An Imperial base lies deep within the city of Faust, and in it are data tapes detailing future Imperial tactics and weaponry. These tapes were recently stolen by an Alliance operative, but he was captured soon after. He did manage to hide the tapes somewhere in the base. Your job is to find a way into the base and recover the Imperial tapes.
The plot for this level is not terribly imaginative. The author mentions there are some bugs in textures he couldn't fix. And this is his first level. I don't think there can be a much worse combination.
But apparently my preconceptions don't have any bearing on a level's quality. This is a great mission, with splendid architecture, near perfect texturing, and plenty of good puzzles to keep you busy thinking.
The author seems to have made a detailed study of what works and what doesn't in a level. As he says in the accompanying text file, there's a lot of Nar Shadda in this city, with grimy walls, small dark rooms, and bounty hunters crawling all over the depths of the city. In contrast, the Imperial section of the city is nice and clean, with lots of Imperial insignia hanging everywhere, and tributes to the Emperor around every corner. The level takes you on an extensive tour of the area as you make your way to the base and then search for the tapes inside. There's lots of space to explore, plus numerous secrets to be found thoughout the city. The puzzles are also nice; though most are variations on previous ideas, they still add a dimension to the level normally absent.
But aside from all the plusses this level might have, there are some drawbacks. Rather than succumb to the usual rookie mistake of planting enemies everywhere in the level, this author doesn't quite put enough in for my taste. Though the city streets could certainly be somewhat vacant in the late evening, especially with the reputation this city seems to have, I would expect the Imperial base to be more heavily guarded. Even with the difficulty set to Hard, I still found myself breezing through the level. The couple of Dark Troopers strengthened the forces somewhat, but it still wasn't enough.
I also found it difficult to accept that the landing pad where Jan meets you at the end is so nearby your location. I think the level could have been much more interesting, and quite possibly more difficult, if you were forced to find your way back through the city to the Crow. Even if you took the same route, generators could have been used to supply you with more target practice. It not only would have increased the depth of the level and made it more interesting, it would have taken care of my previous complaint about the difficulty as well.
Still, this is a very admirable first attempt. The city is detailed, the textures are well done, and it isn't just a shoot-em-up fest. If you enjoyed Nar Shadda, and want a little Imperial touch thrown in on the side, this level will suit your tastes nicely.