To Boldly Go Where Everyone Has Gone Before.

As I sat last night, I decided I wanted to play with other people.  I’ve been playing through Kotor 2 the last week or so to scratch the itch that catching up on Old Republic news has given me.   And it takes up my TV and I wanted to at least have the football game on in the background, because I had a hunch that  things would break Chicago’s way…

So I surveyed my options.  Fallen Earth was out – most of the Casualties crew is way above me, and my brother has been without computer access for the last week and for a couple more as well.  EQ2X has been going good, so I thought about trying to track down some of the Casualties crew there.  But then I remembered that I shelled out for that 1-year-in-advance Star Trek Online thing.  And that there are a few good blogging friends that play that pretty regularly, in addition to the Casualties guild there.  And  I did promise myself that I would at least get my Akira to take some of the sting out of having paid so much up front.

Sir, approaching planet AT&T. We believe it to be ruled by a being known as "Ma Bell."

I won’t lie, it took a good bit to get used to the updates.  Exposes don’t seem to happen nearly as much, combat all around seemed tougher,  I really didn’t get the new signal anomaly mini game.  And then there is just the process of getting the hang of a game you haven’t played in six months.   I’ve spent time in my life driving 15 passenger vans, while my main vehicle was a Ford Mustang.  Drive one for a week and then move to the other – and it takes some getting used to!

But once I settled in I had some pleasent surprises.  Apparently the XP curve has been mitigated somewhat:  I completed two missions last night and basically gained two levels.  And I really, really liked the additional ship interior zones that we’ve been given.   I do have some misgivings as to the scale of those though, which I’m guessing doesn’t change with each ship class.   For example, my science vessel, the U.S.S. Lafayette, supposedly has a crew of 100.  From the outside views, it has only a few decks too it, which also makes sense.  And yet, here is the main hallway:

"Hello ::hello, hello:: Is that an echo? ::echo, echo::

If that’s the same main hallway on, say, a Defiant type ship, I have a problem with that, especially considering the number of crew members would be less than the number of spawned NPC’s walking around the joint!  I do though, like my spacious suite – but it still seems overly large given the size of the ship. The ready room is even bigger than the one in the Enterprise!

"Captain's Personal Log. They finally gave me a ready room...but it seems a bit ostentatious."

Long story short though, I did enjoy myself.  And in a theme this week of lowering expectations, I need to remember that the best value of this subscription to STO will be as a secondary game that I can log into from time to time and enjoy for what it is, rather than wishing it was something its not – lets face it, I really wanted this game to be its own “series” with my Captain as the star.  And it does try, and at times, even succeed in giving me that feeling.

At least, until I exalt over a completed mission, and then look out the tactical view and realize there’s several thousand people who have already done the mission I just finished.  And yet, I hadn’t played with a single one of them…

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4 thoughts on “To Boldly Go Where Everyone Has Gone Before.

  1. STO is what it is, and I play it as a game to log in from time to time as well, especially on the weekends with the weekly missions and the fleet is alive with chatter. I think people who share our view and have realistic expectations from the game will find it to be a pretty enjoyable game!

    1. I absolutely agree. I think it took me so long to wrap my head around it because of me and not because of the game. You’re with the Federation News Service fleet as well right? I forgot to include you in the links above, I’ll have to fix that!

  2. I meant to comment on this sooner. Thank you for the shout out, btw.

    I think it is OK to be going on these adventures with your Captain as the hero, even if many have gone before you. The point is that it’s new for you. Even when playing a single player game, you are simply doing what others have done, are doing, and will do. You just don’t get to interact with them. Every time I log into STO and or WoW, I am doing things that others have done. Even those first heady days of an expansion or patch, I know there are some who race to max level (or the end of the new content) well ahead of me, and then many blame the devs for not having more end-game content. I am happy with the slow and steady progress I make whenever I log in. And that I have much to look forward to that others raced past or through on their way to being “first.”

    Having said all that. I agree that many times the scale is wrong, especially the ship interiors. I can’t wait ’til all of that is more interactive.

    1. I don’t usually mind it either. I think I struggle with it in STO because of the irony – the stories and missions actually matter and actually take a significant amount of time and actually give a significant amount of XP (err…SP). Most MMO quests are just a bonus for grinding in a certain area for a certain amount of time – they are essentially a bribe to help with traffic control. Not these.

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