Personal Log, May 30th, 2256
In the course of events, it has been recommended that I begin a new personal log separate from my notes during my years of training at Starfleet Academy. Given the unusual circumstances of my new command of the USS Bowman, I find that I agree. While I am in command, I am nonetheless not a Captain in rank, merely a Captain in command of this ship. It is important that I remain mindful of this as I go forward.
To whom it may concern: I am Lieutenant Jhudsui, a recent graduate of the Class of ’56 at Starfleet Academy. I am a Mentassan, the first member of my species to thus graduate from the Academy. My people are relative newcomers to the United Federation of Planets, but we were known to them for nearly eighty years, thanks to the efforts of Captain Jonathan Archer of the Enterprise. We have spent a lifetime to come to a point where we could be permitted entry to the Federation, and it has been worth it. I am the first to graduate, but I will not be the last; the dream of stars has been awakened in my people, and I do not believe we will ever go back.
My focus has been command, and I have trained in the defensive arts. I am not the best shot, nor am I the best hand-to-hand fighter. I am no grand strategist or tactician. I am simply a sentient who tries to see the best in others, and in doing so, attempt to awaken the best in myself. War is not what I sought when I joined Starfleet Academy, but if that is the path that is before me, I will walk it to its end. And when I have done so, I will walk the path that I envisioned when I enlisted: the path of exploration.
For the future. End Log Entry. Save.
It’s here at last: the latest offering from Star Trek Online, which incorporates elements from the latest Star Trek offering period. The Age of Discovery is upon us!
Accordingly, with the new publish, with a new tutorial and set of missions (there aren’t many yet), I decided to make a new character to fit. I went tactical, mainly because the whole premise was set around war with the Klingons (this is not the last familiar thing ahead). The options for character species was at once limited and vast. You could make a Human or a Vulcan. Or, you could make an Alien. Which is what I decided to do; I don’t really have many characters of my own alien designs, so I thought I’d do that with this character.
I’ll freely admit: I broke down and started mashing the “random” button for the guy’s appearance. I didn’t randomize the body, going with the default there with minor nudges; I’ve been known to play with that harder for aliens, but I figured I’d stick with the standard for that. I was satisfied with the one I settled on. I took the name from some old gaming article I read years and years go. As far as the ship’s name…well, come on. I’ve been known to make amusing nods to things before, and this one was no different.
With that, I was able to begin the tutorial! It starts in Starfleet Academy, where one of my fellow students led me around to meet other graduating cadets who thanked me for their help, before sending me to see a captain who wanted me to take an advanced phaser test…hold on. This all sounds familiar, doesn’t it?
It should. Take away the specific students and change the skins of the graphics, but it’s essentially identical to the regular Starfleet tutorial. It goes on beyond what I’ve described all the way to an encounter with Klingons, a dead captain, and eventually meeting up with someone with ties to established Trek lore to help. There is a divergence, where you don’t have to worry about the Borg showing up, but the mission beats are all there. Don’t look for too much creativity on the missions.
The characters involved, however, are at least worth the time. Cadet Tilly-portrayed by the same actress who plays the part in Star Trek: Discovery-is a lot more entertaining than Elisa Flores; I find that the doomed captain of your ship is a lot more interesting, too (and he actually has a sense of humor). Your future bridge officers are a decent sort.
There are some things that kind of irritated me; while the phasers and torpedoes are portrayed as I imagine they are in Discovery (having not seen any episodes, I can’t make accurate comparisons, but they’re at least different than the TOS and 2409 era weapons), the existence of personal shields continues to be an irritation. That’s probably not something anything can really be done away with, though-the game’s sort of built around the concept of personal shields, and they’ve already had them around for the Agents of Yesterday expansion, so this is a war that’s lost already. The existence of holodecks, though, is a bit more annoying; I’ve done some research, and I can with effort justify the existence of the things in the Academy, but holographic communications instead of the viewscreens? That said, it seems that this is something that’s been used on the show, so I can’t rightly gripe about it too much-it’s a sin of the show, not STO.
Post-tutorial, you wind up back at the Academy, instead of a space station like Earth Spacedock. Looking at the episodes ahead, I suspect there’s a good reason for that. More on that as I get there.
I suspect very strongly that I will not be putting in too many posts on this Chronicle in the near future-there just isn’t enough content. Once I’ve completed it, it’s back to Selak. But as stuff comes out related to AoD, I’ll revisit this character. I’ll be interested to see just how long it takes before some temporal thing happens to throw the character to the 2409 era.