We are the Ferengi.
Life as you know it is over.
We will take the contents of your wallets for our own.
You will be forced to grind endlessly to merely survive.
Backstabbing and stealing from your peers is not mandatory... but then neither is eating.
You will be adapted to increase our profit margins.
Resistance is futile.
Now that I have seen the changes in actual play. I think the people at Cryptic Studio are morons.
The goal of any change for any product is to make the product better.
What defines a product is better?
A product is better when it saves the user time and money.
It is efficient.
Why is that important?
People have a limited amount of time to play a game and have a limited amount of money to spend on a game.
The concept of 'dilithium crystals' to use as one method for rewarding people for spending time to play the game, that is a good idea.
To use the dilithium crystal idea in place of the old badge system is a good idea.
To use the dilithium crystal system to restrict a players time to play the game is a bad idea.
Because it does not establish value.
Why is that important?
The paying player in any system of payment for a video game has to know that if they put 168 hours a week into playing the game, there is going to be a sufficient manner of reward.
That's human nature.
Think of the game as a Putt-Putt Golf and Games facility (The poor mans casino). People go there after work and towards the weekend because it is cheap and keeps the kids busy and out of trouble.
At many Putt-Putt facilities, you win tickets to get a bunch of free things that normally people would not buy anywhere else because it is a waste of money and the products have no real value. But it was fun to see how many tickets you can win at skeeball so that you can go there at the end of the night and show off to other people, you can get more crap then they can for the same investment.
Now imagine you going to the Putt-Putt facility and all of a sudden it is under new management. Now the management says you can play all the skeeball you want but after 15 minutes we are going to stop giving you tickets for playing. Then when you walk up to the counter to cash in your tickets all the items are labeled with the amount of tokens beyond what you can win in 15 minutes worth of playing skeeball.
Then these morons decide to put a second price up that says, we will sell it to you instead for cash.
The place just went from a respectful place of business to a shady place.
This whole new system coming out seems more like 'how many ways we can rip off the customer before they go somewhere else' than it is about 'how many ways can we give the customer a reasonable value' for the money they plan to spend.
What makes Star Trek Online valuable?
A person pays 15 dollars a month and then spends 672 hours flying around in a fake starship collecting crap and occasionally fighting aliens. Sure when you first start to play the game your first 72 hours is doing the crappy story missions the game designers made. However, once you play all the story missions, you realize they have nothing to do with Star Trek.
All the stories have one plot method, your ship is sent to kill someone to prolong a war that will never end.
What method did Cryptic Studio develop to encourage a person to spend all there valuable time and money?
Congratulations, you now can spend 15 minutes a day exploring for for a crappy crystal worth 1,440. So in 8 days (192 hours) when you reach your limit, you can use it on nothing.
I think here is the big picture the morons at Cryptic fail to understand.
The exploration missions are a series of missions that require a player to complete 3 missions to get the reward. Then the accolade which is tide to the reward is also rewarded to show how many exploration missions you have completed. So your badges will correlate with your achievement. Also the countdown meter on the mission journal reports the completion by the same method.
This means a player when a player journal shows you have completed 9 Arucanis exploration missions, you in actuality completed 9 times 3 missions. That is 27 missions for you people that find math difficult to do.
Also, your ability to grind diplomatic mission xp, and skill points xp and accumulate starfleet merits to train people come from that too.
In case the morons cannot follow my point, you have just hinder the players ability to make advancement in the game because if they do exploration missions while the cooldown period is going on, that time they are spending is not accounted for.
Not only have you lost energy credits, skill points, diplomatic xp, resource gathering, junk pile accumulation to buy other crap with, they have restricted the players time to 15 minutes.
I see all kinds of people writing about 'farmers'. That's a bunch of crap. By putting this method in all you have accomplish is restrict the players ability to get anything done in a reasonable amount of time.
To prove a point, make PVP a daily event. Once people do there pvp, they can't PVP for 24 hours. Then see what happens.
I do not see how that will encourage people to buy things from the C-Store.
The whole reason people buy things off the C-Store is to make the time spent on the ship better or more enjoyable.
The badge system in place now is actually better then what you are proposing with the dilithium crystal.
So, with this system we get less playing time, less reward, and have to spend even more money to get what we could afford before only at a slower rate.
That proves my point, only a moron would say that system is better. Then spend the next 3 months swearing up and down it is better.
All I see is a bunch of Cryptic employees out of a job in 4 months when they fall short of their revenue prediction curve. What will be a hilarious outcome is is these employees are astonished they got fired. Most people can see this coming, and are willing to pay 15 bucks a month to see people get fired , when all along they thought they were making a better product.
By making the exploration a daily mission you have created an antagonistic tool to allow people to enjoy the game they love. An antagonist is a device the blocks or hinders another thing. Exploration missions in this game are the 'bread and butter' missions for the player who has a long term investment in playing this game. You have just eliminated that aspect of the game.
Where I sat down today excited about playing the game tonight, now with this I don't want to even log in the game.
I always wondered what it was like when SWG had that conversion thing, now I know.
Again I ask, who is responsible PW or Cryptic? CO's FTP was much smoother than this was it Atari or Cryptic then? I love STO, I want it to be around for a long time, but these economic changes are too stark. Streamlining merits, emblems, and that is a good idea, but there is too many moving parts. Why did ships have to be thrown in?
Just seems to be way more anger in these posts, and not enough people staying calm and trying to live up to the ideas that Star Trek represents.
I'll admit, I have had some trouble as well in that regard but the stigma is there. Cryptic may call it Dilithium or they may call it Cryptic Points. But whatever the designation is, it is money. And via pennies per day or via larger transfers into their account, players must earn it.
In their desire to implement economic reform, they have let the situation concerning those who already make recurring financial contributions languish to such a degree that it has deteriorated into what this thread, and several others, have become. Their silence on that front has created a festering wound and these continued 'enhancements' to the game are only pouring salt into that wound.
They need to sit down and repair that damage.
First and foremost, they cannot continue to take anything more away from a subscriber. Things that have been promised get delivered.
The second point would be to return to their initial promise that the gameplay experience for subscribers would not change. That includes subscribers not being charged money to purchase their leveling escort, science, and cruiser vessels, whether it be their first or their third. Energy Credits? Sure. Money? Definitely not.
Lastly, provide a global discount (I suggest 20%) to all purchases that require the use of dilithium. The only exception to this should be your exchange rate into Cryptic Points. This would help to alleviate the sting of this new economy. If this means people who are not subscribed subscribe for a month to make mass purchases, so much the better. They're paying for a time-limited club membership and those that don't want to don't have to. Perhaps, after a month of having a discount and not having to grind dailies, the most boring missions of any MMO to purchase their ships, they may want to stay.