It is entirely notable that nothing is being done to reward Gold / Lifetime members who have paid for this game for almost 2 years. More respect and appreciation should be given to this games most loyal customers. Seriously nothing is being done to give added benefits to the best customers. Heres $5 of cryptic points is not enough. Your best customers deserve better.
Big sub days such as 500 days and 1000 days should be given more respect. Removing the 250 day emblem reward for 500 days was a very bad idea. Again, more not less should be done for those that pay to play.
Two of the main concerns regarding free to play revolve around previous and existing players. In my fleet weve had players that struggle to financially play the game. Some subscribe for a month and take a month off. These players will be highly upset if they quit paying and their benefits go away such as earned respec tokens and/or extra characters. Players returning because it goes f2p will be upset if they used to have 3 characters and now only have two. The transition from gold to silver and back to gold again needs to be made more smooth so that items earned will stay earned for when the players can choose to pay again.
The lack of respec tokens is going to be a big problem. Players will tolerate a lot if the game is free but poor instructions / advice about skill trees combined with charging real world money to learn about them is going to make future players very angry. Even now, Im a bit miffed in that much of the skill tree is unexplained, untaught and confusing. Even Cryptic Devs strain at explaining whether or not Photonic fleet is helped by putting points into phasers or by using Phaser relay consoles. For many skills you cant look at your skill tree until you have earned the points and after you earn the points its too late to change them. The main gripe when this game was launched and the thing that turned off many players and cut the player base in half the first 3 months this game was open was the lack of ability to respec. Telling silver players they cant respec unless they pay is going to be a disastor to the f2p cause. For F2P to succeed there must be a mechanism to earn free respecs.
We are almost 2 years into this game and the learning curve is disastrous. Tooltips are missing, bugged, or inaccessable and skills are poorly explained. Going to websites like Sto-Wiki helps but the math and mechanisms behind the games engine are poorly explained, understood, and learnable by even some of the games best players.
Absolutely nothing is being done to enhance the social experience of this game. Fleet leaders have just begged for more fleet interaction tools and they have been denied to us. Ultimately, the new F2P crowd will come, leave, stay, or go based upon how friendly the game is and how well they interact with existing players. If they make friends they will stay and if they dont expect them to try a different game where they do. Champions has fleet halls for their supergroups and other things. Fleets need unique halls for meetings, unique fleet uniforms not accessible to loners, bigger fleet emblems on ships and costumes, Unique fleet equipment that is designable by the fleet, more fleet bank slots, learnable bridge officer skills for fleets, unique eq for fleets, and the ability to have exchanges, mail, consoles, and UGC missions for fleet members. Ive said this in so many posts it gets old saying it but this is the only game Ive ever played where fleets didnt have meeting halls, the ability to design / craft eq or abilities unique to their fleet. And an interactive interface where leaders could hand out rewards promotions based on contributions to a fleet. In this game being in a fleet is an inferior experience to having a strong friends list. There is not really a single added benefit to being in a fleet that you cant have by starting your own chat channel. Change it please Cryptic. In WoW your guild choice matters. Here it doesnt. Over half my characters are loners and its an absolute struggle to keep fleet members happy when they want more from their fleet than friendship.
Cryptic must absolutely get the game balance right before free to play comes. Its no secret right now that torpedo spread is overpowered. Its no secret that mask energy signature is a worthless ability. Game balance issues need to be addressed before adding new gimmicks to the game.
I like the idea of episode content but I believe that once an episode is done that replay should remain unlocked. This is especially true if older players want to help newer players with missions. Replay is important. Also if a person was to complete an entire series they should get an awesome item for having done it. If you do the Klingon series all of them then you should be rewarded by an Efficient Impulse Engine thats the best engine in the game; just like it used to be when the game started and before it got nerfed down several times; and it should be a MK XII rated engine. If you do the Romulan series (all of them) you should get something great. If you do the Bajoran DS9 missions you should get something great. If you make Ambassador you should get something great and I mean something usable instead of just a white coat. Completing an entire series should give you something great like a Borg / Breen set piece. Honestly the best set in the game should be reserved for those that complete every mission. If somebody works that hard then they should be rewarded for it. I guarantee you that this change alone would drop cries for new content by at lest 75%. There is a whole lot of quality content in this game that people just dont have a reason to play very often.
Better Trophies need to be put into the game and players should be able to show them off. A player should be able to get a trophy for making Ambassador and show it off on his ship. There needs to be more than one Trophy stand in the crew lounge. Players can get great trophies but only show off one. There needs to be a bit of a system for earned bragging rights to be acknowledged. Fleet Halls should have trophy stands where they can show earned trophies to new members and even an Entry Hall where trophies can be displayed to prospective members. Though the fleet hall itslf should be secured as Members Only.
Ovely difficult fleet actions like Crystalline Entity and the Undine mission need to be fixed and SB24 ground and DS9 needs to come back into the game.
I could write many more pages but these changes must be addressed if this game is to have a future.
1. Top customers/members/lifetimers need to be given more respect.
2. New customers silver and f2p need to feel an ability to play at the highest levels of excellence. Making them pay to respec, experiment, and learn the skills they best like is highy counterproductive to this goal.
3. More thought needs to be given to transitioning from gold to silver and back again.
4. Fleet leaders need more ability to enhance their appeal to players.
5. Opportunities for socialization in game need to be improved.
6. So called bragging rights or recognition of accomplishments needs to be reflected both in improved equipment and in displayable trophies.
7. Rewards for playing episodic content must be addressed. Honestly the episode missions are fun but they take longer than most levelling options and the rewards dont give players reason to play them.
8. Game Balance MUST be addressed.
9. The library of knowledge and how to do your best needs to be improved. Fleet leaders get annoyed answering for the 1000th time the difference between monotanium alloy and Neutronium.
10. Bugs and broken missions MUST be fixed. Those of us that are lifetime / gold paying members have the right to demand and expect a higher quality game now that we have paid to help build a game you are giving away to others for free.
And as a final aside, the word content springs right up to mind.
I believe in this game and its future but Cryptic needs to address these things before springboarding off in new directions. We all know initial launch wasnt what was hoped in the community and this game got a bad reputation because of it that it is still struggling to shake off. Going F2P is Launch version 2.0 and Cryptic and its fine team needs to get it right this time. There may not be a chance for 3.0.
I would at first think you are commenting about play on the Tribble Test Server?
Do you realize that they want the initial Play on that server to be Basically Start From Scratch, and feel like Silver, on the F2P side? Notes in the release say that other things will be Activated later on?
If I am not mistaken, and I could be, gold features will get turned on later.....