Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
Okay, this will all sound harsh, but I am trying to be constructive in my criticisms. I should note I played the last 4 episodes in the previous 4 days (and repeated the first about a week before that).

Second Wave:
Death is (often) cheap, and drama based on cheap death is cheap drama. Why would I care much about the death of Andrews? One episode isn't enough to make you care, even if the character has a bunch of dialog. All she really does is send you on some fedex mini-quests, hardly inspiring any sort of attachment. Yet its attempted to make her death part of some dramatic finale to the episode, which fails on several levels (see more on cutscenes and dialog near the end of post). If you want to build up to such a conclusion, you really do have to *build up* to it.

Also, the conference scene is rather flat. Other than 2 "Free Passes" to get through the dialog with the various species, all four conversations are carbon copies of each other, with <insert species dominate cultural trait here> with the same basic dialog tree structure. I think it would have worked better to exclude your own side's captain (ie you fill that role) and tailor the solutions to each of the other three as a mix of your faction's philosophy and theirs - which would come across as more Trek imo. As it is, you mainly just play a gotcha wordgame with them (even your own faction's rep).

Of Bajor:
Not much to say, this episode is basically a hodge-podge of what are normally filler side-quests in other MMOs. It has no coherency. If you want those side-quests (a terrible mechanic, imo), then make them true side-quests. Have the actual episode more focused. Expand out the part interacting with Hadron (and make something more interesting than sequentially running thru all frequencies...) and maybe even tie Hadron in to the plot longer term. Otherwise its just a throwaway.

Also, this episode suffers from a disconnect of player knowledge vs character knowledge. You as a player learn nothing you couldn't reasonably have inferred from announcement of this new feature series. Its really hard to create a suspension of disbelief. You need to have the character figure out what the player already knows quickly, and then spend time trying to flesh things out.

Operation Gamma:
I'll just go on a tangent to storytelling for a moment and say, this episode sucked mechanistically. The shuttle vs super zippy little creatures/fighters is a poor use of how the space mechanics of this game work. Sure, if there was a fighter/joystick style of game play to access, it might have been fun.

Back to storywise - there are plot holes in this episode a planet could fit through. What's the point of sneaking up to DS9 in a shuttle if you're going to have several big fire-fighters with dominion fighters? What's the point of blinding the sensors at that point? Might as well have full-impulsed my Luna class thru the gauntlet after the Fed fleet creates a distraction. Also doesn't make much sense to send a small craft on what is possible a long range mission into the Gamma Quadrant.

The storyline with the Ferengi merchant was flat. Especially at the end - kill her or not? Oh, I can do the right thing and Eraun will just shrug it off... Here might have been a point to integrate Hadron further into the story (not that I particularly like him, just given his earlier appearance, this storyline might have been advanced partly by his "contacts" in the Gamma Quandrant). And what's with the random redshirt assigned to me? Was that merely to save on voice acting instead of recording dialog for both a female and male BO? He didn't add much anyway, better just to have text from one of my own officers. Just another throwaway character.

Facility 4028:
Another huge plot hole. How does it make sense for a facility to shutdown its primary personnel (ie holograms) in the even of a catastrophic release of prisoners? Sure, you can reset the system, just once you've basically fixed the situation. Given that non-holographic personnel are usually not at the station, how does this make any sense?

Boldy they Rode:
Flat overall. I think it suffers more from game mechanics than story telling. Though, in an attempt to make mindless jumping from one post to another interesting, plot oddities are introduced. Like, no one's going to be suspicious the stations defenses activated and blew up a Jem'Hadar ship? I was fully expecting that side bit to involve me tricking its sensors or something sneaky. No, I'll just blow it up, right above me...nothing suspicious in that. Or why jumping up right before the Klingon wreckage explodes somehow saves me? Shouldn't it expose me more to the explosion, and fling me off into space?

The arrival of the Enterprise was, underwhelming. Maybe if the Odyssey class hadn't yet been revealed it might have had more impact. Tho, it probably mostly suffers from the cutscene mechanics (again, see below).

Dialog:
Andrews had the best voice acting, Loriss the worst - sounded like an 18 year old drama queen - which I suppose is scary to think of such a person in charge of the Dominion fleet, but that sort of humorous scary is probably not what was intended.

Now, I'm one of those that actually will read long quest text, so long as its moderately interesting. This, however, does not translate well to long monologues. In nearly every case, it sounded like the actors were just straight reading from the script just handed to them, with the occasional forced intonation. They were monotonous. Andrews had a bit of this as well, but the cadence of the scottish accent did a better job of hiding it. When it comes to spoken dialog, less is usually more.

Cutscenes:
If you have a hammer with a lose head, probably better to use a wrench to hit the nail. Ie, if a tool isn't working well, best not to use it. The cutscenes come across as so artificial, and completely break up any flow to the story. This is mostly due to technica issues and glitches. Jem'Hadar ships just appearing in front of the wormhole, wait for a second, reorient, then kinda fly. Ships that are fighting either obviously standing still, or flying in plain old straight lines. The standard emotes, while they might be decent for the perspective players normally see them, translate poorly into cutscenes. They are so over-exagerated and cartoonish its hard to take the scene seriously even if the dialog was good. When something isn't working well, and its detracting, take it out and focus on other aspects that your tools do let you do well.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 2
03-13-2012, 07:53 AM
While I agree that the above commentary regarding some holes in the story are in many ways accurate, I was willing to overlook some of these flaws, because I was playing a game. I appreciate that the developers are trying to produce entertainment on a budget, and therefore understand that expecting a story-line equivilant to that provided to us in the Star Trek series or movie, in a video game, likely isn't realistic.

I've played many other MMOs, and have rarely experienced any that are successful at providing any sort of meaningful story-arc, as STO has done.

I've maintained in my other posts that I found the story in this features series weaker than the previous ones, but was generally satisfied with the experience, and personally didn't find it as catastrophic to my enjoyment of the game as the original poster seemingly did. I guess our expectations of the game are different, allowing for different levels of enjoyment.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 3
03-14-2012, 07:17 AM
My intent wasn't to bash the series too much, and some of the ambition of the series is laudable. But execution is important - there's a certain amount I can fill in/overlook myself - obviously the threshold varies from person to person. I may have high standards and don't lower them, but I hope to elevate things with the criticism rather than it be "lol, noobsauce devs" type of stuff.

Good ideas are great, but execution - consistency, plot pacing, technical mechanisms of the gameplay, etc - is just as important.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 4
03-15-2012, 11:48 AM
The only thing that really bothered me about the series was the final chapter.

I think they missed a huge opportunity with the introduction of the new enterprise. Somehow, after never mentioning that the new enterprise had even been launched, they show up. the officer says "ship coming in, it's the enterprise!" and really, why weren't we expecting the enterprise E at that point.

It wasn't ever mentioned in game that the new enterprise was being commissioned. they never say that the andorian had been assigned to it and they just glossed over what could have been the biggest moment ever in game for real star trek fans.

What should have happened, is they should have been talking about the new enterprise being completed and ready for shakedown throughout the entire series. There should have been some build up to when they showed up. Maybe the captain had her out on her shakedown cruise and diverted to assist, maybe they pulled it out of space dock before the shakedown to get another ship on the front line. Either way, it should have been an event.

I know there was a lot of hoopla about the odyssey, but the Enterprise should have had a ceremony of some kind.

On another note, where did that klingon ship come from that crashed on DS9 while we were space walking. Unless i missed a cutscene or something, it seems like one tiny BOP tries to make an assault on DS9 with no help whatsoever. Why exactly would it do that?I

It would have been the same if in the middle of the fight inside the station, a Devidian showed up and started killing jem-hadar all by himself until he was quickly killed. No mention of what he was actually doing there or why, but it makes some cool special effects..

Anyhow, I'm going to play through it all again and make sure i didn't miss a cut-scene or something.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 5
03-15-2012, 11:19 PM
Bajor was exactly what I expected it to be.. Boring.

They need new leadership to maintain the peace and bring some order.

Lets face it...without real management, the Bajorans are lost.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 6
03-16-2012, 03:01 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nador_Ekoor View Post
Bajor was exactly what I expected it to be.. Boring.

They need new leadership to maintain the peace and bring some order.

Lets face it...without real management, the Bajorans are lost.
Just wait till reconstruction is complete.

Then self-governance.

Then... can you say Reconquista? Let the other powers over-extend themselves while we hoard 'the good stuff', of which you have merely a tiny sample...
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 7
03-24-2012, 11:41 AM
I agree. As nice as some elements were (a spacewalk, some kind of "peaceful" missions), the actual STORY arc was really dumb. In addition to everything already posted I want to add the ending of the series. The ending is... absolutely nothing. Suddenly we are all friends, "do you remember when we took DS9 and killed hundreds of your people in a pointless skirmish? Yeah, good times."
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 8
03-24-2012, 07:02 PM
The Jem'Hadar officer might be a roundabout way for the Dominion to apologize without actually admitting they goofed.

As for the Vorta Loriss, she seems to be a typical specimen of her race. Disposable drama queens and suckups, one and all.

I for one felt no guilt about butchering that Ferengi in Operation Gamma or the rioters in Facility 4028. They brought it on themselves. Frankly ISIS should have an automatic "gas affected sections" protocol for situations like this. Although when mister mad scientist was debating the odds of his escape, I wanted to ask him "how likely do you think it is that you'll make it out of this room with multiple beam rifles pointed at you?"
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 9
03-28-2012, 09:05 PM
While plenty of issues with these episodes have been highlighted, the one that bugs me most is how easy it is to take out a Jem'Hadar attack ship... with a shuttle. Seriously? A few beam shots, a couple of torpedoes, and BOOM? Hey, forget Odysseys, lets just equip everyone with shuttles and runabouts. We'd secure the quadrant in no time.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 10
03-28-2012, 09:31 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cachianz
While plenty of issues with these episodes have been highlighted, the one that bugs me most is how easy it is to take out a Jem'Hadar attack ship... with a shuttle. Seriously? A few beam shots, a couple of torpedoes, and BOOM? Hey, forget Odysseys, lets just equip everyone with shuttles and runabouts. We'd secure the quadrant in no time.

I put 20 satellite turrets in the back for a redneck flying fortress, then equipped the freighter holoemitter. Q-ship!

And yeah, is that why so many people want a Federation shuttle-carrier? The Yellowstone class even looks like some Russian attack helo. (Hint - KA52 Alligator). On close inspection of the 3D model I even noticed the weapons module and nacelles could separate cleanly from the main crew/cargo section.

MVAM shuttle? lol.
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is Off
HTML code is Off


All times are GMT -7. The time now is 07:09 AM.