Sunday, August 31, 2008

Notes on Capturing Ships

Something I tried the other day that I forgot to include in the after-action report. When IKS Krueg4 and the IKS tIQghoB captured the USS Genghis Khan4, I decided, as the Genghis Khan was running out of defenders, that the captain might try to self-destruct rather than be captured. Considering that the boarding parties might try to stop that, I gave the captain a 1 in 6 chance of pulling it off. That option presented itself when the number of defenders dropped below ten. And it could be attempted every time the dice are rolled for boarding party action. Obviously it didn't work for the captain of the Genghis Khan.

More next time


What is Fantasy Trek?

What is Fantasy Trek?

Multilevel Play: Tweaking Shipyard Assault

I decided that it was time for the Federation to make a bold attempt to destroy an undefended Klingon shipyard with four starships while two more remained to interfere with Klingon operations in Federation space. One of those Federation ships was the USS Endeavour4, which was attacked by the IKS Kor3. Since the Kor initiated the attack, it rolled first. Here are the
combat logs:

At coordinates M,22, IKS Kor3 attacks USS Endeavour4

IKS Kor3 rolls: 36 allocation: 12o,24d
USS Endeavour4 rolls: 96 allocation: 39o,57d

IKS Kor3 damage: destroyed
USS Endeavour4 damage: undamaged

After the battle, the Endeavour4 linked up with the Genghis Khan5, and they will either harass the Klingon fleet or attempt to rejoin the Federation fleet.

The Federation fleet did indeed cross into Klingon territory for another go at Klingon shipyard wej. Here are the unfortunate logs:

USS Entebbe2, USS Chang4, USS Gordon3, USS Guadalcanal3 attack Klingon Shipyard wej (F/G,13)

USS Entebbe2 rolls: 108 Allocation: 84o,24d
USS Chang4 rolls: 48 Allocation: 0o,48d
USS Gordon3 rolls: 72 Allocation: 0o,72d
USS Guadalcanal3 rolls: 96 Allocation: 84o,12d
IKS Shipyard wej rolls: 280 Allocation: 39,8,8,27o,99,0,0,99d

USS Entebbe2 damage: destroyed
USS Chang4 damage: undamaged
USS Gordon3 damage: undamaged
USS Guadalcanal3 damage: destroyed
IKS Shipyard wej damage: undamaged

USS Chang4 rolls: 60 Allocation: 60o,0d
USS Gordon3 rolls: 60 Allocation:60o,0d
IKS Shipyard wej rolls: 252 Allocation: 66,66o,60,60d

USS Entebbe2 damage: destroyed
USS Chang4 damage: destroyed
USS Gordon3 damage: destroyed
USS Guadalcanal3 damage: destroyed
IKS Shipyard wej damage: undamaged

This represents just part of a really devastating day for the Federation. The only positive they can bring from this is when they respawn, they'll be in a position to join the battle against the Klingons. Speaking of Klingons, here are the logs of their attack against Federation shipyard Two:

IKS Drunken Warrior2, IKS Krueg4, IKS Genghis Khan, IKS tIQghoB attack Federation Shipyard Two (J/K,21)

IKS Drunken Warrior2 rolls: 48 Allocation: 48o,0d
IKS Krueg4 rolls: 96 Allocation: 96o,0d
IKS Genghis Khan rolls: 72 Allocation: 72o,0d
IKS tIQghoB rolls: 120 Allocation: 120o,0d
UFP Shipyard Two rolls: 308 Allocation: 0o,77,77,77,77d

IKS Drunken Warrior2 damage: undamaged
IKS Krueg4 damage: undamaged
IKS Genghis Khan damage: undamaged
IKS tIQghoB damage: undamaged
UFP Shipyard Two damage: destroyed

While I played through these attacks, I challenged myself to balance the offense and defense of both sides. Simulating both sides acting simultaneously, and doing my best to find some way for both sides to try as hard as possible to win or even survive. I came up with two things. With a shipyard having a multiplier of 28, the most it could have to defend with is 336. (28X12). Assuming that your fleet consists of four heavy cruisers, (each of course with a multiplier of 12), each ship needs to contribute 84 points, or a roll of 7 or up to overwhelm and destroy the shipyard. (84X4=336). So my Federation Fleet Commander, balancing the need to destroy the shipyard with the need to survive, is going to want to devote 84 points to the offensive effort whenever possible, and when he can't, balance the offense and defense as best he can. Considering that 7 is just about the medium possible roll from the two six-sided dice, that number 84 is the number a sensible fleet commander (if the fleet has four ships) will be thinking about when taking on a shipyard. On the other hand, there is the risky (and successful for the Klingons today) strategy of throwing every point into offense. Sure, the shipyard could fire back at four undefended ships, but I think that the obvious advantage enjoyed by the ships in adopting this strategy is balanced by the risk they face by not knowing what the shipyard will have to defend itself with. Look again at that medium 7 roll. Four ships would need to roll more than an average of 7 in order for that strategy to work. Any less, and a shipyard commander can work the numbers enough to whittle down the attackers. And really, once a shipyard has destroyed one attacker, the others are doomed. Because then that 336 max points means each ship (three remaining) will need an average of 112 points each (an average roll of 9.333 each). That's what I worked out during these two shipyard assaults.

So the situation we're left with is this: There are three remaining Federation shipyards. The USS Endeavour4 and the USS Genghis Khan5 are in formation, facing a Klingon fleet that smells victory. Four Federation starships (USS Entebbe2, USS Chang4, USS Gordon3 and USS Guadalcanal3) will respawn in a position to cause trouble for the Klingons, but they'll be slowed. Only three can respawn at once. They really have no choice but to fight a defensive battle now. Or maybe try to capture a Klingon ship or two. I think they can still come back with three shipyards, but if they lose another, I think it's just a matter of time. And of course, the IKS Kor4 is just about to launch from shipyard vagh and rejoin the battle.

All of this stuff probably seems pretty complicated, but it is really just the process of playtesting that works out rules to properly balance. It could eventually contribute to a tactics and strategies manual. It also is fun for me, because the more thinking I put into this campaign, the more I'm enjoying it. No button-mashing. No joystick-breaking. No cheat codes. Thinking. Decision-making. Problem-solving. And while there are no graphics to enjoy (yet:)...), as far as a thinking challenge, Fantasy Trek is getting to be my favorite. Of course, I'm a bit biased probably :)

More next time


What is Fantasy Trek?

Friday, August 29, 2008

Multilevel Campaign: Klingon Offensive

I took a few days off because of a changing schedule at work, but here I am with a day off, and I've made up for a bit of lost time.

The IKS Kor3 encountered the USS Chang3 at coordinates J,18. While working through this exercise, I decided that it made sense for the attacking vessel to roll first. It would have the initiative, and the defending vessel gets a slight benefit by being able to make decisions based on the attacker's allocation. Again, this applies only to basic combat rules. In any case, the rematch
that took place here went the other way this time. The USS Chang3 was destroyed.

Here are the combat tables:

USS Chang3 rolls: 84 allocation: 50o,34d
IKS Kor3 rolls: 84 allocation: 34o,50d

result tie
USS Chang3 damage:
IKS Kor3 damage:

USS Chang3 rolls: 120 allocation: 85o,35d
IKS Kor3 rolls: 120 allocation: 35o,85d

result tie
USS Chang3 damage:
IKS Kor3 damage:

USS Chang3 rolls: 108 allocation: 80o,28d
IKS Kor3 rolls: 96 allocation: 16o,80d

result tie
USS Chang3 damage:
IKS Kor3 damage:

USS Chang3 rolls: 120 allocation: 80o,40d
IKS Kor3 rolls: 84 allocation: 4o,80d

result tie
USS Chang3 damage:
IKS Kor3 damage:

USS Chang3 rolls: 84 allocation: 60o,24d
IKS Kor3 rolls: 72 allocation: 12o,60d

result tie
USS Chang3 damage:
IKS Kor3 damage:

USS Chang3 rolls: 36 allocation: 0o,36d
IKS Kor3 rolls: 120 allocation: 120o,0d

USS Chang3 damage: destroyed
IKS Kor3 damage: undamaged

In an attempt to gain more advantage, the IKS Krueg4 and the IKS tIQghoB attempted to the USS Genghis Khan4 at coordinates N,20. The way to do that is to bring down the defending ship's shields (by doing 5/15 points of damage. The way I set up the combat tables for the ship-to-ship combat was to have one attacker rolls first. The defender rolls next, in response. Finally, the second attacker rolls third, doing what they can to attack enough to bring the defender's shields down. Here is how that went:

IKS Krueg4 rolls: 132 Allocation: 62o,70d
USS Genghis Khan4 rolls: 108 Allocation: 46o,62d
IKS tIQghoB rolls: 48 Allocation: 0o,48d

Result: tie
IKS Krueg4 damage:
USS Genghis Khan4 damage:
IKS tIQghoB damage:

IKS Krueg4 rolls: 42 Allocation: 0o,42d
USS Genghis Khan4 rolls: 72 Allocation: 48o,24d
IKS tIQghoB rolls: 132 Allocation: 29o,103d

IKS Krueg4 damage: 6/15
USS Genghis Khan4 damage: 5/15 (shields down)
IKS tIQghoB damage: undamaged

Then we use boarding parties (personal combat tables) to play the ship-board action out. Here are the combat tables. Note that as I've rolled the dice, I've kept the totals at the top cumulative.

IKS Krueg4
Boarding Parties

Boarding Parties

USS Genghis Khan4

a= IKS Krueg4 boarding parties
b= IKS tIQghoB boarding parties
c= USS Genghis Khan defenders

1st engagement
1a. 5 1b. 1 1c.4
2a. 5 2b. 6 2c.2
3a. 3 3b. 3 3c.5
4a. 1 4b. 3 4c.1
5a. 3 5b. 4 5c.3

2nd engagement
1a 4 1b 4 1c 6
2a 4 2b 1 2c 2
3a 6 3b 1 3c 5
4a 2 4b 4 4c 3
5a 3 5b 5 5c 3

3rd engagement
1a 5 1b 4 1c 2
2a 5 2b 2 2c 3
3a 4 3b 1 3c 2
4a 3 4b 3 4c 2
5a 1 5b 3 5c 5

4th engagement
1a. 1 1b. 6 1c. 5
2a. 4 2b. 6 2c. 6
3a. 1 3b. 1 3c. 2
4a. 6 4b. 2 4c. 2
5a. 2 5b. 6 5c. 2

5th engagement
1a 5 1b 5 1c 6
2a 1 2b 4 2c 2
3a 6 3b 4 3c 2
4a 3 4b 4 4c 4
5a 1 5b 6 5c 4

6th engagement
1a 5 1b 3 1c 1
2a 5 2b 3 2c 1
3a 1 3b 5 3c 5
4a 3 4b 2 4c 6
5a 5 5b 3 5c 4

7th engagement
1a. 1 1b. 4 1c. 1
2a. 1 2b. 5 2c. 3
3a. 5 3b. 3 3c. 4
4a. 2 4b. 3 4c. 4
5a. 6 5b. 4 5c. 2

8th engagement
1a 5 1b 4 1c 2
2a 2 2b 3 2c 3
3a 4 3b 4 3c 6
4a 6 4b 2 4c 1
5a 4 5b 1 5c 3

9th engagement
1a 1 1b 5 1c 4
2a 5 2b 3 2c 5
3a 1 3b 2 3c 5
4a 2 4b 2 4c 4
5a 2 5b 2 5c 6

10th engagement
1a 1 1b. 5 1c. 6
2a 3 2b. 3 2c. 4
3a 3 3b. 6 3c. 6
4a 2 4b. 6 4c. 4
5a 4 5b. 5 5c. 3

11th engagement
1a 6 1b 2 1c 6
2a 6 2b 1 2c 6
3a 1 3b 5 3c 5
4a 2 4b 3 4c 2
5a 2 5b 3 5c 1

Capture successful

With this, the Klingons have a fleet of four ships (IKS Drunken Warrior2, IKS Krueg4, IKS tIQghoB, and the newly captured IKS Genghis Khan) deep in Federation space and within striking distance of Shipyard #4. The IKS Kor3 is on its way to join the fleet, and the IKS Chang4 will launch on the next turn.

If the Klingons can assemble a fleet of five ships to send against the remaining Federation shipyards, it could signal the beginning of the end of this campaign. That leaves few options for the Feds. Try to defend the shipyards while whittling down the Klingon fleet. Gamble big by running for undefended Klingon shipyards. Or assemble as a fleet and take the Klingons on head to head. That would either reset the clock (except for that destroyed shipyard), or pretty much finish it for the Federation. As the commander of the Klingon fleet, I'm pretty enthusiastic. As the commander of the Federation fleet, I'm thinking that a big gamble is the only thing that'll turn things around. That will means either taking on the Klingon fleet, or the Klingon shipyards.

More next time


What is Fantasy Trek?

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Multilevel Update: Klingon Fleet versus Federation Shipyard

The Klingon Fleet, consisting of the IKS Drunken Warrior, IKS Krueg4, IKS Chang3, IKS tIQghoB assembled and made the initial push into Federation territory. While this was going on, four Federation ships (USS Entebbe2, USS Guadalcanal3, USS Genghis Khan4, USS Endeavour4) separated in order to individually protect as many shipyards as possible, (remembering the lesson learned earlier when a single starship ended up saving a Klingon shipyard. The IKS Kor2 was sent to intercept the USS Chang3. It was not successful. The Klingon fleet moved around the Federation lines and took on Shipyard #5(N,20/21). The Chang3 was lost in the assault, but the shipyard was destroyed.

If the newly minted IKS Kor3 can somehow make it through five Federation ships, it will link up with the fleet and try to take out another shipyard. Otherwise it will still be a very long, tough war of attrition, even though the Klingons have the upper hand. And quite honestly, it's hard to see how the Federation can regain the intiative. By failing in the attempt early on to destroy Klingon Starbase wej with three ships, they not only lost those ships (and an early advantage of momentum), but they also gave the Klingons a free lesson in how many ships it takes to destroy a shipyard.

I've decided to include the combat tables from this so you can see the particulars of the battles I've described. The attacking ship rolls and allocates points first. Of course, I'm using the simplified combat rules here. The little 'o' means offense, the little 'd' means defense, and the roll number comes from the total of two six-sided dice times the particular multiplier for the particular class of ship. So if a Heavy Cruiser rolls a six, their 'roll' number is 72. Easy as fishin'. To destroy your opponent, your 'o' number has to equal your opponent's 'd' number plus 15. (To take down shields, you have to have their 'd' number plus 5).

Here's the first battle:

IKS Kor2 attacks USS Chang3 at coordinates F,18

IKS Kor2 rolls: 96 allocation: 50o,46d
USS Chang3 rolls: 84 allocation: 34o,50d

result tie
IKS Kor2 damage:
USS Chang3 damage:

IKS Kor2 rolls: 84 allocation: 50o,34d
USS Chang3 rolls: 96 allocation: 49o, 47d

IKS Kor2 damage: destroyed
USS Chang3 damage: 3/15

Here's the second battle:

IKS Drunken Warrior, IKS Krueg4, IKS Chang3, IKS tIQghoB attack Federation Shipyard Five (N,20/21)

IKS Drunken Warrior rolls: 108 Allocation: 90o, 18d
IKS Krueg4 rolls: 60 Allocation: 50o, 10d
IKS Chang3 rolls: 36 Allocation: 36o, 0d
IKS tIQghoB rolls: 108 Allocation:60o, 48d
UFP Shipyard Five rolls: 308 Allocation: 22,22,22,22o/55,55,55,55d

IKS Drunken Warrior damage: 4/15
IKS Krueg4 damage: 12/15
IKS Chang3 damage: destroyed
IKS tIQghoB damage: undamaged
UFP Shipyard damage: destroyed

More next time


What is Fantasy Trek?

Sunday, August 24, 2008

More ship to ship combat in multilevel play

The IKS tIQghoB (one of the few ships still undefeated in this campaign) defeated the USS Genghis Khan3 as it emerged from its shipyard, and the IKS Drunken Warrior2 suffered minor damage to its shields while destroying the USS Endeavour3 as it emerged from its shipyard. So the Klingon gambit paid off. The remainder of the Klingon fleet has launched, and only the just-launched USS Chang3 is in a position to do anything about it. So I'll have the IKS Kor2 intercept the Chang3, while the other four Klingons attempt to take out a Federation shipyard.

I have to say I'm pretty pleased with the way the random chance is mixing with the pretty simple scenario and the tactical and strategic decisions I'm making. I started this project close to two years ago essentially because I wanted a free Star Trek game. It's not your average game, to be sure, but it is growing on me.

More next time


What is Fantasy Trek?

Saturday, August 23, 2008

More Multilevel Surprises

Saturday night play had four Klingon heavy cruisers (IKS Chang2, IKS Drunken Warrior, IKS Kor, and IKS tIQghoB) trying to finish off the two surviving Federation heavy cruisers. (USS Chang and USS Gordon2). The Chang2 and the Drunken Warrior were lined up against the Gordon2, and the Kor and the tIQghoB were lined up against the USS Chang2.

Normally, both battles would be routs. However, (and that's why I still call this a work in progress) I thought that a lone starship deserves the opportunity to sacrifice itself for the greater good. In both battles, the Federation ship had enough of a roll to defeat one of their attackers. So I decided to allow the defender to direct all offensive points to a single attacker. That takes the game a step away from cold mathematics and a step toward real game play. Real decision making. So while the Federation fleet is now completely wiped out, heroic actions by two captains weakened the Klingons enough to stop them from destroying shipyards. The two surviving Klingon ships (the Drunken Warrior and the tIQghoB) will now have to wait for more ships to come out of the shipyards. I thought it'd be interesting to have them wait just out of weapons range and each attack a single emerging Federation ship as it launches, or even to gang up two on one. If they were each victorious in one-on-one combat, the Federation would have to wait five more turns to assemble a fleet. If they fought two-on-one, they'd risk losing a ship and having to rebuild, and allow another Federation to launch unmolested. On the other hand, if the Drunken Warrior and tIQghoB lose, the Klingon Fleet is gone, and there are five Federation starships running unopposed. In that case, the Federation fleet would most likely start eliminating Klingon shipyards.

All of this points to the real need for a single player, in this primitive stage of the game, to play as the fleet commander on both sides. In a sense, the object of this game is not to win, but to enjoy a good game. Until I make some progress on learning Java, this is single-player Fantasy Trek. To make things more interesting, one day we'll see troop ships full of boarding parties, construction ships to build more shipyards, and jamming cruisers that provide electronic warfare protection for combat ships. Sauce for the goose. And of course, different scenarios.

More next time...


What is Fantasy Trek?

Friday, August 22, 2008

Results of Fleet battle in multilevel play

I expected the extra ship in the Federation fleet to give them the edge over the Klingons, but in fact, that was all that saved them from a complete rout. The USS Gordon2 and the USS Chang (the captured Klingon heavy cruiser) easily destroyed the IKS Krueg3, but in every other battle, the Klingons won, and easily. The IKS Chang2 destroyed the USS Entebbe. The IKS Drunken Warrior2 destroyed the USS Endeavour2. The IKS tIQghoB destroyed the USS Guadalcanal. The IKS Kor destroyed the USS Genghis Khan. Remember, this took place with the simple combat rules and table, and with me playing both sides. So if any lurkers are reading, maybe waiting for a playable game, here is proof that a simple but playable game is here.

Tomorrow, the remaing Klingon Fleet (IKS Kor, IKS tIQghoB, IKS Drunken Warrior2, and IKS Chang2) will engage Federation survivors USS Gordon2 and USS Chang. Assuming that they win, they'll start going after Federation shipyards next, (even as construction begins on replacements for both sides) followed by occupying the Federation planet in the sector.

On the subject of shipyards: if one shipyard is destroyed, another can compensate by building two ships... but... it can still only build one at a time, and it still takes five turns to build a new ship.

Incidentally, I'm of course keeping all of the logs (dice rolls, etc) from these, which I will post at the conclusion of the campaign.

More next time...


What is Fantasy Trek?

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Multilevel Update

Last night I started lining up the two fleets. The Federation fleet, rebuilt and augmented by a single captured Klingon heavy cruiser has pulled the rebuilt Klingon fleet to their side of the board. So we have the following ships facing off. USS Endeavour2, USS Gordon2, USS Genghis Khan2, USS Guadalcanal2, USS Entebbe, and USS (to reflect its capture) Chang, versus IKS Drunken Warrior2, IKS Krueg3, IKS Chang2, IKS Kor, and IKS tIQghoB.

The hope for each side is that enough ships survive to start taking out enemy shipyards. That will start to deny one side the ability rebuild their ships, and that is the key to winning the overall campaign. Of  course, once they've destroyed the enemy ships and shipyards, they'll have to occupy the enemy planet (located behind the shipyards), which has a garrison of fifty defenders.

All of this should in fact be a simple test of every form of combat operations I intended for Fantasy Trek. After that, with any luck, it will be a matter of creating scenarios and rules and guidelines to tie all of these aspects in with the ongoing storyline. Then I'll add more races' ships (Romulans, etc) and more ship classes.

More next time


What is Fantasy Trek?

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

First Good Lesson Learned in Multilevel Play

Four Fed heavy cruisers attacked a Klingon shipyard. If a Klingon heavy cruiser hadn't shown up to defend the shipyard, it would have been lost. As it was, the IKS Krueg(2) sacrificed itself by taking on the USS Entebbe and the shipyard destroyed the USS Guadalcanal, USS Genghis Khan, and the USS Endeavour. They'll respawn with a (2) after their names, and have another go. The lesson here is two-fold. Sacrifice can save the day, and never take on a shipyard (multiplier of X28 under simplified rules) with less than four heavy cruisers  (multiplier of X12 under simplified rules). This demonstrates the importance of tactics even when rolling dice, as well as the benefits of playing on the holodeck when your favorite ship gets blown up taking on a shipyard.

More next time


What is Fantasy Trek?

Monday, August 18, 2008

Update on Multilevel Play

I've been away from the game for a few days, but I played a few rounds last night. Two Federation ships teaming up to capture a Klingon. A Klingon ship came in and destroyed another Federation ship with a single, very lucky strike, and Klingon shipyards are just about to build (respawn) two battlecruisers. The Federation fleet will have to take out the shipyards in order to win.

I'm also working on a 'quest' mission for non-combat players. Essentially a twelve part mission where you get a piece of info that leads you to a location where you get another piece of info that leads you to a further location, and so on.....

More as I get it :)


What is Fantasy Trek?

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Multilevel Play

I'm currently testing what I call multilevel play. That is a combination of fleet action, a simplified ship-to-ship combat chart, and boarding party action doing not only hit and run raids (targeting specific systems) but capture attempts. As I do that, I will also modify ship data to reflect transporters and boarding party capacity. What I'm doing on the map that is a little different is adding respawning at starbases. It can be assumed that if you lose or are captured in combat, your crew is rescued at the last second, and you receive a new ship that can be rechristened with the name of your old ship. Any ships captured in combat can obviously be used in combat by the captor. In simulated combat (which this current playtest is classified as), any captured ships (as well as any destroyed ships) revert to their previous state as soon as the holodeck is switched off. The idea of respawning can be used outside of simulations in a modified fashion if you choose. In that case, it will be assumed that your ship wasn't in fact destroyed, but left adrift and towed back to a friendly base. If your ship is captured (under the modified rule), it is assumed that your crew was eventually released to friendly authorities and you received a new ship, rechristened with the name of your choice. Once I've completed the combat phase of this multilevel exercise, I'll weave a playable story around it and post it all for your kind review. That will pretty much be a full test of the Fantasy Trek concept. Solid storytelling, fleet action, ship to ship, and personal combat.

And of course, going forward, I'm starting to think about simplified Ship System Displays (text-based, without the need for an excel viewer), and Rolmulan and pirate vessels. Then I'll start to work on different classes of ships. And that should put all of the basic systems in place. This probably all sounds frighteningly complicated, but really, all you have to do is choose what you want to do and roll the dice. I'm doing the hard part. :)

One a personal note. It is entirely possible that there is a very distinguished visitor, someone I have now met at two Trek conventions, and whom I am happy to call a friend (and I am a huge fan of hers.) You know who you are, I won't name any names. You can if you want. Anyway, welcome aboard. I would love to know what you think of this game so far.



What is Fantasy Trek?

Sunday, August 3, 2008

MIssion Summary USS Guadalcanal at Jibalia III

USS Guadalcanal NCC 55726
Captain Michael Murphy Commanding
Survey Jibalia III

Mission start :0708.16
Mission complete: 0808.03

C Class planet Jibalia III discovered to be artificial construct, covered by unknown metal alloy shell. Specific composition unknown Origin unknown. Interior surface of shell covered with biocircuitry of unknown origin or purpose. Representative portion of circuitry replicated for further study. During course of mission, crew witnessed evidence of powerful illusions created by unknown source. Planet Jibalia III hereby restricted to authorized visit. Survey vessel to be assigned.

USS Guadalcanal NCC 55726 completes first of five missions towards Experienced rating.

What is Fantasy Trek?

Saturday, August 2, 2008

Captain's Personal Log USS Guadalcanal Stardate 0808.03

Stardate 0808.03
USS Guadalcanal
Captain Murphy
In orbit of Jibalia III

Following the events of my log entry stardated 0708.31, I have decided that despite the obvious danger of a species capable of creating illusions on a par with the Talosians, we need to get some answers before Starfleet starts sending more ships through the wormhole. What kind of enemy are we facing? What's inside the planet?

While I understand that no member of this crew, or even the ship for that matter, is indespensable, I also refuse to risk my crew unecessarily. So I turned T'Par's creative scientific energies to the problem.

Her solution borrowed from an experiment conducted by Commander Geordie Laforge on the USS Enterprise. What Laforge did was use an interface probe, connected to his V.I.S.O.R. (An acronym for Visual Instrument and Sensory Organ Replacement) via remote telepresence technology to explore a starship that was otherwise unreachable. T'Par interfaced that probe with the holodeck, which would allow us to explore the interior of the planet (in a necessarily limited fashion) from the safety of the ship. The first step was to transport the interface probe through the hole we'd previously drilled in the metal alloy shell of the planet.

Once that was done, T'Par, Lukara and I entered the main holodeck and waited for the probe's sensors to transmit data from the interior of the planet to the holomatrix. What we saw appeared to be thousands of kilometers of computer circuits. According to the probe's long-range sensors, the circuitry is all interconnected and interdependent, and extends throughout the entire interior. Indeed, there is nothing else either on the shell or within the space inside the shell. So the planet is essentially a single, huge computer component. Of course, T'Par pointed out that since it does not appear to serve any obvious function in and of itself, it is most likely a single component of a larger network. The purpose of that network is impossible to determine at this point, but judging by the size of this component, we are assuming the purpose is of similar proportion.

As to the circuitry itself, we determined that it was unwise to attempt to remove any. Simply put, if we break their computer, they'll probably get mad and come after us. I'm not quite ready to confront them on that level. We were able, however, to use the probe's sensors to replicate a portion of the circuitry for analysis. The first thing we determined was that it is biomechanical in nature, not unlike the bioneural gelpaks used in modern Federation starships, but of a different nature altogether. It is, fortunately, not Borg circuitry. That we know without a doubt. But we also know that the organic circuitry we've found here is as much beyond anything we have as our technology is beyond stone knives and bear skins. The probe operated for thirty-five minutes before an electrical discharge from the alien circuitry completely disrupted it. Fortunately we saved all of the data to a portable memory device (completely disconnected from the ship's main computer as a precaution), so we can continue to analyze the data. At that point, we departed Jibalia III at high warp. Our investigation will continue, even as we begin to prepare this part of the Delta Quadrant for a full-time Federation presence.

What is Fantasy Trek?