Saturday, November 17, 2012

Star Saga: One - Beyond the Boundary - Clerc, Beyond the Senses

Please note that each character entry will contain spoilers. If you're looking for an overview of the basics of this game, I suggest looking here.

Jean G. Clerc has a dream. Spaceship design has languished behind the Boundary. Why should new horizons be sought when space exploration means exile? This question has dissuaded many, but not Jean. He's taking his first steps to build his dream ship, which is equipped with Photon Torpedoes, a Tractor Beam, and a Ship Shield Generator. I think someone's been watching Star Trek.

Eager to dive into the unknown, to face the void of space, Clerc "borrows" a space freighter from his employer. He christens it, the Run Amok. Unsure of where to find the equipment he seeks, Jean heads towards Crater and then to Wellmet. Using my previous notes, I find the Photon Torpedoes waiting for me on Moiran, pick up the 3-bay drone from Crater, and head off into the unknown.

Luck is with me as I quickly find Baphi. It's here we learn about the Ship Shield Generator, although it can be built without learning how to do so just by entering the correct action code (and having all commodities to build it). Two planets later I crash into Hemindore. Without any mobility enhancements on my ship, it seems I need to take 3 phases (days) to conduct repairs, but I'm still able to explore the planet. Here I pickup the Auxiliary Rockets and Tractor Beam.

I circle round the top of the Fringe, collect some personal equipment, further ship enhancements, and Phase Steel--Phase Steel and Warp Core are two rare ingredients for the Ship Shield Generator. After exploring the upper left third of the map, I head back to the ghost worlds to pick up some more equipment. The next planet after this pit stop is Fiyar, a source of Warp Core.

I quickly assemble the Ship Shield Generator, receive the congratulatory message, and wonder what's next for this intrepid adventurer. I've always thought Clerc's goal lacked deep motivation. It seemed more material than the others. Back on the Nine Worlds, I head home to Norstar. Here I wonder if I'm ready to settle down at all. While contemplating my decision to come back to the life I left behind, I'm approached to explore further by the Institute for Space Exploration. Their ultimate goal, a jump engine capable of supporting instantaneous travel for living organisms.

Inspired by the idea of teleportation, Clerc turns down the offer to build upon the technology he's discovered, but leaves plans behind so others can follow that path. The I.S.E. suggests the technology is found in the Galactic Arm, beyond the planet Outpost. You know what that means... the Tri-Axis Drive Booster is my next goal. I'm given the Flame Jewel, the crucial piece for creating the drive.

I've already collected a Gradient Filter, and need to seek out the second source of Warp Core, the planet Ethnar. I finally find it within the last 5 planets to explore. With all parts, I set to creating the drive.
I find Clerc lacking additional plot points. Stoneseeker had an intricate plot that's left me wanting to know more. Clerc, and I suppose Dambroke as well, have little additional plot that isn't laid out for others to find. I expect Darkwatch to explore a lot more of the back story. In fact, exploring Rialla and their life safe jump engine technology doesn't provide any special dialogue even though this is exactly what my character is seeking.

I stop by Dargen to get the final dialogue of the Brotherhood, and the Darthan ability that helps me overcome the defenses of Vanessa Chang's ship on Gazan. Here I collect the Hyperbeam, which is one of the most powerful weapons for the battle on Outpost. I considered getting the Technology Nullifier as well, but decided to give the final battle a shot to see where exactly I was lacking. I ended up winning.
Once again, I arrived much earlier than my previous play. This seems to have increased the strength of my equipment in this final battle. As an example, the Ship Shield Generator for Dambroke had 29, 45 for Stoneseeker, and 56 for Clerc. This is the only fight that has large differences. Two thoughts here, it could depend on the turn count, or be based on the combination of equipment.

Final Score: 4292
Turn: 181

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For this play through, I started tracking points and how those are earned. I haven't completely mapped all possible points, but it seems fairly straightforward. Points come from number of cargo bays, commodities, planets discovered, equipment, and goals met. The random back story and plot doesn't seem to add any additional points, although I haven't explored everywhere yet.

It wasn't until I started playing this game again that I realized Jean G Clerc's name wasn't Cleric. No wonder I always confused this character with Darkwatch (the religious heretic). Looking into the name, I found it might be based off Laurent Clerc, who studied under Jean Massieu, but that could be just coincidence. It makes me curious where the other names have interesting origins.