Go Back   Star Trek Online > Feedback > The Art of Star Trek Online
Login

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
I will give a disclaimer before this post.

If you play a character that does not follow Federation, KDF or (to a lesser extent) orion or gorn uniform styles then this post is not for you and it will probably offend you, I don't mean for it to be offensive but this could turn into a flame fest.


I am just gonna say it, I avoided this game for a long time because after seeing what was happening in (at the time) Star wars galaxies, Everquest and WoW, I knew that very few people would go into the game with maintaining the design rules in mind.

That is not to say that I don't often find myself enjoying the cool new alien types and sometimes somebody comes up with a really smart looking uniform, but, I sometimes see folks who just go crazy and make a uniform that is meant to look "cool" and not actually fit into the styles the shows and movies set forth.

When I make a character, I spend a long time making sure that the build and facial features look "Starfleet standard", I never make a muscle man, I never have a face that does not look like it could be on the show. This results in characters that some might find boring, I think it shows creativity to work in tight limits and still make something that is very "me".

When I look at the options for uniforms, I tend to go for a Cryptic design and then I use proper colors for departments and agonize over the little stuff to make sure this looks like a uniform that would be worn all day on duty on a Starfleet ship. I even make sure my KDF toon looks like a real Klingon, not to small but also not so huge that he looks silly.

When I make a backstory, I make sure that my characters are very normal, born to normal parents who had normal jobs and then spending a normal amount of time in the academy and then finally finding a normal Starfleet career. I never have a character that is a son or relative of a major character from the show, never give him any superpowers or special abilities outside those his race would bestow...I just make a normal Starfleet officer or a normal Warrior for the empire.

I imagine that this seems like a attack and I suppose in some ways this is, I am only writing this because everytime I play, my brain is screaming because I see things that don't make any sense in the context of the franchise...I just can't understand why players can't, well...conform.

Star Trek is a show about a pseudo military organization and as such, we never see a male character with long hair, never see characters wear anything but approved uniform items on duty and we never get the impression that the character is some sort of superman or something. I imagine that many MMO players who came to STO for reasons other than loving Star Trek just don't care about the visual rules we see in the series and movies...I can understand that, but I still can't shut my brain up.

I also understand that many players are really eager to write a neat story and make a character that is really "different" and reflects deep seated personal desires, I get that and really support it...but again, I still can't shut my brain up.

This post is really long and I don't mean to insult anyone, as I said, I understand why everyone does characters differently...I get it and support it...but my stupid brain won't shut up and I hope posting this will help.

perhaps we can make this a venting area for people with similer thoughts?

Thank you for reading and understanding.

please don't take anything here as a personal attack...as I said, just venting because I know I am wrong in my opinions.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 2
09-25-2011, 08:25 AM
Trust me, you're not alone.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 3
09-25-2011, 10:10 AM
I tend to go for fairly standard designs, but at the same time I'm pretty guilty of mixing and matching uniforms amongst my crew. I've got a Klingon in ENT gear, a lib borg in seven's suit, a TOS medical shirt and I myself have the TNG command uniform I think its called.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 4
09-25-2011, 10:25 AM
All my characters are my own creation and not connected to the pre-made characters from the series and movies at all. Reina, Karen and Kate Beaumont are all family, Rilon Liaos is a family friend to the Beaumont family, Rachel met Reina durring Rachel's Academy days, Susan is the alternate path where Reina Beaumont died in her home universe instead of fate doing what it did, and Susan becoming the alternate.

It's a long story, would take time to fully explain. But basically all my characters are my own creation with no family ties to pre-made characters from the series and movies, such a thing is a lack of imagination and creative thought.
It's more fun to create with only the most basic foundation or from something you've been working on for years, and without a single tie to a pre-made character.

I create, I don't take.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 5
09-27-2011, 07:41 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by startrekmike View Post
If you play a character that does not follow Federation, KDF or (to a lesser extent) orion or gorn uniform styles then this post is not for you and it will probably offend you, I don't mean for it to be offensive but this could turn into a flame fest.
A problem with this is that cryptic doesn't even have all their NPC's wearing the same uniforms. I could let this slide in the area of things like spec ops groups and starbase personnel having different uniforms (This popped up several times in the series) I tend to give my crew uniforms for a reason. My SCI officer has an Andorian Commando team that wears a different uniform, and an alien attache that wears something unique.


Quote:
I am just gonna say it, I avoided this game for a long time because after seeing what was happening in (at the time) Star wars galaxies, Everquest and WoW, I knew that very few people would go into the game with maintaining the design rules in mind.

That is not to say that I don't often find myself enjoying the cool new alien types and sometimes somebody comes up with a really smart looking uniform, but, I sometimes see folks who just go crazy and make a uniform that is meant to look "cool" and not actually fit into the styles the shows and movies set forth.
This is actually one thing I like about STO. In the series they were heavily restricted by budget, as such they had to greatly limit what they could do with aliens. Hence the forehead of the weak syndrome. Personally, I love seeing what people come up with for aliens. The only thing that dissapoints me is that I never get to learn anything about these cool alien creatures. You are right htough, that some people do go a bit too far and make horrible aliens, but I can deal with that drawback.

Quote:
When I make a character, I spend a long time making sure that the build and facial features look "Starfleet standard", I never make a muscle man, I never have a face that does not look like it could be on the show. This results in characters that some might find boring, I think it shows creativity to work in tight limits and still make something that is very "me".
I don't understand why this would be so challenging. The standard alien races all have pretty standard features, what are you worried about? Yes, some people may find it boring, but it is your character, if you want joe average, you can have joe average. By that same token if others want Igthalock from Beta Cappa - 9 , let them have him. Does it really detract so greatly from your experience to see that? I assume of course you are only talking about the more bizarrely proportioned aliens, because we saw a huge range of races on the show, and even more foreheads of the weak type aliens.

Does it bother you when you see someone playing a Jem'Hedar?

Quote:
When I look at the options for uniforms, I tend to go for a Cryptic design and then I use proper colors for departments and agonize over the little stuff to make sure this looks like a uniform that would be worn all day on duty on a Starfleet ship. I even make sure my KDF toon looks like a real Klingon, not to small but also not so huge that he looks silly.
Its funny you say this, because when it comes to uniforms, trek uniforms always bothered me. They never seem plausible as space age uniforms. None of them have pockets, they are basic cloth with no other functionality! When you say proper colors, do you mean the STO era colors, or TNG, or TOS? A lot of people who make custom uniforms are making custom uniforms because they have a vision of what the future of star trek would look like, and that is what they would play. Nonetheless, I do occasionally see someone in something credulous and have to chuckle a little (Hot pink pants and a maroon shirt, what?)

Also, many of us have multiple uniform slots, and use those slots for different functions. My TAC officer has a slew of outfits: Starfleet uniform, dress uniform, spec ops outfit, T-shirt and Jeans casual wear. I like to go to Earth Spacedock just to see what other players have come up with, hopefully though, once we get fleet starbases we will have a hub to visit that has a more standard look to the officers onboard.

Quote:
When I make a backstory, I make sure that my characters are very normal, born to normal parents who had normal jobs and then spending a normal amount of time in the academy and then finally finding a normal Starfleet career. I never have a character that is a son or relative of a major character from the show, never give him any superpowers or special abilities outside those his race would bestow...I just make a normal Starfleet officer or a normal Warrior for the empire.
I don't know what you mean by "Normal" Surprising a good chunk of the Star Trek Characters did not have normal home lives. Most of them had some sort of traumatic or unusual events happen in their childhood that helped to shape who they are today. In all of modern Trek every series had at least one character who had a distinctly abnormal origin. As for characters not having superpowers, might I point out, Wesley?

Quote:
I imagine that this seems like a attack and I suppose in some ways this is, I am only writing this because everytime I play, my brain is screaming because I see things that don't make any sense in the context of the franchise...I just can't understand why players can't, well...conform.

Quote:
Star Trek is a show about a pseudo military organization and as such, we never see a male character with long hair, never see characters wear anything but approved uniform items on duty and we never get the impression that the character is some sort of superman or something. I imagine that many MMO players who came to STO for reasons other than loving Star Trek just don't care about the visual rules we see in the series and movies...I can understand that, but I still can't shut my brain up.
Ahem, Diana Troi? Worf's Baldric? Neelix almost never wore a uniform (though he wasn't an officer, he still served on a federation vessel) Sure, all of these are exceptions to the rule, and I think that may be more your problem, not that people are playing unique characters, but that a good chunk of them are, and that makes going outside the bounds less appealing. I do have to say, that outside of Earth Space Dock Tailor, I do usually see pretty standard uniforms, the aliens, not so much, but I am okay with that. The federation is supposed to encompass 150 worlds and allows non citizens to join. Plenty of room for aliens, unfortunately at ESD, their numbers seem to be high enough to detract from their uniqueness.

Quote:
I also understand that many players are really eager to write a neat story and make a character that is really "different" and reflects deep seated personal desires, I get that and really support it...but again, I still can't shut my brain up.

This post is really long and I don't mean to insult anyone, as I said, I understand why everyone does characters differently...I get it and support it...but my stupid brain won't shut up and I hope posting this will help.

perhaps we can make this a venting area for people with similer thoughts?

Thank you for reading and understanding.

please don't take anything here as a personal attack...as I said, just venting because I know I am wrong in my opinions.
Unfortunately I don't have similar thoughts. There was a petition somewhere to allow players a setting that would replace all uniforms with a single standard. It would effect other player's machines, you would only see it on yours, and I fully support that. If its possible do it, it would add a lot for certain players to not see vast arrays of bizarre aliens running around everywhere.

One last question: How alien is alien for you? Does seeing lots of Andorians, Tellerites, Saurians and such bother you?
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 6
09-27-2011, 11:23 PM
In response to the above post. (amazing post BTW, wonderful points!)

I have left this thread alone because I needed some time to refine my (late night near braindead) post and really read about what I was talking about.

In terms of uniforms, I go with what I feel is the natural progression we have from Nemesis to the 2400's (command red, operations gold...) and I pick the Jupiter uniforms because I like the almost TWOK style revisited look. So if I were to pick what I consider Starfleet standard uniforms, it is any uniform that follows the color and style theme that we see in late DS9 and the TNG movies.

I have no problems with seeing a ton of Tellarites, Andorians or whatever canon species running around ESD, they are canon and I cannot debate that. The fan made aliens get a little tougher, I tend to look from the eyes of a what a Star Trek makeup artist would do, they tend to make aliens that are close to human and don't look to overdone and are colored to look good onscreen.Do I expect everyone to do that, not really. I do however think that they should keep that in the back of their minds and design something that would fit.

As far as backstories...

This all comes down to my utter dislike of "Mary Sue" characters and how they have tainted Star Trek novels for year now, I just looked up the history of Star Trek "Mary Sue" characters and I found that it pretty much is the best way to describe it and I will describe it by paraphrasing the gist of it below.

A Mary Sue is a character that is pretty much good at everything, they frequently have some sort of exotic attractive element that is described with far too much detail and sport unusual features (hair or eye color) or animal like features. The character is frequently described as being very young or very old and having a troubled and complicated past that they constantly have to deal with. They also tend to be put in roles that don't exist or are made just for them (Federation elite commando ninja's, Borg killers or some other career that would never exist in canon).

I think this comes from the simple fact that most players are not writers and should not be expected to be, I understand that not everyone places a high regard on "fitting in" like I do and I cannot and should not tell them otherwise, I do however think that everyone who plays this game is a Star Trek fan and should respect the limits that the franchise has set to make it unique.

The extreme of this can be seen sometimes when one lingers in ESD or DS9, I know that some players are part of tight roleplay groups and can sometimes end up with strange stories and odd characters, I don't get involved in that at all so I cannot speak about that with any experience.


I am a life long Star Trek fan, I have watched it for over 20 years that I can remember and probably more that I don't, I really respect the general design and story style that it sets forth and cry a little inside when I see little thought be put into fitting the character into the franchise in some way.


In summery, I don't mind odd styles or characters, just give a good reason for it, make it work in the franchise and not against it. Star Trek is not so stale that one needs to forgo it for creative expression.

Again, I am sorry about the rant, I think if this discussion continues (I hope it does) that I will be able to further refine that "one thing" that gives my feelings the proper description that is both not offensive and constructive at the same time.

Again, the above posts are very insightful and I hope to see them keep coming.


BTW, about Troi or Worf, Troi was granted a lot of latitude when it came to Starfleet uniform standards but we get the impression that there are limits even then (I like Captain Jellico's feelings on the matter in 'Chain of Command Pt 2') and I am sure that she is not allowed to stand before a Admiral on official business wearing what she wears on the Enterprise. Worf's Badric is a design choice that I cannot fathom but he does wear it over a Starfleet uniform, this is very different from my concerns about unforms, I am sure it is probably not really "allowed" but tolerated due to Starfleet's multi species policies (like wearing a religious item in today's military)
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 7
09-27-2011, 11:31 PM
I have to say that I do basically the same thing. It feel strange playing a Star Trek game with a character in Star Fleet and not being looking like you are. Each to their own I suppose. I'd love to see an option to allow me to set the visual uniform for NPC and Players for my viewing never going to happen.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 8
09-28-2011, 07:57 AM
Uniforms don't bother me, but what makes me shake my head are some of the biographies you run across over time.
Immortal there, genetic super race experiment here, some alien god there....
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 9
09-28-2011, 09:25 AM
With imagination an immortal can be fitted into Trek, takes some doing though. My main, as well as her daughter and granddaughter have been a product of over a decade of work in total -

Reina Beaumont - Born in a differnt universe where the human race was oppressed by two empires who kept the population under a great deal of fear due to the near exctinction of the race in the past.
Reina and her sister were born to a Military Blood family, the Blood caste system was designed to keep the majority of the population in their place when the wealthy took over the British Empire a century after the Empire was founded, and they were trained to be soldiers from the age of three due to policy that demanded that all Military Blood soldiers be trained young in order to defend the Empire form any threats and to only be concerned with the defence of the Empire.

At the age of 28 Reina was a few months from her intended death due to celluar decay. Her sister reappeared after having disappeared ten years earlier and threw her sister into the past without realising what she was doing, Reina found herself a thousand years in the past and somehow, in the few seconds it had taken, was forced into long life.
Faced with no way to get back home, nor to reverse what's been done to her, she lives through the centuries while enslaved by the Empire and forced to create weapons for them, thereby fulfilling the time line, while her daughter who was born immortal - a very rare thing to happen and the reasons are still being looked into - was imprisoned by the Empire due to her born condition.

In 2007 AN, a different system due to the near exctinction of the human race and the effect it had as the human race began to recover upon the Empire's founding, Reina faced her sister in the hopes of being able to help her. Her sister had been forced into long life as well and had lived a lot longer, four thousand years, and had gone insane due to the heavy stress of helping the human race struggle to survive for a thousand years.
Rena, Reina's sister, had become powerful due to her insanity and she wiped out the Empire and the European Confederation before destroying the planet in revenge for her life and for her childhood being ripped from her due to Empire policy.

The destruction of the Earth threw Reina and Karen, Reina's daughter, and Rena into this universe, well an adaption of this universe, and they found themselves in a very different universe where everything they knew had never happened due to the different branching points in the two time lines.
Reina and Karen are helped to adapt to life here while Rena appears in 2079 and is given the help she badly needs.

In 2143 Reina applies to Starfleet after accepting to promise to help others as best she can.

Reina, Karen, Rena and Kate Beaumont aren't the stereotype immortal, they have no interest in power, no desire to rule over anyone. Rena has no desire to serve in Starfleet or any military, she's content to live on a farm colony and spend her days farming.
Reina is content as a security officer with no ambitions for command, Karen is happy as a medic and Kate loves being an engineer. Neither of them care for anything like power and command, being in command of their ships in STO is an example of the times where they have no choice but to do what they can to help the Federation survive against so many who are intent on destroying the Federation.

They have no powers like flight, shooting lightening bolts out of anywhere in the body, no super strength, no super intellect. All they have is the fast healing caused by their conditions and their training from Starfleet and their lives before Starfleet.
However they don't know much beyond their fields of expertise. Reina is a natural Tactical/Security officer thanks to the Empire training of her childhood, Karen has a love of the Medical field and always looks to improve and learn, Kate has a born knack for Engineering and is always happy to learn more.
But even with their skills in those areas, they still have a lot to learn and have no desire to be better than anyone else, only equal and to help within the best of their limits.

With imagination and an understanding that every character needs limits and weaknesses, then an immortal can be made well enough.
Since people also tend to fear the long lived as well then they have very few friends and try not to let their conditions be known about for fear of ambitious types looking to find ways to copy what makes them long lived and use it for malicious means.

They have fears and doubts like any one, dreams and hopes like anyone. Reina longs to settle down one day and be a mother even more, Karen hopes to help with the advancement of Medical Science, Kate wants to be able to be part of the continuing progression of technology.
Reina is scared of the dark and of being used, Karen is scared of losing her mother and of being imprisoned for being different, Kate fears being alone and is terrified of insects.

It can be easy to make the long lived seem as casual and limited as many, instead of powerful and determined to rule,
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 10
09-28-2011, 09:50 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by startrekmike View Post
As far as backstories...

This all comes down to my utter dislike of "Mary Sue" characters and how they have tainted Star Trek novels for year now, I just looked up the history of Star Trek "Mary Sue" characters and I found that it pretty much is the best way to describe it and I will describe it by paraphrasing the gist of it below.
Every character in STO is one of those. Every single (Federation) character is the lone surviving Ensign after a Borg attack that takes command and single handedly spanks the (admittedly weakened) Borg during the Khitomer invasion. Even the ships people are using are first class ships of the line, all Sovereign's, Galaxy's and Intrepid's with not a single Miranda class frigate patrolling the Vulcan sector or Oberth or Nova class survey ships surveying newly annexed areas of space so as to increase Starfleets knowledge and influence, instead everyone's an Admiral taking part in Special Task Forces and defeating the Borg threat. Although you do patrol the home sectors as an LT you don't do it for long and quickly level past it, much faster than you would if you were trying to keep some semblance of 'realism' in the game.
The uniforms are the least of your worries if that's what annoys you so much in STO.
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 On
HTML code is Off


All times are GMT -7. The time now is 04:02 PM.