Star Trek: The Next Generation - Birth of the Federation

aka: BotF
Moby ID: 2508

Description official descriptions

Star Trek: The Next Generation - Birth of the Federation is a 4X turn-based strategy game most similar to Master of Orion II: Battle at Antares. Players choose one of five major races: Federation, Klingon, Romulan, Cardassian or Ferengi, and expand their territory through diplomatic relations with minor races and colonizing new planets, as well as upgrade infrastructure and ships, spy on and fight other players, handle random events such as Borg incursions, and research new technologies.

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Credits (Windows version)

110 People (100 developers, 10 thanks) · View all

Reviews

Critics

Average score: 69% (based on 25 ratings)

Players

Average score: 3.5 out of 5 (based on 23 ratings with 4 reviews)

Far too complicated!

The Good
I wish there was some way to scale this game back. I really enjoyed some elements of it: building armadas and defending my territories was great, opening diplomatic relations with new species was interesting. However, making sure the people on one planet were entertained wasn't.

This game would have worked if the scope were limited. Every aspect of the game looked good, sounded good, and played well, but having to deal with incredible amounts of minutiae every turn really bogged the game down.

But I will complain more later.

I really liked the interface. The interface resembled the computers used by the various species in ST:TNG so the Federation interfaced looked like the Enterprise computer's, etc. The sounds were great, ranging from familiar beeps and whistles to the thunderous impact of a proton(photon?) torpedo. I also like how you could adjust the parameters of gameplay as far as how much of the galaxy you had to control.

The Bad
Remember Star Wars: Rebellion? The controls of BOTF are better (infinitely better) but BOTF could have improved by lessening its scope, or by offering some level of automation.

The game was turn based which isn't terrible, but later turns (80+) had incredibly long load times.

There was also a fundamental problem in BOTF commented on by another reviewer, the Next Generation universe was a poor choice for this style of game. Within this time period, you already know too much about the different species and technologies to make a first contact type game viable. This would have been feasible in the Enterprise universe (referring to the series), but it doesn't make sense to have ST:TNG level technology when you are just leaving the earth.

Also a cute randomizing factor (which you can toggle) allows the Borg and Doomsday devices to show up and destroy everything. Hmmm, great idea.

The Bottom Line
Light years beyond Star Wars: Rebellion but just as flawed. Actually does too good of a job on every aspect, resulting in slow, tedious gameplay.

Windows · by Terrence Bosky (5397) · 2002

Just not quite enough to satisify.

The Good
(Civ for Star Trek fans) The tech tree was well thought out and it had a great idea. In some flops the whole basis for the game is flawed to varing degrees. In this one the foundation was well layed and could go anywere.

The Bad
... its just that it never did go anywhere. First it only included New Generation ships and tech. A major major mistake. You start out on earth with no other planets and ships that look like the picards generation? In all fairness to the designers I am sure they would have loved to included a look of the old, and a proper tech progression but were restrained due to contract infringement. They only had rights to produce a game based on the New Generation not the whole series. However the damage was done and if you play the game you just cant get past that major flaw. Second major gripe is that some minor races (Vuclan, Bajoran, ect) that should never join certain powers will.

The Bottom Line
If you can find it in the bargin bin under five dollars its worth a few hours of play but not more.

Windows · by William Shawn McDonie (1131) · 2000

The best Star Trek game I've ever played

The Good
That's the game I dedicated at least 5 years of interrupted gaming, downloading last mods from various sites,messing with them, making my own..

The flavor , despite all its drawbacks, of this great game is that every major culture depicted here:Federation, Romulans, Klingons, Cardassians and Ferengi has some unique attributes which makes every game experience unique.

If you play with no races, you have to expand, while strengthening your army; if you do, Federation gets an unfair advantage due to diplomatic appealing to all races(except a few) , Romulans are good too.

But the greatest gift is that every major power can be associated in all its unique aspects with a civilization on Earth: United Federation of Planets is ..you guess who, the Klingon Empire is the Japanese Empire, the Cardassian Union is the Soviet Union, the Ferengi are the Israelis, and the Romulans , I can guess who...

Federation are good diplomats and make a lot of money from diplomatic relations, but their ships cannot be compared with the Romulan ones:)); they are also a bit skew when declaring war..always do nasty things to provoke a declaration of war.

Romulans are the most straight-forward when it's about war or peace, they have the greatest network of spies(the name :Phoenix is well given) , are also good in diplomacy with a few races, make little money and are the best in fleets, as their ships may cloak when needed, making surprise attacks a necessity.

Ferengi make the most money of all:just sign a peace treaty with them, and they'll know instantly the location of your worlds and set trade routes without yours or minor races permission; only war can prevent that. They also have the fastest ships, with the most numerous torpedoes

Cardassian are ruthless: always take advantage of weaker races and impose force labor upon them .For them, diplomacy is just words and their ships have the strongest hull of all, making planetary bombardment a nuisance(only hulls count there) .

Klingons are the best warriors: all their ships are armed with the most numerous beams, they like attacks in high number , but are also weak on rear part. their Diplomacy is rather good and may convince through unequitable statements minor races to join them (Vulcans like them,too!)

The diplomatic universe is dynamic: you can have the most loyal races being subdued through bribery or covert action to desert you and join the enemy the other round. Also, the peoples behavior representation is very good: Romulans are the most cheerful of all with regard to gov performance, but secretly wish a revolution (that's why they encourage revolutions on occupied planets), while the Federation guys are the most critical, especially in the newspapers:))

I can speak for hours about what a great simulation of the world we're living is this Star Trek Universe(remember it's history? first Klingons attack Federation,then they join them in the fight against Cardassians, they are defeated by the Borg...all history here)

The Borg invasion is very real: every system with more than 200 people gives birth to a new cube, every system below to a sphere (yes ,they have too! they are called:Borg Scouts).Fortunately , every turn only half of the system pop is wiped out (or kidnapped) , until the 10-mark is reached

The Bad
Well, it's an old game(stating the obvious:(() -the graphics are silly(not in the combat area), you have few options, the galaxy is so small, you have to colonize at least 60 % in order to win(or kill anyone else), most systems are so small they are useless

And the biggest problem is the excessive micromanagement: you have to give building order to all 40 systems you control each turn(that's a real headache). Speeds are limited to int numbers(so if you have a fleet of Warbirds flying at 1 square per turn and a few Battlecruisers flying at 2..all thing moves at 1)

Fortunately, if you download the real trek mod and combine it with the planet mod and the buildings taken from the ultimate mod, you'll get an interesting game, who can keep you day and night in front of your screen: that's because systems are big(even 500 people systems are common) , small ships are 20-30 times cheaper than big ones(destroyers vs cruisers) , which gives alternatives in the case of small systems(be careful , though:one Romulan cruiser wiped out 74 Ferengi scouts and destroyers in just 2 turns!!) and, of course, you have that lovely +1000 intel buildings(and others similar in effects)

Happy Romulan domination! (I only play these guys..matter of ..birth)

The Bottom Line
A great simulation of the world today,gives many testing options and it's so funny!(when you know what you're looking at)

Windows · by lucian (36) · 2005

[ View all 4 player reviews ]

Trivia

Licensing

The game strictly had a license for using races and ships from Star Trek: The Next Generation, but not the other shows of the franchise which partially overlapped in the in-universe timeline. This is why, for example, the Trill race used their TNG look instead of their better-known one from Star Trek: Deep Space Nine. One exception is the Federation Defiant-class ship which debuted in DS9, and appears in this game due to a loophole as it was present in the 1996 TNG film Star Trek: First Contact.

Macintosh

A Macintosh port was announced by MacSoft in July 1998, but was ultimately not released.

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Game added by coder.

Additional contributors: Opipeuter, Plok.

Game added October 14, 2000. Last modified March 31, 2024.