Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
I've seen the point made that Aliens have a pretty big advantage over canon races... and some canon races have traits can be replicated entirely by a custom alien.

I like the options that custom aliens present in terms of customization and would actually like to see more customization allowed to them honestly.

That said, I do think canon races need a reason to be played beyond just the obvious (even though the racial traits they have, generally, make sense aside from Ferengi) and you can do things to balance the option to play a canon race versus a custom race. You can clearly see this issue in the KDF where many people who prefer space combat choose to play custom aliens ahead of Klingons for balance reasons.

So here is my three part suggestion:

1) Instead of nerfing all aliens, just make all "required" traits get a boost and make them the "Superior" version that BOs get. If you're locked into taking it, it should be slightly better. Aliens still get an advantage in terms of choosing what specific traits to combine but canon races need an edge to a point that if you were considering making a character with the same traits as a canon race, the canon race would come out slightly ahead.

If you are locked into taking it, it should be better. It should be on par with what a rare or epic BO gets.

2) Give each canon race a fifth non-combat influencing trait that only exists for flavor purposes and enhancing the canon feel. In general, make these team/social oriented traits on a long cooldown that reward players for contributing to the core Trek feel of the game by playing a canon race.

Ferengi can summon a vendor on half an hour cooldown called "Lobes for Business". Klingons get a death yell that removes a minor injury for a teammate on a half hour cooldown called "Klingon Death Ritual". Humans get "Highly Illogical" which enhances all teammates Psionic, Confuse and Placate accuracy by 30% for 5 minutes on a 30 minute cooldown.

3) Give each canon race one costume piece which is unique to the canon race. This does not refer to core facial/body characteristics (where alien customization SHOULD be higher -- biological diversity is the edhge there) but is a uniform customization, on par with Gorn's bare feet or Trill's spots that go all the way down, which represents the unique cultural heritage/tendencies of a people.

Suggestions:

Leave Gorn and Trill as they are as they both already have something distinctive. Benzites have their unique breather apparatus. Give Betazoids the option to wear Troi-style bodysuits. Give all Klingons (including Starfleet Klingons) a racial baldric option, regardless of rank. Give Orions the outfits NPCs can wear. Give Liberated Borg bodysuit options like the one the Borg BOffs can wear (you have one male and one female version now). Ferengi get a Ferengi business suit style collar and medallion that can be worn over any uniform (see here for Quark mixing Ferengi formalwear with the KDF option). Bajorans get Bajoran militia uniform tops and badges, etc.

This says when you create a custom alien that while you can duplicate the biology of a canon race, you can't duplicate their culture/personality which can show through their manner of dress.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 2
05-04-2010, 06:00 AM
I'm 120 % for this.

What I would like to see are more active ground traits. 'Active' as in a attack you can use, not some stats that are simply there. A few species already have these traits, so its technically possible.

Letheans - Rapture
Orions - Seduce (I was surprised to see that male Orions can pick the trait; its mandatory for females, but not limited to them)
Gorn - Bite
Vulcans - Nerve Pinch
Aliens and telepaths - Telekinetic

That's the kind of 5th trait I would like for all species, and unique to them. Passive traits like 'Acute Senses', for example would still be 4, some mandatory for species, some selectable. The 5th trait would be the active one that can be used in ground combat. And we all know ground needs a lot work to make it more fun.
To mix things up even more: Make it 2 or 3 options, the player picks one of them.

Examples and ideas for such traits would be special melee attacks, buffs and species specials (like Seduce or Rapture are):

A Gorn can pick: Bite, Throw Rock, Hiss (debuff enemy/intimidation; enemies drop Gorn as target)
A Vulcan can pick: Nerve Pinch, Logical Choice (buff team mate with most aggro), Suus Mahna (melee self buff)

That would help big time to make a character more unique in a non-cosmetic way and the gameplay more interesting on the ground.

I also agree with almost all ideas for species exclusive clothing. The exception: Betazoids. My Betazoid is nothing like Troi, and not all Betazoids are counsellors. They were popular as diplomats, so I would rather give them a unique formal outfit option, like a dress uniform or ambassador robe.
For Ferengi, my suggestion is - for male, the option to wear a high cut jacket/tailcoat, and for females, the option to wear long earrings, both shown here. In TNG and VOY, Bajorans were not allowed to wear earrings with their uniform - since that has obviously changed, Ferengi females should be allowed to do the same.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 3
05-04-2010, 01:09 PM
there is something to this...
It didn't take me long to realize a couple things about STO:
1. Your race and traits don't matter. At all. I know some are probably tired of WoW comparisons... but it's the measuring stick like it or not. In WoW your race decided where you would start leveling, each has three abilities or bonuses and race also limits what classes you can play. (STO can't limit classes because it only has three).
2. Class is not really very important in STO... your ship type is paramount.

All this combines to minimize any real flavor in the game, especially at higher levels.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 4
05-04-2010, 01:14 PM
I find the trait discussion, in the context of Aliens, always boils down to the same exact trait:

Efficient.

That's what makes people choose Alien over human or pakled or klingon.

That's what people think is superior.

That's what the entire debate hinges on.

One space trait.

No one enters into the "Superiority of Aliens as a choice" debate because they think Aliens are picking the best ground abilities.

It always comes right back to Efficient.

EDIT: I know the "other" point people use in this discussion is that Aliens can choose FOUR space traits. But I feel that's now a non-issue. Besides the fact that the other space traits are usually very much available to any race choice ... the new difficulty slider has been very good at highlighting exactly how important ground traits can be. For those that ignore ground traits, they do so in the knowledge that they are building a character that is going to be deficient in an aspect of gameplay. They then compound this, by also refusing to invest any skill points in ground combat. They then notice that their space focused character is pretty darn good at space combat on elite. But ... can sometimes face challenges on the ground.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 5
05-04-2010, 01:23 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by codepoet View Post
there is something to this...
It didn't take me long to realize a couple things about STO:
1. Your race and traits don't matter. At all. I know some are probably tired of WoW comparisons... but it's the measuring stick like it or not. In WoW your race decided where you would start leveling, each has three abilities or bonuses and race also limits what classes you can play. (STO can't limit classes because it only has three).
2. Class is not really very important in STO... your ship type is paramount.

All this combines to minimize any real flavor in the game, especially at higher levels.
That's what I think. Species should matter. Its not just WoW, its a lot RPGs - some much older than WoW. I remember Baldur's Gate I had a system for that; some races couldn't be paladins, some were better thieves. That is something I really miss. How many times have we seen a Star Trek episode where only one or two members of a crew were immune to (fill in threat of the week) and saved the ship?
I even find it a bit boring to put together a team after the system "ok, we are a tac and a sci, lets get an eng". I would rather take into consideration what species would add a trait/ability I need for my mission. Like, take a Klingon or Vulcan to Breaking the Planet for superior melee strength; or take a Betazoid or Ferengi to Big Dig for psi resistance (WHICH FERENGI REALLY NEED!!! *waves at devs*) to counter the Reman & Romulan captains; things like that.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 6
05-04-2010, 01:27 PM
first of all this only affects PvPers, a small but vocal minority and pandering to PvPers only turns your game into a Warhammer and nobody wants that.
And secondly the choice is there for all. If you want a PvP toon then make one to suit like everyone else. It's not use saying "Bajorans can't compete in PvP because Aliens have better traits, you need to make Bajorans more powerful"

Just because PvP is the only thing that brings people back to a shallow game is no excuse to create one for them at the expense of alienating players who simply do not want it.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 7
05-04-2010, 01:31 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by ZootCadillac
first of all this only affects PvPers, a small but vocal minority and pandering to PvPers only turns your game into a Warhammer and nobody wants that.
And secondly the choice is there for all. If you want a PvP toon then make one to suite like everyone else. It's not use saying "Bajorans can't compete in PvP because Aliens have better traits, you need to make Bajorans more powerful"

Just because PvP is the only thing that brings people back to a shallow game is no excuse to create one for them at the expense of alienating players who simply do not want it.
I suppose. My thinking is basically just that some races have no traits that an Unknown couldn't also select.

Heck, you could make an Unknown look Klingon and wind up with better PvE or PvP ground traits.

So my big thinking is, if a canon race is going to have fewer options, the options it's locked into should feel just ever-so-slightly better to balance out the appeal of getting to pick whatever traits you want. This helps balance out the feel so that, in a social area, you'll see more of the established races represented.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 8
05-04-2010, 01:33 PM
/sign

I'm 100% in favor of balancing the species choices. Right now, anyone who actually cares about the Trek universe and chooses a canon race is punished. Character selection basically gives you two options:

The Real Trekker Tax (for those who actually love and support Trek)
The "Leet Pwnkid" Bonus (for lame min-maxers who care more about stats than Trek)

The Alien builder was supposed to let people be creative in the cosmetic aspect of making a new species. That's a great idea that I fully support. But allowing them entirely free reign in trait selection, thus giving them a huge advantage in gameplay, is a horrible side effect. Something has to be done to fix this.

I'm not saying make the canon races OP, I'm not saying neuter the Aliens, I'm saying equalize them.

P.S. Please get rid of the nonsensical Ferengi toxic resist thing, it makes no sense. Give them a psi resist, since that's the second most canon thing about them besides their lust for latinum.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 9
05-04-2010, 01:39 PM
That is a BIG point for me. I see less known aliens in any social area than bizarre looking whatevers. I have no problem if someone wants to go alien, and play a race that isn't in the game yet (Cardassian, for example, which makes sense because they are Fed-friendly/supported) or make an own species that fits in the Trek universe. I've seen very good and interesting species from the Delta and Gamma Quadrant.
I'm just tired of seeing that blue species from the Avatar movie and other cases of 'wrong universe', or aliens that look like the player intentionally tried to make them look as goofy, un-trek or childish as possible.

I barely PvP for exactly that reason. Its full of stupid looking immersion breaking childish whatevers. And I'm here to play Star Trek. For me, it is very little about PvP and traits to make real races more attractive to play.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 10
05-04-2010, 01:46 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by ArievDhien
That is a BIG point for me. I see less known aliens in any social area than bizarre looking whatevers. I have no problem if someone wants to go alien, and play a race that isn't in the game yet (Cardassian, for example, which makes sense because they are Fed-friendly/supported) or make an own species that fits in the Trek universe. I've seen very good and interesting species from the Delta and Gamma Quadrant.
I'm just tired of seeing that blue species from the Avatar movie and other cases of 'wrong universe', or aliens that look like the player intentionally tried to make them look as goofy, un-trek or childish as possible.

I barely PvP for exactly that reason. Its full of stupid looking immersion breaking childish whatevers. And I'm here to play Star Trek. For me, it is very little about PvP and traits to make real races more attractive to play.
My alien admiral is my own species that I'm trying to fit into the trek lore.



Granted I switched mains to my human. I just like the cruiser more. I didn't think I would but I do. So I fly that more.

I understand the frustration with avatar clones and what not. But remember we see just as many Malcom Reynoldses and Darth Vaders and Iwannasexurmoms running around the game breaking immersion just as easily.

With no recourse (except for reporting them for naming violations, I guess).

And lastly I wanted to say I PVP the most with my Nausicaan. He's pretty darn tall. He holds his own though.

Targeting issues aren't really related to PC height or skin tone or anything. They're far more related to the UI being herky jerky and spinning you around when you don't want to be. Or for the tab settings to need to be adjusted (a lot of players don't go in and readjust their tab settings so they face problems with tab targetting in pvp that they don't have to).
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