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Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 5
03-13-2012, 04:07 AM
Originally Posted by MustrumRidcully View Post
Yep, TOR is doing a lot of stuff STO should have done in regards to story. There is still room for more.
It's funny to me because, for me, IP dictates philosophy. Getting to the point of what letters follow MMO (MMOFPS, MMORPG, etc.) I think the IP and not the engine or the designers (once the IP is selected) end up deciding that.

In many respects, I think BioWare and Cryptic each designed their model for the wrong IP.

IMHO, Star Wars should be all action and space action.

The idea that an IP known for technical brilliance and shallow, wooden acting from otherwise brilliant actors has a relationship system and an IP known for technical mediocrity and lavish, over-the-top character acting emphasizes combat and setpieces and doesn't have a relationship system seems backwards.

And I think we really have to get to the core of what it means when people say that Cryptic doesn't "understand the IP."

Because that implies that they haven't seen it. I know they have. I know Kestrel has read every novel. I know they watch the shows regularly as a team. I know most of them have watched all or most of Star Trek many multiple times over. I think most could elaborate on their opinions regarding design issues or philosophical considerations of the IP, could make a case for their favorite series or Captain, etc.

And that is, defensively, how I'd expect a dev to respond to that complaint.

I don't think that's what people mean when they say Cryptic doesn't understand the IP. I think it's more accurate to say that they aren't "representing the IP" and that they seem unwilling to make concessions to act to the detriment of gameplay or game design or game development to present a character rich media experience, even on very minor points like camera zoom. I'm not saying they need to make something that ISN'T a game but they do need to make something that is less purely a game, that is willing to compromise on game-like aspects.

Thus far, the only way in which being a game gets trumped by being Star Trek comes in the form of the odd wall of text or an unskippable cutscene. And that basically just means that they put the game on hold to remind us it's Star Trek. Where I see an unwillingness is to fundamentally compromise game balance, gameplay, or mechanics of how we play in favor of the IP. And I think unless they start tailoring every game they produce, philosophically, to compromise game design in favor of IP experience, they'll get labeled a shoddy MMO factory.

And I think that's unfair because they're full of talented people. If they had a team the size of WoW and the quality of employee they have now, they'd dominate. But they don't have that team size and so if they set out to focus on purely designing a game, they'll fail every time next to almost every competitor that can afford a larger team. If they set out to create a fairly solid game with a great overall EXPERIENCE in the non-game-like aspects, the quality of every team member can at least shine.