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Star Trek Online: Impressions From a WoW Player
02/02/2010 a las 14:43
World of Warcraft has the distinction of being the first MMO that I ever tried to play. Before WoW, nothing had ever interested me for two reasons:
I didn't know many people playing any particular game.
I didn't know the game's lore.
WoW overcame both of those via Warcraft III and the following that game brought with it. I've played WoW for years at this point. I find the game to be one that is "easy to learn, but hard to master". Such games appeal to me greatly.
I occasionally sample other MMOs as well (Auto Assault, Guild Wars, and EVE Online being three such examples), but nothing ever keeps my interest for very long. Largely, this is due to the problems described above. Without having the history of the realm stored in my brain and friends with which to play a game, I find it difficult to immerse myself into a game.
Star Trek Online is only the second MMO created where I know substantial parts of the game's lore before even entering the universe. I am also a science fiction nut and have been awaiting an MMO that introduced space combat in such a way that you had more control of your ship outside of "orbit this and fire". So, when I had a chance to check out the Open Beta of Star Trek Online, I took it. But since I work on Wowhead, I did this review on my own time, and it took a little longer than normal. :)
I provide this synopsis and review partially because
it was requested
and partially because this is only the second MMO in which I've been interested in playing beyond a few hours. Seeing as how WoW was successful in that endeavor, perhaps my thoughts will resonate with my fellow Horde and those dastardly Alliance alike. ;)
Be warned, if you're not curious about playing Star Trek Online now that it has been released, you probably want to skip this post. Long post is long.
Star Trek Online (STO) takes place during a time of war between the United Federation of Planets (Federation) and the Klingon Empire (Klingons). The treaty between the two has broken down through a series of events that the game creators describe via a series of
The opening quests takes you through a series of events which results in you having to take command of the vessel on which you are stationed during a time of crisis. Once you make it through the starting event, Starfleet Command grants permanent command of the vessel to you. From there, you will fly around the galaxy performing missions. These missions consist of a combination of space-based missions in which you pilot your vessel from a third-person view as well as away team mission where you beam down to a planet, starbase, or another ship and walk around (with either friends or NPC crewmembers) in third-person view as well.
At launch, the two factions available will be the Federation and the Klingons. No doubt, the parallel that will most often be made is that the Federation most closely resembles the Alliance whereas the Klingons most closely resemble the Horde. Since I play Horde in WoW and plan on playing the Federation in STO, you'll have to forgive me if I believe that the parallel isn't an exact match. :)
The types and number of quests for each faction will be weighted differently. The Klingons are designed to be weighted toward PvP advancement, whereas the Federation is designed to be provided with more PvE content through which to advance. There will be enough content of both types that they remain feasible advancement paths for either faction, however.
on STO's site hints that the Cardassians and Romulans might eventually be playable (if not just major factions in the PvE/PvP plots).
STO allows you to choose between three officer types upon creating a character. Each officer type will grant you with unique away team powers and ship powers to be used in combat. Through each officer choice, you essentially choose your party role in away team missions. That is to say, your officer type will dictate how good of a tank, healer, or damage dealer you are on an away team.
: Tank. Engineering officers excel at taking a beating. They bring to the party abilities that increase shield or power output of a vessel as well as enabling themselves to take more damage when on a planet's surface.
: Damage. Tactical officers excel at putting out more damage either by boosting ship weapon systems or by bringing additional damage abilities to the away team. Tactical officers also except at ranged and melee combat.
: Healing/Support. On a ship, a science officer will have powers that buff allies, debuff enemies, or help recharge shields. In an away team, you'll see science officers with abilities that perform similar functions.
It's worth noting that you should get rid of the assumption that only red-shirts can captain a vessel and that you have to have the rank of Captain to command one as well. STO's website
that captains come from a variety of backgrounds. Also, in the Star Trek canon introduced by the game, the battle between the Klingons and Federation has made both sides more willing to give lower-ranked officers control of their own ship if they've proven themselves.
Each side has a group of pre-defined races that carry with them one or two traits and the ability to select a few more to bring your total traits up to four. Think of this as getting to choose some of your racial bonuses. If, however, you decide that you don't like the look (or abilities) of any of the default classes, the game allows you to make your own in a Sims-style character creator. This also allows you to pick all four of the 'racial' abilities with which you will start.
I never played Champions Online, but I am told that the interface used to modify your character in STO is the same tool. I found the tool to be quite robust and one of the shining points of the game. There are many options which should please the most detail-oriented of players, but fiddling with them all is not necessary to create a creature that looks sufficiently human or alien.
At launch, you'll have the ability to change some of the skinning and coloring regarding your vessel as well as mix and match your configuration from a small selection of engine and saucer sections.
Once you finish the starting series of missions, you'll be ranked as a Lieutenant and you'll be granted a starting ship. Upon each subsequent promotion, you'll be granted access to a new tier of vessels. Each tier contains vessels that are more powerful than the previous tier and consists of one of three vessel types from which you can choose as your own. Each type of vessel determines what sort of role you will take in space combat:
: Tank. Cruisers are large capital ships with huge crew compliments and large power cores. These vessels repair quickly and can take a beating.
: Damage. Escorts are maneuverable ships with large weapons loadouts that are capable of supporting more powerful weaponry than the other vessel types. Their crew complements are small and as such the ability for the crew on an escort ship to repair itself is not as good as that of a cruiser, but they are capable of dealing out much more punishment.
: Support. Science vessels typically have special equipment on board that allow them to buff teammates, debuff enemies, and help allies regenerate their shields. Their crew complement is of average size, thus allowing a moderate degree of self-repair. These vessels are also quite capable of dealing damage, although they're not going to out-gun the other vessel types with their standard loadout.
At launch, the only interior portion of your vessel that you will be able to see is your bridge. Unfortunately, there's no use for it aside from being able to invite people and use it as a 'club house' of sorts. You can't accept hails and communicate through your view screen. You don't use consoles or bark orders from it during combat. You don't tweak your vessels equipment from it. You just chat or return to space view.
There's no sickbay that acts as an away team respawn point. There's no holodeck where you can practice space combat or away team combat or anything else. You don't go to your transporter room to choose your away team, their equipment, and then beam down.
This is especially annoying considering that, in the opening series of quests, you start in your vessel's mess hall, then go to the bridge, then go to your transporter room, then beam to another ship where you end up walking through their sickbay and engineering sections as part of the mission. Afterward, you beam back to your ship and only ever see the useless bridge again.
Bridge Consoles & Officers
Each vessel type has a varied amount of bridge consoles. Each bridge console supports a specific type of bridge officer up to a certain maximum rank. It helps to think of your ship as a piece of equipment where each bridge console represents a 'gem' slot and each bridge officer represents a 'gem'.
Bridge officers comes in the same categories as the officer types from which you can choose when you create your character. This will grant you with additional abilities that you can use during both ground and space combat. For each type of vessel, you'll typically find that they have more bridge consoles of the matching officer type. In other words, cruisers will have more engineering stations, escorts will have more tactical stations, and science vessels will have more science stations.
As you progress through your introductory missions, you will acquire bridge officers to fill the consoles on your bridge. Later on, you can requisition officers from Starfleet Personnel.
Officer Type vs. Ship Type
In STO, you can mix and match any officer you create with any vessel type. Your science officer, for example, could pilot a cruiser. This allows for an interesting play-style where you'd be more suited for healing on an away team mission but tanking in space. I've read some players that prefer this playstyle so that their bridge powers are more varied. For example, playing an engineer on a cruiser gives you many engineering powers but few tactical powers. However, if you played a tactical officer that piloted a cruiser, you'd have access to more tactical powers on your cruiser than you would have as an engineer.
The downside of this mixture is that you would never be as effective as using your vessel if you had a cruiser with a fully-trained tactical officer, at least by yourself. You would either be forced to increase your tactical abilities (thus nerfing the engineering abilities of your crew or your vessel), or you'd train your tactical officer toward more engineering-type skills (thus nerfing his tactical abilities). In addition, your officer will be able to train bridge officers in the highest tier of a skill once they max out certain 'talents' on their skill tree. However, you can only train officers of your type with abilities related to your type of officer. So, a tactical officer who flies a cruiser around will have bridge officers that aren't fully trained. I'm told that you'll be able to talk to your engineering friends and get them to train your bridge offivers if they've trained the appropriate skill, but I've not yet confirmed this in-game.
In general, I like the ability to make this decision and the level of customization the resulting decision allows you to make.
On the ground, you are permitted to equip two weapons. Each weapon carries with it two abilities. In addition, you will have other abilities depending on your officer type. Swapping between the two weapons will change the associated abilities. For example, with a phaser equipped, I have the ability to fire it or use its stun setting. With a phaser rifle, I can fire it or use it to snipe. These abilities, combined with the ones you've learned from your officer type, make up your action bar. You can also gain other abilities by equipping what the game calls a 'kit'. Each kit gives you another ability to use and can be swapped outside of combat if you decide you want to replace your kit power with another one.
In solo missions, you'll have a group of NPCs acting as your away team. These NPCs can either consist of your bridge officers, generic 'security personnel', or a mixture of both. Think of these guys as hunter or warlock pets. You can tell them to shoot whatever moves, focus only on your target, or tell them to just sit there and perform essential role-related duties such as heal you. You can also set rally points that instruct the crew to essentially stand and defect one spot.
When attacking the enemy, you get an advantage to shooting them in the back or the side. The game refers to this as a 'flanking' bonus and it increases the damage you do to the target. This creates scenarios where you will want to have a few party members distract the mobs while you sneak around and snipe them from behind. Presumably, you can also learn to stealth at some point (if the skill tree isn't lying to me).
You can dodge melee attacks manually by double-clicking a direction key (which causes you to roll in that direction). You can 'expose' a weakness in a target via expose abilities. Doing so allows you to deal 'critical' damage to the target.
The ground animations and movement in general felt choppy to me. WoW has accustomed me to a more smooth play experience, so the difference was perhaps more noticeable to me than others. Animations did not seem as fluid and the controls seemed a little bit sluggish and awkward, especially when I was not used to them. I was also disappointed at the lack of vocal emotes from both myself and my party. I'd hear occasional warnings from my personal computer, but the rest of my away team missions constituted of a mixture of epic-sounding-but-not-varied-enough music, tricorder sounds, and phasers being shot. Selecting the different NPC reaction types doesn't even result in you barking an order at your away team.
Your action bar in space consists of a mixture of your officer abilities, the abilities of your bridge officers, and whatever loadout with which your vessel is equipped. For example, at this point I have two phaser banks (one in the front of my ship and one in the back), a photon torpedo cannon (on the front of my vessel), and one extra ability from each of my three bridge officers.
Your weapons each have a firing arc. Your starting phaser banks each have a firing arc of greater than 180 degrees, thus creating a 'sweet spot' whereby, if you fly with the side of your ship toward the target, both banks will fire. You can use this method (referred to in pirating parlance as "firing broadsides") to wear down your opponent's shields faster.
All vessels have four shields (fore, aft, port, and starboard). You can balance power between these in the event you are taking a lot of fire from one side. To destroy an enemy, you will want to punch a hole in their shields by attacking with your phasers until one of their shields is down. Afterward, you would send a photon torpedo volley through the shields to damage their hull. Phasers are not as effective on a hull (in my experience, one photon torpedo does ten times the damage as a phaser bolt to a vessel hull). Conversely, photon torpedoes do very little to a ship's shields.
If you are not a science officer, you will not have the ability to target individual ship systems. You can't, for example, fire to diminish the effectiveness of your opponent's weapons, shields, or engines. Science officers learn this ability at later levels.
You can tweak the power distribution on your ship in much the same way you tweak the shields. In this way, you can either balance the power distribution between engines, shield, and weapons, or you can apply more power to one of those three systems.
All of this makes space combat more involving that I first thought it would be in the game. Originally, I figured I'd 'dance' with an enemy vessel and pound the fire button while flying around at full speed. In reality, I am trying to position my vessel so it is firing broadsides on one specific shield area of the enemy vessel while firing all phaser banks, then rotating to fire my photons before the enemy can manage to get the shield back up. Depending on whether or not I'm in the right position, I might need to give more power to the engines to turn around before I adjust the power consumption to weapons to fire a volley of photon torpedoes. Then, I might need to put power into shields as the enemy's volley hits me.
Of course, I'm a bit of a min-maxer when it comes to games. All the PvE combat I have encountered thus far would have also been defeated with simply balancing the power distribution and hammering the attack key as I originally estimated. I imagine PvP will be a much more interesting experience, however.
In addition, I think it's clear how coordination with the rest of your team could result in vanquishing your foes faster via targeting the same shield face.
Some aspects of space combat seemed unrefined, however. As it turns out, you can set up to two weapons to auto-fire. When you do so, they'll fire at your target any time their firing arc allows them to hit the vessel. This was not intuitive, however, so for my first few play sessions I was spamming the space bar. The limit of two weapons also seems like it will be annoying in vessels with more weapon slots.
I was also annoyed when I discovered that if I wanted to continue to distribute shield power to one shield, I had to hit the appropriate button every four sections. I could not say, for example, "all power to rear shields until cancelled". This added to the annoyance of scenarios where I was trying to escape or simply circle an enemy with my port shield constantly facing them. I also could not simply give a command to circle the vessel, match speed, or have it just automatically try to stay on one side of the target vessel. AI ships do this, so it seems like it would have been easy to add optional AI commands to your vessel as well.
Loot is isolated to single players. If you are in a party, an item will appear that you can 'loot' by interacting with it. These items appear as yellow. White items are items that dropped and are lootable by someone else in your party. I did note that there were different loot modes and thresholds, just as in WoW.
At one point, I was in a system where four players and I had to take out waves of enemies. Whoever was tanking had died and my vessel was quickly destroyed by six enemy vessels. I was taken back to where I entered the system, where a 15-second spawn timer counted down before my ship reappeared. I then charged back into the fray at full impulse. Ground combat followed a similar pattern if you choose to respawn. However, you can also choose to wait out combat to see if anyone in your NPC or PC away team survives to resuscitate you.
As far as I could tell, I suffered no other downside to dying. However, it's been hinted at that there will be a penalty of loss of a part of your generic ship 'crew', thus slowing down your vessel's repair rate. You'd have to go to a starbase to restock your crew.
Generally-speaking, I'm a bit annoyed by how my ship just respawns out of nowhere. I'm not saying the game should make me go back to Earth Spacedock or anything that drastic, but it seems like they could add some lore-based animation to explain that. Your ship has an ability on a 30-minute cooldown that activates a transwarp drive and takes you right back to Earth Spacedock. If you can simulate a hearthstone, you could easily have some animation that had escape pods eject and get rescued by a 'backup' ship that appears out of nowhere. It's cheesy, sure, but it's better than magically appearing out of thin air to be able to charge in and rejoin the combat with the same vessels that just destroyed you.
Similarly-speaking, it'd be nice if the 'respawn' option just beamed you back to your ship's sickbay. From there, you could be healed, then beamed down to the last respawn point. The entire exchange could take place during whatever length of time Crytpic decides to make the 'death penalty' for ground combat.
Resource Nodes & Crafting
Occasionally, you will see some sort of isolated anomaly on a ground or space map. Scanning the anomaly will result in harvesting some sort of artifact or data. These 'nodes' are lootable by anyone in your instance. The materials you collect from these nodes are used to purchase item upgrades from Memory Alpha, a station that acts as an archive for all cultural and scientific knowledge of the Federation.
I like the concept of the crafting system, but I have some annoyance with this method of acquiring upgrades. This is probably just the lore-geek inside me, but I would think that you wouldn't have to scan a bunch of anomalies before Starfleet let you replicate better shields for your vessel. I suppose you could explain it away by saying they give the better shields to 'higher-value vessels' but it's still a bit weird.
As you complete your missions, you will earn skill points (think 'talent points'). At any time, you can use these skill points to boost your abilities. Once you have spent a pre-defined number of skillpoints on your character, he or she becomes skillful enough to earn a promotion to the next grade of their rank.
Each rank has 10 grades. As an example, you start as a Lieutenant (Grade 1) upon your initial promotion. You then proceed through the other grades before you eventually earn a promotion to Lieutenant Commander. A WoW player would very quickly start to think of each of these 'grades' as another level to 'ding'. In general, I like how they adapted the 'leveling' system to Starfleet ranks. It feels very natural to say that you would earn your promotions as you were skillful enough to deserve them.
You will also get bridge officer skill points that are used to level your bridge officers (pets) in the same way. You will have one pool of bridge officer skill points which you can distribute among your officers however you wish. The amount of points you can distribute is capped by your rank, however. As a Federation officer, you can never give one of your officers enough points that they are promoted to your rank. As a Klingon, you can never give one of your officers enough points that they are promoted above your rank (or so I am told).
So far, the missions on which I have been sent were pretty standard MMO missions. One of them had me patrol four star systems wherein I discovered different things to do in each system. In the first, I had to talk to colonists about why they'd stopped mining ore. Once I did, I had to answer questions to prove I'd listened to them before the quest was complete. In the second system, I has to escort a crippled mining freighter back to a mining facility. In the third system, I had to destroy several guarded enemy spacedocks that had been built in secret. The fourth system had me work with four other players to defeat a few waves of ships assaulting the system.
Each of these groups of missions comprises what the game calls an 'episode', which is a collection of tasks that amount to a quest chain. Each of these episodes is intended to take 30-45 minutes to complete and usually provide convenient stopping points in case you want to come back later. These episodes have been split up enough thus far so that I never feel like they are too tedious. In fact, I've yet to come across a 'collect x number of drops from mob y' quest. Of course, this is an MMO, so I'm not holding my breath.
Some of the missions were more immersive than others. One mission had be enter a star system wherein I had to defend a freighter from an attack. I then had to beam onto it, repel the boarding parties on it, and find the captain. The captain was in the engine room trying to keep the power core stable and continued to do so while I rescued the crew and beamed off. I then had to repel another wave of attacking vessels before I could lower shields to beam the captain up (just in time for the vessel to explode).
In contrast, some missions had you simply fly up to a ship and hit a key to beam people aboard. With no ship interior, there was no 'talk to the person on your bridge' step. The discussion happened via the same interface as remote communication between ships, and you never actually saw the person or took the role of having a debrief in your 'ready room'. This was a bit disappointing.
I've heard that the closed beta had better content, and for that part, I am sure hoping those aren't rumors. After leveling about 8 times, I started feeling like I ran through the same process over and over:
Read a wall of text.
Fly near something.
Kill it or hit "F" to interact with it.
Fly near something else.
Walk near something.
Kill it or hit "F" to interact with it.
These steps would be repeated in different orders, sometimes with more steps that were copies of previous steps, and other times with some steps missing. Often, I was not presented with a continued compelling reason to follow these steps beyond the initial wall of text. When I was given more direction, it was very straight-forward: "Look, a probe. Fly up to it and do that F-key thing you do so well." or "Oh, hey, an enemy vessel. This is one of those things you kill rather than hit "F" to interact with.".
Although I cannot speak from personal experience about PvP as I have yet to try it, I include a bit about it for completeness.
Areas in STO are split up into three types:
: As the name implies, these are areas devoid of PvP. These areas are dedicated toward PvE advancement.
: Realm borders such as the neutral zone will be areas that behave like contested zones in PvE realms in WoW. If you're flagged for PvP, you can be attacked by anyone, which will flag them for PvP. These ares will have objectices wherein you will compete for territory and resources.
: Unclaimed territory in the distant regions of space will allow anyone to attack anyone else.
A couple of interesting points about PvP in STO:
PvP can occur between players of the same faction. I'm unsure if you can attack anyone who in is your fleet (guild), but as a Federation officer, you can certainly fire on another Federation vessel in you're in the right sector.
Via PvP, you can raise in rank from Lieutenant to Admiral without ever touching PvE content.
Parts of the user interface are not immediately intuitive. However, thinking back to my starting days in WoW, the only reason WoW's UI was intuitive was because of their tutorial system. STO employes a similar tutorial to show you how to move and access some of your screens (like inventory and the character panel), but the tutorial is not as robust as WoWs and therefore left me poking around to figure out things for myself.
From what I understand, the game will have no add-on API. STO does allow you to resize and rearrange everything in your heads-up display (HUD). You can also increase the number of action bars visible from one to three (out of the ten total bars through which you can scroll), although these appear in a 10x3 window rather than allowing you to split them up and move them around. You can also scale the UI, as you can in WoW.
I have found that I will likely have to change around the default key bindings as they don't really provide what I consider to be a natural layout for piloting my ship while adjusting speed, changing power and shield levels, and firing on the enemy all in quick succession. Likewise, ground combat is initially awkward due to keybindings.
I found parts of the interface slow to respond to my commands, and when there was a response it was sometimes choppy. Ground combat was a great example of choppiness due to lack of animation. Other times, I'd go to interact with a resource node and it would let me see what was in it but would never let me loot it. Anybody who played a dwarven or gnome miner in old-school WoW will know what I'm talking about if they ever tried mining in the quarry in Dun Morogh. However, this occurred in what so far has been the only region I've discovered in my starting sector as being anywhere you could even remotely consider 'farming', so it was slightly more annoying.
STO takes a different approach to their servers than WoW employs. In STO, you play on what you'd think of in WoW as one 'server', or one persisted universe. Load is distributed by instancing each map. So far, I've noticed three types of maps in STO, to which I will apply my own names:
: These are maps where no one else joins you. My ship was one such place I saw this method employed. You start your journey in the mess hall of your ship (to which you never travel again). Later on, you can walk round your bridge. The bridge serves as sort of a meeting place for your teamwhere things can be discussed privately (although you can do that from team chat as well). At the moment, the only other thing you can do from your bridge is return to the 'Space' view of the game. Beyond that, some of the quest systems have content that is designed to be soloed (although you can have friends join you as well).
: Some quests lead you into star systems instanced as team maps (think of a team as a WoW party with the same player limit). If you have a full team, that team flies around and performs your various mission objectives. If you are short one or more players, STO's infrastructure will try to fill the remaining spots on your team with other players who are currently trying to achieve the same objectives. When this happens, it usually means you wouldn't be able to handle the mission objectives by yourself.
: Areas like Earth Spacedock, the sector map (which is your 'warp' travel between systems), and certain other areas allow many more people to join. This is how they support cities as well as large battleground-type areas.
As I mentioned before, STO distributes load by instancing these maps. While you are in Earth Spacedock, you can view a list of all instances of Earth Spacedock and travel between two instances quickly (in the event you want to meet up with a friend but are in another instance). You could think of this as being able to transfer to Orgrimmar on another server while standing in Orgrimmar on your server. Of course, entering Rage Fire Chasm would put you into the instance on yet another server.
This has caused a few problems during beta in which I'd be slated to join a specific team map instance but it would fill up before I actually connected. A patch was released for this, however, and I've not seen any more issues related to this load-balancing system. Keeping everything on one server turns out to be a more immersive experience to me. I know that everyone else it out there is in the universe as well and can be helped out (or hunted down).
On the flip-side, it got annoying when I was partying with another person and we'd be thrown into separate instances because one of them filled while the other was loading.
The thing that bothered me the most about the infrastructure hinges on lag. In WoW, if there's a bit of lag, your client operates smoothly and the server just updates itself with your location and actions since last contact. For the player, the play experience is still smooth when there's a lag spike (aside from seeing an NPC just sit there for a little bit). In STO, when there's a lag spike, you get jerked back to the last location where the server saw you when you sync back up (a concept I heard referred to as 'rubber-banding'. The lag was so horrible in beta that I got visibly annoyed with flying (or walking around) just to be shot back to where I was three seconds ago. Cryptic threw more hardware at the problem during Beta, however, and I've only seen it happen once or twice during the early start. I'm hoping that they can just tweak the fault-tolerance a bit on this one... I mean, I can't be the only person annoyed by this behavior.
The space combat in particular (and the advanced tactics it supports) is what I think will keep me interested in the game. I've been looking for an MMO with good space combat and this game is well on its way to having pretty awesome space combat. In fact, while I was not an avid PvP player in WoW, I could see the space combat drawing me into PvP in STO and being less frustrating than getting ganked by a rogue several times in the span of ten minutes. Of course, that can be explained away by my lack of PvP skill. :(
The ground combat is also varied enough to allow advanced tactics as well.
The lack of significant ship interiors and the degree to which that removes some depth from your mission briefings or actual completion of objectives is a significant oversight. I mean, no repelling a boarding party on your vessel? No mission briefings in the conference room? No using your bridge viewscreen to answer hails?
. Of course, I speak in hindsight, but if I were going to make a game where you captain a crew on a starship, I'd let you see the inside. :)
When I first heard about STO, I was hoping for some mode that was sort of like Puzzle Pirates where you could have multiple human players playing little 'meta games' that would repair damage, heal injured crew, or add buffs to your ship. I suppose it's not technically
that nothing like that was included in the game, but I wanted to fly around the galaxy with a ship full of my friends, . >:(
My main complaint is that I get the overall feeling that the game is unpolished. If you ever dare to visit the feedback forum for the beta, you'll quickly notice two camps of people: those who think the game is unpolished and needs to wait longer before release, and those people who like to parrot a phrase similar to "It's beta, of course it is unpolished". I'd like to believe the latter group, I really would.
I'm a fan of the Star Trek franchise and I've been waiting for this game for over a year now. However, considering that the release for STO was only a few weeks after beta-testing, I think Cryptic is in a little over their heads on this one. I get the feeling some executive is trying to push this out so they can earn subscription monies rather than let it wait until it's polished and ready. Some people have commented that it feels a lot like they reskinned Champions Online and are trying to push it out the door before they get to work on adding a more "Star Trek" feel to it.
I suppose Blizzard spoiled me.
For my part, I'll give this game a shot when it is released. I'm hoping that, like Blizzard, Cryptic learns from their launch mistakes. I've been waiting long enough for space-combat in an MMO that I'm willing to wait it out a bit and see what happens. I cannot say that I'd be inclined to play the game for any extended period as it exists in open beta, however.
Of course, Blizzard could make me happy and release a sci-fi MMO with space combat, and then I'd be set. You know, a game that takes place among the
and involves masterful expertise in related
I'm just sayin'.
For More Information
ZAM's Star Trek Online
ZAM's Star Trek Online
BFF Report covers STO,
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