A simulation arranged by the arrogant Zakdorn strategist Kolrami is supposed to increase the crew's battle readiness. Riker and a skeleton crew change to the 80-year-old and largely defunct USS Hathaway to "fight" against the Enterprise. With the help of Wesley, who smuggles an experiment with antimatter off the Enterprise, Riker has warp power available for just two seconds. A Ferengi ship unexpectedly appears and threatens the two ships, whose weapons are disabled.

Riker and Picard use a ruse to get rid of the Ferengi: The Enterprise fires a torpedo and in the very same moment the Hathaway jumps to warp, creating the illusion that the old ship was destroyed. Puzzled about Picard's brutal action, the Ferengi leave the scene. Data, who was initially unexpectedly beaten by Kolrami in a game of strategema, challenges the Zakdorn again. The android now plays the game not to win but to counter all of his opponent's actions, who grows weary and eventually gives up.

Errors and Explanations

Internet Movie Database

Plot holes

  1. According to the ST:TNG Technical Manual, 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. Wes is likely smart enough to programme the transporter to do this automatically, especially for such a small amount of antimatter apparently contained in a sealed chamber.

Revealing mistakes

  1. Riker's boarding team are carrying First Alert flashlights. These could be updated versions.

The Nitpicker's Guide
Next Generation Trekkers
Volume 2

Alternative Viewpoints and Corrections

  1. Worf is able to fool the Ferengi sensors into believing another Federation Starship is approaching, in a trick similar to the one he used earlier against Enterprise by using his computer access codes. He would have no such access codes for the Ferengi sensors. According to P T H Carder of Lancashire, England, Worf may have acquired access codes for non Federation ships from Starfleet inteligence.

Plot Oversights

  1. Presence of the Hathaway in an area containing Marauders. The Marauders may have been passing by, and changed course to investigate the war game.
  2. Absence of Zakdorns among Starfleet. They may not be diplomatic enough - especialy if Kolrami is anything to go by!

Equipment Oddities

  1. Non use of the holodeck for the wargame. The holodeck may not be sufficently realistic.
  2. Enterprise only using two torpedoes to fake the destruction of the Hathaway, instead of the four mentioned in the plan. They probably decided to revise the plan before putting it into operation.
  3. Enterprise warping away after the strategma match, despite being shown towing the Hathaway shoprtly before it. Starfleet probably dispatched a tug to collect the Hathaway, thus allowing Enterprise to head to her next assignment.

The Next Generation Season 2
The Child I Where Silence Has Lease I Elementary, Dear Data I The Outrageous Okona I The Schizoid Man I Loud as a Whisper I Unnatural Selection I A Matter of Honor I The Measure of a Man I The Dauphin I Contagion I The Royale I Time Squared I The Icarus Factor I Pen Pals I Q Who I Samaritan Snare I Up the Long Ladder I Manhunt I The Emissary I Peak Performance I Shades of Gray
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