Some thoughts on SQ5

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Some thoughts on SQ5

Postby SierraDude81 » Mon Jul 27, 2009 4:43 pm

I recently began another go around through the series and just got done replaying through Space Quest 5. I know alot of fans were turned off by the fact that it relays so heavily on the Star Trek Parody, and having Roger be associated with an organization rather than the "lone ranger" of the previous games disappointed many fans, but I have to say I rather enjoyed them.

One of my favorite aspects of this game, and something that I really wish they would have continued in Space Quest 6 was how the relationship between Roger and his crew develops. At first they see him as another "run of the mill stuff shirt Captain that has come and gone, but they come to form a bond with one another throughout the course of the game, and become true friends, something that Roger has never really had at all in the past.

Speaking of Roger, he seems to be much more confident and intelligent in this game than in many others, and I'm sure that has a lot to do with the fact that, for once, things seem to be actually going his way. Sure, he's captain of a 3rd-rate scow, and a crew seen as a "laughing stock", but he still achieved the rank of Starship Captain, something I'm sure no one ever thought he'd be able to do.

One thing I was a bit disappointed with though, was the handling of the Beatrice storyline. I thought her character was VERY underused and underdeveloped, you'd expect more out of someone who was destined to be Roger's wife and mother of his kid(s), but she spends most of the game either frozen or sleeping. Roger and her never have any time to really develop any kind of a relationship, and Bea's affection for Roger towards the end feels a bit forced and tacked on for the sake of "Well, it's destined to happen".

I also feel, and I know many will disagree with me, that Roger and his crew should have had a hero's welcome upon returning to StarCon, after all, they risked there necks to do something when no one else would (or maybe could), and what happened in SQ6 I find to be very unfair, Roger hasn't gotten any kind of respect since the end of Space Quest 1, and this should have been his return to the limelight.
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Re: Some thoughts on SQ5

Postby Datadog » Tue Jul 28, 2009 2:56 am

SQ5 is my favorite of the series. Throwing in a supporting cast really added a lot more depth to the game than just watching Roger wander aimlessly through desolate wastelands. At least now whenever Roger humiliated himself, there was someone around to see it.
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Re: Some thoughts on SQ5

Postby Akril » Thu Aug 06, 2009 3:46 am

SQ5 didn't really charm me that much the first time I slogged through it, but when I replayed it again a few years later, I tried talking to the members of Roger's crew a lot more and was amazed by how the relations with them and Roger evolved. For instance, Flo's transition from being initially cold and unimpressed with Roger to a bit more respectful of him to actually having a crush on him, then becoming angry and jealous when they pick up Beatrice really develops her as a character.

The way the entire supporting cast of SQ5 was dropped without an explanation and scarcely a mention in SQ6 always puzzled me. It's as if they were deliberately trying to paint the events of SQ5 as something bad that needed to be forgotten, since they ultimately led to Roger's demotion. There aren't even any trinkets from SQ5 in Roger's bedroom, for crying out loud.
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Re: Some thoughts on SQ5

Postby Edu-Sun Trebor » Wed Dec 31, 2014 3:04 pm

I liked SQ5 for expanding on the lore of the universe Roger lived in, and giving him a crew felt like a real step-up. I loved the way they grow to like him over time, and how the villain was human (at least initially). I always got the impression that Quirk wasn't alone, and that he was just one Admiral in a StarCon conspiracy. It kind of fits as to why Roger got busted in rank, and I thought maybe that could have been explored in SQ7.
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Re: Some thoughts on SQ5

Postby Tawmis » Fri Jan 02, 2015 4:24 pm

I loved that Roger got a crew; and I actually loved the crew (which is what makes SQ5 so good!) - but it's really difficult to top SQ3 and SQ4 for me! But SQ5 probably comes in at a strong 3rd favorite for the SQ series.

Might even, from time to time, depending on my mood, knock SQ4 from the 2nd position.
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Re: Some thoughts on SQ5

Postby adeyke » Fri Jan 02, 2015 5:09 pm

I much prefer the earlier parts of the series. SQ1-4 were just comedic games in a sci-fi universe, with references to various sci-fi stories. With SQ5-6, however, it switched to being specifically a Star Trek parody. I didn't care for that change in direction.
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Re: Some thoughts on SQ5

Postby Tawmis » Fri Jan 02, 2015 5:25 pm

adeyke wrote:I much prefer the earlier parts of the series. SQ1-4 were just comedic games in a sci-fi universe, with references to various sci-fi stories. With SQ5-6, however, it switched to being specifically a Star Trek parody. I didn't care for that change in direction.


Well I think SQ5 switched to a Star Trek parody because we see Roger getting his own crew; which I thought was pretty cool. So I didn't mind the switch to that type of specific humor in SQ5. And I don't remember SQ6 having too much Trek humor? Maybe it did (SQ6 is probably one of the games I remember the least of the series)
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Re: Some thoughts on SQ5

Postby adeyke » Fri Jan 02, 2015 7:16 pm

Well, SQ6 continued the use of StarCon, which is clearly just a Starfleet. In addition, it had (just to start; not intended to be an exhaustive list):
  • A transporter
  • A holodeck
  • A tricorder datacorder
  • A replicator
  • The subtitle, "The Final Spinal Frontier"
  • A security officer named Worf Dorff
  • A recreation lounge named Ten Forward 8-Rear
  • A bottle of Saurian Coldsorian Brandy
  • The Borg Bjorn
  • The Vulcan Vulgar Nerve Pinch

There are are also handful of literal references to Star Trek, such as a Star Trek movie appearing on the cinema sign, an actual Enterprise-D shuttle in the shuttle bay, and a "Sarek Lies" graffito in the brig.

I'm fine with references, easter eggs, and cameos. For example, SQ5 sometimes has a lightsabre fight between Darth Vader and Obi-Wan Kenobi in the academy. This is just a visual gag; it's not intended to be canon. A lot of the things SQ5-6 borrowed from Star Trek, however, are absolutely canon and important to the plot. And in a lot of cases, they aren't even making any sort of commentary; they're just using it seriously as it would be used in Star Trek. So in some senses, it's less a parody and more just an unlicensed Star Trek game.
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Re: Some thoughts on SQ5

Postby Tawmis » Fri Jan 02, 2015 9:38 pm

adeyke wrote:Well, SQ6 continued the use of StarCon, which is clearly just a Starfleet. In addition, it had (just to start; not intended to be an exhaustive list):
  • A transporter
  • A holodeck
  • A tricorder datacorder
  • A replicator
  • The subtitle, "The Final Spinal Frontier"
  • A security officer named Worf Dorff
  • A recreation lounge named Ten Forward 8-Rear
  • A bottle of Saurian Coldsorian Brandy
  • The Borg Bjorn
  • The Vulcan Vulgar Nerve Pinch

There are are also handful of literal references to Star Trek, such as a Star Trek movie appearing on the cinema sign, an actual Enterprise-D shuttle in the shuttle bay, and a "Sarek Lies" graffito in the brig.

I'm fine with references, easter eggs, and cameos. For example, SQ5 sometimes has a lightsabre fight between Darth Vader and Obi-Wan Kenobi in the academy. This is just a visual gag; it's not intended to be canon. A lot of the things SQ5-6 borrowed from Star Trek, however, are absolutely canon and important to the plot. And in a lot of cases, they aren't even making any sort of commentary; they're just using it seriously as it would be used in Star Trek. So in some senses, it's less a parody and more just an unlicensed Star Trek game.


:lol: I guess because I am not a huge Star Trek fan, I missed MOST of those references! I knew the Spinal Frontier, StarCon, and Dorff! I am somewhat ashamed I missed the "8-Rear", especially since way back in the day of the BBS world, I was on a BBS called "10 Forward" which was a Star Trek themed BBS. (I just never knew 10 Forward was something specifically on Star Trek, just thought it was a terminology word for something like "10-4" :lol: ).

EDIT: Funny what google can do. Googled the old BBS to see - looks like the guy set up a website, which is now defunct - but it's definitely him (Captain Zimmer)
http://www.firewhois.com/whois/tenforwardbbs.com
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Re: Some thoughts on SQ5

Postby Collector » Fri Jan 02, 2015 9:56 pm

10 Forward (Deck 10 in the forward or front section of the ship) was the lounge where the crew and other inhabitants of the Enterprise would meet to socialize, relax and or drink. In other words, it was the commons area. http://en.memory-alpha.org/wiki/Ten_Forward
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Re: Some thoughts on SQ5

Postby MusicallyInspired » Mon Jan 05, 2015 2:01 pm

I've been thinking about this. I don't mind Star Trek (I love it) or Star Trek parodies in any amount. I think what turned me off to StarCon was that they suddenly gave the nameless Xenon organization a name and changed the (very awesome) uniforms. As a kid I disliked this and that just carried over into adulthood probably. The game is actually great. And funny. There were multiple moments where I laughed out loud where I didn't in 1-4. I just prefer the original visual style of 4. Perhaps if I ever get SQ1VGA Retro finished I'll move on to SQ5 and change all the uniforms to resemble SQ1-4 :).

Also, regarding references, don't forget "Darmok Was Here" in SQ6 on Polysorbate LX.
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Re: Some thoughts on SQ5

Postby adeyke » Mon Jan 05, 2015 5:54 pm

I certainly don't think that SQ5 was entirely bad (though I'd hesitate to the say the same of SQ6 :P) or that SQ1-4 were entirely good. I also do very much like Star Trek. I just don't like how that was used in SQ5-6. Space Quest didn't start out being being associated with Star Trek in particular, so that was a massive change in direction and created a discontinuity with the rest of the series (e.g. it makes it odd that the technologies that apparently exist in that universe didn't show up in SQ1-4). They could have told the basic story of SQ5 without borrowing from Star Trek if they'd wanted to.

And if they wanted to really make a Star Trek parody, the whole thing should poke fun at Star Trek. I like Star Trek, but I readily acknowledge that it provides many valid targets of parody. Just including Star Trek elements isn't the same as parodying them.

And if it just wanted the Star Trek setting and technology to tell their own story, they should have gotten a license for that so they could do it without feeling like a cheap off-brand imitation.
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Re: Some thoughts on SQ5

Postby Tawmis » Mon Jan 05, 2015 9:54 pm

adeyke wrote:And if they wanted to really make a Star Trek parody, the whole thing should poke fun at Star Trek. I like Star Trek, but I readily acknowledge that it provides many valid targets of parody. Just including Star Trek elements isn't the same as parodying them.
And if it just wanted the Star Trek setting and technology to tell their own story, they should have gotten a license for that so they could do it without feeling like a cheap off-brand imitation.


It could have been someone(s) who really enjoyed Star Trek. In the web series I did - my friend Adam and I shoved a ton of "references" of things we loved. (DragonSpear Chronicles is a reference to Dragonlance Chronicles, a series of books; the Blade of Destiny we call the sword is a direct reference to the game of the same name from Realms of Arkania, there's plenty of Red vs Blue references in the beginning, Star Wars references all over it) - and while our series was a comedy (or we tried to be funny!) we took quite a few shots of just "acknowledging" things we loved by making a reference to them. We didn't add it as a joke; more of a nod. Our entire series probably has like 100 nods in it, over 65 episodes.
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Re: Some thoughts on SQ5

Postby adeyke » Tue Jan 06, 2015 8:13 am

All the SQ games had plenty of mere references to all sorts of sci-fi franchises. Those aren't what I take issue with.
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