Captain's Log: Guide to surviving (without) Halloween

Oh boy! My favorite time of year is here again! A time when ghouls and goblins rule the night, I can watch The Monster Squad three times a week without feeling silly and no one has a problem with my wearing leopard-print tights to a party. (I rocked a homemade Kraven the Hunter costume this past weekend. Deal with it.)

Yes sir, I love me some Halloween. And like most awesomely major holidays, my MMOs usually help me celebrate in style. My paladin, for instance, finally snagged himself a set of Horseman's Reins this year. Sadly, Star Trek Online offers no such holiday merriment. So what's a forlorn fan of costume parties and pumpkin patches to do in STO? Fresh from the brain trust behind your beloved Captain's Log, consider these alternatives to tide you over until you go trick-or-treating.
The Devidians

As you know, I'm a fan of STO's weekly episodes. A big fan. I've mentioned them a time or two. And they might not last forever, so you'd better enjoy them while you can.

When last we left the weekly episodes, Series 1 had just wrapped up. The Breen had started harassing the Deferi, running raids into the Defera Sector for some shadowy purpose. As the five episodes progressed, we learned that the Breen really, really wanted to uncover the secrets of the Preservers, a race of beings that long, long ago seeded the universe with intelligent life, or something. The big secret the Breen uncovered in the final episode was pretty cool, so you should go complete the series if you haven't already.

Now we're two episodes into Series 2, which is titled "The Devidians." Spoiler alert: This series of weeklies involves a race of aliens known as Devidians. According to my data files, those dudes are a time-traveling, humanoid race with forehead mouths. They feed on the neural energy (why not) of humans (of course) in a process that kills their prey (naturally).

Apparently the wartime suffering of STO means the neural energy of pain is sweeping the galaxy and has drawn the Devidians out of hiding. Or, wait, they disguise their feedings as random acts of violence. So they're like the newborn vampires in New Moon, except in space instead of Seattle.

To get started, head to the Eta Eridani Sector Block and speak with Sir Francis Franklin Drake, who has need of each player's special skills. (I didn't even know I had special skills.) In the first mission, Skirmish, you head into battle against a True Way fleet, only to eventually run into -- surprise -- a Devidian menace! The second mission, Spin the Wheel, sends you to the Dabo table on Drozana Station. And the story continues with episode three, What Lies Beneath (not that one), this Saturday.
Roleplaying

If the folks at Cryptic Studios don't have a holiday in store for us, why not invent our own? Now, with the exception of the occasional extra-special date night, I'm not much of a roleplayer. I admire the players with the vim and vigor to roleplay their way through MMOs, but I've never gotten into it. Still, were I to limit myself to topics that I'm qualified to discuss, I would have fallen mute years ago.

Halloween seems like the perfect time for roleplaying. I mean, the holiday is constructed around wearing costumes and pretending to be something you're not. (And candy. Candy candy candy candy candy!) I suppose the trick is convincingly roleplaying a long-gone terran holiday in the far-flung future of STO. Listicle time!

  • Costume party
This is probably the easiest possibility. First, get a bunch of people together on the pretense that old Earth records discuss the phenomenon of masquerades. Second, drink copiously because that's what the records say Earthlings did back in the day. Quark's Bar on Deep Space Nine is the best place for that, obviously. Third, mingle!

For costumes, partygoers can wear dress uniforms or off-duty gear. More enterprising alien guests can pretend that they aren't actually an alien, but a human dressed up as an alien -- just avoid any situation that would call for the removal of your costume. (Minds out of the gutter, people!)

  • Time travel
In honor both of Halloween and of the 25th anniversary of puffy orange vests, grab some friends, slap on your off-duty outfits and pretend you're visitors from the distant past. Maybe you think you've stumbled into an enormously elaborate haunted house! Run around Earth Spacedock or Qo'nos, marveling at the lifelike costumes and asking for candied treats. I know my first priority after stepping through a space-time rift would be to hassle the locals for sweets, so this option is pretty realistic.

  • History club
Nothing says fun like stodgily recreating history, but why not give it a try? A few science officers (and maybe an engineer, but those slow-witter redshirts need not apply) can get together and study the curious Earth holiday of Halloween. Think of it like a futuristic Civil War reenactment. Only, instead of a major milestone in the history of the United States, you're reconstructing a quaint custom that encouraged this sort of thing.

But seriously, that could be a great opportunity to flex your imagination muscles. How would people of the future interpret -- and misinterpret -- something as zany as Halloween?

Plan for next year

When all else fails, you can always daydream about next Halloween. I suppose if we're lucky, the fine folks at Cryptic will have come up with some holiday events by then. I know they have to jump through hoops with CBS and canon and all that, but I'm sure they can come up with something. If Middle-earth can have holidays, the United Federation of Planets can find something to celebrate.

And if nothing else, we players should have the Foundry content tools at our disposal by then. We can make our own holiday-themed missions!
Less trustworthy than a Ferengi loan shark and more useless than a neutered Tribble, Ryan Greene beams Captain's Log straight into your mind every Thursday, filling your brainhole with news, opinions and reckless speculation about Star Trek Online. If you have comments, suggestions for the column or insults too creative for Massively's commenting policy, send a transmission to ryan@massively.com.
This article was originally published on Massively.