While i am hoping one day to start out comming off the shuttle pad or transporter pad at SFA, as a 1st year cadet or a returning 4th year cadet(whatever would work best in game).
I will say i do enjoy the current differences.
1.) I noticed for my tactical TTS char i started in security and was sent to the head of security, then told to go to the bridge by way of turbolift. then after contacting the khitomer i get sent to the transporter room.
once aboard the khitomer much is the same, however when you get to main engineering, you find the beam in borg actualy beam in a different hallway then walk into main engineering after that it is all the same except throughout the tutorial you have more informative popups that lead you exactly where you need to go. also i did notice that the points come a ;little faster so far.
Hopefully things get better from here on out.
One thing I found jarring was that your ship's bridge at first uses one of the Sovereign style bridges. However, we you get command of that same ship, it uses the new, Miranda / Frigate style bridge.
Also, I don't like the tutorial starting of in shooter mode. Shooter mode locks out the interact buttons and you have to go into RPG mode to talk with the the NPCs. It should start you in RPG mode, then introduce you to shooter mode in one of the combat segments.
I would aalso strongly suggest NOT to start with shooter mode. As a new player you see a lot of things you need to click on, but at the beginning of the tutorial thee is nothing you need to shhot.
Hence, the first thing players need to do is to get out of shotter mode and probably stay out of it, since they have to continue clicking.
My suggestion to improve this would be:
Start off in RPG mode untill you get to the Borg and need to start shooting. Here the helpscreen should pop up with the Info how to get in and out of shooter mode.
There is really no value in putting players by default into shooter mode when they have to get out of it to even get into the first gound combat area.
On the positive side, I like the new addition at the beginning and the tutorial now runs much soother than I remembered it. This is probably due to the ground combat update that makes the ground combat much faster.
I do agree with the idea of the OP that of course an all different start from Starfleet Academy and as a shuttle pilot would be cool, but the action start in the Borg battle is fine and to be honest, the intro of "Spock" would not fit to a launch form Starfleet Academy.
So in short, good intro, but please rethink the shooter mode start, it really does not add any value.
Disapointing in the extreme.
Why have SFA at all? You aren't using it and what is there is just pitiful. Is that it? Another dead social zone with a couple of tiny quests. Why spend so much time on a whole zone that you aren't using as an intregal part of the beginning of the game? I honestly don't get your thinking here.
How are the damn holodecks supposed to work? I thought you might fix this, but no, I still have to beam to my ship to continue a mission that is supposed to be inside the damn holodeck. Why go to the holodeck at all then? What are they for?
It's just like always with you guys. You throw in a few crumbs here and there, polish up some stuff, and add a few lame mechanics and scream "It's new and great and wonderful now!" Well, sorry, but it isn't.
Let me rephrase that: "It STILL isn't!"
Deep Space 9? That's it? A couple of kiosks on the promenade, an office and green panels for ops? Crappy lighting in Quarks and green lights everywhere else? It's practically unchanged. That's the really huge "revamp" of DS9?
Still adding I guess? Still in progress? Just forget it. Hang it up. I'm so sick of this crap. Huge mega unreal stupendous stuff!!!!!! And then, ... what we really get.
I'm not even going to play this for free. I honestly don't see how any one would.
I see this game doing exactly as it always has. Interest at launch of FTP that quickly fades off until hardly any one is playing anymore.
I have this to say about starting off in the Security Armory as a TAC: I want that room as part of the player ship deck plans! It's too cool to waist on a one off that you can't see again without making a new character! I don't care if it serves no other function than eye candy.
Anyway, I appreciated the change of where the toons start in the tutorial. Having to leave your station and get to the turbolift by going down the hall makes a LOT more sense during an emergency alert than having been hanging out in the lounge and then taking the turbolift straight from the lounge without having to go down the hall to get to it.
I like the new bridge, but it IS a bit disconcerting that it's not the same one once I got control of the ship. However, I just put it down to the previous bridge having been so damaged that the Shipyard swapped modules or something.
Please move the introduction of the shooter mode closer to when we'd first actually need it. it's a bit awkward to start out with it and have to switch it off.
I liked the touches with how the Borg were invading engineering from side corridors rather than beeming straight into the middle of the crossfire that was previously there.
I can't really tell if combat is actually smoother yet, since i had my graphics turned up to look at the shiny new stuff. My laptop can't quite handle that without slowing my toon down. Once I've adjusted it, i'll let you know. On the other hand, with the graphics all the way up, I can see that a lot of work had been put into making the game look great! ^-^
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