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Author Topic: Star Control Story  (Read 27592 times)
Valaggar Redux
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Re: Star Control Story
« Reply #105 on: November 01, 2007, 07:04:12 pm »

From the Star Control II DOS manual (page 93):
The Fury’s main (and only) weapon is a rapidfire,
very short-range mini-gun that launches streams of dense, superheated
metals forward and to the sides.
« Last Edit: November 01, 2007, 07:18:34 pm by Valaggar Redux » Logged
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Re: Star Control Story
« Reply #106 on: November 02, 2007, 01:03:09 pm »

Reading the wiki,... I'm going to be an idiot ans ask, how canon is it?

The goal is for it to be entirely canon, but in practice, it is not free of fan fiction and wild speculation. You're welcome to improve it though.
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Re: Star Control Story
« Reply #107 on: January 20, 2008, 02:26:19 am »

I know, this post is old, and I have no idea if you're still working on this, but in case you are, or are considering getting started on it again, here are my impressions.

This is a very good start.  I'm an aspiring writer, so I know how difficult it is to write Smiley  Very good dialogue, very cool, unique characters.  And actually, when the First Officer reprimands Zelnick for being cocky, I think that the way you phrased it fit his attitude towards the Captain perfectly, at least, based off of my impression of your description.  He's going to be a little caustic because he's an old guy with athritis who spent most of his life just waiting for the Ur-Quan to show up and eradicate Earth, not to mention that he is bitter about an upstard teenager being given command of humanity's only hope.

Some things to keep in mind:

1.  In real life, combat would not be one on one.  *Every* ship would be involved at the same time on both sides (with the possible exception of the Flagship if you decide to give it an arkship configuration).  Now, I think that parts of the Ilwrath Avenger battle work well to explain a one to one thing, since the crew of the Vindicator are panicking so they don't think to fight, while the Tobermoon saves the day, but I pray to whatever holy deity the crew believes in that things don't stay that way.

2.  Also, like an earlier post mentioned space is a big place, that goes for combat too.  Definitely read the Honor Harrington novels by David Weber if you want an example of that.  Even the close range weapons may travel several hundred kilometers, so you probably wouldn't have ships colliding.  For example, in the first Honor Harrington book, David Weber discusses a special device that can eradicate an opponent's shields, however, with a range of a hundred thousand kilometers, it is far too short range to be much use.

Now, in David Weber's novels, the ships have got some freaking advanced weapon systems, so maybe the range doesn't have to be that extreme, but your ships certainly shouldn't be getting close enough to collide.  Including this whole tremendous distance thing in space would work great to get rid of the "gamy feel."

3.  I imagine that on a space ship navigation would consist of inputing vectors and junk into a computer and then having the computer follow that course.  So your inexperienced pilot wouldn't circle around the Starbase for hours trying to dock.  However, you could have her be frustrated because she had to correct her vectors several times during the journey because she kept catching mistakes, and you could even have the captain catch one of her mistakes, which would make her rather embarassed, and the First Mate grumpy.

Good luck in all your writing endeavors.
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Re: Star Control Story
« Reply #108 on: January 25, 2008, 02:32:24 am »

I'll give my short insert in here.

If you are able to recreate the atmosphere that took place on Eta Vulpeculae II (Androsynth homeworld) and Arcturus I (Burvixese homeworld), all I can say is *go for it!*
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Re: Star Control Story
« Reply #109 on: February 20, 2008, 03:41:13 am »

I realise this issue was probably resolved months ago but about the lander and mineral collection.

In the games manual it states that "
Mineral Scan
This function paints low-power, deep-radar waves across the planet, and
interprets the resulting echoes into dots on the mineral display, showing
the location, size, and type of each significant mineral deposit on the surface.
The diameter of the dot indicates the size of the deposit, and the
color informs you what type of minerals are in the deposit.
Of course, each planet has many more resources well beneath the surface.
However, your lander is not equipped to access these minerals, and must
limit itself to what resources are readily available."

So i don't think they will be drilling for the resources so much as collecting the surface samples. I know it sounds stupid driving around and picking up 10 tons of iron from the surface but hey thats what the manual says (oh and the resources what kind of measurement is the 10 iron you pick up? 10 tons, 10 cubic metres?)

Um apart from that i thought the first chapters was well written and just have to say  *Jumping Peppers!*
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Re: Star Control Story
« Reply #110 on: February 20, 2008, 08:08:45 pm »

Hmmm i think its 10 kilo tonnes (pretty sure its metric tonnes) so I guess 10,000 tonnes of iron.

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Re: Star Control Story
« Reply #111 on: October 17, 2009, 02:12:29 am »

Despite it having been a few years, I think I may get back to this soon.

EDIT: Damn, looking over the posts at the beginning of this thread, I used way too many smilies.

Also, several people dislike the prologue (even though it's the prologue of the actual game). Any suggestions on how to fix this? I might expand on it by narrating a part of Zelnick's childhood or something. I'm leery about actually rewording what's there unless I scrap the whole thing and replace it with something else, though, since it is canonical Star Control material.

I'm thinking of going 'generic sci-fi' for the much-pondered over artificial gravity, if only because that's the way Star Control's setting seems to have been built. Any objections to this?

EDIT2: While writing, I suddenly had a thought: How do people get off the slave shielded planet when the Ur-Quan assign them to the space station? At first I thought that maybe they were spacefarers who were forced to run the station and reproduced on board, but Hayes's statement that it was "terrifying to look up and see the red slave shield" and the fact that Talana was a small child when her planet was slave shielded negates this.

Is it safe to assume that the Ur-Quan can bypass the slave shield somehow?
« Last Edit: October 17, 2009, 07:27:11 am by Grakelin » Logged
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Re: Star Control Story
« Reply #112 on: October 17, 2009, 10:14:20 am »

Chapter 2

“One planet left to mine, Captain,” Erika Graves said, locking the vectors into the control console. “Pluto. This shouldn’t take quite so long; it’s a much smaller planet. We should arrive by the seventeenth.”

“Thank you, Erika,” Captain Zelnick replied, placing his coffee mug on the table between himself and Sparks. “I can’t wait until we can turn this into a real warship.”
“We’ve already doubled the speed this tug moves at,” Sparks replied, stroking his bad leg with one hand. “As long as we can slip past Ur-Quan space, we should be able to find a decent ally or two.”

The newly fitted anti-matter thrusters pushed the ship away from the Station. The Vindicator had received extensive personnel rearrangements over the past couple weeks. Thankfully, nobody else had died while mining the solar system, due largely in part to several highly skilled operatives from the station joining Robinson’s mining team.
Lieutenant Kowalski was the foremost of this crew. The Russian had worked in a mine before the Ur-Quan slave-shielded Earth. This knowledge still stayed with him, even twenty years later. Along with him came Ensign Gregory O’Donnell, his right hand man. O’Donnell had a wry wit and a jovial nature about him. There were four others in Kowalski’s team, shady characters called ‘Luigi and the Liebermann Triplets’. They mainly stayed to themselves, but were immensely invaluable to the mining shuttle.
Alan Fritz, Sean Witherspoon, and Jordan Chin also came aboard. Lieutenant Robinson, Marshmallow, and Rigby remained. There had been a bit of debate over whether to include Jenkins, who Marshmallow claimed was a great co-pilot, or O’Donnell. Kowalski insisted on his friend being on the mining team, going so far as to say he’d refuse to join the mining expedition otherwise. Zelnick had finally relented, a choice that Sparks had berated him from that day forward.

Things would have been better for O’Donnell, by far, if he had stayed on the station.

***

“Come on, John, you’ve gotta let me go down there with them!” Traveller pleaded, following the old scientist down the residential corridor. “I’ve gotta see some action!”

“You will address me as either ‘Dr. Sparks’ or ‘sir’, Ensign Frakes,” Sparks replied, not turning around. “And no, you will not be going down. We’ve discussed this before: The mining shuttle is full. And the only action you’ll see will be if we have another Mercury incident. Now get out of my hair.”

“That shuttle is far from full,” Traveller said. “O’Donnell? Witherspoon? For God’s sake, Witherspoon was a security officer on the starbase, and O’Donnell worked in waste management with me, and I can tell you now he wouldn’t know his head from a gallon of liquid radioactive.”

“I wonder how little Commander Hayes thinks of us here on the Vindicator,” mused the old man. “That he should send his waste management staff to crew our starship. If you’ll excuse me, I need to get some sleep.”

Sparks disappeared into his quarters, the door sliding shut behind him before Traveller could get another word in.

***
 “What’s this for?” Marshmallow asked, looking over the rifle that Robinson had just handed him.

“They spotted an energy signature down on the planet’s surface,” the lieutenant replied. Behind him, seated across from Rigby at the back of the shuttle, Kowalski made a sound in his throat. He hadn’t been getting along with Robinson at all lately. The question of which of the two lieutenants was in charge was prevalent. “It’s probably nothing, but the Captain wants us to stow this with us just in case. Just put it in your compartment for now, we’ll pull it out on the off-chance we need it.”

The shuttle flew down to the largest source of minerals on the surface: a vein of Tzo Crystals. Kowalski and Rigby worked fast, using the drill to extract the valuable resource. O’Donnell impatiently sat on the edge of the shuttle, tapping the glass of his helmet and wishing he had a cigarette. Cigarettes were rare on the starbase, of course, partly because there was no way to manufacture them, and partly because Hayes had outlawed them when it became clear the Ur-Quan wouldn’t offer any medical support to the starbase residents; but O’Donnell was well-known for having a large supply of them that he had brought up from Earth. The legendary tale of O’Donnell bringing a crate filled with smokes instead of actual personnel luggage was well-known, especially by Hayes who had immediately assigned him to waste management. When Kowalski brought him onto the Vindicator, the smokers of the starbase were dismayed that their weekly cigarette would no longer be available. In truth, the supply was almost gone anyways.

“Any word on what the energy signature is, O’Donnell?” Robinson asked. Now he remembered, he was supposed to have been scanning the source to determine the nature of this anomaly. Whatever that meant. How could he do that from the other side of this rock anyways? He decided to just make a guess at it.

“Yeah, it looks like it’s a number of these Cho Crystals, but they’re reacting with each other in a way that gives off an energy signature,” he replied. “My guess, anyways.”
“Odd, I didn’t think that was how the scanners worked.”

“Yeah, well, these things are very iffy sometimes.”

When the Tzo Crystals were mined, Robinson took the crew into the shuttle, and they made their way to the next set. Cresting over a crater, they spotted the energy source up ahead. A large red dome, covered in space rocks and sand.

“There’s another one on our two o’clock, sir,” Marshmallow said. “An energy signature, I mean. This one is much fainter.”

“Alright, Luigi and the Liebermann triplets will the land rover and go check that out. The rest of us will have to run some more scans on that dome. I don’t know why you think that thing is a pile of Tzo Crystals, O’Donnell.”

“If O’Donnell says they’re Tzo Crystals, they’re Tzo Crystals,” Kowalski said. “O’Donnell knows what he’s doing, he’s my best man.”

“Look, Kowalski,” Robinson said. “That isn’t a Tzo Crystal. Nor is it a group of them. That thing looks man-made.”

“I’m sick and tired of wasting my time on this goddamned shuttle, Louie,” Kowalski retorted, rising to his feet. “No more scans, no more screwing around. We know they’re Tzo Crystals, so we mine the Tzo Crystals.”

Luigi and the Liebermann triplets got into the land rover – an open concept wheeled vehicle – and looked between Robinson and Kowalski. Robinson nodded to them, and they dropped from the shuttle onto the surface and moved towards the second energy source.

“Kowalski, we need to be careful, our lives are on the line here,” Robinson said. “We need to be absolutely sure.”

“And I’m saying that we are absolutely sure, because O’Donnell is absolutely sure, isn’t that right, Greg?”

All eyes turned to O’Donnell, who until this point had been playing with a console on the wall. There was a moment of silence. The seven miners waited for his response. Finally, after careful consideration, he slowly nodded his head.

“Yeah. Yeah, I’m sure.”

“Fine then,” Robinson sighed. “Let’s go.”

***

“What is it?” Robinson’s voice crackled over the comm. system. The shuttle was almost to the dome, and the Liebermann triplets had just finished digging up a metallic square object from Pluto’s surface.

“I’m not sure,” Luigi replied. “It looks like... Definitely a machine. Lots of flickering lights, there’s a button here. Joseph, don’t touch it, you idiot! Ah, Joseph just pushed the button. Nothing’s happening, though.”

***

 An alarm siren woke him from his slumber. Something had triggered the sensor trap! With lightning speed he moved across the room, pulling knobs and levers as he went. There was a large warship up above. He would not be struck down.

***

The dome began to move before their eyes. Specks of space dust were thrown up into the sky. They floated perpetually as the dome lifted itself up out of the ground, revealing itself to be a sphere. Smaller spheres were attached to it by long, grey tubes. Robinson recognized it immediately.

“Tzo Crystals my ass,” he yelled, reaching for the co-pilot’s chair. “That’s a Spathi Eluder! If we don’t get out of here now, we’re all dead. Luigi! Get out of there, Luigi! Run!”
A missile shot out from the dome, zipped across the landscape, and smashed into the block that Luigi and the Liebermann triplets were gathered around. The four of them disappeared in the resulting cloud of space dust. Marshmallow attempted to pull up the shuttle up. Nothing happened. A quick glance at the console quickly explained the source of this problem: the shuttle had just locked into stand-by mode.

“You didn’t set this, did you, sir?” Marshmallow asked. Robinson shook his head and turned around. O’Donnell was still playing with the console next to his seat.

“You bastard!” Robinson roared, leaping from his chair and grabbing the front of O’Donnell’s suit. “You locked up our shuttle!”

“I didn’t mean to!”

“You didn’t mean to? You didn’t mean to? What the hell were you thinking? Is this what your best man does, Kowalski? Get us all killed?”

“Let’s all just calm down,” Alan Fritz said, standing up and outstretching his arms. Behind him, Rigby was trembling with his eyes closed, and Kowalski was trying to make himself look busy by checking the mining gear. Witherspoon and Chin simply looked on. “I’m sure nobody else is going to be kill-“

Alan’s sentence was cut short by several steel balls tearing through the shuttle’s hull, one of which zipped into his chest and out his back. Another embedded itself into the mining gear, forcibly tearing it off the shuttle. Kowalski, Rigby, Witherspoon, and Chin all fell out the back as the shuttle was rocked to the side.

Marshmallow’s fingers zipped across the console and the shuttle came out of standby. Another burst of projectiles flew at them. He twisted the control stick. Two of the projectiles smashed into the shuttle, tearing off one of the thrusters. A piece of shrapnel sliced open the front of O’Donnell’s suit, and he quickly died a gasping death.

“We can’t take much more of this!” Marshmallow yelled. “Even one more of those things will blow this ship to a million pieces.”

“Get us behind something. Anything,” Robinson yelled back, pulling the rifle from Marshmallow’s cockpit compartment. “Just so long as it will protect us from the Eluder.”
Marshmallow took the shuttle behind a rock, cringing as it was struck by a third burst of projectiles. The Eluder spun around in the air and released another burst, this time towards the four miners on the surface. Chin was struck on the top of the head by one, almost completely atomizing him. Clouds of space debris pushed Kowalski far above Witherspoon and Rigby. A missile zipped past  him, snagging his sleeve and carrying him into the rock Marshmallow and Robinson were hiding behind.  The shuttle soared out of its cover and raced towards Witherspoon and Rigby. Robinson stood on top, firing his rifle at the Spathi ship. The vessel began to erratically zoom around, disappearing over the horizon and appearing on the opposite side within a few short seconds. It repeated this several times, and then fired another missile.
Witherspoon grabbed Rigby and jumped, the two of them being steadily consumed by the clouds of Plutonian dust, as the shuttle flew overhead. The Ensign reached out a hand and grabbed the broken starboard of the shuttle, pulling them both inside.

“We have come under fire from an alien vessel we found hiding on the surface of Pluto!” Marshmallow yelled into his comm. system. Captain! They killed Kowalski, Fritz, Chin, O’Donnell, Luigi, and all three of the Liebermann Triplets! We have returned fire, but our stunner can’t penetrate the ship’s hull armor. We are initiating emergency launch procedures!”

The battered shuttle streaked back towards the ship in a flash.
« Last Edit: October 17, 2009, 10:17:38 am by Grakelin » Logged
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Re: Star Control Story
« Reply #113 on: October 17, 2009, 10:16:55 am »

***

“Attention big, mean, hostile alien vessel hovering overhead in an obvious attack posture,” the Spathi said, displaying himself on the Vindicator’s viewscreen. The creature resembled a green slug, except it had a large, bulbous eye and two claw-like, spindly arms. “This is Spathi Captain Fwiffo. I know you are going to torture me, so let’s just get this over with right now.”

“What’s going on? What the hell is that?” Zelnick asked, completely befuddled.

“The coordinate s of my homeworld, Spathiwa, are 241.6, 368.7,” the Spathi continued. “And the ultra-secret Spathi Cypher, which is known only by me and several billion other Spathi is Huffi-Muffi-Guffi.”

The creature, somehow communicating although it lacked a mouth, had a high, disconcerting voice. Erika covered her ears with both hands. Zelnick grimaced and took a sip of coffee. Sparks just rolled his eyes.

“Sorry about that little mistake with your landing vehicle!” Fwiffo said. “I was so startled when it approached my vessel in a threatening manner that... er... my automated defense systems fired on it when it got too close. I hope nobody got hurt!”

“Attention, alien vessel,” Sparks said, his voice filled with command. “Identify yourself or be destroyed!”

“John, that is hardly the most diplomatic way of doing things,” Zelnick whispered. “Can’t you let me do the talking? I’m the Captain and all.”

“Yes, and eight more men just died under your watch. Now stand aside.”

“Of course, of course,” Fwiffo replied. “As I said, I am Captain Fwiffo of the Spathi voidship StarRunner. Our sensors have tracked your entry into this sytem, which you are no doubt here to conquer, and while you are certainly welcome to do so, we would be greatly appreciative if you would please just go away and forget this solar system ever existed. If you don’t go, it will greatly complicate our master-slave relationship with the Ur-Quan, who stationed us here to watch over the Earthlings.”

“He certainly likes to ramble on,” Sparks said. “I’ve had enough of this, spaceslug. I suggest you immediately perform whatever cultural practices are customary to your species preceding death.”

“What he meant to say, of course,” Zelnick cut in, standing up and blocking the viewscreen’s view of Sparks. “Is that we understand that sometimes these tragic misunderstandings happen. We grieve, but are not bitter.”

“Not bitter? Not bitter?” Sparks cried, shocked. “What do you mean, not-“

“Sparks, if you can’t compose yourself, I will have to ask you to leave the bridge.”

Sparks fell silent, his face flush with anger. He leaned back into his seat, one hand gripped tightly to the arm of his chair.

“Whew, thanks!” the Spathi said. “For a minute there, I thought you were going to kill me!”

“What are you doing here on Pluto?” Erika said. Sparks threw his hands up in the air when Zelnick failed to reprimand her for directly speaking to the Spathi.

“About 20 years ago, this region of space was dominated by a loose confederation known as the Alliance of Free Stars,” Fwiffo said. “Which was composed of aliens native to these parts who didn’t want to be enslaved. They made a valiant effort against the superior Ur-Quan force, and it even looked like they might miraculously defeat the combined Ur-Quan armada, right up to the point at which the Ur-quan totally defeated – indeed, annihilated – them.

“So what are you doing on Pluto?” Zelnick said, returning to his seat.

“When the Ur-Quan armada entered this system to subjugate formally the Earthlings, the Ur-Quan presented the humans with the standard slave options: join the Hierarchy as combat thralls, and retain some autonomy, including the right to travel through space, or become a ‘fallow’ species and return to pre-atomic savagery on the surface of their homeworld, encased for all time beneath an impenetrable force shield. The Humans chose the latter option, and so were swiftly imprisoned on the surface of Earth, but the Ur-Quan didn’t trust them to obey the restrictions, so they chose a small group of Hierarchy combat starships from the Ilwrath and Spathi fleets to create the so-called Earthgguard, and stationed them at a base on Earth’s moon.”

“My God, spaceslug,” Sparks cried. “I am sick of your rambling. Tell me what you are doing on Pluto, now.”

“Originally, we were stationed on Earth’s moon, which made Spathi a bit uneasy, because with each passing day we grew more and more worried about the sneaky Earthlings making a surprise attack, though the Ilwrath kept telling us that was impossible since the Earthlings had no ships or weapons whatsoever. That made us feel a bit better, but when the Ilwrath left, again we grew fearful and decided to make a strategic redeployment to Mars. Later on, we decided it would be prudent to relocate to Jupiter’s moon, Ganymede, then later Saturn’s moon Titan, and finally her to Pluto.”

“The whole lot of these spaceslugs are cowards, Zelnick,” Sparks said. “It turned out alright for us, I suppose, since we weren’t annihilated by B.U.T.Ts on our way into the system. But what happened to the Ilwrath stationed in this system? Care to explain, spaceslug?”

“The Ilwrath contingent were supposed to be the toughest ridge-crest, er... the most rigid flipper, no...” Fwiffo stumbled over his words, trying to find just the right one to explain what he wanted to say. “Ah, yes – the backbone of the Earthguard force; but they departed the system en masse not long after the last Ur-Quan Dreadnought vanished from this region of space. They claimed to have received a direct order their Gods of Evil and Darkness, who had grown dissatisfied with the Ilwrath’s passivity and wanted them to kill or at least torture someone soon. Personally, I believe they just got bored and went off to have some fun.”

“When do you expect the Ilwrath to return, Fwiffo?” Zelnick asked.

“Well, when they were pushing up into Hyperspace 18 years ago, we asked them that very question, and I think they said something to the effect of ‘Real Soon’.”
“I see,” Zelnick continued. “What is happening at the base on Luna, then?”

“We decided that if the Earthlings figured out we had abandoned the base on Luna, they would be more likely to try something sneaky. So we rigged up some old service androids and ordered them to drive around on the lunar surface in bulldozers, endlessly pushing around the same piles of dirt,” Fwiffo explained. “In addition, we connected the base’s local radio transmitter to an audio Melnorme FunRom called ‘Winky’s Happy Night’, hoping that they would think we were still there.”

“Remind me to speak to Ensign Rigby about what a mayday signal actually entails,” Sparks said to the Captain. “And also, try getting some useful specialists next time we’re at the starbase. As for you, spaceslug, what happened to the other Spathi ships? This all looks pretty empty to me.”

“Over the past years, it became necessary to redeploy strategically some of our Earth forces to our homeworld in case of a sudden surprise attack by a vicious, unrelenting alien race which we Spathi call ‘The Ultimate Evil’!” Fwiffo laid the most emphasis on these last three words. Zelnick could not help but feel a chill at the thought of what the Ultimate Evil might be.

“Who or what is this ‘Ultimate Evil’?” he asked, trying to keep his voice from trembling.

“As yet, the Ultimate Evil remains largely unmanifest, and its powers and exact intentions are still a bit obscure, since it lurks just outside the range of even the most sensitive, long-range detectors, which we feel gives conclusive evidence as to The Ultimate Evil’s nefarious intent.”

“What he means, Zelnick,” Sparks said. “Is that the spaceslugs are cowards. How anybody can think of an evil worse than the Ur-Quan is beyond me, but Spathi are very good at it. You could throw salt at them and they would flee in terror.”

“For good reason, from the looks of it,” Erika piped up.

“Spaceslug, how many crew do you have aboard?”

“Dozens – that is to say, scores and perhaps even hundreds of my brethren stride through the corridors of this specially modified, super-efficient, mass-destruction-oriented starship which could lay siege to an entire planetary system should we choose to do so, which, fortunately for you, we have decided not to do today.”
“Hundreds?” Zelnick said, slightly taken aback. “Come on.”

“I am undone!” Fwiffo cried. “You are far too clever for a poor Spathi like me, and now I must submit to your superior, alien intellect. I guess I am not revealing any truly important secrets if I tell you that each of my species’ Eluder-class Voidships typically holds 30 Spathi crewmen, though at present my vessel, the StarRunner, is not up to full complement, due to the needs of my homeworld in their resistance against the Ultimate Evil, and in fact my vessel is somewhat understaffed right now, seeing as how I am the only Spathi on board, which is a bit frightening as I am sure you can understand.”

There was a long moment of silence. Only one Spathi? All this time, Earth’s jailor had been a single Spathi? It almost seemed ridiculous that Humanity had taken this long to figure it out. Zelnick knew that this creature, this Fwiffo, had to be clever if it had managed to fool his entire race for the past twenty years. Finally, he spoke up.
“So why are you still here, Captain Fwiffo?”

“Since it was our most powerful and unforgiving masters, the Ur-Quan, who stationed us here, we knew it would be grossly stupid to disobey them completely, but we decided that it would be okay to send just one ship home. We used one of our most ancient and solemn rituals, Puun-Taffy, to pick the lucky ship. Then... some months later, we decided that it wouldn’t really hurt if we sent one more ship home, and then later we sent another, and then another... well, you get the idea. Alas, as fate would have it, when the final ritual was performed, I, Fwiffo, was left here alone, for as even the most immature encrustling knows, there must always be one Spathi who picks the short Ta Puun stick.

“The Galaxy teems with threatening monsters,” Zelnick said, speaking each word slowly and carefully. “Are you happy here – alone and vulnerable?”

“How true, Captain, how true!” Fwiffo replied. “In truth, just between us, during the past seven years, I have been quite ill at ease, and yet now I find myself enjoying your company, this witty dialogue, and the presence of your huge, powerful, death-dealing starship, which being my friend, you would certainly feel compelled to use in order to save me from any hostile lifeforms who threatened me with death.”

“I’m sure you’d feel a lot safer if you were with us,” Zelnick continued. “Come on, Fwiffo, join our fleet!”

“What?” Sparks roared, shambling to his feet and leaning on his cane. “What the hell are you talking about? He kills our men and you let him follow us around in his Eluder? No, that is insane. We can’t do that!”

“Can I just cut in to say that I completely agree with Doctor Sparks on this one, Captain?” Erika said, turning to look at him.

“No you may not,” Zelnick said. “How about it, Fwiffo?”

“Happy days and jubilation!” the Spathi cried. “I discard all prejudice and hesitations and accept and celebrate your offer of protection and your undying commitment to my well-being! I must wax melancholy for just a moment though, and make sure you understand that any other Spathi ships we meet at large in the galaxy are not going to be quite so responsive to your friendly gestures as myself, since they bear more heavily the yoke of Ur-Quan enslavement, and are also apt to talk themselves out of allying with a totally unknown alien, which I, having been left here alone, cannot do. Welcome me aboard, Captain!”

***

“NO!”

Witherspoon marched down the corridor towards the airlock, rifle in hand. He had barely taken his suit off when he found out that the Captain was letting the Spathi on board. He, along with Timothy Wren, a back-up miner whose parents had been killed by a Spathi Eluder during the Great War, along with several other crewmen, were already on their way to ambush the Spathi as it came off the airlock.

“Captain wants a Spathi on board a ship? A Spathi who just killed eight of our boys? Not bloody likely,” Witherspoon said, his shoulder-length blond hair still matted with perspiration. “We’re gonna kill that thing, and if the Captain tries to stop us, he can eat lead, too!”

“I don’t think that’s such a good idea,” Traveller said, stepping out in front of the airlock. He was unarmed, but had a look of conviction on his face. His face was streaked with dirt from working in the fuel chambers, and his sandy brown hair was blown back from the cooling fans down there.

“Out of my way, Traveller,” Witherspoon grunted. “I got enough of your crap on the starbase.”

“Captain says that the Spathi gets to live, the Spathi gets to live,” Traveller replied. “That’s the gist of it. I’m sure he knows what he’s doing.”

“I’m not quite sure you know what you’re doing, jackass,” Witherspoon said, stepping forward so he and Traveller were toe-to-toe. “I’m going to kill the Spathi. It’s what he deserves.”

“No,” Traveller said back. “You aren’t.”

The airlock hatched opened, and the small, slug-like creature slithered through the opening. Witherspoon moved forward past Traveller, levelling his rifle. In a flash, Traveller pushed the rifle aside and threw Witherspoon to the floor. The miner fell onto his stomach. Wren leaped towards Traveller, who had turned his body when he threw Witherspoon, wrench in hand. Traveller grabbed him by the wrist and punched him hard in the gut, knocking the wind out of him. The other crewmembers in the corridor, mostly unarmed, backed off.

“I’ve always wanted to do that, Witherspoon,” Traveller said. “But you know what Hayes would have done to me. Being on this ship certainly has its perks.”
The Spathi, momentarily frozen in fear, regained its composure and emitted a high pitched wail.

“Please, please, I surrender to your pugilistic prowess, good Human,” Captain Fwiffo screamed. “Please do not torture me to death, for I am at your service and am no match for a skilled warrior such as you.”

“Relax, Spathi, I’m not going to hurt you,” Traveller replied. “What’s your name? I’m called Traveller.”

“My name, oh powerful one, is Captain Fwiffo,” Captain Fwiffo said. “And I must warn you that I may have actually been lying when I said that I am no match, for indeed I am a great hand-to-hand combatant, and could probably incapacitate you before you could finish blinking, meaning in due course that you would never see my lightning limbs fly toward you!”

“Right, sure,” Traveller said. “Come on, I’ll escort you to the Captain.”
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SuddenDeath
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Re: Star Control Story
« Reply #114 on: October 17, 2009, 11:47:38 am »

Is it safe to assume that the Ur-Quan can bypass the slave shield somehow?

The Ur-Quan can do that indeed. Every five years, they replace the crew from the starbase with a fresh one from Earth, as well as refill the starbase's power core. Also, when the Kohr-Ah start their Death March, they penetrate slave shields in order to destroy life on the planets under them.

So, races which we know can manipulate the slave shield are:
- Ur-Quan Kzer-Za, who can install a slave shield and bypass it
- Ur-Quan Kohr-Ah and Chmmr, who can bypass and crack it (whether they know how to install one is unknown)
- Spathi, who can install it (but maybe don't know how to bypass it... though they could probably learn to do so real quick if needed Tongue)
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Re: Star Control Story
« Reply #115 on: October 25, 2009, 12:05:01 am »

Feedback, suggestions, comments, anyone? This thread has over 16,000 views, so clearly somebody must want to say something.
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Re: Star Control Story
« Reply #116 on: October 25, 2009, 12:17:05 am »

Feedback, suggestions, comments, anyone? This thread has over 16,000 views, so clearly somebody must want to say something.

High view count doesn't work that way. At least not on this forum. Protip: If you're dying to hear some responses, start a new thread and pretend whatever you're rehashing is brand new or different somehow. Threads with less than one page of content attract all sorts of people popping in and out. This thread I started could easily fit into the larger Balance Mod thread, but I wouldn't get half as many responses if I put it inside there.

I haven't invested the time to go through your writing. This response was the result of random chance.
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Re: Star Control Story
« Reply #117 on: October 26, 2009, 08:00:51 pm »

Regarding my previous post: it seems there is no way in-game to find out whether the Kohr-Ah can crack or penetrate a slave shield. They never visited the Chmmr or Syreen during their Death March. They do come to the Spathi, but apparently the slave shield over Spathiwa stays up, and as we can't scan the surface we can't be sure whether or not the Spathi were harmed.

The Death March does end with Earth - a slave-shielded planet - and the Kohr-Ah broadcast a victory message which ends the game. It goes as follows:

Quote from: Kohr-Ah
Attention human!
This broadcast is to inform you of your defeat.
We, the Kohr-Ah, have destroyed all the sentient species in this region of space...
... and now we have eliminated the Starbase orbiting your planet Earth as well.
Your efforts to resist us are futile.
You are defeated!

They destroy the starbase. However, there's no mention of passing the shield or cleansing Earth. They do say that they ''have destroyed all the sentient species in this region of space", but the Chmmr and Syreen are still alive, right?
So, what I'm saying is that there seems to be no canonical proof whatsoever that the Kohr-Ah can penetrate slave shields.

This was probably just an overlook by Fred & Paul though, and Tiberian and I both think that they probably intended that all the races are destroyed. But even if it's not canon in the strictest of senses, I think it's safe to assume that the Kohr-Ah can indeed penetrate slave shields (personally, I assume this Wink). So Grakelin, if you're reading this, I suggest you work with this assumption Smiley

EDIT: Ok, I found something more. In their dialogue after they lose the doctrinal war, the Kzer-Za are clearly convinced that the Kohr-Ah can indeed penetrate slave shields. Well, that's canonical confirmation, so I guess my argument is void after all Tongue

Edit2: Thanks Meep!
Quote from: Kzer-Za
"A final command human, but it is more of a plea. ... If we are defeated, you are defeated as well. The Kohr-Ah will be unleashed. They will begin a genocidal orgy, cleansing all known sentience. They will crack the slave shield around Earth and reduce the surface of your blue world to cinders."

Forget I said anything Grin
« Last Edit: October 26, 2009, 11:19:14 pm by SuddenDeath » Logged
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Re: Star Control Story
« Reply #118 on: October 26, 2009, 11:19:21 pm »

This is the whole quote:
Quote
A final command human, but it is more of a plea.
Your insubordination has guaranteed your death, there can be no alternative
but your species has not yet crossed the threshold of disobedience
that would require us to decimate Earth.
You have survived combat with us before. You may survive the ensuing battle.
If this happens, leave! Return to your home. Await our arrival there.
If you interfere with us here, we may lose the Doctrinal conflict with the Kohr-Ah.
If we are defeated, you are defeated as well.
The Kohr-Ah will be unleashed. They will begin a genocidal orgy, cleansing all known sentience.
They will crack the slave shield around Earth and reduce the surface of your blue world to cinders.

(Excellent writing, btw)
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“When Juffo-Wup is complete
when at last there is no Void, no Non
when the Creators return
then we can finally rest.”
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Re: Star Control Story
« Reply #119 on: October 27, 2009, 05:42:41 am »

Shiver: Keeping what you say in mind (though 16,000 views! More than the rules!), I'll reboot into a new thread upon writing chapter 3. This will not be until December, as my schedule is very hectic for the month of November (Expect something in mid-late December, writing is always easier around Christmas time when things slow down). I am still somewhat confused about the radical shift in interest garnering this thread has received since several years ago, however. Has the forum died that much? When I posted this, just the conception stage drew a crowd.

If it interests you in any way, I will say (possibly again) that I am still using your gameplay guide as a general timeline for events, though I may alter one or two directions depending on how much information is available for the Vindicator crew at certain points (for instance, since only the Melnorme know about the Taalo, the Vindicator must buy information from them to get the Talking Pet). So I'd say this project and any future success it may have owes you somewhat of a debt!

SuddenDeath and Meep-eep: Thanks for the input, guys! I'll work with the assumption that the Kzer-Za are able to bypass their own shields (the Kohr-Ah aren't particularly important in this aspect, as I'm not planning the Doctrinal Conflict to end in this rendition, as I think that's the canonical view. Am I incorrect?). Another question, though, is: Do the Kzer-Za still supply the Syreen base with crewmembers from time to time? I would imagine not, but they are awfully close to the Ur-Quan battle zone, so maybe the Ur-Quan do occassionaly resupply? From what I can tell from implications in dialogue, the Organon ambush happens pretty late in the game canonically (It's Talana who gives the player the hint to go find the Chmmr), so that might explain (story-wise) why the Ur-Quan don't show up and find out the Syreen are rebelling, thus glassing their planet.
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