Okay, finally got time to play the first mission. Definitely not bad for a first attempt.
Since I'm also a mission designer I tend to go through and nitpick quite heavily. Don't take that as a reflection of the quality of the mission. I do the same with every mission I play and expect people to do the same to me whilst I'm working on a campaign.
First let me go over what I liked.
1. I liked the use of 3 dimensions in the mission. You've obviously gone to the trouble of making sure that the ships in the game aren't all on the same plane. That's a very common mistake amongst starting FREDders.
2. I can't comment too much about difficulty cause I don't have my joystick and I was stuck playing on very easy using mouse instead. But the enemy did seem to be a challenge.
Okay, what can be improved. Some of these are big issues, many are just nitpicks.
1. There is no animation with the command briefing. Without one, the screen looks rather empty. If you check the Diaspora Resource List in the help, you'll see all the animations available. I'd suggest CB_Colonial.eff would work here but you could easily mention another Battlestar and thereby use the Valkyrie animation or something.
2. In the briefing, the grid is not level. It's a minor thing but it always bugs me cause it's easily fixed by use of the align object / level object options in the Misc menu.
3. As you noted in the other thread the Battlestar is not in the escort list. That's pretty easily fixed and give the player a lot better situational awareness.
4. Although you have messages telling the player to get out of the way of the exploding basestar, the NPC fighters all sit around and get killed by it. Give them some orders to go to somewhere safer.
5. I had a little problem getting the combat landing to work. Although I bounced off the deck a few times, I just couldn't lock onto the deck. Not sure what causes it.
All in all, a good mission which with some shine and a bit more work on the dialogue could actually be a decent entry point to a campaign. Keep working on it.