Personal Log, Stardate 94328.53
I’ve informed my first officer that the next time I say that a mission should go nice and smooth with no shooting, she should immediately just shoot me in the head.
That said, I’ve no regrets on how the extended mission in Deferi space went. The Breen weren’t as tough a problem as I’d learned about in my speed-history course from Daniels; of course, that toughness had been due to surprise during the Dominion War, when Starfleet hadn’t built any way to counter their weaponry. They were unique weapons, I’ll grant that much, but Orca was able to handle that.
The whole point of the Breen meddling was the existence of Preserver artifacts-and the potential of a major find in that area of space. Thot Trel was apparently banking hard on there being weapons available. You would have thought that the name “Preserver” might have been a clue that perhaps weapons weren’t the first thing on these aliens minds. Thot didn’t strike me as all that smart, though.
I’m not giving him enough credit. His people still managed to scan the map before we could stop them that pointed everyone to the Preserver Library, which turns out to have actually held the real Preservers in hibernation. We kept him from destroying the library out of spite-he was a sore loser-and the Deferi are now studying the archives, with a little help from Starfleet-and according to rumor, the Klingon Empire; the Defreri are big on balance.
Now, we’ve just received orders to rendezvous with Battle Group Omega. It seems that we’re about to have our first encounter with what the speed-history course considered the greatest threat in the galaxy.
The Breen episodes have the distinction of being the first Feature Episode series created for Star Trek Online, and despite its age, it still holds up pretty well. It’s an arc that’s self-contained, not really requiring information from previous episodes, and doesn’t build on them either. It does become a plot point to a future mission, but it didn’t turn out to be as big a deal at that time as I thought it might have been. More on that in the future.
That’s one of the reasons why I always enjoyed the Breen missions. It’s the sort of thing you can actually see as a short arc in a Star Trek show. Other arcs in the game mostly build upon the previous arcs and are in an effectively long, game-wide storyline, from the Klingons, the Romulans, the Undine, the Vaadwaur, and the Iconians. In the midst of all this, it’s the short arcs that have nothing to do with the wider story that tend to shine for me. It’s probably why I also enjoyed the other Feature Series back in the day: the 2800 and Spectres (as they were originally called; of course, the Breen Invasion was originally “Cold Wars”). The Cloaked Intentions Feature Series (now folded into the Romulan Mystery arc) couldn’t be called standalone, though, given how much has been built around those missions-one could argue that the seeds of the whole Romulan Republic story began there.
The Breen missions have it all; some puzzle solving (nothing too complex-this isn’t Myst), some space combat, some ground combat, and crazily enough, even some diplomacy! Seriously, there’s a mission that can actually fail if you screw up the diplomatic angle-at least, it could back in the day. I haven’t actually tried to screw it up with more current characters-because it meant starting the mission over. And I’m lazy that way.
We’re coming up on what used to be considered the last of the story arcs that could be considered non-Iconian. Well, they were non-Iconian until they got revamped; Cryptic likes to do revamps regularly, and the next arc was no exception. I’ll have more to say about that next time, if I remember when I write up the post. It’s also the last set that have the Temporal Probes in them; once those are completed, my plan is to do the Episode Replay for the pair of mission that didn’t properly award them to me the first time, and go from there.
On a character note, Rick Masters has now gotten to tier 4 on his Temporal Defense reputation; I was further along than I thought. I’ve started opening more of my reward boxes for the Temporal Probes, since I’m running low on the Temporal Marks. At some point, I’ll do the math to figure out exactly how many I should open up to finish that reputation chain. It’ll be close and I’m not 100 percent sure I’ll have enough. Fortunately, I have other avenues; I haven’t touched anything from my account-bound Delta Recruit rewards, which might have more of the marks if I need them. If this reputation chain is like the others, I should get a fairly large surplus of marks upon completing it, and among other things, I plan to spend some of them to sponsor my KDF and Fed main characters so they can run the chain faster (and, by definition, with less marks).