While I have yet to have the time to experience foundry in depth, I have played various foundry missions and they are on par with some of the Crypic's in house mission.
These extraordinary authors goes far and beyond to give us regular players wonderful new story and missions to experience. They should be allow to add in some custom objects and voice over if they want to.
Of course there will be worries about abusing the system and copy right violation, so I suggest a premium reviewing system.
For a small fee, authors can have their map and added content go through a review by Cryptic or PWE (or even some part-timer working for them) to ensure the quality of these foundry mission. To reward the authors for their efforts, they will receive 125% worth of zen from the small fee if they pass the review and therefore publish their mission to a new 'Skilled authors' foundry category. However, if they failed the review, they'll get a detail reason explaining why and 75% worth of zen.
So if the fee is 10 USD to have your mission reviewed, you'll get 1250 zen back if you passed or 750 zen back if you failed. (I am going off of how 1000 zen are sold in retail stores for 10 USD)
They can even make an elite-foundry subscription with its own foundry veteran rewards program that unlock additional foundry assets.
Yeah I'm afraid voiceovers is just not gonna ever happen.
However, what I and many others have said we'd like is a library of the sound effects that Cryptic already has in-game that we could place on the maps and set to go off using triggers. That doesn't seem unreasonable.
The Foundry Roundtable live Wednesdays at 7:30PM EST/4:30PM PST on twitch.tv/thefoundryroundtable Forums are like Sanctuary Districts, complete with Gimmes, Ghosts and Dims.
I'd really like for this to happen. Voice overs are just so much more engaging than reading a text box. I really dislike the idea of paying to get that privilege. Perhaps there could be some sort of trust system, so the most popular authors get access? Employ a zero tolerance policy, people can flag down offenders. There's too much to gain, in my opinion, to not pursue this, even if it does introduce some challenges.
There's a big gap between a mission with voice acting, good cutscenes and a mission presenting dialogue in a popup, text box. It just elevates the quality of Foundry missions across the board. Custom objects that you can directly upload to your project might be a stretch, but maybe there could be a system where the community can submit and have approved objects/props.
Anyway, I'm all for pursuing more freedom for Foundry authors, since they're the most vibrant and interesting aspect of STO's future in my opinion.
There was a notion to add a barcode like system into the dialog boxes. A small app running in the background would then read that barcode, and load the appropriate mp3 file which could contain VOs, sound effects and the like. It was designed to be almost setup free. As long as the mp3 files are loaded onto a 3rd party server, all you would need to do is to run the app. The barcode had 20 bit length, so it could encode thousands of missions each having something like 256 mp3 clips.
The app also created the barcode itself for the mission creators. So all you needed to do is copy and paste the characters to the dialog box, name the mp3 clip accordingly and move it to the proper folder.
Never took off the ground. I guess it is one thing to talk about VOs, and another thing to actually make them.
In all fairness, I have to admit, the only 1 mission which had this working, was a blast even with the computer synthetized VOs.