Curious what the much-anticipated Star Trek Online will contain? We were there to get all the answers at the Cryptic Studios panel at NYCC, and those answers may be very pleasing indeed.
During yesterday's Cryptic panel, we got a sneak peak at the highly-anticipated Star Trek Online MMO game. This absolutely gorgeous-looking game is set in the year 2409, 30 years past the events of the ST:TNG film "Nemesis." Klingon compromises have fallen apart, with the Klingon Empire on the verge of all-out war. There will also be "an ancient threat from the past." You'll be able to play as either a Starfleet officer or as a member of the Klingon Defense, with both choices at Captain rank. Yes, you will be a Captain of your own starship. You'll be able to select your bridge crew and command them, as well as pilot the ship yourself.
Early on you'll choose your career path — either tactical, engineering or science-based. But the game seeks to bring to the fore what the creators feel to be the fundamentals of Star Trek: space, shipboard and ground exploration. Gameplay will be focused on beaming down to planets for a variety of missions, mastering shipboard concerns and, of course, exploring the final frontier.
You'll be able to have "total customization" of your own alien races, with the ability to modify characters down to the slightest skin-textures and features. While you'll also be able to choose from all of the "known and loved Trek races" to play, if you've ever wanted to father your own alien species, this will be your chance. The brief glimpses and stills we were given of the actual game look extraordinary. The graphics are detailed, rich and look better than the space scenes in most movies. We got to see the character-design elements in action, and the level of detail will please even the most exacting of fans.
After the panel, I asked game producer Craig Zinkievich whether we could expect a high level of social interaction to be available between players along with missions and character-building. He confirmed that character interaction would be very present in the game — just as it is in the Star Trek universe — with sites like space stations offering places to congregate. "And pleasure planets?" I suggested, to which he laughed and skirted the issue — but implied that it could be a possibility, and definitely isn't ruled out. See you all on Risa?