Inner, Outer, Another and Away

Author: DevorahQuinn
Mission Code: ST-HR8SY205
Date Played: April 14, 2011
Length: 30-60 minutes

Author Description:
Dr. Phillips, a renowned expert in mental disorders, has developed a way to probe the inner minds of the Liberated Borg without their knowledge. Is the good doctor using a new therapy to help his patients, or is there something more sinister afoot?

Review

Star Trek only rarely delves into the creepy or surreal, but the few times it has have made for very memorable episodes. So please understand that when I say that Inner, Outer, Another and Away is literally a nightmare, I mean it in the best way possible.

Inner, Outer, Another, and Away is a long mission, and while it does have its run-and-gun segments, it starts out in an incredibly unique manner. My crew and I are asked by one Dr. Phillips to rendezvous with him in the Kei System. Phillips, a mental health expert of some renown, needs our help evaluating the combat-readiness of a Liberated Borg Drone named 451.

The good doctor has created a program that translates 451’s dreams and subconscious fears into a Holodeck spectacle. My crew is asked to step inside and evaluate what we see — in particularly, we’re looking for a core memory that informs 451’s identity and sanity.

Like I said, Inner, Outer, Another, and Away is predicated on a very unique premise, and if DevorahQuinn’s writing had been less clear, it would have been hard to follow what was happening. Fortunately, Quinn is a skilled writer in her own right — she’s written an ebook about her crew — and I have to admit that the movie Inception helped prepare me for such a mind-twisting narrative.

451’s dreamscape is disarmingly serene — it’s apparently her childhood village. But Phillips warns that appearances can be deceiving; after all, I am stepping into the mind of a former Borg drone.

And sure enough, 451’s mind begins to unravel. How Quinn pulls this off — the slow but shocking and unexpected appearance of Borg features, the green mist that rolls in — is a phenomenal use of the Foundry. As the story evolved, I was often surprised, and not a little scared.

But Inner, Outer, Another and Away isn’t solely a RP/Diplomacy mission. Wave after wave of Borg drones descend on 451’s psyche–they’re reskinned Nausicaans and beasts, making the mission available for any level–and a rather tough fight ensues.

Furthermore, 451’s mind is only the “Inner” part of the title; the mission doesn’t end with the ending of the dream sequence. Without spoiling too much, it becomes clear that the memory my team has been sent to retrieve is anything but innocuous, and my captain has to take the fight both to outer space, and to another space.

I really liked this mission. It had a well-developed and unique plot, coupled with several very intense fighting sequences. However, there are going to be many detractors — the story is very cerebral (pardon the pun), and the fighting borders on unfair. But you should try it out for yourself — Inner, Outer, Another and Away is unlike any other mission out there.


“Inner, Outer, Another and Away” is on the long side, taking me roughly 45 minutes to an hour to complete. It opens with an extended information-gathering sequence, followed by a massive ground battle. After that, there are several space action sequences, one last, short ground mission, and then the “away” part of the title kicks in. For players who like their missions to be a pure “type”, this definitely isn’t your cup of tea. For those who want good writing and great action — have at.


Edit (April 28, 2011): The creator of this mission, DevorahQuinn, requested that I link a walkthrough of her mission, right here. Included is a nice “Easter Eggs” hidden throughout the mission.