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Ghost Leviathan
Mar 2, 2017
Can't post for 5 hours!

As cliche as holodecks and their malfunctions can be, they're a common sci-fi thing for a reason. Aside from having all the plot hooks you'd expect, they can tell you a lot about a character and the setting and culture they live in if done well. For that matter, so can other forms of in-universe entertainment and pop culture.

Deep Space Nine of course probably had some of the best treatments. Bashir and O'Brien getting into the Alamo was maybe a little underused; obviously Worf isn't necessarily interested because he's already grown up in Earth culture, but one of the other Klingons might have found the last stand scenario interesting. Cultural confusion can be really fun like that, like the abortive Camelot one where Kira socked Lancelot in the face because her character was a married woman.

And Vic Fontaine is an interesting case, being a self-aware hologram character who basically acts as a host for a program that's mostly light entertainment with a touch of adventure. He comes off as something like a Dungeon Master character, aware of the 'fourth wall' and able to distinguish issues inside and outside the program, and possibly an attempt to avert a scenario like Moriarty or Doctor Chaotica where an antagonist takes things too far; as demonstrated when after helping Nog literally get back on his feet, he cuts him off cold turkey when he's obviously holo-addicted.

Also feel that given Q pulled the 'turn a Holodeck program real' thing once for giggles, there's some missed opportunity for some more direct comparison to be drawn for his puzzle and test scenarios and the ones that people make as programs. Maybe have Q loitering around and notice someone making a holodeck program, and find the process amusingly meta. (and maybe giving him ideas to inflict on the command crew) My Little Pony of all things did something like that with basically-Q playing in a session of not-Dungeons and Dragons. (Meta in a few ways given the show is owned by the same people who own Dungeons and Dragons, and in-universe he's playing with an actual literal dragon)


May 9, 2009

14 inc dont mez

I would actually like an episode that explored the rest of Worf's "kick the poo poo out of cheap halloween costume skeletor" program but I feel like given his character it was probably just the first cave layout in the prefab list and also the skellington was the first result that popped up when he searched for "worthy opponent"

speaking of worthy opponents, Geordi asking the computer to conjure up an opponent capable of defeating Data was beautiful because it showed that starfleet ship computers are malevolent genies and they really should have used open-ended short-sighted requests to get the computer to solve more problems

"Computer, generate someone capable of defeating that Borg cube with a galaxy-class starship that has sustained medium damage to the aft hull and a warp core that is leaking steam, then transfer full bridge control to the holodeck and give the hologram all the command codes"

Jan 1, 2012


Grimey Drawer

In Animorphs the Ellimists's race played something akin to a 4x Strategy Game as their main form of entertainment. The idea was for each player to be given a randomly generated species on separate planets, and based on that species' biological traits the player was supposed to make the smallest possible change to them and then simulate the result of their evolution and societal development until one or the other became the dominant power. For example, Ellimist plays a game against one of his friends where the change the friend makes to a species of horrible rat-people is a very small increase in their reproductive rate, which prompts the species to develop space travel in record time because they consume all their planets resources and they need to fly across space and consume Ellimist's species to survive.

People in his government used recordings of these games to test the bandwidth on an interstellar communication device. Aliens picked up these transmissions and thought they were records of Ellimist's species playing god with innocent sentient and slaughtering them by the planet-full for their own amusement, and sent an armada to destroy their entire world and race for the good of the galaxy. Ellimist (which was his screen-name) was the only survivor.

Later Ellimist encountered an evil being named Crayak, who after reading his mind found memories of those games and found the idea so amusing that he dedicated his existence to "beating," the Ellimist at this game by actually manipulating real aliens and forcing Ellimist to stop him, with again the goal being the most minimal involvement possible. One example was an alien species that would become widely known as "Howlers," where the change Crayak made was to have seem violence and murder as harmless play, turning them into the galaxy's most feared genocidal warrior race.

Jiminy Christmas! Shoes!
Nov 6, 2002

TB Times

Uh, I think we all know what the best - most likely - holodeck program written is:

muscles like this!
Jan 17, 2005

But I'm a virgin... in that way.

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