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Oh captain my captain

April 25, 2011

Yesterday I reached a milestone with my main character in Star Trek Online – he acquired the rank of Captain. So now it was time for a new ship and put away my old USS Grandville (a.k.a the golf ball) for a bit.

USS Grandville will rest for a bit

Instead it will be time to sail the vast seas of space with new USS Rama. I quite liked the golf ball looks, the new ship seems to be a bit closer to traditional space ship design in Federation Trek, but I am quite sure it will be fine.

Time for new adventures with USS Rama

Although a lot of people seem to level quite fast in the game, for me it has been a bit more low intensity play. Usually playing one or two episode missions, perhaps do some exploration missions. Almost after reaching the Captain rank I also reached Consul rank on the diplomacy side.

Lately I have also played a couple of Foundry missions. They have now added a “daily” mission which gives some experience and reward (scales with level) if one plays and completed 3 Foundry missions. The XP given seems to be twice of what the regular daily missions give, so essentially 2/3 of a daily per Foundry mission. Seems fairly ok to me and since there can be a different mission each time it is played I think it is a better option than repeating the same missions over and over. While I have not done much repetition (except perhaps the Save Deferi diplomatic mission) of missions, the story-focused missions started to thin out a bit.

Foundry mission Defector

A good thing about the Foundry missions is that they tend to deviate a bit from the general tone and setting in Cryptic’s missions – this is not a bad thing for neither the Foundry missions nor Cryptic’s missions. Some Cryptic missions have apparent patterns, while others may be a bit more subtle but still there. I guess it may be the presence of different authors that make this difference. Either way, some Foundry missions are refeshing not only because the content is quite good, but also because they have some deviations in how to approach the mission outline.

Foundry mission Death from a Thousand Paper Cuts

At Captain 1 there only seem to be a few hundred missions at most that are publically available on the Federation side. This is a good thing; hopefully this will mean the ratio of somewhat ok quality missions vs less memorable ones will be manageable. From reading the forums it seems also that Cryptic has removed some farm/grind missions that wee created and even stopped some repeat offenders from being able to publish missions.

The discussions in the forums around this looked very similar to the discussions in the City of Heroes forums; but Cryptic may perhaps be more forceful here in keeping Foundry usage in the proper spirit. In City of Heroes Paragon Studios had the approach that they were fine with everything that was not an exploit and they changed mechanics and changed/removed content in Mission Architect to fix various exploits that popped up.

Fixing exploits also caused “proper” missions to stop working and author’s had to fix/change their missions to work around these changes. This was painful for many and did not help to promote the usage of the system.

If it remains relatively easy to find and play good Foundry missions 2-3 months from now I would definitely call it a success. Right now I am hopeful that it will work out.

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Categories: Star Trek Online
  1. April 25, 2011 at 20:38

    That is the first screenshot of “the golf ball” I’ve seen. I didn’t realize any of Cryptic’s ship designs were that far out, a very interesting look. I glad that the foundry is working out so well.

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