GSoC Week 8: Set phasers to stun. ...Then kill.

Last week was mostly focused on finishing up the second part of the “Feathered Serpent” mission, in which Quetzalcoatl is put on trial by the klingons for spreading messages of peace. Kirk agrees to go through a set of trials to prove his honor or something so that Quetzalcoatl can go free.

Kirk offering a fine defense.
Kirk offering a fine defense.

Mission oddities

Last week, I mentioned various ways to get an infinite score in this mission. Well, there are even more, easier ways to do so in the second half, including:

  • Repeatedly scanning a door lock with Spock.
  • Repeatedly scanning an energy life-form with Spock.
  • Repeatedly carving out part of a room with a phaser.

All of the above are in a single room. This room also interestingly allows you to cancel a death if you react fast enough.

In addition, this mission has two endings (three if you just give up defending Quetzalcoatl entirely). The “main” win method is to discover a weird alien room, which is probably what most people did.

The secondary method is very obscure, and I suspect most people don’t know about it. If you don’t discover the alien room, you instead must pass a Klingon automaton blocking you.

Since the solution is so obscure, I’ll just tell you. Using the stun phaser doesn’t work; after two shots, it kills the crew. Using the kill phaser doesn’t work, either; it kills the crew after only one shot.

So, what’s do be done? Use the stun phaser, THEN the kill phaser. That will give it just enough energy to overload before it can take out the crew. …Naturally…

On my casual playthrough, I completely gave up on passing the automaton, since I already knew about the other method of completing the mission. This is an “inferior” way to beat the mission, anyway, but it’s interesting that it’s locked behind such an obscure solution.

What’s next

For now, I’m taking a break from the repetitive mission logic to take a look at the pseudo-3D and ship combat stuff. I really have no idea how long this will take, but I felt I needed to look at something fresh and different. Regardless, my primary mission is to get the away missions working and I only have 3 weeks left (officially), so I’ll return to that if time doesn’t allow me to finish the starship stuff. Due to the belatedness of this post, there’ll be another later this week.

Written on July 16, 2018