1) This is not the largest IP in sci-fi, though its definately a front runner.
2) It will not 'fail' (depending on your definition). It will live on for many years, most likely hovering in the 300,000-ish active player range. Its a niche game (as soon as design considerations have to be made for a 3rd part IP, you are by definition in the niche realm), so it will have niche numbers.
3) Both Crytpic and Atari have already made a profit off this, it's a win for them no matter what.
4) Future sales will not depend on STO, if the SWG snafu didn't sink SOE, this will not sink Crytpic or Atari
5) I am no fanboi of either Cryptic (by a LONG shot, they make simple/shallow games and have very poor design standards) OR ST. You can see my post history for evidence of both of those. So there is no bias here either way.
STO will probably never be an MMO that grows in success or subscription numbers over the years like WoW has because it has already had such a dissapointing launch (and I don't mean the server issues... that's been minimal). Instead, I mean that the game is so unfinished and is getting brutalized by the mainstream game reviewers and on MMORPG and gaming forums everywhere. Where-as World of ******** was praised from the very beginning.