Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 1 Exploration Design
02-03-2010, 02:05 AM
Hello to all.
I will steer clear of content issues since content can and will be added later in the coming months.
I will concentrate on the Exploration design/structure of the game and why it doesn't live upto my expectations/hopes.

The galaxy feels very small. Practically everything is already mapped out. The exploration mechanic is disposable, fake and lacks any form of real discovery that could have wider implications for my game and others.
I had hoped for the possibilty of discovering new worlds and new threats to the Federation. However because of the current exploration design in Clusers, once you complete these missions the systems disappear into oblivion as do any consequences.
I had hoped for a ripple effect were my choices could effect the larger STO gaming universe. Let me give you an example for TNG, the series.
Q introduces the Enterprise crew to the Borg. The episode ended ominously with the knowledge that the Borg were now aware of the Federation existance and they would be coming...........
In STO you don't have to worry about that. Finish the exploration mission and its all forgotten about.
I wish i could think of possible ways to re-fine the current Exploration mechanic but i can't think of any.
This game just doesn't feel like a "live" experience. We are all doing the same missions . Your Star Trek adventure is my Star Trek adventure. No uniqueness.
I understand that the likelyhood of this game Exploration design changing is Zero but i just wanted to ask, does anybody else feel like this?
Were my expectations to high? Mis-placed?

P.S. i'll be placing any Fanboi/Troll responses to this on ignore. So save your energy
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 2
02-03-2010, 02:12 AM
Welcome to the small box world that is STO!
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 3
02-03-2010, 02:51 AM
Well, the OP sounds like he has never played any kind of MMO game before.

To be honest the way the missions play out is very similar to most MMO games. They don't have permanent consequences. None of the MMO games I know of do this. You do X, fight Y, and finish with Z. Rinse, wash, repeat, and the effects reset so the next player can also give it a whirl.

The only thing wrong with the MMO missions in Star Trek to me is that some non-combat missions should at least have puzzles or a multiple choice question in them. Some kind of a branching system so you are required to do more than just run up to glowing objects and click on them.

I honestly think the best way to do missions in an MMO would be to copy "choose-your-own-adventure" books. Each mission can lead to another mission, or end the story arc. Missions don't need to be terribly detailed ones. The reason for the simplicity is so that key words can be randomly generated from a list you don't see. Races and objects change, but the baseline mission is in fact the same.

In those Choose your own adventure books your "story" could be over in as few as three pages, most never going more than twelve or so.

Well, I think space exploration missions need something more to them. They are hopefully just placeholders until a more detailed system can be put in their place.

At least make the space you explore a bit larger. A single sector in Star Trek online is not that big.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 4
02-03-2010, 02:56 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by weirdguy View Post
Well, the OP sounds like he has never played any kind of MMO game before.
You are correct. I guess my expectations were WAY off
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 5
02-03-2010, 03:08 AM
Things can change over time, but the content has to be put in place before hand. I think this is how it works with WoW, where some new content has to be unlocked by a huge raid or something. I think the way to do this in STO would be to have the map be more fluid, where fleet actions and pvp and all that affect how much control of the galaxy each faction has. For this to work effectively I think the galaxy would also have to get a fair bit bigger, with more space between earth and the other faction's homeworlds.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 6
02-03-2010, 03:09 AM
While I'm afraid there is no way to create something like the Borg / Q introduction to Federation space in an MMO today, there are many things Cryptic could do to improve the exploration experience.

To say "they can do better" and offer no suggestion would be pointless, so here are a few ideas : they may be good or not, but at least they are easy to do for Cryptic.

1) Add life to the exploration planets : they are pretty but empty, I never met anyone after beaming on the planet surface expect hostile mobs to kill. Those planets sometimes need wild animals and population.

2) Add variety to the exploration missions : today there are 3 types of exploration missions
  • Scan five stuff (in space or on ground), possibly kill mobs
  • Kill mobs (in space or on the ground)
  • Give 10 units of stuff to a textbox in space
3) Some exploration missions should include two parts, one in space, one on the ground

4) Add skippable minigames and diplomacy minigames in some of the exploration missions

5) Add more different things to find other than the regular anomalies, real alien technologies / perks / unique costume parts, pets etc.

6) Improve the sector space part of exploration : for now, it's ridiculous, we are all chasing floating anomalies in a box, sometimes several players are in at the same time. We are supposed to be deep in uncharted space, and instead of that we are like children in a pool trying to catch the same ball. The so called anomalies don't event have a gfx they are just invisible. This is clearly unfinished. I suggest to limit the star cluster sector space to one player (and his teammates), to remove the grid, to remove the borders, to make sure that when the ships hits one of those invisible borders he returned to the opposite side and to give cool GFX to the anomalies.

Again those ideas aren't perfect, but something clearly needs to be done. Exploration is an important part of the lore and Cryptic invested a massive amount of time in designing the planets (which are sooo pretty) : there is no reason to let it as it is, when it is so easy to improve it.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 7
02-03-2010, 03:23 AM
All of this leads me to believe we are not getting the intended design, probably curtailed to what we have due to the schedule being so short. But, we do have something to do at least, and it was better than nothing.

I like the idea of unique exploration loot/rewards that are ONLY found by doing exploration as a good first step. That being said, the badges of exploration already give you some nice rewards. There are salesmen up in the 2nd floor part of the Sol Starbase 01 shipyard that you can buy consoles and nice ship weapons, and they don't take cash/energy credits. You get some 77 badges of exploration, a nice new "green" level phaser cannon is yours.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 8
02-03-2010, 03:28 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by weirdguy View Post
All of this leads me to believe we are not getting the intended design, probably curtailed to what we have due to the schedule being so short. But, we do have something to do at least, and it was better than nothing.

I like the idea of unique exploration loot/rewards that are ONLY found by doing exploration as a good first step.
That is a very good idea. That would give Exploration real lasting consequences. Shiny new UNIQUE weapons/consoles/abilities.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 9
02-03-2010, 03:42 AM
Of course its unfinished =/

Genesis was only brought online and working in the very last closed beta test, and even then the systems it made crashed a lot.

But yes, im sure they will be improved soon enough, and i like the idea of exploration rewards....as long as they dont unbalance the game.

Purple mark IIIIX phasers only you can have ? No thanks.

I just want them to make the first contact system work, though ive never completed one, but i recall you were supposed to be able to discover new races and get rewards such as a new BO of that race from there.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 10
02-03-2010, 03:47 AM
We were baited and switched. They painted a glorious view of how incredible exploration was going to be in STO then they laid this turd on the table. This has got to be the biggest blatant lie that any MMO developer has "Pr'd" to a community. They based an entire game and "Developer's Chat" around this premise ...
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 10:16 PM.