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Memory Alpha is a library complex located on a small planet, also called Memory Alpha, that is located at the northeast corner of the Teneebia sector in Star Trek Online. The facility is massive, spanning much of the diameter of the planet, and contains the total cultural history and scientific knowledge of all member-species of the Federation of United Planets. In-game, Memory Alpha is used as a hub world for crafting purposes to Federation players, researching and applying data samples to improve Star Fleet ships and personal equipment.  
 
Aside from minor references in novels and video games (such as Star Trek: Deep Space Nine - The Fallen), Memory Alpha was most prominently featured on Star Trek in the original series episode " The Lights of Zetar", in which non-corporeal aliens attempted to take over the bodies of the facility's crew, though their attempts were unsuccessful, leading to massive damage to the facility itself and the deaths of all crewmen by brain damage sustained while resisting the alien mind control.
 

The Upgrade (Crafting) Process

The system for " crafting" items in Star Trek Online involves collecting anomalous readings that are scattered throughout each of the mission maps in the game. These readings provide a variety of data samples that are collected and stored in your inventory, and used to upgrade various items in the game, including ship and personal weapons, shields, and armor. This is not technically "crafting" in the classic MMO sense, but it is generally referred to as 'crafting' by players of the game. For purposes of these article, "crafting" and "upgrading" will both refer to the same process.
 
When you reach level 4 in the game, you are given a quest to speak with Lt. Commander Jenna Romaine on Memory Alpha. This is the hub for crafting in STO. One you complete the mission for Romaine, which involves collecting and delivering a data sample, she will explain roughly how the system works, and you will then be able to start purchasing and upgrading items at a Tier 1 level through her. You will notice that at this point, while there are other scientists in the area, you won't be able to work with them until you do more for Lt. Commander Romaine.
 

Requirements

Data samples are required are the "ingredients" to upgrading items and equipment. You will notice that when you approach a scientist in an unlocked tier and access their "store", there is a list of upgraded items that can be "bought". This does not involve credits, but rather spending your collected data samples as if they were currency. Two things are required to purchase (craft) an upgraded item:  

    •    The required data samples listed next to the item
    •    A "common" version of the item you are upgrading
 
It's important to note that you do not need to have any of these items in your active inventory to spend them. They can be deposited in your bank at the time of purchase.
 
It's also important to note that in order to upgrade that item, you can only have an un-modified, common version of said item in your position. While most of the time, crafting an item makes it rare (light blue), you cannot start with an uncommon (green) item and then upgrade it to rare or very rare (purple).
 

Crafting Tiers and Items

There are 3 tiers of crafting in STO, and each one comes with higher level items that can be crafted. Jenna Romaine represents the first tier, which applies to all classes of players: science, tactical, or engineering. After you craft enough items with her to move up to Tier 2, you must seek out a tier 2 scientist for the class of your preference. Here is a list of all the classes of scientists, along with their names, tiers, and what items they offer upgrades for:
 
 Tier 1 - All Classes - Lt. Commander Jenna Romaine
  •  Large Hypo
  •  Large Power Cell
  •  Personal Shield Mk II
  •  Disruptor Bolt Dual Pistol - Sweep Mk II
  •  Phaser Beam Pistol - Wide Beam Mk II
  •  Phaser Beam Array Mk II
  •  Photon Torpedo Launcher Mk II
  •  Engineering Kit - Basic Explosives Mk II
  •  Science Kit - Medic Mk II
  •  Tactical Kit - Basic Grenades Mk II
 
Tier 2 - Tactical - Lt. Commander Anichent
  • Plasma Bolt Assault Weapon - Energy Blast Mk IV
  • Plasma Bolt Pistol - Compression Bolt Mk IV
  • Plasma Bolt Rifle - Sniper Rifle Mk IV
  • Plasma Beam Array Mk IV
  • Plasma Dual Cannons Mk IV
  • Plasma Torpedo Launcher Mk IV
  • Quantum Torpedo Launcher Mk IV
  • Tactical Kit - Close Combat Specialist Mk IV
  • Tactical Kit - Fire Team Mk IV 
 
Tier 2 - Science -  Lt. Commander Zara Dren 
  • Personal Shield Mk IV
  • Plasma Beam Pistol
  • Deflector Array Mk IV
  • Deflector Array Mk IV
  • Deflector Array Mk IV
  • Covariant Shield Array Mk IV
  • Science Kit - Physician Mk IV
  • Science Kit - Analyst Mk IV  
 
Tier 2 - Engineering - Lt. Commander Marissa Roet
  • Body Armor - Energy Dampening Mk IV
  • Body Armor - Pollyalloy Wave Mk IV
  • Personal Shield Mk IV
  • Personal Shield Mk IV
  • Combat Impulse Engines Mk IV
  • Hyper-Impulse Engines Mk IV
  • Impulse Engines Mk IV
  • Engineering Kit - Enemy Neutralization Mk IV
  • Engineering Kit - Support Technician IV 
 
Tier 3 - Tactical - Commander Shann
  • Tetryon Bolt Assault Weapon - Energy Blast Mk VIII
  • Tetryon Bolt Pistol - Compression Bolt MK VIII & Mk X
  • Tetryon Bolt Rifle - Sniper Rifle Mk VIII
  • Tetryon Beam Array Mk VIII
  • Tetryon Dual Cannons Mk VIII
  • Transphasic Torpedo Launcher Mk VIII & Mk X
  • Polaron Bolt Assault Weapon - Energy Blast Mk X
  • Polaron Bolt Rifle - Sniper Rifle Mk X
  • Polaron Dual Cannons Mk X
  • Polaron Beam Array Mk X
  • Chroniton Torpedo Launcher Mk VIII & Mk X
  • Tactical Kit - Grenade Satchel Mk IX & Mk XIII*
  • Tactical Kit - Operative MK VIII & IX*  
 
Tier 3 - Science - Commander Jher Gwenn
  • Personal Shield Mk VIII & Mk X
  • Tetryon Beam Pistol - Stun Beam Mk VIII
  • Deflector Array Mk VIII & X
  • Covariant Shield Array Mk VIII & Mk X
  • Polaron Beam PIstol - Stun Beam Mk IX
  • Science Kit - Physician Mk VIII & IX*
  • Science Kit - Analyst Mk VIII & IX*
  
Tier 3 - Engineering - Lt Kirayoshi O'Brien 
  • Personal Shield Mk VIII & Mk X
  • Body Armor - Energy Dampening Mk VIII & Mk X
  • Body Armor - Pollyalloy Weave Mk VIII & Mk X
  • Impulse Engines Mk VIII & Mk X
  • Hyper-Impulse Engines Mk VIII & Mk X
  • Combat Impulse Engines Mk VIII & Mk X
  • Engineering Kit - Enemy Neutralization Mk VIII & Mk IX*
  • Engineering KIt - Bunker Fabrication Mk VIII & Mk IX*
 
*Very Rare (purple) level X kits do exist, but are not used in crafting.
 

Tier Advancement Speculation

As of writing this, Cryptic has not announced exactly how a player can advance from one crafting to tier the next in the game. This has caused much speculation and debate among players of the game. Reaching tier 2 is not a difficult task, however, getting from tier 2 to tier 3 can prove quite arduous. It has been agreed though, that advancing from one tier to the next involves crafting either a certain amount of items, crafting items with certain levels of sample data, or crafting enough items to reach an unspecific total credit value .
 
While not much speculation has been made on the first two theories, several users have done extensive research on the latter. The theory for the current credit limits in relation to class and tier is as follows:
 
Requirement for Tier 2 
All classes: 6500 total credit worth of upgrades
 
Requirement for Tier 3
Tactical: 100,000 total credit worth of upgrades
Science: 400,000 total credit worth of upgrades
Engineering: 400,000 total credit worth of upgrades
 
In the current build of the game (as of 4.16.2010), you are not notified when you graduate to a higher class. To find out, you have to seek out the next tier scientist you want to work with, and see if you have the "store" option in the dialogue window.

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