Anyone playing Star Trek Online these days?

Star Trek Online, the MMO, is anyone here playing, or has anyone played recently? I had the game a few years back, gonna guess 2010 but not one hundred percent on that timeline, and I sprang for the subscription.

I’m wondering if anyone has more recent experience than that and can thus tell me if it’s worth a return to the game. I deleted the game files after I stopped playing (and lost that computer in a divorce anyway), so I’d have to download again, and that was the single worst download of my entire online life. Hence my hesitation.

I had some issues with the game as it stood at the time. The ground game was terrible, for instance, truly underwhelming and not at all compelling. The ship customization was, necessarily I’m sure, pretty limited. I’m guessing they could only do so much with the license, but as it was it didn’t really deliver. At the time, if memory serves, there were two factions, Federation and Klingon and there wasn’t a great deal of appeal to playing the Klingon side that I ever found. Any other issues escape me at this time.

What the game did offer, in my view, was a great deal of fun in-ship. Some of the battles in space were really engaging, and the Instances were especially fun. You weren’t unduly dependent on a standard-issue healer like in so many other MMO’s, you and whoever else showed up just went to town on the bad guys and blew shit up, in space! Unfortunately, if no one else showed up, you were scrood.

Still, even really fun space battles get tired after a while and aren’t enough to bring me back.

So what I’d like to know if anyone here does know; is it better now, ground-game wise? How restrictive and unrewarding is the Free-2-Play game build? Are the in-ship battles still, for want of a better term, kind of epic? And is there any real incentive to try out other factions beyond the Federation?

I got bored, downloaded the game again, and have been playing it for a couple of days now. I was torn between letting this lonely little thread fade away, and acknowledging that at least some of those views might have stemmed from a passing interest in this game by other Straight Dope gamers. If the former, I apologize for the seemingly self-serving bump. If the latter, then I can spare a few more keystrokes to share my experience with anyone whose curiosity might be piqued.

First, the download. You have to download the Arc Games client before you can download any of the games there. Irritating, but not uncommon these days, with other vendors using a similar model. It’s a quick download, and the game then downloaded much, much, much better than the last time I played this thing. I had a ridiculously slow connection at the time, but a friend with a much better connection told me he had real issues getting that download over and done with, too. If anyone had a similar experience, that’s, thankfully, a thing of the past. I did have to kill the launcher a couple of times and then re-launch to get past the patches. Other than that, it was a hitch-free download.

The issues I had back then (and upon reflection, I think I must’ve played in '12, not '10) remain, but are mitigated somewhat. The ground game is still pretty lackluster and not terribly interesting, but they don’t seem as tedious this time, and the controls seem a lot less…wonky, I guess. Perhaps I remember it worse than it was, but from this perspective, it seems like a net gain.

The ship customization is still fairly limited, although you can spend ‘zen’ to get some cosmetic changes that are tucked behind the pay-wall. Some impressive looking stuff there, from what I’ve seen, but nothing I just have to have.

There’s now another faction beyond Federation and Klingon, they’ve added Romulan. I haven’t tried it yet, nor have I tried Klingon again, I’m still mucking about in Starfleet.

The in-ship aspect of the game is as fun as I remembered it. It’s the major selling point and the main reason I’ve been considering trying the game out again. Not much has changed here that I’ve found, thus far. And I’m okay with that. I guess I was wrong in that earlier post, it is enough to bring me back. :slight_smile:

The Free-2-Play model they use doesn’t seem terribly restrictive to me. A lot of this seems to be based on micro-transactions (I think that’s the terminology I want). For instance, the aforementioned ‘zen’, which I believe is an Arc-based currency that can be used in other games as well. I’m not a micro-transaction kind of guy, so I haven’t followed through on that. If I run into something behind the pay-wall I just can’t live without, I’ll spring for the subscription again, but the breakdown on the pay vs. no-pay table on their website didn’t exactly compel me to reach for the wallet.

I haven’t answered all my own questions yet, but if anyone else is at all interested, there’s my take on it after a couple of days back in the Captain’s seat. Maybe I should get the lifetime subscription so I can get a captain’s yacht. :slight_smile:

I had fun last time I played a couple years back. Enhanced by me playing different Trek soundtracks.