STO Update: Cryptic Q&A + New Screenshots

This week Cryptic has some new released information for their upcoming Star Trek Online massive multiplayer game. In a new Q&A they answer some burning questions, plus they have released two new in-game screenshots. TrekMovie also has some thoughts on dates and how this game set in the 25th century may still (kind of) tie in to the new Star Trek movie.

 

Cryptic’s answers on design, exploration, customization and more
In a new ‘Ask Cryptic’ the game designers answered some interesting questions about the balance of combat and exploration, the approach to the art direction, and how your customized characters could work into the game:

Q: How much interaction will be allowable with the NPCs representing new life found on strange new worlds? Will it be a case of clobber everybody then a text message providing a clue to the next step (like CoH/ CoV), a series of dialogue selections (Interplay’s Star Trek 25th Anniversary and Judgment Rites), or something completely different.
A: This is a universe at war, so combat will be a major factor, but there will also be a large component of exploration. You will get to meet new species, some of which you’ll fight against, some of which you’ll protect, and some of which you’ll ally with. There won’t be extensive dialogue trees, but you’ll get to explore and have missions that don’t involve just clobbering everybody.

Q: There has been discussion on the art direction. Can you tell us why you chose to design your characters and environments with bright, solid shade colors (for lack of a better word "Cartoony") rather than a more realism style like say, Oblivion or Age of Conan?
A: We’re aiming for a fantastical style, not a “cartoony” one. It’s going to look realistic, in terms of planets, environments, and characters, but we want to take it up a notch and make it feel more fantastic. We’re going to give it that sense of wonder and vibrancy that you expect from Star Trek.

Q: Will my custom species be one-of-a-kind or will the species be taken and seeded on other planets for other players to encounter?
A: At Cryptic, we really like including user generated content into our games. This, for example, is a great idea and we’ll look into it.

…more Q&A at startrekonline.com

 

New screenshots
Cyrptic also released two new screenshots this week, including one showing what looks like a Saber class ship, or an evolution of the Saber class. (click images below to enlarge).


There is trouble at this Federation outpost. Can you fight the flames of war?


The residents of this asteroid base may be friend or foe.

A thought on dates, STO, and the Star Trek movie
[minor spoilers for Star Trek movie]

In recent updates on this game TrekMovie has advocated for there to be some kind of tie-in to the Star Trek movie and the IDW comic books. Cyrptic has been putting out updates to the back story of Star Trek Online in their ‘Path to 2409‘ series of  and Cryptic has told TrekMovie they have been talking to IDW and JJ Abrams Bad Robot. Cryptic’s latest ‘Path’ update covered the year 2383, which is four years after Star Trek Nemesis and two years after the latest Star Trek novels from Pocket Books (with the latest STO updates ignoring the events of the recent Destiny novel series). Yesterday IDW released their 5-page preview for "Star Trek Countdown," the prequel comic for the new Star Trek movie. These comics kick off around the year 2387 (converting the Stardate). So there is still time for us to see a future STO update that could tie into these comics and new movie (or at least the part of it that takes place in the post-Nemesis timeframe). We look forward to the next ‘path’ update.

More STO
For more on STO, see our special Star Trek Online category for our most recent articles and also visit the official startrekonline.com site.

 

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Jas_montreal

looks awesome

The screen shots look great! I can’t wait to play!

Morty

Awooga.

KJTrek

This will be my first MMORPG so I’m very excited!

Alan Hsiao

i may need to get a better computer if i ever dream of playing this game

Michelle

I’m so looking forward to this game! :) I think the screenshots look great.

Warren

I’m skeptical. I love star trek and have always wanted to see an MMO based on it, but I’m on the fence.

Star Wars: The Old Republic looks like an awesome game based on the dev. Star Trek isn’t doing it for me yet :(

Will

Contrary to what Trekmovie advocates, I’m gonna be really bummed if they integrate the movie into the game in such a manner as to be OBVIOUSLY product placement.

On a side note, is that a Saber class ship?

Unbel1ever

Haven’t made up my mind about the game yet. So far I’m not a fan of the comic look. Hopefully gameplay will outweigh the visual flaws.

The Jui$tain

Product placement? Like Anthony said, every single reference to any continuity is ‘product placement’ for that film, TV episode/series or book.

Anyways, i’m looking forward to the new movie and game.

TE

James Heaney - Wowbagger

Mmmm… I really, really, REALLY like extensive dialogue trees. More importantly, I strongly doubt that a game without them can feel remotely like Star Trek.

But we’ll see.

Uhura (Mirror)

Will you are so right. I am tired of these games linking to the franchises they are from. All this contintuity is a huge conspiracy. Any references in this game to starfleet or space ships is just more corporate greed to sell toys and product placement for the military.

They should make the game about ponies…ponies in space

Kruge

I don’t really play games but I will probably give this a try. I just hope that people can play the game casually and not need to play it all day long like you hear about (and like that southpark episode about world of warcraft)

oh and Will…a big congrats to you. Your comment must be an entry in the dumbest comment hall of fame for trekmovie.com…and you did it even without using the word canon or even ‘cannon’

Rekkert

I am really looking forward to play this game.

#13 I know you were being sarcastic, but they can’t make a game about space ponies, because someone else have done it already, it’s called Sins of a Solar Empire.

John Q.

It’s coming out in late 2009…I know this for a fact

spooky

I hope this game revives console Star Trek games. Its so difficult to find a good trek game for the new generation of console machines. This looks very interesting but I am also not a fan of the comic look. The original concepts that were done by Perpetual Studios looked far more dazzling.

I’m looking forward to this. I’ll lay it for a good month or so and give it a fair shot.

sebimeyer

A Star Trek war game? I could be wrong, but that doesn’t sound like anything I’d want to play since that’s not what ST is about for me.

Hopefully they won’t be calling me “old man” by the time this comes out. And yes, that was a cheesy DS9 reference. Deal with it.

ST Gamer

Sebimeyer

did you even read the article before making that innane comment? Firstly this is not a ‘wargame’ it is a massive multiplayer game. And like all massive multiplayer games it has combat…like EVERY SINGLE GAME EVER. But the guy from cryptic said “This is a universe at war, so combat will be a major factor, but there will also be a large component of exploration.”

And excuse me, but combat and war has been as much a part of Trek as exploration from day one.

Picard's barber

Does anyone know what consoles this will be coming out on? The only info I could find on their website was that it was being developed for PC and Consoles, but they didn’t specify which ones. Help?

What a star trek war game? Thats not ST.

I know maybe we should invent a game where we supply replicators to under developed worlds. Shuttle dilitheum back and fourth, and maybe make peace through hollographic outposts?

Next we can all hold hands and sing hippie songs.

Olley Olley Olley

i think i’ll wait for Star Wars: The Old Republic instead
STO looks lame

#23

The Way to Eden Online?

Devon Richards

Personally, I don’t like that all the conflicts are relegated to warring with other species. That’s more “Wars” than “Trek”.

http://geektrek.today.com/

So they’re not taking into account what happened in the Destiny series? Because that was kind of a major change to the TNG era. I loved the Destiny series, but I can see how it might throw a wrench into a MMO game that’s been in development for some time…

Will

I’m just saying that no one even knows what effect the new movie will/would have on the timeline in the Trek universe. Advocate was the wrong word choice, a disjointed thought on my part, but what I meant was that it doesn’t seem that the new movie would need to be a part of this game at all and, in my opinion, that means that any direct piece of the new movie in this game would inherently be product placement for JJ Abrams’ movie.

for example, as a gamer playing STO, you may not have seen the movie itself when you purchase the game so it stands to reason that the rights owners want to get you to go and see the new movie. Solution? Stick it in the game even though it doesn’t have very much, if anything, to do with how things are in the present timeline(unless they rewrite the timeline to show it directly affecting major events in the future they are creating).

Again, to clarify, I have no problem linking games to the franchises that gave birth to them. My problem ist o make it overtly blatant which is, in my opinion, the only way that they could make direct references to the new movie.

And yes, I know the game comes out after the movie does.

AJ

The product is called “Star Trek,” encompassing 5 live action series, 1 animated series and 11 feature films, plus numerous books, games and comics.

Within that portfolio, the different iterations of Trek are all part of the same product, or portfolio of products in the “Trek” line.

___________

Spock: “Jim? I’m going to step out for a smoke.”

Kirk: “Spock, why don’t you try a Kent? Unlike other brands, Kent’s new micronite (R) filter removes the harshness when you inhale, so all you get is smooth flavor and tobacco satisfaction every time.”

Spock: “Captain Kirk…I shall consider it.”

Jeff

Ive said it before and I’ll say it again- Cryptic is making a big mistake by making this a TNG game- they should talk to Abrams and Orci to make this game in line with the new movie- it will sell like hotcakes instead of just becoming another Trek game.

richpit

30 – LOL at your mock dialog!

Will

Alrighty, I guess I’m not explaining the feeling I have about it properly. Or at least, it all makes sense to me and maybe I’m the only one, but I’ll give it one last go to see if I can make my feelings a bit more clear.

Example: STO set in post Nemesis world, Nero is in post Nemesis world as well. That’s all well and good.

Why does Nero’s existence, or the events of the new movie, need to be stated anywhere in the game?

Also, I just feel that it would turn into something along the lines of characters essentially going(NPC’s that you happened to walk past in the world):

“Hey, you remember when Nero traveled through time?”
“Yeah.”
“Wasn’t that something?”
“Sure was.”

or

“Boy, those Nacelles on the constitution class sure were sleek and shiny and smooth. They don’t make them like that anymore. No, sir. The hood on the front of it, the slope towards the back… wonderful. It just flows so well.”

Basically, what I’m saying is, fine, Nero is in the timeline post Nemesis, that’s all well and good, but he’s just a Romulan dude wanting to change *something* in the past and, I assume, failing to fully change things(we’ll see in the comics/movie what his motives are). More over, how would anyone even know that the events of the movie had happened given the ripple effect which generally takes place in Trek timeline shifts(which is why I find the above example dialogue to be something to be worried about in the event of sticking the new Trek movie into the game in any major capacity).

Also, and this is a big “what if”, but what if the movie bombs somehow or is deemed not an official part of the Trek universe at some point by some group with the power to claim such things(a la the Dune Encyclopedia which was first approved and accepted as official canon by Frank Herbert but which was later made non-canon)?

bright one

I wish they make another turn base strategy game based on star trek with a map maker in it. All the starships ever created.

it can be based on star wars empire at war. But more diplomacy and aliens like in birth of the federation but taken from civilization series design.

What do u guys think?