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Deep Space Nine

or...

"What Did She Say?"

When I got my first look at a working alpha (preliminary working version) of the DS9 cartridge, I noticed that the artists had drawn and placed a klingon woman on the station. Knowing that she would thus appear every time the game returned the player to the Promenade, I decided to give her dialogue...but with a twist. All her lines would be in klingonese, not english.

Realizing that only hardcore Trekkers would have the necessary references to translate the klingon dialogue, I thought it would be funny to plant a gag in her dialogue (and, to make it easier for such die-hards, I used only phrases that were easily referenced in the Appendix of Marc Okrand's book "The Klingon Dictionary").

Following is a translation of everything she says in the game.


KLINGON WOMAN
tlhIngan Hol Dajatlh'a'
("Do you speak Klingon?")

SISKO
Yes. I understand some klingonese.


KLINGON WOMAN
naDev qaS wanI' ramqu'
("Nothing happening here.")

SISKO
Yes. It is quiet, isn't it?


KLINGON WOMAN
nuqDaq 'oH Qe' QaQ'e'
("Where is a good restaurant?")

SISKO
Well, the food at Quark's isn't too bad. Try there.


KLINGON WOMAN
nuqDaq 'oH puchpa''e'
("Where is the bathroom?")

SISKO
I've never seen one of those here. Sorry.

This was my little jab at decades of absent toilets on the various Treks. The translation of this little gag was supposed to be an in-joke, known only to us and to die-hard Trekkers who had "The Klingon Dictionary", but someone accidentally sent a script with the translation to Paramount. Their licensing department saw the line and directed the following change:

From Paramount Licensing, fax dated 8/29/94:

Pg 17 - Please direct her to the infermary of Quark's Bar.

Realizing that they did not address the gag (and probably didn't even get it), I decided to try to address a mistake in their suggested change and their reading of the line's context (without addressing the gag itself or the actual justification for the line):
From my "DS9 Script Revisions" fax of 9/1/94:

There's no infermary in Quark's bar! Regardless, she's not ill, she's just asking where the bathroom is.

Amazingly, it worked. No one bothered to double-check the line's context, and the gag slipped into the final product intact.


KLINGON WOMAN
bortaS bIr jablu'DI'reH QaQqu'nay'
("Revenge is a dish that is best served cold.")

SISKO
Revenge? For what? I don't understand.

KLINGON WOMAN
Do'Ha'
("That is unfortunate.")


KLINGON WOMAN
tlhIngan Hol Dajatlh'a'
("Do you speak Klingon?")

BASHIR
I'm sorry, I don't understand. Do you speak my language?

KLINGON WOMAN
Of course. I just prefer speaking klingonese.

I thought (and maybe I was the only one) that it would be funny if it turned out that the Klingon Woman did in fact, speak english, and thus the player would really wonder what was said in klingonese. (Originally, this interchange was between O'Brien and the Klingon Woman, but Bashir was substituted when the O'Brien stage was cut [see "Design Excerpt" for this product].)


KLINGON WOMAN
batlh Daqawlu'taH
("You will be remembered with honor.")

SISKO
Thanks, but we're not finished yet!

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