Captain's Blog: We'll Always Have Paris
Posted February 2nd 2020 by dragoncymru1
“We would have been the richest, most gloriously happy two people in all the worlds.” - Jenice Manheim, ‘We’ll Always Have Paris’

Welcome to the latest article in my solo Star Trek Customizable Card Game First Edition project where, I’m discussing romantic partners, the Holoprogram ‘Cafe des Artistes’ and the various ‘love’ Dilemmas in the game.

Not many CCGs can claim to involve romance in their design, but since it’s a real part of Star Trek it would be really odd if it were ignored. All the different shows had their characters become romantically involved with incredible regularity, either with each other, such as Riker and Troi or Worf and Jadzia Dax, or with the guest star of the week, such as Kirk and, well, just about any new woman that appeared!

Love Dilemmas: The Male's Love Interest and Female's Love Interest Dilemmas have been around since Premiere and represent the ‘guest of the week’ scenario, although Personnel ‘running off’ didn’t actually happen in the shows very much. Having said that, encountering these two Dilemmas is always quite fun as you have to weigh up whether a trip to retrieve your love-sick Personnel is worth it or not.... I’d always say that Male's Love Interest is the stronger of the two as more Personnel, especially in the non-Federation Affiliations such as Ferengi, are male.

Brief Romance is much more representative of what usually happens on Star Trek with Personnel becoming useless for a couple of turns. This Dilemma has a slight twist on the Love Interest Dilemmas above in that an Opponent can choose the gender it affects, so it always will affect one of your Personnel.

Parallel Romance is a slightly nastier Dilemma in that the romance lasts longer (although the affair shown between Worf and Troi didn’t...) and it affects two of your Personnel. However, for it to have any affect you have to have both genders in your crew or Away Team. You can still have some interesting couples though...

Cafe des Artistes: This card was introduced for the 20th Anniversary Collection by the Continuing Committee five years ago and finally gives some use to all those Personnel cards with ‘romantically involved’ in their lore. As I mentioned in ‘The Big Goodbye’ article a few months back, this is easily the most popular Holoprogram card and the only one that gets any real play in decks right now (although I do have plans for some new ones soon – watch this space...). This is because the ‘des Artistes love shack’ is by far the most powerful of all the programs and its’ use as a card-draw engine is excellent, especially if you get a few ‘loved-up’ couples buying drinks there. I have since made Holoprograms non-seedable in the solo version, but this is still a great card and it can also be used to download a romantic partner too...

Picard’s Top 3 TV Romances: Since this Blog is primarily The Next Generation based (and discussing Kirk’s romances might have taken far too much space...), let’s look at Picard’s various love interests over the years...

  • Beverly Crusher – the Enterprise’s chief medical officer has to take top position and the relationship between the two characters really developed over the seven years, from close friend to lover. The actors had real chemistry and it was very easy to see that they would eventually marry.
  • Vash – I really liked her two appearances on TNG and was really surprised that they didn’t get this slightly mercenary archaeologist back for more. Patrick Stewart was also rather taken with her...
  • Jenice Manheim – from this episode and called ‘Laura’ right up to the shooting day apparently. It would have been great to see her again later in the TNG run, perhaps with her husband having passed away and whether she could have rekindled the romance with Jean-Luc.

Dual-Personnel Couple Cards: I’m not overly keen on these Personnel cards but since I’m discussing romantic partners, there are some of these, such as Jean-Luc and Beverly or Worf and Jadzia, which have the romantic couple on a single card. Handy for your Cafe des Artistes and Worf and Jadzia also downloads The Beating Heart, a terrific Event from the Equilibrium Continuing Committee set that stops either partner getting killed.

Next time, I’m investigating those shadowy corners of the Star Trek universe with Hidden Agenda cards, Intelligence skills and scuttling alien parasites that get your head to explode...

My re-watch of Star Trek continues and I’m currently about a third of the way through Season 7 of The Next Generation and also Season 2 of Deep Space 9 (and Picard started last weekend too!). I Tweet my episode reviews on Twitter - so if you're interested in what I think about both these shows, Follow me - @DWSSG01.

“Make it so...”

Captain's Blog is a weekly series on Star Trek Customizable Card Game First Edition Solo Play. Read the whole archive here.