STO: The Needs of the Many by M. A. Martin Review Thread (Spoilers!)

Discussion in 'Trek Literature' started by nx1701g, Mar 25, 2010.

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Grade "The Needs of the Many"

  1. Excellent

    16.7%
  2. Above Average

    23.8%
  3. Average

    28.6%
  4. Below Average

    11.9%
  5. Poor

    19.0%
  1. nx1701g

    nx1701g Admiral Admiral

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    Re: Star Trek: Online: The Needs of the Many - Discussion (Spoilers)

    Oh ok, I wasn't sure myself and assumed that may have been the case.

    Interesting that the Enterprise-E (according to the timeline) is still operational in 2409.
     
  2. Thrawn

    Thrawn Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Re: Star Trek: Online: The Needs of the Many - Discussion (Spoilers)

    Just finished this.

    I think the gimmick here totally fails. It pretends to be something written by Jake for real people, but clearly – CLEARLY – the purposes of this thing are:
    1) to set up all possible enemies and structures necessary to support the ST:O story;
    2) to explain and clarify the events of the Countdown comic book;
    3) to set the ST:O story within the larger novel continuity; and
    4) to show what happens to beloved characters throughout this period.

    None of that has anything to do with what the book says it’s going to do; we get one soldier’s interview as perspective on the Undine war as any kind of story, and all the rest is varyingly ominous foreshadowing about their return until the very last one, which might be more the cultural stuff, but is so ridiculously small-universe-y that it doesn’t really work either. So: form does not match content. Period.

    That said, though, I have to admit that said content is pretty cool. I loved the whole story of Data’s ressurrection, which I wasn’t expecting to; I think the real timeline, if it does this story, should do it differently, but this was a great read. I loved the interview with Dulmer, and thought it presented great opportunities for some continuity fixes in the future; I hope the forthcoming DTI mentions it. I loved the foreshadowing of the Typhon Pact Gorn book, coming soon. Really, it was almost a short story collection, with each vignette told in interview form, and I liked the stories. They were well thought-out and exciting. Actually that’s not quite true, the baseball thing was pretty stupid, but the rest were good.

    So, that’s #2, #3, and #4 accomplished pretty well, if tending a little too closely towards small universe. And of course it succeeds perfectly at #1; the ST:Online game is pretty silly in the first place, but this does everything it can to set the stage for an exciting setting where arcade shooting can survive for years, as well as introducing some in-game characters (Naomi Wildman, for instance) and situations. It’s a solid game tie-in.

    I happen to think that the story here is rather antithetical to Star Trek’s real strengths in the novelverse though, so I can just hope that despite this book’s totally rational explanations for all the Countdown events that the real books come at them from a different direction. This whole Undine War thing is just a little too same-y for my tastes.

    But with Unspoken Truth, I was expecting like a 9/10 and got a 7/10, so I was disappointed; with this, I was expecting like a 5/10 and got a 7/10, so I'm pleasantly surprised.
     
  3. Garm Bel Iblis

    Garm Bel Iblis Commodore

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    Re: Star Trek: Online: The Needs of the Many - Discussion (Spoilers)

    well i tried to keep an open mind and kept slogging through> I go to a part from the Essentialists (fromthe worst ep ever) and it turned into a racist rant about humans being superior and there was an obvious dig at Barry Goldwater, comparing him to Paxton from "Demons\Terra Prime."

    Who's the editor that aproved this book? David Axelrod?
     
  4. DarKush

    DarKush Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Re: Star Trek: Online: The Needs of the Many - Discussion (Spoilers)

    I was flipping through this book. Not sure if I will buy it. I find the style a bit unorthodox. I was curious about the name Undine. Does anyone know who came up with that and why? It seemed like Species 8472 would have a more alien sounding name, probably one of those Timothy Zahn Chiss names from the Star Wars Expanded Universe.

    I noticed that too, and I wonder is there supposed to be a correlation? I know Species 8472 showed up in the last VOY novel, the one that introduced the Indign.
     
    Last edited: Apr 13, 2010
  5. Thrawn

    Thrawn Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Re: Star Trek: Online: The Needs of the Many - Discussion (Spoilers)

    I think Zahn makes great names (AHEM)

    But I think the funny part about "Undine" is how close it is to "Indign", the alien of the week from Unworthy. (Or at least how I pronounced it in my head. Maybe it's pronounced totally differently.)
     
  6. Garm Bel Iblis

    Garm Bel Iblis Commodore

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    Re: Star Trek: Online: The Needs of the Many - Discussion (Spoilers)

    Garm Bel Iblis agrees with you about great names and Zahn...
     
  7. Nerys Ghemor

    Nerys Ghemor Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Re: Star Trek: Online: The Needs of the Many - Discussion (Spoilers)

    Heh...the Essentialists themselves were a bad caricature that had no intention of giving any kind of substance to those who disagreed with the official Trek line.

    That's pretty disappointing that was picked up with the same shallowness.
     
  8. Garm Bel Iblis

    Garm Bel Iblis Commodore

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    Re: Star Trek: Online: The Needs of the Many - Discussion (Spoilers)

    I was waiting to hear from their media rep Limbaugh or Beck. This is without a doubt the most politicized book in trek lit maybe all of trek. its very disappointing, given IDIC is the underlying philosophy in trek, but this author has taken on the far left loon fringe to represent the Federation
     
  9. Nerys Ghemor

    Nerys Ghemor Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Re: Star Trek: Online: The Needs of the Many - Discussion (Spoilers)

    IDIC would be nice if it were actually practiced for real in this world. But it's not...tolerance only extends as far as those who happen to agree with the person claiming it.
     
  10. Thrawn

    Thrawn Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Re: Star Trek: Online: The Needs of the Many - Discussion (Spoilers)

    Oh how fashionably cynical. :rolleyes:

    Honestly. One author being recognizably a Democrat is not the same thing as tolerance never "actually being practiced for real in this world."

    I happen to believe that many things are tolerated by many people, on something of a daily basis.
     
  11. ProwlAlpha

    ProwlAlpha Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Re: Star Trek: Online: The Needs of the Many - Discussion (Spoilers)

    I agree with about the tone of the book. I got that feel it was almost Anti-Starfleet, especially with Rene Picard's speech at the end of the book. I mean Trek is pure Pro-Starfleet and no matter what, Starfleet officers are Heroic, Honorable, and are the futuristic version of Knights, even when some of them are up to no good, they are still almost heroic villains. Yet, the book is laced with if it wasn't for Starfleet, the Undine War wouldn't have happen, or we are being punished for our sins. All you have to do is replace Undine with terrorist and you got a book about the sins of the US Military,.
     
  12. Nerys Ghemor

    Nerys Ghemor Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Re: Star Trek: Online: The Needs of the Many - Discussion (Spoilers)

    It's not "fashionable," it's true of many people, especially of those who go to either political extreme. I could name examples of how this hypocrisy plays out under many different guises and ideologies, but I see no need to belabor the point.

    Are there some out there who practice real tolerance? Yeah, but you won't find them in any hardline ideological camp. And they usually aren't the ones making the big noise to the whole world about how tolerant they are. They just DO it.
     
  13. Hartzilla2007

    Hartzilla2007 Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Re: Star Trek: Online: The Needs of the Many - Discussion (Spoilers)

    Why to heck would Needs of the Many have to do that STO is already very different from the books in that

    Worf was an ambassador until he renounced his Federation Citizenship and became a general in the KDF, The Borg are still around, The Klingon/Federation alliance has gotten stronger instead of weaker, there is no Typhon Pact in STO, The Gorn aren't trying to rebuild some ancient empire they had in the books and are not very imperialistic in the books, and the Iconians are still around the Milkyway STO and are apparently responsible for everything that is happening. Also STO's backstory has Bajor joining the Federation way later then it did in the Books.
     
  14. Sci

    Sci Admiral Admiral

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    Re: Star Trek: Online: The Needs of the Many - Discussion (Spoilers)

    The Federation has always been portrayed as being built on leftist/liberal values and rejecting the values of conservatives and the right wing in Star Trek.

    Star Trek is and has always been a liberal, leftist program. Some creators have brought it further left, and some creators have brought it a bit closer to the center, but it has never been a centrist or right-wing franchise.

    If you don't like that, I'd suggest you find another franchise.

    Oh, nonsense. Star Trek has very clearly depicted Starfleet, throughout its entire history, as being an institution. And, like any institution, it has depicted Starfleet as being subject to the character flaws of its membership and its leadership. How many times do we have to run into Evil Admirals, or corrupt officers, before people get over this idea that Starfleet = Always Good?

    I get so tired of this ridiculous argument in real life, and I'm PO'ed to see it applied to Star Trek, too.

    Here's the thing:

    Saying that the United States Armed Forces and/or the United States government have done bad things, and that those bad things have come back to bite us on the ass, is not the same thing as being anti-Armed Forces or anti-American.

    It's acknowledging that bad things have been done and should not be done in the future. Period.

    Let's say, for instance, that I acknowledge the fact that the United States government provided financial and material support to the military juntas that ruled Chile and Argentina in the 1970s and 1980s. The U.S. did this in the name of supporting anti-Communist allies in South America. These dictatorships murdered thousands of people -- some Communist terrorists, but many more innocent victims.

    This was bad. I don't care what justification you can come up with; it was bad. It was morally wrong, it should not have been done. Period. There were better ways of fighting Communism in South America than supporting mass murderers, but the U.S. didn't take them.

    Now, that does not mean that I'm anti-American. I love my country and everything it stands for. That's, in fact, what I hate about that policy of supporting the juntas -- that policy violated every principle that the United States is supposed to stand for.

    Same thing here.

    Now, I haven't read The Needs of the Many. I can't speak to exactly what you're saying.

    But I can tell you this:

    If the characters in The Needs of the Many are arguing that bad things that Starfleet has done has caused negative consequences for the Federation -- if, for instance, they are arguing that the U.S.S. Voyager should not have created an anti-Undine weapon during the "Scorpion" two-parter -- that does not make them anti-Starfleet. That makes them anti-that decision. That makes them anti-policy.

    I hate the tendency people have to reduce any criticism of a state institution to "You're anti-whatever." It's dishonest and unfair.
     
  15. Daddy Todd

    Daddy Todd Captain Premium Member

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    Re: Star Trek: Online: The Needs of the Many - Discussion (Spoilers)

    Sci, why do you hate freedom?

    ;)
     
  16. Dayton Ward

    Dayton Ward Word Pusher Rear Admiral

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    Re: Star Trek: Online: The Needs of the Many - Discussion (Spoilers)

    [​IMG]
     
  17. Admiral James Kirk

    Admiral James Kirk Writer Admiral

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    Re: Star Trek: Online: The Needs of the Many - Discussion (Spoilers)

    Semper fudge?
     
  18. Man of Steel

    Man of Steel Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Re: Star Trek: Online: The Needs of the Many - Discussion (Spoilers)

    I'm assuming your being sarcastic
     
  19. Steve Roby

    Steve Roby Commodore Commodore

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    Re: Star Trek: Online: The Needs of the Many - Discussion (Spoilers)

    Yeah, same here. It doesn't hang together as a novel at all -- when I turned a page and saw the beginning of the timeline stuff I thought, that was the end of the book? But despite the fanwank and the game setup it does a lot better than it needed to do in some areas, particularly, as you mentioned, the Data and Dulmer/Lucsly sections.

    Oh, and I didn't see the kind of military-bashing some people are complaining about, either. Cute touch of homophobia with the Code Pink thing, too, but Martin's not gay.
     
  20. Dayton Ward

    Dayton Ward Word Pusher Rear Admiral

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    Re: Star Trek: Online: The Needs of the Many - Discussion (Spoilers)

    ^ Actually, "Code Pink" is an activist group who protests in large part against the military. In recent years, they got some press by trying to oust a Marine Corps officer recruiting station out of Berkeley, California, and even managed to convince the city council to declare the Marines there "uninvited and unwelcome intruders."

    Yeah, I thought that was bizarre at first, myself, but then I remembered...it's Berkeley.
     

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