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Old 09-06-2011, 05:24 PM   #1
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Star Trek Online Goes Free-to-Play in 2011


Cryptic Studios sends along a Press Release announcing that Star Trek Online will be going free-to-play later this year.

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Star Trek Online, the acclaimed sci-fi MMORPG, developed by Cryptic Studios, Inc. ("Cryptic Studios"), will be free-to-play in 2011. Players will be able to download and enjoy the game as they like at no cost.

A features matrix, FAQ, overview and various forums can be found on the official Star Trek Online website to better explain the nature of free-to-play to new and existing users.

To learn more about Star Trek Online free-to-play, please visit: http://www.startrekonline.com/f2p

"In addition to seeking out new life and exploring strange new civilizations, part of our continuing mission for Star Trek Online is to expand and improve," said Jack Emmert, CEO, Cryptic Studios. "Transitioning to a free-to-play model is a natural way to share all we've built with a broader community of players and we couldn't be more excited."

Later this year, when Star Trek Online free-to-play launches, anyone can download and play the game for free without purchasing a retail copy or subscription. All players will be able to take advantage of Star Trek Online's many features for free, from customizing avatars, crews and the very ships they command, to exploring a galaxy filled with intrigue and danger.

Players will also be able to access additional features a la carte through a virtual goods store. Current players can become Gold Members by continuing to subscribe to the game for $14.99 a month. New players can also upgrade to Gold status for a set price of $14.99 per month. The differences between paying Gold Members and free Silver Players can be found at: http://www.startrekonline.com/f2p
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Old 09-06-2011, 05:25 PM   #2
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More...

Star Trek Online free-to-play allows players to get into the game and engage the Star Trek universe in a number of ways:

The Universe is Your Only Limit - Play as much as you like for as long as you like at no cost. No subscription is required, nor is payment of any kind required.

Episodic Gameplay - Experience new weekly episodes that feature story-based gameplay and put your captain's ability to command to the ultimate test.

Your Captain, Your Crew, Your Destiny - Become a captain, seek out new life and new civilizations and encounter hostile beings as you advance to maximum level for free.

Familiar Places, New Experiences - Travel to Starfleet Academy, Deep Space Nine, The First City of Qo'noS and many other iconic locations and notable worlds from the beloved Star Trek universe.

Engage and Explore Your Way - A web and in-game virtual goods store provides players the option of purchasing gameplay upgrades or additional premium content as they like, when they like.

Taking place in the year 2409, Star Trek Online boasts extraordinary features and lets fans both new and old experience unparalleled adventures within the Star Trek universe. Players have the opportunity to become high-ranking Starfleet officers and participate in missions structured like episodes that take them into the depths of space, across exotic planets and inside other starships. All players are invited to explore strange new worlds and encounter new life in a vast, ever expanding universe!

Star Trek Online is a licensed product from CBS Consumer Products and developed by Cryptic Studios, Inc. For more information, please visit: www.startrekonline.com

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Old 09-06-2011, 05:34 PM   #3
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Cool, I'll have to give it a try.
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Old 09-06-2011, 06:15 PM   #4
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As a STO player since Open Beta and running the second largest STO podcast online, all I can muster is a George Lucas inspired

NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO

We heard about it last week when Perfect World, the new owners, had an annual business call for earnings and such. The F2P details came out today and they are not good. Real lack of content for paid members compared to free members, and now the Klingon faction, which is still woefully incomplete 1.5 years later, is now being pushed back further to level 25 for access to it..

This is not good.
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Old 09-06-2011, 07:10 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by Mav View Post
As a STO player since Open Beta and running the second largest STO podcast online, all I can muster is a George Lucas inspired

NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO

We heard about it last week when Perfect World, the new owners, had an annual business call for earnings and such. The F2P details came out today and they are not good. Real lack of content for paid members compared to free members, and now the Klingon faction, which is still woefully incomplete 1.5 years later, is now being pushed back further to level 25 for access to it..

This is not good.
I haven't played it since (roughly) six-months in from launch (it was either just after the first 'season'/'episodes' launch, I can't remember) but this will bring me back to at least try it with all the changes.

Looking at the features matrix they posted, I agree that there's little incentive for a person to subscribe (or stay subscribed), unless Cryptic start pumping in a lot of reasonably priced ships/uniforms that you can buy where the 400 points a month becomes valuable.

Still, I see what F2P did for LoTRO and in the long-run, it's been quite good and I can't help but think that it'd be just as good for Star Trek. They're actually in a pretty cool position where they can sell (or give away to subscribers) a bunch of cool shit that won't have to break gameplay (or make STO become pay to win). It's actually the ideal IP for micro-transactions.

At least as someone from the outside looking in, I'm definitely more enthusiastic to play the game now than I ever was going to be.
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Old 09-06-2011, 07:42 PM   #6
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i'm excited to play this, it will definitely get me in the door. LotRO did this same thing for me and am ever so close to paying money to keep going.

I've never been a trekie but have always been interested. Netflix Star Trek every season, why not?! There's enough media out there to get anyone interested.
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Old 09-06-2011, 07:49 PM   #7
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Acclaimed? By who? I only ever heard it was 'alright'.
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Old 09-06-2011, 08:27 PM   #8
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I think I was too into WoW when LOTRO went f2p, and wasn't interested in another fantasy game, especially in a world that was so familiar but strange at the same time. Maybe I was just never *that* much of a LotR fan.

Star Trek Online interests me, but I just never got around to trying it. Out of curiosity, where in continuity does it take place? Post DS9/Voyager? Early Next Gen? Other? Who's the "baddie"?
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Old 09-06-2011, 09:16 PM   #9
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I think I was too into WoW when LOTRO went f2p, and wasn't interested in another fantasy game, especially in a world that was so familiar but strange at the same time. Maybe I was just never *that* much of a LotR fan.

Star Trek Online interests me, but I just never got around to trying it. Out of curiosity, where in continuity does it take place? Post DS9/Voyager? Early Next Gen? Other? Who's the "baddie"?
From memory, it takes place about 30 years after the end of the Dominion War or Nemesis (can't quite remember).

They actually went through and plotted what happens in between that with Paramount's consent. They published online what happens in the years leading up to the game (including why the Klingons break away from the Federation) which was pretty neat.
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Old 09-06-2011, 10:40 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by revelation View Post

Looking at the features matrix they posted, I agree that there's little incentive for a person to subscribe (or stay subscribed), unless Cryptic start pumping in a lot of reasonably priced ships/uniforms that you can buy where the 400 points a month becomes valuable.

Still, I see what F2P did for LoTRO and in the long-run, it's been quite good and I can't help but think that it'd be just as good for Star Trek. They're actually in a pretty cool position where they can sell (or give away to subscribers) a bunch of cool shit that won't have to break gameplay (or make STO become pay to win). It's actually the ideal IP for micro-transactions.
.
Except Perfect World has a reputation as a mmo developer who bleeds customers dry with their in game cash shops. While I do think a certain type of F2P, ala Lotro, DDO, etc can succeed, it hinges on how it is implemented. So far it seems like they are following the Champions Online model which works but we'll have to see how long that lasts.


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Acclaimed? By who? I only ever heard it was 'alright'.
Some of us *cough* love STO. I'll admit I am a bit fanboyish when it comes to STO because I grew up watching Trek through TNG, DS9, etc so it's easily my favorite tv show / franchise. The game isn't perfect but no mmo is, and I think it's a solid title.

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Originally Posted by Mazzicc View Post

Star Trek Online interests me, but I just never got around to trying it. Out of curiosity, where in continuity does it take place? Post DS9/Voyager? Early Next Gen? Other? Who's the "baddie"?
STO takes place in 2409, currently 2410 since it's been out a year, which is roughly thiry years from 2379, the current year from Star Trek Nemesis, which was the last TNG movie that took place after Voyager ended. The universe is the regular Trek one, so no JJ stuff. The baddies vary. Originally it was a war between the Klingon Empire and Federation but all hell has broken loose in the thirty year gap. The Romulan Empire is split in two, the Borg have a foothold into the Alpha Quadrant, Species 8472 has spies everywhere, the Cardassians want to reoccupy Bajor, there's shit going on all over the place.

Sorry.. [/fanboy] off
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Old 09-06-2011, 11:01 PM   #11
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ever since i played Earth and Beyond i've been secretly hopefully to find a decent game where i can tool around space in sweet starship. When i first heard about this, i thought maybe it was focused more on away missions than it was on upgrading your ship and having battles with it. Or is it sorta 50/50?
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Old 09-06-2011, 11:35 PM   #12
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ever since i played Earth and Beyond i've been secretly hopefully to find a decent game where i can tool around space in sweet starship. When i first heard about this, i thought maybe it was focused more on away missions than it was on upgrading your ship and having battles with it. Or is it sorta 50/50?
About 50/50. You can spec into either ground or space or try to balance between them but your game play will be split. Some missions will be ground based, others will be space, some will be a mixture of both. With the new ground combat update that came out recently, ground combat is epic.
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Old 09-07-2011, 12:15 AM   #13
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About 50/50. You can spec into either ground or space or try to balance between them but your game play will be split. Some missions will be ground based, others will be space, some will be a mixture of both. With the new ground combat update that came out recently, ground combat is epic.
When I was playing it, it was truly awful. The character felt odd, the combat seemed too quick, the animations were silly, etc. What changes did they make to the ground combat?
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Old 09-07-2011, 12:29 AM   #14
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When I was playing it, it was truly awful. The character felt odd, the combat seemed too quick, the animations were silly, etc. What changes did they make to the ground combat?
Too quick? That was a major complaint that the combat was too slow. Previously ground combat was very unresponsive, there was usually a delay in activating skills, sometimes dodges didn't go off when used, etc And it was locked into third person view with auto targeting and your target stays locked until dead.

Now you can go into a more FPS style view, where you aim in a fairly FPS / Shoulder style. You have the chance to miss your target. There are benefits to using it, some buffs work better in this mode rather than the older one. Some weapons do more damage, etc. Which is what the ground combat should have been at launch. I would relate it to a console FPS equivalent but I don't play console games, I thinK Gears of War is similar with its over the shoulder aspect. You can also now take cover behind objects, anything taller than you (standing or crouched) now properly breaks line of sight, and you can throw grenades wherever you want so if you need to throw them over boxes or bounce'em off walls you can. All kinds of small tweaks like that.
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Old 09-07-2011, 01:28 AM   #15
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Too quick? That was a major complaint that the combat was too slow. Previously ground combat was very unresponsive, there was usually a delay in activating skills, sometimes dodges didn't go off when used, etc And it was locked into third person view with auto targeting and your target stays locked until dead.
I was thinking more the whole...shoot...bolt up to target...hit them...get shot...hit them...get shot. It was really...fast. There was no element of danger, no need to dodge or take cover half the time, it really felt...off. The whole melee system was ridiculous too.

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Now you can go into a more FPS style view, where you aim in a fairly FPS / Shoulder style. You have the chance to miss your target. There are benefits to using it, some buffs work better in this mode rather than the older one. Some weapons do more damage, etc. Which is what the ground combat should have been at launch. I would relate it to a console FPS equivalent but I don't play console games, I thinK Gears of War is similar with its over the shoulder aspect. You can also now take cover behind objects, anything taller than you (standing or crouched) now properly breaks line of sight, and you can throw grenades wherever you want so if you need to throw them over boxes or bounce'em off walls you can. All kinds of small tweaks like that.
That definitely seems much better and where it should've been. Awesome stuff. I really can't wait for this relaunch.
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Old 09-07-2011, 04:30 AM   #16
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Even F2P, I can't say I'm remotely interested. Cryptic had a good run with City of Heroes prior to World of Warcraft releasing.

That seems to have been the only MMO that was able to stand on it's own with some amount of quality. Champions Online lacked direction.

I'd never buy another Cryptic game until significant reviews justified they had something worthwhile. They are a Hype company with prepaid subscription models, painfully begging to capitalize on revenue, expecting failed subscriptions.

They are a poor model to embrace IMHO.
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Old 09-07-2011, 06:24 AM   #17
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Goddammitall. It sounds like they took everything I liked about Star Trek, and threw it all in one game. Thank God I haven't found this until now, and that I have the incentive of "wait until it's free" to keep me from installing tonight.
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Old 09-07-2011, 06:51 AM   #18
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ever since i played Earth and Beyond i've been secretly hopefully to find a decent game where i can tool around space in sweet starship. When i first heard about this, i thought maybe it was focused more on away missions than it was on upgrading your ship and having battles with it. Or is it sorta 50/50?
EVE Online? X3? Should be right up your alley.
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Old 09-07-2011, 12:06 PM   #19
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Its a decent game. I played it for a month when it was new and maxed out my char. Havent played it since.
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Old 09-07-2011, 12:09 PM   #20
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YES!!! I paid for a Lifetime membership, and then never found anybody I knew who had a subscription. Now maybe I'll be able to get some of my friends to play once it goes free.
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