Listen folks .. this game must be re-designed, and I'm pretty sure you already know that's the case.
Here are but a few suggestions ... food for thought, and some of the food I will need to continue on this journey ..
I will just mention one major re-tooling, that should be done asap .. the game should be all about SKILLS and RENOWN, not collecting or buying/selling widgets. Ships should be modifiable based on the skill level of it's crew, but the base configuration should remain static... for example, an accomplished, highly skilled crew should be able to turn make a stock Miranda class ship out perform the stock ship of a lesser skilled crew, but the configuration of the ship should remain be the same.
A more highly skilled crew should be able to make a lesser class vessel outperform a higher one. The more capable crew could fire faster, with more punch, move faster, and take more damage, before becoming disabled, and as they move up in ship class they would have the added benefit of the greater class' capability.
Slapping in buffs and swapping out phasers for disruptors, and all that nonsense makes each ship unique, and therefore what they are, as Starfleet starshps, becomes meaningless.
As far as crew skills go .. they shouldn't be handled the same way player attack/defense skills have been done in every mmo that has come before .. BORING, and non-immersive. Crew AI should be more sophisticated, that way they will feel more like a crew, rather than a 'skill container' as they do now .. which bluntly, was a REALLY BLOODY LAZY way to do it!!
Starships have patterns to their actions/reactions .. movements coupled with phaser/torp fire, or in order to avoid taking hits/damage .. captains should be able to group their crew skills into patterns, and have them executed on demand, and AT THE VERY LEAST, we should be able to call for "FIRE AT WILL" .. which would couple defense movement coupled with intelligent use of weapons.
Personally I think that ship-to-ship combat, should be more time consuming and tactical, and involve a lot more possibilities... crew, depending on their skills, should make recommendations, to disable impulse engines, or aft disruptor due scans showing reduced aft shield generator failure .. just more more more .. no starship should be able to combat 2 or more of an enemy ship of equal or greater capability, unless they are engaged in a coordinated fleet action (which shouldn't be mandatory btw)
The replicator credits makes sense, and exchanging items for other items is a great idea, but it should be done in a more complex way, at an actual replicator, on your ship .. not with the standard mmo 'store' shortcut, or out of your inventory. Also, we should not have to use a Starfleet 'bank' to store the crap we collect .. that should be done onboard your ship .. the bigger the ship, the more crap you can retain.
We should be doing far more onboard tasks .. interacting with npc crew, and engaging in more "starship management". There should be forced downtime, to a certain degree, to get players off their ships and onto bases, where there would be other tasks to perform (I mean other than running around and picking up more 'led-by-the-nose' ship combat related quests .. ship combat alone will not sustain the game.
Artifacts, samples, and the product of scientific research, should be handled in a completely different way!! The more science-based (and diplomatic) work done by a crew should be just as complex and valued pursuit as combat intenstive 'missions'. There should be real puzzles to be solved, requiring research, collecting clues, pursuing leads, and the more skilled the crew is, the more clues will present themselves, or the less time it will take to pass task milestones. All these accomplishments would increase the value of the crew, in the eyes of Starfleet, thus granting the ship more resources, access to more important missions, and more 'rank/skill' points.
Downtime, in the result of Refits/Repairs/Crew Replenishment .. after having been "Defeated" .. recklessness in the pursuit of bridge officer points .. should be expected, and should be seen by all as desirable. If there is no loss, then the rewards have no value.
TOS & TNGMuse were a hell of a lot more engaging than this game is, in it's current state, and they were entirely text-based. :-)
Surat: I do agree with a lot of what you say, I think a lot of that stuff would definitely add more of a Star Trek feel to the game and that Cryptic has taken quite a few design decisions that detract from the game's title.
Unfortunately, the kind of game you are proposing will be too appealing to us Star Trek fans. Personally, judging based on what I have seen so far, Cryptic had the obvious intention of appealing to the masses instead and decided that wasting some of the potential would be worth the extra subscriptions (and therefore, profits).
While this game is a decent "WoW in space", it's still WoW in space.
During beta I wrote a thread like this myself that basically amounted to "Cryptic should've ripped-off 'A Final Unity' (the game)", because I felt that there's not a lot you actually do in Star Trek Online. A lot of things that could've added immersion, such as actually using things on your ship as opposed to using an interface "shortcut", as per your example, have been glossed over. It seems like an easy way out.
Originally Posted by GavrielBlack
I read as far as "Listen folks .. this game must be re-designed" before I gave up. I only read one book at a time, and atm I'm in the middle of EVE: The Empyrean Age.
Why the hell did you waste everyone's time by replying then? Get out if you don't have something to add to the topic, even if it's to voice serious disagreement. He took the time to write it for us and didn't "rage", "troll" or anything like that, so if you can't take the time to read it then show some respect and keep it shut.
Originally Posted by Shingi
tell you what.
you make that game, and i'll come on your forums and tell you to remake it to be like this one
I do hate this cop-out "you can't comment unless you make your own game" response. The OP is not being paid to produce a Star Trek MMORPG, Cryptic are, and as a paying customer he has the right to criticise it.
Just like, if the OP made a game, you would have the same right as a paying customer.
OP - you joined this website in July of 2008 and are just now getting around to figuring out what Cryptic did with the game? Where have you been?
It has only just gone live. Those of us who have been on these forums for much longer than you have did not receive any special privilages when it came to seeing how the game played or how much like Star Trek it was.