajoran, so the answer would seem to be no. It's especially strange then that he would be PRIMARILY Bajoran. Another thing that bothers me is his classification. I understand that the other holograms may see him as some kind of messiah, but his uniform and actual role on his ship make him an Officer. A way to finally give the Hirogen a VIP? That's no reason to ignore Trek Sense. Skills are better chosen: Leadership (and the Command icon) is obvious, and his dealing with the Doctor in particular smacks of Diplomacy. The same could be said of his bringing together holograms probably designed not to work together because of programmed species bias, where no doubt Anthropology also plays a part. Astrophysics comes up in the plan to ambush ships from a nebula, and Treachery is a comment on his tactics and megalomania. As founder of the Children of Light, he may download that card. His Integrity is on the treacherous side, but also has a selfless component that keeps it from going too far down. His Cunning is very high, as he was able to outsmart his programmers and escape the Hirogen. Strength is as high as possible for a Bajoran "template". The hard start keeps him at 3.3.

STOCKABILITY: While Iden could theoretically be used with Bajorans, only their pricy Warship has a Holodeck, and using Holodeck Door isn't worth it unless they also bring in a lot of Non-Aligned holograms. In any case, his rightful place is the Olarra, which he commands. It allows holograms to report aboard, and when he's there, it may be Plaqued and Logged to the tune of 10-12-11. Planning on using the Children of Light? I'd seed the card to make sure that "treaty" is in play from the start, and use his download to capture opposing holograms either present, or in a ship he's just damaged with the Olarra. They're just a Brainwash away from serving the Children. A minor ability since you can't expect holograms to be part of your opponent's strategy. Still, there it is. It could be used against you, of course, but it's doubtful someone would plan on doing so. With the Children (as opposed to the Hirogen), he can enable mission attempts at Bajoran missions. Iden has a great collection of skills for any mission attempt, with no stinkers in the bunch. What's more, he can add to those skills with Rituals of the Hunt. Yes, as long as he remains Hirogen, he can use that card to add a prey's skills. That card and Relics of the Chase also allows him to capture personnel, and Relics to score points from his kills. The strongest of the Children, he scores a 4 here.

TOTAL: 14.3 (71.5%) Strange to see him classified as a Bajoran, but there you go.

#1831-In the Zone, Incident, Referee icon, HDA
-Seeds or plays on table. If a non-Borg player scores more than 50 points during a single turn (including this turn), those points in excess of 50 do not count toward winning. While your score is exactly 50 points, each of your ships has double RANGE and SHIELDS. Also, nullifies End Transmission and Preparation, and each player may call "Devidian Door" only during their turn (and only once per turn).

PICTURE: The title refers to O'Brien's long streak of wins at darts, so the dart board with a dart smack dab in the middle makes sense. Unfortunately, it looks like it's floating in nothingness (or maybe OS sets for "The Empath" ;-). That patch of gold light doesn't help matters any. The two red lights that are in their "off" position, though the product of the board's flickering, look like mistakes. It's fun enough, but ultimately disappointing as an image. A 2.6.

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

TREK SENSE: Referee-icon Incidents often have some trouble meeting Trek Sense standards. In the Zone even has trouble meeting conceptual Trek Sense! See, if you're In the Zone, you score a lot of points at one time. On the board, this would mean hitting close to the center or whatever. But if you make a lot of points, this card may penalize you for it! Being In the Zone here is a very strict space, the 50-mark exactly. (Is that what the center dot is worth?) In such a case, your ships's Range and Shields are inexplicably doubled. Doubling has a relationship with darts, since some parts of the board are "x2", but at the same time, Weapons may more closely be associated with darts. In any case, since points are conceptual themselves, a very specific measure of achievement boosting ship attributes to that degree is ridiculous and pure nonsense. Further, you might reach 50 while not at all In the Zone, with a few points each turn. The card has three other effects. It nullifies End Transmission, relating the idea of the streak never ending. It nullifies Preparation, because if you're In the Zone, you don't need to prepare. The last effect would force you to call Devidian Door only during your turn. Only while "in your zone"? No real idea, since this is just a tacked-on magic bullet anyway. The Ref icon has no Trek Sense, not really, but I consider it "sensical" if it truly attacks abusive strategies. In its case, it goes after lock-out strategies that would boost up mission points to more than 50 (a bit unfair since there IS a 60-point mission out there), or using unstoppers and other cards to get to 100 points on a single turn. These are hard enough to put into action that "abuse" may be a bit harsh. Abuse of Preparation (a kind of Scan), End Transmission and Devidian Door (limiting scams where you would delay the play of the latter card through use of the former). Minor or debatable stuff. A low one then at 0.4.

STOCKABILITY: Referee-icon cards are always good, not only because they can be manipulated ably by Q the Referee, but also because they affect the meta-game so well. Some aren't as important as others though, and that's how I'd describe In the Zone. If you really are expecting your opponent to go after more than 50 points in a single turn, then sure, by all means include it. But remember that it affects you too, so when you get your chance at a wounded Borg Cube on a turn in which you already solved a mission, that opportunity may be wasted. Good thing Ref-Q can recycle it when that happens, eh? But also realize that 50+ points in a turn isn't something that's so easily done. It takes time to set up such a situation, so your opponent has already handicapped himself while you more speedily grab hold of smaller points packages. Usually, you'll be denying your opponent 5-10 points that went over 50 anyway. Of course, since a one-turn win is possible, In the Zone can nullify as much as half your opponent's points. Did he have a backup strategy planned? The situation is possible, just not very likely. In the Zone also invalidates End Transmission (a niche card anyway) and Preparation (taking away a limited scan-type effect). Time to break out those Lacks of Preparation, eh? To protect some dilemma combos, it can be useful, but again, it affects both players. It also limits Devidian Door to once per turn, only DURING its player's turn. Could cut down on some types of abuse. The one "offensive" effect here is the doubling of RANGE and SHIELDS on all your ships while you're at 50 points. Go for two small 25-pointers (kind of re-energizes those) and then go almost anywhere on the spaceline, or attack any ship with little fear of being destroyed or even damaged. Doesn't do a thing for WEAPONS, but the high RANGEs could make an armada rendez-vous at the right spot. Best shot: Hit a Borg Cube to get you to 95 or 100 points. Wham! The defensive effects are ok without being too necessary, but you could use the card for more than that. Its "zone" is 3.7.

TOTAL: 8.93 (44.67%) Ooops, the shoulder just gave out.

#1843-Jem'Hadar Shrouding, Incident, HDA
-Seeds or plays on table. During your turn, you may place here one or two Jem'Hadar from hand or in play, then draw a card. (These Jem'Hadar are not in play.) OR Plays once every turn (for free) on an opponent's Away Team (unless it is on a homeworld). Initiate battle against that Away Team by playing up to an equal number of personnel to it from your Jem'Hadar Shrouding on table. Discard incident.

PICTURE: The end of "To the Death" with the Jem'Hadar going after the renegades, it features the "Predator" effect with visible, unshrouded Jem'Hadar in the background. Ok, even pleasant, but a bit of a mess visually. A 3, but no more.

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

TREK SENSE: It's the same principle as Engage Cloak, but for personnel. Does it work as well? Well, I still like the way the Jem'Hadar (replacing cloaked ships) are made invisible to all players by letting them play to a copy of this card on table. It creates the right kind of uncertainty and even paranoia. The Jem'Hadar may then unshroud and attack any Away Team. What's really missing is a way to explain how the Jem'Hadar were smuggled to the location in the first place. No ship need ever have been there, and in fact, you can use this to cross Jem'Hadar over to the Alpha Quadrant without the Wormhole being open! I'd say that, and the fact they can't bring their hand weapons with them, are the major problems. On the upside though is the idea that Jem'Hadar in play can shroud again, not just the ones in hand, though then you might wonder how they manage to get to another planet after that. Looking into the various elements, many of them turn out to be purely mechanical in nature, usually to balance the effects. For example, there's no real reason Jemmies can only shroud in ones or twos. Also, no real reason why you then get a card draw (the invisibility opens up possibilities maybe?). The free play is fine, since it means the Jem'Hadar were always there and ready to pounce. The attack has to be on an Away Team, not a crew, though couldn't Jem'Hadar use Invasive Transporters to get aboard a ship and then shroud? The incident just isn't specific enough about Jem'Hadar travel lanes to justify anything like this unfortunately. It's easier here to believe that Jem'Hadar couldn't remain hidden long enough on a ship, and the same seems to go for a homeworld where a Dominion ship would definitely be noticed. But if you do bring a Dominion ship to a homeworld, why couldn't it have dropped a few invisible soldiers there? Or what if they beam to the homeworld and then shroud. Why can't they reappear there? The equal number thing might be a bit of warrior's code, if you like, since Jem'Hadar don't really believe in teaming up on single opponents. Quite the contrary, they like to be one against many. Another note: White Deprivation should prevent shrouding, but it doesn't. Where does that leave us? Well, without a clear way for Jem'Hadar to travel from one spot to the other, there's a rather large piece of the puzzle missing, and in the final equation, the card gets a 2.4.

STOCKABILITY: A Dominion assault deck has a nice little tool in Jem'Hadar Shrouding, though it does require some preparation. After all, you need to seed (better than playing here) a copy, and then start putting Jem'Hadar there from hand or from play, and you can only do 2 at a time at the most. Of course, you can still report your Vorta and Founders with your regular card play. Now, when your opponent forms an Away Team, you can report all your Jemmies (but no more than the number of personnel in the Away Team) to attack it, for free! Massive reporting, though of course, those personnel are now stuck in a battle, and some may not make it out of there alive. Still, my confidence in the Jem'Hadar's battle ability is pretty high, and battle-savvy Jemmies like Ikat'ika, Ixtana'Rax and Toman'torax can be a big help, especially since hand weapons will be out of reach. This could be a fun way to report GQ Jem'Hadar off-campus, as it were, even to the Delta Quadrant, since there's no limit to where they may unshroud so long as there's an opposing Away Team there. Hope that your opponent can't play White Deprivation though, because Ketracel-White, for its part, doesn't shroud, nor do Vorta. Whether it's an issue or not, Jem'Hadar can then re-shroud, though slowly, to attack again somewhere else, but the time it takes to make them invisible again isn't that permissive. You do need to solve missions at some point, but perhaps you can do so without Jem'Hadar at all, running Shrouding as a side-strategy to impede your opponent's progress. Note too that the Jemmies can come to the rescue of one of your crews under attack by intruders on your ship or commandeered/Treaty-bound Nor. Good for side-action, and not that costly, but mostly straying from the point of the game. A still strong 3.7.

TOTAL: 12.13 (60.65%) Pretty far below Engage Cloak's 15+.

#1855-John Watson, Personnel, Non-Aligned, HDA
"London physician and companion of Sherlock Holmes. Recounted a full five dozen of the sleuth's cases. On the holodeck, Geordi La Forge was Data's Watson."
-MEDICAL; If with Sherlock Holmes, you may discard your hand at start of turn; ENGINEER, Physics

PICTURE: There's something a little ridiculous about this pic, and it's not just Geordi's anachronistic VISOR. What we have here is a blind man reading a book. A cute touch, in the same vein as Roddenberry having Laforge drive the ship. The background is nice and rich. A fun 4 then.

LORE: Mentioning Sherlock Holmes is of interest to 221B Baker Street, and the Geordi Laforge persona has to be mentioned. Otherwise, a fair attempt at describing the Doctor from the stories (of which there were apparently 60). A good enough 3.5.

TREK SENSE: Well... Like most holodeck "roles", there are a number of severe problems with this card. They unfortunately try to represent the role as if it were the real person, and at the same time, try to represent it as the personnel playing that role, really succeeding at neither. The "real" John Watson would be Non-Aligned, yes, coming from a pre-Federation time, but Geordi would never willingly work with the Cardassians, Ferengi, etc., would he? What's he doing playing holo-novels on enemy ships? In fact, a Holodeck need not even be present for him to adopt this role. What gives? The real Watson would of course be Medical, but where did Geordi pick it up? If the computer simulates this knowledge for the purposes of the Holmes scenarios, then why can he use it to heal real patients? And he's not just John Watson, as the Engineer and Physics attest. Those are Geordi's skills. The first is his regular classification, and the second is relevant to holographics. Seeing as he mistakenly "programmed" the sentient Moriarty hologram, maybe Computer Skill would have been more relevant, but then it's really more anachronistic than the skills given. Attributes are those of the real Geordi, though they can mostly apply to Watson, with a hero's Integrity, a detective's Cunning, and, well, too much Strength. And the special skill? Quite mechanical, it's hard to match it to something real in-game. A partnership with Sherlock Holmes is enforced, sure, but the hand discard is problematic. Best I can do: It's meant to represent a new story beginning (the new hand/story is curtosy of Holmes). Really hard to go higher than 1.4.

STOCKABILITY: Thanks to a Sherlock Holmes mention in his lore, he can download to a ship with 221B Baker Street played on it. From there, he can of course be turned into another version of the Geordi Laforge persona, or he can join Holmes in the various manipualtions that personnel and his Holoprogram allow. In the latter case, Holmes allows him to discard your entire hand, and that personnel's special skill allows you to draw a new one (equal to opponent's). Now this isn't a bad trick to get a full hand after depleting your own. Discard the couple cards you have left (maybe after storing interesting stuff in a Storage Capsule) to draw a full 7 or how ever many your opponent has. Interesting, though seems like a lot of set-up to do this. Thankfully, Watson and Holmes have some good skills and attributes of their own, including Watson's two classifications (the best in the game, in fact). He's also "any Geordi" if you want to play the Ocular Implants on him. And because he IS a version of the Geordi Laforge persona, he can be switched for a number of cards. With Sherlock Holmes, he can become the combined Data and Geordi, and there are the skillful Premiere and FC versions. All Federation versions, but nothing's stopping other affiliations from using the NA model. His abilities are good, but not overwhelming, so a 3.4.

TOTAL: 12.3 (61.5%) Sorry, but Holodeck Adventures poorly managed Trek Sense in these cases.

#1867-Kar'meth, Personnel, Klingon, universal, Delta Quadrant, HDA
"One of the secondary bridge officers on IKC Voq'leng. Has already begun training his successor; the Nehret has been known to claim his family quickly."
-SCIENCE, Biology, Stellar Cartography; Staff icon

PICTURE: I like the red cabling behind Kar'meth, but his own look feels articifial and painterly (there was some digital manipulation, as Nirok was removed from the right side of the image, so maybe a little cleanup too). A bit clumsy, even if the mood is there. A 2.8.

LORE: Universality is barely acknowledged ("one of..."), but it's there. We also get a rare mention of the Nehret disease, though of course, it's avoided in the game text. Still, the whole thing about training a successor is excellent backstory for this invented character. Gets to 3.5.

TREK SENSE: A universal bridge officer from the DQ-based Voq'leng scores a Staff icon and a job not taken by better-seen personnel: Science. That's fine, and he makes a natural support personnel. Both his skills are scientific, one for planetary excursions, the other for space missions. Biology is appropriate to someone who'd probably like to see the Nehret eradicated, while Stellar Cartography is generally useful to a crew living in deep space and looking for a new home. It's unfortunate that the Nehret has no real effect on Kar'meth, but maybe his relatively low Strength is one. His Integrity is fine for a universal Klingon, and his Cunning for a Science officer. Can't do a lot with these universal support personnel, but what's here generally works. A 3.9.

STOCKABILITY: Being a support personnel, Kar'meth need not be limited to reporting to the DQ, though he can benefit from Home Away From Home on the Voq'leng, of course (he plays for free there). A good SCIENCE support personnel for any Klingon deck, then, he'll find plenty to do at Klingon missions, both planetary and spacebound (though the universal Colony Preparations jumps out at me here). His skill combination is unique, but he's closest to T'Vor (though Biology is a bit better than Geology) and Wo'Din (but Biology is rarer than Diplomacy). No flaws in the attributes either. And need I mention he discards for an extra 5 points at Establish Settlement? Well, he does. Amounts to a 3.5.

TOTAL: 13.7 (68.5%) 1E had its own "weenies", y'know.

#1879-Kejal, Personnel, Cardassian/Hirogen, holographic, Delta Quandrant, HDA
"Cardassian hologram created by the Hirogen. Self-taught engineer of advanced skill. Her name, the Bajoran word for 'freedom,' was given to her by Iden."
-ENGINEER, Computer Skill, Transporter Skill, Honor; SD Holo-projectors; Staff icon

PICTURE: The backgound and even the lighting are definitely in the Hirogen/Cardassian palette (in fact, there's very little difference between the two frames' aesthetics), and I like the way she's positioned between two light fixtures. There's a sense that they're her emitters. The lighting effects are bit strong and splotchy, and there's not much personality to be derived from the bust shot, but this is pleasant enough at 3.4.

LORE: Each sentence in Kejal's lore has some sort of paradox. She's a Cardassian hologram, but made by the Hirogen (so isn't she a Hirogen hologram?). She's self-taught, yet managed to acquire advanced skill. Not impossible, of course, but peculiar. The two terms are certainly in opposition to one another. Finally, we have the driving paradox in her Bajoran name meant to symbolically undo the evil of the Cardassians. An interesting tack, and worth its 3.7.

TREK SENSE: First things first, the dual-affiliation of Hirogen holograms is still a problem. It hinges on my believing that Kejal (with that name, even) would be welcomed with open arms on a Cardassian ship (not that they're usually equipped with Holodecks). Or that the template taken from Voyager was of Cardassian origin (slim chance). When the Hirogen holos escaped their masters, they should have reverted to Non-Aligned status, as far as I'm concerned. Kejal in particular wasn't very Cardassian even in attitude. As for the rest, it all seems fine. She's an Engineer, has the Computer Skill to program holograms, the Transporter Skill to kidnap the Doctor's matrix, and the Honor to feel bad about it ;-). She downloads the very piece of equipment (I know it's technically an Event) she built on the show. Attributes are in fine shape too. I'd say only the affiliations are iffy, so she does score 3.5.

STOCKABILITY: The Children of Light's ENGINEER is good if only for her download, allowing them to drop anchor at a planet mission, in particular Establish Home Planet for 55 points, and she has 2 of the required skills. Speaking of skills, she's the only Hirogen holo with Transporter Skill and Honor, not that ENGINEER and Computer Skill are all that common either. You'll find plenty to do for ENGINEERs in the Delta Quadrant anyway. She certainly uses Divert Power to its fullest potential. As far as using her in a Cardassian deck, remember that they don't have any Holodecks on their ships, and that Holosuites are not a good place to attempt missions from. On the other hand, Crell Moset is such a good personnel that your Cardies may well use Holodeck Door to give themselves one, and as long as your spending a card on making a ship holo-compatible, why not use other available holos? She's got good skills and attributes there too. A package worth 3.6.

TOTAL: 14.2 (71%) It pays to be nice.

#1891-Leonardo da Vinci, Personnel, Non-Aligned, holographic, Delta Quadrant, HDA
"Renaissance man whose accomplishments as a scientist, artist, mathematician, philosopher, astronomer, inventor, anatomist, and geologist dwarfed all his contemporaries."
-CIVILIAN, SCIENCE, Astrophysics, Biology, Geology, Physics; SD Mona Lisa

PICTURE: John Rhyes-Davies has more than a passing resemblance to Gimli here, and he must be really tired of the long beards by now. I'm afraid it makes him look a little too much like Santa Claus in this shot, though it's otherwise fine. The windows have something of the holodeck grid in them, for example. A 3.2.

LORE: Great stuff even if there's no mention of his being a holo-reproduction. First, it mirrors Jean-Luc Picard's lore by starting with "Renaissance man...", but this time he really is a character from the Renaissance. The long list of hats he wore try to match his long list of skills and are fun. Finally, we get a little easter egg regarding Rhyes-Davies' role as the dwarf Gimli in Lord of the Rings ("dwarfed"). A very fun 4.6.

TREK SENSE: First, I don't like his quadrant icon. Yes, he was used by Janeway in the DQ, but I don't think he was programmed there (like Chaotica, for example). He's an historical Earth figure, and should be able to report to any Fed ship, as far as I'm concerned (though Holodeck Door does fix this). The character is a Civilian, as Leonardo wasn't in any kind of military outfit. His long list of accomplishments is translated into skills with more or less success. He was a scientist (Science), artist (Mona Lisa download, more on this in due time), mathematician (Physics), philosopher (what, no Anthropology?), astronomer (Astrophysics seems a bit much for the Renaissance version of astronomy, Stellar Cartography being much closer), inventor (I'd have liked Engineer), anatomist (Biology), and geologist (Geology). The skills don't all mesh perfectly, but I won't dispute that his great mind is worth the 9 in Cunning. As a mentor to Janeway, the high Integrity is also appropriate. As for the Strength, John Rhyes-Davies paints him (pun not intended) as a burly man, so a 4 doesn't seem over the top (to at least push flying machines off hills). And that leaves the Mona Lisa download. Thematically, this is perfect. Sensically? Sorry, but this isn't the real Leonardo. He could paint a copy of the Mona Lisa (with real paint on real canvas I'm sure), but the Artifact's effect hinges on the painting being the original. Hard to do a character like this justice, and there's a valiant try, so it does reach a 3.

STOCKABILITY: Just like on the show, Leonardo is a very good candidate for a Mobile Emitter. He's a got a lot of skills and high attributes. CIVILIAN isn't the most useful of classifications, but the SCIENCE makes up for it. Along with that he's got 4 scientific skills for both planet and space missions. Well tuned to his native quadrant, there's a lot of use for all of them, and he can complete Reinitialize Warp Reaction all by his lonesome. As for the special download, getting Artifacts without having to solve a mission is always useful, but in this case, it's a real nasty trick in waiting. Thanks to the way special downloads work, Leonardo can suspend play just as your ship is being destroyed by an opponent to get Mona Lisa and drop that opponent's points by 25. Ouch! Won't work on the Borg, but with the rather aggressive Kazon, Hirogen and Vidiians in the neighborhood, you can expect some ship battle from time to time. Hey, da Vinci can also walk through a Holodeck Door to work with ANY affiliation, so this will work as well against Klingons, et al. The ship he's aboard may even benefit from protection if this trick is known to your opponent. All very nice and worth 4.1.

TOTAL: 14.9 (74.5%) A great man and card.

#1903-Lewis Zimmerman, Personnel, Federation, HDA
"Father of modern holography. Designed the E.M.H. series. Was briefly romantically involved with Leeta in 2373. Suffering from acute subcellular degradation."
-ENGINEER; Your compatible [Holo] cards may report here (for free, once each turn); ENGINEER, Computer Skill x2; Staff icon

PICTURE: Zimmerman's seen better days, and if it's not a very distinguished pic, it is easier to tell him apart from the EMH this way. The expression is perfect for the character, of course, though the rest is a dull, standard bust shot. Hits 3.3.

LORE: The whole starts a bit grandiose, but that's the size of the man's ego. The second is more reasonable and factual. The last phrase explains his current appearance, but his DS9 role is not forgotten, with Leeta getting a mention. A good 3.3 too.

TREK SENSE: If he invented holographics as we know them (with semi-sentient holograms), then he deserves to be both a super-Engineer and a super-Computer Skill. No complaints from me there. Because he programs/invents so many holograms, the ability to report one for free each turn makes sense too. Heck, this guy would rather hang out with holograms than people. Though he doesn't serve on a ship, the Staff icon tells us he could. That's ok, I think, for someone who lives on a space station. Many systems are similar. Attributes? Well, he's not a bad guy, but very selfish and anti-social, so the 6 in Integrity fits. The Cunning is as high as it should be (could be higher if he was more reasonable). And the Strength shows us a man who's lost his vitality. A good version of the character, it deserves a high 4.4.

STOCKABILITY: If you're using a lot of holograms, there are couple of flesh-and-blood personnel you would be interested in. Zimmerman is one of them, as he allows one hologram to report for free to his location on each of your turns. That's a massive advantage. You need a "real" personnel to protect holos from Deactivation. And it's not just personnel either - there's also Equipment. Zimmerman could be a good way to create an army of Satan's Robots, for example. Zimmerman can certainly just stay at the site of a Holoprogram to enable their strategies more quickly. Aside from the holographic possibilities (and the Feds have the most holograms), he's got two super-skills to bring to the table. ENGINEER remains one of the better classifications, and 2 ENGINEER is a rarer find than 2 MEDICAL. Even better, the 2 Computer Skill means he can be downloaded at the start of the game via Quark's Isolinear Rods for cheap and early holos. That, and he passes Ferengi Ingenuity. Good CUNNING too. Now, holograms have their strengths and weaknesses, and not every deck will make use of them, so he's a niche personnel. A 3.8.

TOTAL: 14.8 (74%) Given the importance he (thinks he) deserves.

#1915-Lily, Personnel, Non-Aligned, AU, HDA
"In her time aboard USS Enterprise-E, Lily Sloane adjusted admirably to rayguns, force fields, bionic zombies, and the holographic world of Dixon Hill."
-CIVILIAN; If with Dixon Hill, once per game may cancel a personnel battle here; ENGINEER, Physics

PICTURE: Really unusual colors and the fact that Lily seems to "float" over the background image add to the artificial nature of the holodeck environment, but somehow, it looks oddly lit for what is supposed to be a ballroom. Though a tighter shot might have been more elegant, the busy crowd seen does make it seem like Lily has to deal with many new things at once. I'm really of two minds about this one, but generally, the aesthetic flaws have a true storytelling function. A 3.5 then.

LORE: *Stands up, applauds* "Holodeck" versions of personae are too often about the character played, and thus difficult to integrate into the regular Star Trek world. Not so here, and the entertaining list of Lily's experiences (bionic zombies and rayguns are straight from her mouth) clearly make this the "clued-in" Lily, Lily AFTER the temporal interference. An excellent and fun 4.5.

TREK SENSE: More than just a "holodeck persona", and that's what makes her work. Lily Sloane is the Lily from her time, part of the crew of the Phoenix (her special download is the only anachronism). Plain, simple Lily is the version that knows about the future, that's been on the Enterprise and has fought the Borg. I can believe this version would be on a ship. I couldn't believe the same thing about Lily - Ballroom Dancer (my main beef with Dixon Hill, Captain Proton, et al.). She has all the same skills: She's a Civilian, yes, but also one of the Engineers who worked on the Phoenix. And engineering the first warp drive would indeed require Physics. She loses the Staff icon here because she's a fish out of water. The Staff icon on the other version was in fact the mistake, since most ships in the game would have been from her future, and thus unstaffable. The attributes haven't moved from the baseline version, though Integrity could have been a bit higher for her making Picard see the light. As for the special skill, it's more thematic than anything else, because it  doesn't really hold water. In the movie, she ended up convincing Picard to stop fighting the Borg and blow up the ship instead. Besides, her powers of persuasion would have to be used on opposing personnel, not her ally. But here, it's not Picard we're talking about, but Dixon Hill. On the Holodeck, she hit Nicky the Nose on the head, cancelling that battle... but I'm afraid she was IN a battle by that point. Fighting fire with fire?  Drops the card down to 2.5, but it would have been much lower if she'd been treated as a holonovel character.

STOCKABILITY: Well, she's not the first personnel to key off her special skill from the excellent Dixon Hill, but the problem is that he's an ultra-rare personnel. I certainly don't have a copy, and there are just too many effects in the game that will only work with that ultra-rare. But say you do have Dix. Lily will allow you to cancel one personnel battle per game. It's not a game-breaking effect. Really, you could be attacked by the same party on the same turn. What it does is buy you some time, a chance to escape from the assault team plaguing you. If you don't have Dixon Hill, you're sadder about not having access to Carlos' skill, I think. Lily is more a kind of one-shot insurance to protect Dix from attacks, protecting his important special skill. While part of a crew or Away Team, she does bring ENGINEER and Physics, which are both good skills, and though her attributes aren't great, they're not outright weaknesses. Any reason to switch versions? Well, you might report Lily Sloane to Montana Missile Complex, staff the Phoenix, score the points, and then want to go on mission attempts. Ok, but if you don't have Dixon Hill, Lily Sloane gives you the same skills and attributes AND a Staff icon. I'm not sure I care even if I have Dix out. I can muster up a 2.

TOTAL: 12.5 (62.5%) Lily Sloane had scored 64% all that time ago.

#1927-Lonzak, Personnel, Non-Aligned, holographic, Delta Quadrant, HDA
"Inferior serving as bodyguard to Chaotica. Enforces his liege's rule, imprisoning infidels in the Dungeon of Pain or Mines of Mercury. Often seizes Constance Goodheart."
-SECURITY; Worth 5 points for each female captive present (double if Chaotica also present); Law; Staff icon

PICTURE: Always extra decimals for the clever black and white templates, and in addition, Lonzak is caught in a perfectly appropriate melodramatic pose and expression. The fake-looking set pieces and ridiculous costume don't hurt the concept either. A good 3.6.

LORE: Some excellent nuggets in here, including the idea of calling him an "inferior". The rest drips with Saturday Matinee atmosphere with those purple-prose locations. I also like how he "often" seizes Constance, a nice comment on serials, and there's the useful keyword "bodyguard". A high 4.4.

TREK SENSE: I don't think Lonzak could actually Staff a ship, but turn the interface into something from his program, and yes, he no doubt can work the controls. As a bodyguard, he's definitely Security, and the Law allows him to enforce Chaotica's rule. Of course, throw him into the real legal arena and it won't quite work. Do you really believe he could help during a Drumhead? It's the usual problem with holograms that aren't self-aware (or at least aware they are holograms on a starship). Their skills just don't always apply to the real world. Lonzak's special skill gives him a special goal that CAN work in the real world, especially if you set up your brig on your holodeck (hey, *I* would). Lonzak is programmed to grab the "defenseless" girls, so for him, detaining such captives is a goal worthy of points. If he was under orders from Chaotica, then that's a double-incentive. I think this is a good one, full of flavor, but still works in the "real world". He's got the low Integrity of a serial villain, and as a henchman, isn't too smart either. I might even have gone lower. Strength's appropriate. The usual holographic troubles can't keep this one lower than 3.5.

STOCKABILITY: Lonzak can provide a fast-downloading SECURITY (Defend Homeworld) with the rare Law for any affiliation, as long as it has Holodeck-capability (actual or Doorway-enabled), but as is often the case, the strength of this hologram is in his special skill and side-advantages. In this case, Lonzak is one of those cards that's meant to work best with the evil Chaotica. In this case, the mention of that personnel makes him downloadable to Holoprogram: The Fortress of Doom. Chaotica's all about causing problems for your opponent, so the Holoprogram makes missions harder to attempt, the despot himself can shoo away enemy holograms, and his love Arachnia lowers opposing SHIELDS. Thanks to Bodyguards, Lonzak can protect either of these two VIPs from personnel battle if need be (and is great for A Fast Ship). Whether Chaotica is present or not, Lonzak's a good SECURITY to have watching over your female captives, since each one is worth 5 points. Kidnappers will certainly help you there, as will Now Would Be a Good Time. Try for any capture strategy that gives you a choice. Lonzak can come in late in the game to be "worth" the points. And if Chaotica is also there? They're 10 points apiece. Man, that could be a sound round-the-corner strategy for the Cardassians or Romulans. Lots of fun to be had, and so hits 3.7.

TOTAL: 15.2 (76%) Very fun.

#1939-Madam Pulaski, Personnel, Non-Aligned, HDA
"Katherine Pulaski entered the holodeck on a bet that Data could not solve a Sherlock Holmes-style mystery without already knowing the outcome."
-CIVILIAN; Unique missions seeded by both players are worth +10 points if you complete them; MEDICAL

PICTURE: Rich colors and good costume detail make this a nice pic, even if the focus isn't as crisp as it could be. I think a 3.3 should do.

LORE: The lore tells the beginning of the story, but doesn't give away the ending. That's fine, though a little plain. It also makes it clear that she started the chain of events that created the sentient Moriarty hologram. I do like the "Madam" title, matching the 19th-century Guinan's. And of course, the mention of Sherlock Holmes is important. All of that brings us to a fair 3.4.

TREK SENSE: The usual problems crop up, as only the skills and abilities relevant to the holoprogram are mentioned. That's thematically sound, but does Pulaski actually lose the use of her skills, affiliation and staffing icons just by donning the costume? After all, missions will be attempted normally, not "in-character". As such, Pulaski isn't really Non-Aligned, and isn't really a Civilian. At least they left her one instance of Medical. The attributes likewise do not change from the baseline version, since it was all in the same season anyway. The special skill is again thematic, but it is interesting. It plays with the idea of challenging Data to an original (unique) mystery (mission). The challenge she makes, presumably to her colleagues, makes the mission objectives more important than they were. Pride and egos add 10 points to the mission. The "bet" seems to be: "You can't complete that mission before our opponent does." Fun stuff, and translatable to actual missions given Pulaski's temperament, but it's still a little conceptual (for example, she doesn't need to be present). I appreciate the special skill, but the card has many problems, and so only scores 2.4.

STOCKABILITY: She's one of those "holo-personae" that will work with anyone, and doesn't actually need a Holodeck to survive. If you do have a Holodeck, of course, you can play Holoprogram: 221B Baker Street on it and later download Madam Pulaski in place of your normal card play. MEDICAL is always nice, even if she has little else to offer in the way of skills or even attributes. If you're playing the Federation, you could use Katherine Pulaski for actual dilemma-busting, but Madam Pulaski to avoid the beaming restriction. Timing issues may arise if you want to get the Madam's extra points from such a mission attempt though. Fed or not, Madam Pulaski's main draw is her special skill, but is it enough of a draw to actually include her for it? +10 points on a mission is great, but your opponent must have seeded the same unique mission(s) you have. How likely is that in a game that features more than 200 unique missions? I'm afraid I have little faith in the strategy. A 1.8.

TOTAL: 10.9 (54.5%) To Katherine's 12.1.

#1951-Maleth, Personnel, Vidiian, universal, Delta Quadrant, HDA
"Typical chief of security for large Vidiian bases. Head of perimeter defense for the Avery III installation. Captured Tom Paris, B'Elanna Torres, and Peter Durst in 2371."
-SECURITY, Leadership, Physics, Transporter Skill; Opposing personnel are STRENGTH -1 where present; Command icon

PICTURE: Interesting fact about Maleth - the character would have first appeared on Dilanum's card in the background, but he was CGIed out. He finally appears on his own two expansions later, and this time, another guard has been digitally removed from the image. Fair is fair, I guess :-). Pic's a little blurry, but I like the action shot. And there is some sympathetic correspondance between the cavern rocks and the texture of his face. An interesting 3.4.

LORE: Peter who?!? Kidding aside, universality is well-handled, and the specifics are fine too. I love it when I don't have to work hard to find the pic's origin ;-). A 3.1.

TREK SENSE: Maleth is typical head (Command icon/Leadership) of Security, so those elements fall right into place. The special skill is also security-based, in that it affects personnel battle. Good security measures and tactics drive down opponents' Strength. It's similar to boosting your own personnel, but is more clearly for battling (you can't use the attribute modifications to pass a dilemma or solve a mission), though it's equally odd that opposing personnel would be handicapped by Maleth when dealing with dilemma and mission requirements where he is present. Comes out about the same, but thematically, it's appropriate for the Vidiians to take away something from their opponents. Transporter Skill is part of organ harvest technology, so to use a Vidiian weapon more effectively. Physics isn't really on show, and is probably tacked on because the affiliation had few actual Physicists. Two other Avery III Vidiians have the skill, so perhaps there's something about the assignment :-P. Integrity is at a fair Vidiian level, proposing someone who would do anything to save his race. Cunning may be high for a universal security personnel, but we must remember that he's head of security for a large base, and that Vidiians are an advanced people. Strength, on the other hand, is low for a security personnel, but though he's sick, his capture of three personnel should have given him a bit of a lift (to 5). Didn't scratch my head at much, so a good 3.4.

STOCKABILITY: There are only 16 Vidiians to choose from when constructing a deck, so every personnel counts to some degree, universals especially so. And this universal is pretty good too. SECURITY can only be found on three Vidiians, and though Maleth is physically the weakest, he is the smartest. Besides, other attributes can be brought up by Sorum's Lower Decks download. His Command icon allows him to staff any ship, and Leadership to initiate battles. Physics and Transporter Skill, the latter rare even among other affiliations, round out a fairly good skill pool. Since the Vidiians naturally have less STRENGTH than many affiliations (especially the Kazon and Hirogen in their part of space), any boost in personnel battle will be a help. Vidiian Harvesters add to their STRENGTH, but Maleth lowers opponents', which is as good a bonus. After all, you don't want to go into Organ Harvesting unprotected. If Maleth hangs around your opponent's mission, the penalty will also apply to STRENGTH in dilemma and mission situations. Could be milked for some effect. I'm thinking Flash Plasma Storms for some reason. Maleth certainly has his place, but who doesn't among the Vidiians? :-D Hits 3.7.

TOTAL: 13.6 (68%) Are all the smileys because he's from "Faces"? Why yes, I must admit they are.

#1963-Mila, Personnel, Cardassian, HDA
"Former housekeeper and confidante of Enabran Tain. Hid members of Damar's resistance in her basement. Procured a com unit and other equipment for their use."
-CIVILIAN, MEDICAL, Computer Skill, Honor; SD Any Equipment card

PICTURE: Mila's opening the door to some Jem'Hadar in her last live scene, which is a bit cruel to the character. Never liked that fixture behind her either. I guess my beef is that she was too strong a character to deserve the weak position she's been given here. Otherwise, I do think the shot is interstingly lit, has tension, etc. Comes out at 3.

LORE: The first sentence only tells us what was revealed and confirmed onscreen, though many (including the Trek novelists) have made her out to actually be Garak's mother. I like the vagueness. The second sentence deals with her last few episodes, again good. The last one seems bent on explaining her special download, and it seems a bit forced as a result. Still comes out ahead at 3.2.

TREK SENSE: A housekeeper would be a Civilian, yes, and her loyalty to Tain and son appears in the form of Honor and high Integrity. Computer Skill would be a useful skill to have if you lived with a couple of Obsidian Order operatives, if only to keep their computers free of bugs, worms and viruses. Her ease with procuring electronic equipment may also be part of this skill (she knows how to search eBay for the right stuff). High Cunning, a Cardassian trait anyway, is all a function of those qualities. Medical is a bit of a surprise, though she probably practiced first aid on Tain and/or Garak who would have used their home as a safehouse. Possible, even probable, but not proven fact. A similar case can be made against the special download. Ok, she procured a com unit, but hand weapons? Without limits, we're left with a character that can somehow gain access to Agonizers, Borg Nanoprobes and Satan's Robot. PADDs, Tricorders and Kits are probably more up her alley. Wrapping up, I just haven't mentioned her low Strength yet, but it fits her character, so no problem there. I don't really think anything is wrong elsewhere, but the designers just went a little too far in order to make her useful. I'm going to give her 3.3.

STOCKABILITY: Skillwise, Mila doesn't offer a great classification, but MEDICAL is an important one to have even as a skill, and not all that common in her affiliation. Computer Skill is much more so, though still useful, and with Honor, she fits in with a certain segment of the population. Indeed, as far as missions go, Honor can be combined with MEDICAL to help solve Protect Shipment, or with a tricorder download to help with Quest for the Sword. The mission she comes closest to completing on her own, however, is Eliminate Virus (MEDICAL/Computer Skill), with only Exobiology missing. There's nothing too special about her skill list though, nor about her attributes, even with the two high ones. Where she'll probably be most useful is in getting the proper Equipment cards out quickly. Security Chief Garak can download any specifically Cardassian Equipment card (AND he's MQ), but Mila has no such limits. She can add to your skill base (though not her own list) with Kits, Tricorders and PADDs; or boost attributes with PADDs, Kukalaka and hand weapons; or go for more exotic items like an Echo Papa, Environmental Suit (saving a personnel in a nick of time by suspending play) or Transporter Drones. In a Treaty deck, she may well get your Jem'Hadar some much needed Ketracel-White. She's just that flexible. Also, having the word "resistance" in her lore makes her reportable to Rusot's location. A necessity? No. Useful? Until her download is used up, and even after that. A 3.7.

TOTAL: 13.2 (66%) Maybe a tighter connection to the Order would have done her some good.

#1976-Mine Gallicite, Mission, planet, Any Away Team may attempt mission, Delta Quadrant, HDA
Sakari colony: Collect valuable material from the tunnels beneath this apparently abandoned world.
-ENGINEER + Geology + (Diplomacy OR Treachery + STRENGTH>40)
-Span: 2; 30 points

PICTURE: We're used to small balls of rock for every mining mission, and then this one comes along and wows us. Beautiful world, great colors, cool close-up... A pretty 3.4.

LORE: If you're looking for the source of the Sakari colony, it's from "Blood Fever". The lore adds the word "apparently" to make one of the requirements work (there ARE people here, and they will have to be dealt with). A good, if lackluster, job at 3.2.

TREK SENSE: Where there's mining, there should be Geology, and Engineer isn't bad for the extraction side of things. And since there are people whose gallicite it turns out to be, you'll need Diplomacy (if you want to strike a deal), Treachery and lots of Strength (if you want to screw them over and take the ore by force). I do think it's odd that these requirements are listed right on the card (so that an Away Team would bring the right personnel along), when in fact, the presence of these colonists was unknown. In game terms, they would have been a dilemma. But there's no way around it using the game's mechanics. Gallicite is important to the fabrication of warp coils, so any affiliation may want to attempt the mission, and in the Delta Quadrant, you're either a tourist without a spacedock in sight, or a resource-poor native, so the points are at a good level. The Span is too, since the mission appears to be something of a survival emergency. "Set course for the nearest source of gallicite!". It all checks out, with the one anomaly something that couldn't be avoided. A 4.

SEEDABILITY: The Delta Quadrant is rife with ENGINEER missions, and Mine Gallicite will fit into those types of deck easily, and for any affiliation. It's unique, and at 30 points, is thus covered by Fair Play. Obviously, it's probably less personnel-intensive to do the mission with Diplomacy, but some affiliations, like the Hirogen, will probably be bringing the STRENGTH to the table anyway. With Assign Mission Specialists, the Feds can bring extra help to the DQ (Brahms, Inge Eiger and Ensign Davis) to up this puppy to 45 points. Otherwise, it's a fair 30 points for very few requirements. A 3.5.

TOTAL: 14.1 (70.5%) Looks nice, does nicely.

#1989-Minuet, Personnel, Non-Aligned, holographic, HDA
"Knockout brunette in a computer-generated gin joint. Programmed by the Bynars to distract William T. Riker. His feelings for her remained quite passionate for years."
-CIVILIAN; Once each turn, your Bynars card may play for free; Once every turn, may "stop" up to two males present

PICTURE: Well, my tastes run in Riker's direction on this one. It's all in the eyes (well, not ALL in the eyes), deep and confident. Very sultry. The two-tone background is disconcertingly mismatched, though it reminds us of her unreality. Yes, I'm smitten, so a perhaps biased 4.4.

LORE: The gin joint stuff uses cool period slang (straight from Riker's pick-up line), while the second sentence deals with her actual role (explaining her special skills). We end with something we found out in "Past Imperfect", where Barash pulled her from a strong memory to be Riker's dead wife. A complete and interesting 3.8.

TREK SENSE: If the Bynars are Non-Aligned (if allied with the Federation), then their creation also should be. And since she's basically a barfly, Civilian is the only classification that can stick. She has no regular skills, though Diplomacy and Anthropology could have fit. Some personnel have gotten Music from less dancing. But she may well have been programmed so specifically that she couldn't really use those skills on missions. Her way with men has been turned into a stopping ability instead, useable on two males at once, just like on the show. Her link to the Bynars is represented by the first special skill, allowing any Bynars card to play for free, but what's the rationale? Is it that she buys the Bynars time so that they CAN play their Data Transfers and Weapon Enhancements? Thematically, it works, but in actuality, it's a little fuzzy. I mean, it's not like the Weapons are something they'd do under your nose, it's what you contracted them for. Kind of silly, really. As for attributes, she tricked Riker and Picard, so doesn't deserve high Integrity. 5 does seem a bit low however, it's not like the Bynars were evil. Her program's Cunning is high so that she can easily manipulate men. And Strength's not a priority, though she did appear to be a healthy woman. A mixed bag worth 3.3.

STOCKABILITY: Minuet doesn't have very much to contribute to a misson attempt, as CIVILIAN is rarely used, and she has no standard skills. Attributes will be added to her crew's totals at space missions, but only CUNNING is rated highly. It'll have to be about her special skills, then. Her main function, since she can be anywhere in play and make it work, is to offer free plays of Bynars cards. Bynars Data Transfer and Bynars Weapon Enhancement are both events that use up your standard card play, so getting one for free each turn is useful. Imagine yourself boosting your WEAPONS over the course of several turns, completely for free. Data Transfer is a very useful card manipulation tool that could also be better for free. And there's the Bynars themselves, 10 and 01, who download one more Bynars card, as well as prevent Computer Crashes (and these ARE useful in mission attempts). Minuet also has some stopping power, on two personnel no less, but they'll mostly be used against intruders unless she's given a little more autonomy, either with Holo-Projectors or a Mobile Emitter. If she's given her freedom this way, hey, she can curtail the strength of opposing Away Teams in personnel battle, or even hurt your opponent's mission attempts. She's nice, but you have to be using a certain set of cards. A 3.6.

TOTAL: 15.1 (75.5%) Make that "stop" up to three males ;-).

#2003-Mona Luvsitt, Personnel, Non-Aligned, holographic, HDA
"Capable valet to Secret Agent Julian Bashir. She speaks seven languages, has degrees in biology, chemistry, and physics, and can fly anything from a jet to a helicopter."
-CIVILIAN, SCIENCE, Biology, Physics, Navigation, Anthropology; Staff icon

PICTURE: Mona is certainly lovely (and could be a fruit-vendor), but I wonder if the angle on the oversized jacket doesn't hide her figure too much, and the background is a bit too busy, even if I like the monitor screen on the right (is that some kind of tv-phone?). Overall, a 3.4.

LORE: She's got a good Bond girl name that doesn't go too far (007 films feature some real groaners - geez, sorry, now everything sounds like a double-entendre to me), and her lore is pretty much all spoken dialogue. Secret Agent Julian Bashir (an important keyword here) tells us his valet is quite "capable", and then goes on to list her various fields of expertise, which we also get. Good work, if perhaps obvious, for 3.5.

TREK SENSE: If this were a James Bond 007 CCG, Mona would make a lot of sense. A valet is a Civilian, but she's rated in Biology, Physics and chemistry (Science), plus can pilot any aircraft (Staff icon and Navigation) and is a great linguist (Anthropology). But if transplanted to the 24th century where she must attempt missions, how do those skills hold up? Does she know about warp drive, which would be part and parcel of the Physics skill? Can she Navigate or even Staff a starship? Is linguistics as important a facet of Anthropology when you have a universal translator? Biology and Science are little more believable, as is Civilian, but this is the kind of thing that's distressing about period-specific holograms in this game. I imagine someone could reprogram her to function in modern times, but wouldn't that be missing the point? To finish up with attributes, since these are more timeless, we start with quite high Integrity, showcasing her great loyalty to Bashir, but is seems a bit high given the tone of his spy stories. Cunning should be this high for her to be this capable. I would have expected more Strength, but she was easily killed off, and Bashir never mentioned any martial arts or anything. The fish out of water syndrome hits hard, and she's down to a 2.5.

STOCKABILITY: The dilemma here is that Mona is a very good skill horse, but that holograms can't easily be brought on planet missions. That keeps Anthropology and Biology from fulfilling their true potential (CIVILIAN hardly even has a potential), but the rest will work very well at space missions. Excellent attributes too, especially if she's not gonna go get herself into personnel battles. If Holoprogram: Dr. Noah's Mountain Retreat is on the mission-solving ship, then she can easily report or download there for immediate assistance. Otherwise, well, she's a mission-solver with an annoying handicap (locked out of half the missions unless some kind of Emitter card is also in play). Useful, but not as useful as she would be had she been made of flesh and blood. Just 3.

TOTAL: 13.4 (67%) Don't know if she loves this.

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