Newsletter/Summer 2007

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Newsletter for the Star Trek: Freedom Wiki. Summer 2007 edition.

To see previous editions of the newsletter, visit The Archive

News from the Front

  • USS Nimitz:

Mission: To Skin a Cat The Nimitz crew is faced with the challenge of taking out a heinous experimental facility on the home planet of the pacifistic Caitians. Intell says this place is dedicated to genetically engineering soldiers using unwilling alien and human prisoners. Some creatures have been created with some success already. What will the Nimitz crew be faced with when they gain control of the medical complex?

  • USS Boudicca:

Mission: The Anointed The Away Team is now aware that Colonel Straton is The Anointed of Alzarna, and are discussing ways to either rescue her or, should that prove impossible, to remove her altogether. The team who are visiting the Trivaste shiphome have been presented with some unusual sights and information; will they be able to help the strange aliens fulfil their quest?

  • USS Spectre:

The USS Spectre has now returned to Federation space under close escort with the Federation President, Rondar Nell safely on board. Her rendezvous with the USS Hood has been a success & the Hoods cover mission to investigate a binary emergence remains intact, whilst makeshift running repairs are carried out to the decimated Spectre en route. The approximate coordinates of the Steel Talons have now been ascertained & Captain T'Vhor is now preparing to execute the final leg of this mission - The safe delivery of the President himself to the 52nd fleet command.

  • USS Dennison:

Mission: Supernatural/Past, Present...Future? With two crewmembers now missing, the crew are becoming increasingly paranoid and are suspecting spies. The telescope they are orbiting is exibiting high levels of chronoton radiation. Will the crew be able to pull themselves together and weed out the good officers from the bad, or will it be too late as they are forced into the past, present and future?

  • USS Hades:

Mission: Shore Leave The USS Hades is docked at Geneva Space Station, ostensibly to give some well earned shore leave to the crew and additional much needed repairs. However, unbeknownst to the crew, there is an assassin out for blood on the ship who caused a nasty explosion in Environmental Subsystem B, killing several and injuring many others. The crew must find out before more people are murdered.

  • USS Champlain:

Missions: The Hephaestus Principle, followed by Beyond Vengeance

The last day or so life on the USS Champlain has been extraordinarily eventful. Only a few hours ago, on Stardate 2407.30.13, she encountered a primitive warp ship with a Federation warp signature orbiting the planet Irlix, which should not have had warp technology at all, much less specific Federation tech. The crew began to prepare to investigate this mystery, and Captain Edward Wolfe expressed hopes for a First Contact mission, despite the well-founded doubts of some of the crew…

However, since the Captain’s capture by a malfunctioning ancient gateway on Ivor Prime only a week before, his behavior had become inexplicably and increasingly erratic. The ship’s FO had also become unreliable in stress situations, and there was no second officer. So, when the warp ship re-appeared a little after midnight and became aggressive, the Third Officer, Lt. Brianna Frazier was forced to take charge. She and one of the veteran Bridge officers ordered the Champlain’s withdrawal, but not before the enemy ship had done some damage. The Champlain went to warp and outdistanced the primitive Irlixian vessel, but in moments, her warp engines failed. The moment the Champlain came out of warp, she ambushed by the Wyvern, a Nebula class and a part of Doenitz fleet which had tailed them for the past two weeks on a mission to capture or kill Captain Wolfe, and to take the Champlain as a prize.

TheWyver’s first shot seared the Champlain’s bridge, killing Captain Wolfe almost instantly, rendering FO Ulia Mason unfit for duty, and causing other, multiple casualties. The Champlain far outmatches the Wyvern, but her crew had planned their attack well, and their Captain, Angela Smithwick, is legendary for her determination, perhaps bordering on obsession. She will not stand down easily, but Frazier is determined not to destroy then if she can in any way avoid it. At present, both ships are damaged, there are grievous casualties on both sides, and they remain locked in a power struggle.

Check back later to see how this tense situation is resolved! -GrannyGM

  • USS Paladin:

Mission: New Beginnings

The Paladin is currently docked at Geneva taking on supplies and planning a refit operation; in the meantime, a party has broken out on the holodeck... some serious dancing could mean a long night for some!! -Anthony Keen

Star Trek XI: Separating Fact from Fiction, part 1

by herbalsheila

Though CBS Paramount is keeping Star Trek XI a classified top secret, eyes only project, we are attempting to separate fact from rumors. The rumors are abounding and the truth is mixing with rumors to make it confusing enough for anyone.

The following is true as officially endorsed by CBS Paramount and stated by writers and producers in official interviews.

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Filming will begin this fall for Star Trek XI to be released Christmas Day 2008. JJ Abrams is the producer of the highly anticipated film. The screenplay has been written by Alex Kurtzman and Roberto Orci, who previously collaborated with Abrams on "Mission Impossible III." Kurtzman and Orci will executive produce with Bryan Burk, and Abrams will produce along with Lost co-creator Damon Lindelof. Scott Chambliss will be production designer and Daniel Mindel will be director of photography.

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The writers did promise that this movie will contain more action than any "Trek" film that has preceded it. Since CBS Paramount gave the writers no stipulations and no limits, this film will have the biggest budget of any Star Trek film to date. But Abrams insists that, "We've made a pact not to discuss any specifics," so very little confirmed information is forthcoming.

The title of the eleventh film in the Star Trek franchise may simply be "Star Trek," and it's being considered more a reimagining than a prequel. James T. Kirk will be in Star Trek XI as announced by Abrams in May 2007. As far as key roles, the writer/producers were very coy, only saying things like, "We never said Bones was in it." Though the early report from Variety pointed to a story taking place at Starfleet Academy, with Kirk and Spock in their late teens or early twenties, Abrams specifically referred to those reports as being "premature" and "not entirely accurate.”

Star Trek Poster.jpg

A promotional poster released by Paramount and StarTrek.com indicates a prequel movie, spotlighting James T. Kirk and Mr. Spock in their years before Kirk took command of the Starship Enterprise. On July 22, 2006 at the Comic-Con convention in San Diego, Paramount Pictures began circulating a Star Trek XI promotional poster, bearing the gold of command uniforms and the blue of science/medical uniforms from Kirk's era. The Enterprise (NCC-1701) will appear in the film. At the July 2007 Comic Con recently held in San Diego, it was announced with permission from Paramount by director Abrams, that both Leonard Nimoy will appear as the older Spock and the younger Spock will be played by Zachary Quinto (Heroes).

In one interview Orci said, "We're not going to start totally from scratch. We want it to feel like it's updated and of the now. That's actually the discussions we're having now: how to keep the look of the universe yet have it not look like nothing's new. It's tricky."

"I actually love the technobabble!" Kurtzman said. "I don't think you can do Trek without technobabble." "Trek, more than anything, has always been about the human interactions," Orci said. "It's all about the human soul."

Top Ten Questions

For any member to answer with help on formulating questions from Liz and Hanspeter Bosshard

Q 1

1. Could Data take on one of the Cylon toasters from the new Battlestar Galactica in a fight and win?

  • I'm sure he could. Before the battle he would have come up with some sort of disease that would render them helpless. So, he probably wouldn't beat them with brawn, but with brains. - Jason French
  • Yup I think he would out think them too. He would come up with a computer virus that would infect them all. -herbalsheila
  • Of course he could. There's one Data, and a ton of Cylons. It's one of the rules of theatrics. The more there are, the weaker they are. -AnunC8

Q 2

2. Which of the Enterprise ships do you like the best and why? The ships themselves, not the crews or the stories

  • Enterprise E, no question! She has by far the most beautiful lines (to me at least) and she's pretty poky too ;) - Liz Geuken
  • Constitution refit, by far, is my favorite. It just seems to have a bit more class and elegance than all of the ships that followed. -Don aka Serixs Ssarumon
  • I know this is going to sound weird, but I like the NX-01 the best because I think the most thought was put into it when they designed it for the show. They made it real small and I heard they modeled it after the inside of a submarine. Captain Archer's ready room has low ceilings and engineering is very tiny. It really gives you the sense that this is an early starship. - Jason French
  • Gonna have to back Jason up here. NX-01 is amazing. Finally, I got a sense of personal connection to the ships of Star Trek, by experiencing where the more fantastic ships came from. Granted, I think I’d rather serve on Enterprise E, but the level of love and care that Jason sees in NX-01’s creation is breathtaking. I also have a soft spot in my heart for the Norway Class, as described on Ken’s Federation Starships page. She’d make a great little ship for my PC! –GrannyGM
  • I agree with Jason and Granny, the NX is my favorite. It was cramped and dark, and it looked like a real vessel. I liked that it didn't have shields or tractor beams, and that the phasers were emitted from little swiveling cannons. The grappler was lots of fun too. And unlike what everyone seems to think, I don't believe it really looks anything like the Akira. -AnunC8

Q 3

3. Supposing your Primary Character (PC) has 3 months leave after the end of the Federation Civil War. Where would they go and what would they do?

  • Serixs would probbaly spend his entire time tinkering in a lab. Despite being big, green, and equipped with a LOT of sharp teeth, he's such a big nerd. ;) -Don aka Serixs Ssarumon
  • I think Bree would embark upon an epic shopping spree of galactic proportions, and shamelessly play tourist! Should be a wild ride… anybody wanna come along? –GrannyGM
  • Room for an extra one, Connie? I think Susan's family will prove a little too much for her after a while ;) -Liz Geuken
  • Hey Connie and Liz! Move over and make room for the Horta. He's is gonna make that shopping spree rock! -herbalsheila

Q 4

4. In your opinion, which species is the least aesthetically pleasing in the Star Trek universe and why? You can even include Gamma and Delta quadrant species.

  • Tellarites. Those pig noses and they have always been portrayed as a very stubborn and argumentative species. - Jason French
  • Aw, c’mon, Jason, you might hurt my holodeck instructor’s’s feelings! (Yeah, right!) And what, pray tell, is wrong with a good hot debate? Anyway, I think pigs are kinda cute. Just ask Miss Piggy. But Ferengi… now, those guys are just sleazy. Charming in their way, and snappy dressers, but mud-fence ugly. GrannyGM
  • I gotta say it must be a tie between Dopterians and Borg. Talk about using some emu oil for skin care! Both of these species always looks like they are growing mold, in my opinion. -herbalsheila
  • Got to agree about the Ferengi! I also find the Kazon aesthetically unpleasing and the Borg just downright scary! Liz
  • In the original series, Tellarites and Andorians. The Tellarite mask was dumb, and the Andorians just looked silly; not to mention their incredibly bad hair. In Enterprise they both looked fine, but the Tellarite makeup got especially better. -AnunC8

Q 5

5. Do you think Commander William Riker looks better with or without the beard?

  • With it!!! WHAT was Troi THINKING.... -GrannyGM
  • Beard. I remember back in college I always wanted to grow a beard because it looked so cool on Riker. :-) - Jason French
  • With. When he was younger it stopped him looking baby-faced; now he's older, it stops his face looking quite so big ;) Seriously, it adds an air of gravitas that he needs. - Liz Geuken
  • I agree, but I think he would have looked better with a goatee than a beard. For heavens sakes, he looked like he was about 5 without it! herbalsheila
  • Of course with a beard. He looks much more dignified. -AnunC8

Q 6

6. What would be your idea for the next Star Trek television series?

  • I would like to see one based on other species for a change instead of the Federation. Perhaps a series with an all Klingon crew. Don aka Serixs Ssarumon
  • Go back to the Next Generation era and continue on with a starship that is exploring strange new worlds. There's plenty of stories out there to be told in classic Trek formula. - Jason French
  • I'd like to see another ship exploring using technology that could take them to other dimensions, or inside a sun. Sure they could explore a quadrant or something, but it would be cool to be using newer technology to help make fresher stories. And how about a Horta crewmember or two? -herbalsheila

Q 7

7. Do you think we will we have physical currency and not just electronic credits in the future?

  • I hope we do. I hate to think about the level of bureaucratic control, potential for abuse, and the invasion of privacy that would be inherent in an economic system with NO physical currency. -GrannyGM
  • I'd like to stick to using hard currency myself. Credit and identity theft is already bad. Though technology can get more advanced that doesn't mean that people automatically grow a conscience along with the tech. -herbalsheila
  • I agree with you both, for all the reasons you've given. However, my ideal would be to have a society that could exist without currency or the necessity for it. I like the idea that sometime in the future we all work together for the good of all, contributing what we can to society as a whole and receiving back what we need. But I doubt human nature will change that much that quickly :( -Liz

Q 8

8. In what way will you pass on the Star Trek legacy to future generations?

  • My kids always see me watching the show, so I'm hoping that they pick it up from osmosis. - Jason French

Q 9

9. If you were an Orion Pirate, would money and credits be more important than control and power, or vice versa? Why?

  • Money and credits are simply one route to control and power. Others might be preferred, but money and power are the ultimate goal of those who seek wealth. It's not really an either/or situation. -GrannyGM
  • I think for some especially the big corporations, wealth and power feed each other. The more power one has the more wealth is needed to maintain that power. The more wealth one has the more power that is needed to protect it. -herbalsheila

Q 10

10. In your opinion, who would make a good young Kirk and Spock in the upcoming Star Trek 2008 movie?

  • To me, Shatner as Kirk, Nimoy as Spock, with Kelley as Bones is as classic as you can get. Why mess with a classic? I think we need to move on. I wish that Kate Mulgrew could be in the new Star Trek XI movie as Janeway or anybody else. She's fantastic! -herbalsheila
  • I have no idea, but I can't wait to see what they do. I really can't get past the original actors playing those characters, so it's going to be a hard sell for me. I hope that incorporate Captain Archer into the movie. He would still be alive... - Jason French
  • I don’t follow the kid actors, so I can’t suggest any names, but I hope the writers and producers toss off the restrictions of ‘canon’ and do something fresh, like they tried to do with Enterprise. There’s a point where a ‘classic’ crosses the line into ‘stale’. I think that many fans’ adherence to old casts, old writing styles, etc. puts the whole Star Trek scenario in serious danger of stagnating. This is FICTION. There’s no such thing as a ‘canon’. Fictional characters and scenarios should be re-interpreted in new ways by each generation, to meet their own needs. If they are not, the work loses it’s integrity, it’s quality of truth. When a story is so beloved that it evolves into a cultural mythology, as Star Trek has, it doesn’t make sense to stifle the creativity of a new generation by strapping them down too tightly to the previous generation’s vision. Roddenberry’s dream is strong and inclusive enough to withstand a new take on it, and whichever actors they cast, I hope to see just that! -GrannyGM

Star Trek: Legacy Video Game Review

by Jason French

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There has been very few choices for new Trek out there since Star Trek: Enterprise went off the air waves just over two years ago. You could read some of the new Star Trek novels out there. You could watch some of the fan films. Or, you could play Star Trek: Legacy on your PC or Xbox 360.

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Star Trek: Legacy was released December 5th, 2006 by Bethesda Softworks. The game is a starship battle action game where play takes place with a third person camera trailing behind the starship that is being controlled by the user. The main campaign storyline takes the players through the different eras of Star Trek and features the voices of all five Star Trek captains: William Shatner, Patrick Stewart, Avery Brooks, Kate Mulgrew, and Scott Bakula. You start out in control of the NX-01 Enterprise where Captain Archer discovers a Vulcan scientist who has gone renegade. The story picks up later with the NCC-1701 Enterprise, where Captain Kirk picks up a hint that the Vulcan scientist has discovered a new cybernetic species, which we later come to know as the Borg once the storyline reaches the Next Generation era. The story is written by Derek Chester and Dorothy "D.C." Fontana. It’s good to see that someone very familiar with the Trek history had a hand in creating the plot.

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The game has a lot of appeal for Star Trek fans. It’s great to hear the voices of the captains once again in their old roles. The story is compelling and makes you want to keep playing.

Unfortunately, the game designers decided that you wouldn’t be able to save a mission in middle. So, if you die at any point, you have to go back to the beginning and play the whole mission again. That’s one of my biggest issues. I’ve actually gotten stuck on the last NCC-1701-A mission in which Captain Kirk is attacked by a Borg sphere.

Overall I think if you are a gamer and a Star Trek fan, it’s a must game to pick up.

Star Trek: Legacy

by Bethesda Softworks

Available for the PC & Xbox 360

Click on pictures to view larger versions.

Star Trek XI: Separating Fact from Fiction, part 2

by herbalsheila

The following are the unconfirmed rumors currently flying all over the place. !Warning! Much of the following may or may not be true, so readers beware. CBS Paramount will neither confirm nor deny these rumors and speculations.

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Speculation involves Matt Damon playing Captain James T. Kirk. Rumors have fingered Oscar-winner Philip Seymour Hoffman as playing a doctor other than Dr. McCoy in XI or possibly Dr. Mark Piper, McCoy's predecessor, and to Damon's childhood friend and frequent film collaborator Ben Affleck as playing either Kirk or Spock. But according to IGN news, as of February 2007 the actors being considered for Kirk, Spock, and McCoy are Matt Damon, Adrien Brody, and Gary Sinise, respectively. Taking over for George Takei, IGN has learned that Daniel Dae Kim (Lost) is being eyed to appear as Sulu.

Michael Giacchino, the composer for several other Abrams projects, including MI:3, Lost, and Alias has confirmed that he will score Star Trek XI, although no official announcement has been made.

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Both Shatner and Nimoy have recently signed contracts giving them some approval power over any recasting of their Star Trek characters, though it is unclear exactly how much power they have, as the full terms of the contract have not been revealed. On June 21, 2007, the New York Post reported that Shatner was "very upset" that Nimoy had been offered a cameo role but that he hadn't.

George Lucas’ Industrial Light & Magic (ILM) has been selected to provide the special visual effects for Star Trek XI (2008). In keeping with the usual Star Trek secrecy, ILM will officially neither confirm nor deny it.

Bibliography: Facts and other information culled from a wide variety of news articles that were quoted in the following sources:

www.trekmovie.com

www.StarTrek.com

Wikipedia

Resorte Advanced Training Academy

by Anthony Keen

STF runs its own Academy. Unlike a lot of PBeMs, new applicants to the game have to pass through a training holodeck in order to play on one of our ships when they graduate. A lot of people applying to the game ask why is this? The simple answer is that in the past, we did indeed had a more relaxed policy and the Academy would allow new members to graduate without going to the Academy if they showed a good application that was through out and didn't employ the usual super-skills of telepathy, telekinesis or Q like powers.

Of course, the game swelled, we had several hundred members playing but it was unsustainable and unmanageable.

Now, we work hard to make sure the only members graduating are ones that really want to play our game for the long haul and are willing to spend weeks in the Academy before they get to play and even longer before attaining a senior position and even then, accepting they may never get to be a Commanding Officer in the fleet due to the fact we have only 7 ships when other games could have 50 ships, 50 COs and 60 total members.

I guess we aimed for a most post-friendly game!

Two questions I get asked a lot are:

  • What is the Resorte Advanced Training Academy?

We didn't want to play at Starfleet Academy on Earth for a few reasons, one of which is that we assume when you apply, your character has already done 4 years of training on Earth but they have been sent for advanced training prior to playing and they have decided to specialise in an area such as Science or Engineering or Medical or Command or Tactical; their training takes place in a holodeck with one of our experienced members that have decided to take on the additional role of instructing one or more new cadets till they graduate or fail the course.

The only way you can fail the course is if you drop out!

  • Why not roleplay the Academy?

This is a tough one, the Academy doesn't change if the story says we're at war or if Earth is taken over by a madman, why?

The simple answer is that its too hard and too confusing for new people training to get a handle on our game or our posting style or the rules or the fleet, its a lot to take in. Plus, we rely on the instructor to let them the game situation and I am sure they can handle it once its all explained but there is a problem with a plot, how do you write coming from Earth and entering a battlezone and basically leaving behind to join our fleet which is involved in a civil war with the rest of the Federation?

There are several ways this can be handled and I like the idea of the cadet making the choice to side with the 52nd Fleet and take on the crazy antics of Doenitz!

Words of Wisdom

No matter where ya go, there ya are. Translation: You can't run away from your problems unless you confront them directly. -herbalsheila

Change is the only constant. -GrannyGM

If you enjoy creative writing with a group of people, who are all working on making the plot/storyline as good as possible, then join Star Trek: Freedom. - Jono Bradley

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