Following Karajorma's suggestion about the fredders of the FA testing each other's missions, I took a crack at this one. I think I'll divide my thoughts into categories to make this easier.
Not bad, a few oddities, i.e., saying Neo-Terran Remnants instead of Remnant. I do like how each stage is marked with a date, despite that its the same on the last two. Some of the sentences feel rather incomplete though. Example.
These remnants have the advantage of fighting on their home system...giving them tactical advantage. While we have strategic advantage only.
I would change that to this:
The NTR has home field advantage in the Polaris system. They know ever planet, every asteroid, all the locations to coordinate an effective defense. Despite our strategic advantage in numbers and resources, the NTR's knowledge of the terrain means they can deploy their forces more effectively than us.
I like to think that whoever is giving this briefing has some personality, and might make a comment like "home field advantage". Don't get me wrong, sounding all official is good, but having little phrases in the briefing gives it a more personal touch.
Little changes also need to be made, such as changing "In December 3rd" to "On December 3rd"
Minor spelling error with threat being spelled as threath.
On the last stage of the briefing, I wouldn't mention Big Earl's just yet. I'm assuming Alpha 1 has just been assigned to the fighting, and probably won't know what Big Earl's is. Command briefings are better at giving an overall view of the situation, involving strategies and enemy objectives. Individual mission information should be kept in the mission brief stage.
The only other comment I will make about this briefing is the lack of information on where Alpha 1 is stationed. The story of the campaign is that the GTD Messana was deployed to the system, so mention that. Include the standard "welcome aboard" speech if it feels right.
Fairly good icon placement with just a little overlap. My main concern with this briefing is that its a bit uneventful, the screen stays on the same position all the time, with only one or two icons moving. Rotate around the objects, give different angles for each stage. Also, the the cargo containers name is cut off by the top of the briefing window, I'd lower that a little bit if I were you. Also, change " Kappa wing has just finished his patrol" to "their". And I'm not sure if I understand the briefing correctly on whether or not Kappa will depart once Alpha wing arrives. I'll elaborate more on the actual mission section. As a final note, again, some of the sentences feel like they've been cut short or are missing words like and.
This includes, it's cargo containers, it's static defenses, the freighters and transports that travel though it.
Put an "and" after the third comma, and change "though" to through.
The cargo depot placement is very nice I must say, it has that "major hub" feel to it, with the Acheron centrally positioned and the fighters moving around. The freighters and transports arriving, docking and undocking, and disembarking adds more to the the surroundings. The background itself, however, could use a little work. More actual background in front and around the depot would be nice. The large black space that it currently occupies is in need of nebula. Now, let's talk about the rest of the mission. The loadout and ship choice are perfect for this mission, hornets all around doesn't bother me a bit. Messages are also well timed, with no overlap that I can see. The only problems I really have with this mission are the following.
Kappa wing is called Beta wing, little error but needs fixing. Also, Kappa 1 says they're going to leave, but they never do, they just float around with no real purpose in the mission. That needs to be fixed.
Delta wing's early demise. The first time through, Delta is instantly killed by the Horizon's main gun. Delta needs to arrive off to the side of the cruiser, not directly in front of it. Also, if Delta wing is destroyed, command should not continue to tell Alpha to escort them.
Also, Aries and Cancer, assuming the Kappa error is fixed, need to be reduced to three ships per wing. Eight against four is extermely lopsided, whereas six against four is a bit more reasonable. Its not too bad with Kappa wing around, but once they leave, Alpha will have a hard time holding their own.
The dialogue in this mission is, interesting. Some of the words need to be changed, again. Instead of
we are supposed to be fighting the rebels, not between us
change it to "we're" and "not each other".
Also, the comment about "I've got some action for you", doesn't really seem like a threat at first, more like a proposal to me. I know that sounds strange but that's the impression I get.
All the rebels in your area have been killed, and We are fending off the rebel attacks, but the they don't seem to be withdrawing, but regrouping
Sounds really odd. Change "killed" to "eliminated", and change the last sentence to something like "We've fended off the rebel attacks, but they seem to be regrouping, not withdrawing."
And this sentence
But the battle still rages across other sectors.
I would say "But we are still engaging rebel forces all across the system".
Alpha 4's comment about peanuts seems a little strange, but that's personal opinion.
I think the only real problem with most of the messages and dialouge is a general use of words. Command sounds a little odd and undisciplined. Saying "sixteen fighters" doesn't feel the same as "three rebel wings" to me.
Taurus wing needs to arrive once Aries, Cancer, and the Horizon are down. I understand if this is supposed to be the old diversion tactic, but having them arrive with their own escort wing seems better than just popping in when the Horizon is destroyed.
Delta wing should stick around, unless they've got somewhere more important to be. At the very least a reason should be given for sending them away, with a little dialogue to help explain.
The final three wings of Hercs seem a bit uncoordinated, simply ignoring the player sometimes and moving slowly towards the Achilles. They have no orders except guarding the Executor and attacking the Dashor, which means that they are easy prey for Alpha wing. Setting one wing to guard the Executor while the others attack any ship would be more reasonable. Setting them to attack the Dashor won't really help matters, as that Sobek isn't too scared of those Hercs.
A little more dialogue during the second lull period wouldn't hurt. I'm talking about the time after Taurus wing is destroyed, before the Executor jumps in. Its not vital, but it can't hurt.
And my final comment, put something inside those cargo containers. Defending empty crates doesn't seem to serve much of a purpose. Also naming some of the ships like the GTFR Triton and the GTT Argo 58 can't hurt.
Its mainly just personal preference on this, but I feel the successful stage is somewhat lacking. Also, defending the Achilles and protecting the depot should be one goal, not two. This may be personal opinion, but without that installation, there isn't much protecting Big Earl's and the rest of the cargo.
This mission is impossible for me on medium. I can deal with the enemy fighters, but the Horizon or the Executor pulverizes me with their anti-fighter beams. Or I take out the beams, but get jumped by four enemy fighters while my wingmen are blown out of the sky. Reducing enemy wing strength down to three fighters with Aries and Cancer and eliminating one wing when the Executor arrives would go a long way towards improving the odds. Or simply keep Delta and Kappa wings around if it suits you, either way, something has to be done about the cruiser-fighter situation, because I find it difficult to take the fight to the enemy without being killed. The mission usually plays out with either myself being destroyed or my wingmen being killed outright and leaving me alone against two wings of enemies.
I hope these suggestions and comments prove helpful.