Let’s call it a Worf-apalooza. Star Trek’s beloved Klingon warrior will return to action in Star Trek Online’s new Feature Episode, “Sphere of Influence,” and StarTrek.com has a preview penned as a guest blog by Star Trek Online Content Designer Kate Bankson. StarTrek.com also spoke briefly -- and exclusively -- to Michael Dorn, who returns to the Trek fold to voice Worf for “Sphere of Influence.”
Other than not having to spend hours in a makeup chair, what would you say are the main differences between playing a role as a voiceover artist vs. acting in front of a camera?
DORN: No wardrobe, No makeup and it’s over fairly quickly so you still have time to have a life.
How quickly and easily do you fall back into Worf's voice and mind set?
DORN: Fairly quickly. I’m afraid Worf is always lurking somewhere in the background of my psyche.
Worf has matured over the years. How have you approached voicing him, taking into account that he's three decades older than when you first played him? And in what ways do you feel your personal experiences over the years have influenced how you're portraying Worf now?
DORN: I really didn’t look at him as older. I think Michael Dorn aging probably had the desired effect.
The STO team has said they take inspiration from your performances and thus Klingons have become a race of honorable warriors, following ideals Worf set down. How much Klingon “background” was there when you first started in the role? In what ways do you feel your portrayal influenced the TNG and DS9 writers to make Worf -- and other Klingons -- more honorable?
DORN: I just gave him the gruff and surly attitude and the writers took off from there. The first season (of TNG), Worf was an out-of-control fighter. He was almost running amok without any form or function. I told Gene (Roddenberry) that I wanted him to be more in control, almost “Samurai-like.” To his credit, he allowed me to create the whole “Klingon Martial Arts” mystique.
Worf’s loyalties have always been torn between the Federation and Empire, factions at war again in STO. Now that he's an ambassador in the Klingon Empire, how do you think Worf would balance his loyalty to the Empire with his loyalty to his friends in the Federation?
DORN: Worf has learned he does not have to choose. Even if the writers on STO have him making statements to the contrary, I feel he feels that life is a journey and this is just a stop along the way. And maybe next year he’ll make a different choice and rejoin the Federation. You never know with Worf.
In "Firstborn," Alexander travels back in time to warn Worf that he will die in front of his son at a future date unless Alexander becomes a warrior. Worf tells Alexander he must die with honor and that he can only do so if Alexander stays true to himself and his beliefs, even if that means not becoming a warrior. Now that you’ve seen the results of Worf’s decision, what are your feelings about the advice Worf gave Alexander and the impact of that advice?
DORN: The advice was sound. Nobody has a crystal ball and nobody can predict the future. Alexander made millions of decisions in his life since then. Who’s to say one of those didn’t lead to his demise?
Beyond STO, what else are you working on at the moment?
DORN: I have a Worf spin-off script that I think has traction and I’m starting down the road of producing a romantic comedy that I wrote a couple of years ago. Otherwise, I’m working on my backhand.
IMDB lists something called Swallow Your Bliss. What is that and what's happening with it?
DORN: It’s an independent pilot about a cooking show. It’s been shot and now they’re in the process of shopping it. We’ll see.
Did it work out with Unbelievable!!!!!? Are you in the film? If so, what do you play and how did it go?
DORN: You’ll have to buy a ticket.
And now to that Star Trek Online guest blog…
Star Trek Online is almost ready to release Season 8: The Sphere, which will take our players into the unknown to face a dangerous and powerful foe from a distant quadrant of the galaxy. The Feature Episode “Sphere of Influence” will be the bridge that links our players to this exciting upcoming content.
Deep under the surface of Mol'Rihan (New Romulus), Romulan and Reman scientists have been working tirelessly to study the discovery made there. As promised, D’Tan, the leader of New Romulus, has shared this research and invited his allies from the Federation and the Klingon Empire to attend what he hopes will be a triumphant success for his people; the reactivation of the Iconian Gateway.
Reactions to this news have been mixed. The power of instant travel would do much for the fledgling republic, but the specter of the Dewan’s past failure looms over their hopes for the future. Players will team up with an old ally – that’d be Worf -- to uncover the mystery of the gateway, and together make some surprising revelations.
Starting this Thursday, October 31st, characters level 10 or higher from all three factions can hail D’Tan from the ‘Available’ tab in the mission journal (default key “J”), or via the event entry on the in-game calendar, to learn about the restoration of the Gateway. Once they accept the mission, they will be directed to travel to New Romulus to attend the reactivation as a representative of their faction.
Those who complete the mission will earn a powerful new ship, the Obelisk Carrier, as well as be able to earn the Ancient Obelisk Technology Item set. The Obelisk can only be earned from October 31 – December 5. The box containing the Obelisk can only be opened once the character reaches level 40. Ship and items stats will be posted in an upcoming Dev Blog. This ship is available to all factions.
We’re pleased to bring this exciting Feature Episode to our fans and take them where no one has gone before!
See you on Romulus this Thursday.
Star Trek Online
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