Star Trek MMORPG To Focus On TeamworkBy Michelle
March 5, 2005 - 10:39 PM
As the Star Trek Massively Multiplayer Online Role-Playing Game comes closer to beta testing, Glen Dahlgren, the lead designer of Star Trek Online from Perpetual Entertainment, has spoken to several online gaming publications about what fans can expect from the MMORPG.
Speaking to PC Gamer, Dahlgren reminded readers that the game is still early in the development process. "What I’m describing are intentions, rather than realized features. Things can and likely will change," he warned, assuring fans thaqt the staff at Perpetual "are dyed-in-the-wool fans of the franchise...it represents a galaxy ripe for exploration rather than a single, static, pre-established storyline." Because of the license acquired by the company, designers are able to use characters and scenarios from the entire Star Trek mythos, including both 23rd and 24th century elements.
"Star Trek lends itself well to team-based activities," he added, noting that players can solo but entire "ships" may be staffed, with vital elements in the medical and engineering as well as the command modules. The flexible platform will make this possible. "Want to assign new missions from a cell phone? How about check up on the progress of your crew via mission reports on the web? Perpetual’s platform can do that and much more." Player characters, he added, will not die in the game but will be "fatally wounded" and resuscitated. Players will be able to upgrade weapons and ships and to exchange technology with non-Starfleet races. "The fact that we have two very different dynamics, ship and ground, is daunting. Both will need to be refined...I think people will appreciate the ability to revisit elements from their favorite episodes."
In another article published by MMORPG.com, Dahlgren said that the look of the game would be as realistic as possible rather than "cartoony", promising that the starship would be a big focus of the game. "We're making lots of areas aboard the ship important, such as the Bridge, Quarters, Sick Bay, Recreation Area, Holodeck, Transporter Room, Engineering, and a lot more. Feel free to explore!"
Players may initially choose to be human, Vulcan or Klingon, with three types or dispositions of races: analytical, versatile, and aggressive. "Starfleet becomes much more of an equal opportunity employer, crews are more diverse, and it becomes easier to distinguish your character," Dahlgren noted. "And, of course, this leaves the Klingons as a possible expansion empire."
And an article at GamerGod, Dahlgren said that he expected non-Star Trek fans to be interested in the design, the fast action and the strategic content of the game as well as the opportunities for role-playing and socializing. Whether playing a role in science, tactical, engineering, medical or command, each player will have "vital interdependent tasks to perform during ship combat." He stressed the team aspect of the game, saying that NPC department chiefs would assign missions, "but NPC 'red shirted' security officers will listen to you on away missions, and potentially take orders." The game will emphasize combat, but there will be elements from the Star Trek universe that does not involve fighting, such as holographic interaction.
At last report, the Star Trek MMORPG is not expected to be available for beta testing until next year.