The 3 day review
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Join Date: Dec 2007
02-01-2010, 08:36 AM
Space Combat: A
Ground Combat: B+
Progression Curve: B-
Overall Rating (after the first 3 days): B-
Space combat – The space combat is actually pretty smooth considering all the things going on behind the scene. Some of the battles have an epic feel to them, including some of the smaller mission related engagements. This was a major win for the game. Though it can be somewhat repetitive, it is engaging and though I cannot put my finger on it, somewhat satisfying. There are some issues with enemies being able to target and engage you through solid objects (like Asteroids and space stations) while the reverse is not true. I believe the collision system needs some work in that regard.
Ground combat – Ground combat is a great break from all the space missions and it is fun. I find it a bit laggy in most instances, though that may be due in great part to my graphics settings (maxed) and my ISP speed. The rewards are a bit humdrum but sometimes surprising. The enemies can be a bit brazen and tend to shake off damage a bit too easily. I am not sure if they are capable of it, but a more intelligent use of tactics on their part would make it more rewarding. Our away teams tend to be a bit "ignorant" and don’t always perform in the best traditions of StarFleet. There have been a couple times I truly wanted to airlock a BO or two. Still experiencing some pathing issues with them where they get stuck in walls, doorways, or other environmental objects.
Storyline/Missions: The storyline is rather nice if not a bit repetitive in many missions. Only the names and places are changed. Though this is the Achilles heel for many if not all MMO's, it is my hopes there will be more enriched storylines to come. The Genesis system is something that shows a lot of promise, however, it can be a bit confusing and frustrating on how groups can follow one another into an instanced mission. The popup button (the one that pops up on the lower right of the screen) doesn’t always show for everyone. This is group-breaking and tends to cause major slowdowns in the smooth progression within the group mechanic. Rewards are so-so and some of the stats could be a bit more clearly defined (thinking from a new store-bought version players perspective). Maybe something in the tutorial could go over stats a bit. One final note here is that we are supposed to be Starfleet representatives. In that respect, we should see some mandatory Starfleet mission orders that are required missions. They could be group or individual type missions. One or two per rank (Ensign, Lieutenant, LCDR, etc) would feel right. The missions portion of the review could go on for pages.
Progression curve: I have to agree somewhat with the OP. The feel of progression could be a bit more defined. Cant put my finger on one outstanding issue here as there seems to be a smooth flow between rank levels which does help give the feel of progression. I know, I know, it sounds as though I am contradicting myself. But like I said, I cant put my finger on it.
PvP: I am not a big fan of PvP but I do have to say the PvP in this game is some serious fun. The instances are bit short but that could be what keeps me coming back for more. I believe they have a win in this department. No one player feels over-powered and even a newer player can get in there and mix it up some. Maybe some missions can be created for each side that could be diverse mix of space and ground, where taking real estate could be involved (i.e. taking control of a space station and its surrounding space).
Mechanics: The mechanics of say logging in and having to wait forever will be disheartening to a new player. This something that will drive new blood away quickly (and some experienced ones). The ques are a good idea due to the issues experienced up to now. I hope the addition of hardware is in the works to resolve this one. No one wants to wait for 45 minutes to login just to get disconnected while loading into an instance only to start the process over again. The same holds true for missions that are abended due to disconnects. A players progression in a mission should be saved and be able to be continued where they left off, especially longer missions. This is the most important aspect of the game (getting into the game itself) that should flow smoothly. I rather feel they are waiting to see how many player accounts stay after launch before investing in more hardware, and that to me seems self-defeating. However, I could be wrong, as it is just a gut feeling. Having worked for years in the IT Industry, I know it is possible and moreover a standard practice of having infrastructure hardware delivered overnight, or at least within 72 hours. There are usually contractual agreements in place between vendors and customers.
Overall: I think this game is a winner. I do not regret the purchase of a lifetime subscription and look forward to all the enhancements that are more than likely on the horizon. I feel this game will make it big and be around for years to come.