The good parts of FS1 go by in a flash while some of the worse filler or generally bad missions(like every single bombing mission or any time you have to protect a stationary target against a single wave that always warps in at the exact same place) drag on forever.
Stuff like First Strike(The worst mission ever made aside from ST which we all pretend never happened anyway) or Where Eagles Dare, or the terrible trio of Enter the Dragon, Playing Judas, and Evangelist.
Every time I go for a replay of FS1 I dread those three missions especially because they're all either mind-numbingly tedious or stupidly frustrating and they're in a row. FS1 would've been a much better game if it was even shorter, if like 30% of the missions were just cut out.
I don't mind Enter the Dragon at all, partially because of how quick it goes by, but I agree Playing Judas is tedious, partially because of the way the scanner can freak out. I like the idea behind Playing Judas more than its execution since it does go on too long but the core premise of it is usually enough for me to tough it out.
Again I don't think the core logic behind First Strike is the problem, it's that
wanted to make sure everyone had plenty of time to actually bomb the Taranis, leading to the issue of towing it back usually taking way too long.
Evangelist would have benefited greatly from having more fighters in general at a bare minimum, especially seeing the importance the GTA placed on it for whatever reason.
At least with the missions you named, yeah they aren't the greatest from an individual mission design perspective but that wasn't always
's primary concern for better or worse.
They should have invented the fiction viewer back than and spend the time on writing stuff that could've set FS1 apart from a somewhat generic space opera like they did later with FS2. I still like the story though; I played FS2 first and reading the tech entries makes the Great War come across much more epic than it actually was in FS1, while I could imagine that "viewing" FS2 through a FS3 techroom it would be impossible to catch the athmosphere closely.
I don't think
had a dedicated writer like they did for ST and FS2 back in FS1 which is why it comes across more bare bones (and them hiring Jason Scott to clean up ST obviously didn't help it much, but was great for FS2). I do still think the way
ended FS1 was enough to differentiate it, plus the direction they went after was fantastic, and it's still one of the games that does cosmic horror well in comparison to a lot of things directly cribbing Lovecraft.