Star Trek Online

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Star Trek Online

Post  Joe on Tue Dec 13, 2011 2:52 pm

I thought I'd mention STO since it is going free to play (either already or next month). Its a possible option we could play around with, since it is free and PSO2 is awhile away. It has two main modes of combat, space and ground. Ground is more like a first person shooter, and space is pretty different than most combat systems. There is also a massive amount of gear and options, so it is very intricate and customizable for your playstyle (I can help out there if you get confused).

To start out, you can choose 1 of 3 professions, Science, Engineering, or Tactical. Science is a debuffer (stuns, etc.) and healer, but can do neat things like take out shields or cause spatial anomalies like gravity wells. Engineering does some debuffing (weapon malfunctions) and utility type things like setting turrets or medical generators, and Tactical are masters of hand held weapons and martial arts (and melee weapons such as the bat'leth, lirpa, swords, and falchions), as well as getting neat things like grenades. In addition, every profession also get skills as they level that other professions do not such as orbital strike (ground-engineering) and go down fighting (space-tactical).

The next step is ships. You can fly any type of ship as any captain (such as a tactical captain in a cruiser, or a science captain in an escort, etc.), they each have their own style. Escorts are small and DPS + movement oriented, they are also the main vessels that can load cannons. Cruisers are tanking oriented and have a slow turning speed, and load many weapons (but only one specific cruiser can load cannons), so they tend to broadside like pirate ships of old. Science Vessels focus on causing status effects and easily bring down shields, and they also get some special options not available to escorts or cruisers (never played one, so I dunno what it is). You can always switch your ship if it doesn't suit you, as long as you can afford it (you get free ships as you level). Some things to keep in mind are your professions space abilities, such as miracle worker (engineering), which can bring you back from the brink of destruction and make you a very effective tank, or maybe a really pesky DPS vessel.

The final step, is the various types of gear you can utilize.

Space:

Weapons-Primarily there are two types of weapons, beams which are effective on shields and projectiles which are effective on hulls. There are also cannons, turrets, and other types, but those are the main two. The various types of weapons also have side-effects attached to them, such as phaser beams taking out a random power system, such as engines, weapons, etc. or tetryon beams putting a very high drain on shields opening the vessel up to torpedos. This is similar to ground weapons as well.

Basic Systems-The main components of the starship is the the engine, deflector dish, and shield. There are at least 3 types available for each that have different effects. For instance, covariant shield arrays have a higher threshold, but a low regeneration rate, while resilient shield arrays have a low threshold and medium regeneration rate, but absorb more damage and less gets through to the hull. Different types of engines also affect movement, either maximum speed, turn rate, etc (larger ships are harder to turn, so they usually use combat impulse engines which have a bonus to turning). Deflector dishes usually improve different ship aspects, such as shield strength or improving science abilities like tachyon beam or gravity well.

Consoles-Depending on the vessel, you have a range of tactical, engineering, and science consoles, more of them are available on larger ships, and more are open on the type of ship (such and cruisers having more engineering consoles, and science having more science consoles, etc.). Engineering consoles usually focus on repair rates, defensive plating, and other ship aspects. Science consoles affect deflector dish abilities, crew health, and power transfer. Tactical consoles nearly always improve damage to specific weapon types or a broad range of types (such as 17% to phaser damage or 11% to flat out energy damage if you want to equip different types).

Other tips: Exploding ships are not good to float by =p. Each type of vessel has a certain amount of crew that affects regeneration rates and takes awhile to revive them, and large explosions can not only harm your vessel, but also your crew. In elite modes, you have to get new crew if they die, which makes you stay on your toes more. Also, just starting out you don't have to worry about the different weapon and ship equipment types too much since you get them gradually as you level. A plain jane setup is well balanced and effective enough to get you through for awhile.



Ground

Weapons-Same as ship weapons for the most part (phaser, disruptor, tetryon, etc.), but you have different types. You can get dual pistols, phasers, sniper rifles, assault rifles, mini-guns, melee weapons, etc. Tetryon miniguns are nicely effective at taking out many opponents shields at once.

Personal Shields-These are pretty standard and little choice, except that some can repel enemies or reduce damage to specific types, etc. Usually you'll have a regular old shield.

Body Armor-These varry quite a bit, and defend against certain types of damage, such as kinetic, physical, or energy, and may enhance your critical rate, damage, etc.

Kits-These are your primary ground skills, and they change based on your kit. For instance, I usually use bunker fabrication, which allows me to beam in medical generators, shield generators, turrets, force fields, and attack/support drones. Sometimes I use enemy neutralization, which lets me create a mine barrier, turret, and toss some grenades or cause weapon malfunctions. I'm not that experienced with tactical or science kits since I primarily play my engineer, but there are tons of options like that.


Both

Bridge Officers-These are your main crew and they effect what skills you have available in space, as well as accompanying you as your away team on ground missions and have their own set of skills you can customize. Sometimes bridge officers have a rare skill rank that they can teach other officers, if you like the ones you have or want a particular rank of a skill that isn't normally trainable (usually rank III).


Other

Duty Officers-These are a new addition as of the last update, and they're pretty cool. Its sort of like a facebook game concept, you set them to work and reap the rewards later. So you might send some officers away on a diplomatic mission for 6 hours, or have them scan some anomalies for 45 mins, etc. and they'll bring you back some items or skill points (exp), or possibly end up in sick bay. The main thing is matching up the right officer to the task, as some are unqualified (such as putting an astrometric officer on a geologist mission), but they can be successful anyway, just sometimes there is the risk of failure may put them in sick bay (usually for a day) or kill them off (usually white quality ones). Aside from that, they can also be slotted to improve certain ship and ground abilities, like lowering recharge time on a skill, or adding an effect, such as beaming in an extra turret or regenerating shields partially. When slotted, they can't go on missions till you unslot them.

So, there is a summary of the systems without a ton of technical jargon. The character creation is also very advanced, letting you alter pretty much everything about them, from cranal depth and height to finger length. You also have the option to create your own alien with specific traits that standard races do not have. This also applies to your bridge officers, as well as your character. Combat on ground is kind of FPS like, you can click an enemy and attack them, or point in their direction and fire and it should auto-select them, the same goes for melee weapons. Space might take some getting used to since it is 3 dimensional (up and down in addition to left, right, forward, and backward). Auto-attack is something you can turn on (and I'd recommend it at times, especially when you have 8 weapons on a cruiser, I usually make my beams auto-fire and choose when to launch my torpedo or mine field), so attacks are complete button pressing if you want them to be.

My current setup is this:
Engineer on an Exploration Cruiser (Captain 7 rank, currently using a galaxy class like the enterprise from TNG)

Space:
Tetryon beam weapons and shield busting abilities like tachyon beam and target system shields, as well as chroniton mines and eject warp plasma to slow down enemies, and quantum torpedo spread to take out ships quick or take down many mines or fighter types at once. Massive hull and crew to keep me tanking longer, and tough shields and experienced engineer crew to outlast multiple enemies.

Ground:
Bunker fabrication to support my allies, and a tetryon mini-gun to spray shield killing bullets at a mass of enemies.

Future expectations: At Vice Admiral I plan to get the Dreadnaught class cruiser (from the last episode of TNG), it is a tough cruiser that is a bit more fight oriented than tank, but it is the only cruiser that can carry cannons, the only federation ship with a cloak, and it has a massive phaser weapon built in that quickly takes down shields. My other choice is a refit of the galaxy class that'd make an excellent tank, but I'd like to switch between the two.

So yeah, there is a mass of info.
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Re: Star Trek Online

Post  harbinger on Wed Dec 14, 2011 10:22 pm

please tell me the combat system is better than anarchy or WoW...? please...
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Re: Star Trek Online

Post  Jonth on Wed Dec 14, 2011 11:00 pm

Well, I can already tell I probably won't like space combat. I never have liked it in any game that I have played. But yeah, like Jake said. If the melee/ranged combat system isn't point, click, press automated attack button, then it might be something to look into. One other thing I am concerned about. You said that bridge officers could accompany you down on away missions. What about other players; can they also accompany you on these missions? I would be disappointed if I didn't get to cooperate with my friends in an MMORPG.
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Re: Star Trek Online

Post  Joe on Wed Dec 14, 2011 11:29 pm

It is more similar to DDO sorta. Ground combat is kind of FPS-like. You can aim and crouch, strafe, etc. Hiding behind objects can block shots. There is also a bonus for attacking an opponent from behind. You can either click to target, or point in the direction of your enemy and fire (usually) to target them.

Space combat is quite a bit different, but positioning and movement is very important. Some weapons can only be fired from certain angles (turrets can fire 360 degrees around your ship, but cannons fire at 45 degrees to the front or rear, etc.) and some abilities work the same way, so getting behind or to the side of a science ship would be important to avoid their deflector dish (front), as well as any drain weapons they may have (front/rear). The same wouldn't work for a cruiser because beams fire at 250 degrees around the ship (because they're slow they tend to load weapons with a high arc), so staying at a distance is your best bet as they do the most damage from the sides, but their front or rear may have dangerous projectiles or the dreaded Eject Warp Plasma (slows nearby ships by 90% and deals plasma damage to the hull and bypasses shields, I call it poo gas). Shields are also divided up on your ship by the four cardinal directions, so if one quadrant is focused on and you don't move so they're targeting another quadrant or react to repair it, they can take it down quick and go straight for your hull and crew.

Space combat is much more complex from a mathematical stats standpoint (lots of Star Trek technical jargon and gear/ability choices), where as ground is more about your personal ability, but they both require skill to do well, and they're both frequently encountered in missions (personally I prefer space, but ground is fun too).

You can play with friends too (which ups the difficulty auto-magically by adding more/tougher enemies), if you don't have enough members I think the leader can choose from their bridge officers to fill the open spots. I think the system may still defaulted to auto-grouping, it was when I started anyway, but chose to turn it off since I got a lot of people who didn't know what they were doing and making the mission harder on myself.
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Re: Star Trek Online

Post  Joe on Wed Dec 14, 2011 11:34 pm

Also, like WoW and most MMOs, there are massive raids and pvp (such as tons of people raiding a borg outpost, or trying to defend against the borg while you fight off klingon players from the opposite faction).

Oh, and one of the newer additions is the ability to create your own missions and share them with the community.
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Re: Star Trek Online

Post  Jonth on Wed Dec 14, 2011 11:44 pm

Well, I just watched a video of the ground combat, and it actually does look fun and action-y. Again, not too sure about how I feel about the space combat, but I might be able to struggle through it for the good part. I am looking to give it a shot, how about you Jake? From what I can tell, ground combat looks like something you would enjoy.

Combat Video
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Re: Star Trek Online

Post  Joe on Thu Dec 15, 2011 12:00 am

If I play a tank in space, pretty much all you have to do is dps which should make that faster. I usually play support on ground so my team can overun the enemy while I place fancy gadgets to keep them alive and support my lack of dps.

I can tank in a cuiser, Jake can dps in an escort, and Jon can dps and support in a science ship. On ground I'll go engineer provide survival support (bunker fab), you guys can go whatever, and I can use my medical/engineering officers to fill in spots that way you can dps as you like.
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Re: Star Trek Online

Post  Jonth on Thu Dec 15, 2011 8:31 am

From what I can tell, it doesn't look like the free-to-play starts until January 17.
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Re: Star Trek Online

Post  Joe on Thu Dec 15, 2011 11:39 am

Ah, figures. They changed the system to free to play but haven't opened it up yet. Used to, you'd get badges as a currency from various missions to buy nice gear, but now they added in "dilithium" which replaced all badge types, and you can trade it for cryptic points (the game's cash shop currency) and like-wise purchase it for points (it varries, but something like 500 dilithium to buy 1 cpoint, and 1 cpoint for 400 dilithium to sell). They also improved leveling speed and added in taxi type service (in-game money to transwarp to the area for the mission). I was commander rank last month, but now I'm almost rear admiral on my main character.
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Re: Star Trek Online

Post  harbinger on Sat Dec 17, 2011 2:31 am

so free to play? cause i might could be beamed up... but you do know i'll refer to jon as spock... haven't determined if your kirk or scotty...
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Re: Star Trek Online

Post  Jonth on Sat Dec 17, 2011 10:36 am

Come January 17, I could be brought to play as well. I have console gaming to do until then anyway. I'm getting Final Fantasy 8 and 9, and Rogue galaxy from Sara.
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Re: Star Trek Online

Post  Joe on Sat Dec 17, 2011 11:28 am

Jon could actually play a vulcan. I think the catian race should be free when it goes F2P (They're panther-like people, canon from their cartoon series, but there is nothing cartoony about them). I think they're like $5 or so otherwise. They have neat tactical type traits, such as a running pounce ability.

I think I'm more like a Next Generation character... Maybe McCoy (doctor bones) from the old Star Trek. I guess I could be Scotty since I'm an engineer.

-engaged in battle against 5 klingon birds of prey and Jake draws aggro-
Joe-"Sorry Jake, I canna extend tha shields furtha, she canna take the strain!".
Jake-"Do it anyway!"
Jon-"That is illogical"
Jake-"Stuff it pointy ears"

Edit: Here is the Catian race
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Re: Star Trek Online

Post  Jonth on Sat Dec 17, 2011 1:18 pm

Lol
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Re: Star Trek Online

Post  harbinger on Sat Dec 17, 2011 6:10 pm

Joe wrote:Jon could actually play a vulcan. I think the catian race should be free when it goes F2P (They're panther-like people, canon from their cartoon series, but there is nothing cartoony about them). I think they're like $5 or so otherwise. They have neat tactical type traits, such as a running pounce ability.

I think I'm more like a Next Generation character... Maybe McCoy (doctor bones) from the old Star Trek. I guess I could be Scotty since I'm an engineer.

-engaged in battle against 5 klingon birds of prey and Jake draws aggro-
Joe-"Sorry Jake, I canna extend tha shields furtha, she canna take the strain!".
Jake-"Do it anyway!"
Jon-"That is illogical"
Jake-"Stuff it pointy ears"

Edit: Here is the Catian race


dude... you nailed it... however about that time we would engage in ramming speed.
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Re: Star Trek Online

Post  harbinger on Sun Dec 18, 2011 3:26 pm

so made a char... its one of those people with the spots on the sides of their faces... haven't played but like 20 minutes plan to at some point today... names jake harbinger. feel especially nerdy now. space fighting is slow and kinda boring, ground is okay so far
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Re: Star Trek Online

Post  Joe on Sun Dec 18, 2011 5:12 pm

Space fighting will get faster when we fight together and you get an actual escort ship. You can add me at Zouka@Azurous. Is your handle Harbinger (mine is Azurous)? I should be on most of the day.
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Re: Star Trek Online

Post  harbinger on Sun Dec 18, 2011 7:47 pm

yeah.. i keep getting booted at every load screen pretty much... as far as names go... i got no clue how they do
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Re: Star Trek Online

Post  Joe on Mon Dec 19, 2011 11:56 am

It might be easier to meet in the Sol System or something then, and just add eachother in person. The unique naming system exists because is uses your handle so you can have any name you want for a character (like Zouka@Jimbob compared to my Zouka@Azurous). Regardless, if you type Zouka@Azurous into your buddy list it will send me an invite.

I usually hang-up at 96% or so on Earth Spacedock and DS9. I think it is from the huge amount of people on there + newwave's lag. It could just be the game having issues rendering it though. When I re-login I get through though, usually around 94%.
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Re: Star Trek Online

Post  harbinger on Tue Dec 20, 2011 9:10 am

yeah... i think it might be something to do with the free account, its almost timed... but i'm not going to be on much probably til the first of the year. busy week. i'm just trying to get a feel for it and figure out how to get the xbox controller to work worth a crap... no good in space combat btw... wont go up or down
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Re: Star Trek Online

Post  Joe on Tue Dec 20, 2011 11:40 am

Alrighty. That sucks, I usually use the mouse for space movement, I don't see why a joystick wouldn't work :/ . I just made Rear Admiral Upper Half, just a few more levels till Vice Admiral. Hopefully they'll release more levels when it goes F2P.
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