Captain
Join Date: Jul 2012
Posts: 2,192
# 31
01-23-2013, 05:30 AM
Although I'm no longer playing LOTRO, I like which way the game was heading with its F2P. I cannot the same about STO. My vote is clear.
Career Officer
Join Date: Sep 2012
Posts: 2,398
# 32
01-23-2013, 05:34 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by diogene0 View Post
You're also ignoring two major aspects in this debate. STO's team is still rather small. It's hard to make a lot of story content and places to go when you struggle to fix bugs and to create one new social/adventure zone every year.
Paragon Studios had a comparable sized staff, perhaps an even smaller one, yet had no difficulty in churning out content for CoH.

Quote:
Originally Posted by sirsitsalot View Post
Well, Turbine's efforts are geared towards delivering a Middle-earth experience in LotRO. By that token, I don't want to compare to LotRO so much as I would like to see Cryptic's efforts become geared towards delivering a Star Trek universe experience.

I just don't feel like Cryptic takes the IP seriously enough.
I wouldn't say Cryptic doesn't take the IP seriously. At least IMO it seems they are trying to make STO something for everyone in terms of Trek genre by throwing in the ships/costumes from each of the series. It doesn't work well, at least to me.
Captain Kirk is climbing a mountain. Why is he climbing a mountain?
Captain
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 514
# 33
01-23-2013, 05:47 AM
I suspect if we went to the LOTRO forum we'd see the reverse of this discussion. Heh.

(Nearly every MMO thinks their developers are the worst, ever)
Ensign
Join Date: Jan 2013
Posts: 1
# 34 LOTRO is way better
01-23-2013, 06:38 AM
After experiencing bug after bug and then basically being locked out of STO for a long time due to my computer, which never changed, not being to play STO (even after many attempts with their technical support)...I have to say that LOTRO never had issues this bad.

Plus, LOTRO is easier to follow and has a better story line, great graphics, less "cookie cutter" builds, etc, and is just much more fun to play.

STO has tons and tons of potential and is fun to play. But, sorry Cryptic, it is just not all there yet. It was a nice try though.
Commander
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 308
# 35
01-23-2013, 06:49 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by diogene0 View Post
I like the fact that you quoted the most unimportant argument i gave, while you "forget" to answer to what really makes the difference between those games, which is the nature of the IPs themselves. One is about heroically slaughtering evil guys between two unending and boring descriptions (in the books), which makes a very easy and obvious MMO translation, the other one is much more complex.
And I notice you didn't respond to what I actually said either.

Your the one who brought up small size dev team as a defence of STO. I just pointed out that this statement has been used by day 1, not only by the supporters, but also by the devs themselves and it's now used as a convenient excuse for a lot of STO's ills, both past and present.
From the man himself - "And as far as Season 7 being "grindy" - welcome to the MMORPG genre"

Look into my eyes, look into my eyes, the eyes, the eyes, not around the eyes, don't look around my eyes, look into my eyes, you're under..."Grind is good".
Captain
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 966
# 36
01-23-2013, 07:29 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by sirsitsalot View Post
I just don't feel like Cryptic takes the IP seriously enough.

I am an MMO fan on one hand. I am also a fan of Lord of the Rings, AND of Star Trek. So when I came to STO and to LotRO, I came as a fan of those IPs respectively. The biggest fundamental difference between STO and LotRO is that while LotRO was designed in such a way that the game's mechanics were wrapped around the IP, STO was designed in such a way that the IP was stretched around the game's mechanics.

Look at Risa... We have a beach, some hammocks and some trails to explore. We don't have the risa resort that was shown in the shows.

In Lord of the Rings Online, if I climb to the top of Weathertop, I find scorched earth, and the G-rune with the three marks that Gandalf left there. Someone who doesn't really care about Lord of the Rings likely wouldn't notice it. But anyone who calls themself a Tolkien Reader would automatically find themselvs looking for it, and smiling with pleasure at finding it.

To me it's not about which game is "better" so much as it is about which game puts forth a better effort to be true to its source material. I really wish I could say that it is STO. But as one who loves both Star Trek and Lord of the Rings, I would be lying if I did.
I agree.

"Star Trek: Online" is a patch work of historical franchise elements, which were stitched together with an artistic license. Cryptic had to invent explanations for why historical franchise elements exited in the 25th century. In order to achieve their overall goals, Cryptic created nonexistent elements to fuse everything together. Some of those nonexistent "Star Trek" elements include: M.A.C.O. Armors, Omega Armors, armors, mini-guns, blast-guns, antiproton weapons, etc...

Second, while "Lord of the Rings" and "Star Wars: The Old Republic" are role-playing games, "Star Trek: Online" fits into the strategy game category. While there are story and role-playing mechanics in place, "Star Trek: Online" does not fuse them together in a "Dragon Age: Origins" and "Star Wars: The Old Republic" manner. Players do not have dialogue choices, which influence the 'overall' flow of a 'main' story. New Romulus is an example. During the cut-scenes on New Romulus, the player does not have the ability to choose between options. Your avatar just bounces her or his head, walks, and allows another npc to ramble. I do not think you can compare two different games, which were built with two different gaming styles. I could be wrong.

Quote:
Originally Posted by sirsitsalot View Post
Look at Risa... We have a beach, some hammocks and some trails to explore. We don't have the risa resort that was shown in the shows.
I feel your pain.

Bajor should be the stepping stone in which all social zones should follow. If Cryptic dedicated a half a season to revamping social zones, (adding non-grinding contexts, depth, new designs, story elements, and mini-missions), I think many people will shout out with joy. As long as those new environments are geared towards the social experience, many people will find some sort of use for them. Do you know what Cryptic will do? Cryptic will find someway to destroy those environments with grinding reputation marks.

Last edited by linyive; 01-23-2013 at 08:29 AM.
Starfleet Veteran
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 785
# 37
01-23-2013, 07:40 AM
This kind of shows what I was thinking about the 'Best F2P MMO of the Year' award Cryptic got. On a more well known site, against other games, STO really doesn't stand a chance. The other site they had to ask us to vote on, and was one few had heard of, I certainly hadn't.

STO isn't terrible by any means, but neither is it a great game either.
http://sto-forum.perfectworld.com/image.php?type=sigpic&userid=91851990000&dateline=  1341951426
Captain
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 804
# 38
01-23-2013, 08:00 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by bladeriel View Post
Lotro respected the IP fairly well until Moria. Then they introduced runekeepers riding on goats killing mobs with lightning strikes. On the other hand you can see Galors, D'Koras, bugships, tholian and breen ships and alike in STO. At this point neither games respect their IP as much as purists whish, so voting is irrelevant and is about "which game I like more of these two'.
Yeah... Runkeeper was an element of concern for me. I understand that its inclusion had to do with a lot of complaints from paying customers that the game did not have enough of a magical side to it. But since MOM there have been no new classes added, and they have not jumped the shark like that again. Some would say that they should have taken runekeeper out. But when developers start REMOVING things, the result can be worse than adding things that do not fit the lore perfectly.

I think they listened to the negative feedback regarding runekeeper and have put forth a lot of effort in their subsequent content which has put them back on track in my eyes concerning sticking to the lore.

If ever there was a time for them to really start jumping the shark with things, it would be the time since the game added the free to play option. But to their credit, the only thing they have done since then is develop and produce story content that plays off the themes of Lord of the Rings.

Seige of Mirkwood gives players a chance to explore the effects of Sauron's forces operating out of Dol Guldur, which was described in the council of elrond scene in the books as still being a very evil place and that the elves do not go that way. It also opened up the forest of Greenwood to the players, a familiar location from middle-earth lore. For some time they also hinted that Erebor and Dale would be introduced to coincide with the movie release of The Hobbit. Well, now that the movie is out, those regions will probably be in the pipeline for release between now and December of 2014.

Rise of Isengard gives us events centered around Saruman's meddling in the affairs of the world with his alliance with Sauron, which gives rise to the plight introduced in Riders of Rohan, which is the first part of content in that region, with the second part to include Helm's Deep. And then onward into Gondor and Minas Tirith would be the logical direction to go. Now that ROR has introduced mounted combat, the battle of Pellanor will be able to be done propperly with both infantry and cavalry. It will also likely introduce seige engine mechanics.

LotRO has received way more lore-friendly and engaging content since it Free to Play became an option than it did under a subscription model.

How much meaningful mission content have we gotten in STO? Season 6 brought us a grindfest with absolutely no story progression. Season 7 brought us a grindfest with some story progression. Each time LotRO releases an expansion, it is heavy on quest content and ultimately moves the game forward in terms of world story. But STO has essentially stagnated for 3 years with nothing significant in ITS world story progression.

Both games are now Free to Play. Both have the same potential. But only one of them emphasizes the production and marketing of quest content. So my position stands that Turbine is putting forth a greater effort to deliver a middle-earth experience than Cryptic is putting forth on delivering a Star Trek universe experience. And I believe that that is why the votes are skewed so much in LotRO's favor.

I will continue to play both games. But I am more inclinded to pay for stuff with my own money in LotRO than I am to do so in STO. Because LotRO lets me buy access to what I want out of an MMO: Playable Content. STO does not, and because no money is being made from content in STO, it remains a lesser priority.

Some would say "But we have the Foundry. LotRO doesn't... LotRO doesn't NEED it because its developers never let go of their responsibility to create content. Cryptic has, in spite of promises prior to the introduction of the Foundry. We were promised that the Foundry would not mean less content from Cryptic, and if anything it would result in them producing more content than ever. Those promises calmed the fears of many, and yet since the Foundry came out, there has been LESS content than ever. And Dan is even on record as having said that he sees foundry mission development eventually replacing official development. Just like he had implied that Perfect World wanted to see the KDF completed and even the inclusion of a playable Romulan faction as soon as possible. Now we find out that efforts to complete the KDF have not even begun and suddenly PWE's desire to see its completion and the inclusion of a third playable faction was just a passing reference from a PWE rep.

Cryptic still relies on empty promises to keep players holding on. Turbine actually delivers content which keeps players coming back if they have left or interested if they haven't

Turbine takes content development seriously, because they have made it a part of their business model and therefore it is a large chunk of their bread and butter that they realize they need to deliver. Cryptic on the other hand has made excuse after excuse after excuse as to why mission content just cannot be done in a timely and meaningful manner.

Turbine makes game content. Cryptic makes excuses.

Again, another reason I feel that the votes are skewed towards LotRO.

Like I said. I like both games, and will continue to play both. But this vote which compares two games with both a subscription and free to play option should show Cryptic that there is a disconnect somewhere in their development priorities. Now if it is PWE that is holding them back from what I believe they should be focusing on, there is not much they can do. When the one who signs your paycheck also assigns the prioritization of work efforts, then if you want to keep working for the company, you do what you are told. But if the decisions are in Cryptic's hands and that all PWE does is give advice, leaving Cryptic to decide what to do and how to proceed, as has been the "official" party line, then it is indeed Cryptic who can do something about how their game is developed going forward.

Sometimes, I feel like they have just given up. All the excuses they give ring hollow in my ears, like the excuses of a depressed person for why they don't leave the house and get out there and take on the world. That was me, by the way for the better part of a year. I stopped caring about everything. But the beautiful voice of a young lady, singing a song about ancient Dwarven wealth touched my heart and I felt alive again for the first time in the better part of a year. There has been damage to me that won't ever heal, but my heart, mind and spirit are on the mend and I am taking on a big challenge now that had I not been re-awakened, I would not even be thinking about.

Beautiful music and lyrics lovingly and tenderly sung cracked the barrier I had put up around myself. If Cryptic has lost its creative drive and has drawn into itself, then I wonder what it will take to rekindle the fire of the DREAM within them. This does not feel like the same developer that produced City of Heroes, which has been praised for its approach, and was shut down by NCSoft as nothing more than a precursor to driving people towards GW2. Just like the decision to kill Star Wars Galaxies was nothing more than a ploy to funnel those with Star Wars MMO withdrawals to SWTOR.

I'd like to see them wake up and live the dream again. Then maybe there will be more content and less excuse-making. As it is now, I feel like they don't really believe in themselves. And if that is the case, then they won't really believe in their products, and NONE of them will ever even reach for their potential. And that right there is very sad.
I personally want a Star Trek game that is actually Star Trek. On a qualitative level that could be a lot of different things for a lot of different people. But on a quantitative level, if the developers were to watch star trek and make the game like what they see, then at least it will be a shot in the right direction, as far as I am concerned.
Captain
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 804
# 39
01-23-2013, 08:35 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by diogene0 View Post
You're also ignoring two major aspects in this debate. STO's team is still rather small. It's hard to make a lot of story content and places to go when you struggle to fix bugs and to create one new social/adventure zone every year. I think the "Trek feel" you're talking about is existing on new romulus though. It's not a perfect place but it makes sense.
Well, we've been told that the STO team doubled in size since PWE took over. But the only thing that has doubled in quantity in the game is the number of grindfests and lockboxes.

[quote]The other issue is that most of the Star Trek IP is based around philosophy, ethics, and scientific munbo-jumbo (TNG), finding a way to punch aliens in the face after 25 minutes of weird and slow character interactions (TOS), or around character interactions (DS9), and these elements aren't easy to bring into a game. It's really easier to make something looking like an IP if half of the said IP is counting your kills with a dward, sending fireballs in your enemy's face, or finding new ways to behead your opponent. [quote]

There have been other Star Trek games that have been successful. Look at how well received the Star Trek 25th aniversary game was back in the day. Followed by Judgment Rites. Followed by the TNG game "A Final Unity". If STO's ground game was modeled aftrer those games, then it would make for much more interesting and involving gameplay. Where the goal isn't to avoid standing in the fire so mych as it would be to really figure things out, with a healthy sprinkling of Pew Pew into the mix. But they seem to only have one writer, and what she does (which based on what I have seen in a lot of cases) gets burried under a mountain of grind.

And all MMOs have their share of bugs and technical snafus that have to be dealt with. They are either an MMO developer with a desire to be such in more than just name or they are not.

The problem is design priority in the development process. If content development was made a priority, they could have enough people working on it that they can at least deliver about 2 hours worth of mission content per month.

Quote:
Middle Earth is at war, Star trek's galaxy isn't, and it's easier to build a MMO around epic battles rather than ethics.
in STO, we're at war with EVERYONE. So that statement just got nullified... or are you playing a different STO than I am?

Quote:
I may agree with you as a TNG fan but i'm also aware of the fact that it's a game and popular games are those where you kill stuff.
There are tons of ideas floating around in the community as to how STO can be made into a much better game by wrapping gameplay systems around the elements introduced in Star Trek. But that would require actual effort, rather than just fluff items in lockboxes and in the C-store, and excessive grindfests.

It is not that they CANNOT do these things. The just WON'T do them. The process they follow has them in a straightjacket. if the process gets in the way of productivity, then the process needs to be streamlined and restructured so that it doesn't...

If they spent more time making content than they do making excuses as to why they cannot make content, then the KDF would be complete by now and the Romulan faction would likely be in final preparation for launch. How often do we get a "That's not currently in the works" response on things that we were told they were working on as far back as when Atari was in charge? Everything they tell us that isn't currently being worked on, or is something they would like to do, but it isn't in the pipeline makes me wonder more and more about what it is that they actually DO. If it took them the entirety of Season 6's run to develop the material for Season 7, then I really feel that there is a problem. I can see environment design taking that long. But in terms of mission content? It's repetitive grindy crap that was designed to be repetitive grindy crap, in an age where most MMO players are fed up with repetitive grindy crap.

But mission content is not a priority for them. That's what the foundry authors are for. They don't have to pay foundry authors.

They need to fix their process... If they do, then they can produce gameplay that is as compelling and profitable as Turbine produced. Had they taken the IP seriously and developed content around it, then I should have had a tough choice in my vote.

Bottom line. Turbine seems to care about their game than Cryptic seems to care about theirs. And based on the vote, players see it.
I personally want a Star Trek game that is actually Star Trek. On a qualitative level that could be a lot of different things for a lot of different people. But on a quantitative level, if the developers were to watch star trek and make the game like what they see, then at least it will be a shot in the right direction, as far as I am concerned.
Captain
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 966
# 40
01-23-2013, 10:16 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by sirsitsalot View Post
... If it took them the entirety of Season 6's run to develop the material for Season 7, then I really feel that there is a problem. I can see environment design taking that long. But in terms of mission content? It's repetitive grindy crap that was designed to be repetitive grindy crap, in an age where most MMO players are fed up with repetitive grindy crap...
I agree.

While the new content is welcomed, the mechanic used to deliver them stinks.

If you remember back when they boasted about new 'on ship' missions, Cryptic had us thinking they were going to make actual 'tasked missions'. rofl... We ended up getting duty officer click missions, which involves zero mental thinking or strategy. *yawn*

As a result of all the grinding involved with Season Six, the arrival and missteps of Season Seven caused me to abandon fleets. Once you add in all the waiting periods, (20 hour timers for a single project, 24 hour timer for dilithium cap reset, 15 minute tier claims, 1+ days for fleet base upgrades, 24 hour waits for fleet base projects, etc...), the grinding and waiting process makes you consider leaving. I do not see how this system is suppose to be fun.

On a related note, although I was able to gather enough resources, the 8,000 dilithium refinement limitation has hindered my progress. Instead of being able to claim my items within one day, I have to wait two days to cap off a single 9,000 dilithium requirement item. In order for me to claim all three pieces of my armor set, I have to pause my game time for four days. I sign in for five minutes a day, refine what I can in dilithium, fill the requirements to 8,000 dilithium, sign out, and return the next day to repeat and/or finish the process. I currently have two STF pieces of gear in my rep queue, and its going to take me three days to claim them. Even though I put in my time to grind the resources, another time gate has caused me to stop playing. Ironically, I have to wait until 7:00 pm every night, so that the dilithium cap gets reset.

...and, to think I spent over $200 on zen. What was I thinking? rofl...


Even though Cryptic denies what I said a few days ago, I still think "Star Trek: Online" will be closing its doors by the end of the year. I do not see how the fleet base, embassy, and reputation system can add up to fun.

Last edited by linyive; 01-23-2013 at 10:31 AM.
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