Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 111 several issues
09-17-2009, 07:44 AM
While I like the fact that there is an inverted pyramid style of skill selection, I do have to take some issue with this initial player progression information.

First, like several before me, starting us all off as Lt instead of "cadet", "midshipman", or Ensign bothers me a lot. The kind of skill progression metioned works best with ranks starting below a ship command rank. The start rank should enable you to choose your main focus/class and earn the right to command a ship through the missions and episodes you need to finish. Granted this may turn off some that want to command a ship right off the bat, but that does not happen in Starfleet.

Second, there would need to be a different set of rank progression for Klingons. This is because Klingons can advance by challenging someone in a higher position to personal combat and defeting them. It can also happen based on skill or number of ships under your command. But it would destroy the appeal and authentic feel of being a Klingon if that is not incorporated.

Third, LT junior grade has to exist because that rank is rather common in Starfleet. Almost as common as that of Ensign. To leave either out is diminishing the game already.

Fourth, while being a Romulan has yet to be discussed, they also have other way to advance such as the use of assasination. While that may not be something a game system would feel comfortable including, leaving it out will lesson the appeal and authentic feel of being Romulan.

I guess what I am saying is that while this appears to be a decent "first step" for Starfleet, Cryptic obviously has some fine tuning before it will be acceptable to the majority of potential players.

Oh...I should mention that I do hope that maxing out a skill set will allow you cool bonus abilities...such as being able to take your ship into a barrel roll if your helm skills are high enough. You KNOW Sulu had to have done that at least once!
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 112
09-17-2009, 07:49 AM
Will combat missions give you more experience than non-combat missions, or do they award about the same amount of xp?

Is the skill point pool a catch-all for ability upgrades, promotions and ship tier advancement, or are there separate pools for each one?

Is ship tier advancement based on rank, or can you advance to the next tier without being promoted if you have the requisite number of skill points?

Thanks for putting this thread together.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 113
09-17-2009, 08:20 AM
I understand the basics and where they are coming from. But I have played quite a few MMOs including ones with skill based progression over lvl based progression, and I have seen some incredible flaws come fourth in some of these systems. Probably the most vexxing is pre-CU SWG, which has quite a few parallels to STOs proposed system. I have a rule for MMOs easy to play, difficult to master. My concern is how Cryptic plans to keep STO from progressing out of control into insanely over complicated, like I have seen many skill based systems do before. Honestly, this is something that just can't be explained in words, this is something I will probably have to wait till either beta or game release to fully understand, but it is a deep concern of mine.

I know that some of you are going to reassure me, some of you are going to be upset with me for mentioning it. And Crpytic is probably going to do a great job on the game, when they listen to their testers they usually do. But like I said it is something that will bug me until I play it.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 114
09-17-2009, 08:21 AM
Personally I think the concept is very sound - and any questions I might have are already being asked in this thread so I'll just say "Thanks Cryptic!" and stroll on by.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 115
09-17-2009, 08:29 AM
My questions is

Will each rank have a set limit of skill points to use?

Example: Lieutenant have 10 skills I can pick. Can I maxes everything in that rank then put my skill points to rank to Lieutenant Commander. etc

Or will it be like you have 100 skill points only to use of all the skill tree? something like the age of Conan skill tree model.

and will each skill be equal to max out? example: Engineering, Maintenance= 0/5 (one skill point so 5 skill points to maxes that skill) and you have other skill like Modification is only 0/3 skill points to fill?
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 116 Few questions
09-17-2009, 08:41 AM
Once I reach admiral, and I max out a skill tree can I continue to work on my character and learn skills in other trees? In effect if is spent long enough working on one guy would i be able to MAX out every skill or is there a limit to the number of skill points you can get, and/or some skills that makes others unavailable?

How does your ship "level" up compared to your rank and skill? Is it a skill based item, where you need Escort level 3 (and its pre-requisites) or Science ship level 2 to command such a craft?

As with many MMO's, including CO, can you "unlearn" your skills to re-spec? Likewise as we build our bridge officers, and we level them up like our own character, can we re-spec them as well?

It was stated that loot will be skills and officers, those skills and specials that a new officer can bring to the table are trainable to your old BO set. Other than the addition of a new "station" or seat on the bridge, what reason or incentive would people have to change out their bridge officers? Or would it make more sense to add them as needed for space on the bridge but keep the same set because they gain power?

Is there a reason to have several sets up officers you use for different situations? If so that seems not so star trek to me. Also if you need to switch out a bridge officer is it possible to do that on the fly even in combat or is that something you have to do while idle?
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 117
09-17-2009, 08:53 AM
"Were a player to invest the minimum-required skill points to reach Admiral, hed be about half-developed in terms of a maxed character, though in terms of time itd take significantly longer to completely max out each available skill."

So does this mean, in the end all characters will be exactly the same when they are maxed out? You can just change a kit no problem...

Doesn't sound so good... I like differences between characters other than their outlook.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 118
09-17-2009, 09:03 AM
Hello, I am new to the forums, but I've been following STO since July and I am very excited for this game. My questions are as follows:

1) Being a Lieutenant as your starting rank is fine, but what happened to the rank of Ensign? Ensigns are the first commissioned officiers of Starfleet or KDF (not to mention most real world navies) so why not start there with even broader skill sets to choose from in the three categories of Tactical, Science and Engineering?
2) Will skill point acquistion be correlated to mission type and difficulty? Example: you're exploring a nebula out in deep space and then you run into a scout ship from the Borg and succeed in defending yourself. Which gives more skills? Destroying the Borg ship or mapping out the nebula? Will more points be given if the scout ship was a destroyer or heavy-cruiser and your ship was of equal or less class (light cruiser for example)?
3) Will these methods of progression apply to the NPC bridge officers on your ship?
4) Will rank and skill progression affect what type of ship or the types of upgrades you can purchase? An example will be if you progress with a focus on tactical, will the player get a discount or some sort of advantageous ability to lower the cost of getting a Vigilant or Prometheus class ship which are more focused on combat than anything else or purchasing a quantam torpedo or a phaser upgrade?
5) Or will the modification skill set for Engineers take care of the upgrade issues in question #4?
6) The rank of Admiral usually comes with being assigned to command portions of fleets, will the player be able to command or issue commands to NPC ships?

If some or all of my questions have been asked before, my apologies for inadvertently repeating them.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 119
09-17-2009, 09:05 AM
I have one question. Where is my money? This is very much the system I described :p

In all seriousness though I'm glad you tied rank to another variable than just XP.

How does Bridge Officer progression work? Do we share our own XP with them or do missions come with a certain amount of BO xp built in that we can "divide" to which ever officer we wish?
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 120
09-17-2009, 09:17 AM
Is there anyways to redistribute skills once they have been used?

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