The Enterprise is to engage in war gaming exercise with a master strategist, Sirna Kolrami, on board. As part of the exercise, Riker will command an old vessel, the USS Hathaway, and act as the 'enemy'. Riker takes along Laforge, Worf, Wesley Cusher and several others as his crew and their first task is to get the vessel operational. Kolrami is supremely confident and arrogant, convinced that his superior skills will result in an easy victory over Riker. When they are attacked by the Ferengi who want the Hathaway as their prize, Picard and the crew stage a clever deception. Written by
David Lander aka "Squiggy" from Laverne & Shirley plays the unnamed Ferengi. See more »
ST:TNG Technical Manual says that antimatter cannot be beamed through a transporter without making extensive modifications to the circuitry. Yet Wesley took no such precautions, and was still able to beam it safely. See more »
The Federation interrupts the work of the Enterprise to involve it in a type of war games which tests the ingenuity of the crew as they face off. Everything is done in simulation and no harm is to come. Part of the episode has to do with each ship and its "captain" getting the upper hand. Each plots in an interesting way to outdo the other. The bad thing is that both ships have had their weapons systems eliminated for the duration of the game, leaving the possibility open for an attack. Who should show up but the Ferengi. They throw a monkey wrench into things but, in the process, challenge the two captains to face a real threat without any weapons.
There is a subplot as well, as Data loses some of his confidence due to his performance against an arrogant overseer of the games. He feels he should be unbeatable and his lack of "confidence" leads him to withdraw and try to figure out what went wrong. This is an interesting twist until Picard intervenes. This is certainly an imaginative episode.
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